29 June 2007

Things You Don't Necessary Like to See on a Friday Morning:

Eighth Avenue is blocked off at 34th Street. There is a phalanx of fire engines clustered at Port Authority, and helicopters circling overhead.

Maybe it's just a fire, but the helicopters aren't there for that. If they're News, it's because they wonder whether it's a bomb. If they're Police, it's because it might actually be a bomb. An explosive device was found this morning in the middle of London, after all.

I think those of us who were here six years ago expect a terrorist event at any moment. We go about our normal lives, and aren't even necessarily anxious about anything -- though a loud truck backfire sends me jumping. But we know the possibility always exists, and we're waiting for it.

It's probably just a fire.

22 June 2007

If Only

Walking down Lexington Avenue last night, I walked a little more briskly than usual in order to keep up with a pair of 20-something women having this conversation:

"There've got to be guys like that who like to read, who are interested in music."

"There are. I see them on the subway every morning."

"You know, someone who makes a lot of money but still likes independent films."

"Right, or who is totally into that world, but has this other life, too."

Good luck, ladies.

04 June 2007

What Happened Next

You may be wondering what happened to my entry in the Smallest Coolest Apartment contest.

In brief, I didn't win.

However, I did spend a full day as the "most viewed" post on the site, several days after my initial posting, a fact for which I have no explanation.

I knew I wasn't going to win by the time the announcement party rolled around a couple of weeks ago, but I went anyway. It was held at Design Within Reach in Soho -- a fancy furniture store that sells Herman Miller chairs and Philip Starck Bubble couches and the like. A few years ago, around the time the store opened a branch in Cambridge, I had brunch with my friend Sam at a restaurant next door. I mentioned that another friend of ours, Will, who is very design conscious, must love it. Sam replied that in fact Will didn't like it at all; Will would prefer design to remain a little bit out of reach. But I digress.

The winner was London Urchin's Jewelry Box, shown in the picture above. There were many details to like about this apartment -- I particularly like the blue of the kitchen, and the fact that the owner used black rubber flooring -- but come on. Since when is London part of the East Coast of the United States? This entry should have gotten an honorable mention and a promise to include a international category next year.

Or perhaps I am too rules-dependent.

Still, it was surprisingly fun to enter the contest. Though the pictures I submitted looked really simple, it took a whole morning to stage them just right. And reviewing all the other entries, which I did obsessively to size up the competition, gave me a lot of great ideas to try in my apartment. Next up, I'm thinking of entering the Fall Cool Colors Contest. I'll win something yet!