Saturday, February 27, 2010

Staying Connected With Hawaii During A Tsunami

I woke up at 9:30 am EST today, and like every Saturday, I turned on my computer and checked my Facebook wall, which was scattered with status updates from friends in Hawaii who had posted about a Tsunami warning.  I was instantly concerned.  As all of Hawaii was still asleep (it was 4 am there), I was in New York trying to figure out how serious the situation is back home.
Until today, when I needed to know what was going on halfway around the world in real-time, I did not understand how useful Twitter, Facebook or online streaming video can be.  I have been watching streaming live video of Hawaii's shorelines on CNN, reading tweets from total strangers in Hawaii about the progression of the Tsunami and viewing mobile uploads of crazy gas station lines in Hawaii.  It is interesting to see how a sudden, urgent event plays out online:  UFC champion BJ Penn has been video blogging his preparation for the disaster on his site and Hawaii's newspaper The Honolulu Advertiser (@HonAdv) needed some help learning how to tweet.
Social media is surely changing the way we get news, and obviously, media channels are learning to adapt; however, the easiest and quickest way to find out what's going on is a phone call, and after talking to my family, I know that they will be okay and I have nothing to be concerned.  Stay safe Hawaii!  

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Forget Gold, I Want the SMYTHE Point Blanket Coat

Oh Canada, finally something more desirable than your maple syrup!  Rachel Bilson recently sported an adorable, comfy coat at the Vancouver Olympics designed by Toronto-based label SMYTHE.  The limited-edition coats--only 10 were made (I really hope this is a lie)--are made out of the Canadian Clothing store Hudson's Bay Company's signature point blanket.  Besides the wide-rainbow stripes and oversized hood, I'm in love with the single clasp.  Oh, and I really like the really large pocket.  It was like SMYTHE made this jacket for me--easy access, great to pass out in because its practically a blanket and it can hold my chapstick, camera and a little snack!  AHHH I WANT ONE. 

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Olympic Hockey Predictions - Another US Canada Matchup?

I took a minute to fill out the bracket.  If you're wondering, my decisions were based on very little rationale, except that I predict USA winning gold and Canada pulling through in tonight's game against Russia (as much as I love you Ovechkin, Canada's blow out game last night against Germany is a sign).  The Czechs and Swedes are also really good (and this is based on how many NHL players I know), so I see them moving on to the semi-finals as well.  BIG GAMES TODAY! GO USA!

Sunday, February 21, 2010


Photo by
With an empty net goal in the last minute of the game, US defeats Canada 5-3.  Once that puck slid into Canada's empty net, I jumped out of my seat with my fists in the air, shouting "USA! USA!".  If today wasn't a Sunday, I'm sure I would have caused more damage but I'll save that for possibly next Sunday?  Now about that Gold...

USA vs. Canada, Miracle Part 2?

Will the US Men's Ice Hockey team beat Canada this Sunday and relive the same underdog victory that the US did over the Soviet Union in 1980?  Will this be another 'Miracle on Ice'?  Most predict not because Canada the home-team just won't let it happen.

Today at 7:40 pm starts the one game that will set the tone for Canada in the remaining week of the Winter Olympics.  As the host country, Canada is probably not too happy being fifth in the medal count with eight medals, but there is only one thing that matters to them--HOCKEY, and that Gold medal is one Canada cannot lose.  That doesn't mean I am cheering for Crosby and the Canada kids, because USA with a winning record so far, allowing only one goal from Switzerland and Norway, has just as much of a reason to win Gold.  It may not be the Cold War but its a frickin recession and we Americans need a reason to BELIEVE!  Unemployment is at an all-time low, young Americans are losing faith in the college system, dumb celebrities are taking over our televisions and Tiger cheated on his wife... WE NEED A MIRACLE!

I have been looking forward to this game for the past week and I want it to be close, good fight.  I'm starting the morning off with a recap of the US's last two games (DVR'ed it), then watching Disney's Miracle and throwing on my BU jersey signed by 2009 National Champs (if anybody knows a miracle, it's this team).  AHHHH, I'm so ready for this and you should be ready too.  Watch the 1980 Miracle: 

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Walgreens Share A Kiss Times Square Billboard

Today holds another life record.  My face was on a giant Times Square billboard.  Digitas Chicago with branding firm Gilmore Group developed Walgreens' Share A Kiss campaign where you can upload a photo of you and your sweetheart to be shown on a billboard in Times Square OR go to Times Square today from 11 am-2 pm and have the Walgreens street team take your photo which would show up 15 minutes later on the billboard located above Times Square Walgreens.

Now that I have moved out of Gramercy and work at the edge of Times Square, I decided it wouldn't hurt to wrestle with sidewalk peddlers and lost tourists.  The snow had stopped, the sun was out and the roads were plowed.  I walked through Times Square unsure of what to look for, but obvioulsy right out side of Walgreens was a team of red parkas holding clipboards and taking photos of tourists.

I really like the current Walgreens Valentine's campaign, especially the TV spot where the boyfriend buys his girlfriend contact solution in an attempt to top the other guy, because everyone knows your girlfriend always needs contact solution.

Don't be sad if you didn't make it down to Times Square or don't live in NY, it's not too late to have your pretty face show up on the billboard, submit your photo here.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

NYC Restaurant Week: The Secret to MEGU's Platinum Rice

Last night, I had a late restaurant week dinner (10:15 pm was their earliest reservation available) at fancy-shmancy Japanese restaurant MEGU in Tribeca.  I always look forward to restaurant week because I can wear my most ridiculous pair of heels and eat at some of NYC or Boston's best restaurants for $24-$35!

Some friends had told me the RW menu at MEGU is nothing spectacular (I've had better Japanese food in Hawaii) and yelp reviews were mostly negative saying the RW scallops were overcooked, wait was long and food was bland.  I originally had restaurant week reservations for Fig & Olive in the Meatpacking District, but one faithful Saturday morning, Travel Channel's Steak Paradise, a show about the best places in the country for steak, featured MEGU's kobe steak, and at that moment I knew it was time to break my kobe virginity.  I was determined to try Kobe steak for the first time! 

The verdict:
The sauteed scallops in a foie gras teriyaki sauce was really tasty. The two half-dollar coin sized scallops were not over cooked and the sauce was so rich and delicious that I dipped my eel/avocado roll (which I ordered outside of the RW menu) in the leftover sauce.  The oriental salad, which was two slices of raw red snapper on a bed of julienned carrots and daikon with walnuts, almonds, sunflower seeds and peanuts drizzled with hot olive oil, was very light and a nice portion the size of my fist.  Then arrived the flaming Kobe steak served on a river stone grill with platinum rice...

This is the question I asked myself when reading the restaurant week menu.  What the hell is platinum rice?  I expected the rice to have a silvery glimmer probably caused by some toxic chemical like the mercury in thermometers.  So when the waiter placed the porcelain bowl of white rice in front of me (I'm already dissapointed by the lack of shimmer), I asked him, "So why is it called platinum rice?"

He looks at me with the you're-not-going-to-believe-me look and says, "it's cooked in Evian water."

Yep.  Wow, what do you say to something like that.  I took a bite of the rice and it tasted like any other white rice.  All in all, the kobe was good, but I'm still a fish-type of girl... and really, Evian?