Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Safari #48: A Wee Bit of Scotland

In Boston, anything Scottish is hard to find. Until now.

The Haven, located in Jamaica Plain, is Boston’s only Scottish pub serving traditional food and drinks. As a lover of craft beer, I really enjoyed trying BrewDog Dogma (a honey infused ale) and Merlin’s Ale along with some traditional Scottish foods like bridies (pastries stuffed with meat and veggies), deviled eggs, and haggis (when in Rome folks, when in Rome).

During my visit, Jason (the owner) and his son Oliver graciously shared some Scottish Christmas traditions such as the Christmas Cracker (a toy containing a joke and a prize) and paper crowns. It made my visit all the more memorable.

I hope to return again soon.

*Special thanks to Jason, Oliver, @layersmarketing, @blumie, and @TheMightyRib for a wonderful evening.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Safari #47: Pasties, Pointe Shoes, and Whips? Oh Yeeaaaah!

If you’re at all uncomfortable with sex, you might want to stop reading. And when I say sex, I mean stripper poles, pasties, dildos, rhythmic simulations - all of it. If you keep reading, I might offend your delicate sensibilities...
If your “proper” self decided long ago that the Slutcracker wasn’t for you, you might want to reconsider. This safari traveler recently attended an amazing, eye-popping performance.

Now in its fourth run at the Somerville Theatre, the Slutcracker combines elements of the traditional Nutcracker ballet with burlesque, fetish, and free flowing hormones. The show deals with its risque topic using humor all the while proposing the idea that sex (gasp) - however you may like it - is meant to be enjoyed (double gasp).

The show is an enjoyable exploration and a reminder that we take ourselves way too seriously. It was shocking, titillating, and completely hilarious.

Thank you to the cast for showing me such a good time.

My Tips:

  • Go with the Right People. The faint of heart will not be impressed. Choose carefully to ensure you have a great time. 
  • Buy Your Tickets Early. This show continues to grow in popularity. Figure out when you’re going, and buy tickets ASAP. 
  • Beverages. Did you know that the Somerville Theatre serves alcohol? I didn’t, and it was a nice surprise. 
*As of this posting, there is one last performance on New Year’s Eve at 7pm.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Safari #46: Cambridge Antique Market

If you're an adventure seeking Bostonian, chances are that you've already visited the SOWA open and vintage markets, which are great places to scope out hand made goodies and unique vintage items.  I'd like to suggest another great spot for vintage shopping - with free parking and a T station nearby.

The Cambridge Antique Market - located in North Cambridge - offers an unbelievable blend of vintage items including furniture, housewares, artwork, novelty and print items, collectibles, clothing, and jewelry.  With five floors, you are guaranteed not to leave empty handed.  I was shocked at the amount of Danish mid-century housewares and collectible glass - both passions of mine.

Today's trip was for a secret santa purchase for a co-worker who enjoys 1950's novelty items.  I had a hard time choosing between vintage comics, toys, and other chotchkies.  In the end, I selected a cute pair of salt and pepper shakers.  I think she will adore them!

What have you purchased recently?  And what did you love about the item?

Before You Go

  • Getting There. Parking is free and onsite.  The Lechmere T station is only a few blocks away.
  • Be Prepared.  Every floor is FULL of items.  You can easily spend a few hours shopping.  Each floor has restrooms for your convenience, and the 5th floor has a small seating area.
  • Floor Attendants.  The tables and display areas in the market are open for your perusing.  When you're interested in buying an item, find one of the market attendants on the floor (a person typically carrying a large, black, electronic clipboard) to put aside the item for you.  When you're done shopping, head to the registers on the first floor to pick up your items and pay.
  • Like Bicycles?  I didn't get a chance to see the basement, but rumor has it that the market has one of the best selections of vintage bikes. 

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Safari #45: The Revolution Will Be Typed

When I first heard about the Boston Typewriter Orchestra, I couldn't believe it. I dropped everything to see them last week.

I'm so glad I did.

The "orchestra" uses old typewriters to create rhythmic songs using keystrokes and percussion.  Add to the mix playful skits and comedy, and you have a unique combination unlike anything you've ever seen.

My Tips:
  • Sit Close.  To get the best view and sound, try to sit as closely to the performers as possible.
  • Like Rhythm? If you enjoy performances like Stomp or the Blue Man Group, you will definitely enjoy the orchestra.
  • The orchestra has limited engagements.  Please check their Facebook page for performance schedules and announcements.
  • If you'd like a peek at their performance, take a look at the video below.  Enjoy!

Special thanks to Eric Andersen and Dan McCune for joining me!