2020 – The Best Photos of the First Half of the Worst Year


(ignore May 1, 2017 publish date – this was published on July 10, 2020)

Annoying facts:

Included are 227 images I photographed on 177 of the 182 days of Jan-Jun. Not counted as more than one are the ones with multiple images in them that range from 2-8 (you KNOW I hate to nitpick). A full 70% were taken from my apartment (why do you think I like living here? It’s a lazy photographer’s dream).


It’s become a MAJOR chore to do this on an annual basis, what with me taking an average of about 18,000 photos a year. I DO try to lessen the load with daily placement of good pix into folders of varying subject matters and editing those folders on a monthly basis, but still…………

And instead of just throwing everything I shot into monthly categories to show some semblance of order, these will have a daily sequence.

To make this MORE time-consuming, I’m adding information to most of the images because I get a lot of “Nice pic – what the hell is it?” questions.

So let’s see how it goes for the 2020 halves. Feedback is appreciated.


January 1 – For more than a decade (and no matter how hung over I may have been), my first shoot of the year is always a noontime Ecuadorian religious “Our Lady of the Cloud” procession.

Fortunately for me, it’s been going right past my building for the last few years. I shot this from one of my bedrooms:



January 5 – These residential towers are “The Modern 1 & 2” in Fort Lee, NJ and are almost next to the George Washington Bridge This sunrise shot was taken from my living room about 5 miles away:


This van has been sitting with a couple of flat tires in a bank parking lot two blocks from home for the last few years:



January 7 – These guys are working atop a 5-story construction site (395 Main) a block away straight out from my living room. It looks like a ribbon-cutting ceremony:



January 12 (busy day) – As I went to take this picture of the mega-crane at the 150-170 Main construction site, a hundred or so pigeons flew into the frame:


From the same spot, I noticed something else flying around in the distance. I couldn’t tell what it was, so I zoomed in as much as I could and got a small image of a plastic shopping bag with some helium balloons in it:


Another angle of the 150-170 Main project:


New Club In Town:


Not a fan of smelly speedsters:



January 15 – Sparking for higher meter rates:


Windy day:



January 18 – Making donuts in the snow:


Making clones in the snow with a clonephone:


Making stupidity on the sidewalk (how are the tenants supposed to get in and out of their building?):



January 20 – Speaking of parking stupidity………….



January 23 – Lunar New Year………I think the buildings are in Jersey City and the fireworks are on the Hudson River:



January 24 – Geese fly past The Modern 1 & 2:



January 25 – May be my best umbrellas shot of the year:


May be my best after-the-rain strong double-rainbow shot:



January 26 – May be my highest-altitude birds-in-flight shot of the year:



January 27 – The Empire State Building’s colors honor recently-deceased Kobe Bryant:



January 29 – Feast in the parking lot:


I was waiting for him to drop some of them. Damn sure-handed guys spoiling my shot………….



January 30 – Strange sky-driving:



January 31 – Smoke drifts toward Fort Lee:



Oversize postcard gets delivered by USPS crane:



February 1 – Only the best in studio lighting for his woman:



February 2 – Man, is this ugly!



February 6 – let a tailgate be your umbrella:



February 9 – Inside a closed bed store (“Bruce the Bed King”, Hackensack):



February 14 – Dual cement pumpers dating on Valentine’s Day:


A Valentine’s Day high-five with smart phones on the roof at 395 Main (actually, it’s the same guy, but you didn’t hear that from me):



February 15 (another busy day shooting from home) – The 395 Main roof overflown by geese cruising past The Modern 1 & 2 – three towns away:


Lonely man contemplates………………something:


Strong mom rescues daughter from seeing the horror of the next picture:




Maybe this will help. It’s a multi-image photostitch showing Manhattan from the southern border of Central Park down to the Battery (click to enlarge – NOTE: On all stitches, click once. If your cursor becomes a + sign, click again for full enlargement – you may have to scroll laterally at this point and cursor will become a minus sign. To return to normal, click once and then hit your return button):



February 16 – Dancing fool (girl looks REAL impressed):



February 18 – Note on an apartment door (“on board”? Is a car in there?):



February 19 – This is a little tighter photostitch showing midtown Manhattan at sunset (once again, click to enlarge):


February 21 – Cement pumper encloses Sears at the 435 Main project:


Crane pickup work at same site:



February 22 – Couldn’t fit that HUGE motorcycle in one of those teeny spaces, huh?


He’s got every tool you could imagine, but it appears that someone stole his tire and wheel:



February 23 – Behind the Hackensack War Monument on The Green (the base of the monument presents four relief sculptures of war scenes: General Washington at the Battle of Monmouth, the Civil War, the Spanish-American War, and World War I) is the 50 Main St project:


Meanwhile, up the street, a broken heart is for sale (and it’s got one of my feet in each half…………sorry about that) :



February 24 – Found along the banks of the Hackensack River:


The new pedestrian bridge over the river between the Teaneck and Hackensack campuses of Fairleigh Dickinson University:


Trying to land on the Sears tower:


Discrimination against a toilet-trained gull:


This is a video still showing a leaping squirrel:



February 25 – They can’t BOTH be right:



February 28 – If there’s one thing I can’t stand, it’s nonsense from my bread:



March 1 – Another goose squadron heading for my apartment:


I never did find out if they got the huge sofa through that small door, but I kinda doubt it:


The squadron travels to take in another Manhattan sunset:



March 3 – How often do you see one of these machines being passed by another? The driver of the nearer one is on the far left in the green shirt. It’s all bucket-controlled:



March 4 – My side job:


Cushion-chucking into his truck:



March 5 – The Channel 11 chopper snoops over Hackensack:


Maybe it’s watching the bird on my bedroom A/C:


I saw this gentleman coming and going on March 5 and 8:



March 7 – This is the saddest conversation I ever saw 6 guys have:



March 8 – Hey kid! Football season ended last month:



March 9 – This was the first time I saw someone from my window wearing a mask. He looks envious of the supermask that’s riding by:


For some reason, my little camera has difficulty focusing on the moon………….but not tonight:



March 10 – They’ve all got a mouthful:



March 12 – Cement pumpers: apart and together



March 15 – The 395 Main project………….it’s gettin’ there:


Meanwhile, spoolin’ around in the back………..


I found this a block away from where it’s supposed to be:



March 20 – Keeping my timing sharp:



March 21 – Gull harassment atop the steeple next door (this scene is about 3 or 4 floors higher than my apartment):


The skateboarder is back:


How incredibly-stupid is this parking job?


These images were taken 14 minutes apart:


Interesting design on the car, courtesy of the sunlit building it’s parked in front of:



March 24 – When 435 Main is done, I won’t be able to see the Sears tower, but that’s OK because Sears just announced that the Hackensack store is closing:



March 26 – Workers at 395 Main:


I went out my building’s back door and this was staring me in the face. I froze and slowly dug my camera out of my pocket…………..click!


I’m not sure what this guy’s about, but I’m glad I’m not him:


I’d like to know what transpired here that would result in a scene like this:


A steel plate is being lowered into the road at the 435 Main project:



March 27 – BUSY day!


Talking to himself:


These only bloom for a limited time and – short of having a drone – this was the only way to show them on two different streets:


This is the day I walked a mile each way on Main St to document all the Coronavirus “closed” signs on the businesses. It’s all posted beginning here: http://www.hackensacknow.org/index.php/topic,3922.msg13850.html#msg13850 it’s 3 posts covering 2 pages, but here are 3 images that caught my eye:


While I was there, these two unrelated images caught BOTH eyes:


Back home, I took these very similar images one block and 34 minutes apart:

I wish I had framed this better. It really looks like this guy’s weight is tilting the front of the truck upward (maybe he parked on the curb).




March 29 – You think that’s bad in March? As I write this in July, the wreath’s still there!



April 1 – My roommate ain’t no April fool:


Neither are these 395 Main workers washing their hands after work:



April 2 – From my living room a half-mile away, I got this shot of a cement bucket being brought into position at the 150-170 Main project:


April 3 – Did small children make these masks? Well, at least they’re wearing something:



April 4 – Does she have rocks in her hand?


The NJ governor ordered all flags to be flown at half-staff in honor of all the people who were lost to Covid-19:


Interesting selfie:


Colorful shopping (and what’s that on his head?):


Nothing special……..I just liked the way the light hit it:



April 5 – The Yelling Guy gets a visit from two masked men (nothing happened):



April 8 – The sun bounces around The Modern 1 & 2’s towers for 15 minutes:



April 11 – Just played a hunch that 8 pictures taken on a windy day might be interesting together. You decide:


The Sidewalk-Mopping Brigade?


Quick! Get him out of sight before somebody sees him!



April 12 – How to wear a face mask………….on your cap:



April 13 – I wish I knew what it was she was drawing……..


Interesting sun reflections:



April 14 – I’m just glad I wasn’t behind this guy…………but I’m not exactly thrilled with this angle either:



April 15 – Perfect fit (and it sat there for a couple of months):



April 16 – Worker carried out of 395 Main. I heard that someone “fell”, but that’s it. Never could find out what happened:



April 18 – Windows day (get a Mac – it’s easier):



April 20 – Two new Corona messages from a railroad station and a laundromat:



April 23 – Goose on a roof:



April 25 – Man with no face (or two masks?):


SDS (Social-Distancing Soccer):


The kid’s afraid that his friends will see his doofy helmet:


Just before his pants fell down (I’m guessing………I didn’t wanna look):



April 27 – Info regarding the next day’s flyovers:



April 28 – The flyovers:



April 30: Electronics delivery day at 395 Main? In the pouring rain? You can tell from this photostitch (click to enlarge) that the truck on the right is an old one because it says that PC Richard has been in business for 105 years old, while the other two say 110:



May 2 – I like to walk along the Hackensack River Walkway. These first two scenes were taken on the pedestrian bridge mentioned on February 24:




I had walked past an older couple and I wasn’t sure if pre-Corona acknowledgements were still in style when masked (the park had just reopened that day). Surprisingly, the woman gave a big raised fist salute – in a “free at last” manner that I immediately understood.

That stuck with me during the walk and on my way back to my starting point, I saw them ahead and took this shot:


When I caught up with them, I introduced myself and told them that her gesture probably expressed what everyone there was feeling that day and asked if they would pose for a celebratory shot (Joy the dog didn’t feel free, being on a leash):


Back home, I saw a young woman coming up the street and two guys talking where she was about to approach them. I kind of figured they would take notice and react after she passed. Duh!


Sometimes, ripped jeans look good…….



May 3 – If you saw the Hackensack Coronavirus OhLimpPix post (https://iaintjustmusic.bobleafe.com/?p=10343), you may recall the golf and hopscotch athletes I featured. Here are two stills of them:



May 5 – Sun not bright enough?


Let’s hope no vehicle takes this detour:


This one appears to suggest that maybe we should all go to hell:


Masked and unplugged:


Chalkster-extraordinaire Mom is at it again. I’m glad I took this picture because rain washed it all away the next day:


Remember the dazzling broken heart for sale in a Main St store in February? It’s taken them 3 months to come up with a dazzling cure:



May 6 – It’s just an alleyway between two Main St businesses, but in this slice taken from Moore St is Main St, City Hall on State St (with the Oratam seal) and the high-rises up on Prospect Ave.

There doesn’t seem to be much distance between the last two, but look at the aerial view on  the right:

I’m located on the yellow line between the green and red circles. You can see Main St crossing the yellow line inside the red circle. City Hall is inside the purple circle on the yellow line on State St. Prospect Ave is at the top end of the yellow line, which goes through the building shown at the top of the photo.

Quite a Hackompressed distance…………..



May 9 – Busy window lady:


Totally fenced-in on two sides……………and the gate is locked! How will it ever get out?


Oh, come on, lady – that’s a church! How could you let him do that?


Speaking of peeing dogs………it’s incredible how many stupid people think that because the back of an apartment building faces them, NO ONE COULD POSSIBLY SEE THEM.

BTW – the unedited version is available to any interested law enforcement.


Guess who and guess where………..


Clouds potentially peeing on Manhattan:

Overall, it was a pretty wet day (and the sun was shining).



May 12 – Another flyover occurred today. This one had F-16 fighter jets, a KC-135 refueling tanker and came up from the Shore. As they passed low over Teterboro Airport – about 4 miles south of me – they started bending to their left to make an inverted “U” and head south again.

That worked to my advantage. They had split into two groups. I managed to capture the first one – an F-16 and the tanker – from a bedroom window as they started to climb to altitude after the Teterboro pass. I couldn’t get the second group.

This is the closest shot I’ve gotten from any of the flyovers:



May 14 – Interesting-looking trio………


I don’t think you’ll ever see a guy doing this in a truck commercial:


May 15 – …………or this:


Think you might have dressed differently when the temperature feels like 91 degrees?



May 16 – Colorful outfit:


Get this sandwich lady a cart!




Walking over there:




Photostitch (click to enlarge):



May 17 – Ugly freight train:


The flag at Foschini Park:



May 18 – A little Clydesdale has joined the group:



May 21 – “It fell off a truck!”






May 21 was Red Nose Day:


Which would YOU rather be doing?



May 23 – I always wanted to try one of these…………it was absolutely tasteless:

One and done on a sesame seed bun.


Two shots on the FDU pedestrian bridge after it rained:



May 24 – Some lucky girl gets flowers from a straight-A guy (Adidas shorts and an ALDI shopping bag):



May 25 – May be the only real athlete in the Hackensack Municipal Parking Lot OhLimpPix:



May 27 – Installing 395 Main window coverings (someone forgot to install a facial covering):


May 29 – Ever see those Progressive Insurance commercials that feature “Motaurs” (top half is a man’s head and torso, bottom half is a motorcycle)? I photographed something similar locally, but I don’t know what it’s called. Same deal on top, but the bottom appears to be protection from wayward cars for an electrical box:



May 30 – This appears to be the “before surgery” shot to the above photo, but I took it the day after:

One of life’s little mysteries…………



June 1 – Trying to get some old lady’s pet tiger down from the tree? Just a guess…


Must have been something funny inside that sweatshirt:



June 2 – I had no idea what the big cocoon-like truck was carrying/hiding, but it turned out to be a tree truck, whose contents were to be installed around the outside of the building:


Oh good – they finally got masks. Maybe that box contains instructions on how to use them:



June 4 – On the minus side…………..



June 5 – Haven’t we been told all our lives to NEVER mix drugs and alcohol? Here’s a business whose name appears to encourage it! What kind of crazy location would allow that? You guessed it…………….

Paterson, New Jersey!



June 6 – I was working on a blog post when I heard some very familiar chanting going on nearby. A big crowd was forming in the small parking lot of a pediatric dentist (closed that day). It was a Black Lives Matter rally in the making…………great, but why there?

Turns out that it was supposed to form in a big Sears parking lot two blocks away, but permission was never granted, so it was quickly shifted to this little lot (and expanding onto two cross streets).

The whole story is in a previous blog post (https://iaintjustmusic.bobleafe.com/?p=10401), but here are a few of the more meaningful pictures of the assemblage, the march stepping off and some returnees coming back from the courthouse rally:

The gathering:


Black and white children are being photographed by black and white adults:


“Hey – getcha signs heah!”


The march to the Bergen County Courthouse begins:





June 7 – A screened bee:



June 8 – An interesting gentleman:



June 9 – An exciting pile of dirt:


Unanticipated candid stop-action (not easy to frame and capture):



June 10 – Our old friend, the Yelling Guy, is………….actually, I have no idea what he’s doing. Blindly filming something? Auctioning off some gadget?



June 11 – There may be an anaconda in there:


They sure do a lot of window-cleaning at 395 Main:



June 13 – Lotsa photos today (and a few comments):


I though he had a towel in his, uh……….cheeks (I think his friend is taking a closer look to see what the hell’s going on with The Man in Black):


Interesting outfits, especially the raincoat(?) and galoshes(?) on a bright, sunny day:


June 19 – Wouldn’t it make life easier if he just tied a rope around the bundle?


June 20 – If I’m not mistaken, that’s the same woman from 2 pictures ago. Ladies – whatever you do – don’t dress-shop where she does:



June 23: We do?



June 24 – From the Parking Lot Graduation post (https://iaintjustmusic.bobleafe.com/?p=10561):



June 27 – The extremes of guy-dom:


Local delivery:


Next-door neighbor at sunset:



June 28 – This guy really struggled to get across the lot. Whatever his problem is, I hope it’s temporary:


(Later that same day) Maybe this photostitch is a good sign for him (click to enlarge). It looks good for 395 Main on the right, but not for Sears, which announced a day or two later that it’s closing the Hackensack store:





June 29 – Awwwww!


June 30 – Big and little clouds:


On to the second half of this horrible year where, so far:

                          19 has kicked 20’s ass!



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