Time to Get on the Top of the Rock
Can You Smell What’s Cooking at the Top of the Rock?

There’s one thing that I hate about Chrysler Building. It does not have a public observation deck. I feel that any major skyscraper needs to have two things at the top: a restaurant and an observation deck.

To the owners the public areas at the top are usually a pain in the ass and rarely pay for themselves. Having a lot of people from the street come up to the very top of the building, adding to the overall traffic is not fun for building management from the security standpoint. I remember reading about the co-op board of a posh building at 30 Central Park South trying to evict Nirvana, a top floor Indian restaurant with amazing views of Central Park. They complained about the traffic and the cooking smells.

Because of this most buildings that used to have observation decks and restaurants closed them. Over a the Tishman Building Top of the Sixes turned into an exclusive cigar club. At the City Services Building the public observation deck, which was actually planned as the owner’s penthouse, was turned into a closed lounge for AIG brass. An at the Chrysler Building, the observation deck became Schrafft’s Restaurant, then it morphed into posh and private Cloud Club, and then closed altogether.

When I was younger, I was not particularly attracted to the views from high vantage points. But for some reason at the turn of the Millennium found me deeply fascinated with skyscrapers and views from them. To this day I can’t forgive myself not visiting the observation deck at WTC. I probably did not have enough money to eat at the perished Windows on the World, but not visiting Top of the World still fills me with remorse.

Because of this upsetting tendency of restriction and destruction public spaces high in the skies, I find this very joyous news: the rocket-like 30 Rockefeller Plaza will be opening an observation deck to the public. It’s going to be called “Top of the Rock.”

Rockefeller Center has an interesting distinction of being one of the very few Rockefeller family projects that carry their name (the other big one being Rockefeller University). Most people also think that it’s built and named after John D. Senior, the Mr. Burns prototype and semi-crazy hander outer of nickels, when in fact, it was the mellow John D. Junior who built it.

Since the Rockefeller name is not that popular, it’s common to see “Rockefeller Center” to be shortened to sexier “Rock Center”, as for example the menu of Yummy Sushi contains several sushi combos named Rock X, where X is a number of the combo.

As much as I tried, I could not find out a more definite date than “sometime this fall”, but one of the free booklets that you can get in the lobby of the GE (former RCA) building has a little blurb and the logo. I like the logo. It’s all Art Deco-ey.


The bas-reliefs on the front of the GE Building are easy to understand. Wisdom, Light and Sound.
But what about the one in front of the entrance to the Rainbow Room are not that obvious. Spanking as an educational tool? The evil of wearing pants? What the hell does it symbolize?

The little penis that is sticking out is especially disturbing.

Is That A Genetically Engineered Banana Or Are You Just Glad To See Me?

Thank you for the link, raymondc_feed.

Quote from http://www.etichettando.com/uk/plu/plu.htm
“How to read a PLU code:
-For conventionally grown fruit, (grown with chemicals inputs), the PLU code on the sticker consists of four numbers.
– Organically grown fruit has a five-numeral PLU prefaced by the number 9.
– Genetically engineered (GM) fruit has a five-numeral PLU prefaced by the number 8.

A conventionally grown banana would be:
An organic banana would be:
A genetically engineered (GE or GMO) banana would be:
84011 “

By the way, those genetically engineered fish are already on sale in Petland Discounts near me. Unfortunately I temporarily got rid of my aquarium (the fish are my father’s tank for now).

The Rocketship Building

I really like seeing this building in the morning. The rising steam makes it look like a rocket. I still don’t know what generates the steam. Probably a cooling plant or something. It’s not the GE building like I mentioned earlier though. It’s 30 Rockefeller Plaza.


Went fishing on Pastime Princess today. Caught 4 very nice keeper blackfish. The term “keeper” refers to the fact that blackfish can only be kept if they are over 14 inches. Had an interesting “double header” (a baseball derived term meaning two fish at a time). A blackfish took the hook and ran into it’s burrow in the shipwreck. I let the line hang for a minute or two and then lifted. At that moment a smaller blackfish took the second hook and probably helped be force the first one out of it’s hole. Had another doubleheader, but without a snag. Caught and released many “short” blackfish. Nice.

Now for the general randomness. I was napping in the hold of the ship. When I woke up, people near me were talking about “King’s” biography. For a moment there I naturally assumed that they were talking boxing. Well, it wasn’t Don King they were talking about. It was Stephen King. Hmm, a literary discussion in a hold of a fishing ship. How refreshing. I joined in and told them about Stephen King’s prodigy stepbrother, David King. One of the guys even read H.P. Lovecraft. And they were usual gruff, seasoned Brooklyn fishermen. Weird.

The catch filleted. Can you name my three favorite kitchen appliances on the counter?

Mmmm. Blackfish + butter + Keto brand low carb “breadcrumbs” + sea salt + “Pride of SZEGED” brand fish rub + my favorite Le Cruset pan = Mmm mm m

This came out great, but I am thinking about taking a fish cooking glass from a culinary school. I learn from books pretty well, but it would be cooler to get some instruction.

Oh yeah. Remember I wrote about natural lighting? Kitchen is the only place in my apartment still lit by crappy fluorescent lighting. That’s why the first picture looks so crappy. The range in illuminated by a GE Reveal bulb.

WML: Ligh My life

You know what I hate? Well, many things. But I especially hate bad lighting. Office lighting. Even in the best furnished, expensive offices with Aeron chairs in cubes and espresso machine in the kitchen, lighting is provided by the same crappy cheap fluorescent fixtures of horror.

You know them. There is probably one hanging above your cube right now. Grating on your eyes, throwing glare onto your monitor. Giving you headaches and depressing the hell out of you. Well, of course, it’s not like that everywhere. For instance, a long time ago, in a galaxy called the dot com, I interviewed at a company called Betelgeuse. It was named after an extremely bright red supergiant in the Orion Nebula, which name English speakers pronounce “beatlejuuuze” OR “beatlejuice”, and Russians pronounce “betelgeyze”. It’s a dying star, about to explode (or go supernova if you want to put a positive spin on it).

In any case, this company had the coolest lighting scheme. They turned off all the lights except a few small spotlights, and lit the corridors with decorative candles. The offices were lit with individual lamps.

But what can a cube monkey like me (and probably you) do about the lighting situation? Well, for one, you can kill the horrible hell beacon above your cube. Since there is no light switch, here is what you need to do.

Get onto a chair and get close to the lighting fixture. Your task is to unplug the fluorescent tube from it’s socket. It can be usually accomplished by rocking the tube slightly left-right and away from the socket. Make sure to let your friendly maintenance person and your boss know you are doing this. You don’t want someone trying to open the fixture and get hit on a head with a fluorescent tube. Also, don’t burn or electrocute yourself. This trick only works with fluorescent tubes.

But Michael, you ask, what else can I do? You can light everything with full spectrum natural lights. A cheapo solution is to use GE reveal bulbs. They cost about as much as regular incandescent bulbs but have a spectrum that is less yellow. Everything looks a bit better. I use Reveal bulbs at home.

There is also a more expensive option – full spectrum fluorescent fixtures. Remember, in previous WML I mentioned aquarium limps? Well, besides aquarium lights they make full spectrum tubes for regular lighting.