Henna tattoos have long been a vacation staple for white pre-adolescents who want to rebel but aren’t sure how to do it in a way that won’t upset their parents. The non-permanent designs are usually harmless, but for five-year-old Jess Errington, what happens on a family vacation to Bali doesn’t stay there. Errington’s parents allowed him to get two henna tattoos of dragons, which he reportedly begged for. However, while most henna is gone within a week, Errington went back to school this week with 2mm raised welts where his “tattoos” had been, much to his parents’ horror.”We just feel terrible – it was supposed to be a totally innocent holiday souvenir,” Mr Errington said. “I’ve got tattoos and every boy wants to be like their daddy, so when he saw all the kids getting them done on the beach in Bali I gave in, thinking it was harmless.” The culprit in Jess’ reaction is para-phenylenediamine, a chemical used to darken the ink that is also found in strong hair dyes. Exposure in this manner could lead to skin problems, lifelong allergies to anything containing PPD (e.g. black clothing, dark hair dye, some cosmetics), and other ailments that do not involve being a boy named Jess.
Thankfully, application of steroid cream on the affected areas has been proven to keep the welts under control. Still, Jess’ father has some reservations. “Luckily he’s not in any pain but we’re worried he could be permanently scarred,” he said. Here’s hoping that the Erringtons make better decisions about body modification in the future. Read more here.
Whole Foods has been talking about taking over about six current Johnnie’s Foodmaster locations in eastern Massachusetts. This family grocery store has been known for its low prices and loyal customers for the past 65 years. Negotiations are still in the early stages, but Whole Foods wants to move into sites in Arlington, Brookline, Charlestown, Melrose, South Weymouth, and on Beacon Street in Somerville. Whole Foods has certainly been on the rise in the past 10 years and this move will increase the company’s presence by 30% if the deal goes through. Kevin Griffin, publisher of the Griffin Report of Food Marketing, said Whole Foods could be an attractive out for Johnnie’s Foodmaster because it is usually difficult to exit a family-owned grocery business and get paid for it. The deal makes sense for Whole Foods, he said, because the company is attempting to open smaller markets and defend against rivals. Boston is certainly a good place to expand for businesses, but what will the residents and local Bostonians think? Will they be against these new stores wiping out a long time family grocery store? What do you think?
The world’s oldest woman reached the incredible age of 116 yesterday. Besse Cooper, of Monroe, GA, had a ceremony in her honor, during with the leaders of Monroe named a bridge after her. Cooper was unable to attend the ceremony, but told her son Sidney that she was glad that she “gave them a reason to name it.” This makes Cooper one of only eight people known to have lived to 116 or older. Born in 1896, Cooper has four children, 12 grandchildren and over a dozen great-grandchildren and great-great grandchildren.
Wondering about the secret to Cooper’s long life? Apparently, keeping it simple is the way to go. “I mind my own business,” she says. “And I don’t eat junk food.” Read more here.
As you may know September 1st is a big day in beantown. Some call this time of year Allston Christmas because of all the free things strewn along the streets. Since Allston is a popular area with many of the college students in our city this area, along with many others, will be quite chaotic on the first of the month. 79% of all Boston leases start on this date making for a very hectic stressful day for everyone. Whether you’re moving, helping friends move, or just trying to get around this mess on Saturday, it should be quite an interesting day. Yesterday the Boston Police Department came out with a statement reading: “Traffic & Parking Advisory: Relative to College Move in Weekend August 31-September 4, 2012 Residents should expect congestion and delays in the areas of Allston, Brighton, Fenway, Back Bay, Mission Hill and Beacon Hill as 70,000 college students will be moving in these neighborhoods.” What are your plans for September 1st? How do you deal with this stressful day?
If you’re tired of the perils of traveling by air, your troubles may soon be over. Statistics show that ridership of Amtrak in the Northeast has been steadily increasing, particularly on trips between Boston and Washington, DC, and Boston and New York City. For example, only 20 percent of those traveling between Boston and NYC in 1994 traveled by train. Now, however, the number is around 54 percent.
This surge in popularity has opened the door to many rail-themed projects. One idea is to create a large-scale station in Springfield, MA. The city is about halfway between Boston and NYC. Therefore, a larger station would be put to good use, given the push for rail transport. This could potentially be a very exciting project, so here’s hoping it stays on the right track. Read more here.
Boston residents have no doubt noticed the large number of tourists who frequent the city in the summer. While it’s understandable that many of them do not understand how the MBTA operates, public transportation seemed especially foreign for one Attleboro woman. Holding her 4-year-old in her arms, the woman walked right off of the platform at the Kendall/MIT T station and tumbled onto the tracks face-first. Thankfully, the woman managed to avoid the third rail on the tracks, which could have electrocuted her and her child. Two commuters jumped down onto the tracks and helped the woman back onto the platform before the train came through. When asked for the reasons for her actions, the woman said that she had mistaken the northbound train that was arriving for the southbound train that she was waiting for.
Although they escaped unharmed, MBTA spokesman Joe Pesaturo says that the situation could’ve been handled more safely. “The bystanders’ quick response is worthy of praise, but it’s also important that the public remember that the subway’s third rail is electrified,” he said. “It’s always best to immediately notify an MBTA employee so that we can alert nearby train crews and shut off the power to the third rail as soon as possible.” Or maybe just stay on the platform until your train comes. Read more here.
This Saturday at the Institute of Contemporary Art near the Seaport in Boston Red Bull will be sponsoring the 2012 Cliff Diving World Series. The event will start at 4:00 and run until 6:30 p.m. This will be the fifth stop for the series as they have just returned from Europe. After last season’s premiere, the Red Bull Cliff Diving World Series athletes will climb back to the top of the Institute of Contemporary Art building on Fan Pier to exhibit their latest skills. Founded in 1936, the ICA’s mission is to exhibit contemporary art; count on the world’s best divers to deliver 21st-century art in this sports-mad city. This event is free and open to the public. This area of the Seaport can be a little tricky to get to by public transportation but if you’re up for it it is only a short 10-15 minute walk from South Station. The ICA is located at 100 Northern Avenue Boston, MA 02210. Watching these cliff jumpers can be pretty exciting, so if you’re looking for something fun, free, and different to do this weekend we recommend this! It only comes once a year so be sure to catch it!
Do you like to eat at Boston Market but are worried about how much salt you’re ingesting? Have no fear–the chain is implementing a plan to remove the salt shakers from guest tables in every single one of its locations. In addition, the restaurant’s signature rotisserie chicken, macaroni and cheese, and mashed potatos will see a 20% decrease in sodium content in the next few months. Many people are taking notice, but Boston Market still has a long way to go in order for its food to be truly healthy. “I haven’t heard of any other restaurant doing that,” says Michael Jacobson, executive director at Center for Science in the Public Interest. ”That said, many of Boston Market’s offerings are loaded with sodium.”
For those involved directly with the restaurant, however, the goals remain realistic. “We don’t want it to be misconstrued that Boston Market is becoming a ‘healthy’ fast-casual chain,” says chief brand officer Sara Bittorf. “We’re never going to have the healthiest mac and cheese on the block.” Can’t live without your salt? Relax–the salt shakers will be relocated to the beverage stations. Read more here.
Local Needham Olympian Aly Raisman has been getting some major news coverage the past several days. This is a story that hits close to home considering that Rasiman is a Massachusetts resident and lives and trains so close to Boston. After she helped the United States win the women’s team gymnastics gold medal at the 2012 Olympic Games in London, she became an instant star. The night after the big win, the NBC announcers mentioned that one of the notable people who contacted Raisman to wish her congratulations was New England Patriots wide receiver Wes Welker. Rasiman’s twitter account also featured mentions by celebrities such as Justin Beiber and Lady Gaga. Raisman was also featured live on Fox 25 this morning, Boston’s news channel. Raisman spoke about life after the Olympics as well as a few other topics. It will certainly be interesting to see where else our local gold medalist ends up.
Today we’ll be looking at Park Street, a prime stop on the T located downtown. Park street is the connection from the red to the green line and also a spot filled with things to do. Going out with friends? Going for a stroll? Or maybe looking for some historic sites to visit? Then Park Street has what you’re looking for!
Beantown Pub- Ofcourse there are many bars and restaurants throughout the city, but location is key. This pub is very close to the Park Street stop and a pretty good place to grab drinks with friends. Whether you’re looking to get a drink after work or make a night of it with your friends this is one place to keep in mind. They also have plenty of food and appetizers to chose from.
Freedom Trail- One of Boston’s most well known historical sites is the Freedom Trail which goes throughout the city highlighting many of the important spots. The tour goes through faneuil hall, the Paul Revere house, the Massachusetts State House, and the area around Park Street and the Boston Commons. As soon as you step off the T, you will be stepping foot on some historical ground.
Boston Commons- One of the best parts of Park Street and one my personal favorite spots in the city is the Commons. Located right in the middle of downtown, this is Boston’s version of central park. If you’re looking to go for a stroll on a nice day or lay outside with a good book during your lunch break this is a perfect spot. Grab a friend or a good book and go have a seat on the lawn and enjoy some sun!
Frog Pond- Starting in November the frog pond will be open for business. Another favorite of mine, this is an awesome winter activity. For only $5 you can spend a couple hours skating around outside in the middle of the Boston public gardens. On Tuesday nights they also run a college special night where students can get in for just $2. Keep this in mind for when it gets chilly!