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Showing posts with label Places to Eat. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Places to Eat. Show all posts

Saturday, 30 March 2019

Big City Nights (Da Funk)

Big City Nights Bus Stop

Location: New York, New York, USA
Address: 139 2nd Ave #1
Date: January 2019
Website:  daftpunk.com

  Daft Punk caught the world's attention with their single Da Funk back in 1996.  It was a purely instrumental song with a driving beat and funky synthesizers.  The music video directed by Spike Jonze brought even more attention.  The video was a short film called Big City Nights. In the video, Da Funk played in the background behind the dialogue.

Orpheum Theatre where Stomp has played since 1994.

  We were watching the music video for Da Funk and after the dog missed his bus (more on the video's plot later) we noticed something.   Down the street we could see a sign for the musical percussion peformance group STOMP.  In New York, STOMP has been performing at the Orpheum Theatre since 1994.  They are still going strong after more than 10,000 performances.

Deutsches Dispensary

  We did some research and found that a large part of the music video was filmed in New York's East Village on 2nd Avenue near the Ottendorfer Library.  The building was built in 1883 and one part is the library and another part is the Deutsches Dispensary (pictured above).  The building does not make an appearance in the video but its bus stop does as do some of the surrounding buildings.

  The video follows Charles the dog as he hobbles through the street on crutches.  All the while his boom box with a broken volume knob is blasting Da Funk.  Charles is not a real dog but an actor in a costume.  Daft Punk also like to hide behind costumes and usually appear in public dressed as robots.  Charles tries to take a survey, buys a two dollar book called Big City Nights and eventually runs into an old neighbour.

East Village Meat Market

  Charles the dog runs into Beatrice inside a variety store and they walk out into the street.  Beatrice invites Charles to "come with" for dinner downtown.  Charles agrees.  They wait for a bus outside of the East Village Meat Market.  The gold door on the left looks about the same but the white door (pictured above) used to also be gold back in the 90s. 

East Village Ukranian Restaurant

  We know this is the right place as across the road is a restaurant.  You can see the words Ukranian Restaurant reflected in the window behind Charles.

A Bus Travels Along 2nd Ave. Just Like In Daft Punk's Da Funk Video.

  A bus pulls up and Beatrice gets on.  Charles wants to follow her but sees a sign stating "No Radios. No Smoking. No Spitting".  Now he must choose between his music and a girl.   The bus closes its doors and drives away.  Charles hobbles down the street alone.

Map of Our World
Post # 246

Wednesday, 20 February 2019

Pizza & Bears On Kingston Road

Uber 5000 Pizza Pizza on Kingston Road.

Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Address: 1054 Kingston Road
Date: August 2018
Website:  www.uber5000.com

  Uber 5000 is a graffiti artist who calls Toronto home.  One building which is covered in his characters is a Pizza Pizza on Kingston Road.  We took a walk one day and visited this pizza place and some other art in the area.

Uber 5000 Yellow Chick on Pizza Pizza

  One character that seems to appear on almost everything Uber 5000 has done is the little yellow chick.  The Pizza Pizza is no exception as we counted at least a couple of dozen.

Uber 5000 Cat Graffiti on Pizza Pizza

  Cats are also a favourite.  This cat above looks to be riding a red magic carpet along the wall.

Cat with Ghetto Blaster Uber 5000

  Another cat is holding a ghetto blaster and wearing a chain that is part of the building's gas piping.

Octopus painted by Uber 5000 at Pizza Pizza

  The back of the building is filled with a giant green octopus.

Uber 5000's Toronto Chicks on Pizza Pizza

  In a doorway on the side of the building are more yellow chicks and a city of Toronto logo.  This makes us think the artwork was commissioned by the city.

Uber 5000 Pizza Pizza Mural

  We enjoyed the playful and colourful display but we needed to get on our way.  We headed further west on Kingston Road.

Half Decent Swan artwork on Kingston Road Rooftop

  We hadn't gone too far when we noticed a swan painted up on a rooftop.  From the tag we determined this was from an artist called Half Decent.  Not half bad we thought.

Bear and Waterfall Mural at Dashwood & Dashwood Kingston Road

  We walked another block or so and came to Scarborough Road.  Here there was a nice mural of a brown bear beside a waterfall.  It was on the wall of Dashwood & Dashwood law firm.

The Loop restaurant Scarborough and Bear Mural

  The wall faces the patio area of a small restaurant called The Loop.

Lovely Day For A Guinness Toucan.

  Around the side of The Loop was more artwork.  This time it was a toucan balancing a beer on his beak and suggesting it would be a lovely day for a Guinness.  We looked behind us and were surprised by what we saw.

Uber 5000 painted utility box

  Uber 5000 had struck again.  The utility box on the corner was covered with the same cats and chicks from the Pizza Pizza building.  Thanks again Uber 5000.

Map of Our World
The Loop
Pizza Pizza (Uber 5000) , Half Decent Swan , Dashwood Bear Mural

Post # 242

Wednesday, 30 January 2019

TAO Downtown

TAO Sign Manhattan

Location: New York, New York, USA
Address:  92 9th Avenue
Date: November 2014
Website:  taodowntown.com

  We arrived at TAO Downtown on a busy weekend evening.  TAO offers Asian cuisine like dim sum, sushi and more all in a mysterious setting.  We encountered a long corridor which was lit by candles.  We slowly moved down the dark corridor towards our dining destination.

TAO New York Elephant Sculpture.
Crouching Statues TAO New York

  Tucked in behind the candles were different sculptures and artwork.  Sitting men and elephants watched us as we made our way deeper into the restaurant.

TAO New York Reclining Buddha.

  We turned a corner and there was a reclining Buddha.  According to TAO's website, the Buddha’s position signifies tranquility and serenity that comes with enlightenment and represents the final passage into Nirvana.

TAO's Impressive Dining Room.

We turned around again and found ourselves at the top of a grand staircase looking out across the restaurant.  It felt like we were entering a large temple.  We were led down the staircase to the main dining area below.

Quan Yin Statue At TAO New York.

  At the far end of the dining room stands Quan Yin.  Quan Yin is the goddess of compassion and has 24 hands.

Quin Yin at TAO New York in Blue
 Quin Yin TAo New York in Colours
 Quin Yin TAO New York in Yellow.

  3D projection makes Quin Yin appear in different colours and outfits.  At some points it looked as if birds were flying past her or if a waterfall was flowing over her.  All of this and we haven't even ordered our food yet.

Little Man Chopstick Holder.
Little Man Chopstick Holder.

  Our group ordered various items from the menu and everyone was pleased.  We also loved the cute little chopstick holder man even if he was a bit cheeky.  After our meal we climbed back out of TAO's temple and into the busy Manhattan streets having had a memorable dinner adventure.

Three Sisters Statue at TAO New York.

Map of Our World
TAO Downtown

Post # 240

Tuesday, 20 November 2018

Robo Sushi

Robo Sushi

Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Address:  865 York Mills Rd #9
Date: September 2018
Website:  www.robosushi.ca

  A new sushi place has arrived in Toronto and offers something a little different.  Robots are nothing new, but we are not yet used to them serving us our food.  Robo Sushi still has human workers, but we went there to see the robotic staff and of course to eat all that we could eat.

Welcome To Robo Sushi.

  As we entered the restaurant we were greeted by a talking mannequin.

Miss Robo Sushi 2018.  Finger Puppeteer Extraordinaire.

  There was another mannequin standing behind us, but despite being plugged in she didn't have anything to say.  We headed through the next set of doors and into the restaurant.

It Would Be My Pleasure To Show You To Your Table ...And To Take Over Your Job.

  Three robots waited for us.  Two of them had cute, smiling bellhop heads and one had a head full of trays.  They stood at attention waiting to serve us.

Please Follow Me. Beep Beep Boop.

  The human being at the counter greeted us and typed something into the tablet on the top of the purple robot's head.  The little guy rolled away and we followed closely behind.  On a screen on top of his head was a video of a person following a robot.  We felt we were doing quite well.


   Our host turned a corner and then stopped at a booth.  He said something but we couldn't hear him over the restaurant noise.  We sat down and then our host turned and rolled off again.

Out Of My Way Or I'll Lose My Head!

  We have visited Robo Sushi twice since it opened.  The first time the robots seemed less sensitive to something in their way.  We witnessed a host and trayhead collision and a few near misses between robot and human staff.  One trayhead robot even went straight into a customer's chair.

More Mango Ice Cream?

  On our second visit we noticed that the human staff often had to push a host or trayhead robot until it felt nothing was blocking its path.  Once the robot was satisfied it would roll away again.  Eventually the programming will be just right.



  When a trayhead robot arrived with your food it would turn and face the table with its blinking eyes.  You could start to offload the food yourself, but usually a human staff member would come to assist.

Thank You.  On Your Way Little Guy.

  When you wanted the trayhead robot to leave again you were supposed to tap it on the head.  This worked sometimes because we were probably doing it incorrectly.  We think you have to just place your hand on top of a little hand symbol on the robot's head.

Rolling Robot.

 To order your food you use a tablet placed at your table and submit your request from there.  Soon it won't be long until a trayhead arrives loaded with your carefully selected items.

A Fully Loaded Trayhead Robot.

  We tend to order quite a lot on our first round so when our robot arrived it was fully loaded.  Soon afterwards our table was filled with tiny trays and dishes.

Just A Little More.

  You could also place a small order and a trayhead would come to drop that off as well.  When it comes to All You Can Eat you need to pace yourself.  At least the robots never gave us a disapproving look based on our food choices or quantities.  They just give the same look all the time.

Really?  Another Order Of Tempura After Ice Cream?

  We enjoyed our food at Robo Sushi and the robots made our meal even more fun.  As we rolled ourselves out of the restaurant we waved good-bye to our robot hosts.  They smiled back at us.

Map of Our World
Robo Sushi

Post # 233