ARCHIVE FOR August, 2013

Brooklyn Gots Its MTV1

Posted by Deirdre // 08-25-2013


So for those of you who aren’t rinsing off at a Wellfleet Pond after a day at the beach, or zipping up a late afternoon sweatshirt before a cookout in the Adirondacks, or something else awesome outside of the city enviorons, you may miss Brooklyn’s day in the sun. That is, the descending upon of the glitterati — the VMAs will be held tonight at our own Barclay’s Center. mtv-vmas-2013-barclays-center-brooklyn-instagramOf course when Barclay’s was being built, it was rife with debate, and I personally was vehemently against it. “It will put Brooklyn on the map!” was one of the phrases that irked me the most. Well now that it’s here, and the Nets are pretty cool, and it’s not like that was a particularly picturesque intersection anyway, I dunno, I’m mostly fine with it.

But when I read NY Times’s MTV Brings its Red Carpet to Brooklyn, I got kind of grossed out. I’m fine with the fact that we “…are going to get a taste of Brooklyn throughout the show,” according to Stephen Friedman, president of MTV. That’s cool. And I like that the Red Carpet will be on the street, with “bodegas and brownstones” behind it. Nice.

I’m not sure how I feel about “short films featuring Brooklyn scenes, characters and themes will be shown on the gigantic television screens above the floor during the show” — that is starting to make me feel squishy. I do like that MTV sold special tickets to those in zip codes around the arena, but I wonder if special attention was paid to exactly which zip codes they were…Williamsburg, Ft Greene, Bushwick, yes. Park Slope, Brooklyn Heights, no. I get it.

But on that note, the fact that “MTV has sent casting agents out to find hundreds of young Brooklynites — from Williamsburg hipsters to hip-hop b-boys — to make up much of the crowd standing (and, producers hope, dancing) on the floor at the foot of main stage” is kind of too much for me to handle. Then, they actually deny that they’re trying to be Brooklyn at all…”MTV executives said their decision had less to do with wanting to tie MTV’s image to Brooklyn in a marketing sense than with a desire to do something new.” Ok guys, so next time maybe it’ll be the Hartford Civic Center. That will be new, too.


The Price We Pay1

Posted by Deirdre // 08-13-2013


So often in Brooklyn — at least on this blog — we talk about how “rich” life might be elsewhere, with more green space and less garbage and less hustle and bustle. One of those dream towns (or cities) is San Francisco — the weather, the food, the diversity…I could go on. Fact is, the Bay Area is, as they say out West, hella expensive, too. Thanks to my friend Angelina for sending The Price of Urban Family Living, my way, because it could have come directly from a post here (except of course it was in the NY Times).

“If we want to live in a good school zone, our rent increases significantly. If we want more square footage, we give up a safer neighborhood. If we splurge on groceries, then we cannot eat out that week. While other parents send their children on a carousel of after-school enrichment activities, we debate whether ballet class or a swim lesson is worth more than an investment in a college savings bond. We stretch our budgets while our choices shrink and sacrifices grow, making us wonder how long we can afford urban living”.

So I guess we can feel better that we’re not alone? Cross San Francisco off of the What if/Maybe/Someday list? The article, in the NY Times’ often great Motherlode Blog, stems from the recent release of the Economic Policy Institute’s Family Budget Calculator, which the author uses to basically give herself a lesson in shame and disrespect since her family’s is of course completely out of sync with the recommended budget. So for a hoot, I did ours. Here’s what came up:

Screen Shot 2013-08-13 at 10.42.37 AM

I’ll wait for you to catch your breath.  Read More…


Brooklyn Based No More0

Posted by Deirdre // 08-07-2013


This is her dining room in JC – pretty sweet!

Colleen Kane mentioned the blog on Brooklyn Based last year, in her piece “I Walk the Mile,” when she was having the all-too-familiar stay or go crisis. It looks like she chose go, and will chronicle her exit(s) in a column called “Life After Brooklyn”. Interestingly, she chose not to go to the ‘burbs or way beyond — but to Jersey City.

More interesting is that she echoes some of the themes that have come up recently on the Bklyn or Beyond list serve about staying in Brooklyn but having to choose fringe neighborhoods and what that sometimes entails – crappy supermarkets, garbage, noise, etc. In addition, on the Facebook page I often post about JC, mostly because a friend lives there and is actively involved in the betterment of the city, and I share her posts.

I’m looking forward to following Colleen’s quest and will keep you updated!