Main Menu

Tag Archives | New-York

…The subway is not a dangerous place?

New York Subway

Lenore Skenazy of The New York Sun left her 9-year-old son at Bloomingdale’s with “a subway map, a MetroCard, a $20 bill, and several quarters, just in case he had to make a call.”

Several hours later…he turned up at home, safe and sound.

Surprised?

Half the people she told that story to were, but for what reason? Have we come to distrust our fellow man so much that we feel the need to keep children under lock and key so that they have no chance to foster any type of independence? I think we have, and Lenore would agree.

The problem is not that we aren’t aware of the risks, and haven’t heard stories of what can happen, it’s that “we all know that story — and the one about the Mormon girl in Utah and the one about the little girl in Spain — and because we do, we all run those tapes in our heads when we think of leaving our kids on their own.”

Except, instead of making them safer, locking them up just makes them dependent and afraid of the world.

    The statistics show that this is an incredibly rare event, and you can’t protect people from very rare events. It would be like trying to create a shield against being struck by lightning.

So perhaps it’s time for everyone to just relax a little bit, trust a little bit, and give a little bit, because otherwise, what kind of world have we created for ourselves?

[The New York Sun – Why I Let My 9-Year-Old Ride The Subway Alone]

…MOO is having an egg hunt?

MOO Egg Hunt

Get a jump on the Easter season with MOO’s Egg Hunt.

MOO has hidden eggs online, in MOO products, and in the great outdoors, and finding one could win you one of over 3,500 prizes.

Each working day they’ll hide new clues in the MOO Blog, and there are also clues hidden in orders for current MOO customers.

The first person to find each egg wins a prize, and another nine random finders will also win prizes, for a total of 10 winners per egg.

They’ve also partnered with Flickr, so if you’d like to get started with finding eggs in the great outdoors, and live in either London, Montreal, Bordeaux, Oaxaca, Tokyo, Paris, Niagra Falls, Toronto, New York, Brighton, Glasgow, BC, Oslo, Barcelona, Brussels, Silicon Valley, Wellington, Oxford, Austin, Konstanz, or San Francisco, then check the map for an egg near you.

[MOO – Egg Hunt]

[Flickr – MOO Egg Hunting Map]

…It’s Movie Monday: I Am Legend?

I Am Legend PosterI Am Legend felt like a good idea that no one knew what to do with.

There were a few shining stars:

Will Smith’s acting was superb, in a Tom Hanks on an island sort of way, and you really feel for him as he navigates the empty streets of New York with Sam, his devoted dog, and his slowly fading sanity as he tries his best to cure the zombied world around him.

The CGI work was also superb, and you will easily believe that New York was stripped bare and left to sit for a few years to give it that true, hasn’t seen humans in a while look and feel.

However, there were also a few disappointments:

The story was…less than superb. It starts out slow, which is fine, since Will is, after all, alone, except for his dog, so he doesn’t exactly have a lot to do. He spends his time driving around the emptied streets in abandoned sports cars, hunting for deer that now roam those streets, teeing off on the back of an aircraft carrier, and, when he has a few spare moments, trying to cure the zombie disease that has killed off the rest of the world. And hiding from darkness. This takes up most of his time, and most of the first half of the movie is spent setting this groundwork for the story that you think will come.

Unfortunately, the second half of the film doesn’t do much better. There are a few moments when the pace picks up, and you begin to feel as if something is actually going to happen, but they’re few and far between, and you’re soon lulled into a sedated state as you begin to simply watch Will live. Then, the end of the film arrives, and it comes so abruptly that you hardly have time to comprehend what’s going on. Just as quickly as it began, the lights flick back and on you’re left sitting in your chair with a strong feeling of “Meh.”

The story also suffers from the problem of “Well, isn’t that convenient.” Every time something needs to happen, it does, and every time you see a movie cliché building, it doesn’t fail to disappoint. I can only think of one twist that I didn’t see coming, but even that twist seemed forced and didn’t make much sense when you consider what was discussed during the preceding parts of the movie. The ending basically rounded out the whole film, as it managed to be both conveniently timed and cliché filled.

I Am Legend just feels like a film that relied on a lot of CGI and Will Smith to cover up a thin plot and poor, cliché details. It lacked the scare that it needed to be a good horror film, the emotion that it needed to be a good ‘man on an island’ film, and the twists and turns it needed to be a good action/adventure film. Instead, it forces its way through a butchering of Richard Matheson’s story, and avoids anything that could have made this a great film.

[I Am Legend]

[Rotten Tomatoes – I Am Legend]

[IMDb – I Am Legend]

[Wikipedia – I Am Legend]

…It’s Things Thursday: Valentine One?

Alex Roy

When Alex Roy drives, Alex Roy drives fast.

The veteran of numerous rallies, races, and records, he recently drove from New York to Santa Monica in 31 hours and 4 minutes, beating the previous transcontinental record by over an hour. To give you an idea of the kind of speed it takes to break a record like that, think about this: Roy needed a sustained speed of almost 90 miles per hour.

For 31 hours!

So what kind of technology does it take to pilot a four-wheel rocket through 31,000 highly trained highway patrol?

  • Tasco 8 x 40 binoculars with a Kenyon KS-2 gyro stabilizer
  • Military spec Steiner 7 x 50 binoculars
  • Bumper-mounted L-3 Raytheon NightDriver thermal camera
  • Flush, bumper-mounted Blinder M40 laser jammers
  • Redundant Garmin StreetPilot 2650 GPS units
  • Preprogrammed Uniden police radio scanners
  • Ceiling-mounted Uniden CB radio with high-gain whip antenna
  • And last but not least, a Valentine One radar/laser detector

Valentine One

Since 1992, Valentine has been making a radar detector that refuses to loose. It’s a company that only makes radar detectors, only make ones model of radar detector (constantly upgraded with the latest technology), and only makes the best radar detector, so you know that they mean business.

On my recent trip to Las Vegas for the SEMA show, I had a chance to check out the capabilities of my newly purchased V1, and I must say, I was beyond impressed. Not only did it constantly keep me aware of what was going on around me (the patented arrows tell you with amazing accuracy if the radar is in front of, beside, or behind you), but it also saved me from at least one sure-fire ticket.

Coming down a hill with a clear lane and a tailwind, my car was more than happy to break the posted speed limit, and trusting in the powers of the V1, I was more than happy to oblige.

Suddenly, the V1 flashed Ka band, and maxed out the signal strength indicator, showing sure signs of a cop ahead. Heading the warning, I quickly brought the car down to posted speeds, and peered ahead for the awaiting cruiser. After about a mile of driving, I came upon the hidden cruiser, tucked neatly under an overpass with his radar gun pointed directly down the road that I had just traveled. Just past him though, there were three other cruisers parked and waiting to pick up what the radar gun picked off. It was a speed trap, and thanks to the V1, I had easily avoided it.

Chock one up in the V1 win column.

Though you can’t exactly call the Valentine One cheap, it’s a definite case of you get what you pay for. (And it’s also probably cheaper than getting a ticket.) Plus, if Alex Roy trusts it to drive across the country, shouldn’t you trust it to drive the kids to soccer? (Quickly.)

Also, having tested out a few other radar detectors over the years, I can confirm Valentine’s claims that the V1 is the easiest to use, most reliable, and gave the best warning time out of the bunch.

Your driving record will thank you.

(For more information about Alex Roy’s record run, check out his book, The Driver, and his documentary, 32 Hours 7 Minutes.)

[Valentine One]

[32 Hours 7 Minutes]

[Wired Magazine – The Pedal-to-the-Metal, Totally Illegal, Cross-Country Sprint for Glory]

[Team Polizei 144]

…The Bravia bunnies are coming?

Wow!

Remember when I gave you a preview of the new Sony Bravia ad that was being filmed in New York?

Well it’s done, and it’s amazing.

Following in the footsteps of the bouncy ball ad and the paint explosion ad, this spot sure had some big shoes to fill, but with one of the most ambitious stop-motion films ever created, I’d say it managed to top them both.

Featuring over 200 Play-Doh bunnies roaming the streets of New York, a total of 100,000 frames make up this 1:30 spot. The entire commercial took over three weeks to film, used 2.5 tons of plasticine, and employed 40 animators to make the motion.

Prepare to be amazed. Again.

And a behind the scenes:

[Sony Bravia]

[Passion Pictures]