Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Hats and Coats

A friend of mine is visiting New York City from London. When she asked me what the weather is in NYC this time of the year I told her to bring: a hat, gloves, a heavy winter coat, a scarf and boots. She came last week on a beautiful sunny day. “Oh, it’s not that cold she said, I will be fine”. She also said that she did have a coat, two pair of boots, two pair of gloves but no hat. “I don’t like hats”. Ok, I said. Let’s try tomorrow.

It’s true that fashion is not the number one priority of New Yorkers during the winter days. Forget about the “Sex and the City” cocktail dresses, Manolo high heels and Prada bags. New York has nothing to do with those pretty and sexy images on January days. All you can see (or I can see) is non-elegant individuals walking around in heavy jackets, thick sweaters, ugly boots, woolen hats, colorful gloves, wrapped up in long warm scarves. Often they are so wrapped up that you can’t actually see their faces. Yes, New York is not really the capital of fashion as you would have thought when you moved here. It’s probably the opposite.

On the other side of the Atlantic, London, is doing much better (am I biased or what?). Londoners are dressed elegantly even if it is winter time. It’s not that cold anyway. You see nice silk mashminas, leather boots and trendy coats bought at Top-Shop. The only unpleasant necessity is the very famous item all Londoners need to carry with them: an umbrella! Rain is a part of daily life in the British capital. It’s wet and disturbing and can spoil the mildness of the weather. But again, fashionistas in London pick elegant umbrellas too that match the colors of their clothes.

My friend enjoys her stay in New York. But also, she bought a hat. A woolen hat. The one she didn’t have when she landed in JFK. The hat she didn’t like. She has an umbrella already.

New York is cold in January.

Saturday, January 20, 2007

NYLON weather

When it comes down to weather, both cities pretty much suck. Weather is a very personal matter however. What is nice weather for me, is not for my friend or my cousin. I personally like warm and humid days, when you stick from the humidity and when you only find consolation in iced-coffees and frozen margaritas. Nice weather is the weather in Miami, Los Angeles or San Diego. Definitely not New York or London.

Lucky me (!), I saw the first New York snow yesterday, and the second today. Thank God, it didn’t stay but melted quickly. That is good news. And although the days are becoming increasingly colder, native New Yorkers say that “I haven’t seen anything yet”. What does it mean? The worse is just about to come. Unless Global Warming decides to melt the ice, abolish snow and blisters in NYC and offer nicer and warmer days, I might have to buy another coat, a hat that I hate and put on all my London pashminas. Speaking of London, the weather in London never becomes very very cold. But it can stay cloudy and overcast for months, including the whole summer. London is grey and rainy for many days throughout the year. I didn’t mind it during the winter and fall days because clouds bring rain but also a milder atmosphere and mood. You rarely see snow in London (only 3 times in 7 years I spent). But when June comes and it is still overcast with an average temperature of 15 Celcius, you often question your well-being by staying in the city. June is supposed to be nice and warm when locals can show off their exercised yoga and pilates bodies in t-shirts, shorts and mini-skirts. I guess you can do that easily in New York that becomes warm and humid during the summer months (after having spent the snowy days in one of the numerous pilates and yoga studios).

I haven’t experienced that yet. I am still on my "snow days" in the Big Apple. Hopefully the snow will melt quickly and with just about nine weeks to go (official end of the winter), the spring will enter with flowers and bees!

New York stuff:

BAG Gallery invites you to apply to submit work to the upcoming show LOOK SEE :: PHOTOGRAPHS ON REFLECTION Theme of show is reflection. Images created via any form of photography will be accepted for consideration (i.e. shot on film, shot digitally, unaltered shots, alternative process, mixed media, digital manipulations, montages, etc.), so long as part of the image is photographically created. All works must not exceed 36 inches in width, height or depth.
Award: a solo show at BAG gallery, located in Brooklyn, New York. Winner announced on night of group show opening.
Submission deadline: Friday, January 26th, 2007
Apply: Please visit Brooklyn Artists Gym website for details. Contact: Michele Jaslow at

Friday, January 12, 2007

Neurotic New Yorkers, alcoholic Londoners

When it comes down to New Yorkers, they all seem to have one problem or three. That makes the city a real heaven for therapists. My new NY friend, native New Yorker, was complaining on the phone the other day that he had either the flu or a sinus (he wasn’t sure) and couldn’t go to work for a few days. And guess what, that means that he is not making any money since he is in sales (if you don’t work, you don’t sell). So he was bitching against life and all the consequences, viruses, the weather and sales jobs! Another acquaintance, a lady who is in the process of doing a PhD for the last decade or so had a strict deadline to submit 100 pages of her dissertation the first week of January. She didn’t do it therefore she might be penalized by the College (if they hadn’t done it all those previous ten years, why they should it now?). She was blaming the holiday season, Christmas dinners and the New Year (getting older?) and the obnoxious relatives visiting. Those are two, close to me examples of neurotic New Yorkers. Don’t get me started with numerous others who have alimonies to pay, have recently lost their wallet, can’t loose those extra pounds, whining about Donald Trump who is responsible for the excessively priced housing market in the city (yeah!!!). Every single one has a problem or two. Since I moved to New York, I can better understand Woody Allen films. Obsessed individuals with their little daily habits, neurotic human beings who do not know what they really want but also what their real issue is. What I think it is, it’s probably the fact that they are not satisfied with their choices; that's the reason they have to complain about them all the time. The most famous of all, Woody Allen himself, a real New Yorker, the real neurotic one who, not surprisingly, made a career out of it. Also the cleverest!

Londoners, on the other hand, are the posh ones. Even if they have one or two problems, they are cautious and boundary and quiet. Londoners rarely talk openly about themselves and with the exception of the weather and how expensive the capital is, do not complain about anything else. They are well-dressed (not always in the same pair of jeans New Yorkers…), speak confidently on their mobile (i.e. cell phone) while browsing the racks of Top Shop or Jigsaw. There is only one minor problem: alcohol. Every decent Londoner (and Brit as well) should start drinking around 5 pm in the local pub. By 10 pm is drunk as a skunk. Unique remedy is going home by taxi followed by an amazingly greasy fry-up the following morning in the same pub – if they are not ashamed (because they made fool of themselves the previous night). You can’t say anything about it – that’s a British tradition! Although I don’t really know where this tradition comes from, I was one of those people who personally experienced it multiple times. Not cool!

Yes, if New York is the heaven for therapists, London is definitely the heaven for the AA.

Events in the Cities:

Neurotic Woody Allen is playing his clarinet with the Eddy Davis New Orleans Jazz Band. Every Mon through June 11, $95, show starts at 8:45 (dinner reservations recommended for better seating), Cafe Carlyle, 35 E. 76th St (between Madison and Park), 212-744-1600

Have you said anything about Dragon’s Den? The famous reality show for aspiring entrepreneurs is back! Dragons' Den gives entrepreneurs the chance to pitch their proposals to a panel of the UK's most successful business people. They have pledged to invest their own money in the best ideas. If you are an entrepreneur, with a fantastic business idea or product that is investment-ready, then mail: for an application form. You can also call on 09011 110825 or visit

Second Chance Tuesday
Second Chance Tuesday is back by popular demand on Tuesday 23 January 2007. The event starts at 6.30pm at the The Royal Commonwealth Society, 25 Northumberland Avenue, London. Entry is by guest list only and costs £20 payable in advance - a welcome drink will be served. Visit to register.

Second Chance Tuesday is an event for anyone who believes in the power of the internet to
change everything, from the way we communicate to the way we entertain ourselves. Come
mingle with London’s leading entrepreneurs and investors (as well as some older and wiser
faces from the boom of 1999) who are helping create the world changing ideas
of tomorrow.