San Francisco in late-afternoon May can be very cold. The locals chuckle, because tourists expect California to be warm in May/June. And because we’re cold, all tourists must buy sweatshirts at the hotel gift shop that have “San Francisco” printed on them. I know I have. There are often thousands of us walking around with basically the same sweatshirt. The locals know who we are.
We had a nice breakfast down on Elizabeth Street this morning with friends, and then all decided to walk over and see a NYC Rock History landmark. Two different pieces of rock history happened here at 96 and 98 St. Marks Place.
FIRST, in 1975 these two buildings became the album cover for Led Zepplin’s Physical Graffiti album. Here is how they look today to my camera:
Here is the album cover from 1975. To make the photo square for an album cover the artist removed an entire floor.
My picture from today shows that the building actually has 5 floors:
The SECOND event from Rock History that took place here: The Rolling Stones used the steps of 96 St. Marks for their “Waiting On a Friend” video. That’s Mick Jagger and Peter Tosh (front left) on the steps.
Here are those same steps today:
The song has been a favorite since I saw the video debut on Saturday Night Live. Again, the same location at St. Marks Place. Here’s the video (directed by Michael Lindsay-Hogg who also made the Beatles “Let It Be” movie):
By the way, breakfast with friends this morning was at “Lovely Day” on Elizabeth Street in Nolita. Great strawberry & banana pancakes. Mimosas and Stumptown coffee. Good service, too. I haven’t blogged in a week because the Boston Bombings really effected us. Dawn and I worked the Finish Line at the Marathon for our Boston radio station for a lot of years. Today was a nice step back into the light.
UPDATE- More reading: Candid photos taken during the making of “Waiting on a Friend” at this link: http://www.iorr.org/talk/read.php?1,598709,598709
Comets hyped as “The Comet of the Century” have famously fizzled. (See Comet Kohoutek) But this new one, just…might…be…spectacular. Astronomers think that when this comet swings around the sun it might become as bright as the full moon and be visible during the day. THAT would be spectacular. Here’s what you need to know below my photo of Comet Hale-Bopp.
When can I see it and what’s it’s name? See it in late November and into December. It’s name is Comet Ison.
Why is this one so exciting? This comet is called a “sungrazer” because it’s going to come very close to the sun’s surface as it whips around. This makes more of the comet melt leaving a bright tail across the sky. The comet itself doesn’t produce light, it’s material reflects the sun. The closer to the sun the brighter the comet can become. This comet will come within the distance of less than one diameter of the sun. That’s close.
How bright was this comet the last time it came around? This is thought to be a never seen before, new comet. Comets come from the “ort” cloud way out past the orbit of Neptune and Pluto. It’s cold out there. The ort cloud is filled with huge dirty snowballs. Every now and then one of them gets knocked out of orbit (by the gravity of Neptune, Pluto and others) and sent hurtling in toward the sun. It then becomes what we call a comet.
I thought the comet was just here last week? That was another comet called Comet Pan-Starrs. It did not get very high above the horizon in the Northern Hemisphere and wasn’t easy to spot.
Where is this new comet right now? As I write this, it’s on it’s way toward the sun and currently near the orbit of Jupiter.
Is it on a collision course with Earth? No. There’s no danger.
Why be so iffy about how bright it will be? Because it could break up. However, the chances of this one being spectacular are pretty good. As in, the best in hundreds of years. In the 1600′s there was a comet so bright that people saw it during the day. Keep your fingers crossed. It should be all over the media in a few months. Stay tuned!