October 31, 2003
Sushi Fest #6 on November 21st
Photos from a few of the past sushi parties are in the photo album.
October 30, 2003
Cafe Blog, Salon-Style Events for Weblog Writers and Enthusiasts
Dave Winer picked up on a salon idea that I suggested at one of the Thursday night weblog writer meetings at Berkman a few weeks ago. Bloggercon is a great event to have once a year, but in the meantime it would be nice to get people together in a mostly informal, conversational setting discussing pre-selected topics. For the Boston salon perhaps Chris Lydon could conduct a 10-15 minute interview wih someone in the room and have it taped for his MP3 archive. The interview would then kick-off the open discussion. Dave mentions that a few people might be flown in to participate. I'm not sure I see the need for this. There are so many people to tap into in the Boston/Cambridge area and I'm sure that is true for the rest of the world whether the salon is in New York City or Sheyboygan. In any event, it should be an interesting adventure to discuss at tonight's weblog writer meeting!
The Annual Spring Pilgrimage to Austin for the SXSW Interactive Festival March 12-16, 2004
"Now in its eleventh year, the South by Southwest Interactive Festival emphasizes cutting-edge, creative thinking as related to the world of websites, interactivity and online technology."
That sums up the official description of the annual South by Southwest Festival but it's also an affordable and inspiring adventure in Austin to get together with other people working in technology/web/Internet worlds. It's also the most exhilarating five days you can spend conspiring with people who are collaborating and creating independent web projects. The deadline to submit your website to the 2004 Web Awards Competition is Friday, December 19th. The walkup rate to register for the conference is $250. You can save $75 if you register by November 14th. And if you have a spare two weeks you could also attend the film and music festivals and absorb everything.
Southwest Airlines is a good option out of Providence for reasonable airfares (as low as $99 each way).
October 27, 2003
Weekend in New York City
I spent Saturday and Sunday in New York City with friends so we could go to Cynthia Von Buhler's party Saturday night. Cynthia has an enormous (4,500 square feet) loft in the meat packing district that she has transformed into CVB Space, a gallery featuring her artwork and the work of others, too. By the time we got back to Josh's apartment in Brooklyn it was 5am and we had to be up a few hours later to meet Carrie, Jeffrey and Miranda for brunch. Who needs sleep?
October 23, 2003
After the Berkman weblog writers meeting tonight we relocated to Changsho for dinner. I got pretty good advice at the end, as seen above. Matt May from the W3C's Accessibility Group attended the meeting in town from Seattle for a few weeks. We knew each other online a long time ago and hadn't seen each other in person since Web99 in San Francisco. It was a very cool surprise to see him at the meeting. It's been that kind of month.
Lush Lands in Boston
Lush, a handmade cosmetics store, finally landed in Boston a few weeks ago at 166 Newbury Street. I'm not really a perfume-y kind of person but their products are exceptional and everything is made of organic, fresh stuff. And their products have very amusing names including my favorites Rock Star Soap (it smells like candy), Ceridwen's Cauldron (A fizzy bath concoction), and Wiccy Magic Muscles (a massage bar that includes cinnamon leaf, spice oils and aduki beans). I've been ordering from their Vancouver, Canada store for years. It's about time they arrived in Boston. Last night I had two hours to occupy before the Mass for Dean canvassing meeting at Marche so I wandered down Newbury Street to find Lush. You can smell the store at least ten feet away. I picked up some "Demon in the Dark" soap and a few other things. Thanks to Shannon for alerting me about the store's arrival to Boston. Yum.
October 22, 2003
Over the Rhine at TT The Bear's Place
Whatcha doin' with a suitcase
Tryin' to hit the ground with both feet runnin'
Aren't you trippin' on your shoelace
You're stealin' away on a sunny day
Well aren't you ashamed at all
Funny but I feel like I'm fallin'
I wanna beg you to stay
You're stealin' away on a sunny day
-- "Suitcase", from Over The Rhine's OHIO album
Last week I finally had a chance to see Over The Rhine in concert, a favorite band of Shannon's and Annalisa's (both natives of OTR's homeland Ohio). It was a great show but TT's was definately too small of a room to even attempt to contain their sound. After the show I took a photo of Gregor with Over The Rhine's Linford Detweiler and Karin Bergquist.
October 20, 2003
Last night I was wading through my old photo archives at capricious.org and stumbled across this photo I took of a peony a few years ago. It's too bad my favorite flower is only around a few months each year. Click the image to see a larger photograph.
October 19, 2003
Howard Dean and Mass for Dean in Dover, NH
I got home a few hours ago from my weekend canvassing/volunteering for Howard Dean in Dover, New Hampshire. It was a wonderful weekend. I took a bunch of photos that I need to get developed tomorrow. I'll have more to say about the experience when I put the photos online. But in the meantime, this is a photo Jerry Sneivson of Durham, NH, took of the Mass for Dean volunteers who spent the weekend canvassing in Dover. This morning Dean gave a short speech at the Elks Lodge in Dover. As he was shaking hands and talking to people I asked Chad (Dean's driver) if we could somehow get Dean to take a photo with the Mass for Dean group. Dean has a very gracious staff -- somehow they managed to make it work. We were all assembled outside next to Dean's van so when he walked out we were ready and waiting for the photo. Click on the image to see a larger photograph.
October 17, 2003
Boston World Explorers Foundation, Destination: Fun Spot in New Hampshire
On Sunday Heath Row's Boston World Explorer's Foundation is going on a trip to Fun Spot in New Hampshire, the second largest arcade in the country. Sounds like an amusing and fun trip. Heath needed RSVPs this morning but there's a mailing list for future events, too. This brings back memories of when my parents owned a bar when I was a kid and I would spend Saturday afternoons taking quarters from the cash register to play Asteroids.
Making House Calls for Dr. Dean in New Hampshire
With cold weather and the resulting partial hibernation looming, I figured this weekend was the best time to participate in one of the Massachusetts-to-New Hampshire canvassing caravans for Howard Dean. I figured if I wrote about it here then I'll be extra inspired not to back out. I'm a mixture of excited and freaked out that I've committed myself to going door-to-door to talk to New Hampshire voters about why I'm voting for Howard Dean. As an added bonus, Governor Dean is joining us for breakfast Sunday morning and participating in a few house calls of his own later on that day. Hopefully I'll be able to take a few photos and have interesting stories to share.
October 16, 2003
The other day I was thinking about how fabulous it would be if Edie Brickell and the New Bohemians got back together. Well, half of that came to life. Edie has a new album out called Volcano. She was on Jay Leno earlier singing "Rush Around" which I already have on a CD from a few years ago when the New Bohemians got back together to record The Live Mauntauk Sessions album (for which they didn't tour much other than a few shows). It was fun to see the singer from my favorite band in high school back into music again -- but I am disappointed that the rest of the New Bohemians are not joining her. Her tour page doesn't have any dates listed just yet.
October 15, 2003
ser·en·dip·i·ty ( P )
n. pl. ser·en·dip·i·ties
The faculty of making fortunate discoveries by accident.
The fact or occurrence of such discoveries.
An instance of making such a discovery.
October 13, 2003
Boston Bands Bonanza
Three of my favorite Boston bands have shows coming up in Cambridge at the Lizard Lounge in the next few weeks. Sparkola is celebrating the release of their second album Handclaps and Slapbacks on the 24th. Rose Polenzani has a month-long residency at the Lounge every Tuesday throughout November and the really good news about that is she'll be joined by a full band. She does the solo singer/songwriter thing very well but after a CD Release party a few years ago with a full band, I've always hoped she'd be able to do more shows with other people on stage. The So and So's are also celebrating their first CD Release party (Give Me Drama) with four nights in a row at the Lizard Lounge Wednesday, November 19th through Saturday, November 22nd.
If any of these shows interest you, let me know if you'd like to join me and other pals.
October 11, 2003
One BloggerCon Photo
I took a few photos at BloggerCon's pre-conference party that I helped organize. Unfortunately most of the photos did not turn out so well. That's what I get for buying cheap film. Next time it's back to the good stuff. One photo I took of Michael Feldman and Adam Curry turned out mostly okay except I didn't realize there would be a reflection from the bar's cash register.
October 09, 2003
What She Said
I've had some sort of mix of a cold, allergies and the martian death flu for the past month. I'm not feeling all that eloquent today; but fortunately Wendy is.
The photos I took at the Bloggercon Pre-Conference Party Friday night did not turn out so well. It might be the cheap film or the photo processing at Walgreen's. The photos I got back were missing several that I know I took. The photo of Michael Feldman and Adam Curry turned out OK so I'll post that tonight after Dave Winer's Thursday Weblog Writer's Meeting.
October 08, 2003
Recall the Recall?
Last night was reminiscent of a night not too long ago. Yet again, a Republican won a race that seemed way out of their league. I'm glad I don't live in California and now have Arnold Schwarzenegger as my governor. I'm embarassed by it and I don't even live there. Howard Dean had an interesting take on the situation. I read somewhere (wish I could find the source) that you have to wait six months after someone is in office until a recall can be proposed. Will anyone be inspired to try to recall the recall?
October 05, 2003
These are Days
These are days you'll remember. Never before and never since, I promise, will the whole world be warm as this. And as you feel it, you'll know it's true that you are blessed and lucky. It's true that you are touched by something that will grow and bloom in you. These are days you'll remember. -- "These are Days", 10,000 Maniacs
BloggerCon concluded a few minutes ago after saying goodbyes to dinner companions. It never occurred to me that I should try to get Zippy my notebook computer online at the Harvard Book Store until Gregor and I stopped by after dinner and he turned on his computer to check the bus schedule. Voila! The bookstore is surrounded by Harvard buildings so my connection is probably coming from a student's dorm room or apartment. Photos from the Friday night Hong Kong party will be online tomorrow. I forgot to drop off the film today.
The 10,000 Maniacs' song with the same title as this entry came to mind when I was thinking about the Bloggercon weekend. I was pleasantly surprised to discover on the band's website that they are back together after a two-year break following the death of founding member Robert Buck. Oskar Saville is the new singer (replacing Mary Ramsey who replaced Natalie Merchant in 1994) and they're joined by Jeff Erickson on lead guitar. This band has special significance in my life. Fifteen years ago a coworker at the restaurant I was working at as a teenager gave me a handful of cassette tapes and CDs to listen to after discovering I had 80s hair bands in my collection but no alternative tunes. After listening to "In My Tribe" a few times I was hooked. Now if someone would just convince Edie Brickell to get back on tour with the New Bohemians. Toad the Wet Sprocket, my other favorite band from high school got back together earlier this year.
October 04, 2003
Tonight's BloggerCon pre-party upstairs at The Hong Kong was a good time. A couple weeks ago I offered to find a venue and set up the party to help out the very busy Wendy and Dave. Other than the Geek Pride Festival in 2000, it's been a while since I had anything to do with a conference. I think the last time I had one of my sushi parties during Boston conferences was Miller Freeman's Web99. 1999. Time flies. I took photos tonight with my old manual SLR so it'll be a couple days before I can post anything. After the shindig I walked up the street to the Harvard Book Store to see Michael and his cohorts. I found a computer in the back to check in with pals who weren't able to make it to the party or conference. Michael's co-worker Kari had never been to the famous (around Boston, that is) Kelly's Roast Beef yet (being a recent transplant from Nebraska) so at 12:30 a.m. we embarked on a little journey to Revere. Something tells me I am not going to want to get up in three hours to get ready and take the 77 bus into Cambridge. Mmmm, caffeine.
October 03, 2003
Iceland Airwaves ... Maybe Next Year?
The Iceland Airwaves Festival is coming up in Reykjavik October 15-19. I've wanted to attend this music festival since the first one a couple years ago. Once again it's time to say "Maybe next year." Starting at $499 you can fly to Iceland, stay in a decent hotel and attend the festivities. Several people who have attended Airwaves made comments on my entry from May about the event. It sounds like so much fun. Let me know if you're interested in a group trip from Boston to Reykjavik for next year's festival. Who knows, maybe 2004 will be the year to finally make it!
BloggerCon Kickoff Party Tonight Upstairs at The Hong Kong Restaurant's Lounge
Dave Winer, the host of this weekend's BloggerCon conference, and Adam Curry are sponsoring a kickoff party tonight upstairs at The Hong Kong Restaurant's Lounge in Harvard Square for conference attendees. On Sunday (Day 2), there's an assortment of free panels and discussions open to anyone who wants to participate.
I confess I was a little (OK, a lot) skeptical about the concept behind spending two days blathering on and on about weblogs; but judging from the assortment of presenters and activities that Dave and Wendy have put together, it should be a great time with a mix of fun and learning. And it's always a good sign when you go to a conference that starts off with a party.
October 02, 2003
Sushi for Dean on November 15th
Howard Dean supporters around the United States are planning events during the weekend of Governor Dean's 55th birthday. I haven't hosted a sushi party in over a year so it seemed like a good idea to have Sushi for Dean on November 15th. I should know in a few days where it is going to be. Fun!
Dinner at ZuZu and Sondre Lerche at TT's on November 14th
Sondre Lerche is embarking on a headlining tour around the U.S. next month. He'll be at TT the Bear's on Friday, November 14th. Anyone interested in meeting up the street on Mass Ave at ZuZu, home of the oddly named yet excellent Middle Eastern version of the Pu Pu Platter and tasty bourbon-infused Sour Mash Smash, is invited to join us at 8:30pm. Send me an email if you will be joining us. We'll walk around the corner to TT's at 10pm for the music.
I picked up Sondre's new Don't Be Shallow EP last week when it came out. At 21, he's already got a gift for crafting truly excellent songs. Then again, he wrote the songs on his first album Faces Down when he was a teenager. The EP includes four new studio tunes and four live solo recordings from his Spring 2003 tour around the United States. I was happy to see it included a live version of Sleep on Needles which completely overwhelmed the TT's crowd when he performed it a few months ago. Newbury Comics has Don't Be Shallow on sale for $8.99 so go grab it!