Brick and Mortar Opening

DSC_0919 copy

Last night Michael B. Welsh’s much anticipated Brick and Mortar (BAM) opened up at 12th and Pearl Streets in the Loft District of Philadelphia. The New American tavern seats up to 110 people and is located on the first floor of the Goldtex Building, which features large windows letting in a lot of light and banquet style tables as well as having a community table for large parties. Chef Brian Ricci’s menu will serve lunch and dinner, as well as late-night snacks, plus the best cocktails you could imagine.

Last night’s opening served as a fundraiser to support Friends of The Rail Park, attracting supporters including Inga Saffron, Connor Barwin, Sam Sherman and Paul Steinke, who enjoyed signature cocktails + hors d’oeuvres crafted by the BAM staff. Friends of The Rail Park had a lot to celebrate last night as the Philadelphia Art Commission had given final approval for the anticipated park’s design on Wednesday. During the event Philly’s favorite rapper, Chill Moody performed with Yufi Zewdu & DJ Ricochet.

Photos after the jump »

Internet Meets Caitlyn Jenner, Immediately Sexualizes Her

vf-cover-bruce-jenner-july-2015-940x540

I was getting coffee when Caitlyn Jenner met the Internet. Not fancy coffee — regular drip, black, get that cinnamon-sugar shaker away from me — so we’re talking maybe 15 minutes away from my desk. And yet that was enough time for seemingly the entire world to chime in on the Vanity Fair cover story documenting her transition.

Many were supportive and respectful, from Lady Gaga to Rick Santorum. Others, of course, were decidedly less so. (Tell me, how does it feel to be behind Rick Santorum in the Evolution line? Or don’t you guys believe in that yet? As you were.) But lurking through it all — the Facebook comments, the coverage from major outlets, even Vanity Fair’s presentation and promotion of the story — was an ugly subtext: After less than a day of revealing her new identity, Caitlyn Jenner had already been objectified and sexualized for our entertainment.

Which makes sense. She is, after all, a woman. Read more »

Two New Studies Debunk What You Thought You Knew About Millennials and Sex

As soon as I heard about the pair of new studies showing that millennials are getting less sex than their parents did, I knew the kids would twist themselves into pretzels explaining to me how that’s a good thing. After all, we’re the ones who ruined the environment, razed the economy and stuck them all with a hundred grand in college debt, so how could anything that we did ever be good?

The first of those two studies, published in the Archives of Sexual Behavior, revealed that millennials have had far fewer sexual partners than the boomers or Generation X. In fact, millennials are having sex less than anybody since their grandparents’ “Greatest Generation,” who averaged just two partners apiece. Boomers and Gen X’ers in the study averaged 11 sexual partners. Millennials, the study says, are likely to average eight. Read more »

61-Foot, 11-Ton Duck Coming to Philadelphia Waterfront

World's Largest Rubber Duck

Photo courtesy of Craig Samborski

A 61-foot tall, 11-ton duck is coming to Philadelphia next month.

As part of the 2015 Tall Ships Philadelphia/Camden festival, being held from June 25th to the 28th, Draw Events is bringing the World’s Largest Rubber Duck to the Delaware River.

Based on a the plans for an installation called Rubber Duck originally made by Dutch artist Florentijn Hofman, this version of the giant rubber duck — actually made of an inflatable vinyl covering — also appeared at last year’s Tall Ships Festival Los Angeles. Hofman unveiled the first version of the rubber duck in his native Amsterdam in 2007; the first North American appearance was in Pittsburgh in 2013.

“In my estimation, you need to go big or go home,” says Draw Events president Craig Samborski. “Then someone floated the idea of the duck past us.” Yes, a six-story high duck floating by is big enough. Samborski’s company bought the plans from Hofman, modified the specs — the version coming to Philadelphia is larger than what was indicated in the plans provided — and set out on building an 11-ton vinyl duck that sits on a 10-ton steel pontoon. Read more »

Are the Duggars Pro-Family — or Just Anti-Woman?

The Duggars

The Duggars

In general, I try not to dissect why I care about the lives of strangers on reality TV shows. Best-case scenario, I don’t have enough going on in my own life. Worst case, I have a sneaky crush on Dr. Dubrow that’s about to surface and cause worlds of pain and confusion.

But 19 Kids and Counting has always been a little different. It’s hard to be a woman in 2015 and not be interested (or, in my case, morbidly interested) in the Duggar family, who are followers of an ultra-conservative brand of Christianity that adheres to the Biblical patriarchy movement.

After this weekend, it’s impossible not to be afraid of them. Read more »

What’s the Future of PAFA in a STEM-Obsessed America?

Photo | GPTMC

Photo | GPTMC

The news earlier this year that venerable Sweet Briar College in Virginia was closing its doors despite a hundred years of history and an outstanding national reputation intensified shock waves already moving through the world of higher education. A senior vice president at Moody’s predicted more college closures to come, while the Department of Education announced it was monitoring 544 colleges and universities it considers to be on shaky financial ground.  When the National Association of College Admissions Counselors in May released its annual tally of colleges that had yet to meet their enrollment targets for next fall, there were 18 Pennsylvania schools on the list. Seven of those were local: Cabrini College, Delaware Valley University, Eastern University, Gwynedd Mercy College, Holy Family University, St. Joseph’s University … and the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts.

Okay, most of those are small liberal arts colleges — the sorts of places that, like Sweet Briar, are most likely to be facing economic straits. But PAFA? That two-centuries-old art school-cum-museum housed in a wedding-cake Frank Furness palace at Broad and Cherry? The school at which such prominent artists as Mary Cassatt, Thomas Eakins, Wharton Esherick, Benjamin West, Alexander Stirling Calder and David Lynch studied and/or taught? How could easels at such a renowned institution be going unused? Read more »

What’s Hot on Wildwood Boardwalk T-Shirts in 2015

Wildwood Boardwalk T-Shirts, 2015

Wildwood boardwalk t-shirts are big business. Sure, you think it’s all “Senior Week 2015″ and “I’m not as think as you drunk I am” shirts, but this is serious business. Not everyone can be Baruch Cohen and sell 6,480 different t-shirts at his boardwalk shop. For most shop keepers, it’s a cutthroat competition to sell shirts that tickle the fickle fancies of sunburnt, possibly drunk teenagers. Read more »

Should Philly Get to Vote on Its Public Art Installations?

Clothespin, B. Krist for Visit Philadelphia | Doctored <em>Paint Torch</em> via <a href="http://www.phillymag.com/ticket/2015/04/01/photos-street-artist-turns-part-of-the-pafa-paint-torch-sculpture-into-a-poop-emoji/" target="_blank">Streets Dept.</a>

Clothespin, B. Krist for Visit Philadelphia | Doctored Paint Torch, Streets Dept.

I don’t have great taste in art. Or, maybe even worse, I don’t have any taste in art.

I have a couple of nice pieces courtesy of friends and family who haven’t yet realized their work is too good to give to me. But, left to my own devices, I gravitate toward the Basic Bitch Trifecta when decorating my walls: beaches, dogs and inspirational quotes. Part of me still misses my freshman dorm’s super-cheesy Audrey Hepburn print (another part of me misses it so bad that it’s in my Ikea shopping cart).

And so I’m never quite sure how to feel about some of Philly’s more abstract art. Is an oversized electrical plug art? Probably, considering it ended up in the Art Museum’s sculpture garden. How about a plastic, swirled dollop of paint? Perhaps. What if you dress up the dollop to look like the poo emoji? I’m going to go with definitely, but like I said, what do I know? Read more »

Why Dunkin’ Donuts Is Philly’s True Coffee Soulmate

The cup of coffee you carry around Philly says a lot about you. In a city where no one smiles or, God forbid, says hello, it can quickly relay a good amount of information about strangers. I like to think of it as the human equivalent of a butt sniff – or rather, the Philadelphian’s equivalent of a butt sniff.

When I see Red Hook’s cute little cup parading down Fourth Street, I can’t help but admire its drinker. Not only did she resist the best muffin in town, but she went to a locally owned café and spent a little extra to support her neighbors. She’s socially conscious and expensive smelling, but not so much better than me that she remembered her reusable travel mug. Read more »

4 Biggest Mother’s Day Social Media Missteps

As far as holidays go, Mother’s Day is traditionally in the minor leagues.

It’s an important one, yes, but it barely takes up an entire aisle in CVS. No long weekend, no dead deity, no big deal.

Unless, of course, you’re going by social media standards. Because on Facebook and Twitter, Mother’s Day is apparently a High Holy Day of Sharing (and, possibly, caring).

Not that there’s necessarily anything wrong with that. After months of stalking your bar selfies and whiny status updates, your mom was probably delighted to spot herself in your new profile picture. If your partner granted you a tiny human over the past year, it’s more than appropriate to send a shout-out. You gave life to those kids and got them dressed for a family photo shoot before noon? Go ahead, lady — blow up my feed with your tiny army of brunch terrorists. You earned this.

That said, there was also some pretty questionable Mother’s Day posting this year. Do mom a favor and remember the following next time around. Read more »

« Older Posts  |  Newer Posts »