Monthly Archive for August, 2008

What Could Possibly Make Someone Want to Leave New York and Move to Buffalo?

Buffalo #1
Lisa’s tattoo confirms that Buffalo is indeed #1.

New York magazine has an interesting feature on New Yorkers moving to Buffalo, NY, the very city that Lisa and I were raised in and subsequently couldn’t wait to leave from after high school.

Some people will read this as a story of defeat. They will look at Herbeck and Cloyd and think, They came; they couldn’t cut it; good riddance. That’s also a familiar New York narrative, one that’s especially comforting to those of us who stay and stick it out. Because, sure, stained glass and spare bedrooms are nice and all, but no one moves to New York because they think they’re going to get a great bargain on an apartment. You move here because you want to live in New York City.

The writer then goes on to say that this is not a story of defeat, but rather an opportunity:

But New York, for all its mythology, is no longer a frontier. Buffalo is a frontier. And when you think of the actual frontier, you’ll recall that no one ever packed up and moved West to a gold-rush town because they heard it had really good local theater.

Um, okay… Truth is, I know more former 716 area coders that are now in 212 or 718. But, it’s a provoking premise for a city famous for little more than snow and four consecutive failed Superbowl bids.

Vivian Girls @ Death By Audio

Vivian Girls

Cassie Ramone and Vivian Girls perform.

Last week I saw Vivian Girls play at Death By Audio in Williamsburg. It was my second time seeing them, and certainly won’t be the last. The Times printed a rave review:

Even though this band’s music tends toward the discordant, Vivian Girls … are romantics at heart. Their taut, no-nonsense songs brim over with noise and touches of shoegaze reverb, but at the center are glorious, gentle harmonies.

They open for Sonic Youth tomorrow, August 30th, at the McCarren Park Pool, or you can catch them again at Death By Audio on September 2nd.

Neighborhood Envy, Gossip Girl in Carroll Gardens

I’m no stranger to neighborhood-envy, but it’s nice to hear some directed our way:

Gossip Girl Invades Carroll Gardens, Olds Are Befuddled, Enraged »

I’m going to refer to my neighbors as “Smith Street whipsters (wealthy hipsters)”, unironically and with zero self-awareness, from now on.

Embeddable Flickr Slideshows, and the DNC Convention Stage

The Democrats are going “game show” in Denver.

Flickr revamped their slideshow feature, and the results are stunning. The full-screen mode is especially nice, and videos are now integrated:

One of the main improvements we’ve made is that you can watch videos as they appear in a slideshow. When we come to a video in a slideshow, we’ll play it before we move on to the next item.

The slideshow above is from the Democratic National Committee, showing what the stage will look like at for the party’s convention in Denver, which starts Monday. It’s just about the cheesiest Deal or No Deal thing I’ve ever seen, but perhaps it will play well on TV. (The Caucus has a photo of the Republicans’ stage, as well.)

Or, if kitties are more your speed, here is a gallery of our cats Katya and Mouse…

1 Year in New York City

Brooklyn Bridge 5

Lisa and I on the Brooklyn Bridge, taken some time in 2004. (I realize that it was not taken in the past year, but it’s a great photo!)

I can’t let this pass without a mention – last Friday was the 1-year anniversary of our move from Cambridge to Brooklyn. Since then, we’ve started new jobs, reconnected with old friends and made new ones, and had an all-around great time.

I miss Boston from time to time, but couldn’t be happier living and working in New York City. Why would anybody live anywhere else?

Yearbook Yourself

Yearbook Yourself

Upload a photo of yourself, and they’ll take it from there – 1970, 1976, and 1986 respectively.

I had a lot of fun playing with Yearbook Yourself, a site that will take your boring headshot and turn it into embarrassing yearbook photos that never were.

The truly amazing thing is that the 1970 composite (left) is a dead-ringer for my Dad around that time. This is what my mom kind of looked like in the early 60s.

Pool for Sale

The pool of my childhood is for sale. My, how things fall apart!

The Macktivist

macktivist
Illustration by Shira Golding

My friend of some 15+ years, R. Alvarez, just launched a sex column for The Indypendent, New York City’s leading social justice newspaper. It’s called The Macktivist, and she intends to make the column a “sex-positive, educational, kink-, vanilla-, homo-, hetero-, bi-, trans-friendly, smart go-to for the discerning reader.”

Not only is Ms. Alvarez a dear friend, but she also happens to be an entertaining and gifted writer. Go read her column now, leave her a comment, and send in your questions!

Feral Child in Florida

If you’ve got a few minutes, read this heartbreaking story of a feral child in Florida:

“Three years ago the Plant City police found a girl lying in her roach-infested room, naked except for an overflowing diaper. The child, pale and skeletal, communicated only through grunts. She was almost 7 years old.”

There is also a companion multimedia piece, with a video slideshow about Danielle’s progress, including speech therapy sessions.

If you’re curious about life in this small Florida farming town, the New Yorker has an unrelated piece on Plant City this week.

John Lydon Still Makes Me Laugh

John Lydon still makes me laugh, even if only uncomfortably so.

nytimes.com Outage

Graham

Reaction from Twitter user Graham Mudd, on the nytimes.com outage this afternoon.

Nytimes.com has been down for about an hour, and thankfully it wasn’t my turn to watch it. I haven’t heard of any explanation yet, but it could be anything from problems with DNS or our CDN. Who knows? I’m just a designer here.

It seems like just yesterday, when everyone was complaining about recent downtime troubles at Twitter and Amazon, including us.

Adrienne
Despite Adrienne Shaffer’s tweet, we’re housebroken, I swear!

Hopefully this is just a temporary blip. But, I had a good time reading people’s tweets.

6:27 pm UPDATE: The site is mostly up, but some functionality is not working, such as Search.