Archives for posts with tag: new york city

Okay so first off, I’ve been around a lot over the last two months, and I haven’t faithfully conveyed in picture or word what’s been up. The short version is that I’ve been on a project in Geneva and flying back/forth a bunch and somewhere in there spending a day in Zurich and Sofia, Bulgaria. The reason for so little communication is that most of these places are pretty boring and Bulgaria is not the type of place that is exactly fun to visit. Somewhere in there I went to Lake Tahoe for the weekend, so I’ll post that afterwards.

Today is July 4th, 2007 – actually the anniversary of my landing here in New York (plus a day or two) so it ends up being kind of a reflection on my time here in the big city (when I was in town, at least). I’m in the process of leaving town to somewhere undecided and I’ve finally gotten to the point where I really appreciate all of the great things about New York without being irritated by the many annoying parts.

So in celebration of the great parts of NYC, I went with friends to Coney Island for the day. We started off trying to catch the famous Nathan’s Hot-Dog Eating Contest, famously dominated by a Japanese teenager for some years. This year, of course, the rumors circulated of an eating-related jaw injury and possible title-loss to some other guy who looks like Peyton Manning. The crowd was abuzz.

I popped out of the subway and found a ginormous crowd of people who all were thinking it would also be cool to watch people cram inhuman amounts of pseudo-meat into their moo. I have to admit – I should have shown up earlier. You know when stuff is on ESPN, you need to show up a lot earlier. Turns out the other guy won by downing 66 dogs and buns. Not clear how long before he barfed everything up.

Anyhow, I tried even going to the other side but all I could get was this enormous Ketchup bottle in my face so I decided to go for some non-competitive eating of Mexican food followed by the Cyclone (surprisingly great for being a million years old), the Tilt-a-Whirl, Pirate Ship, and bumper cars – all classics.

All of the rides for some reason had airbrushed backgrounds from the early 80’s, and my favorite dated ride was straight called the Break Dance. Much nausea and junk food was observed

Then we stopped by the Sideshow by the Seashore, aka the Freak Show. The first thing I noticed was the reference to the Luna song “Sideshow by the Seashore” and the references to mermaids made a lot more sense. Man I wish they didn’t suck so much now.

Anyhow, the Freakshow was great because it hammered home the great American circus tradition of promising a bunch of crap and then taking your money. It felt right. The highlights of the show included sword-swallowing, fire-eating, a contortionist, and Chuy the Wolfman (Interview), who I saw on PBS once.

All in all, it felt good to get back to America’s roots of cheap entertainment and delicious junkfood. I did the most American thing I could and promptly went to sleep in the middle of the day. I woke up to catch the NYC fireworks off of my roof. Here in New York, they do two big displays – one off of lower Manhattan and the other over the East River, and from my meager NoLita 5-story apt roof, I could see both okay. The East river one seemed more elaborate.

Nonetheless, a solid day appreciating all of the great things in America which I miss when I go to stupid Switzerland like restaurants open all day and everyone speaking English. I’m glad to be here in the US and I’ll definitely miss NYC.

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Last night at the United Palace Theater in Washington Heights, New York I saw The Arcade Fire in concert. In short, it was amazing – they put on a great show and are very pro-fans. During the encore, they played “Wake Up” after inviting all of the fans in the front onstage (including me and my pals). To quote my friend Matt, “It’s always a good day when you end it up on stage dancing with a band.”

The venue is amazing and the restoration job is incredible. If you get the chance to see a show there or just visit, definitely do so.

I’m in the NYC looking for apts (I found a cool one in Soho) and as usual all kinds of weird shit is happening all around me. Here are some pics from the last few days:

This is a guy on the subway singing “Jealous Guy” while sharing the bench with a passed out guy with his pants around his ankles.

This is a street in the financial district which takes advantage of the deserted nature after hours and puts tables in the middle of the street where all of the restaurants serve food. Eating in the middle of the street sounds kind of strange but its one of the coolest places I’ve ever seen – like a street fair but at night and more of a diner.

 

Also from New York. What I love about the city is the constant flow of random people you see on the street. This guy was walking in front of me and based on how detailed the bus on his jacket is, down to the MTA logo, it’s clear that he actually drives one. He really must hate his passengers. Posted by Picasa

 
The following morning the snow clung to the trees in Central Park. Posted by Picasa

 

I happened to be in New York in December for the 25th anniversary of Lennon’s shooting outside his apartment building on the Upper West Side. I walked over and the whole area was a mob scene – TV cameras and vans from across the world, people with guitars singing, making speeches. Nearby in Central Park, in an area designated “Strawberry Fields” in honor of Lennon by the city, a huge crowd with candles was singing Beatles classics, notably “Give Peace a Chance”. It was kind of cool to be there, but also sort of a circus. Posted by Picasa