Grandfather and skeleton

Grandfather in medical school

Years ago, when the worldwide web was new, I had a tiny little non-blog at Columbia, and on it I posted a scan of this photo of my grandfather. I’d made the scan in the school’s computer lab; scanning machines were then exciting and new, and it felt vaguely like theft of technology for me to use it for such a merely personal purpose. Reading through some old family letters this morning, I thought of the photo again, and decided I’d make a new scan, on our home scanner, whose technology is probably fourteen generations better than the machine I used twenty years ago. My guess is that the photo itself was taken in the 1930s, but I’m not sure.

From an old journal: My 9/11

2001-09-11 sun photo Caleb Crain

Here’s an entry I made in my journal on 13 September 2001. At the time, Peter and I were living on 11th Street near Fourth Avenue, in Brooklyn. Lota was our black Lab mix, and Nina was my sister’s chihuahua, whom we were dog-sitting. I’m including scans of some photos I took that day as well, which get mentioned in the journal. Hope you can read my handwriting.












I didn’t write more later; I didn’t write any journal entries for the next three months. I don’t remember the rest of September 11 anywhere near as clearly as the part that I wrote down, but I do know that I biked into Manhattan that afternoon with Lydia, a friend of friends who either was, or was about to be, a medical student, and wanted to see if she could volunteer. I took a different camera with me on that ride, and took more photos, including the one of the sun at the top of this post and the ones of Manhattan below.




Whalers’ caps

Dutch whaler's cap, 17th c, Rijksmuseum

Woollen Dutch whalers’ caps, 17th century. “The men were bundled up so tightly against the fierce cold that only their eyes were visible. Each cap was individualized; the men recognized one another only by the pattern of stripes on the caps.” Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam.

Dutch whaler's cap, 17th c, Rijksmuseum

Dutch whaler's cap, 17th c, Rijksmuseum