I follow lots of New York media via Twitter, it’s a great way to get a broad flavour of what’s happening in the city without trawling through websites or buying the papers every day. Yesterday I saw a tweet from the New York Post saying “Never pee on the third rail”. I was intrigued. The tweet took me to the full story on the New York Post website. I’d assumed that someone had been electrocuted whilst actually in the act of peeing, which can never be a good thing. But on closer inspection it was that he had got down onto the track to pee, stumbled when he’d heard a train coming, tried to get off the track and fell on the third electrified rail. It just shows that the 140 character limit of Twitter can create an impression that something has happened in order to send traffic to a website but it’s really not quite the truth when you get there. I see from the Post website today that the story had re-tweeted 47 times, but had appeared on other media Twitter feeds so there were many more re-tweets. More ghoulishly, 209 people ‘liked’ the story as it appeared on the Post website. I wonder if they really thought about that: the fact that this poor 30 year old man died in a freak accident and they ‘liked’ it. Maybe I’m just as bad, as I am blogging about it too.
Don’t visit Washington DC when it’s really hot. When the thermometer outside a bank tells you it is 100 degrees Fahrenheit and you then attempt to walk from the Capitol building to the Lincoln Memorial with two small children you will fail. It is a very long way. I know that now.
My apologies for invoking the spirit of Phil Collins and his 1985 album in this post. He called his album by this name after an incident at The Pump Room in Chicago, where Collins was denied admittance to this establishment because of his attire. I think of it only because it is so incredibly humid here in NYC that to wear more than a t shirt on your upper body is a mistake. My British side sees rain and thinks, ‘yes, it is raining, I must wear my raincoat and perhaps some Wellington boots*’. But my newly adopted NYC self knows this is wrong. It is raining, but it is hot: it is counter intuitive. Don’t wear a rain coat as you will melt. In fact, wear as little as possible, but always carry an umbrella, that way you will be a true New Yorker.
*Oh, and by the way, if you say Wellington boots or ‘wellies’ here you will get a funny look as no one will know what you are talking about. They are rain boots.
I was a friend of the Tate for many years in London. I went to pretty much every exhibition they did in both Tate Modern and in Tate Britain. I worked very close to Tate Modern in the last few years and wandered around at lunchtime, but not as often as I should. And now I’m here in NYC, living about the same distance from the Met. On Saturday I read the FT’s review of the new exhibition, “Lowry and the painting of modern life” at Tate Britain and I felt sad. Sad, not because it was a poor review, in fact the review was brimming with enthusiasm, signing off that it was “a revelatory, enjoyable, historically significant show”. Sad because I can’t go. I console myself with having been to the Lowry gallery in Salford, but it was a long time ago. If you’re in London before 20 October, go and see it and think of me, nyc-newbie.
Introducing the Pretzel Dog, combining the salty bready taste of the New York pretzel with the equally salty frankfurter-style sausage. Note that every other item on this menu from a local park fast food van has the calorie content listed, with the cheese pretzel out on top with 510 calories. So if you add the calories of the hot dog at 320 plus the calories of the pretzel at 465 and take a bit off to compensate for the hot dog roll, it’s probably around 680 calories. Worth it? Knowing the calories certainly stops me from snacking in the park!