Archive for the 'travel' Category

New Year’s Eve in the Berkshires

Reverse

Mass­a­chu­setts Museum of Con­tem­po­rary Art, in North Adams, Massachusetts.

Things have been quiet around here over the hol­i­days. I turned 31 years old on Decem­ber 22, and then Lisa and I spent some time in Buf­falo with our folks, where I got to see my newest baby cousin Aline.

North Adams

The MASS MoCA cam­pus was once the Samp­son Shoe Company.
Sol LeWitt: A Wall Draw­ing Retrospective »
Anselm Kiefer: Sculp­ture and Paintings »

Then, after a few days back in Brook­lyn, we headed up to the Berk­shires for New Year’s Eve in North Adams – it’s not the most excit­ing town to ring in the new year, but we vis­ited MASS MoCA, stayed in a won­der­ful hotel called The Porches, and had the best meal North Adams has to offer at the Gramercy Bistro.

I didn’t do a lot of reflect­ing and resolution-making, but I am thank­ful for my fam­ily and friends, and for how great 2008 was for Lisa and I. Lisa is fond of say­ing that each year has been bet­ter than the last, which is more than one can hope for in this world.

More pho­tos below the jump.

Con­tinue read­ing ‘New Year’s Eve in the Berkshires’

MSM Ahead of Curve on V.P. Debate

Did you know that NYTimes.com streamed live video of last night’s debate, right on the top of its home page? There was a full-screen option, too. Pretty cool stuff – even Gawker was impressed.

Also, check out our V.P. Debati­na­tor – a mashup of video, tran­script, and time­line from the debate.

My Bloody Valentine @ Roseland

My Bloody Valentine

My Bloody Valen­tine per­form­ing at Rose­land Ball­room, in New York City.
My Bloody Valen­tine on MySpace »
Brook­lyn Vegan’s Photos »
Stereogum’s pho­tos and video of an ear­lier show »

Walk­ing out of the Rose­land Ball­room last Tues­day night, I felt blind, deaf and dumb­founded – and I’m not the only one. We had just stood through an assault on our eyes, ears, and patience, but it was an amaz­ing show.

Ear plugs were handed out on the way in, and I jammed them in as far as they would go – but, I’m not sure it was enough. It was cer­tainly the loud­est show I’ve ever witnessed.

And it wasn’t enough for the light show to be trippy and beau­ti­ful, but it also had to burn out your reti­nas. Lisa made the point that there were more lights pointed out at the crowd than at the band them­selves. Still, the bright pink glow was exactly the per­fect accom­pa­ni­ment for the band that recorded Love­less.

Con­tinue read­ing ‘My Bloody Valen­tine @ Roseland’

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.

Carroll Gardens Featured on Gridskipper

Grid­skip­per put together a nice fea­ture on our neigh­bor­hood in Brook­lyn, includ­ing a snarky comparison:

Car­roll Gar­dens fea­tured on Grid­skip­per
Car­roll Gar­dens is quaint, and for those in love with the West Vil­lage but who sim­ply can’t afford to live there, it will do.

I’m not sure that I agree with this – we chose to live in Brook­lyn over Man­hat­tan, and I would argue that the neigh­bor­hoods to the north (Cob­ble Hill and Boerum Hill) are prob­a­bly more fit­ting equiv­a­lents. Also, with few excep­tions, Car­roll Gar­dens is still very much a fam­ily neigh­bor­hood. Sure, it might be chang­ing, but take a walk down our street dur­ing the day, and you’re going to see a lot of old men who’ve lived there for 50 years, as well as kids play­ing on the side­walk. Err, maybe that is what the West Vil­lage is like.

Still, can’t deny that Car­roll Gar­dens is awe­some, and rel­a­tively afford­able, con­sid­er­ing the restau­rant and bar options – we rarely make it into the city on weekends.

[via]

Con­tinue read­ing ‘Car­roll Gar­dens Fea­tured on Gridskipper’

Vamoose Bus

I know what bus I’m tak­ing now, when­ever I need to get to Boston or DC:

NYC-Boston bus offers free wi-fi, and reser­va­tions
…will pro­vide rid­ers with free WiFi on its leased buses, which are equipped with routers. Vamoose is sell­ing one-way reserved seats for $22.

Free wi-fi and a guar­an­teed seat, for $40 round trip? Done.

More at Vamoosebus.com.

Apple Picking

Stickball

We went Apple Pick­ing upstate, in War­wick, NY. Jason and I dis­cov­ered some­thing more chal­leng­ing than chuck­ing apples at each other – spear­ing them with a stick, and then attempt­ing to fling them at each other. The one pic­tured above is bounc­ing vio­lently towards me.

It’s been 3 years since we last went apple picking.

More below the fold. [from iPhone]

Con­tinue read­ing ‘Apple Picking’

SXSW: Day 1

4 rest­less hours of sleep, and 1 Jet­blue direct flight from BOS to AUS, and I found myself in Austin. Checked into the hotel and met up with the EchoDitto folks, and other friends. There are like 4 Jasons, 2 Justins, a John (me) — so it gets confusing.

70 degrees here, 55 or so at night. This fes­ti­val totally takes over the city. Met some cool peo­ple last night, and the first panel this morn­ing was cool — i started in “why XSLT is sexy”, but bailed for “emerg­ing social and tech­nol­ogy trends”. Next up, “How to Bluff Your Way in Web 2.0″, with Andy Budd & Jeremy Keith… which I expect to be hilarious.

Only com­plaints are that the hotel is a bit of a walk, across the river. And, i’m sick… so i’m com­pletely groggy and don’t feel like talk­ing to any­body. but, i’ll get over it.

Another prob­lem is try­ing to explain my job, and what the Local­iza­tion indus­try is. It comes off sound­ing really lame, con­sid­er­ing every­body I talk to works small design shops…

So if you have any ideas how to punch it up a bit, let me know.

SXSW ’07

Things have been so hec­tic with work lately, there’s been no time to update.

I’ll be attend­ing the SXSW Inter­ac­tive Fes­ti­val this year in Austin, TX. I just couldn’t let another year go by.

I’m crash­ing with Jason and the EchoDitto crew at the Hyatt — can’t wait to meet everybody.

The Good, The Bad And The Queen

Damon and Paul
photo by NME

The Offi­cial Blur mail­ing list announced today that Damon Albarn’s new project The Good, The Bad And The Queen, will per­form their first gig at a BBC fes­ti­val in Octo­ber. TGTBTQ is a col­lab­o­ra­tion between Albarn (Blur & Goril­laz), bassist Paul Simonon of The Clash, and gui­tarist Simon Tong of The Verve.

Damon is already set­ting expec­ta­tions high, accord­ing to the BBC:

It was “a story” rather than a band, said Albarn, adding he was “very, very proud” of the work, which will be per­formed on 26 Octo­ber at the Roundhouse.

It’s a very Eng­lish record. It’s the first time I’ve really writ­ten about home since Park­life,” he said.

The sound of the com­po­si­tion was “very cos­mopoli­tan” with “a lot of songs that have got his­tor­i­cal sto­ries to them”, Albarn added.

A sin­gle will be released this fall, but the album isn’t due until 2007, pro­duced by Dan­ger Mouse. Check out the offi­cial web­site for more info and a teaser video.

UPDATE: Scott at Stere­ogum posted with a YouTube link to the teaser video.

Pitchfork Music Festival

Pitchfork Music Festival

We didn’t make it down to SXSW, but we are head­ing to Chicago for Pitchfork’s fes­ti­val.

96 degrees and humid… see you in hell, Chicago!


Rhode Island of Misfit Toys Rally

Boobies IIThis past week­end was the Rhode Island camp­ing rally… we rented a truck to trans­port the bikes, drank san­gria made from 4.5 bot­tles of wine & 1 bot­tle of brandy, and had a good time scoot­ing around, (before the drink­ing began). I even got to DJ sat­ur­day night, with an impro­vised iPod/radio setup.

Even the 90+ degree heat couldn’t keep us down – but I totally under­stand now the impor­tance of shade, when you’re try­ing to snooze inside a tent.

Asobi Seksu @ Great Scott

Asobi Seksu

Yuki Chiku­date and Asobi Seksu per­form­ing at Great Scott in Allston.

We went to The Plan at Great Scott on Sat­ur­day night to see the Brook­lyn band Asobi Seksu – I got some good shots of them and two of the open­ing bands.

As I wrote ear­lier, the new record Cit­rus is an incred­i­ble step for­ward for them, and the live show suc­ceeded in dupli­cat­ing the wash of gui­tars and noise, with­out com­pletely cov­er­ing up Yuki’s voice. They’re nice peo­ple, too.

The other great thing dur­ing the set were the lights and smoke effects… so cool. The Plan peo­ple are really show­ing up the old Cam­bridge clubs, because it was freak­ing cool.

California

Things have been busy lately, so I’m still play­ing catch-up with Flickr and this weblog… but, I wanted to write up a short post on our trip to South­ern Cal­i­for­nia last month.

Pres­ley & I haven’t been to the west coast before, so we were really look­ing for­ward to spend­ing a week in the sun. Here are some pho­tos that we took:

From the San Diego: Zoo set:

tear

tear, polar bear

chewy

chewy, panda bear

From the San Diego: City set:

trolley

trol­ley, down­town San Diego

From the Los Ange­les set:

pose

pose, Pres­ley & Milch in Jet Rag

WeHo

WeHo, Jeff & Jared’s apart­ment in West Hollywood

Yea, New York

hang onWe had a nice week­end in NYC… thanks Jenna, Becca, Jason, Matt, & Sharon.

Some obser­va­tions:

  • Saw Mill Park­way is still the best path into the City. I love dri­ving by Read­ers Digest HQ.
  • Bloody Marys are bet­ter when hand-made.
  • I can’t rec­om­mend the food at 7A. Or the service.
  • Don’t let your high school friends tackle you in the mid­dle of Tomp­kins Square Park… your clothes will end up dirty.
  • I could spend every day in the Lotus Lounge on Clin­ton St… Cof­fee, Beer, wi-fi.
  • Star­foods has no other cus­tomers at 7:30pm on a sat­ur­day night… creepy.
  • Jason is a crazy MF, for almost walk­ing us into the Armory Art Show on Pier 92, with lit­tle more than a piece of paper in his pocket. Keep your eye on that one.
  • I love the way delis in New York wrap up your cof­fees in a paper bag. So kind…
  • Fat Sal’s had a good slice.

Snow Infographics

Aw crap… there goes our week­end in NYC.

snow is coming

Beer Logos in Vector Format

Boddingtons BitterI love this site, which offers tons of beer logos for down­load, in EPS for­mat [via]. For some rea­son, this amuses me.

What didn’t amuse me, was the 20 min­utes of frus­tra­tion last night, try­ing to get a freakin’ Bod­ding­tons at The Bur­ren in Davis Square. I had to order twice, from the same woman, (as she must’ve for­got the first one)… and finally I grabbed a sec­ond bar­tender to go check on things. And, HE was the one who brought me my freakin’ beer. I real­ize that a lot of bar­tenders double-pour Boddy’s, (much like Guin­ness), but you’re not sup­posed to for­get me!

Jet Blue shuttle

Oh, how I heart Jet­Blue… finally, a low-cost Boston-New York shut­tle flight. And the best part is, they’re run­ning an intro­duc­tory fare sale:

Jet­Blue will offer intro­duc­tory fares of $25 each way on what will be up to 10 flights between the cities, with fares later set­tling at between $40 and $120 each way, under­cut­ting the estab­lished shuttle.

It’s about time.

La Laque & Pas/Cal

When I was in New York, Jenna and I checked out the La Laque & Pas/Cal show at Tonic, in the Lower East Side. They were cel­e­brat­ing the joint release of a 12″ sin­gle.

The real sur­prise for me was how much I liked the Brooklyn-based La Laque. They’re three girls & three boys, play­ing French New Wave / Surf rock. Lis­ten­ing to the few MP3s out there won’t quite con­vey the energy and feel­ing they exert on stage. I may never lis­ten to another Stere­o­lab album again [sic].

And it was nice to see Yuki & James (of Asobi Seksu) again… they’re com­ing to Boston soon, and I can’t wait to see them play again.

Weekend

After 5 days off from the nine-to-five last week, I drove down to nyc to hang out with Jenna again.

Pho­tos will come soon, because they need to be devel­oped… (Pres­ley had my trusty Elph with her in Vegas for MacyMe’s Bach­e­lorette week­end).

Speak­ing of which, here’s Macyme:

24 hours in nyc

gar­den”, posted by ned­ward

I plunked down the $15 and rode the Fung Wah to nyc to visit the new MoMA, and visit some friends. It was nice to finally get inside the museum, hav­ing been thwarted by long lines on my past two vis­its. I enjoyed mean­der­ing around by myself, though the guided audio tour is pretty worthless.

Sat­ur­day night, Jenna took me out with Jin, Anna, and my friend Stef from Boston, to see maz­ing vids at the Cake Shop in the Lower East Side. We ate s’mores from a street­cart, which made me want to go camping.


Anna from John Nie­der­meyer on Vimeo.

Tattoo

Tat­too”, posted by ned­ward

Presley’s new tat­too, done by Cus­tom Claire, of Fat Ram’s Pump­kin Tat­too, Jamaica Plain, Massachusetts.

Per­haps my favorite night of our time in Vegas was Mon­day, when we escaped to the Strip for a bit of cul­ture… ear­lier this month, Cirque de Soleil opened at the MGM Grand, so we fig­ured, why not check it out?

We “splurged” for the cheap seats at $100 a pop. Steep, to be sure, but that still got us a decent view, cup-holders and speak­ers that were inte­grated into the head­rests. Pretty cool…

This show was unlike any the­atri­cal expe­ri­ence I’ve ever had—to start, there is no stage… or rather, the stage rises ver­ti­cally, spins, floats and dis­ap­pears, (made pos­si­ble by hydraulics). The actors work above a mas­sive empty “pit”, (an abyss into which count­less actors fall), per­form­ing an aston­ish­ing com­bi­na­tion of martial-arts, the famil­iar Cirque acro­bat­ics, and even an amaz­ing baton-twirling number.

This was all incred­i­bly exe­cuted, but what tied all of this together into a truly mag­i­cal illu­sion, were the light­ing and visual pro­jec­tions… absolutely un-real.

$200 mil­lion can buy you an eye-full…

Let the Sin begin

Let the Sin begin”, posted by ned­ward

Got back from Nevada on Wednes­day morn­ing, hav­ing fled the pour­ing rain, bright neon, and the sound of slot machines. We spent about a week in Nevada, which is far too long, con­sid­er­ing we didn’t get mar­ried or lose our life’s sav­ings… No, instead we made due with $2 forty-ounce lagers and the right to smoke any­where we please.

Lammy”, posted by ned­ward

It was good to be amongst scooter­ists again, though the rain kept us from rid­ing except on Sun­day… (when you think of desert, a con­stant soak­ing is not what pops to mind!). Mor­gan, aka Mr. Pants, is da’ man for hook­ing us up with his vin­tage Vespa GT to ride, (even though we swapped it for his Lammy, out of comfort).

rid­ing”, posted by ned­ward

The big Ride that we went on was Sun­day, out to Red Rock Canyon… we saw red rocks, and hap­pily rode the “scenic drive” on our one day of sunshine.

Vegas, baby…

Pres­ley and I are off to Vegas for nearly a week, to go to the High Rollers Week­end, AKA, the Las Vegas Scooter Rally. Mor­gan is the man, as he’s going to let us ride his gor­geous vin­tage Vespa GT while we’re there.

I’ve never actu­ally been west of Chicago, so I’m excited.

The weather, how­ever might not coop­er­ate. A quick glance at the 10-day fore­cast doesn’t make me hopeful.

Any­way, I’ll have pho­tos and all the details when we get back. The funny thing is, my par­ents called to say that they would be there at the same time… which seems just not right.