Joel Klein wrote an essay in the Atlantic about the reasons for the current problems in the primary educational system.
"This is it." This week, the final push is on for marriage equality in New York and it looks like the state is closer than ever. [more inside]
Street View New York 1982. Black and white photographs of New York City streets [ a work in progress] | Street View 1982 Storefronts NYC. Created by Dan Weeks.
Katherine Goldstein writes about working as a fact checker for Cosmopolitan.
"For five cents Coney Island will feed you, frighten you, cool you, toast you, flatter you, or destroy your inhibitions. And in this nickel empire boy meets girl." [more inside]
Step Across the Border (previously, link now broken) "as long as I was playing in a band I didn't have to actually go out there and talk to girls and dance, I could just be on stage and watch everybody else doing it". The critically acclaimed music documentary on Fred Frith, written and directed by Nicolas Humbert and Werner Penzel (amazon link). It is also available in 8 parts, on youtube. [more inside]
Think you love to crochet? I can guarantee you’re not a patch on Polish-born New York artist Agata Oleksiak, now known as Olek. Olek has covered everything in her apartment with its own custom-made crocheted sweater, and a installation of those items is on display at the Christopher Henry Gallery in Nolita until May 28. She’s also done people, bicycles, cars, windows in abandoned buildings, the bull on Wall Street, and pretty much anything else that would stay still long enough. She keeps track of her crocheting time by counting the number of movies she watches while making an item. I notice she uses variegated acrylic, which is the cheapest yarn on the market. I always wondered who was still buying that "ugly afghan" yarn.
Before his death, Mickey Mantle spoke to Sports Illustrated about the effect that alcoholism had on his life and career. [more inside]
Media outlets are declaring a winner in NY-26 as Democratic candidate Kathy Hochul has a 6% lead (with 91% reporting) over Republican Jane Corwin (previously) in Tuesday's special election. [more inside]
The last gasp of the arcade. Several months ago, two of the last major arcades on the west coast and east coast, Chinatown Fair in New York and Arcade Infinity in Los Angeles, shut down. [more inside]
Dominique Strauss-Kahn, Managing Director of the IMF and likely French Presidential Candidate, was arrested in New York for sexual assualt today. The Port Authority of New York removed Strauss-Kahn from the first class cabin of an Air France flight ten minutes before it departed for Paris and handed him over to the NYPD, whose Special Victims Unit is handling the case, for questioning. He is expected to be arraigned later tonight. [more inside]
Down and out in Toronto and New York: Freelance film critic Steven Boone recounts his experiences with the soup kitchens of Toronto and New York in First rate, second rate: In and out of the soup kitchens of Toronto and New York
For their 43rd anniversary issue, New York Magazine chose "to explore, across time, one of the things that has most defined New York life for centuries and has become a unit of measurement for our successes and failures: The Apartment: A History of Vertical Living" / Sardine Life: What a century and a half of piled-up housing reveals about us. [more inside]
/ / R | | P \ \ for the recently departed John McCracken (1934 – 2011), a West Coast artist who brought a New Age openness to Minimalist sculpture, along with a vocabulary of bright, sleek slabs, blocks and columns that balanced teasingly between painting and sculpture. [more inside]
Have you ever gotten lost in the Myst-inspired architecture of Anthology Film Archives’ website, or struggled awkwardly with the Chinese puzzle box-construction of BAMcinematek’s calendars? Have you ever circled the block at Lincoln Plaza in search of the secret entrance to the fabled Walter Reade Theater? (Hint: look behind the waterfall.) Have you found yourself asking time and again, “What the fuck is Union Docs?”The brainchild of critic Paul Brunick, Alt Screen is a new site billed as "a comprehensive digital resource covering film exhibitions and related special events in the New York City area." The contributing editors include blogger Jim Emerson, Ignatiy Vishnevetsky [previously] and Nathan Lee (apparently coming out of retirement).
With the crackdown on smoking and higher cigarette taxes in New York City, people who sell individual cigarettes, also known as loosies, are rapidly gaining new customers.
She adored New York City. She idolized it all out of proportion. Sure, she paid $700 for a 90-square-foot microstudio, but New York was her town, and it always would be (via).
New York State Congressman Anthony Weiner (D) did an IAMA (I Am A Democrat Who Fights) Q and A on reddit last week. While he answered many questions, he responded to the top five most popular questions questions in video form. [more inside]
Wijnanda Deroo: Inside New York Eateries "Continuing her long-term exploration of the architectural interior as a genre of photographic investigation, artist Wijnanda Deroo has scoured New York's five boroughs documenting the full spectrum of the city's culinary institutions. From Café des Artistes to Papaya Dog, the Russian Tea Room to Yonah Schimmel's Knishes, Deroo's viewfinder alights on diverse sites (and sights) where we New Yorkers sit (or stand) to consume our daily bread." More interiors at the artist's website -- Indonesia :: Curacao :: Mexico :: Berlin
The New York Times launches digital subscriptions, only for Canadians at the moment and on March 28 for everyone else. Packages start at $3.75/week. Readers will be allowed 20 free articles a month sans subscription. (previously, previously)
"Anyone who was around New York City in the late 1980s and early '90s couldn't have missed the work of the AIDS Coalition To Unleash Power, better known as ACT UP. Its group's activism reached a fever pitch during the early '90s, when the iconic black 'Silence=Death' posters and t-shirts seemed ubiquitous downtown and served as somewhat more defiant symbols for the Gay community than the rainbow flags that took over to serve that role slightly later. ... So what were we to think as we wandered through Barneys Co-op in Chelsea yesterday when we spied a whole shelf full of T-shirts featuring ACT UP's famous imagery [priced each at $50 ... 'a portion of that price tag will go to the activist group'] as if they were magically transported there from 20 years ago?" [more inside]
A short film about that moment when you emerge from the subway and find yourself in a new and sometimes unexpected world. [SLVimeo]
The Madoff Tapes "One evening, my home phone rang. “You have a collect call from Bernard Madoff, an inmate at a federal prison,” a recording announced. And there he was." [more inside]
An Urban Teacher's Education is a intelligent, touching and very personal blog about the challenges that a high school teacher faces in the Bronx. [via]
The Coolest Locksmith Shop in New York City "From a distance, it looks like a bunch of golden squiggles and spirals have been added, snaking whimsically across the facade. But get a little closer and you’ll find the real magic… The new design is made up entirely of keys, literally thousands, and thousands, and thousands of keys, twisting into wonderful assortment of swoops and twirls."
"Feathered Hussy Moves in on Pale Male." Famous Central Park raptor Pale Male has taken a new mate, which most likely means that Lola, his companion of the last eight years, has died. Though some birders hold out hope for her return, one expert says, "This is not the season that experienced [female hawks] cavalierly absent themselves from their established territories." Pale Male is known to have sired at least 26 chicks, and inspired both controversy and counter-protests when fancy Upper East Siders tried to evict his nest from their fancy building. The birds won that conflict. Next argument on tap: what to name his new mate.
In the 1960's, 70's and 80's, urban decay and high crime rates caused retail chain supermarkets to flee New York City. (google books link) Korean immigrants filled the gap with corner grocery stores. For nearly two decades they were ubiquitous -- symbols of the group's ongoing quest to achieve the American Dream. But 30 years later, Where Did The Korean Greengrocers Go? [more inside]
"The Museum of the City of New York is pleased to announce the soft launch of its online collections portal [where you can] view more than 50,000 newly digitized photographs by Berenice Abbott, Samuel H. Gottscho, Jacob A. Riis, the Byron Company, the Wurts Brothers, and many others."
Three subway map design titans come together in one room to debate form versus function in NYC's transit map
Ballerina Project — Nine years ago, young photographer Dane Shitagi walked up New York City’s Broadway towards the highly patronized and well known STEPS dance studios in search of a ballet dancer who could help him begin his project: to capture images of ballerinas in urban environments. Those images first started appearing on Blogspot, but have since migrated to Facebook. [via]
"Toity poiple boids / Sittin on da koib / A-choipin an’ a-boipin / An’ eatin doity woims." From Atlantic Avenue to Zerega Avenue (map), the kinds of New York City accents made famous by the likes of Archie Bunker, Jimmy Breslin and Travis Bickle are disappearing. But though you may not often hear “foath floah” for "fourth floor" in Manhattan anymore, documentary filmmaker Heather Quinlan knows you can still hear strains of the old mellifluous tones in Brooklyn, Queens, Staten Island, and the Bronx, and that's exactly what she's setting out to document in her film If These Knishes Could Talk.
Where will you be one week from today? "In this age of restless wanderings, how can you be certain where some urgent call may take you? What guarantee have you that a feeble cry in the night, a sudden emergency call, or a "date" will not summon you hurriedly to 431 Eighth Avenue?" [more inside]
Brooklyn to New York via the Brooklyn Bridge as shot by the Edison Manufacturing Co. in 1899. (SLYT) [more inside]
Paris versus New York. A friendly visual match between those two cities, as seen by a Parisian-based-and-lover on New York : details, cliches and contradictions.
The fish men see her still, their Annie, in the hide-and-seek shadows of South Street. She’s telling her dirty jokes and doing anything for a buck: hustling newspapers, untaxed cigarettes, favors, those pairs of irregular socks she’d buy cheap on Canal. She’s submitting to the elements, calling out “Yoo-hoo” to the snow and the rain and her boys. Annie and Gloria: Death of a Fulton Fish Market Fixture.
Carl Paladino, Republican candidate for New York Governor addressed a group of Orthodox Jewish leaders in Brooklyn yesterday. Reading from a prepared statement:
“I didn’t march in the gay parade this year — the gay pride parade this year. My opponent did, and that’s not the example we should be showing our children. And certainly not in our schools. Don’t misquote me as wanting to hurt homosexual people in any way. That would be a dastardly lie. My approach is live and let live. I just think my children and your children would be much better off and much more successful getting married and raising a family, and I don’t want them brainwashed into thinking that homosexuality is an equally valid and successful option — it isn’t.”The remarks were caught on video. [more inside]
Are you feeling blue? Suffer from insomnia? Need career advice? Have dietary concerns? Want to know more about sex? Wonder how the market is doing and your finances? Never fear, Sweet Old Bob is here
Mayor Michael Bloomberg has asked federal permission to ban the use of food stamps to buy sodas and sugary drinks in New York City. In an op-ed in the New York Times, the city and state health commissioners argued in favor of Bloomberg's proposal, saying the practice amounts to "an enormous subsidy to the sweetened beverage industry." [more inside]
The stately James Farley Post Office on 8th Ave in Manhattan is being converted into the long-awaited Moynihan Train Station. Almost the entire block-long building has been emptied to prepare for the conversion and Mefi's own nycscout (previously, previously, previously) was there to take pictures. [via mefi projects]
Over the decades nature has reclaimed southern Edgemere. Groves of trees, acres of bushes, wild flowers, rabbits, and flocks of birds all thrive within sight of the nearby elevated MTA line. However, few people can be seen walking through this no-mans-land, perhaps because of its history of wild dog attacks. In 2001, two Rockaway residents "were brutalized by a pack of wild dogs" in the Arverne Urban Renewal Area, according to The Wave. The dogs came from an abandoned block, "stalked" their first victim, and "dragged him off the boardwalk onto an adjacent lot and began consuming his flesh," according to The Wave. In spite of this, several homeless camps are currently hidden deep in the Edgemere overgrowth. Some are as simple as a mattress tossed in the bushes or a sofa placed in a clearing. Others are more elaborate, including one camp with platform beds on a stone patio surrounded by a garden and fence. Another camp is large enough to house several families.The place is Edgemere, Queens, New York, where for nearly 4 decades an entire neighborhood has sat vitually empty on abandoned ocean front property.
They call it the "Ring of Steel" The NYPD is tightening surveillance in New York's subways by installing a new surveillence system modeled after London's so called "Ring Of Steel" . The $200 million system, paid for with federal funds and mismanaged by the MTA and Lockheed Martin, is part of what will one day be a 3,000-camera network of "public and private-sector cameras." London, feeling it's title as the most surveilled city in the world threatened, is now considering using unmanned drones for covert aerial surveillance, security, or emergency operations.
Once upon a time, cows were milked in Brooklyn's Prospect Park. The city dairy provided a safe, affordable source of nutrition for children in 19th-century New York, and was an important bulwark against one of the city's most insidious killers: swill milk. The dairy and its cows have disappeared, but the story of the swill milk scandals lives on. [more inside]
On this day it's good to remember that Muslims are part of the fabric of New York. They live in downtown New York, they worked in the Twin Towers and were affected just like everyone else by the tragedy of 9/11.
Photographer Bill Cunningham has moved out of his a rent controlled apartment right above Carnegie Hall after living there for 60 years. He offers some pictures and memories of his time there. Andrew Carnegie intended the space above the hall to be occupied by artists and since 1896 the list of occupants has included Isadora Duncan, Marlon Brando and Leonard Bernstein. The last 5 residents (more details about them here) are being cleared out to make way for a music school. [more inside]