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Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Photo Wed: 7/1/09 : The Rainbow Connection

MJ's Rainbow 6/27 - 11
(by B'klynBorn from flickr: Fort Greene Park)

Considering the size and diversity of the planet it's probably true to say that rainbows are an everyday thing. But it's not everyday that you get so close to everyone watching one rainbow. Last weekend, on Saturday the 27th I saw one over Brooklyn and so did many others. It kept my attention for nearly a half hour of shining brilliance.

As I've told friends I've never seen a rainbow as well defined, vibrant, wide and long lasting as that rainbow. What a way to end a week of surprises good and bad.

Rainbow over Brooklyn
("Rainbow over Brooklyn" by Barry Yanowitz, on Flickr: Downtown)

The rainbow which was observed by thousands at least (possibly millions when you consider that the populations of Brooklyn, Staten Island, Queens and lower Manhattan alone, number in the 4 million range).

(by Danon' from flickr: East River)

My research comes from the search I did on flickr by topic and date. Dozens of shots began to load from flickr, all rainbows, all from Saturday all with Brooklyn center frame.

Sign from above
(photo by andyclymer on flickr: Williamsburg)

Dozens of pics of the same rainbow from various vantage points and angles all over Brooklyn and the surrounding areas.
MJ's Rainbow 6/27 - 17
(by B'klynBorn on Flickr: Fort Greene Park)

How ubiquitous was it? To give an idea how much of Brooklyn was covered by this one rainbow, I found a photo on flickr with a clear view of my residence framed by the rainbow (I wasn't home but it was nice to see what it would have looked like had I been there) there's almost nothing remarkable about that block of mine and yet someone was moved to photograph it and had an impressive view at that.

Whats at the End
(by Alberto Vargas26 on flickr: Williamsburg)

I was so taken with the phenomenon that I created the flickr group "Brooklyn's June 27th Rainbow Massive" you should really check out the snapshot-in-time it offers in addition to the variety of rainbow orientations. It's not often you get to see what people are doing all across Brooklyn at roughly the same moment.

rainbow's watching you
Astrotowers -Rainbow June 27, 2009
(top: by underwhelmer: Prospect Park / bottom by Rubys Host from flickr: Coney Island)

All the photos on this posting are also from the flickr group and besides catching the rainbow, in an impromptu (nearly) all Brooklyn snapshot, the photos in the group offer some great views by photogs with great eyes. Check it out.

Rainbow over NY
(by RICHBRAT from flickr)

Which takes me back to the dynamics of the rainbow. Don't get me wrong I've seen rainbows before, and while they're pretty I've never thought much more than "oh look there's moisture in the air combining with refracted sunlight..."

Rainbow over Clinton Hill
(by yatta from flickr Clinton Hill)

But (cue the crazy talk) this rainbow was different, as you'll see in my flickr pics, it appeared briefly and then disappeared, reappeared suddenly and then grew from an almost totally vertical band to an arc that then grew until it seemed to connect both north and shout Brooklyn from Williamsburg to Coney Island. And it lingered.
Brooklyn Rainbow
(photo by petname on flickr Crown Heights)

Long enough that I called people in Bushwick and Flatlands from Fort Greene and was able to direct them to see it with enough time to walk around taking more and more pictures.
Brooklyn Rainbow
(by M505XL from Flickr: Flatlands)

The pictures don't do it justice, the two bands of the rainbow were visible, the thinner outer band less so but the colors against a fairly bright sky were vibrant and frankly, cheerfully fake looking to the point of seeming painted on.

Brooklyn Rainbow
(photo by petname on flickr Crown Heights)

And for the first time I looked up at a rainbow and thought,"water vapor my ass, that thing is magic!"

I think we did it. I have complete belief that the intangibles of life affects the physics of nature, and that human expressions such as emotion are just one of those affecting factors. I believe happiness, sadness, etc have manifestations in the visible world. My caveat is I don't think the small scale, one individual's emotional/spiritual affect on the world for example, is enough to be noticed. So if I win the lotto I don't expect anyone to see pot's of gold other than me. However on a large scale if we all feel the same way so to speak, I really think we can have an effect on the world around us.

A rainbow in Brooklyn
(by Abhimanyu Lad from flickr: near Metrotech)

A week ago I was looking forward to my niece's high school graduation on Thursday. Thursday comes, I'm in an auditorium at Brooklyn College sitting with family waiting for the graduation to start when a ripple of conversation begins to spread. My family and the rest of the audience began checking mobile devices. Thus the news was broken, as well as some websites and communications networks and so the weekend was turned into a review and assessment of the life of Michael Jackson.

The sheer volume of people interested in the news was enough to motivate us to push the internet into a busy signal or at least Google for a few minutes. I know what you're thinking, "google is essentially a bunch of computers, a device, we pushed it, we broke it. The atmosphere is physics, we can't just change the laws of science and physics."(cap'n)

(from MariaTeresaCB from flickr: Prospect Park)

Well, okay. You can talk about refractionary forces on molecules of water, suspended in the atmosphere until you're blue (and every other color of the rainbow) in the face, but really isn't science a consistently repeatable, confidence inducing magic trick? And who's to say positive energy is any less potent or operational?

FU Rainbow!
(from MariaTeresaCB from flickr: Prospect Park)

I was at a Michael Jackson party on Saturday night in Sputnik (thanks DJ Spinna) where the crowd was so deep with hundreds of focus points of personal nostalgic revelry and exhalation; that the air turned to steam. During the same weekend Pride celebrations filled the canyons of Manhattan expressing not only cultural joy and tradition; but did so in the most favorable political climate for that culture in over a decade.
Brooklyn Bridge Rainbow Series 4
(by The MikeD on Flickr: South Street Seaport)

For over thirty-five years I've lived in this borough and I've never seen a rainbow much less a double solid manifestation stretch borough to borough lasting nearly 30 minutes.
A Rainbow Grows in Brooklyn
(by BarkerBell from flickr: Williamsburg)

Maybe there aren't enough occasions in our fractured world where we've all got the same topic in mind, or the same level of emotional out-pour, to really see what can be manifested en masse.
double rainbow
(by simply photo on flickr)

Unicorn Vomiting Rainbows
(by sarkeezy on flickr: Williamsburg)

Sounds crazy? Not to the lovers, the dreamers and me.
MJ's Rainbow 6/27 - 18
(by B'klynBorn on Flickr: Fort Greene Park)

(Wikipedia rainbow definition entry)



  2. what a lovely post. Thank you for going through so much effort to aggregate these photos.


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