Thursday, June 25, 2009

Rain, rain and more rain in New York

Ginny, erin and I went to ny for a long weekend to see our friend Heidi who is staying in brooklyn for the summer doing an internship. The weather was just dreadful (except for the day we left, of course), but what are you going to do. I spent most of the time exploring the city alone doing all the things i have always wanted to do, but have never had the time to do while in new york. I went to museums, the ny public library, ellis island, central park, a concert and just walked around the city (in the rain it is a bit less less fun, but still mildy enjoyable). Oh we did go to In the Heights, a musical. I didn't get to go to coney island due to the weather, but perhaps can do it next time.

Murals around Heidi's neighborhood in Williamsburg Brooklyn aka Hipsterville.

A pig or bear? you decide.

I happened to be walking by radio city music hall, saw Andrew Bird was playing there and got a ticket an hour before the show. Calexico opened, which was a nice surprise. It was an awesome concert!

My friend Louise, who lives in Manhattan, took me to the Highline, which is an old elevated rail that has now been converted into a garden/walkway. It just opened a few weeks ago. I thought it was really great and would highly recommend it. Below is a video done by the sundance channel that gives you a bit of a overview on it.

I look like the wind is blowing me over.

Didn't stop at liberty island. Seemed like a waste of time since I couldn't go inside the statue.

I took a guided tour of the ellis island which I found to be very worthwhile and informative. The tour guide took you around the building and kind of had you pretend like you were an immigrant and had just arrived in the US. My dad's grandparents came over (separately) to the US from Hungary and Austria through Ellis island so it was kind of interesting to imagine what it was like for them. I liked the building itself a lot.

I went to the Cooper Hewitt design museum, which had an exhibition on felt and also designing for sustainability. I thought both were just fabulous as well as the museum building itself. I'm even more excited about felt than I was before this exhibit; it's just so versatile. I am now obsessed.

In this little room an artist had made a yert out of felt/silk. It was breathtakingly beautiful. One of the coolest things i have seen in a long time. This is the ceiling. The picture above this one is the entranceway.

Weeze and I went to the Guggenheim and saw the Frank Lloyd Wright exhibition. We had high hopes for it, but it was a bit of a let down. Would NOT recommend it; super boring. It was interesting to see the building though, it doesn't seem particularly functional as a place to exhibit art, in my opinion. The galleries were tiny compared to how big the actual building is.

Heidi and Erin outside heidi's living space for the summer.

Secret project robot.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Sweatin' to the oldies

My only celebrity sighting in NY, but a hilarious one. He got out of the cab and a bunch of chubby women started screaming and chasing him. No time to write anymore about the trip, perhaps later this week.

Sunday, June 21, 2009


My friend Ian and I took a mini east coast vacation this past week. We flew to Baltimore Monday evening to visit our old Brainco friend Eric. A few days later the three of us drove to Philadelphia to see our other Brainco friend Drew (above Drew, Eric, Ian, and I are posing with the Rocky statue at the Philly art museum).

Baltimore was pretty rough in a few areas. Seen the Wire? Just like that. Notice my window is up. Row house door, row house door of cinder blocks, boarded up row house door. Not good.

First day in Baltimore we ate at Dizzie Izzie's across the street from Charm City Cakes, the location of the Food Network show Ace of Cakes. Before we ate I met Duff who was outside inspecting the repair of the bakery's AC.

After lunch I met Geof.

Later in the evening we caught a game at Oriole Park at Camden Yards. Nice venue.

We visited Fort McHenry. I felt somewhat obligated for obvious reasons.

It was really cool. This is the location best known for its role in the War of 1812 when it successfully defended Baltimore Harbor from an attack by the British navy in the Chesapeake Bay. After the bombing Francis Scott Key was inspired to write "The Star-Spangled Banner," the poem that would eventually become the national anthem.

Our stop at the American Visionary Art Museum was great. Amazing outside art!

Equally awesome art inside. The pencil tip art by Dalton Ghetti was fabulous.

Before we feasted on crab at Mr. Bill's Terrace Inn in Essex, MD.

After. Over an hour and a half later.

Down at the old Navy yards we visited Drew's lady friend Pruitt. She works at the Urban Outfitters HQ.

The headquarters are very impressive, lots of thought went in to everything.

All the buildings are former Navy warehouses. This is the main one.

Our hotel was right in the old historic area near Ben Franklin's house and his old fire station.

The Liberty Bell was my favorite. You can see Independence Hall outside. That was actually kind of boring. Until we walked in we all thought we were going to see the actual Declaration of Independence and Constitution. Nope, they're in the Nation Archives in DC. This was just a tour you needed advance tickets for and have to stand in line for multiple times.

The Philadelphia Magic Gardens. The entire inside floor to ceiling and outside two level garden is covered in crazy mosaic work.

Yep, Rocky stood here. I gingerly walk/ran the stairs. Same result; I felt like I was ready to go 15 rounds with Apollo.

Since we had to be at the airport around 4:30AM Saturday is it a surprise we decided to go get cheese steaks at 3AM, post bar? Make that two (okay, three; we also stopped at Tony Luke's the previous day for lunch). I had this pizza cheese steak at Pat's then grabbed another across the street at Gino's for the walk back to Drew's apartment. Leaving that early was terrible, but the trip was fun.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Garden update

New south facing tomato plot after. We had to move the tomatoes due to the realization that they weren't getting much sun in the veggie garden. Tomatoes love heat and sun, two things they were lacking in their previous location. This year is trial and error. Also, not so sure what we will do with all the bounty from 7 plants, but i'm sure friends and family will be more than willing to take some heirlooms off our hands. 

South garden before while we were putting in the insulation panels on the foundation.

New boulevard shade and native plants garden. Forgot to take a before bit i'm sure everyone can imagine a weed/grass filled boulevard. Clearly this is an improvement. 

Veggie garden progress. It has proved to be a bit less sunny than we anticipated when we built it. Most things still seem to be thriving though, especially the broccoli. 

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Lyndale Community Fish Fest

Today our neighborhood got together for a little eating, drinking and chatting. I spent the whole time 3 hours facepainting kids' faces, which was fun, but kind of hindered any eating, drinking and chatting with my neighbors. The kids seemed to enjoy it though and their parents enjoyed it because it was free. It was nice to see the diversity in the neighborhood: young/old, black/white/hispanic/asian, and a range of socioeconomic classes. Just what a community should be, in my opinion.

Our cute little next door neighbor wanted a fire breathing dragon. It seemed like every boy wanted one of these... i hope to never do another one ever again. 

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Screen printing: Walker style

We stopped by the Walker Thursday free night to do a bit of screenprinting outside in the sculpture park. Way more people showed up than the organizers had anticipated so it was cramped, disorganized and chaotic. The point of it was to reuse old t-shirts that we had and make them into something new that we would wear again. The end results turned out pretty well.

Sunday, June 07, 2009

Northwoods wedding

We attended a wedding this weekend for our friends Eddie and Michelle. They decided to have the festivities near her family cabin at The Heartwood, so we lucked out and only had a 2.5 hour drive to Spooner, WI on Friday afternoon and back on Sunday morning. It was great to see everyone and we enjoyed the woods and lake.

Above are the bow tie twins: Pat, who recently started a music/beer blog, and Ben, who runs an urban farm (and soon will host hens) on a rooftop in Brooklyn.