From a one foot hop to E-Bikes

By Jeffrey the Barak. How much do we want to exercise, and how much help do we want from machines and electricity? With electric bicycles, or  e-bikes, becoming more common, we can begin to wonder whether we are still pedaling bikes or if we are just gradually switching to quieter and slower motorcycles. Not that…… Continue reading From a one foot hop to E-Bikes

Irony is Destiny

By Sigmund Shonholtz. or How to be a Self-Entertaining Entity, S.E.E. Be the cause in your coincidence. There are billions of people, animals, and things on this planet, and between them, there are trillions of possible intersections.  Combine them with trillions of moments each day, and you have a sauce that will result in thousands…… Continue reading Irony is Destiny

Sebago and Sperry, Breaking-In, Boating and Loafing

By Jeffrey the Barak. An American classic, the boat shoe is a fashion staple around the world. It is a shoe that a man or woman can wear in hot climates and is an alternative to the flip fop, and yet it is still very functional in it’s intended use, which is walking sure-footedly around…… Continue reading Sebago and Sperry, Breaking-In, Boating and Loafing

The Nimble Cargo Scooter

By Jeffrey the Barak. The Dwell On Design Show is not about scooters, but among the pre-fab homes, bathroom fixtures and forward-thinking designs for the homes of tomorrow, you do occasionally see certain bicycles, and in this case a variation of a warehouse cargo scooter called the Nimble. The Nimble scooter is low to the…… Continue reading The Nimble Cargo Scooter

My Afternoon with Andy

By Sigmund Shonholtz. Andy Warhol once suggested that we all get 15 minutes of fame. What happens if you have your 15 minutes with Andy Warhol himself? Well, that is exactly what happened to me in 1984. I was an advertiser in his Interview magazine. One day, I received a call from Page Powell, Andy’s…… Continue reading My Afternoon with Andy

Are we building the wrong way?

By Jeffrey the Barak. Most Westerners live in one of two types of house. Either it is masonry, solid, strong, but not much good in an earthquake, or they are in a wood-frame cage with the gaps filled in with drywall and stucco. High rise dwellers may instead be in a steel cage with concrete…… Continue reading Are we building the wrong way?

The Mibo Gepard Kick Scooter Review

Mibo Gepard

By Jeffrey the Barak. I have been waffling on in recent articles about kick-scooters about how much I miss pneumatic tires. Yes, the small solid tired folding scooters are convenient and portable, and in the cases of the Know-Ped and the KickPed are also reasonably comfortable at slower speeds on slightly rougher surfaces, but it…… Continue reading The Mibo Gepard Kick Scooter Review

Admitting to the Lost Techniques of the Old Masters

By Karen Little. April 2013. Have you ever wondered whether the Old Masters, whose drawings, painting, prints, and statues fill space in world-class museums, had drawing skills that far exceed those of today’s artists? Or do you suspect that those Old Masters might have used technology to improve their techniques, the result of which increased…… Continue reading Admitting to the Lost Techniques of the Old Masters

Dancing on the Beach

By Karen Little. I’m a very private person, especially when it comes to doing something in public that is seemingly foolish. And what I regard as foolish is showing off my body in any way, dress, or motion in which it isn’t reasonable to be shown. I will not, for example, trot down my neighborhood…… Continue reading Dancing on the Beach

Washing the insides of leather shoes

By Sunny Trailbringer. Men and women with a foot odor problem may find that one day their leather shoes have become smelly. Well shoes themselves don’t smell, but the bacteria in the shoes does. It is the bacteria from your body, reproducing and dying in the millions that produce the gas we may call stink…… Continue reading Washing the insides of leather shoes

A Night in Tunisia

By Jeffrey the Barak. February 8th 2013. As chaos ensues in Tunisia, a small North African country wedged between the Mediterranean Sea and the Sahara Desert, and conflicts arise between the Islamist government and a mass of citizens who would have preferred that the Islamist party had not won the democratic election, it is worth…… Continue reading A Night in Tunisia

Don’t buy jeans online, try on many pairs instead

Levis 511 (c) Levis

By Jeffrey the Barak. Online shopping is amazing. It is so convenient and usually a great bargain too as sellers don’t have the enormous cost of providing a glass and granite palace to show you their goods. But some things do not fit in with the online shopping model. The most striking example is denim…… Continue reading Don’t buy jeans online, try on many pairs instead

Kick Scooter Classifications

By Jeffrey the Barak. As you may have gathered from visiting the-vu.com, I am very enthusiastic about the simple and wonderful human-powered vehicle that we call a scooter, and far less enamored with the machines we call bicycles. But despite appearances to residents of the United States, where scooters are so rare you almost never…… Continue reading Kick Scooter Classifications

KickPed and Know-Ped Family Reunion

By Jeffrey the Barak. A search for the word scooter on the-vu.com will reveal my passion and obsession for this type of vehicle. I much prefer scooters to bicycles, even though I have to admit I won’t be tackling a hundred mile charity ride on one. I have this year reviewed the KickPed, an amazing…… Continue reading KickPed and Know-Ped Family Reunion

One-Piece Electronic Drums

By Jeffrey the Barak. March 2012. I have been a drummer since the mid 1960s, and now it is 2012. So not quite half a century, but a heck of a long time. I have had quite a few drum sets over the years, originally acoustic and recently electronic. I play mostly in a jazz…… Continue reading One-Piece Electronic Drums

Scoot Like a Pro!

Hannu Vierikko, pioneer footbike racer on his KickBike. (c) KickBike.com

By Jeffrey the Barak. The most popular scooters in the United States are the small folding kind. The fact that they can fold up and be carried makes them so much more versatile than the scooter that remains it’s full deployed size and is basically a bicycle without the seat or the drivetrain. While you…… Continue reading Scoot Like a Pro!

L.A. Beach Bike Path, Part Three

By Jeffrey the Barak. Part one took us from Torrance to Manhattan Beach on the L.A. Beach Bike Path, and part two began in Manhattan Beach and ended as we arrived at Venice Beach. This article is part three so if you are starting here, you may want to navigate to parts one and two…… Continue reading L.A. Beach Bike Path, Part Three

L.A. Beach Bike Path, Part Two

By Jeffrey the Barak. Part one took us from Torrance to Manhattan Beach on the L.A. Beach Bike Path. This article is part two so if you are starting here, you may want to navigate to part one first. Google Maps has an overlay view of the L.A. Beach Bike Path at this link: Part Two:…… Continue reading L.A. Beach Bike Path, Part Two

L.A. Beach Bike Path, Part One

By Jeffrey the Barak. You have seen it on TV and in countless movies. The twenty-six mile bike path along the coast in Santa Monica Bay is a place that many a scooter rider is longing to try out. The bike path is quiet in some places and crowded in others, and some of it…… Continue reading L.A. Beach Bike Path, Part One

My road to the KickPed

By Jeffrey the Barak. Most kick scooter riders and potential kick scooter buyers are thousands of miles from being able to stroll into a certain New York City bike shop called NYCeWheels, but thanks to the Internet anyone is able to choose to buy the scooter that I have personally chosen as my current favorite…… Continue reading My road to the KickPed

Why choose a kick scooter?

By Jeffrey the Barak. Ah, the humble kick scooter. Often maligned as inefficient, or silly looking, but to those of us who know, it is the ideal vehicle for short-distance, low to medium speed transportation. True, if you need to go ten miles, then a bicycle of any type will get you there with less…… Continue reading Why choose a kick scooter?

KickPed versus Xootr, a scooter review

By Jeffrey the Barak. The KickPed is a custom Know-Ped, manufactured in the same factory in California, Patmont Motor Werks, but made to a lean and mean customized set of specifications, exclusively for one retail store, NYCeWheels in New York City. In some ways it is less of a scooter than the Know-Ped but the…… Continue reading KickPed versus Xootr, a scooter review

College Dance and the “Real World”

By Natalie Walters. If you’ve hung out with a Senior in college lately, you’ve probably witnessed a least one breakdown or “freak-out”  about something along the lines of entering the vicious job competition underprepared and moneyless. If you’re hearing this from a Dance major, then they’re also worrying whether their body is pretty enough, strong enough,…… Continue reading College Dance and the “Real World”

Why bother with an audience?

By Leda Meredith. “Why have an audience? Why not just create your art for art’s sake and dance it in, say, your living room?” That’s one of the first questions I ask students in my choreography classes. The initial answers always focus on what the audience does for the dancer/choreographer: The audience creates performance adrenalin, provides…… Continue reading Why bother with an audience?

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Categorized as Dance

Lahaina Noon in Hawai’i

(c) KITV.com

By Jeffrey the Barak. The State of Hawai’i is the only place in the United States in which you can lose your shadow, outside, in the middle of the day. when there are no clouds. In Hawai’i this is known as Lahaina Noon and it happens twice a year, but on different dates, depending where…… Continue reading Lahaina Noon in Hawai’i

Wash, don't wipe, your butt.

By Sparklee A Hole. If you can read this, you are a human, and you poop. A subject that may delight a few, and disgust many more. but opinions don’t count, because we all have to go and poop. It is what happens afterwards that is rarely discussed. People from different cultures have different ideas…… Continue reading Wash, don't wipe, your butt.

The Nice Manifesto

By Jeffrey the Barak. In the story, “The Emperor’s New Clothes”, adults are persuaded to accept a false reality, which is eventually shattered by one little boy, who voices  a true observation that instantly makes the adults realize they were following a false path. I too have my little boy, the eternally young Lamb Borghini,…… Continue reading The Nice Manifesto

The Saddleback Briefcase Odyssey

By Jeffrey the Barak. I am a man-bag flipper. I like my personal luggage, be it a briefcase, messenger, pouch or satchel. I was never one for going around with no stuff, or stuffing my pockets, so a bag just makes sense for me. I always regret leaving the house without one, and I’ve carried…… Continue reading The Saddleback Briefcase Odyssey

The Presbyopic Pirate

By Jeffrey the Barak. Novels and movies have glamorized the image of the pirate. We can imagine ourselves dressed in puffy shirts, with swords at our side, swinging on ropes between various high points of ship’s rigging, sailing to exotic lands full of treasure and beautiful women. Of course deep down we know that pirates…… Continue reading The Presbyopic Pirate

A 70’s dinosaur falls into eDrums.

By Jeffrey the Barak. Before I ever had electronic drums, I spent a couple of decades carrying around large, heavy drum sets and cymbals, which could only ever be played in rented rehearsal rooms, because they naturally made very loud sounds that would never be appropriate in a normal domestic setting. As loud as real…… Continue reading A 70’s dinosaur falls into eDrums.

End of the Uh-Oh’s

I wonder if we will call this coming year twenty-ten or the more cumbersome two thousand and ten. I think we should have called 2001 twenty-o-one, just like they did in nineteen-o-one and eighteen-o-one. Personally I will from this day make that change, and no longer refer to twenty-o-four, as two-thousand and four. And what…… Continue reading End of the Uh-Oh’s

The Seven Perspectives

By Sigmund Shonholtz. Several years ago, a seemingly insignificant event launched me on a thought about the importance of the word “perspective.” While it was always an important word to me, I had never realized how much fun I could have with it. It happened one afternoon. I was driving rather poorly that day, stopping and starting in…… Continue reading The Seven Perspectives

How Art Almost Killed An Entire People

By Jeffrey the Barak. At times, we wander the galleries and see pieces of art that look as if they could hurt someone, or kill someone, but in a way this has actually happened. I refer to a place commonly known as Easter Island. This is it’s modern name, given to the place by Christian…… Continue reading How Art Almost Killed An Entire People

Watching Time

By Andrew Lim. Like most people I’ve gone through a number of hobbies, photography now being the greatest one. However the fascination with watches is one of the oldest. In general, I’ve always liked anything small and complicated, anything with tiny clicking bits. My very first watch was probably a yellow plastic Garfield watch that…… Continue reading Watching Time

Los Angeles, what are we standing on?

By Jeffrey the Barak. Geologists would say that the Los Angeles Basin is like a huge bowl of sand The geologic center for the Los Angeles Basin is the place where the Los Angeles River and the river known as Rio Hondo merge in South Gate. At this central point, sand, silt, clay and other…… Continue reading Los Angeles, what are we standing on?

The hazards of imagining countries

By Jeffrey the Barak. Nomadic tribes move independently of each other and occasionally come together to interact through trade, war, sport, cultural exchange, intermarriage, murder etc. In the dense jungles of South America and Africa and Asia, the boundaries formed by geographical features such as ridges and valleys are all it takes to keep two…… Continue reading The hazards of imagining countries