Archive for the ‘New York’ Category

Rock & Roll High School Street

January 9, 2017

New York City’s borough of Queens, home of LL Cool J, Run/D.M.C., and Donald Trump, has named a street after it’s premier punk band, The Ramones. Members of the band met while they were teenage inmates students at Forest Hills High School, and the intersection at 67th Avenue and 110th Street at the school’s front steps is now known as Ramones Way.

More:

“Street Corner In Front Of Forest Hills High School Renamed To Honor The Ramones,” Mike Smeltz, CBSNewYork

Related:

“The Ramones return home for Queens Museum exhibition,” Maria Alvarez, Newsday

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New York Plagued by Ice Cream Rustlers

August 16, 2016

New York Plagued by Ice Cream Rustlers
New York City was once known as “A Summer Festival” but this year, with Climate Change, the the Big Apple’s summer is big, hot, sweaty mess. And now there are ice cream thieves.

Shoplifting swarms have been emptying retail freezers at Manhattan CVS, Duane Reade, and Gristedes chain stores. Thieves steal the $6.00 containers of Häagen-Dazs, Ben and Jerry’s, and Talenti ice cream and sell them cheaply to corner stores, which retail them for $5.00.

Things are so bad this summer that John Catsimatidis, billionaire owner of the Gristedes grocery chain, is offering a $5,000 bounty for the arrest of ice cream rustlers. So get your posse together, ride them varmints down, and get the reward. Quick, before it melts.

More:

“Ice cream bandits are wreaking havoc on NYC supermarkets,” Reuven Fenton and Linda Massarella, New York Post

“So Maybe Don’t Buy Ice Cream At A Bodega,” Nell Casey,  Gothamist

Update:

“Stolen, Sold and Savored: Ice Cream Is a Hot Commodity in Manhattan,” Michael Wilson, New York Times

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Image (“Lady With an Ice Cream Sundae, after d’Agesci”) by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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Hot Dog Eating Contest. God Bless America.

July 3, 2016

Hot Dog Eating Contest: God Bless America

Matt Stonie vs Joey Chestnut. Miki Sudo vs Sonya Thomas. It’s the 100th annual Nathan’s Famous Hot Dog Eating Contest.

Or is it?

“Showmen behind Nathan’s annual Fourth of July hot dog eating contest have long claimed the tradition began in 1916 as a showdown between patriotic immigrants on the Coney Island boardwalk.

That would make this Monday’s contest a centennial, except for an inconvenient truth: The contest and its backstory were invented in the 1970s by PR men trying to get more attention for Nathan’s, which had just become a publicly traded company.

‘Our objective was to take a photograph and get it in the New York newspaper,’ acknowledges Wayne Norbitz, who served as president of Nathan’s for 26 years and still sits on the board of directors.

Norbitz is careful to say that the company’s source for the 1916 story is ‘legend has it.’ He says the first contest actually happened in 1972, and the early chowdowns were all small, sparsely attended affairs.

‘We’d honestly wait for a couple of fat guys to walk by and ask them if they wanted to be in a hot dog contest,’ he says.”

— “Behind famed hot dog contest, a whopper of a legend,” Michael Balsamo, Associated Press

More:

“Competitive Hot-Dog Eaters Have Made America Great Again,” Walt Hickey, FiveThirtyEight

“The Aspiring Writer Who Became an Eating-Contest Emcee,” Ross Arbes, The New Yorker

Related:

“An ode to America’s favorite summer food — the hot dog,” Bruce Kraig, Washington Post

Update:

“Joey Chestnut eats 70 hot dogs, 17 more than Matt Stonie, to win Nathan’s title,” Michael Balsamo, Associated Press

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Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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Subway Blues

May 7, 2016

 

“Subway Blues,” written and performed by Mabel Scott in 1950.

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‘A’ Train Lady

April 24, 2016

“”A’ Train Lady,” written by David Forman and Duke Levine, sung by Willy DeVille  with harmony by Mr. Forman, performed by the band Mink DeVille (bassist Rubén Sigüenza, Thomas R. “Manfred” Allen Jr. on drums, Ritch Colbert on keyboards, guitarists Robert McKenzie [“Fast Floyd“], Deville, and Louie X. Erlanger) with Mac Rebennack (Dr. John) on piano; sax solo by co-producer Steve Douglas (or possibly Jackie Kelso); background vocals by  Cleon Douglas and “Max & Bees.” Arranged by producer Jack Nitzsche. Released in 1978 on the Mink DeVille album Return to Magenta.

The A Train is New York City’s 8th Avenue subway line that runs the length of Manhattan, through Brooklyn, and into the borough of Queens (Billy Strayhorn wrote about it). The lyrics here mention High Street, the station in Brooklyn Heights.

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Why Bernie Tawks the Tawk

February 26, 2016

Senator Bernie Sanders represents Vermont. So what’s with that accent? Joss Fong explains it all to you.

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Christmas In Hollis

December 25, 2015

“Christmas In Hollis,” by Run DMC (Russell SimmonsJoseph Simmons, Darryl McDaniels and Jason Mizell), a rap track originally released in 1987. Hollis is a neighborhood of about 24,000 people in the borough of Queens in New York City.

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A Soulful Hanukkah In Brooklyn

December 11, 2015

Brooklyn’s Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings cook the sizzling latkes out of Hanukkah, all 8 days of it, in this video by illustrator Rich Terrana. The tune is on the Holiday Soul Party album (matching knit hat & scarf available; sorry, no yarmulkes ).

The band recorded a live version of “8 Days” at the NPR studio in DC this week (after the jump):

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Brooklyn: ‘Do The White Thing’

November 6, 2015

An all-star cast (including Flavor Flav) updates Spike Lee’s Brooklyn classic for Jimmy Kimmel.

” … 26 years after the original, we finally have a sequel that we think does an equally good job of reflecting the spirit and feeling of Brooklyn today.”

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Pizza Rat

September 28, 2015

Pizza Rat
Last week New York comedian Matt Little was at the First Avenue subway station waiting for the Canarsie Line when a fellow traveller walked down the stairs carrying a slice of pizza. Nothing unusual about that, except the diner was a rat. Mr. Little recorded a video on his phone, and it’s been watched 6 million times on YouTube:

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