Monthly Archives: December 2011

“$40 Million Dollar Slaves & The Woman On The Train.”

A couple days ago I boarded the downtown 4 express train, headed for Union Square. As the doors closed and the train began to move, I found myself a seat and began to fumble with my iPod. Before finding the song I was looking for (Coldplay’s Viva La Vida…for those of you that are REALLY into details) I happened to glance across the subway car to the seats in front of me and saw one of the most beautiful women I’ve ever laid eyes on.

Her hair was long and the darkest of browns, almost black…dyed slightly lighter at the tips and pulled into a single large braid behind her. Her skin was light, internationally mixed and absolutely flawless: the kind of color you get when you pour a little too much fresh milk into your morning coffee. Her eyebrows were dark and thin, her face classic, the only modern touch was a single tiny golden stud in her left nostril. She wore a sleek and perfectly fitting top and a simple skirt, which in my opinion happened to be exactly the length and style that a perfect lady would wear. Her long, full legs were in a pair of black heels that you just wanted to buy ten more pairs of in ten different colors for her JUST because she looked so good in them.

Her big, brown eyes acknowledged my presence with a quick blink before looking away just in time to avoid that “uncomfortably long stare”. She reached down into her shoulder bag and pulled out a book that I had never heard of…$40 MILLION DOLLAR SLAVES. This enhancesd the attraction, as her reading such a book denoted character and intelligence. How do I know..? Because I was reading the comics section of the Daily News…

As she found her place and began to read, I found myself daydreaming about what I would say to her should the opportunity arise for conversation. I could have just admired her beauty in awe and silence without interrupting her. But what would be the point of that? Even Outkast once said “Everybody knows you can’t let a pretty one pass you by…without saying hi.” For those of you that have no clue who Outkast is, how about a different analogy, “If you saw a sparkling diamond just sitting there within your grasp…wouldn’t YOU try to pick it up?”

But I digress…where was I?

Oh yeah…

The point is, how does one start a conversation with a woman who has probably already shot down ten other men better than you just in the last hour?? What perfectly original, sincerely smooth, ear-opening comment do you make to such a woman?

“Hello there young lady, I see you’re reading my favorite book of all time…$40 Million Dollar Slaves.”

No…that’s not it.

“Hey girl, I noticed you sitting over there, looking all good, reading $40 Million Dollar Slaves.”

Nope…definitely not gonna work.

“Excuse me miss. I seem to have lost my copy of $40 Million Dollar Slaves and I was wondering if I could borrow yours?”

Geesh…shoot me.

How do I speak to her? How do I tell her that she’s absolutely stunning and even though I don’t know her in any way, shape or form, I feel that my day might be a little more grey if I don’t continue to look in her direction? How do I explain to her that if she’s at all as interesting, funny, cool, or understanding as I THINK she might be, than she should let me take her out, wine and dine her, meet her parents, prove my love, propose and grow old with her until we both die happily like those two fools in The Notebook…???

How do I tell her…?

“Um…hi…”

I look up…she’s standing above me, $40 Million Dollar Slaves in her hand.

“I’m sorry,” I say, pretending to turn down my iPod to buy some time, “What were you saying..?”

She blinks her baby browns at me again. “I was just saying hi.”

“Hi,” I mumble, shyly.

She sits next to me and reaches into her purse.

“I feel a bit foolish,” she continued, “but I saw you looking in my direction earlier and I thought you might introduce yourself, but you didn’t.”

She blushes ever so slightly.

“Well, the thing is, I don’t really know anyone in New York, the subway’s a short ride so I never know how to start a conversation with anyone…and you’re really cute.”

She pulls her hand from her purse…it’s holding a business card.

“…anyway, if you’d like to…I don’t know, get coffee or something, my number’s on the card.”

Before I can part my lips to speak, the doors open, she smiles again and leaves me sitting there on the downtown 4 express train.

I don’t say anything.

I don’t do anything.

I simply put the card in my jacket pocket, go back to fumbling with my iPod and begin laughing aloud like some kind of crazed lunatic.

– F


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Filed under Love Life, New York City, Throwback Blogs

“Old Friends.”

* Preface *

“I know I’ve been neglecting to post on my blog. I could hit you all with excuses about how I’ve been traveling the world and shooting since March in India, Nepal and about 7 different states here in the U.S.. I could go on and on about how time seemed to have moved so quickly because of the flights, the bus rides, the couch-hopping and the friend-visiting. I could even talk about the wonderful two months I was able to spend in California with my beautiful 10-year old daughter and how I barely had time enough to pull the trigger, let alone find a wifi signal and try to update my blog every few days. I could say all those things…but I won’t. Instead I’ll just say that ‘I’m sorry’ and that I was ‘busy’. I’m glad to be back however, thanks for being patient! As you can probably tell I’ve revamped my website. I have some snazzy new blog ideas to begin using, as well as some feature stories to write about some of the things that I’ve shot during my absence: beaches in South Carolina, MLB games, Occupy Wall Street, models, snow-covered mountains in Colorado, NCAA football games, old friends, Alcatraz, my beautiful little girl and so much more. For now however, we’ll just start off with a new series of posts…smaller, but more intimate.”

“They’ll be called: The Story Behind The Shot.”

“Enjoy.”

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(photo: Fidel Amos)

While in Union Square in NYC one Spring day in 2009, I saw an elderly woman leaning on a wall small wall, facing the grass. For a second I thought she was merely staring off into space or resting, then I realized she was motioning with her hand…holding something. I looked in the direction that she was looking and saw a beat-up, raggedy, NYC squirrel standing on his hind paws in the grass about 30 feet from her, staring back at her. I prepared my Canon (which was slung around my shoulder) ready to shoot the interaction between them, trying to figure out a way to squeeze them both into the same frame. Suddenly the squirrel darted in her direction, quickly (yet politely) snatched the peanut from her by-then outstretched hand  and ran up into a tree.

By the time he go to her I had approximately 1/2 a second to pull the trigger…it’s a fraction off focus, but it came out rather nice.

A casual onlooker might think this was just a case of an elderly woman feeding a nut to a squirrel…as she might bread to pigeons on her stoop, or apples to a mounted officer’s horse. Judging by the condition of the squirrel, the familiar way in which it seemed to notice her and head in her direction and the simple fact that she was motioning for that particular one and none of the others that were within the same distance, I like to think that she had been going there for months and that the squirrel had been expecting her…
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(Wanna hang it on your wall? It’s available via my online gallery on Society6.comClick the photo below to find out more…)

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Filed under New York City, The Story Behind The Shot