Tag Archives: museum

Playing dress up

I have lived in New York City going on eight years now, and I sometimes worry that I will start to take the city for granted.

Maybe I already have.  Maybe we all have.

Image: An aerial view of Burj Dubai is seen in DubaiThe city of Dubai isn’t going to take that chance.

They have put together a think tank on tourism, and one idea is getting serious consideration –

Covering the Burj Khalifa — the world’s tallest building (2,716.5 feet and 160 stories) — with a “super-lightweight, reflective and semi-transparent fabric material.”

They say it’s art.

Critics say it sounds (and will look like) something much less low brow, but I like the idea of dressing up monuments.  The Statue of Liberty in a tasteful winter coat? The Guggenheim Museum decked out as a layered birthday cake? The Flatiron Building as a wedge of Swiss cheese?

Oh man — I think I’ve finally found my calling!

Location, location

Where is the best place to live in the Upper West Side?  I am only guessing, but…


Andy’s Deli always smells of yummy bacon.


And the apartments above have a bucolic view of the park that surrounds the Museum of Natural History.

Now, that’s what I call atmosphere.

Did someone hit redial?

Happy 40th Birthday, Cellphone!

cellphone birthdayThat’s right.  Forty years ago today, Motorola engineer Martin Cooper made the first cellphone call — to one of his rival engineers at Bell Labs, no less — and made telecommunications history.

Looking at your ‘baby photo’ at left — a cellphone model that I see turn up in old movies and television sitcom reruns all the time — I can honestly say…

You look even younger today.

(You really do.)

Sit. Stay. Good boy.

Welcome to Fun Fact Friday!

I just invented it because I ran across a fun fact on Google that I wanted to share.  It is, in fact, a fun fact about Google…which makes it even more fun.

Well, at least, to me.

Anyhoo, here is your promised fun fact

Google has a pet dinosaur. His name is Stan.  He is a T-Rex.

His skeleton was unearthed near their headquarters, authenticated and later adopted by Google.  Now Stan is kept on a fairly short leash outside Building 43.

Are these Stan’s real bones or a scale model?  This fact I do not know.  But having a dinosaur as a pet?

Very cool.  And very Google.

Look at that

Do you know what this is?  I’ll give you three guesses.


Origami sculpture?

Re-tooled DNA?

Times up.

It’s actually the central vault above the atrium of the Museum of Islamic Art in Doha.

But I’m pretty sure the artist had one of those three items in mind when he was creating his masterpiece.

Either that, or he was staring at his blue eye a bit too closely in the mirror.

I think I need more sleep.

Day Four, Milan / Padova: a masterpiece

Today was all about art.

And really, shouldn’t every trip to Italy have days like that?

We started back in Milan at the Pinacoteca di Brera, a lovely museum with over 30 rooms of paintings by the classical masters. Of course, I spent most of my time in the one room filled with modern art.

You can take the girl to Italy…

In the afternoon, we trained our way to Padua, or Padova as everyone calls it here. This will be our home base for the next three days, so we walked around to get the lay of the land.

We also attended a viewing of the Scrovegni Chapel.
It contains a fresco cycle by Giotto, completed about 1305, that is considered one of the most important masterpieces of Western art.

Now I have already admitted that I prefer modern art, but this church blew me away.  To think that the entire thing — it’s enormous — was completed in three-and-a-half years!  Every detail painted; all the trim and faux marble.  Dimension was even added with paint to make elements look 3-D.

It was truly incredible.

Then we came outside, and it was raining really hard.

Back to earth.


How often do we judge something as being good or bad without fully understanding it?

We’re all human, so I would guess…too many times to count.

It appears Anthony Burrill agrees. The English illustrator and designer is well-known for his posters, videos and 3-D pieces.

Check out his print below.















I love this.

(What is it?)

Ale yes

I can’t drink beer.

I have a hops allergy, so even a single beer can give me a pretty bad headache, sometimes before I even finish drinking it.

I’ve never really liked the taste of beer, though, so it’s no hardship.  But when people hear my tale of woe, they are inordinately upset.  (The folks I met in Ireland were inconsolable.)

So I am especially excited to find a way to enjoy beer that does not involve drinking it.

The MF Gallery in Brooklyn is hosting “The 40oz Show,” featuring 40 ounce beer bottles customized by over 40 local underground artists. Prices start at $40.  (I see a theme.)

The show kicked off March 18th with a huge opening night party.

I missed that.

But this Sunday, April 10th,  the gallery is open for walk-ins from 2-5pm.  I am definitely not missing that .







Look at these bottles!  They are such incredibly creative works of art!  There is literally something for everyone’s taste.  It is really going to be hard to choose.

No one can drink just one…

Killer nose

I lived in Boston for six years, and never knew Lizzie Borden’s house was just down the road.

(Random learning from the Internet #725)

Turns out Lizzie Borden and her poor, axe-murdered parents were from Fall Rivers, which is an hour outside of Boston.  Their house has been turned into a museum and bed-and-breakfast, and was recently chosen by The Huffington Post as one of the “10 Strangest Lodgings to Stay Around the World.”

I would second that notion.

Visitors can take a “time tour” of the murders — even see the carefully preserved skulls of the Bordens –  then stay overnight in Lizzie’s room or the rooms of her dearly departed mom and dad.

Well, that certainly sounds restful.

Of course, we have to remember that Lizzie was found not guilty at the murder trial.  But the made-for-TV movie, “The Legend of Lizzie Borden” starring Elizabeth Montgomery, is what is burned on my brain.

There she was — sweet, nose-twitching Samantha  — spooky scary as Lizzie Borden.  After watching her re-enact how the police thought the murders had taken place, I was never more certain in my life that any woman was a cold-blooded killer.  Based on her performance alone, there is no way I would stay overnight in that house.

If the ghost of Lizzie Borden doesn’t get you in your sleep, I’m pretty sure Elizabeth Montgomery will.