Milk Crates of Florence

This past July I was able to travel to Florence, Italy for a 20th anniversary reunion with a group of study abroad alumni. The trip involved a potent mix of nostalgic recollection and eye-opening discovery of how much the seemingly timeless city had changed since my last visit. One of the internal changes that colored … Continue reading Milk Crates of Florence

City Scenes: Jeff Rosenstock at Nashville’s Eastside Bowl

With the first three weeks of the Fall semester having faded into the rearview mirror with nary a road bump or pit stop, I figured the coast was clear for a quick getaway. So with a jetsetter whimsy entirely at odds with my actual socioeconomic station I caught a Friday flight from Pittsburgh to Nashville … Continue reading City Scenes: Jeff Rosenstock at Nashville’s Eastside Bowl

Buff Zone: Color Park controversy

A couple of weekends ago I went for a run along one of my usual routes on the South Side stretch of the Three Rivers Heritage Trail. While crossing beneath the span of the Birmingham Bridge I noticed the words "Buff Zone" graffitied onto the pile foundations and sporadically spotting the asphalt of the trail … Continue reading Buff Zone: Color Park controversy

City Scenes: Toronto Cinema Spaces pt. 2

Last month I made a return trip to Toronto. It was my first time getting to experience the city in Spring/Summer mode (all my previous visits have been in late October/early November). I also brought with me past impressions and unfinished business from recent trips, especially the cinema locations I wasn't able to visit last … Continue reading City Scenes: Toronto Cinema Spaces pt. 2

City Scenes: Pirates 2023 Home Opener

The 2023 baseball season thus far has been a strange one for Pirates fans. The hot stove interval didn't produce any big ticket news for the Pittsburgh club. Ownership had promised more additions and renovations for PNC Park, including a new scoreboard and jumbotron twice the size as the previous screen (more jaded Bucs fans … Continue reading City Scenes: Pirates 2023 Home Opener

City Scenes: Mediated L.A. Spaces

In Simulacra and Simulation, Baudrillard refers to Los Angeles as a "perpetual pan shot": more a cinematic circulation of hyperreal fantasy than a space-bound city of definable dimensions. This association is strengthened by how the city's sprawling urban landscape is typically traversed, rendered as a steadily-streaming assortment of images scrolling through the letterbox framing of … Continue reading City Scenes: Mediated L.A. Spaces

City Scenes: Toronto Cinema Spaces

Film venues and screening spaces are among my favorite fixtures of the urban mediascape. For me, the crown jewels of Parisian cultural superiority are not the sidewalk cafe tables but rather the abundant cinemas (and also the multi-story bookshops that seem to be all around). Toronto also has a strong film culture and a number … Continue reading City Scenes: Toronto Cinema Spaces

City Scenes: Zenith vintage & brunch

My sister’s trip to Pittsburgh this past summer gave me an opportunity not only to revisit some favorite local spots but also to check off some items from my Steel City bucket list, like Jerry’s Records. One of the other places I got to experience for the first time was The Zenith: an antiques shop … Continue reading City Scenes: Zenith vintage & brunch

Cycling Toronto’s Waterfront (w/ video!)

While in Toronto this past October I tried out the city’s bike share system. Even though I’d used the city’s public transit during previous visits to Toronto, on this trip it took me a while to acclimate in terms of which stations I was able to purchase a metro pass for the subway or streetcar … Continue reading Cycling Toronto’s Waterfront (w/ video!)

West Coast Reflections

Just as this year’s Fall foliage was flourishing throughout Pittsburgh I slipped off to the west coast to meet my parents who were on their own California vacation. It was a bit of a Southland homecoming for all of us; we hadn’t been together in L.A. since our family lived in the area in the … Continue reading West Coast Reflections