Holiday gifts: Albany Archives' Matt Malette

Matt Mallette

Gifts and giving are on most everyone's mind this month. So, once again, we thought we'd ask a few people to share some thoughts on presents, past and present.

Today we check in with Matt Mallete. He's the creator of Albany Archives and the Albany Postcard Project. Matt's also a graphic designer for a local television news channel, trivia host, and somewhat avid runner.

What gifts would you like to get this year?

For a while now I've been looking for a unique lamp for my desk at home. The desk is built from salvaged pieces that came from Silver Fox Salvage and the Historic Albany Foundation Warehouse. A regular old desk lamp just won't do. Sometime last year I found a hand-crafted lamp made of metal pipe and a telephone pole glass insulator at Artique, but it was gone by the time I finally decided to go back and buy it. It will eventually be mine!

I also have a weakness for 100+-year-old Albany prints and advertisements. Who else would have a rejected design of the NYS Education Building hanging in their bathroom?

What gifts would you like to give this year?

Every year the loved ones in my life receive a bottle of White Diamonds perfume. They've always brought me luck.

But seriously, the gifts I give are all over the board. My parents usually receive a gift certificate to a locally-owned restaurant each year. Ginger Man is always a solid go-to option for that.

My friend Carl and I exchange every year, and it's become a theme that his gift is of something that's named "Carl" (Fredrickson from Up, Carlson from The Simpsons, etc.) He may hate it, I don't know, but there's still plenty of "Carl" options ripe for the picking.

Booze is always a solid gift idea, too. Everyone loves a good bottle of alcohol.

What charity would you like to support?

Picking one charity is like picking which of your children is your favorite. Someone's feelings are always going to be hurt. With that said, I'm a fan of the Melanie Foundation which awards scholarships to students in the mental health field. Each year I run the Palio Half Marathon in Saratoga which supports their cause. Plus it's also consistently one of the best races in the area.

Historic Albany Foundation is another one that's near and dear to my heart. No one is better out there that's equipped to save our architecture than them.

What is your most memorable gift from childhood?

The most memorable gift I ever received was probably when I was about five years old. It wasn't this really cool toy or a bike or anything, but a small collection of fur covered glass animals from my grandparents. I don't really remember much of all the crap I asked for over the years (sorry Mom and Dad, I'm sure they were awesome and I know you both worked really hard for them), but this set of glass animals just always stood out in my mind. With both of those grandparents long since passed, it's a memory I do hold closer this time of year. Over the years and a few homes later, I've lost track of those little guys... I really should go find them.

I'm going to find them.

What is your wish for the new year?

Everyone has those grandiose dreams of world peace and fixing the planet, especially in this day and age, but I'm going to skip right over that. It would be a total cop out if I went that route so I'll keep it local and achievable.

If I had one wish it would be to have all the historic local buildings that are on the brink of demolition to be saved, rehabbed, and given a purpose again... specifically the Church of the Holy Innocents. That one, for whatever reason, is special to me. And she's close, too, really close. Close to being saved or close to being lost forever. That building probably more than any other in the area is riding that razor's edge between success and failure. It's not an obnoxious wish either. It's quite doable. There are a great bunch of locals that share that same wish. Where there's a will there's a way, right?

____

Earlier on AOA:
+ Holiday gifts: Jaye McBride
+ Holiday gifts: Julie Madsen
+ Holiday gifts: Patch Gallagher
+ Holiday gifts: Chopsticks Optional
+ Holiday gifts: Craig Gravina
+ Holiday gifts: Karen Tararache
+ Holiday gifts: Truemaster Trimingham

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