Time to Get on the Top of the Rock
or
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.

Rock Center At Night

Group portrait of the newer, uglier Rockefeller Center buildings: Newscorp Building, McGraw Hill Building and Exxon Building.

Jewelry district with the view of the illuminated glass crown of the Bear Stearns Building. The crown houses machinery and water tanks.

Wheeee.

For some weird reason green traffic light turns blue on my photographs.

One Hundred Views Of Empire State

So I was buying overpriced fotoclips at the photography museum shop. Then I decided to buy a few postcards for sending to my non-writing friends. The only one New York picture I liked half way was the one on Empire State Building with the subway globe. But then I quickly remembered the globe itself was half a block from where I was. So there it is. Zero creativity, 100% clich�. Saved 75 cents.

Tivo! Tivo! Tivo!

Ok, I am a dork. A dork with a tricked out Tivo.
So far I struggled through:
* Installing TurboNet ethernet card
* Installing a 120 gig drive instead of the two 20 gig drives that came with my Tivo
* Getting telnet to work
and finally, finally!
*Installing Tivo Web

One of the coolest features of Tivo Web is ability to undelete shows.

Here is a list of my “season passes” that I grabbed with Tivo Web.
(I would like to note that I don’t watch “Enterprise”. does.

# | Show Name | Channel
1 Futurama WNYW
2 The Job COMEDY
3 The Sopranos
4 The Job WABC
5 Sex and the City HBO
6 Six Feet Under HBO
7 ER WNBC
8 Friends WNBC
9 That ’70s Show
10 Farscape SCIFI
11 Firefly WNYW
12 Enterprise WWOR
13 The Simpsons WNYW
14 The Man Show COMEDY
15 Antiques Roadshow WNET
16 Malcolm in the Middle WNYW
17 Scrubs WNBC
18 CSI: Crime Scene Investigation WCBS
19 This Old House WNET
20 NYPD Blue TNT
21 Antiques Roadshow UK WLIW
22 Insomniac With Dave Attell COMEDY
23 New Yankee Workshop WNET
24 Samurai Jack TOON
25 Monk USA
26 John Doe WNYW