Tag Archive for 'travel'

New Year’s Eve in the Berkshires

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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’

New York to Boston for $1?

Yes­ter­day, the Times took a look at a few new entrants into the East Coast dis­count bus travel business:

We’re fre­quent rid­ers on the dis­count Chi­na­town bus lines, despite their ten­dency toward break­downs and shenani­gans. And, a while back I was excited about Vamoose Bus, which was sup­posed to begin NYC–Boston ser­vice with free wi-fi and a guar­an­teed seat. This seems to have fallen through, as there is now no men­tion of Boston on the their web site.

But it’s inter­est­ing to note the emer­gence of Bolt­Bus and MegaBus – because both are owned by tra­di­tional bussing com­pa­nies, not scrappy Chi­na­town star­tups. Grey­hound owns Bolt­bus, and Megabus is run by Coach USA, par­ent of Gray Line sight­see­ing bus line.

Both are tak­ing a “South­west Air­lines” approach by offer­ing cheaper fares to those who book early, but last-minute book­ings will cost about as much as Grey­hound. $1 fares are nice, but I’m most inter­ested in the free wi-fi, power out­lets, and enter­tain­ment options. Those fea­tures are worth pay­ing a lit­tle extra.

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.

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.

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.

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.

Yea New York

After a fun New Year’s Eve time down in the Lower East Side, I of course decided to leave my beloved dig­i­tal cam­era behind in the cab. Bril­liant. I called the Limo & Taxi Com­mis­sion, and put a notice on Craigslist… no chance.

We walked over the Brook­lyn Bridge today, and I had to be con­tented with a Kodak dis­pos­able… and tomor­row morn­ing, we’re going to check out the new MoMA.

I’m tempted to go down to E 86th street in the morn­ing and buy a new one. this sucks…

Apple Picking

From Flickr: Guess what Presley found? No really, there weren't many apples to pick.Last sum­mer, after we were forced out of our beloved Mass Ave apart­ment, due to neg­li­gent fire, we were for­tu­nate to be taken in by some truly great peo­ple. And these peo­ple invited us to go apple pick­ing last year, some­thing I hadn’t done since I was a kid. It was the kind of thing you don’t do enough, liv­ing in the city.

This year, the crew con­sisted of Jason & Liz, Bryan & Jill, and Pres­ley & I. We headed fur­ther up the North Shore this year, to Ipswich, MA. Seemed like a lovely town, though we spent all of our time on the farm.

How great is it that they make you take a hay ride before you can pick apples?

Niagara 2004

My Niagara 2004 picturesLast week­end, we trav­eled to South­ern Ontario for the Nia­gara Scooter Rally. And, the Cana­di­ans sure know how to throw a party. Check out our pics, and here are some highlights:

  • Our first camp­ing trip in years
  • My grade 9 Eng­lish teacher’s son was there with his crew
  • Another two-up ride on Presley’s Lam­bretta—and we still couldn’t keep up with the pack
  • First titty-bar expe­ri­ence with Pres­ley
  • Don’t buy gas in Canada—it’s pricey and will make your scoot sputter
  • Vino Girl(!) got muddy—which was just not right
  • I caught one of these at the raffle—now I can carry a six-pack on my leg shield

Jason posted in a more timely fash­ion, though I severely ques­tion his asser­tion that “the weather was fairly nice”… I can only imag­ine what pre­vi­ous years were like. We had a light­en­ing show all Sat­ur­day night, and I still have wet boots sit­ting in my car trunk.

Any­way, we’ve got 1 city rally and 1 camp­ing rally under our belts…

Gotham ’04

gotham.jpgWell, we sur­vived the Gotham rally this past week­end. We met a lot of cool scooter­ists, and enjoyed rid­ing around Man­hat­tan and Brooklyn.

I think we put brought joy and curios­ity (and maybe envy?) to the peo­ple of New York—seeing a hun­dred scoot­ers com­ing through your neigh­bor­hood in a giant pack is not some­thing peo­ple see every day. Those kids down in NYC know how to throw a good time. Too bad I didn’t win the bike raf­fle.

I posted my pics at Scoot.net—check out Jason above. Tonight, I buy my first scooter: a Vespa P-200.

Pre Gotham Rally

gothampatch.jpgTomor­row, we get out of work a lit­tle early, and load into the Saab for a trip down to NYC for the Gotham Scooter Rally. From every­thing we’ve heard, Brook­lyn will be burn­ing by sun­day night.

Pres­ley and I are rel­a­tively new scooter­ists, and this is our first rally. Jason and Kim of course are respon­si­ble for this… so a spe­cial thanks to them for all their help get­ting Lisa’s ’63 Lam­bretta Li125 on the road. If all goes well, next week I’ll be rid­ing a 25-year old Vespa p200… sadly I won’t have it for Gotham, but I’m psy­ched, nonetheless.

Sooooo, look out NYC. Can’t wait to see you Kunta, Renee, Jenna, and the rest of you Yankee-liking swine.