Telling it like it is in Wenham

No need to recontextualize this one: “the War of the Rebellion.” In Wenham Center, on a bike ride earlier today.

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From Lexington to Concord along the Minuteman and Reformatory Branch Trails

We rode 16-plus miles today along the Minuteman Bikeway from Lexington center and the Reformatory Branch Trail from Bedford to Concord, which was new to use. Enjoy!

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Where we started.
The route.
Minuteman terminus in Bedford.
Smile!
Reformatory Branch Trail.
Mary Putnam Webber Wildlife Preserve.
Great Meadows National Wildlife Refuge.
Along the trail.
Near the end in Concord.
Big sky.

Bird is the word

Click on image for a closer look.

I was in Winchester center a little while ago picking up Chinese food when I saw about a half-dozen people with serious-looking cameras. It turned out they were birders. I’m not sure what they told me this guy was, but I think I heard someone say it was a night heron. So here’s my crappy, over-enlarged smartphone picture.

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Mystic-ism

Upper Mystic Lake from the Winchester Boat Club, 7:35 a.m. today. Click here for a bigger, sharper image.

North Shore bike ride

Near the Danvers-Peabody line. The sign in the middle says “God Bless America.”
Near Danvers Center
Salem Beverly Waterway Canal

Alewife Brook Reservation

Near the Alewife Brook T station in Cambridge just before sunset earlier today.

Errol Morris’ wonderful portrait of Cambridge photographer Elsa Dorfman

Elsa Dorfman. Photo copyright © 2010 by Tim Kennedy. All rights reserved.

Last weekend we had a chance to see “The B-Side,” Errol Morris’ wonderful documentary about the Cambridge portrait photographer Elsa Dorfman. I know Elsa through her husband, Harvey Silverglate, my friend and occasional collaborator. She also once took our family’s picture for a Boston Phoenix article. Our son, Tim, took Elsa’s photo a few years ago when he was attending photography school.

Dorfman is warm and outgoing, and her photos reflect that. Now mostly retired, she is best known for her work with a large-format Polaroid camera that takes 20-by-24-inch photos. And though she is known for her portraits of artists such as Allen Ginsberg and Bob Dylan, she’s also taken photos of literally hundreds of ordinary families who found their way to her studio. In the film, she comes across as intensely proud and self-aware, yet still the same person who once sold her photos out of a shopping cart in Harvard Square.

Here’s some backstory that the film does not explain: Several years ago Morris wrote a book about Dr. Jeffrey MacDonald, the former Army doctor serving a life prison term after being convicted of murdering his pregnant wife and young children. The book brought Morris into contact with Silverglate and Dorfman, as Silverglate is a member of MacDonald’s legal team. As Morris’ book, “A Wilderness of Error,” clearly shows, MacDonald did not receive a fair trial and may actually be innocent. (I reviewed the book for BookForum.)

Morris is a master storyteller, and Dorfman is an ideal subject. As Richard Brody wrote recently in The New Yorker, Dorfman is “a remarkable presence, a cinematic character whose comments distill a lifetime of wisdom, self-awareness, frustration, and survivor’s pride.” Go see it.

Middlesex Fells by moonlight

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I took this shot toward the end of a hike through the Middlesex Fells around Winchester’s North Reservoir. If you’d like to see more, please click here.

Late October

img_0782Sunday afternoon at the Minute Man National Historical Park somewhere near the Lexington-Lincoln line. Photo was taken with my iPhone 6S, unfiltered, unedited, uncropped. This was my second visit (and Barbara’s first)—I was there 10 or 12 years ago leading a Boy Scout troop. Ironically, we ran into a friend from church who was with a Cub Scout den.