Category Archives: Brooklyn Adventures

Hidden within the McCarren Park Hipsters

I was walking through McCarren Park in Williamsburg, Brooklyn yesterday, and I got lost in a sea of whirling hipsters. One tattooed arm blended into a dragon-swirled back whose black ink strokes gave way to long black hair and shaggy bangs that shook out over eyes seeing the same.

But through the swirls and pools of people banding together to be different, I caught a scene of innocence, and it was so, so refreshing. Like lemonade and ices, and sticky fingers in summer–before the summer turns into the drudge in which we have a sticky commute while pining for iced coffee.

P.S. Contrary to how this post comes across, I have a love for hipsters 🙂

Brooklyn Distance Running is a Cultural Experience

This morning I knocked out 4.6 Miles here. That is the longest distance I’ve ever squeezed in before work. Victorious! I ran through three distinct Brooklyn neighborhoods and saw the morning routines and nuances of three different cultures (Hipster–is this a culture? Hasidic, and Hispanic).

Looking at this small loop it seems impossible that there can be such abrupt changes in the people who live here. If I went even farther out I would’ve hit a fourth, without a doubt. Welcome to Brooklyn friends. I personally think it’s one of the borough’s best attributes.

Random Directions of Life

So my running cycle continues. I would love to say that my graceful glide back into the morning runs has stuck, but this weekend was chaos and with chaos comes no time, and with no time… comes not putting myself first… aka.. no running.

That’s not how it’s supposed to go, I know.

But, so it went. I did a lot of writing this weekend, not for this blog clearly, and my mom came into Brooklyn to get dinner with me Sunday (rare form) which was really nice.

I DID have a jazzercise adventure this weekend. What did she say? I said Jazzercise. Why? For this article. It was an interesting experience. Definitely something you could only find in Brooklyn. These two women rent out a room in a makeshift multi-tenant building, and teach aerobics like it’s the 80’s. Fully donned in spandex and side ponies. The kitschiness is definitely with a purpose, and it was funny–including the alcoholic beverages served prior to working out. BUT it wasn’t really a kick-ass workout. It was more like dance class. But my arms did get fatigued and I was grunting like an old man at the gym occasionally.

In other news, I’m leaving for IRELAND on Thursday. This trip has me in a slight panic since I’ve planned nothing. I just called my friend today to find out which airport we fly out of (JFK) and what time the flight is (8:45). We are flying into Dublin, and then have a car rented to drive around for a week. Where are we driving to? I don’t know. Can I drive on the opposite side of the street? I hope ;).

Don’t quest and answer formatted posts get annoying? I agree.

I’d also like to share with you a weird thing I noticed on the back of a can of chick peas: an ingredient (chemical) was “added to promote color retention.” Why don’t they just say “added o retain color”? Who can I write to about this?

NYC Marathon Ran, And I Did Too

I somehow managed to wake up sans hangover this morning, the day after Halloween. Go figure. I decided to stop the no-running bullshit and get out there again. I needed it.

So, at about 9am I made some coffee, had a piece of toast for a little pre-run fuel, and left. I started running down Driggs Ave this morning instead of Nassau for a change of pace (that might have been a pun) and noticed that every block to my right had a blue barricade.


Last year I left my place to get a cup of coffee and all of a sudden came up upon the race out of nowhere. I can’t believe I almost forgot it again. Mel, get with it.

nyc marathon in brooklyn

I ran over to Bedford just as the wheelchair athletes were passing by. I watched these men and women rockin it at mile 12 and thought to myself, I can’t believe I doubt my ability to run sometimes. Am I kidding? Talk about inspiration. I had the chills running past these people, and smiled the whole time. This is what running is all about.

In true Brooklyn style, local musicians hit up the sidewalks to provide some tunes for the runners and crowds. Love it.

I rounded out with a 3.6 mile loop here. It felt very, very, good. I’ve also been ravenously hungry all day. That always happens when I get back into it.

After getting home and showering, I went right back out to cheer the runners through. Hundreds of people poured past me. And you know what? I think I can do this one day :).

The Return of Yoga

After all my threatening to halt a bit on running and get into yoga, I finally jumped in. The yogasphere welcomed me with open oms*, and now I’m very, very sore :).

Here’s the story.

As a new weekly contributer to the WGNews, I am contanstly seeking out local health and fitness issues to write about. This might sound easy. Theoretically it is. It just turns out I’m very good at waiting until the last minute to decide my topic and do some research.

This week’s furiously chosen topic (I think I ruined the suprise by now, yes?): yoga. Specifically, I took a class for beginners in the heart of Williamsburg. It was a very, very educational class, and it was good for me since my only previous experience was at Yoga To The People which is all open classes and assumes a level of familiarity I just never had. Unfortunately I can’t divulge details until the article is up in the news, but I’ll hook you up with a link soon. After class I felt shaky and yummy, and hit up El Beit on Bedford for watermelon and iced green ginger tea (the tea was awesome) to write my article.
watermelon and green tea

The story continues:

My ability to wake up at 6am in the dark/cold is very limited so far. I’m weak, I know. So no run again this morning. While at the office, I started to feel the affects of yesterday’s venture into yogaland. My legs felt really tight and my arms sore. I wanted to stretch it out but couldn’t get deep enough. Then it occurred to me: the cure… just might be… more yoga!

Further into yogatown I went, with a return to Yoga To The People tonight. I took a 7:30pm class, and it was as packed as I remember. The difference this time was that I knew my form a little better, and the teacher, a dude named Xander, ROCKED. He articulated exactly what I was feeling when it hurt, so I felt comforted in my pain, and he KICKED OUR ASSES. and made us laugh.

I laughed during yoga class. Is that illegal?

We did some intense core work and I thought my stomach muscles were going to explode. Luckily, they did not explode and I kept my insides to myself. Cheers.


this pic from their site is pretty accurate

I’m looking forward to another deceivingly calm butt-kicking this week. Any NYCers want to join me on a visit to yogaville?

* open oms? instead of open arms? damn i feel clever.

Nighttime in McCarren Park

baseball in mccarren park

baseball game
tree in mccarren park
autumn tree
my ghostmy ghost

Flushing Farm Brunch + Yoga Considerations

Sorry guys, my computer broke (aaahh!) when I got back from Canada and I’ve been unable to blog/email/read other blogs sans the limited use of Mike 1 and Mike 2’s computers.

Worthy weekend recap:

I met up with Sofia of Crunchy Granola Gal for brunch and had an awesome time. Such a cool chick! We blog bonded over a bloody mary and mimosa, and devoured our eats. The location was Flatbush Farm in Brooklyn, a cute home-feel joint on St Mark’s Street. I got the tofu scramble which came with kale and whole wheat toast:tofu scramble

Sofia enjoying her morning buzz:cheers sofia

Excellent first date. Date two will involve cocktails and me trying to take Sofa back to my place. Kidding. But seriously. (not seriously, still kidding).

Running update: There isn’t one, as in I haven’t been. What’s to blame? I’ll go with a) freezing weather that makes me mad and b) recent onset of a freakin’ cold. Sofia has the balls to run in the cold rain, hell I’ve even run in the rain before, what gives Mel? Man up!

Okay. Yelling at myself might not be productive. The truth is I’ve been heavily considering pursuing yoga again. After reading about Heather’s experience on her blog, I’m just being drawn to it at the moment. I’d like to hit up one or two places this week and see if it’s something I can maintain through the winter. Maybe my arms will even tone up. Thatsa crazy talk.

I keep a sports bra, running tights, and a tank in the drawer at work for when the yoga mood strikes. I think they’re dusty at this point. Delicious. Can’t wait to put them on.

News update: Check out my latest article in the WG News givin’ the scoop on the Metropolitan Pool Center