have you had your dojo mojo today?

Wednesday, June 29, 2005


We know about the Macy's fireworks, which can be seen from Liberty State Park, on the 4th of July.

But did you know that Annual Cycle Messenger World Championship will be rolling through Chilltown on July 2nd and 3rd? We've recently learned that the CMWC attacts the craziest bike messengers [redundant, we know] from around the world, so brace yourselves and keep your camera with you at all times this weekend!

Here's the schedule and the racecourse:

Also worth mentioning is the FreedomFest, a concert featuring jazz, rock and blues, slated for July 4th at 6:30-8:30 PM. This is sure to warm us up for the fireworks, which begins at 9:20 PM. Carpooling and early arrival are highly recommended if you wish to secure a good spot at the Green Ring section of the park.

Monday, June 27, 2005


According to the 2000 Census, Filipinos are the second largest API [Asian Pacific Islander] population in the United States, with the majority residing in California, New York, and New Jersey. Here in the garden state, nearly a quarter million Filipinos have chosen to live in -- you guessed it -- chilltown JC!

In case you were wondering, that is the Phlippine flag that has been displayed
along with the American flag in front of City Hall

Each summer, JC comes alive and proudly boasts its multicultural makeup through numerous weekend parades and festivals. As mentioned in this week's calendar, Exchange Place was the site of this year's Philippine-American Friendship parade and festival. Sure, the theme was Philippine-American Friendship, but yesterday's parade and festival seemed more of a celebration of the Filipinos' multiethnic and multicultural heritage. The faces are as colorful as the traditional dress, and the food is the amalgam of Malay, Spanish, American and Chinese cuisines.

The highlights of yesterday's festivities were the parade, which included among others, Mayor Healy dressed in the native Barong Tagalog, and the Fashion de Manila, which featured modernized versions of the Barong and the Terno, the national costumes for men and women, respectively.

Here are the photos, in case you missed out on all the fun. By the way, all photos are
©2005 Dojo Mojo. Be nice. Don't steal.


Exchange Place: the scene of the crime

It sure didn't rain on their parade

Flower girls

Flower boys

It wouldn't be a parade without the pretty pageant girls

Not to be overlooked: Mrs. Philippines

Grand macdaddy float with the token Caucasian dude

Healy with his posse


Sunday, June 26, 2005


A small part of me has always wanted to run away and join the carnival, and through the creative efforts of the Carnival of the New Jersey Bloggers, I can finally say I have.

Thanks to EnlightenNJ for giving birth to the idea, Riehl World View for hosting this week's carnival, and lest I forget, Tillie for being our mascot -- each one of you has made my dream come true!

Now excuse me whilst I practice my double-jointed acrobatic act.

Saturday, June 25, 2005


It is currently 94°F in chilltown JC, and despite our little moniker, we like to keep things hot, hot hott around here!

We recommend the following events in and around town:


The Annual Philippine American Friendship Day Festival
Parade starts at 10:00 AM at Lincoln Park
and ends at Exchange Place
All day street festival at Exchange Place features food, live music, artwork and other performances


The Rebecca Vallejo Project
Live band featuring salsa, merengue, Brazilian jazz
Comfort Bistro
295 Grove Street
6:00 PM
$3 minimum donation suggested


Music at the Fountain
Journal Square
Jazz! Latin! Soul!

The sounds of music fill the air during the Fountain Entertainment Series. Local musicians privide multicultural music for your lunchtime pleasure. Funded in cooperation with Provident Bank, the Jersey City Economic Development Corporation and New Jersey's Urban Enterprise Zone Authority.


Words and Music @ The Waterbug Hotel
Every Thursday night
10:30 PM - 1:30 AM
Waterbug Hotel Annex
7 Erie Street


JUNE 12 - JULY 21
Liberty Science Center Welcomes the Heart Gallery
Free Photo Exhibit Access Daily from 9:00 AM – 5:30 PM

Come to Liberty Science Center June 12– July 21 in
Liberty State Park to see the debut of one of the most important photographic projects undertaken in recent years.

Thanks to time donated by 150 award-winning professional photographers, 15 photo editors and scores of other volunteers, poignant portraits of New Jersey children available for adoption will be on view at the science center. The photographic subjects are children who may be considered hard to place because they are over three years old and/or are siblings that need to stay together.



I've been meaning to see JC's own American Watercolor Movement for some time now, and I thought, what better time to check them out than this evening's event?

Although the five-band lineup tonight was reduced to three, the artists who did perform this evening more than compensated for those who were absent. First up was Han Shot First, whose funky bluesy rock warmed me up for the evening. They were followed by Kukurudu, a percussionist and belly-dancer duo who truly do deliver an "electrifying explosion of drums, percussion, dance and energy." While the hostess extraordinaire Christine Goodman and her co-host raffled off the last set of prizes, I wondered how the next performer could possibly top the last set. Nothing could have prepared me for the American Watercolor Movement, whose music I shall refrain from attempting to describe, and will instead point you to Tris McCall's review.

Although I didn't win the Ipod Mini or the $100 Best Buy gift certificate, this evening's event definitely surpassed my expectations. Good times.

I wish Arthouse Productions the best of luck and look forward to their future projects.

Han Shot First


American Watercolor Movement

American Watercolor Movement

The illustrious Christine Goodman with Chilltown editor and her co-host

Friday, June 24, 2005


Responding to the rumor that an erotic massage parlor exists above a certain well-known food establishment, and consequently being attacked and called a "snitch" for her contention that the authorities be notified, a certain member of a local website responded


I see nothing but a bunch of Hippocracy on this board and with regards to this subject, hey come on theres bigger and worse fish to fry than what 2 consenting adults do regardless if money is exchanged or not !!

JC Insomniac reminds me of the class snitch who got Her jollys off by telling on the students who were 'acting Up",you know like that classic Teacher's pet !!!



Hippocracy -- is that like a state governed by hippos (hippopotami)?

Call me a snitch and trivialize the issue all you want, but the truth of the matter is that (if there is even any truth to this rumor to begin with):

1) Erotic massages are legally a form of prostitution

2) Prostitution is illegal in NJ

3) Many of the asian women in these so-called massage parlors that provide "happy endings" are victims of human trafficking and are under some form of indentured servitude or modern-day slavery

Oh, and by the way, New Jersey is cracking down on prostitution taking place through escort businesses and massage parlors under "Operation Risky Business."

The only hypocrisy [yes, that is how it's spelled] I see around here is from the likes of you who expect politicians and the law enforcement agency to combat crimes such as drug-dealing, vagrancy, public intoxication and failure to curb their pets, yet turn the other way in other issues such as this one.

Read the article below on a recent crackdown on massage parlors right here in New Jersey:

Prostitution crackdown nets 14 in S. Jersey

Escort services and massage parlors were targeted in a statewide effort.

By Sam Wood

The Philadelphia Inquirer Staff Writer

A statewide crackdown on New Jersey's illicit-sex industry has uncovered evidence of human trafficking and ties to organized crime, authorities said yesterday.

Escort services and massage parlors throughout the state were targeted during the last month as part of a state police investigation dubbed "Operation Risky Business."

Fourteen residents of Camden and Gloucester Counties were among those caught in the troopers' dragnet.

At one end of the spectrum was a Cherry Hill escort service that offered to fly women nationwide and charged $350 an hour for their services. On the other end was a small out-call service in Lindenwold that even its 80-year-old madam described as "bargain basement," according to troopers.

"This is just the tip of the iceberg," said Detective Sgt. Jim Fish, the leader of the state police organized crime unit. "We're expecting to close down a lot more as we go forward."

Fish said the investigation began in earnest in April after the force's Narcotics and Organized Crime Bureau received numerous anonymous letters from local residents and complaints from police departments.

In all, five escort services and nine massage parlors were raided across the state and at least temporarily shut down. More than 40 people have been arrested. Investigators said they were eyeing 156 more sex-related businesses.

A woman arrested in one of the raids told troopers she had been smuggled into the country by a Chinese crime organization that charged her $30,000 to be brought to New Jersey through Mexico. Though she has paid off her staggering debt, now she fears for the well-being of her family, Fish said.

"They have her family under surveillance," Fish said. "They've been threatened already and now fear for their lives. Her situation is unique."

Also arrested were college students from New Jersey and Virginia who worked for one escort service and many full-time professionals who lived in small apartments behind the massage parlors where they worked, Fish said.

Investigators have confiscated tens of thousands of dollars but say they believe that computer records and videotapes will provide them with invaluable information.

"Many of their clients can expect to receive grand jury subpoenas," said Lt. Jim Simpkins, who heads the Organized Crime Bureau. "They may even be charged with fraud and tax evasion if they charged the services to their credit cards and deducted the expenses on their tax returns."

Among those arrested locally and charged with promoting prostitution were John Esposito, 48, of Shamong, owner of Heavenly Bodies in Cherry Hill; Vera Tursi, 80, of Lindenwold, owner of August Playmates; Jung Soon Kasperowicz, 44, of Atco, who ran Physical Studio and Greentree Rainbow, both in Evesham; and Margaret Cook, 67, of Gloucester Township, who ran Mam'selle de Paris, according to police.

They have been released on summonses.

Thursday, June 23, 2005


The sun is shining, the bands are playing -- it's a great time to come out and support the arts at Art House Productions' benefit party!

Art House Productions invites you to the
Sponsored by Chilltown Magazine
186 Grand St. at Marin Blvd, Jersey City
(10 min. from NYC near Grove St. PATH)

Featuring Live Musical Performances By:

*Tickets only $7*

Plus Middle Eastern Cuisine and Raffle Prizes

For more information, please visithttp://www.arthouseproductions.org/ or call (201) 915-9911

***********The purpose of the event is to raise money for "The HeistProject," Art House Productions' multimedia theatricalpresentation scheduled to be staged in November 2005.

Based on the convergence of two true stories, "The HeistProject" is a collage of still art, poetry, live theater and musicexploring the value society places on its art and artists.
In 1990, the theft of thirteen works by artists such as Rembrandt, Degas and Vermeer from the Isabella Stuart Gardner Museum in Boston, Massachusetts shocked the world. And, because Ms. Gardner's will stipulated that the museum could not be altered after her death, thegallery walls remain bare today, a poignant testament to the great loss. One man who claims to know where the art is being held poses this question to the FBI: Is it more important to punish someone for the crime or to getthe art back?

In 2005, Jersey City, NJ is undergoing a massive social and economic shift. For decades, professional artists have inhabited the cluster of warehouses-turned-studios known as the Powerhouse Arts District (PAD) and have championed the arts in Jersey City, celebrating diversity and collaboration with citywide events such as the annual JerseyCity Artists Studio Tour. During the recent period, property development has led to demolition in the PAD, resulting in loss, displacement and questions about the future of art in America's burgeoning cities.

MORE INFO AT: www.arthouseproductions.org

Directions to Victory Hall:Take the PATH train towards Journal Square or Newark to the GROVE ST. STOP (2nd in NJ)PATH stations in NYC at:World Trade Center, 33rd St/6th Ave, 23rd St./6th Ave, 14th St/6th Ave.,9th St./6th Ave., Christopher St./Greewich Ave
When you get out of the train, go up the stairs and take the exit WITHOUT the escalator
Walk straight to MARIN BLVD. and make a right Victory Hall is 6 blocks down on the left 186 Grand St. at Marin Blvd., 3rd Floor

Creating Performance, Broadcast and Publishing Opportunities for Artists
P.O. Box 3264Jersey City, NJ 07302
(201) 915-9911

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

C is for Cookie Curfew and Crown Fried Chicken

Earlier this year, JC implemented a business curfew in high crime areas that are designated "late night hangouts of street toughs and rowdies," the most [in]famous of which is the Crown Fried Chicken spot on Communipaw in Lafayette. Many applauded the ordinance, but some feared that it would hurt mom and pop businesses and ultimately cause them to close their doors due to lost revenue.

Either way, since I hadn't braved the Crown parking lot in all the years I've lived here, I thought I'd park my car there once and for all (instead of gunning it down Communipaw like I normally do) and try their chicken and ribs before they go out of business.

It was about 8 o'clock on a Thursday evening and while there were some teens hanging out across the street, the parking lot was virtually empty, save for 2 other parked cars. In the lobby were three young women and one older man, all of whom were waiting for their respective orders from the two women behind the bullet-proof windows. In about eight minutes, I was back in my car, driving east to DoJo with my two sacks of chicken and ribs.

So, was it worth risking my life to sample their chicken and ribs? Hell fuckin' yeah! Crown sure knows their fried chicken, but I'd have to say that the ribs were a disappointment. Next time (that is, if they're still in business the next time I get around that area), I'll just stick with the fried chicken, hold the BBQ ribs and hold the stray bullets, please!

Sunday, June 12, 2005

Popular JC Goals

Goals Popular in Jersey City

  1. learn to write music
  2. own a used bookstore
  3. improve my piano playing
  4. Buy investment property
  5. watch more foreign films
  6. build a log cabin
  7. join a gym
  8. get things done
  9. learn greek
  10. Get an MBA
  11. Go to Mardi Gras
  12. learn to play the violin
  13. pay off my credit cards
  14. take better pictures
  15. Get (or renew) a passport
  16. Get all my mp3's properly tagged
  17. live in New York City
  18. relax
  19. Get a digital SLR camera
  20. learn german
I added my goals. If you are from JC, whu don't you add yours?

Saturday, June 11, 2005

Majestic, Indeed

Bar Majestic and Majestic Liquors and Foods, the wine and spirits store with a cozy wine bar situated in the old Majestic Theatre across the street from City Hall, transforms from a quiet, romantic date location from early- to mid-week, to a buzzing, crowded nightspot on the weekends.

We've been going there regularly since it opened a few months ago. The service has consistently been friendly and efficient, and the prices very reasonable. You can sample from the changing wine menu at $2-3 per portion, order a glass from $5-8, or invest in a bottle for a mere $15-25. If you're not in the mood for wine, you can order cocktails and some tapas. Either way, you won't be disappointed.

Friday, June 10, 2005

Calling on Tris McCall

Tris is a local artist who has been writing and singing about all things Jersey City longer than I have been writing this blog. He was recently featured in the New York Times, and is appearing in tonight's installment of the Coffeehouse Series at the Hudson County Courthouse.

If you miss tonight's performance, you can keep up with his adventures on the Tris McCall Report.