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Author

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Volume 1, Number 28 FREE East and West Village, Lower East Side, Soho, Noho, Little Italy and Chinatown February 3 - 9, 2011

Cooper Sq. at ‘tipping point’ ‘It’ll never happen


again,’ bar owner
as 1825 building faces demo tells protesters
BY ALBERT AMATEAU BY JEFFERSON SIEGEL but is known to most as just
Preservation advocates gathered Members of a group Trigger.
in front of 35 Cooper Square on accusing the Continental Trigger joined the dem-
Friday afternoon demanding that the bar of a racist door policy onstrators on the sidewalk
Landmarks Preservation Commission gathered outside the Third for most of their 90-min-
protect the early-19th-century, Federal- Ave. watering hole again ute protest. At first dancing
style building by giving it landmark last Saturday night. Despite along to their chants, he
designation. bitter-cold weather, how- also spent a half-hour talk-
L.P.C., however, has said the build- ever, there were signs of a ing with a woman who said
ing has been too altered by the addition thaw in relations between she was previously denied
of a brownstone coating to its facade the ANSWER (Act Now to entry to the bar.
to qualify as architecturally eligible for Stop War and End Racism) The protests grew from
historic designation. Coalition, the protest’s orga- an incident last June when
For the past decade, the building nizer, and the bar’s owner,
was the location of Cooper 35 Asian who goes by Trigger Smith, Continued on page 2
Pub — a bar popular with New York
University and Cooper Union students.
Last November, 35 Cooper Square and
its adjoining space at the corner of E.
Sixth St. were purchased for $8.5 mil-
U.F.T. prez, C.B. 1:
lion by Bhatia Development, an orga-
nization that intends to demolish the New projects must
building. Indeed, the Asian Pub served
its last drink on Saturday night Jan. 22
and closed for good.
factor in students
Last Friday’s rally, led by David said, has created and perpet-
Mulkins, chairperson of the Bowery BY ALINE REYNOLDS uated many of the problems
Alliance of Neighbors, or BAN, included United Federation of that are plaguing public
Assemblymember Deborah Glick and Teachers President Michael schools in Lower Manhattan
state Senator Tom Duane, as well as pres- Mulgrew is just as fed up and around the city.
ervation leaders Simeon Bankoff, execu- with the city’s Department “We cannot allow this
tive director of the Historic Districts of Education as some really unscrupulous, disgust-
Council, and Andrew Berman, execu- Downtown education activ- ing behavior to stop us from
tive director of the Greenwich Village ists are. School overcrowd- being a part of the work that
Society for Historic Preservation. ing, standardized testing and might help us help children
“This is one of the most signifi- Photo by J.B. Nicholas student teacher evaluations in the long run,” Mulgrew
cant buildings on this street,” said
Mulkins. “If we lose this building,
Cooper Square loses a much earlier
Gal Friday helps Ray party were among the union presi-
dent’s main talking points at
a special forum Community
told the local parents and
activists at the forum.
Mulgrew became union
sense of its history,” he added. Mulkins Gal Friday gave Ray (standing behind the counter) of Ray’s Candy Store Board 1 held last Wednesday president in August 2009.
referred to the recently built 20-story on Avenue A a special treat Tuesday night at his 78th birthday party. She evening at the Museum of He previously taught English
Cooper Square Hotel across E. Sixth shimmied on his countertop, and stripped down to a fringed G-string and Jewish Heritage, in Battery
St. from the site, saying, “If we have black pasties with tassels — which she twirled expertly. “Oh, beautiful!” Park City. D.O.E., Mulgrew Continued on page 10
this kind of out-of-scale, out-of-context Ray said, then twirled her a delicious vanilla egg cream. Speaking of
development, we will destroy the sense hot, Ray’s latest offering — beignets — are selling like hotcakes, well,
of place that we get in these historic mini-hotcakes. “I want to make funnel cake next,” he said.
neighborhoods.” He noted that the
EDITORIAL,
Bowery was one of the world’s most not be designated because it has been East Village preservationist, carried a LETTERS
renowned neighborhoods. altered,” he went on. “Of course it was poster reminding passersby that the PAGE 14
“The Bowery that has been known altered, it’s more than 100 years old.” poet Diane diPrima and the singer Liza
over the centuries is vanishing before our Demonstrators waved signs saying, Minnelli once lived in the building.
eyes,” Bankoff said. “At this point we “Build Memories, Not Luxury Hotels,” Jim Power, 62, “The Mosaic Man,”
SCOOPY GOES
have to say, Stop. and displayed photos showing the who transformed lampposts all over the EGYPTIAN
“The Landmarks Preservation neighborhood as it was at the turn of PAGE 3
Commission said this building can- the last century. Carolyn Ratcliffe, an Continued on page 4

145 SIXTH AVENUE • NYC 10 013 • COPYRIGHT © 2011 COMMUNITY M E D I A , L L C


2 Februar y 3 - 9, 2011

Bar owner, protesters start dialogue on door policy


to meet with us now because he’s feeling the
Continued from page 1 pressure.”
“Early on, I was willing to meet,” Trigger
four young black women claim they were told this newspaper. “People of all color are
denied access. On that summer night, one welcome here, but there’s a vibe, a style and
of the women, Shaniqua Pippen, 25 from dress that’s not welcome here.”
Brooklyn, pressed one of the bar’s bouncers, As Trigger continued imploring the pro-
who was black, for an explanation. testers to come in and talk, some cautiously
“Do we need to be regulars or do we just began to engage him in conversation.
need to be white?” Pippen asked, claiming “We have a dress code and a door policy,”
the bouncer replied, “Your people don’t Trigger told one woman.
know how to act.” She, in turn, asked him to explain, “Who
Posts on several Web sites have also com- do you turn away?”
plained about blacks and others arbitrarily “Jersey Shore types,” Trigger replied. Yet,
being denied entry to the Continental. A on the Continental’s Web site is a link offer-
Facebook page, “Boycott Continental Bar in ing directions to the bar; topping the list are
NYC,” has gained almost a dozen members directions from the Holland and Lincoln
in the past week alone. One hundred forty- tunnels, both of which connect New Jersey
two members have so far joined that social to Manhattan. Photo by Jefferson Siegel
network site’s wall. One young woman eventually engaged The Continental’s Trigger, left, talked with Ashley Diaz, 22, who says she was
Revelers entering the bar Saturday night Trigger in a serious and lengthy dialogue. denied entry to the bar last June.
did not appear to be dissuaded by the 20 Ashley Diaz, 22 from Brooklyn, was one of
demonstrators holding signs and chanting. A four friends who, with Pippen, tried to enter “I’m going to talk to the bouncers. I’m a long time ago.”
small police presence observed events from the bar last June but claim they were denied sorry for that, I truly am,” he told Diaz. After an hour and a half in the cold and
a distance. entry by the bouncers. As Caceres and Diaz continued to press snow, the gap between both sides appeared
Shortly after the protest began, Trigger “We were four females — nothing over Trigger on his alleged door policy, he again to have narrowed. Trigger watched the pro-
appeared wearing his trademark peaked the top — and we got refused,” Diaz said. sought to defend his motives. test disperse.
bamboo hat. He approached several of the “If you come here any night of the week “I’ve dated women of all colors,” he said. “Hopefully, we’ll meet and everything
protesters, inviting them inside to talk. and don’t see black and Asian women here, “I’ve donated money to Obama’s campaign. I will defuse,” he offered.
“We’re not going to meet with him in his I’d be shocked,” Trigger told Diaz. “The only had a party here celebrating Obama. ANSWER had already made a list of
bar,” said protest organizer Jinnette Caceres thing I can say is maybe someone was drunk. “I’m sorry you didn’t get in,” Trigger demands, including requesting the bar hold
of the ANSWER Coalition. “He wouldn’t Why would I turn away paying customers?” again told Diaz, “It’ll never happen again.” multicultural theme nights, offer diversity train-
meet with us in our office because he wants Diaz assured Trigger that no one in her “Your conversation makes a lot of sense,” ing to managers and staff, and post a statement
a sense of power and entitlement. He wants group was drunk. Diaz replied, “but this could have been done of nondiscrimination on the bar’s Web site.

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Gay City
NEWS
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www.gaycitynews.com 
:HOOV)DUJR$GYLVRUV//&0HPEHU6,3&
Februar y 3 - 9, 2011 3

SCOOPY’S
NOTEBOOK
FROM THE VILLAGE TO CAIRO: As the world
anxiously watches the situation in Egypt unfold, in
Washington Square, there’s confidence that opposition
leader Mohamed ElBaradei will help play a positive
role in the outcome. ElBaradei taught as an adjunct law
professor at New York University School of Law from
1981 to 1987. He received his Ph.D. in international
law from N.Y.U. in 1974, going on to win the Nobel
Peace Prize in 2005. Washington Square News, N.Y.U.’s
undergraduate newspaper, quotes university president
John Sexton saying of ElBaradei, “We have great faith
in his character, intelligence, integrity and leader-
ship. We all fervently hope for a peaceful conclusion
to events now transpiring in Egypt, and we have little
doubt that Mohamed ElBaradei will be instrumental in
achieving such an outcome.” Sexton was dean of the law
school when ElBaradei was an adjunct. W.S.N. quotes
Richard Revesz, the law school’s current dean, saying of Photos by Milo Hess
ElBaradei, “We hope he will now be able to contribute to
On Saturday, about 500 Egyptian and Egyptian-American demonstrators rallied across from the United Nations,
peaceful democratization in Egypt.”
denouncing President Mubarak’s regime and calling for him to resign immediately. Some painted small Egyptian
flags or the word “Egypt” — in red, white and black — on their faces.
ALMOST A WITNESS TO HISTORY: Knowing that
West Village political and gay activist Allen Roskoff was To commemorate the anniversary, bookbook will be CORRECTION: Our article last week on the Feast of San
recently planning to visit Egypt, friends wondered how offering 20 percent off all store merchandise (includ- Gennaro indicated that one of the conditions the event’s orga-
he was faring there as the popular uprising against Hosni ing their well-known remainders) for the whole month nizers agreed to was to move the sound stage around to differ-
Mubarak broke out last week. It turns out, however, that of February. At 266 Bleecker St. between Sixth and ent spots during the 11-day street festival. In fact, according to
Roskoff won’t have any epic stories of being caught up in Seventh Aves., bookbook features general literature, art Community Board 2’s resolution, the organizers have agreed to
the dramatic events. “I couldn’t get into Egypt,” he told us in and drama books, New York books, cookbooks, poetry, rotate the sound stage’s location each year, so as not to annually
an e-mail. “We are in Eilat and have to return home without children’s books and an entire wall of bargain books. inconvenience the same residents with amplified sound.
Egypt.” Eilat, a port city and resort in southern Israel, is right
across the border from Egypt.

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through a wall next to a row of bikes. As if that wasn’t
SUNDAY
unsettling enough, we’re told members recently had to PIANO NIGHT
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Photos by Albert Amateau

David Mulkins, BAN chairperson, right, led Friday’s rally. Also speaking were, to his
left, Simeon Bankoff of H.D.C. and Assemblymember Deborah Glick.

Neighbors, preservationists,
pols rally to save building
dates back to 1825.
Continued from page 1 Duane, whose district includes the build-
ing, said, “There is so little left of our beloved
neighborhood with tile mosaics, urged dem- Village, of the history we’re proud of. To risk
onstrators to employ direct action to preserve losing a piece of that, even just one building,
the area. Power was also incensed about the is tragic.”
city’s proposed alterations that would close Last fall, City Councilmember Rosie Mendez

The Best School Break Astor Place between Lafayette St. and Fourth
Ave., which he fears would eliminate lamp-
posts with his mosaics.
also sent a letter to Tierney urging landmark
protection for the building, located on a site
once owned by a member of the Stuyvesant

Camps, Hands Down.


Glick, who sent a letter to L.P.C. Chairperson family.
Robert Tierney urging him to reconsider his The original address of 35 Cooper Square
finding that the building does not qualify for was 391 Bowery, according to a research paper
landmark protection, told the Friday crowd that Sally Young, a BAN member, sent to L.P.C.

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that, “We are at a critical point. There is a tip- The original two-and-a-half-story building, with
ping point at which this area will no longer have a gambrel roof, twin dormers and large end

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a connection to the past.” Glick pledged not to chimneys, had a ground-floor storefront with
give up her efforts to save the building, which a brick arch and decorative cast-iron pilasters
added around 1876. The crushed-brownstone
stucco covering the Flemish-bond brick facade
February 21-25 | March 21-25 | April 18-22 was likely added around the same time.
Owned by the Stuyvesant family, it was first
occupied by a John Snider. By 1867, Herbert
Junior Golf, Gymnastics, Multisport & Marshall sold liquor out of the ground floor,
continuing until 1876. In 1900 the building

Little Athletes Gymnastics


apparently operated as a hotel. In the second
half of the 20th century, a painter, J. Forrest
Vey, whose works are in the Whitney Museum
of American Art, lived in the building. In the

Holiday Camps at
1960’s, tenants like diPrima and Minnelli began
renting upstairs rooms in the building. Poet
diPrima and her then husband, Alan Marlowe,
ran a few seasons of the New York Poets Theatre
from 35 Cooper Square. Claude Brown, author
of “Manchild in the Promised Land,” also lived
23rd Street & Hudson River Park there. In 1970, Stanley Sobossek, a painter, ran
a bar on the ground floor.
212.336.6520 | www.chelseapiers.com/camps In 1976, a woman named Hesae owned a
Carolyn Ratcliffe quoted poet Diane restaurant known by that name at 35 Cooper
Celebrate your birthday at Chelsea Piers! diPrima, a former 35 Cooper Square Square until 1990. She returned around
resident, on her sign. 2000 and ran Cooper 35 Asian Pub until last
Saturday.
Februar y 3 - 9, 2011 5

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Accused gay basher says, ‘I’m bi’ City settles in ‘false’ porn busts
BY DUNCAN OSBORNE used words of hate.” BY DUNCAN OSBORNE Some of the men who were arrested
A 45-year-old man charged with Just prior to going to Julius’, Giunta New York City has settled lawsuits with told Gay City News, the East Villager’s sis-
attempted robbery and third-degree assault is alleged to have attempted to steal a four men who sued in federal court after they ter newspaper, they were approached by a
as a hate crime in 2010 incidents in two wallet from someone near Ty’s Bar on were arrested for prostitution by vice officers younger man who aggressively flirted with
West Village gay bars said that while he Christopher St. in a Manhattan porn shop and a spa. them. It was only after they agreed to a
was admittedly involved in a bar fight, he He denied doing that. The city, however, will continue fighting consensual sex act that the young man, who
never used antigay or racial slurs. The third-degree assault as a hate the federal case brought by Robert Pinter, turned out to be an undercover officer, said
“I just wanted to tell my side of the crime charge is significant in Giunta’s the gay man who blew the whistle on the he would pay for the sex. Some men said
story,” said Frederick Giunta in a phone case. If he is convicted, that E felony will vice squad busts and the only man among all they refused the money or, as in Pinter’s case,
interview. “I think it’s only fair because I be sentenced as if it is a D felony, and his those arrested to go public. said nothing and they were arrested.
am facing a lot of time in this case.” possible maximum time in prison will go Three of the men were arrested in Unicorn The city’s Law Department and the Police
Giunta, who said he is bisexual, arrived from four years to seven years. DVD, located at 27th St. and Eighth Ave. in Department’s Legal Unit cited the prostitu-
in the West Village around 1 p.m. last Giunta was already on parole on an Chelsea, while the fourth, a straight man, tion arrests in separate nuisance abatement
Oct. 11. He told police he was there to earlier larceny charge. In that case, he was arrested at a W. 34th St. spa after he lawsuits they brought against the porn shops
see a friend. He then visited a series of was diverted to drug and alcohol treat- went there to apply for a driver’s job. and spas.
gay bars and drank at each one. By the ment instead of prison. Since he was One of the men arrested in Unicorn DVD Pinter declined to comment, as did
time he reached Julius’ on W. 10th St. rearrested, he would likely have to serve received $25,001 in his settlement. The Spiegel.
at about 5:40 p.m., he was “really, really at least two years in prison on the larceny other three received $40,001 each. In an e-mail, a Law Department spokes-
intoxicated,” Giunta said. charge. Their attorney, Michael Spiegel, got “rea- person wrote, “Since some elements of the
He allegedly fought with another patron In addition, he has served three short sonable attorneys’ fees, expenses and costs,” settlements of these cases remain unresolved,
and an employee there after an argument. prison terms for drug sales and another according to filings on pacer.gov, the federal we are unable to comment at this time.” The
During the incident, he is alleged to have larceny since 1991. None were violent courts Web site. Police Department did not respond to an
used antigay and racial slurs. crimes. All the arrests, which are seen as false e-mail seeking comment.
“[The bartender] then jumps over the Giunta could not make his $25,000 arrests in the gay community, were made in The city has aggressively litigated Pinter’s
bar, grabs me,” Giunta said. “As they are bail, so he has been held in the Manhattan 2008 by Manhattan South Vice Enforcement case from the start, but then the facts in his
escorting me out to the door, I’m sure I Detention Center since his Oct. 15 arrest. Squad officers. case are different from the other cases. Pinter
might have said something, but nothing He spoke to this reporter by phone after Altogether, vice officers arrested 30 men initially pleaded guilty to disorderly conduct.
hateful at all. It’s blown out of propor- his wife, Judy, approached Gay City News, in six porn shops. Another 11 men and one He later had that plea vacated and the charg-
tion... . I had no intent to do what they the East Villager’s sister paper, offering an woman were busted for prostitution in two es dismissed. The other men contested their
are saying I was doing.” interview with him. spas. The same vice officers made most of cases, and their charges were dismissed.
Giunta acknowledged he was involved “A lot of these things are just fabricat- the arrests. Pinter has been a vocal critic of the Police
in the fight, but called it a “bar scuffle.” ed,” Giunta said. “I was actually flirting Five of the men, including Pinter, brought Department’s handling of these arrests. He
“There was one punch that was thrown with the bartender... . I’m a very caring, four federal lawsuits. Another man sued in has organized multiple protests and held
that I could admit to,” he said. “I never kind person.” state court. meetings with city officials.
Februar y 3 - 9, 2011 7

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www.finelinetattoo.com RICHARD YARDE: BLUES
8 Februar y 3 - 9, 2011

N.Y.U.’s applicants most ever C.B. 3 O.K.’s Astor/Cooper plan


BY ALBERT AMATEAU Abu Dhabi campus represent a 24 percent BY LESLEY SUSSMAN Community Board 2 the previous week.
New York University has received a increase of applicants over last year for In addition to unanimously approving rede- Also approved at the C.B. 3 meeting was
record number of 42,242 applications for the first class of the U.A.E. campus. There velopment guidelines for the Seward Park the temporary use of an empty lot at 33 E.
the 2015 class, exceeding last year’s fresh- are spots open for about 150 students this Urban Renewal Area at its Tues., Jan. 25, full First St. by the Guggenheim Museum for
man applications by 11 percent. year at N.Y.U. Abu Dhabi’s World’s Honor board meeting, Community Board 3 also voted various cultural programs. Work on the site
More than 41,000 of the applications College, according to the announcement. on the Astor Place/Cooper Square reconstruc- would begin in April and is expected to be
were for the estimated 4,800 places at the N.Y.U. this year received 7,625 applica- tion design, as well as a plan to convert a lot completed by August.
Washington Square campus, according to a tions from students outside the U.S. to all for use by the Guggenheim Museum. The project drew praise from Robert Graf,
Jan. 24 university announcement. N.Y.U. campuses and academic centers. C.B. 3 gave its approval to the proposed president of the First St. Block Association,
Nearly 4,700 of the Washington Square “We’re immensely proud and grateful that reconstruction of Astor Place and Cooper who said the empty lot was a haven for
applicants asked also to be considered for so many extremely talented high school stu- Square, on the condition that public seating in rodents after dark.
admission to the university’s new Abu Dhabi dents from around the world are interested new open plaza spaces to be created between “It’s a rat warren and a plague to this block,”
campus in the United Arab Emirates. The in N.Y.U.,” said Randall Deike, N.Y.U. vice E. Seventh and E. Fifth Sts. on Cooper Square’s he said. “We’re delighted the Guggenheim will
1,184 applicants who applied only for the president for enrollment management. west side be eliminated where it would be excavate the lot and leave a paved surface that
accessible to the public 24 hours a day. will be used for future cultural events.”
The board said seating in “Village The Guggenheim project would operate
Square,” a new plaza to be created south free of charge from early August 2011 until
of Peter Cooper Park, should be locked or November 2011, and will then be operated by
removed at night, so as not to disturb seniors the next-door First Street Green Co-Op, which
Whether you’re in the nearby JASA/Green Residence on
Cooper Square’s east side.
will sponsor subsequent cultural events there.
Susan Stetzer, C.B. 3 district manag-
traveling to Europe “Village Square” is planned as part of er, also praised the lot’s cleanup by the
the larger reconstruction of Astor Place Guggenheim.
for a few days Europe by
b Carr and Cooper Square, to be done by the city’s “I’ve been working on the rat problem there
or a year... can help you save! Department of Design and Construction,
with assistance from the Department of
a long time,” she said. “After the Guggenheim
leaves, the lot will be rat-proofed.”
We offer discounted rentals Transportation and Parks Department. On another matter, Stetzer said there recently
and long term car leases. The city’s plan calls for almost 8,000 square had been an increase of fires in the East Village,
feet of new planting area, which would include and she wanted more details about why.
64 new trees, in addition to the creation or “I’ve asked the Fire Department to give us
expansion of several plazas. “Village Plaza” a list — what were the causes,” she said. “A lot
(800) 223-1516 would be used primarily for daytime events of these fires might have been preventable, and
www.europebycar.com and provide opportunities for programming I want to see if there’s been a common thread
by local artists. The plan was endorsed by so we can launch an educational program.”
Februar y 3 - 9, 2011 9

Children’s Aid parents might try to buy building


BY ALBERT AMATEAU Aid about ways to keep the early-childhood hood of the Village was not in keeping tioning school. It would be a pity to tear
Community Board 2 has unanimously center and the other programs on Sullivan with the society mission to serve children it down to make way for a condo,” said
called on the Children’s Aid Society to St. for good after the property is sold,” in poverty. Alexandra Van Schie, a member of the
condition the sale of its Greenwich Village said Keen Berger, chairperson of the C.B. 2 On Dec. 16, the C.A.S. board of trustees early-childhood center’s parents com-
buildings so that any new owner would Social Services and Education Committee. confirmed its intention to sell the Village mittee.
preserve the society’s early-childhood and At a Jan. 18 committee meeting, a property, known as the Philip Coltoff Berger reminded the Jan. 18 meeting
community programs on Sullivan St. at least Children’s Aid executive told parents and Center. Although the society said it would that the Village, whose schools are severe-
until June 2012. community board members that she could maintain its programs in the Village until ly overcrowded, needs more educational
The Jan. 29 resolution, which closely not speak about plans to sell the property June 2012, it added that the programs opportunities for a booming population of
resembles a proposal by SAVE (Save a because of the pending lawsuit. might move to “a comparable location” in school-age children.
Village Education), a group of parents Manhattan if the Village center were sold C.A.S. has 75 other centers in the five
involved in the society’s preschool program, earlier than expected. boroughs, including one on the Upper East
also urges Children’s Aid to make a com- But Heather Campbell, a member of Side of Manhattan.
mitment to keep current teachers and staff ‘It would be like the SAVE with two children in the Coltoff “There’s not much poverty on the Upper
in place on Sullivan St. until June 2012. center, told the Jan. 18 committee meeting, East Side,” said one neighbor who attended
Saving the highly esteemed program is YMCA packing up and “We don’t know if they might move the the committee meeting. “I think the deci-
especially urgent for parents of more than school to 34th St. and Fifth Ave.; it would sion to sell the Sullivan St. property is
400 children, ages 2 to 4, who attend the leaving.’ be a hardship for many parents who have based on the fact that it has the highest real
society’s nursery classes in the Village — children in other Village schools. ‘A com- estate value,” the neighbor said.
the largest nursery school in Manhattan Robert E. Lee parable location’ is a big caveat,” Campbell The society spokesperson said at the Jan.
— because school contracts and deposit said. 18 committee meeting that Children’s Aid
requirements must be made by Feb. 18. “It would be like the YMCA saying had not yet secured a broker, or signed a
Meanwhile, a Feb. 1 hearing on a law- it would be packing up and leaving the contract with a buyer.
suit filed by the mother of a 2-year-old in The society, which opened its Sullivan neighborhood,” said Robert E. Lee, a SAVE The community board resolution con-
the program demanding that Children’s Aid St. center in 1892 and started its early- member and parent of a child at the cludes with the recommendation that the
guarantee that the preschool would remain childhood center there more than 20 years Sullivan St. center. society find a buyer who would continue all
open on Sullivan St. through June 2013 has ago, was founded more than 150 years ago Campbell said SAVE is working to put existing education and community-based pro-
been canceled. to serve the city’s poor children. a bid together to buy the property from grams. The resolution calls on the society’s
The hearing in the suit by Viviane On Nov. 30, Richard Buery, Jr., C.A.S. Children’s Aid. But the group wants the board of trustees to join with Community
Bromberg, represented by her lawyer, Luke executive director, told parents the society society to give it a preference — in case the Board 2 members, neighborhood leaders
McGrath, who is also her husband, was was considering selling its property at 219 group is not the high bidder. SAVE is also and elected officials to “work to maintain
canceled to give attorneys on both sides Sullivan St. and at 175-177 Sullivan St. and asking the society to help finance commu- the educational services now provided by
more time to discuss a possible settlement. closing the programs by June 2012 because nity acquisition of the property. Children’s Aid Society for current and future
“We really want to talk with Children’s a presence in the relatively rich neighbor- “It’s a wonderful program in a func- children of our community.”

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10 Februar y 3 - 9, 2011

U.F.T. prez, C.B. 1: Projects must factor in kids


schools and other local infrastructure. ages in the coming years. The Tweed Courthouse Mulgrew also noted that larger classes are
Continued from page 1 Instead, Menin said, new developments in and 26 Broadway, she said, are education spaces making it more difficult for public school teach-
the area are routinely approved without atten- the community cannot afford to lose. ers to do their jobs effectively. D.O.E. did away
for several years at a public high school in tion to school capacity. The city, she said, has “It broke my heart that we lost the space at with its Teaching and Learning Division, there-
Brooklyn and has a master’s degree in special “an attendant duty to provide the estimated 26 Broadway,” said Erica Weldon, a Millennium by no longer offering teachers the structure and
education from CUNY’s College of Staten number of school seats” that will be needed as High School parent. support they need.
Island. a result of approving Downtown construction Menin told her and the other distraught par- “Teaching and learning in the classroom is
C.B. 1 Chairperson Julie Menin reiterated projects. ents to rest assured that the community board the fundamental main piece we should all be
her criticism of D.O.E. for failing to plan ahead Mulgrew said he would be pushing the City would not remain “silent” on D.O.E.’s recent concentrating on,” said Mulgrew. “It saddens
to avoid overcrowding in Lower Manhattan’s Council to pass legislation to modify the plan- decisions. me — it makes me feel the administration is
K-to-12 schools. ning process pertaining to new developments. Mulgrew said D.O.E. should focus on finding getting to the point where it’s pathetic.”
“We’ve organized this town hall because of “We’re always looking for better ideas, to district seats for all public school students before Paul Hovitz, chairperson of the C.B. 1
the number of important issues that have arisen figure out how to move education forward,” he worrying about screened versus unscreened Youth and Education Committee, remarked
in our district recently,” Menin said, citing the said. “We can no longer go to the D.O.E. for schools. The U.F.T. president took a more neutral that teachers spend “inordinate” amounts of
rise in population and other factors that have that. That’s really sad.” stance on charter schools. While the fundamen- time on test preparation.
contributed to school overcrowding in the area. Mulgrew accused D.O.E. of misleading tal concept of charter schools is sound, he said, “How can we re-create a well-balanced edu-
Schools are bursting at the seams all around the Downtown community by making false many of them are not working, and some are cation for our children?” he asked Mulgrew.
the city, according to Mulgrew, who said he promises about new classroom space that was wrongly casting aside special-needs students who The solution, in part, Mulgrew said, is
hears “nothing but frustration and anger” from supposed to be reserved for neighborhood underperform on standardized tests. to modify the city’s student progress report
the public school teachers he represents. children. “You can’t just open charter schools and not system, which now hinges on English and
“Congratulations. You’re the epicenter of Lower Manhattan parents were dismayed give them support and help in instruction,” said math test score results. Harvard University
overcrowding,” Mulgrew told the audience. by D.O.E.’s recent decision to designate two Mulgrew. recently audited the state’s system, he said,
The problem, Mulgrew explained, lies unused classroom floors at 26 Broadway for Growing class sizes have become wide- and concluded that the progress reports are
in the fact that the city lacks a systematic an unscreened, nonselective Upper East Side spread across the city, Mulgrew reported, and useless.
urban planning process. New York doesn’t high school, rather than open up a second the U.F.T. has taken legal action to try to miti- Mulgrew worked with David Steiner, com-
require developers, for example, to outline Millennium High School there. The depart- gate the problem. The union sued D.O.E. early missioner of the state Education Department,
potential impacts their projects could have ment also allocated six vacant classrooms at the last year for failing to allocate more than $760 to craft the state’s application for the federal
on local neighborhoods, such as creating a Tweed Courthouse, on Chambers St., to a char- million that the department secured from the Race to the Top program, with the aim of using
population boom. ter school rather than to a district elementary state since 2007 purportedly to reduce class the funds to focus on a more well-rounded cur-
C.B. 1 passed a resolution last March urg- school the community said it badly needs. sizes. The case is currently pending in State riculum, rather than merely teach to standard-
ing the city’s Charter Revision Commission to Menin pointed out that, even with the new Supreme Court. ized tests.
enforce standards for developers seeking to build schools that Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver’s “The class size at every grade in every level Mulgrew said “real learning” doesn’t happen
in a community, such as taking into account the Overcrowding Task Force helped found, the has increased dramatically since the money was when teachers simply try and drill students to
effects a proposed development would have on Lower Manhattan area faces severe seat short- sent here,” Mulgrew said. “It’s inexcusable.” memorize facts for a test.

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Februar y 3 - 9, 2011 11

i v e S a l e
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fo r L
Photos by Milo Hess (above) and J.B. Nicholas

Pigeon as friend, and lunch


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who he calls Karma, above. Karma is a wild pigeon that flies with a flock, but she
comes to the man when he’s around. Meanwhile, the previous Sunday, in Tompkins
Square Park, a red-tailed hawk, dubbed by some the Hipster Hawk, was dining alfresco
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12 Februar y 3 - 9, 2011

DNA test for a mystery man


POLICE BLOTTER James O’Donnell, dubbed the “International
Man of Mystery” by the tabloids, appeared
in Manhattan Supreme Court last Thurs.,
Jan. 27. O’Donnell was arrested early
last year on St. Mark’s Place when
to be an admiring “Damn” to a woman
Sex-assault attempt walking past him on W. 14th St. at Sixth
police found a knife in his belt and a gun
with a silencer in his backpack. Police
Ave. at 9:37 p.m. Sat., Jan. 22, infuriated
subsequently found more weapons in a
Police are looking for a suspect wanted her companion, who pulled a 12-inch knife
storage locker. Prosecutors are unsure
for an attempted sexual assault on a and slashed the victim on the left fore-
if James O’Donnell is even the man’s
12-year-old girl in a stairwell of her arm, police said. The victim was taken to
real name. O’Donnell was brought back
Hester St. home around 6 p.m. Mon., Jan. Bellevue Hospital in stable condition. The
to court again last week for a judge to
24. The victim was walking to her apart- suspect, Craig Hutter, 37, was charged
rule on taking a DNA swab. DNA was
ment when she heard someone banging on with felony assault.
found on the weapons from the storage
the building’s outside door. She admitted Photo by Jefferson Siegel
locker, and prosecutors want to compare
the suspect, described as a white male, The judge said the order would take
it to O’Donnell’s. Judge Bart Stone asked
between ages 25 and 30, about 5 feet
9 inches tall and 175 pounds, wearing Joint was his downfall O’Donnell’s attorney, Howard Simmons, effect in five days. With DNA identifica-
tion taking 30 days, the judge scheduled
if O’Donnell would provide a swab volun-
a blue jacket, brown trousers and gray the next hearing on the matter for early
tarily or if the court would have to use a
hat, who followed her to the third-floor A man smoking marijuana on the March. O’Donnell remains in custody.
force order. Without waiting for his attor-
stairwell where he attempted to sexually southwest corner of MacDougal and W.
ney to reply, O’Donnell spoke out, with a
molest her, police said. The girl fled and Fourth Sts. around 11:30 p.m. Thurs., Jefferson Siegel
slight Irish accent, “Use a force order.”
was unhurt, police said. Jan. 27, swallowed the joint when a police
officer approached him. Police found the
suspect had a Clonazepam pill — a potent possession of a forged instrument.
tranquilizer and secondary epilepsy treat- Fatal on L line
A bit possessive ment — in his pocket, as well as a fake
Pennsylvania driver’s license. The suspect, Stick to decaf Brendan Mahoney, 24, of Greenpoint,
A man who made what was believed Stephen McCarron, 19, was charged with Brooklyn, was killed around 5:30 a.m. Sun.,
Police arrested Palash D’Cruze, 37, Jan. 30, when an L train crushed him after
around 1:45 a.m. Sun., Jan. 23, inside Caffe he went onto the tracks to retrieve something
Reggio, 119 MacDougal St., and charged — keys, according to one report — that he
him with criminal mischief after he picked had dropped from the Halsey St. platform in
up a chair and smashed the establishment’s Brooklyn. Mahoney, a writer and reviewer
front plate-glass window. for Tiny Mix Tapes, a music Web site, had
been spending the hours prior to his death
at Mars Bar, at First St. at Second Ave.,
and left after 2 a.m., according to friends.
Fake credit cards He was formerly an administrative assis-
tant with the Reynolds Program in Social
Police arrested Marvins Pierre-Louis, Entrepreneurship at New York University.
20, around 5 p.m. Tues., Jan. 25, after he
tried to buy an iPad with a phony credit
card. The suspect was found to be in pos-
session of a total of four phony credit Schools-protest arrests
cards, police said.
Police arrested 24 demonstrators who
blocked Chambers St. in front of Department of
Education headquarters in the Tweed Courthouse
Car hits senior at 4:30 p.m. Mon., Jan. 31, during a protest
against the planned closing of 25 failing schools.
A northbound taxi made a right turn City Councilmembers Charles Barron and
from Pike St. onto East Broadway at 9:39 Jumaane Williams, both of Brooklyn, were
a.m. Fri., Jan. 28, and struck a woman, among those arrested and taken to the
84, as she was crossing from the southeast Seventh Precinct, where they were issued
Photo by Jefferson Siegel corner to the north side of East Broadway. summonses and released. The arrests came
The victim was taken to Bellevue Hospital after an earlier rally at Tweed by hundreds

Officer comforted dying man


Monday, Police Officer Quathisha Epps, 37, arrived at Manhattan Supreme Court to
in critical condition. Police said both the
victim and the cab driver had a green light
at the time of the accident and there was no
of students from the schools targeted for
closing. Demonstrators carried signs saying,
“Fix schools, don’t close them.”
testify in a murder case in which she responded — both as a neighbor and an officer. criminality suspected.
One night two summers ago, she told the court, she heard gunfire outside her Eldridge
St. apartment. According to a New York Post article by Laura Italiano, Epps placed
the baby she was nursing in his crib, then told her three other kids to get into the
Student loses bag
bathtub. Then, she ran downstairs — barefoot and in her nightgown, carrying towels —
Eldridge St. murder trial
to give a last moment’s comfort to Vincent Cruz, 17, who had been shot through the A student at Metropolitan College, at 431
neck and would bleed to death in her arms. She said that, as she pressed the towels The trial of Ricardo Martinez, 25, for the Canal St. at Varick St., told police that she
to his wounds, “I told him, ‘I’m here with you. … You’re very loved. Just hold on for murder of Vincent Cruz on June 24, 2008, left her bag at her desk around 4 p.m. Mon.,
me.’ ” As she cradled him, Epps called 911, while stretching out her leg to hold her on Eldridge St. near Rivington St. began Jan. 24, when she went to the bathroom and
toe against a knife on the ground — a piece of evidence. The next day, according to Mon., Jan. 31. The victim, age 17, was shot returned a few minutes later to discover the
the Post, Epps realized she knew Cruz, who seven years earlier had tutored her son, in the head a block from 40 Rivington St., bag was gone, along with her Ecuadorian ID,
then 3, in preschool. “This is a case that never leaves me,” said Epps, a community where he lived. The shooting was over an 80 euros and $80 in U.S. currency.
affairs officer at East Harlem’s P.S.A. 5. Ricardo Martinez is accused of shooting Cruz argument about stolen property, according
during an argument. to court papers. Alber t Amateau
Februar y 3 - 9, 2011 13

Photos by Clayton Patterson

The revolution will be televised


Three episodes of “Brick City,” the new
CLAYTON’S PAGE Sundance Channel show, screened at the
School of Visual Art’s E. 23rd St. theater on
Sunday. The documentary series chronicles current-day Newark and its daunting challenges.
Clockwise, from above, Marc Levin, “Brick City”’s director and producer, with Caroline
Kennedy; Newark Mayor Cory Booker, right, with Newark Police Director Garry McCarthy;
Deshaun “Jiwe” Morris, a Newark Bloods gang member, author and antiviolence advocate,
left, with Mark Benjamin, an executive producer of “Brick City.” Also attending was former
Newark Mayor James Sharpe, who was freed from jail last April after serving 18 months for
fraud involving the sale of city-owned property. Last May, in The Villager, documentarian
Clayton Patterson wrote about “Brick City” and the Newark Bloods’ and Crips’ foiled effort 6RFFHULQWKH
to have a unity basketball game. “This is one of the few TV shows that they could take and
it could be a movie,” Patterson said. The footage is real, not fictionalized, he assured. “If you 6SULQJ 6XPPHU
watch ‘Brick City,’ you can definitely see dead people in the street after a shooting... breaking
into apartments with police. It’s right now — right, f---n’ now, baby.” Patterson added the
series has “won a bunch of Sundance Awards.” 6SULQJ5HFUHDWLRQDO6RFFHU
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14 Februar y 3 - 9, 2011

EDITORIAL LETTERS TO THE EDITOR


Fight of San Gennaro Festival critics are snobs since there is no feast around to get in their way? Just asking.

Tempers have been flaring in Little Italy and Nolita Emily DePalo
over the long-running Feast of San Gennaro. This To The Editor: DePalo is a board member, Figli di San Gennaro
85-year-old street festival — one of the country’s most Re “Effort to shorten San Gennaro Fest falls short” (news
well known — currently stretches along Mulberry St. article, Jan. 27):
between Canal and Houston Sts. The San Gennaro Feast was forced to accept vendors
At the neighborhood’s north end — in what not long of other backgrounds than Italian and Italian foods and The Feast of ‘San Generic’
ago was redubbed Nolita — residents and new fashion merchandise by the city of New York. That decision was
boutique owners have organized and are calling for the out of our hands. As for public drunkenness, there is abso- To The Editor:
festival to be cut off at Kenmare St., reducing it by about lutely no alcohol sold at any of the stands during the feast. Re “Effort to shorten San Gennaro Fest falls short” (news
half. They argue that the neighborhood’s population is no Restaurants with liquor permits are allowed to sell alcohol article, Jan. 27):
longer heavily Italian, and that the festival has become within the confines of their stands, which they pay hand- They say the feast is for everyone. That’s the problem. A
“generic,” and is an “11-day barricade,” preventing somely for. If any of these patrons happen to act stupidly and generic street fair should not get a permit for 11 days. If they
people from getting to their stores. raucously once they leave these establishments, how is San made it authentic and local, they might get more support. I
What’s more, the annual September feast coincides Gennaro responsible for that? haven’t heard Italian spoken in Little Italy since I was a kid.
with Fashion Week and Fashion’s Night Out, boutique I’m sure Nicolas Dutko from Tartinery has seen more
owners add, further negatively impacting their busi- than a fair share of stupid behavior from drunken patrons Davide Gentile
nesses. Neighbors also complain of public drunkenness who got that way after drinking at his establishment. Is he
associated with the festival. going to blame San Gennaro for that during May, June, July
and August when the bars and restaurants along Mulberry
In response, members of the festival’s nonprofit
board, Figli di San Gennaro — many of them proud, life- St. are jampacked? For Mr. Dutko to say that “the people Church was a spiritual oasis
long Little Italy residents — counter that the “newcom- are very rude that come” to the feast is showing his stupid-
ers” have no right to say the festival should be cut back. ity and his biased attitude. How in the name of God can To The Editor:
The organizers note the feast draws about 1 million anyone make a public statement like that? Who is he to Re “Lady of Vilna appeal goes to state’s highest court”
people a year, many of them tourists, which generates paint everyone who visits the feast with the same brush? Are (news article, Jan. 27):
millions of dollars for businesses, hotels and restaurants. all those hundreds of thousands of people rude, yet all the I am the vice chairperson of the Save Our Lady of Vilnius
The religious-based festival also features two three-to- people patronizing his establishment perfectly mannerly and Committee. I am a second-generation Lithuanian-American whose
four-hour street processions and a special Mass. respectful of others? Who is he kidding? grandparents were among Our Lady of Vilnius’s first parishioners.
When the Feast of San Gennaro started back in 1926 Many of us have dealt with snobs like this who think It is the mission of the committee to revive the parish. It is our
they are better than the rest of us. That attitude alone speaks hope that the litigation will lead to a dialogue that, unfortunately,
it was a much humbler affair. It was a one-day, religious-
volumes about how delusional they are regarding their own was not initiated by the archdiocese when discussions about clos-
based event, centered on Mulberry St. between Grand and
importance. And by the way, why is he in business if not to ing the parish were begun with the Lithuanian clergy.
Hester Sts., where Neapolitan immigrant families owning
make money? Why is it O.K. for him but not for the vendors Back in 2006 when parishioners were first told about the
coffeehouses brought tables out onto the sidewalk in honor
of the San Gennaro Feast? As for the boutiques who blame possibility of closing the church, The Villager published a
of their patron saint’s day. The feast has since burgeoned to
the feast for their lack of business and customers during San moving and accurate portrait of the parish, “Lady of Vilnius
11 days and seven blocks, and is now run by Mort & Ray
Gennaro, how do they explain their empty stores throughout and ‘Pretzels’ and ‘Provolone’ may lose home” (news article,
Productions, one of the city’s major street-fair operators.
the rest of the year? Why are their businesses empty for 351 Aug. 23, 2006).
Trying to mediate the conflicting interests, Community
days when there is no feast? In their press releases, the Archdiocese of New York has
Board 2’s Street Activities & Film Permits Committee did
Julie Dickson from Fox & Boy hair salon speaks about the presented Our Lady of Vilnius as a Lithuanian cause. They
a good job of reaching some sort of compromise for this
feast and “the dangerous element it attracts.” Really, Julie, you’re refer only to the Lithuanian parishioners, and vaguely direct
year’s festival in September. Past attractions that drew the
embarrassing yourself. San Gennaro is one of the most well- them to the archdioceses of Brooklyn and Newark to worship.
most complaints won’t be included in this year’s festival,
known and beloved feasts that exists today. It is a secret to no They fail to mention those who worshiped there, not because
notably, karaoke and “Dunk the Clown” — the latter featur- one that it takes over Mulberry St. for 11 days every September. they were Lithuanian, but because they found a community
ing a loudmouthed insult clown who would have made Don Rather than have these elitist snobs move in, then try to force us that helped them feel closer to God, feel fortified in their daily
Rickles blush. Rock and hip-hop music CD’s and mafia to change for them, why can’t they be good neighbors and respect lives by His presence and by the support of each other.
T-shirts also won’t be sold. Clearly, the organizers have an 85-year-old neighborhood tradition that they knew existed The parish was a spiritual oasis and an anodyne to the
shown they are willing to work with the community. before they ever moved their families and/or their businesses to Catholics and local working-class residents that have not yet been
We did hear, though, that Figli di San Gennaro was the area? I, for one, am a lifelong Little Italy resident. gentrified out of their lifelong homes or workplaces. Our Lady
almost ready to give up the block between Prince and One more thing I’m curious about: Are any of these bou-
Houston Sts. this year — so there may be room in the tiques participating in the upcoming February Fashion Week Continued on page 23
future for negotiating cutting back the festival somewhat.
Two weeks ago, C.B. 2 voted on its advisory resolu-
tion giving conditional approval to a permit for the feast.
However, the community board strongly urged the city to EVAN FORSCH
consider stopping the festival at Kenmare St., “so as not
to disturb the emerging business community in Nolita... .”
C.B. 2 also pointedly noted that Figli di San Gennaro and
the Mayor’s Street Activity Permit Office should “expect
that C.B. 2 will continue to negotiate further reductions of
[the feast’s] scale and duration for subsequent years.”
Merchants toward the festival’s north end do say that
the vendors booths outside their shops and eateries are
not of particularly high quality, so the argument can be
made that the feast is already overextended, and should
be cut back at its uptown end: Quality over quantity.
It sounds like this year’s festival will still run from
Canal St. to Houston St. (Figli di San Gennaro members
say they already have sanitation contracts in place for the
whole stretch.) But future years will likely see changes.
We’re confident that, with C.B. 2’s good help, the right
compromise will be reached.
Februar y 3 - 9, 2011 15

An author comes clean about her mother’s hoarding


INTERVIEW Yes, I have to say that many of my friends or colleagues
have said, “Oh, my Mom was a hoarder,” or an aunt was,
BY WICKHAM BOYLE so I hope it is freeing in that sense to be able to talk about
Jessie Sholl is a hyper-clean, nearly elfin, 41-year-old it. No one is just a hoarder. This condition announces many
woman who for nearly a decade has lived in the West Village other problems. Hoarding is a kind of blindness. A “nor-
between great bookstores: Three Lives and Bonnie Slotnick mal” person knows to call a repairperson if the refrigerator
Cookbooks. I met her at a dinner party, also in the West breaks. But a hoarder has deep shame about the state of
Village, and when I saw that her book was about to debut, I their home, and thus doesn’t call, and this only exacerbates
asked if she would indulge me in an interview to discuss this the mess. Many hoarders live in great danger, amid health
very brave memoir. She suggested Joe on Waverly. challenges and the very real possibility that fires will start
So in the penultimate week of 2010, I peddled my trusty and the firefighters will be unable to find their way through
1968 Raleigh up Sixth Ave. to hear how Ms. Sholl found the the mess. There is also a version of hoarding that involves
courage and words to pen this beautiful memoir, billed as the adopting and often mistreating animals. People have homes
first by the child of a compulsive hoarder. or apartments filled with filthy animals, who are in great
distress. My husband and I adopted a small dog that we
W.B.: This book is so kind and loving toward your named Abraham Lincoln, and it felt good to save someone
mother, yet I was in a rage at her by the time you and your from that life.
long-suffering husband were infected with scabies for the
second time. How did you find that enlightened approach? How did you come to this project, and are there any
things you wanted to write but discarded as too difficult
J.S.: The biggest thing that helped me was that the more either for you or your family? You don’t have to disclose
research I did into the condition of hoarding, the more I what, but just if that was the case?
came to recognize it as a disease. When I saw it as an illness
I didn’t give her a free pass, but, because she has a mental I started as a fiction writer and got my M.F.A. at The New
illness, it put her behavior into a different context. School, and I had been working on a novel for young adults.
Also, when I began to talk to her in depth about the I began writing health articles as a “day job” and this gave
book — to which she gave her blessing — I began to see me an entree to think about my own past and to research.
the depth of her horrific upbringing. And of course my own I had this “Ah ha” moment as I was doing research when I
therapy helped. saw that my mother’s hoarding was also an extreme type of
I didn’t want to write a “bad mommy” or “Oh, poor me,” Photo by Kate Lacey brain malfunction, and I started researching it. When I saw
self-pitying memoir. So deciding on this direction gave me Jessie Sholl. that it was a disease and talked to my mother about the book
the push to regard the good things I got from her as well project, it freed me to be able to use any story, all the stories,
as the fear, filth and shame. I am a minimalist about hav- shame and live more transparent lives. as a way to tell where I came from, but also to free others
ing stuff. I consider myself a purger. I go overboard about who have held onto this dirty secret.
cleaning when people are coming over, but — unfortunately This book is about hoarding but you allude a few times
— not always. I don’t want folks to think, “Oh, look at those to the similarity between A.C.O.A.’s (adult children of alco- “Dirty Secret: A Daughter Comes Clean About Her
dirty glasses on the table, she is on the slide to become just holics), and you clearly state that being able to come clean, Mother’s Compulsive Hoarding,” by Jessie Sholl, Gallery
like her mother.” if you will, with friends was so liberating. Books. For more information, visit www.jessie-sholl.com .

You also describe in detail many things that happened in


your childhood. For me, as the adult child of an alcoholic
and a chronic suicide attempter, I know that denial is and
was my drug of choice. This means I have intense, but
A valentine for Village businesses
spotty memories of childhood. I could not provide an arc During my formative years, my family ran a print shop in the
the way you do. Did you always have this clarity of memory
or did it come as you wrote?
TALKING POINT Far West Village, when operations like Superior Ink actually
manufactured ink on the premises and weren’t condomini-
BY DEBORAH GLICK ums. I saw firsthand how much work it takes to make a small
I decided I wanted to write about this. I told my husband, As someone who has spent nearly my entire adult life business successful and how few resources exist to assist
the wonderful writer David Farley, stories for years, and he in Greenwich Village, I was crestfallen when St. Vincent’s mom-and-pop operations. Unfortunately, this fact remains
encouraged me to write them down. I talked with my agent shut its doors. Not only was the hospital the center for our as true today as it did then. The city invites small businesses
and I wrote a proposal and she was a huge help at putting community’s physical health, it also has been the lifeblood to open their doors but then does little to help them be suc-
the tales in order. Everyone would be surprised at how many for many small local businesses. Now the health needs of cessful. It’s hard enough to make it in New York City as it
memories emerge once you begin writing. It may not be our community have been severely diminished, and the local is; so imagine the effect when a 3,500-person operation, like
linear at first, but you can reorder and create a timeline after stores that give our neighborhood its character are withering St. Vincent’s, suddenly shuts its doors. The wake of such a
the fact. Writing this was very important to me and it was in silence.
always my hope that it would be a way for others to unlock My connection to small businesses goes back many years. Continued on page 23

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16 Februar y 3 - 9, 2011

Edgar Tafel, 98; Worked with Wright


OBITUARY
BY ALBERT AMATEAU
ATTENTION ALL Edgar Tafel, who apprenticed with Frank
ARTISTS Lloyd Wright and designed St. John’s in
the Village Episcopal Church and First
On April 6th, 2011, the 8th An- Presbyterian Church Community House,
nual ArtWalk Opening Cere- died Jan. 18 in his Greenwich Village home
mony will be held at TD Bank, at age 98.
666 Broadway, New York, NY Tafel was a resident of E. 11th St.
(on the corner of Broadway between Fifth Ave. and University Place,
where he worked and lived for more than 40
and Bond Street). Artworks
years. He was a member of the committee
will be shown from April 6th
for the 1970 redesign of Washington Square
through April 19th. Park, said Norman Rosenfeld, a friend and
neighbor who also served on the Washington
Cash prizes for best original Square architectural committee with him.
artwork! First Place will re- Born March 12, 1912, to Russian immi-
ceive $250. Second Place grants, Edgar A. Tafel graduated from
will receive $100. Manhattan’s Walden School and attended New Edgar Tafel.
York University, but left at 20 to study archi-
Starting Febrary 1st, 2011, artists should
bring their work to be viewed, by appoint- tecture at Taliesin, Wright’s Wisconsin colony. Fifth Ave. He later designed St. John’s in the
ment, to 636 Broadway, Rm 708. Please As a Wright apprentice, he worked on Village, on Waverly Place at W. 11th St.
include a signed, general release form with Fallingwater, the private house cantilevered Another project of his was the Protestant
your art works. over Bear Run Creek in Pennsylvania, and chapel, since demolished, at Kennedy
To schedule an appointment or for more the Johnson Wax Building, since demolished, International Airport, and the fine-arts
information, please contact NOHO NY BID at in Racine, Wis., as well as Wingspread, building and a residential complex at State
212-677-4579. home of Herbert F. Johnson, the company’s University of New York, Geneseo.
Harriet Fields, Executive Director president, near Racine. Tafel authored “Apprentice to Genius:
Although a senior apprentice to Wright, Years With Frank Lloyd Wright,” published
Tafel resisted the master designer’s autocrat- in 1979, and also “About Wright: An Album
ic rule and left in 1941 to work in a Chicago of Recollections by Those Who Knew Frank
architectural firm. During World War II he Lloyd Wright,” published in 1993.
served in Army photo intelligence in India. His first marriage ended in divorce and
Tafel returned to Manhattan after the war, his second wife died in 1951, according to
qualified as an architect and designed 80 Robert Silman, an architectural engineer
Family Owned by Pre-paid funeral houses, 35 religious buildings and three col- and close friend of Tafel. A cousin, Joan
third generation trust funds lege campuses, among many other projects. Scott, survives. A memorial will be held on
funeral director FDIC insured In 1960 he designed the First Presbyterian Feb. 17 at the Center for Architecture, 536
Community House, on W. 12th St. near LaGuardia Place.

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READER SPECIAL! ‘Blackout’ response to girl’s letter


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Earth School), at Sixth St. and Avenue B, wrote and hand-delivered a letter to the office of
Receive $25.00 OFFyour next online order* Cathie Black, the Department of Education’s new schools chancellor, inviting her to an anti-
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Februar y 3 - 9, 2011 17

EASTVILLAGERARTS&ENTERTAINMENT
Tennessee, TNC and a famous BOB
Theater thrives, thanks to the late Ellen Stewart
BY TRAV S.D.
I started out the new year with a veritable junket of
show going, most of which pleased my cantankerous taste
buds. The sole exception was “Gob Squad’s Kitchen” —
an empty interaction between a handful of hipster improv
comedians and the static mid-60s films by Andy Warhol’s
Factory. If there was an idea to be found in this tedious
exercise, I’ll eat my Leopard-Skin Pillbox Hat. Other than
that, though, I pretty much hit the jackpot — catching
“Spalding Gray: Stories Left to Tell” at P.S. 122 (featur-
ing a surprise visit from David Strathairn); “Too Late!” in
the Under the Radar Festival; “Green Eyes,” an obscure,
late Tennessee Williams one-act presented in a midtown
hotel room; Theater for the New City’s “Age Out” (about
some unhappy waitstaff); and “The Continuing Story of
Carla Rhodes” — an autobiographical rock opera pre-
sented monthly at Arlene’s Grocery by a multitalented
ventriloquist. All recommended. Either someone has put
mood enhancers in my Yoo-hoo or I’m walking under a
lucky constellation.

The major news to report this month is the sad pass-


ing of Ellen Stewart, founder and artistic director of La
MaMa E.T.C. The theatre she founded turns 50 years
old this year, and the Off Off Broadway movement she
helped launch is stronger than ever. Indeed, most of the
showfolk who generally wind up in this column owe
something to her. She will be missed, but her legacy is
ubiquitous. Several shows happening at her theatre this
month strike me as particularly exciting. February 3-13,
award-winning puppeteer Theodora Skipitares presents Photo by Kirsten Kay Thoen
her own version of Aristophanes’ “Lysistrata,” mixed Getting Ready to “Purge”: Jillian Lindig (top) and Larisa Polonsky (bottom).
with “actual present-day accounts of sex strikes.” Why,
it’s un-American! In addition to masks and body suits domination copes with the Great Recession; “Yippie!” at Joe’s Pub a few months back, and can testify that it mixes
inspired by ancient Roman circus comedians, the produc- (about the eponymous radical political party which once Bob’s patented exhibitionism with revelations of a deeper
tion boasts the music of way out experimentalist Sxip ran a pig for President); and “You Shouldn’t Be Here” by sort. Find out more at thewildproject.com.
Shirey. Also of note is “Purge.” The American premiere self-described “mock star” Killy Dwyer. For a full sched- At Clemente Soto Velez Cultural & Educational Center,
of a #1 best seller in Finland, it tells the story of a couple ule and ticket info, go to FRIGIDnewyork.info. February 4-20 Flux Theatre Ensemble will be presenting
of Estonian women forced to make choices as the country We seem to be somewhat in the midst of a Tennessee Liz Duffy Adams’ “Dog Act.” While that may sound like
makes the tough transition from totalitarian communism Williams revival at the moment, as directors and pro- a mere circus or vaudeville turn featuring trained poodles,
to criminal capitalism. Finnish-Estonian playwright Sofi ducers exhume countless obscure works ignominiously we learn from the release that it’s really one of those post-
Oksanen was “Estonia’s Person of the Year” in 2009 and is scorned in the genius playwright’s lifetime. Not only has apocalyptic things, one in which a character undergoes “a
hailed in her country as one of the most important voices there been the above-mentioned production of “Green voluntary species downgrade.” But, really, aren’t we all
of her generation. The show promises to be an important Eyes” by director Travis Chamberlain, but last year doing that at this stage in evolutionary history? Tix and info
cultural event. It runs February 11-20. Also this month at saw an entire festival of such works by Target Margin, at fluxtheatre.org.
La MaMa, the movement ensemble Witness Relocation as well as a series of revivals by White Horse Theatre February 6 through March 6, the Irish Repertory
presents the premiere of a new work featuring text by Company, and the film version of “The Loss of a Theatre Company will be presenting “My Scandalous
playwright Chuck Mee. The content is unclear but the Teardrop Diamond.” And, now, of all people, Elizabeth Life” — a play about Lord Alfred Douglas, Oscar Wilde’s
personnel is impressive. The show runs from February 17 LeCompte will be directing the late Williams play lover who indirectly brought about the celebrated author’s
through 27. For info on these and all shows at La MaMa, “Vieux Carrè” with her company the Wooster Group, downfall. Normally history remembers “Bosie” (his nick-
go to lamama.org. running through February. In the this production, this name) as a superficial, unfeeling character, but the blurbs
Meanwhile, across the street at Horse Trade Theater most experimental of ensembles will be taking on an about the current show seem to indicate that (in this play
Group, it is time once again for that company’s annual autobiographical work of American realism, concerning at least) there was more to him than that. How true it is, I
and (aptly named at the moment) Frigid New York Williams’ earliest days as a writer in the New Orleans can’t say, but at least it will be something new! More info:
Festival (February 23–March 6). Smaller in scale than French Quarter. It’s not the first time the Wooster Group irishrep.org.
most of the summer theatre festivals, Frigid New York has dared to monkey with a Great American Playwright. Lastly, Theater for the New City’s 8th Annual Love ‘N’
substitutes quantity for quality, priding itself on a They’ve done it with Eugene O’Neill more than once, so Courage benefit will take place at the National Arts Club
well-run machine featuring 30-odd shows at its three- the answer to the obvious question “Is nothing sacred?” on February 28. This year’s guest of honor will be the lovely
space the Kraine, the Red Room and Under St. Marks. has already been answered and it’s a flat no. Tickets and Marian Seldes, with a wealth of presenting stars from both
Standouts this year to these jaded old eyes include: “The info may be obtained at thewoostergroup.org. the Uptown and Downtown theatre scenes, including Eli
Bitter Poet: Looking for Love in All the Wrong Black Box In the vaudeville/ burlesque category this month: Wallach and Anne Jackson, Tammy Grimes, Jean-Claude
Performance Spaces” starring the hilarious leather-clad “Female female-impersonator” World Famous *BOB* Van Itallie, and many others. A great way to close out an
Downtown performance veteran Kevin Draine; “My Pal will be reviving “One Man Show: The True Story of Miss action-packed month, even though this Valentine’s Day-
Izzy: The Early Life and Music of Irving Berlin”; “Hi, World Famous *BOB*” at Wild Project, 195 East 3rd themed event will be two weeks too late for Cupid. See
How Can I Help You?” — which shows how a house of Street February 3-5. I caught this show on its original run you next month!
18 Februar y 3 - 9, 2011

Four women wrote this


13th effort by Wide Eyed Productions features best of 388
THEATER
A GIRL WROTE IT
Four one-act plays by women
A Wide Eyed Productions presentation by Horse Trade Theater
Group
February 3-20
At The Red Room (85 E. 4th St. btw. Second Ave & Bowery. Third
floor; no wheelchair access)
For tickets ($18, $15 for students), call 212-868-4444
Visit wideeyedproductions.com and horsetrade.info

BY JERRY TALLMER
Just call them A, B, C, D. That’s what the playwright
calls them — or, rather, that’s what her play calls them.
When the lights go up, all four are discovered in a sterile-
looking sort of waiting room/classroom. The younger of the
two couples, A (male) and B (female), sit with arms around
one another. Not so with the older, more uptight couple.
D (male) paces the room impatiently while C (female), his
wife, just sits and broods. Photo by Kristin Skye Hoffmann
All four are waiting to be individually red-lighted or
“The Return of Toodles Von Flooz” — featuring Lisa Mamazza, Colin McFadden & Brianne Mai.
green-lighted as a consequence of certain computer-generat-
ed intelligence tests. A deus ex machina simply identified as youngest of my three daughters — when she was looking for
“Efficient Woman” is on hand to elucidate the results. a one-act play she could direct next year in school. Then I
The play is “Selection” — as in Darwin’s “natural selec- got a notice from the Dramatists Guild about this company,
tion” — and it is the one I liked best of the four one-acts The play is “Selection” — as in Wide Eyed Productions, that was looking for one-act scripts
by four women presented together under the rubric “A Girl by women.”
Wrote It.” The playwright is Kris Montgomery of Shelton, Darwin’s “natural selection” — and Plays have to get conceived and brought to birth, just
Connecticut — whose day job, as it happens, is installing like human babies. This one, says its mother — whose three
computer software. it is the one I liked best of the four flesh-and-blood daughters are, as it happens, adopted —
When the results for A, B, C, and D come in, the green was spurred into life “by discussions I used to have with
light flashes three times, the red light flashes once. Now one-acts by four women presented friends about whether some people ought to have to get a
what? Who gets the intelligence test’s thumbs up to bring license to give birth to a child. Alcoholics, welfare moth-
that baby into the brave new world of the day after tomor- together under the rubric “A Girl ers, low-IQ’s, et cetera. That’s not exactly genocide, but a
row — and who does not? gray area.”
The admirably concise “Selection” contains overtones Wrote It.” The playwright is Kris From this play, her play, “Selection”:
not only of Aldous Huxley and Orwell, but of early and late
Albee (“The Sandbox,” “The American Dream,” “The Play Montgomery of Shelton, Connecticut EFFICIENT WOMAN: This is interesting. The com-
About the Baby”) as well as of a scary futuristic Ira Levin puter print out says that this is one of the highest greens
novel called “This Perfect Day” (1970) — right down to ID — whose day job, as it happens, is we’ve ever had.
touch pads at every turn. A: Meaning?
“This play,” says Montgomery, “has been done a number installing computer software. EFFICIENT WOMAN: They almost passed the red
of places, starting in 1999, and then thrown away, It was [this particular green’s partner] just because the green
rediscovered last fall by my 16-year-old daughter Erin — the was so high.
B: So, why don’t they do that? We want to have kids
together.
EFFICIENT WOMAN: They didn’t do it because if
they start making exceptions, the whole system falls
apart.

Continued on page 19
Februar y 3 - 9, 2011 19

“Medea” for the Hudson Shakespeare we even managed to come out in the black.
Company was rehearsed “for a really long This is now our 13th production and our
time,” but got “only four performances — second evening of one-acts. In all 12 of those
all outdoors, all free — which seemed a shows, we had never done anything written
pity to me.” by a woman, and I thought that was crazy.
Perhaps it could be done again, and “We did a call for scripts by a woman,
better, and indoors. “If I do it again,” she posted it all over the place. Received 388
said to her buddies, “will you guys stick submissions, and I read all 388.” This was
with me?” chopped down to 50, and then to the four at
Yes, they said, yes. Red Room: “Clementine,” by Lynda Green;
After much search, she found “a very “Plight of the Apothecary” by Elizabeth
nice man named Richmond Shepard,” who Birkenmeier; “The Return of Toodles Von
made his East 26th Street theater available Flooz,” by Lisa Ferber; and “Selection,” by
to her without a deposit — and a second Kris Montgomery.
“Medea,” again starring Amy Lee Pearsall, A, B, C, D. Red light, green light. Stop
was on its wide-eyed way. and Go in The Red Room. Keep your eyes
“Everybody lent us stuff, and somehow wide open.

Photo by Kristin Skye Hoffmann

“Selection” features, L to R: Tom Carman, Lucy McRae & Mim Granahan.

Four women wrote this Von Flooz.”


Continued from page 18 Directing is Hoffmann’s passion, start-
ing back at the University of Northern
A: Isn’t that what the Nazis did? Colorado, from where she and a number of
You’re trying to get rid of a whole group
of people.
B: This is genocide.
EFFICIENT WOMAN: No, it isn’t.
No one’s being killed here. We just
“Everybody lent us stuff,
don’t let everyone reproduce. There’s a
big difference….
and somehow we even
All the above — indeed, all of “Selection”
managed to come out in
— represents, to Montgomery “a kind of
argument with myself — and it’s my hope
the black. This is now our
that it will elicit discussion and/or argu-
ment elsewhere.”
13th production and our
Montgomery, who says she was born in
Elizabeth, New Jersey, “somewhere in the
second evening of one-
last century,” and that she is “married to a
acts. In all 12 of those Will Pittsburgh
woman named Lisa,” has an acting/singing
career alongside playwriting. She has widely
toured as the Eva Peron of “Evita,” and —
shows, we had never done Turn Back The
in nice happenstance parallel to her present
Red Room connection — plays keyboard
anything written by a Pack or will
and sings with a band called Those 4 Girls.
Which takes us to another Kris — or,
woman, and I thought that The Packers
to be more exact, Kristin Skye Hoffmann ESTABLISHED SINCE 1880
was crazy.”
— the co-founder (with Liz White and
Sky Seals) of Wide Eyed Productions. It is
Famous Dylan Thomas Watering Hole Make Swiss
Hoffmann who had the idea of putting four
Cheese out of
White horse Tavern
short plays together under the heading “A theater-minded pals came straight to New
Girl Wrote It,” and is the director of one of York to try to do their thing. Wide-eyed is
those four, Lisa Ferber’s farcical film noir
bar room Western, “The Return of Toodles
what they knew they were.
Her directing of an exciting 2007 567 Hudson St. NYC * 243-9260
them?
20 Februar y 3 - 9, 2011

Just Do Art!
COMPILED BY SCOTT STIFFLER money? The latter is a sure bet. The former with intermission. At LABA Theatre at the
is anybody’s guess. Find out for yourself on 14th Street Y (344 E. 14th St. btw. First &
THIRD ST. MUSIC SCHOOL Sat., Feb. 5, 10am, at St. Mark’s Church-in- Second Aves.). For tickets ($25), visit red-
SETTLEMENT: “STRING the-Bowery (10th St. & 2nd Ave.). FREE. ferntheatre.org or call 866-811-4111.
‘STRAVAGANZA” For more info, call 212-777-3240 or visit
Some things in life should happen more thirdstreetmusicschool.org.
often then they do. But for now, you’ll just CHILDREN’S MUSEUM OF THE ARTS
have to be satisfied with the fact that this Explore painting, collage and sculpture
is a semi-annual event — and the fact that GENTRIFUSION through self-guided arts projects. Open art
February 2011 means you’ll have the oppor- Red Fern Theatre Company’s latest project stations are ongoing throughout the after-
tunity to attend Third Street Music School charged several playwrights with the task of noon — giving children the opportunity to
Settlement’s “String ‘Stravaganza.” More than exploring the “different truths” surrounding experiment with materials such as paint,
150 violinists, violists, cellists and bass players the gentrification of New York’s neighbor- clay, fabric, paper and found objects. Young
will perform a concert comprised of diverse hoods. The short plays of “Gentrifusion,” minds can be great minds — and great
selections from “The O’Connor Method — A we’re assured, will reach beyond the cli- minds, as they say, often think alike. See for
New American School of String Playing.” Give chéd ideas of gentrification to explore how yourself when you view “Art Within Reach:
these young musical artists credit for their imposed changes on the place where you live from the WPA to the Present” — on display
ambition: The program begins with the most both improves and diminishes the commu- now through June 5. This intergenerational
difficult composition, calling on all students nity. What they’ve found out already is that exhibit connects the artistic and intellectual
who have mastered it to stand up and play “both long-time residents and the new crop dots between those who grew up in NYC
together. That piece is followed by the second- of gentrifiers benefit and suffer in different during the Great Depression and those who
hardest piece with more students joining the measures and different ways.” The roster of are growing up in the city today. Regular
first group of players, and so on until the short plays are supported by projections cre- museum hours: Wed.-Sun., 12-5pm; Thurs.,
program has progressed to the easiest pieces ated from photojournalist and documentary 12-6pm (Pay as You Wish, from 4-6pm).
and the group of players has grown to include filmmaker Dennis Ho (dwho.com). Through Admission: $10. At the Children’s Museum
students from 4 to 18 years old. Photo by Christina Limson O’Connell, Courtesy of Third Street Feb. 13. Thurs. at 8pm, Fri. at 8pm, Sat. at of the Arts (182 Lafayette St. btw. Broome &
Music School
The performers will be joined by mas- 8pm, Sun. at 3pm (Super Bowl Sun., Feb. 6, Grand). Call 212- 274-0986 or visit cmany.
ter violinist and creator of The O’Connor Third Street’s littlest string students, at 2pm). Additional performance on Mon., org. For group tours, call 212) 274-0986,
Method, Mark O’Connor. That method, accompanied by the school’s most Feb., 7 at 7pm. Running Time: 120 minutes, extension 31.
according to Third Street, “exposes students advanced, make beautiful music (at St.
to a variety of North American fiddle and Mark’s Church-in-the-Bowery).
violin styles, including traditional tunes and is, providing examples in composition, litera-
O’Connor originals. The method attempts to ture and teaching.” Will the students become
establish a concept of what American music the master, or at least give him a run for his

Image courtesy of the Children’s Museum of the Arts

“The Train Station” — by Alyssa Ramroop, Age 11 (watercolor & gouache on paper.
2010. 22.5in x 15in). See “Children’s Museum of the Arts.”

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Februar y 3 - 9, 2011 21

L.M.C.C.’s “Access Restricted” provides insider’s insight


Lecture series to make seldom-visited spaces accessible
BY ALINE REYNOLDS
“Revitalization” has become the buzzword to describe
post-9/11 Lower Manhattan. Amid the mushrooming high-
rises and rapidly evolving technology, one Downtown arts
organization is directing the spotlight on the area’s rich
cultural history.
In a series of lectures this winter and spring (organized by
the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council; lmcc.net), humani-
ties scholars will present histories of Lower Manhattan that
slipped out of the pubic consciousness or were overlooked
from the get-go. The lectures, based on archival research
and local lore, span architecture, urban development, social
justice and the environment.
“Looking back on the artistic historical material allows us
to appreciate different historical layers present in our neigh-
borhood and think about our changing neighborhood today,”
said Erin Donnelly, curator of the lecture series and a special
projects consultant at the L.M.C.C. — a nonprofit organiza-
tion that secures grants, artist-residencies and other services
for artists.

Another purpose of the annual


lecture series “Access Restricted”
is to make accessible Downtown
Photo courtesy of the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council
spaces that are rarely visited by L.M.C.C.’s lecture series gives you access to restricted Downtown spaces.

the public. Venues used during this much more intermingled in terms of different groups of present moment, but to earlier art.”
people, different classes and all that,” he said. “For me, Artists continue to use the metropolis as a performance
year’s series include the Woolworth it’s an important example of the way in which the port stage – for example, choreographer Trisha Brown, Crimp
itself created a port culture.” Tchen hopes to attract some noted, is recreating Roof Piece, a dance from 1971, on
Building, 7 World Trade Center and longtime Seaport residents to the L.M.C.C. lecture who rooftops in Chelsea and the Meatpacking District this
will be willing to share their perspectives on how the area spring.
195 Broadway (the former AT&T has changed, and talk about aspects of its history that Crimp plans to give a brief introduction about the
have gone under the radar (although he wouldn’t com- exhibition he co-curated at the Reina Sofia in Madrid last
building). ment on the forthcoming redevelopment of the Seaport). summer, which serves as a wider context for the films he’ll
Tchen has also extensively researched the history of be presenting at the March 23 screening. The exhibition,
Chinatown. When he founded the Museum of Chinese in entitled “Mixed Use, Manhattan” focused on how artists
America (on East Broadway in 1980), Tchen uncovered from the 1970s to the present experiment with urban
“Lower Manhattan Revealed,” the name Donnelly cabinets and other relics of the past in dumpsters sur- space. He will also offer the L.M.C.C. audience a tour of
chose for the 2011 program, “had a nice ring to it — rounding Chatham Square. “[The stores] had 99-year the Cunard Building at 25 Broadway, a landmark building
thinking about this year being 2011, a year when our leases, they were coming to expiration, and their histories from the 1920s that was the original U.S. headquarters of
district is being memorialized, and its future being dis- were just being dumped,” he said. “This kind of shocked the Cunard Line, an Anglo-American shipping company
cussed.” Another purpose of the annual lecture series me.” Artistic and historic community groups must be that dominated the seas in the early 20th century.
“Access Restricted” is to make accessible Downtown formed in Chinatown and elsewhere, Tchen said, in order “Lower Manhattan Revealed” will close with an April
spaces that are rarely visited by the public. Venues used to establish cultural diversity and help preserve the neigh- 13 lecture given by Native American scholar and curator
during this year’s series include the Woolworth Building, 7 borhood’s’’ unique histories. David Oestreicher at Pershing Hall on Governor’s Island.
World Trade Center and 195 Broadway (the former AT&T Tchen believes that business improvement districts Oestreicher will talk about the history of the Lenape, a
building). (BIDs), such as the one proposed for Chinatown, are too Delaware Indian tribe that was reportedly the earliest
Next Wednesday, architecture and urban studies writer narrowly defined and often lead to cultural homogenization group to inhabit Lower New York.
Jeff Byles will interview architecture professor Michael rather than diversity. “Culture doesn’t emerge from monocul- L.M.C.C. created “Access Restricted” in 2006 to satisfy
Sorkin (director of City College’s graduate urban design ture,” he said. “It emerges from these vital mixes.” the curiosity of those wishing to penetrate Downtown’s
program) about the building boom that has occurred On March 23, art critic Douglas Crimp will be showing untold history. Participants of the series’ first season
Downtown in the past decade. The discussion will also four 1970s films shot in Tribeca and on the Lower East got a special tour of the old City Hall subway station,
be about “rethinking open and green spaces…and what it Side, that demonstrate how filmmakers utilize the city as which is now closed off to the public, and the Surrogate’s
means to reclaim the city from an environmental perspec- performance stages and templates for their work. Crimp Courthouse and the New York Hall of Records on
tive,” according to Donnelly. writes for a variety of international and scholarly journals, Chambers Street.
On March 9, John Kuo Wei Tchen — co-founder of the and teaches art history at the University of Rochester. This year, Art International Radio, a Downtown-based
Museum of Chinese in the America (at 215 Centre Street; Crimp selected the films he thought were the most online radio station, is partnering with the L.M.C.C. to
mocanyc.org) and an associate professor of social and cul- resonant with and representative of the era. The L.M.C.C. audio-record the events and store them in their online
tural analysis at New York University — will be speaking event, he said, is an opportunity to show a new generation cultural archive.
about the history of the South Street Seaport. The lecture of NYC artists a sampling of lesser-known artworks of the The events are free, but RSVP is required since space
will take place in the attic of the Seaport Museum, the site period. “It’s an example of how artists were able to use is limited. For more information, visit lmcc.net or call
of the former Fulton Ferry Hotel. this neighborhood while it was undergoing transforma- Marisa Olsen, external affairs coordinator, at 212-219-
Nineteenth-century Downtown, stretching from tion,” he said. Today’s generation of artists, Crimp said, 9401, ext. 105. The first “Access Restricted” recording is
Chinatown to the South Street Seaport, was lined with can be inspired by 20th-century filmmaking. “There’s a scheduled to launch on A.I.R.’s website (artonair.com)
lively outdoor markets that bustled with activity. “It was way in which contemporary art is not only attentive to its on February 7.
22 Februar y 3 - 9, 2011

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Februar y 3 - 9, 2011 23

A valentine for Village businesses ‘Vote for Lyn’; Help club win $50K
Participants will be given a map of busi- The Lower Eastside Girls Club is in the
Continued from page 15 nesses on Greenwich Ave., Sixth Ave. and running for a $50,000 award if it wins the
Seventh Ave. and, after shopping at these DVF Foundation’s “People’s Voice” online
closure has been harsh and swift. businesses, they will have an opportunity vote, which started Monday. Actress Rosario
The closing of St. Vincent’s has been a to exchange their receipts (that value at Dawson nominated the club for the competi-
devastating blow to the Village and just as least $10) for raffle tickets on the first tion. Four other organizations are also on the
devastating for the businesses that depend- floor of the Lesbian and Gay Center, at ballot — though these are national groups,
ed on St. Vincent’s for survival. Many busi- 208 W. 13th St. between Seventh Ave. and unlike the girls club, based in New York’s
nesses have already closed, while others are Greenwich Ave. between 10 a.m. and 3 own East Village. Voters can also enter their
struggling to survive. To help confront this p.m. Multiple raffles will be held through- names to win a free trip to New York City
problem, my office invited the Greenwich out the day with the chance to win prizes and a DVF (Diane von Furstenberg) shop-
Village-Chelsea Chamber of Commerce, donated by local businesses. To show ping spree — only one person will win. (If a
Community Board 2, Congressmember Valentine’s Day appreciation, giveaways New York City resident wins, hopefully she
Jerrold Nadler, Borough President Scott will include locally designed “Love the or he will get some other perk since no travel
Stringer, state Senator Tom Duane and Village” T-shirts for the first 100 people to is required.)
Council Speaker Christine Quinn to par- participate. To vote for the girls club, go to www.
ticipate in a Valentine’s-themed shopping Although a one-day event may not save girlsclub/vote, and click on the “Vote for
extravaganza on this Sat., Feb. 12, enti- a business that is teetering on the edge, it Lyn” button above the YouTube video of Lyn
tled, “Love the Village,” with the goal may help introduce people to businesses Pentecost, the girls club’s director.
of supporting businesses that have been that they might pass every day without ever The DVF Awards were created in 2010
adversely impacted. The event will kick entering. If we do want our neighborhood by von Furstenberg and the Diller-von
off at 10 a.m. on the northwest corner of to be more Jane Jacobs than Marc Jacobs, Furstenberg Family Foundation to recognize
Seventh Ave. and Greenwich Ave., across a good first step is by stepping foot inside and support women who are using their
L.E.S. Girls Club members want your
the street from Roasting Plant Coffee. On an independently owned local business. I resources, commitment and visibility to trans-
vote.
the weekend before Valentine’s Day, we look forward to seeing all of you on Feb. form the lives of other women. Honorees
want to show local businesses how big our 12. Now, more than ever, we need to come receive $50,000 in support of the nonprofit, Avenue D clubhouse and for their con-
hearts in the Village really are. together as a community and help those 501c-3 organization with whom they are tinued employment of local teenagers,
“Love the Village” will be a daylong businesses that are in need. affiliated to further their work. The last day Pentecost said.
shopping extravaganza that will encour- of voting is Feb. 15. “It’s really a vote for localization and a
age the public to engage with businesses Glick is assemblymember for the 66th If the girls club wins, the money will sustainable community,” she said. “It’s about
in the immediate vicinity of St. Vincent’s. District. go toward construction of their new keeping it all in the neighborhood.”

highest court” (news article, Jan. 27): inals’ in Soho, lawyer says” (news article,

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR It’s religion. People should respect


that. The church should be considered a
landmark, not only because it’s been here
a long time, but because it’s here to serve
Jan. 27):
The real issue as I see it is live-work
space for actual working artists. Soho
inspires the heart of the artist in many
I hold fond memories of Our Lady of people of faith. People now and in the ways. The low roofline and the large
Continued from page 14 Vilnius Church. I was baptized there and regu- future could learn to respect the efforts windows create a neighborhood awash in
larly attended Sunday Mass. It is a beacon for of a dedicated community in their effort light. The legacy of art in Soho is impres-
of Vilnius was the “old country” to my family. the faithful. It feels good to see the church as I to preserve their church and to practice sive, to say the least.
My father and aunts were working too hard to come home each day. However, I am inevitably their faith. Yet it seems as if the link between civic
commute to Mass there every week, but it was reminded of the callous manner in which its I was baptized at Our Lady of Vilnius and artistic is not as strong as it needs to
where they would have been if they could man- doors were suddenly shut, without consid- Church 14 years ago. I don’t want to only be to meet the real needs of living, work-
age it. It was a place to go for important feasts eration for Father Eugene Sawicki and the keep the church’s “memory” in my mind, ing artists. Not many career artists can
and momentous events like baptisms and funer- church family; without notice, without a care. I want to see the structure and its beauty afford the space rates, and so they are
als. It was our St. Patrick’s Cathedral. Many of Our Lady of Vilnius’s displaced — not only on the outside, but inside, as forced to move their studios elsewhere.
Our Lady of Vilnius was not an exclusively congregation regard its closing as a heart- well. I yearn to enter Our Lady of Vilnius Sadly, it is clear from this article that
Lithuanian parish. The Villager’s inaugural less undertaking. Throughout the past four because I would be surrounded by histori- many of the live-work spaces that were
article spoke of “Pretzels” and “Provolone,” years, the Lithuanian supporters remained cal, sacred walls. People who have a say- once set aside for artists are not housing
not “Kugelis” and “Cepelinai.” I am urg- undaunted in their goal to worship at Our so in these matters should respect that. artists at all. With all the creativity at
ing anyone who loved this place to jump Lady of Vilnius Church, albeit, outside on hand in Soho, it amazes me that a more
onboard — all of you Hallorans and Dolans the church steps. In rain, snow and sunshine, Lauren J. Sousa effective plan has not been generated to
with no Lithuanian heritage, all of you Piros, they practice the Roman Catholic faith with assure the continued existence of artists
Passarellis, Tangredis and DeLorenzos with song, candles, words of scripture and prayer. and their neighbors in Soho. Since suc-
Lithuanian grandmothers, all of you who The service always culminates with delicious cessful art district plans have been devel-
were strengthened for your workday by Father Lithuanian homemade food and inspirational Missing Grandpa Bruno oped in other neighborhoods in other cit-
Sawicki’s noon Mass, all of you sitting in your discussion. The spirit of the faithful remains, ies, one must wonder why it is that Soho
cars waiting to get into the tunnel who are to love and serve the Lord. To The Editor: cannot get it straight.
heartened by the sight of Our Lady of Vilnius There is still a strong parish here, and the Re “Olindo Bruno, 88; Worked in the
as a symbol of God and old New York — we parishioners remain steadfast with their goal garment industry” (obituary, Jan. 20): Lawrence White
are trying to reconstitute this place so that it of reclaiming their church. Miraculously, St. Thank you for writing this about my
continues to inspire. Brigid’s Church was saved. The hope is that grandfather. We miss you very much, Pop!
a similar miracle can happen here, too. Rest in peace. E-mail letters, not longer than 250
Christina Nakraseive words in length, to news@thevillager.com
Linda L. Sousa Anthony Bruno or fax to 212-229-2790 or mail to the East
Villager, Letters to the Editor, 145 Sixth
Ave., ground floor, NY, NY 10013. Please
Praying for a miracle include phone number for confirmation
Teen torn by church’s loss Soho’s zoning is failing purposes. The East Villager reserves the
To The Editor: right to edit letters for space, grammar,
Re “Lady of Vilna appeal goes to state’s To The Editor: To The Editor: clarity and libel. The East Villager does
highest court” (news article, Jan. 27): Re “Lady of Vilna appeal goes to state’s Re “Non-artist residents feel like ‘crim- not publish anonymous letters.
24 Februar y 3 - 9, 2011

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