Items tagged with 'fluff'

Tulip power rankings

Washington Park tulips 2014

The storied arena.

Tulip season is very much underway in the flowers beds of Albany's Washington Park. There are still several varieties yet to bloom, but there were plenty of tulips to gawk at Wednesday afternoon.

So who's out to the early lead in this ultra-competitive floral venue? Which blooms are lowering the boom on the competition?

Let's go to the early season power rankings...

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Recycled: The superiority of the peanut butter egg

Because it was popular last year -- and the season for it is here -- we thought we'd resurface this post about the superiority of the peanut butter egg over the peanut butter cup. A clip:

The peanut butter egg is a seasonal item, and therefore only available part of the year. So even if somehow the egg and the cup were both of the same quality (which they are obviously not), because the egg is more scarce than the cup, it will be more desirable to us. Sure, this part of it is all in our heads, but so much of life is.

Just last night we had a peanut butter egg -- and we can confirm it is still better.

These Capital Region places are not like NYC, but if they kind of, sort of were...

nyc skylineEarlier this week, Gawker posted a list of neighborhoods that were supposedly "the Williamsburg" of their respective cities. A lot of people floated the link our way because Albany is mentioned -- and Center Square is tagged as "the Williamsburg."

That seemed... not correct. But, whatever, the whole idea is silly.

So, of course, we then proceeded to make a list of Capital Region neighborhoods/places and their NYC neighborhood (or near NYC) analogs.

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Hibernation TV suggestions

veronica mars still

No mystery: Veronica Mars was a really good show.

Snowshoeing, skiing, pond skating -- all fun things to do during the winter, and good ways to get out of the house. But you know what: Sometimes in the deepest part of winter you just want to stay inside, wrapped up in a blanket on the couch, and hibernate. Preferably with some good TV to watch.

We would argue the best hibernation TV is made up of series that can be block (or binge) watched. So here are a handful of our suggestions. It's just a few shows, so we're hoping that you'll add some of your favorites in the comments. One of your faves could be totally new to someone else -- and become a new favorite for them.

So, please share!

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Competitive layering

competitive winter clothing layering illustration

As you well know, the key to staying warm in very cold weather is layering. But in these cold, competitive times are you willing to stand idly by while your co-workers or neighbors out layer you?

No, you are not. To that end, here is a competitive layering metric to help you accurately score the way you've deployed your winter clothing.

A high score will definitively prove you have out layered the crowd. And that you're warm.

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Early season apple power rankings

sansa apple closeup

Can the Sansa be a contender?

5. Honeycrisp
A popular pick. And its ability to grow in colder climes is admirable. But some real talk: Honeycrisps are sweet and little else. They lack complexity. It's like they're just a bit too eager for you to like them. And have you seen the gargantuan size of some of the apples in stores lately? Too much. Let the masses eat Honeycrisps -- you can do better.

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Well, that is upstate...

msnbc upstate ny wrong map

You know, everyone makes mistakes sometimes. It happens.

And sometimes, when it does happen, you have to laugh.

That screengrab above is from the Martin Bashir show on MSNBC, about the upcoming Barack Obama bus tour through upstate New York. And as @AlbanyArchives remarked: "We'd like to welcome Binghamton, Buffalo and Cuse to the Capital Region!"

The show owned up to the mistake. From a tweet last night:

Thank you viewers (and Buffalo bloodline @lukerussert) for pointing out our erroneous PA/NY map...an honest geographic mistake...

[via @AlbanyArchives]

Update: A map of the MSNBC cities versus where the actual cities are (with distances)...

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Bumper gawking

ILK2XLR8

Well, OK.

We like to gawk at custom license plates.

And we know you do, too.

Here's yet another new bunch from around town...

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The summer so far...

summer so far pie chart

In pie chart form.

(Inspired by Ann Friedman's excellent pie charts for The Hairpin.)

About New York and maple syrup

quart jugs of maple syrup capital agway

Two quarts of this year's haul.

Agricultural fact of the day: New York State produced 574,000 gallons of maple syrup during the 2013 season, according to a recently-released USDA report.

New York's production represented almost 18 percent of the national total. It was second only to Vermont, which produced 1.32 million gallons, almost 41 percent of the national total. (Don't mess with the Green Mountain state when it comes to maple syrup.)

Production in New York -- and all around the nation -- was way up this year compared to 2012 because of that year's oddly warm spring. The weather last year significantly shortened the amount of time farmers could gather sap -- just 24 days on average. This year the average season was 37 days.

Anyway, here are a few useless "facts" about the size of New York's maple syrup production:

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Proof that the peanut butter egg is better than the peanut butter cup

peanut butter cup vs peanut butter egg

Friday morning on AOA's Facebook page we blithely asserted that the Reese's peanut butter egg is vastly superior to the peanut butter cup. And while there were some who agreed with us, we did later in the day realize the error of our ways.

We didn't have data to support our claim.

So, because it's Friday afternoon, here is definitive proof that the peanut butter egg is better than the peanut butter cup.

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Leg up

Because it's Friday at 4:30 pm: here are 12 seconds of a baby goat trying to climb up onto a couch at a recent Modern Farmer photo shoot. The kid is from Skipping Goat Farm in Westerlo.

Modern Farmer is a new publication based in Hudson. It's releasing its first issue in April.

Happy Valentine's Day

be mine albany

For Valentine's Day we thought we'd whip up something fluffy: a little infographic of local bits related to holiday, love, and attraction.

Among the bits: the number of single people, the price of roses, Ferris Wheels, engagement rings, and... Craigslist.

It's after the jump.

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Traces

skate traces on Buckingham Pond

For no other reason than we like the way they look: photos of the traces recently left by ice skates on Albany's Buckingham Pond.

Here's a set of five in large format.

Earlier on AOA: Tiny, frozen bubbles

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A future timeline of Watson at RPI

HAL from 2001

IBM announced this week that RPI will be getting a modified version of Watson, the artificial intelligence system that famously put the beatdown on human players on Jeopardy. Blurbage from RPI press release:

The arrival of the Watson system will enable new leading-edge research at Rensselaer, and afford faculty and students an opportunity to find new uses for Watson and deepen the systems' cognitive capabilities. The firsthand experience of working on the system will also better position Rensselaer students as future leaders in the areas of Big Data, analytics, and cognitive computing.

This is a big deal because systems like Watson -- along with other stuff like Siri, and Wolfram Alpha -- are both the future and The Future (you have to say it while looking off into the distance). They hold the promise of helping people make sense of the torrents of data all around us.

Now, via a flashforward, a future timeline of Watson at RPI.

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You didn't actually ask, but...

crusty slush on car

It's that time of year.

Believe it or not, there are some people who don't visit AOA via an autocomplete url, feed reader, share, irresistible urge, or unconscious habit. (Yes, shocking, we know.) Many of these people come in looking for something via Google -- and sometimes we can't help but take notice of what they're looking for.

Well, as you know, we like to help. So even though you didn't actually ask, here's the (an) answer...

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Hipster Henry Hudson

hipster henry hudson by AlbanyArchivesWe started goofing around today with @AlbanyArchives about the idea of Hipster Henry Hudson. It was prompted by AA's note about the Hudson River's name before, you know, the Half Mooning. Anyway:

@AllOverAlbany: "I'll be exploring the Grande River. It's in America. Very obscure. You probably haven't heard of it." #hipsterHenryHudson

@AlbanyArchives: "The Dutch offered me a Full Moon but I turned them down. Told them I'd only take half." #hipsterHenryHudson

@bdiddy100: "You know I had the first horn-rimmed spyglasses." #hipsterHenryHudson

And then Albany Archives created the image on the right.

Sometimes you just need a hipster portrait of a famous explorer to get you through the day.

Roll your own: AA has posted a blank version of the hipster Henry Hudson image if you'd like to your own Hipster Hudson quote. And here's one by @Bullmooser12.

You didn't actually ask, but...

washington ave ext map

This Washington Ave, it extends.

Believe it or not, there are some people who don't visit AOA via an autocomplete url, feed reader, share, irresistible urge, or unconscious habit. (Yes, shocking, we know.) Many of these people come in looking for something via Google -- and sometimes we can't help but take notice of what they're looking for.

Well, as you know, we like to help. So even though you didn't actually ask, here's the (an) answer...

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The manhole cover is looking back at you

manhole cover face

Oh, you surprised me!

Because it's Friday: We came across this manhole cover on the Harriman State Office Campus recently while walking Otto.

It made us smile.

How to win a mayors race

valleycats mayors mascots

A rare time out from the intensity of the race for (left to right) "Gary McCarthy," "Lou Rosamilia," and "Jerry Jennings."

By Casey Normile

While many politicians are just gearing up for the fall elections, some Capital Region politicians have been at it since the beginning of summer.

The nightly mayors race at the Tri-City ValleyCats games have kept Albany mayor "Jerry Jennings," Troy mayor "Lou Rosamilia," and Schenectady mayor "Gary McCarthy" in peak political shape.

Hardened with the fire of intense competition, honed to a razor sharp edge by experience, the three mayors now graciously offer some tips to other local politicians on how to win...

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What would you call a New York State without New York?

new york map broken in three parts question

Hudson?

Today's (more than) somewhat ridiculous question: If New York City and the rest of the state divorced, what would you call the rest of the state?

This question came up during a conversation recently (obviously a very serious discussion). It was quickly decided that New York City would retain the name New York State. But what about parts upstate?

And would "upstate" even decide to stay together? We could see Upstate West and Upstate East also deciding it wasn't worth it to stay together. (It's a pop/soda thing.)

Yes, all very important questions.

Long Island: We're just assuming that Long Island would stay with NYC -- but a few years back there was legislation introduced proposing a study of possible Long Island secession. (insert your own joke here)

You didn't actually ask, but...

didnt ask 2012-05-11 composite

So many questions...

Believe it or not, there are some people who don't visit AOA via a bookmark, feed reader, irresistible urge, or unconscious habit. (Yes, shocking, we know.) Many of these people come in looking for something via Google -- and sometimes we can't help but take notice of what they're looking for.

Well, as you know, we like to help. So even though you didn't actually ask, here's the (an) answer...

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TulipVision

tulip vision small

Virtual flowers never wilt.

Tulips are past their prime? Still wish you could enjoy the blooms now? There's an app for that.

Introducing TulipVision, the world's first augmented reality app for tulips.

Using an iPhone, iPad, or Google Glasses, TulipVision inserts digital tulips into your field of vision in the spaces occupied by empty flower beds.

This is just version 1.0 -- future versions are planned to include a number of TulipFest-related features.

Future directions:
+ Audio capability to swap out music from the festival band for a band you think is cooler
+ Facial recognition for ID'ing people caught peeing on your street
+ Elected official tint adjustment
+ Fried food booth mapping

Yes, this is a joke.

The AOA tournament pool

2012 NCAA BracketWe figured it'd be fun to set up an NCAA tournament pool for AOA people. So we did.

The pool is set up on Yahoo. This link should take you to the registration. But if not, here's the info:

Group ID#: 147896
Password: greatdanessaints

If you already have a bracket set up at Yahoo, you should be able to add it to the AOA pool with just a few clicks.

To make things (only somewhat) more interesting, we'll give the winner of the pool a $25 gift certificate to the Recovery Room.

The deadline to set your bracket is 12:15 pm on Thursday. (The new "first four games" -- or whatever they're called -- aren't included. Thankfully.) Good luck.

'Cuse: Syracuse is the #1 seed in the East bracket. The Orange play UNC-Asheville Thursday at 3:10 pm. The game will be on TruTV. You can also watch it online.

You didn't actually ask, but...

karner blue butterfly

Karner Blues hang with a notoriously tough crowd. (We might have made that up.)

Believe it or not, there are some people who don't visit AOA via a bookmark, feed reader, irresistible urge, or unconscious habit. (Yes, shocking, we know.) Many of these people come in looking for something via Google -- and sometimes we can't help but take notice of what they're looking for.

Well, as you know, we like to help. So even though you didn't actually ask, here's the (an) answer...

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AOA valentines 2012

valentine nipper 2012Using only scissors and a glue stick, we've made a new batch of AOA valentines for this year's Valentine's Day.

That's one of them on the right. A full size version, plus a few more (including one returning from last year), are after the jump. Please feel free to copy/email/facebook/tweet/pinterest as you like.

Happy Valentine's Day.

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You didn't actually ask, but...

glass of albany tap water

Drinkable?

Believe it or not, there are some people who don't visit AOA via a bookmark, feed reader, irresistible urge, or unconscious habit. (Yes, shocking, we know.) Many of these people come in looking for something via Google -- and sometimes we can't help but take notice of what they're looking for.

Well, as you know, we like to help. So even though you didn't actually ask, here's the (an) answer...

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Stop. No, really.

stop means stop

In case you were thinking this is one of the optional stop signs.

We had a laugh this week after seeing this sign at the Price Chopper Plaza in Slingerlands.

Cities and towns as puzzle pieces

guess city shapes puzzle

Here's something to burn off the rest of your Friday afternoon:

Can you guess Capital Region cities or towns by their geographic shape?

A handful are after the jump.

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You didn't actually ask, but...

Vermonster Attack

There are many things in that bucket. Hope is not one of them.

Believe it or not, there are some people who don't visit AOA via a bookmark, feed reader, irresistible urge, or unconscious habit. (Yes, shocking, we know.) Many of these people come in looking for something via Google -- and sometimes we can't help but take notice of what they're looking for.

Well, as you know, we like to help. So even though you didn't actually ask, here's the (an) answer...

(there's more)

How to survive the zombie apocalypse in the Capital Region

empire state plaza zombies

The ESP: wide open space to spot zombies -- but also few places to hide.

From everything we've been seeing, it's basically only a matter of time before the zombie apocalypse is upon us (it would explain a lot). And, if you're anything like us, you're totally unprepared.

But fear not, fair citizens. We have drawn on the wisdom of your fellow Capital Region residents to compile a quick primer on how to survive the zombie apocalypse here.

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New York's First Lady-friend, between takes

So, that might answer a few questions about her... cupcakes.

Possibly not safe for work.

[via Buzzfeed]

Earlier on AOA: A handful of items about Sandra Lee

An exclusive interview with Ryan Gosling's motorcycle

kawasaki motorcycleYou might have seen one or two stories about the The Place Beyond the Pines shooting around Schenectady, and sightings of the film's star, Ryan Gosling.

Well, we weren't able to get an interview with Gosling. But we were able to land the next best thing: a few minutes with his motorcycle -- about the film, Gosling, and Schenectady...

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The color of Albany

color of albany representation

There's a site called the "The Color Of," which pulls photos from Flickr and combines them to determine the "color" of something. So we plugged in "albany, ny."

It kind of has a nice impressionistic vibe going for it. And if you lean back, you can sort of see what looks like the ESP.

This idea reminds us of research done about 10 years ago to determine the color of the universe. (It's beige.)

[via Swissmiss]

Earlier on AOA: The Egg as text

You didn't actually ask, but...

Twin Bridges

Including a geography question involving the Twin Bridges.

Believe it or not, there are some people who don't visit AOA via a bookmark, feed reader, irresistible urge, or unconscious habit. (Yes, shocking, we know.) Many of these people come in looking for something via Google -- and sometimes we can't help but take notice of what they're looking for.

Well, as you know, we like to help. So even though you didn't actually ask, here's the (an) answer...

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Capital Region news stories that would be better as TV shows

veronica mars still

Veronica would have cracked this yearbook case, no problem -- all while solving Lilly Kane's murder.

We joked this morning that the Saratoga High School yearbook story would have been better as a Veronica Mars episode.

This got us thinking about other Capital Region news stories that could be better as TV shows...

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The Scoop

Ever wish you had a smart, savvy friend with the inside line on what's happening around the Capital Region? You know, the kind of stuff that makes your life just a little bit better? Yeah, we do, too. That's why we created All Over Albany. Find out more.

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