MEAAAAT! MEAT, MEAT, MEAT! Ever since I stopped buying meat to save money on groceries, any sort of eating establishment with the word meat in the title lures me in like a mosquito to one of those mosquito zapping contraptions. I also really like deli sandwiches for some reason, so when I heard that the old school Italian folks at Graham Ave Meats & Deli make a great Italian hero, I knew I had to walk the six or so blocks over from my apartment to check it out.
Welcome to Part 1 of several Q&A’s with various entrepreneurial journalists that I’ll be posting throughout the semester. First up is fellow Brooklyn-based blogger Tim Donnelly who, among other things, is one of the editors of Brokelyn, a Brooklyn-centric site for us poor folk that I also write for. As a recent J-school grad (’04), he has a lot of interesting things to say about what journalism has become and what it’s going to be like in the future. Also, heed his advice for upcoming graduates. Stuff is good. You can also check out his Twitter and personal blog here and here.
How was Brokelyn established?
Faye Penn, the founder of Brokelyn, found herself with an unexpected inheritance from a cab driver she wrote a newspaper profile about many years ago. The two stayed in touch but when the cab driver died, she left a large sum of money to Faye. Faye (who was also out of a job at the time) decided to do something helpful with the money — we were entering the hard times of the recession right about then, and everyone was feeling down in the dumps. The idea was to counteract all the pessimism in the world about the economic situation: everyone has plenty of places to go to gripe, but where can they go to pick themselves up and improve their situation? The money allowed Faye to create a great looking site, buy up the domain names and kickstart the whole thing with a staff of interns culled from Craigslist. From there, it was an almost instant hit.