Friday, December 31, 2010

The Fifty-First...

Number Fifty-One:

Dots Back Inn, Breakfast, Omelet

New Year's Eve eggs? L. & I had some running around to do before evening festivities and this is a great place to start!

Happy New Year!

(Scariest Stache so far BTW)

Thursday, December 30, 2010


Number Fifty:

Cafe Ole (Carytown), Lunch, Spinach Burrito

What once was probably a gas station, then a laundry mat, then briefly Ben & Jerry's now has a local place giving it a try; Cafe Ole. Their first location being downtown and the one that I used to meet fellow ThroTTle friends on my lunch hour when I worked at VCU. I was pretty excited to see this endeavor in Carytown, and I think a lot of people are happy to see it there too.

I met my pal M. for delicious burritos and Carytown havoc. Hitting the great places like Chop Suey, RCC, and Plan 9 where we both scored some cool records. Then Mongrel and some beers at New York Deli. I do missed the old NY Deli, the newer one is clearly marketed to the bar crowd and it does have a decent tap selection, but there was something charming about the old Jewish Deli that made great breakfast and sandwiches and had greater vibe. This one feels kind of like any other place with a lady two stools over from us who looked like she just came from the tanning salon and had a big fashionable purse. What the hell does someone with a purse that big KEEP in the damn thing? We speculated; nightie, lotions, poodles --unfathomable. Anyway, a great afternoon!


Wednesday, December 29, 2010

The Forty-Ninth...

Number Forty-Nine:

Virginia Center Commons Regal Theaters, Popcorn, Movie

After trying to help G. at work get her Prius started (we never did and she had to get a tow), I got home and was spent, throat still blah (maybe a humidifier will help), but not nearly as sick. H. was chilling on the couch and I started to look at Fandango for whimsy.

"Hey H., you wanna go see True Grit?" I threw it out there, not expecting much from the teen.


What? Really? Getting her to the movies, let alone a western remake? Wow! OKAY!
It is a Coen Brothers film, so at least the dialog would be clever and the cinematography by Roger Deakins is always a joy; I knew it would be entertaining.

Both of us enjoyed it a lot. Some fine acting and just a great western. Not nearly as great as Unforgiven, but more approachable and not as complicated a tale. H. even said she liked it better than the last Harry Potter movie! Wow!

Got this Stache sitting in the Virginia Center Commons theater, which any RVA moviegoer knows these days, is the new crappy movie theater in town. Well, maybe in a tie with West Tower. Not a terrible theater, just the people working there would rather dance to themselves singing shitty 90s dance music than oh say, wipe a counter of sticky fluid or random popcorn sog. I'm pretty good in any theater until people start being assclowns on their cells or talking or whatever; we lucked out today though, everyone was well behaved. But it was still no Bowtie!

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

The Forty-Eighth...

Number Forty-Eight:

Riverbound Cafe, Lunch, Turkey Reuben

Another Bookmobile lunch, this time with the full crew, most of them sick (including me still on some kind of virus from hell mend). Waitress confesses by the second sentence that it is her second day. Yes, she performed like it, but you have to cut her a little slack for being thrown to lunch crowd wolves.

Speaking of lunch time wolves, some dude maybe a little older than me brought attention to himself immediately with his loud cell phone ring: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly. I lean over to G. "That guy right there is known as The Douche with No Name in some parts." She replies, "The Good, The Bad and The Douchey?" *chuckles* This was the beginning of our wonderment of this probably perfectly nice fellow taking his wife and folks out to lunch during the holidays. He also was wearing matching Corvette gear; hat, shirt, jacket --he could have been in a pit crew. Wow. So we started to wonder if his Vette was out in the parking lot somewhere, or was it something he aspired to or received as a gift and was hoping to work up to the actual car, or just an enthusiast. Now when someone like that dresses in full gear as such, you better own a Vette or be a 6 year old. I mean sure, I have my own fashion problems but really, WHO is dressing like that?!?

Anyway, snapped this one quickly.

Monday, December 27, 2010

The Forty-Seventh...

Number Forty-Seven:

Lunch, Buz and Ned's, Ribs

For the two weeks during Christmas and New Years, work tends to be quieter and you can manage a little bit more time for lunch. It's the way work should be all year round! C., J. and I were planning on a trip to Dot's (I was surprised at the suggestion, considering it was peak crowd time), then we saw the wall of people crammed in the front door like a college contest from the 50s. Quick thinkingly, we chose the Greek Grill, but damned if they weren't closed. The only real choice, heading back in the direction of work, was Buz & Ned's; home of some kick ass tasting but makes you feel bad for eating so much red meat all the time ribs. Naturally they were equally crowded with hordes of families that must think the tiny joint is a frickin Panera and they can camp out at tables after eating as long as they want. We were resigning ourselves to eat out on their tent-porch, when luckily, a booth popped up. Sweet!

This napkin is freaking filthy with sauce from fingers. Good ribs are brutal that way...

Sunday, December 26, 2010

The Forty-Sixth...

Number Forty-Six:

Home, Lunch, Morningstar Farms Burger

The snow cancelled our trip to the farm to visit L. folks, but we got to trounce around the neighborhood some more. Lunch, then watched Diner, one of L's favorites and comforting enough to allow a nap midway through. I just hope we can get a snowday from work tomorrow too! :-)

Saturday, December 25, 2010

The Forty-Fifth...

Number Forty-Five:

Home, Christmas Dinner, Roast Beef

Lisa and I decided to go for making a roast beef for our first Christmas in the Fungalow, rather than my usual lasagna. I have never made a proper roast beef before and neither had she, so it was a fairly daunting task to get it right. Basically we combined a recipe from the internet and from a 1963 Edition of McCall's Cook Book. Despite the few times of taking it out early to see if it was done, doubting the crazy meat thermometer and just slicing into the damn thing, it turned out great! Tender and the gravy we made from it wasn't too bad either. That combined with the last bottle of the Beaujolais nouveau (yeah, we like it) and the beginning of what looks to be a significant snowfall made for a perfect first holiday dinner at home. Alas, with this photo, my glass is bare!

Empty Glasstache!

Friday, December 24, 2010

The Forty-Fourth...

Number Forty-Four:

Yen Ching, Dinner, Family Style (a little bit of everything)

For the past few years, we have gone out for Chinese on Christmas Eve with the G. family, and the L.-R. family. I love starting this kind of "new tradition" with friends, and hope they last! I think none of us are particularly religious, so it is kind of nice to get together on our own. Pagan-style!

How can I explain? Hmmm, you know how when you were in college or at least younger or something and you most ALWAYS went to your folk's home for the holidays? Well, I guess I kind of feel that this is like establishing my/our own sense of adulthood. Does that make sense? Not in any mean-spirited way to my folks, or hung up on that idea of still being a young person, but in a more independent way; creating a tradition. Plus it's just a good time to spend with friends you like to spend Christmas Eve dinner with!

Unfortunately, L. was not feeling well, so I went solo, hoping to get her some soup to cure her as well as rendezvous with my kid while out. Everyone but L. was there, and we all had a great time. M.G. thinks I am insane for doing this Napstache thing and says he shuns everytime I post the link update in FB. Ha! Ha! So, he wound up taking the picture, for he wanted nothing to do with the participation, can't blame him, because it IS rather mad, I suppose!

Christmas Evestache!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

The Forty-Third...

Number Forty-Three:

Beer, Red Rooster, Party

The last holiday party till the New Years parties start kicking in. The plan tonight was originally the Threesome plan, which meant going to my friend J.'s birthday/holiday party, with two married women. C. and S., good friends to go as a crew, arriving early, leaving early. It's our Threesome! Ha ha! But this year falls on the night before my 6AM radio show, so I had to make it way earlier than they were willing to leave. So I am going solo. Still it was a great time with a lot of radio people, lot of fun, and a speakeasy style bar in the basement called the Red Rooster and tended awesomely by BrownCo.


And yes, I have been using these Cocktail napkins as my goto napkin, having a couple in the pocket each place I go!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

The Forty-Second...

Number Forty-Two:

Dots Back Inn, Dinner, Famous Amos

Wow! The first day in like a WEEK that I have felt good! YAY!

Had a great walk and dinner with my kid, she is all goofy and funny like me so when the two of us get that father-daughter time it can get pretty hilarious. I hope when she is older, she will remember times like these with her Pop and smile.

Anyway, we got there right before six as I like to do. Lots of folk in holiday sweaters and Santa broaches and "Oh isn't THAT great, nah ha ha!" conversation. Tis the season! Two big parties took the middle tables, one was a family with Mom, Dad, Grandma, Grandpa, and three kids. Each kid was plugged into a various game / iTouch device, oblivious to the world of Holidays and Grandma and Grandpa, but did take time at the dinner table to actually eat when the burgers came.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

The Forty-First...

Number Forty-One:

Mekong, Dinner Event, Winter Solstache

So how could I NOT go to this event? I believe it might be the second annual one, and there's a big trophy involved. The event requires a moustache for some good free beer; An's gift to the beer drinking community really, and very very awesome. There was also a contest involved for various best of styles. I did not enter, but I knew I had to do a special napstache. Why not use the leftover cocktail napkins from the house and bring 'em? E., R. and I went, saw more people there, just crazy fun with an excellent beer selection as usual. Our friend R. won the best Chevron category! ...which meant a really cool beer mug with Winter Solstache and a mock stache etching on it. Yeah!
This is me and my good pal An, solstachin' with the best of them!


Monday, December 20, 2010

The Fortieth...

Number Forty:

Home, Hot Toddy, Afternoon

STILL trying to shake this sore throat crap, what a pain! The toddies help though:

1 tbsp (or more) honey in the bottom of a coffee mug
lemon juice (tsp or more)
bourbon as desired ;-)

Steep some hot tea in a separate mug, then pour it in the honey mug, mix and enjoy!


Sunday, December 19, 2010

The Thirty-Ninth...

Number Thirty-Nine:

Mekong Restaurant, Lunch, Claypot Chicken

After last night's party, drinking plenty of tasty fancy pants beer, we had a lunch date with one of L.'s Girl Scout friends from WAY back who was visiting the States from Holland. "Doots" and I have become friends via Facebook, talking about our love of beer! Before she planned on coming to the States (she is originally from here), we worked out that she would bring me some beer from there and I would send her back with some in return. Travel regulation only allows less than 3 liters (or something nutty like that) so it REALLY limits us beer lovers! She chose two from what looks to be a great place called Brouwerij de Molen or Brewery the Mill in English. I gave her a bunch more, thinking she and her family would definitely partake of them while here, then take the rest home; A Legend Barleywine, A Sierra Nevada 30 Grand Cru and a few others. Doots had an entourage with her which was great: her husband, her two teenage children, and her sister and her sister's boyfriend (both local here in town). So, where do we take them for good food and a great beer selection? MEKONG!

We spent the afternoon there, eating, drinking and having a great time. Lien was even kind enough to give them two Mekong 15th Anniversary pint glasses to take back with them! I was hoping Doots would be up for a double Naptstache photo, being the perfect moment, but even BETTER, everyone at the table was up for the participation! YAY!


Great time and I look forward to maybe one day visiting Holland! :-)

Saturday, December 18, 2010

The Thirty-Eighth...

Number Thirty-Eight:

Eggnog, Home, Party

Took this quickly, party dressed, L. frantically mixing eggnog in the background trying to get it thick. I'm all lit a Christmas tree.


Friday, December 17, 2010

The Thirty-Seventh...

Number Thirty-Seven:

Home, Tastebuds American Bistro, Takeout, Pizza

MMMmm! Great pizza in the Northside! Tastebuds is a subtle restaurant in the small business district of our neighborhood. Very humble storefront, it's a small place that grew from a catering joint a few doors down. Inside, it's chock full of great food; from pizza to a burger to a prix fixe menu (weekdays) to my go-to favorite when we are there; Sliced Sirloin with Blue Cheese Risotto, Haricot Vert & Smoked Tomato-Red Wine Sauce. It's an excellent family run place when you want to dress up a little more too.

L. was coming home from work and a frustrating store to store hunt for taper candles (no one hardly carries them anymore), so I ordered us up a pie for Jeopardy! Friday night parking in the small strip of a business district in the Northside can definitely be dodge-y. Alas I had no choice but to park in the Once Upon a Vine parking lot, where you better be a customer or get towed (so the sign says), a beer THEN pick up the pie a few doors down. Yeah, twist my arm to buy a beer! Ha!

It was a few moments after dinner when I noticed that L. had changed the magnet lettering we have on the back of one of our doors:


Ah, a nice Festivus greeting, for the rest of us! :-)

These little magnet letters bring great joy to the Fungalow (Fun + Bungalow) household. The phrase before this that had hung on since Memorial Day?

Le Clown Gumbo Awe

Thursday, December 16, 2010

The Thirty-Sixth...

Number Thirty-Six:

Home, Lunch, Soup & Sandwich

So I am feeling a bit under the weather these past few days, and finally call in sick, on a snow day nonetheless. Ridiculous! Of course, the library has not closed yet, for various debatable reasons, but I knew the Bookmobile would be off the road. I slept super late (10am!) pumped full of meds. But you know how even though you are a little icky feeling, you KNOW you still have shit to do? Well, I did the bare minimum, which was to move my car closer to the road and set up the Mr. Christmas Shooting Stars lights that I bought for fifty cents this summer and they work...awesome! Anyway, this moustache?
Snow Day Sickstache!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

The Thirty-Fifth...

Number Thirty-Five:

Chops Suey Books, Noah Scalin book signing, 1 cheese cube

Noah's book 365: A Daily Creative Journal came out today, or come out next week or any second now. His first in town signing being Chop Suey, Fountain Bookstore is next week if you missed tonight.

The threat of snow in RVA is ridiculous, but I had to go to the Carytown Kroger anyway, knowing I was in for trouble. Something about Richmonders that draws us to grocery stores like a mecca. And the REALLY ridiculous thing is that we know this. We KNOW that it is stupid to mass to the grocery and stock up immediately at the end of the day, we KNOW it will be crazy insane nuts crowded, but we shrug and go "ha ha ha" and do it anyway. Myself included; enter excuse: but I really needed to get this item! The parking lot was insane, horns and aggravation and sitting still but I managed a streetcurb and zipped in and out scoring cold meds and Brunswick Stew. Noah's event started at 6, so I killed a few minutes talking beer with Dave at River City Cellars.

Local bookstores rule, I'm just saying. Ward Tefft rocks. Also, Noah rocks. He was there messaging someone on his phone and we rapped a bit about this and that. Various 365 projects and opinions, then his folks showed up! All friendly approachable people. Artists rock! On one of the tables in the back were his new books all nicely laid out, great binding, like a Taschen, but more approachable and interactive, a book designed for creativity. Anyway, he was more than happy to do a 'stache, so here it is:


Tuesday, December 14, 2010

The Thirty-Fourth...

Number Thirty-Four:

Kitchen 64, Lunch, Greek Nachos

So the Teen Services Committee were meeting for another work Holiday Lunch, at Kitchen 64. Now this place has some serious divisions among Richmonders; crowded, loud, crappy wait staff OR come hungry, delicious, great atmosphere! I went for the first time today, loaded with opinion from Yelp and Urban Spoon.

Crowd-wise it is probably not for me; pricey sunglasses perched on thinning pates like some scrawny bird of freedom past it's prime in the nest. Trendy people looking well dressed, but worn out.

Reaching our large table, I recognized immediately a woman long associated with restaurants in town... Katrina Giavos. Ahhh, so this is part of the whole Sidewalk Cafe, Stella's, Three Monkeys, Kuba Kuba set. Gotcha. She recognized me, from past parties I suppose and I felt more at ease at her working in the trenches and giving me a welcoming smile. The menu was extensive and I had read that the sweet potato fries were the stuff that full bellies were made of, but looking at the first page, I had my mind made up immediately. Greek Nachos, as made famous at Sidewalk Cafe, and YES, they are like they are there! One word, well, okay two: cheese, leftovers.

So would I go back? At the heart of it, it is just neighborhood bar wedged between interstates and intersections and the parking probably is always a pain. The food is not fancy, very neighborhood bar-food food. If I lived within walking distance probably, but I don't so, rarely.

This pic is friend A. and I both giving the stank eye, so...

Stank Eyestache!

Monday, December 13, 2010

The Thirty-Third...

Number Thirty-Three:

Zorba's Restaurant, Lunch, Meatloaf

More snow than expected in town caused us to be running late on the Bookmobile, thus we were about 30 minutes behind our lunch schedule as well. What a difference it makes! Zorba's was pretty crowded but we still managed a booth, the trade-off being the slow cute auburn-haired server instead of the efficient cute auburn-haired server. C. and I both wanted the meatloaf. Yes, that is right, meatloaf, and mashed potatoes...for lunch! And at a Greek-Italian joint to boot! Very unique flavor, a little spicy and the mushroom gravy...just what you need on a cold ass day with snow sloshing around town.

I guess now that I have made Boing Boing (thanks to Noah Scalin, yay!), I will have to explain myself. You know, the REASON. Well, here is the first post that might cover some of it.

Nutshell: I am a class clown, I like to keep my wife laughing, and this is one of the things that I sometimes do to make her either snicker, or, depending on the location, roll her eyes embarrassingly. Knowing Noah and his project, we often joked that I would start something like this. Then one day at lunch after doing some birdwatching, I had my point and shoot camera and just asked L. to take the picture. Did it, on Veteran's Day, that should be an easy enough anniversary day if I actually do it for a year. That's how it started; a random photo in a neighborhood eatery.

I guess a bigger question to address is WHY?!? Hmmm, no reason really except to see if I can do it. Is it futile? Most certainly a maybe. Not to wax bourgeois existential or anything but who knows what something becomes or will become. As my little project continues I like to think I am turning it into some flash-pan social commentary on eating establishments, maybe with some humor. What I have tried to do as of now, is write a little bit about the situation that either leads up to the photograph, or what is topical at that moment in time. Maybe at some point over the course of the year, that will change too.

Reflecting one month into it, I will say that starting a 365 day project is kind of like starting a diet or exercise program; you dread it (maybe to abandon it entirely) or are hung up on the first few weeks, but as you continue, it kind of becomes part of your routine. Now if only I WOULD exercise or diet with such dedication as I have with the Napstache...sheesh! I'm only a month in, so we'll see....

Yeah, in a way it is a vanity project because I have to be in the picture, or at least the 'stache does, but maybe it will branch out to submissions (I have gotten some already) at some point.

Anyway, I just thought I would explain this blog in more detail for anyone that has recently seen this and gone, "What. The. Hell?"

All that being said, I guess I will have to call this one:

Boing Boingstache!

Sunday, December 12, 2010

One Month

Number Thirty-Two:

Home, Breakfast, French Toast

This rain is miserable, but managing my time with laundry and Tarantino's Inglourious Basterds.

Yes, that's an elf on a ledge! Elfstache!

Saturday, December 11, 2010

The Thirty-First...

Number Thirty-One:

Thai Diner Too, Lunch, Red Curry Tofu

Great little Carytown eatery with one of the best lunch specials. They totally give you an egg roll no matter what! H. I were doing a little Holiday shopping and this was the spot we agreed on. After that we headed home, but not before stopping by MacArthur for the Holiday Illumination weekend. Sales from locals, a firetruck, other stuff and they opened Samis Grotto (or the old Bellevue Theater) and had bands playing! Super cool!

Tried to create another Mirrorstache.

Friday, December 10, 2010

The Thirtieth...

Number Thirty:

Peking Restaurant, Lunch, Hunan Chicken

I KNOW. I totally didn't mean to eat at Peking AGAIN this week. Not that it was bad, I got something else, but today's lunch was supposed to be our Bookmobile Holiday Lunch. That meant a longer lunch break and going somewhere really cool in town. Alas, our part-time associate, J., who also works at Fairfield Library, could not get more than one hour and fifteen minutes away for lunch, so we had to do something closer to the office. In other words, pretty much pick one of the same 7 places we eat when near the office. Still, it was a nice, and C. paid! Awww! Happy Holidays!

Being that this is Number Thirty, I looked up "The number thirty" on Google, and this was second on the search results below Wikipedia:

The magic number 30.


Thursday, December 9, 2010

The Twenty-Ninth...

Number Twenty-Nine:

Ruby Tuesday, Salad, Turkey Burger

C. and I again on the road, same Ruby Tuesday, same meal as reasons stated in the previous post. This time as we were leaving, I noticed that I was one of the few male patrons. Seemed like everyone else was a 47-60 year old lady with a friend donning Holiday Sweaters, meeting up for lunch to talk about how their daughter is thinking about quitting the cheer-leading squad because she is new and everyone else already knows the basic cheers and how Henrico County Schools really need to fix this problem and that blah blah blah....

Yeah, okay lady, tough times at the West End household I guess...

...or the 2 couples in their 70s being absolutely AMAZED at the selection of soups (two) they have there. Really. Kind of funny.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

The Twenty-Eighth...

Number Twenty Eight:

Deep Run Recreation Center, Lunch, Turkey Wrap

Part Deux, or rather Day Two, the other half of the library staff, and as promised, my portion of our talk of Change & The Library. Presented awesomely by M., B. and myself, but probably won't come across as well here because, well, we had a great slide slow presentation to go along with it. Yes, use your imagination with I have stuff like (IMAGE OF BLAH BLAH), that means I was changing the slide! Oh, I managed to sneak this shot at nearly the very end of the first presenter from the Kansas Public Library system.

Here ya go:

"I am here to tell you about a few of the examples of some of the changes that are happening in libraries and what the future could be in terms of Library Collections and Building Designs.

Like M. said, library collections are almost secondary to what libraries are really about: which are people. Media formats are continually change, we know that, from clay tablet to scroll to book to playaway to our current competition: eReaders. According to a recent study, by 2015. up to 25% of books will be sold in digital form. And we think that statistic might be low. Imagine that percentage in 10 years.

Yeah, whatever Phil, how does that affect that Tuckahoe patron that wants a large type copy of Joan Medlicott’s “The Gardens of Covington”?
Right now, we can’t even get that for less than 400 dollar used.
(IMAGE OF BOOK WITH 2nd HALF – $400 Price)

Well, on the Kindle, you can get it for quite a bit less, and change your font size to what you want. But, for the sake of argument, this poor patron does not own a Kindle and we can’t shell out nearly 500 bucks for a book.

Now imagine this at your library branch.
It is what they call a Print on Demand machine. What this does is print a copy of a stored book in the system on paper. A person looking for a book not on the shelves could come into the library look to see if a large type edition of “The Gardens of Covington” was available in the system for POD, then for the cost of the printing fee, have it printed out, checked out to them.

Another option we could have is through the electronic distribution of digital media.
Imagine having an application on your handheld device that would allow you to download audio books or even Ebooks through your local library. One of the solutions, at least for now, is something called Overdrive.
Overdrive provides libraries popular audio books, eBooks, music, and videos to lend to patrons for download. In some ways it is very similar to a kind of lease plan in that we are allowed a certain amount of bestsellers available digitally for download onto a device.
For instance, we may have 10 digital “copies” of “Stones into Schools” available for card carrying library patrons to place a hold on, download when available, then virtually return once they are done. Overdrive items are not limited to a few best sellers; there is a digital collection from their catalog of more than 100,000 titles available to anyone who has a participating system’s library card. And the good news about this is that our system is planning on getting this sometime next year.
But what about 10 years from now when everything you ever wanted in information and entertainment could be made available via a stream of information, plucked from the internet “cloud” like Netflix already does?

Will we even need paper books?

Has anyone seen one of these?
That’s right, the infectious RED BOX, coming to a grocery store or pharmacy near you. Quite successful right now.
And I saw this when I went up to ALA in DC this past year, a snack machine full of books and dvds. So it looks like vendors are trying to sell libraries on this as well.
Expensive yet successful in the areas they serve.
This is the Library A Go Go, part of a CA Public Library system. It holds about 400 paperbacks and is designed similar to an ATM.
Much like the Red Box, these seem to be successful in Malls and various public buildings. One example in Hugo, Minnesota is called the Library Express.
This is a drop collection set up outside their City Hall. What happens is a Library worker goes to these metal lockers with various holds that library patrons have placed to pick up. They can go any time of day or night to do this. It has been successful; the criticism is that it is no longer a “public library” but more of a “public book locker”. Incidentally, there is also one in Roanoke, Virginia.
As you can see, the future can go pretty much anywhere, so be open and be prepared.

So IS a future library a library without a library? IS a future library a library without books? Could it be a space with fewer books, but more access to more information through electronic distribution and streaming media? Fewer materials in the collection, but better, even faster CONNECTIONS to the information they want and need? Could it also serve the community as a space for people to connect and collaborate? Will the future of library service be more creative?

Ultimately a library reflects the community in which they serve. Here are some examples of some library building designs that do that with the future in mind.

This is perhaps the most dramatic example:
The University of Amsterdam has converted their library into basically a massive study hall without any visible books. Instead of stacks of books, they created multiple workspaces with access to wi-fi. Instead of the shelving, they have red crates where students who request books can pick them up similar to Minnesota’s Library Express. As ebooks continue to increase in popularity, the University of Amsterdam has basically shifted their focus of operations from books to people.

Now a less extreme example closer to home is the Chicago Public Library.
YOUmedia was created to connect young adults, books, media, mentors, and institutions throughout the city of Chicago in one dynamic space designed to inspire collaboration and creativity. Mentors from the Digital Youth Network, a digital literacy program, and the Chicago Public Library created this space in a centralized location downtown. It houses wi-fi, books, media – it even has a television and music studio so teens can have a place to create. Not only does a place like this offer career opportunity, but it also teaches and educates teens in different skill sets so they have more than one in case their dream of becoming a famous music producer doesn’t quite pan out. This is a wonderful example of collaborating with other agencies and creating space for the always feared “teens in the library”.

You might guess that library staff in a place like this has to expand their skill set to meet their patron needs as well. At this point I will turn it over to B..."

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

The Twenty-Seventh...

Number Twenty-Seven:

Deep Run Recreation Center, Lunch, Turkey Wrap

So for the last three years, our work has had the idea of a Staff Development Day to motivate or inform the employees, which usually means a boxed lunch consisting of some kinda sandwich choice, chips choice and way nasty brownie thing that'll burst your chest. For three years in a row now, I have sat at the back right table, kind of like how I sat in classrooms during my education years. The good thing about my seating choice is the ability to escape to walk around in an aimless pattern or wash your face in the restroom when restless or bored with the "inspirational" speaker. This year I also presented, the topic being the future of the library in the age of our newest collection threat: the ebook. I will be doing the same thing tomorrow, so the treat here on the blog will be that I will post my portion of the presentation I will have given over the past two days!

Monday, December 6, 2010

The Twenty-Sixth...

Number Twenty-Six:

Peking Restaurant, Lunch, Imperial Chicken

I felt the best way for today's was through a Haiku:

Had Peking for lunch
There was a Peace Lily there
Napstache, meet Lily

The Haikustache.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

The Twenty-Fifth...

Number Twenty-five:

Home, Lunch, Tuna fish sandwich

Getting stuff done around the house today, time for a quick bite, rather than the habitual Dots on a Sunday, then more chores.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

The Twenty-Fourth...

Number Twenty-Four:

Basilis, Lunch, Gyro

We were hitting Carytown early, cuz that's how we roll, and ahead of the crowd, even for lunch at this great little Greek eatery. Tokyo Market and
World of Mirth for stocking stuffers,Chop Suey Books where I picked up the funniest book title EVER called "Eeeee Eee Eeee" by Tao Lin, and a few other places on our list. No over the top consumerism, I swear!

Mirror Napstache here, note the Napstache P.O.V. on the left side.

Friday, December 3, 2010

The Twenty-Third...

Number Twenty-Three:

Bellytimber Tavern, Dinner, Pizza

After having a delightful pizza and wing special dinner at the old Texas-Wisconsin Border Cafe with pals M. & M., we visited another great place called Sprout for our friend A.'s art gallery opening. Cool art and people. There for a beer and some fine conversation, then off to Gallery 5 for the RVyAy event and to catch Gull rocking to his fanbase outside, then seeing pals J. & M. with MonkeyDogStudio, and T. and her last Cherry Bomb showing. Just a good solid night out full of friends, art and music! Love Richmond!

M.& M. = Michael & Melissa
A. = Anna
J. & M. = Janet & Mark
T. = Tracy

This Napstache BTW, is like 5 napkins, the waitressing was fast and clean at Belly Timber, constantly barraging us with napkins and water and "No, I will get your waitress to come take your beer order..(cuz I'm 18!)".

Superstache! Caught on film!

Thursday, December 2, 2010

The Twenty-Second...

Number Twenty-Two:

Home, Breakfast, Eggs and Bagel

Time is an important thing in the morning when you have to be somewhere like a job or an appointment. I managed to scramble some eggs and post this! Wow! Efficient!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

The Twenty-First...

Number Twenty-One:

Chick-fil-A, Lunch, Chicken Sandwich

Pressed for time at work, we thought this was the best bet for fast food. It was, but the Fil-A-ers seemed a bit confused and short-staffed. Still, it didn't stop them from saying their mandatory response: "It was my pleasure." Really? Did it bring you joy at 7.25 an hour to hear that lady bitch at you that you got her order wrong and she wanted NO pickles on every other sandwich and not every other sandwich WITH pickles? Maybe the phrase "It was my pleasure" is a cult mantra they must say or be taken out back and MADE into chick-fil-a-parts?

And spelling Chick-fil-A the way they spell it is freaking nuts, by the way. Good sandwich though. I mean fried chicken on a bun with pickles? Aw yeah! But, the whole spelling thing...just saying...

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

The Twentieth...

Number Twenty:

Padow's, Lunch,
Turkey Pastrami sandwich

Padow's in an old 7-11 near Mechanicsville to be exact. One that, for some odd reason, has lots and lots of promotional posters for Strawberry Hill Races from previous years; back to even 1992. Anyway, today was a bit crazy. I got to work early, as usual, then eventually looked at the clock at 8:11, only to realize that I had to be ACROSS TOWN for a class at 8:30. Zoinks! (And I totally had a Shaggy response to this in my head.) I made it ten minutes late. Class ended at 12ish where I came back to work, then went out to lunch with C. Parking at that Padow's is almost as insane and messy as my hair is in this picture. Let's dub this one "Mad Dashstache".

Monday, November 29, 2010

The Nineteenth...

Number Nineteen:

Mekong, Lunch, Tofu Curry

It was kind of awkward getting this one done. There were a couple of well dressed older white dudes having a lunch meeting at the table next to us, at the table across from us there some young couple fondling each other and looking around to see if people were watching them fondle each other, and another couple with their back to us; the dude at this table burped real loud at one point, so I guess he had his own deal to worry about. Anyway, tried a different angle with this one. It looks like the Napstache could strike at any moment, like a cobra! Cobrastache!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

The Eighteenth...

Number Eighteen:

Home, Snack, Cheese and Crackers

After decorating the aluminum tree, listening to Phil Spector's Christmas Album on vinyl, we noshed on some fancy cheese leftover from Thanksgiving. Funny how I act like I dread that the Holidays are coming too fast, but love when the vintage gleaming tree is up and the color wheel is clicking and shining!

Saturday, November 27, 2010

The Seventeenth...

Number Seventeen:

Home, Lunch, Leftovers

Turkey sandwich and Pirate's Booty. You know, the turkey leftover from that meal a couple of days back? Many sandwich styles from many people, I know. Mine might be weird for the one ingredient, but really, who's leftover Thanksgiving sandwich isn't? I usually like whole wheat or multi-grain bread, sliced turkey (duh), cheddar cheese, lettuce, pepper, Dukes's mayonnaise and ketchup.

I like ketchup!

Going around to various adult retirement complexes for my job, I get to notice retirees' opinions of the dining halls and which have the good food and which have the bad. One of our ladies made a great remark saying, "I don't know what people expect here (at the retirement home) for great food, they're feeding a few hundred people at a time for every meal. You can't expect gourmet!" I thought that was pretty insightful and made the joke that if I wind up in one of these places, I was going to always bring a bottle of ketchup with me in case the meal wasn't great. I would improve it. I would be the crazy old man that brings his ketchup bottle in one pocket, and flask of bourbon in the other. At least, I think I am joking....

This Napstache kind of looks like a strip of bacon, doesn't it?

Friday, November 26, 2010

The Sixteenth...

Number Sixteen:

Home, Dinner, Millionaire Chicken

Yum! A favorite L. dish for sure. Chilled chicken, a little spicy and over rice. Note sleigh in the upper left, yes the Holidays have arrived. Used for a prop for our robot Christmas card this year.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

The Fifteenth...

Number fifteen:

Erin, Thanksgiving Dinner, you can guess a traditional Thanksgiving Dinner...

L. was SO not wanting me to do the Napstache at the Thanksgiving table, and I was ready not to. Until L.'s Mom more or less mentioned it, which is as good as suggesting it to me. And while it is not the best napstache, it DID create delightful cheer at the table with Aunt S. who immediately did a Napbeard, followed by Napbinnoculars.

H. then did her first Napstache:

I'm so proud!
A Thanksgiving MIRACLE!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

The Fourteenth...

Number Fourteen:

Mekong, Dinner, Spicy Crispy Chicken / Ginger Chicken, Beer

Hands down, one of our favorite places in Richmond, but you probably already know that if you know me. Delicious food, THE best beer selection and the staff is awesome. An, Liem, Ka, they all make you feel right at home. So, here it is, the first of perhaps many Mekongstaches!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

The Thirteenth..

Number Thirteen:

Avalon, Dinner, Beef Teres Major with a mash of date & sweet potato

We were in the area again, getting cheese at River City Cellars (best in town!). Avalon was our walkable restaurant when we lived on Mulberry. One of the best go-to restaurants in the city for us. Great seasonal menu, nice beer and wine selection, and good wait staff. (We love Steven! Alas, he wasn't there this time.) Unfortunately for me, I feel it is losing it's touch. "It ain't what it used to be." is the old man in me talking. Despite my wanting to be curmudgeonly enough to say that, the beef balanced wonderfully with the date & sweet potato mash.

The waitress completely played it cool when L. was capturing this photo with the neon in the background. Like, "I don't EVEN want to know what your goofy ass is doing." --but in a nice way.

Monday, November 22, 2010

The Twelfth...

Number Twelve:

Home, Breakfast, Cereal

We have a great little breakfast nook in the Fungalow, perfect for eating cereal, drinking coffee, and peaking out at the street of joggers, dog walkers, and people waiting for the bus.

By the way Ralston Oat Wise cereal tastes better than Life Cereal, just saying.....

Sunday, November 21, 2010

The Eleventh...

Number Eleven:

Dots Back Inn, Brunch, Corned Beef Hash

I pretty much order this every time we get there on a Sunday at 10:30am or so. Good stuff. L. and I are funny, well okay, mostly ME, about arriving at Dots. I know we have to get there not at 11am but 10:30am, not at 6PM for dinner, but 5:45pm. Ahead of the crowd wave. Sometimes it is hit or miss, but we rocked a booth today.

There were a trio of gals in their 50s who initially sat at the bar (in the wrong spot where the food was placed to be picked up by the waitresses, they were asked nicely to shift down). Then one of them grabbed the wrong menu, so a waitress had to give them the right one. Then they moved to the booth behind us. When the waitress took their order, it was as if they'd never seen a menu before. Instead of asking for, say the "Richmond Plate" or "Corned beef hash", they ordered like: "Oh two eggs, bacon and a bloody mary." Waitress asked specifics; "How would you like your eggs? Would you like grits or apples or potatoes? Would you like toast or a biscuit?" After the waitress went to put the order in, one of the ladies remarked snidely: "That certainly was a LOT of questions just for breakfast!"


This Napstache is a curled up one by L.'s request. There were a group of hipsters at one of the tables across from us; three gals and a dude. The gals where nicely tattooed and pierced; one with their butt cracks CONSTANTLY showing. The dude sported a real 'stache nearly like this one. One of the gals stared over at me while I did this. I wonder if she thought I was making fun of their dudefriend? I hope she thought no, because explaining this would prove to be difficult without the wifi access to back it up I would guess.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

The Tenth...

Number Ten:

Coppola's Deli, Lunch, South Bronx Club

THE best deli in Richmond, or one of. We stopped by our old haunting grounds, getting various items; bagels from Ellwood Thompson's, a James Brown Christmas cd (with insane Brownism) from Plan 9, and great beer from River City Cellars. The funny thing about no longer living near Carytown is the type of people you think that have taken it over in your absence. A few months ago, I was sure that it had been seized by douchebags, today it seemed to have balanced out to dudes and dudettes in sweatshirts, clearly donning their college alma mater...from years ago. RICHMOND, NOTRE DAME, VIRGINIA TECH, DELAWARE; represent!

Friday, November 19, 2010

The Ninth...

Number Nine:

Riverbound Cafe, Lunch, Chickensteak sandwich

Nice Friday long lunch at a decent restaurant in Mechanicsville. They specialize in crabcakes from Reedville and awkward waitstaff. The Bowtiestache.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

One Week

The Eighth:

McAlister's Deli, Turkey sandwich, Baked potato

Home of the mother of all ice tea containers. If you feel like amping up on tea and banked insurance of taking the longest whiz in your life, then buy this. And don't think you can eek away from this place with a small or medium sized drink. I tried and they said, "One size." Decent food and obviously in running with Panera. My boss, Carolyn, said I should have the tea cup in the picture, she was right. I mean look at that thing! Yes, they give you free refills....

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

The Seventh...

Number Seven:

Ruby Tuesday, Salad, Turkey Burger

So imagine trying to explain to your boss, who is much older than you, what exactly you are doing after you take a photo like this. I know. She is young at heart and once I showed her the Blog, she laughed, but I think, like other people, she thought it was a little too weird. You know, that uncomfortable, "Ha Ha Ha"?

Anyway, what I noticed about Ruby Tuesday, a restaurant ONLY good for the salad bar, is that there were a lot of young, cute waitresses with little love handles and pot bellies. It was kind of strange, everything else about them was apparently lean and firm but for their mid-protrusions. I like this song by Deke Dickerson in reference to that. I know I have no room to talk with my beer belly and fat head, but I just thought it was funny.

Oh, I tried a unique fold with this one.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

The Sixth...

Number Six:

Home, Dinner, Soup & Tuna fish

Second day of L. being home sick, so more soup, more sandwich. This time at the table with H. who took this photo. I tried wrapping the napkin around the ear for some kind of fancy effect. Fail. But note the pink facial glow with matching flamingo in the china cabinet. Classy... and yes, same shirt as yesterday!

Monday, November 15, 2010

The Fifth...

Number Five:

Home, Dinner, Soup & Grilled Cheese

L. was not feeling well, so I offered to make her/us some soup and grilled cheese in front of the t.v., watching Ren & Stimpy, the GOOD seasons (1&2) mind you, before Nickelodeon fired creator John K.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

The Fourth...

Number Four:

Buster's Place, Lunch, crab cakes

After birdwatching (and bushwhacking) in and around an old farmhouse at one of the Rappahannock River Valley National Wildlife Refuge sites with L.'s folks, we crossed the River back at Port Royal. There was this seafood restaurant called Buster's Place that had staked at the roadside real estate signs boasting "Best Crabcakes", "Seafood Here" and "Party Barge Platter: $9.99" ...'nuff said. I call this one the "Royal Napstache".

Saturday, November 13, 2010

The Third...

Number Three:

Gallery 5, Beer

Working the WRIR 97.3 booth with Sean at Gallery 5 for their Dia de los Muertos Cultural Festival. We were the early shift and things were muy complicado because of the Richmond Marathon; a traffic thorn in the side of everyone that lives in Richmond that doesn't run. Street closures and the lack of parking hindered the art event early, but surely picked up by the afternoon when acts were performing. Booth vendors got free booze, so I had a Magic Hat and then used this napkin. Note, HUGE spider.