A Corpse Grows in Brooklyn

Friday, August 11th, 2006

The Brooklyn Botanic Garden‘s Titan Arum, the Corpse Flower of Simpsons fame, just started blooming last night. This is the first one to bloom in New York City since the 1960s.

Titan Arum, Corpse Flower

It wasn’t nearly as stinky as I (or the garden staff) expected. However I did get strangely nauseous while looking at it. The power of suggestion, perhaps? Anyway, it’s blooming now. See it (and smell it) while you can. It should continue blooming through Saturday, and maybe Sunday (but probably not). The garden’s open till 6:00 P.M. and opens tomorrow at 10:00 A.M.

Penn Station: Gone but not Forgotten

Monday, July 31st, 2006

The old Penn Station in New York was torn down before I was born. Looking at these pictures, that feels like a mistake. The current site is functional, but no more; really just some office towers and underground corridors of no particular interest or beauty. The new Madison Square Garden is an arena, but nothing more. The old Penn Station appears to have been much more beautiful. Whether it could have handled the traffic levels of the 21st century, I don’t know; but I can’t help thinking that we lost something special here. At least we still have Grand Central.

Why Cars Should Stay Out Of Parks

Tuesday, July 25th, 2006

Car crushed by tree

Prospect Park, July 24, 2006

Kitten Season

Wednesday, May 17th, 2006

Kittens are naturally popular and usually the first to be adopted at most animal shelters. At some times of year it can be hard to find one. However, I’ve just received word that the New York Center for Animal Care and Control currently has a surplus of kittens ready for adoption, so now’s a great time to add a friend.

Apparently the surplus is directly related to the time of year. Cats tend to time their pregancies to the Spring. Thus, if even if you’re not in New York, chances are very good your local animal shelter also has kittens looking for a home. Don’t wait. By the time summer rolls around, it will be too late.

It’s Freezing In Here

Monday, February 27th, 2006

It’s -2°C outside, (the warmest it’s been all day) and after turning the heaters all the way up, removing the window air conditioner, replacing the windows with new, more tightly sealed ones, the temperature in my office has now reached an invigorating 21°C. Later today I’m shopping for warmer socks and a ski mask. I love New York, but days like today make me think seriously about moving to California.

Malcolm Gladwell Misses the Boat (Again)

Thursday, February 9th, 2006

A lot of people have been talking about Malcolm Gladwell‘s books lately in the blogosphere. Based on multiple recommendations, I’ve recently finished both The Tipping Point and Blink. He’s an exceptional writer. It’s rare to find intellectual nonfiction of this sort–i.e. books about ideas–that’s as much of a page turner as a good mystery novel. I devoured both books very quickly.