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September 30, 2008

Due to the Economic Crisis...

IMG_1905, originally uploaded by ultraclay!.

I have decided to suspend my blog, so that I might provide much-needed leadership in Washington. Only when Congress has agreed on a plan will I begin blogging once more.

Or, you know, when I have some more time in the day.

Actually, I'm just super busy and I wanted to do a little more than 40 "of the day" posts in a row.

Right now, Tammi and I are dealing with Wedding minutiae, travel planning and work work work.

Expect sporadic posts over the next month or so. There are a few things I wanted to put up, so maybe in the next couple days I'll be able to post something.


September 23, 2008

Graffiti of the Day: Matt Siren Burlesque

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Chelsea, NYC. 2008.

Artist: Matt Siren

September 22, 2008

Graffiti of the Day: God Says Hi

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NYC. 2008.

Photo of the Day: Kevin & Dorla Got Married!

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Yesterday, I had the great pleasure of attending the Wedding of our friends Dorla and Kevin. It was nine years in the making and it was a wonderful time.

Photos are posted, as usual, on Flickr.

September 21, 2008

Graffiti of the Day: False Teeth

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September 20, 2008

Graffiti of the Day: Sensual


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Dumbo, Brooklyn. 2008.

Return to Musha

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Here's a bit of awesomeness I've been saving from the Los Angeles trip: Scallops, seared by blowtorch at Musha in Torrance. After rereading last year's post on the Musha branches, I have nothing new to add except this: Yum!

Above is a shot of the seared scallops cooked tableside by blowtorch (awesome!).

Below is a shot from the bar at Musha Santa Monica. (Plug: It was posted here on Eater LA)


Photo of the Day: Barber Shop

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Prospect Heights, Brooklyn. 2008.

September 19, 2008

Photo of the Day: Moving On

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DJ Jon Oliver & The Towers in Light. Madame X, Greenwich Village, NYC. 2008.

Graffiti of the Day: Jesus Saves

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East Harlem, NYC. 2007.

September 18, 2008

Graffiti of the Day: No to Fascism

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Cuyoacan, Mexico City. 2007.

Photo of the Day: Break Time 3

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Greenwich Village, NYC. 2008.

September 17, 2008

Graffiti of the Day: Clogged

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SoHo, NYC. 2007.

Photo of the Day: Okay

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San Francisco. 2008

September 16, 2008

Brother Jimmy's

Brother Jimmy's, originally uploaded by ultraclay!.

Brother Jimmy's, a new bbq spot opened up a month or two ago near my office. I had never heard of it before, but the buzz at the time of opening was that it is part of a chain based mostly on the upper east side - and tended to attract a UES style crowd.

To the uninitiated, the ues pretty much has 2 groups, rich old people and twenty-somethings fresh out the frat house.

That said, most of the posts I read about Brother Jimmy's stuck to maligning the customer base, not the food, which generally got good marks.

This was the first time I came across it since it opened. I was on my way elsewhere so I didn't get a chance to go in, but I'll definitely be trying out their bbq soon.

Stay tuned.

Graffiti of the Day: Because We Need to be Heard

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First Avenue, near Stuyvesant Town, NYC. 2008.

Photo of the Day: Snow on the Champs Elysee

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Paris, France. 2003.

As we're getting ready for our honeymoon in Paris, my first visit comes to mind. My sister and I arrived in Paris after a balmy New Year's in Barcelona. Our arrival in Paris immediately preceded the biggest snowstorm the city had seen in ages. We knew the weather was going to be cooler, but this was completely unexpected.

The weather this fall should be significantly more moderate (I hope!)

September 15, 2008

Graffiti of the Day: Being Frank

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Nolita, NYC. 2008.

Photo of the Day: Superman

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Moto X World Championships, San Diego, California. 2008

September 13, 2008

Graffiti of the Day: Memorials of the Past, Design for the Future

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Williamsburg Bridge, Brooklyn, NYC. 2008.

Photo of the Day: Octopi

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Tsukiji Fish Market, Tokyo, Japan. 2007.

September 12, 2008

SF: Rosamunde Sausage Grill

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Though Toronado doesn't serve food, every table has a menu on it and empty serving baskets pile up at the end of the bar. The popular choice of snack at the bar are the sausages at Rosamunde, right next door.

I had the beer sausage, which was fantastic, but I could have tried out everything on the menu. It all looked so good. I'm glad I made it out at least once this trip.


Photo of the Day: Chicken Heads

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Ferry Building Farmers Market, San Francisco. 2008

September 10, 2008

Graffiti of the Day: Valmar

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Outer Mission (?), San Francisco. 2008.

Bars: Hurricane Party at Soda

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Who doesn't love bacon? No one I want to meet, that's for sure (Jon, we've already met, so it doesn't count). The bacon here is part of a chicken BLT Tammi had at Soda. I had an incredible kielbasa sandwich that I ate far too quickly to get around to photographing.

Saturday afternoon, while Hurricane Hanna swept down on New York, dumping a month's rainfall in a couple hours, Tammi and I spent the afternoon hanging out in Prospect Heights.

I had been to Soda once or twice before after years of meaning to go. Both Jon and Mike performed there regularly a couple years ago, but I never made it until recently.

While there, ostensibly looking for Parisian vacation rentals, we ended up running into Ethan and Anna. We sat there for hours hanging out and chatting completely oblivious to the general productivity we all planned out when heading there. It was great.

Meanwhile, outside,

New York Primary Day 08

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Yesterday New York held local primary elections that was largely below everyone's radar given all the national politics in the news lately.

The most notable aspect in this election was that a number of entrenched incumbents were challenged, some for the first time in over 20 years.

The results are in and though some newcomers succeeded, much of the local political landscape is just about the same. At least part of the reason has got to be the rather low turnout, which seems ridiculous in such a politically charged year. But then no one cares about local politics until some obscure pol who has been in office for decades starts flexing his power to shoot down sensible projects.

In any case, tirade aside, I also wanted to note that the voting machine for my district, an ancient behemoth, was broken and I had to fill out a paper ballot.

Photo of the Day: Heirloom

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Ferry Building Farmers Market, San Francisco. 2008.

September 9, 2008

The Upside of Fall

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I can't say I'm particularly happy that summer just blew by this year. With so much going on, I didn't get nearly enough time to relax outside and enjoy the season. But with September here, there are some benefits to cooling weather.

I took advantage of today's dank and rainy weather to tuck into a nice bowl of Pho from Pho 32 in Koreatown. I came across it late in the spring and couldn't bring myself to have soup when it was upwards of 80 degrees out. So, this was my first opportunity to return.

This bowl, the number 4, I believe, has thin slices of beef brisket, flank, tendons and tripe along with noodles. All the different textures of meat and the rich broth were incredibly gratifying. If nothing else, I now know how I will survive the winter ahead.

And like that, it's gone...


2 W. 32nd St.
New York, NY
Phone (212) 695-0888

SF: Muni Passport

IMG_3698, originally uploaded by ultraclay!.

I've raved about various parts about San Francisco and how I wish I had certain aspects of the Bay Area readily available where I live. Eventually I was bound to run into a few things that didn't make any sense. And here it is. The most ass-backward thing I saw while in SF was the Muni Passport.

It's a 3 day pass that allows the bearer to get on the buses, street cars and trolleys around the city. It's obviously something that you'd want to carry around. But it's huge. Instead of being a wallet sized swipe or proxy card, like everywhere else in the world, this pass looks more like a lottery scratch ticket that should be tossed out after losing your money than something you would put in your wallet. In fact, there's no way this thing would fit in anyone's wallet. I've put it next to a standard sized Metrocard here for scale. It's very silly.

Graffiti of the Day: Ghost

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Upper Haight, San Francisco. 2008.

Photo of the Day: The Phantom DJ of the West

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Skylark Lounge. The Mission, San Francisco. 2008.

September 8, 2008

SF: Zeitgeist

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I read mention of Zeitgeist several times on the interweb while I was researching for the trip, but forgot I had been here before until a couple days before I headed out. On a visit a few years back, a friend who lived out there took us there. Being slightly off the beaten path, I never managed to run into it again.

Apparently, it's quite the popular hangout spot, pulling all types of local crowds into its divey environs and its gigantic backyard under the freeway.

On my last night, Guy and I passed through and finally encountered the Tamale Lady, a local legend I read about but never encountered. All was right with the world.

I snapped this shot on my first night, while I wandered the town trying to avoid jetlag by staying up until a decent hour. I was playing with some overexposure, leaving an effect similar to how I was feeling at the time. The photo was also posted on Eater SF while I was out there.

Graffiti of the Day: Daniel-San

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Amoeba Records Parking Lot. Upper Haight, San Francisco. 2008.

SF: Bayless Sighting

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Neither here nor there, I saw Rick Bayless at the Farmers Market last week in San Francisco. I am forever grateful to Bayless for introducing me to Queso Fundido, which I first experienced at a visit to his restaurant in Chicago.

Cheesy wonderfullness in the extreme.

Photo of the Day: Morose

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Elbo Room. The Mission, San Francisco. 2008.

Despite the tone of the photo, the vibe at this bar on a Thursday night was lively and fun. I hung out here for a round as I was waiting to meet up with ToJ to pick Guy up from the airport. I had passed it before but never went in. I'd go back with a group of friends.

September 7, 2008

SF: Posole

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I only had a taste of Guy's Posole at Los Jarritos in The Misson, but it was wonderful. Hominy kernels and chunks of pork, braised to perfection swam in the spicy, savory tomato broth.

My only hopes is that I can somehow find a place that serves it here in New York - or learn how to make it myself.

La Taqueria Tacos

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I had my share of tacos while in San Francisco. These are from La Taqueria and there were among the best I had the whole time.

If you look closely, you'll notice that the inner tortilla layers are crisp, having been hard cooked on the griddle. The effect is brilliant, offering both the soft chewiness of the soft shell and the firm crunch of a hard shelled taco.

Seen here are a carnitas taco and a lengua taco, my favorites. My attraction to crispy shredded pork is obvious. I don't think I need to elaborate. Lengua on the other hand is one o those things that people have some trouble with.

I won't deny that my initial attraction to eating tongue was the competitive foodie instinct that leads many of us to eat random ridiculous things to prove our intestinal fortitude (sometimes literally). But beyond that, the texture, which is almost creamy in its tenderness is amazing.

Below is an up close and personal perspective.


La Taqueria
2889 Mission

Graffiti of the Day: Chalked up

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Hayes Valley, San Francisco. 2008.

Photo of the Day: The Fight

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Upper Haight, San Francisco. 2008.

I saved the best for last. Guy, ToJ and I were waiting for a seat at Magnolia in the Upper Haight. While we waited, this woman, who was clearly high on something, yelled, threatened, strutted and flailed about. She was screaming til hoarse at this guy who did little more than follow her as she paced and harangued.

We had to feel pretty bad for this guy. During all this, his dog apparently in heat, hopped up on hind legs and repeatedly humped his leg.

Now that's a pretty bad day.

September 6, 2008

Graffiti of the Day: Warrior

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Upper Haight, San Francisco. 2008.

SF: Toronado

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I always want to go to Toronado when I go to San Francisco, but its location on Haight near Fillmore, is seemingly the most inconvenient place to get to from Downtown.

Ask any beer fan who has been to the Bay Area and Toronado will be mentioned in the first few breaths. It's a beer bar in a city of bars with great beer selections.

It's got about 40 taps, but numbers aren't the point. A lot of places go around these days cheering about how many taps they have but use half of them up with mass market swill. The selection here is curated. Obviously, there is a wide selection of local craft beers. More importantly, they often stock low production batches that often can't be found anywhere. On my first visit, they had a keg of Siera Nevada's bottle brew of their Pale Ale. I don't think I had ever noticed the difference between the tap and bottle versions of Sierra until then. Additionally, Toronado stocks more European beers than most West Coast bars I've seen.

After the jump, a sampling of the draft list - all I could fit in one shot.

547 Haight Street
San Francisco, CA 94117


Photo of the Day: Taco Time

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La Taqueria, The Mission, San Francisco. 2008

September 5, 2008

SF: Nachos at Taqueria Cancun

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This vision of loveliness was served up at Taqueria Cancun. ToJ, Guy and I headed there right after picking Guy up from sfo.

I had never considered getting Nachos at a Taqueria, largely because I only ever associate the dish with the terrible "casual dining" establishments where I tend to encounter them. These were nothing like that.

The immediate shock is the lack of hot orange cheez whiz on top. Instead there was thick, gooey cheese on top. Craziness. The dollops of crema fresca and slices of avocado added cool and soft to the crisp texture of the tortillas.

Graffiti of the Day: Koi

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Clarion Alley, The Mission, San Francisco. 2008

Artist: CAB

Photo of the Day: Sweep

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The Mission, San Francisco. 2008.

September 4, 2008

Graffiti of the Day: Thylacine

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Upper Haight, San Francisco. 2008.

Photo of the Day: Twirl

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Upper Haight, San Francisco. 2008.

September 3, 2008

Graffiti of the Day: Wingspan

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Hayes Valley, San Francisco. 2008

Photo of the Day: Into the Light

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Financial District, San Francisco. 2008.

September 2, 2008

Graffiti of the Day: Scare Bear

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Clarion Alley, The Mission, San Francisco. 2008.

I came across some great, huge wall sized graffiti all around San Francisco. They were striking to me, coming from New York, where it's harder to find those giant works. I got a bunch of shots of those, particularly with interesting Wildstyle pieces. I'll be posting those eventually, but I thought I'd spend this week posting the smaller, uncommon work: Stencils, Paste-Ups, stickers and so on.

To start off is this cool paste up that I found on my return to Clarion Alley.

Photo of the Day: Practice

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Taqueria Cancun, The Mission, San Francisco. 2008

Last week, I did a lot of interesting people-watching in San Francisco, which I enjoyed immensely. This week, I'll be posting photos of the people I saw there.

San Francisco Photos Posted

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I'm back from San Francisco and getting settled in back home in Brooklyn. Over the next week or so I'll be posting photos, stories and links about my trip.

In the meantime, I've posted a set on Flickr of SF Photos and as usual, a separate Graffiti set.