Have you ever thought about quitting your job and pursing what you truly love? If so, what would that dream job be? Maybe you want to start an animal sanctuary, or build a house shaped like a beagle, or open a store for left-handed people. Is it money that’s holding you back? prAna, a California-based sustainable clothing company that sells apparel containing recycled content, hemp, and organic fibers, wants to give one lucky dreamer $100,000 to quit their job and make a leap into the unknown.
“The goal of this promotion is to spread our ‘Clothing for Positive Change’ philosophy,” Jeff Haack, prAna’s vice president of global marketing, said in a press release. “By asking the question, ‘How can prAna help you affect positive change in your life?,’ we are giving our audience a means to share their stories about what positive change looks like for them.”
To enter the promotion, rules state applicants must be at least 21 years old. While you shouldn’t quit your job just because you entered, whoever wins the contest will be asked to quit their current job and pursue their dream job—and to generate updates along the way.
Applicants should submit a video that’s between 30 and 180 seconds long and describe their current gig and what their dream job would entail. Originality is key, so prAna encourages entrants to show their “passion in action.” For instance, an aspiring filmmaker could share a sample of their work while a pastry chef might want to show off some dishes they’ve made.
A panel of judges will review the videos and judge them on the quality of submission, originality, boldness, personality, and passion/enthusiasm. Applicants have between now and September 16, 2019 to submit, and prAna will announce the winner around October 17.
If $100,000 seems like a lot of money to win at once, there’s a caveat: the money will be doled out in four quarterly installments over a year. The winner can expect the first installment in November 2019 and the last installment in November 2020. If you’ve ever wanted to transform your daydreams into reality, here’s your chance. Click here for the full list of rules, and to enter.
Jonah Hill has dropped his coffee. We repeat: Famous actor, writer, and director Jonah Hill, while strolling down the street unawares, dropped his coffee. Normally, this would not be noteworthy, but two facts come together to make it so. The first is that Hill is a celebrity and the second, related to the first, is that being a celebrity means he’s photographed so incessantly that the exact split-second when the coffee dropped from his hand has been captured in an entrancing image.
Here, see for yourself:
This photo is beautiful in its simplicity. Hill is captured, stoic in all-black, sunglasses, and AirPods, as he surveys a city street, holding the lid of a coffee cup as it begins to detach and plummet to the ground. He is not aware this is happening yet, but will be in the immediate future when his pant legs are splashed and his chance to enjoy the coffee snatched away by the cruel whims of cup physics. To the side, a woman in sandals smiles serenely as if she knows what’s about to happen. The same photo, taken a moment earlier or later, would be disposable. By some stroke of fortune, however, a masterpiece is born.
Amidst people tweeting the picture with captions like “MOOD” and “rip,” artists have sought to recreate a moment of impending disaster with illustrations based on it. @krartkat made their drawing into a sticker that, if stared at long enough, allows the viewer to meditate on the fickle nature of happiness.
Jen Lewis translates Hill’s fateful moment (and, crucially, the woman standing next to him, who frames the piece) into a watercolor painting. Lewis guides us through her process, from the initial spark of creative energy through to the finished work.
It isn’t surprising that the photo has captured so many imaginations. Even if it wasn’t Jonah Hill, celebrity, holding the coffee cup, the image is striking. Who among us has not dropped a cup, after all? Who among us, confident that we’ve conquered the ability to hold objects, hasn’t had those skills fail us spectacularly, losing an imminent battle against gravity? Truly, the picture speaks to the universal experience of stupid accidents happening to our stupid selves.
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Softbank Robotics has announced it is working on a Tokyo cafe that will be run by its humanoid robot Pepper.
The cafe, called Pepper Parlor, will utilise both human and robot staff to serve customers, and marks the company’s first time operating a restaurant or cafe.
“[The] aim is to create a space where people can easily experience the coexistence of people and robots and enjoy the evolution of robots and the future of living with robots,” Softbank Robotics said.
“We want to make robots not only for convenience and efficiency, but also to expand the possibilities of people and bring happiness.”
Pepper Parlor, according to Softbank Robotics, will provide customers with a waffle-inspired menu, with the waffle items to be influenced by countries around the world.
The robot-run cafe will be located at Tokyu Plaza Shibuya and is set to open in December next year.
When SoftBank first offered 1,000 of its emotionally intelligent Pepper robots to the consumer market in 2015, the entire run sold out in under a minute.
Pepper was developed for SoftBank by Aldebaran, a French robotics company specialising in emotionally intelligent humanoids that can function in unstructured environments like homes, shops, and specialised care facilities.
Turns out the rush to automate the air travel experience may be missing the point, and that’s a big lesson for robotics companies.
Public-facing corporations that want to appear innovative are turning to gimmicky robot assistants.
Japan’s education ministry will deploy 500 English-speaking robots to the country’s schools from next year, with the aim of improving students’ English-speaking skills, according to NHK.
Researchers claim that Pepper was commercialized before it was ready, and that ‘the manufacturer extensively neglected any sort of security assessments.’
After Rodolfo Perez immigrated to the United States from the Dominican Republic, he spent several years working in a garment factory in New York City’s Hell’s Kitchen neighborhood. Today, the sharp-dressed, strapping Perez runs a Dominican eatery in the same factory’s elevator vestibule, serving the very workers he once labored alongside.
He calls it “a family restaurant.” He bought what was once the building’s hamburger stand and opened Acuario Cafe in 1991. “I used to work in the factory, so I decided to [sell my food at] a cheaper price for the people working,” he told Gothamist. At the start, he sold hefty plates of rich Latin classics such as carne guisada, pollo guisado, and customer favorite rabo guisado, an oxtail stew, over a bed of rice and beans for $3.50. Almost 30 years later, he sells the same plates for only a few dollars more.
The weekday lunchtime crowd regularly snakes out the door to the service-entrance hallway and around the corner. A confounding mix of construction workers, businesspeople, and parking lot attendants wait patiently for Perez’s plates while deliverymen push past, rolling oversized carts of textiles in and out of the building. While the surrounding neighborhood has changed drastically, many of the customers are regulars of 10 or more years who still patronize the cafe regularly.
Know Before You Go
The cafe is closed on weekends.
Seattle is a town that leaves that doesn’t leave those looking to eat and drink well in want. It’s a city that checks all the boxes. Dining, coffee, cocktails, natural wine, Seattle has it all. And with the new Mr. West Coffee Bar in the University Village shopping complex, they are all under one roof.
Featuring coffee from Campos and a rotating guest roaster, Mr. West is home to not one but two brand new La Marzocco KB90s—because what’s even the point of new tech if you can’t have two of them—that anchor their coffee program. But it’s not just coffee. Mr. West’s version of the always popular all-day cafe model includes a little splash of the natty juice to go with a list of amaros, spritzes, and classic cocktails. There’s food too, but what’s the point when you can just drink your breakfast… and lunch and dinner? So sidle up to the bar, be it coffee or adult beverage oriented, we’re checking out Mr. West Coffee Bar in Seattle, Washington.
As told to Sprudge by Henri Schock.
For those who aren’t familiar, will you tell us about your company?
Henri and Soni Davé-Schock, Mr. West owners, revolutionized the Seattle food and drink scene when they opened their first venue in 2015. A unique part of their appeal is Mr. West’s seamless transition between a cafe serving breakfast and brunch in the morning and afternoon, to a bar serving artisanal bar snacks, drinks, and cocktails late into the night. Regardless of the time of day, maintaining approachability and building relationships in a casual yet elevated environment underscores Mr West’s distinct style and take on hospitality.
The concept takes inspiration from European cafe culture, one in which a well made espresso, a glass of wine, a pint of beer, and a delicious snack are commonplace. Our broad, personal stroke is to wrap it all up in a verdant and contemporary environment (perfect for Instagramming!). It’s the perfect balance and dichotomy of intimate yet boisterous, casual yet refined—what Mr. West does best. Mr. West serves as a favorite daily gathering point for all who enjoy exceptional drinks, food, and conversation. We strive to create an atmosphere where people can connect for social engagements, work meetings, and casual drinks. Developing a sense of community to gather and enjoy the best coffee, wine, beer, cheese, and charcuterie Seattle has to offer is our gold standard.
In this cleverly designed space, one can truly select an experience for any desired adventure. We invite everyone to “Go West” with us and come see what the new location has to offer—morning, noon, and night.
Can you tell us a bit about the new space?
Bordering a central courtyard, Mr. West University Village has multiple entrances and a “choose your own adventure” customer experience. Bring yourself and your laptop or roll up with friends after strolling through the shopping village. We love to be accommodating in both our service style and offerings. At the South entrance, guests are presented with several outdoor seating options. Cozy up to the outdoor fireplace, or lounge under the trellised porch with a curated and lush plant selection for a truly Pacific Northwest vibe. Upon entering, our affable baristas greet you from dual espresso machines with carefully curated coffee and tea offerings. Our selection of coffees from featured quarterly guest roasters and partnered roaster, Campos, provide a variety of single origin espressos and blends, or one may imbibe a thoughtfully handcrafted coffee cocktail. At the North entrance, patrons will be greeted with a more intimate façade sprinkled with bistro tables. Entering through the charming double doors, one can sidle up to the wine bar, fashioned from handsome materials of tile, quartz and wood, and sip custom cocktails made from wine-based spirits and aperitifs.
What’s your approach to coffee?
Founded by owners Henri Schock and Soni Dave-Schock in 2015, MrWEST Cafe Bar opened its first location in a 1969 retrofitted office building in the Denny Triangle neighborhood, one of Seattle’s emerging neighborhoods—just blocks from Paramount Theatre, the Seattle Convention center, several hotels, Flagship Nordstrom’s, and Amazonian South Lake Union growth. Mr. West Cafe Bar serves as a casual and refined environment in the bustling downtown Seattle area for all that enjoy exceptional drinks, food, and conversation. As a neighborhood cafe, wine shop, and bar, all conveniently wrapped in one space—Mr. West a handsome and comfortable environment that feels good to be in morning, noon, and night.
Mr. West provides the best in high quality coffee service, as well as fresh and local foods made daily. Our staff is comprised of coffee experts, which in turn offer our customers the resources, knowledge, and information for whatever they choose to drink. Our coffees are all sourced from renowned roasters from the west coast and around the US. We also partner with our favorite local roasters to create custom roasted Mr. West blends for every season. All coffees are thoughtfully sourced, mindfully fostered relationships with artisans. We feature seasonal syrups and lattes made from in-house original recipes and offer coffee-based cocktails. We make all our standard syrups (chocolate, vanilla, caramel) in-house as well using local and outstanding ingredients to make sure our guests’ experiences are exceptional each time.
We aim to provide guests with an elevated cafe experience, and the key to success with our coffee program is offering guests prompt and friendly service, all while keeping quality at the highest standard. We understand the importance of time for our guests and strive every day to offer a consistent, value-driven, and streamlined experience. Mr. West’s main competitive advantage is honing in on that experience, maintaining approachability, and building relationships in a casual yet elevated environment.
Any machines, coffees, special equipment lined up?
Complimenting the stylish interior and layout that has made Mr. West a mainstay of the Seattle cafe and bar scene, we have two (yes two) La Marzocco KB90 machines, the first such machines to be installed in the US. Alongside these beautiful machines we have six Anfim SP II grinders (running multiple blends and single origins at a time). We also have a Marco SP9 to feature single origin pour-over. We also set up our espresso bar differently from others we have seen in the the US. It would be great to chat over the phone to discuss our setup, as it is super unique.
How is your project considering sustainability?
We compost and recycle all our coffee products.
What’s your hopeful target opening date/month?
August 3rd, 2019
Are you working with craftspeople, architects, and/or creatives that you’d like to mention?
We have an in-house graphics and interior architecture firm that does all of branding and design. RCL Design is the firm’s name, and is responsible for all creative projects within the business.
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