Sunday, September 9, 2012

Local Yoga Groupon

A reader sent me this link to a Groupon for all you local yoga practitioners. She writes: "I am not an owner of the studio, but I do practice at this studio and think it is a wonderful place and deserves community support." Zen & Yoga – Forest Hills

Calm After The Storm

Truly was a gorgeous day today and a fittingly beautiful late summer evening to top it off.


A Slice of Heaven...

.... Nick's Pizza. Especially their pepperoni.


Saturday Storm Pics

A couple of photos readers sent in of Saturday's storm.


This amazing photo is looking south over the Forest Hills Tennis Stadium.

This shot is in the direction of the Walgreens on Queens Blvd., and 69th/Yellowstone. 
By the way, I find it kind of interesting that the Police Commissioner visited the areas affected by Saturday's tornado. If my memory serves me correctly, I don't remember him visiting Forest Hills when we we suffered a lot worse damage a couple of years ago from our tornado. Strange... The only thing I can conclude is this formula: Amazing Video of Tornado + Media Picking up That Amazing Video = Police Commissioner Visitation to Affected Area.

When our tornado hit, we didn't have video of the actual tornado hitting Forest Hills - only the aftermath of the damage. The closest thing was this footage shot in Park Slope just before it hit us here:


By the way, just to set the record straight, we here in Forest Hills had a tornado on September 16, 2010 and also a "macroburst." There were two tornados that day, one of which went over a portion of Forest Hills. How do I know for sure? Because I was in the tornado. It went right over my building while I was home. I didn't grow up on a farm in Kansas, but I've heard enough descriptions of a tornado to know what it was that went over my building. I heard the rumble approach, and it sounded like a freight train as it passed over my location and the entire building shook. I looked outside just as it was hitting and saw nothing but swirling debris and white. The whole experience lasted like about 45 seconds as it moved over my building and then subsided quickly. I've experienced straight line winds, which accompany a macroburst, and this was nothing like that. There isn't a loud rumbling associated with them and they hit with a sudden punch and then that's it, it's over in a second.
Read more here: Two Tornadoes, Macroburst Confirmed in New York City

This incredible video kind of captures what I am talking about. Listen as the tornado goes over the Georgia Dome and you'll hear that freight train sound.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Tornado in Queens

This is what happens when a tornado comes off the ocean and hits Queens... Unbelievable



Now, we stil have to get through this...

AT 319 PM...NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE DOPPLER RADAR SHOWED A LINE OF THUNDERSTORMS OVER EASTERN PENNSYLVANIA...MOVING NORTHEAST AT 40 MPH. BASED ON THEIR CURRENT MOTION...THESE STORMS SHOULD ENTER ORANGE COUNTY AROUND 430 PM...NORTHEAST NEW JERSEY...ROCKLAND AND PUTNAM COUNTIES AROUND 5 PM...AND NEW YORK CITY AND WESTCHESTER COUNTY AROUND 530 PM. THE STRONGEST PORTION OF THE LINE WAS OVER SOUTHEAST PENNSYLVANIA EAST OF READING...AND HEADED TOWARD NORTHEAST NEW JERSEY AND NEW YORK CITY. THIS LINE OF STORMS WILL BE CAPABLE OF PRODUCING DAMAGING WIND GUSTS...AND POSSIBLY A BRIEF TORNADO. KEEP AN EYE TO THE SKY AND STAY TUNED TO NOAA WEATHER RADIO FOR POSSIBLE WARNINGS. A TORNADO WATCH REMAINS IN EFFECT UNTIL 9 PM.GOODMAN

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Chipotle Construction Commences


I can taste those burritos now.. Can't wait. It will be so nice to have 'em here whenever I so desire!

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Local Restaurant for Sale

A reader sent me this tip... Biu Bella, the restaurant that moved from where Agora Taverna is now to the space right across from the Post Office, is up for sale:
Coffee Shop/Restaurant - $400000 (Forest Hills - NY)

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Chipotle Getting Underway

I'm at the Edge of the City Mountain Compound for part of the long weekend. But one of my readers had sent this in. So thought I'd post it...this is on the storefront where they're building the new Chipotle, next to Martha's on Austin St.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

The Clint Eastwood Speech


Personally, I thought Clint's speech was probably the only interesting thing I saw in the convention. And I thought the 82-year Eastwood used a creative, and very memorable, way to drive home his point.

But, therein lies the problem.

It was too memorable, and as a result, a huge strategic blunder, on par with, for example, Mike Dukakis allowing himself to be photographed in that tank (see below).

Think about it — even the right-wing rag, the New York Post, which would love more than anything to see a Republican in the White House, couldn't resist putting Eastwood, not Romney, on its front page the day after what was supposed to be Romney's big night!

What a strategic blunder! And that is what I think is the most important thing to come from the Clint Eastwood speech. It says something not about Eastwood, but about Romney's decision-making capabilities and poor judgement. After all, Romney made the decision to have Eastwood speak right before he did. It also reveals Romney's poor judgment in choosing his campaign staff. Did not one of them think Eastwood might overshadow their candidate? So their misjudgment ended up probably costing their candidate all the positive exposure his biggest speech was supposed to give him.

These types of gaffes are probably more important than any speech in showing us the true capabilities of a candidate. It can be argued that the real value of our incredibly overly long presidential campaigns come in these moments. When mistakes in judgement reveal the real capabilities — or lack thereof in this case — of the candidates.



Wednesday, August 29, 2012

More Media Criticism

... and while I'm criticizing the media today, I have to say CNN is getting worse and worse. Just their anchors' general editorializing about stuff. Where's the objectivity? Disgraceful. Not journalism. On a related noted, watching the coverage of Hurricane Isaac today, I really have the feeling that this storm is being hyped way more than it merits. We'll see if what I'm saying proves to be true. Yes, they're evacuating some people from low-lying areas right near the Gulf that are prone to flooding. But from everything I've read, the levees in New Orleans proper, which led to the catastrophic flooding from Katrina 7 years ago today, are not close to having any problems whatsoever. You wouldn't know that from watching CNN! They are doing their best to make this a disaster that rivals Katrina. And I believe from all I've read and heard, that that is a very inaccurate exaggeration.

By the way, if people are out in a hurricane, being blown about, that by definition means that the hurricane is not that bad. Think about that when you see those photos of people in the wind and rain on The NY Times website and on CNN . What you're not seeing is it's probably college kids having fun. I did it when I was that age. If the hurricane was really bad, you would not be seeing people standing up in it!

Enough already.
Along those lines, Anderson Cooper, please sir, enough already. Get out of the rain.

Really bad jobs by the news media are one of my pet peeves. Excuse me for my ranting.

Huh?

I'm sorry, but the Republicans are having Condoleezza Rice speak at their convention tonight for what reason exactly? Are they aware that this person was part of the most incompetent  administration we've had in the White House maybe, like, ever? Why would they want to be associated with the team that brought us Iraq and other disasters? I don't get it. And I never understood their — and the media's for that matter — love affair with this person. What am I missing? Someone help me out here. I'm all ears.

Vacant Locations

Just a couple of vacant locations around Austin that have some nice potential:

1) The Organic Market next to the Windsor. Very excited about this location. It's part of a new condo so could house a very nice restaurant or another upscale grocer. (It's already set up to sell food, etc.) A bit cozy in terms of size. My choice would be a nice, new restaurant there. I would imagine the rent is pretty high though given it's a new construction. But, it's also on a side street. Hmmm, maybe we'll be looking at another fantastic food place like La Boulangerie, which also managed to afford a side street near Austin. And has found a huge following.

2) The former Marianella's Mexican spot. Right next to the McDonald's this location I see for another fast food chain. Chipotle is already coming next to Martha's, so while that would have been a no-brainer for them, that chain is out. (The location they chose is obviously better for them. Much better visibility in that highly-trafficked corner, right there visible even by Restaurant Row-goers.) What other fast food chains could come into that spot? 

Article About Metropolitan Ave.

Taci's chose Metropolitan Ave. over Austin St.
A reader sent me this link. It's an interesting look at Metropolitan Avenue discussing how and why it's rapidly becoming a "restaurant destination."
Affordable rents boost Forest Hills’ other retail strip

Now, if only they'd build that long-delayed trolley from Austin St. to Metropolitan through the Gardens I'd be there in a second! (Kidding! Don't all you Gardeners get upset. Just a joke. No one's building a trolley through your neighborhood....yet.)

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Arctic Sea Ice Lowest in Modern Era

Dot Earth: Arctic Sea Ice Hits New and Early Summer Low for Satellite Era The biggest retreat of sea ice on the Arctic Ocean in the modern era gives some polar experts chills.



There are things we Forest Hillers can do every day to save our planet, and ourselves. If you drive, how about taking public transportation to work? At least a couple of times each week? We're lucky to have access to a great subway and bus system here in FoHi.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Lincoln Movie Poster


Can't wait for this movie. By the way, I got the new Jaws Blu-Ray last week. Really great!

Huntley Charged with Corruption

A busy news day for us Forest Hillers...

Queens State Senator Charged in Corruption Investigation
Shirley L. Huntley was charged with tampering with evidence, conspiracy in the fifth degree and falsifying business records.

Proposals Rejected for Stadium

Seems like members of the West Side Tennis Club have decided to selfishly deny residents of Forest Hills future use of the Tennis Stadium as a center for music, theater and other arts. So sad. So disappointing. But, at least there's still some hope. The latest proposal would at least not touch a hair on the famous, iconic Stadium which is so well-known it was even recently the setting for an episode of Mad Men.

I'm glad the members have at least not decided to just sell it off to builders who would demolish it (to me, that would be as horrible an act as what was done to the original Penn Station. And look how that turned out. Today, you get to circumnavigate claustrophobic tunnels more fit for rats than humans. You used to catch your trains in a palace, a sister to the gorgeous Grand Central Station we thankfully still have today. But I digress...)

I'm also very glad that local City Councilwoman Karen Koslowitz has come around and called for the use of the stadium in a manner that can benefit all of the residents of the community.

Here's the article with this information: Forest Hills Courts Could Be Sold

Oh, and by the way, you're welcome for providing you with enough laughter to get your Monday off to a rip-roaring start. Yes, I too laugh hysterically every time I read that the Landmarks Preservation Commission rejected a proposal to make this amazing stadium - so pivotal in the history of sports in the United States and architecture overall - a landmark, thereby protecting it from demolition. After, all (excuse me, the laughing hurts so much I can barely type), what better structure to deny landmark status too, then a landmark? Ha!!

Poll Results

Here are the results so far from the August 14th poll that asked: "What do you dislike most about living in Forest Hills?"

216 people responded

1. The Supermarkets (47 votes)
2. Not enough fun stuff to do (45 votes)
3. Not enough good restaurants (40)
4. Queens Blvd. (32)
5. Not enough good take-out places (24)
6. The Shopping (14)
7. Other (14)

Hmmm, looking these over it occurred to me that a Whole Foods where the stalled construction site is on the north side of Queens Blvd. near something called a "Key Food" would solve most of these complaints, wouldn't it? Are you reading this Mr. Whole Foods? This is just a small, rinky dink blog so you can assume there's like another 10,000 non-voters living in Forest Hills for every vote in my poll. You do the math!

And here are the write-in responses:

Other Answers
Total
14
the new homes being built
Basement flooding
the projected Windsor II
the narrow sidewalks on Austin St.
Rude people who take over the entire sidewalk
Rude residents
lots of grumpy people
Nothing
need more daycare centers
not enough fitness center options
Parking
No Chipotles
Not enough coffee shops or cafes for writerss

I had to just remove one racist answer - not bad!! Keep it up guys!




Friday, August 24, 2012

The Apple iPhone Patent Case

This makes me so incredibly happy!
From the NY Times:
Jury Awards $1 Billion to Apple in Samsung Patent Case
The jury found that Samsung infringed upon a series of Apple patents on mobile devices, in a closely watched court case that could have broad implications for the industry.

I despise, DESPISE, copycats! I HATE IT when companies, people, whomever, just blatantly rip off someone else's idea. For years now, every time someone took out their Android phone and showed it to me, saying, "Look! It's so much better than the iPhone!!! Isn't it great??" I always thought to myself, "It's a freakin' illegal copy you moron! Don't you have any respect for ingenuity???"
Steve Jobs said that Android was "a stolen product." I hope he's resting easier tonight.

Empire State Building Shooting

My friend, a local Forest Hills resident, found himself in the midst of the commotion today during the shooting. Here's a couple of the pics he took:



Wednesday, August 22, 2012

So, so true, and so nicely explained, as usual. Just makes me want to throw up....
From The NY Times: 
Just Think No 
Why do Republicans have a gender gap when they ascribe superpowers to women, like the ability to block rape sperm with sheer willpower?
I cannot believe in this day and age the Republican Party actually has as part of their platform that a woman must give birth to the baby even if the result of rape or incest. So revolting. What kind of people are these? Who supports this bullshit?! At this point, I think the Republican Party should just be ruled illegal - it is an affront to decency.

It's Beginning to Look A Lot Like...

.... Frozen yogurt, as in Red Mango. Wow! What happened to that OTB facade? It seems like it was there just last week.

Just a clarification: I don't know if this is what the Red Mango storefront is going to look like. This is what the adjacent space to it looks like, and we don't yet know what it will be.

My friend took the pic so I didn't realize this pic doesn't include the Red Mango space on the corner of this building.


Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Fire Pics

Here's some dramatic photos a friend sent in of a fire near the corner of 71st Ave. and Dartmouth St. yesterday.






Sunday, August 19, 2012

Obama Fly-Over

This was an unexpected thrill this weekend...

Organic Market Closing

This store, right near the Windsor building, gave it a go for a few years. But I guess between Natural and the new Farmer's Market it just couldn't make it. I liked their freshly-made sandwiches, way in the back. But I noticed their shelves were thinning out in recent months...

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Tennis Event in FoHi Saturday

Click to see a bigger version And visit evianwrc.com for more information.


evian® Debuts The First Annual evian Wood Racquet Cup (via PR Newswire)

NEW YORK, Aug. 14, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Paying tribute to the heritage of evian and the brand's history with the US Open, evian®(a brand of Danone Waters of America, Inc.) will debut its first annual retro tennis tournament with the evian Wood Racquet Cup taking place on Saturday, August 18, 2012…

Natural Goes Indian

By the way, while we're on the subject of food, I was thrilled to see the other day that Natural on Austin is now selling frozen meals from Cafe Spice. I've been getting these from Whole Foods in Manhattan for years and they are really great.

Yes, I know, some will say, why in the world when we have the best Indian food in all of the US of A an express stop away would we want to have a frozen Indian meal? Well, for those days when we are spectacularly lazy, of course.


Newest Delectable Delicacy

I love discovering delicious food, especially when I find it unexpected places.

I have been getting pizza from the recently opened Gloria Pizza (right next to the Midway Theater) every couple of weeks for a while now and have been liking it more every time I go. My most recent discovery was their Grandma pizza - delicious, tangy and saucy squares of goodness, Though plenty of crust to chew on, the lesser amount of cheese has been especially appealing as I try to fight the battle of the bulge. I find Gloria's Grandma pizza to be the best I've found in Forest Hills. The sauce is so fresh and tangy - getting hungry just thinking about it!

But the real reason for this post is my delightfully unexpected discovery at Gloria Pizza - their house salad. Who on God's earth would've imagine that a simple house salad from a pizza place could be so delicious? Their secret ingredient - their amazing house dressing. I don't know how they make it, what goes into it, but trust me - it just may be the best salad dressing I've had in New York City, or right up there with the best.

I don't say this lightly. Believe me, I am not easy to please when it comes to food. (I'll never set foot in T-Bone again, for instance, since the time they served my Dad their shrimpless shrimp salad like 10 years ago). So when I discover something this good, I just have to spread the word.



Tuesday, August 14, 2012

President Obama Calls Mars Rover Team


And here's a color view of the surface of Mars taken from Curiosity. Click on the pic for a very cool larger view.



New Poll

It's a muggy, cloudy day, and they even expect big thunderstorms! Just the type of day to take out all of your frustrations on a new poll! Hooray! And a new poll with a decidedly uncharacteristically negative tone to it! All you poo-pooers will just love it! Enjoy!

Where Can We Fit One of These?

Now, this would be amazing here in FoHi. Where could we fit one?

Cologne-influenced German beer hall opens in Slope
Brooklyn is getting another whiff of Cologne thanks to a massive new beer hall inspired by the German city. A 200-seat pub opened for business on St. Marks Place near Fourth Avenue under the name Die Koelner Bierhalle — the borough’s second tribute to Germany’s fourth largest metropolis.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Project Runway Contestant Lives in Kew Gardens

Despite his success, Budhu plans on staying in Kew Gardens, where he moved a few years ago. "I'm a more reserved guy," he said, "and I like a place that is more quiet and serene."
Read the story here: Queens Designer Ven Budhu Turning Heads on 'Project Runway'

Friday, August 10, 2012

New Information on Chipotle for FoHi



Now we are hearing that Chipotle will probably be coming to Forest Hills, in the old Martha's Bakery space on Austin. A commenter had written about that here months ago and the information now seems more reliable so I am tentatively reporting it.

I believe this will be the first Chipotle in Queens. If I'm wrong, let me know.



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