Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Do Not Recycle!

Not that we want to be, but you know we'll never be like Brooklyn when you see signs like this.
And it's my beloved Tradefair on 30th Ave. I wonder if they'll bust me when I sneak a bag in the store. It could get exciting!

Maybe their wall of shame is filled with hipster eco shoplifters. I haven't looked in a while.

Something to consider:

Sunday, October 24, 2010

East Good Bread! (please)

Astorians, allow me to be blunt: you have shitty taste in bread. Or maybe you have good taste, but bread in Astoria sucks.

There was a great french bakery on Broadway. It closed because people complained it was more expensive than the bad bakeries. Duh... because they take time to make bread right and use butter in their pastries.

I usually buy my bread from [eyes to ground in slight shame] Panera. Their sourdough is pretty good, which is more than I can say about any other bakery here. Hell, they have sourdough. And I also like the bagels from Brooklyn Bagels (though they're a bit too big). Other than that it's pita, reheated frozen Portuguese rolls from Tradefair, and the occasional no-knead home-baked bread.

Well now there's new great cafe in town, cute and tasty, with home-cooked Moroccan food. You can get French baguettes with bite and taste from Balthazar, the french bakery in Manhattan. And they cost just $2! Real croissants, too. Just $1.75 for plain and or $2.25 for chocolate or almond.

But you might not know from the outside. Here it is:

So now you know.

So go there, make the sweet guy happy. And keep him in business we can all buy good bread.

Harissa 34-05 30th Ave. (formerly and still maybe owned by Angel's Steak--Angel, buddy, you had a nice place, but maybe you shouldn't put steak in the name if you don't actually sell, er, steak!).

In a very sad farewell, Greek House foods closed (the little place between the vegetable stands on 30th Ave). That was my Greek store. He was my man, and always gave me good feta. Luckily, there are still other Greek places (and objectively, Mediterranean may be better Greek store. But they don't know who am I. I don't know their whole family from working in the store). I just hope he retired by choice and not necessity.

Also a sad goodbye to Marino and Sons fish store. Since 1932 says they sign. Plus I feel guilty because just the day before I saw them closed, I thought, "30th Ave could actually do with one less fish store." But I didn't think it would come true! Plus, Marino was probably the best of the lot (though they're all pretty good).

And here's a picture of the new Roosevelt Island trams. They're testing them now. They can run independently of each other. Plus they have more glass to see out of.

And just so you don't think I actually get up to ride at 8AM on a Sunday morning, please note I had been up all night. And I still am. [Rock!]

Thursday, October 14, 2010

As big as a car

I love this. And was kind of thinking of this the other day while on a bus. I had 35 fellow passengers (kind of empty for the M60). I then tried to count 35 people in cars that drove by. It's not easy, but it's about two city blocks of cars.

When push comes to shove, people who drive cars are greedy. And the bigger the car, the greedier the person.
The Austrian civil engineer Hermann Knoflacher developed the Gehzeug, or walkmobile, in 1975 to allow a pedestrian to approximate the amount of space taken by a motorist. It is ideal for protesting against the primacy given to automobiles in the city, or just taking a walk in traffic.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010


From the Wall Street Journal:
A new helmet law reduces bicycle deaths among the affected age group by about 19%. It doesn't affect older riders. Since serious bicycle accidents are rare, however, the absolute numbers are still small, about eight fewer deaths a year among kids 5 to 15 than would otherwise occur in the states with helmet laws. "It's not a ton of lives when you compare it to something like wearing your seat belt," says Prof. Stehr.

One reason for the drop is, of course, that more kids wear helmets when they get into accidents. But another is that many give up cycling altogether. Using surveys of parents, the professors find that about 650,000 fewer children ride bikes each year after helmet laws go into effect. That's about 81,000 fewer riders for every life saved. Helmets may save lives, but the dork factor also takes its toll.

Wednesday, October 06, 2010

Queenplaza Bike Lanes

The bike lanes through Queensplaza from Queens Blvd are starting to take shape. Very exciting!

I'm still not clear how exactly you're supposed to exit the bridge and head east. But I'll assume they're doing something logical and not leaving the long bike-the-wrong-way-against-traffic section heading east off the bridge.