Flip the Script (Part 11): And So This Is….Thanksgiving

It’s been two weeks since the presidential election,  and we’d like to thank the more than two dozen artists,  writers,  and performers who offered words of pre-election encouragement from our South Philadelphia windows….

16_10_21-1-vote-tasker-side-dc_8280Click here to learn about the 28 inspiring Philadelphia artists who spent the pre-election month smiling  from our windows.

…and the hundreds more warm-hearted souls who let us photograph them for our blog….

composite-photoClick here to scroll backwards through all 11 of our pre-election posts,  starting with this one.

HOW  IT  ALL  BEGAN….

We dreamed up our non-partisan photo project this summer,  during a depressing campaign week that painted America as a failed experiment — with a candidate who somehow made it okay to overlook insults against minorities,  women,  the disabled,  the armed forces,  prisoners of war,  our allies – seemingly against basic human kindness itself.

And we did our best to put aside our own political leanings to remind people  (including ourselves)  of the goodness that built our country and the goodness we can still create together.

…AND  MOVING  FORWARD

But healing is largely missing from the holiday menu this year:  No one could have predicted that the candidate with almost three million more votes would be declared the loser,  and that the Ku Klux Klan would be planning a public victory parade – or that the election results would be hailed with racist graffiti and taunts against children and adults in cities all around America,  including our own.

This Thanksgiving  will be an especially hard one,  with families split along ideological lines and feelings so raw.

So where do we start?   There’s only one clear path….

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BRINGING  IT  ALL  BACK  HOME

And so this Thanksgiving – when radio stations all over the country traditionally play “Alice’s Restaurant”,  that rambling folk ballad – what better musician to quote than self-described “folkslinger”  Arlo Guthrie,  in a fun-but-true riff built off a comment by fellow musician Pete Seeger:

 “If the world was perfect and everybody had money,

everybody drove a BMW,  nobody was homeless,  nobody ever got sick,

everybody was smart and…happy all the time,

you’d have to go an awful long way out of your way

to make a difference in this world.  

You’d have to do a whole hell of a lot to improve the way it was.

“But in a world that sucks,  like this one,

you don’t have to do very much at all.

 ♦

“There was never a time in the history of the world

where you could do so little and get so much done.”

16_11_24-arlo-guthrie-alices-restaurant-tour-dc_4575
Amazing Grace”:  Check out Arlo Guthrie’s fun,  inspiring,  and always rambling riff here on YouTube .

Time to get moving again….!

make-america-kind-againAnd,  yes,  we’ve been handing out dozens of these pins,  available at Via Delia,  to make ourselves feel better.   Sometimes,  you just have to get back in the game.

Happy Thanksgiving to all,

Kate & Dave

Flip the Script (Part 10): Nov. 8 Is Here, & It’s Now or Never

Well,  it’s come down to this….and there’s no do-overs after Election Day….

16_10_02-4-passyunk-windows-cm_5590Corny perhaps, but indubitably true:  Click here to learn more about these smiling faces in our South Philly windows – and about the hundreds more big-hearted Philadelphians we’ve photographed for our blog this month.

And,  yeah,  it’s easy to say that both major candidates are flawed,  and you don’t want to vote for either of them.  But their agendas are polar opposites,  and one of them will be elected this week.

And you  – and all the other smiling faces on our blog – will be living with the consequences for years to come.

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Flip the Script (Part 5): Halloween Edition

When we opened our South Philadelphia studio on Saturday,  over 130 people poured in to add their upbeat images to our anti-election-stress,  flip-the-script photo campaign….

16_10_25-01-vote-corner-view-dc_0137Click here to learn about those reassuring artists and musicians in our windows – and the hundreds of other Philadelphians we’re photographing for our blog.

THERE’S  SOMETHING  STRANGE  IN  YOUR  NEIGHBORHOOD

Given that the East Passyunk Avenue Fall Fest was in full swing Saturday,  it’s no surprise that the crowd included a mad mix of superheroes,  frogs,  princesses and one extremely large chicken.

So to celebrate Halloween,  we’re featuring all our costumed  players and their parents today.

And,  yes,  even the bear and the chicken got along this weekend – which makes us think there’s an over-sized metaphor there for this high-stress election season….

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Flip the Script (Part 3): A Cure for the Pre-Election Blues

Sometimes the anger and angst on the national stage makes it impossible to see the goodness on your own corner.

That’s why we gathered over two dozen Philadelphia artists,  writers,  performers and musicians,  and asked them to pose for our windows holding upbeat signs with words like create,  collaborate,  envision and – yes – VOTE….

16_10_25-01-vote-corner-view-dc_0137Click here to learn more about our pre-election window display on the corner E. Passyunk Avenue and Tasker Street.

16_10_02-9-tasker-street-photos-cm_5602You can see it just across  from South Philadelphia’s  “Singing Fountain”  through election week.

WE CAN WORK IT OUT

That’s also why today – and several more times until the election – we’ll share photos here of scores more optimistic Philadelphians holding these same signs.

And,  yes,  they really are out there by the thousands – even though it’s sometimes hard to see them through the haze of the evening news….

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Flip the Script (Part 2): Meet Our Window Artists & Join Them on our Blog!

Earlier this month, we told you about our upbeat new South Philadelphia window exhibit – a non-partisan response to the soul-draining divisiveness and election angst in the news right now.

16_10_21-1-vote-tasker-side-dc_8280Show me a sign:  28 local artists share positive messages from our windows at the corner of E. Passyunk Avenue and Tasker Street.

After all,  if we can’t come together to make things better here,  then who in the world can?

PASS  IT  ON…

Starting today, and continuing through Election Day,  we’ll introduce you to the artists who generously agreed to help us “flip the script”.

We’ll also share dozens more photos of good-hearted Philadelphians who grabbed a sign and added their optimism to our campaign.   (And,  yes,  read on to learn how you can join them on our blog between now and Election Day.)

16_10_21-2-miguel-horn-karen-benson_5563Artists Miguel Antonio Horn and Karen Benson help light up our lives – and the corner across from South Philadelphia’s “singing fountain”.

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Election Year Blues: Help Us Flip the Script!

This year,  we struggled with finding a new topic for our annual holiday window display.

We’d already displayed photos of our South Philadelphia neighbors and of local celebrities from the 1960s….

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What was left?   South Philadelphia restaurant owners?    Current local celebrities?    Favorite Philly athletes?   (Way too controversial!)

But one topic kept intruding in our heads.

ELECTION  STRESS  DISORDER

Like many people,  we’ve been beaten down by the soul-draining divisiveness in the country this year.

Violence.    Name-calling.   Corruption.   Terrorism.   Racial and religious divides.   Following the news – particularly the election news – you’d think that the country and the entire human race were sliding down that greased pole to hell.

16_10_02-2-kate-newspapers-dc_8245“Uhm,  Dave,  do you have the comics?”

 And,  yes,  it even has a name:   Election Stress Disorder,  and everyone we knew had symptoms.

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