Monthly Archives: April 2010

London’s Markets

London’s Markets

If there’s any way to get to know London, get away from the sites and start exploring its side streets. The best side streets to start with are those that host markets.

My Top 4:

  1. Portobello Road Market
  2. Brick Lane Market
  3. Camden Market
  4. Borough Market

Portobello Road

Many would agree Portobello is the mother of all markets, which caters to the young and old. The best day to go is on Saturday as even on Sunday less than half the street vendors set up shop. Go in the morning beginning at the Ladbroke Grove (tube stop) end and work your way south towards Notting Hill Gate (tube stop). Much of the road is filled with old flea market items and some antiques that could be your favorite London souvenir. This is also the best place to get fresh produce, fish, meat, pastries, goodies – and lunch. Several giant pans of paella, gourmet sandwiches, crepes, sausages, African foods, and French goodies is just some of the dishes you have to choose from. Crowds are massive but tourists and locals mingle alike, just be cautious of pickpocket. Have your camera ready to shoot as you never know who or what you will see. Check out the Banksy graffiti at the top, note the road gets more posh as you head south, and don’t forget to check out a flat where George Orwell once lived.

There will be several performers.

Food for lunch, food for dinner, food for later.


Brick Lane Market

Brick Lane in east London (Aldgate East tube stop) is home to many Indian and Bangladeshi restaurants and businesses. Go any time of the week for good curry, spicy samosas, and other sweets, but Sunday is the best day to visit Brick Lane as the street and side streets boast flea market goods, delicious unique food made right in front of you, and the best used and new fashions. While many of the vendors are Indian, there is a huge young British twenty-something hipster culture. You will find clubs and bars pumping danceable music even in the middle of the day. The street also has to remarkable graffiti art. At the southern end of the market is the Whitechapel Art gallery – small but worth a pop in.

Brick Lane.


Paste and paper street art.

Spray street art.

Camden Market

If you are or you like punk-hippie-young-earthy cultures check out Camden market (Camden Town tube stop) on Saturday or Sunday. You can get a tattoo, piercing, eat delectable food for cheap, catch a show, buy some spiked leather, trendy clothing, or some of your favorite hits on vinyl. It’s definitely worth a visit, even the architecture is like nothing else in London. Definitely don’t go during the week as nothing is really happening.

Borough Market

Borough Market is the best place in London to grab a healthy, cheap, gourmet lunch, fine meat, wine, and produce on a Saturday afternoon. Nestled between brick buildings and archways on the south bank, this is definitely on hot spot for locals and tourists alike. Take the tube to St Paul’s cathedral, cross the millennium bridge, maybe pop in to the Tate Modern, make your way past the Globe, and dig in.

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Harvey Pekar

I attended a conversation with comic book writer Harvey Pekar yesterday evening.

Chatting with fans.

Pekar is best known for writing American Splendor an autobiographic series, which was adapted into a film called American Splendor where Pekar was played by Paul Giamatti

Pekar discussed how he got started and the Jewish graphic novel. And said he was writing a book about his thoughts on Israel, and expressed his disappoint with the state.

Pekar’s talk and conversation with Naomi Seidman was held at UMass Amherst and was sponsored by the Department of Judaic and Near Eastern Studies.

Writing out autographs.

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FUSE Rally At UMass

FUSE – Fighting for Unity and Student Enrichment held a rally today on the steps of the UMass Student Union.

Photo of the day: Rally.

Leaflets at the rally state, “By Fall 2010, the UMass administration plans to put the four resource centers that presently serve ALANA students into one program called the Center for Multicultural Advancement and Student Success (CMASS), to serve current and future ALANA students.” 

A bit small than most UMass rallies, but the spirit was there.


Native Americans Student Services is one of the services centers at risk to being watered down.

Don't move our cheese.

For more information on FUSE, one can email and visit

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Photo of the Day – Back At UVC

April 28, 2010

Back at UVC-TV 19. I will be directing Commencement this year.

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100 Words For London


Parliament - see it at all times of day.


There are hundreds of words to describe London, but here are 100.

  1. Posh
  2. Poverty
  3. Clubbing
  4. Diverse
  5. History
  6. Fashion
  7. People
  8. Buildings
  9. Dance
  10. Films
  11. City
  12. Gardens
  13. Tourism
  14. Fast
  15. Cobbled
  16. Business
  17. Hip-hop
  18. Newspapers
  19. Rich
  20. Food
  21. Aesthetic
  22. Dark
  23. House
  24. Noise
  25. Big
  26. Languages
  27. Warm
  28. Pop
  29. Wet
  30. Digital
  31. Theatre
  32. Late
  33. Tea
  34. Dreary
  35. Free
  36. Expensive
  37. Parks
  38. Poor
  39. Television
  40. Graffiti
  41. Riding
  42. Trendy
  43. Clean
  44. Seeing
  45. Museums
  46. Culture
  47. Dirty
  48. Watching
  49. Punk
  50. Old
  51. New
  52. Fresh
  53. Hip
  54. Delicious
  55. Loud
  56. Close
  57. Underground
  58. Far
  59. Quiet
  60. Trees
  61. Beautiful
  62. Ugly
  63. Reserved
  64. Awake
  65. Centered
  66. Gated
  67. Photogenic
  68. Canalled
  69. Hills
  70. Buses
  71. Pavement
  72. Grass
  73. Cabs
  74. Accents
  75. Shrubs
  76. Lonely
  77. Passion
  78. Fountains
  79. Collective
  80. Biscuits
  81. Pubs
  82. Monuments
  83. Proper
  84. Open
  85. Humorous
  86. Protective
  87. Accepting
  88. Fun
  89. Hard
  90. Easy
  91. Love
  92. Poetry
  93. Traffic
  94. Rude
  95. Eager
  96. Wild
  97. Kind
  98. Mighty
  99. Proud
  100. Exceptional

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Photos of the Day – Last Days In London : (

April 23, 2010

A grainy moonlit Hyde Park.


April 24, 2010

A performance of Macbeth at the Globe. Photography not permitted during performances.


April 25, 2010

Parliament at dusk.


April 26, 2010

Welcome to Harrod's 'Egypt.'


April 27, 2010

This is what London's telephone booths look like.

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Photo of the Day – Feeding Birds

April 22, 2010

This woman at St. James park was saying how she only feeds certain kinds of pigeons, while others are dirty.


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