Category Archives: brooklyn

The current state of Williamsburg, in four easy posts


This list above is the last few stories from FreeWilliamsburg, via my RSS feed. A symbolic and ubiquitous coffee chain finally makes a move, a generationally significant sleek and pricey technology store eyes the nabe (for its first Brooklyn location), while a punk rock vegan fast food restaurant gets priced out and a music store (a music store) gets in trouble in a Brooklyn neighborhood that once was full of young people for being too loud with its guitars and noise singing and etc.

happy 2014, Brooklyn!

Til death do us pun

A video full of wedding puns? Aisle drink to that!

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Ted Leo’s comedy debut + a cover of “Just Gimme Little Sign”

Ted Leo guest hosted the Hot Tub comedy night at Littlefield on Monday, which he said was his first time doing anything like that (at least more than the witty between set banter at his shows). And he killed it! It’s hard to go wrong with a bit comparing farts to H.P. Lovecraft titles.

Ted also had this — is it a dig? A snark? I’m not sure what to call it, except maybe accurate — jem: when introducing comedian Jamie Lee, he said, “She was a finalist on Last Comic Standing … which you don’t know about, because you’re hipster trash like me and you don’t own a TV.” And it’s true.

So please enjoy a portion of his cover of the Brenton Wood Song “Gimme Little Sign” from Hot Tub.

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My unintentional Christopher Hitchens tribute

Hitchens rides a bike. Via Vanity Fair

On Dec. 12, I participated in my third PUNDERDOME 3000 in Park Slope, an event that is exactly what it sounds like (if you’re saying “I mustache you a question” about this, I humbly request you shave it for later).

One of the semi final categories was WILL SMITH; On my turn, I opened with, “I heard that Will Smith’s favorite Atlantic writer was Christopher HITCHens.”

And then, three days later, Christopher Hitchens died  (incidentally giving us the only repeated use of the term “polemicist” in modern obituary history).

If this trend continues, things that also should be on the lookout: Big Willie Smiles, Fresh Prints, Giant Goddamn Steampunk Spider. Continue reading

Everyone gets a go

This little comment I got from one of our new writers this week after posting her first story warmed my heart in a strange way, and it alone explains why there’s inherent value in working for a scrappy but diligent blog staffed by volunteers, open to all and welcoming to anyone willing to put the time in to contribute — and also why, even with all the hyper competitiveness bred into all corners of New York City, Brooklyn is the right place to be for anyone just looking for a place to give it a shot:

AWESOME!  My first non-self published work ever!  Thanks!  (AKA, looks great.)

I know the feeling, for sure, and I’m glad to help. (And in case the relevant writer happens to be reading this, thanks for sharing!)

Actual Occurrences: The punk rock island we once knew and loved

[Here’s the deal with this post: I wrote this more than a year ago with intentions of posting it here, then on a whim sent it off to NY Press, who responded that they would love to run it in the 8 Million Stories section. And, after a few follow up emails of reassurance … they never did. So whatever. But while wandering around the Brooklyn waterfront yesterday, we happened to pass by Ted Leo at the promenade, so in this blog’s grand tradition of letting no unpublishable work go unpublished, I decided to pull it up from the graveyard and post it. NOTE: all time-sensitive elements are related to Nov. 2009, just shy of a year since I first moved to Brooklyn.]

I have found the nexus at which punk rock musicians and struggling journalists who’ve written about them collide, and it is TJ’s.

Yesterday at reg in the midst of the inescapable writhing mass-of-humanity shitshow that is a sunny Sunday afternoon at Brooklyn’s favorite grocer, I was ringing up the purchases of a young, groovy looking couple in refreshingly good spirits considering aforementioned shitshow that often causes much grumbling among other customers (note: YOU ARE HERE ALSO TAKING UP SPACE).

The girl looked at my name tag which lists my hometown as “Hilton Head, S.C.” and asked me how long I’ve been in New York, if I came directly from South Carolina, etc.

The guy turned to her and said, “Oh, that’s where we played that show that they said it was like the ‘first punk show’ ever.”

Strange gears began to come alive and click together in my head as an improbable slide of memory pushed in reminding me that, not only had I heard that comparison before, but — hold on a second — I wrote it.

Turns out the guy was Marty “Violence” Key, the bassist for Ted Leo and the Pharmacists, who I interviewed last year before their head-explodingly nonsensical (but awesomely embraced by the five punksters on Hilton Head, four of whom worked at the newspaper) appearance at Stages on the island.

It included this:

Question. We did a little bit of research, and we think this may be the first punk show in Hilton Head history.

Answer. I used to go out with someone who lived on Hilton Head. I used to actually go down there a lot and visit her and we’d hang out and see shows in Savannah.

But there was one night where some ska band that I actually knew from New York was playing at like some crazy frat bar, and we went. And I remember her being so freaked out, like, ‘God, this is so weird, there’s actually a band that’s not like the String Cheese Incident or Widespread Panic or something that’s playing here.’

Wow, but I would have figured since then, that since there are kind of ‘punk’ shows everywhere, I’m surprised to hear that I’m the first.

Q. How does that feel?

A. It’s exciting. It’s auspicious. I had no idea. Continue reading

Clip links that don’t lip sync

An interview with the first-ever organic farmer in Georgia!

Consult the Experts: Farmville, Hilton Head Monthly 11/29

Tip from an executive at Edible Arrangements on how to handle holiday gifts!

How to set an employee gift policy, Inc. 12/10

Subversive yacht journalism!

Megayacht Calixe (one of America’s 100 largest), PMY November 2010

The ship’s five cabins and an interior designed by Terence Disdale should be a convenient place to hide from the spotlight: McCaw has been a lightning rod for criticism from newspaper employees who opposed her editorial interference and labor practices. At the height of a staff insurrection in 2006, McCaw was spotted cruising the French Riveria with fiancé (and co-publisher) Arthur von Wiesenberger. While her newsroom workers took issue with McCaw expressing her staunch animal-rights views in the newspaper, the ship’s crew doesn’t seem to have the same concern. Once, during a cruise off the Turkish coast, she sent crewmembers to swim ashore to free a tied-up donkey.

A totally awesome xmas present you can buy for the beer drinker in your life, available by special secret pre-order today to devoted readers of this blog (many of whom don’t live anywhere near Brooklyn), the curation of which has consumed my life for the past month!

BUY IT before it sells out!