Peeks at the lake…

…during 9/11’s contemplative walk.

Morning at the Lake–11SEP2012

Here…then Gone

From yesteryear…

…but photographed yesterday!  Of course, I Shopped it to the nth degree!

Gamewell Fire Alarm (c. early 20th century)

From Wikipedia:

Fire alarm call box

A fire alarm box is an outdoor device used for notifying a fire department of a fire. Early boxes used the telegraph system and were the main method of calling the fire department to a neighborhood in the days before people had telephones. When the box is triggered, a spring-loaded wheel spins and taps out a signal onto the fire alarm telegraph wire, indicating the box number. The receiver at a fire station then can match the number to the neighborhood. The boxes are a form of street furniture still in service in many places, though many towns and cities have removed them due to cost of maintaining the obsolete system. This action has been blocked by courts in New York, where the boxes are seldom used for any purpose bar making hoax calls.


The first practical fire alarm system utilizing the telegraph system was developed by Dr. William Channing and Moses G. Farmer in 1852. Two years later, they applied for a patent for their “Electromagnetic Fire Alarm Telegraph for Cities”. In 1855, John Gamewell of South Carolina purchased regional rights to market the fire alarm telegraph, later obtaining the patents and full rights to the system in 1859. John F. Kennard bought the patents from the government after they were seized after the Civil War, returned them to Gamewell, and formed a partnership, Kennard and Co., in 1867 to manufacture the alarm systems. The Gamewell Fire Alarm Telegraph Co. was later formed in 1879. Gamewell systems were installed in 250 cities by 1886 and 500 cities in 1890. By 1910, Gamewell had gained a 95% market share.

Usefulness during communications disruptions

In New York City there are 15,000 call boxes. The September 11, 2001 attacks knocked out cell phone service for a large part of the city. If the power is out, people will not be able to charge batteries in portable phones, and VoIP telephony typically will not work without power. The telegraph alarm boxes, on the other hand, are powered from a separate supply and will likely continue to work in the face of outages of both electrical and telephone systems.


Decommissioned fire alarm boxes have become an item which people collect. Some are collected as-is for their historical significance, while others are used for decoration.


There are still many of these in Chicago.



Just so we always remember…

…and NEVER forget!  If we do forget…it’s pretty much all over…and you can call yourself a Marxist, Alinskyite, Communist…whatever.

But you WILL have to obey the DICK-TATER Soebarkah, whom I consider a mere form of mutated potato.

And, apparent;y, his wifey, Meeeeee-chele, don’t like potatos, unless they are French-fried!

Back, it seems, a thousand years ago…

…when I was a child, we used to hang our stockings and hope and pray that St. Nicholas would bring us some small gift.  My mother was raised Greek Orthodox…and had to go to ‘Greek school’, even though my grandfather, Aristophanes (Harry), died when she was only three years old.  This was back in the early 1920s.

Mother kept the tradition of St. Nicholas Day, however.  Each December 5th, I and my three brothers would put out a stocking on the dining room table (we couldn’t REALLY hang them, as we had no fireplace–like in the movies!), and lo and behold, we’d wake to oranges, and ribbon candy, and even pomegranates (not your ordinary fare in those days.  Oranges were especially hard to find at Christmas time)!  One year, when all of us were especially BAD (I guess that’s the year a family friend, Harry Kalifidas, died, and my brothers chased me –I was four and they were older–around the funeral home…and we caused quite a ruckus!), we received coal–REAL coal, in our stockings.  Apparently, this figure visited:

Black Peter, one of the really creepy European stories around the Holiday Season. Also known as Krampus. This is the giver of coal, the punisher of bad little children.

I wish I had photos of these moments in time.

Today, it seems, no one regards dear Nicholas, nor his accomplishments in his day.

“Saint Nicholas was a real 4th Century Greek Saint who was admired for being kind and helping those in need.  He was renowned for secretly giving gifts and placing coins in the shoes of the needy. In one story Saint Nicholas helped a man who had three daughters who couldn’t marry by throwing bags of money in their house when they came of age, but being very modest he did it in the night so the man would thank God instead. He is the patron saint of children, unmarried girls, and sailors.”

On September 11, 2001, the church of St. Nicholas (at the World Trade Center) was destroyed.  It is a Greek Orthodox church.

I ask, not for me at all, but for the many who perished that day, to contribute something to St. Nicholas Church, that it may be re-built…and honor the victims of the Islamic attack on NYC September 11, 2001.

Their website is not working apparently…but this is the address:

St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church
P.O. Box 340968
Brooklyn, New York 11234

Efharisto!  (Thank you!)

To All Those…

…who have passed before us, and especially friends and family lost on September 11, 2001.

I will remember you
Will you remember me?
Don’t let your life pass you by
Weep not for the memories

Remember the good times that we had?
I let them slip away from us when things got bad
How clearly I first saw you smilin’ in the sun
Wanna feel your warmth upon me, I wanna be the one

I will remember you
Will you remember me?
Don’t let your life pass you by
Weep not for the memories

I’m so tired but I can’t sleep
Standin’ on the edge of something much too deep
It’s funny how we feel so much but we cannot say a word
We are screaming inside, but we can’t be heard

But I will remember you
Will you remember me?
Don’t let your life pass you by
Weep not for the memories

I’m so afraid to love you, but more afraid to loose
Clinging to a past that doesn’t let me choose
Once there was a darkness, deep and endless night
You gave me everything you had, oh you gave me light

And I will remember you
Will you remember me?
Don’t let your life pass you by
Weep not for the memories

And I will remember you
Will you remember me?
Don’t let your life pass you by
Weep not for the memories
Weep not for the memories