Saturday, September 20, 2014

Spirited: Brooklyn's Dessert Speakeasy

Spirited is Native Creative Concierge™ approved.

The Big Bad Brooklyn Blackout Cake and The Rosemor dessert-cocktail
paring at Spirited in Brooklyn, NY

The chalkboard out front greeted me with the message: Have your drink and eat it too.

On the corner of Vanderbilt Avenue and Bergen Street stands Spirited, a dessert speakeasy owned by Kimberly Wetherhell. The idea for Spirited dates back to 2010 but it wasn't until 2012 when she baked liquor-infused Thanksgiving pies -- filling 40 orders at $40 a piece -- that she knew the idea was a viable one.

From decision to conception it's taken a year and a half for Spirited to open its doors.Two weeks in and Sprited is full of...well, spirit! "It's like throwing a party every night," says Executive Baketender® Kimberly Wetherell. Her experience in the entertainment industry comes in handy in running a house of cake and cocktails.


Executive Baketender® Kimberly Wetherell

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Root and Bone, Part Dinner

Bucket of Birds, root & bone, NYC

The opportunity arose to have dinner at Root and Bone. Of the things I had my eye on, I was only able to cross the Bucket of Bird and Macaroni and Cheese off the list. But don't go feeling sorry for me. I still left Root and Bone that evening satisfied with a doggie bag to boot.

We arrived a little before 6:30 on a Friday. Again, it really is like having a meal in someone's kitchen. The hostess greeted us warmly and seated us. Where do we start? Do we order a starter? Our drinks? Put our whole order in at once? Decisions!

This evening we were paired with David. He fielded our questions about the cocktails to start. I had a Lady J Ivory. Yes, I'm a woman of vodka habit. My friend ordered The Twisted Mustache (Russell's 6 Year Bourbon, Swedish Punsch, citrus and ginger). It was the bomb-diggity. Ok, she may not used those words but her expression after she took her first sip said so.

Root and Bone is Native Creative Concierge™ approved.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

WWE SummerSlam 2014: Stephanie McMahon vs. Brie Bella

This week's WWE Raw ended with a segment between Stephanie McMahon and Brie Bella. And now I'm excited for their match at WWE SummerSlam on August 17.

The word "bitch" is thrown around, a lot, but so far I appreciate that the storyline isn't based on pure cattiness. Brie quits, slaps the boss. The Boss takes out her revenge on Brie's twin sister. Slaps her at ringside. Brie presses charges and Stephanie McMahon is arrested then strong-armed into a match against Brie who she plans on making her bitch. Why? Because we all know you don't cross the boss...

You, bitch, mine.

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Root and Bone Alphabet City

Root and Bone is Native Creative Concierge™ approved.

Fried Chicken and Waffle Sandwich at Root and Bone, East Village, NYC

My proclivity for chicken and waffles has been well documented. It even resulted in my being quoted on Eater NY. So when I received emails announcing the opening of Root and Bone in the East Village I planned a visit.

Picture it:

Saturday afternoon. Across Ave B is the usually boisterous brunch crowd. Outside Root and Bone, on East 3rd Street, was dotted with diners waiting to be seated and others waiting for  their take-out orders. I left my name with the host and was told it'd be a 30 minute wait. Not so. My friend arrived about five minutes later and we were called in about five minutes after that.

The set-up is a cross between a home kitchen, a front porch and classroom. They went old school with the chairs. There's even a cubby under the chairs that the host put my bag in when it fell off the back of my chair. It's a very cozy atmosphere. 

Thursday, July 24, 2014

New York City Firefighters Calendar Launch

NYC Firefighters 2015 Calendar - 20th Anniversary Special Edition

On Wednesday, July 23, I attended the launch of the 2015 NYC Firefighters Calendar -- 20th Anniversary Special Edition. The event was held at Sofia Italian Grill on 48th Street. Some of the firefighters featured in the 2014 and 2015 calendars were on hand to greet attendees and sign copies of the both calendars. Also in attendance was Battman of Battman Studios, the photographer of the Firefighter Calendars since 1996. All donations made that evening went to the Staten Island University Hospital Burn Center.

From Left to Right: FF Andy Guich, FF Christopher Frazzetta, FF Kievon Harper,
FF Conor Moriarty, FF Tom Caruso, FF Jimmy Condit

Sunday, July 20, 2014

#seemetakeover Includes Abigail Ekue Photography

This Thursday, July 24, SeeMe takes over 2 of the biggest billboards in Times Square - Express (9000 sq foot LED) and American Eagle (15,000 sq foot LED and 25 stories tall) - for the #seemetakeover.

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Welcome to the Neighborhood, Burger Heights

Burger Heights is Native Creative Concierge™ approved.

Burger Heights now open in Washington Heights, NY providing a great
option for burgers in the neighborhood

On July 2, Burger Heights held a friend and family pre-grand opening event. Burgers and fries were served, fountain drinks flowed (they carry Boylan by the bottle!), wine was passed around (not on the regular menu), all capped off with ice cream and milkshakes (gelato shakes to be exact) for dessert.

Between mouthfuls of unbelievably juicy beef, Led Black of Uptown Collective and I agreed that Burger Heights is a great addition to the neighborhood. New businesses do open in Washington Heights but they tend to be the same, he shared. Personally, I love burgers. Love. However, I do not eat McDonalds beef. The interior of Burger King franchises skeeve me out. That left Twin Donut (not ideal), Pick N Eat ($10 burgers) or diners over 20 blocks away.

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Lower Manhattan Tuesdays


Lower Manhattan -- that area south of Chambers Street that many only equate with courthouses, "Ground Zero", Century 21, Wall Street and being a ghost town after 5 PM or on the weekends -- is now home to the promotion Lower Manhattan Tuesdays presented by the Downtown Alliance for New York. It will run every Tuesday from May 27 to September 30.

Sign up to get your Redemption code for special deals and promotions to use at participating businesses. You can also get a promo code with 9/11 Memorial Museum tickets.

A few of my recommendations:

Stone Street Tavern -- A friend chose this restaurant as the site of my birthday dinner a few years ago. Surf and turf was enjoyed by all. The location is a draw too as I'm a sucker for cobblestone, windy streets that bring me back to Old New York.

The Iron Horse -- skip Hogs and Heifers and go here. That is all. Oh, get on the giant swing too. And I know this is about Tuesdays but if you go on Sundays and buy a drink you get a free burger. Ok now, that is all.

City Sports -- their promo is for the Run Club but while you're there buy yourself a pair of supportive and ergonomically-correct sneakers for the miles that you'll cover and track on your pedometer that you'll also buy at City Sports.

Monday, May 12, 2014

My Writing Process - Blog Tour

It's unreal the number of notes that were passed in class between Glendaliz Camacho and myself between 6th and 8th grade. Not only the number of notes but the sheer volume of the written exchanges. Since then she's been published numerous times and is working on her short story collection ("La Baca" still thrills me) and will be included in an upcoming anthology. She's been a huge supporter of my blog and has wielded the red pen against my words. 

This is the cyber-version of passing a note -- Glendaliz asked me if I'd like to participate in this blog tour. It's good timing since my focus lately has been everywhere. Not in a bad way. Just that there are quite a few projects I have going on right now that are at different phases of development and taking some time to think about only my writing is needed.

Can't fight fate. We were destined to be writers. 




What are you working on?

I'm working on some stuff. 

I work to maintain this blog and it's many focuses -- the personal writing, the sex, dating and relationship writing, body image, rants on the idiocy of society, Ask Abbie, the guest posts, NY posts for my Native Creative Concierge business, Planet of the Apes -- there's a system to my Random Musings. 

I want a syndicated writing gig - a column. One that I get paid for. I need to do more work on getting that. 

The 5th anniversary edition of The Darker Side of Lust is also on my To-Do List.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Judgmental Map of New York


This one will surely upset and offend some people. It will make others laugh.

This latest Judgmental Map of New York by RBD Enterprises features only The Parts [of NY] That Matter.

That right there is sure to set some people off.

The glaring omissions of most of The Bronx, Brooklyn and Queens and Staten Island are the first offenses and the inclusion of part of New Jersey are the first offenses.

Monday, April 21, 2014

A New Yorker Not From New York

Abigail Ekue Photography

"I’ve learned I don’t care for people who say they’re from New York when they’re not. If you’ve lived here 13 years -- or even just eight years -- you can call yourself a New Yorker, but you can’t say you’re from New York."

That statement by David Blend in his post, "What I Learned Living in NYC for 13 Years" received an audible, "yes!" response from me.

I'm sensitive about some things. That is one of them. People who live here are New Yorkers. There's a reason we specify "Native New Yorker" and "New Yorker". Being from New York means something, considering our numbers are shrinking. I am from New York. I even have my own lawn! (well not really, but you get the idea)

What else did I agree with David on?

There really are a lot of Jews in New York. Including Black Jews. I wonder if he's visited or spent time in the Orthodox and/or Hasidic communities in Brooklyn. I've had immediate next door neighbors erect sukkahs (Crown Heights, I miss you!). I drove through Williamsburg on the night of Purim this past March -- a whole 'nother world.

Sunday, April 20, 2014

South Bronx Culture Trail


This week it was announced that Casita Maria Center for Art & Education, City Lore and Dancing in the Streets were partnering to create the South Bronx Culture Trail. According to the Associated Press, they are currently in the process of identifying culturally significant sites which will be designated with physical markers. 

I "got my start" in the South Bronx (940 Grand Concourse!) and then came back during junior high and high school. It will be great to learn more about the living history I may have been oblivious to as a kid and to be able to share it with Native Creative Concierge clients. I have a family visiting next month that requested a stop at Yankee Stadium. I'll include surrounding areas during their private excursion. One of the landmarks that will be highlighted on the South Bronx Culture Trail will be 1520 Sedgwick Ave where DJ Kool Herc created hip hop in the early 70's.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

WWE Wrestlemania 30 Press Conference in New York City

WWE Wrestlemania 30 Press Conference at the Hard Rock Cafe in
New York City

On April 1, in the heart of New York City's Times Square, the WWE held their WrestleMania 30 press conference at the Hard Rock Cafe. The event was hosted by Michael Cole and featured Chief Brand Officer Stephanie McMahon, COO Paul "Triple H" Levesque, Daniel Bryan, John Cena, Randy Orton, Batista and the host of Wrestlemania 30, "The Immortal" Hulk Hogan.

WWE Hall of Famer Hulk Hogan will host WrestleMania 30
in New Orleans, LA on April 6. 

WrestleMania 30 will take place on Sunday, April 6 at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans, LA. 

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Bare Men Preview (VIDEO)

Work continues on my male nude series, Bare Men. The book layout is at 90%. The images that will be featured in the solo exhibition are selected for the most part. But what was going to be the preview exhibit for my series has been cancelled. The images that were selected for the juried exhibition were pulled from the exhibit. The reason I was given was that the other artists did not want to share screens with me because my work would have to be seen along with theirs and they didn't want any of their guests to be offended. 

Sunday, March 2, 2014

The Power of I Am

When I began corresponding with a new friend in São Paulo he said he was single. Wanting firsthand knowledge of the namorar-social scene there, I shared Dating in Brazil Vs USA: Paquerar & Namorar and he agreed with some of what was said about how relationships are "conducted" Brazil.

A few emails later he told me about his girlfriend. So I was curious -- does he consider himself single because he's not legally married? I know there are people who consider themselves single even if they're dating someone. Dating is the process of getting to know someone until you decide if you want something more "serious" or "committed" or to take things to the "next level". You can date more than one person. By law, in the US, it's illegal to be married to more than one person. But here the majority of people don't consider themselves "single" if they're dating only one person.

Monday, February 24, 2014

There's So Much More To New York Than That

Native Creative Concierge client snapping photos at Fort Washington
during our half day excursion

A friend recently shared a commercial by an Israeli company in which he appears. Two things jumped out at me when I watched the ad - the role he was cast in and the product the commercial was for.

Friday, February 21, 2014

Guys & Dolls and Native Creative Concierge

On Saturday, February 22, 2014, the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation will host its 14th Annual Guys & Dolls Bachelor/Bachelorette Auction. To date, Guys & Dolls has raised close to two million dollars in funding to cure cystic fibrosis and virtually every approved drug for cystic fibrosis was made possible because of support from the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.

Guys & Dolls hosts a gala each year with 700 attendees who come together for food, entertainment and charitable giving in the name of cystic fibrosis research.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Bowery Mission Continues Its Mission in New York

The Bowery Mission,  NY (Source)

I remember last spring a pair of visitors from Germany wanted to see homeless people huddled over a fire burning in a garbage can to keep warm. After my eyes widened and I laughed, I let them know that image of New York they were fed isn't the reality anymore.

And while there's no more skid row here in NY, The Bowery Mission, on the Bowery which was New York's skid row, still provides services to the homeless and people in need. This week, I worked with a client whose interest was in criminal law and social services provided to New Yorkers. I took her to The Bowery Mission as part of her immersion.

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Batista To Work On The Road To Wrestlemania


I'm all for the rivalry brewing between Alberto Del Rio and Batista. Last week on WWE Monday Night Raw when Batista finally had enough and let Del Rio know, "dude, I didn't come here for you, I came for the title, but if you keep getting in my face I'll handle that too," I thought, Hmm, this will be interesting.

Looks like the WWE is going to make Batista work.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Ask Abbie: Married Man Wants To Be Someone's Little Maid

Seeking A Submissive Role Asks:

I need advice on why I always have these thoughts that run through my mind. I am a married white male in my mid forties that has a normal life but I always have thoughts about being dressed up in lingerie and playing a submissive role to a woman or a couple. I always have thoughts about being someone's little maid and doing everything for them. Why is it that I always think about this stuff?

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Wrestlemania XXX: Roman Reigns Vs. The Undertaker

People have crowned Roman Reigns the heir apparent of the WWE. Hold on, now. Let's not get ahead of ourselves. Do we enjoy seeing his spear? Yeah buddy. Does the Superman punch wow a bit more than Jon Jones? It's arguable, but that pretty face of Reigns is not ready to be the face of the WWE.

That being said, he could certainly give us a great match at Wrestlemania XXX against the Undertaker. Or is it a match against the streak? At this point they're one and the same. And out of everyone in the locker room, who is active, Reigns would be a great opponent. And let's face it, we all know that will be the real main event of Wrestlemania XXX.

Whose yard is it really -- Undertaker's or Reigns?

Sunday, February 9, 2014

The Positive of Mercury Retrograde

Old photo from my trip to GA. Photo taken by my bro, "Kid"

Merely writing this blog post is indicative of Mercury Retrograde. Lately my work and creative energies have been focused on photography and exercise and fitness -- areas of my life that I've gone back to recently.

Revise, Rewrite, Rework, Relearn, Rekindle...

Bare Men is a major focus point right now. The project has taken on new life. I'll even be able to preview images this spring in an exhibit -- I've found a home for my nude men.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Super Bowl XLVIII Week in NYC

January 27 to February 2 will be affectionately known as Super Bowl Week in New York City. Well, affectionately known to me but to others it'll be known as a traffic-jam, clogged-sidewalk causing nightmare. Either way, it will be a high-energy time in NYC no matter how cold the temperatures may be.

I'll be working with the NY/NJ Super Bowl XLVIII Host Committee at various tourist welcome sites and along Super Bowl Boulevard perimeter. This gig is right up my alley. Need directions? Need help purchasing a metrocard? Need help hailing a taxi? Need help getting to your terminal to catch your flight? Need to know where to go to avoid all the Super Bowl Madness? Need to make sense of the madness that will be Penn Station, Times Square, Grand Central, or the PATH trains (the game will be played in New Jersey)? It's just a small part of what I do as {The} Native Creative Concierge and it's what I'll be doing during Super Bowl with for the Host Committee.

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