Saturday, September 8, 2012
Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade Setup
It used to be the thing to do to go to the Museum of Natural History the night before the Macy's Parade and watch them set up, which would involve, among other things, a bunch of really large balloons on their backs being inflated. Now it has been discovered, and it is a tourist thing, and real NYers stay away, I am told. This happens on 79th and 81st street, between Columbus and CPW.
This picture would be from the late 1990s. For those who are unaware of the capabilities of various high speed black and white films, I have enclosed a detail from this picture which, if you look carefully, shows good detail inside a utility room inside the building. I doubt it was handheld, so the camera had probably been stabilized on some available geometry, such as a mailbox or fire hydrant.
Whenever I think of this event, I remember the first time I saw it, before it was discovered, and an embarrassing celebrity moment that occurred. This would have been in the late 1970s or early 1980s and a few years after Annie Hall (1977) had come out, and the "Annie Hall - look" was an identifiable fashion trend. Diane Keaton actually dresses that way, one heard, and so Woody Allen just incorporated it into the movie. So that night, watching the balloons being inflated, I saw across the street a particularly egregious case of someone dressed up to look like Diane Keaton in full Annie Hall regalia. After a while, I figured out it was Diane Keaton and I should stop staring at her. Its impolite to stare, anyway.