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Wednesday, December 11, 2019

Posted By on Wed, Dec 11, 2019 at 8:00 AM

click to enlarge The Dec. 11 cover of Pittsburgh City Paper
The Dec. 11 cover of Pittsburgh City Paper
What is a world without information? A person without a phone? A city without a newspaper?

Earlier this year, Removed, a photo series by North Carolina photographer Eric Pickersgill, reemerged online through viral posts, showcasing “life without cell phones.” Before he took each portrait, the photo subject was asked to pose while holding a cell phone. Pickersgill then physically removed the device from their hands, leaving image after image of people staring into invisible objects: a couple in bed, kids on a couch, people at a dinner table.

click to enlarge CP PHOTO: JARED WICKERHAM
CP photo: Jared Wickerham
For this week’s cover story on the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, which is facing a contentious labor battle and a shrinking newsroom, we took inspiration from Removed and created our own photo series showing glimpses of life in Pittsburgh without a newspaper. CP photographer Jared Wickerham asked our models to pose throughout the city as if reading a Post-Gazette, then photographed them reading an invisible medium. One model sat at a bench in Downtown Pittsburgh, another at home, a third, in a coffee shop. Riding across the Monongahela River on a Port Authority light-rail car, model Carolina Loyola-Garcia took it a step forward, flipping through invisible pages with her thumb as nearby passengers pretended not to notice.

Pickersgill first began his ongoing photo series back in 2015, but his images continue to provoke heated discussions online every time they reappear. In his artist’s statement for the series, Pickersgill writes, “The joining of people to devices has been rapid and unalterable.” He refers to cell phones as a “phantom limb” and his series alludes to an obsession with technology replacing human interaction. Some online comments have said the series shows how “silly” our addictions are; that we are wasting precious time; that we should be spending less time on our phones and “more time living.”
click to enlarge CP PHOTO: JARED WICKERHAM
CP photo: Jared Wickerham
But for me, what’s most striking about both of these series isn’t the addiction to the missing objects, but the overwhelming sadness of realizing they could be taken away from us. Earlier this year, the Post-Gazette reduced its print distribution to only three days a week, after cutting down to five in 2018. (Pittsburgh is now the largest U.S. city without a daily print newspaper.) As the contentious battle between management and staff continues at the P-G — the staff is in the midst of a byline strike, withholding their names from stories as a public stand against management — what will soon be left?
click to enlarge CP PHOTO: JARED WICKERHAM
CP photo: Jared Wickerham
As a Generation Xer, I remember a time without modern technology, when I was unable to use a cell phone to access information on the spot, look up a meaning of a word, research a school project, write to my friends from across the country without having to wait for the USPS to deliver my letter ... or, to read a newspaper. The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette isn’t just a print product. It’s one we read in print, on laptops, on cell phones, at home, on public transportation, in coffee shops. The publication's incredibly talented Pulitzer Prize-winning staff keeps the city informed, keeps politicians in check, and deserves better than how they've been treated.

What does a city look like without a newspaper? This week, we tried to show it through photographs. But really, let’s hope we never find out.

Wednesday, October 16, 2019

Posted By on Wed, Oct 16, 2019 at 12:00 AM

Think you have the cutest pet? Find out in this year's Cutest Pet Contest, presented by the Pittsburgh City Paper and Petagogy.

Enter a photo of your dog, cat, bird, or snake (in the appropriate category), and let Pittsburgh do the rest! The three pets voted cutest will win prize packages from Petagogy and have their photo featured in the paper.

Photos can be submitted until Wed., Oct. 30. Voting starts Thu., Oct. 31 and ends Wed., Nov. 6.

Good luck! May the cutest pet win.

Sunday, October 6, 2019

Posted By on Sun, Oct 6, 2019 at 5:49 PM

click to enlarge James Conner waits to take the field inside the tunnel for introductions. - CP PHOTO: JARED WICKERHAM
CP Photo: Jared Wickerham
James Conner waits to take the field inside the tunnel for introductions.

No, this isn't a general game story. If you're a Steelers fan, you know they lost a wild game in overtime filled with turnovers and injuries to the Baltimore Ravens.

Instead, I wanted to share the one of the best piece of photo advice I ever received: "Go where everyone isn't."

Every week, photographers shoot photos as players are introduced one by one and enter the field through a cloud of smoke. We're fairly limited as to where we can stand for these, and it's typically in less than ideal spots. Last week I was able to take a bad spot I was given and make something (thankfully). But this week, I wanted to try something different.

I went up into the stands early and found a spot that gave me a different vantage point as the players waited inside the tunnel. They aren't groundbreaking photos and they probably won't win any awards, but it feels good to see something different at an event I've covered dozens of times. Sometimes it works out, sometimes it doesn't. But I had fun and met some wonderful fans in the process!

click to enlarge Alejandro Villanueva waits in the tunnel before being introduced. - CP PHOTO: JARED WICKERHAM
CP Photo: Jared Wickerham
Alejandro Villanueva waits in the tunnel before being introduced.

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Thursday, October 3, 2019

Posted By on Thu, Oct 3, 2019 at 11:22 AM

Emerging from Seattle’s burgeoning mid-1990s grunge scene, Candlebox found mainstream success with deep, lyrically driven melodies and big radio hooks. Power anthems like “Far Behind” and “You,” from the debut, self-titled album, exploded onto the charts, propelling the album to sell more than four million copies worldwide.

Later albums would showcase the band's versatility between emotionally charged, brooding ballads like “Cover Me” and groove-infused, straight-up rock 'n’ roll tunes, including “Change” and “Arrow”. The 2016 release of Disappearing In Airports found Candlebox revealing a more classic rock vibe with songs like “Vexatious” and “Supernova,” driving the album to debut at No. 9 on the Billboard Charts.

In 2019, the band will be touring domestically and internationally to support its 25th Anniversary, and the group has announced plans to start
writing and recording new music in the year ahead.

Enter to win tickets to see Candlebox at the Roxian Theatre Oct. 20! Buy tickets here.

Tuesday, October 1, 2019

Posted By on Tue, Oct 1, 2019 at 12:23 AM

click to enlarge Jaylen Samuels #38 of the Pittsburgh Steelers celebrates his second half touchdown. - CP PHOTO: JARED WICKERHAM
CP Photo: Jared Wickerham
Jaylen Samuels #38 of the Pittsburgh Steelers celebrates his second half touchdown.
Hopefully the Steelers season ends the same way their 27-3 win over the Bengals did on Monday night. Down 3-0 early to the Cincinnati Bengals following a fumble made it seem like Pittsburgh would continue its losing streak. Luckily the defense stepped it up and kept the Bengals from scoring while their offense slowly figured out how to move the ball down the field. Some timely sacks and turnovers coupled with a run game that opened up in the second half between James Conner and Jaylen Samuels gave the Steelers its first win of the season, improving to 1-3 on the year so far.

The Steelers next game will be at home on Sunday against the Baltimore Ravens at 1 p.m.

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Monday, September 23, 2019

Posted By on Mon, Sep 23, 2019 at 4:00 PM

In the late summer of 2018, Sum 41 frontman Deryck Whibley stepped off the tour bus after three years of worldwide touring, turned on the console in his home studio, picked up a guitar, and started writing song after song.

Feeling incredibly inspired from 2016’s critically-acclaimed 13 Voices album and tour, Whibley feverishly started putting together songs from the cascade of ideas flying through his mind. Energy from some of the largest crowds the band had ever played in front of bred a multitude of ideas that Whibley had stockpiled and couldn’t wait to record.

Within three weeks, the majority of the music for the new album, Order In Decline, was written.

Win tickets to see Sum 41: Order in Decline tour at the Roxian Theatre on Tue., Oct. 1! Enter to win below. A winner will be picked Fri., Sept. 27.

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Thursday, September 19, 2019

Posted By on Thu, Sep 19, 2019 at 12:56 PM

click to enlarge “Nicest Neighbor” costume from Yandy - PHOTO: YANDY
Photo: Yandy
“Nicest Neighbor” costume from Yandy
Fall is on its way. The leaves are turning, there’s a chill in the air, and the lingerie and Halloween costume company Yandy has unveiled its latest line of dually offensive and confounding get-ups. If you’ve spent time on the internet around October, you probably heard of the company and their classic hits, including sexy Handmaid’s Tale and sexy DO NOT WEAR THIS EVER.

Yesterday, Twitter — especially Pittsburgh Twitter — was, as they say, aflame when it was reported that Yandy sexified one of the city’s most beloved figures – Mr. Rogers.

Twitter screenshot: @arbybeast
Twitter screenshot: @JessicaValenti
Twitter screenshot: @JasonIsbell
The “Nicest Neighbor” costume for women includes a white collar and tie, sans shirt, an ultra-cropped red cardigan, and grey booty shorts, all for the low, low price of *checks notes* $59.95? Instead of practical sneakers, the promo image suggests that the look would not be complete without white ruffle socks and pleather platform heels. As the website description states, you can also “entice your friends next door with your playful puppets” (sold separately), whatever that means.

As if that wasn’t enough, this tribute to a man who dedicated his life to making sure all children felt loved and accepted only comes in sizes S-L. So much for liking people just the way they are.

If you want to dress as the late children’s television icon/purest human being ever in a more accurate and far less expensive way, there’s the unisex “Be My Neighbor” costume kit, which comes with a grey vinyl wig and two hand puppets of Neighborhood of Make-Believe denizens King Friday and Daniel Tiger (sadly, they are not sexy).

This isn’t the first time Yandy took on PBS, lest we forget the company’s attempt to make you hot for happy little trees with its sexy Bob Ross costume.

Even with all this awfulness, I’m surprised Yandy showed restraint in not using Mr. McFeely as a euphemism. Maybe next Halloween.

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Sunday, September 15, 2019

Posted By on Sun, Sep 15, 2019 at 5:52 PM

click to enlarge Alejandro Villanueva #78 of the Pittsburgh Steelers sits on the bench in front of the cooling fans. - CP PHOTO: JARED WICKERHAM
CP Photo: Jared Wickerham
Alejandro Villanueva #78 of the Pittsburgh Steelers sits on the bench in front of the cooling fans.
The home opener for Pittsburgh started with an opponent most Steelers fans have good memories of — the Seattle Seahawks.

As a kid, I drove to Detroit with my mom in 2006 to be a part of the Super Bowl festivities. We didn't have tickets to the game, but that didn't keep us from enjoying everything else about it, especially the 21-10 victory over the Seattle Seahawks.

A much different team these days with Russell Wilson at the helm, the Steelers had a number of chances to pull out the win, but between Ben Roethlisberger giving the ball to backup quarterback Mason Rudolph for the entire second half due to injury, and the defense not able to contain the mobile quarterback on the other sideline, the team simply ran out of time for a comeback resulting in a 26-28 loss.

Pittsburgh plays at San Francisco for a 4:25 p.m. EST game next Sunday before returning home to play the Bengals for an ESPN Monday Night Football game.

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Saturday, September 14, 2019

Posted By on Sat, Sep 14, 2019 at 12:52 PM

click to enlarge Pittsburgh Tattoo Company at work on the tattoo chosen by Pittsburgh CIty Paper readers - CP PHOTO: JARED WICKERHAM
CP photo: Jared Wickerham
Pittsburgh Tattoo Company at work on the tattoo chosen by Pittsburgh CIty Paper readers
Earlier this week, readers were given the chance to pick which design our events and sponsorship manager Blake Lewis got tattooed on his leg. The winner? The plague doctor.

On Friday morning, as the line wrapped around the corner on Smithfield Street in Downtown, Pittsburgh Tattoo Company released a second flash sheet which included an illuminati design of an eyeball on a hand. Blake, being Blake, decided to get a second tattoo of the design on his opposite leg to balance the readers' choice.

Watch all the action from yesterday's event below:

Thursday, September 12, 2019

Posted By on Thu, Sep 12, 2019 at 2:52 PM

Slippery When Wet – The Ultimate Bon Jovi Tribute was formed in 2003 by Jason Morey after answering many inquiries of “Are you Jon Bon Jovi?”(Most notably, comedian Dave Chappelle invited Jason backstage following one of his comedy shows thinking that he was the New Jersey icon.)

It was then that Jason knew he had to take advantage of the resemblance.

Win four tickets to see their show at the Roxian Sept. 21! Enter below!

Get tickets and more information here.

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