Everyday-scapes

12/31/2008

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These everyday New York City images by Yoanne Lemoine are what my world looked like as a kid growing up in Queens.  It’s funny how this French chick is so into this stuff.  These photographs capture all the things that made me desperate to get away, but now feel kind of bittersweet.  Europeans are always obsessed with things like this.

She also made a bunch of videos about “young New Yorkers” – none of whom are from New York.  Not so into those.

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Dome Mention It

10/27/2008

Quite possibly the most beautiful room in new York City, Café Pierre (or the Rotunda) at The Pierre hotel is a perfectly executed exercise in lavishness. The trompe l’oeil murals created by American artist Edward Melcarth play backdrop to the most fabulous afternoon tea this side of the Thames. Have some Earl Gray with a lover under the dome and discuss the 253-room hotel’s luscious history (including tales of founder Charles Pierre and original financiers Otto H. Kahn, Edward F. Hutton, and Walter P. Chrysler,) its infamous bankruptcy in 1932, and eventual purchase by oilman J. Paul Getty for $2.5 million in 1938.

If the top of the building looks familiar its because it was modeled by archtects Schultze and Weaver (The Breakers Palm Springs, The Waldorf-Astoria, The Sherry-Netherland) after Mansart’s Royal Chapel at Versailles. Permanent residents in the few apartments have included Elizabeth Taylor, Viacom entertainment company chairman Sumner Redstone, Harrods owner Mohamed al-Fayed, and the late designer Yves Saint-Laurent.

In 2005 The Pierre was acquired by Taj Hotels Resorts and Palaces, an India-based global chain of fine luxury hotels and resorts, yet it still retains its forever charm. I spent the night of my birthday there right after the purchase so I can attest to it.

Original Handster

10/25/2008

If you grew up in New York like I did, you were probably really excited to find out that “Handball” had made it on to the list of Olympic sports. Years spent watching the most skilled (and often cutest) boys in the neighborhood pound a little blue ball against a twenty foot wall, with the mercury hitting anywhere from below freezing to way into the triple digits, gave you a certain respect for the game.

And then you actually saw Olympic handball, which looked more like a dry land version of water polo played in a gym by a bunch of European guys wearing kneepads. I won’t even talk about the actual ball, which looks like what my kids played soccer with in kindergarden.

As it turns out, Olympic “Team Handball” is actually a completely different sport that dates back to the ancient Greeks. But, for all you disaffected NYC nostalgics (and the IOC) here are some pics of what handball (and its affectionate cousin, prison handball) really look like. Prepare to feel fuzzy inside.

Lacoste is the one and only originator of the tennis (or polo) shirt which completely revolutionized athletic and casual clothing almost eighty years ago. It was created by tennis legend Jean René Lacoste (nicknamed “The Crocodile”) in 1929 and continues to be the world’s premier luxury tennis item, outfitting top tennis players around the world including America’s own Andy Roddick. This fall, Lacoste is launching their totally redesigned women’s polo, the PF170.

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I seriously never, never wished I wore glasses. I wished I could get braces (and I did) but never glasses. Until now.

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