Today's Mighty Oak


Isn’t it great in the winter!  Truth be told, I expected it to be worse, so I guess there’s that…



Video Games Live is returning to Heinz Hall, for their Bonus Round concert (due to demand, they were asked to return less than nine months after their last show).  This time, the set list includes Final Fantasy VIII, Sonic, Assassin’s Creed II, Shadow of the Colossus, BioShock, Mass Effect, StarCraft II, Mega Man, an interactive Frogger segment as well as the world premier of a new Guitar Hero segment.

Thursday’s show has been cancelled, but ticket holders can call the PSO to get a refund or move the tickets to the Friday performance:

We are sorry for any inconvenience this may cause people.  This is the first time in our 5 years of touring that anything like this has happened but unfortunately it is something completely out of everyone’s control.

I highly recommend the concert, if you want more information, check out their website here.



Chris Potter over at Pittsburgh City Paper has a great article about how the Port Authority is communicating during the the snow storms:

Over the weekend, I found myself hooked on the Port Authority’s Twitter account, which I’ve never really noticed before.

Potter brings ups a lot of points I’ve thought about, but never really found myself articulate to put down on the screen (page?), including the idea bouncing around my head about a giant LED screen at Penn Station telling me which bus is about to come around the corner, and how that idea is almost possible!  It’s a great read just for that!

But, the main focus is about PAT’s use of twitter and their (I think even more under-promoted) blog.  It boggles my mind to realize that the Twitter account is staffed by only two persons.  And for that, I have to hand it to PAT, that has been the most reliable way to get in touch with them, and the interactions have always been awesome, if not completely transparent, but really, hats off to PAT!

Check out the latest route updates on their twitter feed, scheduled (awesome by the way) updates on their blog and through their continuously updated press release.

Stay safe out there, be warm!



If you’re stuck at home (and I hope you are, or at least someplace warm and safe), check out Mike Woycheck’s Twitter feed as he live blogs the Snowmaggedon in truly Carbolic Smoke Ball fashion.  Some gems include:

To avert Pittsburgh drivers from using major roadways, PennDOT erecting banners from recent Pittsburgh Pirates mktg. campaigns at roadside.

TERROR IN SHADYSIDE: Women are forced to shield their bronzed skin and styled hair from falling snow using Louis Vuitton handbags.

You can also watch the real Liveblogging, going on at WTAE (a combination of twitter feeds and user and reporter comments), but it is not nearly as entertaining.  Except in some kind of Schadenfreude way.

Stay warm and stay safe!  I can’t wait to see all the pictures tomorrow!

Update to add this thought: I typically hit the publish button, swear, then go back and spell check.  After the obligatory cursing, I went back to see what I misspelled, and had put a double ‘e’ instead of a double ‘g’ in ’snowmaggedon.’  I’m going to assume that since it’s the title, that is why, but the correct spelling came up in spell check.  Awesome!



Here’s a bit of a story for you.  Back during all the snow, our heater broke.  So my brother graciously allowed me to crash on his couch.  His house is very close to a park ‘n ride lot, so after getting ready that morning I drove down the hill and had my first ever experience with a park ‘n ride.

And I can say that they are weird.

I’m probably just used to getting the neighborhood bus on the street, although this lot served flyers and some of the local neighborhood lines that came through.

So I parked and went over to the little shelter, which is very small, especially for how active this lot is.  A few other people were there, waiting for other buses to go to Oakland and after their bus came and went, I was left alone, jamming out to music on my headphones.  Eventually, a few other people joined me in the shelter, and soon the line stretched out into the parking lot.

The strange thing with the line is that I’ve seen it go into the parking lot some days, and into the street on other days.  I can’t figure out which is the “normal” way.

So back to the story, as the bus was coming towards the shelter, herds of people flooded out of their parked cars and shuffled and ran over the line.  I got on, and headed into town no problem.

But I’m still confused, which way should the line go?  How many people should get on each bus?  What if I need to get on a bus to get into town by a certain time, but the line doesn’t get me on, can I skip ahead the people waiting for the next bus?  Why do people wait for the really nice coach buses (ok, that one is easy to answer, but I always feel like our neighborhood bus isn’t good enough when no one gets on)?  What does it all mean?

I’ll have to use the park ‘n ride lot come June (we think, if rumors are to be believed), so I’m already feeling somewhat anxious!  Park ‘n rides are weird!

In other PAT news, they are looking for input in updating their website (general consensus, work more with Google Maps. make it user friendly and make it fast to find schedules.  Also, real-time bus locations would be awesome, but PAT doesn’t have the money for it yet) and the first wave of TDP changes start April 4, I’ll be reporting more on it then, as well as looking at the new schedules!



Just a quick programming note for everyone, I will be helping to run an event for 10,000 people this weekend, so I’ll be on location most of this week and part of next week (that is the current thinking at least).

I have a few posts that are scheduled to appear as the week goes on.  If something major happens in town, it’s not that I don’t want to cover it, it’s that I can’t (even though it appears I’ll still be writing).  This will be the last huge event for me for a while and I get back to a normal schedule.

Have a great one, and I’ll catch you soon!



A lot has been going on lately, but I would like to call your attention to a really cool charity event going on: Make Room for Crazy.

It works like this, two local bloggers are betting on the Pirates.  Michelle from Burgh Baby is betting that the Pirates will not break .500 this year, and Ginny from That’s Church is betting they will.  Prizes are being collected as we speak, and the winning blogger will donate 75% of the money to their charity, the other 25% going to the other (Either Make Room for Kids or Christmas Crazy for Kids).

Here’s more detailed information, as well as links to donate to either side (pick one, and enter as many times as you want, $5 gets you an entry).

I voted No by the way, not that I’m trying to influence you at all, I’m just going off of, you know, history.



Franktuary is unveiling a new dog this week, the G-20 Plummet:

In honor of this debacle, Franktuary has created the G-20 Plummet.  During the Plummet the restaurant will offer its Pittsburgh frank, buried under 20 additional condiments.  Franktuary publicist Frida Marquetza states, “The extra condiments represent the insensitive visitors who disrupted Pittsburgh’s tranquil and prosperous everyday life.  The suffocated pierogie symbolizes our city’s immobilized economy.”

I have a hard time thinking of 20 appropriate condiments to go on one hot dog, let alone how I would even eat it.  However, everything that I’ve ever tasted from Franktuary has been amazing, so I’m sure if anyone can pull it off, they can.

They are doing an online scavenger hunt all this week to commemorate the launch.  Check out their blog and twitter feed for more info and for more clues.



Conflict Kitchen, the discussion-starting cafe run by The Waffle Shop is working to open their next incarnation, Bolani Pazi, featuring Afghan take out.  I love the Waffle Shop, and love the premise of Conflict Kitchen:

It is easy to forget that behind all of the government conflicts there are people and a culture. When this personal connection is lost, things become dangerous. Conflict Kitchen creates a public forum and space for discussions that might not normally take place, mediated by food.

And previously-unknown to me, Conflict Kitchen ran some awesome programs, just like Waffle Shop does:

Conflict Kitchen also programs public events to more directly connect everyday Americans with everyday people from the country of focus. For example, Kubideh Kitchen brought together members of the public for a live Skype meal between Tehran and Pittsburgh, during which groups in both countries shared the same meal on a virtually connected table: an inter-continental dinner party.

That Skype meal with a citizen of the country Conflict Kitchen is featuring sounds really cool, right?  Well, now’s your chance.  Conflict Kitchen has a campaign going on on Kickstarter, and depending on how much you give, you could have your very own Skype meal.  Even if you can’t give at that level, every little bit helps.

Please consider giving to Conflict Kitchen, and don’t forget to stop by!

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