King Tut Trinket Hunting @ The Discovery Center Gift Shop

A couple of weeks ago I went here….

Discovery Times Square Exposition Center

To see this guy….

Hail To The King

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Tom Otterness’ “Real World”: A Public Art Display

Readers of the PiercingMetal.com website might recall a not too long ago concert report for the band Renaissance in which the band performed outside on a hot Summer night down at Rockefeller Park in Battery Park City.  While a little unbearable under the setting sun, the night was a wonderful one in the end and the adventure down to the actual concert something entirely different and interesting in its own right. The reason for this was based on our discovery of another public art installation by Tom Otterness, the American sculptor whose work really shines in my humble opinion. We had explored the artists work after another concert with his “Life Underground” pieces that are set up under the streets of NYC on the 14th Street & 8th Avenue subway line.  Interested folks can click that link to check out the full views and images captured for that experience and we cannot recommend enough that you check this out but totally watch your step as you wander the platform.  Anyway, while heading down into the actual park where the stage was set up, we found the installation of what is called “The Real World”.  The display was commissioned of the artist in 1986 and installed in 1992 and oddly enough I never even knew about it since I rarely get down to this part of the city and the parks.  I guess I need to change that course of action since I am usually finding amazing things to share with the world.  Anyhow, this installation is a fascinating one and is set up around a beautiful playground area.  I photographed a number of the pieces as I wandered down to the show for your visual enjoyment.  Read on.

tom otterness, the real world sculptures

The first piece we see is a couple of monkeys and apparently a mother and her baby based on the bottle that is visible in the hand of the larger one.  I love the derby’s.

tom otterness, the real world sculptures

I’m actually wrong, as the piece above is at the entrance walkway to the playground area while this guardian monkey is ready to welcome you down into the fun.

Continue reading Tom Otterness’ “Real World”: A Public Art Display

Walking Next To The “Sidewalk Catwalk” Fashion Display

You really never know what you are going to see in New York City at any given time and how a simple walk to the office of a friend can find you stumbling upon something interesting and really cool.  Such was the case that I would find while heading over to a publicist’s office to pick up some new review materials for PiercingMetal.com.  I was in Times Square, and the day was nice, so I decided to walk down Broadway even though their office was a good mile down the avenue.   As I began the wander I realized that as far as my eye could see, how mannequins dressed up in very detailed designs were positioned along the same path I was going.  This was New York’s Fashion District and I had accidentally come upon a public art project called “Sidewalk Catwalk”.  Walk with me for a few minutes.

Designer: Catherine Malandrino

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PiercingMetal Pregaming Guide: Rudy’s Bar & Grill

I forget who first told me to check out Rudy’s Bar & Grill down on 9th Avenue around 44th and 45th Street but its a cool little place to visit, even though it can be kind of crowded depending on when you visit the place. The sigh outside is easy enough to notice on a clear night but its the next sight that really gets your attention.

The big standing pig at the entrance is the sure sign that you have reached Rudy’s. I went in here once or twice with some friends when we were getting crowded out of Smith’s Bar right up on 8th Avenue. Folks who know me well, know how I’ve been using Smith’s as my pre-concert launching point for shows that are at B.B. King Blues Club and the Nokia Theatre as each are in very close proximity to the bar. Let’s you get that one last round before heading into the show. Sometimes financially this is a very good option LOL. Anyways, so examining Rudy’s for a second, its a cozy place and very dark in some sections but its workable.

The beer selection is straightforward and priced to sell. Take a look at the menu shot below and tell me if I am wrong in this. I’ve gone with my conventional Coors Light bottle or a Rudy’s Red pitcher. Before you ask, yes I was sharing the pitcher. Mind you it does go quickly either way. While this is not pictured, Rudy’s is also known for serving up free hot dogs and this is a pleasant treat to go along with the beer if you enjoy those kind of delicacies. I know that I don’t mind a couple when I am in Rudy’s.

One of the other points some friends like about Rudy’s is the open porch in the back which I guess is depending on the weather because they let you go out there and if you smoke you can bring your beer along with you. I sure don’t mind the no smoking law since I am not a smoker but I can feel for the smokers who would have to leave their drinks behind and stop the time with their friends to do it. This lets them remain in the mix in some fashion.

Check out Rudy’s if you happen to find Smith’s a little too crowded or just want to sample the beer I mentioned and enjoy a free hot dog as well. Their link is below.

Official Website: http://rudysbarnyc.com/

“Place Yer Bets”, “Place Yer Bets”

Last month I was in Atlantic City and wandering around the premises of the hotel after a not too productive session of slot machine play. I must admit that while the thrill of winning always appeals to me, the actual visuals of some of the slot machines really piques my interest but therein lies the dilemma – You are NOT allowed to take photographs on the casino floor.  That bothered me a little bit as a photographer since there are so many cool machines out there.  I have seen a Star Wars and Star Trek one, an Ebay one and many, many more.  I am sure that even KISS has its own machine but I just have not seen it yet.  Moving along.  As I wandered the hotel lobby I happened upon this icon of the hotels history and snapped a shot. It was apparently the first ever slot machine to be installed. Feel free to utter awed sighs of amazement.

The plaque above this relic reads “This is the first legal slot machine in Atlantic City and was installed on the Resort’s International casino floor in 1978. It can be identified as the first machine by the number 1 on the lower right side of the cabinet. Since that time more than 14,900 different machines……” Sadly I blocked the rest of the sign but I guess it’s pretty safe to say that there are now over that many machines in this particular casino floor and since there are numerous casinos to enjoy on the Atlantic City Boardwalk we are likely talking about a couple of hundred thousand in total. That is surely a lot of money coming in and all the more reason that we should finally have gambling of this kind be legal in New York State. I think casinos on the West Side highway would be awesome for tourism. Something to think about.

How To See This: Go to Atlantic City, NJ to the Resort’s International hotel and casino and wander the lobby until you chance upon it.

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