Possible Big Things Next Weekend

There might be big things happening next weekend. There is a concert in Burlington, VT that will include my step daughter and her staggering vocal talent. That’s a big deal. Might the weekend turn out to be an even bigger deal?

Before the dark days of Covid-19 ruined everything, Jen and I used to try to go to New York during the Christmas season. Sure it’s freezing cold, but it’s New York at Christmas and it’s worth the frostbite and the shivering and all that.

Over the last month we’ve been talking ourselves into and out of making the trip. Jen wants to go but I’m nervous, then I want to go but Jen is nervous, and back and forth we go. Covid-19 paranoia at it’s worst, right? Yesterday Jen asked if I wanted to go to New York next weekend before we head up to Burlington. Sure it’s three hours in the wrong direction, but it’s still doable. I said yes, immediately. No doubts this time.

Will it happen? Who knows. There’s still a week to go for one of us to change our minds, but as of last night we’re in. I even took the last two hours of the day off next Friday in case we want to sneak out early. If we do it, we’ll do it on the cheap. In other words, we’ll stay outside of the city and take the commuter train into town. We’ve done that before. Staying in the city is preferable but hotels in New York are amazingly expensive. Cheaper rooms are the better option when you have two kids in college. Believe me.

If we do this it will be for me, personally, a test run for Disney World from a camera perspective. I’d bring a film camera and a digital camera and start with film and go until I finish a roll (or two?) and then go digital for the rest of the way. The only question is, which film stock should I bring? Oh, the questions. Talk about a dilemma, right?

The final New York question would be is The Book of Mormon still running on Broadway? Screw Hamilton, I wants me some South Park (adjacent)!

It’s the day after Thanksgiving so I guess it’s officially Christmas season, whether I like it or not. HoHoHo and all that crap.

Not My Best Travel Moment

We cut short our two days in Washington by one day and decided to spend that day in New York. We booked a hotel before we left DC, but otherwise had no plans.

We head North and Waze takes us into Manhattan through the Lincoln tunnel. The second we pull out of the tunnel a thunderstorm hits and the sky literally falls on us. Huge, massive downpour.

We get to the hotel, my wife runs inside to check us in and I wait for a valet. I’m double parked. A city bus comes up behind me. I have to move.

Around the block I hit monster traffic as everyone here (just like at home in Boston) equates rain with a suspension of all driving laws. Idiots everywhere. It took me about 10 minutes to get around the block. When I got back I double parked again. No one from the valet paying any attention. The rain continues to pour. Again, a city bus starts honking.

Screw you, bus driver!

I pulled up a little and blocked a driveway. Someone from the hotel comes out with an umbrella. Do I give you my key? No. Damn it. I get all discombobulated trying to hurry up and get the bags and get inside out of the rain and figure out who the hell gets my car key and who gives me a receipt…

…and I forgot my iPhone in the fucking car.

Looks like no Pokemon Go at the Empire State Building for me.

The Swankiest Room on Earth

Want to see the room we stayed in last weekend?

You’re gonna be jealous.

As jealous as we are poor now.



Yes, we had a television embedded into our bathroom mirror. Yes, that’s a thing.





Oh yeah, and unless we forget… there was the awesome view.




And that, friends and neighbors, is the sweetest suite on Earth. Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go cry over the fact that we are now dirt poor.

New York

We were supposed to head to New York today to celebrate my wife’s upcoming birthday. Unfortunately there was a snow storm in the forecast so we had to scrap the plan.

We left yesterday instead.

So now instead of spending hours on the road today trying to get here, we are looking for things to do on what is literally a bonus day in the city.

We are about a block away from the Empire State Building, and our hotel room is facing it. As an added bonus, we can see the new One World Trade Center building (aka the Freedom Tower) from our room too, and if we look out a different window we can see the top of the Chrysler Building.

This suite is pretty sweet!

New York, the Rest of the Weekend

Get ready. Here comes a bonanza of New York pics. Basically, everything that doesn’t involve Ground Zero.

We stayed at the Omni on 5th Avenue. We started our Saturday with a nice walk down 5th.

We came across St Patrick’s Cathedral. It is entirely under renovations. Inside and out.

We did not go to Radio City this time, but I always feel the need to acknowledge it.

I’m sure there is a logical reason for big tanks of Nitrogen to be out on the street. I’m sure of it.

A bunch of the stores on 5th had Christmas window displays. I want to say that this is Sacks, but I’m not sure. I’m not even sure I spelled Sacks correctly.

We visited the Rockefeller Center tree on Sunday, but not on Saturday. This was taken as we passed by, from across the street.


Down the street from the Empire State Building. We didn’t go there either. It’s not the tallest building in the city anymore.

5th Ave, babie.

Modern Art, or geometry homework? You be the judge.

The obligatory subway adventure. Get ready for blurry train pics.

Told you.

My love. My wife. She who had the ridiculously irresponsible idea to visit the city. Good thinking, love!


We happened upon a movie shoot. Or at least some trucks and a caterer.

I took many, many pictures of random buildings.



I love finding the normal looking buildings hidden behind the gigantic sky scrapers. Look at this little two story runt.

A razor, a shaving brush, and a stand to hang them off of… $300. I love New York. (no, we didn’t buy it. My beard (or the ugly crap that passes for it) ain’t worth that much)

On this corner is located a place that needs to be saved for future reference. Last time we were in New York we stayed across the street from a restaurant that had a Sunday brunch. On Sunday we went there without realizing that their Sunday brunch was $100 a plate. Oh my stars it was worth it though. The bacon… oh the bacon.

The Christmas lights looked more impressive at night, but what are you going to do, right?

Concrete next to glass and steel. Old next to new.


After lunch we went back to the hotel for a while. When we went out again it was dark out.



That cop came up on us while we were crossing the street. We were in the way so a bus couldn’t pull through the red light to let the cop by. Sorry about that, officer.

This is on Park Avenue. Jen thought it was the Helmsley Building.


The Christmas lights really are much better at night.


Because we booked the hotel at the absolute last second, we were able to snag a massive discount on a fantastic room on the top floor of the Omni hotel. Granted, it wasn’t the suite on the top floor of the Omni hotel. This plaque is on the wall outside of said suite.


On Sunday morning we went for another walk. This time we wanted to go to the Rockefeller Center Christmas tree.



There were three Christmas light cats. At least we only saw three. The third one is coming later on.

Back at the tree.

This trip was our Christmas present to each other. Merry Christmas, Jen. I love you so much!





We didn’t go up to The Rock’s observation floor. It was freezing out on the ground. It would have been much worse a billion feet in the air.


And we finish with the third Christmas light cat. I hope you enjoyed my pointless pics from our Christmasy weekend get away to New York.

Radio City Music Hall

Let the rumors begin.

Word on the street yesterday was that Rush is about to release the dates of the second leg of the Clockwork Angels North American tour.  It’s supposed to take place in March and April, just prior to the band going to Europe in May.  There are no definite dates yet.  There was a leaked itinerary that was pretty clearly fake.  It featured three separate stops at one venue.  That seemed very unlikely and it removed any possible credibility from the “leak”.

Still, the rumors suggest that there will be another stop at Radio City Music Hall in New York City.  I remember back in 1983, reading in some lame rock magazine (Circus?  Maybe?) that Rush had booked six nights at Radio City.  Back then, that sounded like the most amazing example of success.  To book six consecutive nights in one of the most famous of all US venues.  It was hard to believe.  The 13 year old me decided that someday, he would see Rush at Radio City.

I am still waiting for a chance.  I have seen them in Manhattan twice.  Both times at Madison Square Garden.  As unbelievably awesome as those experiences were, they still weren’t Radio City.

I have been inside Radio City Music Hall once.  My wife and I took the tour on one of our visits to the city.  Hopefully the next time we’re there it will be to see the Holy Triumvirate of Prog Rock.