Saturday, August 30, 2014

Signs

I don't want to come across as too critical, but there are some signs I've noticed recently that are in need of repair. Here's the first one, from the side of a building on East 3rd Street:


If you look at this, you will notice horizontal lines that were used to keep the size of the letters and the leading (space between lines) consistent. This was commendable. I commend the maker of this sign. However, once the letters are in place, it's customary to remove those horizontal lines. Leaving them makes the sign look unfinished.

Here's another one:


I wouldn't expect the curator of an art gallery to know anything about kerning (the space between letters), but I would expect the person who applied these letters to, and to use his/her better judgement, and not simply place the letters as printed. The kerning on this is terrible.

[UPDATED 9/1]

Ee-gads. The kerning on this one is so bad that I can't tell if it's deliberate or not. Maybe it's Spanglish for "See Meat," or "Look To Meat," or something.


Big Mess August 30

So, I'm going to just put the date at the end of "Big Mess" for these, until I stop doing them.

Yesterday,  I reported that the woman here said today she would be finished. Maybe I passed by too early — I don't think this is finished yet.



Reflecty Building Again

The reflecty buildings over at Astor Place are just extremely cool! This is another view of the building I posted the other day, looking East:

Reflecty building.

This is another building I noticed today, across the street (southward) from the one above. You can see the Carl Fisher building to the right:

Another reflecty building.

I wonder what one reflecty building looks like reflected in the other? It must be like a house of mirrors!

Equipment Update

Yesterday, I put up a picture of someone posting an Equipment bill on blank plywood boards over on St. Mark's Place and Second Avenue. I wrote that Equipment is a store in Soho and that I might go over to take pictures of it. Well, I did!

Front of store.

Inside store, through closed front door.

In the back, you can see a store worker. I didn't notice her at the time, but she came over and opened the door just after I took this photo. If she objected, she didn't say anything.

So that's Equipment. Very Soho-y.

Friday, August 29, 2014

Balconies

If I had a balcony, I would definitely use it. I would sit out there with my lemonade, taking pictures of people walking by, and put them on East Village Today. People walking down the street with their smart phones, reading this blog, would then see themselves, in slightly less than real time.

Look honey, it's us sitting on our balcony!

Window Box

This is a window box down the street from the Art Project/Mess on East 7th Street.


I wish that cardboard box had been pushed down into the dumpster all the way. It looks trashy.

Don't Text and Zoltar

Can't people take time off from texting long enough to find out their future? If you're going to pay a dollar, or whatever it costs, shouldn't you pay attention while Zoltar talks?


This guy is probably texting "I'm getting my fortune told by Zoltar right now – oh shit, I just missed it!"

Equipment

The painted-on plywood boards at the corner of St. Mark's Place and Second Avenue are now billed-on plywood boards.



Equipment is a very expensive store over in Soho. Maybe I'll go over there and take a picture of the inside of it, and post it here.

This Is Not An Art Project

Or maybe it is.


Big Mess Update Again

I made it a point to walk by the Art Project/Mess this evening. The scene has changed:


The chair is still there, but the rest of the stuff from previous days is gone.

A group of people stood looking at it:


The woman said "It will be finished tomorrow."

The orange, barbed-wire-looking stuff is construction fencing, the sort that holds other materials in place. It's probably not a good idea to cut it up and string it over a chair.

I guess it doesn't need to be said that I'm going to keep an eye on this site, now that I found it!

Booted

I'll bet this guy was so happy when he got this parking spot. There are only about two weeks in the Summer when school is not in session and you can park here. He probably thought he had it made.


People's Pops?

You might not know it to look at it, but this is a chain store:


I just did a google search and found out they have eight locations, and are also found in eight stores in Manhattan, and another eight in Brooklyn. (They must like the number 8!).

They claim to be made from "fresh, local fruit".

Local fruit? What fruit is grown locally?  Do they sell ginko-flavored pops/ices?

And what makes them "people's" pops? Hmmm? Their web site says:
"people's pops started as a one-day experiment on a hunch that the world deserves a better ice pop."
Their web site also has stars, and their East Village location opened on May 1. That's people-ish. Still, I think there are other things the world deserves first. Priorities are sometimes messed up in the East Village too.

Astor Place Mosaics Vandalized

Someone has been vandalizing the mosaics over in Astor Place:



An orange sign has contact information to help stop the vandalism. I'm not sure it's going to do any good though; a lot of people support the mosaics' destruction!

Reflecty Building

Over in Astor Place there's a cool, new building that's very reflecty:

Looking West.

You don't really even see the building itself, just the reflections of its surroundings. Maybe that's the idea — maybe it's not really there.

Private Trash


I wonder what would happen if you put trash here but weren't an Otafuku x Medetai customer? 

Some Kind of Mess - Update

Yes, the letters spelled ALMOST:


Thursday, August 28, 2014

Some Kind of Mess or Art Project or Something

I was walking around tonight, when I came upon this, on East 7th Street:


The letters behind the square thing appear to spell ALMOST.

There was a black chair to the right of this, with black paint or something in it. Maybe tar. You can see some of it on the rug. If I remember correctly, there was a lamp or something above the chair with this black stuff dripping very slowly, like pitch, downward. A man was photographing it, and I think he described it as "demented". The chair didn't interest me though, so I didn't take a picture of it.

Personally, I think it's a mess. Probably the superintendent of the building will think so too.


Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Hell's Angels Bench

The other day, I mentioned that I was going to sit on the Hell's Angels's bench to change the battery in my camera. I neglected to mention that someone was already sitting there. I was surprised to see this, since I knew they didn't allow people to sit on their bench:


When I passed her, I saw she was wearing a Harley Davidson t-shirt, so she probably had permission. Meaning, she was with the crew.

This is what their headquarters looks like, in case you ever pass by and want to sit down and somehow don't notice the sign:


Of course, this is what it looks like from across the street. If (drunken angel) you're on the other side, you're not likely to even see the bench, let alone cross over to sit down. This is what it looks like when you're on their side of the street, walking eastward:


That's all.

Erstwhile Squat

Back in 1990, this building, on East 6th Street, just east of
Avenue B, across from the Earth School, was a squat:


A friend of mine knew of a party there. I don't know how she knew such a thing, she was from Holland and was only here for six months, on a dance scholarship. The only thing I remember about it was that the apartment was very raw, and James Brown played on a cheap cassette player.

I think it's the only squat I was ever in. I didn't even think about it until yesterday.

Citibikes

Row of bicycles outside 6th & B Community Garden.

Citibikes are very popular in the East Village. They're cheap (if you get an annual membership) and there's almost always one available (if you time it right), and with an ever-growing number of bike lanes, they're quickly becoming the vehicle-of-choice for many people.

The only trouble I've had is finding one if I leave the apartment late. Even then, there are stations within a short distance where I can get one. Then, if I leave work late, sometimes the nearest station to lock-up is full, but again, there's always more than one nearby that has empty stalls.

Looking Inside

A lot of places these days have big open windows and doors and you can take pictures of people (if there are any there) eating/ drinking/etc.

A lot of times when I pass by, no one is there except workers setting up, and people like me who don't like to go when it's busy.

Poco, Avenue B and 3rd Street.

Kazuza Hookah Lounge, Avenue A.

Hayaty, Avenue A.

10 Bistro, Avenue A.

Avenue A, I don't know the name.

16 Handles

I was never big on frozen yogurt. When Pinkberry came around, I thought of it only as a place where the daughters of millionaires went, with their dogs in their bags, and tweeted about it.

However, one day I was taken to 16 Handles on Second Avenue, and I have to say it's very good.


A lot of people put candy and sprinkles and such on their yogurt, but I like fruit: mangoes, strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, mostly berries. The yogurt makes the berries freeze where they touch, but they're still good.

That's mine on the right. OK, I like sprinkles, too. Who doesn't?!

Ray's Candy Store

There's a candy store on Avenue A called Ray's Candy Store. At least, that's the name — it doesn't specialize in candy. It sells lots of stuff, and people seem to like it — it gets good reviews from Yelp.

I've only been in twice. Once I got an egg cream, and the other time I got an ice cream cone.

The only issue I take with this store is that it looks like a dump:


There's no reason for it to look this way. Get rid of that piece of garbage in front, take down the hand-made signs, clean the place up a bit…


I bet his sales would improve over night if he did that, or had someone do it for him, in exchange for some ice cream, and maybe some Belgian fries.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Gin Palace

This is a photo of a place called Gin Palace, on Avenue A:


I don't have anything to say about it; I just like the way it looks. People who like to drink in dark places might like this place. I don't know — I've never been inside.

Crusties Hate Jazz

If you're not from around here, you wouldn't necessarily know it by looking, but the crusties, who usually inhabit the area by the tree on the left, were missing during the Charlie Parker Jazz Festival.


There are only two likely possibilities: 1) crusties hate jazz; or 2) crusties hate crowds.

Now that I think about it, either is likely, as witnessed by this photo of a group of crusties at the 26th Annual Riot Reunion, on August 2. No jazz music, no crowd!

"Hey, you guys want to go hear some jazz?"
"Hell no!"

Speaking of crusties, there really haven't been many around this year.

Monday, August 25, 2014

Rodent/Bug Free

The sign on the wall of this building at 231 East 4th Street reads:
Please put your trash in the garbage can.
Keep our building clean and rodent/bug free!

Good luck with that! This place looks like the rodents come from the inside.

East 5th Street

This is East 5th Street, between Avenues A and B:


It has a lot of bars on it, and very little traffic. The reason it has so little traffic is that it doesn't go past either Avenue A or B.

On the Avenue A side is what's called a NORC, a naturally-occurring retirement community. The official name is Village View Apartments. They don't take applications for apartments; no one who's moved in has ever moved out.

On the Avenue B side is the Earth School. It's very groovy. The building also houses Tompkins Square Middle School, also very groovy. Because so many people want their kids to go there, and because the administrators don't know how to say No, class sizes are seriously high — over 40 kids per class in the middle school. The kids don't do well on state tests either, but then parents don't send their kids there to be educated, but to be groovy. You can see them walking around the neighborhood wearing black hoodies with TSMS printed in red on the front.

St. Mark's Place Deserted!

St. Mark's Place was deserted this afternoon:

St. Mark's Place deserted.

Maybe everyone was at the Charlie Parker Jazz Festival in Tompkins Square Park:

Charlie Parker Jazz Festival.

#eastvillage #charlieparker #jazzfestival #stmarksplace #tompkinssquarepark

Old Flat Top

There is an RV that I see around the East Village from time to time, with the name Old Flat Top painted on the front. I guess it's so people can say, when they see it coming, "Here come Old Flat Top!"

It was parked on East 3rd Street today and the door was open. I went to take a picture, but my camera battery was dead. I headed back to the bench in front of the Hell's Angels headquarters, to sit down and change the battery, but the stoop of a building was closer, so I sat there instead. I changed the battery and then took this picture:


Maybe the dog's name is Old Flat Top. He does have joo-joo eyeball!

Teeny-Tiny Building

On East 8th Street, just in from Second Avenue, there is a teeny-tiny building:



It's hard to know how such a small building came to be built. Why is it only three stories? Why is it so thin? It looks like people live in it.

The East Village is crazy!

#eastvillage #3rdstreet #8thstreet #secondavenue #stmarksplace

Sunday, August 24, 2014

The Standard

I was walking around the East Village today, taking pictures, as I do, when I passed by a relatively new hotel on Third Avenue and East 5th Street, called The Standard.


The name of the hotel is upside down, which is anything but standard!

This is the view through their front door:


This is an alleyway leading to a restaurant called Narcissa, beside the hotel. "Farm to table"!


The restaurant is named after a character from the Harry Potter movies, Narcissa Malfoy.


This is a shot of the inside, taken from their web site:


I should go in next time. Taking pictures of the insides of restaurants is part of what I want to do here.

These people were in the garden beside the hotel:


On the 5th Street side was some sort of statue and some hangy things:


And! Some guy, sitting in a chair. I don't know if he works there, or is a guest, or what. He was just sitting there, with his back to the window, never a good thing to do.


#eastvillage #5thstreet #hotel #narcissa #thestandard #thirdavenue