I moved to New York

40th Street Station Sunnyside Queens

Wow, looking at that last post, I see I really had good intentions to start blogging on the reg and telling the world about all the great things in Glendale, California. Wellllllll, that did not happen. I did have a good year in Glendale, don’t get me wrong, I loved the old neighborhood vibe out there, I loved being close to Griffith Park and I had no incidents with white BMW drivers (or P22.)

That said, it was time for a change. I had seen it coming, and it was only after hundreds of passing conversations that my wife and I agreed to pack ourselves and our two cats into an Elantra and drive across the country to start a new life phase in New York City.

I first visited New York City in the 80s when my parents took me to Madison Square Garden to see the Ice Capades. During that trip, my mother pushed me up against the giant glass window of the Metropole, which was apparently a respected jazz club at one time, but I remember it as a strip club where a topless dancer waved at me from the stage. It’s been “look out, ladies” ever since. There was definitely a tangible seediness about the city that current NYC residents pride themselves on missing, so much so that some of us do actual research to find the divey-est (but not like, really divey) bars in the city. And, if that dive happens to have free hot dogs, well that’s just the gravy, isn’t it?

I’ve been here just about a few months now and I’ve already done a TON exploring, mostly while sweating through my clothes in this ridiculous humidity. I am very much looking forward to fall, but not winter. Maybe I can do like one week of winter. Keep my seat warm, LA.

ANYWAY, I’m lowercasing the first A in LA Snark and going with a more general pop culture-focused La Snark now. Viva La Snark? Just go with it. Ain’t nobody got time to get a new website indexed when Google has been so nice to this little WordPress joint for the past nine years.

Cheers from NYC!

Jon

 

Don’t Call It a Comeback

Americana Mall Glendale

…I’ve been here for years. But, much like jogging, or any other activity ending in “ogging,” blogging is easy to cast aside in times of laziness. It’s been a few months in the no-blog zone, but here I am, typing into WordPress because it’s been on my to-do list for those few months.

I have left the West Side. After eight years of living in Santa Monica and packing a bag every time I had to go east of the 405, my wife and I have relocated to the Atwater Village area to be around other approaching middle aged people that never stopped dressing like it’s the 90s. I’m getting a nice, different perspective of Los Angeles and I am enjoying exploring new areas that previously seemed like a day trip away. I have already been to five Dodger games this season and I can still only name half of the lineup.

I’ve been exploring Glendale a lot. There is a lot to see and do in Glendale. It’s conveniently located to a lot of interesting places. It’s right next to Griffith Park, but frustrating in that you have to take a lot of side streets to get there on foot or bike. So, I just drive to the park. The running trails are endless there, though the horse people do insist on taking up the full width of the path. I have not been horsekicked yet, but it is one of my new concerns. (In Santa Monica my main concern was being eaten by a shark if I put my toes in the ocean.)

One overwhelmingly noticeable thing that I see in Glendale is an abundance of 60-year-old men hanging around on street corners. Also, everyone walks right into traffic without a care in the world. Whatever, Glendale.

Places to see in the Glendale / Atwater Village area:

My wife and I have been to the Pub at Golden Road Brewing way too many times in the past few months. It’s a fun patio area, especially if you can find a seat.

Being from Rhode Island, I’m always interested in finding classic seafood restaurants. We hit up Clancy’s Crab Broiler twice but were disappointed both times. For some reason I want to go back just because I like the atmosphere. Maybe I’ll pack my own crab legs.

We went to Canelé because Eater LA told us they had one of the best lunches around, but I must have read that as “best brunches around” and the brunch menu seemed weirdly non-brunchy (but kinda lunchy, I guess). I had dumplings for breakfast. I love dumplings, but it felt wrong.

Speaking of dumplings, we went to Din Tai Fung at the Americana which was so amazing that I am pretty much forcing myself to not return every day. Everything tastes like a pillow of deliciousness.

We’ve enjoyed a nice casual bar crawl from the Tam O’ Shanter to The Griffin (hit me up if you want a website) to The Bigfoot Lodge to The Morrison. We stopped into the Village Tavern but they ignored me when I tried to order at the bar so we left.

The Famous is a nice cocktail bar in Glendale. The drinks are creative and the room is nice and spacious. I’d like to hear some cool loungey music playing in the background, maybe they’ll let me DJ soon.

I have yet to visit the Moonlight Rollerway, but it is on the list. This NSFW video for “Throw Sum Mo” makes it look pretty fun.

Being close to Burbank has been nice too. Standouts include Chili John’s and Don Cuco. Also, I finally went to an Islands and it was fine by me (I’m not a food blogger).

We’ve only done some light exploring in North Hollywood so far, but we’ve made Tiki No/Little Toni’s our go-to date night itinerary. I can’t believe I just linked to a Google+ page.

Sooooo, things are good on the north east side. We have a little more space out here and my wife let me put a little recording studio where the dining room should be. That was nice of her. I hope to have something musical to share soon. In the meantime, we are on the hunt for a new go-to sushi spot. We’ve tried a couple and have yet to fall in love. We are open to any recommendations.

This blogging thing isn’t so hard, I guess.

Edit: I’m getting a lot of recommendations for Porto’s. That might deserve its own post. Thanks!