Friday, December 5, 2008

Enter Southside's TriBeCa Studio, Be Inspired, Spend Money, Look Cool.

Shops like TriBeCa in 5PS are the type that make living Intown so unique. I'm no retail expert and I'm not one the get excited about cloth stores usually but I get a smile every time I walk into this store. In my experience there is no store that duplicates what they are able to do. Maybe it's the clothes: Some fashions are like what you see in the mall stores, but seem more authentic somehow; others are like what you will see in other independent stores on the West side of town but with better materials and more cache. The prices are good also. Usually there's
something on sale that I want in addition the the regular stuff which while definitely no cheap is definitely fair for the quality and uniqueness offered. Maybe its the staff. There usually are several good looking women there, led my store manager Mia, dressed in the style that the store sells which have I mentioned is unique. Maybe it's the hats. Probably it's the hats. R and B singer Ne-yo and "Mad Men" character Don Draper have brought the fedora back and TriBeCa has the best hat collection in the city. Thus the picture above which is my latest acquisition.

Get inspired at
1919 11th Ave S,a few doors down from Golden Temple or call them at 939-1594.
Let me know if you agree or disagree with me on the styles there.

Store manager Mia is bullish on business in 5PS and says the this shopping season has been decent so far. She likes the new ferrite-toned paint at the district namesake intersection. The store hasn't had any problems with crime, something she says usually occurs after midnight. "People need to get past the general idea of fear down here." Amen to that.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Are the green spaces of Intown Bham an answer to ADHD and obesity?

Maybe. If we take advantage of what we have available to us. According to the December issue of the American Journal of Preventive Medicine and reported in Birmingham News last week, the amount of open spaces in a neighborhood has a correlation to the amount of body fat, hyperactivity and cognitive ability. So move to Norwood, Bush Hills or around Highland Avenue or near one of the many parks of Intown and your children will all grow up to be hot-bodied, well adjusted, 1600-SAT achieving teenagers! Go Intown!

If only it were so easy. Food is so good. TV is so comfortable. Video games are so addictive. "Excercise" kinda sucks. This article is good news though. The linear and street bordered parks of Norwood Blvd, Bush Blvd and Highland Avenue were designed in tandem as gems in a dreamed of city of parks and open spaces. I still get excited about that idea. Perhaps if we can find more social reasons to draw people out into our many open spaces we can actualize the health potential of our parks?

For the technical out there you can read the actual Journal article here.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Birmingham Chamber wants to know how people feel about living in Birmingham.

We have a regional Chamber of Commerce in Birmingham. Ideally that's supposed to help the Metro area to work better together, but you wouldn't guess that based on the many fiefdoms that make up our area's political geography. UrbanUpscale focuses on the historic and older areas of Birmingham and the surrounding area, but I'm interested in a poll that the Regional Chamber is looking for responses to. Please take a second to take our poll to the right then click HERE to go to the poll that the Chamber is doing and see what people in neighborhoods all over the area-historic and otherwise are thinking.
The password for the Chamber poll is "bham".

Thursday, November 20, 2008

"We grow old by deserting our ideals." Sam Ullman

I think I would have liked Sam Ullman if I'd had the opportunity to know him in 19th century Birmingham. His progressive work and independent spirit live on in the spirit of the Southside today. His home, preserved and historically designated through UAB, serves as a reminder of the inspiration the living man gave to Birmingham and the world.

One of my customers is a retired teacher who over several years has told me several stories about the old Ullman High School, named after Sam Ullman. This was one of the few high schools that educated Blacks in Birmingham beginning in 1937 and continuing until 1970. The building still stands on UAB's campus near the football field and track on 6th Avenue South. A few weeks ago I came across the poem that has contributed as much as anything to make Ullman's name known worldwide, "Youth". Reading it I get a sense of the way the man thought and perhaps a window into the unique character that lives on the Southside of Birmingham in particular and perhaps in the new residents and businesses creating Intown in general. I'm including the first two paragraphs of the poem but you can read the full poem here.

Youth is not a time of life; it is a state of mind; it is not a matter of rosy cheeks, red lips and supple knees; it is a matter of the will, a quality of the imagination, a vigor of the emotions; it is the freshness of the deep springs of life.

Youth means a temperamental predominance of courage over timidity of the appetite, for adventure over the love of ease. This often exists in a man of sixty more than a body of twenty. Nobody grows old merely by a number of years. We grow old by deserting our ideals.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Lots of choices in the city for election night.

You'd think it was a friday. For my neighbors in Norwood, it looks like many will be heading to Norwood Circle for a pot luck and intimate company looking out over downtown from a large back porch. Email me for an address. For those who want to get out into the streets there's ton's of choices. Cosmos Bar and Grill will be open and watching its many LCD screens and there is no cover except on weekends during special occasions. Free programs are going on at Steel Urban Lounge at 1st Ave N and 23rd Street downtown, Steppers and Walkers at 2223 4th Ave North, downtown next to the Birmingham News (they say they will have drink and food specials all night), I've heard from friends meeting at several different restaurants around the city and the Birmingham Obama campaign office will be partying at the Boutwell Auditorium in the Exhibition Hall, 1930 8th Avenue North, Birmingham, Al 35203 at 7:00 P.M. until 11:00 P.M. Whew! As I always say:
What to do, what to do?