08/05/16 4:09pm
Dogs wear jorts, not cargo pants. Photo via @radswagg on Instagram.

Ask a dog: jorts, or cargo shorts? Photo via @radswagg on Instagram.

On Monday, writer Nicole Hong penned a piece for the Wall Street Journal about how women are fed up with their husbands wearing cargo shorts. This stirred up controversy among readers, igniting the Cargo Shorts Wars of 2016, as Hong is calling them, which only further escalated on Twitter after this Washington Post hot take shed light on the country-wide schism that exists between jorts people and cargo shorts people.

We at Brokelyn expressed ages ago that we are pro-jorts. We’ve taken a firm stance and there’s nothing that could sway us. But for those of you who are still up in arms about what you should or shouldn’t stick your legs into, might we suggest looking to man’s best friend for guidance, as has been humanity’s pastime for tens of thousands of years? Ask yourself, what side would a dog take in this hot debate?

We did the leg-work, scouring Instagram to find out how the shorts struggle manifests in the dog world. To get a fresh, other-species perspective on this deeply contentious issue, we selected canine contenders from Team Jorts and Team Cargo Shorts to answer the question, who wore it better? Behold, dogs in jorts, vs. dogs in cargo shorts:

08/04/16 12:22pm
Ivanka posted a video of the films opening scenes, with the caption "date night." Photo via @ivankatrump on Instagram.

Ivanka posted a video of the films opening scenes, with the caption “date night.” Photo via @ivankatrump on Instagram.

The gruesome twosome (yes that’s a nod to Sandy Cohenreferring to Julie Cooper and Caleb Nichol, basically the  Ivanka and Jared of The O.C.) had a date night watching The Royal Tenenbaums at last night’s SummerScreen in McCarren Park, the Daily Mail reports.

Odd for the two of them to venture outside of Manhattan, not on private jet; perhaps the alleged slumlord and his wife first swung by to check in on Kushner’s building at 184 Kent, which he plans to convert into condos, if it would just stop catching fire all the time (four instances to count since May).

Perhaps they were trying to appeal to the Brooklyn youngs, to make light of recent controversies, like when a staff writer at the openly pro-Trump Observer, which Kushner owns, penned an open letter challenging his support of his father-in-law after the “Crooked Hillary” meme’s blatant Anti-Semitic imagery surfaced. (more…)

08/03/16 11:01am
Maybe you shoulda studied bug extermination at Yale, Richard.

Maybe you shoulda studied bug extermination at Yale, Richard.

Bugs are on everyone’s mind right now thanks to fears of the Zika virus and the fact that the space insect in an overstuffed man suit from the first Men in Black movie is currently the Republican nominee for president. We often associate bugs with dirtiness, grime and poverty: you think of them as streaming out of overflowing trash cans in untended alleyways and having a stanky many-legs party in an old bag of Trader Joe’s flour in the cabinet every time you turn the lights off.

But it turns out, rich people actually have way more bugs in their homes, according to a study from the California Academy of Sciences that The Atlantic reports on today. They write: “While many people intuitively think that homes in poor neighborhoods would host more bugs, it’s actually the other way round: the wealthiest areas that harbor the widest range of arthropods. … In short: more money, more bugs.” Hey insects are gentrifiers too! (more…)

08/02/16 3:12pm
Brownsville residents can now get solar panels installed on their homes for free — and you can too

Level Solar technicians install solar panels on a roof in Brownsville. Photo via Malcolm Bliss/Level Solar

Last Friday afternoon on Powell Street in Brooklyn, the sun blistered down upon a small group of Brownsville residents, alternative energy advocates and City Council people as they gathered in front of longtime resident Ellen Fludd’s house to sip ginger ales and vie for spots beneath the easy-up tent. The sun also reflected off of several shiny new solar panels that were recently installed on Ellen’s roof free of charge, the cause for the celebration, and a result of the Solarize Brownsville campaign, which aims to install free solar panels on 100 Brownsville rooftops to help cut electricity costs and carbon emissions in NYC.

Fludd has been rooted in the Brownsville community along with her three children and six grandchildren for more than 50 years. She saw a flyer posted up in her neighborhood, she followed up, and now the home she owns is powered entirely by renewable energy that cost her nothing to install.

“I’m very happy about it,” she said shyly at the ribbon cutting ceremony.

To date, Level Solar, in partnership with Council member Latrice Walker’s office and New York State Energy and Research Development Authority, (NYSERDA ), has installed solar panels on five Brownsville rooftops for free, and they’ve been campaigning aggressively to grow that number.

“When they knocked on my door, I was like, ‘What’s this all about?’,” said Eric Pritchard of Sackman Street. “When I heard it was for solar power, I said ‘Come on in, I’ve been trying to do this for 20 years.’”

Along with Ellen Fludd, Pritchard is one of 150 Brownsville residents who have expressed interest in free solar panel installation since Council member Latrice Walker’s office announced the Solarize Brownsville campaign last month.

Brownsville is far from the first neighborhood to participate in a Solarize, which has been around for about six years. It’s supposed to be a short-term initiative that drums up excitement about solar power at a grass roots level. Then, when a neighborhood has demonstrated a need, the state government (via NYSERDA) steps in to help fund various projects. Similar initiatives include Solarize CB6 in Red Hook and Here Comes Solar NYC  which allows interested residents to organize group rates and save money on solar installation.

Brownsville residents are the first to get solar panels for free — and you can apply to have your building considered for free solar panels too.  (more…)

07/29/16 6:00pm
Microgreens at Brooklyn Grange's Navy Yard farm, with a backdrop of the NYC skyline. Photo via @michlcee on Instagram.

Microgreens at Brooklyn Grange’s Navy Yard farm, with a backdrop of the NYC skyline. Photo via @michlcee on Instagram.

Like us in website form? You’ll love us on FacebookTwitter and Instagram, and don’t forget to sign up for our mailing list!

A Brooklyn woman absolutely frappéd her boyfriend in this Craigslist ad.

The L train shutdown became official, and we looked at the consequences.

Ikea made your meatball dreams come true.

Zara ripped off another small designer, and people took action.

We survived the first Panorama, and wondered: Is NYC reaching music fest overload?

A new site started giving landlords/buildings letter grades, just like restaurants.

Jon Stewart made a surprise appearance at The Bell House!

Bed-Stuy vegan bakery Clementine talked to us about their a big expansion.

We introduced you to the best Brooklyn park you’ve never heard of.

We considered quitting our desk jobs to work on a rooftop farm.

Tips tips tips tips: tips [at] brokelyn.com

07/27/16 2:42pm
Salute your jorts? Via Etsy.

Salute your jorts? Via Etsy.

This election is about what kind of country we want. Do we want a nation led by the spoiled lovechild of Yosemite Sam and a late-night tweeting Twitter egg, running around inviting foreign countries to spy on us? Or do we want someone who maybe at least knows how to do the job? Do we want more of Obama’s legacy, or risk it all and take what’s behind blood-soaked curtain No. 2? Do we want diversity or jingoism, fear or hope, Logan or Jess (but never Dean, obvs)? We also need to decide what kind of attire we want to wear in this new country: Do we, as a nation populated with millennials and an obsession with why millennials are Bad, want to be able to wear jorts wherever and whenever we want? Should you be able to wear jorts when casting a historic vote for the nomination of your party?

This is an important question raised by our own Rachel Eve Stein, who is on the floor of the DNC right now as a delegate from New York and has seen at least two people wearing jorts in her own delegation. Yes, it’s hot in Philly, but maybe bump it up to at least business casual, she says.  (more…)

07/26/16 3:28pm

How do you make sure you aren't buying from companies that have stolen artists' work?

Last week, illustrator Tuesday Bassen took to Twitter to accuse fashion retailer Zara of ripping off her designs. She posted a side-by-side comparison, above, of her original illustrations and Zara’s near identical versions.

To anyone with eyes, Zara’s versions are undeniable copies. Bassen tweeted the graphic in response to a letter she received from Zara denying her claim, arguing that the designs in question weren’t distinctive enough to be associated with her, and that any complaints coming from her small customer and fan base were insignificant compared to Zara’s millions of clientele worldwide.

But Zara might be wrong about the impact one independent artist can have when she gets enough interested parties on her side. In the week since her tweet went up, Bassen’s situation has been covered by several media outlets and a third party has even set up a Go Fund Me in her name. And it’s drawn attention to other artists whose work Zara has co-opted. Shop Art Theft, a new Instagram account created by one such artist, Adam J. Kurtz, is a good first step towards helping artists fight back and helping consumers stay woke. (more…)

07/25/16 1:03pm
Via Flickr's Michael Tapp.

Via Flickr’s Michael Tapp.

Cherish your subway rides while you can, L train riders, for today the soothsayers and doomsday prophets finally heard official word from mount MTA. The Times reported this morning the MTA has come to a final decision about what to do with the L train to repair Hurricane Sandy damage: The train will be completely shut down between Bedford Avenue and Eighth Avenue for 18 months, starting in January 2019. That means no L train whatsoever between Williamsburg and Manhattan, and no trains along 14th street in Manhattan at all.

2019 is a cosmically long way away, so who knows if we’ll all still even still be alive or if President Trump will have replaced all forms of mass transit with mandatory gold SUV ownership by then. But the shutdown will have a huge impact across the borough, not the least of which are dips in rents along the L corridor and a whole new wave of trite jokes about Williamsburg and the people who live there. Here are 10 effects the train’s shutdown may have: (more…)

07/22/16 4:44pm
You can keep your leaning benches, MTA, but we'll take the countdown clocks.

You can keep your bright lights and leaning benches MTA, but we’ll take the countdown clocks.

Like us in website form? You’ll love us on FacebookTwitter and Instagram, and don’t forget to sign up for our mailing list!

The Hubble Cantata, a virtual reality trip to the cosmos, is coming to Prospect Park.

We ranked the MTA’s 15 new proposed subway improvements.

We told you which BK restaurants vegans and carnivores will both enjoy.

A BK expat realtor thinks you should leave Brooklyn and join him in Philly, aka Brooklyn 2.0.

We went camping via Tentrr, which sets up your whole campsite for you.

VinePair, Alamo Drafthouse, BRIC Arts Media and more BK spots are hiring.

We rounded up Brooklyn’s best dead zones, where you can disconnect from your phone.

If you volunteer to pick up trash at Panorama, you can get a three-day ticket for almost free.

We decided which summer Blockbusters are worth the price of admission.

There’s now a Pokemon Go dating app, because of course there is.

If you see something, send something to tips[at]brokelyn.com

07/22/16 3:40pm
Heat dome a comin', keep it cool this weekend, even if you're covered in fur. Photo via @samsonthedood

Heat dome a comin’, keep it cool this weekend, especially if you’re covered in fur. Photo via @samsonthedood

Gothamist would like to see a pic of your tricked out fire escape  [Gothamist]
297 affordable housing units opened up in Prospect Heights [BrickUnderground]
NYC Pokemon Go winner lost 10 pounds, logged 95 miles to catch ’em all [NY Daily News]
The Secret Lives of Real New York Pets [NY Times]
There’s an anti-gentrification and displacement forum Sunday at Brooklyn Museum [Bushwick Daily]
Got a Girl Crush zine has a new 95 page issue out, includes interview with Jessica Williams  [Brooklyn Paper]
Ask a Swole Woman how to get, well, swole [The Hairpin]
And finally, What your eyebrows from different phases of your life say about you [Manrepeller]