Touched By Humans Of New York


I've been reading the Tumblr blog, Humans of New York, for almost three years now. For those of you who may have never heard of HONY, it is a uniquely authentic blog by creator and portrait photographer, Brandon Stanton.


Brandon graduated from the University of Georgia with a degree in History. He traded bonds in Chicago for three years, before losing his job and moving to New York. In November of 2010, he started the photography blog Humans of New York, in hopes of creating a catalog of New York City's inhabitants, including photographs of 10,000 New Yorkers and plotting their locations on a map. Brandon worked for several months with this goal in mind and during this process, HONY began to take on a much different character. Brandon began collecting quotes and short stories from the people he met, and incorporated these snippets alongside the photographs. Taken together, these portraits and captions became the subject of a vibrant blog. With over eight million followers on social media, HONY now provides a worldwide audience with daily glimpses into the lives of strangers in New York City.

In addition, Humans of New York has launched a number of highly successful charity efforts, due to Brandon's desire to help others through his own success.

Earlier this week, I was especially touched by this particular photograph and caption...

(and I'm not ashamed to say that I cried when I read this, I was so moved)


“I actually went to the shelter to get another dog, but he’d already been adopted. So I decided to do a lap around the facility before I left, and I saw Engelbert. He had about ten pages of physical problems. His back legs didn’t work. His old owners kept him outside, so his ears were completely frostbitten. And he only had three teeth. So I thought if I didn’t get him, nobody else would.”

-----------------------------

I'm sharing this post today for two reasons.

One, is that I think we sometimes become tainted by what we constantly hear and see in the news about how the world is in such chaos and all the negative things that human beings are capable of, oblivious to the human beings who bring such kindness, compassion, and goodness into this world.

And two, is that New York City and its inhabitants are often blanketed as being rude, uncaring and self-absorbed. But as you can see, that is not true.

In fact, some of the softest hearts I have ever encountered are from within that city.

The humans of New York...


Have a beautiful weekend everyone!
X

*all photos shown are from Humans of New York



34 comments

  1. http://ladyfi.wordpress.comMay 01, 2015

    I follow the HONY on Facebook and love the glimpses of life and wisdom I see there! I missed the story of Englebert - it was very touching!

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  2. Ron, you are right about what the media covers and I just don't bother keeping up with a lot of news anymore. I was so disturbed by a photo that people kept 'liking' on FB this past week from recent events that I wanted to scream.

    What a wonderful idea this young man had for a blog (and I hope he can make a decent living from it?) I will go take a peek. Have a super weekend!

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  3. Ron, what a beautiful post! I cried too when I saw the photograph and then read the caption. Oh my god, what a lovely and caring gentleman. And that dog is precious!


    You're right, we have become tainted by all the negative news we hear and read about in the world, forgetting that there are people like this man who has a heart of gold. I've heard of the blog Humans of New York on Facebook, but never checked it out. Being from New York I should, because it sounds like a very interesting and fascinating format.


    Thank you for sharing this post today, Ron. Especially with all the violence going on right now.


    Have a wonderful weekend X

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  4. " and love the glimpses of life and wisdom I see there!"


    Isn't it a FAB blog, Fiona? And not only the photographs, but also the different stories that underline each one. It's such a diversified look into life!


    Thanks so much for stopping by, my friend. Have a super weekend!
    X

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  5. "...you are right about what the media covers and I just don't bother keeping up with a lot of news anymore. I was so disturbed by a photo that people kept 'liking' on FB this past week from recent events that I wanted to scream."

    Yes, I don't either, Bijoux. I barely watch the news and am not on FB because it primarily seems to be one big gossip media.

    "What a wonderful idea this young man had for a blog (and I hope he can make a decent living from it?)"



    From an online interview I've read, Brandon makes his living through the books he's written and guest appearances/talks. But he doesn't make a living through things like advertising or sponsorship on his blog.


    Thanks so much for stopping by, my friend. Have a SUPER weekend!
    X

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  6. Hola Denise!

    "And that dog is precious!"

    Isn't he adorable?

    " I've heard of the blog Humans of New York on Facebook, but never checked it out. Being from New York I should, because it sounds like a very interesting and fascinating format."



    I'm not on FB, so I read Humans of New York via the blog itself. And I think you would love it, not only being a New Yorker, but also because it such an amazing glimpse into the lives of the people Brandon photographs. So many diverse and fascinating stories!


    Thanks so much for stopping by, girl. Have a wonderful weekend!
    X

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  7. "we sometimes become tainted by what we constantly hear and see in the news about how the world is in such chaos and all the negative things that human beings are capable of, oblivious to the human beings who bring such kindness, compassion, and goodness into this world." Ron, you are so correct, the media seems to only enjoy focusing on all the negative drama, leaving out the good stuff.


    What a touching story! And thank you for sharing this blog because I will check it out sometime this weekend. Genius concept!

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  8. I remember reading about Brandon and being most impressed -- it takes a LOT of courage to capitalize on the loss of one job and turn it into success with something entirely different.

    I find it fascinating to see these strangers and read their stories. And what a heart-warming tale that is of Engelbert! I'm not sure I would want to take on a dog with so much going against him right off the bat, but gee, isn't it great that there are big-hearted folks around who do?!!

    Thanks for pointing out this site today, Ron, and have yourself a wonderful weekend!

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  9. Rob LenihanMay 01, 2015

    Hey, Ron, how's it going?

    I recently started reading HONY and i love it. I'm so glad there is somebody out there recording these incredible stories of everyday people.


    Living in NY, you sometimes get the feeling that the only people that matter in this town are fashion models and hedge fund managers, but there are millions of more folks out there who deserve to be heard.


    Thanks for the fabulous post, buddy! Have a great weekend!

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  10. Oooo I loved this post, Ron. Let me say here and now that new Yorkers ARE caring.... at least those I've met are. I remember one elderly man who came to my aid in NY when I tripped up a kerb. I was fine but he and his friend wouldn't leave me until they were sure I wasn't going to pass out or something. It was a slight stumble but they weren't taking any chances. Everyone I met there were fine people, even the taxi drivers, and I've stories about them.


    I love the pictures... you can see the love there. Oh and that little dog is adorable, I can understand your eyes tearing up. I would give anything at all to help animals, especially dogs.


    Happy Friday, dear friend x

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  11. benzekneesMay 01, 2015

    What a great idea!

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  12. Mark PetruskaMay 01, 2015

    Funny, I'd never heard of HONY until last year. I was telling a coworker about an idea I had for a new blog in which I would approach strangers and ask them, "What's your story?" She replied, "Oh - you mean, like Humans of New York?" Err...yeah, sure. I started following them on Facebook and Instagram and have to say, there are some compelling stories on there!


    Never did start that blog, btw...but I think if I did it there would be more emphasis on words and less on photos. Maybe someday. I'm pretty busy with multiple blogs anyway; no need to add yet another!

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  13. Ron, I'm sorry to be commenting so late in the day, but we were out of town for a few days and just got back. I've read Humans of New (on Facebook) and LOVE it! I also know that Brandon has writing a few books and has a new one coming out soon. I think it's great that he uses his success to help others through certain charities.


    And it's true what you said about New Yorkers. They may seem a little rough on the outside, but are are softies on the inside. I find most New Yorkers to be very sincere.


    Great post, Ron!

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  14. Hiya Matt!

    "..the media seems to only enjoy focusing on all the negative drama, leaving out the good stuff."

    Yes, and I do realize that there are quite a bit of negative things going on in the world, but there are also a lot of positive things as well. And the media seems to only like focusing on the negative and blowing it up.

    "Genius concept!"



    It is a genius concept. And I think it's so interesting to read how the blog has changed from what it started out to be and what it has evolved to today.


    Thanks so much for stopping by, buddy. Have a most excellent weekend!
    X

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  15. Helloooooo there Debbie!

    " it takes a LOT of courage to capitalize on the loss of one job and turn it into success with something entirely different."

    I agree! And isn't it something about that saying, "When one door closes, another will open," because Brandon's story proves that it's true. And I'm sure he never fathomed that things would turn out the way they did with his blog. He just followed his heart and it brought him success.

    "And what a heart-warming tale that is of Engelbert! I'm not sure I would want to take on a dog with so much going against him right off the bat, but gee, isn't it great that there are big-hearted folks around who do?!!"



    It's takes a very special person to do what that guy did because many people wouldn't probably do it, knowing the dog's medical condition and background.


    Thanks so much for stopping by, my friend. Have a fantastic weekend!


    X

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  16. "I have a friend who adopts dogs in need, those who have been physically abused...she had one whose jaw had been mangled and hand fed her daily for years...these are truly special people."


    Oh, that's AWESOME, Suzi! And I agree, people like your friend and the guy in the photograph are truly special people! One of my longtime blogging friends also does the same thing, she adopts senior dogs which many times go unadopted.


    Thanks so much for stopping by, my friend. Have a faaaabulous weekend!

    X

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  17. Hey there Rob!

    " I recently started reading HONY and i love it. I'm so glad there is somebody out there recording these incredible stories of everyday people."

    Isn't it a GREAT blog? And I was hoping that you heard of it, being from New York.

    "Living in NY, you sometimes get the feeling that the only people that matter in this town are fashion models and hedge fund managers, but there are millions of more folks out there who deserve to be heard."



    True, New York can be very competitive and rough at times. But I still have to say that some the most genuine people with the softest hearts I have ever encountered are New Yorkers. And YOU are one of them!


    Thanks so much for stopping by, buddy. Have a grrrrrrreat weekend!


    X

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  18. Helloooooooo there Valerie!

    " I remember one elderly man who came to my aid in NY when I tripped up a kerb. I was fine but he and his friend wouldn't leave me until they were sure I wasn't going to pass out or something. It was a slight stumble but they weren't taking any chances."

    Yes, and that's a perfect example of what I mean about New Yorkers being caring people. I've had similar situations in NY when I was lost and didn't know what subway to take in order for me to get where I needed to. A very lovely lady noticed that I was confused and walked right up to me and asked to help.

    "Oh and that little dog is adorable, I can understand your eyes tearing up. I would give anything at all to help animals, especially dogs."



    Isn't that dog ADORABLE? OMG, I just want to squeeze and kiss him! What a precious little face he has!


    Thanks so much for stopping by, dear lady. Happy Friday, and have a lovely weekend!
    X to you and Joe

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  19. Isn't it a GREAT idea, Benze? I love that blog!


    Thanks so much for stopping by, my friend. Hope all is well with you. Have a wonderful weekend!


    ((((((((((( You )))))))))))


    X

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  20. "I was telling a coworker about an idea I had for a new blog in which I would approach strangers and ask them, "What's your story?" She replied, "Oh - you mean, like Humans of New York?" Err...yeah, sure. I started following them on Facebook and Instagram and have to say, there are some compelling stories on there!"

    HA! Isn't it an awesome blog, Mark? And I think, for me, it's the stories that are most compelling. Some are very lighthearted, but others are very raw.

    "...but I think if I did it there would be more emphasis on words and less on photos. Maybe someday."



    GREAT idea!


    Thanks so much for stopping by, buddy. Have a faaaabulous weekend!


    X to you and Tara

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  21. Hello there Elaine!

    No apologies needed, my friend. Thanks so much for taking the time when you got back to stop by. Hope you had a great time on your out of town trip!

    " I also know that Brandon has written a few books and has a new one coming out soon."

    Yes, you're right. I did read that he has another book coming out soon. And his charity work is so admirable.

    "And it's true what you said about New Yorkers. They may seem a little rough on the outside, but are are softies on the inside. I find most New Yorkers to be very sincere."



    Thank you. And I agree!


    Have a terrific weekend, my friend!

    X

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  22. Wonderful post, Ron! And I'm also not ashamed to say that the photograph and caption made me cry too. What a touching story. Oh my god, that little peanut dog is so adorable. And his name suits him - Engelbert!

    I don't know of Humans of New York, but I'm glad that you shared it because it sounds like something I would enjoy reading. What a great conceptualization. I love hearing stories about how people lose one thing, only to have it replaced by something better. I'm sure he had no idea that after losing his job, this blog would end up being such a success.



    Good for him!

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  23. Hey ho Robert!


    You cried too? Isn't is such a touching story? I was SO moved!

    "Oh my god, that little peanut dog is so adorable. And his name suits him - Engelbert!"

    Isn't he PRECIOUS? And yes, I thought the same thing about his name - PERFECT!

    "I love hearing stories about how people lose one thing, only to have it replaced by something better. I'm sure he had no idea that after losing his job, this blog would end up being such a success."



    Me too. I love hearing stories about how adversities change people's lives for the better. And yes, I've heard him talk on interviews, saying that he never imagined that Humans of New York would ever become what it has become. And so quickly!


    I'm very happy for his success!


    Thanks so much for stopping by, buddy. Have a SUPER weekend!
    X

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  24. I love this site, Ron! I've visited as my niece is a huge fan and has directed me there. Am so impressed with Brandon's sensitivity to the human condition. I think he could have planted himself anywhere and would have been equally amazing. However, there's something to be said for New York's character and diversity. And you know who are probably the rudest? The out-of-towners rushing to get to work? lol Because everyone I've known are just like you and me. Don't know much of the wealthy New Yorkers. ;))
    And what a beautiful story you highlighted about the adoption of little Englebert. Such a special story.
    TY for sharing, Ron! Hope you're having a wonderful weekend! :))

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  25. nite byrdMay 02, 2015

    I love HONY! I follow them on FB but didn't realize it was on Tumblr! Thank you!


    I'm not ashamed to say that Englebert's story made me cry, too. What a beautiful person his new dad must be.

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  26. Hellooooo there Petra!

    "I love this site, Ron! I've visited as my niece is a huge fan and has directed me there."

    You're a fan of HONY too? Isn't it a GREAT site! And you're right, he could have planted himself anywhere and would have been equally amazing. But as you shared, there is something to be said for the character and diversity of New York!

    "And you know who are probably the rudest? The out-of-towners rushing to get to work? lol Because everyone I've known are just like you and me."

    Exactly! People forget that not ALL of New York is composed only of New Yorkers.

    Isn't the story of Engelbert so touching? And isn't he such a cutey?

    Thanks so much for stopping by, my friend. Hope you're having a wonderful weekend too! The weather here is STUNNING!

    X

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  27. "I follow them on FB but didn't realize it was on Tumblr! "

    Yes, I'm not on FB so I discovered HONY through Tumblr about three years ago, and have been reading it ever since. Isn't it a great site?

    "I'm not ashamed to say that Englebert's story made me cry, too. What a beautiful person his new dad must be."



    You too? OMG, after I read the story I cried, I was so moved!


    Thanks so much for stopping by, sis! Hope you're having a super weekend!


    X ya!

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  28. Hope you're enjoying the beautiful weather we're having in Philly this weekend, Ron!

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  29. Elaine, isn't it gorgeous? And yup, I had off today so I spent much of the day outside savoring it :)


    Have a super Sunday!
    X

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  30. I follow HONY on Facebook and every other posting makes me cry. Brandon is so talented. I'm amazed at what one one picture, one quote, can do to me and everyone else. Humanity in all its glory, and with some warts too. I loved that little dog who got saved, too! (That's among the ones that made me tear up).

    Hope you're having a great weekend, my friend!

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  31. "I'm amazed at what one one picture, one quote, can do to me and everyone else. Humanity in all its glory, and with some warts too."

    Kathy, you stated so perfectly how I feel and why I think HONY is such a special site. You're spot on...."Humanity in all its glory, and with some warts too." It's such an honest look at life and humans.

    Thanks so much for stopping by, my friend. Hope you're having a great weekend too! Gorgeous weather, hu? Have a super Sunday!

    X

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  32. AkelamaluMay 03, 2015

    I have seen HONY on Facebook but didn't know the story behind it. Thanks for this Ron. x

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  33. Isn't the story behind HONY fascinating, Pearl? What an awesome blog!

    Thanks so much for stopping by, m'dear. Hope you had a lovely weekend!

    X

    P.S. I love your new avatar!

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  34. I can't think of a better project (except one with animals)! What wonderfully heartwarming captures of humanity. I love it! Too bad the mainstream media doesn't spend more time on things like this. Perhaps if they did, society would improve overall!

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