Wednesday, September 2, 2015

I cloud nine when I want to


I’m troubled by the lack of clean drinking water in Africa.

I had an idea, and posted it here:

Global brands should give any airline passenger with an African destination two small bottles of their water.

Passengers can drink one on the way if they promise to deliver the other bottle to a collection kiosk at the other end.

Clean water would flood in on every flight, every minute. 

I took my idea to a half-dozen water companies.

They were polite, but nobody bit.

Now filmmaker and Bronx native Mary Jordan is raising awareness through watertank art.

I think it’s awful little kids don’t have clean water to drink.

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

president or bust

By now you’ve probably heard Kanye has declared 
for the 2020 presidential race.

We’re a long way from President Reagan.

Presidents are often honored in stone busts.

If the thought of President West's bust doesn’t frighten you, not much will.

Then there’s First Lady Kim’s bust.

And Nancy’s.

Monday, August 31, 2015

just don't stair at their mistake

A couple weeks back we visited the exterior and grounds of the beautiful Van Cortlandt House, the “oldest house in the Bronx.”

The interior is also well worth a tour.

George Washington stayed here at least twice, and they display his coat, his hat...

and the boots he left behind.

The rooms have changed over the years, improving historical accuracy.

The house is furnished with priceless antiques.

Even Delft tile in a fireplace surround 
has been repainted, restored and regrouted.

My favorite part was the period, carpentry woodwork. 

The wideplank floors and rosehead nails are original.

So is the front staircase.

It continues, less grandly, up to the third floor.

The virtuoso stair rail is “mortise and tenon” assembled.

It uses wooden pegs instead of nails to hold it together.

Our guide pointed out how the dowel pin held the pitched rail in place, but a patch in the newel post probably indicated a carpenter's mistake. 

“They probably installed the level rail too high” he said,
 “so they moved it down and patched the hole.” 

Then he headed back downstairs.

Sunday, August 30, 2015

trail of broken hearts

looking back at you.

Now and from the start,

these words will travel true.

The godspeed of trust,

will settle the dust

that we’ve been passing through.

Leaving just a part,

down the trail of broken hearts.

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Smör, please

From our Swedish correspondent:

dizzy on deepfried poultry

With an odd name and a Westfield, New Jersey location,
 Korean-fusion “RoosterSpin” really delivers.

The concept is based on double-fried chicken in an industrial setting, and with DJ’s spinning old vinyl.

I started with a sweet and murky sugar cane drink
 infused with algae.

It was odd. 

Imagine Kermit’s bath water served up cold and sweet. 

But the food is actually terrific. 

It has creative intelligence behind it and you can sense the care in translating fusion flavors.

Crispy soft shell crab: creamy and delicious.

Fresh and bright, with an excellent sesame-mango dressing.

Only the steamed, vegetable dumplings were familiar, 
more authentic than adventurous.

But the spicy tuna was outstanding. 

And the star of the show was the crunchy chicken, 
six garlic-y and six insanely hot.

The service is good and the interior is fun. 

I especially liked the glassy string-lights room divider, 
a play on Asian paper lanterns.

I’d go back...just one hour west of SoBro on NJT 
for flavors you’ve never tasted!