Sunday, July 09, 2006
I live in NYC because of Days like Today
Among other reasons (career mostly), I live in NYC for days like today, and last weekend and a few days before that, when Italy won their futbol games. This year my husband decided to institute "World Cup Fever" in the household, and as a result, I began documenting the crazy Italians in our neighborhood through the lens of my camera.
It started when they won a few matches ago and there was a string of cars running the stop sign at my corner....probably 30 in a row, all waving their Italian Flags and honking their horns (even the firetruck participated). I hung my head out the window and snapped some shots. A few minutes later, from the other direction came a parade of people ON FOOT, taking up the entire street, carrying a 30 foot Italian Flag. Incredible.
The next time they played it was the 4th of July, so on our way to our friends gathering, I stood up through the sun roof of our car with my camera and snapped some photos while my husband drove around the block a few times. This was exhilerating.
Today I decided I would do my documenting on foot. As soon as they kicked the last goal, I ran outside and to the busiest street I could find. I just followed the noise of celebration. I was only out about 20 minutes (had to get back to my garlic mashed potatoes and chocolate chip banana cake), but I had a great time and got some great shots.
Why was this experience so compelling for me as a person and a "photographer"? (because it certainly had nothing to do with soccer) A few reasons:
A. My husband and I have very little in common as far as interests, likes and hobbies, so I wanted to show interest in his "World Cup Fever" in my own way.
B. I have a new camera
C. The unity that this event has brought for not only the Italians, but the entire neighborhood (although I didn't see many French folk out).
D. The mystery of the effect that this Italian Soccer Team has on one small neighborhood in 1 of 5 humongous New York City Boroughs.
E. Capturing people in the thrill of the moment. This is something they are stoked about, and who doesn't want a piece of that?