NEWS AND NOTES

-We're going to Iceland on Saturday! This trip came together pretty quick once Marilyn found out about the incredible deals Iceland Air has been offering. While I hate flying it sounds like it could be a pretty cool trip, no pun intended. Hopefully I'll be able to get some good pics for Depicted.

-Obama winning the election was quite the event, and we even had a small get together to watch the event sports style. While I know these are common, they aren't for us. Not that weren't ever interested, but this election really was a spark plug of debate. It was cool to see what some of my oldest friends thought of the proceedings. I also got to write my first real political column, although maybe the one about Bloomberg's congestion pricing plan takes that honor. Either way, I dug doing that. Politically, I ride that middle line of independence where I can slide either way depending on who I like, so it was cool to be able to talk about that amongst other things. If I write more political columns, I think I'll keep the AKA: Politica title as it kinda stands for an alter ego for me that even I didn't know I had.

-So after a few years ban of Halloween, and our initial continuing of that ban this year, we actually decided to hit a Halloween party the day after the holiday. Archaia Studio Press threw a grand party in their space, a gorgeous former vaudevillian theatre. Having visited publisher Mark Smylie earlier this year at this space, me and Marilyn felt that this was a party not to be missed. Our costumes only came together 2 hours before the party with Marilyn designing a cloud mask with raindrops and me making a felt "robber" mask. It was quite silly, but at least it was something.

-We started watching 30 Rock on DVD and I'm quite enjoying it so far. I'm a big fan of Tina Fey's and she's just always on when she's writing as well. The cast is good, with Alec Baldwin being so perfect in his role. He really shines in comedies.

-We went to this great restaurant called Char #4 that I'm thinking of reviewing more in depth. Food writing is something I'd like to try to get more into here, so maybe that can be a first. If not, I'll cover it more in the next News and Notes.

-Another eatery I went to this week was Hallo Berlin, a German place in Hell's Kitchen. The spot doesn't have much of an atmosphere, and is actually pretty no frills overall, but the food and beer were excellent, and that's all that really counts, right? I had a bratwurst and potato pancakes along with a giant humpen of Spaten Munich lager.

-Fall softball continues to be fun, although I'm pissing myself off on the field. I think I'm psyching myself out on defense, when I should just relax and be more natural. At bat I'm not doing too bad, although I'm getting under a lot of pitches, which is odd considering how I swing. Today was particularly fun as we played on essentially a little league field which was 180 feet to the fences. I believe 8 home runs were hit today, none by me. Fun to see though. I only had two hits on the day, but was very happy with how I was hitting the ball overall. I also gunned down two runners at first base from short right field!

-We went to James G. Barry's CD/book release party. Jim is one of the Four Fathers of the McSorley's Bash and a Brooklyn Original. His new CD reminds me of Jack Johnson meets Greg Graffin filtered through a fine Blues screen. I truly dig what he's going for, and his book companion makes a perfect set. Check out his My Space for songs and purchasing info.

-Recently we've discovered Airborne, and I think we may be addicted. Is that bad? I mean it's got a ton of Vitamin C and other things that are good for you, plus it's got an interesting kick to it. I hope it's not bad for you...

That's the news and I am outta here!