Displaying posts categorized under


On walkability, part 5: Aesthetics revisited

[This is the fifth in a series of posts on walkability and city form. If you’d like to read them in sequence, here are part 1, part 2, part 3, and part 4.] Via The Atlantic Cities, I’ve been checking out OpenPlans‘ Beautiful Streets project, an experiment to determine what makes a street beautiful. When […]

The laundry-cart people: an autobiographical interlude

It’s college move-in season everywhere, and anyone who’s spent any time in academia is probably thinking of this time of the year, not January, as the real new year. The freshmen arrived last week at Swarthmore, and over the last few days we ushered all of them through the library in slightly dazed groups. My […]

Ode to a cheesesteak vendor

Let us now praise the food-truck vendors of Philadelphia: the tireless purveyors of gyros, hot dogs, burritos, falafel, and street food of every description; the guys who set up at 7 in the morning in Center City to sell fruit salad to commuters; the legions of food trucks that congregate in University City to feed […]

Urban exploration: the Italian Market

Fridays are non-work days for me most of the time, so they generally end up being devoted to some combination of errands and coursework. Yesterday’s errand was a badly-needed haircut. I’d heard good things about the Jean Madeline Institute down in Queen Village, and I wasn’t disappointed at all: the student who cut my hair […]

A visit to the art museum

Owing to Swarthmore’s fall break schedule, the weekend before last was a three-day one for me. I celebrated the extra day off by visiting the Philadelphia Museum of Art, which was high on the list of "things I’m surprised I haven’t done since moving to Philly." I ended up spending most of my time on […]