A Walk Down Reguliersgracht

Tuesday evening, 6pm, humid. I get out of work, cross over to Rembrandtplein and go. 

The pigeons rule Rembrandtplein. There are a series of benches with small trees interlocking over them that are perpetually covered in bird shit. I see tourists eating kebab on them all the time. 

The plein is dotted with touristy, stag party type bars and clubs.

Crossing Thorbeckplein, I head south down the scenic little Reguliersgracht. This canal intersection is always busy. 

Girls spray painting their bikes. 

I feel like I’ve seen this stencil in several cities. Does anyone else recognize the source?

Starting a little #streetart side gig. Keep an eye out. 

I like the fact that Amsterdam is sexually tolerant enough that you can poster up the entire city with ads for an overt gay cruising app without any controversy. 

Speaking of seeing things all over the city, I see this sticker everywhere. Whoever Maud is, someone really wants her to be free. 

Great color formations on this canal boat. 

Looking back toward Fredericksplein. There’s a great little French country restaurant owned and 100% operated by a sole French woman. It’s delicious. 

Nice collection of stickers on this bakfiets.  

Bike skeletons. 

Bottom end of Reguliersgracht looking west toward the Rijksmuseum, seen in the distance. 

Crossing over to the outer canal separating the Centrum from De Pijp, there is this row of bizarre looking trees lining the canal. They’re thick and bulbous at the bottom, and then end in shrubby, bare limbs. 

Jesus-in-a-tree. 

#tapeup — my new medium. 

Birdie wants a tattoo on Albert Cuypstraat. 


Go teams!

Everyday Racism

It’s surprising how latent racism can surface. I was walking along a street in Berlin earlier today when I saw a bunch of African dudes crowding the sidewalk in front of me. As I got closer, the conversation started getting really animated. 

I found myself unconsciously swerving out of the way around the guys, walking almost out into the street. One of the guys on the periphery of the group caught my eye, smiled wide and said “aw man, there’s nothing to be afraid of here”. 

100% called me on my shit, and I cracked an embarrassed smile back at him, waved, and said “oh, ok thanks”.

There was nothing threatening happening, they were just joking loudly. I instantly realized I had unconsciously racially profiled these dudes completely unfairly. All in about a half second. 

Two blocks later, we saw the guy again in a park. He smiled at me and asked “everything still alright?” And we all had a big laugh.

Then he tried to sell me weed. 

Walk: Van Ostadestraat and Rustenburgerstraat

It’s one of those bright, overcast, but still pleasant afternoons. I grab my sunglasses, my camera, and something to smoke, and I head out to walk through some of the residential back streets of my neighborhood.

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Just as I exit my apartment and turn the corner to walk away from the park, I come face to face with this beauty. Love the color.

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As I was taking a photo of the scooter, I noticed something really bright out of the corner of my eye. Just the neighborhood trash pickup with some intimate apparel.

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I’ve been here, it actually is a nice place. Product isn’t as good as some other places in my neighborhood, but it’s only a 100 meters from my apartment, so…

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As I walk west on Van Ostadestraat, I noticed the bright, even light really made this orange tag jump off the wood boards.

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This is one of the uglier buildings I’ve ever seen. It houses a group called Casa Migrante which appears to be a social services organization helping Spanish speakers. I’m taking this picture from the front door of the building looking back to the sidewalk. It’s very bright outside, and yet the entrance is still so dark. And there’s a creepy safety light clearly on in the upper corner.

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As I cut down the block to go west on Rustenburgerstraat, I notice a fresh Laser 3.14 tag.

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Pink door framed with bright green bushes is nice.

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Van der Helstplein is one of the few urban squares in the city center that is completely canopied by trees. The bright light filtering through the green leaves is gorgeous. This plein has a nice italian restaurant, a couple brown cafes, and a nice coffeeshop.

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The sun makes a lot of these colors feel extra saturated. I like the greenery, and pink flowers paired with the dark green on the door.

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Well-loved omafiets.

A Walk Around the Amstel

1:00pm Sunday afternoon and the sun is brightly shining overhead. Lots of people out along the canals and on terraces enjoying the sun. Not optimal photo conditions, but let’s go anyway.

I walk east along Ceintuurbaan, and make a right on Amsteldijk, the street that fronts the west side of the Amstel river.

Fun looking paneled houseboat on the opposite side of the Amstel.

Really fun graphics painted on the front and running all down the side of 59 Amsteldijk, adjacent to the big vacant lot.

Electric buddhism.

I noticed this place a couple weeks ago, and thought I’d stop here for coffee sometime, but on closer inspection it appeared closed. Checked it out on Facebook, and it looks like they’re just closed for some kitchen refurb work. They’ll be back open on June 14.

Insane window covers in the back. #VanVibez will soon be plastered with these, at the rate I’m taking photos of weirdo vans.

This building across the street from Dragon’s Delight is completely fenced off and boarded up. Not quite sure what’s going on, but it’s one of the tallest buildings in the neighborhood. Most immediately, I’m wondering who’s drying their t-shirt in the mail slot.

Lots of cultures in Amsterdam.

Stop TTIP is something that should probably continue to be amplified.

Cargocycle.

This sticker caught my eye. Turns out it’s for a band in London.

Who doesn’t want to ride in a 1980’s era limo?

This statue is at Berlagebrug, the bridge at the southern border of De Pijp. I couldn’t find much info about it online. From the other side, it kind of looks like a horse coming out of the blob.

I crossed Berlagebrug to Oost, and was delighted to find this huge tag baking in the sun.

Nice ride!

Another laser 3.14 piece.

The guy on the left looks like a 19th century aristocrat about to blunder through an adventure in Congo.

Trying to figure out why this balcony is completely enclosed by a net. Toddler? Pet?

This is what you see on the ground when you open a car door. A tile gives you quick, contextual directions on where the parking meter is. Nice little bit of design.