Sunday, June 28, 2009

St. John Bar and Restaurant

The delectable bone marrow at St. John.

St. JOHN Bar & Restaurant Smithfield
26 St John Street

Fax 020 7251 4090

Restaurante Arzak: Part III

Pato azulon con perdigone dulces
Sopa y chocolate "entre vinedos"
Esmeralda de chocolate con laminas de rosquillas
Dulce lunatico
Tizon con zaharena

Restaurante Arzak: Part II

Bogavante con aceite de oliva "extra blanco"
Del huevo a la gallina
Pescado del dia con semillas de perejil y cartamo
Rape bronceado
Taco de vacuno con resina, molleja y vino de bota

Restaurante Arzak: Part I

Puding de kabrarroka con fideos fritos
Raiz de loto con mousse de arraitxiki
Morcilla en tempura
Caldito de alubia negra con queso
Arroz crujiente con hongos
Manzana con aceite de foie

Ostras vegetales

Restaurante Arzak
Alto de miracruz 21
20015 San Sebastian
t: 943 278465 - 943 285593
fax: 943 272753

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Will the Daily Show shift its tone?

With violence escalating in Iran seemingly everyday, it will be interesting to see how The Daily Show handles the situation.  Following the election results, The Daily Show aired a few reports from a correspondent, Jason Jones,  sent to Iran to cover the Iranian election.  In one report, Jones humorously investigated why the Iranians "hate" America.
Now that lives have actually been lost, will The Daily Show abandon its flip treatment of the Iranian unrest?  Will it adopt a somber tone similar to its first show post 9/11?  As much as I enjoy The Daily Show, some of the show's Iranian Indecision gags might not fly so easily at this point.  

Family by Lauren Dukoff

Family is photographer Lauren Dukoff's debut book. Published by Chronicle Books, the book is comprised of an impressive array of photos of the Freak Folk artists of the day. As a close high school friend of Devendra Banhart, Dukoff had complete access to take intimate photos of Banhart, Joanna Newsom, Bat for Lashes, Vashti Bunyan, and a myriad of others. For more photos, go here.

3 Sixteen x Quoddy Deck Chukka "Peanut Grizzly"

3 Sixteen and Quoddy collaborate on this "Peanut Grizzly" suede high top boat shoe.  Available for pre-order now at 3sixteen.

(Hat Tip: hypebeast)

Woody Allen sets eye on First Lady

Having already cast 2008's flavor of the year Slumdog Millionaire's Freida Pinto in his next London production, Woody Allen now has his eye on Carla Bruni. In Paris to promote his latest film, Whatever Works, Woody Allen could not stop gushing about the songstress. "I'm sure she would be wonderful," Allen explained through a translator.  "She has charisma and she performs, so she's not unknown to the audience, and I would cast her in many different ways." Bruni once had a brief cameo in Robert Altman's Pret-a-Porter so it's not as if she lacks experience with American Auteurs.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Blu Dot at Urban Outfitters

Urban Outfitters and the Minnesota based design firm, Blu Dot, recently collaborated on this capsule line.  The items include a few side tables, a sofa, and a storage unit.  

A New Taco Truck in Town

Following on the heels of Kogi's success, a Vietnamese themed truck will soon be descending upon us.  Nom Nom Truck will serve banh mi, spring rolls, and lemongrass chicken tacos.  Let's hope they don't have their own Alice Shin in tow.

(Hat Tip: Squid Ink)

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

State Department asks Twitter for a Favor

In another sign that Twitter rules the world, the Washington Post reports that the State Department confirms that it asked Twitter to put off scheduled maintenance "earlier this week to avoid disrupting communications among tech-savvy Iranian citizens" during Monday's protests.  

Sarah Silverman is a Boy

Sarah Silverman is the face of Boy's Spring 2009 collection.  Take a look at the polaroid look book shot at everyone's favorite late night eatery, Canter's.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Last Day Dream by Chris Milk

Chris Milk's exquisite interpretation of a life 

(Hat Tip: Shape + Colour)

Los Angeles Bike Lanes

Los Angeles city planning officials are now accepting suggestions for previously proposed bike lanes plan.  The deadline to submit any and all suggestions is June 12.

I had a chance to quickly peruse the proposed plan and one thing jumped out at me; a large stretch of Santa Monica Blvd (the portion south of Doheny Blvd and north of Avenue of the Stars) has been designated as a "proposed but currently infeasible" bike lane.  Now, anyone who has been stuck in gridlock on this part of Santa Monica Blvd has surely noticed the large expanse of land located on the western border of Santa Monica Blvd.  Predominantly grass with a dirt path along with some trees, this area has plenty of space to accommodate 2 meager bike lanes (4 feet in width probably) going opposite directions. Many bike commuters already use this stretch of Santa Monica Blvd, choosing to perilously weave in and out of traffic. 

Those against a bike lane will point to the fact LA already lacks parks, why pave over this area in order to put in a bike lane.  Putting a bike lane here isn't a case of paving over Canal St. Martin in order to make a bike lane.  For all I can tell this area is hardly ever used except for the jogger, wandering tourist, or periodic art show.  Has anyone ever seen someone sitting on the grass?  A protected bike lane would leave most of this area intact.

What I think is happening here is the NIMBY phenomenon.  Just as Beverly Hills residents have impeded the expansion of  LA's budding metro, now we have these same residents preventing a simple bike lane from being put on Santa Monica.  Sadly, I don't this think will change until a cyclist gets in a bad spill on this stretch of road.  Or maybe our ineffectual Mayor will follow his New York counterpart's example.

Monday, June 8, 2009

How We Write?

How should one write? George Pendle recently explored this question in his entertaining Cabinet Magazine article "To Sit, to Stand, to Write" (reprinted in Rumpus Reprint). For Gustave Flaubert, the answer was simple "One cannot think and write except when seated." To Friedrich Nietzchse, sitting to write was not only a bad choice but a sin against God. To Nietzche, "finely attuned to the slightest signs of cultural decadence, Flaubert’s admission was nothing less than an attack on the nature of creativity itself. “There I have caught you, nihilist!” he snapped triumphantly. 'The sedentary life (das sitzfleisch—literally “sitting meat”) is the very sin against the Holy Spirit. Only thoughts reached by walking have value.'"

As the years have gone by, neither party has really emerged the victor in this debate of sorts. Pendle notes some writers have spent their careers writing standing up (Virginia Woolf, Lewis Carroll, Thomas Wolfe, Fernando Pessoa, and Ernest Hemingway, who observed that “writing and travel broaden your ass if not your mind and I like to write standing"), while others wrote lying down (Mark Twain, Marcel Proust, and Truman Capote). We could also add list Philip Roth and Woody Allen to opposite ends of the ledger (how appropriate considering their long simmering beef). While Roth prefers writing standing up due to back problems, Allen pounds his annual screenplay from the comforts of bed.

"My spot on the bed is my spot in the world," he explains. It's where he watches baseball games, and reads, and where he writes, usually in the morning, because if he starts at night, he sometimes gets so excited he can't go to sleep. It's where the act of imagination is actually "pleasurable and I might go cast the people and see my characters come to life. And I put the music in and I see the characters playing their scenes to the beautiful music behind them. You know, I get a kick out of that. And if nobody else does, that's too bad."

Another curmudgeon, and noted squash cheater, former secretary of defense, Donald Rumsfeld, also writes standing up as a result of an achy back. In an often reported anecdote from the Rumsfeld years at the defense department, Pendle recounts how when presented with "a list of approved torture techniques being used at Guantanamo Bay, [Rumsfeld] infamously scribbled a query on it: “I stand for 8-10 hours. Why is standing [of prisoners] limited to four hours?”

(Hat Tip: We Love You So)

Federer the 'Greatest Ever'

Pete Sampras goes on the record and calls Roger Federer the "greatest ever"  following Federer's 2009 French Open victory.  Maybe Nike can start the Sampras/Federer commercial campaign. Something along these  lines perhaps ...

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Sonic Youth takeover Origami Records?

I just came across this press release about Sonic Youth taking over the Eastside's burgeoning record destination, Origami Records (scratch the "Eastside" part, no need for me to entangle myself in the great Eastside debate of 2009).  Anyway, here is the press release in its entirety:
In celebration of their new album on Matador Records, The Eternal, Sonic Youth will take over our little record shop. For one day only, on June 9th, Origami Vinyl will become Sonic Youth's House of Shifting Plates and Ridiculous Juice, as dubbed by the band itself. Our wall of featured albums will display selections hand-picked by Thurston, Kim, Lee, Steve and Mark - ranging from Okkyung Lee to John Lennon - as well as a wide range of Sonic Youth and Sonic Youth related releases. The band has also invited their friends Pocahaunted and Shiloe to play sets at the store. Deathbomb Arc, a local label in Los Angeles that has released some Thurston Moore stuff on vinyl, gave us the following very limited edition goodies to sell in-store:

Gang Wizard / Algebrassiere
split 12"
originally co-released between Deathbomb Arc & Ecstatic Peace
Test pressings packaged in exclusive handmade art by Melissa
From 5:30 till 6:30 on June 9th, Melissa will be in-store to
personalize the art on these for the lucky buyers.
limited: 2 copies / $25

Thurston Moore / Men Who Can't Love
split 12"
originally released as a part of the Thrash Sabbatical box set by
Deathbomb Arc
Overrun of this record from the box set has been hiding at DBA HQ for
some time.
Now repackaged in exclusive handmade art by Josh Taylor.
limited: 13 copies / $15

Origami has also teamed up with local artist, Seizer, to create a special limited edition silkscreen print of the art below. The art poster will be limited to 50 copies, hand numbered and signed, available for pre-order the day of the event.

As if that weren't enough, Two Boots Pizza will create a special "Eternal" pie that resembles the album's artwork. Free slices of this pie will be given away during the event at Origami. Phil, owner of Two Boots and long-time friend of the band, is excited to be a part of the band's new release.

The details of the event are:
Sonic Youth's House of Shifting Plates and Ridiculous Juice
Tuesday, June 9th from 5.30pm - 9pm
with live performances by Pocahaunted and Shiloe
Limited edition goodies provided by Deathbomb Arc and Not Not Fun
Free "Eternal" Pizza slices provided by Two Boots
+ other SPECIAL surprises
1816 W. Sunset Blvd, Echo Park, Ca 90026
I have to hand it to the writer behind this thing.  I walked away with the feeling that Sonic Youth would actually be at this "takeover."  It was only by taking a closer look that I realized Sonic Youth isn't actually going to be at Origami.  Only their curated records and a few friendly bands.  Well done, Origami.  Big Brother would be proud.  

Jonathan Gold to NYT?

Rumors continue to swirl involving the beloved Jonathan Gold's imminent departure for the New York Times. J Gold tries his best to tamp down any such rumors.

Phoenix/Brat Pack Mashup - "Lisztomania"

And the hipster take ...

Quoddy Blucher at South Willard

Brown suede, brick sole bluchers handmade by Quoddy for South Willard. Available now at South Willard.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Wall Street 2 plot

Nikki Finke gets her hands on the top secret plot for the Wall Street sequel. This actually sounds like it might be halfway decent. Maybe Jon Stewart can get a cameo eviscerating the reformed Gordon Gekko.

Duckie Brown/Florsheim collaboration available at Confederacy

Duckie Brown's highly anticipated collaboration with Florsheim will soon be available at Confederacy. According to the LA Times "All the Rage" blog:
Kicking off with a VIP shopping event on June 11 from 7 to 10 p.m., (anyone can be a VIP, but you do need to e-mail first) the Fall 2009 collection will be available for immediate on-site purchase, an assortment of styles including brogues and brogue boots ($395-$595), wingtips ($295) and a version of Florsheim's Riva style suede loafer with matching sole/uppers in shades including orange, electric blue and purple ($175).

In his shoes

After indicating that he would not wear the Kobe model shoes he has been sporting all season long during the Magics series against the Lakers, Mickael Pietrus has changed his mind and will be wearing the Black Mamba's shoes when he suits up tonight. If it ain't broke why fix it.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Franco pulls out as UCLA commencement speaker

Citing "pre-production" obligations on his next film (David Gordon Green's Your Highness), James Franco decided to pull out as UCLA's commencement speaker. His announcement is exactly 9 days before the ceremony. Perhaps the rigors of portraying Ginsberg and penning his very own novel got to Mr. Franco. Or maybe a ghostwriter failed to meet their deadline.

For those lamenting the Franco cancellation, here is some of the thespian's fine prose to hold you over. I think it's now safe to say that our generation has found that elusive hybrid James Dean/James Joyce.

If that's not enough, here are some excellent commencement speeches I have come across through the years: