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BrooklynBornThis blog started in my head when I listened in the 90's to friends who feared Brooklyn and newcomers who blogged about BK as if it barely existed before they arrived. Brooklyn as Tabula Rasa. My blog satisfies my need to hear and air feelings of B'klyn from the people whose life experience was born here. Also I hope to provide balance to some of the revisionist historical musings I've seen how Brooklyn and her residents used to be, we're still here. If we can all live as best possible while appreciating the past and neighbors we've inherited that would be great too.

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Friday, July 31, 2009

Weekend One-Liners 7/31-8/2 4Boro Party Edition

Press Play...and continue reading :)

We've one full month of summer left to go and about to begin, so I offer you a *4Boro Party Edition of weekendOneliners (*S.I. hollar at ya boy!)

Friday July 31st
Lower East Side
Le Poisson Rouge - 158 Bleecker St. & Sullivan St. Door:($?)
"DJ Moma" Bringing his eclectic brand of flavor to the FREEDOM Dancefloor 2nite!
DJ Cosi & Herbert Holler will rock tonight for your dancing & listening pleasure as well...3 DJs, two turntables, one mic. The way it's always been at Freedom.
*Hosted by: Tony S.,Miguel,Marc Smooth, Stone Jackson,Erik, C-Black,Grae Ent.

Saturday August 1st

Queens (L.I.C.) P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center
PS1 August 1 Summer WarmUp: Chez Damier, House of House, Kai Alce, and Stars Like Fleas (as usual Dancing will be in the courtyard, food and beer on sale, and exhibits in the galleries) Time: 2:00 PM to 9:00 PM
22-25 Jackson Ave at the intersection of 46th Ave
Long Island City, NY 11101
(718) 784-2084
www.ps1.org

Brooklyn - Brooklyn Museum 1st Saturdays
Events all day, Dance Party 9-11pm
http://www.brooklynmuseum.org/visit/first_saturdays.php

Harlem - Cabana de Capoeira - Enjoy sabor & libations from around the world from the fabulous GARDEN up to the scenic ROOFTOP of a historic brownstone.
Come celebrate Abada Capoeira New York! The students of Edna Lima are fund-raising for their annual Batizado in HIGH STYLE on a BUDGET.
$20 for lavish dinner, dessert & drinks all night.
78 W. 120th St. (b/w Lenox & 5th Ave)
LIMITED ACCESS. rsvp.mundo@gmail.com

Sunday August 2nd

East Village
Sin Sin - 85 2nd Avenue (cnr. of 5th St.)
Sunday morning August 2nd @ 4am - 10am
REDness presents Aftermath-Afterhours w/DJs Simon Heyliger & Cleveland
Another night of bad behavior and deabauchery kids....wear your shades.
http://www.theREDness.com

Beer Summit (or not....)

I thought the inner turmoil raised by the intersection of race and politics was the most unbearable thing I had experienced (in minutes that last weeks after all I've personally been embraced and snubbed by the Skipper, both times in a case of mistaken identity) but that was nothing compared with the inner conflict that arose from announced drinking choices for the much publicized "BEER SUMMIT"!
HoneyMoon over?
For those who don't know, the cop (Sgt. James Crowley of the Cambridge P.D.) that arrested Dr. Henry Louis "Skip" Gates (noted Black guy) for breaking into his own home, selected (appropriately) BLUE Moon, while out of preference (or the implied subversive palette choice?), Dr. Gates chose (apparently Sam Adams, see my update below)RED Stripe. Those, I kid you not, are my two fave widely distributed bottled beers. My god. Why must we choose sides?

More importantly the Beer Summit suggested by Prez. Obama and joined by V.P. (and foot in mouth disease sufferer) Biden (how greatly awkward must that convo have been ?Luv ya Joe, fer reals!) seems to have gone flat.

My question; why wasn't a funnel involved? Politicians, even President Swagger are supposed to be skilled at ramming things down our throats, couldn't that skill have been employed to generate a Stevie/McCarthy moment?. Frankly I'm still thirsty. For Harmony!

Btw this entire post (which has nothing to do with Brooklyn) is all written to support my graphic, of which I find cool and refreshing.

For those who didn't take the reference/link plunge, I now ram this down your throat:


(UPDATE) It seems that the star of my amazing graphic, Red Stripe, never made it to the party and was instead replaced by Sam Adams (who's going to tell the Jamaicans?!?) I don't know what happen but I suggest an appropriate distraction from this story is to look at your healthcare premiums (or especially, lack of coverage) and drink until the situation becomes even more blurry yet incredibly attractive.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Photo Wedns: 7/29/09 : 1st night @ UmiNom

UmiNom 1st night - 13
There goes the neighborhood. Discreetly tucked into a row of neighborhood establishments is a newcomer, restaurant "UmiNom"(white sign far right)

A review of the restaurant "UmiNom".

I like it. Who needs obscure words falling over each other like lotus petals tantalizing at the koi pond's edge, when you can simply say;

UmiNom (Tagalog (Filipino language) for "drink") the name of the new restaurant precariously balanced on the edge of Clinton Hill and Bedford-Stuyvesant has the type of attractive stylish yet modest decor you'd expect from most image proud Manhattan establishments, the service was friendly and the food was very good.
I like it!
UmiNom 1st night - 29

The interiors are very warm, attractive and amazing (even more so because this used to be an age worm laundromat). Spacing in some places was a little tight seating-wise , but New York tight not Tokyo tight. Expect to turn sideways to exit some tables. Overall I felt very comfortable and I wished I thought to bring three friends with at least.

UmiNom 1st night - 22
As for the staff, also nice. They treated me like a grandmother treats an only child. I was tucked into my table, and given treats I hadn't asked for. Specifically a crispy lightly fried wonton filled with crab and cream cheese. Delicious. I imagined the delicious filling being spread on anything and making that thing better. Next time I'll definitely order a plate, it might just make me forget how much I love curry puffs, that common menu item of some many city thai places. The lovely treatment I received was to be expected since it's first day of course, but it's probably a good idea to ask to sample even more.

For my meal I had the staple of some many Asian-infused eateries of course, pad thai. I imagine it will probably be the most ordered item on the menu due to unadventurous delivery diners who still equate the dish with the exotic.

The list of main courses was limited to a few selections but there was a long list of small plates, essentially tapas, to choose from. I picked the Mackerel Plate in addition because I wanted something sharper flavor-wise to go with my presumptions of what the pad thai would be.

The waitress was sure to inform me it would be a full fish, "head, tail, everything" which was great of her, because you really should know not to expect a chunk of grilled salmon steak when you order the mackerel.

If you don't know mackerel, body-wise think foot long sardines. Years ago living in Tokyo I used to buy and roast Mackerel all the time so I was ready for it and UmiNom did not disappoint.

Two whole roasted mackerels came with garnishes. They were grape tomates and what I recall as a shredded outlay of pickled radish on the side. The tender mackerel meat worked well with the slightly salted outside crunchy skin and made nice with what seemed to be a light, sweet, pickling of the tomatoes. I liked also those flavors and textures, the sours, and sweets of the crunchy pickled vegetable mixing with the charred outer salted skin of the mackerel which gave a lot of sensation to an intentionally small plate.

The only downer was the mackerel plate is a great tapas for eating and destroying during a boisterous conversation with friends and beers. I flew solo and the liquor license hasn't made it to UmiNom yet, although; everyone, assured me it's on the way. Soon.

The Shrimp Pad Thai was light and flavorful. According to my taste-buds, I was tasting the sweetness from tamarind, a variety of other spices and what seemed to be a very light but but nicely flavored soy sauce, and I recommend munching on the fresh basil leaves whenever you want to send your palette on a joy ride.

I went back and forth between the two dishes. Especially comparing the two very differences between the so light I can't express it enough taste of the pad thai with the ruggedness of the mackerel.

UmiNom 1st night - 24
The process of making an indelicate mess out of the mackerel was satisfying by itself. For people who really want to render the meat from a bone in this case the the length of mackerel vertebra that comes in the fish, this dish is for you. If you're clever about it you should be able to flip the fish open (it's already sliced lengthwise) grab the bone with your fork and yank the whole thing out like you're playing a game of "Operation". Make sure you get another fork or chop sticks so you can anchor while you pull off this trick. I thought it was a good idea to ask for chopsticks to get this done.

At this point I expect pad thai is about as common as tacos in New York City. I've had the dish for years and in short, I've never has it better than UmiNoms. It's a simple dish, essentially noodles, spices and a meat or tofu. But as tasty as most pad thai is, it's usually pretty heavy. Sometimes I want that feeling like I just ate a tasty lead balloon, when I haven't wanted that feeling I've skipped pad thai. I never knew I could have light and tasty pad thai, but at UmiNom I can. Yeah big endorsement, but seriously I wanted to and felt like I could eat the soft and cozy like a bird-nest of noodles plate with it's tasty shrimp and south-east Asian spices day after day. The tofu pieces however didn't ascend to anything other than tofu, but the dish was so tasty I wouldn't let the waitstaff have my plate until I cleaned it.

To wash down and meld with the meal, I had the coconut water (which I think they called "juice" but my West Indian leanings says "water"). I love the after taste of it. It's kinda like the last frosted flakes and milk that have congealed into a hyper-sugar at the bottom of your bowl while you watched Saturday morning cartoons.

Tip1: If you like coconut, order the coconut juice until the liquor license comes, it provides with you a comparably flavored beverage and a desert in the form of large coconut chunks that come with.

Tip2: If you want to drink something stronger do what makes sense and you'll be alright

Picky
My coconut juice arrived in a nostalgic happily flimsy plastic cup that contorted a little when I picked it up I liked it. It even came with tools, a Nathan's-like fork for scooping out coconut meat and a bendy straw. Fun. But my utensils were taped to the cup so to use them I had to pick the sticky residue from the tape off my straw an coco-fork since I didn't want to ruin a great meal by eating glue.

Overheard Playlist (incomplete but in order of play)
Prince melody feat. - "Erotic City"
Lupe Fiasco - "Superstar"
Madonna - "Borderline"
Sting - "Everything She Does is Magic"

UmiNom

A proudly designed restaurant servicing gourmet plates of Asian-fusion situated in an unlikely place with a housing project and infamous local fast food spot as it's neighbor.
Great renditions of familiar dishes, Attractive setting, bar for socializing, tables for dining, helpful friendly staff. I like it and I want more.

UmiNom 1st night - 20

*** end of review ***

Because I hadn't considered possibilities that would have allowed me to drink with my dinner I left and went to a local bar, ran into friends we got into a conversation about UmiNom, I brought it up. We talked about these kinds of restaurants, fancy, new, stylish, foreign. In my family we use the term "chi chi foo foo" (with it's silly phonics meant to imply exotic pretense) to describe these types of restaurants, boutiques, people, etc.

Our stories describing these places become ridiculously exaggerated like the one about the boutique in Nolita that has five items in the entire store, each priced north of $10k preciously arranged by an impossibly long legged woman whose spends equal time blowing soap bubbles and braiding a unicorn's mane. Or that new bar that has no liquor; they simple put pieces of paper written with the names of spirits into a goblet and your supposed to read the papers, thereby becoming literally incapacitated until you've been mentally intoxicated.

As funny as the branding of chi chi foo foo can be there is often something else I hear in those conversations, an uneasy mix of attraction and fear. Because we want to be pampered, we want to be stimulated but we don't want to be excluded and what if these people and places don't welcome us, what if they decide we are not for them and they are not for us? I had a long conversation with another friend where we detailed coming to terms with being allowed to seek comfort and quality in dinning, decor and the like, without feeling like a bougie sell out. And we each years earlier had independently realized that as people with impoverished backgrounds we had trouble getting over feeling uncomfortable about being so comfortable.

An additional element that causes unease with new things come into the neighborhood is the reality that yes new upscale businesses and people often lead to circumstances where people are pushed out of their communities. That reality has driven many conversations I've witnessed, about some new chi chi business, from fun mockery to outright hatred. And the next thing you know rather than address the larger issues of our community we're focused on who's an outsider regardless of what's being brought in.

I've wondered for years about this situation and these conversations.

Where do we draw the line as far as "outsiders" coming into "our" neighborhood. Do we reject businesses that bring value into our neighborhood (umi's sister and the owner's first restaurant is in Manahattan) if that business is not from our neighborhood?

Getting back to my table of friends listening to my account of UmiNom, several thoughts were added to that conversation. The prevailing opinion expressed by my friends was something like does this restaurant benefit the established neighborhood as opposed to the incoming residents who's frequent turnover contributes to a lack of investment in these neighborhoods.

I don't know what the right answer to that is, or if the question is even completely accurate, but my opinion is the neighbor needs a range. Range of culture, service, amenities, people, economic classes and restaurants. In my opinion as a whole, Brooklyn has enough Crown Fried Chickens, we need more UmiNoms to increase the expectation and market for better levels of dining, shopping and living.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Missed it Mondays: Wknd of 7/25-7/26 Edition

I myself missed alot of this weekend, what did I not miss? I did catch the block party on Grand Av in Clinton Hill, organized by local merchants.
and I did not miss getting caught in the rain as you'll see in the video below.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Weekend One-Liners 7/25-7/26

Saturday July 25th

Grand Ave Btw Lafayette Av and Clifton Place (Clinton Hill)
Still Hip's 2nd Birthday Block Party! (Lots of free stuff, specials and goodiebags)

Fort Greene Flea

Sunday July 26th

Central Park Summerstage Feat. Joe, Ginuwine & Chico DeBarge from 3:00 PM to 7:00 PM

Fort Greene Soul Summit (House Music, Fort Greene Park)

Red Hook Lobster Pound call for appointment!

There's more but I gotta run!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Heatwave!! Hot and Bothered in Prospect Park

Crunchy! That's how some people are feeling after the Heatwave, (nope not the weather or the 70's singing group who we love, even when they're out of key.) The Heatwave I'm referring to was version "9.0" of a unofficially organized barbecue in Prospect Park, and everybody's still simmering over the aftermath.

Interestingly my dude mentioned it was happening last weekend and for a brief moment I considered going. Instead I chose the Soul Summit in Fort Greene Park, and would have never thought of it again had it not been for the debate that followed.

In short, small group promotes big event, without permits, gathers hundreds, maybe thousands of people to Prospect for massive barbecue, people leave, trash is everywhere. Parks/sanitation Depts. are overwhelmed, later reports of rats (I imagine partying like "Templeton" from "Charlott's Web") and days later it's reported on blogs where everyone takes one of three positions;

"You people need to clean your messes!"*
"Who you calling you people?!"* (sprinkle with racially charged accusations)

and finally my favorite:
"littering sucks"*

(*paraphrasing) btw I'm down with #1 and #3 if you care.

If you didn't click the link above I'm wonder if Prospect Park was like this after "Heatwave 9.0"...

Photo Wed: 7/22/09 : Full Gallop

Red Hook Pony
Maybe I need to get off the horse. (Photo taken in Red Hook)

Summer's getting away from me. I know it is. I've been hard at work on multiple fronts, and I'm mostly confident my efforts are creating great works, but I can't even really see. It's like I'm tied to the nose of a great vehicle, plowing through the atmosphere, the air ahead rushing into my face, blinding and suffocating me. I turn my head away just to breathe and gather myself. that works, I can breathe. But all I see is a blur rushing past.

I think that rainy day yesterday unleashed a floodgate somewheres.

In other news the Times reported the City Council is considering a bill to reduce the number of incomplete building construction sites that have become eyesores around the city. With the article was a map which I was happy to see included the rusting shell I encountered and wrote about last month.

However according to what I understood of the article, the Council's suggestions seems to be more of an amnesty program for developers who already got in too deep than an actual step to prevent having derelict skeletons left to rot because they didn't secure funding in advanced. The latter would be my preference.

Monday, July 20, 2009

WTF! Free.Bouncy.Rides. ?!?

How in the fuck did I not know about this:

It's been going on at least since March, apparently everywhere.

So what I want to know is, is that Paco Cao under the hood? And why are some many women I dated in the last few months, on that fish's lap?

Also you can't miss this:

Random New York Magic (not shot by me) featuring said Dolphin Furry:

Missed it Mondays: Wknd of 7/18-7/19 Edition

Well I missed it this time! I didn't do most of what I listed in the Weekend Oneliners (okay they're usually longer than one line). And the highlight of the weekend was not even in Brooklyn (ay fuhgeddaboudit!) But that highlight was the Summerstage concert featuring Little Dragon, Chester French and headlined by Q-Tip (and others I haven't googled for a reminder yet). Giant Step produced the event and it was a high energy, rhymhn love give and take between Q-Tip and the audience, and even a dancing Diddy. For a moment a few security guards were on the wrong note, (I comment about it in the video clip) but the party went on....Video after the jump.





And just to show my appreciation for Q-Tip click this Q-Tiplink if you wanna buy his music.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Weekend One-Liners 7/18-7/19

Saturday July 18th

Celebrate Brooklyn! Presents African Festival
Saturday, July 18, 2009 2 - 9 p.m.
Celebrate Brooklyn!’s annual all-day festival of music, food and crafts features a lineup of music selected to keep dancers moving into the night [Link]

Macy's Fishing Contest
July 15 - 19, 2009 10 a.m. - 4 p.m.
Join a great Brooklyn tradition: Prospect Park's annual fishing contest![Link]

Brooklyn Flea: Bishop Loughlin Field, Lafayette Ave btw Vanderbilt and Clermont. [Link]

City of Water Day 10:00am - 4:00pm Governors Island.
Take the free Ferry from the Battery Maritime building in Manhattan or Fulton Ferry Landing in Brooklyn. An annual celebration of New York's waterways with fun events and live music, a Scavenger Hunt that highlights the island's history and environmental significance [Link]

Tonight Afrokinetic Party @ the Old American Can Factory, Carmina Soul returns OUTDOORS in the courtyard, part 4 of this 7 part series. 9:00 PM – 4:00 AM
cover: $10 [Link]

Sunday July 19th

BoCoCa Arts Festival; held in Boerum Hill, Cobble Hill and Carroll Gardens includes music, theater and more. See Web site for complete schedule.[Link]

Lefferts 2nd Floor Tours every Saturday and Sunday. In June from 1:30 - 4:30; July & August, 1:30 - 5:30 Free! Explore the unique architecture of Lefferts Historic House on this special tour.[Link]

Farmers Market; J.J. Byrne Park • Fifth Avenue and Fourth Street
When: 11 am–5 pm, Sundays: Free [Link]

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Photo Wednesday 7/15/09 :new Brooklyn Brews

This is not a fair comparison, although I realize a lot of my drink of late is split between coffee and bier...
BierGarten on Fulton
New Crown Heights Dunkin Donuts
Words to come...

Monday, July 13, 2009

Missed it Mondays: Wknd of 7/11-7/12 Edition

Whooooo-a-Wheee! Busy Weekend, I got to do lots, hope you did too...but nuff about me, let's talk about you! Did you have a full weekend around Brooklyn?

Then this "Maybe you missed it Monday" is for you. Wknd of 7/11-7/12 Edition

First stop was marked on the calendar 7/11! as in Free Slurpees at 7-Eleven!
I shot over to the Bed-Stuy boarder 7-Eleven grabbed the biggest cup and then had a moment of reality. I asked the dude behind the counter which was the free size. He handed me a cup like the one pictured to the left.

That cup is almost life-sized. Sheesh! But free is free!

And too much of that Slurpee mix ain't good for me, even though in my life I've probably had three total Slurpees. Of course I had something Blue to celebrate the rare occasion.

After wandering through Restoration on Fulton St. in a hypoglycemic stupor, I made my way to Crown Heights just in time to see Council Member Letitia James (Tish to friends) doing her best to drum up business for the Franklin Av/Sterling Pl Flea Market.
FranklinAv/Sterling Pl Flea Market 7/11-11
Councilmember Letitia James "Tish" (center) enticing passersby to check the nascent
Franklin Av/Sterling Pl. Flea Market. Below she seems to be happily product testing.

FranklinAv/Sterling Pl Flea Market 7/11-3
The Council Member was pushing for the Smoothies being made by the ladies of Bristens at 715 Franklin Av (next door). According to Tish her toughest competition were a bunch of locale kids hawking water. For me, the idea of natural banana and mango purifying my blue tongue made for an easy sale.
FranklinAv/Sterling Pl Flea Market 7/11-2FranklinAv/Sterling Pl Flea Market 7/11-4
Fresh banana/Mango/Honey Smoothie by Bristen's (over exposed poor photography by yours truly)

I had never heard of Bristen's Eatery (I've actually been meaning to write that Franklin (imho) needs more diverse businesses) but if that smoothie and the cool ladies who made it are any indication, I'd say a good meal is to be had at Bristen's.
I'll check them properly and let you know soon.

FranklinAv/Sterling Pl Flea Market 7/11-1
Councilmember Letitia James "Tish" with a soon to be flea market customer.

While the blender whirled and the ladies and I chatted a smoothie little line had formed before I knew it. I gotta tell ya Ms. James has a pretty effective sales pitch.
FranklinAv/Sterling Pl Flea Market 7/11-9
Smoothie in hand, cool sweet natured in belly, I made the rounds of the Franklin/Sterling Flea. It's a modest entrepreneurial encampment as Fleas go but filled with a variety of goodies, like the mobile below there were all variety of crafts.
FranklinAv/Sterling Pl Flea Market 7/11-5
FranklinAv/Sterling Pl Flea Market 7/11-6

Next things got saucy! (I'm so corny. I know)
FranklinAv/Sterling Pl Flea Market 7/11-8
I met up with chef Jason Hait and Marketing Director Ayelet Prizant of the "Pour Gourmet"(below). Jason's a local Chef currently hard at work bringing his sauces to market. He said the Franklin Av/Sterling Place flea market is perfect for him because it's nearby, and provides him an opportunity to get direct feedback from the public plus make some sales.
FranklinAv/Sterling Pl Flea Market 7/11-7
I declined to taste the sauces, explaining to Jason, that my reason was the Smoothie, and not a lack of confidence in his culinary skills. Scott then demonstrated he's as skilled with the pitch as he is with the sauces, he pointed out a Plantain based barbeque sauce which he assured me would blend nicely with my then taste sensations. It did. It was delicious, for real though.
I coulda ate a whole bottle of that stuff without a meal.

FranklinAv/Sterling Pl Flea Market 7/11-12
Next I met this duo whose table of jewelry and accessories shimmered in the warm July SUN (Capitalized because after a month like this, we need to be capitalizing on the SUN)
FranklinAv/Sterling Pl Flea Market 7/11-14
FranklinAv/Sterling Pl Flea Market 7/11-13
And they'd like you know their website is: http://925ikonz.com/
FranklinAv/Sterling Pl Flea Market 7/11-15

I enjoyed my trip to the Franklin Av/Sterling Pl. Flea but there was more to do so I broke out and headed for the subway (the long way) which led me to run into this sister at my fave Fort Greene Triangle; Cuyler Gore Park.Here's her clip:


This was an organized event with signage and everything. Seemed to be similar to those neighborhood blood pressure testings that happens at community events. But I was in a hurry and this wasn't a planned stop, so after this clip I kept it moving. The vibe was cool though, no hypertension there.

After that I was off to (gasp) Manhattan, "The City".
FranklinAv/Sterling Pl Flea Market 7/11
Central Park Lawn
You may ask yourself (or me) Why oh Why would ANYONE choose to go to Manhattan when they could be in Brooklyn?!? And my answer is Central Park, and specifically one of the things I like as a Born and Bred (CityBoy) is the looming presence of the city as a location reminder. Sometimes I draw comfort from the geometric confines that the city provides. And unlike in Prospect Park, it's easier in Central Park to be reminded how much in a city you still are. I like the contrast.

Central Park Skate 7/11
It's even more interesting when you look at what goes on inside and think of the hard fast city being home to these activities...
Central Park Skate 7/11
Which led me to the Skate Dancer's Circle near the Band shell in Central Park that has been going strong for over 30 years. Did you know that your boy "Brooklyn Born" spent most of the 90's going in circles out here trying to pick up women in a space heavily enlivened by gay men? Took me years to figure that out. No wonder the women couldn't understand why I was interested.
Central Park Skate 7/11

Cooley I ran into several characters I hadn't seen in ten years and a circular pleasure ensued. Here's a skate level view, (not for the faint of heart or easy to dizzy)

Then came Sunday 7/12 late in the day I got over to what is fast becoming the ritual end of each season's Afro Punk festival, the AfroPunk Block Party.
Afro Punk Block Party 7/12/09
I did just enough housework Sunday to miss all the concert performances. Sad. I really wanted to see John Forte, after all how many Hip-Hop acts get a presidental pardon, from a white republican President at that! Yeh inflammatory, I know.

Anyway maybe you missed it or maybe you'll enjoy reliving but here's some sights, some sounds and lots a motions from (warning shaky camera) from the day:


Afro Punk Block Party 7/12/09 Ladies Stylin'Afro Punk Block Party 7/12/09
Afro Punk Block Party 7/12/09Afro Punk Block Party 7/12/09
Afro Punk Block Party 7/12/09
Afro Punk Block Party 7/12/09Afro Punk Block Party 7/12/09

Afro Punk Block Party 7/12/09
Afro Punk Block Party 7/12/09

Afro Punk Block Party 7/12/09
Afro Punk Block Party 7/12/09
Afro Punk Block Party 7/12/09
Afro Punk Block Party 7/12/09
Afro Punk Block Party 7/12/09
Afro Punk Block Party 7/12/09
Afro Punk Block Party 7/12/09

Wanna see more? Here's a video clip from the block party:


And as if all that weren't enough I got an earful from damn-near everyone that the Soul Summit, the party in the park (specifically Fort Greene Park) was back and celebrating it's first jam of the summer.
Fort Greene Soul SummitFort Greene Soul Summit
I sped on over and got there while it was still light enough out to notice a lot more people were there than I'd ever seen. The Soul Summit has grown from an outdoor dance party to a nexus for meet-ups, picnics and general socializing. What's additionally cool, and I noticed this as I entered the park, is how well the event works with all the other activities of the park. Tennis was still being played on all courts, bike wheels and soccer balls continued to spin all overlapping each other's energy. beautiful thing.

Fort Greene Soul Summit
Wanna see a shakey clip? Here we go!:


And it keep on an on and on, even after the sun got tired and went down, the dancers and drummers stayed up.
Fort Greene Soul Summit

Fort Greene Soul Summit

Now let's get this Monday over so we can get back to the weekend!