Wednesday, May 26, 2004

Bird Blogging II

Yesterday afternoon, while hanging out with InfoWorld's Matt McAlister in the Yerba Buena Gardens, a bird pooped on my pants leg. I wish it'd been wearing a "revolutionary bird diaper," because then I wouldn't have had to change in a restroom stall at the Palace Hotel.

Monday, May 24, 2004

Conferences and Community IX

I confblogged Ad:Tech today -- for FC Now and the grassroots Ad:Tech Blog. I was also on a panel about the "new social Web." Rick Bruner offers his starter notes from the session, and Evan Williams offers a brief commentary on the experience. Clearly, I couldn't confblog my own session. I was, however, able to be online for most of the day thanks to the Palace Hotel's Turbonet wireless network. But for $16 a day, I expect more consistent service and no need to log in more than once.

Sunday, May 23, 2004

Among the Literati LVI

Belatedly, I wish Uber a happy fourth anniversary. Mayhaps it's time I send them the short-short stories Eyeshot rejected.

Games People Play XVI

Who knew? Kickball in McCarren Park in Brooklyn. Just goes to show how in the Out Crowd I am, the New York Times was in on this before I was. Oh, the Village Voice was in the know a year prior? No worries.

Big Brother Is Watching XX

Not only does Donald Rumsfeld want to ban camera phones in Iraq, we're starting to face increasing limitations on public photography stateside. Soon, they'll want to ban cameras and phones.

Not only are some municipalities seeking to ban said phones in locker rooms and indoor pools, lawmakers in New York want to outlaw subway photography even as Mayor Bloomberg criticizes such plans -- and the MTA steps up its own surveillance efforts. They can watch us, but we can't watch them, it seems.

Amd I thought it odd that I was monitored while taking a taxi from SFO to the Noe Valley this afternoon. Heaven forbid that you're a rail fan.

Update: Thanks to Googlewar for validating that the phrase is not "heaven forbid if."

The Gmail Spot

As a Gmail beta tester, I used my two new account invitations to gift friends who clearly, enthusiastically, and unprompted expressed interest in checking it out. I also ignored all the pleas for invites I received via Orkut. Come on people, make friends with the "right" people, not friends of friends. Seriously, and curiously, though, if Blogger can offer users Gmail invitations -- if you use Blogger, you can try out Gmail -- why can't Orkut? Seems like natural synergy. I've already started usimg Gmail as my primary blogging email.

Update: I said all that to say that there's now a Gmail invitation-swapping service online. Gmail Swap helps pair those with invitations with those without accounts, "because people are nice." Now, I like to think that I'm not a "nefarious hooligan" just because I didn't gift a random, but here you go. Let's see if supply equals demand.

Thanks to Daypop Top 40.

Music to My Ears LIII

My friends Brad and Amie -- as well as their cats -- will attest that I've been a tad ringtone obsessed recently. And while there's plenty of ringtone download services and MIDI-related translation tools available, I was thrilled silly to learn about Xingtone, a nifty bit of software that helps people translate MP3 files into ringtones. According to one journalist, the service is a concern because it allows folks to use their existing, owned media assets in a new way, but I think Xingtones is a boon. Don't make me buy a ringtone for a song I already own on CD or MP3. This is clearly personal use.

Thanks to Boing Boing.

Television-Impaired XVIII

Also on NYC TV last night was a surprising show called Inside the Archives. Basically a slide show of images from the city's, well, archives, the program is a wonderful walk through historical ephemera, sites, and sights. With an occasionally intrusive electronic music soundtrack, the show airs images for 10 seconds a snapshot, and there's also an e-commerce tie-in, as you can order images online. Were it not for the music, lack of historical information and captions, and irritating countdown ticker at the bottom of the screen, this program would be priceless.

Music to My Eyes XXIV

Last night while channel surfing at home in Brooklyn, I came across a broadcast of Ben Folds' 2003 Summer Stage performance in New York City. Aired as part of NYC TV's Cultural Corners program, the show captured most, if not all, of the concert, complete with song title text placements. Next up was New York Noise, which offers music videos by New York-based bands and musicians such as Dean Wareham and Britta Phillips, Cat Power, the Boggs, the French Kicks, the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, the Strokes, and Death Cab for Cutie. Labels including Jetset, Matador, and Arena Rock provide videos, and Punkcast's Joly MacFie serves up some of his live show footage from area venues. MacFie even offers select VCD's for sale. What a wonderful local TV find! If you must stay in on a Saturday night, you can still take in some local music and shows. Every relatively large city should have "public affairs" programming this vibrant.

The Restaurant I Ate at Last Night XXX

OK, this afternoon, just moments ago, but in San Francisco's Noe Valley, there's a wonderfully nondescript neighborhood diner that's the kind of place I'd frequent if I lived in the area. Herb's Fine Foods on 24th Street, steps away from Streetlight Records and Phoenix Books & Records, is a comfortable and inexpensive breakfast and lunch spot. With counter seating, plenty of booths, and a simple menu, Herb's served up a decent grilled cheese with tomato, potato chips, and coffee for all of $5. The wait staff is friendly, too. Hop the J Church and check it out.

Street Art XI

Blame it on the cows, I suppose, but this summer brings two new street art installations riffing on similar themes. In New York City, the Big Apple Fest will bring hundreds of four-foot-high acrylic apple sculptures to Gotham. And in San Francisco, where I just arrived for a couple of days' stay, more than 100 five-foot hearts will be "left" throughout the city by the end of June as part of Hearts in San Francisco. Both civic art projects follow similar models. In New York, businesses can sponsor sculptures, which will later be auctioned. And in the Bay Area, the goal is to raise $1 million for the San Francisco General Hospital Foundation. Go for a walk and try to collect them all! (Kudos to Hearts in San Francisco for sharing a list of locations to make such urban exploration easier.)

Monday, May 17, 2004

From the Reading Pile XXVII

I am now a contributor to Zine World. Here are the reviews I've submitted for the forthcoming supplement to the reader's guide to the underground press.

Abort! #15: Jonathan is a student at NYU, and until he graduates, he's couch surfing to save money. This issue of his Cometbus-styled perzine, even if he forgets Aaron's name, covers Feb. 3-21, 2004. He shares stories about his series of temporary roommates, offers couch-surfing advice, interviews the Phantom Limbs, misses an ex (one of the more poignant sections), shares New York vignettes, looks forward to Leap Day, shares correspondence from pen pals in the Middle East and Massachusetts, and reviews punk records. Like Snakepit in prose form, Abort! Recounts the day-to-day mundanities of life, all the while maintaining a DIY optimism. Jonathan Spies, 45 E. 7th St. #106, New York, NY 10003 [$2 48S :19]

Brooklyn! #43-44: As soon as I moved to Brooklyn, I subscribed to this eponymous local zine. Boy, am I glad! The long-running publication's mix of history, lore, and geographic detail is an appreciative guide to all that is good and galling about New York's best borough. These two issues gossip about Brooklyn Bridge magazine, highlight changing signs, offer brief tours of Bush terminal and Brooklyn Heights, ride the borough's shortest bus line, expand the now 28-part lexicon, run through local bridges, touch on Deborah Moody, poke fun at bad drivers, and otherwise document Brooklyn's people, places, and things. Fred Argoff, 1800 Ocean Parkway #B12, Brooklyn, NY 11223 [$10/four issues 24S :19]

Catfight #2: MK Reed's hitting her stride with this Andi Watson- and Ariel Schrag-fueled comic about four high school friends and their relationships. Jenna and Andrea meet with the principal about their lunchroom altercation. Andrea's parents approve of Jenna's comeuppance. Andrea deals with the fallout at school. And it becomes more clear that the spritely Sam doesn't know Don likes her -- and that Andrea is beginning to suspect that Sam may like her boyfriend Aaron. MK is talented with dialogue -- the lawsuit discussion in the principal's office is great -- and facial expressions. It'll be interesting to see where the story goes. MK Reed [Free 32M :07]

Comic Book Heaven #9: Scott Saavedra's well-read, and -researched zine focuses on the bright spots and oddities of the Golden and Silver Age. I can't believe how thoroughly Scott reads some of these comics! This issue recounts live presentations he's given at various conventions; features found items in the Jumble section (including Bob Kane's verbose epitaph); considers stories in a 1952 fire protection educomic, Superman family comics, Bunny #4, and an edition of Mr. District Attorney; offers 10 things to love about Marvel; and quotes dialogue from romance comics of the '50s. Reproducing plenty of pages and panels from the comics covered, Comic Book Heaven is a reminiscent romp through the funny books of the past. Comic Book Heaven, P.O. Box 2363, Saratoga, CA 95070 [$3.50 52S :12]

Genetic Disorder #17: What is up with the reprinting? Jacob David prints a 2001 essay, Ralph Coons reissues the Last Prom, and Larry reproduces a found pamphlet featured just three issues ago. Are we now in the popcult-revisiting Scooby Doo 2 era of zinemaking? Regardless, this issue -- and the Youth Sub Cultures pamphlet -- was well worth reading. Recently unemployed and homeless, Larry explores where the Menendez brothers bought their shotguns, interviews the econo Coachwhips, maps the 15 San Diego Police Department shootings in 2002, reconsiders the warning signs of alcoholism, and reviews zines and records. Think Ben Is Dead meets Murder Can Be Fun by way of Dan Kelly's Evil, and you've gone too far. Larry, P.O. Box 15237, San Diego, CA 92175 [$3 84S :18]

How Much Art Can You Take? #5: Charmingly forgettable, this fun punk zine reminds me of a less thoughtful Absolutely Zippo or Tales of Blarg. Full of distressed typography and artwork stolen from other sources, Randy's fanzine is extremely playful. In addition to the reprinted material cribbed from MRR -- band photos -- and Flipside -- the Big Boys interview -- Randy apes Pushead with a sloppy review section, offers some clip art from the "golden years" oof punk zine ads, and a funny photocopy essay in which members of Defiance, Blood Spit Nights, and other bands don a hairdo called the "Gedy." There's not a lot here that's original, but it's a fun, breezy read. 6250 NE 6th, Portland, OR 97211 [13 cents 56S :08]

Read Magazine #23: This is a zine to return to. If Lollipop were funny or Roctober less obsessive, they could be Read. In the first 34 pages of the zine, you get the real deal -- the non-interview and -review content. Being the "Conspiracy" issue, this issue features Bruce Campbell pickup lines, "Conspiracy Articles I Didn't Write," "secrets" of Freemasonry, an analysis of whether Rick Springfield is a poetic genius or evil madman, "23 Films 'They' Don't Want You to See," an alcoholism self-test that reminds me of Genetic Disorder (conspiracy!), and a piece about whether Iron Maiden unlocked the secrets of time travel (originally in Read #19 -- dopple conspiracy!). I'll have to revisit the interview with Max Spoons, the Kittenpants insert featuring Corn Mo, and the reviews, but the first third clearly includes the best bits. Adam Liebling, P.O. Box 3437, Astoria, NY 11103 [$3 100M :13]

Media Dieticians everywhere can send materials for review consideration to Heath Row, P.O. Box 3318, Grand Central Station, New York, NY 10163.

Rock Shows of Note LXXXV

Thanks to everyone who came out to Handstand Command's fourth anniversary show Saturday night! We took some photographs, and we gave away the first run of our fourth anniversary compilation CD, "Not Dead Yet." I was lucky to get a copy of it myself. Instant rarity, you collector scum.

As the back cover of the comp says:

Handstand Command is a musical collective.
Handstand Command is based in Somerville, Mass.
Handstand Command is four years old.
Handstand Command is not dead yet.
Handstand Command is your friend.

Thursday, May 13, 2004

Event-O-Dex XCVIII

Saturday, May 15: Handstand Command rings in its fourth year as a music collective at PA's Lounge in Somerville, Mass. Waxing happy will be Big Digits, Asian Babe Alert, Nice & Easy, Sinkcharmer, the Operators, and the Anchormen -- in a rare reunion!

Wednesday, May 12, 2004

Fan Friction II

What's better than seeing the forthcoming Harry Potter movie on opening night? Seeing it the next day with 600 Harry Potter fan fiction authors in an Imax theater. Participants in FictionAlley, The Leaky Cauldron, HPANA, SugarQuill, LiveJournal's POA_NYC community, and other sites have rented out the theater and are organizing a chat-based afterparty. I can't wait. This is going to be better than Trekkies.

The Best of the Web VII

The winners of this year's Webby Awards were announced today. I was a nominating judge in the community category, and I'm honestly surprised by who the final winner is. The nominees are a good grouping of sites, all representing slightly different approaches to building community online. Congratulations to all involved.

Monday, May 10, 2004

Rock Shows of Note LXXXIV

After accidentally -- and thoughtlessly -- paying $9 to get into the Middle East Upstairs on Saturday, where I thought I was to meet my friend Brad, I realized that I had wandered into the WBCN Rumble, a battle of the bands-like Boston institution that I've managed to avoid for the last seven years. Turns out the the show I was to meet Brad at was a free, largely unpromoted show at the Middle East Corner. The $9 I don't mind so much, but the Rumble did irritate. Crowded, nowhere to stow my bag, and the wrong show!

Luckily, the Corner -- and the show there -- did not irritate. A veritable Burlington love-a-thon, several Vermont-based acts made their way south to Boss Town. Helps when all the bands share members. First up, Steve and Joe in Liberty Valence, a pleasant country-tinged duo featuring guitar and bass. Then, Colin Clary, who surprised with an unusual mad skill- and flow-ridden set of solo acoustic pop songs. Finally, everyone got together with a drummer as the Magic Is Gone, which has been around since 1999.

That project confused me slightly, as there was plenty of catchy, poppy neatness -- as well as some difficult-to-scry psychedelic wash and noise. An awkward pairing, and I preferred the poppier side of things. But it was awesome to get three different doses of Burlington music at one time -- and to meet Colin finally. It was also fun to see so many Burlington expatriots, family members, and friends gather for the show.

Soundtrack: Onion Flavored Rings, "Used to It"

Games People Play XV

Shades of its precursor, the Big Urban Game, this past weekend, Pac-Manhattan took over the neighborhood surrounding Washington Square Park to reclaim public space -- and an element of play to pedestrian life.

A player dressed as Pac-man will run around the Washington square park area of Manhattan while attempting to collect all of the virtual "dots" that run the length of the streets. Four players dressed as the ghosts Inky, Blinky, Pinky and Clyde will attempt to catch Pac-man before all of the dots are collected.

Using cell-phone contact, Wi-Fi internet connections, and custom software designed by the Pac-Manhattan team, Pac-man and the ghosts will be tracked from a central location and their progress will be broadcast over the internet for viewers from around the world.

I'm sad I was out of town and missed the shenanigans. Luckily, plenty of photos and videos are available.

Thanks to Alex.

Friday, May 07, 2004

From the Reading Pile XXVI

I am now a contributor to Zine World. Here are the reviews I've submitted for the forthcoming supplement to the reader's guide to the underground press.

Black Velvet #37: Despite my criticisms of Propaganda, it's a hella better read than this glossy British "independent" rock publication. Like a Kerrang! For the mersh punk and emo set, Black Velvet includes interviews with and profiles of Funeral for a Friend, the Movielife, All-American Rejects, the Ataris, the Starting Line, and Less Than Jake. While that's a reasonable genre range, the reviews -- record and show -- truly confuse: the Hard-Ons and Marilyn Manson, the Teen Idols and Staind, AFI and LA Guns. What the? There's even a Bon Jovi profile. No accounting for taste, this seems like a shameless bid for label promo service and Americanization. Surely there are more independent British bands worth looking at. God save the queen! Black Velvet, 336 Birchfield Road, Webheath Redditch, Worcs. B97 4NG England [$6 40L :03]

Cool Beans #15: Matt Kelly is a zine legend, akin to Aaron Cometbus and Dishwasher Pete in my mind. In this issue, the Truck Truck Truckin edition, Kelly details his 2001 experiences learning how to drive -- and driving -- a big rig, getting more personal than usual. The bulk of the issue is made up of "My Time as a Truck Driver," a 29-page journal of his time behind the wheel. He touches on trucker culture, truck stops, Wisconsin, Waffle House, and CB lingo before moving on to
more general zine fare. The interviews with Deadbolt, Jad Fair, and the Foibles also address trucking. A well-rounded read. Matt Kelly, 3181 Mission #113, San Francisco, CA 94110 [$5.95 68S :33]

Cryptozoa #9: Androo Robinson seems to be connected somehow to Utne magazine, and I'm not surprised. His high-minded ur-gag panel comics are as thought provoking as they are chuckle inducing. Drawn with a balanced hand, the text-heavy items address memory, gift giving and generosity, imagination, communication, identity, and playfulness. Not
only did Robinson's mini make me smile, it gave me several new project ideas involving found objects and mail art. Androo Robinson, 2000 NE 42nd Ave. #303, Portland, OR 97213 [$1 16XS :03]

Gold Dust (March 2003): Read this travel zine twice, once for the words and once for the photos. My copy includes several pages printed twice, but this narrative of a month-long journey to India by the publisher of Growing Up-Falling Down is one of the better travel zines I've read in awhile. Entries detail experiences with food, transportation, family, shopping, and the area's history. The sections detailing the formerly British city Shimla, a sketch artist, Sukhna Lake's ill fate for forbidden lovers, American discrimination at the Taj Mahal, a dancing bear, and the collapsing Krishna statue were particularly intriguing. Nav Violet fleshes out the travelogue with information about India and Bollywood. Not overly useful in terms of
retracing her tour, it's a fascinating trip journal nonetheless. Kudos! Nav Violet, Gold Dust, 400 Buchanan Ave., Staten Island, NY 10314 [$2 108XS :15]

The Last Prom #4: Were anyone but early-'90s zinemaker and documentarian Ralph Coons to "re-release" a zine, I'd accuse them of finding lost boxes and distributing damaged goods. But Coons' Last Prom -- as featured in Chip Rowe's Zine Book -- is well worth revisiting. This slim edition -- not even Coons' most-storied drivers' education film issue -- was supposedly inspired by UFO abductee Jim Nestor's skull. Continuing the tale of Gray Barker, West Virginian gay UFO scholar, the issue includes oral history, collage art, and Men in Black conspiracy theory. Last Prom, 4632 1/2 Hollywood Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90027 [$4 24S :09]

Muvfugga #3: Muvfugga is a charmer. Think McSweeney's with a Farm Pulp edge, and you get close to this Midwestern sleeper. Prepared on an NEC Versa 550D laptop by a library research assistant who used to work for Southern Illinois University, the zine is smart, caring, and thought provoking. Sean Chapman offers a popcult creation myth. Jon Ritz
provides "Smoke," a nice bit of quick fiction. Dan Seiters' eulogy for Vernon Sternberg is lovingly honest. And Gehner's interview with cartoonist P.S. Mueller, an email exchange in which Mueller gives extremely thoughtful responses, will make me appreciate his work more next time I see it. The zine blends appreciative localism, intelligent references, and enthusiasm. A need to read. John Gehner, 4146 39th Ave. S, Minneapolis, MN 55406 [$3 52S :15]

Nero Fiddled While Rome Burned #5: Thin given its content, this issue includes four pages of photocopied and mostly handwritten letters to the editor, four pages of anti-Arnold Schwarzenegger photocopy collage, and a six-page piece written in 2001 that's basically an assemblage of Bertrand Russell, Karl Marx, Al Franken, and Noam Chomsky excerpts. Now, I've been tempted to dig into my zine archives and I'm with David politically, but if you're as incensed as you ought to be, this is just plain lazy. Nero fiddled, indeed. Jacob David, P.O. Box 3050, Eureka, CA 95502 [3 stamps, trade 16M :04]

Pigman: What could have been a darkly alluring introduction to a comic book series ends up a disappointingly shallow ashcan. Rob Jones' art shows promise, exhibiting a Howard Chaykin via Gene Day sharpness. But "Philpott"'s bizarre plotline is inane: A disturbed man dons a pig's head and beats people up. Despite allusions to a familial proclivity toward porcine vengeance and some indications of political intrigue, the brief, well-printed comic fails to pique my interest. Jones could
be doing better things, like drawing for Max Allan Collins and Warren Ellis. Rob Jones, P.O. Box 23394, Jacksonville, FL 32241 [Free 12S :02]

Propaganda #2: If you're a skateboarding, British punk, please don't publish fanzines about Less Than Jake, Face to Face, and Anti-Flag. The fact that contributors name Blink 182 and Sum 41 and cite Goldfinger's version of "99 Red Balloons" as a punk song "close to my heart" indicates that they need to listen to some Drop Acid (that's a joke). Published by a self-proclaimed 15 year old, the zine follows the trite-and-true Maximum Rocknroll-inspired columns-interviews-reviews format. Despite the generic commentary on being a true punk, emo, politics, elitism, and "weak" scenes, several items stand out. The two-location skatepark profile is clearly locally actionable, and the interviews feature bands I'm unfamiliar with:
Lightyear, Phinius (sic) Gage, Route 215, and Adequate 7. A scene is only as weak as you make it. Go more local. Eddie Maile, P.O. Box 2837, Calverton, Nottingham, England NG14 GWU [$3 US/Mexico/world, $4 Canada, trade 28S :05]

S.S.O. Free Poetry Day #8 (December 2003): Subtitled "Building Rain in a Silent Movie," this zine, also labeled Free Poetry Day 263, reminds me of Shrimper's old poetry zine. Typewritten and cut and paste over photo collage, the photocopied collection addresses car culture, communication, depression, love, and memory. While most of the pieces are disposable, Brent Robinett's "Black Garden" and Josh Amberson's "Like We're Tearing a Hole" gave me pause. The addition of Bennn Money's comics "King Tubby Comics #6" and "Deleted Panels from Who Likes Milkshakes #2;" as well as Cole Cunningham's "The Reformers" was welcome. Those artistic elements could have perhaps punctuated the poetry. S.S.O. Press, P.O. Box 2645, Olympia, WA 98507 [Free16S :02]

St. Cosmo, I Come to Adore You #5: This photocopied literary journal of stories, poetry, and art isn't always printed on both sides of the paper. With material on art and want, storytelling, and mannequins, this edition includes several noteworthy items. Kurt Knebusch's poems "Field Guide to 1579 Brentwood Drive, Wooster, Ohio" and "Battle of Lake Erie;" and Christoph Meyer's illustrations "In the Naughty Boy Corner" and "Lil' Me" are worth checking out. Jacob Snodgrass, 6648 Eastland Court, Worthington, OH 43085 [$1, trade 40M :06]

Still Not Perfect: A 17-year-old woman who was a victim of sexual abuse at age 5 writes through her memories of and feelings about the incidents and their impact in way she can't in her Livejournal. Reminiscent of past issues of Navelgazing and Verboslammed, the mostly narrative self-analysis is compiled in cut and paste photocopier layout. Interspersed with quotes from Ani Difranco, Tori Amos, Garbage, and Poe, it's even bound with red thread. Stereotypical publishing metaphors aside, the one shot is a disturbing and inexcusable story, as well as surprisingly level-headed and well-reasoned. Ashlee doesn't want our sympathy: "If you're going to write me, write because you can relate. Ashlee, P.O. Box 576, St. Bonifacius, MN 55375 [$1, trade 16XS :03]

Umbrella Vol. 26 #3/4 (December 2003): In publication for 25 years, Umbrella is basically a more formal and academic approach to Ashley Parker Owens' old Global Mail. As a seemingly quarterly news and review zine about artist books, monographs, bookbinding, and visual poetry, the zine is an upscale directory to a partially democratic scene. This edition references works by Brion Gysin, Jeff Brouws (roadside readymades), Clive Piercy (aspirational architecture), Katharine Harmon (personal maps), Jacob Fabricius (Rent-a-Bench), and other projects. Despite the Mail Art Call section, Umbrella is more imposing than inspirational. Judith Hoffberg, P.O. Box 3640, Santa Monica, CA 90408 [$20/year 52M :06]

Media Dieticians everywhere can send materials for review consideration to Heath Row, P.O. Box 3318, Grand Central Station, New York, NY 10163.

Bird Blogging

MIT's Academic Media Production Services has set up the MIT Hawk Cam to monitor the progress of two nesting red-tailed hawks who made their home in a relatively well-trafficked part of campus. Now the nesting pair has two hatchlings, and the camera remains trained on the nest -- and the doings of the two chicks. The video is streaming live, not static images, refreshed, and it's quite a kick to watch the chicks move around. A friend even saw the mother bring back a mouse to feed the hatchlings. Bird watching, blogger style.

Thanks to Paul.

Thursday, May 06, 2004

Take That, Big Apple VI

Now that spring is here, I'm settling into the city and its rhythms much better. My apartment is still a shambles, but that, too, shall improve. And yesterday, I had one of my first, honest-to-gosh "I love New York" moments. Many mornings, I stop at a bagle cart near 41st and Lex for a cup of coffee and a bagle (plain, cream cheese). The cream cheese is just kind of slabbed on the bagel, and the cart just raised its prices, making the $2 breakfast a $2.10 breakfast. But because they don't have tons of change, my $3 got 75 cents back, which made it a $2.25 breakfast. I'm not going to carry dimes all the time just to get a bagel on the street.

So I went to Delmonico's yesterday morning, and instead of getting my customary egg and cheese on a toasted roll, I got a bagel and cream cheese. And with just one bite, I discovered a whole new world of bagelry. Delmonico's bagels are amazing. Just chewy enough on the outside. Just soft and spongy enough on the inside. Such glorious flavor. Hella better than the bagel cart bagels I've been eating since January.

Good morning, New York City.