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August 2012 (129 posts)
Whether your legs are long, short, or somewhere in between, these classic pumps by Rachel Roy will make them look leaner. The 4.5-inch heels may seem high, but the .75-inch hidden platform ensures you get a lot of comfort at that altitude. The best part? The wide range of colors makes it easy to find the right pair.
Rachel Roy, $225 to $250 each, nordstrom.com
Then in 1948, 2,741 acres of the Fresh Kills marshlands (kill is Old Dutch for "stream") were designated a landfill. Seven years later, Fresh Kills was the largest residential trash repository in the world—and the name Staten Island less synonymous with bucolic meadows than with an epic stench.
But now Thoreau's "garden" is making a comeback—as Freshkills Park. In 2008 construction began on a 30-year master plan that calls for nature trails, a bird observatory, and canoeing. The city is also harvesting natural gas from the buried waste and using it to heat 22,000 homes (the waste is "capped" with an impermeable cover to prevent fumes from escaping). This summer the park's first completed section, a playground, is scheduled to open to the public; a pedestrian loop and the Owl Hollow Fields—which include soccer fields, lawns, and a LEED-certified rest area—will follow this fall. Red foxes and deer have already recolonized the upland forests, and park administrator Eloise Hirsh sees goldfinches on her way to work—evidence that "the land is healing itself," she says. "By turning this into something really beautiful, we want to help people be more thoughtful about what they throw out."
Above is a photo of La Tomatina, Spain's annual festival featuring music, parades, dancing and fireworks. Oh, and a giant battle involving about 30,000 people hurling tomatoes at one another. It's taking place today, but if you forgot to book your trip to Valencia, there's no law against staging a food fight in your own backyard tonight. And yes, tomatoes are in season, but you know what else is in season? Cake. Satisfying to throw, satisfying to get hit with, and definitely satisfying to scrape off your face and eat.
As an animal lover, I like to tell my dog about the interesting pet-related stories I come across on the Internet. "Look at this hard-working, life-saving, diabetes-sniffing Golden Retriever," I'll tell the snoring mound on the floor. Or else, "Wow, check out Faith, the amazing two-legged dog who learned to walk upright!" as my mutt diligently licks leftover applesauce off the baby's high chair. I just think she might be interested to know that dogs have amazing potential, and not just as farting foot-warmers. (Although I will say she excels at that.) But Lemon Pie is one dog I couldn't even tell my own under-acheiving pup about without getting choked up.
Lemon Pie lost his front paws in a uniquely horrifying way -- according to the BBC, they were chopped off by a Mexican gang as (brace yourself) practice. But thanks to some kind souls, Lemon Pie was rescued by an animal shelter and fitted with, amazingly, two prosthetic legs. You just have to watch the video, and see Lemon Pie galloping along on his new legs, to believe it. This dog is the picture of a survivor, and the people who rescued him, who saw fit to raise the $8000 for his artificial paws, portraits of what is right with the world.
Helping Victims of Domestic Abuse By Saving Their Pets
Saying Goodbye to a Furry Best Friend
Amazing Animal Updates
It's one of the most humbling experiences a city-dweller can have: gardening. I'd volunteered to work in the community garden, so there I was on a Sunday morning, crouched in the dirt, hopping up every few minutes to find someone to ask, "Sorry, this is so embarrassing, but is this a weed? Is this a plant? Or a weed? Looks kind of planty? Wait, I mean weedy?" By the end of my two-hour-long shift, though, I was already seeing things differently: noticing a spriggy vine of weediness from across the garden patch; a rustling in the purple bushes I realized was a steady stream of visiting butterflies.
These are the moments we need, when you look at a thing long enough to see what it really is. As in these otherworldly shots of migrating butterflies on Environmental Graffiti: seeming at first to be a tree branch, or a smattering of leaves, the swarms of color reveal themselves to be instead bouquets of butterflies, masses of monarchs, and reason enough to look closely.
Visit Environmental Graffiti for more amazing images of these surreal butterfly swarms. Suggested listening while viewing:Muriel Rukeyser reading her poem "The Speaking Tree": "The trunk of the speaking tree looks like a tree-trunk / Until you look again...It calls your name." What else is calling our names, if only we would listen? What else could we see if we looked, looked again?
Instant Inspiration: Photographs of Trees
Breathing Space: Favorite Places on Earth
New York's luxe department store, Bergdorf Goodman, turns 111 this year and celebrates its birthday with a new illustrated book, Scatter My Ashes at Bergdorf Goodman. A companion to the documentary film of the same name, it's a delicious collection of tales and tidbits from the store's fabled history. Thanks to anecdotes from staffers who remember the time Yoko Ono and John Lennon bought seventy fur coats one Christmas Eve or the day Grace Kelly came in, unannounced, to order her wedding invitations, the anthology reads like a storybook in which the protagonists just happen to be a who's who of Hollywood and New York society. We might not all be Bergdorf's shoppers, but with this collection of photographs, drawings, and recollections, everyone can indulge in a bit of the died-and-gone-to-heaven feeling found at Fifth Avenue and 58th Street.
Whether you're wondering what to wear this fall or trying to figure out the best pieces for your shape, now's your chance to get personalized style advice straight from O's creative director Adam Glassman! During the month of August, he'll be answering some of your burning fashion questions.
Jocelyn asked: What's the hottest color for fall?
See Adam's video response:
Do you have a question for O's beauty director Val Monroe or O's creative director Adam Glassman? Ask away here!