"A maverick theater and industrial designer, Norman Bel Geddes
is best remembered for creating the undisputed hit of the 1939 New York World’s Fair. Mounted in the midst of the Great Depression, the Fair focused on America’s promise of a utopian tomorrow. Geddes’s Futurama
, a piece of “immersion theater,” took six hundred visitors at a time on a swooping, simulated airplane ride across America circa 1960."
"The City of Tomorrow, a model of Manhattan that Geddes created, in 1937, to promote Shell Oil Company’s new “motor-digestible” gasoline, is often cited as [Futurama
's inspiration.] But Futurama’s beginnings actually harken back much further, to the meticulous, insanely detailed private games he created in the 1920s and early ’30s for the amusement of his friends.
" [more inside]
posted by zamboni
on May 6, 2012 -
In December 1974, there was a memorial service at St. James Episcopal Church on Madison Avenue for Louise Fitzhugh, author and illustrator of Harriet the Spy, the groundbreaking children's novel that has sold 2.5 million copies since its publication in 1964. [more inside]
posted by Trurl
on Mar 26, 2012 -
! "The infamous Panther Five has pulled an audacious new heist: they’ve stolen the world’s 3rd most expensive jewel, the Adly Diamond, from the Overholt Showroom in Washington, DC. Now they’ve split up and fled—dispersed to five different cities. We’re offering a reward to help find them. We’ll release their mugshots here on game day: March 31, 2012."
If you can get a team together that can cover these 5 cities, then you've got a shot at $5000 (USD).
| New York City
| Bratislava [more inside]
posted by juliplease
on Mar 12, 2012 -
"I know you are out there, just wanting to put your wig on, just like me. And I know you're just waiting to have a good time. Just put a little ball earring on, a little bad sunglasses, and a big, bad wig on, 'cause it's good. It feels good, works, it does
." It is, or was, Wigstock
, an annual outdoor drag festival held in NYC, starting in 1985 by "Lady" Bunny
and friends. Each year the party grew
, moving to Union Square in 1991
, then to Christopher Street waterfront in 1994
to deal with the expanding crowd. 2001 was supposed to be the last year
, but the party came back in 2003
, in conjunction with the annual HOWL festival
. That carried the tradition on for another two years, and Wigstock's official website is stuck in 2005
, a reminder of the festivities that were. You can reminisce with Gawker
, or take a short journey back to 1987 with Wigstock: The Movie
(part 1 of 4), not to be confused with the longer film of the same name, capturing Wigstock 1995
(part 1 of 8).
posted by filthy light thief
on Mar 9, 2012 -
The web site of The Costume Institute
at the Metropolitan Museum of Art has more than 30,000 images searchable by who, what, where, and when.
posted by Trurl
on Mar 8, 2012 -
The Cabbie v. the Morgan Stanley Executive
"Those of you who have any degree of contact with the financial blogosphere no doubt caught the news today that one William Bryan Jennings, the co-head of fixed income for the Americas for Morgan Stanley, was arrested and charged with second-degree assault, theft of services and intimidation by bias or bigotry and released on bail of $9,500. He has been put on leave." [Via
posted by marienbad
on Mar 3, 2012 -
Longtime New Yorker Bob Egan's PopSpots
tracks down the original New York City locations where famous images were shot, then superimposes the original picture over the present-day location. Did you know the iconic The Kids are Alright
album-cover shot of The Who, asleep and wrapped by the Union Jack, was staged just east of Columbia University? Ever wonder where, exactly, the shot of the Central Park "pretzle" guy from Steely Dan's Pretzel Logic
was taken? Or curious whether it would be possible to figure out the exact spot in Greenwich Village where the solarized cover photo of Neil Young's After the Gold Rush
was snapped? The exact fire escape where Paul Simon was photographed for Still Crazy After All These Years
? Egan reveals all, then shows you how he figured it out. [more inside]
posted by Joey Bagels
on Feb 19, 2012 -
The last 24 hours
has demonstrated that the site has become a major player. At 12:45pm Thursday, NYC Council Speaker Christine Quinn
announced that the city work work with Kickstarter to spotlight community projects and businesses in need of funding in those same areas
. Just over an hour later, at 2:08pm, Elevation Dock
becomes the first Kickstarter project to reach $1M in pledges. Four hours later, at 6:42pm, Double Fine
hits the $1M mark after being on Kickstarter for just under 22 hours. By the end of the day on Thursday, Kickstarter has seen its largest day of pledges, with $1,605,981 put towards projects. As VC Fred Wilson
tweeted, "they don't come very often, but days like this are why startups are exhilarating.
posted by NotMyselfRightNow
on Feb 10, 2012 -
Hiya Freddie baby, give me a dozen...my life's blood, without bagels what is a day? Yah make it a dozen assorted. Dat's it, give me the garlic, the sesame, the onion, give me them all baby, that's it! They're still handmade eh? Hot Bagels!
Wait a second let me PAY yah! Here you are, kid. Thank you. Have a good day.
posted by timshel
on Feb 9, 2012 -
Best known for the (exaggerated) tales of her miserliness, Hetty Green
was arguably the greatest female investor
in history. During the 1907 Bankers' Panic
, her loan of $1.1 million helped keep New York City solvent. Her estate - greater than that of J.P. Morgan's - was valued at more than $2 billion in today's money. [more inside]
posted by Trurl
on Feb 5, 2012 -
"They stuck me at P.S.A. 7 in the South Bronx," he said, referring to Police Service Area No. 7 in the department’s housing bureau. "They cover all the housing projects in that area." It was dangerous work, performing vertical patrols — marching up and down staircases — watching for drug deals, responding to violent fights and domestic brawls, and worse.
Two years passed, and Officer Bolfo brought something else to work, along with his radio and his gun. A camera
posted by swift
on Feb 3, 2012 -
- A bike in New York is locked to a pole and photographed everyday as it slowly disappears. [via]
posted by quin
on Jan 21, 2012 -
June 25th 1906, was the opening night of the musical revue Mamzelle Champagne
on the roof of Madison Square Garden
. In attendance were Stanford White, renowned architect (Washington Square Arch, Judson Memorial Church, Madison Square Garden itself)
, and Harry Kendall Thaw
, eccentric coal and railroad scion. During the performance of the song I Could Love a Million Girls
, Thaw "left his seat near the stage, passed between a number of tables, and, in full view of the players and of scores of persons, shot White through the head
Standing over White’s body, Thaw said “You’ll never go out with that woman again.” [more inside]
posted by davidjmcgee
on Dec 22, 2011 -
"One thing about life in New York: wherever you are, the neighborhood is always changing. An Italian enclave becomes Senegalese; a historically African-American corridor becomes a magnet for white professionals. The accents and rhythms shift; the aromas become spicy or vegetal. The transition is sometimes smooth, sometimes bumpy. But there is a sense of loss among the people left behind, wondering what happened to the neighborhood they once thought of as their own." For Sophia Goldberg (98), Holocaust survivor, change has meant the end of a way of life.
posted by zarq
on Dec 1, 2011 -
For decades Dawn Powell was always just on the verge of ceasing to be a cult and becoming a major religion. But despite the work of such dedicated cultists as Edmund Wilson and Matthew Josephson, John Dos Passos and Ernest Hemingway, Dawn Powell never became the popular writer that she ought to have been. In those days, with a bit of luck, a good writer eventually attracted voluntary readers and became popular. Today, of course, "popular" means bad writing that is widely read while good writing is that which is taught to involuntary readers. Powell failed on both counts. She needs no interpretation and in her lifetime she should have been as widely read as, say, Hemingway or the early Fitzgerald or the mid O'Hara or even the late, far too late, Katherine Anne Porter. But Powell was that unthinkable monster, a witty woman who felt no obligation to make a single, much less a final, down payment on Love or The Family; she saw life with a bright Petronian neutrality, and every host at life's feast was a potential Trimalchio to be sent up.
- Gore Vidal
posted by Trurl
on Nov 12, 2011 -
Bundled, Buried & Behind Closed Doors.
"Lower Manhattan’s 60 Hudson Street is one of the world’s most concentrated hubs of Internet connectivity. This short documentary peeks inside, offering a glimpse of the massive material infrastructure that makes the Internet possible."
posted by twirlip
on Nov 10, 2011 -
A Year of New York in 5 minutes.
Cameraman Andrew Clancy lives in New York City, and was in the habit of shooting footage of what was going on around him whenever he was out. This is a compilation of life in the city, from the point of view of a New Yorker.
posted by Phire
on Nov 7, 2011 -