When times is tough

July 13, 2011 § 1 Comment

go see a free movie!

With the help of the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation (which I like to imagine is run in very similar fashion to the one in a certain small town in Indiana), I have compiled this handy calendar of free outdoor summer movies. If one so desired, it is theoretically possibly to see a movie in a New York park at least every week night from now through the end of August.

Some of the kids’ movies like WALL-E, Madagascar, Megamind and The Karate Kid show up more than twice (and for some reason Justin Bieber: Never Say Never is being shown on not one but two separate occasions), but for the most part there’s a wide range of the best old movies (e.g. Back to the Future, Jurassic Park) and more recent ones (e.g. The Kids Are All Right, The Fighter). Free popcorn is also available at some of these but in some cases might just be for the kiddies. Don’t get greedy!

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179th Commencement

May 19, 2011 § Leave a comment

Bill Clinton spoke at yesterday’s NYU Commencement on behalf of the honorary degree recipients of 2011. I resented every cheer when the sun came out, since it was so miserable last year. (Not including Alec Baldwin.) 30 Rock is great, as is Jack Donaghy, but ever since I learned that Harvard gets Amy Poehler, as well as an actual important person (the Liberian president), I’ve been wondering (for the first time) why more schools can’t be more like Harvard. Clinton’s speech was impressive, in any case. I wasn’t even graduating and I felt inspired.

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Free week of folk/pop music

May 16, 2011 § Leave a comment

I do not write music reviews. But I do like music, and I love free shows, especially if the bands might be good (bonus points if they’re actually good). In honor of NYC Popfest at the end of this week, I’ve compiled a list of free shows that might not suck through the end of the weekend. The list is pretty folk/pop/Brooklyn heavy (if you know what I mean) and I tried (successfully) to leave the DJ sets out of it. Not that I can’t enjoy a good DJ set (although I did only come to appreciate them within the last year when Eugene Hutz of Gogol Bordello showed up at Bowery Electric). But almost any bar or venue that plays music has at least one free DJ set a week, and I don’t have quite the extensive knowledge of that scene to distinguish them all from each other.

So here we go:

Monday, May 16: Sherlock’s Daughter @ Knitting Factory
Tuesday, May 17: Mathew Snow & The Way It Was @ Spike Hill
Wednesday, May 18: Roots n Ruckus @ Jalopy Theater
Thursday, May 19: Neverest Songs/Kelly McFarling/Otsego @ Googie’s Lounge
Friday, May 20: Daytime acoustic show for NYC Popfest @ Paul Smith Sale Shop
Saturday, May 21: Allison Weiss playing with a bunch of other people @ Rockwood Music Hall (Stage 1)
Sunday, May 22: Mira Cook @ Pianos Upstairs Lounge

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Weekends on $5

May 9, 2011 § Leave a comment

Now that my loans are coming in full throttle, forcing me to have a budget like a real adult, I’ve also been forced to cut back on living like college isn’t over. As an only child, my parents are more than happy to fund my big city living, but being the stingy and guilt-ridden offspring that I am, I’m trying my hardest to survive without the automatic deposits courtesy of my mother.

I’ve tried working 9-5 M-F and pretending I don’t need human interaction, because I didn’t want to spare the cash on movies or dinners or even what would be considered normal, cheap socializing activities; a few dollars on beers every couple of days that always add up to much more than you thought it would by the end of the month. I’ve also tried restricting myself to finding as many places as I could that gave away free food to save on cash, but such events of any significance are few and far between, and the efforts were fruitless.

And so I’ve come to the conclusion that I won’t be a hermit, and will be trying to find ways to entertain myself for free in this fair city of ours (i.e. New York) without resorting to too many old fall backs, like trying to pass off reading in Washington Square Park by the fountain as new and exciting. I will catalogue as many of these things as possible on this page.

I will also (reluctantly) be paying for my own food, but most likely not in my attempts to get out of the house. Let’s not get crazy.


May 7, 2011 § Leave a comment

As part of the Festival of New Ideas, St.  Patrick’s Old Cathedral is hosting a midnight show of organ music.

  • 12:00 Rashaad Newsome – Herald
  • 12:20 Aaron Siegel – Common Tones
  • 12:40 Mudboy – Night Eyes (Second Movement)
  • 1:00 Matt Marble – Way Up in the Middle of the Air
  • 1:20 Pilottone – Flash:Remix

The full program is available here.

Family Festival

May 2, 2011 § 1 Comment

The Tribeca Film Festival hosted a street fair in Tribeca last Saturday and despite my inability to relate to children (which I was told there would be a lot of), I signed up to volunteer. Thankfully, I got stuck monitoring the most colorful and acrobatic event of the day, where I just had to shoo kids away from the edge of the performance space and spend the rest of the time watching aerial acrobatics from Cirque-Tacular, a New York-based circus talent agency.

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Pre-Cherry Blossom Fest

April 24, 2011 § Leave a comment

This past Saturday was the last day to get free admission before the cherry blossom festival next weekend, when admission will be $15. I’ve missed the cherry blossoms every year for the past two years at least and I wanted to get my chance before they disappeared. It turns out that I may have jumped the gun and went too early this time, so here are some pictures of tulips and magnolias instead. Presumably free admission on Saturday mornings will resume on the first Saturday in May and I can get my long-awaited look at the cherry blossoms then.

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