Barclays Center in Brooklyn New York

When my mother was in town we trekked it on down to THE Barbra Streisand concert at the spankin new Barclays Center in Brooklyn. Whew was it an affair. The arena is huge, looks like a spaceship and still has that ‘new car smell.’ Warning, the cheap seats are steep. Like bring repelling gear, have good balance, maybe some altitude sickness medication, and definitely keep your arms and hands inside the carpet at all times. But go! It was an awesome time, and was a total hoot to share the concert with my mother, who played Barbra’s entire catalogue when I was growing up. Even at 70, Babs is kickin it with the best of ’em. Just maybe keep it under 3 hours next time K? That G train home to Astoria late at night is no picnic. Special thanks to mom for being such a trooper with the MTA.

Fort Green in Brooklyn

Before the concert we wandered down through Fort Greene and had some dinner and poked around the cute neighborhood. Sometimes when I walk around BK I wonder, is this real life? I mean, my block is pretty cute but Fort Greene is totally ridiculous. And funny to think its just about 7-8 blocks north of the total disaster zone of Atlantic Pacific. NYMag has a recent article about the Barclays history and its implications to what it means for Brooklyn as a borough, worth a read if that’s your jam.

What do you think? Have you been, do you like the JayZ branding of the BK Nets? Does the commercialization of Brooklyn mean the end of Brooklyn? What’s your favorite Streisand song?

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Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis reservoir in central park

My Mother is in town internet! Some of my favorite things about people visiting me in New York is that 1. It forces me to leave the house 2. You have excuses to do ‘touristy’ type things (within reason, there are certain things I simply won’t do, like the statue of liberty) 3. If it’s a parent, they like to pay!

Yesterday we picked up and rented a couple bikes for 2 hours and biked the loop in Central Park. After a rainy morning the afternoon turned into totally beautiful and awesome fall weather. Aside from the hilly northern part of the park near the Harlem Meer the ride was a total breeze. Those hills are serious up there yo’! At one point I got passed by a runner, soooooo take your humble pie along with you for a snack. We rented our bikes from Central Park Bike Rental on W 57th, 14 bucks per person for two hours if you book online. Reasonable and worth it.

lookup in New York City Hells Kitchen

I also like that visiting with people I’m reminded to look up and slow down. Living in the city you tend to bustle and hustle, weave and bob, and just get where you’re going as fast as you can because you don’t need to look around, you live here. But stopping to ‘smell the fumes’ and look at that tiny corner building on 9th Ave and W 57th that you totally love but totally forgot about is refreshing. It reminds you why you moved to this hell hole and pay thousands in rent every month in the first place. I HEART YOU NEW YORK, no matter what I might say when I’m stuck on the N Train during rush hour.

Ponche Taqueria & Cantina in Hells Kitchen NYC

Eating of course is a highlight for visitors too. People coming to New York LOVE to eat our snacks. Which is awesome, I also love to eat. Plus you can distract them from the fact that the only thing in your fridge is coffee, milk, and a stray jalepeno. Since we were in Midtown after the bike ride it was the perfect excuse to take my mother to Pónche, a little taqueria BYOB restaurant in Hells Kitchen. A tiny little nook in the wall with amazing tacos, guac, chilequiles, + you can bring your own booze. It’s amazing and out of the way and never crowded. They do a ton of delivery, if I lived near them I would eat their mahi tacos and verde chicken chilequiles exclusively.

old Planet Hollywood location in Times Square 45th and Broadway

PRO TIP: If you get your host/guide a little bit drunk at dinner you might convince them to walk through Times Square with you. Fun fact, wayyyyyy back in the day when I was still performing I worked at the corner 45th and Broadway at Planet Hollywood Times Square and slung burgers and fries to the masses while auditioning all day etc etc etc. Living. The. Dream. It was interesting to see the changes to the ‘hood, the Planet is currently under construction to reopen late 2012 and the Forever 21 used to be the Virgin mega store “back in my day.”

Off to see Barbara Streisand at the new Barclay Center this evening which means dinner in Brooklyn! Think we’ll hit up Fort Greene. Follow along on twitter and instagram for food porn and city views!

Oh yeah, PS. The hand-holding-man-friend’s move went just fine. I drove  a 10 foot moving truck and didn’t hit anything or anyone and no furniture or bones were broken. Yay, stay tuned for lots of Forest Hills, Queens updates!

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weekend activities captured with Instagram

Weekend Round up Instagram Style.

ONE // Wore a Kate Spade dress handed down to me from hand-holding-man-friend’s Aunt to an interview. It made me feel like 1 million dollars, so obviously I aced it even though interviews make me want to die.

TWO // Moved all the plants to the highest ground in the apartment so the new subletter cat couldn’t dig in them while I was away.

THREE // Subletter cat promptly decided to sleep in the sink the ONE weekend I’m away, probably knowing full well I’d been waiting for this moment since his arrival and spotting that he was probably a sink sleeper.

FOUR // Had an empanada date in the park on probably the last warm day where it’s acceptable to sit outside and eat empanadas in shorts and a tshirt.

FIVE // Cleaned the hand-holding-man-friends apartment in preparation for the big move tomorrow. I hope we don’t kill each other &/or break up. Its entirely possible we’ll be doing this move all by ourselves. I have to drive a 10′ truck.

SIX // That new apartment has a pink tiled bathroom. No pink toilet though.

PS. If you’re interested in different ways you can use Instagram for your business, blog, or you know, to post anything besides grainy selfies, you may want to check out Friday’s newsletter that I wrote on just that topic!

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Let’s talk Instagram. Or “the ‘grams” as I lovingly like to refer to it. Whenever the blog is quiet over here you can probably find me over on the grams (username: cubicle57blog) taking cat photos or food photos or running photos (well not so much lately, my fall allergies have put a halt to all running).

There’s some talk about whether Instagram has ruined blogging i.e. people are sharing photos and short bursts over on that platform and blogging less. Which ok, I guess is a thing. But personally I think that there is enough internet to go around, and you will follow someone exactly as much as you want to consume. I don’t blog daily, so for me sharing stuff on Instagram is supplemental. If you want all me all the time, go to my twitter for that. That said, there are bloggers that I follow on twitter and such that I stopped following on Instagram because I don’t like the way they ‘gram. And that is totally not a judgement factor on photo quality or art or any of those things. Its simply a matter of preference about what I want to see, and it’s not 7,000 grainy selfies. #OOTD (outfit of the day) is one thing, but a constant stream of your pouty face is just not what I want. Its too much for me. Luckily the internet gives us the unfollow option. So hey, it’s not that I don’t like you, and I’ll probably still follow you somewhere else, but if your instavibe (yeah, made that up) doesn’t mesh with my highly curated feed you’re out. Come back when there’s more cat photos (shameless).

Anyway, this guy says it way better. Casey Neistat is a YouTube filmmaker and super talented and I loved this vid so I just wanted to share it with you.

PS. All of my Instagram photos live in this special gallery here on this here blog. Also, I love living in a world where YouTube filmmaker is a profession. Go internet.

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