Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Aussie Brunch Plus TV in Bed Equals a Great Weekend

Painted garland. Should have done this with all of my leftover paint chips from foundations.
from You Are My Fave
It's late so I'm not going to say much, just a quick, "Hello, I'm alive!"

The past week has been a little nuts. I had a bad few days at work last week as did my roommates so we spent a lot of time having wine and watching movies. Best rough day cure as far as I'm concerned! This weekend the L (aka the train that stops a block and a half from my apartment) was closed for construction so I decided it was a perfect excuse to do absolutely nothing all weekend. Essentially I slept, ate, and watched Grey's Anatomy and Mad Men. Food-wise, we went the Sunburnt Cow for Aussie-style brunch on Saturday. By Aussie-style I mean that all of the dishes came with French Fries and the staff had (probably) authentic accents. In other words it was awesome. That night Kendra and I met Erin and some of her friends for Indian at Milon, a crazy place full of chili pepper shape lights and decorations for miscellaneous holiday. About every fifteen minutes the lights would start flashing and an India version of happy birthday would come on while the staff brought a table free birthday ice cream. We thought people were lying about their birthdays to get the ice cream but just before we got are check, we were given our own set of mini-desserts in honor of a birthday no one had claimed to have. Apparently at Milon it is always everyone's birthday. I can get behind that!

Nothing else notable has happened of late except that I am officially a New Yorker. I know this because I went to yoga tonight and the instructor said that "we New Yorkers" are used to small spaces. Since she was including the whole class in the statement and is an enlightened person it must be true. I should eating more bagels or something. Sounds terrific!

That's all for this evening. I know it's bedtime because I tried to write another paragraph and it was completely incoherent. Goodnight and please send good thoughts to the victims of the Chardon High School shooting and their families.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

A Family Affair

I've been missing the glory that is Greece!

I know, I know, it's been a while. I'm a terrible blogger and am going straight to blogger hell. Anyway, here is what happened in the last week or so:

1. Two weekends ago, my parents came to visit and my sister and I had a lovely weekend with them. We went to the Natural History Museum to see the dinosaurs which I was disproportionately excited about since I am not an archeologist or something. We also went to Chelsea Market for food and checked out some Chelsea galleries. The highlight of weekend would have to be seeing The Lion King on Broadway. It was amazing to see the creative staging and the beautiful costumes. The Lion King was one of my favorite movies growing up (my mom made me an awesome Nala costume for Halloween when I was 4 but I got the chicken pox and only got to wear it around the house) so it was really cool to see it come life. Thanks mom and dad for a wonderful time!

With my dad and sister in Chelsea Market

Some typographic art in a gallery in Chelsea. This should probably be sited
 but I have no idea who the artist is. So instead I'm going to give a
shout-out to Heinz, my awesome professor who taught me all about letterforms
and allowed me to sound smart in front of m family.

My dad's favorite piece of "art" in Chelsea.

The family with some dino bones.

According to the wall plaque this is not a Velociraptor but I have
decided it is because it is my blog and I make the rules.

Simba, you are my son and the one true king...

My geologist parents claim that the dark layer killed the dinosaurs. I think that they
are confusing killer-rocks with the crushed up Oreo layer of an ice cream cake.
2. I've starting going to yoga at a studio near my apartment. It's called Yoga to the People and the classes are on a donation basis which is great since yoga classes in the city cost about $20 per class. Since its so cheap tons of people always show up and they let as may in as possible. Instead of the standard 6-12 inches of space between mats there is about 1-2 inches. Definitely takes some getting used to but its also kind of cool to be with so many people and it forces you to stay really focused. Not usually much for Zen sayings but at the first class I went to, the instructor talked about staying tied to discomfort instead of running away from it which I think is really interesting.

You can't tell, but this guy was literally painting a UFO.
He is awesome. And possibly schizophrenic. 

3. This weekend was a long one (I had Monday off) and Erin and I went to the Catskills with Ansell, Matthew, and our grandmother who is in town for the week. We had a relaxing time sitting by the fire, reading, eating homemade pasta and frittata, and watching My Family and Other Animals (which I definitely recommend because it is British and hilarious). Monday we went to Woodstock to take in the smell of patchouli and the sight of overpriced hippie souvenirs and then Erin and I took the bus back to the city. The others stayed in the mountains for more skiing and lazing. Unfortunately, it seems that their vacation was cut short today when Ansell took a nasty fall on his skis. He is ok and has feeling in his fingers and toes but they think he fractured a vertebra. Please keep him in your thoughts.

Matt and Topper being completely adorable. 
Woodstock. So much tie dye, so little time.

4. As usual I have been trying a lot of great food including cheese and appetizers at the new beer garden in Eataly, Greek food at Kefi, to die for perogies at Veselka, and a great sandwich at 'wichcraft. My only big disappointment so far (knock on wood) has been Spice Cove, an Indian place I ordered in from that was, for lack of a better word, weird. Other than that I am eating like a champion and enjoying every bite!

5. I have started listening to my iPod on the subway. This is significant because if you listen to an iPod on the street/public transportation in Cincinnati you will be marked as an easy target and mugged. For this reason I held out on becoming an iPod listening commuter like everyone else in NYC but I have given in. This is clearly a sign that I should be shipped back to Ohio and exorcised.

6. Another request for good thoughts: my roommate Allie went back to Cincinnati this week to be with her grandmother who is sick. I'm sure her faily would appreciate some positive energy!

Thats all for now. Can't make any promises  but I will try to post more frequently in the future! 

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

High Rollin'

This is what my life will be soon. And yes, I am obsessed with Mad Men.

Greetings! Hope Kristen Bell and her sloth love held you over while you pined for more blog posts.

I've been trying to figure out the best way to write about everything that has happened in the last week or so and have even started writing this post a couple of times. Emily is sitting next to me doing a post in list form so I am stealing her idea. Thanks Emily!

1. First and most importantly, I spent Saturday night being actually living up to my Glamour and Glory name for once! My cousin Sasha called me in the afternoon to invite me to a Human Rights Campaign benefit dinner with her husband and some friends. They had an extra ticket and when they called Erin to invite her she told them I was in the city and that they should take me instead. She did this because she is an amazing sister and wanted me to have a cool experience while in the city! Anyway, thanks to my fantastic cousin and sister I ended up all dressed up, my hair actually done for once (thanks to Kendra and her curling skills), drinking champagne ten feet from Michael Kors and Anna Wintour (aka. the woman who Meryl Streep's character was based on in The Devil Wears Prada). It was a great event that celebrated the people and events that have helped advance gay rights in the past year. Anna Wintour received an award for using her position in the fashion world to support equal rights and she gave a wonderful speech. I feel like I should be quoting people but honestly I was so overwhelmed by everything that I can't pinpoint one thing specifically. All I can say is that along with all the delicious food and fancy clothes, there were many moments that made me remember what the event was for and feel proud of how far we've come and hopeful for the future.

Ok sappy moment over. We ended up at an impromptu after-party at a bar in the Meatpacking District. The appetizers and drinks were compliments of Vogue and I have literally never felt so much like I had been thrown into someone else's life. The people we were with all seemed to have fancy titles (eg. Head of PR at Vogue) but were so nice! Post-after-party we went to the Boom Boom Room at the top of the Standard. Not being a New Yorker or a fancy person I had never heard of it but apparently it is so nice that the Standard doesn't even list it on their website. The bathroom literally had floor to ceiling windows looking at the Empire State Building. I don't even know what to say about the whole, there are no words. I had such an amazing time and have to extra thank Erin and Sasha for my Cinderella moment (you don't have to meet a prince to be Cinderella anymore because of feminism), it was incredible!

Wish I had picture to post but my bag was too small for a camera. I wore this dress but its a much brighter red in person!

That was a long list point. A few more quick things I did/learned.

2. In spite having a bajillion sizes, lengths, cuts, and "curve identities" Levi's do not actually make any clothes that fit my body. I spent nearly an hour digging through heaps of jeans looking for some magic pair and got nada.

3. Found some more awesome restaurants including Num Pang (Vietnamese sandwiches), Two Boots (pizza), and Hi Thai. The food here is killing me. I need to start doing yoga or something.

4. Sunday we had a Super Bowl party. You can read all about it on Kendra's blog but basically it was fun, there was delicious food, and, being interim New Yorkers, we all cheered for the winning team!

5. I forgot how much I love The Bachelor. This season has the worst people. I love it. The best part is Allie who sits in the corner and goes "He's not that great" every time the girls gush about how great the bachelor is. This is why Allie and I are friends. My other favorite part is the insane things these people say. To finish up the post, my favorite line from this season of The Bachelor:

"On a scale of one to ten, I feel like I'm going to throw up."


Thursday, February 2, 2012

Veronica Mars plus Sloths Equals So Much Greatness

This is the best video of all time. Seriously. No one has ever had a better reaction to anything ever. Just watch it. Now.

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Everyone is Mean

Yeah Jerkface, who?

Update: My always-wise mother pointed out that the email I included in this post was not that mean. After realizing she was right, I decided to post an update with a definitively meaner email I received yesterday.

Disclaimer: I am a big supporter of people getting paid for things. This post is about basic courtesy not copyright issues.

Last week, while madly messaging Flickr users to request use of their images I exchanged a couple of emails with a guy which eventually ended in this:

Hello Amy,

Thanks for your interesting insights.

The impression I get from your website is that Two Twelve is a serious and professional organization, I don't have to ask you if I right on that. You get paid for your designs too, I suppose. Then why would you ask a photographer to give away his work for free? 

How do you think that an editorial photographer can keep on investing time and energy into making images that work for your business and your clients? Please tell me if you know so I can get rich by doing what I love too! Here is an interesting read about this. I suggest you share this with anyone that likes photography and wants to keep on using the great things photographers do to help your business keep doing what you love to do: http://matthew-oldfield-photography.com/thoughts/can-i-have-your-photos-for-free-part-2/

FYI - if you are planning on distributing content make sure that your organization has all property/model releases figured out. Perhaps you can use material in an editorial way if it fits your project. Even if it is a free app and people allow you to use their material for credit only you have to consider these points. My photos are available under editorial licenses. I hope you can use this to your benefit.

Good luck with your project!

I decided to respond to this sarcastic condescension with some painfully polite professionalism seasoned with a hint of snark:

Dear Jerkface,

Thank you for your response. Of course I understand your need to be paid for your work. The reason that I contacted you was because I found your work on Flickr, a website with both professional and non-professional work. Many of the non-professional photographers are willing to give permission for their work to be used.  
I am sorry if I offended you. Most of the professional photographers I have contacted have refused in quick, polite messages so I didn't see the harm in asking.

I hope he felt the disdain but I don't know because he hasn't responded. I feel like designers are always having the conversation about being paid for our work. I completely respect anyone who says "No I need you to pay me for my work." I expect to be paid for my work. What baffles me are people who are so rude about it. I am contacting you as a member of the same community. I am doing my job. Also you are posting your professional work on Flickr, a website full of vacation snapshots. I'm not saying there isn't good work on Flickr but its not all professional work so you'll have to forgive me for politely messaging you to express interest in using your work. I AM COMPLIMENTING YOUR WORK! JUST SAY "NO THANK YOU" LIKE NORMAL PEOPLE!

My point is this:  Stop being a jerk, everybody!

(Yes I realize that this is sort of pointless ranting. Its been a long day. Leave me alone.)

*Name has been changed for identity protection reasons.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Scabbies the Asbestos Rat

Patterned cups and bowls from West Elm

Just a quick hello! Our internet is dreadful so here's hoping that I can actually post this!

Yesterday I went for a walk during lunch because it was gorgeous out. I was shocked to discover a giant blow up rat with a sign that read "Asbestos Kills."I was confused because in Cincinnati/everywhere giant rats blown up in front of buildings mean that someone did something without using unions. I thought maybe our building hired union works for some construction and then they got Asbestos poisoning. Wrong. I googled it and I guess it means someone had the asbestos removed by someone who was not the Asbestos Union (yes that is a real thing). The rats name is Scabbies because asbestos isn't gross enough apparently. You learn something everyday. Yesterday it was that I have been inhaling asbestos for the last month and it may not have been properly removed. Huzzah. If you really want to see Scabbies or know more you can check it out here. (I took a picture but the internet is the worst so I'm not even going to try it).

We got Pomme Frites last night. Basically cone fries (like Amsterdam!) with tons of different sauces and flavored mayo you can put on them. Its only like five blocks away. This could be a problem of the financial and calorie variety. We walked to from the restaurant to Union Square to bring Emily her fries since she had to work late and we got to see her company Rockwell which was an awful lot like Two Twelve on the inside. Fun Fact: Rockwell did the interior design for the Chambers, the hotel Ansell manages. It is excellent inside so clearly they are great.

Work has been completely insane. But mutual insanity seems to bring people together so my co-workers and I have bonded. Someday, probably around 2019, you will be able to download the app we are working on. It will be free and I will send you a link. Then you can tell me how it is the greatest app ever created. You will tell me this even if you do not have any app-able devices otherwise I will never speak to you again.

That's all for now! I'll report back this weekend. I have big plans like doing laundry. Stay tuned!

Sunday, January 22, 2012

My New Least Favorite People are the Ones on Flickr

Life motto. This is how I feel almost all of the time.

Today on the phone my dad pointed out that I am the world's worst blogger because I never post. Thanks dad. 

I spent most of the work week contacting Flickr users trying to get permission to use their images for an in-house project I'm working on. What I learned is that Flickr users are the worst. Ok not all of them but a lot of them. One guy wanted to trade on photo he took of a park for me designing him an entire map. He actually used the word barter. Because we are pilgrims. Other than that painful process, work has been really good. I like everyone I work with and, although it been really busy, I like having something to do and feeling like I'm actually contributing.

Outside of work I've been enjoying the city. Monday I was off work for MLK day. I went to see Young Adult with Erin. I thought it was really good. Erin thought it was terribly depressing. Afterward went to Rosa Mexicano, a fancy Mexican restaurant that is participating in Restaurant Week (basically fancy restaurants have set menus for a set price so that poor people like us can afford to go). They had the world's greatest guacamole that they mix up right in front of you. Its nice to get to try good restaurants without (completely) breaking the bank. Tuesday, Ansell took us to see Lady Bunny, a hilarious drag queen which was really fun! She spent a lot of time mocking Katy Perry songs which I appreciated. I tried Kati Roll which is an Indian restaurant that basically just wraps up Indian dishes in flat bread. Like a burrito plus Indian food. Its as awesome as it sounds. 

Other things happen during the week but everything has been so hectic that I can't really remember what happened (no mom, I'm not on drugs, just tired). Friday, I went to Fig + Olive,  another restaurant week place, with my roommates. The meal was good but the best part was definitely dessert, which was a chocolate mousse type thing. After dinner we went back to Horse Box for a couple beers. The bartender forgot to charge me for my second beer so that's always a bonus!

Saturday I had lunch with Ansell, Matt, and Erin at Momofuku, which is delicious and has the added bonus of being about three blocks away. Afterward, I walked up 1st Ave to get some pictures for work since everyone on Flickr is awful. It was actually really nice to go for a walk in the newly fallen but already slushy snow. I got to use my new snow boots and felt like a real person who is prepared for weather issues. Erin stopped by with some friends in the evening. I was planning on going out with them but I was feeling tired, lazy (see above image), and like I might be coming down with a cold so I stayed home. 

That's sort of the update of my life. Exciting, I know. I promise to actually post this week. I want to do some inspiration type posts but I'm not that real yet. Be patient. It's a slow process.