Christmas craziness in NYC

Venture out shopping or otherwise in New York City this time of year and you might encounter ad hoc bicycle art, drunk and disorderlies, crazy marketing ploys and extreme sugar highs. The city that never sleeps ratchets its energy up just a little more than usual. It makes me sorry I’ll be away over Christmas, and calls for obnoxious HTML borders. Check out:

Decorated bicycle manifesto

Bike decorated with wreath, candycanes & manifesto

Dear Bike, I want a Santa for Christmas sign

Bike with pink Santas and cranberries

Bike covered in teddy bear fur

Gluten free desserts at Eataly

Gluten free desserts at Eataly

When I stopped by Eataly yesterday there were only two gluten free desserts, mini chocolate and hazelnut cakes (Tortina Tenerina and Torta di Noccioli), but earlier in the week about half of the offerings were GF. With this dietary restriction becoming more widespread, I think these would be an impressive and considerate addition to your holiday party. On Monday they had Tortino Dama, a hazelnut gianduja-filled sandwich cookie, three kinds of tiramisu, chocolate mousse and panna cotta. The secret must be out so I’d recommend calling ahead on availability.

Free samples at Shake Shack

Shake Shack peanut butter hot chocolate

Shake Shack brought out a tray of hot chocolate samples, peanut butter and regular, for people shivering in line. I chose the peanut butter hot chocolate and I have one word for it: YES. It tasted like a melted peanut butter cup. At least in the small sample cup, it didn’t have an overwhelming, death-hastening richness. I know it was a sales initiative but I felt a bit special and, dare I say, happy. It doesn’t take much.

Madison Square Park marketing stunts

Duracell Help Power 2011 promotion

Duracell actually came up with a pretty interesting promotion. I was enticed inside the truck/tent by the offer of free batteries. Inside, people were generating pedal power (and having pictures taken and emailed to them) on recumbent bikes. Their action charged a giant battery that will light up the Times Square 2011 numerals. Smart and “actionable” PR—people were excited to be a part of something tangible and famous. I took advantage of the docking lockers to power up my iPod.

Family wrapped as Christmas presents

Old Navy is doing a promotion in the park today and tomorrow where you can have “Awkward Holiday Photos” taken with stupid props. I hate to admit it, but this appeals to my ironic hipster side.

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  1. […] sample cup of peanut butter hot chocolate […]

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