Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Brooklyn Public Library

This is the front entrance to the Brooklyn Public Library near Park Slope, Brooklyn. It may not be as recognizable as the New York (Manhattan) Public Library but I think it is just as majestic. During this trip, I did not get a chance to go inside. I will the next time I'm in the area.

So where do you usually get the books you read?

Monday, September 29, 2008

Urban Ballerina

I saw this performance artist dancing on Smith Street in Brooklyn a couple weekends ago. The plastic skirt she was wearing had little solar panels that generated enough electricity to play a weird static-like sound/music on the mini-speakers that were also attached to the skirt too.

But the funniest thing was hardly anyone on the street stopped to look at her except me and another passerby. It seems that New Yorkers are so desensitized to this sort of stunts that they don't even bother to look at them any more. I mean, we have the Naked Cowboy at Times Square.

So what is the oddest thing you ever saw on the street?

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Free Tibet Rally

I saw this Free Tibet rally at the southern end of Union Square on my way home from an alumni function in the city last night. The function went well and we ate some great southern food -- cajun gumbo, fried catfish, popcorn shrimp and hushpuppies.

Interestingly enough, it was an unexpected reunion for me and two friends whom I went to graduate school with over 10 years ago. The last time we were all in a room together was in March 2005 when we all met up (again, unexpected) in Basel, Switzerland.

So have you been to an alumni function lately?

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Rainy Friday

I took this photo with my cell phone while waiting for the train to go to work yesterday morning. I apologize for the poor quality but I liked the colors in it. The splash of orange, yellow, pink and blue definitely cheered up an otherwise, dreary day.

So do you usually wear colors or are you a black-on-black kind of dresser?

Friday, September 26, 2008

Human Beehive

This skyscraper, east of the Staten Island Ferry Terminal, is One New York Plaza. It has these interesting square windows that make it looks like a beehive.

I wonder what it feels like to work inside there. Will everyone be running around, busy like a bee?

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Triple Vision

Notice the multiple reflections in the glass doors? This photo was taken at the back entrance to the Winter Garden near Battery Park in Lower Manhattan last weekend. The area was surprising not crowded despite the wonderful weather.

It's been a busy week for me so I haven't had much chance to visit everyone's blogs. I will play catch up this weekend.

How is your week so far?

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Brooklyn Heights Promenade

This is the Brooklyn Heights Promenade on the western edge of Brooklyn overlooking the vista of Lower Manhattan across the East River. I took this photo last Saturday and edited the image before posting it on here. I enhanced the contrast and reduced the brightness. Then I cropped the photo to give it the image I want.

So do you edit your photos?

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

W Hotel Union Square

This is the W Hotel Union Square, located on the northeast corner of the park. The building itself has been there for decades before the W Hotel chain took over and converted it into a boutique hotel. The external façade were kept the same while the inside were gutted and turned hotel rooms.

Notice the flight of fire escape stairs on the right of the building. Imagine trying to climb down or worst, climb up those stairs. So are you a stair climber or an elevator rider?

Monday, September 22, 2008

Graffiti City

Paris has the outdoor stairwell at Centre Pompidou and we have ours at 5 Pointz in Long Island City, New York. This converted warehouse, across the street from the P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center, is home to many artists who work in their studios here. These graffitis are part of their work and they are totally approved by the building owner.

So do you have a monument or place in your city that resembles one in another city?

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Battery Park Rooftops

This photo shows the various rooftop apartments in buildings at Battery Park near the Staten Island Ferry Terminal on the southern tip of Manhattan. Top floor apartments and penhouses maybe wonderful (no one stomping on the floor upstairs) but the electricity bills can be signicantly higher than (sometimes double) apartments on the middle floors. However, if one can afford penhouses like those, electricity bills are probably not a huge concern.

So how is your weekend going?

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Peking Duck III

This restaurant with its banner for Peking Duck House on Mott Street in Chinatown supposedly serves one of the best Peking ducks in NYC. I was invited to dinner there a few years ago and I have to admit, it was a classy joint.

The duck was served three ways: (1) the whole duck was carved table side to yield pieces of crispy skin with a layer of fatty meat, and served in paper thin crepes with scallion and hoisin sauce; (2) the skinless duck was then taken back into the kitchen and the meat cut into small pieces and stir-fried with shiitaki mushrooms and other vegetables, served with rice; (3) the rest of the duck (bones and all) was then stewed to make a light soup, which was served last.

It was probably the most decadent Chinese meal I've ever had in NYC. Thank goodness I didn't have to pay for it. The host did.

So where did you eat your most decadent meal?

Friday, September 19, 2008

Long Island City Vista

Here is another view of the Pepsi-Cola sign (middle of the photo) in Long Island City. Click to enlarge the photo and you will also see the Queens Borough Bridge and the ConEdison Power Plant chimneys. The building on the right is one of the new condominiums that are sprouting up all over the neighborhood.

So would you ever live in a condominium or do you prefer a house with a back yard?

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Pepsi-Cola Sign

This Pepsi-Cola sign is what was left of a Pepsi bottling plant in Long Island City, Queens. The gigantic metal structure has gained such an iconic status in the area that earlier talks of moving the sign elsewhere caused quite a huge uproar among the local residents. For now, it stays where it is supposed to be.

So does your city have an iconic structure that represents it?

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Fishs Eddy

This eclectic store north of Union Square called, Fishs Eddy stocks some of the most colorful and interesting housewares I have ever seen. As you can see in the photo, there are a lot of fun and interesting stuff to buy here including porcelain hand molds from glove manufacturers (yesterday's photo), wooden shoe molds (not shown in this photo), cake pedestals, discontinued hotel chinaware, milk jars, old paintings, etc.

So is there anything in this store you would like to have?

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Hands Across America

Last Sunday, various New York City bloggers got together at Le Pain Quotidien to welcome Chuck of One A Day - Mostly Seattle to our city. We talked shop and politics, exchanged URLs of our websites and had a great time, in general.

Lisa of Gramercy Cafe posted a great photo of us at the restaurant. The other bloggers in the photo include (in no particular order) Elizabeth of About New York, Alexa of The Road is Mine, MissB in NYC and Eliane of NYC Daily Photo.

So have you met any of the other bloggers in your city?

Monday, September 15, 2008

Midmonth Theme: Subway Day

Today is September 15, which means it's mid-month subway theme day again. This photo was taken last week from the elevated subway train station (#7 train) on a surprising clear day. You can see the skyline of Manhattan quite clearly.

Three other cities are participating in the mid-month subway theme:

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Lunch Time @ Bryant Park

This photo was taken at Bryant Park last Wednesday during lunch time. Everyone seemed to be outside enjoying the beautiful weather, including me.

So how is the weather in your neck of the woods?

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Pretty Girl

This beautiful girl is a host of a Russian fashion TV show, I think. She taped a series of segments in front of Bryant Park with a small crew (director, makeup person and camera man) and spoke in a language that I could not recognize. I knew it wasn't French, Spanish or Italian. No, I don't speak all those languages but I can identify them if I listened long enough.

So how many languages do you speak?

Friday, September 12, 2008

The Devil Wears Prada

This is Anna Wintour, the Editor-in-Chief of US Vogue and one of the most influential people in US fashion. She has a reputation of being a tough boss who insisted that junior staffers not speak to her unless they are spoken to first. The book and movie, The Devil Wears Prada was written by one of Anna Wintour's former junior assistant and the plot was (allegedly) based on author's experience working at Vogue.

If you were to write a memoir or a novel, what would it be about?

NB: Sorry for the cut-off-at-the knee photo of Anna Wintour. She came out of the tent at Bryant Park and dashed into a waiting Mercedes. I was lucky to get this photo because she DOES NOT stop for photos.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

New York Fashion Week Spring/Summer 2009

New York Fashion Week began last Friday and will run through till next Sunday. Yesterday evening, I attended the Anna Sui runway show at Bryant Park courtesy of a friend who knows someone who works for Anna Sui -- talk about networking, huh?!? Because of the low light inside the tent, most of my photos didn't come out great. I gave up after a dozen or so shots and decided to just enjoy the show instead.

So do you network much? I'm not good with network and meeting new people especially in a crowd. I do better one-on-one.

NB: For more photos of the runway show, click on the companion blog, The Making of New York City Daily Photo.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Bike Lane

The mayor's office has recently designated sections of the streets into bike lanes all over in the city . Cyclists are ecstatic about the change; automobile drivers, not so much. As for me, I don't drive nor bike so I'll reserve my judgment until later.

One thing I will have to do now is watch out for speeding bicycles as they careen down the street. They are not as easily noticeable as cars, that's for sure. But they do less damage than a car coming at you at 45 mph.

Personally, I rather hike than bike. What about you?

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

8th and 22nd

This is 22nd Street looking east from 8th Avenue. It is one of a number of tree-lined streets in Chelsea, which is fairly rare in Manhattan because of over-development due to industrial zoning in the neighborhood. The buildings down this street are mostly residential so the trees were spared.

Notice the cars parked on both sides of the street? You will have to be a pretty good at parallel parking to get into those tight spots. I'm glad I don't own a car because (when I did own one many years ago), I was a lousy parallel parker.

How good is your driving skill?

Monday, September 8, 2008

Vintage Adult Pulp Fictions

These adult pulp fictions (early porn?) were on a table filled with vintage books, magazines and records on a stretch 0f 8th Avenue between 21st and 22nd Street in Chelsea. I'm sure they were considered risque back when John McCain was a kid but these images look pretty tame by today's standard.

As a 12-year old boy, I've heard of these adult novels from classmates but could never get my hands on one. The books that I did manage to find (and read) were mostly Jackie Collins novels that I checked out from the public library (unbeknownst to my parents, of course).

Nowadays, I prefer to read (less risque but just as entertaining) travel essays like A Year in Provence and Under the Tuscan Sun, and humorous fictions like Me Talk Pretty One Day and Alec Baldwin Doesn't Love Me Anymore.

So what is your reading genre of choice?

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Plimoth Plantation in Plymouth, MA

Here are some photos from my Boston trip last weekend. They were taken at the Plimoth Plantation, a re-creation of a village in Plymouth, Massachusetts that were built by English settlers to the New World in 1627. On the other side of the plantation is the Wampanoah village where the Native Americans lived. In the 2nd photo, you can see a man and a woman dressed in period costumes performing chores that were commonly done during that time period. The "actors" will answer any questions you may have about life in the village.

This is what I learned from them. 1. The early selttlers bathed only once a week but changed into freshly laundred clothes every day. 2. There were no functioning toilets but there were designated areas for people to do "their business". 3. Women were prohibited from wearing pants and men were not allowed to wear shorts.

So what modern conveniences would you miss most if you were magically transported back to the 1620s?

Friday, September 5, 2008

Last Days of Summer

The last days of summer have arrived and gone so dining outdoors will be the thing of the past pretty soon. This restaurant on the corner of Union Square West and 16th Street is called The Coffee Shop and is a popular hang out for locals as well as tourists. It was rumored that Sandra Bullock worked here as a waitress many years ago before she became famous.

Before I became Ming the Merciless, I worked at Kentucky Fried Chicken for 6 week when I was about 17 years old. I quit the job after they made me do a double shift. Yes, I was a spoilted brat. :-)

So what is your most unglamorous job?

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Woodbury Commons

I went to Woodbury Commons, a premium outlet mall outside of New York City, for some shopping recently. A friend who has been talking about going there for some time said she would drive so I decided to tag along. We managed to do some damage on the credit cards. I bought a new pair of loafers to replace the old ones that were falling apart. I also bought a new belt.

So what did you buy lately?

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Grey Goose

I'm not much of a drinker but I do love the Grey Goose Vodka bottles. This photo was taken months ago when I walked by a liquor on the Upper East Side. The owner did a great job displaying the beautiful bottles on the window display.

So what is your drink of choice?

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Waiting for Amtrak Train at Penn Station

I got back from Boston yesterday afternoon. While in Boston, I ate a fair share of lobsters, clams, scallops and shrimp. I also have a new favorite dessert: Boston Cream Pie, which is more of a cake than a pie.

This photo was taken inside Penn (Pennsylvania) Station in Manhattan on Friday afternoon when I was waiting for my Amtrak train to Boston. The trip (on the high speed Acela train) took 3 hours 30 minutes and it was very comfortable, with plenty of leg room and personal space to relax and enjoy the journey. I have to admit, I love traveling by train. It's so much more civilized than what we called, "air travel" today.

So do you prefer to travel by plane, train or car?

Monday, September 1, 2008

Theme Photo: Sister Cities

According to the New York City government website, we have 10 sister cities around the world. They are Tokyo (inducted in 1960), Beijing (1980), Madrid (1982), Cairo (1982), Santo Domingo (1983), Rome (1992), Budapest (1992), Jerusalem (1993), London (2001), and Johannesburg (2003). The only sister city I have visited in the last year or so is Beijing, China. So here is a photo of the scene inside the Forbidden City from my trip there last July.

Click here to view the thumbnails for all the other participants of this month's theme photo.