The View From Your Window


Patagonia, Arizona, 12.23 pm. The reader is arguably our best VFYW contributor ever, given all of her great submissions over the years, stretching back nearly to the beginning of the feature. We got her permission to print her full name below (given the Dish’s default anonymity policy):

Andrew, you have become a HUGE part of my day, my husband’s day (he is copied on this), and our marriage, as you have provided us much fodder for conversation as well as little digressions from me while on vacation, etc., to take VFYW pics.  (Vince is very patient!)  You have enhanced the classes we both teach at ASU through timely blog posts or less-timely ones we’ve saved for the future or dug back to find.

We have exposed our kids (now 26 – our daughter who was cat-called in DC and moved to Silver Spring, is now in Tucson getting her Master’s degree – and almost-24 – our son whose HuffPo blogs on being transgender you have linked to more than once, is still in San Francisco, living with his wonderful girlfriend and gainfully employed – yay!), who have also found you interesting, informative, and entertaining. I have shared many of your posts on Facebook and know I am personally responsible for getting you several more readers. :-) (It was lovely to click on the link in the pets’ deaths comment and see our sweet Zella looking back at me.)

You will be GREATLY missed, and if you ever can resume The Dish on a part-time basis (with the excellent Dish staff’s assistance, of course), we will follow you again, immediately.  (Post only M-F AM, with the Window Contest on Saturday, and take off one week a month? No need for guest bloggers – Patrick, Chris, Zoe, et al. are FAB-U-LOUS!)  But I am sure you have thought of every possible permutation …

I wish you God-speed and good health and much happiness, with Aaron and your parents and your family and your LIFE.  If you ever want to visit Arizona, we have a guest house that you (and Aaron) would be welcome to stay in.

Kathleen Waldron
Phoenix, AZ

Her first view was posted on January 11, 2007:


Sedona, Arizona, 9 am. Kathleen adds:

My father-in-law died later that day after a 10-year battle with prostate cancer.  (And he did battle it – went through every clinical trial he could find.) It was from a cabin we rented a few days previously.  Nice and snowy!  Zella and our other golden, Zoe, had a great time!

She sends a followup:

Good Lord, I’ve had so many – the Contest view from Mankato; the VFYW Book view from Bright Angel Lodge at the Grand Canyon (y’all accidentally mislabeled it as Williams) :-) At least two Patagonia views, the one last week from our kitchen window, one from the French doors in our living room, one from a classroom on the Downtown ASU campus (of the historic Rosson house); one from Tucson (very boring – a lamppost from a restaurant’s backdoor); one from Minturn, CO; the last VFYW of 2014, from snowy Prescott; a bunch of others!

But never the views from my son’s two AWFUL air-shaft windows!  Of pipes and a scary Raggedy Ann type doll that used to give him the creeps and other detritus. I forgive you!

And a number of airplane views, too – the Washington Monument under scaffolding, the Rio Grande in Albuquerque, the Grand Canyon, the “lake somewhere in Nebraska” that some readers took deserved umbrage to!, the SF Bay, …

I have SO enjoyed this run, and I will continue to take window views, but they will be limited to my FB page, alas!

Here’s that scaffolding view that never got posted:

unnamed (37)

The Best Of The Dish Today

by Chris Bodenner

Travelers Check In To Flight To Havana, Cuba From Miami

Today on the Dish, Michelle shook her head at the long-overdue exoneration of a black teenager executed in 1944, reflected on a perceived sexist remark made during her J-school days, and added her final thoughts on the Serial finale. More from Michelle on Dorothy Parker tomorrow and a sign-off post with reflections on TNR’s collapse on Sunday.

Our most popular posts today were Howard Roark and the Hacker’s Veto and On The Right Not To Be “Triggered”. Two other posts from Will included his musings over the rapid acceptance of same-sex marriage and his hatho-induced awe over Glenn Beck’s newest video.

Phoebe, our wonderfully bright intern leaving the Dish soon, examined the evolving ways we look at gentrification, highlighted French author Éric Zemmour’s look at his nation’s decline, and joined Vanessa Vitiello Urquhart in considering the role of masculinity in their lives and literature.

Be sure to check out Andrew’s cameo in the Colbert finale and this hilarious story from a reader who ran into the senior Senator from Colbert’s home state of South Carolina. More Santa-crushing stories from readers here.

We’ve updated many recent posts with your emails – read them all here. You can always leave your gifting-cartoonunfiltered comments at our Facebook page and @dishfeed. 20 more readers became subscribers today. You can join them here – and get access to all the readons and Deep Dish – for a little as $1.99 month. Gift subscriptions are available here (you purchase one today and have it auto-delivered on Christmas Day). Dish t-shirts are for sale here and our coffee mugs here.

One of our newest subscribers has been a regular emailer since 2010:

The Dish staff photo finally prompted me to subscribe today. I had been dodging the pay-meter on a daily basis since its inception, but seeing the staff photo helped humanize the team, replacing my mental image of a gaggle of flaming liberals – though if I squint real hard, I think I do see a few sparks coming off a couple of you. Happy holidays!

Andrew will be back on Sunday night and likely torture-blogging throughout the week, so be sure to tune in for more on waterboarding, rectal feeding, and war criminals … Merry Christmas!

(Photo: A sign shows the departure times for flights to Cuba at Miami International Airport on December 19, 2014 in Miami, Florida. By Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

The Best Of The Dish Today

by Chris Bodenner

We missed a BOTDT last night because of a Dish holiday reunion with current and former staffers at Arts and Crafts Beer Parlor, near where we hold staff meetings. Before the drunken revelry, we snapped a rare photo of the whole staff together (except Alice, who joined us at the bar):


Update from a reader:

Love the staff photo. Can you please let us know who’s who? It’s nice to put a face to the name that we see all too rarely. Thanks for all your work and contributing so much to so many.

Left to right, that’s Phoebe (Dishtern), Jonah (international editor), Matt (literary editor), “some clapped out old bear“, me (editor, in charge of email), Patrick (editor, in charge of RSS), Jessie (editor, in charge of weekend), Chas (managing editor, aka Special Teams), and Tracy (associate editor, Jill of all trades). At the bar were former interns Brendan, Doug, Gwynn, Katie, and general manager Brian.

Andrew, now officially the most frequent guest on the Colbert Report, is attending the series finale tonight, so be sure to tune in. For a dose of nostalgia, check out Andrew’s first appearance on the show back in 2006. And for an even bigger dose, don’t miss this new supercut of Colbert over the years.

The most popular posts today were Will’s “On The Right Not To Be “Triggered” and “Obama Just Ruined Cuba!” His followup to that Cuba post is here. Will also responded to a dissenting reader over his semi-defense of dynasty, spied on the “Elf on the Shelf” Christmas trend, and absorbed the American public’s acceptance of torture.

Michelle, meanwhile, confronted in two parts the caving of Sony Pictures to the terrorist threat over The Interview. She also discussed the discussion of rape, touched on the cycle of outrage stoked by Twitter, took before and after looks at the end of the Serial podcast, and penned an appreciation for Penelope Fitzgerald.

Phoebe also chipped in with her thoughts on white privilege. Don’t miss this epic MHB of Germans playing head-pong, and be sure to contribute to our new Losing Your Faith In Santa reader thread, which is a much lighter counterpart to our popular and continued thread on rape.

We’ve updated many recent posts with your emails – read them all here. You can always leave your unfiltered comments at our Facebook page and @dishfeed. 17 more readers became subscribers today. You can join them here – and get access to all the readons and Deep Dish – for a little as $1.99 month. Gift subscriptions are available here (you purchase one today and have it auto-delivered on Christmas Day). Dish t-shirts are for sale here and our new mugs here.

See you in the morning.

The Best Of The Dish Today

by Chris Bodenner

Try not to watch this Michael Bay GIF over and over and over again:


Today on the Dish, guest-blogger Will Wilkinson used the news of Jeb’s exploratory committee Leadership PAC to make a contrarian case for dynastic presidents. He also argued for the abolishment of police unions, defended Uber against its snarky and socialist detractors, and reflected on his less frenetic life in Chattanooga.

Meanwhile, our other guest-blogger for the week, Michelle Dean, pondered the state of Truth in 2014, trashed year-end book lists, replied to a dissenting reader over the Sony scandal, and ended the day with Herzog.

The most popular posts were Will’s take on dynasty and Andrew’s takedown of Cheney on MTP. On that note, a reader writes:

Under Obama, the only evil-doers sent to prison are whistleblowers. Today is Chelsea Manning’s 27th birthday – and she’s barely begun an immoral 35 year sentence. Think of Dick Cheney, and Chelsea today.

Other top posts today included Dishtern Phoebe’s look at the You Had One Job meme and a reader-submitted graphic on Republican values. And don’t miss our latest installment of the riveting reader thread, “Would You Report Your Rape?” If you’re a fan of the VFYW Contest, Chas has you covered:


Many of our posts were updated with your emails – read them all here. You can always leave your unfiltered comments at our Facebook page and @dishfeed. 18 more readers became subscribers today. You can join them here – and get access to all the readons and Deep Dish – for a little as $1.99 month. Gift subscriptions are available here (you purchase one today and have it auto-delivered on Christmas Day). Dish t-shirts are for sale here and our new mugs here. A final email for the day:

I recently let my subscription lapse because I just couldn’t muster the emotional energy to keep up with partisan politics any more after my euphoric involvement with the 2008 campaign. Your “Was it something we said?” email didn’t get me to change my mind about the subscription. But as someone who shares the same experiences with TNR that Ross depicts here, and Andrew’s explanation about why The Dish is important in keeping that kind of experience afloat … well, guess what: partisanship crap or no, that is one compelling argument for a renewal of the subscription. Here’s to your ongoing stewardship of our common culture at the highest levels of intellectual engagement.

And panda GIFs. More in the morning.

Bigger, But Better?

by Chris Bodenner

Looking back at 2014, Felix Salmon runs through all the high revenue and venture capital numbers of new media companies like Buzzfeed, Vice, and Vox:

The small but self-sustaining bloggy site is a thing of the past: if you’re not getting 20-30 million unique visitors every month, and don’t aspire to such heights, then you’re basically an economic irrelevance. Advertisers won’t touch you, you won’t make any money, and your remaining visitors will inexorably leach away as they move from their desktops to their phones.

But if you’re like the Dish and rely on subscribers rather than advertisers, you don’t need to be so dependent on huge traffic numbers. And even if you can get those numbers and their corresponding ad dollars, advertisers are fickle, as Gawker recently saw when it lost “seven figures” in ad revenue from their controversial coverage of Gamergate. (Can you imagine the ad backlash over Dish controversies like Scrotumgate or all the graphic photos of dead children in war zones?) Speaking of Gawker, Michael Wolff absorbs a recent staff memo from founder Nick Denton, who outlined a big management shakeup and a refocus on generating scoops over Facebook-friendly fodder. Here’s Wolff:

Gawker, or the Gawker identity, Denton seemed to acknowledge in his memo, is a casualty in the race for traffic: Gawker succeeded because it was a carefully molded product (a small band of young people overseen by Denton — with Denton constantly hiring and firing his editors). But then it morphed into a business with a much larger number of ever-younger people having to produce more and more, and working with less and less editorial vision or leadership. Gawker began to focus on an open area of parallel writing (i.e. free writing) designed to enhance its traffic base — but, too, with the natural effect of diluting quality and confusing purpose. … [A]t somewhat cross purposes to his desire to better compete with BuzzFeed (or admitting that this is impossible), Denton urged his company back to its blogging roots.

In Denton’s words:

[Blogging is] the only truly new media in the age of the web.

It is ours. Blogging is the essential act of journalism in an interactive and conversational age. Our bloggers surface buried information, whether it’s in an orphaned paragraph in a newspaper article, or in the government archives. And we can give the story further energy by tapping readers for information, for the next instalment of the story, and the next round of debate. The natural form of online media is the exchange, not the blast. [New executive editor Tommy Cragg’s] ethos gives us the best chance of recapturing the honesty of blogs, before their spirit was sapped by the tastes of the Facebook masses.

Denton is even jumping back into the blog saddle himself, something he hasn’t done regularly since 2008. Responding to Wolff and Salmon, Mathew Ingram pushes back on the perception that bigger is better when it comes to new media:

[They both] seem to see media success as being composed of just one thing: namely, huge amounts of traffic gained by reaching a massive audience of millennials and then selling them to advertisers for tens of millions of dollars. That’s what Salmon seems to mean by talking about how the “table stakes” for starting a digital media company have never been higher, and small sites are a thing of the past.

But this is demonstrably not true. The cost of starting a digital-media entity, even a potentially successful one, has never been lower. Ask Jessica Lessin, who left the Wall Street Journal to start The Information, or Lara Setrakian of News Deeply, or Andrew Sullivan of The Daily Dish, who is now making close to $1 million a year from his readers — or blogger Ben Thompson, who went from being a relative unknown to running his own self-financed blog company. As Thompson put it in a recent post on his site Stratechery:

“The thing about Internet scale is it doesn’t just have to mean you strive to serve the most possible people at the lowest possible price; individuals and focused publications or companies can go the other way and charge relatively high prices but with far better products or services than were possible previously.”

… It may not make you a billionaire, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t possible. The New Republic’s problem isn’t that it somehow needs to transform itself into a massive mega-media entity like BuzzFeed, it just needs to do a better job of identifying a market need or an audience that is passionate about its content, and then giving them a way of helping to support that mission.

That’s precisely the insight that venture capitalist Roger McNamee shared when discussing the Dish to Charlie Rose shortly after we went independent two years ago, and it’s an insight even more relevant today as sponsored content and click-bait are consuming the new media landscape.

The Best Of The Dish Today

by Chris Bodenner

And the best Christmas card ever:

Andrew is off the blog for the week, but he may pop on to write a post or two on the torture report (his parting takedown of Cheney is here if you missed it). To help in his absence are guest-bloggers Michelle Dean and Will Wilkinson, whose introductory posts are here and here, respectively. Michelle today invoked her time as a corporate litigator to scrutinize the Sony hacking story and then commented on a few drunken Santas harassing a Garner/Brown protest. Will, meanwhile, tackled the SCOTUS ruling that just gave cops even more discretion to detain, search, and arrest people.

The most popular posts of the day remained Andrew’s takedowns of Dick Cheney on Meet the Press and Fox News. A reader’s take:

Dick Cheney is not a psychopathic evil “sith lord”; he is a moral relativist, which is actually much worse. If he were the former, it would be far easier for him to be sidelined by the press and all people of good conscience the way serial killers are. The right is so quick to claim their moral authority based on the Founding Fathers and their interpretation of the Constitution. In this context, it’s important to remember that George Washington was no moral relativist, when speaking about how the Continental Army should respond to rumors of British bayonetings at the Battle of Paoli:

Treat them with humanity, and let them have no reason to complain of our copying the brutal example of the British Army in their treatment of our unfortunate brethren who have fallen into their hand.

Many recent posts were updated with your emails – read them all here. You can always leave your unfiltered comments at our Facebook page and @dishfeed. Gift subscriptions are available here (you purchase one today and have it auto-delivered on Christmas Day). Dish t-shirts are for sale here and our new mugs here. 25 more readers became subscribers today. You can join them here – and get access to all the readons and Deep Dish – for a little as $1.99 month. A new subscriber writes:

Although a Northern CA lefty, I began reading the Dish before Obama’s first election. I was impressed by your dedicated adherence to “balanced” discussions and the willingness to expose epistemic closure. I have felt guilty for not subscribing before, but signed up to quantify my support of your stance on the historically significant damages this dark episode of torture has done to our nation.

Although an Obama supporter, I have, from the start of his administration – to the revulsion of my friends – decided that his unwillingness to even consider bringing to trial those responsible for this horror will far out weigh his accomplishments. My perspective on this comes from my 27 years as part of a nonprofit aiding veterans and their families from the generational impact of service to this country. The craven destruction of America’s code of honor regarding the treatment of our enemies has removed the shield that may protect our military personnel from comparable base and depraved actions when captured.

For that alone, even if they never face the justice they deserve, Cheney and all of the architects deserve, and, I believe, will be remembered as the true traitors to this country. Keep up the great work.

See you in the morning.

Dish Shirts: 100% Cotton Tees Are Here!

by Chris Bodenner


We are sold out of the screen-printed tri-blend t-shirts we launched last month, but Dish polos are still available – in navy blue and white. When we released our premium tri-blends, a reader wrote:

Shirts do look beautiful, congratulations and hope you sell a lot because I am a big fan of your blog.  I will unfortunately be abstaining because I am allergic to polyester and can only buy all natural fibers – cotton, all linen or rayon mix, etc.

Another had a similar concern:

Please consider finding a really soft 100% cotton shirt (for purists as well as those of us with sensory issues).

We took those considerations to heart and are now offering a 100% cotton version of both t-shirt designs – the Howler (seen above) and the Logo, seen below next to the navy Polo:


Both the Logo and Howler versions of our 100% cotton t-shirts come in nine different colors: White, Navy Blue, Light Blue, Royal Blue, Red, Kelly Green, Asphalt, Teal, and Brown. So go here if you’d like to purchase a Howler shirt in one of those colors or go here for a Logo version. And both designs still come in men’s sizes and women’s sizes – no unisex.

Another big thanks to Jerzy Shustin and everyone else at BustedTees for hosting our shirts. As always, we welcome your feedback in the inbox:

The View From Your Window Contest: Winner #217

by Chris Bodenner


After more than four years running the VFYW Contest (a feature increasingly innovated by Chas, aka Special Teams), I thought I would finally throw my own view into the ring. A reader writes:

Somewhere in Barcelona. I had a very similar view from a hotel there once.


Paraguay, because of “Chacarita” on the bus. (Chacarita is a barrio, or neighborhood, in Asunción, the capital of Paraguay.)

Another asks, “How about Chacarita, Costa Rica?” Another stands by his principles:

SW Rome. I don’t believe in researching these!

Another notices a key detail:

Winter clothing and the portable propane patio heater tell us we are looking at the Southern Hemisphere.

Another gets the right city:

Unless I’m missing something, this one had a surprisingly HUGE giveaway: the graphics on the bus – Chacaritas – clearly place the photo in Buenos Aires, Argentina. I’m putting it in the Colegiales neighborhood on Calle Maure, but being an underachiever with three kids in tow to boot, I’ll leave it to another Dishhead to take this one home!

Another shares a great memento:

A few years ago, my family went on a vacation to celebrate my dad’s 60th birthday in Buenos Aires, the location of this week’s VFYW.  This photo transported me back on Sunday morning when I saw it, with its architecture, foliage and of course, the bus. While there, one souvenir I purchased was a small coffee table book, El Libro de los Colectivos, a book celebrating the unique styles and culture of the city’s buses:


The colectivo 39, without a doubt, is the major clue in his week’s photo (although according to the book, number 39 seems have have changed its look since this book came out).  Looks like it used to have a red and black color scheme, different than today’s mud and cola colors.  Both still have gold accents.

Another goes for the right neighborhood:

After hoping that someday there might be a VFYW pic with a clue so obvious that it might as well have been written on the broad side of a bus, there it was, right in front of me. But I’m still uncertain. I’ll go with the neighborhood of Chacarita in Buenos Aires, Argentina. More specifically, a view from the Hotel Torre at the corner of Avenues Corrientes and Olleros.  Late afternoon Southern Hemisphere fall shadows agree with that intersection’s orientation,  but there is still something not quite right with the hotel’s location at that corner.  But I will stand firmly in quicksand with my guess.

Another adds, “The famous Chacarita Cemetery is the largest cemetery in Argentina with many notable interments.” Another reader:

Gut feeling says “Buenos Aires.” I was there a couple of years ago and this looks like the neighborhoods I walked through.  I won’t go for the intersection (let alone the exact window), but let’s say it’s in the Recoleta neighborhood, near the cemetery where Eva Peron is entombed.

Another notices a detail no one else did:

The jacaranda trees and architecture told me it was Buenos Aires, probably the Palermo neighborhood, before I even tracked down the bus that features so prominently in the photo.

Palermo it is. Another reader:

Welp, everyone is going to get this week’s window location, I think.  Googling “chacarita 39” brings up this route map for the bus in the picture as the very first hit:

Screen Shot 2014-08-12 at 11.51.01 AM

If I were motivated to find the exact window, I’d just take that map and – noting that the bus is turning right – find all the right turns on the route and zoom in on them. But I’m not, because thinking of Buenos Aires reminds me of my favorite author, the master Jorge Luis Borges (who was born there), and I find a parallel between the VFYW contest and his tale of the Zahir: that thing that possesses the power to induce an overwhelming obsession in those who see it, slowly consuming them until they lose all sense of reality, until finally “(they) will have to be fed and dressed, (they) will not know whether it is morning or night, (they) will not know who (they were).”

Many are the Saturdays that I have spent long hours seeking out the location of a fascinating View window. Is it possible that this contest has become my Zahir?

Another moves along:

If you think I’m going to follow the 39 Chacarita bus line through it’s entire route looking for this corner, you’re nuts.

Another gives it a shot:

I’m not super familiar with Buenos Aires, but based on the fact that the bus is turning right and on the tree-lined street, I’m guessing Avenida Santa Fe in the (trendy!) Palermo district, taken at the intersection of Santa Fe and Vidt.  From a 5th-floor window in the building on the northeast side of the street.

Another tried another tool:

So, I’ve chased every turn the #39 Chacarita bus makes as it winds through the streets of Buenos Aires and failed miserably. Even tried searching through the photos of each hotel listed on the route in the Time Out guide. I’m exhausted and my head hurts!

Chas helped me plot many of the other guesses:


Another scratches his head:

I thought the geometry of this intersection was peculiar. There were three vehicles in motion at this intersection. The photo shows that the vehicles are traveling on a one way street. The vehicle to the right (in the photo – it is left in relation to the other vehicles in the real world) is making a left-hand turn, while the bus and the car next to it are going straight through the intersection. To the left are parked cars facing the opposite direction from the car turning left, which indicates that this street might be two ways.

Another nails the right intersection:

First-time entrant, long time astonished observer here.  I think this was taken from the fifth-floor window (fourth-floor in European counting, i.e. ground+4) of the building on the corner of Mario Bravo and Soler in Buenos Aires (3600 Soler? Can’t figure out an exact address), on the five-way intersection of Soler, Honduras, Mario Bravo, and Coronel Diaz.

Another provides a visual of the five-way:

The #39 bus to Chacarita!  Google search for “Chacarita” led me to Buenos Aires, and from there I found a detailed route map of the #39.  So I just have to use Street View to check out all the intersections on the route where the #39 bus turns, right?  Wrong – there’s no Street View for Buenos Aires yet. But Google Earth is a good enough substitute, and it led me to this intersection:

VFYW Buenos Aires Map

The photo looks like it was taken from the triangular building on the south side of Soler, and the photo is catching the bus turning onto Soler from Av Coronel Diaz. I couldn’t find the address for the building where the photo was taken, so I assume it’s residential – I’m guessing the window is on the 6th floor of the building.

Another has a great photo of that triangular building:

My city! Finally! At first sight, it looked like the snobbish Palermo neighborhood. With the 39 line bus clue, and the street that changes its direction (Soler Street), it was a piece of cake to deduce the exact corner. I know this city better than my palm. It’s a similar size to NYC, and it does have a somewhat similar vibe, but it has fewer green spaces (in that sense, it is the worst in Latin America) and a worse public transport system. It’s a worse city than New York, but I love it.

This was the building in which the picture was taken, and I’m guessing the fifth floor:


Another walks us through:

The two-steps-forward-and-one-step-back of this week’s contest:

1. Easily spot Chacarita 39 on bus in picture… Yay!

2. Note that this damn bus line in Buenos Aires runs through pretty big portion of the city… Grrr

3. Easily find a block-by-block bus route on a satellite image-enabled map… Yay!

4. Waste precious time trying to find a spot on the route where the bus turns sharply right… Grr

5. Using both the bus line website and Googlemaps, locate the slight turn (a right turn!) on from Avenida Coronel Diaz, across Soler, onto Honduras that appears to fit the bill… Yay!

6. Realize that Google Streetview is not avialable in Buenos Aires… WTF?!

My best guess is that the picture was taken from an apartment building with the address “De la Carcova 3501-3599” in the Palermo section of Buenos Aires. The view looks due north from the fifth floor across Soler towards Avenida Coronel Diaz.

One of the best visual entries:


Another didn’t get that far:

Looks like a South American city. Somewhere I’ve been. Best guess: Buenos Aires. It may be winter there, but it’s a gorgeous summer day here, so I’m done. (I’ll leave finding the details and winning the book to someone else.) Gonna go out and enjoy myself in Central Park, in that wonderful city that you hate so much and that apparently makes so many people so miserable.

Rest assured there won’t be any gratuitous NYC bashing while Andrew is away this month. And by the way, the winters down in Buenos Aires are pretty gorgeous too; 65-degree sunny days are common. How a reader describes it:

It’s a strange place: Warm as hell but resembling a German city at times.


It turns out it’s actually more frustrating when you know the city! I have spent a lot time in Buenos Aires so I knew immediately. I suspect I’ve even taken the Line 39 Chacarita Bus. If I were a more patient individual I could trace the route of the bus but I’m not that patient. Anyway, I’m guessing somewhere in the Palermo neighborhood. I await the efforts of a more obsessive person to identify the exact corner, and window.

Another obsessive:

Screen Shot 2014-08-12 at 12.41.49 PM

Another notes:

Riding those buses years ago was one of my highlights of living there. Drivers would “drive,” shift gears, smoke, talk to their girlfriends (seated behind or next to them), give tickets, make change, yell at passengers, debate passengers, and, usually, avoid minor fender benders with other vehicles and pedestrians.

Another also knows the area:

The #39 bus to Chacarita (a fabulous neighborhood where many gays have moved since the gentrification of Palermo) veers right at this intersection onto Calle Honduras. Hope I’m right!  And I hope the “rational default” doesn’t further destabilize an already highly volatile economic / employment situation in Argentina.

Another has fond memories of the city:

I spent six months studying in Buenos Aires while I was in college and lived in the Palermo neighborhood with a lovely old couple, and I woke up to a similar more often than not. After I got married last year, I traveled there on my honeymoon where I tried to relive some of the magic of that city. Now, the number 39 route (which I did ride on occasion) goes through several neighborhoods, but the feeling on the street reminds me of Palermo. Thanks for reminding me once again of this great place.


It’s a tremendous coincidence that you selected this precise location, since it not only inspired great nostalgia in me as a former resident of Buenos Aires, but in fact the lower-right corner of the photo contains a view of Café Nostalgia, located at the corner of Av. Coronel Díaz and Soler in the neighborhood of Palermo.Café Nostalgia

My nostalgia was further enhanced by the fact that I used to live about ten blocks away, on the border of Palermo and Recoleta, and that I used to ride that very bus (the 39 Line to Chacarita) with great frequency while attending classes in the Faculty of Social Sciences at the University of Buenos Aires.

Great choice – thanks for the wonderful memory!

Another adds, “Café-Bar Nostalgia is described here as ‘a space in which you can revel in the antiquated whilst observing the modern,’ complete with a crowd-pleasing ‘barrelful of monkey nuts’ – yum!”  … meaning a barrel of peanuts from which they serve you a bowl at your table. Another reader:

The neighborhood sounds interesting and perhaps a bit ritzy. A review of the restaurant across the street gushes about the $35-$40 main courses and the excellent people watching.

That review was written in January 2010, and prices at Cafe Nostalgia are actually much lower now. I’ve had many amazing steak dinners there with another person, sharing a bottle of wine, and I’ve rarely spent more than $50 USD. Update from a reader:

By the way, if you want a fancy (somewhat expensive by BA standards) and amazing meal, try Paraje Arevalo.  We went late last year and loved it.

Just the kind of recommendation I was hoping to get by posting my view this week. And I’m finally getting a two-week vacation this month, after many years without a break from the Dish longer than a week, so keep the recommendations coming! My favorite entry this week:

I recognized Bs As right away – same as I did last time you had this city: there’s something so distinct of its aesthetic. I used to to live there back in ’09-’10. I googled the bus line and that confirmed it (as recently as 2010 there was no website like that and you had to carry around a city-issued byzantine pocket-guide). Out of the path on that route it felt like the neighborhood of Almagro to me.


I started looking along “Honduras” and when I cam across the corner of Colonel Diaz I saw “Cafe Nostalgia” pop up. Back in Bs As I worked part-time as a photographer for The Argentina Independent, a small English language newspaper. I’d photographed Cafe Nostalgia for them as part of a project on the then-54 Bares Notables (bars and cafes with a sort of historical landmark status from the city). Two of my photos [seen above and below] still come up as some of the first google image results for “Cafe Nostalgia.


I went back and looked through the rest of that roll (all film) and even though there wasn’t any smoking gun pic, I do think that that green awning in the bottom right is Cafe Nostalgia. Maybe it’s just wishful thinking for this whole coincidence to be the case, but I’ll make my guess for that corner: Universidad de Palermo – Ingenieria, Mario Bravo 1300, Almagro, Buenos Aires, Argentina. Let’s say 4th floor.

Truly an amazing coincidence that the photographer is a Dish reader, since his photos were widely cited by other players this week. Another:

So easy!!! Since this is my hometown :)  The giveaway was the bus. The “39”. Anybody who has ever visited BA knows that the city is crowded with buses everywhere, each with their different numbers and their distinctive colors. The 39 passes by my old school (University of Buenos Aires) and of course I took it many times to go places in the city. The “Chacarita” written in the top of the bus signifies the last stop, one of the biggest cemeteries in the city. So I’m guessing that you will get tons of correct answers this week. I can’t give you the exact window but it doesn’t matter, it was definitely nice to see my city in the contest this week, I really miss it. “Mi Buenos Aires querido”.

Another also reflects:


Identifying the city was easy.  I went on holiday to Buenos Aires with friends in 2008, and I snapped a street scene in the containing buses with similar numbering, attached here, which helped me identify this photo location.  The distinctive multi-story European architecture and signs in Castilian Spanish were also good clues.

Another wants to go:

I came across the El Ateneo book store while googling along the route 39 bus line and then stopped searching as I didn’t want it to be anyplace else. Beautiful. Thanks for adding another location to the bucket list!

Another goes for the right window:

More specifically, it’s the building located at -34.594237, -58.414353.  The view is looking roughly due north (Chini will probably tell you it’s looking N at 2.278 degrees or some shit).  And I’m guessing the window is on the sixth floor, maybe the seventh.  No idea what the unnamed (2)room number is.  The building is located in the triangle between Mario Bravo, Soler and De la Carcova streets.  It took me about 20 minutes to find the building.  Then I spent the next three hours trying to figure out something about the building.  Nada.  I’m guessing it’s an apartment building since there seems to be a bunch of rentals nearby.  You can always check out the nearby Lovers and Fuckers, if you’re in the neighborhood.

After having wasted more than a few Saturday afternoons trying to figure out the VFYW contest, I’ve now decided that if I can’t figure out a lead within 1-2 minutes, then I have to get on my life.  Sometimes I’ve been able to get the city, but not the building.  Other times, I have a gut feeling that I’ve been to the town or city in the picture, but can’t quite figure it out.  I nailed #157, but so did everybody else.  #177 was especially frustrating since it looked so familiar, I’d recently been on vacation there and had gone to college nearby.

When I looked at this VFYW pic, my immediate reaction was “WTF?”, like usual.  But then I noticed the bus and realized that it offered a ton of clues.  Sure enough, it lead me to this building.

(The above image is actually from a different reader.) Another suspects that “Doug Chini is fuming with boredom.” Let’s see:

To steal a line from Whittier, “it might have been.” If your viewer had waited a few seconds longer to take this week’s image just finding the right city would have been a battle, much less the exact spot. But they didn’t, and that #39 bus passing through center frame means that the Dish staff is gonna be buried under a landslide of responses.

This week’s view comes from Buenos Aires, Argentina. The picture was taken from roughly the fifth floor of a building on the 3500 block of Esquinas Soler and looks almost due north along a heading of 348.3 degrees. Bird’s eye and overhead views are attached along with a shot of the video game store just below your viewer’s window:

VFYW Buenos Aires Store Front - Copy

Another great entry:

This one gave my roommate and me a good, solid two hours of bonding time. You usually don’t give as many hints as you did here! A full bus number and name, that’s something. He’s been to Argentina, so he noticed the architecture right away, too. From there, it was scouring the bus line for an intersection where the 39 takes a right from a one-way street onto a two-way street. It’s where Av Coronel Diaz meets Soler and Honduras here. The 3500 block of Soler. We haven’t had this much fun together since we used to smoke pot and play frisbee in the park, thank you!

About 95% of the contestants this week correctly answered Buenos Aires, and dozens guessed the right floor in the triangle building at 3594 Soler, where I’m living for two months while Dishing full-time. So picking a winner was tough this week. But the prize goes to one of our favorite new contestants this year, better known as the GIF guy, for his inimitable entry:


The GIF guy, like Chini, has become such a great staple of the window contest that I asked permission to use his real name (since the Dish has a default anonymity policy of course). So welcome Blake Fall-Conroy to the pantheon of the VFYWC. Little surprise that Blake is an artist. Another creative reader wraps up this week’s contest with a short story:

The Chacarita 39

The late afternoon light was fading along Soler street, but enough of it filtered in to softly illuminate the small apartment with the dingy windows on the 6th floor. The low hum of traffic and street chatter drifted up from below and a few birds whistled loudly to each other.

Fernando’s eyes blinked open. What time was it?

He glanced over at the clock by the bed. The numbers were red and blurry, but he could make out 7:32. That couldn’t be right. Had he really slept for 3 hours?

He sat up panicked and looked down at his clothes. He was still wearing the wrinkled khakis and blue t-shirt that he had on in his engineering class that morning. The classes at Palermo were always long and boring and he was still hung over from Chasco’s party. He thought he could get a short nap in before meeting Maricela at the café across the street.

“I’ll give you one last chance,” she had said, sipping her Torrontés, her mischievous eyes sparkling from the blue party lights. “Meet me at six at Nostalgia and we’ll talk about it.” He had grinned stupidly at her as she left the party, and she had smiled back.

Fernando put his head in his hands. How had he let himself sleep through it? Would she still be there?

The answer came from the low rumble of a diesel bus overtaking the clatter of conversations from the café patio. He ran to the window and peered down at the intersection. Through the trees he could see the Chacarita 39 – Maricela’s bus – pulling out from in front of the café. He was too late. He grabbed his phone and snapped a picture as it turned onto Honduras street. The bus faded out of his view, taking Maricela across Buenos Aires and out of his life.

(Archive: Text|Gallery)

Mental Health Break

by Chris Bodenner

One of the top nominees from our cover-song contest that hasn’t been aired yet is José Gonzalez’s acoustic rendition of “Heartbeats” by the Swedish synth-pop band The Knife. Gonzalez’s austere video is here, but the Sony Bravia version is far more visually stunning:

The Knife’s version – with its vintage footage of suburban kids on skateboards and trippy digital crows – is probably even better. And for another great video from the Swedes, don’t miss their drag queen-led performance for “Pass This On”:

Face Of The Day

by Andrew Sullivan

EU Election Count In Southampton

UK Independence Party (UKIP) leader Nigel Farage is interviewed by media as he arrives at the Guildhall for the results of the South East election count on May 25, 2014 in Southampton, England. UKIP, which advocates withdrawal from the European Union, was the top vote-getter in Britain’s European elections, beating both the Tories and Labour. By Matthew Lloyd/Getty Images.