Friday Noir: Flat Break

Sometimes a guy just needs a break.

Doesn’t even have to be one of those big thunder breaks that scatters balls in all directions.

Sometimes, just a good, solid flat break would help.

Just a ding off to the side that gets the whole thing rolling.

Something that helps get you to the other side of the game.

But then, what fun would that be, right?

Ain’t no sunshine in the gutter.

Sometimes it’s better to think about what’s on the other side than to actually get there.

Because sometimes the quickest way off that bridge…

Is down.

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I know, I know…this isn’t one of my normal “fedora and gat” induced noir pieces. I think it works in the genre, though.

See, while noir is about B&W, stark lighting, fog, .45’s blasting in the night, and femme fatales…it’s also something more.

True noir is about not really know who the good guys are from the bad guys, or if the good guys become bad guys due to circumstance, a bend in the road.

And it’s also about that middle ground where one is neither good nor bad. Just trying to get by each day, anyway possible.

The opening sentence to David Goodis’ Retreat from Oblivion novel reads “After a while it gets so bad that you want to stop the whole business.”

What’s the “whole business”? The dark side? The crime side? Life itself? Hard to say and that’s the point. Make of it what you will.

I shot the above image when I was on the Retreat to Goodisville. It was near the end of the day and the group was down on the Philadelphia waterfront (now called Columbus Ave. but to me it’ll always be Delaware Ave.)

The guy in the photo is a noir fan and actor, Eric Rice. I saw him sitting there just looking out, enjoying the view of the Delaware River and Ben Franklin Bridge. It spans from Philly to the Camden side. Camden’s about as hardscrabble as it comes. At night, though, lit up blue, the Ben Franklin ranks, in my eyes, up there with the Golden Gate Bridge as one of the prettiest.

And while there’s no fedora, gat or femme fatale, when I shot this, I immediately thought of the neo-noir/hardboiled crime drama Payback. Not sure why, it just popped into my head.

And so did the story that I put with the photo. just the way Eric was sitting there seemed like he could be contemplating his next move…be it to the right side of the law or off the bridge.

© Mark V. Krajnak 2012 | JerseyStyle Photography | All rights Reserved

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