24 Hours, 24 Kisses and 24 Magazine Covers

(Not much about language in this one.)

The title of the cover story in the NYT Magazine on the 10th, with this illustration:


Las Vegas claims the title “Sin City”; this is New York’s bid to  be “Love City” — challenging Paris, Rome, and (in the U.S.) San Francisco, where Tony Bennett famously left his heart:

The loveliness of Paris seems somehow sadly gray
The glory that was Rome is of another day
I’ve been terribly alone and forgotten in Manhattan
I’m going home to my city by the Bay

I left my heart in San Francisco

But densely packed New York is the place, the NYT argues, for expressing private intimacy in public places. From the cover story:

How do you capture the essence of love in New York? The answer is in a kiss.

There is something quintessentially New York about a couple kissing against the bustle of the city. Intimacy, whether it’s physical affection or a conversation, can happen in tightly packed spaces here.

“Being O.K. with having privacy in the context of busyness is a New York state of mind,” said Jake Silverstein, editor of The New York Times Magazine.

That’s the idea behind the 24 distinct covers for the magazine’s annual New York issue, out this weekend. The entire issue is dedicated to one day in New York, May 19, as seen through the lens of one four-letter word: love. And each cover features a different couple kissing.

From midnight to midnight, the issue features stories about romance, lust, heartache and everything in between. There’s a profile of a divorce attorney, a story of a fiancée’s visit to Rikers Island, a young couple’s trip to Ikea. This is love in all of its rawest forms.

But how to communicate that visually? For the photographer Ryan McGinley, the answer involved rigging a flatbed truck as a moving photo studio, to shoot couples kissing against the New York streetscape.

“I wanted to capture love in motion,” Mr. McGinley said. “Kissing on an open-air moving vehicle throughout New York City’s streets is my kind of romance.”

As I wrote on my posting “Gearing up for Fathers Day” on the 10th:

June is a month of Sundays. Today in the New York Times it’s the Sunday of Love, with 24 alternative cover photos of couples (of all sorts — mine had two Latino men) kissing, plus photo vignettes of love around the city on Saturday May 19th (the day of the royal wedding in London). Next Sunday [still coming up!] is, once again, Triple Play Day: Fathers Day, Commencement Day at Stanford, and World Music Day, all rolled into one.

My cover, #2 in the display above:

(#2) Erick Majano, 28; and Javier Medrano, 28

Long-time readers of this blog will know that I am a fool for kisses — same-sex kisses especially, because they are so often hidden from the world, but in fact kisses of every kind. Needless to say, I was deeply pleased by the NYT‘s Sunday of Love issue.

More anniversaries. Yesterday was both Loving Day, the anniversary of the 1967 decriminalization of interracial marriage in the United States; and Pulse Day, the anniversary of the 2016 slaughter of 49 people (almost all young, mostly Latino, gay, and male) at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando FL. The first a triumph of love over prejudice, though with an edge. The second a monumentally sorrowful triumph of hatred over love and hope, dragged further down by a chorus of empty, conventional “thoughts and prayers” from a number of public figures whose true thoughts were no doubt that the murders in Orlando were merely the modern firearms equivalent of the stoning to death that their god demands for homosexuals and whose true prayers were no doubt that the earth would soon be similarly cleansed of all remaining homosexuals.

You will note that the kissing couples in the array above include interracial and interethnic couples, as well as same-sex couples.

From Wikipedia on Loving:

Loving Day is an annual celebration held on June 12, the anniversary of the 1967 United States Supreme Court decision Loving v. Virginia which struck down all anti-miscegenation laws remaining in sixteen U.S. states. In the United States, anti-miscegenation laws were U.S. state laws banning interracial marriage, mainly forbidding marriage between non-whites and whites.

But… cautionary note in a Newsweek article on 3/14/18 by Tim Marcini:

It has been just more than 50 years since Loving v. Virginia, the landmark Supreme Court decision that banned state-level laws preventing interracial marriage.

Yet in 2018, there are a large number of Americans — nearly 20 percent — who feel there is something wrong with interracial marriage, according to a new poll this week from YouGov. The survey of U.S. adults asked about the “moral acceptability of various behaviors” regardless of the legality of the action; one of those behaviors was interracial marriage.

Seventeen percent of respondents said interracial marriage was “morally wrong” while 83 percent said it was “morally acceptable.” There was a bit of a divide along party lines on the subject, with 28 percent of Republicans [approaching 1 in 3] and just 12 percent of Democrats replying that interracial marriage was morally wrong.

(I’ve seen references to other polls, probably less dependable than this YouGov one, reporting that a majority of Helmet Grabpussy supporters were in favor of recriminalizing interracial marriage — and, for that matter, homosexual relations as well.)

And then the bare facts about Pulse, again from Wikipedia:

On June 12, 2016, Omar Mateen, a 29-year-old security guard, killed 49 people and wounded 53 others in a terrorist attack inside Pulse, a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida, United States. Orlando Police Department (OPD) officers shot and killed him after a three-hour standoff.

Pulse was hosting a “Latin Night” and thus most of the victims were Latinos. It is the deadliest incident of violence against LGBT people in U.S. history, and the deadliest terrorist attack in the U.S. since the September 11 attacks in 2001. At the time, it was the deadliest mass shooting by a single shooter in the U.S., being surpassed the following year by the Las Vegas shooting.

Yet another anniversary, tomorrow. From Wikipedia:

In the United States, Flag Day is celebrated on June 14. It commemorates the adoption of the flag of the United States, which happened on June 14, 1777, by resolution of the Second Continental Congress.

I’m not sure I can talk rationally about the U.S. flag (or the national anthem) any more. The best thing I can say about tomorrow is that at sunset the month of Ramadan is over, and Eid al-Fitr is upon us: a time for feasting, social gatherings, hospitality and generosity (and, yes, prayers and charity). Then on Saturday come Bloomsday (1904) and Ann and Arnold’s wedding anniversary (1962).

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