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The Kooks Presale Code - 6/9

2/29/2008 02:46:00 PM 0 Responses
Presale for the Kooks concert in June just started today and runs until the end of the weekend. They will be playing 6/9 at 8pm at Paradise Rock Club. Tickets are general admission and cost $20. Get them before the general public with the presale password.

The Kooks are back on tour in support of their eagerly anticipated sophomore album Konk, featuring the new single “Always Where I Need To Be.” This is the stunning follow up to the hugely successful Inside In / Inside Out, their breakout debut which sold over 100,000 albums in the US and over 2 million copies worldwide.

Presale password is “KONK” which you can enter into the box on the Ticketmaster page (here).



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Updown.com $10K Student Stock Contest

2/29/2008 02:05:00 PM 0 Responses
Sure, it's no Lemelson Prize (here), but $10K goes a long way when buying pizza and beer - or as college students call it .... breakfast.

Updown.com is a virtual investing website started by three Harvard students. They are starting a new contest tomorrow, March 1st for students (undergraduate and graduate) and the prize is $10K.

How do you win? I'm a little unclear on the rules, but I believe it's based on highest portfolio returns and also some sort of stock analysis report that you have to write during the competition.

Click (here) to go to the contest site and sign up. The contest ends May 31st. Contest starts in 9 hrs, 50 mins, 33 secs (they have a counter on their webpage).

I'm not sure if this is the same thing, but I read an article a while ago about one of these virtual investing sites that was tied to a hedge fund that was basically using other people's picks on the site that had good track records.

I've also heard that if you do well on some of these sites, you could get offered a job in the financial industry.



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Real Estate Classes

2/29/2008 01:29:00 PM 3 Responses
Happy Friday Everyone! Thank goodness for the weekend. It's been quite the busy week. Anyone have any good plans for the weekend?

I'm going to spending most of it in a weekend real estate class. Part of me is hoping that it'll help me to understand the process a little bit better for when I end up buying a home of my own. The other part wants to learn a little bit more about the industry so that maybe I could be a part time real estate agent on the weekends/evenings.

If there are any other folks out there that are interested. I'm taking the class offered by the Lee Institute. They have lots of locations and also offer the option of a two-day weekend course sometimes (which works out well for me since I travel for work so much).

I'll report back after the class as to how it was, but I'm expecting that it's going to be like driver's ed. Sit there for countless boring hours and then take a relatively easy test at the end.

Any real estate agents out there want to chime in on how their thoughts on their profession and how they like it?

Click (here) for a link to the Lee Institute.



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The Proposal & Mall Cop Casting Call - 2/29

2/28/2008 01:40:00 PM 0 Responses
Here's another casting call, this one for tomorrow, where Boston Casting is looking for specific types of people. The movies are The Proposal (here) which is supposedly a romantic comedy starring Sandra Bullock and Ryan Reynolds and Mall Cop (here) which stars Kevin James and will be filmed at the Burlington Mall.

Here's what they need:

1. PRECISION DRIVERS TO WORK IN TWO FEATURE FILMS : THE PROPOSAL AND THE NEW COLUMBIA PICTURES COMEDY

WE ARE LOOKING FOR PEOPLE WHO ARE: ACCOMPLISHED RACE CAR DRIVERS WHO HAVE DRIVEN IN MOVIES IN THE PAST WHO UNDERSTAND HOW TO TAKE DIRECTION AND STOP ON COMMAND.

OPEN CALL FRIDAY 2/29 FROM 2-6PM.

PLEASE BRING 2 HEAD-SHOTS AND 2 RESUMES.

IF YOU CANNOT MAKE THIS OPEN CALL, PLEASE DROP OFF YOUR 2 HEAD-SHOTS AND RESUMES ANY SATURDAY.

2. WE ARE ALSO LOOKING FOR RUSSIAN-LOOKING PEOPLE 18+ FOR THE FEATURE FILM: THE PROPOSAL

YOU DO NOT HAVE TO SPEAK RUSSIAN, JUST LOOK THE PART. LIGHT HAIR PREFERRED.

OPEN CALL FRIDAY 2/29 FROM 2-6PM.

PLEASE BRING 2 HEADSHOTS OR PHOTOS AND RESUME IF YOU HAVE ONE. OPEN TO UNION AND NON-UNION ACTORS AND NON-ACTORS.

Click (here) for more information from Bostoncasting.com


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Mall Cop Casting Call - 3/1

2/28/2008 01:33:00 PM 0 Responses
They're holding an open casting call this Saturday 3/1 for what I'm guessing will be the new Kevin James movie - Mall Cop - which I blogged about earlier this week (here).

OPEN CASTING CALL FOR THE NEW COLUMBIA PICTURES COMEDY
To be filmed at the Burlington Mall, Burlington, MA

SATURDAY, MARCH 1
10:00 AM- 4:00 PM
HILTON GARDEN INN
5 WHEELER RD.
BURLINGTON, MASSACHUSETTS

Follow the signs marked “EXTRAS CASTING CALL”
PLEASE BRING PHOTO AND RESUME

Click (here) for more information.



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Congrats to Tim Lu For Winning Lemelson Prize

2/28/2008 01:22:00 PM 2 Responses
Congratulations to my friend Tim for winning the Lemelson Prize yesterday.

Timothy Lu, a 27-year-old graduate student at the Harvard-MIT Division of Health Sciences and Technology who is in his third year at Harvard Medical School, received the $30,000 Lemelson-MIT Student Prize yesterday for inventing antibacterial agents that can thwart microbes such as methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, which has become impervious to many drugs.

MRSA is a big problem in hospitals nowadays. What do you do when antibiotics don't work anymore? It's a scary situation to be in - and it's happening more and more frequently.

Click (here) to read the Globe article. I'm sure this won't be the last time you read about Tim in the news.

PS. Tim, if you're reading, I owe you a celebratory beer or something.



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New Legal Seafood Promo Code - 10% Off

2/27/2008 04:52:00 PM 0 Responses
As I promised, I would continually search for new coupon codes for the Legal Seafood Mail Order site so that you guys could get a better deal. I just found one and checked to see if it was still good and here's what the website said:

This coupon entitles you to receive a discount of 10% good towards your purchase. Please remember to enter this coupon on the cart page or during checkout to receive your discount.
Expiration Date : 28-Feb-09

I've posted the promo code with the original post (here) for the sake of keeping everything together. Just scroll to the update at the bottom. You can also get there by clicking "Legal Seafoods Mail Order" under my Affiliate Advertising section on the left.



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Rumor: Cleveland Cavaliers at the Four Seasons

2/27/2008 02:38:00 PM 1 Response
I was walking down Boylston on the way to the office when I overheard two people talking quite loudly that they had just seen a bunch of the Cleveland Cavaliers at the Four Seasons and it was too bad that they didn't get to see Lebron.

Whenever sports teams are in town, they usually have an area for fans to stand and wait for autographs at the Four Seasons and the Ritz so if you swing by and see a huge tour bus out front or perhaps a bunch of guys standing out in the cold waiting for something - it's a good sign.

Who's got tickets to the game tonight? And where's the best bar to watch from if you don't have tickets? I'm still mourning the loss of the Hooters in North Station.

Update from 5pm.




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Ashecliffe Sighting - Ipswich

2/27/2008 02:33:00 PM 1 Response
Thanks to Bloggery Reader dschoonover shooting a quick email off to me on an Ashecliffe sighting.

signs, trucks, trailers, film crews.... are at Turner Hill Country Club in Ipswich today. I didn't think they'd be on the Northshore. interesting.

Anyone out there a member of the Turner Hill Country Club that wants to run in and snap some pictures? I'll post them here. Although I'm sure the paparazzi (do we have paparazzi in Boston?) are already all over it.



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Le Cordon Bleu College Opening In April

2/27/2008 12:14:00 PM 0 Responses
Things didn't work out last Friday like they were supposed to. In my fantasy world, I was going to win the $270 million dollar megamillions jackpot so that I could quit my job, move into the Ritz, and go to culinary school.

Life has a funny way of being cruel, so just to add insult to injury and remind me that I did not in fact win the lottery, the Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts Boston is slated to open in Cambridge on April 7.

The school, which is modeled after the renowned Ecole du Cordon Bleu in Paris, will serve up a two-year Associate of Applied Science degree in which students will learn classical French cooking techniques, the business of food preparation, nutrition and sanitation. The program costs $38,300 for the two years and includes tuition, books, uniforms and a Wusthof knife kit.

It's ok, I didn't actually want to go to culinary school to learn French cooking. I want to go so I can become a sushi chef, so I guess I shouldn't be too disappointed (except for the part about not having $270 million dollars)

Click (here) to read the Boston Business Journal article. Click (here) to go to the school's official website.



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Ashlee Simpson Coming To Town Friday - 2/29

2/27/2008 11:58:00 AM 2 Responses
I am quite impressed with the line up that the clubs in Boston have been featuring lately. Off the top of my head Gypsy Bar had a handful of Playboy Models a little while back. Liquor Store had Steve-O. The Estate had Brody Jenner and Paris Hilton on separate occasions. Here's the latest and greatest:

Gypsy Bar will play host to Ashlee Simpson this upcoming Friday 2/29.

Ashlee Simpson makes her only Boston appearance on Friday, February 29th at Gypsy Bar, celebrating the release of her new single “Outta My Head”.

The new single is part of her LP release “Bittersweet World” due out this April. With Simpson’s new single rising up the charts she has plenty of reason to celebrate, and Gypsy Bar is the only spot in town to hang out with her!

Big sister Jessica is all washed up (I'm still mad at her for ruining the Dallas Cowboys winning streak). Now it's Ashlee's time to shine. I haven't heard her new song yet, I"ll see if I can find it somewhere - I'm currently hooked on Flo Rida's new song "Elevator" (they keep playing it over and over again on the MTV Jams channel).

Click (here) for the official invite on Gypsy Bar's site. It appears to have a snippet of Ashlee's song in the background.



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Twin City Contest - VOTE FOR BOSTON!

2/26/2008 03:18:00 PM 2 Responses
Oh whiskey, how I love thee. Let me count the ways: bourbon, scotch, and last but not least Irish whiskey.

Boston is one of 3 finalists to be selected as America’s Twin City to Bushmills, a region of Ireland that is the home to Bushmills Irish Whiskey, which is celebrating the anniversary of its original license to distill.

The finalist cities were selected based on an application outlining why they embody the four quintessential values of Bushmills—pride of place, hospitality, craftsmanship, humor and wit. People of legal purchase age across the U.S. can vote online at Bushmills400years.com until March 17, 2008. The winning city receives a $40,000 grant--$20,000 for the preservation/advancement of local culture and $20,000 for local responsible drinking programs-- while each voter is eligible for an expenses-paid trip for two to Ireland.

And here I was thinking they'd choose based on capacity to drink whiskey, in which case Boston would clearly win. Anyway, I just voted and for the time being Boston is in the lead, but let's make sure we DOMINATE. Here's a screenshot of the current standings.


Click (here) to vote. Yes, you have to have pop-ups enabled. And then when you're done voting, make your coworkers vote, and then your friends, and then your enemies. We're a pretty competitive city here in Boston and I don't think we want to lose to Kentucky or Maine.


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Au Bon Pain - A Boston Institution

2/26/2008 12:08:00 PM 4 Responses
I was reading my Sunday Globe as usual this weekend and a short article about kitchen tools caught my eye. Not because of the tools, but because of the person recommending them. It was Thomas John, executive chef for Au Bon Pain. Apparently the guy lives in the boston area (Newton).

Pardon my ignorance, but I had no idea that ABP was a Boston company. So I did a little digging. Turns out Au Bon Pain was founded as a bread and sandwich company in 1978 in Faneuil Hall Marketplace (here).

You learn something new about Boston every day (especially if you read my blog!). What's more, I basically eat ABP everyday for lunch because I usually have to grab something quick and head back to the office to eat at my desk. I ate Subway for a while, and then Souper Salad for a while, but it all got pretty old.

I've been on an ABP kick for the last couple of weeks and it's been pretty good. After I finish this post, I'm off to grab a roast beef & brie sandwich with jalapeno mayo. YUM.

PS. If anyone knows of a good place to get quick food in the Boylston St & Berkeley St area, let me know. I'm open to suggestions.



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Nordstrom Burlington Grand Opening Gala - 3/26

2/26/2008 11:57:00 AM 0 Responses
Seems like just yesterday that we got our first Nordstrom's at the Natick Mall. Apparently we're getting another one - this time in Burlington. For all you shopping fanatics out there. And also those of you that like to show up on the inside cover of Improper or Stuff@Night in those charity event pictures.....

Nordstrom Burlington will be having their Grand Opening Gala on March 26th from 6:30pm to 10pm and will feature a runway fashion show from 7:30-8:30.

You're invited to the party of the season - an unabashed fashion fete celebrating the opening of our newest Nordstrom store. Join us for a night of music, dancing, cocktails, and dinner , plus a runway show spotlighting American and European designer collections. Best of all, enjoy private shopping before our store officially opens on Friday, March 28th. Cocktail Attire.

And how much does such an event cost to attend? Tickets are $125 and proceeds go to Dana Farber Cancer Institute, the Junior League of Boston, and the Links, Inc.

Click (here) to purchase tickets online.



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Charlie's Sandwich Shoppe in Details Magazine

2/25/2008 01:36:00 PM 4 Responses
First it was Matt Murphy's in Esquire (here) and now it's Charlie's Sandwich Shoppe in Details Magazine. And again, it's a place I haven't been. I know what you're thinking - yes I've been here 8 years - but I keep on going to the same few places. I will broaden my horizons, I swear.

Although, not going to Charlie's isn't entirely my fault. I walked past it numerous times to try to grab food while I lived in the South End, and there was always a long wait. Being the impatient person that I was, I always left. Now that Charlie's is nationally renowned, I guess the lines will be even longer.

The article in Details was about the best places in America for Breakfast. Here's what they have to say about Charlie's:

Few 80-year-old restaurants lack for lore, but not very many can brag about having served blacks and whites alike during segregation—making eggs for regulars like Duke Ellington, and letting a young Sammy Davis Jr. inside to dance for pocket change. All the while, Charlie’s was making turkey hash that may have single-handedly won this South End diner its James Beard Foundation America’s Classics award. Local chefs, tourists, and Beantowners white-collar and blue- gather on stools at the Formica counter, not so much for the sandwiches that give the place its name, which are fine, but for the archetypal pancakes, perfectly poached eggs and toast, and charred, juicy links of sausage.

Click (here) to read the entire article. Obviously, they saved the best for last.



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More Movies Coming to Boston

2/25/2008 01:22:00 PM 0 Responses
For faithful readers of this blog, it's not news that more and more movies have been filmed in Boston in the past year. 2008 is looking to be an ever more productive year. Who knows, pretty soon all the Starbucks in the area might be manned by aspiring actors and actresses as opposed to broke students.

As you know, Mr. McConaughy and Ms. Garner are already here filming Ghosts of Girlfriends Past (here). Martin Scorsese will begin production of Ashecliffe next month (here). And now it appears that Bruce Willis will be filming a movie called "The Surrogates" in the area and Kevin James will be filming a movie called "Mall Cop."

The Surrogates is "set in the near future, where humans live in isolation and interact vicariously through surrogate robots who are better-looking versions of themselves. Willis plays a cop who, through his surrogate, investigates the murders of others’ surrogates. The cop is forced to venture from his own home for the first time in years and unravels a conspiracy."

On top of all that, rumor has it we're (using the royal "we") trying to secure a TV series in the next year or so. That would be pretty neat. I hope it's Smallville - so that Kristin Kreuk will be in town. =)

To what do we owe all these movie deals? Tax credits.

Click (here) to read the Metro article.



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Gang-Related Shooting at Aria

2/25/2008 01:10:00 PM 8 Responses
Original credit goes to DanDan for emailing a Herald article about this to me last night. But I'm going to quote from this morning's Globe article instead because something caught my eye and basically pissed me off.

So as the story goes, someone snuck a 9mm handgun into Aria on Saturday night and sometime around 1:45am some fights broke out inside the club and said person started randomly shooting into the crowd.

Here's what caught my eye in the Globe, "The police had been tipped days earlier that gang members were planning to show up inside the red velvet draped club."

No one tipped me. Good thing I don't go clubbing anymore. Because apparently even though the cops know there may be gang related activity INSIDE a club, they don't do anything to prevent it. They just station people there to wait for bad stuff to happen so that they can react quicker. Isn't it better to be pro-active than reactive? In which case maybe some innocent bystanders don't get shot?

Did the owners of Aria know? If I was the owner, I'd close for the night due to 'renovations' or something to avoid something like this happening at my club. No one wants to go clubbing where you can potentially get shot. It's been years since I've been to Aria, and now I don't think I'll be going back.

Click (here) to read the Globe article.



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Tom Hanks is Coming - March 7

2/24/2008 09:30:00 PM 0 Responses
Tom Hanks is coming! Tom Hanks is coming! According to the Globe (here) Mr. Hanks will be in town March 7th to host a reception and a screening of a new HBO miniseries entitled "John Adams."

The series is based on David McCullough's Pulitzer prize winning biography. The series is set to start airing on March 16th at 8pm (here).

Anybody out there know where the reception is going to be with Tom Hanks? He was one of the executive producers. I wonder if Paul Giamatti will be in town as well? He's the one playing John Adams.



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Good Calories, Bad Calories: A Review

2/24/2008 08:02:00 PM 1 Response
It's a little too early for me to say that this book has been life-changing, but give me a couple more months to test things out and I might come back and make the declaration. Good Calories, Bad Calories is a book that proposes an alternative hypothesis as to the cause of our problem with obesity.

One thing to note before I get into my favorite excerpts. I am a pretty nerdy/scientific guy and this book was constantly putting me to sleep. It cited so many scientific studies that the bibliography at the back is over 70 pages long. Yes, certain parts of the book are boring, but it also makes the theories seem a bit more credible.

Here are my favorite excerpts:

1. "Insulin stimulates the transport of glucose into fat cells ... when insulin is secreted, or the level of insulin in the circulation is abnormally elevated, fat accumulates in the fat tissue."

My comments: What stimulates insulin secretion? Carbs.

2. "Our cells have the option of using fatty acids or glucose for fuel, but when surplus glucose is
available .... the fatty acids are swept into the fat tissue for later use"

My comments: That darned glucose makes it really tough to burn pre-existing fat.

3. "Fructose is converted more efficiently into glycerol phosphate than glucose ... fructose is considered the most lipogenic carbohydrate"

My comments: Click (here) and read the section on "Fructose Metabolism." Then ponder the fact that most of the sweets we eat/drink are either sucrose or high fructose corn syrup - both made up of glucose and fructose. Glucose induces the secretion of insulin and thus the promotion of fat accumulation. Fructose provides the glycerol phosphate necessary to make the triglycerides in our fat cells. It's a double whammy.

4. "Sylianos Nicolaidis had demostrated that rats will secrete insulin in response to the mere taste of a sweet substance, and it doesn't matter whether it is sugar or a no-calorie sugar substitute."

My comments: Good thing I stopped drinking diet coke a few months ago. I knew that stuff had to be bad for you somehow.

Click (here) to get your own copy. I highly recommend it. It'll take a while to read because you'll probably keep falling asleep. But it's well worth it.



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Blue Ginger Expansion To Come

2/22/2008 07:11:00 PM 0 Responses
I've heard pretty good things about Blue Ginger in Wellesley. And I've seen Ming Tsai on tv cooking shows a few times. Unfortunately, I've never had a chance to check it out - yet.

Because I live so close to Chinatown, it's tough to justify driving all the way out to Wellesley for Chinese food. Even if it's a little bit more like fusion than it is straight up Chinese food.

Tsai is taking over the former retail space next door, nearly doubling its size. Blue Ginger is located in Wellesley Square, Wellesley, Mass.

The Rockwell Group is designing the new space, which will include three private dining rooms that can accompany parties from 10 to 90 people and a 50-seat, walk-in only lounge featuring a 10-stool bar.

The most important thing to know is that the restaurant will still be open for your dining needs during the renovations. And renovations will be done by Spring.

Click (here) for the official Blue Ginger site and take a peek at their menu. Looks pretty tasty. I'll have to make my way down there sometime soon. Click (here) to read the original Boston Business Journal article.



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Chanel Trunk Show Preview - 2/23

2/22/2008 07:04:00 PM 0 Responses
Happy Friday everyone! Sorry for the lack of posts this morning. I'm at home nursing what appears to be a really nasty cold. Hopefully I can sleep it off this weekend, just in time to go back to work Monday.....ugh.

Coming up tomorrow, Saturday 2/23, cath a preview of the Chanel Trunk Show during an informal modeling session. They will also have desserts inspired by the spring/summer line. What that means, I have no idea.

Reservations are required, so try to give them a call first thing tomorrow morning. Or perhaps there's a voicemail line that you can leave your name with. Call 617-598-5255 to make reservations.

When: Sat., 2 & 4 p.m.
Where: The Lounge at Taj Boston, 15 Arlington St., Back Bay



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Real Estate Deals in Boston - Part II

2/21/2008 01:43:00 PM 1 Response
Part II to the crumbling real estate market is the American Brewery Lofts in Jamaica Plain. According to the Boston Business Journal, the owners are going to put the lofts up for sale starting this Sunday 2/24.

The owners of the American Brewery Lofts in Jamaica Plain are holding a winter clearance sale, offering the first 20 buyers a $30,000 discount each in hopes of pushing the project past the 50 percent sold mark.

Further, the first 10 buyers will each be eligible to receive up to three $5,000 coupons they can use toward closing costs, hardwood floors or for sealing and staining floors, said Michael Dorion, a sales associate with Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage who is marketing the lofts. The next 10 buyers will only receive the $30,000 discount.

These particular lofts are priced between $299,000 and $700,000. I think it's an interesting ploy - it creates a sense of urgency in consumers to try to be the amongst the first ten buyers. But at the same time, they might be shooting themselves in the foot because the 11th customer is going to be pretty upset. If it were me, I'd be upset enough not to buy if I wasn't one of the first ten.

Click (here) to read the BBJ article.



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Real Estate Deals in Boston - Part I

2/21/2008 11:41:00 AM 0 Responses
Everyone is talking about the recession, how the subprime collapse is only going to get worse, and how inflation is reaching painful levels (7% I read today). Here's another indication: auctions and incentives from developers.

First off: The Atlantica Auction next month.

Twenty condominiums in the Atlantica, a newly constructed project on Revere Beach, will go on the auction block March 9. The minimum required bids, $215,000 to $315,000, are relative bargains for one- and two-bedroom units on the water. Most either face the ocean or have views of the surf.

For those of you looking for a deal on beach front property, this looks like it could be your lucky day. I've personally never been to Revere, so I can't comment on the quality of the beach front itself.

If you're interested, click (here) to go to the official Atlantica auction site or go (here) to read the accompanying Globe article.



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Free Membership to Freepeats.org Until 2/29

2/21/2008 11:13:00 AM 0 Responses
For all the readers out there with kids or plan on having kids sometime in the not-so-distant future. A new website (or at least new to me) is coming to the Boston area called Freepeats.

Welcome to Freepeats – where you can get gently-used baby, kid, and maternity items like clothing, high chairs, bouncers, swings, bikes, and toys for free from other parents who have finished with them. It's also a way to get rid of baby cast offs without having to load up the car (and the kids) and take them to the thrift store.

Got baby, kid, or maternity stuff worth Freepeating? Post your own gently-used baby equipment, toys and clothes and pass it on to a like-minded thrifty parent (or future parent) like yourself!

The Boston section of freepeats is new, and so they're currently offering free memberships until the end of the month (2/29)

Click (here) to join.



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Matt Murphy's Featured in Esquire

2/20/2008 03:19:00 PM 1 Response
The latest issue of Esquire had a feature on the best sandwiches in America. I love reading about restaurants in magazines, gives me an excuse to try out a new restaurant. Only one restaurant in Massachusetts made their list and that was Matt Murphy's of Brookline. Here's what Esquire had to say:

Lamb Sirloin

Matt Murphy’s Brookline, Massachusetts

In a land teeming with trite Irish pubs, Matt Murphy’s stands alone: no Gaelic street signs, no U2 poster, no “Molly Bloom Mozzarella Stix.” But this hits you like a Joycean epiphany: sirloin, cooked until it dissolves on the crusty potato bread, and pickles, daubed with sweet relish and a sauce bearing the faintest rumor of mint.

Now, any list of "Best Sandwiches" that includes McDonald's and Chick-Fil-A is a little suspicious to me, but given the chance, I will make my way down to Matt Murphy's and try the Lamb Sirloin.

For those of you out there reading, any favorites that you'd recommend? I'm a big fan of the Sedona Chicken Sandwich at the Cottonwood Cafe and any sandwich served at the Publick House in Brookline.

Click (here) to scroll through the rest of Esquire's Sandwich Winners. There's a few in CT and one in Maine if you're looking to make a sandwich roadtrip tour - which actually sounds like a pretty fun idea. This coming from a guy who's driven to Philly to have a cheesesteak and also driven to New Jersey to have a certain Rutgers food truck sandwich that shall remain nameless so that I don't offend anyone.


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Matthew McConaughey & Jennifer Garner Are Here

2/20/2008 11:53:00 AM 25 Responses
Needham just got a little closer to Hollywood. Yesterday, they started filming a new romantic comedy there starring Matthew McConaughey and Jennifer Garner. According to IMDB, Michael Douglas will be in the movie as well.

The movie is called The Ghosts of Girlfriends Past. Not much information to be had on the plot. All IMDB says is "A bachelor is haunted by the ghosts of his past girlfriends at his younger brother's wedding."

According to the Globe, crews are filming at a house in Needham and will be around the area for the next couple of months. Undoubtedly we'll start hearing more and more about celebrity sightings at places like Abe & Louie's, Boston Public, etc.

This is great. One movie already filming now, and then Ashecliffe (here) starts filming next month.

UPDATE: Bloggery Reader Kym just informed me that Mr. McConaughy will be filming at Sonsie on Newbury today. If work wasn't so crazy these past couple of days I'd walk over there and check it out myself. Thanks Kym!

UPDATE 2/22/08: Mr. McConaughy was in the Leather District on South Street near South Station filming. According to the Globe, the crew will be relocating to the North Shore for a couple weeks of filming.




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Promo Code For Boston Globe Travel Show

2/20/2008 11:05:00 AM 2 Responses
Happy Hump Day Everyone! Hope you'll be out and about partying tonight. I will be spending the evening at my new accountant's office working on my taxes. Yeah I know, I'm a loser. Have a drink for me.

But as is customary, it's Wednesday so I'm already thinking about the weekend (although I usually start on Mondays). The Boston Globe Travel Show is coming up this weekend at the Seaport World Trade Center and I've got a 2 for 1 coupon code for you.

The 2-day event is New England’s biggest and most comprehensive travel expo. At the show, attendees can learn about new and exciting travel opportunities—budget vacations, cruises, tours, adventure travel, weekend getaways, exotic destinations, luxury escapes, and more—and book trips at incredible savings, right on the show floor.

I've just about had it with the cold. I don't have many vacation days but it might be interesting to hear about some of those weekend getaways. I hear that Bermuda is quite nice and also a very quick flight. Click (here) to go to the official website for more info and to purchase your tix to the show and use promo code: BGTS241 to get the 2 for 1 deal.



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Free LSAT, GMAT, GRE, MCAT Test

2/20/2008 10:54:00 AM 0 Responses
Personally, I've only got my lowly undergraduate degree under my belt. But a lot of my friends have been spending their post-undergrad years collecting advanced degrees like they're Pokemon cards.

Once or twice a year, Kaplan hosts a free practice test for a number of those standardized tests out there. Here's the full list:

GMAT | GRE | LSAT | MCAT | DAT | OAT | PCAT | TOEFL

I did take the GRE a few years ago when I was considering getting a PHD. It wasn't too hard. It's the pesky LSAT and MCAT that I always hear is painful. I bought an MCAT study guide back in the day when I was pre-med. I read the preface of the study guide and then promptly sold the book on half.com and dropped pre-med.

Click (here) to register for a free test. Testing schedule is as follows:

Harvard - Saturday 2/23
MIT, Wellesly, BU - Sunday 2/24
Newton Kaplan Center - 2/27
Boston Kaplan Center - 2/28



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Get Ben Mezrich's "Rigged" for 60 Cents

2/19/2008 02:49:00 PM 0 Responses
I've done this twice now (once a month for the last two months) so I think it's safe to say it works. Back in December, I joined one of those online survey companies that pays you to take surveys: e-rewards.com. For each survey you take, there is a designated 'dollar' value. Reach a certain amount of dollars and trade them in for actual rewards.

My reward of choice? Border's Rewards Cash. Each time I hit $15 in e-rewards money, I trade it in for $15 in Border's rewards cash. The cash is credited to your Border's account (you'll have to sign up for their rewards program - it's free though so it shouldn't be a problem) the month AFTER you actually make the request.

In addition, when you join the Borders rewards program, they send you coupons almost on a weekly basis. They usually range from 25%-30% off one book, but occasionally, they have a rare 40% off coupon code. That's usually when I strike.

So this afternoon during my lunch break, I walked over to the Border's on Newbury/Boylston and browsed for a book. Having been a big fan of his previous two books on the MIT blackjack team and also being supporter of everything local (Ben Mezrich and his wife Tonya live somewhere here in the Boston/Cambridge area) - I decided to pick up a copy of his new book "Rigged."

The book was $25.95. Minus the 40% off coupon = $15.57. Minus my $15 in Border's Cash = $0.57. And then they charged me tax on the 57 cents to bring it to a grand total of 60 cents.

There you have it. Yes, it takes a bit of time to get this done. But I've got it down to a system now where I pretty much accumulate $15 each month and trade it in for Border Cash, and have one new book to read each month. Yay for cheap books. Now if only the writer's would go back on strike, then i'd have more time to read books.........jk.

PS. For those of you who would just be happy with 40% off. Here's a link to the coupon. It's only good for two days and it expires today.

UPDATE: I don't know if it's always been there or if they just added it. But now E-rewards says you can only redeem once per calendar year. I can't be sure because I started doing this in December so since I've done it twice over Dec and Jan, that's technically 2 calendar years. BAH. I've been thwarted.



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Linkin Park Rocks My Socks

2/19/2008 02:23:00 PM 1 Response
There's only a few musicians/musical groups that I listen to in which I love all of their CDs and all of their songs. Bowling for Soup is one of them and Linkin Park is the other. I've seen numerous BFS concerts back in the day (they always played the club scene, not big arenas) but never Linkin Park.........until last night.

My friend Kevin and I made our way up to the Verizon Wireless Arena in Manchester, NH for the concert last night. First off, Verizon Wireless Arena - YOU SUCK. Not only was there no parking available - we had to circle for 10-15 minutes and finally ended up finding a deserted street to park on. In addition that, it was raining last night and you confiscated my umbrella at the entrance.

But it was all worth it. Linkin Park was phenomenal. Words cannot describe how happy I am now that I've been able to see them in concert. Happy enough to blow $30 on a T-shirt and not care. That's a big deal for me. Who the heck pays $30 for a t-shirt?

They played a good mix of their new stuff along with their old stuff. Personally, I prefer their old stuff - the songs that are louder, angrier, and overall involve more of Chester Bennington screaming.

Click (here) to get their cd's. You won't regret it. They rock my socks. My favorite is "Collision Course", they're collaboration with Jay-Z. I would have given anything to go to that concert back in the day.



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1000 Words - Biggest Loser Casting Call

2/18/2008 11:28:00 AM 0 Responses


Casting Call for NBC's The Biggest Loser
Felt in Downtown Crossing
2/16/08



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Bo Burnham Videos

2/18/2008 11:17:00 AM 3 Responses
I read the article about Bo Burnham in the Globe last week, but didn't actually get around to checking out any of his videos until yesterday. Compared to most of the stuff on the internet these days, I'd say he's definitely in the upper half. Will Ferrell's "Landlord" skit still tops my picks, but Burham's stuff is pretty decent too. I spent a solid 30 minutes on his website listening to all his songs.

St. John's Prep senior Bo Burnham, who shoots most of his videos in his bedroom, has landed a Hollywood agent and a booking on Comedy Central.

Burnham hails from Hamilton, MA. Congrats on your internet fame and I'm sure all of us have our fingers crossed for you to make it in the comedy world. Mad props to any 17 year old that already has a Hollywood agent.

Click (here) to read the article in the Globe. But more importantly, go to his website (here) and watch the videos. I'd say the videos are a tad on the NSFW side, so if you work for a really PC company, wait till you get home before watching his videos.

P.S. My personal favorite is "Rehab Center for Fictional Characters"



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Auto Insurance Comparison Site

2/18/2008 11:12:00 AM 0 Responses
The state has posted a website for consumers to shop around for car insurance. I just tested it out and in my opinion it's a pretty crappy website.

There aren't enough options to choose from to really tailor the quote to what would actually be a salient rate quote. I guess it would be a good starting point though so that you could see which insurers are on the cheaper side and which ones are on the more expensive side.

After that you could just call the insurance companies directly and get a real quote.

Click (here) to check the website out for yourself.



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Gillette's New Posterboy

2/15/2008 12:49:00 PM 2 Responses
Guess who's going to be the new spokesperson for Gillette Razors?


That's right, it's John Cena from the WWE.

Cena, a native of West Newbury, will be featured in the advertising campaign for the launch of the new Gillette Fusion Phenom razor, as well as public appearances at mobile marketing events throughout the United States during the summer of 2008.

Boston-native TV star repping a Boston-native company. Love it. Although, Gillette is now a Proctor and Gamble company and should be leaving its sweet digs in the Prudential Tower for Ohio if it hasn't already.

Click (here) for the link to the Globe.



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The Biggest Loser Casting Call - 2/16

2/15/2008 12:35:00 PM 0 Responses
Happy Friday everyone. It's been a rough week. I can't wait until 5pm. Business travel during the winter should be banned.

Anyhoo. Another casting call is on its way to Boston tomorrow. This one doesn't really depend on acting ability though but rather how much weight you think you can lose on this TV show.

We are currently looking for outgoing and charismatic TEAMS OF 2 who have personality along with the WANT, DESIRE and COMPETITIVE EDGE to vie for this all-expense-paid chance of a lifetime and compete to win $250,000!

*While we will do our best to see everyone, we guarantee the first 500 people in line will be seen. Please do not line up more than 3 hours before the start time.
*Please bring a non-returnable photo of you and your partner

The casting call takes place tomorrow, Saturday 2/16 from 10am to 6pm, at Felt in Downtown Crossing. Click (here) for a link to NBC or click (here) for a link to Felt.



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Dr. Bose Inducted Into Hall of Fame

2/14/2008 04:10:00 PM 0 Responses
Dr. Amar Bose, who most of you know as the inventor of those great sounding and very small home theater systems - and also those awesome QuietComfort noise-canceling headphones, and then a small group of you now as the Professor for your acoustics class when you were at MIT, will be inducted into the Inventors Hall of Fame.

Bose, who is among several inductees in the "living" category, will be honored along with the inventor of the television remote control and the inventor of styrofoam.

It's a toss up for me. I can imagine life without a Bose system - hell, I'm living life without it right now. But I think i would die without my television remote control.

I have a pair of the Quiet Comfort 2's (I prefer over-the-ear as opposed to on-the-ear). They are remarkable, especially on airplanes. Click (here) to get a pair of your own. The inventor is going to be in the Hall of Fame, afterall.



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More International Flights Coming to Boston?

2/14/2008 03:59:00 PM 0 Responses
The Massachusetts Port Authority announced today that it is going to implement a new incentive package to try to attract international airlines to good 'ol Logan Airport.

Massport's board adopted the International Air Service Incentive Program at its February meeting. It will apply to new nonstop international service to destinations in Asia, including China and India, Central America, South America, Africa, the Middle East, and Mexico City.

Nonstop flights to Asia are often cited as the number one service target among the Boston-area's business, academic and tourism communities, according to a Massport release.


Yeeee haw. I'm psyched because that means I won't have to fly out of JFK anymore whenever I go to Asia. I always have such a huge layover in New York and no one wants that after having sat on a plane for fifteen hours already.

Dear Logan, please concentrate on getting Singapore Airlines to come to Boston. Japan Airlines would be awesome too. And at the very least, please get Cathay Pacific. For those of you who haven't flown Singapore Airlines before - trust me, they are the best by leaps and bounds.

Click (here) for the original article in the Boston Business Journal.



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Happy Valentine's Day

2/14/2008 10:46:00 AM 0 Responses
Happy Valentine's Day to those of you out there that celebrate it. Personally, I don't. I will however be celebrating President's Day later this week. Two years ago, the gf and I celebrated President's Day in the Cayman Islands. That was by far one of the best vacations ever.

This year, I'm going to celebrate by doing lots and lots of sleeping. The gf is going to Daytona this weekend and I've been on business trips all week (Richmond and now Chicago) and am severely sleep deprived.

For those of you looking for flowers. Here's who Citysearch recommends.

Winston Flowers
131 Newbury St, Boston, MA
Elegance and personal attention are the hallmarks of this long-standing dowager of Boston's floral industry.

Boston City Florist
714 Commonwealth Ave, Boston, MA
European dish gardens, Holland flowers and long-stemmed roses in 16 colors. Free delivery in the Boston area.

Harry Quints Flower Bouquet
1189 Centre St, Newton Center, MA
Holland flowers, orchids, snapdragons and more; sells stuffed animals, balloons and gourmet baskets. Designs and installs wedding and funeral arrangements.

Box Exquisite Floral Design
53 Charles St, Boston, MA
Personalized service and lush, sophisticated floral design distinguish this one-of-a-kind boutique.


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Presale: Jay-Z & Mary J Blige - NOW

2/13/2008 02:08:00 PM 1 Response
This is gonna be HUGE. Jay-Z and Mary J Blige are coming to the TD Banknorth Garden on Thursday April 3 for their Heart of the City tour.

Those of you in the fan club or with a Citibank credit card can buy tickets NOW. Otherwise, tickets go on sale to the general public this Friday, 2/15.


Click (here) for the link to Ticketmaster and if you don't have a Citibank credit card, start hounding your friends.

UPDATE: This just in, according to a Livenation email that I got, there is a presale code as well "music" that can be used. Here's the link (here) that Livenation provided.



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Dunkin Donuts 3 Meals A Day

2/13/2008 02:00:00 PM 1 Response
I personally haven't had a donut in years. I'm reading "Good Calories, Bad Calories" right now. I'm only halfway through but the book already has me thoroughly convinced that refined carbs and sugar are the devil.

Anyhoo. Dunkin Donuts announced today that they're expanding their offerings to include a new “all-day, oven-toasted menu” and will be serving flatbread sandwiches and personal pizzas heated in convection ovens. They're making a huge deal out of these ovens.


There you have it. America can now run on Dunkin three meals a day. Bagel/donut for breakfast, sandwich for lunch, and pizza for dinner.

Just as a brief aside: I recently discovered that Vitamin Water contains just about as much sugar as a Coke. Shocked? I was too when I actually read the nutritional information. The key is that you have to multiply everything by 2.5 since once bottle of Vitamin water is 2.5 servings.

Click (here) for the original article.



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PRESALE: WWE Smackdown & ECW - 4/8

2/13/2008 06:34:00 AM 0 Responses
I haven't watched wrestling since it changed names from WWF to WWE. Not because they changed names, but just because I discovered the UFC instead. Real fighting versus what I considered to be the male version of the soap opera. The last saga I remember was Undertaker being killed and then coming back to life.....or something like that.

See all of your favorite SMACKDOWN Superstars including Rey Mysterio, Batista, MVP, Edge and The Undertaker plus all of your favorite ECW Superstars including Chavo Guerrero, the Great Khali, and CM Punk!

The event is going to be at TD Banknorth on April 8th, 2008. The presale starts today Wednesday, February 13 @ 10:00 AM. Click (here) to go to the ticketmaster page and use presale password "INSIDERS".

Tickets go on sale to the general public on Saturday.



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BBJ Best Places To Work 2008

2/12/2008 10:39:00 AM 0 Responses
Every year the Boston Business Journal comes out with a list of the Best Places to Work. I have yet to work in one of these companies but maybe one day I will (but I doubt it).

They're currently taking nominations for their 2008 picks until March 7. For the few of you out there that actually like their jobs and don't mind rolling out of bed to goto work (especially this time of year when it's dark and cold in the mornings) - nominate your companies.

Click (here) to go to the BBJ nomination webpage. Winners will be published on June 13th.



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Chinatown 23 Years Ago

2/12/2008 10:06:00 AM 3 Responses
I love looking at old pictures of what Boston used to be like. There's a bunch of them hanging in the hallways of my apartment complex and then this one I shamelessly stole off of John Keith's Boston Real Estate Blog.

John, if you're reading - I meant to link back to your original post, but you're too prolific a blogger. I kept on pressing the 'older entries' button for a solid 5 minutes and still did not make my way back to the post. I thought it was only from a week ago, but I couldn't find it. So instead, I'm linking to your main page (here). Keep up the good work, I read your blog daily.

Anywayz, back to the topic at hand. Imagine how much more fun my evenings would be if my neighborhood still looked like this:


Can you identify that area? Near the T stop, where the RMV is, and now the new Archstone Boston Common area. Click the image to get it full-sized.



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Remember, Remember, the 10th of February?

2/11/2008 10:50:00 AM 1 Response
I was walking to brunch yesterday with my friend Jake and as we passed Copley Square, we saw a group of folks hanging around wearing Guy Fawke's masks. Very strange, I thought to myself, but I've seen stranger so I thought nothing of it and kept walking.

Well in the newspaper today, I see why they were wearing those masks and that I 0nly saw a small portion of the real group.

As you can see from the picture above (From the Globe), they were there to protest Scientology. According to the article, they were members of an informal internet group called "Anonymous."

I wonder if this has anything to do with the recent deal where the scientologists bought the Alexandra Hotel (here). Man, those masks are cool. Now I have the sudden urge to watch V for Vendetta again.

Click (here) to read the Globe article.



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Stabbing at The Metropolitan

2/11/2008 10:31:00 AM 2 Responses
Well this is rather depressing. The Metropolitan was one of the candidates of where I was considering moving this upcoming fall. I suppose crime is everywhere, so I shouldn't be surprised.

A 27-year-old man was stabbed to death yesterday in a gleaming 3-year-old Chinatown high-rise residential building, police said.

Officer James Kenneally, a department spokesman, said Chambers was arrested soon after the killing in the vicinity of the crime scene, but he would not elaborate. Investigators believe Chambers and the victim knew each other, said a person familiar with the investigation.

Well I guess it's slightly more reassuring that the suspect and victim knew eachother - at least that means there's no random acts of violence springing up in that building. The doorman can't keep danger out if you invite it into your home.

I find it slightly amusing that the Metro described the Metropolitan as a "building filled with pricey condominiums and penthouses." How can a building be filled with penthouses? That makes no sense.

Click (here) to read the Globe article.



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Top 10 Cosmetic Procedures at MGH

2/08/2008 12:29:00 PM 2 Responses
Happy Friday Everyone! It's been a long week. Thank goodness it's finally coming to an end. Anyone have big plans for the weekend? I'm going to get a pick out a new bed, swing by the mall, and maybe get some blepharoplasty. Ok just kidding on that last part, I just think it's a fun word.

Top 10 Cosmetic Procedures at MGH

1. Tummy Tuck (Abdominoplasty)
2. Liposuction
3. Breast Augmentation
4. Breast Lift
5. Nose Job (Rhinoplasty)
6. Eyelid Rejuvenation (Blepharoplasty)
7. Face Lift
8. Body Lift
9. Arm Lift (Brachioplasty)
10. Brow Lift



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1000 Words - Charlize Theron

2/08/2008 12:26:00 PM 0 Responses





Charlize Theron at the Hasty Pudding (Details Here)
More Pictures (here)



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Paris Hilton at Harvard University

2/07/2008 11:14:00 AM 1 Response












Never thought you'd ever see those words in the same sentence did you?
Me either.



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Presale: Jesus Christ Superstar May 16-18

2/07/2008 11:03:00 AM 0 Responses
For those of you that aren't into magic and want something a little more "theatre'ish" - Jesus Christ Superstar is also coming to Boston the week after Mr. Copperfield. Personally, I chose to get tix for the magic show over the musical.

The first masterpiece from the legendary writing team of Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Webber. The show exploded onto the scene in 1971 changing the world of musical theatre forever. With a score of amazing songs - "I Don't Know How to Love Him", "Hosanna", "Everything's Alright", "What's the Buzz", "Superstar", and "Heaven on Their Mind", this original groundbreaking production starring Ted Neeley in the title role and Living Colour's Corey Glover as Judas
is as relevant and timeless as ever.

The show runs for one weekend May 16-18 at the Opera House. Click (here) for the presale link.


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Presale: David Copperfield May 9-11

2/07/2008 10:59:00 AM 0 Responses
I remember watching him as a kid on TV, but I never had a chance to go see him in Vegas. Come to think of it, I've never seen any type of magic show live.

David Copperfield is coming to Boston for "AN EVENING OF GRAND ILLUSION" which will be playing from May 9-11 at The Opera House.

An evening of illusion and magic and displaying his off-the-cuff brand of humor, Copperfield breaks new ground in "Grand Illusion" and takes his art to a grand yet intimate, personal yet universal dimension for an evening of wonders that will never be forgotten.

The presale is going on right now, so if you're interested get your tickets fast. The email I got didn't mention when tickets go on sale to the general public. You'll have to register in order to get tickets.

Click (here) for the presale link.



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Alpha Omega Liquidation

2/06/2008 12:51:00 PM 9 Responses
Ok folks, this is what you've all been waiting for. There is a full page ad in the Metro today announcing that a "Court Authorized Bankruptcy Liquidation of Alpha Omega" starts tomorrow, Thursday 2/6.

I wonder if this court announcement is actually just an advertisement in disguise. Obviously now that a series of financial companies own Alpha Omega, I'm sure they want to get rid of everything quickly and get their money back.

I'm not in the market for a Rolex or diamonds or anything, but maybe I'll swing by just to see what kind of pricing they have. For those of you that are interested, maybe you can go today, put what you what on hold and then buy it tomorrow when the sale begins.

By court order, all Alpha Omega and Alpha Omega Express stores must liquidate their entire inventory immediately. Every diamond, every jewel, every timepieces is available at liquidation prices!

UPDATE 3/7/08:
The Alpha Omega kiosk in the Prudential Center and the 400 sqft Express Store in the Burlington mall will be closed as of March 10th.



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Upromise$25K Tuition Contest and Scholarship

2/05/2008 04:42:00 PM 0 Responses
We've got a lot of colleges/universities in the Boston area. What does that mean? Lots of broke students that will be paying off loans for the next fifteen years (me included, although I guess I'm down to twelve years now)

Upromise, a local company based in Newton, is holding a video contest where the winner will win $25K towards college tuition.

Think you or someone you know deserves $25,000 for college? Create a personal video and tell us why. Make us laugh. Make us cry. Just make it you. It's simple. Anyone - student, parent, grandparent or graduate can enter on behalf of themselves or their family members and friends. Just upload your video between now and March 23, 2008. We'll pick ten finalists then YOU - the voting public - decide the grand prize winner by casting votes online! Each finalist walks away with a $500 Bed Bath & Beyond® Gift Card, only one walks away with $25,000 for college! Aaaand, Action!

Click (here) for a link to the Tuition Tale contest. This should be easy for all you kids out there that are putting yourselves on YouTube anyway.

In addition to the Tuition Contest, Upromise also has a scholarship fund where they're giving away a total of $250K to 100 winners ($2500 each for those of you who aren't good at math).

Click (here) for a link to all the requirements to enter the scholarship contest.

Many thanks to Bloggery Reader Bethany for letting me know about this. Good luck to all the students out there. Dear Upromise - where were you about 7-8 years ago when I needed you?



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Paris Hilton Reminder - 2/6/08

2/05/2008 12:40:00 PM 1 Response
Just a reminder that if you missed Paris last week (does anyone have pictures from that event?) She'll be in town tomorrow night at Estate after she gets honored by the Harvard Lampoon.

Click (here) for details about the event from my original post.




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Boston Winter Restaurant Week 2008

2/04/2008 01:22:00 PM 0 Responses
Restaurant Week is coming back for 2 weeks during March 9-14 and March 16-21. Per usual participating restaurants will be offering special price fixed meals. 3 course lunches for $20.08 and 3 course dinners for $33.08.

I got a mailing that states that right now, until February 10th, American Express cardmembers can get a jump on making advance reservations at Restaurant Week restaurants before the general public.

Call the restaurant to make the reservation and "mention any American Express Card."

See below for the restaurant list.




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