Bodega Strikes Again...

Bodega is a phenom!

One of only five selected documentary shorts in competition at the fiercely independent Woodstock Film Festival, Bodega and the IC's keep drawing new fans with their old school discussion of what folks are really eating in the hood. It's a humorous yet searing commentary about the choices confronting people who live in "the poorest urban county in the country." Under the yellow awning of the Bronx Bodega, all the important food groups are represented.

Join Dallas Penn, Rafi Kam and Casimir Nozowski of iNternetsCelebrities.com as they illustrate the finer points of the Bodega Food Pyramid at the Woodstock Film Festival. Give quarter water a chance. Chea!

Friday, October 3 @ 11AM

Sunday, October 5 @ 11 AM

Woodstock Film Festival

Latest YouTube numbers: 55,064 views and counting. Maybe they should allow absentee ballots at this festival....


Rose Parade

Okay, it's official. I'm addicted to these time-lapse videos the Brooklyn Botanic Garden is putting out. This one just looks like magic. Don't you want to live in the special, sweetly green far away land where the people are really really tiny and the air smells like roses all the time?


Think Pink

I know it's the wrong season, but I just found this video. I have a special thing with the Brooklyn Botanic Gardens and their Cherry Blossoms. I go every year for my birthday. One year, the blooms were so abundant the trees were giving flowers to the wind. It rained pink for two days and it seemed as if I'd wandered onto the set of a Bollywood movie. Who says you can't have springtime in September?


Flight of the Purple Condor

These sexy Silver and Amethyst Quartz earrings may encourage a few stylish flights of fancy of your own. Watch out, fierceness ahead!

Handmade, Mexican silver swoops play host to extra-large, hand-selected gems that look like the purple-dipped feathers of some fantastic mythical bird. Slim lines of curved Sterling Silver add to the feathered effect, creating a pair of truly unusual earrings.

Not only is the design unique, but the gemstones are special too. They're known as Chevron or Banded Amethyst, a naturally occurring composite of Crystal Quartz and Amethyst. While I have other examples of the stone in my collection, none are as well balanced in their shape or as striking in appearance.

Go gorgeous.


Theraputic Touch

I've always thought of massage as a potent tool in my personal "feel better" toolbox. And now there's proof! Check out this article from Newsweek:

Five Surprising Benefits of Massage

The newest cure-all may be an ancient one: simple touch. The Chinese have been using massage for all kinds of medical conditions for centuries. Now, Western research is confirming that massage isn't just for muscle pain. One of the most surprising findings: massage may help premature babies gain weight. When Tiffany Field, a professor of pediatrics, became a new mother, she massaged her premature infant daughter and was so impressed with the results she later founded the Touch Research Institute (TRI) at the University of Miami School of Medicine. Massage, it turns out, may boost immunity and help people with a range of conditions from premenstrual syndrome to high blood pressure. It also seems to help soothe pain from arthritis, burns and even surgery. Here are five surprising facts about massage from the research findings at TRI and elsewhere that you can put to use:

1. Pick Your Spot: You don't have to massage the part of the body that hurts most. If you're shy about letting a friend touch your aching lower back, for instance, she could help by massaging your shoulders instead. This is because massage creates chemical changes that reduce pain and stress throughout the body. One way it does this is by reducing a brain chemical called substance P that is related to pain. In a TRI study, for example, individuals with a form of muscle pain called fibromyalgia showed less substance P in their saliva (and they reported reduced pain) after a month of twice-weekly massages.

2. De-Stress, Stay Healthy. Massage may boost immunity. Several studies have measured the stress hormone called cortisol in subjects' saliva before and after massage sessions, and found dramatic decreases. Cortisol, which is produced when you are stressed, kills cells important for immunity, so when massage reduces your stress levels and hence the cortisol in your body, it may help you avoid getting a cold or another illness while under stress.

3. Blood Pressure Benefits: Massage reduces hypertension, suggests a good deal of research. This may be because it stimulates pressure receptors that prompt action from the vagus nerve, one of the nerves that emerges from the brain. The vagus nerve regulates blood pressure, as well as other functions. In a 2005 study at the University of South Florida, hypertension patients who received 10 massages of 10 minutes each over three weeks showed significant improvements in blood pressure compared to a control group who simply rested in the same environment without any massage.

4. Technique Tactics: There's little evidence to support one kind of massage over another, says Field, so don't worry about whether your therapist is schooled in Shiatsu, Swedish or some other technique. The key is pressure firm enough to make a temporary indentation in the skin. If you try massage with a partner, use massage oil, which you can find in a health-food store or pharmacist, but test a little on your skin first to make sure you are not allergic.

5. Self Help. You can massage yourself. Although you don't have to massage the part of the body that hurts to relieve pain, targeting that area does tend to help more. One example is massaging the arms. If you're in danger of developing inflamed nerves in your hands or arms from repetitive movements (like typing on a keyboard, or even gripping a steering wheel for hours at a time) try massaging your arms for 15 minutes a day. Stroke from the wrist to the elbow and back down on both sides of the forehand.


Something New

I recently made this silk-strung necklace for my Mom. She picked out the stone -- it's a rare mineral discovered in Japan 1944 called Sugilite -- when I took her to a gem show here in New York this summer.

Sugilite is very opaque but lustrous as the same time, its unusual violet color a sign of awakening spiritual potential and compassion for all beings. A conduit for the third-eye and crown chakras, it enables deep perceptions of one's place on the earth and brings positive feelings of optimism and hope for the future. It should come as no surprise to anyone who knows my Mom that this is the stone to which she was drawn.

I love that so rare a stone found it's way to so rare a person.


Welcome to the World

I made this custom piece for a friend of a friend. He and his wife were expecting their first child and he wanted to commemorate the occasion with a necklace and earrings. It was such a special commission, I was delighted to be asked.

Strung on the 14k gold chain are seven tiny freshwater pearls -- the birthstone for June -- for the lucky birthday boy, with two larger freshwater pearls for his parents, symbolizing faith, honesty, wisdom and dignity. The six iridescent moonstones, for passion and new beginnings, will bring good luck and a happy home. And finally five Australian fire opals that speak to the heart and bring forth all the wonders of childhood -- creativity, imagination, inspiration and memory.

Took me awhile to figure it out, but when I did, it came together like magic. Must of be that new baby mojo...Congrats to the happy family!


Trying to Lose My Fatty

Well, the moment of reckoning came and it was a doozy. I used to be able to walk around Prospect Park -- that's 3.5 miles -- in about 35 minutes. No high impact jogging for me, thank you very much. The girls do not like the bounce.

But I digress.

Today I went around the park for the first time in I don't know how long. It took me one hour and three minutes. That's nearly a 20 minute mile!!! Oh the horror.... So I'm back on the treadmill, determined to no longer be embarrassed by the senior citizens that lap me with their aerodynamic walkers and the pregnant woman who actually left me in her wake as she speed walked past me.

Oh, the shame of it all.


Interesting New York

A first-ever, day-long confab, Interesting New York gathers "fascinating people who love stuff" to give ridiculously brief 3min presentations about topics they're passionate about or have first-hand experience with, from the utilitarian ("How to get run over by a Metro North train and live"), to the practical ("How to defend yourself from a blogger"), to the Goya (and my personal favorite from The Big Guy) "The Bodega Food Pyramid."

Saturday, September 13th
10am til 6pm

The Katie Murray Ampitheater @ FIT

7th Ave at 27th St, Building D


Insect Life of Florida

In those days I thought their endless thrum
was the great wheel that turned the days, the nights.
In the throats of hibiscus and oleander

I'd see them clustered yellow, blue, their shells
enamelled hard as the sky before rain.
All that summer, my second, from city

to city my young father drove the black coupe
through humid mornings I'd wake to like fever
parcelled between luggage and sample goods.

Afternoons, showers drummed the roof,
my parents silent for hours. Even then I knew
something of love was cruel, was distant.

Mother leaned over the seat to me, the orchid
Father'd pinned in her hair shrivelled
to a purple fist. A necklace of shells

coiled her throat, moving a little as she
murmured of alligators that float the rivers
able to swallow a child whole, of mosquitoes

whose bite would make you sleep a thousand years.
And always the trance of blacktop shimmering
through swamps with names like incantations—

Okeefenokee, where Father held my hand
and pointed to an egret's flight unfolding
white above swamp reeds that sang with insects

net over the sea, its lesson
of desire and repetition. Lizards flashed
over his shoes, over the rail

until I was lost, until I was part
of the singing, their thousand wings gauze
on my body, tattooing my skin.

father rocked me later by the water,
on the motel balcony, singing calypso
above the Jamaican radio. The lyrics

here the citronella burned, merging our
shadows—Father's face floating over mine
in the black changing sound

night, the enormous Florida night,
metallic with cicadas, musical
and dangerous as the human heart.

-- Lynda Hull


Pick Up Sticks

Carnelian is an energy stone. Associated with the sacral chakra, it amplifies your connection to other people, creativity and energy storage.

In other words, it provides a nice pick-me-up. And who doesn't want that when looking in the mirror?

A top seller at persuede.com, these earrings, as the song goes, "ain't no joke." Rich columns of Carnelian are gracefully suspended on 14k Gold fill wires to create your own personal jeweled architecture for the ear.

Go gorgeous.