By Alexis Soloski
By Molly Grogan
By R. C. Baker
By Christian Viveros-FaunÃ©
By Alexis Soloski
By Alexis Soloski
By Lilly Lampe
We'd like to see those fickle young knitters haul a loom onto the subway. Get ahead of the portable-crafts set with The Yarn Tree's beginning weaving class (718-384-8030, theyarntree.com) and whip up a scarf wide enough for a llama. Twisted fringes, fiber stalkswarp and woof what? Carla Blumenkranz
Rex Reed might beg to differ, but being a film critic isn't just about good looks and poise. Fortunately, NYU's (212-998-7171, scps.nyu.edu) "How to View and Talk About Movies Like a Critic" lets you in on those other two crucial components: viewing and talking. Not only will you learn how to spot doppelg motifs in Hitchcock's Shadow of a Doubt, but you can talk about it at dinner parties . . . like a critic! And since professor Kevin Allison is an alum of MTV's The State, he might impart some tips on cultivating a nostalgic Gen-X swagger, gratis.
So you took a writing workshop. In college. But wasted too much time. Hating on that chick. Who thought short sentences. And affected detachment. Made her Joan Didion. Out of lingering spite, take Makor's (212-601-1000, 92y.org) "Screenwriting" and write a Didion adaptation (maybe A Film of Common Prayer?) with lots of jump cuts. Didion's hot right now. Sell high.
Movies only exist for two reasons, neither of which can be printed in this family paper. But if we still pretend it's all about the Academy Awards, why not study Oscar's history? At the New School's (212-229-5690, nsu.newschool.edu) "The Oscars," you can rehash the Rocky versus Taxi Driver debate, and even become the Zen dude who asks: Wouldn't it be awesome if Billy Crystal were nominated for an award on a night when he's hosting? Akiva Gottlieb
My idea of an investment is purchasing old books and records, but there are some out there who view things a little differently. The 92nd Street Y's "90-Minute Financial Lobotomy" (212-415-5500, 92y.org) offers a "surprisingly simple" approach to money management based on the premise that "becoming wealthy isn't brain surgery." March 29.
For me, the cell phone with a calculator was the invention of the century. The more mathematically inclined might want to sign up for NYU's School of Continuing and Professional Studies' "Fundamentals of Individual Investing" (212-998-7200, scps.nyu.edu). Learn how to manage a portfolioand be able to definitively answer what, exactly, the Dow Jones Industrial Average is. Classes begin February 1.
Perhaps it's because I am half Irish, but my superstitious proclivity has escalated to the point where just the sight of a ladder freaks me out. If you're like me, sign up for the Learning Annex's "Money Magic: Learn How to Attract Riches" (212-371-0280, learningannex.com). In addition to learning how to hypnotize yourself, you'll also learn the "secret to all financial and personal success the spiritual 'law' of contributing." Classes start January 16 and February 13. Jessie Pascoe
Has it been a while since high school civics class? The New School's "Government and Politics in the United States" (212-229-5630, nsu.newschool.edu) reacquaints you with the Constitution, political institutions, media, and interest groups that dominate domestic- and foreign-policy issues. At least with this class you won't become another statistic testifying to American stupidity. Classes begin January 26.
If your New Year's resolution involves moving beyond wine in a box, go one step further and attend the "Romantic Wines of Romania" event (mic-associates.com) at the St. Regis Hotel on February 16. You'll learn the difference between a Murfatlar and a Reh-Kendermann, and sample other bottles from the land of Dracula for free!
So you're stuck at another boring dinner party when the topic turns to politics. Thankfully you attended the World Policy Institute Forum (212-229-5808, worldpolicy.org). Floating flawlessly from the topic of how to redefine our foreign policy post-Bush, you segue into Mexico's perilous presidential election. Before dessert arrives you've single-handedly turned this yawnfest into a dynamic, invigorating soirée. Sessions start February 9 and are $5 each. Jessie Pascoe
Can't deal with another silently awkward cab drive? Transform it into a moment of social eloquence with a class in Punjabi. Offered by Columbia's School of Continuing Education (212-854-9224, ce.columbia.edu), you'll study the Gurmukhi script. Classes for all Continuing Ed courses start January 17.
They say that to be a true New Yorker, you have to live here for 10 years. As an additional prerequisite, I would add the frequent use of Yiddish phrases and expletives. Don't freteven though your grandma didn't come from the Old Country, the 92nd Street Y's "Beginning Yiddish" (212-415-5500, 92y.org) will have you kvetching like you've been kvetching for years. As an added bonus you will become versed in Yiddish songs. Classes begin February 6.
So you're at another lame party. Your friend that you came with is across the room. Thankfully the two of you enrolled in the New School's "Introduction to Sign Language" (212-229-5630, newschool.edu) class and can signal, "Let's roll." Become fluent in the third-most-used language in the U.S. (Spanish is so last year.) Classes begin January 24 and 26. Jessie Pascoe