Sunday, July 13, 2008

Culture and Video Games

I had wanted to visit the Cloisters, but it was so far away that it never seemed convenient to go.

Paul had wanted to visit Barcade, but the lack of a direct train route from Bay Ridge would make that a pain, too.

So what did we do? We decided to make both inconvenient journeys in one day.

First, a little explanation.

The Cloisters is a part of the Metropolitan Museum of Art. However, it's in the far northwest reaches of Manhattan, and you can only get their by subway followed by a bus or a 10-minute walk. It's small but is well-known for its tapestries and architectural displays.

Barcade is a (what else?) cross between a bar and an arcade. It has a wide selection of microbrews that regularly changes along with about 30 old arcade games you can play for a quarter apiece.

So with the Saturday newspaper in hand, we boarded a subway after lunch and made the 90-minute ride to the Cloisters. I knew it was on the edge of a park, but I didn't realize we would also have beautiful views from the museum of the Hudson River below. I had never seen it, aside from out an airplane window.

As for the museum, I especially like the stained glass windows and the unicorn tapestries, like this one. Obviously, the doorways, archways and exhibits were beautiful.

We were at Barcade in time for happy hour. I don't know if Paul was more excited about the beer or the games. We sampled them both. I watched him play a Mario Brothers, Marble Madness and a couple games I had never heard of but which he assured me helped form his childhood. I played a couple of games of Frogger and found out that I'm not nearly as good as I was 20 years ago.

We capped off the night at a Polish restaurant, where I ordered the potato pancakes and some delicious blueberry pierogis.

After that: home. And it didn't take as long as we had anticipated. I guess we'll be going back to Barcade after all.


  1. For someone who grew up around Pittsburgh, it's kind of funny that I have never been in a Polish restaurant (lots of Polish people and neighborhoods there). It sounds really good! Too bad Phil hates pierogis and potato pancakes. What a weirdo.

  2. Hey, I've heard of Barcade! I think my friend Katie went there once or twice. It sounds fun!

    The Cloisters looks lovely, from your photos. I've always wanted to see it - ever since I read a Babysitters Club "super special" where the girls went to New York City :P The artsy one went to the Cloisters to sketch. Haha.

    Happy two-hours-late birthday! :)



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