Friday, July 21, 2006

CBGB's Vega$?

CBGB's may be moving to Vegas, due to NYC's prohibitive rent. Owner Hilly Kristal is also recovering from lung cancer. The famous music venue's lease ends in October, so I'm sure many East Villagers and music lovers are hoping for a last-minute miracle. It's looking less and less likely. (Via Gothamist)

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Squeeze Me Into Wine & Serve the Planets

A few quick 'n' lazy notes on some noteworthy artists I've stumbled across in the last few days.

Via newyorkette (one of two blogs I've recently discovered devoted to the New Yorker), comes the delightfully bizarro comix of Kaz's Underworld, which manage a distinct balance between dark and joyful. And surreal. I especially love this one.
artwork by Derek Van Gieson
And via Emdashes (the other New Yorker blog) I discovered the gorgeous, elegant nigh monochromatic art of Derek Van Gieson. That's his artwork above. The Kalamazoo Gazette reviews his new book.

Finally, not all my art experience has taken place in cyberspace. Fumiha Tanaka has some lovely, playful work on display at CBGB's gallery right now. Which, I might add, is right around the corner from where I live now. Jealous?

Art School Bonus: You too can paint like Jackson Pollock!

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

This Is New York City

I've created a new photo set over at Flickr called This Is New York, and added a bunch of recent pics I've taken. Grand Central Station above.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Apple's Manhattan Store

Manhattan Apple Store

If you haven't seen Apple's striking 5th Avenue store, here's a photo I took this weekend. It's downstairs from that glass entrance and open 24/7. Want a new pair of headphones for your iPod at 3am? Head on in.

More photos on my Flickr site.

RIP Syd Barrett

Syd Barrett RIP

"Remember when you were young, you shone like the sun."

Pink Floyd's original vocalist and co-founder, the reclusive Syd Barrett died a few days ago in Cambridge, England. He was 60. The Floyd song "Shine on you Crazy Diamond was a tribute to him, and he famously showed up during its recording, though the band member didn't initially recognize him. The album title Wish Your Were Here also references Barrett.

- Excellent Observer story on Barrett's evolution into a recluse.

- YouTube search on "Syd Barrett"

Friday, July 07, 2006

Ali G Interviews Noam Chomsky

'Nuff said. Just click the link.

I always find Ali G's interviews with politicos and the literati to be great tests of the individual's character. Chomsky does quite well, getting a little bothered and impatient by the end. Not like Andy Rooney who went ballistic and dripped with condescension and contempt. Of all the ones I've seen, Gore Vidal (of course!) had the best reaction. A real class act, he just cruised along with the whole thing, treating Ali G politely, acting as if it were a legitimate interview all along.

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Caucasians & the City

One thing I've realized since moving to the Big Apple is what a load of bunk Sex and the City is. (Well, I knew that already, but now for different reasons.) I've never cared for the show, but living here really drills home what a scrubbed fantasyland those girls live in. I'm sure someone's noted this before, but there are practically zero people of ethnicity in Sex in the City. That's entirely contrary to the New York I'm getting to know, where practically everywhere I go, I'm surrounded by people of multitudinous ethnic backgrounds. It's something I love about New York. You'd hardly guess it watching this show, though. Sure, there may be a few token people of color in the background from time to time, but where are the characters? Not just African Americas, who appear rarely as anything other than wallpaper in the scenery, but where are the Indians, Pakistanis, Middle Easterners, Africans, Hispanics, Latinos, Chinese and Korean people I see everywhere I go?

In fact, riding the subway, it's not uncommon for lily white boys like myself to be in the minority. Speaking of which: where are the straphangers in Sex and the City? I don't remember ever even seeing a single subway scene in Sex and the City. Everyone takes taxis all the time. Nobody I've met here so far takes taxis everywhere. Seven million New Yorkers actually ride the subway and buses on a daily basis.

Flipping back and forth between the two shows right now: Seinfeld portrays NYC with far more accuracy than Sex and the City.

Monday, July 03, 2006

It's True

You've probably heard the advice that if you want to get rid of something in New York, just set it out on the curb and it'll be gone in half an hour.

Well, I thought I'd test this out. I've had this old wicker settee for nigh on a decade and finally decided I didn't need it enough to take up space in my diminished quarters. So I set it out on the curb (strangling my genteel Southern guilt at cluttering my own neighborhood thusly) and set off to Veselka for a late-night treat of delicious raspberry blintzes and coffee.

Came back and it was gone.

Saturday, July 01, 2006

I'm Your Man

"There is a crack in everything. That's where the light gets in."
- Leonard Cohen, "Anthem" from 1992's The Future
If you're a fan of Leonard Cohen, I heartily recommend Lian Lunsun's new documentary Leonard Cohen: I'm Your Man. Lunsun basically threw a concert with folks covering Cohen's considerable oeuvre, filmed it and interviewed those involved. Since U2, Jarvis Cocker, Nick Cave, and Antony (of Antony & the Johnsons) among others were invited, the results are eminently watchable. I'm writing a review up for Skyscraper, so look for it (hopefully) in the next issue.