In The Know | #10

A weekly roundup of interesting, inspiring, delicious and beautiful things that I’ve stumbled upon recently.

Listen:  Paperwhite
I first heard the Brooklyn “Dream-Pop duo” Paperwhite at OTB Live, the intimate performance featured in last week’s In The Know (#9).  Live, they performed a stripped down version of 4 of their songs, which was a great introduction to their music, and Katie’s vocals. My favorite song of the evening Take Me Back reminded me of Haim, and I was hooked.

Read:  A Founder of Secret, the Anonymous Social App, is Shutting it Down | NY Times
An article about the most recent company to start, raise millions, and then shut down. With a lifespan of a mere 16 months, Secret represents the faddish nature of so many startups who raise money and initial buzz, only to be nonexistent in a matter of months. But to me, this article also represents a more disturbing trend. One of the reasons usage of the app declined and eventually shut down, was the amount of trolling and cyber-bullying that it promoted. But seeing how it began as an anonymous app with the intention of being “an outlet for people to speak honestly about things that would otherwise result in career damage” – was anyone really surprised that this concept would attract people with hateful, negative things to say? I see an increasingly frightening disconnect between smart people with great ideas who are apparently oblivious to the fact that much of todays technology can be used for just as much bad as for good… Ah, but thats a rant for another day.

Watch:  Questions No One Knows the Answer To | TED Talk by Chris Anderson
We know the answers to more about our universe than we ever have as a human species. Yet there is still SO much that we know absolutely nothing about… and will probably never know. That might be frustrating for some people, but I find it fascinating. We know so little –there’s so much to learn, to question, to wonder at!  This TED talk puts life into perspective, and helps illustrate (literally!) the unknowable questions all around us.

Taste:  Nitecap
Small, dim, intimate cocktail bar under Schapiros restaurant in the LES. The coolest menu design I’ve seen includes a huge drink list, food, plus fun + games to entertain yourself while waiting for your date. If you still don’t know what to order with all the options on the menu, ask the bartender to whip you up something special and you won’t be disappointed.

Explore: The Dean
A recent addition to Providence, Rhode Island is The Dean – a design conscious boutique hotel that seriously ups the cool factor of my little hometown city.  Set in the perfect downtown location, it’s the best way to explore all that The Best Small City has to offer. Weekend getaway, anyone?

In The Know | #9

A weekly roundup of interesting, inspiring, delicious and beautiful things that I’ve stumbled upon recently.

Listen:  Laura Mvula – She
Recently came across British singer-songwriter Laura Mvula, and was enchanted by her powerful voice and often orchestral arrangements.  Drawing from her acapella and gospel backgrounds, She is one of my favorites, starting off delicate and dreamy, mostly acoustic with a choir in the background, almost hymn-like. As it progresses, it layers and gains complexity for a moment, before returning full circle and fading out as gently as it began.

Read: How One Stupid Tweet Ruined Justine Sacco’s Life | NY Times
I just finished Jon Ronson’s book, So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed. This NY Times Magazine article he wrote was what initially sparked my interest, as it covers three case studies of individuals profiled in the book.  I’m not even on Twitter, and I remember the Justine Sacco debacle well – that’s saying something. Really interesting look at the psychology of “public shaming” via social media and the destruction it causes in the lives of those who have unwittingly found themselves on the receiving end of it.

Watch: American Shokunin | Ryan Bush
A beautiful video about the art of Bonsai. Ryan Neil talks about his work, the similarities between trees and humans, and being a “master” at your craft.  An elegant look at the intricacies this incredible art form.

Taste:  Cafe Clover
Beautiful design, delicious food and elegant branding. I am shocked that Cafe Clover isn’t hyped more, though the fact that it’s recently opened (January 2015) means there’s still plenty of time for word to spread. Far from touristy, it was filled with what felt like the most in-the-know crowd in the village. Though you wouldn’t guess it from the flavors and variety, each item on the deceptively healthy menu is vetted by a nutritionist first – one of many reasons to return.

Explore: OTB Live
Brooklyn art and sound design studio One Thousand Birds hosts it’s monthly OTB Live series at it’s Bushwick location. Three local bands (new or established) play sets of 4 songs each with breaks in between for food and BYO drinks. Launching in SF soon, it is an evening full of great people, great food, and great music.

In The Know | #8


A weekly roundup of interesting, inspiring, delicious and beautiful things that I’ve stumbled upon recently.

Listen:  Wet – Don’t Wanna Be Your Girl
Mellow, sad and beautiful. Slow jam anthem of anyone who’s ever wanted to say “You can’t do me right // So I decided that // I don’t wanna be your girl no more”

Read:  The Lefsetz Letter – Catalina on Shark Tank
If you’re wondering Who The Hell is Bob Lefsetz, he’s a former music industry nobody, who began writing his opinions on the industry and has subsequently gained the respect (and wrath) of hundreds of thousands of people who subscribe to his newsletter. Besides music, he writes about technology, culture, and society as a whole. The thing is, he’s spot on in most regards, which attributes for his large following (and the haters). “Catalina on Shark Tank” is one of my favorites, as it touches on some of the same ideas about intelligence as this recent piece I wrote. There’s something I really like about Bob. You don’t need to have made it big to have a valid opinion. You just need to be right.

Watch:  The Now – Ray Collins
A short video on the photography of waves, as captured by Ray Collins, an Australian coal miner turned photographer. Being colorblind, it’s especially interesting to hear how he looks for the changes in light, the shape, and the dark vs. light instead of color.  His transition from coal mining – a job that could not be further from photography and the ocean – to the present day awards and accolades for his creative work is inspiring. Who knows what hobby or passion of ours could blossom into something utterly unexpected?

Taste:  Cheeky’s
There are only good things to say about this New Orleans inspired spot, and their sandwiches. The best kept “secret” of the LES, everyone who stumbles upon this tiny unassuming shop, or is referred there by a friend feels like they’ve just been initiated into a secret society of serious sandwich lovers. Two guys man the counter, one taking orders and the other crafting the most perfect mouthwatering delights, like fried chicken on a biscuit and braised short rib on challah.

Explore:  Uprise Art
A super cool startup for the next generation of art collectors. Uprise Art boasts an incredible selection of work by the best contemporary artists, showcases them in their online gallery and through various events and exhibitions, and makes it easy to purchase the work or give it a “trial run” by paying through monthly installments. Their gorgeously curated website even includes a peek inside the homes of some of their collectors, which serves as both artistic and interior inspiration.

In the Know | #7


A weekly roundup of interesting, inspiring, delicious and beautiful things that I’ve stumbled upon recently.

Listen:  Broods – Bridges
Clearly I have a style of music that I gravitate towards, and Broods encompasses the best of it. All their music I’ve listened to so far is great, but Bridges has been a consistent favorite. Ethereal female vocals, sweet intro, exploding into a complexity of layers and beats – rinse and repeat.

Read:  Interview with Clayton Cubitt  |  The Great Discontent 
I’m fascinated by interviews with creative people, talking about their journey and how they “figured it out” or pursued their path, usually against significant odds. A photographer and filmmaker who has shot for the likes of Vogue and Rolling Stone, Clayton Cubitt’s story involves all the key elements – a nomadic childhood with a single parent, finding creative ways to sell his art to classmates when he was young, leaving home at 16 to make it on his own and eventually moving to New York City to fulfill his dream. There’s a lot of good stuff in this article, and I’m especially inspired by the line “I want to take the long-road approach to what I do. What I’m doing is not a sprint; it’s a marathon. I’d rather focus on what’s meant to be, what’s organic and real, than chase trends or cash.”

Watch:  LøV – Vanessa Bruno
This short fashion film featuring Kate Bosworth is a visual delight. The images alternate between strange movement, various locations and gorgeous scenery, subtly featuring the clothing without making it the focus. The part with the tree by the lake and mountains is stunning, and reminds me very strongly of a dream I once had. I wish more fashion brands would utilize art and video instead of traditional campaigns.

Taste:  Black Tree
Known for it’s sandwiches and cocktails, this spot in the Lower East Side sources all it’s food from within 50 miles. Besides the staples on the menu, each week features a different meat or ingredient. Last week was chicken, so I had to try the Tree-Fil-A which included pickled lettuce and some kind of delicious sauce on toasted thick cut bread. The image above is their Winter Pig Sandwich, a staple on the menu (and probably my next meal!)

Explore: Shut Up Claudia
I recently discovered the work of Claudia Alexandrino, a Portugese artist living and working in Milan. Her whimsical illustrations feature bright colors, snarky remarks and naked people. Whats not to love? I am inspired by her playful style, and hope to have a piece hanging on my wall someday, even if I have to travel to Milan to get it!

In The Know | #6

InTheKnow6A weekly roundup of interesting, inspiring and beautiful things that I’ve stumbled upon recently.

Listen:  Francis and the Lights – For Days
I was listening to this song on the bus, and someone tapped me on the shoulder and asked “excuse me, is that Francis and the Lights?” Just the beat coming through my headphones was enough for them to recognize the distinctive style. I like the juxtaposition of the apocalyptic lyrics, packaged in a pop song “I’d never say I wish that it would happen/ But in a way I wish it would / If there was just an airstrike / Or a natural disaster / You could have been mine”.  His various albums and songs have different styles and influences, yet there is an unmistakable sound that is uniquely his own. Plus, the man can dance.

Read:  Living Off The Grid  |  Flint Magazine 
In this interview, Michael Brown – a Kansas City portrait artist – shares his story of pursuing his art, consciously choosing to be homeless and living “off the grid”.  After 15 years of working at an unfulfilling job just to pay the bills, he chose to leave his apartment, sell his car, his furniture and focus on his art.  “You realize that it takes very little to survive in life and the time most people spend on the bells and whistles in life to keep up with the Joneses or with society, you see the foolishness of it all… You see life on its basic level… You understand real quick what is important to have and what is a complete waste of time.” His answers are incredibly insightful. He speaks about the importance of not getting comfortable relying on others, and the way that people both inspire and disappoint. His definition of happiness and statements about travel and experiencing the world are eloquent, and very much in line with my own beliefs. An inspiring read.

Watch:  Ballet Meets Robotics | the making of Francesca Da Rimini
The story of Francesca Da Rimini is told through the dancing of San Francisco ballet principal dancers Maria Kochetkova and Joan Boada. Captured by a robotic camera, this piece was designed as an experiment in synchronizing dance with Robotic motion. Ballet Meets Robotics is the behind the scenes video describing the making of the first piece, giving a deeper insight into the complexities that go into the making of something that looks so effortlessly simple.

Taste:  Creamy Cauliflower Garlic Rice – Pinch of Yum
This genius recipe takes a vegetable as healthy as cauliflower, and turns it into something decadent (yet guiltless). When made with rice as the recipe suggests, it becomes a sort of creamy risotto, and a great base for additional vegetables or meat. The texture of the cauliflower on it’s own is kind of like a mashed potato, so most recently I made just the pureed cauliflower as a side in place of a starch, to go along with salmon and spinach. It. Was. Awesome. So many possibilities!

Explore: The Hunt NYC
I stumbled into The Great Frog on Orchard Street a couple weeks back, drawn in by the motorcycle I saw, and lo and behold discovered there was yet another shop inside called The Hunt, filled with all sorts of curated oddities and objects. Besides a selection of pricey antiques (everything from aviation goggles and bookends, to taxidermy and vintage photos), The Hunt is also a design firm that can be hired for interior decor and custom design work. The fact that it’s located in the back of another shop makes finding this place a bit of a hunt in itself, and was a welcome surprise to discover.

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