Earlier this summer, I had the chance to visit Visby, a medieval city on the island of Gotland in the Baltic Sea off the Swedish mainland, which I write more about in another post this week. Wandering the streets of the old town, I was struck by the beautiful colors of its wooden and plaster […]


You are on a rock- and sand-covered beach. Behind you, there are trees with hammocks strung up between them and a small seawall. In front of you, there is only endless sea stretching to the sunset. Nearby, there is a grassy plain dotted with flowers centered on a small pond and a colony of ducks. […]


I’ve never been into antiquing in the traditional sense – classic side tables by old masters, tufted velvet couches, Victorian lighting fixtures, English bone china. But I love antique stores for the bric-à-brac and the curios, for the oddities of yesteryear cluttered into collapsing bookshelves, for the history of the objects’ creation and provenance, for the […]


I spent most of the first decade of my life in a relatively new development in a then-exurban part of Richmond, Virginia, called Midlothian. Midlothian as a community dates back a couple hundred years and was, for a long time, known for coal mining. If my elementary school teachers told the truth, it was the […]

Ben Sandler and friends, Key West, early twentieth century.

The way I understand it, Key West, way back when – way back before the spring breakers and Girls Gone Wild, back before the pride parades, back before Jimmy Buffett and Margaritaville, back before the leather shops on Duval Street, back before the Conch Republic, back before Tennessee Williams, back even before Papa Hemingway and his […]

Toronto-Dominion Centre (1969), Mies van der Rohe.
Photo: J.S. Graboyes.

Last winter, I wandered into the United Colors of Benetton in Dupont Circle in its final days. I managed to snap a few photographs of the  Terracotta Army of nude mannequins that stood guard in the back of the store.


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