no chocolate, just books
Wed May 16
Jersey Street in Soho is just two short blocks long, and few people have any reason to walk down it. Now they will: the city's first public library to open since 1989(!)--and the neighborhood's first library, period--is set to open in just a few days. What's cool about this 12,000-square-foot branch, aside from its very existence, is that the building was formerly the Hawley & Hoops candy factory, with a history dating back to the late-19th century, producing such healthful products as chocolate cigars. Turns out that the logistical challenges in designing this branch are a benefit for visitors: for example, the low ceilings (due to having to accommodate pipes) make for a cozy space for story-hour time, with upholstered chairs provided. And there lots of other corner nooks where your kid can curl up with a good read. One of the architects on this project recently told the NY Times, "We wanted to create a Harry Potter dungeonlike atmosphere." (Most of the library's space is below...
Teachers of the year!
Tue May 15
I don't often gasp while reading on the subway. But I did this morning after glimpsing a news item about the prank gone wrong in Murfreesboro, Tennessee. Apparently the brilliant educators at a local school there got the idea to tell the 69 sixth-graders on a class trip that a gunman was loose and that they were all in imminent danger. (The alleged motive for this ghastly act? To test how well the kids followed emergency procedures. Nice.) It amazes me that this is how educators would respond to the horrible killings at Virginia Tech. Not with a sober discussion of being a society obsessed—truly—with firearms. No, never that. Instead, let's scare the bejesus out of 11-year-olds who, in a better world, wouldn't even be able to contemplate such atrocities. Simply vile.
Mon May 14
A little while ago, look books for Little Marc--Marc Jacobs' newish kids' line--hit our desks. While speculating just how much cash these threads would require, we noticed that smiles on the catalogue's prepubescent models were few and far between. Look at these pics. We can only imagine what the direction from the photographers must have been like: "Nothing's ever going to keep you warm. Ever." "Ok, Preppie Monster. Put your arm around Grunge Lad, but do it in such a way that we don't think you actually like him. Can you do that? Cardigan Cindy, I want you to think of this picture as the moment you decided you were going to Wesleyan to major in Proto-Feminism during the Cold War, okay? And, Scarf Boy, just focus on this one word: demitasse. No, don't say it... just THINK it." "Oooh, I like that face. You just found out how much your trust fund's going to be, didn't you? And 'ums feels like her specialness is not being adequately compensated,...
Mon May 14
Yes, I may have hurt my foot playing soccer last night (we won, by the way), but no, it didn't stop me from throwing back a few pints of Guinness at a spankin new joint in South Street Seaport called Nelson Blue. It's not your token kid spot - i.e. no chicken fingers - but they do have some delectable New Zealand-style grub, including chicken skewers that any tot with taste will love—not to mention a slew of brewskies and a fab wine list for you. And it's laid back just like you'd expect those Kiwis to be. (plus, it was just featured on hip-dad site, Urban Daddy, so single 'rents take note).
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