NFL holds Super Bowl in NYC; NYC unimpressed. While the stadium is technically in New Jersey, it is considered equally if not primarily a New York stadium, and the NFL turned Times Square and Broadway into Super Bowl Boulevard Engineered By GMC. Visitors can kick a football, watch television, ride a toboggan, shop, enjoy a free slice of Papa John's pizza, play XBox, take a photo with the oversized Roman numerals 'XLVIII', use relevant Twitter hashtags, and more. It is not decadent and depraved, though Vice and Gothamist would tend to disagree. The Times discusses less vehement disapproval and disappointment, while Business Insider wishes ill upon the city. Ticket sales are faltering relative to recent years, with the new mayor among those skipping out.
On July 1, 1913, a group of automobile enthusiasts and industry officials established the Lincoln Highway Association "to procure the establishment of a continuous improved highway from the Atlantic to the Pacific, open to lawful traffic of all description without toll charges," and to be a lasting memorial to Abraham Lincoln. The Lincoln Highway efforts started about three years before the first federal road act would provide funding to states to improve the broad network of roads. Never officially finished, the first transcontinental highway eventually became renumbered as various interstate and US routes. To celebrate its centennial, there was a cross-country tour in June. [more inside]
"On an average afternoon in the area around 44th and Broadway in Midtown Manhattan, you’ll find a motley crew of Chewbaccas, Buzz Lightyears, and Minnie Mouses — along with the usual Naked Cowboy and face-painted Statues of Liberty—posing for tourists’ pictures and demanding cash in return." Condé Nast Traveler editor Eimear Lynch spent a couple of days dressed up as Cookie Monster to see what it was like. Video. [more inside]
"I was never threatened covering the cops beat nor while reporting on a big Mafia trial, but I was threatened – twice – for writing negative reviews of two restaurants. Shows where the passion is, I guess." Restaurant critics write about (and link to) their most negative reviews and discuss the measured and reasonable responses they received after their publication. [more inside]
Boy Genius Report gets an extensive and informative tour of the Times Square New Year's Eve Ball and takes us along for a the highly-informative and photo-heavy ride.
Faisal Shazad has been arrested in connection with the Times Square bombing as he attempted to leave the country. The suspect was allegedly trained in Pakistan, though he claims he acted alone.
Times Square > Art Square: "a very complex project with a simple goal: to turn all advertising on Times Square into art."
I came across this at youtube while looking for a visual to illustrate "strong teeth" in an e-mail. Just had to share: Woman crosses Time Square by her teeth, circa 1932.
This New Year's Eve you can watch the drop of the "Waterford Crystal New Year's Eve Ball" (which will now become a year-round attraction hovering above Times Square). Not interested? How about watching the dropping of a drag queen, a pirate wench, pickles and sausages (among other things) while ringing in the New Year? [more inside]
Times Square: Crossroads of the World is the official website of Times Square in New York City. An estimated 1 million people from all over the world are in Times Square tonight, celebrating New Year's Eve and the 100th anniversary of the ball drop (with a new eco-friendly, LED-lighted ball). Also on the site: A History of New Year's Eve in Times Square, a Then and Now interactive timeline, a Signs of the Times gallery, and much more. The FAQ is also interesting.
Sleazoid Express (this post rated NSFW) was a New York film fanzine that championed the grindhouse cinema that played in sketchy Times Square movie theaters during the pre-Giuliani era. Featuring in-depth reviews of film fare such as Pets, Nanami: Inferno of First Love, and Let Me Die A Woman, the Sleazoid Express zine later inspired a book, which can probably take some credit for stoking Quentin Tarantino's interest in grindhouse filmmaking. (An excerpt from the book, Sleazoid Express, can be found here, and here's some original grindhouse trailers thrown in for good measure.)
"Spotlight Live... puts guests in the limelight in a way that will surpass their wildest dreams. Guests can walk in the door for dinner and walk out the door a star" In the age of American Idol, why go to see a show on Broadway, when it's your birthright to be a show on Broadway, complete with your own professional back-up singers and dancers?
Babyface: A Times Square Odyssey "This interactive web piece about the Babyfaces of Times Square takes place in the past, when the center city was a clash of classes rather than today's funeral of a theme park controlled by middle class undertakers." This is definitely not safe for work (drugs, porn, men in bathroom stalls), but if you want to remember the seedier side of NYC, this is one way to do it.
What should be dropped at Times Square for New Year's Eve? Perhaps a change is needed this year. Which item listed would you vote for? Or do you have one not given here?
David Blaine is at it again (requires flash). If you are in New York, you can also see him frozen live at Times Square from now through the 29th.