Meb Byrne

Archive for the ‘list’ Category

Web Zen

In blog, healthy, inspiration, list, website, website wednesday on March 22, 2011 at 1:13 pm

Spring has sprung! Pastel color schemes invade every SoHo storefront. The food trucks burst from hibernation, trailing cupcakes and gay ice cream in their wake. Children fete tortuous tales of chocolate bunnies laying eggs and raising a zombie Jesus from the grave. Now is the season of new beginnings and spring cleaning, both physical and mental. Here are three sites that will help you realign and rejuvenate your fabulous self.

Zen Habits

Blogger Leo Babauta can be infuriating at first. He’s so calm and happy! Keep calm and carry on reading, though; Leo has some great insights to share. Will you rise at 4:30 am like him to experience the calm of the morning, or spiritually connect with centuries of tea drinkers as you sip your morning cup of oolong? Maybe not, but his simplicity and minimalism are great reminders to slow down and rethink how you go about your day.

The Daily Love

Mastin Kipp wants you to love yourself! Really, really love yourself! His Twitter feeds, @TheDailyLove and @MastinKipp, are chock full of positive energy and incorrigible enthusiasm. Have them delivered to your phone only if you accept that your cheek muscles will ache by day’s end from smiling so much. His site often features guest bloggers who carry the same joyous message.

holistic fitness for the real girl

Leanne Shear, a personal trainer in New York, focuses her writing on physical fitness, but her message extends to mental well-being as well. She uses her personal slip-ups (we’re on vacation! margaritas all round!) as teachable moments, in a voice that’s equal parts girlfriend and guru. With her self-challenging, can-do attitude, her blog is a gym bunny’s inspiration.


Quixotic Bloggers

In blog, list, treasure trove, website, website wednesday on November 2, 2010 at 11:18 am

Among the innumerable mediocre bloggers out there, a rare few stand out. The questioning. The quirky. The quixotic. The progeny of The Julie/Julia Project, these cats blog on uber-specific topics, never straying from their stated paths and yet holding our attention the whole way. Add them to your blogroll ASAP.

Condom Science

Two crazy-in-love MIT students rate condoms with a frank, enthusiastic tone and an eye for the scientific. You wish your sex life was as educational as this. “Making love in the name of science?” I’m all for it.

The Daily Nail

A different nail polish every day for a year… and much, much more. This well-manicured blogger crafts innovative nail designs from holidays, wallpaper and fabric swatches, TV shows and more. Get inspired for your next girls’ night in.

The Confined Nomad

Three Brooklyn natives set out to eat the cuisine of every nation in the UN, all within the confines of New York City. They’re up to Colombia. Check out where they’ve chowed down and comment on where they should explore next.


In list, music, treasure trove, website, website wednesday on September 29, 2010 at 4:08 pm

This week’s Website Wednesday brings you music to live by. Coincidentally, both sites invoke the climate.
SoundCloud: For when you party. SoundCloud is a sleek, streamlined, uber-fast way to upload and download your favorite tracks. The site tends toward electronic and dance remixes of Top 40 tunes, making it great fodder for your next cardio playlist.

Rainy Mood: For when you study. Rainy Mood loops thirty minutes of calming rainstorm sounds, replete with thunderclaps and chirping birds. Play it with your favorite Yo-Yo Ma or Kenny G tunes and you can burn the midnight oil all night long.

Now if only it would rain men.

The 7 Newsletters You Should Be Following

In dinner, list, nyc, treasure trove, website on February 10, 2010 at 8:49 pm

Even glitter sleuths need a little help sometimes. Here are my favorite email newsletters to stay informed about the wild and wacky happenings around NYC.

Deals & Steals


Daily discounts of 50% to 90% off of goods and services in the city and online. A new deal goes live each morning; when a critical mass of people agree to purchase it, the deal goes live for everyone to buy. From luxury spa services and custom-made jeans to Pilates classes and fancy restaurants, Groupon can save you a ton of money on otherwise-prohibitively-expensive services. Half off at 16 Handles? Yes, please!

LivingSocial Deals

Like Groupon, only less frequent. Subscribe to both and you’ll get the best of both worlds.

Funky Events


My favorite newsletter, hands down. Each daily email centers on one new hidden gem that you’d never discover on your own, be it restaurant, store or event. (Four words: mac and cheese burger. Exactly.) The text is written in short, snappy prose, and whets your appetite for more. The UrbanDaddy website offers super cool Groupon-esque perks to members, too.


Like UrbanDaddy, but more partial to lists of cool items, instead of in-depth reviews of individual finds. Twice the fun!

Village Voice Insiders

Like Thrillist, but longer, less frequent and slightly less awesome. You have to search for the diamonds in the rough in the Voice’s lists of upcoming events, but a keeper pops up every once in a while. Subscribe just to be safe.

Cheap Eats

Tasting Table

Like Urban Daddy, but exclusively for gustatory finds. It has a flashier logo, too. A great resource for picking your next Friday night date spot.


Like Groupon, but for restaurant deals only. An occasional email grants discounts and unexpected perks (free sea scallop ravioli! free cheese plate! free bottle of wine!) at chosen eateries for a given window of time. You have one day to accept the offer, and one month to use it.

Start subscribing!

Obscure Christmas Albums

In album, children, holiday, list, music on December 21, 2009 at 3:02 pm

As Christmas draws wonderfully, tantalizingly close, the sounds of the holiday season may start to grate on you: in the shopping mall, in the grocery store, in your car. Don’t you wish you could have a bit of variety? Don’t you wish you could escape that looped track of “I Want A Hippopotamus For Christmas”?

Never fear! Here are a few obscure Christmas albums and websites to spice up the seasonal drudgery that is Sir Paul McCartney’s “Wonderful Christmastime,” played ad nauseum on your local radio station.

A Christmas Together, John Denver & the Muppets : Sing along to classic Christmas standards with your favorite furry friends. Recorded in 1979 for the Muppet television special of the same name, A Christmas Together pairs John Denver’s endearing simplicity with the madcap humor of Jim Henson, Frank Oz, Jerry Nelson, Dave Goelz, Richard Hunt and the rest of the Muppet performers. Who doesn’t want to hear Miss Piggy try (and fail) to lead a round of “Christmas Is Coming,” or Dr. Teeth and the Electric Mayhem rock out to the Beach Boys’ “Little Saint Nick”? (Spoiler: Animal yelling “Run run reindeer!” in the background is priceless.) The album has its poignant moments too: Robin crooning “When The River Meets The Sea” is perfect for snuggling with little ones by the fire.

More Twisted Christmas, Bob Rivers : One of the most irreverent parody singers all year round is at his best at Christmas. Bob Rivers’ album is composed entirely of wittily-parodied holiday tunes, including “Yellow Snow! Yellow Snow! Yellow Snow!” (Let It Snow), “Police Stop My Car” (Feliz Navidad), and the epic “Buttcracker Suite.” As a sampler of the lyrics you’ll get, the aforementioned Buttcracker Suite opens with “Thong! What a delightful gift idea / Thong! Magical shorts that disappear.” A great album for linguists, punny people, and anyone who likes classic rock, More Twisted Christmas will make it hard to breathe for laughing.

Note: Although I love this album, I can’t recommend Bob Rivers’ other Christmas compilations, including Twisted Christmas and Chipmunks Roasting On An Open Fire. The songs can be vulgar and almost racist.

A Rosie Christmas, various artists : This star-studded album by former talk show host Rosie O’Donnell is great fun for the whole family. The tunes are perky and filled with Rosie”s trademark enthusiasm. Each features an appearance from performers both young and old, from Sir Elton John, Celine Dion, Billy Joel and Cher to Elmo and Angelica Pickles. “Gonna Eat For Christmas,” with Gloria Estefan, is a sassy song that will resonate with all those slaving away in the kitchen this holiday season. Christmas tag radio : This station on, one of the leading free listening music sites now coming into vogue, plays a wide variety of holiday favorites non-stop with few repeats. Artists range from Bing Crosby and Eartha Kitt to Jethro Tull and Mariah Carey, with some Trans-Siberian Orchestra and Weird Al Yankovic thrown in there too. The site requires you to create a (free) profile to listen in, but the great mix of old and new tunes you get makes it well worth it.

Finally, for those of you with a penchant for overdone 80s pop ballads, there is, which catalogs every recording ever made of Wham!’s seasonal hit. If you don’t know all the words by heart already, I guarantee you will soon.

Happy listening!

Food Porn

In food, list, treasure trove, website wednesday on September 23, 2009 at 3:37 am

Confused by the burgeoning supply of food porn (the name is not my fault) on the Internet? Here are the best sites to follow.

FoodPornDaily is the eponymous king of mouth-watering culinary photography. Every day features a new, super-close-up photograph of a delectable dish, with the food’s name woven into the photograph. Click on the photos to scroll through previous days. Waking up to this website is a fabulous way to start your morning.

TasteSpotting, FoodGawker and Photograzing are all, as TasteSpotting puts it, “community driven visual potlucks.” Individuals submit beautiful photos of food which are moderated and posted to the site; the photos often link to a recipe or website. Photograzing displays slightly fewer photos per page, but sorts them by fun categories like “International Cuisine” and “Bacon.” FoodGawker and TasteSpotting are nearly identical: each features lots of pictures, with links to the most popular entries or to a random selection of photos. FoodGawker is slightly more tricked out, with a neat directory of all its food categories at the bottom of the page for easy searching, and a link to store your personal favorite photos. All three sites update very regularly, so check back every few hours for new treats to drool over. You can also follow all three sites on Twitter.

On the opposite end of the spectrum, This Is Why You’re Fat is an exercise in revulsion and amazement. Individuals still submit photographs of their own culinary creations, but here, the goal is to be as high-calorie, high-fat, and high-carb as possible. If you think your monstrosity is ready for submission, you’re wrong: wrap it in bacon, dip it in chocolate, add a few more eggs, and deep-fry it. Now it’s ready.

And finally…

Cake Wrecks is a fun collection of cakes gone “horribly, hilariously wrong.” A bit snarky at times, the site is mostly just hilarious. Beautiful cakes are showcased once a week as Sunday Sweets, to restore a bit of your faith in the future of the baking profession.

What To Do This Weekend!

In event, list, upcoming on September 11, 2009 at 10:11 pm


Get your Dutch on.



Get your Italian on.

Drink more.


Chase and munch.

Chase and munch more.

Lather, rinse, repeat.

Well? Get to it!