This weekend thousands of people will flock to NYC to gather together all over the city to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day. Besides being a a cultural and religious holiday, St. Patrick’s day is perhaps mostly cherished here in the city because it provides city dwellers and visitors alike with a great excuse to get completely wasted on pints of Guinness and green beer before noon. Thousands of people adorned with shiny green shamrock stickers, face paint, and ribbons will flock to neighborhood Irish bars early in the morning on Sunday only to stumble home for a nice afternoon nap after a hard day of drinking. After waking from their sobering slumber they will undoubtedly discover that they left their Iphones, credit cards, and dignity at one of the many bars they visited that day. Yes, St. Patrick’s day here in NYC can get pretty rowdy and usually, like Santacon, itis a day of overcrowded neighborhood bars filled with heavily intoxicated people dressed up in ridiculous costumes making a lot of poor choices. In other words, its a day that many of us locals like to stay home. However, here are some party animals that I would be more then happy to see any day of the week, dressed in their St. Patty’s day best, ENJOY!
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Yesterday, when I started thinking about what I wanted to post for Valentine’s Day this year I found myself reflecting back to “love stories” of the past year that I remembered and loved the most. These ‘love stories” are just a handful of moments either captured in a news article, photograph or video over 2012 that really tugged at my heart strings when I first came across them. Although I am sure there were a many many more stories about love that I found joy in discovering over the past year these five “love stories” are the one’s that came instantly to mind when I asked myself the question, “what does it mean to be in love.”
1. I don’t think there were many women out there that didn’t swoon while watching Issac Lamb’s now infamous proposal to his girlfriend Amy Frankel. The six minute video of Lamb’s lip-synced proposal to the Bruno Mar’s song “Marry You” starts out with Frankel wearing headphones, listening to the song Lamb’s brother tells her “reminds him of them ( Frankel and Lamb) the most.” As Frankel sits in the open back of an Honda CRV that slowly rolls down the street, she watches as Lamb is gradually joined by approximately 60 of their friends and family, all dancing and lip-syncing together, ending in a grand finale involving a marching band and of course Lamb asking for Frankel’s hand in marriage. Perhaps the best part of the entire video is watching Frankel’s reaction as she experiences a wide range of emotions from giddiness, to shock, to happy tears, while watching Lamb and their family and friends perform what many dub as one of the greatest proposals of all time. Aside from the creativity and elaborate choreography, Lamb’s proposal was such a sensation because it was a glowing example of how special it is to be loved by someone so much that they would go above and beyond all expectations to make you happy. In an interview with Today’s Ann Curry when asked why Lamb went to such great lengths to propose to Frankel he simply replied, “”I felt like she deserved something like that.”
2. In October of 2012 while visiting Bondi Beach, a 20 year old Sydney University student trying to capture images of the early morning sunrise captured something even more romantic, a proposal. The student, Michael Keane, did not even realize the magic moment he had photographed until he returned home and began post-processing his images. In a statement posted by Kean on the website reddit.com Keane explains the story of how the images came to be, “I was at the Sydney International Food Festival taking dozens of pictures on shore hoping that at least a few would turn out right. I saw the couple’s silhouette on the cliff, so I started taking pictures with them in it because I thought it would be cool in the pictures. It wasn’t until I got home and was looking through my camera that I realized “holy crap, he is down on one knee in this one….holy crap in this one before it he is in the PROCESS of getting down on one knee.”
3. The fight for the legalization of same-sex-marriage has been a long and tedious one and is far from over but the progress made over the last decade can’t be denied. As of January 2013 nine states including Connecticut, Iowa, Main, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, the District of Columbia and Washington state have all legalized same sex-marriage and we can only hope that others follow their lead. The next love story in this Valentines Day Tribute comes from WashingtonState where a picture taken of a couple obtaining their marriage license became what many believe to be one of the greatest images of what marriage equality can look like.
Shortly after same-sex marriage was legalized in Washington, Larry Duncan, 56, a retired psychiatric nurse, and Randell Shepherd, 48, a computer programmer made their way to the King County Administration Building to wait in line to apply for a marriage license after being together for 11 years. It was 1:30 AM on December 6th when the couple finally reached the front of the line and as they raised their hands in union to take an oath in front of a King County Representative, Seattle photographer Meryl Shenker snapped a photo of the soon to be infamous couple after the image would go viral after being posted on Reddit. The image of the two soft-spoken men, both dressed in plaid shirts, with full grey beards, and camouflaged colored hats, raising their hands in union together, starring straight ahead seems to challenge any stereotypes people have of same-sex couples. When Shepherd and Duncan first heard about their internet fame they laughed with Shepherd stating simply, “That’s just who we are.” Just a few days after the infamous picture was taken Shepherd and Duncan were married at Seattle First Baptist Church in a group ceremony with 24 other couples.