A little over a week ago, Brandon Stanton, the photographer behind the blog “Humans Of New York,” posted a photo of a young man named Vidal who cited his school principal, Nadia Lopez, as the most influential person in his life: “When we get in trouble, she doesn’t suspend us. She calls us to her office and explains to us how society was built down around us. And she tells us that each time somebody fails out of school, a new jail cell gets built. And one time she made every student stand up, one at a time, and she told each one of us that we matter.” Vidal lives in a housing project and attends middle school at Mott Hall Bridges Academy in Brownsville, a neighborhood in Brooklyn with one of the highest crime rates in New York City. Keep reading »
Kids at STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math) Summer Camp in Brooklyn have foregone the usual craft projects and campfire games of the season to spend their vacation learning the ins and outs of gentrification. It shouldn’t be such a surprise, since that seems to be all New Yorkers (and the writer of every obnoxious Williamsburg trend piece) can talk about anymore. The fact that this camp is a necessity convinces me in various ways that society, especially that of New York City, is going down the toilet; but it’s also a really encouraging way to try to make gentrifying neighborhoods accessible to everyone. Maybe these kinds of initiatives can allow for residents whose families have lived in a neighborhood for 30 years stick it out alongside all those thirty-something accountants from Iowa who seem hellbent on moving into every last brownstone on the block.
Camp leaders hope so, anyway, and want kids to understand what the gentrification means on a financial level so they can take control. Campers walk around the rapidly changing Brooklyn neighborhoods of Bedford-Stuyvesant and Clinton Hill taking pictures of symbols of the gentrification process, like construction or for-sale signs. Some of the kids shared their ideas on finance with Sally Herships of Marketplace. Lots of their thoughts are adorably giggle-worthy, like 7-year-old camper Tristan’s:
“Gentrification is a small shift in an urban community to mostly help senior citizens get a home.”
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UPDATE, 7/13, 5p.m.: THANK GOD, this was only a hoax! [New York Post]
Brooklyn is on the hunt for Penelope, a pregnant Mexican Red Rump tarantula, who is apparently someone’s beloved pet. She escaped from her owner’s home, and flyers have turned up in the neighborhood with this plea for help:
I know she looks crazy scary, but she’s mostly harmless. She’s pregnant, so I’m hoping to find her before she has her babies. She’s mostly active at night and likes to hide in dark corners. She shouldn’t bite, but sometimes jumps when frightened. If you find her, please try to catch her and put her in a tupperware bowl with a few holes in the top for air. Then please call me and I will come get her.
I have so many questions. How many babies do tarantulas have? Where did Penelope find another tarantula to knock her up? What if her babies disperse themselves all over the city and creep into apartments through air vents en masse and viciously attack Brooklynites in our sleep?! If you live in New York and see a terrifying tiny beast chilling on the sidewalk, you know who to call. [Gothamist] [Image via Imgur]
The heavens have opened and gifted us cat fanatics with a whole Saturday night dedicated to kitty-centered DIY projects. Cat Lady Craft Night is going down at the Brooklyn Craft Company in New York City this weekend and I will totally be there, presumably decked out in my favorite cat tights. This night of self-described “catlady nirvana” will teach crafters how to make papercut cat cards, cat mugs, cat earrings, cat tote bags and about a million other homemade goodies. The crafts are each at different stations for you to mingle between at your own pace while you eat snacks and guzzle cocktails. The evening also includes a raffle that benefits Brooklyn Animal Action, a no-kill group that works to better animals’ lives. I haven’t done much in the way of crafting before, so I’m really excited to try this out. Maybe I’ll even learn a thing or two churn out some Pinterest-quality creations? A girl can dream! If you want to come along and get your catlady on, check out the event page here to register and head to Brooklyn this Saturday. You know there’s nothing more awesome than a whole night of celebrating cats! [Image via Brooklyn Craft Company]
Drunk people are annoying — so annoying, in fact, that a Brooklyn bar is raising their drinking age on weekends to keep the youngest annoying drunks away. Neighbors have been complaining about bar patrons from Phil’s Crummy Corner leaving empties in their planters and screaming in the streets until 4 a.m. So now the joint will no longer admit drinkers younger than 25 after 10 p.m. on Friday and Saturday nights, a plan they referred to as becoming a “quiet family place” (instead of a combination sports bar/Latin American restaurant, which is what Yelp calls it). Phil’s Crummy Corner is even hiring a bouncer to keep those young’uns out, too. Noisy assholes will have to find someplace else to drink … just stay out of Queens, please. [DNAinfo New York] [Image of drunk people via Shutterstock]
Brooklyn-based writer and comic Kyle Ayers was minding his own business, enjoying the view from his rooftop with some friends, when a couple arrived and proceeded to breakup in front of everyone. So Kyle took to Twitter, as one does. ”A couple is breaking up on my roof right now,” he tweeted Saturday evening. “I was just trying to enjoy the view. Now I will live tweet the breakup.” I will allow the Storify of his exhaustive tweet session speak for itself, because it is hilarious… Keep reading »