Look Back @ It: Thayer Street edition

As we transition from #fallfoliage to the cruel reality of a real New England winter, it’s easy to forget that College Hill sheds more than just its leaves every season. Shops and restaurants are constantly opening their doors, followed by a review by yours truly, and continue to exist for a period that ranges anywhere from 1 year to a century. The initial shock that inevitably hits Brunonia when a store is closed, followed by the sweet anticipation of a new franchise, is all part of the emotional rollercoaster that students experience during their time at Brown. Maybe I’m drawing too much from my own personal meltdown when Shades Plus went “out of business,” which for me really reaffirmed that nothing lasts forever.

Thayer Street in particular has witnessed a hefty amount of storefront makeovers, recently bringing a new Sushi Cafe (review to come!) into the old location of the beloved Spats, and spontaneously kicking out City Sports in an eight-day period of “EVERYDAY WE SELL IS BASICALLY FREE.”

After all of its ups and downs, Thayer deserves a post dedicated to its transformation through the years. Thayer Street, you may not realize it because you’re just asphalt, but we’ve known you since you were a baby.

Let’s look back at @ it

249 Thayer

Store 24 to Tedeschi to ???

The only online review of Store 24 is scathing, a direct quote being “You get a dirty feeling just walking into this place.” Tedeschi Food Shops eventually took its place and quickly gained a cult following with its bizarre yet price-friendly selection of goods. Tears were shed when it closed, and its disappearance even inspired a “ghost of Tedeschi” Halloween costume in Fall 2012. Now the storefront next to Chipotle is completely vacant.

257 Thayer

Esta’s to Toledo: Pizza in a Cone to 257 Thayer

The funky atmosphere at Esta’s included a gift shop, video rental business, and bike shop … but unfortunately the demise of video renting in general ended its reign in 2004.

However, Esta’s was soon replaced with Toledo: Pizza in a Cone. Reviews of this place ranged from “Hidden gem!” to “I had the misfortune of downing one of these pizza in a cone’s in January 2011.” Now the area is dominated by the 257 Thayer apartment complex … an arguable downgrade from pizza cones.


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Six Reasons To Be More Excited about “House of Cards” than Valentine’s Day


Valentine’s Day may be right around the corner, but you can make someone buy you dinner or stay home eating chocolate by yourself any night (if the second option rings a few too many bells, maybe check out Blind Bears). Only on February 14, 2014 will you finally have access to the much-awaited second season of House of Cards–and yet for some reason CVS is still stocking up on Hallmark Valentines instead of the construction paper prototypes of Kevin Spacey’s face that I keep sending to their headquarters. What are they going to refuse to sell next? Cigarettes? Anyway, despite what every jewelry store commercial wants you to think, here are six reasons that Valentine’s Day is far less exciting than House of Cards:

1. February 14 is the first night of Presidents’ Day Weekend. This means four blissfully school-free days to gorge on all 13 new episodes. Sure, your roommate may be spending the weekend going home or visiting friends at Columbia, but you get to travel to the high-profile, high stakes world of cutthroat D.C. politics from the comfort of your own bed. Valentine’s Day is only one night, House of Cards is forever.

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Here are some ridiculous RI laws

Whatta badass bish

Casual law-breaking on Thayer; photographed holding just-purchased illegal substances.

College students are used to breaking the law (we’re not going to go into specifics here, but we’re sure you get the idea). However, there are some laws that make you wonder what had to go so wrong to create the need for a law against it. I decided to live on the edge and test the limits of the Providence Police (ProPo, as opposed to BroPo) by breaking some ridiculous Rhode Island laws.

You may not sell toothpaste and a toothbrush to the same customer on a Sunday in Providence.

I can’t even imagine where this law came from. Maybe churchgoers love morning breath? Or eating toothpaste while massaging your face with a toothbrush is a secret Sunday hangover cure? Anyway, I went to CVS last Sunday to once again do some badass law-breaking. I carefully selected a tube of Crest toothpaste and an Oral-B toothbrush and brought them to the register; I wasn’t trying to sneak around the law by using an Express Check-Out station. To my surprise, the cashier sold me the toothpaste and toothbrush together on a Sunday! But he conspicuously did not give me a receipt, so I’m assuming this was part of an elaborate cover-up effort. Although I was able to get CVS to break this law, I’m sure it’s super serious, so don’t come running to me if someone gets arrested—you’ve been warned.

It is illegal to wear transparent clothing in Providence.

I’m guessing that this law resulted from some Hangover-inspired night gone wrong. I wanted to see how seriously this law is taken, so I walked down Thayer in a transparent top. Although I got some weird looks, possibly resulting from the fact that it was 30° and my shirt was completely see-through, no one tried to make a citizen’s arrest (unfortunately I couldn’t find any police to break the law in front of). So for all of you who are guilty of this every weekend, don’t worry: the BroPo has better things to bust you for. Note that Rhode Island has no specific statute against Indecent Exposure, so if you’re planning on wearing a transparent shirt, just do the legal thing and go topless instead. Continue Reading

A $10 Valentine’s Day showdown

The $10 holiday shopping challenge is back, and this time with some good ole’ fashioned Blog v. Blog competition. Looking for the most bang for your Valentine buck? Well we are here to help. Who said wooing your sweetheart had to break the bank? It’s the thought (and $10) that counts, right?

While I took my $10 budget to CVS, Jason headed to East Side Mini Mart to see which convenience store would prove to be the most fruitful in our pursuit of a seemingly-expensive wow-worthy Valentine.

(BlogDH) Budget Valentines 1CVS:
– Singing Hallmark Card – $4.99
– Russell Stover Assorted Chocolates – $4.99
TOTAL: $9.98

(BlogDH) Budget Valentines 2

East Side Mini Mart:
– Lays BBQ Flavor Chips – $2.00 (on sale)
– Easy Mac – $2.69 (giggle)
– Ben+Jerry’s – $5.60 (big money!)
TOTAL: $10.29

Bottom Line: If you’re looking for the route of the classic romantic, CVS is your destination. C’mon, you can’t really go wrong with Hallmark and chocolate. Though many say that the way to a college student’s heart is through convenience foods, I don’t know if Easy Mac is going to get you “lucky” this Valentine’s Day.

Chow Down Brown: A $10 Thanksgiving

HA! We wish...

Thanksgiving is a welcome distraction from the dreaded arrival of finals — you know, those unspeakable evils that are looming over the semester’s end. In my current midterm “lull” that always precedes final exams, I decided to get a little bit creative and plan a makeshift Thanksgiving meal for my roommates on the eve of our respective departures home. Now that we’re college students, we have limited time and limited funds, so I chose to explore the idea of a $10 (and maybe only 10 minute) Thanksgiving meal. This amount is not quite arbitrary – it happens to be the credit card minimum at East Side Mini-Mart – but it inspired me to get a little bit crafty in my procrastination spare time. Since we’re a week out from Turkey Day, I decided to take that $10 cap and compare the “feast” options available at both East Side Mini Mart and CVS. Check out the results of the investigation after the jump.

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