February 14, 2015 |
The students leaned in for a better look at their subject - a flattened skeleton, curled up and encased in a brown gunk of dirt and wax. "I've never been this up close and personal with something . . . that old," said Carly Sokach, 21, a University of Pennsylvania senior. That's 5,300 years old. The skeleton was excavated from a 50-foot pit in Iraq in 1930, packed in a crate and shipped to the Penn Museum. Not much more was known about it. For decades, the skeleton had rested in obscurity, with no paperwork to explain its provenance.
February 8, 2015 |
Thanks to his older brother, Mike McLaren may never grow a mustache. Much to his babysitter's dismay in the early 2000s, the youngest of three future La Salle wrestlers tussled over a plastic sword with his middle brother, Matt. The dispute ended with an emergency room trip and six stitches to Mike's upper lip. The oldest brother Andrew McLaren, an 18-year-old senior, remembers the incident as vividly as he remembers the family's unfinished basement with a mat, where the boys spent hours wrestling each other under their parent's supervision.
February 4, 2015 |
The DIY music scene is thriving in Philadelphia. And the do-it-yourself ethos extends to how emerging bands get their music recorded. Take PUDH, a former DIY venue/house in Lansdowne, whose basement seems better suited for an Evil Dead remake than a makeshift recording studio. Members of the band Snoozer now call its basement home. Vocalist and guitarist Tom Kelly, who lives there with his two bandmates, says he has recorded demos for his band there. "We put the mics in the ventilation ducts," he said.
January 5, 2015 |
Question: Last year, we bought a house in the suburbs, and we've decided that we'll need to refinish part of the basement. The basement is very humid in the summer, and the dehumidifier we have isn't up to the job. The excessive moisture is creating mold problems, attracting bugs, and causing water stains on walls. We don't want to spend a lot of money to fix this problem. It is not water intrusion during heavy rains, but dampness. We have been told by some people we have brought in that we need a new heating/cooling system.
December 11, 2014 |
It's a sad day in Philadelphia when a firefighter is killed, even though it's accepted that facing death is part of the job. Added to the list of the fallen Tuesday was Joyce Craig-Lewis, 36, who died in the smoky haze of a basement fire inside a West Oak Lane home. She becomes the first female member of the Philadelphia Fire Department to die in the line of duty. An investigation is ongoing to determine how Craig-Lewis became isolated and trapped in the basement. Fire Commissioner Derrick Sawyer said basement fires are particularly challenging.
December 11, 2014 |
WHEN THEY are older, and showing their own children photo albums that have far too many blank spaces, Mehki Donte Green and Laylani Lewis will say that their mother died a hero on a soggy, bitterly cold day in Philadelphia. Their mom, veteran Philadelphia Firefighter Joyce Craig-Lewis, lost her life while battling a hellacious blaze in West Oak Lane in the early morning darkness yesterday, earning a heartbreaking place in the city's history as the first female firefighter to die in the line of duty.
November 21, 2014 |
CHRONICLING the recording of new music using long-lost lyrics by Bob Dylan, tonight's Showtime special "Lost Songs: The Basement Tapes Continued" will have its biggest appeal to the boomer-era fans taking in Mr. D's shows at the Academy of Music this weekend. But the target demo could be lowered by the far more "current" artists who took on this time-warping collaborative mission - Marcus Mumford (Mumford and Sons), Jim James (My Morning Jacket), Rhiannon Giddens (Carolina Chocolate Drops)
October 10, 2014 |
DEJA ALVAREZ has lost count of the times she has come to the Criminal Justice Center on Filbert Street. "Oh my God, I can't even remember anymore," she said, before settling on four. Each time, the case against the man accused of stabbing and dismembering her friend Diamond Williams, on July 14, 2013, was continued for one reason or another. Mostly because lawyers and doctors were trying to figure out whether Charles Nolan Sargent was sane enough to stand trial in the brutal slaying of a transgender woman whose grandmother said was born Mark William Woods.
September 12, 2014
BASEMENTS, basically by definition, are the ugly and unloved stepchildren of any tiered structure. A damp, dank place to stack cardboard boxes full of ex-lovers' stuff. A resting place for never-used exercise equipment. A sunlight-free ecosystem perfect for the cultivation of cobwebs and dust bunnies. An eminently unsafe hiding place for psychotic clowns armed with blood-stained garden equipment. (Just me?) But none of these subterranean stereotypes, even the totally rational killer-clown one, apply to what lies beneath the Reading Terminal Market, one of Philadelphia's most recognized historical and culinary contributions.
September 7, 2014 |
Art is imitating life here. As I write this, I'm waiting for our utility to replace a 1924 steel gas line that was found to be leaking. So the gas is off for a couple of hours, and a three-man crew is digging up the street in front of my house to fix the problem, thanks to a detection unit that roams our street once a year, as required by the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities. What happens between visits? Detection is up to you, and the utilities have made it easier.