Archive for April, 2007

Photobooth

Went to dinner at El Vez last night and was pleasantly surprised with the photo booth that is in working shape 3 dollars and 5 minutes later a little print out was dispensed and the night was complete with a little souvenir. There is also this 15 foot orange wall behind the photo booth by the stairs where people posted their strips. Wonder how people got the photos up near the top? If you were on the hunt for a photo booth- be sure to stop by El Vez on 13th.

The Pita Pocket

Falafel Sandwich & a plate from the salad bar

How is it possible that I haven’t heard of the Pita Pocket until today? You people have been holding out on me (seriously, I am ALWAYS up for restaurant recommendations). Anyway, if you haven’t heard of it either, let me tell you, you are in for a treat. It is a small counter-service place on the west side of 16th street, between Walnut and Locust (218 S. 16th St. to be exact). You walk in and are immediately greeted by the cheerful owner and the smell of marinated, roasting chicken. You have a choice of a number of different sandwiches and platters. I got the falafel sandwich pictured above. For an extra $.75, they also stuffed in a number of slices of eggplant. I watched them make it and was amazed at how many falafel balls they managed to cram into the pita.

I was handed this bulging pita and walked over to the checker, who charged me a criminally cheap $6.15 (that includes tax) for it. Then I got to choose anything I wanted from the salad bar, which is included in the price of the sandwich. I piled a plate with spiced carrots, sliced radishes, fresh pickles and pickled baby eggplant (the hot peppers were REALLY hot and the pickled mango was too salty to eat). It was like getting an additional meal. So do yourself a favor and get over there. They are open until 9 pm, so it would also be a great place to grab a quick, delicious dinner. Oh, and don’t be fooled by the lack of seating on the first floor, there is a whole roomful of tables upstairs.

No more psychics?

did someone mention and i miss the fact that in philadelphia you can’t be a fortune teller anymore? i just read about this on msnbc (link to story). apparently there’s a law prohibiting fortune telling for profit. it’s actually a state law, which means all across PA you may not be allowed to charge for a tarot card reading! weird, huh?

i once got my palm read in college. during freshman orientation at drexel this girl amy took my palm and looked at it, pointing out that my life line splits at a point where i’ll either live a long time or be severely crippled, or something; and pointed out that i have a lot of friends, wouldn’t make money; and also she couldn’t find my love line. i didn’t pay for this service, but damn that girl was right on on just about everything so far. the life-thing i’d have to wait another twenty years at least to prove, in my estimation.

hey, anyone out there read palms? or do i have to go to the black market now to get a new reading?

$52 lb.

We ate at Bookbinders last night for dinner and upon entering the establishment I noticed a memo on their lobster tank. Evidently there is a shortage of live lobsters and market price for them has sky rocketed. Last night Bookbinders was selling the lobsters for $52 a lb., with each lobster starting at a minimum two lbs. Needless to say no one at our table got the lobster, although someone in the resturant did get one while we were there. As much as I like lobster, I cannot fathom paying $104 for one. Hopefully the price will drop back down to somewhat reasonable levels in the near future.

Fabulous!

I often see some weird and interesting things on the bus, but the past few weeks have been fairly humdrum. Until this past Thursday, that is. I was sitting at the back of the Rt 12, quietly reading my book, when the bus stopped at 15th and Locust. A pretty blonde in sixties-style mod white ran on the bus, passing out gum to all the passengers. That’s when I noticed there was a bevy of pretty blondes in sixties-style mod white all around: on the bus, on the corner, on the street. They were handing out sample packs of new Orbit “Mint Mojito”, and as quickly as she got on the bus she was gone again, and I was left with a single piece of gum in my hand and a “What the…?” on the tip of my tongue.

Eating Well

I may have said this a thousand times before, but one of the things I love so much about Philadelphia is that I am constantly stumbling across bars and restaurants right outside my front door.

This weekend we started with brunch at Sandy’s. It’s a sleepy low-key diner in the Fitler Square area. The brunch isn’t particularly gourmet but it also wasn’t classically greasy. I had a mushroom omelette and hash browns and went home very happy.

Maybe it was the late breakfast (we went after noon) or maybe I was just sleepy, but after brunch I decided I couldn’t go out shopping as I had planned. So I settled in to laze around the house, but in a couple of hours we received a call from some friends who were sitting at a table by the window at The Bards and asked if we’d like to join them for a beer. Well, I perked up and was putting on my shoes before my husband was even off the phone.

We sat and talked by the window as the rain sprinkled lightly outside. Inside was cozy and, happily, not at all crowded. In fact, we walked by The Bards later on that night and saw that it was still pretty empty inside, while the Irish bar next door was packed and had a line out on the sidewalk. I must be getting old because I don’t get what the difference is, except that one place was loud and crowded and the other looked like you could sit and have a beer in peace. Yeah, that has got to be age talking. A younger me would have waited in line on the street just like everyone else to eventually get into the crowded bar.

Anyway, after a beer, we decided we were hungry, and not for Irish food or sandwiches, so we spent what seemed like forever trying to decide on the perfect place to go for dinner. Of course, by now it was 8 pm on a Saturday, so the chances of getting a table anywhere without a huge wait was pretty slim. I have wanted to try Melograno for a while, but at the mere suggestion my husband shot me a look like I was crazy for suggesting it on a Saturday night. And of course he’s right that we wouldn’t have wanted to want an hour on the street in a slight drizzle, so I will have to report on it later. We ended up making no decision except to walk outside and hope to come across something.

We hadn’t gone very far before we reached Pietro’s Pizza, which our friends recommended. So in we went and I suddenly realized I had been there years before for a friend’s bachelorette party, before I ever knew I would be moving to Philadelphia one day. Our friends recommended the pizza they always order, and now I think that whenever we go back, I will be ordering the same thing because it was quite good – mushroom, Kalamata olives, and pepperoni with fresh mozzarella.

Then on Sunday, we finally made it to Sunday School at Tria and it was every bit as good as everyone has been telling me for months. I could easily become a regular.

But then, because the appetizers we had there were small and because I was already on a food high from the rest of the weekend, I suggested we cap it all off at, of course, Capogiro, where I finally ordered a cup without anything chocolate in it, but instead ordered (and loved) Mojito and Red Grape.

I can’t complain. I felt like I was on vacation this weekend. And I like being able to feel like that in the city I live in.

Surviving Zombie Armaggeddon in Philly – Part One, Setting the Stage

The Seattle metroblog had a story about how to survive a zombie attack there, which was followed up by one from Pittsburgh. I had a few thoughts for what would happen in Philly.

Like the Pittsburgh poster, I agree that the contagion starts in morgues, cemeteries, and other places where you can find the recently deceased. Unfortunately for Philly, we’re an old, large city, and a central hub of medicine our area. There are over a dozen major hospitals and over 200 cemeteries in the area. The hospitals will make downtown a very dangerous place to be, and the cemeteries will spread the rest of the attacks all over the area. Worse, a lot of police and hospital workers are going to be contaminated trying to stop the first wave of attacks. When they turn, the number of people who are able to help maintain order is going to drop like a rock.

Earth Day Every Day

At the Cecilian Center for Earth, Arts and Spirit, 100 W. Carpenter Lane, Philadelphia ,19119
Phone 215 849 3364

Dom Roberti, Ph.D.

Threats to our life support systems on earth challenge us to a new spirituality based on an entirely new way of looking at the natural world, taking into account results from empirical science, from our personal experience, and from our various faith traditions, including the Bible. The four sessions will be devoted to Teilhard de Chardin’s sacred cosmology, biological evolution, the universe story, and entropy and chaos. Each session will have a presentation by the instructor and at least an hour for dialogue among the participants.
Four sessions

Wednesday

May 2, 9, 16, 23

9:30 – 11:30 am
Free will offering

Eagles Draft A Quarterback in First Pick

I am speechless. We actually traded away an earlier pick to get this Houston University QB.

Suggestions for the Eagles’ draft pick

Well today is the NFL Draft. Personally I can’t wait for it to be over so Sportscenter can devote more time to baseball highlights. But it’s on now…the Raiders took Jamarcus Russell, the stud quarterback from LSU. So that takes him out of the running for the Eagles, but that certainly doesn’t limit the Birds’ options.
I thought I would take a few moments to suggest three possible picks for the Eagles in this year’s draft.

1.) My roomate Nailz Noodlez. Granted she’s a female and that may pose some problems, but I honestly think she could be a difference maker for the Eagles. While I’ve never seen her run, I have seen her do numerous pull-ups on our spiral stairs and also has been known to do some pretty serious rock climbing with her boyfriend, the Medicine Man. I think kicker would be the ideal position for her, much like Kathy Ireland in Neccessary Roughness, which is perhaps one of the best football comedies ever made. Sinbad! Scott Bakula! Robert Loggia! It’s amazing. And Nailz could also be amazing as the Eagles’ kicker.
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