The International Association of Chiefs of Police Conference Hits Philly Tomorrow


Photo courtesy of IAG.

The Pennsylvania Convention Center will play host tomorrow to the International Association of Chiefs of Police Conference (aka IACP 2013), slipping in quietly amidst the debut of the Philly cops’ new spokescanine. But where there’s police chiefs, there’s brutal police-state machinery on display—so, err, it’s not all bad?

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Walnut Street Is Now Little King of Prussia


All hail Walnut street, the retail powerhouse of all of Philadelphia. According to the recently released 2013 Global Retail Highlights Report, rents rose by more than 34 percent over the past year, bringing in tenants more associated with areas like the King of Prussia Mall, including Ann Taylor Loft, Intermix, and Anne Klein. Oh, joy: Read more »

Ohio Valley University Not Concerned Over Sharing Wharton Name with Penn

WhartonThis country, apparently, is big enough for two Whartons. Two weeks ago, Ohio Valley University (in, coincidentally, West Virginia) renamed its business school with Wharton in the name, echoing the namesake of Penn’s Wharton School. Surprisingly, though, there’s been little backlash–though Penn has yet to comment on whether they’ll be pursuing legal action.

Either way, students don’t seem to be phased: Read more »

The 700 Level’s Ranked Tastykake List is All Wrong


Ah, Tastykake. Every Philadelphian, diabetic or no, has a soft spot in their heart for the caky, spongy treats cranked out by way of the Navy Yard. From the simple breakfast treats like their frosted danish to dessert-y items like pies and cupcakes, these little squares of corn syrup and flour are as much a part of our identity as the Liberty Bell or an incredibly high gun murder rate.

So, you could see how a ranked list of Tastykake products might make sense as editorial content, so congrats to the 700 Level on their list. Unfortunately, though, they’re all wrong. Let’s take a look, shall we?

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Two Cows Escape Trailer in New Jersey


While New Jersey’s politicians are worrying about whether they should force the gay marriage issue any further, a menace is walking the plains, getting smarter, and plotting its revenge.

I’m talking, of course, about cows. Those damn dirty bovines have been giving Jerseyans trouble this week, with two cows recently making their escape from the back of a trailer as it was on its way to have them turned into delicious, delicious meatparts. The cows evidently got wise to the plan somewhere in Montvale, crashing out of their trailer and disrupting traffic for a period of time before police could wrangle them and bring rightful human order to the area.

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NY Times Magazine Chronicles Philly Guys’ Quest to Revitalize New York’s Tavern on the Green

Photo courtest of Wikipedia

Photo courtesy of Wikipedia.

The culinary world flipped its lid last year when two Philly boys, Jim Caiola and David Salama of Beau Monde at Sixth and Bainbridge, won a contract to redesign New York’s beloved foodie landmark, Tavern on the Green, which closed amid bankruptcy issues more than six years ago.

Today, though, the culinary world is rejoicing thanks to lengthy, extremely detailed look at the pair’s plans in NY Times Magazine. Set to reopen in late December, the culinary institution expects its renovations will bring in around $17 million, and expects to see 600 sit-down meals each weekday, along with 1,200 on the weekends.

But all that won’t come until the painstaking process of re-tooling an 80-year-old culinary institution is completed. And, as the Times‘ Max Chafkin illustrates, that process goes right down to extended discussions about the different virtues of various fork styles:

Over the course of three hours, they looked at probably 300 forks and actually tested some 50 possibilities. Testing meant first looking at a fork, feeling its weight in the palm of a hand and then, if it seemed especially promising, pantomiming a bite. I watched them reject one fork because they didn’t like the scalloped design on its end and two others for being “too squared off” and “too Deco,” respectively. Another was dismissed because, as Sparks put it, “that reads bistro” rather than tavern.

All the forks — for which their tableware supplier estimates they will pay around $2 each — had a shaft and four tines, and most were made of the same high grade of stainless steel, containing 18 percent chrome and 10 percent nickel. (Actual silver silverware — or even the plated stuff — was ruled out as too expensive. Cheaper, lower-grade steel was deemed not durable enough.) And yet, even in what would have seemed a fairly narrow universe of possibilities, it felt as if there were an endless array of choices.

And with that, New York just became a little more Philly. Read Chafkin’s entire report here. [New York Times]

Meet Krokodil, the Dangerous New Drug Narcotics Officers Really Hope Doesn’t Make it to Philadelphia

Heroin injection

These days, it’ll cost you anywhere from $10 to $50 to get high off of Oxycontin, depending on the size of the pill and the quality of your hookup. Heroin is cheaper, though, at around $100 a bundle—a grouping of 10 to 13 bags, only one of which is required for a dose. It’s also stronger, longer-lasting and readily available here in Philly, making the switch a no-brainer—economically speaking, anyway—for the hopelessly opiate-addicted looking for a consistent high. Never mind, of course, that that high comes via a more dangerous route of administration from a more dangerous chemical.

This is the train of thought that has driven the rise of heroin usage in Philadelphia, and, indeed, nationally. Prices for either drug, however, aren’t going down anytime soon, and with the economy being the way it is, even junkies might need to start tightening their belts to get by. What stands to replace heroin as the cheap opiate of choice, though, is proving itself hellishly unmanageable. Enter krokodil—and at about a tenth the price, too.

“It’s essentially a cheap alternative to heroin,” says Lieutenant Charles Jackson, a veteran of the Philadelphia narcotics unit of more than 15 years. “It can actually eat your flesh.” Read more »

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