Archive for June, 2010

Imagine That, a Science Festival!

Science Works!

The on-screen realization that something improbable has the potential to exist, such as genetically generated dinosaurs roaming around an island or bioluminescent animals not on a far-away planet but Earth itself is what makes going to the movies an experience that validates our wildest imaginations. Science enthuiasts, get ready, the 2010 Imagine Science Film Festival, is coming back to NYC, opening on October 15th, tempting peoples’ imaginations while accurately portraying the foundation of science in new films.

Brooklyn Maize Fields

Food Looped In

[Updated: Now with Photos!] Boerum Hill, Brooklyn used to be a Native American maize field. Our urban sprawl has left no evidence of its existence. We joke that New York neighborhoods are in constant flux, but rarely do we examine the extent of the words, “This neighborhood has changed.” Gowanus artist and resident, Christina Kelly, critiqued and challenged this phrase by planting urban corn gardens in Canarsie and Boerum Hill, namely at the intersection of Smith and Bergen. Christina cites that this particular area was cultivated by the Marechkawick Indians, as mentioned in a 1640 land grant to the Dutch citizen Frederick Lubbersen. The gardens are a nod to the historical resilience of New York City living.

The Many Virgins Mary

Inner City

The stocky, mustached man stepped out from behind his counter to greet me as I entered, revealing a pair of lustrous bicycle shorts in the colors of the Ecuadorian flag. I dragged in a beaten blue bicycle, its wheels wrapped in a chain that kept it from rolling. I had carried it up on the R Train from City Hall, where I had extracted it from a nearby dumpster on Chambers Street.

La Strada

Make Room for the return of Minstrel Folk

La Strada has come a very long way. There was a time where their main gig was on the subway platform, performing to patrons waiting for the G train. The band carries a sound of their own that transcends genres and classifications, creating an anomaly of different sounds and transform it to something only they could create. Each tune is a new surprise waiting to be discovered, and each can easily become a new favorite.

Summertime, Get me to Sleep

The New York City Reason To Be

Have you looked down your street to see the wavy lines coming up from the pavement, making two blocks down seem like a mirage? Have you stood on the lower platform at West 4th Street? Have you seen Do The Right Thing? I know the South has legitimate, thick humidity and the desert of course actually gets hotter than it does here. I would wager however, that there is a type of heat and level of summer discomfort specifically unique to New York.

Unicycling

One Wheel Circus

The unicycle has long been a family member of the circus. Though it may have played the funny-looking little sibling to the shining star of the trapeze, everyone from the early to mid-20th century Valla Bertini Troupe to the Ringling Bros. Barnum & Bailey circus has had unicyclists.

June 2010 Issue: Cycling NYC

Issue Cover

Welcome to our second volume, Hoopla Hoop’s June issue focusing on Cycling in New York City! This month we’re covering what it means to be an active (Bi)Cyclist, how it empowers us as New Yorkers, how it can alienate and how it can connect us together. We have articles covering Unicycling in the city, Bike Polo, planning bike trips with friends and even a photo curation! Keep checking back as the articles are rolled out, and for now enjoy this cover and the “Letter from the Editor”.

Go Loco for Agua de Coco

Foodnotes and Anecdotes

I found my salvation in a coconut! Coconut water to be exact, the liquid from young coconuts (not to be confused with coconut milk which is expressed from the flesh of mature coconuts) is one of the world’s most nutritious beverages. With the perfect balance of electrolytes and carbohydrates to replenish fluids lost during exercise, coconut water makes an excellent replacement for artificially flavored sports drinks, like Gatorade, and can be easily found at your corner Bodega!

Revisiting Sunnyside

Our NYC Roots

I was a Sunnysider for 14 months, my first year in the city. For a Northern Californian, Queens was an alien landscape where just about everything is organized differently: better public transportation, transparent but approachable personalities and a true melting pot society where you can literally hear six different languages crossing the street (and not be in a tourist spot). Though I enjoyed Sunnyside, my eventual exposure to Brooklyn called me away and I soon left to re-engage my youth and a growing sense of superficiality. While I’d stepped foot back in the neighborhood a handful of times since moving, after two-years away I went back to Sunnyside from my home in Bushwick to see how the neighborhood had changed.

Inner City-The Illuminated Grimoire of Newtown Road

Inner City

I joked about it. I called it Queens Times Square. Every time I told a new friend where I was living there was a predictable moment of hesitation and a laugh. I had found myself a nice little apartment right near 42nd and Broadway, thankfully free of the harsh light and the awful crowd of its eponymous twin.