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Local Knowledge

My Last Post!

This has been a fun experiment, and I have loved writing for you. However, I’ve realized that I only have so much time in the day, and that I’d rather spend my time writing for Urbanette Magazine. In case you haven’t see it, Urbanette is the only magazine in history to be 100% volunteer and give 100% to charity, and have 100% unique content.

It’s been a lot of fun, and maybe someday I’ll pick it up again… but, for now, you can see the articles I’ve written here.

Love, Hilary

Fostering Cats and Dogs to Save a Life

This past weekend Mike and I volunteered to help The Animal Project. They trap stray cats/kittens and get them the medical attention they need, then they try to find them a home. They put cats and kittens up for adoption every Saturday from 2pm to 6pm at the PetCo on 92nd and Broadway. These kitties need love, so stop by and play with them!

This is a gorgeous kitty who’s about 5 months old, waiting for someone to come and love her:

adopt-cat

If you have space in a room of your home, it would help save lives if you would take one or two cats in until they can find a home. Read more

A New & Fun Holiday Tradition

So… Mike and I were in the shower this morning, talking about our charitable gift giving tradition, and I admitted that, even though I love it, part of me still feels like we should have some sort of gift for Christmas.

Soooo here’s what we came up with: each Christmas Eve, we’ll go on a little treasure hunt, wearing Santa hats, of course (this year we couldn’t find any last minute, so that part we’ll start next year). We’ll finish at about 4pm, in time for afternoon tea at a fancy hotel (this is the best deal ever – for $7 or $8 a pot, you can sit and hang out for hours, but make sure to arrive between 3pm and 4:30pm). We’ll set a spending limit (an amount that allows us to buy something nice, but not crazy) and only allow one item each. We’ll walk around Madison Ave and see what we can get for that amount.

In front of Barneys, on our treasure hunt :-)

In front of Barneys, on our treasure hunt :-)

A great bonus: this’ll take all the pressure out of having to find something the other person will like, since we’re picking our own gift.

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Got Pets? You’ll Want to Read This.

Adopting my cats was, next to marrying Mike, the single action that has brought me the most happiness through my life. However, if you live in NYC and have pets, then you know that vet bills can be craaaazzzzyyyy expensive. Like, nutty expensive. Think $1000 to have teeth cleaned, $5,000 to $10,000 to have bladder stones removed, and hundreds for a general “wellness” yearly checkup. Yikes!

Well, I did my exhaustive research and found out how to avoid this. But first, some important stuff you should know…

pet-insurance

Our adorable rescue cats: Dinah (from Alice and Wonderland) & Oscar (from Oscar: Cat-About-Town)

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5 Steps to Finding Lasting Love in NYC (& Why It’s Been Hard)

I was at a cocktail party on Friday evening with my friend Andrea Syrtash (the real-life Carrie Bradshaw), and had a conversation that echoed what I have discussed with so many friends living in lower Manhattan. The topic: Why it’s hard to find love while living in downtown New York City.

Models getting ready for a video shoot on a New York street

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Best story ever?

I was out for dinner last Friday night at the Waverly Inn with my husband and another friend. It was a great scene, a who’s who of the fashion & media elite. Rumors have swirled that the Waverly had lost it’s cache, but it certainly seemed to be it’s normal celebrity-heavy self that night. We walked through the maze of closely aligned tables, nearly butt bumping everyone along the way. Which is saying something, because I’ve got a pretty small tooshie, LOL.

waverly

It felt so nice being there. The fire was lit, the room felt warm, and the ivy on the brick walls added a lovely feeling of being outdoors. As always, the food and wine were amazing, and the young modelesque boy who served us was very charming. The night had been amazing up until that point, but the best part of the night was yet to come. I can’t recall what we were talking about, but my husband began telling two inspiring stories that had me and our friend teary by the end. Read more

Hollow-f&*ing-ween!

Hilary Rowland Michael Rowland

Ok, so where do I start? Halloween used to be one of my favorite holidays, but since moving to the Upper East Side… well… not so much. Besides the fact that you’ve got hordes of crazy kids from ages 4-14 (isn’t 14 a little old to be trick-or-treating??) running all over the neighborhood, they’re all high on sugar like cracked-out zombies. Instead of brains, it’s brownies they crave. Their poor parents!

You can see these poor bastards shuffling along behind their children with a “kill me now” look on their faces. You could even forgive them for putting sleeping pills in their Kool Aid. I know, I sound like the Grinch that stole Halloween, right? But this year, that was the least of my problems. Read more

Update: The NYPD to Arrest Banksy!

Last week I told you about the amazing art truck that Banksy made, which is touring NYC right now. Well, the NYPD and Mayor Bloomberg are *not* impressed. So not impressed, in fact, that they decided to [attempt to] deprive New Yorkers of Banksy’s incredible street art. If you can believe it, they’ve put out a warrant for his arrest and have a “big” task force wasting tax-payer dollars trying to hunt him down so they can “out” him and book him.

banksy-new-york Read more

The Differences Between NYC and Toronto

toronto_Fotor

When I tell people I’m from Canada, I’m often asked what Toronto is like. To the naked eye, it’s not all that different. It’s got great restaurants, Broadway and off-Broadway theater, a subway system, a couple of airports, lots of tall glass buildings, and everything else you’d expect the biggest city in Canada to have.

But then you look a little closer, and you notice that, oddly, the streets are really clean. Why? Because the vast majority of Canadians subscribe to the philosophy that they share the space with other people, and they’re not the center of the universe, so therefore they should hold on to their trash until they find a garbage bin.

Here are a few more examples of typical Torontonian behavior that I experienced during this trip: Read more

Banksy’s NYC Art Truck: Slaughtering Ignorance

Banksy-Truck

I’m VERY excited because one of my favorite contemporary artists, Banksy, is in NYC for the month of October. If you caught The Colbert Report (my favorite TV show) last week, you’d already know that he’s in town. He’ll be adorning random buildings with his famous (and valuable) “street art” (which instantly make that part of the wall worth millions, so don’t be surprised if you see big chunks of buildings suddenly missing!)

NEW YORK IS IN A CITY-WIDE SCAVENGER HUNT

One of the main reasons I love Banksy is because his art carries a message, and is usually tied to an ethical question. His latest is no different in this department. Check out this video to see the truck, and the ‘animals’ (and their puppeteers), in action:

I was browsing through the YouTube comments, and about 1 out of 50 comments seemed to ‘get’ it. For the other 49, the point was not only completely lost, but they seemed to think that the best way to react is to mock  animal suffering, profess their intent to immediately go eat some bacon, and then ignorantly state that animals either don’t have feelings or aren’t intelligent enough to warrant our compassion. Yeah, right on dudes. Smart. :-S

Believe it or not, people used to think that babies don’t feel pain. Really. Read more

A Princess and a Party

New York is a magical place. There are very few cities where you can have such diverse, random and wonderful experiences. Thursday night was a perfect example.

Hilary Rowland

We started out the night at Cinderella on Broadway. I wasn’t sure what to expect, after all, I’ve never been a big fan of Disney. Even when I was a child I thought that the concept of being ‘saved’ by marrying a wealthy man was a dangerous message to send out to young girls. So I was happy to see that the modern Cinderella has several twists I didn’t remember… Read more

Centers of the Universe?

New York City is home to some of the most influential people in the world. It also attracts a large number of them from abroad. What’s interesting is how their importance seems to rub off on the rest of us.

New York City attitude

Walking down any busy street in Manhattan, you get the feeling that everyone is operating with a heavy dose of self-importance, on their way to some important meeting. It’s like NASCAR without the cars. Walking in this city is a contact sport, and you’ll get run over if you’re not careful.

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New York – Shrunk

I was poking around on the web today, looking for cool stuff to share, and I came upon this really neat short film about New York City. It was made out of 35,000 still photos over 5 days. It kind of reminded me of the feeling of being in an airplane and looking down at all the little miniature-looking houses and cars. It always makes me feel like such a super tiny piece of a much, much bigger picture. Travel in general is good for that, and I think it’s healthy. Keeps it all in perspective.

27
Sep
2013
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