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THE EAST VILLAGER 2-3-11

THE EAST VILLAGER 2-3-11

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145 SIXTH AVENUE • NYC 10013 • COPYRIGHT © 2011 COMMUNITY MEDIA, LLC
Volume 1, Number 28 FREE 
 East and West Village, Lower East Side, Soho, Noho, Little Italy and Chinatown
February 3 - 9, 2011
BY ALBERT AMATEAU
Preservation advocates gatheredin front of 35 Cooper Square onFriday afternoon demanding that theLandmarks Preservation Commissionprotect the early-19th-century, Federal-style building by giving it landmarkdesignation.L.P.C., however, has said the build-ing has been too altered by the additionof a brownstone coating to its facadeto qualify as architecturally eligible forhistoric designation.For the past decade, the buildingwas the location of Cooper 35 AsianPub — a bar popular with New YorkUniversity and Cooper Union students.Last November, 35 Cooper Square andits adjoining space at the corner of E.Sixth St. were purchased for $8.5 mil-lion by Bhatia Development, an orga-nization that intends to demolish thebuilding. Indeed, the Asian Pub servedits last drink on Saturday night Jan. 22and closed for good.Last Friday’s rally, led by DavidMulkins, chairperson of the BoweryAlliance of Neighbors, or BAN, includedAssemblymember Deborah Glick andstate Senator Tom Duane, as well as pres-ervation leaders Simeon Bankoff, execu-tive director of the Historic DistrictsCouncil, and Andrew Berman, execu-tive director of the Greenwich VillageSociety for Historic Preservation.“This is one of the most signifi-cant buildings on this street,” saidMulkins. “If we lose this building,Cooper Square loses a much earliersense of its history,” he added. Mulkinsreferred to the recently built 20-storyCooper Square Hotel across E. SixthSt. from the site, saying, “If we havethis kind of out-of-scale, out-of-contextdevelopment, we will destroy the senseof place that we get in these historicneighborhoods.” He noted that theBowery was one of the world’s mostrenowned neighborhoods.“The Bowery that has been knownover the centuries is vanishing before oureyes,” Bankoff said. “At this point wehave to say, Stop.“The Landmarks PreservationCommission said this building can-not be designated because it has beenaltered,” he went on. “Of course it wasaltered, it’s more than 100 years old.”Demonstrators waved signs saying,“Build Memories, Not Luxury Hotels,”and displayed photos showing theneighborhood as it was at the turn of the last century. Carolyn Ratcliffe, anEast Village preservationist, carried aposter reminding passersby that thepoet Diane diPrima and the singer LizaMinnelli once lived in the building.Jim Power, 62, “The Mosaic Man,”who transformed lampposts all over the
Cooper Sq. at ‘tipping point’as 1825 building faces demo
Continued on page 4
BY JEFFERSON SIEGEL
Members of a groupaccusing the Continentalbar of a racist door policygathered outside the ThirdAve. watering hole againlast Saturday night. Despitebitter-cold weather, how-ever, there were signs of athaw in relations betweenthe ANSWER (Act Now toStop War and End Racism)Coalition, the protest’s orga-nizer, and the bar’s owner,who goes by Trigger Smith,but is known to most as justTrigger.Trigger joined the dem-onstrators on the sidewalkfor most of their 90-min-ute protest. At first dancingalong to their chants, healso spent a half-hour talk-ing with a woman who saidshe was previously deniedentry to the bar.The protests grew froman incident last June when
‘It’ll never happen again,’ bar owner tells protesters 
BY ALINE REYNOLDS
United Federation of Teachers President MichaelMulgrew is just as fed upwith the city’s Departmentof Education as someDowntown education activ-ists are. School overcrowd-ing, standardized testing andstudent teacher evaluationswere among the union presi-dent’s main talking points ata special forum CommunityBoard 1 held last Wednesdayevening at the Museum of Jewish Heritage, in BatteryPark City. D.O.E., Mulgrewsaid, has created and perpet-uated many of the problemsthat are plaguing publicschools in Lower Manhattanand around the city.“We cannot allow thisreally unscrupulous, disgust-ing behavior to stop us frombeing a part of the work thatmight help us help childrenin the long run,” Mulgrewtold the local parents andactivists at the forum.Mulgrew became unionpresident in August 2009.He previously taught English
U.F.T. prez, C.B. 1: New projects must factor in students 
Continued on page 2 Continued on page 10 
Photo by J.B. Nicholas
Gal Friday helps Ray party
Gal Friday gave Ray (standing behind the counter) of Ray’s Candy Storeon Avenue A a special treat Tuesday night at his 78th birthday party. Sheshimmied on his countertop, and stripped down to a fringed G-string andblack pasties with tassels — which she twirled expertly. “Oh, beautiful!”Ray said, then twirled her a delicious vanilla egg cream. Speaking ofhot, Ray’s latest offering — beignets — are selling like hotcakes, well,mini-hotcakes. “I want to make funnel cake next,” he said.
EDITORIAL,LETTERS
PAGE 14
SCOOPY GOESEGYPTIAN
PAGE 3
Authorcomesclean,p. 15
 
2
February 3 - 9, 2011
four young black women claim they weredenied access. On that summer night, oneof the women, Shaniqua Pippen, 25 fromBrooklyn, pressed one of the bar’s bouncers,who was black, for an explanation.“Do we need to be regulars or do we justneed to be white?” Pippen asked, claimingthe bouncer replied, “Your people don’tknow how to act.”Posts on several Web sites have also com-plained about blacks and others arbitrarilybeing denied entry to the Continental. AFacebook page, “Boycott Continental Bar inNYC,” has gained almost a dozen membersin the past week alone. One hundred forty-two members have so far joined that socialnetwork site’s wall.Revelers entering the bar Saturday nightdid not appear to be dissuaded by the 20demonstrators holding signs and chanting. Asmall police presence observed events froma distance.Shortly after the protest began, Triggerappeared wearing his trademark peakedbamboo hat. He approached several of theprotesters, inviting them inside to talk.“We’re not going to meet with him in hisbar,” said protest organizer Jinnette Caceresof the ANSWER Coalition. “He wouldn’tmeet with us in our office because he wantsa sense of power and entitlement. He wantsto meet with us now because he’s feeling thepressure.”“Early on, I was willing to meet,” Triggertold this newspaper. “People of all color arewelcome here, but there’s a vibe, a style anddress that’s not welcome here.”As Trigger continued imploring the pro-testers to come in and talk, some cautiouslybegan to engage him in conversation.“We have a dress code and a door policy,”Trigger told one woman.She, in turn, asked him to explain, “Whodo you turn away?”“Jersey Shore types,” Trigger replied. Yet,on the Continental’s Web site is a link offer-ing directions to the bar; topping the list aredirections from the Holland and Lincolntunnels, both of which connect New Jerseyto Manhattan.One young woman eventually engagedTrigger in a serious and lengthy dialogue.Ashley Diaz, 22 from Brooklyn, was one of four friends who, with Pippen, tried to enterthe bar last June but claim they were deniedentry by the bouncers.“We were four females — nothing overthe top — and we got refused,” Diaz said.“If you come here any night of the weekand don’t see black and Asian women here,I’d be shocked,” Trigger told Diaz. “The onlything I can say is maybe someone was drunk. Why would I turn away paying customers?”Diaz assured Trigger that no one in hergroup was drunk.“I’m going to talk to the bouncers. I’msorry for that, I truly am,” he told Diaz.As Caceres and Diaz continued to pressTrigger on his alleged door policy, he againsought to defend his motives.“I’ve dated women of all colors,” he said.“I’ve donated money to Obama’s campaign. Ihad a party here celebrating Obama.“I’m sorry you didn’t get in,” Triggeragain told Diaz, “It’ll never happen again.”“Your conversation makes a lot of sense,”Diaz replied, “but this could have been donea long time ago.”After an hour and a half in the cold andsnow, the gap between both sides appearedto have narrowed. Trigger watched the pro-test disperse.“Hopefully, we’ll meet and everythingwill defuse,” he offered.ANSWER had already made a list of demands, including requesting the bar holdmulticultural theme nights, offer diversity train-ing to managers and staff, and post a statementof nondiscrimination on the bar’s Web site.
Bar owner, protesters start dialogue on door policy
Continued from page 1
Photo by Jefferson Siegel 
The Continental’s Trigger, left, talked with Ashley Diaz, 22, who says she wasdenied entry to the bar last June.
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Gay City
NEWSNEWS
TM
www.gaycitynews.com
 
February 3 - 9, 2011
3
FROM THE VILLAGE TO CAIRO:
As the worldanxiously watches the situation in Egypt unfold, in Washington Square, there’s confidence that oppositionleader
Mohamed ElBaradei
will help play a positiverole in the outcome. ElBaradei taught as an adjunct lawprofessor at New York University School of Law from1981 to 1987. He received his Ph.D. in internationallaw from N.Y.U. in 1974, going on to win the NobelPeace Prize in 2005. Washington Square News, N.Y.U.’sundergraduate newspaper, quotes university president
John Sexton
saying of ElBaradei, “We have great faithin his character, intelligence, integrity and leader-ship. We all fervently hope for a peaceful conclusionto events now transpiring in Egypt, and we have littledoubt that Mohamed ElBaradei will be instrumental inachieving such an outcome.” Sexton was dean of the lawschool when ElBaradei was an adjunct. W.S.N. quotes
Richard Revesz
, the law school’s current dean, saying of ElBaradei, “We hope he will now be able to contribute topeaceful democratization in Egypt.”
ALMOST 
A WITNESS TO HISTORY:
Knowing that West Village political and gay activist
Allen Roskoff 
wasrecently planning to visit Egypt, friends wondered howhe was faring there as the popular uprising against
HosniMubarak
broke out last week. It turns out, however, thatRoskoff won’t have any epic stories of being caught up inthe dramatic events. “I couldn’t get into Egypt,” he told us inan e-mail. “We are in Eilat and have to return home withoutEgypt.” Eilat, a port city and resort in southern Israel, is rightacross the border from Egypt.
FEEL THE BURN (GETTING BURNED):
Equinox’stakeover of the Printing House gym on Hudson and LeroySts. has gone smashingly — though not as in a smashingsuccess — so far. A tipster tells us that during a recentspinning class, a construction crew came bursting rightthrough a wall next to a row of bikes. As if that wasn’tunsettling enough, we’re told members recently had toendure spinning classes “with no water or the abilityto get water — without a door on the gym, so everyonecould see their breath while they cycled in skimpy work-out attire. And of course,” our source added, “we haveno bathrooms or changing rooms in the class section of the gym, but our fees are still the same.”
SALESALE AT BOOKBOOK:
It’s been a year sinceBiography Bookshop closed in the West Village andopened a little farther down Bleecker St. as bookbook.To commemorate the anniversary, bookbook will beoffering 20 percent off all store merchandise (includ-ing their well-known remainders) for the whole monthof February. At 266 Bleecker St. between Sixth andSeventh Aves., bookbook features general literature, artand drama books, New York books, cookbooks, poetry,children’s books and an entire wall of bargain books.
CORRECTION:
Our article last week on the Feast of SanGennaro indicated that one of the conditions the event’s orga-nizers agreed to was to move the sound stage around to differ-ent spots during the 11-day street festival. In fact, according toCommunity Board 2’s resolution, the organizers have agreed torotate the sound stage’s location each year, so as not to annuallyinconvenience the same residents with amplified sound.
SCOOPY’S
 
NOTEBOOK
Photos by Milo Hess
On Saturday, about 500 Egyptian and Egyptian-American demonstrators rallied across from the United Nations,denouncing President Mubarak’s regime and calling for him to resign immediately. Some painted small Egyptianflags or the word “Egypt” — in red, white and black — on their faces.
 N 
 
THE 
 
HEART 
 
OF 
REENWICH 
ILLAGE 
— Recommended by Gourmet Magazine, Zagat, Crain’s NY, Playbill & The Villager — 
“Gold Medal Chef of the Year”. — Chefs de Cuisine Association
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69 MacDougal St.
(Bet. Bleeker & Houston St.)
 
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