From The Archive: The First View From Your Window


Los Angeles, California, 4.47 am.

It was posted on May 22, 2006, accompanied by the following post:

One of the strange things about having a blog, especially a one-man outfit like this one, is that, over time, you get to find out more about me, but not much about each other. Yes, you get to read some of the smartest emails on the web, but you don’t get to know who your fellow-readers are, where they live, what they do, what they see as they look out their window each morning. I get a little sense of it from the roughly 500 emails I get a day. But it’s still opaque.

Hence this idea, which may be nuts or inspired. We’ll find out. This week, get out your digital cameras, and take a picture of the view from your window. It can be your living room window, bathroom window, car-window or office view. If you’re serving in the military, or traveling, it can be just the view from where you’re standing or sitting. Email it to me, put “View From My Window” in the contents line, and I’ll post as diverse and as interesting an array of reader photos as I can all week. Just send it via the email option on the right, include the place and the time of day. By place, I mean town, state or county, and country. If you live outside America, I’d love to capture some of the exotic places I often get email from. Special treatment for those of you in the military, wherever you are. No names will be given: this blog’s rule of reader anonymity will remain. And by sending it, you give me the right to publish it. So show me – and every other reader – your world. Don’t pretty it up; just show it as it is – a glimpse through the looking glass of a blog, at the world its readers live in.

To see the resulting first week of reader photos, go to this Dish page. As you will notice, many of the initial VFYWs featured animals and rainbows, which are banned from the feature nowadays. And very few of the earliest VFYWs contain a portion of the window frame inside the photo frame – a requisite for the feature now.  Money quote from the end of that week:

This feature is officially over, but I had so many sublime or touching submissions that I didn’t post I’m going to publish a few of the remainders over the coming weeks, every now and again. Please don’t send me any more. It took most of my weekend to download and organize just the hundreds I received. I now have one week’s worth of images from around the world – an astonishing display of the web’s power and diversity. When I get a minute, I’m going to find a way to gather them all together and publish them somehow – either on the web or on paper. So stay tuned.