Archive for March, 2008

Wed 12 Mar 2008 6:54 am   //   Posted in: Brooklyn, Videos

Seal the deal

A harbor seal was spotted in Red Hook this week. Arrested Development-inspired puns welcome.


Tue 11 Mar 2008 10:53 pm   //   Posted in: In the news, Transit

The Amtrak angle

Who is currently our governor? Curious people in New York are checking the news every couple of hours, the way we check the weather during a snowstorm.

Today’s blog post was going to be about Eliot Spitzer’s resignation speech – would it be spectacular and destructive, spraying birdshot, tearing others down in this disaster? Or dignified and boring? Would Spitzer confess, or does he think he’s blameless? We don’t know, because it hasn’t happened.

So I’ll go with topic B: The train. I think it’s interesting that “Kristen,” the high-class call girl who visited Client 9, traveled to Washington on the Regional. According to the criminal complaint, she rode Amtrak 129, leaving Penn Station at 5:39 p.m. on Feb. 13. (That seems to be a mistake, since the train that departs at that time is number 193.) She returned to New York the next morning on Regional 84.

I’ve ridden the Regionals dozens of times between these two cities. It’s a nice way to travel; you can get a drink in the café car while gliding comfortably through Delaware at 100 miles per hour. Still, a $2,000-an-hour Emperors Club prostitute – who certainly wouldn’t ride the Peter Pan from Port Authority – would fly, right?

Apparently not. Maybe Delta and U.S. Airways and Reagan National just lack the romance of Union Station. If you’re en route to meet the friggin’ governor of New York at the Mayflower, would you fly the Shuttle from LaGuardia? No, that would make a terrible movie. So it’s the train. That leaves me with one nagging question: Why not splurge for the Acela?

Mon 10 Mar 2008 11:40 pm   //   Posted in: In the news

Client No. 9

This whole thing makes no sense.

If you’re the friggin’ governor of New York, why do you have to pay for sex?

Mon 10 Mar 2008 7:00 am   //   Posted in: Brooklyn, New York is different

Parallel parking’s unwritten rules

A study once found that half of the traffic in Park Slope consists of drivers searching for parking.

When people do manage to find street parking here, it’s often a fender-scraping effort to fit a middle-size car in to a sub-compact space. Bumping is acceptable. In fact, it’s necessary. But the unspoken rules of parking etiquette say you shouldn’t bump a car if the driver of that car can see you doing it.

Yesterday I was walking on 6th Avenue and saw a man and a woman with a baby getting into a small station wagon parked on the street. Right ahead of them, a driver was trying to extract a small Jeep from a very tight space. He backed up the jeep and – thump! – hit the small station wagon. The man with the woman and the baby looked up in alarm. “Wait,” he said.

He walked over and spoke to the driver of the Jeep: “Look, I do this all the time too, but not when the guy’s right there!

Sun 9 Mar 2008 10:21 pm   //   Posted in: In the news

Why this blog is better than The New York Times

Daryl Lang, 25 Feb: “Obama and the Bigots

Nicholas Kristof, 9 Mar: “Obama and the Bigots

Sun 9 Mar 2008 8:06 am   //   Posted in: Music

Sia sells sea shells

I saw the brilliant/crazy singer Sia last night with at Webster Hall. (Also attending were some of my Brooklyn friends and a coworker who writes the Sheena Beaston music blog, which you should totally check out.) Sia is a whimsical, Muppet-like character who grins at the crowd like it’s the first time she’s ever been outside and is trying to stay composed. Her costume includes clashing plaids and a couple of scarves, which she occasionally trades with members of the audience. The music is poppy enough to get stuck in your head on the first listen. Sia’s album is called “Some People Have Real Problems.”

They do – Like the opening act, Har Mar Superstar, a sweaty, pudgy, foul-mouthed guy whose act consists of stripping down to his briefs. Amazing.

An aside: While this was (in my skewed estimation) a very cool concert, Webster Hall is probably the least-cool place below 42nd Street to see a show. It’s like the Las Vegas version of what people think a New York City dance club is supposed to be like.

Sat 8 Mar 2008 2:23 pm   //   Posted in: Brooklyn, Right now, Weather

Mobile phone update

A storm blew down a few trees and light poles on 20th street in my neighborhood a short time ago.


Fri 7 Mar 2008 9:54 pm   //   Posted in: Labeling

A blog with no name

I’m no good at naming things. Including this blog. Inspired by the cartoon below, I decided that History Eraser Button was a way better name for a blog than Brooklyn International Jetport, the name I had before. Change is good!

Fri 7 Mar 2008 12:00 pm   //   Posted in: Videos

Guarding the button

Remember the 1990s cartoon Ren & Stimpy? I did not appreciate it as a kid, but only now do I realize how good some of it was. Enjoy:

Thu 6 Mar 2008 11:29 am   //   Posted in: In the news, Right now

Round up all the bicyclists!

Right now this is the top headline on

Cyclist may be suspect in Times Square bombing
A man on a bicycle is being sought as a possible suspect in today’s bombing at a military recruiting station in Times Square. Mayor Michael Bloomberg said the city is safe and New Yorkers should go on with their lives. New Yorkers, Bloomberg said, “are not intimidated.”

A man on a bicycle! Well, that narrows it down. Also, “not intimidated” is a gross understatement. “Dimly aware that something weird happened in Times Square” would be more precise.