Finding my Pittsburgh. Mostly art, music, and coffee.

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The next chapter

Last year, I moved to Pittsburgh from Brooklyn, where I had been for the better part of two decades. Pretty substantial change. And I learned a couple of months ago that the job I’ve had for almost 12 years (I’m a software engineer in the daytime) is being eliminated early in 2017.

I’m actually OK with this– aside from the expected semi-regular freak-outs about money, I’m excited about going deeper into software than I have before and doing it in Pittsburgh. This city is an amazing place for tech and I feel lucky to be part of it.

Why am I writing this? Because while I started this blog as a place to entertain myself with coffee and art, I’m going to start including thoughts on software development. Definitely some ruby and Javascript, maybe some Java, and probably ramblings about connecting the real world to hardware, and then to the cloud. More soon.


ART:: Jennifer Nagle Myers @ 707 Gallery — Opens 3/4/16

Work from "Waterfall Vision" by Jennifer Nagle Myers

Work from “Waterfall Vision” by Jennifer Nagle Myers

“Waterfall Vision,” a show of new work by Jennifer Nagle Myers opens Friday, March 4th at 707 Gallery. Myers, a NYC native, is currently based in Pittsburgh and is in-residency with Pittsburgh Filmmakers / Pittsburgh Center for the Arts (her work in production for that residency looks interesting as well.)

Nagle Mayers’ work covers many mediums and approaches, although the early hints to what will be part of Waterfall Vision point toward 2D work similar in nature to her previous pigment on slate pieces. It should be an interesting show.

Facebook event page is HERE.



ART:: “SELF-DRIVING CAR” (CMU 2016 MFA Thesis Show) — Opens 3/18/16

Jesse Kauppila

Jesse Kauppila

Work from current MFA candidates: Dan Allende, Zhiwan Cheung, Nima Dehghani, Ada-Scarlett Hopper, Jesse Kauppila, Tucker Marder, and Daniel Pillis


“Travellers’ Tales

The unpredictability of the MFA program at CMU is one of its strengths and joys. It is a three year journey of exploration led by student curiosity, experiment and adventure.

In this final year MFA exhibition, we will experience: a belly aching performance full of gut wrenching bathos; a heartfelt search for identity within and beyond ethnicity; concern with exile, diaspora, displacement and virtuality; the body in extremis, biologically, physically and philosophically; intellectual gamesmanship, exploring the relationship between technology and craft; surprising collisions between human culture and animal behavior; and the interface between personal and technological histories, emotional and artificial intelligence.

All of this with depth and intensity, approached variously with humor and candor, passion and politics, deliberation and determination. This group of young artists have been test driving ideas on a tough course. Students bring ideas, hopes, enthusiasms, expectations and practices which are challenged, examined and developed through intense discussion and debate with faculty and peers.

Having had attentive instructors over the last three years, they have ultimately found their own sense of direction, and are now totally into self-driving mode. I am sure that the road ahead is filled with wonder and discovery, and I look forward to the travellers’ tales, which will come back over the years. Congratulations and bon voyage to the MFA class of 2016.”

– John Carson, Regina and Marlin Miller Professor, Head of the School of Art


More information on the CMU site can be found HERE.

Facebook event page is HERE.

MUSIC:: Guerilla Toss / IT IT / Gangwish / KMFD @ The Mr. Roboto Project 3/23/16

Guerilla Toss

Guerilla Toss

DFA Records weirdos Guerilla Toss will be at Mr. Roboto on 3/23… my birthday! I can’t really pin down their sound but I kind of kind it for it’s total art-damage-funk-punk-party aspect. Listen for yourself here:

Also on the bill are three acts from Pittsburgh: IT IT (think of a Beck 45 played on 33rpm), Gangwish (also kinda Beck-y at times), and KMFD. Definitely an interesting night.

Facebook event page is HERE.

MUSIC:: The Soft Moon / The Gotobeds / The Garment District @ Cattivo 2/19/16

The Soft Moon have recently released their 3rd (I think?) full-length on Captured Tracks and it’s a dark, leathery, synth-y gem. They play Cattivo this Friday.

Facebook event page is HERE.

MUSIC:: OSO OSO / Prince Daddy and the Hyena / Spill / DIVORCE / The Otis Wolves @ The Shop 3/8/16

This looks interesting– I’m going, in particular to check out OSO OSO and (Pittsburgh’s own) DIVORCE. Recommended for fans of 90’s indie and pop-punk. At Bloomfield DIY venue The Shop.

Facebook event page HERE.


ART:: Ka-Man Tse and Aaron Blum @ Silver Eye Center For Photography, 1/29/16

This friday is the opening reception for Ka-Man Tse and Aaron Blum’s solo shows at Silver Eye.

Fellowship 16: Projects by Ka-Man Tse & Aaron Blum features solo exhibitions from our International Award and Keystone Award winners, selected from an open call for entries in mid-2015.

Join us for an opening reception on Friday, January 29, 2016, from 6:00 – 8:00 pm. Remarks by award winners Ka-Man Tse and Aaron Blum will be at 6:30 pm. This event is free and open to the public.

The exhibition runs through April 2, 2016.

Facebook event page is here. I’ll be there.


The Coffee Hunt: Cafe de Noir

As previously stated:

…I figured I would set out to try every espresso in The City (and some in the South Hills burbs)… if you want to find the perfect coffee, you have to put in the legwork. In the interest of simplicity, here’s how it’s gonna go down: single shot espresso, rating from 1-10 based solely on that shot. No further justification. Just because.

I really dig Pittsburgh’s Brookline neighborhood: it feels like old-school Pittsburgh, it’s generally very friendly and down-tempo, and it’s the home of local gems Pitaland, Las Palmas #1, and Rather Ripped Records.I was looking forward to sitting down in Cafe de Noir to check out their espresso game. But while their Mediterranean treats look pretty tasty, the coffee was only so-so.



The Coffee Hunt: Big Dog Coffee

As previously stated:

…I figured I would set out to try every espresso in The City (and some in the South Hills burbs)… if you want to find the perfect coffee, you have to put in the legwork. In the interest of simplicity, here’s how it’s gonna go down: single shot espresso, rating from 1-10 based solely on that shot. No further justification. Just because.

In the South Side of Pittsburgh, on the mostly-residential Sarah St. is Big Dog Coffee. (Be warned that their Web site commits one of the cardinal sins against good design: it plays music automatically upon page load. No one likes this.) It’s a parlor-esque place and I was immediate struck by the friendliness of the two baristas. They serve Intelligencia Black Cat which make a tasty shot.




POETRY:: Robin Clarke, Crystal Hoffman, and Charles Legere @ SPACE

Tonight, Friday 1/5 @ SPACE

As part of SPACE gallery’s current exhibition, The Mountain and the Bumblebee, three poets will be reading poems about landscape, capital, and survival. Featuring Robin Clarke, Crystal Hoffman, and Charles Legere.

Facebook event page


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