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Old February 28th, 2011, 07:22 AM   #1
...wolf in cheap clothing
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Atlanta: A Beautiful Sorrow

This past weekend, my boyfriend and I headed down to Atlanta to take in an opera at the Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre which, incidentally, has the acoustics of a public restroom and is not recommended by Hauntedhead Enterprises or any of its subsidiaries. As a further aside, while Porgy and Bess is indisputably a work of great art, it confirmed what I had long suspected, which is that spoken English sounds idiotic when sung.

Anyway, before the opera on Saturday evening we spent the day on foot in the central city. My legs are still sore and in addition, I've got a lot on my mind. More on that later.

Hello and welcome to the...

The view from our hotel balcony:

Atlanta on foot:

In preparation for the 1996 Centennial Olympic Games, Atlanta spruced up its downtown with numerous artworks, including a great many based on traditional Southern folk art. A lot of the artworks can be found on the little plazas that cap the interstate highways running through downtown.

Here is an artwork designed for use as a planter.

Here is the homeless person asleep behind the planter.

See this lovely old house stranded behind its gate amidst all this urban eruption? Keep it in mind.

My faithful companion.

I told you to keep it in mind... Here's a side to central Atlanta that isn't often explored. Atlanta is not what you could call an historic city, despite the history that has occurred there. However, some areas do retain the panache of long-gone days.

The skyscrapers of Midtown:

Outwrite Books is located at the intersection of 10th Street and Piedmont Avenue, nerve center of gay Atlanta.

In the parking lot of the Caribou Coffee at 10th and Piedmont, Nellie McQueen blocks traffic while performing to a medley of Lady GaGa's greatest hits.

As a native and resident of Asheville, I am required by law to photograph anything that includes the word "Biltmore" in its name.

Biltmore squared!

Would anyone care to speculate on the fuel efficiency of that Hummer limo?

A taste of the Rust Belt in the heart of the Sun Belt.

See this? There's more to be said on this subject a bit later on.

Sandwiches, soup, and blankets being dispensed to the homeless in Hurt Park.

A rally in support of the public sector employees of Wisconsin was going on in front of the Georgia State Capitol Building.

The skateboarders across the street from the capitol were ambivalent to the plight of Wisconsinites.

I believe this is the Georgia State Board of Education building. Not sure. What I do know is that the entire next block had been taken over by the homeless, all the way up to the Shrine of the Immaculate Conception. The smell of piss was overwhelming.

Another swing by Hurt Park and its homeless.

Now, here we are to the subject weighing on my mind. Throughout this thread there have been pictures of the homeless citizens of Atlanta.

In Asheville, depending upon the pleasantness of the season, there are between five hundred and a thousand homeless people -- most of them completely out of their minds -- roaming the city on any given day. This in a city of only 80,000 people, and as a result, the people of Asheville have developed a cold-bloodedness toward the homeless that would do our big city cousins quite proud.

I personally have been part of a crowd that was stepping over a toddler lying motionless face-down on the sidewalk. I have also personally witnessed a ragged-looking man drop to his knees at the corner of College and Broadway in downtown Asheville and begin shrieking and beating his forehead against the curb hard enough that I could hear the crack of it from across the street. It immediately became obvious who among the nearby pedestrians was a tourist and who was a local. The tourists whipped out their cameras and phones and began taking his picture. The locals ignored him completely.

I guess it's because when you're at home, everything -- the ubiquitous homeless population included -- is part of the background. Thus, you don't see it. When you're a tourist, however, you have to be aware of your surroundings for your own safety. And thus, you see the misery around you.

These people in Atlanta, and these people in Asheville, and these people everywhere walking the face of God's gray earth, are human beings. Someone once loved them. Someone may love them still.

None of them deserve to be forgotten. None of them deserve to be ignored.

Moving on, as we always move on, never seeing, or if we ever do see, forgetting as soon as our backs are turned.

And in closing, one final look at the homeless of Atlanta -- a beautiful...


Bring me the head of Strawberry Shortcake!!
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Old February 28th, 2011, 11:47 AM   #2
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Great, very nice photos, views of Atlanta
Urban Showcase: Athens Kalamata Trikala Thessaloniki
Cityscapes: Paris Barcelona Dubai, U.A.E. Monte Carlo, Monaco
General photography: Castles of France - Chateau de France and, since May of '08: Greece!
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Old February 28th, 2011, 02:24 PM   #3
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Nice collection, Atlanta looks interesting.
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Old February 28th, 2011, 05:19 PM   #4
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Great pictures and story too. It looks that "American dream" is nightmare to some.
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Old February 28th, 2011, 06:54 PM   #5
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Thanks for the photos of a city we don't hear much about over here.
Can't say I would rush to go there (actually I've used the airport to change flights!) except maybe a stop over to see the fabulous "Fox" theatre, as I love old movie palaces and this one is still going although as a live venue.
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Old March 2nd, 2011, 02:02 AM   #6
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Great photos!
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Old March 2nd, 2011, 03:49 AM   #7
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Nice tour
Операція И - 19.3.15
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Old March 2nd, 2011, 10:01 AM   #8
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Were these all taken really early in the morning? There's like no people except for the homeless and some power walkers.
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Old March 2nd, 2011, 10:12 PM   #9
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great photo collections.
you have depicted characters of the vast parts of the city.
thanks for the tour.

Vancouver&Burbs TravelPhotosUpdate
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