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Frugal in New York City – Bee Thrifty: Episode One

Posted Tuesday, October 14th, 2008 at 8:30 am by Christine in Cultural Bees. More in 10001

Hello everyone! My name is Christine Rath and I am new to the neighborbee hood. My mission: To find you the good life on the cheap. I am a grad student and I pride myself on thrift. In these tough times, who couldn’t use a little cheap fun? Sans risk of VD, of course. I said cheap, not seedy!

This past Friday I wandered into Chelsea for the opening of ‘Monitor’ an exhibition by artist Noah Fischer at Claire Oliver. Fischer’s lo-tech sculptures made of oh-so-familiar machines may have you scratching your head, but hopefully it’s because you’re receiving his transmission regarding “calling into question the ultimate function of our entertainment- based culture” as the press release for ‘Monitor’ suggests. This is a good event for the poor in the wallet and for those who have joined the revolution against consumerism for moral reasons, as Fischer’s refashioning of the icons of our new gods, can help us feel like being poor isn’t a curse, but a virtue. I almost threw my iPhone in the Hudson on my way home.

Oh, and it’s also good if you’re poor because, hey, free wine.

‘Monitor’ is on view until November 15th at Claire Oliver, 513 West 26th Street (off of 10th Ave).

Another part of my cheap weekend, was a movie with a fellow thrifty hero. We went to see Happy Go Lucky—a film by indie icon Mike Leigh. If you are looking for the right attitude about life during the economic down turn, Leigh’s protagonist Poppy holds the key. Don’t worry, the movie is not about the economic downturn—but it is about unflinching optimism in a mad mad world. See it, but go to the matinee if you can and skip the popcorn and soda. Sneak snacks in grandma-style and save save save. Also, since the distribution on this film is limited, there are only a few theatres that have it. Check it out at Lincoln Plaza Cinemas at 1886 Broadway near 62nd Street.

Uh, one quick side note…I’ve given you the US link for Happy because I assume you will see it here in the states, but the American Marketing Machine has made the US website look like a tampon commercial. (Sorry hard-working marketing people!)

Check out the UK site, even the trailer is better.

After the movie, I was hungry, so we wandered into the East Village to find a noodle shop. What we found was even better. Umi No le! Say it again folks: Umi No le! What are we shouting? Well, I don’t know what it means, but it is the name of my new favorite restaurant. Specializing in Japanese home cooking, Umi No le is located at 86 East 3rd Street (sorry, no website). I had a bowl of rice soup with salmon. Yum. And for $6! Double yum. We also split a bottle of sake for $18. Oh, and the best part? Sitting on the floor, shoes off (though you don’t have to if you don’t want to or if you are worried because your socks don’t match, like mine).

All in all, a couple of good arty events, and all with the right attitude for a thrifty life.

Next week’s missions:


Long Term goals:

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