Hoboken: October 2004 Archives

Out Of My Gourd...

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For some fun last night, my bestest roommate in the world (if I didn't say this she described some "consequences" that may happen), Kristen and I decided that it would be fun to carve some pumpkins. 1004hob 063.jpg

Pumpking carving. On a Thursday.

Yes, folks, its come to this.

What would normally be a night of getting plastered at the "Midtown Triangle" (the three main bars that I hit - Farside, Moran's or Dipper's), turned into a night of domestic tranquility.

While carving our creations, I wondered about the history of jack-o-lanterns. Well thanks to Pumpkin Carving 101, I am fully educated!

For you Irish out there - did you know that Halloween was created from the Celtic holiday known as "Samhain" (pronounced "sow wan"), which means "Summer's End". It is also translated from the Hoboken term: "Weekafterhunt" which roughly translates "Winter Drunkfest".

Yes, Samhain is the end of the Celtic year which ended promptly at sundown on October 31. The night was not only the end of the year, but as lore has it - the time in which the veil between the realm of the dead and the realm of the living was at its thinnest. It was considered the most magical night of the year, with the spirits of the dead appearing in the lands of the living.1004hob 065.jpg

Because of this, our drunken ancestors decided that it would be a bright idea (no pun intended) to carve turnips and set them around the house to protect them from evil spirits. Call me crazy, but if I set a truckload of turnips around my house in the wilderness to "protect" me from spirits I would have to think they would just kill me out of spite. I get angry just seeing some of the bad decorations that people put up for Christmas around here and want to egg their house like the old days.

Ok, back to the story. So after the zombies and ghosts of the Irish heckled their living relatives about the turnips, it was agreed that maybe turnips weren't the best idea. Plus, they also agreed to stop using lumps of coal and switch to candles after everyone started to burn down their houses.1004hob 066.jpg

It wasn't until European settlers, particularly the Irish (with the surname of Furey, im sure), came to America that they started using pumpkins - since they were indigenous to the western hemisphere. Plus, our ancestors learned from the ridicule of carving turnips and didn't want to hear it from the undead Native Indians who were constantly coming up with new ways to heckle the Europeans. So pumpkins it stayed, and last night I continued the tradition of becoming a lame bachelor and stayed in to carve my pumpkins.

Please send your donations of lithium to my home address.

As for our carvings, Kristin's pumpkin was the "Boo Brothers" and I tried to make the "Bat Cave". I rushed thru my carvings, and was done well before her, only to destroy the upper two "bats" because I wasn't careful enough. Now I have to get some toothpicks to fix that for this weekend. Also after carving one, I woke up this morning really jonesing to carve some more. But carver be warned - scooping out a pumpkin is rough stuff!! Our backs were killing us by the end of all our scooping - so I would only suggest trying to do one a night. I included some links for people who want to get into the spirit of Halloween, or are slowly becoming lame like myself. I plan on fixing this situation by getting very drunk at Dipper's tonight, feel free to join me around 10pm.
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  • Pumpkin Masters, they make pumpkin kits and stencils for carving.

  • The Yard Hunter, this is what happens when you move from Hoboken into the suburbs - you redirect your drinking money into constructing scary yards.

  • Fontenstein - if you want to be cheap and download fonts rather than buying them, here is a good site to find stencils.

  • Grow your own Pumpkin patch - never too late to plan for next year.

  • Halloween Ghost Stories - learn a few stories here to scare the bejesus out of your children, nieces and nephews this weekend. We all know the ghost of Dipper's bar? If you don't - ask the bartenders about the ghost and the stories...

  • Halloween Web Cam - Not enough trick or treaters stopping by your Hoboken condo? Go online and see what webcams you can find...

  • New York's Village Halloween Parade - Or you can join the fun yourself and hit the Village to see how the other half lives...

  • Willie & Ted

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    I wrote about Willie before...

    But I got to see him last night at Dipper's, while I was there with some friends and Heather the bartender. If there was a contest in town for the hottest bartender in Hoboken - Heather would win the contest in my book. She is as beautiful on the inside as she is on the outside, she is incredibly sweet - a rare combination especially in this town. Of course, I am not just saying this because she is very generous to me when it comes to tallying my bill at the end of the night.

    Plus, I got to hear the music of Will O'Connor and Ted Dougherty jamming together, along with a new percussionist. They sounded Uh-MAZING together. Could this be the start of something good? I hope so. Will has honed his craft to a new level, and I will hands down argue that he is one of the best guitarist/singers living and working in Hoboken. Pat Fleming used to hold that crown before he ditched all of us and moved to Austin, TX. Just kiddin, Pat, we still love you even though you despise us.oconnor.JPG

    Will and Ted were rolling last night, with some sets that you could just feel the energy and fun they were having together. Sadly, there weren't a lot of people out last night, I am guessing most Yankee fans didn't want to be around town watching Boston fans celebrate.

    I really would love to see Will and Ted play together more often, and even moreso - see if they can get some original music going. Will and I worked on some lyrics a year or so ago, and its something that I should try to sit down with him again.


    Grand Theft Auto: Hoboken

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    A nerd herd gathers outside the Hoboken GameStop.

    I can make fun of them because I am a nerd also. I get excited when a new PC game comes out, and while I am walking home tonight I see my greeks, freaks and dweebs all outside of Gamestop waiting in line for Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas.

    For those of you who don't know Grand Theft Auto (read: 75% of women or people over the age of 40), its simply the most fun a nerd can have without it involving Leonard Nemoy. Its a video game that involves everything a young, growing gamer needs: violence, sex and good music - with your primary objective is to gain power, wealth and status stealing cars, eliminating your enemies and staying alive in 1990 "San Andreas" (A pseudo Compton style city).

    I'll get my hands on this game in the next few weeks, and put a review up. In the meantime I am playing Tribes: Vengeance and Star Wars: Battlefront during my free time. Both are first person shooter (FPS) games, and are so far so good, but nothing super exciting.

    If anyone owns those games and feels like challenging me to a duel or wants to play online - drop me an email. I will be happy to destroy you.

    This wasn't very exciting...

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    But its not too often that you see a stop light smashed on Washington Street.

    So I figured I would get a picture of our tax dollars at work...

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    Insider's Look at Club H...

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    I was at Club H Fitness (110 Sinatra Drive, 201-656-9989) last night and spoke to Adam, who is in charge of PR. He was nice enough to show me around the new section of Club H, which should be opening up very soon. From what I was told he is waiting on the Port Authority, who owns the property, to 'OK' the new additions and let members use them. Adam expects the new area should be open by this weekend.

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    Nice new machines...Only 225 days until Memorial Day Weekend 2005...

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    Training room and basketball half court....that is 5,400 hours...

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    New Lockers...324,000 minutes to Memorial Day 2005...

    Also there is the new River Spa area which is nearly complete. I got to look around but it was very messy and Adam would let me back later to take pictures of the place...it looks really great.

    Here are some more pictures of the new section...

    Somewhere a guido quietly weeps...

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    Some of you may know that I bartended in town for a little while. It was a small bar, but got a decent crowd of regulars and I had a lot of fun there. To me, it was like having your own personal bar, because a lot of my friends would visit, drink, and we would be able to shoot the shit all night long while getting drunk together. Plus, on top of it, I got paid at the end of the night. Since I was a bartender I got to know other bartenders, bouncers and owners in town, and I usually have my ear to the ground on the rumor mills...

    I was passing by the old "River Street" bar, and noticed like everyone else that they, once again, are renaming and renovating their bar. Also it appears that they are going for the whole "Martini Bar/Lounge" theme that all the other bars in town are copying. Word on the street from Huggy Bear is that they are trying to get rid of their guido image and going more upscale. I snuck inside today and was able to grab some photos before they chased me out. Actually that is another lie - they were nice about it and let me in when I asked if I could take pictures.

    The "Martini Bar Explosion" is obviously the latest trend for bars in Hoboken. Gone are the days when Irish pubs ruled Hoboken - now its all about the bling bling.

    There seems to be five common rules to Martini Bars:

    1. Flat screen TVs.
    2. Lots of wood - hardwood floors, wood panelling, etc.
    3. Dark and lit by candles.
    4. Ottomans and couches.
    5. Prices must increase.

    Anyhow - here are the pics from inside the place, enjoy.


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