Archive for December, 2006

Goodbye Iverson


The Allen Iverson legacy is over. He has been traded to Denver for Andre Miller, Joe Smith, and two 2007 first-round picks. I feel a emptiness inside because I love Iverson, but I too think its time for him to move on. He won’t get a ring with the team here in Philly and I do think he deserves at least one. He is the T.O. of basketball so I can’t wait to see the trouble he gets into over there.

Smarty, and now, Slots

The slot parlor at Philadelphia Park opened today, and people actually went! I wonder, though, if they will return at a steady rate. Opening day is exciting, but slot machines with not much else around don’t seem all that interesting. Atlantic City has restaurants, shopping, the boardwalk (however seedy it may be) and the beach. It’s also mean fun to watch the tipsy lines of over-excited guys outside the strip clubs. I’ve been to Bensalem before, and while it’s not a terrible area there sure isn’t a whole heck of a lot to do there. Maybe watch traffic build up on I-95.

I’m not too heavily involved in the casino news. It’s a nice though, reduction of wage and property taxes, but how realistic is that? Apparently the board already blew through $25 million. Life is really tough for a board member: “trips to resorts, six-figure salaries, highly paid employees, high-end cars and trucks, and thousands of dollars in dues and conference registrations.”

Photo of the Day: Walnut/30th

Now this is a gorgeous black and white from prin x. amorapanth. I love the wide angle, love the high contrast, love the lonely figure in the giant intersection, just love it all around.

Photo by prin x. amorapanth

Taken with his fancy new Nikon D200.

Note: I’m going to be away for 10 days, so photo posting will be sporadic if at all! Sorry, and enjoy the break!

Please add your Philadelphia photos to the Metroblogging Philadelphia Flickr group. Readers’ photos will (normally) be featured here on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

For the Birds

Add this to the collection of City Hall pics…

City Hall

Camera:     Canon EOS 350D Digital Rebel XT, Canon EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6
EXIF:     Aperture Priority, Pattern Metering, EV 0, 1/1000 sec, F/5.6, ISO-200, 55 mm (88 mm equivalent), cropped
      (This was very frustrating to process to black and white. There just wasn’t much tonal range to play with. But color wasn’t really all that much beter. Honestly, I just liked the birds.)

And by the way, I often see people referring to the statue atop City Hall as Ben Franklin, but it is actually William Penn. (For the historically challenged, William Penn founded the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, “Penn” for his father Admiral Sir William Penn, and “Sylvania” which is Latin for woods.)

It may surprise you (well, it surprised me) to know that the statue of Penn was sculpted by Alexander Calder, who I always associate with giant abstract mobiles.

Update: The historically challenged one is me! In the comment below, Mike points out that I got the wrong Calder. He writes (for those of you too lazy to click through to the comments): “The William Penn statue was done by the grandfather of the most recent, mobile-creating Alexander Calder. The middle Alexander Clader, son of Alexander Milne and father of Alexander, Alexander Stirling Calder sculpted the beautiful Swann Fountain in Logan Circle.” Thanks Mike!

Oh and guess how tall the statue of Penn is – 36 ft, 4 in!! That’s about 7 of me, and still at least 6 of some of you. And yet it looks so tiny from the ground. (Yes, I know, perspective and all of that.) Also, it’s hollow, with a tunnel leading up to a 22-inch hatch in the hat. I have never been up there myself, but how cool would it be to climb all the way to the top of City Hall and peek out from William Penn’s hat to look over the city? Well, I don’t know if you can actually do that, but they do have an observation deck just below the statue, which you can be sure I will be taking pictures from at some point.

Please add your Philadelphia photos to the Metroblogging Philadelphia Flickr group. Readers’ photos will be featured here on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Two Things on Saturday

This Saturday from 10 am until 5 pm, R5 Productions is presenting the annual holiday Punk Rock Flea Market at the Starlight Ballroom (460 N 9th Street / Just Below 9th & Spring Garden). There will be…

120 tables of old records, clothes, art, music, food, junk, bicycles, stereo equipment, instruments, automobiles, tools, posters, furniture, computers, skateboards and whatever else the 100 sellers can fit on the ballroom floor. In addition to the normal flea market stuff there will also be a full bar (woo!) and food service kitchen to make the day go by a little faster.

There will also be the THE FIRST ANNUAL R5 WII BOWL CHALLENGE (capitalization is all their’s). Apparently, they’re going to have a huge projection screen/TV with the Nintendo Wii. It uses a motion sensor that registers the tiniest movement. Games are $3 a pop.

If the Punk Rock Flea Market isn’t quite your speed, you might want to wander on over to the Ten Stone (21st and South) at 3 pm for the monthly blogger meetup. Bloggers and blog readers from all over the city will gather at the table in the back behind the bar to talk, hang out and imbibe. Fun will be had by all.

Come on Lemonheads, Feel Me

Feeling the need to see live music at a smaller venue, I went to see the Lemonheads at the North Star Bar on Wednesday night. I’m very glad I went for the nostalgic value–I haven’t heard songs like “Into Your Arms” and “It’s a Shame About Ray” in quite a while. And, Evan Dando is still a cutie. But I can’t exactly say that it was a great show. My friend and I speculated if perhaps the band hadn’t had a chance to practice since, say, the dawn of this millennium (you can read a Spin Magazine’s review of the performance here). There were issues with tuning during the entire show, Evan’s voice didn’t sound too hot…A fun but surprising evening, as every other show I’ve seen at North Star has been fantastic.

Are the schools that bad?

I suspect this happens quite often, and this woman happens to be one rare unlucky soul who gets caught. Apparently the Philadelphia schools are so horrid she forged a lease to get her son into the nearby Cheltenham district instead. I certainly can’t blame her for wanting a better life for her son. However, lying and forgery is not the exactly setting a good example.

I Love The Nutcracker

Some people get into the Christmas spirit by listening to Christmas carols, but I find them annoying. To get myself into the holiday spirit, I have been listening to “The Nutcracker” endlessly at work. I am not a ballet connoisseur, but I like to see this ballet during the holiday season whenever I can. Thankfully, there is no shortage of viewing options in the Philadelphia region this weekend. The Keswick Theatre in Glenside will be offering a production of the ballet, performed by the First State Ballet Theatre. And if you can’t quite see yourself enjoying a traditional ballet, the Philly Nutt Crak-Up at the Painted Bride Theatre sounds like a riot. Or, why not see both? Perhaps the best news of all is the fact that both options can be enjoyed for half-price by visiting the PhillyFunGuide website.

Photos from Yesterday: Foggy Day

Yesterday was deliciously foggy, wasn’t it? I noticed some great compositions yesterday when I was out, but for once in my life I didn’t have my camera on me. But fortunately, many of you did have your cameras on you…

This one from Moocat is just lovely:

Photo by Moocat

And below the jump there are some others. Sorry for the smaller thumbnails, but I am trying not to turn this blog completely into a photoblog. (Okay, I’m not trying very hard, but I can at least make motions as though I’m not.) Anyway, click below (where it says “Continue reading “Photos from Yesterday: Foggy Day””) and then click on the photos to see them larger on their original Flickr pages.

Please add your Philadelphia photos to the Metroblogging Philadelphia Flickr group. Readers’ photos will be featured here on Tuesdays and Thursdays (and other days when I can’t resist).

Photo of the Day: Philly Horse Farm

I am loving the Metroblogging Philadelphia Flickr group lately! You are all putting in so many good pictures, making my job simultaneously easier and more difficult. I hardly know how to choose among them.

They’re probably best viewed en masse, as a series about Philly through the eyes of its inhabitants. Check out the slideshow of the photos submitted so far.

But of course, I’ll continue to feature ones here that catch my eye. And today’s really caught my eye because it is simply so bizarre and surreal.

Photo by anjan58

I have to check out this crazy place sometime.

I had the pleasure of meeting Anjan recently actually and had a great time talking about photography with him, and in particular, Flickr. He has recently switched not only to digital photography from a lifetime of film photography, but has also been very recently introduced to Flickr and as far as I can tell, is quite obsessed with it. I have my issues with Flickr (the oversharpening of the resized images, for one thing, drives me nuts), but I realized that the things he loves about Flickr are the things that keep me coming back, like the groups and community aspect of it. And truly, that is one of the things I am enjoying most about the Metroblogging Philadelphia Flickr group (as well as the other Philadelphia Flickr groups). In fact, it’s one of the things I love about this blog, that it’s not just one person’s perspective on the city, but a collection of everyone’s glimpses.

Anjan also said something amusing about the one thing missing from digital photography is that the photos simply aren’t “lickable”. I will let you interpret that one as you will. :)

Please add your Philadelphia photos to the Metroblogging Philadelphia Flickr group. Readers’ photos will be featured here on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

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