Saturday, July 31, 2010

Gabba Gabba Hey? No?

(l-r) pink monster, robot, DJ Lance, orange monster, green monster, wolf

Upon the suggestion of a friend of ours who has a kid, I decided to check out Yo Gabba Gabba on demand. She described it as a children's show for hipster babies where all the music sounds like Band of Horses. It was definitely entertaining and reminded me of a throwback to older programming from my youth.

Parts HR Puff n Stuff and Sesame Street, from what I gather there's a guy named DJ Lance who has a bunch of friends (I honestly don't remember their names, so I'll just refer to them as how they look) there's a tall orange monster with one eye (he's appearing in a car commercial with toys going on a roadtrip), a pink monster with a flower as hair, a green monster with long arms, a wolf, and a robot. Each show has a theme that they all since, dance, and talk about. Then in between these segments are kids either dancing, or being the characters in 8-bit video games. A very spastic and trippy 23 minutes.

What we liked the best was the drawing corner with Mark Mothersbaugh, where he draws animals that animate off the page all while dressed in a bright shirt and possibly a Devo jumpsuit, and the dance/music corner. Biz Markie also seems to make an appearance to teach kids beats... as only Biz Markie can.

For the dance/music corner segment, we saw both Mya and Leslie Hall teach dances. Very simple, but then they free style and get down. I caught Supernova playing a song on Yo Gabba Gabba about jumping, and through the magic of Youtube, we found The Shins, Mates of State, Ladytron, The Roots, and so on. We knew it was a hip show, but were also amazed that bands of that caliber and variety appeared.

I don't see myself becoming an avid fan, but I'll probably check every now and again to see what bands are on there. I can see how it's entertaining for kids and adults, given it's bright colors and spastic nature.

Here's The Shins on Yo Gabba Gabba. I joked to Ricky that this is pretty much what they looked like when I saw them in concert last year.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Portland: The Green Elephant

I figured I'd start my reviews now. I had today off, but the rest of the week has been a bit busy.

Ricky and I knew that we wanted to enjoy seafood by the water for dinner, but that we were slightly hungry now and wanted a snack to tie us over until dinner. On the suggestion of Anne the innkeeper, we checked out Green Elephant, an all vegan/vegetarian restaurant on Congress St on your way towards Old Port.

Green Elephant has a nice, bright feel to it. A bright green accent wall with dark painted silverware was on one side, and opposite from it was a lightly painted brick wall. Clean looking chalkboards were displayed to show daily specials and what was on tap. The floors and furniture were also light. This may the whole restaurant appear quite clean.

We went at an off time (possibly 2, I think?) and I was surprised at the amount of people there. We sat by the brick wall and split an order of Vegetarian Springrolls. Ricky had some coffee and I had some tea. They make their own blends of tea, so I was excited to check it out.

The springrolls hit the spot. A little oily, but crisp and flavorful throughout. They came with a nice soy dipping sauce. The portion was large (we each got two springrolls), which also helped us walk around until a later dinner. The appetizer was also seasoned nicely and didn't come across as bland or tasting like the same thing (which is often the case with springrolls, in my opinion).

Ricky really enjoyed his coffee, but that may also be because he needs coffee daily to function as a human being. The tea was nice. I got a green tea, that was subtle and nothing too fancy about it. Just a plain, but satisfying, green tea.

Service was nice, efficient, and punctual. Pricing was reasonable. For all the food we got, the snack and two drinks were until $10. The rest of the menu seems reasonable and to also have an Asian flare to it.

Next stop: J's Oyster!

Monday, July 26, 2010

Weekend in Portland = awesome

Pretty clouds and seas...

This past weekend, Ricky and I trekked to Portland, ME for two days of sight-seeing, eating, walking, looking at rare and out-of-print books, and more eating. Having been told that Portland is a city for foodies, we decided to try and eat as many different places as possible.

We definitely barely scratched the surface, but had some great food and have some ideas about where else we want to eat when we return. For example, we only went to one brewery, one seafood restaurant, and did not eat ice cream.

I think I'll be breaking each place out in its own post, so keep checking back here for reviews of all the places I ate, along with some yarn I bought. (food and yarn? Best vacation in the world for me)

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

JFL, Five Years Later

Just like last year, I'll be having a shot at 9pm with various friends all around the country for my friend Jack, who died five years ago today. I think because it's the 5th anniversary, I'm feeling more nostalgic than past years. So on this day, think fondly of friends, cherish them, and if you find yourself with a shot of whiskey at 9pm Natick, MA time, lift it in memory of Jack and in celebration of old friends in general.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Update on the bike hunt from a few summers ago

Is he pleased with the bike, or in awe that he has a white probably fake Christmas tree? We'll never know.

I believe it was last summer, I blogged about how I was on the hunt to find a bike to ride around Salem and be in better shape and more green. Despite some craziness getting in the way (moving... buying my car... moving again... a million weddings...) I have still been keeping my eye out for this purchase.

This past weekend, I got Martha Stewart Living's August 2010 issue. I like MSL a lot, because while most of the articles aren't big on substance, it packs a visual punch. There are many days where I just want to unwind and look at a spread about a Clam Bake in Nantucket, or how best to incorporate stripes into your living room. This issue included articles about collecting vintage bottles, desserts that don't involve the oven, and how to show off your succulent garden. So lots of pretty, but not a lot of hard reading. Anyways, in this issue there was an article all about how vintage-style bikes are making a comeback and are being produced by classic companies again, like Schwinn and Raleigh. To boot, it was photographed by the Hipstamatic iPhone app. Anyways, it was a great little article, and whilte reading it, I found the bike I now have my eyes on:

The 2010 Schwinn Jenny.

I love that this has those classic lines and colors that I've been hunting for, and a place to put a bike bag in the back, but that Schwinn updated it with enough gears to handle city roads. It seems to only come in that yellow color, but I'm okay with that. (at least it's bright so people would see me!)

I could definitely see myself riding this to visit people in Beverly, going to Crosby's for quick groceries, and even to Forrest River Park for some Bagel World. At around $400, I was equally pleased with the price.

At this rate and at this point in the season, I probably wouldn't get this until perhaps the fall or next winter I'd look at the 2011 model or get the 2010 for last season prices, but we'll see.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

10 days!

This past year, I did what many friends have told me to do for years and started watching Mad Men. Holy crap, that tv show is made of awesome. Love it. I'm dying to see what happens in Season 4, since so much shit went down at the end of Season 3. (I won't say what for those of you who haven't caught up or what have you)

Anyways, I saw a friend of mine (the very talented musician Brian E. King of Oranjuly) Mad Men-ized himself this morning. I took some time and did it for myself as well. So here I am, just hanging with the boys in the office. No big deal.

And an up close on my City Loving-Gal face:

A nice way to waste a few minutes, and if you watch the show, the sets and accessories are clever and fun to use. You can make your own Mad Men here.

I also took a minute and made a Ricky. Note that the accessories are a lot more fun for the girls than the guys.

Ricky came home and made his own Mad Men. This is how he envisions himself in a board meeting... guns a-blazing and Metro West section a-reading.

And an up close version. Ricky's version looks more accurate, albeit a bit more smug... but that may be because he has a gun. Hard to tell.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Maybe it's because I'm a Sox fan, but...

...whenever I think of George Steinbrenner, I think of Seinfeld and Larry David:

Monday, July 12, 2010

American Splendor

"I think comics have far more potential than a lot of people realize."

I try and write the way things happen. I don't try and fulfill people's wishes."

I'm a guy that likes to sit in one place."

Thursday, July 8, 2010

I want these for my apartment and life

I found these bad larrys on Apartment Therapy:

I WANT A KNITTED BEAN BAG. How cute is it?? Definitely more of an ottoman than a chair, but so freaking cute. I want to live in this apartment.

The aerial shot just makes me want them more. I think I'd go with gray, but hard to say. I definitely want to live in this house and be friends with that hip reader.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Would you believe in a love at first sight?

A little happy birthday shout out to Ringo Starr, a top notch drummer and tiny conductor for a magical train station.

Midnight vs. Nic Cage

Midnight looking out the window:

Nic Cage looking out the window:

Song I'm digging this week

I've moved and am back on the internets! My camera shit the bed, but when I'm able to, I'll post photos of adorable nooks and spaces in my new adorable apartment.

In the meantime, he's a song I've really been digging a lot the last few days. Thanks to TBTL for playing it.