Before The Revolution on Flickr.

Queens, NYC; 2011
I don’t know what the story is with these characters, but it looked like a scene out of the final days of the Court of Versailles before the French Revolution. Note the younger man angling his body in deference to the passing costumers. The older young man in black is visibly annoyed at these fops crowding the sidewalk. I took his rolling up of his sleeve as an unconscious manifestation of hostility.

Freezin’ For a Reason - please help

Tomorrow is the Polar Bear Plunge, when the Coney Island Polar Bear Club and hundreds of costumed revelers ring in the New Year by celebrating 2012 with a January jump into the ocean.

In answer to all your questions, we are not just a bunch of lunatics running across the snow-covered Brooklyn beach and jumping into New York’s lower harbor in the middle of winter. The Coney Island Polar Bear Club and the New Year’s plunge raises thousands of dollars every year for Camp Sunshine in Maine.

"Camp Sunshine supports children with life threatening illnesses and their families. The camp has the distinction of being the only program in the nation whose mission is to address the impact of a life threatening illness on every member of the immediate family—the ill child, the parents, and the siblings. Since its inception, Camp Sunshine has provided a haven for over 30,000 individuals from diverse cultural backgrounds."

Please give whatever you can in aid of this beautiful organization, and I’ll just thank you for it in advance. DONATE.

Thank you all, and have a wonderful, safe and Happy New Year!

Central Park Super G - Split Shots on Flickr.

Post-blizzard stunt skier Gabrielle transforms a staircase in Central Park into a downhill showcase. As dozens of park visitors looked on, she strapped on her skis at the top of the stairs and pushed off—managing to take flight by the second landing. Gabrielle picked up the pair of Rossingnols for $30 on the street last night for the express purpose of ruining them on unconventional urban slopes. After this run, she was packing up her equipment in search of staircases with a smaller audience.

Security Appreciation on Flickr.

A security guard pauses to appreciate the $10 million bronze sculpture of a stuffed teddy bear he watches over on a normally crowded Park Ave. plaza. The 23-foot-tall bear is the work of Swiss installation artist Urs Fischer, who created three of the bronze sculptures.

“Untitled (Lamp/Bear)” is currently placed in front of the Seagram Building on Park Ave. in Manhattan, where it will remain through September before being auctioned by Christies in the spring. The work is estimated to gain upwards of $10 million at sale.

More can be read about the installation at The Wall Street Journal.