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Edge of Darkness Casting Call - 8/2

7/31/2008 06:00:00 AM 0 Responses
I think someone asked about this earlier. Well here it is, just around the corner - the casting call for Mel Gibson's Edge of Darkness. For those of you that want a chance to be famous, be sure to clear your schedule for Saturday, 8/2.

Date: Saturday, August 2, 2008
Time: 12 – 2 pm for SAG/AFTRA actors
2 – 4 pm for non-union actors
Location: Boston Casting, 129 Braintree Street, Boston, MA
Details: MUST bring a headshot and resume. MUST be 18 or older - No children.

Shooting for EDGE OF DARKNESS starts in mid-August through December in the Boston area and Northampton, MA. We strongly suggest you attend the open call

If you cannot make the open call, please e-mail a headshot and resume to

The casting call is being held by Boston Casting. Click (here) to go to their website.

Unfortunately, I hafta make a trip down to Rhode Island on Saturday otherwise I'd love to go check out the scene. For those of you that do go, report back and let me know what it was like.

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Revere Man Starts Dinner In the Sky

7/31/2008 06:00:00 AM 0 Responses
This guy gets props for being ballsy. Opening up a pretty pricey niche restaurant during a recession. Then again, there are still a lot of folks with money (I read that private jet sales are up - but mostly from foreign buyers).

Dinner in the Sky features seating for 22 from a unique perspective - diners eat at a table hoisted up to 180 feet into the air by a crane.

Guests are strapped into leather seats, while waiters and waitresses can stand in an aisle at the center of the table. The table and crane are currently housed in an 18-wheeler in Las Vegas, but for prices starting at $35,000, co-owner Michael Gallant says dinner can be served anywhere in the United States.

I'm fairly certain that I would never go for this. My fear of heights would prevent me from enjoying the food. It's not like I have an unnatural fear of heights, but the thought of being strapped to a chair, suspended 180 feet up in the air - no thanks.

Click (here) to read the article.

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Jacob Wirth Getting A Facelift?

7/31/2008 06:00:00 AM 1 Response
Looks like more "revitalization" in the works (trying hard to avoid the 'G' word). This time in Chinatown.

A Boston developer wants to build a 24-story office tower around the Jacob Wirth building in Chinatown - a plan that replaces a 2006 proposal for a 108-room hotel and a residential building for which part of the historic tavern would have been demolished.

EASTAT's plan includes a two-story winter garden with a cafe on a mezzanine level and ground-floor retail space, according to papers filed with the Boston Redevelopment Authority. The developer would keep the tavern operating in its current place.

I'm not really surprised. I hear all the time from my friends that live/work in Chinatown that rents have been going up like crazy forcing a lot of restaurants to close. Here's another little tidbit. Most of the people that work in Chinatown - they live in Quincy cause it's too expensive to live in ctown.

Can I use the "G" word yet?

Click (here) to read the rest of the article.

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Cheap Cheesecake - Today Only!

7/30/2008 12:35:00 PM 0 Responses
Many thanks to Bloggery Reader Milee for letting me know about this. Now, instead of running today I want to go to the Cheesecake Factory and eat cheesecake instead. Doh. The promotion is only for today - to celebrate their 3oth anniversary. Running can wait, right?

Celebrating “30 Delicious Years,” The Cheesecake Factory is serving up several sweet initiatives throughout 2008.

To kick-off the anniversary celebration and in commemoration of National Cheesecake Day on July 30th, 2008, The Cheesecake Factory restaurants will offer every delicious slice of its more than 30 varieties of cheesecake with a dollop of nostalgia by featuring all cheesecakes at $1.50 per slice, limit one per guest, dine in only, on that day—as they were when the restaurant first opened in 1978.

In addition, a special, limited edition cheesecake, the 30th Anniversary Chocolate Cake Cheesecake, will be introduced on July 30th with $0.25 from the sale of each slice sold this year benefiting the national hunger-relief organization, America’s Second Harvest – The Nation’s Food Bank Network. Additional activities will be announced throughout the year.

My favorites are the fresh banana cream cheesecake and the carrot cake cheesecake. Sooo delicious.

Click (here) for a link to the Cheesecake Factory site with the blurb.

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Midsummer Night's Dream & Jose McIntyre's - Tonight!

7/30/2008 11:14:00 AM 0 Responses
Happy Hump Day, Everyone! It's been one of those weeks where I spend more time on an airplane than I do in my apartment. Makes me wonder why I pay all that rent when I'm spending my evenings sleeping at the airport.

Anyway, I just realized that it's hump day so now I'm looking for something to do tonight 7/30 and this event caught my eye: A Midsummer Night's Dream at Jose McIntyre's

WFNX, Coors Light, and Smirnoff present: A Midsummer Night's Dream

Guys: Dress like Hef
Ladies: Dress to Impress Hef

An evening of dancing, drinking, live music and people dressed in their underwear. July 30th at Jose McIntyre's in Boston. Wear your finest bed clothes. Robes, undies, smoking jackets, slippers, etc. You decide. The best dressed will win a trip for two to Los Angeles to see the Raconteurs. Get on the list HERE! Doors - 8pm 21+

Will there be girls in lingerie or bunny costumes? Let's hope so.

There's a lil bit of info on the WFNX website (here)

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Boston Common Movie Theater Getting IMAX

7/30/2008 10:49:00 AM 2 Responses
This is awesome! The last time I tried to see something in IMAX, I drove out to Jordan's to see Harry Potter 5. I went to both the Framingham one and the Reading one and both were sold out. That being said, it's been years since I've seen a movie in IMAX. Honestly, I think the last IMAX movie I saw was Fantasia 2000 while I was in highschool. But it looks like that's all about to end.

In September, the AMC Loews Boston Common theater will be unveiling its first IMAX screen, the only such screen in Boston that would show primarily studio films. Boston-area venues such as the New England Aquarium and the Museum of Science also feature IMAX screens but primarily show shorter educational and documentary films over big budget Hollywood movies.

Now, I'm struck with the odd sense of ambivalence. Part of me can't wait until we get the IMAX downtown, but the rest of me can definitely wait because September = weather starting to cool off.

Click (here) to read the metro blurb.

PS. Am I the only one left that hasn't seen Dark Knight yet? I need to stop working so damn much and get over to the theater.

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Free Rock and Blues Cruise Ticket Contest - 8/1

7/30/2008 10:26:00 AM 0 Responses
It's been a while since I've given away anything on this blog. It's about time, right? It's a lil bit short notice, but that just means you have better odds of winning if you enter.

I have three pairs of tickets to give away for the Rock and Blues Cruise this upcoming Friday, 8/1. I've blogged about this event a couple of times this year as well as last year. If you haven't gone to any of them yet, you're missing out - but here's your chance to go for free.

Contest rules are the same as usual (I haven't had time to think of more creative ones). Step 1: subscribe to my blog either via email or RSS using the widget in the upper right corner. Step 2: Send me an email with subject heading "Rock & Blues Cruise" and your first and last name in the body of the email.

The contest ends Friday morning 8/1 at 10am EST. I will choose 3 names at random - each winner will win a pair of tickets.

Also, please don't enter the contest if you don't plan on making time to go. It just ruins it for everyone else.

Cruises depart from the Boston Harbor Cruise gates at Long Wharf, adjacent to the Long Wharf Marriott and across from the New England Aquarium on Atlantic Avenue. Boats board 1/2 hour before the time listed on website. Please note that some cruises have 2 separate shows per night. Ticket holders must be 21+.

Click (here) for more information about the 8/1 Blues Cruise.

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New Condo Project in the North End

7/29/2008 04:48:00 AM 1 Response
There's a proposal on the table for a new condo project in the North End that sounds pretty big and it's got some people upset.

At the nexus of Stillman, Cooper, and North Margin streets is a parking lot whose fate has been the subject of consternation and controversy in the North End. Steve Fustolo and his development group, 30 North Margin Street Development, have proposed building a 55-foot-tall condominium building with a four-level underground parking garage.
The underground garage will provide two spots for each of the building's 61 units and an additional 121 spots to be leased or purchased by North End residents or businesses for long-term parking.

What's interesting in the article is that people are apparently quite opposed to the underground parking garage. Why is that? I had several ex-coworkers at my old job that lived in the North End (and commuted out to Weston for work) and they would always complain that they'd have to circle the neighborhood for at least 30 minutes a day trying to find parking in the evening. Would an underground parking garage in the area really be that bad?

Parking fees downtown strike me as pretty egregious these days. I currently pay $300 a month, and that's apparently a bargain. The parking in my apartment building is so pricey that I'm forced to park elsewhere and make the 10-15 minute walk to my car each time I need it.

In my mind, more availability = lower prices, hopefully.

Click (here) to read the article.

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MBTA Ridership Is Up - Time to Upgrade the T

7/29/2008 04:31:00 AM 1 Response
We've been reading about it for a few months now. People are driving less due to the high cost of gas - me included. True to my low car diet resolutions (here), I've been walking/T'ing over to the grocery stores when I do my shopping. I do need to make a trip down to Rhode Island this weekend though, so I'll be using a Zip Car (I'll post a review of my experience afterwards).

"It's apparent to me that the high price of gasoline has finally hit home for people and caused travel behavior changes that we did not see when gasoline was $2 a gallon or $3 a gallon," said Bernard Cohen, the state secretary of transportation. "Four dollars a gallon seems to be the turning point here in terms of people rethinking modes of travel."

I found this to be pretty interesting. Why is four dollars a gallon the magical number that shifts people's driving habits? I think it's a combination of high gas prices and recession/inflation. Every day we read another article about gas being expensive or groceries being more expensive. If it was just gas prices that were going up, I don't think we'd be as panicked. But then again, I'm not sure it would be possible for gas prices to go up without everything else going up with it.

With gas prices going up, maybe we'll start to invest in our mass transit systems like some of the other countries around the world. Just one example: Hong Kong. I remember back in the day when the Hong Kong subway resembled our T - but that was like almost 20 years ago. They've constantly upgraded to the point where I barely recognized it when I was there in January. The stations were clean, there were sliding doors in front of the actual tracks. And most importantly, there was a display that showed exactly how long you had to wait until the next train arrived.

Dear MBTA folks, take a trip to Hong Kong and try riding their MTR to get some ideas of what the T could be like. It'd be a worthwhile trip.

Click (here) to read the article.

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Spirit of Amsterdam Event Review

7/28/2008 11:42:00 AM 1 Response
Sadly, I was out of the country for the second half of last week so I wasn't able to go to the Amstel Light event in Faneuil Hall (here). But fortunately, I was able to send a Bloggery representative to scope out the scene and report back. Sounds like DanDan had a pretty good time:

Last night was the Amstel Light's "Spirit of Amsterdam" event in Faneuil. This event was part of Amstel's new national marketing campaign designed to emphasize the fact that Amstel Light is, well, from Amsterdam. Fresh off a successful event in NYC, the folks from Amstel set up a pretty cool pubcrawl at all the hot spots along Union St and in the surrounding area. Because we hardly need an excuse to go out on a Thursday, I grabbed the normal crew and we decided to check it out.

Unfortunately, yesterday turned out to be a rainy day, so the bars were a little emptier than normal for a Thursday after work. That being said, the Amstel girls were out in full force, with a few at every bar handing out free beers, signing people up for giveaways (including a trip to Amsterdam) and being all-around pleasant. We swung by Purple Shamrock and Hennessey's before heading over to the after party at Grand Canal.

Grand Canal was a great scene. As soon as we walked in and saw the crowd of tall people decked out in Euro gear, we knew the beer wasn't the only thing that was imported. I was impressed by the number of foreigners at the event, and all the mix of cultures and accents and general revelry reminded me of Oktoberfest in Munich. We got to try a few beers also produced by Amstel, which are not normally available in the US, including Amstel Lager, Amstel Gold, Amstel Malt, and Amstel 1870. Of the bunch, I'd definitely give the nod to the 1870. We rounded out the night there with some dancing and headed home around midnight. All in all, a great night! The Amstel Bike was on display, but not in use because of the rain.

I'll get images up as soon as they're available. Anybody else go to the event? Did you have a good time?

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Email from L'Espalier About Their Move

7/28/2008 11:19:00 AM 0 Responses
I hope everyone had a great weekend. I'm exhausted. My flight in last night from JFK was delayed for over four hours - so I didn't get home until around 3:30am after I got my baggage and hopped in a cab. I probably could have driven home from NYC in about the same time.

Anyhoo, I checked my email this morning for the first time in a while and got an email from L'Espalier announcing the details of their move and a special dinner. Here are the details:

Our big move is just around the corner, and although I am too busy at the moment to feel nostalgic, we do want to say goodbye to 30 Gloucester Street and hello to 774 Boylston Street with verve and style!

Our final night will be Saturday, August 30 and we hope you will join us for dinner. The evening begins with a sneak peek at our new home. Champagne and hors d'oeuvres will be served at 774 Boylston from 5:30 until 6:30 pm.

We will transport you to 30 Gloucester Street for dinner at 7 pm. I am planning a multi-course feast of my favorite menu creations. Dinner will feature the local bounty of the season, teamed with exotic touches and our usual French twist. Erik's twenty-six outstanding wine pairings round out the picture. Food and beverage are $285.00 per person.

I was there about a month ago (here). Didn't have a very great meal, that time so I think I'll probably pass on the the Farewell Dinner. Besides, I bet it'll be impossible to get a reservation.

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Pay For Parking WIth Your Cell Phone

7/25/2008 07:00:00 AM 2 Responses
I always see people while I'm walking home, standing next to their car that they've just parked waving a dollar bill at passersby asking if they have quarters. It's a huge pain. Even when you think you're prepared, sometimes you accidentally run out and then you have to run around to a coffee shop or a sub shop to make change. This could change it all:

With a pay-by-phone system, Tobin said, drivers can send a text message to a phone number posted on a meter and begin paying for parking time by entering the meter number and the amount of time they need. Such cities as Las Vegas and Coral Gables, Fla., have implemented similar programs in recent years.

More than $62 million in parking fines was collected by Boston officials in the fiscal year ended June 2007, and that figure is expected to reach about $77 million in the coming year, due to higher fines, additional parking officers on patrol, and the expansion of metered spaces.

Holy cow! Is the city sure that they want to make it easier for us to pay our parking meters? That's a huge revenue stream that they'd be cutting into if we're all able to do a better job paying our parking meters.

Click (here) to read the article.

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Philips HQ Moving to Andover

7/25/2008 07:00:00 AM 0 Responses
This is kind of cool. Philips Electronics is moving their US headquarters to Andover. Looks like NYC is losing more than just its movie filming projects to us. heh.

Get ready for an influx of Dutch folks coming to the area. Philips is a huge Dutch company, I've met a fair number of folks that work for the various Philips offices throughout the world through ye old day job and most of them are Dutch.

Gov. Deval Patrick is expected to announced on Tuesday that Dutch conglomerate Royal Philips Electronics NV will move its North American headquarters from New York City to Andover, Mass.

The company plans to hold an early press conference at its Andover facilities, which already serve as the global headquarters for its health care division. With the move, Massachusetts will gain between 50 and 75 jobs. More are expected to follow.

I'm sure all of you have heard of Phlips. They sell all sorts of stuff: tvs (soon to be outsourced to Funai), dvd players, sonicare toothbrushes, computer accessories, medical equipment, and so on and so forth.

Long story short, this should be great for the MA economy and create some more jobs for the state.

Click (here) for the BBJ blurb.

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Money Mag's Best Places to Live & Places for Singles

7/24/2008 07:00:00 AM 2 Responses
Money Magazine released their list of "Top 100 Best Small Cities" of 2008 under the heading "Best Places to Live" and a few cities in MA made the cut.

Newton at number 49 (here)
Waltham at number 72 (here)
Brookline at number 87 (here)

We definitely didn't fare so well in that category, but there is one that we did better on, that would be "Best Cities for Singles"

Cambridge at number 2 (here)
Somerville at number 3 (here)
Boston at number 5 (here)

Click (here) to browse through some of the rest of the categories.

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Rock and Blues Cruise Redux

7/24/2008 07:00:00 AM 0 Responses
Just a friendly reminder as I sit here in my office daydreaming about the weekend, the Rock & Blues Cruise series is half over (here).

If you haven't checked one out yet, you should. Several of my friends went last year and reported back that they had a great time.

Friday July 25 – deSol with Tim Blane

Saturday, July 26
– Benefit cruise for the Pan Mass Challenge featuring disco/soul/funk band Booty Vortex and (two time cancer survivor) Evan Michael and his band. This cruise will also have a special silent auction with great concert and sports tickets up for grabs as well as several other fun items.

Both cruises are at 8pm, boarding at 7:30pm at Boston Harbor Cruises on Long Wharf. Must be 21.

Info and Tickets are available at

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James Levine Health Update

7/23/2008 07:00:00 AM 0 Responses
For those of you that weren't aware, James Levine (director of the BOS and the Metropolitan Opera) had surgery last week to remove a kidney. I received a press release detailing his progress after the surgery.

Boston Symphony Orchestra Managing Director, Mark Volpe, reported today that its Music Director, James Levine, was released from the hospital this past weekend. According to Mr. Volpe, Maestro Levine was hospitalized on Tuesday, July 15, for surgery to remove a growth in his kidney. Tom Levine, James Levine's brother, reported to Mr. Volpe that doctors "found the growth to be malignant, but it was very small and confined to the central area of his right kidney, which was then removed. Fortunately, as the growth was discovered early enough, it had not spread to the surrounding tissues, blood vessels, or lymph nodes. Doctors reported the surgery was completely curative and no further treatment is necessary." Tom Levine also stated that his brother was very relieved by the doctors' report, is in very good spirits recuperating at home, and looks forward to conducting the opening events of the 2008/2009 seasons of the Boston Symphony Orchestra and the Metropolitan Opera in September. Maestro Levine is Music Director of both institutions.

Good luck to Maestro Levine with his recovery and we all look forward to your return in the Fall!

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Amstel Light Promo in Faneuil Hall - 7/24

7/23/2008 07:00:00 AM 0 Responses
I drink a fair amount of Amstel Light. Or at least I used to before I started trying to cut down on the beer consumption. But, that's not to say that exceptions can't be made. =)

Amstel Light is going to be doing a promotion of some sort at a number of bars in Faneuil Hall on Thursday, July 24.

Visit your favorite pubs around Faneuil Hall and Quincy Market from 5:00–8:00 p.m. to experience the free-spirit of Amsterdam with “Dutch Treat” specials and a unique 10-person "Beer Bike." Be on the lookout for Amstel Light bike riders giving away free Amstel Light-branded items.

Here's a list of the bars that are participating: Bell In Hand, Green Dragon, Hennessy’s, Paddy O’s, The Point, Red Sky, The Tap, Purple Shamrock, Ned Devine’s.

I've already recruited all my friends to go. We spend most of our time in Faneuil Hall anway, so may as well swing by the festivities. We'll be the rowdy ones at Ned Devines. And then perhaps we'll work our way over to the Kong for some scorpion bowls afterwards.

PS. That's a picture of the "10-seater Beer Bike" which will be making an appearance at the event.

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Petition to Save The Newton Starbucks

7/23/2008 07:00:00 AM 0 Responses
This was bound to happen after Starbucks announced that they were closing 600 locations (here). People don't mind that Starbucks is closing locations until they find out it's THEIR location. Then, it's personal.

Change is brewing in Newton. And resident Denis Goodwin is boiling mad. Last week, Goodwin created an online petition to protest the closing of the Starbucks at 70 Union St. As of late yesterday, nearly 100 people had offered support at

Goodwin, who visits the Union Street shop about five times a week, said he hopes to persuade the company to instead close the more generic "McStarbucks" nearby at 1269 Centre St.

I'm sure Starbucks had some consulting firm come in with a fancy formula to analyze revenues per store in relation to overhead and this store didn't make the cut. I don't think it was personal, just business.

Here's something kinda funny. Look at petition signer 80 on the site. I like how she says "MEDIA INQUIRY, not signature."

Click (here) to read the Globe article.

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Tax Holiday Approved - 8/16

7/23/2008 01:39:00 AM 0 Responses
Looks like the tax holiday (here) was approved. It's gonna go down 8/16-8/17.

By a 139-15 vote, the House of Representatives agreed to withhold the state's 5 percent sales tax from items costing up to $2,500 that are sold during the weekend of Aug. 16-17. Boats, cars and meals and tobacco products are excluded, as are telecommunication services and gas, steam and electricity utilities.

Senators defeated a proposed amendment that would have made the holiday a permanent fixture, no longer subject to an annual debate.

Items up to $2500. Hmm ... well I do need a new laptop - if there's a good sale that weekend and it's also tax free that would be nice. Although it's always tax free when I shop online. Is alcohol usually taxed? I've never really paid attention to my receipts. Maybe that weekend will be a good time to add to my wine collection.

Then again isn't New Hampshire always sales tax free?

Click (here) to read the article

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1000 Words - East Boston Italian Festival

7/22/2008 11:26:00 AM 0 Responses

14th Annual East Boston Italian Festival - 7/19/08
Pictures from the

Click (here) to see more pictures.

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Lifting The Alcohol Ban On Golf Courses

7/22/2008 11:12:00 AM 0 Responses
Must be a slow news day today. The front page of the City/Region section featured an article about a bill that is currently pending that would lift the alcohol ban on golf courses.

Massachusetts bans alcohol from being served directly on the grounds of golf courses, a restriction that has been widely ignored by many courses that offer beverage carts at various holes. The state is one of two, along with Alaska, that bans alcohol on the grounds of golf courses

Some folks want to be able to drink while they golf. Some folks want to go with their families and not have to deal with rowdy folks that perhaps drank a little too much.

For the avid golfers out there, is it a big plus for a golf course if you are able to drink while golfing? Is that something you look for?

"I've definitely gone to courses and paid more to go there because I could have a cold beer on the course," Debold said on a recent morning round as he started at the first hole.

I haven't touched my golf clubs in about two years, and even if I did start up again it would take all my wits and concentration just to make sure I hit the ball. I'm not sure having a beer or two would help my cause. But for the golfers out there, I'll keep my fingers crossed that the ban gets lifted.

Click (here) to read the Globe article.

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Sales Tax Holiday Next Month

7/22/2008 10:51:00 AM 1 Response
According to the Metro, Governor Patrick has agreed to sign a bill this week to suspend the state sales tax for two days next month if the Legislature passes it. I've always wondered about these tax free weekends because people tend to go nuts shopping.

But from my point of view, it's only a 5% discount, I can get a better discount waiting for stuff to go on sale or shopping online. The only benefit to the tax free weekend that I can see is if you're buying something that never goes on sale. I have a friend who bought up half of Home Depot during the tax free weekend while he was renovating his house - that saved him some considerable money. Then the only other thing I can think of is perhaps Apple products since they rarely go on sale.

Back in TX, families did a lot of back-to-school clothing shopping during the the tax free weekends, but we don't have clothing tax to begin with.

What would you buy if the tax free weekend bill passes?

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List of MA Starbucks That Are Closing

7/21/2008 01:12:00 PM 0 Responses
Ah the good old days, when I had coworkers to do 'coffee runs' with. I can't believe how much coffee we consumed on a daily basis. Besides, it was nice to be able to get out of the office for a few minutes and drive over to the local Starbucks.

Anyhoo, Starbucks posted last week the list of the 600 stores that they plan on closing over the next several months. I clipped the MA locations of of the list to post here:

My condolences to the coffee addicts that are going to have their local Starbucks closed. Although, there's probably another one not too far down the street. I literally walk by 4 Starbucks locations each day when I walk to work - and it's a pretty short walk (2 in Downtown Crossing, 1 in the Theatre District, 1 in Back Bay).

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Haymarket Attendance Is Up

7/21/2008 12:03:00 PM 0 Responses
Attendance at Haymarket is up. And for good reason.

About a month ago I was at Star Market walking through the produce section and I spotted some cherries. It's my own fault for not paying attention, all I saw was a sale sign that said $3.99 so I thought "Great! I haven't had cherries in years, $4 ain't so bad." What I didn't realize was that it was $3.99 a pound and that bag of cherries rung up as $10. I was too embarrassed to tell the checkout person I didn't want them anymore, and just hoped that they would be really awesome cherries. They weren't. I want my $10 back.

"It wasn't until gas prices and everything shot up that I started to take a look," said Billy Patterson, 34, a Wrentham father who works downtown and who carried his Whole Foods bag while shopping yesterday. "I get cherries down here for $2 a pound. I was at Whole Foods: $7 a pound."

"They have good prices, but you have to be careful," said Kelly Hanns, 23, of the Back Bay. "You may get seven apples for $1, but two or three of them might not be the best."

I typically only get the fairly hardy fruits/veggies from haymarket because there's a better chance that they'll be decent. Potatoes, onions, lemons/limes, apples. I've had bad experiences with the more exotic stuff like peaches and mangos so I tend to steer clear of those.

Click (here) to read the rest of the Globe article.

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Mel Gibson Gets The Cold Shoulder

7/21/2008 11:56:00 AM 3 Responses
Sorry for the late posts. I'm currently suffering from a serious case of the Mondays. Work is crazy busy and I'm exhausted from the weekend (at least it was a fun weekend).

So as reported earlier (here), Mel Gibson is going to be filming a movie called "Edge of Darkness" starting sometime in August. Well, August is just around the corner so I guess they' started scouting for locations to film. The owners of a building in Roslindale have declined a bid to use their building in the film. Why? Because they're pissed off at Mel Gibson.

They're upset about an anti-Semitic comment Mel made to the police officer who arrested him for DUI near his Malibu home.

The couple isn't talking about the contretemps with Mel, but their nephew Brian Keaney, who blogs at, is. Keaney told us his aunt and uncle were initially excited when Hollywood came calling. "Until they found out Mel Gibson was involved," said Keaney. "The whole family's very proud of them for standing up to [Gibson]. You can't make comments like that and get away with it."

Click (here) to read the rest of the blurb.

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I Was Approved For Zipcar's Low Car Diet

7/18/2008 03:53:00 PM 1 Response
I thought I'd give everyone an update on my Low Car Diet. I applied back in June (here) and found out recently that I was approved. Woohoo!

So far, only the zipcar card has shown up. There is a kick off event coming up this Monday 7/21 but unfortunately I can't go (that pesky day job again - ruining all my fun). As part of the low car diet they're giving away a bunch of awesome schwag as well at the kick off. Here's an excerpt from the latest email:

We're going to hook you up with some Charlie Card credit to scoot around the city and out of traffic. Vitamin water to keep you hydrated on your travels. Once you get your metabolism pumped and the fitness bug hits you, make a trip over to Equinox Fitness in Back Bay to get a free one week experience at their premium health club. When you have some down time, walk or T it over to the New England Aquarium with your free pass. Got the mojo for some social sporting? Then the Boston Ski Sports Clubs free membership and Clif Bar will keep your energy up when living 'la vie sportive.' And if you want to hop into a Zipcar, use that $100 in driving time to convey you over to Whole Foods and use their $25 gift card and take your haul home in a cool reusable shopping tote.

So I actually did spend some time thinking about what driving I could cut out. Here's the top few that I can definitely stop driving to and take the T or walk instead:

1. Cambridgeside Galleria
2. My friend dwillen's house.
3. Grocery Store (I'm going to T it over to the Prudential Center one)
4. Trader Joes (Goto the one on Boylston instead of the one on Mem Drive)

And the one place that I will still have to drive to and hence will use the Zipcar:

1. Costco (I love me some Costco)

I exchanged a couple of emails with the Zipcar Boston folks and they've agreed to mail me all the stuff from the kick-off event since I won't be able to pick it up in person. woot.

I'll post a review later on of my first Zipcar experience once I get a chance to test it out.

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Jordin Sparks Concert Tix On Sale Now - 8/20

7/18/2008 10:03:00 AM 0 Responses
Jordin Sparks is touring with Jesse McCartney and they're coming to the Lowell Memorial Auditorium on Wednesday, August 20th.

You know Jordin Sparks, she sings that popular song with Chris Brown about not having any air to breathe and what not. I don't know anything about Jesse McCartney - I've heard his name before but that's about it.

For the teeny boppers out there and parents of teeny boppers, tickets went on sale 5 minutes ago.

Click (here) to get your tickets from Ticketmaster.

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Belgian Beer Festival Tickets On Sale Now

7/18/2008 12:50:00 AM 2 Responses
I blog a lot about the beer festivals that go on in Boston. Partly because all my friends always go and partly because they are wildly popular. Coming up in September is the Belgian Beer Festival which in my opinion is second only to the Extreme Beer Festival during the Jan/Feb time frame.

Here's a little story about just how popular these things are (these things always sell out). One of my friends had an extra ticket to the Extreme Beer Fest earlier this year so he posted it on craigslist. It was a $40 ticket. Guess how much someone offered him for it. $130. Over 300% return. If only I could choose stocks that well.

Anyhoo, tickets just went on sale a couple days ago. Get them while they're still available. I'll be at the session II. The event takes place on Sept 27th.

Oh and just because I like you guys so much, here's a promo code that I found online for 10% off: NN8XX9.

See you there!

Click (here) to buy your tickets.

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Rez(life) A New Boston College Magazine

7/18/2008 12:35:00 AM 0 Responses
I have great admiration for entrepreneurs. And even more admiration for young ones that drop everything to pursue their dreams. That's some serious risk taking that I don't currently have the cajones for.

Rez(life) is a new magazine about Boston College that is written by a former student - Marc Deley.

Deley recently dropped out of BC because of his hectic work schedule as a freelance news photographer. But he also left to focus on a magazine that is written by college students who are also featured as models in the photo spreads.

With help from two investors, one a former student and another a local DJ, Deley launched a maiden issue last December with 2,500 copies. That was followed in April by the most recent issue with 4,000 copies. Both included nightclub ads that carry some of Deley's professional photography.

Props to Mr. Deley and his team. Best of luck with your endeavor!

Click (here) to read the rest of the article.

Click (here) to go to the Rez(life) website.

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ABC's "Opportunity Knocks" Casting Call

7/18/2008 12:27:00 AM 0 Responses
Everyone loves a good 'ol fashioned casting call. This one is for families - it's for a TV game show from ABC called "Opportunity Knocks." Here's the casting call info verbatim from Boston Casting (pardon the all caps text, I was too lazy to retype it all)

You Can Win A Huge Cash Prize $$$

Are you an outgoing and fun family with at least 2 kids or teenagers (ages 7-21)? Would you love to finally pay off that debt, buy that flat screen TV, or new refrigerator? If you would love a chance to win money and amazing prizes for the entire family, this show is for you! This is a trivia based game show where the entire family participates to possibly win money and amazing prizes!

Picture of your family
Picture of the front of your home
Brief bio of each member of your family
Ages of your family

Submission deadline is July 23rd 2008
617-254-1001 EXT.3 - ask for ASHLEY

Click (here) to go to the Boston Casting website

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Jay Manuel at Prudential Center Tonight - 7/17

7/17/2008 11:41:00 AM 1 Response
For those of you out there that watch America's Next Top Model (I'll admit it, I've seen parts of an episode or two while flipping through channels), Jay Manuel - one of the judges - will be in Boston at the Lord and Taylor at the Prudential Center tonight - Thursday, 7/17.

According to the Herald, he's there for a Calvin Klein Underwear event:

According to Calvin Klein, 51 percent of women have trouble finding a bra that fits. We’re all ears Thursday as the designer label presents “Calvin Klein Underwear goes Undercover,” a free bra-spotting seminar at Lord & Taylor in the Prudential Center. Join “America’s Next Top Model” judge and creative director Jay Manuel as he dishes survival tips on finding the perfect-fitting bra. It goes down from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Pru, 760 Boylston St. Call 617-262-6000 for more information.

Click (here) to read the blurb.

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Is that BU Jamba Juice Still Around?

7/17/2008 10:28:00 AM 4 Responses
I haven't been to the BU area in quite some time. Is the Jamba Juice still there? I tried to use the store locator and it didn't turn up. Maybe I was doing something wrong.

Anyway, if you go to the Jamba Juice website, there's a Buy One Get One Free coupon if you register on their site and submit your email address.

I could definitely go for a smoothie right now. It's been pretty hot out these last few days - excellent summer weather.

On a side note, I went for a ~3.3 mile run yesterday outside for the first time in probably a year (I've been doing strictly treadmill lately) to see if I could even attempt to train for the half marathon (here) - and the answer is probably not. I've been spoiled running on a treadmill in an air conditioned gym. Hitting the pavement in the summer heat is way more difficult.

Click (here) to go to the site to get your coupon.

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Shutesbury & Washington Get Internet

7/17/2008 12:49:00 AM 0 Responses
I can't imagine life without high speed internet. I've had it for too long - can't live without it anymore. So good news, Shutesbury & Washington will soon be on the list of places that I could possibly live if ever the need should arise.

The town of Washington in Berkshire County will get high-speed Internet for the first time and the town of Shutesbury in Franklin County will have its service drastically expanded in a $200 million dollar program by Verizon (NYSE: VZ) to lay down wire for DSL service for 24 towns in the state. Residents will be able to purchase Internet access with speeds up to three megabits per second, far faster than dial-up service but not as fast as Verizon’s FiOS or cable Internet service.

Congrats to the folks in Shutesbury and Washington. Hope you read my blog once you get access to hi-speed internet. =)

Click (here) to read the article.

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Inflation + Recession = Bye Bye Savings

7/17/2008 12:36:00 AM 1 Response
For those of us with bills to pay and groceries to shop for (wasn't life grand when you were a teenager?) you undoubtedly know that everything is getting more expensive. We don't have it as bad as Hawaii (I read that a gallon of OJ is about $8 bucks now over there) but things are still bad. I bought a six pack of Bass the other day and it cost me over $9. Ouch.

Here's a few more statistics:

The same basket of alcoholic beverages bought in June 2008 cost 4.3 percent more than in June 2007, the government reported. Nationwide, alcoholic beverages grew by only 3.1 percent during the same period.

The pricetag for dining out grew 5.1 percent in Greater Boston — less than the 6.1 percent nationwide increase.

The local killer was household energy. Resident of Greater Boston saw prices increase 19.5 from June to June, while the nation as a whole saw an increase of only 13.7 percent.

Hold on to your seats, it's going to be a bumpy economic ride.

Click (here) to read the article.

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L'Espalier Moving In September

7/17/2008 12:22:00 AM 1 Response
I first blogged about L'Espalier's upcoming move over a year ago (here). For those of you that haven't heard, Frank McClelland is going to be moving his flagship restaurant over to the new Mandarin Oriental. If you want to go check it out before it moves, you've got about a month and a half left to do it.

Frank McClelland, executive chef/owner of L’Espalier, confirmed Tuesday that his restaurant will move from its current location on Gloucester Street in Boston’s Back Bay to Boylston Street within the new Mandarin Oriental Boston Hotel & Residences on Sept. 15, 2008. The Back Bay landmark will close its doors with a final dinner at 30 Gloucester Street on Aug. 30.

I took my own advice and had dinner there two weekends ago. I have to admit, it wasn't nearly as good as I had remembered. To be fair, I went to French Laundry back in April and was probably holding L'Espalier to too high of a standard. The food was good, but not amazing. French Laundry was amazing.

Click (here) to read the rest of the article.

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Boston Half Marathon Registration Now Open

7/16/2008 10:05:00 AM 4 Responses
I almost had a heart attack when I opened up my email this morning. Reader Dan Dan sent me a link to the Boston Half Marathon registration. At first I thought he was suggesting that I register for it. That's when my heart stopped. Then I thought, "Oh wait, maybe he just wants me to post it for everyone else out there."

I'm not a runner by any stretch of the imagination. After I do my three to four miles, I'm about ready to keel over.

But for those of you that are more ambitious runners than I, the event is in about 3 months and registration opened today.

Presented by Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and the Jimmy Fund and showcasing Boston and Brookline's Emerald Necklace park system, the eighth annual B.A.A. Half Marathon will be held on October 12. Online registration is now open.

Click (here) to go to the registration page.

Ok, now my interest has piqued a little over the span of writing this entry. I wonder if a little less than three months is enough time to train from running 3-4 miles to 13. Do you think I could do it?

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Shakespeare on the Common Has A Blog

7/16/2008 12:46:00 AM 1 Response
Shakespeare on the the Common has a blog. And their blog has wayyy better pictures of the set than mine does (here). They're using the blog as a rehearsal journal. Here's a brief excerpt from their latest entry:

We started technical rehearsals on the common on Saturday afternoon! It’s going well. Takes a long time to figure everything out, but we’re being super productive and are right on schedule.

We’ve worked up through Shakespeare’s Act 4 Scene 1, meaning that tomorrow night we need to push ahead through the end of the play so that we can do a dress rehearsal run-thru on Wednesday night.

Props to all the actors and behind-the-scenes folks that are working hard to put this together for us. I can't wait to see the show.

Click (here) to go to their blog.

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Boston Cocktail Week - Starts 7/15

7/16/2008 12:31:00 AM 0 Responses
Most likely playing off the success of Restaurant Week, there's a new week-long event that just started yesterday called Cocktail Week.

Fifty-three bars and restaurants in and around Boston have signed on to participate in Boston’s first annual “Cocktail Week.” The week-long celebration of the cocktail, presented by Stuff@night magazine and in association with Bacardi USA, is set to begin on July 15th, and run through July 21st.

Consumers will be treated to specially priced cocktail and appetizer “flights,” which each restaurant has created specially for Cocktail Week. Each flight (or pairing) will be priced at $20.08, and will be available only from July 15th through the 21st.

I'm not big on the super fancy drinks, but it has been a while since I've been to Douzo for some sushi. Maybe I'll swing by and have a few drinks too. Their Grey Goose Saketini and Bacardi Peach Red Blood Orange Martini sound pretty good.

Click (here) to see the entire list of participating restaurants.

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1000 Words - New Downtown Crossing Logo

7/16/2008 12:17:00 AM 5 Responses
I wrote a post last week about the gentrification of Downtown Crossing (here). One reader wasn't too keen on my use of the term "gentrification" so I thumbed through the sparse little thesaurus that is my mind and decided upon a new term - "Revitalization." Better?

The New Downtown Crossing Logo

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Ray Lamontagne Boston Concert Presale

7/15/2008 01:27:00 PM 0 Responses
Ray Lamontagne and guest Leona Naess are going to be performing on Friday, October 10th at the Opera House and pre-sale tickets just went on sale this morning.

Presale starts: Tue, Jul 15 at 10am
Presale ends: Fri, Jul 18 at 9:59am

Tickets go on sale to the general public on Friday at 10am EST, so get your tickets now.

I don't think I know any of his songs, but I just read up on his wikipedia page and am going to see if I can check out his tunes on Pandora to decide if I want tickets.

Oh and the pre-sale password is: gossip

Click (here) to go to the Livenation site.

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More Updates on Four Single Fathers

7/15/2008 01:02:00 AM 0 Responses
This just in from Bloggery reader who I'm going to keep anonymous in case spilling the beans gets him in trouble with the movie folks.

Yes the movie is in production, I have a part in the film, its filming on berkeley st off of columbus ave in the south end, the story is about four italian fathers that find hardship being married to american women, the scene is based in new york city, the director is Andre Padres, they will continue filming on berkeley until the 17th, there are other scenes to be filmed in west roxbury, it's an indy film with no distribution! there plans are to submit it to sun dance film festival, its a 3 million dollar budget with not so famous actors, some of them play good roles in Hollywood movies but not the lead roll so I would say its a B rated film that can easily become a block buster hit! Ive worked on other films and this one is very good compared to bachelor 2 starring Dane Cook.

There you have it folks - they'll be filming at the intersection of Berkeley and Columbus for the next few days. Go check it out and let me know what you think.

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The Surrogates Back Filming Downtown

7/15/2008 12:48:00 AM 3 Responses
I spotted the telltale "VSI" sign near the financial district while driving home today around 8:30pm. As you can see, the sign pointed towards the South Station area.

Anyone know what they were filming? And if Bruce was there?

More info on The Surrogates Filming (here)

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New England Sand Sculpting Festival - 7/14

7/14/2008 12:40:00 PM 0 Responses
The New England Sand Sculpting Festival starts today in Revere Beach - 7/14. The event runs for the entire week with some really cool sights to be seen.

The New England Sand Sculpting Festival (NESSF) is held annualy at Revere Beach in Revere, MA. Originally, the NESSF was the largest contest of its kind and still today reins as one of the premier events for sand sculptors all over the world. This year's event will be held Monday, July 14, 2008 - Sunday, July 20, 2008. This is a family oriented event that has garnered both natioanl and international media attention over the last 3 years. All of the proceeds raised during the NESSF go directly towards funding programs for the Revere Beach Partnership.

Monday and Tuesday (July 14th and 15th)
Demonstration sculpture worked on by all 16 master sand sculptors

Wednesday-Saturday (July 16th-19th)
11 sculptors compete for over $15,000 in prize money

Thursday- Sunday (July 17th-20th)
Vendors and Family Fun

Saturday (July 19th) 8:00pm
Awards and Fireworks

Sunday (July 20th) 9:00am-2:00pm
Amateur and Family Sand Sculpture Competition

Click (here) to go to the official event website to get details.

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New Sassoon Hair Care Academy Opening 2009

7/14/2008 10:35:00 AM 3 Responses
Boston/Cambridge is known for their educational institutions. Most recently Le Cordon Bleu opened up a culinary school in Cambridge (here), and now Elan Sassoon (son of Vidal Sassoon) announced plans to open something of his own:

The Academy for Hair and Skin by Elan Sassoon is a 90,000 square foot, $22 million school planned on Commonwealth Avenue near Boston University.

The school, which will have 180 dorm beds and a 200-seat auditorium, will require 1,500 hours of cosmetology training over nine months to graduate, 50 percent more the 1,000 hours required for a state license.

The $19,500 tuition makes it one of the nation's most expensive such programs.

I don't have too much of an opinion on hair care, since my hair is pretty simple to cut. So a question for those of you that do like to go to nice hair salons. Do you know where your hair stylist went to school? And would it influence your decision to go to him/her if she went to a "famous" hair school?

I'm just wondering because I go through the same thing with doctors. Of all the doctors I've been to (which is a handful), I have no idea where any of them went to school except for the oral surgeon that removed my wisdom teeth - he was pretty chatty and mentioned that he'd gone to Harvard.

Click (here) to read the Globe article.

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1000 Words - Four Single Fathers Set

7/14/2008 10:24:00 AM 2 Responses
The gf and I wandered down to the South End on Saturday for lunch and on the way there, I made it a point to swing by Appleton Street to see if I could find the Four Single Fathers set (here).

I didn't see too much, just a few signs and a few trucks. Anybody else have better pictures? A few folks have left comments that they were working on film - how'd the shoot go?

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Shakespeare on the Common Starts This Week - 7/18

7/14/2008 10:02:00 AM 1 Response
Shakespeare on the Common starts this Friday, 7/18 and they'll be featuring "As You Like It."

Free Shakespeare, a public program of the Citi Performing Arts Center, will return for an extended run on Boston Common this summer. The popular midsummer tradition of free Shakespeare under the stars will return to the Boston Common for three weeks with Citi as the new corporate presenting sponsor for the program.

Directed by Steven Maler, founding artistic director of Commonwealth Shakespeare Company, As You Like It will be staged at the Parkman Bandstand on Boston Common July 18 through August 3, 2008, with two dress rehearsals open to the public on July 16 and 17.

Bust out the picnic blankets and lawnchairs. Shakespeare on the Common is always a great family and/or date event to go to. And from what I recently heard about the NYC Shakespeare in the Park - ours is way more accessible. Apparently in NYC you hafta stand in line for hours and wait for tickets. Whereas for us, we just show up a little early to try to stake out a nice viewing spot.

PS. Picture is from this morning - looks like the set setup is coming along nicely.

Click (here) for show times and other details.

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1000 Words - Want a 3G Iphone? Get in Line.

7/11/2008 10:15:00 AM 3 Responses
The line had already formed out the door at the at&t I walked past on my way to work. It was around 9am'ish when I walked past there, I can only imagine that the lines are going to get longer throughout the day until the stores run out of phones.

Photos taken from the at&t in Downtown Crossing near the Financial District.

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Gnarls Barkley Tickets On Sale 7/12 at 10am

7/11/2008 01:07:00 AM 0 Responses
I remember when, I remember, I remember when I lost my mind. I think it was from listening to Gnarls Barkley's "Crazy" too many times last year. But hey, why not hear it one more time - in person!

Gnarls Barkely is coming to Boston to perform at the Wilbur Theatre on Wednesday, August 6th and tickets go on sale Saturday 7/12 at 10am EST.

Anyhoo, according to Ticketmaster they're all $25. That means usually means one of two things. One - it's a standing room only concert so the tickets are general admission tickets. Two - it's a seated concert, but those who buy early get good seats and those who buy late pay the same amount of $ for crappier seats.

I can't remember the last time I went to the Wilbur Theatre for a concert (or if I ever have) so I'm not sure which of the options it is. But if you want tickets, get them while they're hot.

Click (here) to go to the Ticketmaster site.

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Welcome to Boston Martha Hackett

7/11/2008 12:55:00 AM 0 Responses
So I was on a plane back to Boston this afternoon from LA (Los Angeles, not Louisiana) and guess who I was sitting near? I didn't recognize her but someone else did and chatted with her briefly. It was Martha Hackett from Star Trek Voyager.

Apparently she's from the area and had come back with her kids on vacation. Here's a few tidbits about her for those that don't know much about her (like me).

Martha Hackett is an American actress. She is known for her role as Seska in the television series Star Trek: Voyager. Hackett is an alumna of Harvard University (here).

Martha Hackett, who played Seska on Star Trek: Voyager, was born on February 21, 1961 in Boston, Massachusetts. She has guest starred in a few television shows including General Hospital, Hill Street Blues, Sirens, Monty, Touched by an Angel, and The Guardian. Her film credits include Carnosaur, Leprechaun 2, In the Heat of Passion II: Unfaithful, Inconceivable, Never Been Kissed and more (here).

Welcome back Martha! I hope you and your family have a great vacation.

She's the second famous person that I've been on a plane with. The first was Paul Pierce when I was coming back from the Cayman Islands a couple years ago.

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