Category New York

Spotted on the Roadside: A Colossal Clog in Albany, NY

Albany is proud of their Dutch heritage, and in 2012, installed ten huge clogs (six at a whopping seven feet long, four at three feet long) throughout the city as part of the “Stand in the Soles of Albany” program. This clog, however, might have gone rogue, as all of the clog installations were supposed to be removed in May 2013, and this bears out as I didn’t see any other clogs on my wanderings through the city, and I definitely visited some of the other  installation locations.  If they need ideas for future clog uses, I’d like to see them hollowed out and turned into clog cars for a clog parade where they could clog along, clogging traffic. Clog.

Spotted on Lodge St in Albany, NY

“Well, I’m from Utica and I’ve never heard anyone use the phrase ‘steamed hams’ before.” “Oh not in Utica, no! It’s more of an Albany expression.”

While Jason was off doing his groomsman duties over the course of the couple of days we were in Albany, I decided to take take the opportunity to wander around and see what there was to see. More than once I found myself thinking “Dude, where is everybody?” It’s not that peculiar that a state capitol is no longer a center of commerce, but aside from a few cars on the road and the occasional other pedestrian, it felt absolutely deserted. I’ve heard that when school is in session, it’s more lively, but I can’t speak to that: all I know is that when our cab arrived at midnight and everything was closed, it made me feel like I was in a suburb, not a city. In 2013, Conde Nast Traveler Magazine determined Albany was the 7th most unfriendly city in the country (the 13th most unfriendly in the world!). Aside from an unpleasant encounter with a cab driver (which was admittedly just as much my fault as his), I have to say that I just don’t see it. Everyone that I spoke with was perfectly nice, and I didn’t solely interact with people in hospitality–so either the title shook the natives to their core and they’ve made a strong effort to change how they’re perceived, or the list is mostly a bullshit excuse to put up a slide show for ad revenue. I’m thinking the latter is more likely. Continue reading

Spotted on the Roadside: Nipper the Giant Dog in Albany, NY

Unquestionably the cutest part of the Albany skyline, Nipper the RCA dog is perched on what used to be the tallest building in Albany, thus requiring him to have an aircraft beacon attached to his ear (now a light fixture). Weighing in at four tons, Nipper looms over the street, listening for the sound of his master’s voice. Let’s hope an ionic disturbance doesn’t bring him to life, though: the real Nipper was named after his tendency to nip the backs of visitors’ legs.

Spotted on Broadway in Albany, NY.