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now

Do try this ‘From Home,’ p. 23

Chelsea
VOLUME 3, NUMBER 30

Quinn on hot
seat in debating
THE WEST SIDE’S COMMUNITY NEWSPAPER AUGUST 27 - SEPTEMBER 9, 2009

Passannante-Derr
and Kurland
BY LINCOLN ANDERSON half-hour debate, audience
More than 200 people members heard the candi-
packed a spirited debate dates spar over term limits,
for the Third City Council the City Council’s so-called
District at New York “slush fund,” overdevelop-
University on Thurs., April ment, the Department of
13, hosted by Community Sanitation’s planned Spring
Media’s The Villager, Gay St. megagarage and wheth-
City News and Chelsea Now er Quinn—whose mayoral
newspapers. ambitions are well known—
It was the first—and most has been sufficiently engaged
likely only—public debate in with her own district.
the high-profile Democratic The Third Council
primary election, pitting District stretches from Canal
10-year incumbent City St. to around 55th St. on the
Council Speaker Christine West Side, and is known by
Quinn against challengers some as “the gay seat” of the
Maria Passannante-Derr and City Council.
Yetta Kurland.
During the one-and-a- Continued on page 2

Copters flights
catch flak at Chelsea Now photo by Jefferson Siegel

Council hearing
BY ALBERT AMATEAU for closer Federal Aviation
On the waterfront
Attendees at a ceremony celebrating the long-awaited debut of Pier 64 on the Chelsea waterfront enjoyed a
Anti-noise and air-traffic Administration control over
safety advocates joined elected chopper and private planes moment looking out over the Hudson River at the end of the new 500-foot public pier on Thurs., Aug. 20. See
officials at a Tues., Aug. 25, flying lower that 1,100 feet. story and photos, page 13.
hearing by the City Council’s One solution proposed by
transportation committee on Manhattan Borough President
how to improve air safety in
the aftermath of the Aug. 8
helicopter crash with a pri-
Scott Stringer for separate
flight altitudes—1,100 feet for
private planes and 500 feet for
Hell’s Kitchen neighbors’ fears
vate airplane over the Hudson helicopters—prompted boos
River in which nine people
were killed.
The crash involving a
and jeers from members of
the audience long concerned
about helicopter noise.
flamed by hookah bar’s fumes
Liberty sightseeing helicop- Stringer, however, also BY SHEILA MCCLEAR from the city’s smoking ban. For college But what’s it like living above one?
ter flying out of the 30th proposed a moratorium on The city banned trans fat in restau- kids and twentysomethings, they’re seen Horus Too—a hookah joint from
St. Heliport in the Hudson all sightseeing flights while rants and smoking indoors—but what as an exotic alternative to smoking ciga- the operators of three similar loca-
River Park provoked repeated allowing commercial, law about hookah bars? rettes. For Middle Easterners, smoking tions in the East Village—recently
demands at the hearing for enforcement and emergency Part of these establishments’ popular- a hookah is a relaxing social activity
banning such tourist flights ity certainly stems from their exemption dating back centuries. Continued on page 5
and inspired more demands Continued on page 9

1 4 5 S I X T H AV E N U E • N Y C 1 0 0 1 3 • C O P Y R I G H T © 2 0 0 9 C O M M U N I T Y M E D I A , L L C
2 August 27 - September 9, 2009

Continued from page 1

The event was free and open to the pub-
lic on a first-come, first-served basis. The
crowd started lining up before 5 p.m., and
soon wrapped around the corner onto Mercer
St. Quinn simply managed to get more of her
supporters there earlier, and thus about an
estimated 75 percent of the audience in the
main room indeed appeared to be Quinn sup-
porters. Passannante-Derr angrily charged that
her backers had been locked out of the venue
by the strategic maneuver by Quinn. About 45
people were turned away at the door because
the space had reached its capacity based on
Fire Department safety regulations.
Quinn may have had the most supporters,
but Kurland’s sat closest to the front, all of
them wearing yellow “I <3 Yetta” T-shirts; a
strategic move on Kurland’s part, perhaps,
since signs weren’t allowed under the debate’s
ground rules. Chelsea Now photo by Jefferson Siegel
In her opening statement, Kurland, a civil Christine Quinn (at left) and Yetta Kurland at the Aug. 20 debate held at New York University.
rights attorney, noted she had represented
“thousands of people during the Republican you tell me that you want two terms, I will lis- that this practice was going on, we imme- of a growing community. It will be 120-feet
National Convention” in 2004, which is when ten to you, and I will respect that decision.” diately asked the authorities to look into it tall… . We already have the second-worst air
she got interested in politics. Quinn said she doesn’t support term limits, and to investigate it. It’s a practice that never quality in the Northeast. We already have 16
“I think we need a breath of fresh air in City arguing that they “empower lobbyists and staff should have gone on.” lanes feeding into the Holland Tunnel. We’re
Hall,” Kurland said. “We need someone who’s over elected officials.” Quinn said she sup- Quinn added that, due to new proce- going to have a 5,000-ton, open-ended salt
going to stand up to the powers that be and ported repealing term limits—which had been dures, every budget item that gets approved shed with airborne salt flying all over right
speak truth to power.” approved by two voter referenda—because of is now “vetted and trackable” online. next to the Holland Tunnel fresh-air tower.”
Quinn listed some of her major accom- the recession. However, Kurland said, “One of the most Passannante-Derr said she supports the
plishments, such as “fighting successfully to “I think given these extraordinary times, it troubling things to me is that we haven’t community-alternative Hudson Rise plan,
provide affordable housing at Westbeth, Penn was appropriate to give voters a choice,” she seen the investigation on the slush funds. which would only have two Sanitation dis-
South and Manhattan Plaza,” going to bat for said. “We face now the worst economic crisis What happened?” Kurland said she was tricts, plus a park on top.
individual tenants facing landlord problems, this city and state and country have seen since glad Quinn acknowledged the practice was Kurland said she supports Hudson Rise,
and authoring citywide tenant-protection laws the Great Depression.” wrong, then added: “But you must certainly too, adding, “I think the problem with
s well as, “beating back the West Side stadium” Wall St. provides 25 percent of the city’s have known about it, if in 2006 you were Hudson Square typifies the problem we
and “making sure every 4- and 5-year-old has a taxes, she noted. using those slush-fund monies for your have in this community with the type of
[school] seat in Greenwich Village.” But Passannante-Derr said the power of district. development and the way that development
Quinn said she was proud to have been incumbency makes it impossible for challeng- Kurland added skeptically, “I can’t believe is happening. This is the perfect example of
involved in “the progressive struggles that ers to have a level playing field. that the Speaker’s Office asked the federal how our current councilmember can’t stand
have defined the West Side,” and, in particular, department to investigate them. I think the up for us as a community and stand up for
pledged to keep pushing for same-sex mar- COUNCIL ‘SLUSH FUND’ investigation was [already] going on.” the problems we face. It would wipe out that
riage. The next question concerned the so- community,” she said of the megagarage.
called “slush fund,” under which millions SPRING ST. MEGAGARAGE “We have a solution: Hudson Rise is an
PASSANNANTE-DERR GOES ON of dollars of city budget funds were stashed Also sparking fireworks was the topic of incredible, complex solution.
ATTACK under names of phony nonprofit groups. the city’s plan for a three-district Sanitation “None of this development happens in
Passannante-Derr, a former Community Essentially controlled by Quinn, as the City garage on Spring St. in Hudson Square, a this city until our councilmember says, ‘Yes,
Board 2 chairperson, on the other hand, went Council’s speaker, these funds were then project Quinn approved in the City Council. OK,’ and signs off on it,” Kurland added.
on the attack in her opening statement, coming doled out to various community groups and Quinn said her office continues to work
out with guns blazing. organizations, many in Quinn’s own district, with community members who oppose the ON BEING COUNCIL SPEAKER
“This election is about an arrogant incum- including Friends of the High Line and even three-district garage to find an “appropriate Another flashpoint question was whether
bent who has turned the City Council into the Greenwich Village Little League. The alternative” site for the trucks from one of Quinn’s being Council speaker—consid-
a rubber stamp for a right-wing Republican question: “Who bears responsibility for the the Sanitation districts. Getting Sanitation ered to be the city’s second most- powerful
mayor,” she charged. “A candidate who has slush fund’s continuing until spring 2008?” District 2’s garbage trucks off Gansevoort office—has benefited her district or, rather,
sold out her community—first, with a three- Quinn became the Council’s speaker in Peninsula is required under a lawsuit settle- actually taken her focus off addressing con-
district Sanitation garage, when there’s a January 2006. ment, she noted. stituents’ needs.
two-district community alternative,” and sec- “There is a complete disgust with the In either a misstatement or just a flub in Passannante-Derr didn’t hold back.
ond, with a marine waste-transfer station on slush-fund scandal and the fact that we are which she could have used a G.P.S., Quinn “Christine Quinn is an absentee coun-
Gansevoort Peninsula, “a station that’s 50 paying for Christine Quinn’s legal fees and said, “I think we’ve all seen the [garbage] cilmember who is disconnected from the
yards from a toddler playground, a playground the legal fees of her staff,” Passannante-Derr trucks sitting around Father Demo Square district,” she said. “She shows up for ribbon-
where children will now ingest polluted air said, referring to the attorney Quinn hired bothering people who are having fun in cutting ceremonies… . She’s in the outer
from Sanitation trucks that will drive into this after the practice came under investigation. the park—that’s not what we want.” Father boroughs for photo ops. Sure, Stephen
park all day long,” Passannante-Derr said. “The Department of Investigation’s inves- Demo Square is in the South Village, not DiBrienza, term-limited councilmember in
The early questions were among the eve- tigation was pushed under the carpet because Hudson Square. Brooklyn, gets $1 million from Christine
ning’s toughest for Quinn, and her responses of Mayor Bloomberg and because of your Quinn added that Community Board Quinn’s slush fund—but the Visiting
were frequently met with some hoots of deri- power in the City Council,” Passannante- 4, which contains some of the proposed Neighbors got totally wiped out. How is
sion and hisses from the audience. The first Derr accused of Quinn. “Thank God, we alternative sites, already has many similar that helping us with Christine Quinn as
question asked the candidates’ position on have a federal investigation going on, or we municipal-type facilities. speaker?”
term limits and on their being overturned would hear nothing of this.” But Passannante-Derr blasted Quinn, (The payments to DiBrienza’s nonprofit
legislatively last year in the City Council, in an For her part, Quinn said, “We found charging, “This Sanitation garage will be group—termed a “ghost district office” by
effort led by Quinn with the backing of Mayor out a year and a half ago that there was a Christine Quinn’s legacy for selling out some—in fact started under Quinn’s pre-
Bloomberg. very inappropriate practice going on in the the community.” Noting the neighborhood decessor, former Speaker Gifford Miller, in
“It is not an issue of term limits—it is an City Council,” her statement meeting some already has many FedEx and UPS trucks, 2002. Under Quinn as speaker, DiBrienza’s
issue of democracy,” stated Kurland, who is groans of disbelief. “We believe it dates back Passannante-Derr said, “One-hundred-
also an educator and, like Quinn, lesbian. “If to at least 1995. And when we found out twenty-eight more vehicles right in the middle Continued on page 11
August 27 - September 9, 2009 3

biz kids
THE with at least one Twitter page created to “help send a loud
and clear message to The Riese Organization that we don’t

n.y
3URIHVVLRQDO7UDLQLQJIRU<RXQJ$FWRUV‹
BUZZ want his TGI Friday’s in Union Sq. SAVE THE SQUARE!”
For its part, the Union Square Partnership responded that the
restaurant—whose original outpost opened on the Upper East
Side in 1965—would be a boon to business on the bustling
hub. “We are fortunate that in this difficult economy, Union

)LOP

NYC DOWN SOUTH Chelsea’s Cheyenne Diner will
become the centerpiece of recreated 1950s-era Birmingham,
Square’s retail vacancy rate remains one of the lowest in the
city, with diverse retail options and new businesses coming

WKHDWHU

Ala., town when it eventually arrives in the Deep South.
According to Patti Smith, one half of the duo that bought
to the area,” said Jennifer Falk, the Partnership’s executive
director. “T.G.I. Friday’s will bring much-needed foot traffic

WHOHYLVLRQ
the railcar-style restaurant from property owner George to the businesses located on the eastern side of the square,
 Papas, she and her husband plan to add a theater, classic car which historically has not seen as many pedestrians as the

FRPPHUFLDOV
museum, post office and sheriff’s office to go along with the businesses to the south and west.” Performance preacher and
Art Deco diner. “This has gotten much bigger than it origi- Green Party mayoral candidate Reverend Billy—a staunch
 nally started,” Smith excitedly told us of the project, which anti-consumerist who’s sparred with the Partnership over
will begin in earnest once the Cheyenne is relocated from plans to renovate Union Square’s north end pavilion for a
33rd St. and Ninth Ave. to the Heart of Dixie in the coming Danny Meyer-helmed restaurant—said there are bigger fish
)8//&216(59$725<75$,1,1* weeks. “It’s going to be amazing.” The new owners already (or jalapeno poppers?) to fry in regard to the square. “The
)$//7(506(37²'(& collected pieces of the diner’s interior including booths, monoculture, the sea of identical details, should be resisted in
$IWHUVFKRROSURJUDPV barstools and cookware for refurbishment, and Smith said the area of this national historic landmark,” said the reverend,
7XHVGD\:HGQHVGD\ she’d also like to get her hands on some original recipes to aka Bill Talen. “With the Union Square Partnership hell-bent
7HHQVLQJLQJFODVV)ULGD\ replicate the greasy spoon’s menu. “I want to maintain a on actually destroying the landmark itself by privatizing the
7HHQ$FWLQJFODVV)ULGD\ lot of that history,” she said. “I want to have some of that pavilion and turning into an upscale restaurant, we have big-
same food they were famous for.” A Discovery Channel ger problems than T.G.I. Friday’s.”
6DWXUGD\ documentary about the move is in the works, and Smith
 also hopes to draw the attention of David Letterman, who CHELSEA ‘CHEFTESTANT’ Since one of our favorite
&203$1<&/$66 E\DXGLWLRQRQO\  used to dine at the Cheyenne. On top of that, the Alabamans guilty pleasures is the hit realty show “Top Chef,” wherein
7+856'$< are also eyeing other endangered New York landmarks for talented culinarians compete for cash, prizes and the afore-
 possible rescue. Smith said she has discussed salvaging the mentioned title, you can imagine our excitement in learning
³DEVROXWHO\WKHEHVWDFWLQJWUDLQLQJIRUNLGVLQ1<&´ Jay Dee Bakery in Forest Hills, Queens, after preservationist that this season’s lone New York contestant hails from a
Michael Perlman (who helped broker the deal between her West Chelsea restaurant. Ash Fulk, 29, works as the sous
 and Papas) began working with the owner to save portions chef at Trestle on Tenth at the corner of 24th St. and 10th
 of the nearly 60-year-old Art Deco structure. “If there’s any Ave., a contemporary American brasserie infusing both
way we can save it and incorporate it in this town, we’ll do Swiss and French cooking styles. Fulk, the only openly gay
ZZZEL]NLGVQ\FRPRUSLHU6WGLRVFRP
that too,” Smith said. “We’re trying to preserve the integrity of man on the show, didn’t make too much of a splash on the
these buildings and allow people who might not ever be able season’s premiere episode—that is, his dishes neither shined
to see these to step back in time.” nor earned him an early departure from the competition.
While Fulk didn’t return a call for comment—most likely
FRIDAY’S ON THE SQUARE Walmart’s long-speculated because of a gag order on speaking to the spoiler-hungry
entry into New York City, most recently via a rumored deal press—a woman answering the phone at the restaurant said
to take space in Union Square, found no lack of detractors business hasn’t yet seen a boost because of the show. “He
among the Downtown set. So imagine how the arrival of chain- didn’t really get the spotlight yet,” the employee said, adding
restaurant T.G.I. Friday’s will be received after it was reported that the eatery hopes to bring in more patrons as the recog-
that the purveyor of “Parmesan-Crusted Sicilian Quesadillas” nition grows. At least we know who we’re rooting for!
would be opening inside a recently purchased building on
Union Square. The Riese Organization, which just bought TOWN HALL State Sen. Thomas Duane will hold a
34 Union Square East, announced plans to bring in both a town hall meeting on Tues., Sept. 1, to discuss a range
Friday’s and Tim Horton’s coffee shop if it can’t find another of topics related to the district. Some of the issues Duane
tenant on the quick. (The property has been vacant for nearly will address include the current state of the Senate in
two years, and Riese scooped it up only after the asking price Albany—something we’re sure he’ll have a lot to speak
fell by a reported 40 percent.) The move follows on the block- about—as well as constituent questions and concerns.
buster lease of the former Virgin Megastore/Circuit City space Let’s just hope that no yahoos show up with Kenyan birth
on Union Square South to Nordstrom Rack and Best Buy, certificates or picture of President Obama scribbled over
respectively. The backlash among Needle Park purists began to look like Hitler. Actually, bring on the birthers! And let
immediately after the news started trickling through the Web, Tom sort ’em out.

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146 West 13th Street, New York, NY 10011 )*.0k_8m\el\Y\kn\\e)+k_),k_ EP:('''(s)()%),,%././
212-242-7802 Dfe$=i`1/Xd$.gdsJXk1/Xd$-gdsJle1('Xd$-gd
4 August 27 - September 9, 2009

Commercial rent regulation bill stuck in Council limbo
BY PATRICK HEDLUND Fulton Houses, the public-housing complex tions on the free market. Seen as a form of
When a real estate developer acquired across the street from the Ninth Ave. stores. commercial rent control, the bill was sub-
a block-long residential complex on Ninth “Subway is just competing against these sequently amended to remove the portion
Ave. in Chelsea in 2007, he wasted no time small businesses that have been there for calling for set rent increases that would have
in outlining plans to clear out the longtime years.” been triggered if arbitration proved unsuc-
mom-and-pop businesses on the ground cessful.
floor in favor of high-end retail. “This is the mildest thing ever presented
Now, nearly two years after the purchase, to the City Council,” said Steve Null, the
the first new tenant has arrived. Subway—a director of the Coalition for Fair Rents, who
fast-food chain that’s difficult to classify as ‘They’re going to do what- helped write similar legislation in the 1980s
high-end even by the loosest definition of the that fell short of passing by one vote. With the
term—recently took over the space between ever it takes to protect the predetermined rent increases outlined in the
17th and 18th Sts. occupied by more than original measure excised from the new ver-
three decades by Chelsea Liquors. landlords. Their dog-and- sion, Null explained that the “Small Business
While many wouldn’t argue that a liquor Survival Act” currently only seeks to resolve
store serves some greater community good pony show has run out of rent disputes through a third party.
than a sandwich shop, nearby neighbors “It’s common as apple pie to use arbitra-
nonetheless mourned the loss of the familiar dogs and ponies.’ tion,” he said. “Almost all contracts call for
face behind the counter, who started work- arbitration mediation.”
ing there in 1974 and stayed until his final — Steve Null, After a lengthy hearing on the issue,
days last November. Subway, on the other the revised proposal won over former crit-
hand, just earned the distinction of ranking Coalition for Fair Rents ics like Brooklyn Councilmember David
No. 2 for having the most stores citywide, Yassky, chairperson of the Small Business
with 361 across the five boroughs and 151 Committee, as well as each of his four col-
in Manhattan alone, according to a report by leagues on the committee. The bill currently
the Center for an Urban Future. Acevedo attended another rally outside has support from 33 councilmembers—
At rally held last year in support of the Chelsea Liquors last year to tout a proposal enough to pass—but still faces one major
string of shops on the block, Chelsea Liquors aimed at preserving small businesses by roadblock at City Hall.
owner Brian Rhee said that his new landlord requiring landlords and tenants to submit Council Speaker Christine Quinn has
planned to more than double his rent—from to mediation and arbitration if the two refused to bring the bill to a vote, citing the
$2,400 to $6,000—a decision that led to his parties can’t agree on a fair rent. The leg- possible legal implications it presents as a
Chelsea Now photo by Patrick Hedlund
departure less than seven months later. islation, introduced by Upper Manhattan regulatory measure.
“There’s two other delis [on that block] Councilmember Robert Jackson, initially “If I’m not sure to a reasonable sense Councilmember Tony Avella, a mayoral
that make sandwiches,” said Miguel Acevedo, received a cool reception from some of his that the action the Council is taking is legal, candidate, stands outside City Council
president of the tenant association at the Council colleagues for its possible implica- I have to be cautious, because you don’t chambers during an Aug. 20 meeting
want to create hope you’re not sure you can to protest the proposed bill not being
sustain,” Quinn said, adding that attorneys scheduled for a vote.
continue to research the proposal.

8SS'SSP
However, advocates for the legislation agencies to expedite inspections.
claim that Quinn is just acting as an agent “I’m extremely anxious—almost kind of
for Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who would obsessed with the idea—of finding something
likely veto the bill if it were adopted. that is legally doable that will bring relief to

JSV7LYP# “Quinn will never regulate the land-
lords—she’s their player,” Null charged.
“Everybody seems to get it except for Quinn
and the mayor.”
small businesspeople and their rent,” Quinn
said. “But it has to be something that I have
some sense of confidence will stand up.”
Null and Avella both scoffed at the speak-
Queens Councilmember Tony Avella, a er’s proposals, viewing them as incapable of
/MHWVIEPP]¾MTJSV
candidate for mayor, went so far as to stage preventing the continued displacement of
PIEVRMRKEFSYX.YHEMWQ
a boycott at the Council’s Aug. 20 meet- mom-and-pops.
EX6MWLSRMQ KVEHIWO¯ 
ing in response to Quinn’s unwillingness “They’re going to do whatever it takes to
&´REM1MX^ZEL%GEHIQ]
to bring the measure up for a vote. While protect the landlords,” Null said of Quinn
KVEHIW¯ ERH
his protest ultimately failed to recruit other and Bloomberg. “Their dog-and-pony show
6ET[MXLXLI6EFFMW XIIRW  councilmembers, the message was clear. has run out of dogs and ponies.”
8LI2I[7LYP´WMRRSZEXMZI “Obviously [Quinn’s] not even listening Avella believes the city’s numerous small
EJXIVWGLSSPTVSKVEQWXLEXXYVR to her own members,” Avella said. “The real businesspeople—many of them operating in
,IFVI[7GLSSPYTWMHIHS[R estate industry and the landlords control the the outer boroughs—will make their voices
ERHFEGO[EVHW legislation in this city. She’s not about to turn heard come Election Day.
;IEVIRS[EGGITXMRKRI[WXYHIRXWJSV away that money.” “They have to exercise the political power
*EPP6IKMWXIVFIJSVI7ITXIQFIV Quinn contended that whereas a “hous- they have,” he said.
ERHVIGIMZIEXYMXMSRGVIHMX ing emergency” must be proven to justify res- Even Acevedo, one of Quinn’s most
idential rent regulations, no similar method ardent local supporters, differs with the
*SVQSVIMRJSVQEXMSR exists for identifying a comparable situation speaker on this issue.
ERHVIKMWXVEXMSRTPIEWI in the commercial market. “Maybe she should sit down with
GEPP(MVIGXSV%Q])MGLIR[EPH “So if you did the Small Business Survival [Councilmember] Jackson and discuss with
+SPHMRKEX Act, the legal question we’re trying to answer others how this bill can be tweaked,” he said.
.SMRYWJSVXLI,MKL,SP](E]W is without the kind of construct like that… “That’s the only way it’s going to happen.”
GEPPJSVQSVIMRJSVQEXMSR are you engaged in some level of taking of Acevedo added that he still keeps in regu-
the owner’s private property right,” Quinn lar contact with Rhee, who has expressed
said. interest in opening a new shop in the neigh-
The speaker did make small business borhood.
preservation a centerpiece of her State of the “If they became part of our community,
City address earlier this year, unveiling ini- they’re family to us—there just not people
tiatives to fast track the permit-application out of business,” Acevedo said. “Let’s keep
^^^UL^ZO\SVYN
process for startups and coordinate the city them in the community.”
August 27 - September 9, 2009 5

Hookah bar’s smokescreen stoking neighbors’ fears
to the city.
Continued from page 1 Moyer now keeps his windows closed,
but said that the smoke still seeps in through
landed in the ground-floor space at 416 W. air-conditioning units. “And if you don’t get it
46th St. between Ninth and 10th Aves. The from the street, then you get it from the ven-
Mediterranean restaurant/bar, and its fragrant tilation system in the back [of the building],”
hookah fumes, has gotten many of the residents he said. “[The smoke] comes from both sides
of the building smoking mad since opening in no matter where you live.”
April. They’re tired of the sickly sweet smell After so many years at the address, Moyer
and noise emanating from the front and back of is now considering taking a drastic step. “I’m
the space. But the tenants couldn’t have known giving it a year,” he said. “After that I’ll have to
what they were in for, as the owner framed the leave, and we’ll be priced out of New York.”
operation as a family-friendly restaurant on a Camille Turchel, who was “born and bred
residential block when it appeared before the in Clinton,” bought her apartment in the same
local community board in the spring. building more than 20 years ago. She keeps her
Hookah bars avoid the indoor smoking ban window closed most days to avoid the smoke,
because the product being puffed on doesn’t and claimed patrons often “stand outside at
contain tobacco and they need no special midnight or 1 o’clock, talking loudly. They’re
license to operate. Sally Sarhan, a manager at not very good neighbors.”
Horus Too, said that her restaurant’s hookahs Both the World Health Organization and
contain hardened molasses and fruit, which the American Lung Association recently
can be flavored with tea, milk or wine. A released studies on waterpipe smoking based
hookah costs anywhere from $15 to $40 for on hookahs using tobacco, which isn’t used
“top shelf” ingredients. Some hookah propo- in New York’s public hookah bars. The WHO
nents—including a waitress at the restaurant, reported that a typical hour of smoking a
according to an online review—claim it’s not waterpipe results in more than a hundred times
as harmful as cigarettes, and proponents also more smoke inhaled than from smoking a
say it aids in digestion. cigarette. The organizations also recommended
that “waterpipes and waterpipe tobacco be
subjected to the same regulations as cigarettes
and other tobacco products,” and suggested
‘I’m giving it a year. After that hookah use “be prohibited in public
places consistent with bans on cigarette and
Chelsea Now photo by Patrick Hedlund

The Horus Too hookah bar on W. 46th St., which claimed to be a family-friendly
that I’ll have to leave.’ other forms of tobacco smoking.”
In a March 20 letter from Community
Mediterranean restaurant

— Scott Moyer, Board 4 to the State Liquor Authority, the
board recommended denying Horus Too’s beer /VSTFSZUI(SBEF1SPHSFTTJWF4DIPPM
and wine license request “unless the following 'PVOEFEJO
W. 46th St. resident
conditions, as agreed to by the applicant, are
incorporated into the method of operation: "%.*44*0/4&"40/)"4#&(6/$06-%
Hours of operation will be from noon to $03-&"34#&UIF4$)00-'03:063'".*-:
midnight; no backyard use; no hookah use; no
Sarhan, however, refused to wade into sidewalk use, and signs will be posted request- *GZPVBSFMPPLJOHGPSBTDIPPMXJUI©
the debate. “I’m not going to condone any ing quiet; French doors will be closed at 10
type of smoking,” she said. She did note that p.m. Sunday through Thursday, and at 11 p.m. …"OJOUJNBUF EJWFSTFBOETVQQPSUJWFTFUUJOH
hookah smoking is a popular social activity on Friday and Saturdays.” ….BTUFSUFBDIFSTXIPXJMMSFDPHOJ[FZPVS
among Middle Easterners, and a social and While a business owner is not legally obli-
leisure activity for many Muslims because it gated to follow the instructions of a communi- DIJMEBTBOJOEJWJEVBMMFBSOFS
isn’t “haram”—forbidden by the Koran—like ty board, Moyer said that the owners willfully …"GBDVMUZBOETUBGGEFEJDBUFEUPJORVJSZCBTFE
alcohol. For them, she added, it’s like relaxing misrepresented their intentions. According to FEVDBUJPO
with a beer after work with friends. Moyer, when someone asked the owner at a
Although hookah bars are pervasive in meeting, “No hookahs, right?” he replied, “No,
the East Village, only a handful operates on no, just good Mediterranean food.”
©$PSMFBSTNBZCFUIFSJHIUGJU
the West Side. Sarhan explained that Horus The restaurant is open until 4 a.m., despite GPSZPVBOEZPVSDIJME
Too’s patrons are often regulars, because the owners originally telling the board they
“there’s a large Middle Eastern population would close at midnight. Moyer and Turchel 'PS.PSF*OGPSNBUJPODPOUBDUVT!
in this neighborhood.” As if on cue, an older also said that guests frequently spill out into
gentleman at the table next to her expertly the space’s back courtyard, the restaurant

exhaled a thick plume of smoke scented like offers sidewalk seating and does not consis- XXXDPSMFBSTTDIPPMPSH
sweetened incense. tently close the front door, as requested by the
But for Scott Moyer, a 14-year resident board to mitigate noise and smoke.
of an apartment above the restaurant, the
problem isn’t as simple as the smell and
“They’re trying to generate a business that’s
really overflow onto the street,” said Danajean
01&/)064&
noise—he’s worried about the health of his Cicerchi, who has lived on the second floor in QN 
infant son. Nine months old when Horus Too the front of the building since 1982. She added 5)634%":
opened in April, Moyer’s son developed a that she’d like the restaurant to follow the Open 0$50#&3UI 
chronic cough within two months, which the agreement it made to the community board. 4 - 7pm
doctor agreed was due to smoke coming from “We do all live in NYC and realize we have
the restaurant. to coexist with businesses,” said John Owens,
“He says if it doesn’t go away I’ll have co-chairperson of Board 4’s Business Licenses
to move,” Moyer said, adding that his son’s and Permits Committee, which oversees liquor 324 West 15th Street
cough subsided when they left town for a license applications. “We need to figure out New York, New York 10011
month, but came back shortly after returning how to better integrate them.”
6 August 27 - September 9, 2009

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High Line puts brakes on
improvement district plan
BY PATRICK HEDLUND or 9-cent tax per square foot for buildings
A controversial plan to tax residents and located near the High Line, with the district
property owners near the High Line to help running for almost 20 blocks along the
pay for the elevated park was dropped last length of the former viaduct.
week after neighbors came out against the “Friends of the High Line has always
proposal. been a community organization, and the
According to Friends of the High Line, members of the Steering Committee are
Value
the nonprofit that oversees maintenance community members first and foremost,”
t Instruction • Best
Exper
acilities •
and management of the West Chelsea green- the Friends’ statement continued. “Friends
thentic F
space, the concept of imposing taxes on
owners of buildings based on their proximity
of the High Line will continue to work with
the community to develop a diversified rev-
Au
to the park caused enough of a stir for the enue stream for the High Line’s future, so
organization to table the plan for the time that the park can always be maintained and
being. operated at the level necessary to make it a
“Friends of the High Line and the treasured asset to its community and to the
District’s Steering Committee sought broad city as a whole.”
community input on the idea of creating an The news came as a relief to Daniel
Improvement District to help the City’s new Cahn, the owner of a large industrial ware-
High Line park,” read a statement from the house on W. 27th St. who would have had
Friends. “The Steering Committee reached to pay the higher, 9-cent tax under the origi-
out to the larger High Line community, so nal proposal. If the Friends try to pursue a
that their responses would help determine similar plan in the future, he suggested the
whether to move forward. Following these group rely on input from property owners
public outreach efforts, it was decided to inform the improvement district’s funding
to put the proposal on hold. While many structure.
strongly supported the concept, important “Maybe a restaurant or something on
concerns were also raised.” the High Line would make the most sense,”
The proposal, modeled after the city’s Cahn said, also recommending advertising,
business improvement district program, granting vendors access to the park or tax-
sought to raise about $1 million from vari- ing developers of new large-scale residential
ous property owners for daily upkeep of the buildings in the area. “I know they want to
park running from Gansevoort to W. 30th keep it business-free, but money has to come
Sts. The plan called for levying either a 3- from somewhere.”

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Chelsea Now photo by JB Nicholas

NYPD scuba divers and harbor unit officers recovering a body from the Hudson
River after the fatal midair collision on Aug. 8.

Helicopter flights catch
flak at Council hearing
He noted that in the Washington, D.C. area the
Continued from page 1 F.A.A. requires general aviation pilots to take a
course on “see and avoid” rules. Paskar said a
helicopter flights to continue. similar course should be required of pilots who
Abigale Trenk, president of Air Pegasus, fly in the Hudson River corridor.
which operates the 30th St. Heliport, submit- Congressmember Jerrold Nadler submit-
ted a statement saying that vertical separation ted a statement calling on the F.A.A. to use its
of aircraft in the corridor is the most vital air- authority to control airspace below 1,100 feet.
traffic issue to address in the short term. The “The F.A.A. insisted to us for years that it lacked
statement noted that while Air Pegasus runs statutory authority to regulate the airspace
the heliport, it does not operate any flights. Her below 1,100 feet in the New York City Corridor,
statement also said that pilot education and but we are gratified that the agency has reversed Gay,
dissemination of flight rules and procedures its position and agreed it has statutory authority Str8,
should become a priority. to regulate this airspace,” he said.
Assemblymember Richard Gottfried sub- Nadler repeated his demand that all small Bi,
mitted a statement that said, in part, “We do aircraft be required to install a Traffic Collision Curious?
not need sightseeing helicopter rides. Yes, tour- Avoidance System and a Mode C Transponder,
ism is a very large and important part of New devices that make low-altitude aircraft aware of
York City economy and supports many people’s each other.
livelihoods. But whatever sightseers spend on Joy Held, president of the Helicopter Noise
a helicopter ride they would eagerly spend on Coalition of NYC, said sightseeing helicop-
some other activity.” ter flights are “utterly unnecessary, dangerous,
Under the settlement of a 2008 lawsuit noisy, a serious security risk, and they cause
by Friends of Hudson River Park, sightseeing pollution.”
flights from the 30th St. Heliport will cease as of Testimony submitted by William DeCota,
April 1, 2010, and the number of tourist flights aviation director of the Port Authority, noted
from 30th St. was reduced to 25,000 flights in that the National Transportation Safety Board
the year that ended last May 31 and to 12,500 is likely to make recommendations to the F.A.A.
for the coming year. Matthew Washington, after the review of the Aug. 8 tragedy is com-
deputy director of Friends, told the committee plete. “But it will be up to the F.A.A. to imple-
that the lawsuit was filed to eliminate the noise ment them,” DeCota said. He also mentioned
that disturbs park users. “While our suit was that the F.A.A. had closed the East River flight
not based on specific air-traffic concerns, we corridor after Corey Lidle, a former New York
hope these efforts will aid in a reduction of Yankees player, fatally crashed his plane into an
potential dangers,” he said Upper East Side building in 2006.
Ken Paskar, a Lower East Side resident and a The Eastern Region Helicopter Council
general aviation pilot for 30 years, told the com- also submitted a statement saying that copter
mittee that the Federal Aviation Administration pilots flying out of the three ports—at 30th St.
has rules for flights at all altitudes, but at 1,100 on the Hudson, Wall St. and 34th St. on the
feet and below, the agency does not require pri- East River—have all gone through extensive
vate pilots or helicopter pilots to file flight plans training. The Council statement noted that
or be in radio contact with flight controllers. since the first helicopter landing area in the
Indeed at 1,100 feet, planes and choppers may city was established in 1949, there was only /ÀÞʈÌÊÀiiÊUÊ
>Ê˜œÜ
not register on radar and radio communication one mid-air collision, in 1983, besides the Aug.
can be uncertain, so the “see and avoid” rule
governs low-altitude air traffic.
8 accident.
Councilmember John Liu, chair of the trans- 646-731-6658
Paskar, a volunteer representative with the portation committee, said that neither the F.A.A.
F.A.A. Safety Team who testified as a private nor the N.T.S.B. were scheduled to testify on
citizen, said he believes that rules for flying in Tuesday, but said his committee would invite
the Hudson River corridor could be improved. the two agencies to subsequent hearings. 1800GayLive.com MC 7003 Ent only 18+ *Limited Free Trial Photography by Kevin E. McPherson
10 August 27 - September 9, 2009

POLICE BLOTTER
Fulton Houses shooting fleeing west, police said. Three passersby BB shot in window Celluloid swipe
Bullets were flying in the Fulton Houses gave chase, and one of them tackled the A BB fired from an unknown location hit A supplier of electrical equipment told
around 5:45 p.m. on Sat., Aug. 15, leaving suspect and held him for police. and put a hole in a window of the 12th floor police that someone had called the com-
one man sprawled in the street in front of apartment of a 74-year-old woman at 418 W. pany on Friday evening, Aug. 21, and
412 W. 17th St., police said. 17th St. in the Fulton Houses on Mon., Aug. asked how much electric ballast devices
The victim, identified by police as Prince Seminary offenses 10, police said. The shot did not penetrate were worth because he had two of them.
Harris, 29, of Sherman Ave. in the Bronx, Police arrested James Alexander, 18, the window and apparently fell outside, Two of the devices were soon discovered
was hit by three shots fired by a suspect at 12:01 a.m. on Mon., Aug. 10, on police said. missing from a film location on W. 20th
described only as a black man with his hair the grounds of the General Theological St. between Seventh and Eighth Aves.,
in dreadlocks and wearing a red T-shirt or Seminary for carrying a 3-ounce can of police said.
tank top. The suspect fled east on W. 18th spray paint and charged him with mis- Bump and bash
St. in a burgundy colored SUV, police said. demeanor possession of a graffiti instru- A customer was walking to the rear
Four shell casings and a live 9 mm round ment. of the Seventh Ave. Convenience Store Bag ladies
were found at the crime scene. A member of the Seminary staff left at 200 Seventh Ave. at 22nd St. at 4:50 Police arrested three women shortly
The block west of Ninth Ave. was her office at 3:05 p.m. on Fri., Aug. 14, p.m. on Thurs., Aug. 13, when he acciden- after 2 a.m. on Sun., Aug. 23, in Son
closed to parking because of filming the without closing the door and returned 35 tally bumped into another customer who Cubano, the restaurant at 405 W. 14th
next day for a scene in “Just Wright,” minutes later to find that her iPod had grabbed a bottle from a cooler and hit the St., and charged them with stealing prop-
starring hip-hop stars Queen Latifah and been stolen from her desk, police said. victim in the face with it, police said. The erty from the bags of two female patrons
Common, according to reports. The victim suspect fled south on Seventh Ave. of the place. Tracy Molina, 21, her sister,
had just parked on the block and got out of Kelly Molina, 24, and Elizabeth Hervas,
his car when the shots were fired. He was Kiss goodbye 23, were observed going through the bags
taken to St. Vincent’s Hospital in serious A Brooklyn man told police that he Drug-dealing dad and throwing items on the floor, police
condition. was at a party at Kiss and Fly, the Police arrested Juan Zabala at 9:30 p.m. said. The three were charged with lar-
nightclub at 409 W. 13th St. in the on Fri., Nov. 14, on the northeast corner of ceny for stealing two handbags, two cell
Meatpacking District, and drank two Ninth Ave. and W. 26th St. for the posses- phones, credit cards and $540 in cash,
What’s in a name? beers at 2 a.m. on Wed., Aug. 12. He sion and sale of an unidentified drug. The police said.
Police arrested Kelsey Steals, 19, of passed out and woke up at 10:30 a.m. suspect, 28, a resident of College Point,
Brooklyn, around 12:35 a.m. on Sun., at the northwest corner of the West Side Queens, had his 9-year-old daughter with
Aug. 16, in connection with a purse Highway and 40th St. to find his iPhone him when he was arrested and was charged Club patron robbed
snatching on 29th St. between Seventh and credit cards missing. There was an with endangering the welfare of a child as A visitor from North Carolina was
and Eighth Aves. unauthorized withdrawal of $400 from well as possessing with the intent to sell a walking on W. 25th St. between Ninth
The victim was walking on the south a debit card and $300 in unauthorized controlled substance. He was released on and 10th Aves. at 3:30 a.m. on Sun., Aug.
side of the street when two men snatched charges on a credit card, according to parole pending a Nov. 9 court appearance. 23, after a night at a nearby club when
her bag, one fleeing east and the other police. two men punched him in the face, took
his wallet and cell phone, and fled, police
Burglar busted said.
A resident of an apartment on 22nd St.
east of Fifth Ave. was awakened at 4:30 a.m.
on Wed., Aug. 12, by someone rummaging Sweet tooth
through his possessions, police said. The Michael Schotter, 47, was arrested in
victim, 38, confronted the burglar, who fled Whole Foods, 250 Seventh Ave., at 3:30
down a fire escape. p.m. on Sun., Aug. 23, and charged with
trying to walk out without paying for a
pint of Haagen-Dazs strawberry ice cream
Slept through alarm and a wrapped ciambellone, a specialty
The resident of an apartment at 300 W. Italian sweet bread.
21st St. at Eighth Ave. told police he and
his fiancée were asleep on Friday morn-
ing, Aug. 21, and woke up to discover Gym lockers raided
that a burglar had entered and made off A thief with an unknown method of
with two laptops, an iPhone, $40 and his operation raided three lockers in a fit-
driver’s license. ness club on 10th Ave. at W. 20th St on
Sunday evening, Aug. 23. The victims’
locks remained locked and unbroken, but
Weekend burglary a watch, an iPhone and cash were removed
A woman resident of an apartment from the lockers, police said.
at 200 W. 15th St. at Seventh Ave. told A thief broke into a patron’s locker
police that someone had entered the place at the Chelsea Piers health club on 11th
sometime between 7:30 a.m. Thurs., Aug. Ave. at 21st St. on Sunday evening, Aug.
20, when she left for the weekend, and 9 23. On Friday afternoon, Aug. 21, a thief
p.m. Sun., Aug. 23, when she returned. broke into a locker at the New York
The burglar made off with a necklace, ear- Sports Club, 128 Eighth Ave., and made
rings, a bracelet and a watch with a total off with a patron’s Gucci wallet and credit
value of $23,800. The victim had left her cards, police said.
keys with her cousin, who used the apart-
ment until Saturday evening and left the — Alber t Amateau
keys with the doorman, but neither report-
ed anything suspicious, police said.

Find it in the archives
www.CHELSEANOW.com
August 27 - September 9, 2009 11

hopes to replicate Brooklyn District Attorney
Charles Hynes’s “School for Johns” program in
Manhattan, “to be a deterrent, and stop people
from coming to the Village.”
She said a program at The Door on Broome
St. put in place to help the gay and lesbian
youth frequenting the Village is working, and
that she’ll push to keep funding it.
Taking a harder line, Passannante-Derr
said, “This problem has gone on for years.
Youth come into the area, some are well
behaved, some are not. And the ones that are
not, they terrorize the community. They walk
all over the cars, they defecate, they urinate,
they have sex in the streets, and they’re detri-
mental to what’s going on in the community.
People have a right to walk on the street—but
with every right comes a responsibility: the
responsibility to act with respect for the people
in the neighborhood.”
Passannante-Derr proposed that the
Christopher St. Pier be closed an hour earlier,
at midnight.
She added that, a few years ago, she’d sug-
gested to the advocacy group FIERCE that the
gay youth use Pier 54—a blacktop pier at W.
Chelsea Now photo by Jefferson Siegel
13th St. in a less residential area—late at night,
Maria Passannante-Derr (at left) speaks during the debate with Christine Quinn and Yeatta Kurland. instead of Christopher St. Pier.
“That was unacceptable to this group—and
the mayor, and with other forces, stops her Quinn said she was glad St. Vincent’s proj- I don’t understand why to this day,” she said.
Continued from page 2 from actualizing that opportunity to show up ect changed as it went through the Landmarks Kurland said, “We can’t ignore that this
and to be a fighter for our community. ... I am Preservation Commission’s review, so that is, in large part, the LGBT youth. We need to
group got more than $200,000 in 2006. Dr. beholden to no one but the people of the Third four of the hospital’s existing buildings were get those children into education programs,
Cynthia Maurer, Visiting Neighbors’ executive District.” saved. into youth-program services. There are things
director, told Chelsea Now that the group was Passannante-Derr even blamed school over- “The project will now make its way we can do without villainizing people that set
still hoping for $200,000 from “the speaker’s crowding on Quinn. through the full land-use process,” Quinn them up for success, give them opportunity,
pot” of funding. “Bottom line,” Maurer said, “We have children that are now going said. “There’s more work to do—to balance that get them off the streets.”
“we still haven’t seen a contract yet and the fis- to have to go from the Village down to 26 the medical needs of our district with the
cal year started July 1. We’re running on empty, Broadway for middle school,” she said. “And preservation and residential needs of our LIGHTNING ROUND
basically. It’s scary.”) that is a crime. That should have been addressed district…to maximize the open space in the Next, a “lightning round” of questions
A clearly impassioned then Quinn listed in the long-term capital plan. … We have school triangle.” with “yes” or “no” answers was informative,
some of her accomplishments serving her overcrowding because of Christine Quinn.” Referring to Kurland’s and Passannante- fast-paced and entertaining.
district. Derr’s calls for creating new schools along Both Kurland and Passannante-Derr said
“I am incredibly proud of the work that I do LGBT ISSUES with new development, Quinn said the City they opposed a seasonal restaurant in the Union
and my staff does every day for the residents of All three candidates said they back gay Charter should be changed so that develop- Square pavilion, but Quinn approved of it.
this district,” she said. “Whether it’s standing marriage, and each expressed disapproval ers “are held accountable for the services Both Kurland and Passannante-Derr said
up with the residents on 22nd St. when they of the Police Department’s bogus busts last that their buildings create the need for—not they would support the Democratic nominee
faced a landlord who was going to take over year of middle-aged gay tourists on prostitu- just schools, but things like fire[fighters] and for mayor, but Quinn said, “I’m not going to
their home for use by his own, beating that tion charges at porn video stores in the East police officers and transportation.” make that commitment today.”
back… . I’m incredibly proud of when there’s Village and Chelsea. Passannante-Derr said the hospital’s As for whether the Village and Union Square
been crime in our district, the work that I’ve To address similar false arrests, Quinn construction will be the biggest challenge, area could absorb further New York University
been able to do with our local police officers... . said the Civilian Complaint Review Board, which can be addressed through “vigilance,” expansion, Kurland said, “These are not ‘yes-
I’m proud of the work I’ve done in our Housing as before, should have prosecutorial powers, monthly Community Board 2 meetings and no’ questions,” while Quinn said, “I agree
Authority buildings, bringing them cameras and she noted approvingly that the police curtailing construction hours. with Yetta.” Passannante-Derr seemed non-
that helped reduce crime in those projects, and commissioner’s LGBT Advisory Board has Kurland accused Quinn of backing a committal, but eventually said, “Probably
proud of having gone door to door in those been re-established. development plan for the Hudson Yards that not…no.”
projects, to help identify problems where ser- Kurland also supports creation of a lacks affordable housing. But Quinn said the Asked if they would accept a parking
vices weren’t being delivered, and enroll people Committee on Police Oversight, and the three plan, in fact, will be an opportunity to create placard if elected, Quinn and Passannante-
who live in the Fulton Houses in food stamps— candidates all said they back anti-bullying leg- affordable housing—“something we’re going Derr both said yes, but Kurland said, “I don’t
that’s constituent services,” she said, as her sup- islation for New York City public schools. to fight to make sure that it happens, and is know—I don’t own a car,” prompting cheers
porters burst into thunderous applause. permanent,” she noted. from her supporters.
Quinn added that park areas like Father ST. VINCENT’S HOSPITAL They all said they would decriminalize the
Demo Square and J.J. Walker ball field, which On another development issue, St. PROSTITUTION AND YOUTH use of marijuana.
“were in desperate need of renovations,” got Vincent’s Hospital’s rebuilding project, all said A written audience question asked, “What Whether a police permit should be required
renovations under her. they favor the hospital staying in Greenwich are you going to do about the huge prostitu- for a gathering of 50 people or more was
“I do think the opportunity to serve our Village. tion problem in the West Village? What do another lightning-round question, to which
community has been failed,” Kurland said, “I “We need it here,” Kurland said, though you intend doing about the unruly youth in the Kurland and Passannante-Derr answered no,
think time and time again, as the City Council adding of the project, “It is overly concerned West Village?” but Quinn answered yes.
speaker, she has to serve the interests of others with luxury condos being developed. This is Quinn said she was happy to see the recent At the lightning round’s conclusion, the
beyond our community. ... Our community because of the type of overdevelopment we’re reinforcements for the Sixth Precinct, includ- energized partisan supporters erupted into
came up with a great solution to transfer the seeing in this district—without the kind of ing a mounted unit and an infusion of new cheers, each side trying to chant the name of
Gansevoort transfer station so it would be out urban planning and the care for the commu- Police Academy graduates. their candidate louder than the others. After
of the way of children and people using the nity. … The problem with St. Vincent’s is that She said she’s “working with community the candidates’ closing statements, things
Hudson River Park—in the district still, but it does not create… affordable housing—it members on conversations that we can have ended on a high note.
out of the way. That couldn’t happen because, actually displaces the community. And it also with judges” about prostitution, “particularly As the satisfied crowd got up out of their
unfortunately, Christine Quinn has to answer changes the look and feel of a very beautiful focused on not giving johns a pass—not let- seats and was starting to file out, one man
to a lot of people. And her close alliance with part of the Village.” ting them off the hook.” Quinn said she shouted out, “No third term!”
12 August 27 - September 9, 2009

DIRECTOR ANG LEE
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August 27 - September 9, 2009 13

‘Tearing down the wall’ along Chelsea’s waterfront
BY PATRICK HEDLUND
Despite opening to the public back in
April, Pier 64 celebrated its official com-
ing out party on Thurs., Aug. 20, with a
cadre of local advocates and elected offi-
cials on hand to fete the new waterfront
mall that spent more than two decades in
the making.
The group gathered at the end of the
500-foot pier between 24th and 26th Sts. to
share memories of the Chelsea waterfront’s
genesis through the years from all but for-
gotten to one of the most active stretches
along the Hudson River.
Assemblymember Richard Gottfried
credited a “relentless army of community
organizers” with pushing for the revital-
ization of the West Side waterfront, which
will also see two adjacent piers open next
year along the Chelsea portion of the
5-mile Hudson River Park.
“This is as great an example of West
Side vision and West Side activism as any
one we have ever seen,” said City Council
Speaker Christine Quinn of the local effort
to create public passive space at the once
Chelsea Now photo by William Alatriste
bustling port.
The celebration was attended by State. City Council Speaker Christine Quinn (at podium) speaks at the Pier 64 opening celebration joined by (from left to right) Robert
Sen. Thomas Duane, Congressmember Trentlyon, Matthew Washington, Congressmember Jerrold Nadler, Assemblymember Richard Gottfried, Doris Corrigan, Deputy
Jerrold Nadler, Manhattan Borough Mayor Robert Lieber, State Sen. Thomas Duane and Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer.
President Scott Stringer and Deputy
Mayor for Economic Development Robert issues related to the Hudson River Park. reserved the highest praise for Trentlyon, High Line railway. But for most of that time,
Lieber. Also joining were Connie Fishman, “So many of you have really gone beyond who helped lead the charge to redevelop residents on the Lower West Side remained
president of the Hudson River Park Trust; the community organizer mold and have the Chelsea waterfront throughout the removed “from their rightful possession of
Robert Trentlyon, founder of the Chelsea really created magic.” 1980s and ’90s. the Hudson River,” Trentlyon noted.
Waterside Park Association; John Doswell, Duane—who worked on waterfront “This is more than Hudson River Park “In fact, the lack of contact with the river
a founding chair of the Friends of Hudson issues as a community board member, adding another pier to the park,” Trentlyon made many Chelsea residents forget one of
River Park; Matthew Washington, depu- district leader, city councilmember and said in his statements. “It’s about tearing the great rivers of the world was just a few
ty director of the Friends; and longtime state senator—praised the persistence of down the wall that has kept Chelsea locked blocks away, or even forget they lived on an
community activists Ed Kirkland, Doris advocates in realizing their goal. off from its waterfront for close to two island,” he said.
Corrigan and Lee Compton. “We waited a long time, and it’s worth centuries.” But now—with the High Line reimagined
“I am really proud to be a part of this it,” he said of the project, adding, “it’s He recounted the riverside’s evolution as a popular public park and Pier 57 off
family,” said Stringer, a former Upper West spectacular, it’s beautiful, it’s amazing. We from economic engine serving the mari- 15th St. slated for redevelopment—“the wall
Side representative on the state Assembly should be very proud of ourselves.” time industry to the traffic initiatives that has fallen down, and Chelsea residents are
who previously worked with Gottfried on Many of the speakers, including Duane, included the West Side Highway and the united with the Hudson River once again.”

Chelsea Now photo by Jefferson Siegel

Longtime neighborhood advocates (from left to right) Doris Corrigan, John Doswell A view of the newly opened pier, between W. 24th and W. 26th Sts. on the Chelsea
and Ed Kirkland waterfront
14 August 27 - September 9, 2009

EDITORIAL
Safer demolitions
For many of us, the vivid memories of the 9/11
attacks will always be there. As we approach the
eight-year anniversary, there are also still physical
reminders of the tragedy hovering over the World
Trade Center. The two remaining buildings that
were damaged on that day—the former Deutsche
Bank building and the City University of New
York’s Fiterman Hall—are literally the biggest
reminders.
Demolition of Fiterman began about a month
ago, and deconstruction at the plagued Deutsche
Bank building could finally resume next month.
Since two Village-area firefighters were killed bat-
tling a blaze at the Deutsche Bank building more
than two years ago, we’ve learned to be skeptical
regarding any claims about bringing this danger-
ous hulk down. But we’re pleased that preparatory
demolition work began this week.
More importantly, some of the long-overdue
safety improvements for demolition and construc-
tion projects appear to be working effectively, but
more needs to be done. There was, of course, no
need to wait for the tragic deaths of Firefighters
Robert Beddia and Joseph Graffagnino, Jr., who
were stationed at the firehouse at Houston St. and
Sixth Ave., to begin taking safety more seriously.
Community leaders and Downtown Express, our Chelsea Now photo by Tequila Minsky

sister publication, warned about safety problems
before the deadly fire—but any time safety is
SCENE A “Star Wars”-inspired street musician playing his accordion on 20th St. and 10th Ave.

increased, it potentially saves lives.
There were many preventable reasons for the

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR
firefighters’ deaths, but at the top of the list was
the broken standpipe that was never inspected or
repaired. Firefighters were sent into a “death trap”
without a water source, according to Manhattan
District Attorney Robert Morgenthau, who is still
investigating the case. High Line’s high costs Jane and St. Vincent’s
At Fiterman Hall, work was stopped a few weeks
ago when the standpipe failed a test. That’s the way To The Editor: To The Editor:
things are supposed to work. As a building is being Re “High Line district plan is too taxing, neighbors cry” Re “Jane Jacobs, mother of urban planning, gets her
dismantled, the standpipe must be cut repeatedly (news article, Aug. 13): ‘Way’” (photo, July 16):
and, in turn, must be tested repeatedly. The High Line stood for about 25 years with little or no What irony! All those smiling officials at the Jane Jacobs
More troubling are the cigarette butts recently maintenance. In this state it became a treasure that had to be Way dedication. Jane was all about saving the Village—yet
found at Fiterman. Smoking was prohibited at the preserved. Now it takes $3.5 million to $4.5 million a year most of these elected Village representatives are in support
Deutsche Bank building because of the flammable to maintain? Find a way to make the High Line less costly or of the massive project that will have a negative impact on our
materials, but workers typically smoked there and tear it down, but don’t raise taxes. historic district.
a cigarette started the blaze, according to investiga-
tors. Fiterman no longer has flammable materials Charlie Walker Continued on page 15
needed for the abatement of toxic materials because
demolition did not begin until the abatement in
the building was finished—another post-Deutsche
reform. Smoking may not be as hazardous there as
it was a few months ago, but it is still dangerous
IRA BLUTREICH
and is prohibited for a reason. Last year, inspectors
found cigarette butts at the Deutsche Bank build-
ing, and one of our photographers got a photo of
a construction worker smoking while working on
One World Trade Center, even though smoking is
prohibited throughout the site.
If no-smoking rules are flouted at high-profile
sites at and near the WTC, where inspectors are on
site, it seems likely that there are more violations
elsewhere around the city.
Building safety appears to be getting better,
but clearly more vigilance and enforcement are
needed. Construction work is dangerous enough.
Lax enforcement only increases the risks.

It would be funny — if it wasn’t so sad.
August 27 - September 9, 2009 15

My brother Frank: the teacher who walked beside me
BY ALPHIE MCCOURT
My brother Frank McCourt died on July
19 this year: one month, to the day, before his
79th birthday. The world took notice. Walter
Cronkite died on July 17. My wife, Lynn,
said that Frank waited a couple of days so
that Cronkite could have his moment. Frank
McCourt? And Walter Cronkite, the most
trusted man in America? In the same breath?
Isn’t this a great country?
Frank’s early miseries are well known, as are
his teaching career, his monumental success as
a writer and his vast international popularity as
speaker and humorist. He has always been a
strong presence in my life, along with my broth-
ers, Malachy and Michael. I will never speak to
him again, nor see him. I can’t believe that. But
I will have to get used to the idea. Death comes
to, and for, everyone.
As is well known, seven children were born
to my parents. Three died and, as Malachy has
pointed out, for many years the odds were in
favor of the survivors. Three were gone and Photo by Lynn McCourt
the four of us still stood. Now the odds have The literary brothers McCourt: Frank, Malachy and Alphie
shifted.
Frank was 10 years older and, from my rearing, and returned to New York, the city of 15-cent glasses of beer. But we are cheerful. eating a soft-boiled egg. One single, solitary,
boyhood, I remember him as being serious, his birth. We were left behind: Mam, Mike and By this time I am as tall as Frank, my oldest soft-boiled egg, with no bread, no butter, no
austere, even: disciplined, determined and with myself. Malachy was already away in England. brother. Out of the night and into the day we tea in sight. That was his way. Only what he
a sense of mission. Ten years distant from any Our hearts broke when he left. walk, out of the darkness, into the light and the needed, that’s what he took. He kept the faith.
possibility of an easy relationship with him, A long 10 years would elapse before I came promise of the future. Only in retrospect, and Twenty-five years later, the success of his
I was a little bit intimidated. Until the day I to New York. And, a couple of years later, in only after many years, did I see the symbolism. first book, a memoir, left him bewildered.
borrowed his bike, crashed it and awaited his 1961, when I was staying with Frank and his To this day I treasure it. Ever the teacher, Frank Throughout most of his adult life he had been
wrath. Wrath never came. Frank dismissed the wife in Brooklyn, Frank and I went for a few didn’t send me or walk behind me. Nor did he “only the teacher.” “Angela’s Ashes,” a saga
incident without any fuss. In our Limerick, in beers in a bar in Downtown Manhattan. All lead. The teacher walked beside me. shot through with poverty and hunger, became
the bleak harshness of the 1940s and 1950s, too soon it is 4 a.m., closing time, with the Eight or nine years later, when I was living the engine of his success. Now even Gourmet
no one said I love you. But Frank didn’t chide dawn coming up, too late and too early to take in Dublin and attending University College, magazine was asking him to write a piece.
me, or shout or threaten. No, he forbore and, a subway or bus. At Frank’s suggestion we walk Dublin, Frank came over to work on a doctor- “Irony is my constant companion,” he would
to a child reared on fire and brimstone, more across the Brooklyn Bridge. Two men, walking ate, at Trinity College. I was sharing an apart- remark as he poked fun at his status as a newly
especially on the Irish Catholic version, such side by side; fat or thin, tall or small, rich or ment with two friends. Frank lived elsewhere, minted big shot.
forbearance, in the face of destruction and poor; there’s a magic in that. but he had a key to our apartment. One miser- Frank survived typhoid fever as a boy and
stupidity, was nothing short of love. We are nowhere near drunk. It would be able rainy afternoon I came home to find him
In 1949 Frank left Limerick, the city of his hard to get drunk even on a succession of small in the kitchen. Standing, still in his coat, he was Continued on page 22

founded the West Village Committee. The committee exists spare,” film review, July 16) Steve Erickson writes,
Continued from page 14 today, and is on record as a strong supporter of Protect the “‘Bruno’ could have been a brilliant satire on homopho-
Village Historic District, the group that is leading the fight bia.” I think the reviewer is seeking political correctness
Jane wasn’t known just for stopping roadways. She first against the Rudin-St. Vincent’s project. and a movie that will preach to the converted. That kind
came to public attention with her successful effort to keep of film plays for one week at the Quad. Bruno” is a dis-
Robert Moses from bulldozing 14 blocks in the West Village Carol Greitzer turbing and outrageously funny film about the insatiable
for a Title I slum-clearance project. As someone who worked appetite in this country for fame. The film is doing terri-
with her on that and other causes, I am certain that Jane bly in Middle America because they don’t want to see any
would have opposed the current Rudin-St. Vincent’s proposal. fags on screen, particularly gay men kissing passionately.
Surely, she would have supported an alternative, less intrusive Cohen’s ‘Bruno’ genius Writer and star Sacha Baron Cohen is a mad genius
design that would allow for a modernized hospital without
setting a precedent deleterious to historic districts. To The Editor: Jim Sullivan
Let it be noted that out of that Moses encounter, Jane In his review of “Bruno” (“Satire dual-edged, but

Member of the
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ARTS EDITOR Jason Sherwood Rose Hartman
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Diane Vacca Dani Zupanovich Cheryl Williamson Jefferson Siegel
16 August 27 - September 9, 2009

Chelsea Now photos by Rose Hartman

Fashion designer Betsey Johnson Artist Lola Schnabel

it’s a classic shift or a bronze taffeta skirt, I am its exquisite patio a must-see. Facing a glittery will become a permanent addition to Sag

RAMBLING ROSE more than a little amazed by her attention to
detail.
marina, Urban Zen is located at 4 Bay St. Visit
www.urbanzen.com for more.
Harbor in the future. At 197 Madison St. until
Columbus Day.
Cannon’s latest project—costumes commis- It was then on to the newly opened Rizzoli Arriving in East Hampton, I discovered yet
Downtown doyenne and culture chroni- sioned for an upcoming opera/ballet by Trisha Bookstore at the Empire Gallery, where art, another new bookstore/photo gallery. Uber-
cler Rose Hartman has documented the Brown of the eponymous dance company— architecture and design texts share space with chic Christiane Celle, who founded (and sold)
world of fashion in New York and across the leaves the designer little time to relax. To clear changing exhibits. (To extend the summer, I her Calypso fashion boutiques, opened Clic,
globe for more than three decades. Here, she her head, this soft-spoken couturier makes an intimate, carefully curated shop stocked
offers her best-of picks for where to see and frequent forays to neighborhood galleries. Visit with limited-edition art books and featuring
be seen in and around Chelsea. her at elizabethcannoncouture.com. striking photos. 23 Newtown Lane.
Another longtime favorite, the Glenn
BY ROSE HARTMAN HAMPTONS-BOUND
The ebullient Betsey Horowitz Bookseller, overflows with gor-
After two glasses of my favorite Chilean With summer drawing to a close, I knew geous, limited-edition books and eclectic
Merlot, I left the apartment to make at least one it was time to check out art offerings a bit
Johnson created an exhibits. 87 Newtown Lane.
new discovery on a sultry summer afternoon. I removed from Chelsea’s Gallery District. With Finally, I dashed over to a private preview
headed over to “Sexy and the City,” a single my bike in tow, I boarded the Long Island
installation that features of “The Art of Fashion in the Hamptons” at
wall, salon-style hanging of 29 mostly black- Rail Road for a brief visit to East Hampton Guild Hall, the town’s famed art museum.
and-white photos from the 1940s through the and Sag Harbor. Most of my picks can be
her face atop cardboard Nine prominent fashion designers—includ-
’90s. It features shots like Diane Arbus’s awk- enjoyed until October (except for the Secret ing Calvin Klein, Ralph Lauren, Donna
ward teenage couple photographed on a bench Art Society’s group show, which included none
mannequins dressed in the Karan and Vera Wang—scoured the hall’s
and a drag queen out on the street captured by other Chelsea Hotel resident Lola Schnabel, holdings to find the perfect object for their
Nan Goldin. Never fail to provoke the viewer. who displays less arrogance than her famous
designer’s fanciful fashions. vignettes.
On display at the Yossi Milo Gallery, 525 W. father). The ebullient Betsey Johnson created an
25th St., through Aug. 28. With its low-key ambiance, historic Sag installation that features her face atop card-
Elizabeth Cannon, a true independent, Harbor is perfect for meandering. Donna board mannequins dressed in the designer’s
designs beautifully made clothes for a demand- Karan’s recently opened Urban Zen is an oasis recommend picking up a copy of Eric Fischl’s fanciful fashions. Enjoying drinks with a crowd
ing clientele of art-world personalities in her of calm filled with her classic, luxe clothing “Beach Paintings.”) The space is co-owned of world-famous fashion luminaries made my
small London Terrace studio. Inspired by gor- line, books, jewelry, and Asian and African by Kristen Roeder and her husband Anthony departure bittersweet. Guild Hall, 187 Main
geous materials and the artist-painted fab- objects. Even if you can’t afford her pricey Petrillose, who owns the boutique art-book St., through Oct. 12.
rics that she commissions, Cannon handcrafts garments, book-signings and special events publisher Empire Editions. I, for one, only
clothing reminiscent of a gentler time. Whether held throughout the year make the shop and hope and pray that their bookstore/gallery rhartmanphotos@mac.com
August 27 - September 9, 2009 17

CHELSEA: ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT
A ‘clear, terse, compelling, richly enjoyable’ Odyssey
Actors, puppets, acrobatics bring long journey home to life
BY JERRY TALLMER
I can hear it now. “A stone at you will I throw.
Sophocles, it was. Or Euripides. Or maybe blind old Homer THEATER
himself. One of those ancient Greeks, issuing through the nasal
voice box of Harry Alan Jacobs, my classmate, age 15…
“A stone at you will I throw.” THE ODYSSEY
“Oh dear, no,” says the day’s visiting guest teacher, Winifred Adapted from Homer by Simon Armitage
Lenihan (who some few years earlier, when starring in the
American premier of Bernard Shaw’s “Saint Joan,” had been Directed by J. Scott Reynolds
adjudged one of the most beautiful women anywhere). “Try Presented by Handcart Ensemble
again, young man,” said Lenihan, a Brooklyn girl herself, in her
hot-potato theuh-tuh accent. September 3-19
“A STONE at you will I throw.” In The Green Room Theatre at 45 Bleecker Street
“No, no. Try again.”
“A stone at YOU will I throw.” For tickets, call 212-239-6200; Visit www.handcartensemble.org
“Oh no. Unnecessary emphasis. Do try once more.”
“A stone at you will I THROW...”
Well, Harry, well, Miss Lenihan, well, long-lost members of terings of one-eyed Cyclops — before Odysseus pokes out that
the 10th grade, Lincoln School of Teachers’ College, here’s a monster’s only orb with a red-hot blazing tree branch. This
breath-saving tip for all of you, all of us. Cyclops, by the way, becomes rather more than a second cousin
There is at hand — at 45 Bleecker Street — an inspiring — or great-grandfather — to Shakespeare’s Caliban.)
example of an Old Greek (Mr. Homer) rendered into clear terse “What’s to forgive?” (Mae West-ish Circe, to another of
compelling richly enjoyable vernacular English, in many ways Odysseus’s captains, before turning that captain and others of
a sort of astonishingly American (even New York) English, the shipwrecked crew into four-footed, snout-nosed pigs, so
though I don’t know if British poet-playwright Simon Armitage that stranded Odysseus will have no other port of call than her
intended it as such. bed).
The opportunity is the Handcart Ensemble presentation of NAUSICA (a jealous serving woman) : “…I presume you Photo by Nadia Kitirath

Simon Armitage’s adaptation of Homer’s “Odyssey” — the life told that scheming, conniving hostess of yours to go to Hades David D’Agostini as Odysseus; Cyclops puppet manipu-
and times of Ulysses the wanderer — by means of 11 actors on a horse and cart? Or even lopped off her head with your lated by Nick Moran
under the direction of Handcart co-founder J. Scott Reynolds, sword?”
with the assistance of a couple of puppets, some sheets, some ODYSSEUS: “No, it was…I judged it to be more compli- “Theater,” says director Scott Reynolds, “is a very oral
shadows, some lights, some acrobatics, and a very large quo- cated than that.” medium. Also aural,” he throws in. “And the language here is
tient of imagination, the audience’s and the cast’s interchange- Do I hear echoes of a president named Obama? (Though so strong and emotive, you go along for the ride.”
ably. Or interlockingly. Armitage turned out this work on commission for BBC Radio It was his idea, upon reading the Armitage radio play in
Ten years of battle at Troy, ten years of striving homeward at — in the pre-Obama year 2004). book form (he has never met Armitage), to turn it into a piece
sea. Here is how Odysseus himself (via Armitage) sums it up: “Ha! Pay up. You’re a born loser, Anthinomus.” (One of the for theater — mount it, that is, on an actual stage. Which also
invidious suitors of Penelope — lonely, lovely Mrs. Odysseus at meant cutting it from what would be four hours down to just
Nymphs have held me back. her eternal loom — to another of that rotten crowd of worse under two hours.
Armies have held me back. than swine.) To this end “we brought on a talented dramaturge, James
Witches have held me back. “What’s rattled your cage?” (Another or the suitors to yet Melton, the artistic director of Verse Theater Manhattan. I put a
Sea monsters have held me back. another — and more cautious — of the gang.) few things back, and then we sent it for approval to Faber and
The one-eyed mumbling Cyclops, “The fingerprints of the Gods are all over this.” (A suitor Faber, which had published the original in England.” (W.W.
the mind-melting songs of the sirens, sniffing trouble in the news that Telemachus, the now grown-to- Norton published it here last year.)
the deep narcotic of the lotus flower manhood son of Odysseus, has evaded a blockade and is on his Reynolds agrees that its hero’s behavior “falls a bit short of
the prophecies of the dead, way back to Ithaca with military force to revenge his ten-years- what we consider an admirable person,” but the director also
whirlpools, clashing rocks. missing father.) sees the hero’s redeeming virtue — and “the heart of Homer’s
“Athena — what if they see you? You gave me this disguise epic” — to be Odysseus’s “insatiable need to be reunited with
No man loves his country or his family — now you’ll blow my cover.” (Secretly returned Odysseus, in his family and loved ones.”
more than me — the heart is a magnet, disguise as a feeble old man, to his silver-eyed protectress, who But first…but first…apart from Circe and other diversions/
it spins and finds its true north, and pulls. now has suddenly made herself manifest.) distractions, there’s that little seven-year stopover at the Land of
It tugs… It is, as a matter of fact, toward the climax of the play — and the Lotus Eaters, which sounds mighty like the Age of Leary’s
of the legend — that we realize Odysseus, like any great warrior “drop out, tune in, turn on.”
But the heart isn’t a boat. (George Patton, let’s say) is not through-and-through a nice guy. Yeah, man.
This heart alone won’t sail me home, Indeed, at climax, Odysseus emerges more and more as, on Odysseus is embodied by David D’Agostini; Telemachus by
and somewhere in this mad, wild, hurling clock- occasion, a bully, a braggart; in short, a bit of a shit. Joel Rainwater; Penelope by Elizabeth Ruelas. The other play-
work When nobody, none of the suitors, can bend and string the ers: Jeffrey Golde, Rachael McOwen, John Michalski, Nicholas
of islands and time and Gods, I’m lost… famous bow left behind by the Odysseus who’d sailed for Sparta Alexiy Moran, Jane Pejtersen, Joel Richards, Javen Tanner, and
twenty years earlier, and then that feeble old man steps up and Ryan Wood.
None of that is “American (even New York) English,” per does it — sends an arrow twanging betwixt two huddled spears Reynolds, a 1996 graduate of Brigham Young University,
se. But what about these, scattered through the play (for it is — his son Telemachus, in on the game, offers congratulations to Provo, Utah, started the Handcart Ensemble three years later
a play — of sorts) like thumbtacks: the doddering stranger. with friends from that school. Its goal: To produce new adap-
“She never did need telling twice” (Zeus on his clever, uppity “And no fluke either,” says Simon Armitage’s Odysseus. tations, new translations, new works for theater from mainly
daughter, Athena, self-appointed guardian of Odysseus). “Look, I’ll prove it again” — and sends an arrow plunk! through classical sources.
“It’s baby talk if you ask me. Gobbledygook language” the throat of the most abominable of the suitors. After that, the Can’t get much more classical than Home Run Homer, can
(Antiphus, one of Odysseus’s captains, on the drooling mut- slaughter. you, Winifred Lenihan?
18 August 27 - September 9, 2009

Last call, FringeNYC
Two fleeting shows worth seeing
THEATER
REVIEWS
HIS GREATNESS
Written by Daniel MacIvor
Directed by Tom Gualtieri
A 2009 New York International Fringe Festival presentation
Presented by Adam Blanshay and Lyric Productions, in associa-
tion with The Present Company
At the Cherry Lane Theater (38 Commerce Street)
Aug 27, at 3:45 p.m.; Aug 29, at Noon
For tickets ($15), visit www.fringenyc.org or call 866-468-7619.
Visit www.HisGreatnessPlay.com

BY SCOTT HARRAH
This provocative show, based on a true story about “two
days in the last years of the life of playwright Tennessee
Williams,” is one of the undisputed highlights of the 13th
Annual New York International Fringe Festival.
Canadian playwright Daniel MacIvor’s brilliant script,
the stellar performances of the three cast members and
Tom Gualtieri’s tight direction create a top-notch bio-drama
about one of America’s most celebrated, controversial the-
ater icons.
“His Greatness” is not officially about Williams. The
Photo by Neilson Barnard
Broadway/Hollywood legend’s name and play titles are
never mentioned, and the lead character is simply called Tennessee Williams, sorta, center, in “His Greatness”
The Playwright (Peter Goldfarb). However, Daniel MacIvor
covers all the notorious territory about Williams’s private
life — from his alleged problems with alcohol and drugs to SCATTERED LIVES
his failed attempts at writing in his later years. Written, directed and choreographed by Yoshihisa Kuwayama
The story takes place in a Vancouver hotel room circa
A 2009 New York International Fringe Festival presentation
1980, as The Playwright prepares for the opening of a new,
updated version of an old play. “His Greatness” focuses on A presentation of Samurai Sword Soul, in association with The
the complicated symbiotic relationship between the writer Present Company
and his high-strung, devoted assistant/lover (played with
aplomb by Dan Domingues). Troubles abound when a calcu- At the Robert Moss Theater, 440 Lafayette Street, third floor
lating hustler (the superb Michael Busillo) is hired to escort Aug 28, 9:30 p.m.; Aug 29, 4:30 p.m.
the old man to the gala opening.
Goldfarb is first-rate as The Playwright — playing him For tickets ($15), visit www.fringenyc.org or
as a lovable yet sad person on a path of self-destruction. call 866-468-7619.
Dan Domingues is totally incandescent as The Assistant.
He brings down the house with his manic mannerisms as he Visit www.HisGreatnessPlay.com
delivers MacIvor’s beautifully written dialogue. When The
Photo by Motoyuki Ishibashi
Playwright complains about pain in his soul, The Assistant
quips, “That’s not your soul — it’s your hangover.” The BY SCOTT STIFFLER The Samurai storytellers of “Scattered Lives”
Assistant is the only one who can get The Playwright out They drink! They fight! They repeat that process all day
of bed and keep him sober enough to get through a radio and all night! blade meets blade, although not that of metal, lets you
interview and the opening of the play. Domingues portrays Occasionally, the good, bad and conflicted Samurai pause know in no uncertain terms that a battle is taking place.
The Assistant as a compassionate but frustrated man who long enough to experience fleeting moments of moral and The fight choreography, by writer/director Yoshihisa
tries desperately to help the egotistical, deluded author over- philosophical clarity amidst the relentless bloodshed and Kuwayama, is relentless, imaginative and effective in its
come his battle with alcoholism and drug addiction so he can power grabs. In the end, only a disembodied spirit and the implication of drawn blood and death (of which there is
maintain both his career and dignity. drunken shell of a former great fighter remain to survey much!).
“His Greatness” doesn’t solely rely on the sordid the damage and vow that their swords will only be used But along with all the violence you’d expect from a
aspects of Williams and his personal problems. There’s improve life rather than reign destruction upon the land. Samauri tale comes a thoughtful plot which sees two war-
also great detail on why critics were so fascinated with That’s the fascinatingly complex moral drawn at the end ring factions duel to the death and a drunken clown achieve
his female characters, and what he really thought of of the simple story to be found in Samurai Sword Soul’s redemption. By the time the rival clan is permanently dis-
such theatrical peers as Arthur Miller. Ultimately, how- production of “Scattered Lives” — a fine example of mini- patched in the climatic battle, only the reformed drunk and
ever, “His Greatness” is a portrait of a once-great writ- malist technique made to serve the telling of an epic tale. the ghost of the good-guy master remain on stage to con-
er’s decline and why so many people turned on him The bare, black box stage is filled only with three musi- template the way of the warrior and the responsibility that
in the end — showing exactly why the real life of cians, a nine-member cast and their swords. They swords comes with the power to take a life with relative ease. That’s
Tennessee Williams was every bit as tragic as his plays. aren’t real, though; but the well-constructed props glisten the unique, unexpected ingredient which makes “Scattered
with deadly implications and the resulting sound when Lives” more than just a series of violent encounters.
August 27 - September 9, 2009 19

KOCH
ON FILM
“INGLOURIOUS BASTERDS” (+)
I thought this flick was based on some historical facts. It
is not. It’s a spoof. If you view it as such and don’t get super-
sensitive thinking one should be extremely careful when
engaging in a spoof that involves elements of the Holocaust,
you will enjoy this film.
Interestingly, Brad Pitt’s performance does little to height-
en the enjoyment. He portrays Lt. Aldo Raine, a Tennessee
hillbilly in charge of eight Jews. The performance of
Christoph Waltz, playing the Nazi Gestapo figure Col. Hans
Landa, is the highlight of the film. His ability to convey courtli-
ness and sympathy and then go to commit the cruelest of horrors
is simply superb.
The plot is simple. The U.S. Army authorizes Lt. Raine (Brad
Pitt) to take eight Jews with him, parachute into Germany and
then simply kill Nazis. He states that each of them owes him 100
Nazi scalps before they are through with their campaign. They
proceed to kill their share of Nazis and literally scalp them. Universal Pictures
The Jew hunter, Col. Hans Landa, pursues Jews in occupied Mélanie Laurent as Shosanna Dreyfus in “Inglourious Basterds.”
France. There is an enormously touching scene showing a
French farmer giving up the Jews he had hidden in his house out so when an attempt to add a “buddy” component was for the one who became a psycho. The sudden ending left
of fear that he and his three daughters would be killed. The her- introduced. One of the aliens, Christopher Johnson (Jason the audience unaware of what befell the unsavory characters
oine is a Jewish woman, Shosanna Dreyfus (Melanie Laurent), Cope), tries to help Wikus (Sharlto Copley) who was in in the film. We learned how immigration laws are circum-
who does us all proud. A fictional finale involves an apparently charge of the aliens’ care. After accidentally becoming vented, and how little human life means to gangsters and
successful effort to kill Hitler, Bormann, Goering and Goebbels infected, Wilkus starts to turn into an alien and Johnson musclemen. The title character had the face of a boy. You
at a French theater. The film at that point becomes a rollicking promises to cure him. couldn’t be sure until she stripped for action.
musical without the music. All I could do was hum “Springtime I repeat. Stay away. This movie is an enormous waste
for Hitler,” which I liked immensely. of time and they don’t hand out free sodas or comic In French, Albanian and Russian, with English
Quentin Tarantino, writer and director, did it again. books. subtitles.1hr 45minutes; Rated R (Drama); at Cinema
PT said: “I didn’t really enjoy the film, although it was very 1 hour, 53 minutes; Rated R . Village, 22 East 12th Street. For screening times, call 212-
well produced and quite realistic except for the outrageous bits: 924-3363. For the Box Office, call 212-924-3364.
Brad Pitt as a hillbilly, Jewish soldiers trying to pass themselves At the Regal Union Square Stadium 14 (850 Broadway).
off as Italian filmmakers, and other unrealistic flights of the For screening times, call 1-800-326-3264 x628. For the Box
filmmaker’s fancy. I just couldn’t reconcile the serious parts of Office, 212-253-6266. Also at, among other places, Chelsea SKIP IT ON DVD
the film such as the giving up of the hidden Jews with the Clearview Cinema (260 West 23rd Street). For screening The disappointing “Cheri” was out of area theaters
comedic elements.” times, call 212-777-3456 x597. For the Box Office, call 212- before we could get Ed Koch’s review into print — but
1 hour, 52 minutes; Rated R. 691-5519. let the below serve as a warning to anyone who might
consider renting the film upon its inevitable, and unfor-
At the Regal Union Square Stadium 14 (850 Broadway). tunate, release on DVD.
For screening times, call 1-800-326-3264 x628. For the Box “LORNA’S SILENCE” (+)
Office, 212-253-6266. Also at, among other places, Chelsea I tried getting tickets for “Inglourious Basterds” on a “CHERI” (-)
Clearview Cinema (260 West 23rd Street). For screening Friday night after my Bloomberg Radio Show, which airs All of what was necessary to come up with an inter-
times, call 212-777-3456 x597. For the Box Office, call 212- from 6:00-7:00 pm, 1130 on the AM dial. The show had sold esting and entertaining movie was available here. Instead,
691-5519. out by noon that day so I had to wait a few more days to see those in charge produced a boring movie which was so slow,
it. After reading a blurb in the New York Post on “Lorna’s it called up that old phrase, watching grass grow.
Silence,” I decided to see it. The reviewer, who gave it four The movie is based on a book by the French novelist
“DISTRICT 9” (-) stars, wrote: “From Belgium’s revered Dardenne brothers, Colette. She herself was the talk of Paris as Manohla Dargis
This horror/sci-fi film received kudos from the critics, the story of a young woman who becomes involved in an of The New York Times reports, having “lovers of both
some giving it four stars. Ridiculous. Stay away. immigration scam.” sexes.” The movie concerns itself with the lives of courte-
The picture reminded me of the serials or chapters that The picture is good, but far from a blockbuster. It is sans — a nice word describing what today would be very
I watched as a child every Saturday afternoon. For one a Belgian film noir that lacks the sensuality for which the high-priced call girls (perhaps the word “mistress” would be
dime I saw two films and also received a free soda and a French are famous. I didn’t identify with any of the charac- more accurate).
comic book. Of course, “District 9” cost a lot more to ters, but the story is interesting. One such courtesan is Lea (Michelle Pfeiffer), who is in
make because of the technology involved. An Albanian woman, Lorna (Arta Dobroshi), fraudu- her 40s or 50s. She becomes infatuated with Cheri (Rupert
A spaceship, unable to move from its position in the lently acquires the right of legal Belgian residency by marry- Friend), now 19-years-old, the illegitimate son of another
sky, appears over Johannesburg, South Africa, in the ing a Belgian drug addict, Claudy (Jeremie Renier). Claudy courtesan, Charlotte (Kathy Bates), who is now retired. Lea
1980s. The alien craft is invaded by members of the is paid by a crime syndicate for the arrangement. Lorna and Cheri have an affair for six years before he leaves her to
South African military and police force who find a million intends to divorce Claudy and marry a Russian involved in marry a younger woman.
or so creatures onboard that look like insects and to some organized crime who also wants Belgian residency. The head The French have always touted relationships between
like crustaceans. of the criminal ring with whom Lorna is involved is Fabio young men and older women. This one doesn’t work for
The extraterrestrials are initially treated humanely and (Fabrizio Rongione). Fabio’s enforcement thug is Spirou me. The director is Stephen Frears, who has had many
placed in a refugee camp known as District 9. Relations (Morgan Marianne). pictures that were exciting and sexual such as “Dangerous
deteriorate and they are soon viewed as social outcasts Fabio, wanting to shorten the process allowing Lorna’s Liaisons,” “The Grifters,” and “High Fidelity.” This movie
and referred to as prawns, a slur. In an apparent allegory, marriage to the Russian, opts to kill Claudy with an over- is not one of them.
the treatment toward the aliens by the blacks and whites dose — but Lorna prefers to wait a month for the divorce to Those wanting to immerse themselves in the feel of the
of South Africa, with their history of Apartheid, becomes take effect. You’ll have to see the film to find out who wins Belle Epoque period, preceding the first World War, may
brutal. A war is declared to get rid of them and they are out. The movie is well acted but lacks soul. want to go just to see the clothing and housing. But if you
moved to an undesirable slum area. HS said: “The movie was well done and well acted, but it are into sensual experiences, this is not for you.
I frankly thought it was all ridiculous, particularly was a real downer. Every actor was a thug or junkie, except Rated R; 95 minutes.
20 August 27 - September 9, 2009

Rooftop Films presents P-Star, under starry sky
2009 Tribeca Film Festival flick gets Brooklyn premiere
BY ELENA MANCINI daughters who longed for their absentee,
P-Star Rising is the story of a second
chance that emerged from a Harlem hous- FILM crack-addled mother. Jesse’s parenting style
might be unorthodox, but his straight talk
ing shelter, “a rose in concrete,” as director and refusal to whitewash his checkered past
Gabriel Noble refers to the character and for their benefit is a testament to his love and
talent of child rapper P-Star (on which his P-STAR RISING unwavering devotion.
feature documentary is based). 2009; 83 minutes; feature documentary As much as the story depicts the perks
When Noble met Priscilla “P-Star” Diaz and pitfalls of launching and managing a
Directed by Gabriel Noble
and her father/manager/former hip-hop career in the New York City hip-hop scene,
hopeful Jesse Diaz at a rapper debut dance Free; Thursday, September 3 (rain date, it’s even more a story about a family’s strug-
party in NYC, he knew immediately that September 10) Live 8:30 p.m. music perfor- gles to fulfill a dream without present for
P-Star was not just a kid with a lot of spunk one another and sticking together. The Diaz
mance by P-Star; 9:00 p.m. screening, fol-
— she had a story that was worth telling. family brings its both its love for one another
At the time, she was all of nine years old. lowed by Q&A with the filmmaker and its baggage to the well documented risks
What struck Noble about P-Star (apart from At the lawn of Ft Greene Park, North Portland and gains of child stardom. It learns many
her tender age and the fact that she was out lessons along the way.
and Myrtle Avenue, Ft. Greene, Brooklyn (G
at a party past midnight on a school night) P-Star must learn to temper her pluck
was “the aggressiveness of her flow, charis- train to Fulton) and talent with her need to just be a kid.
ma, her street smarts and her fire.” As Noble For information, www.rooftopfilms.com Jesse must come to accept that despite his
Photo courtesy of Rooftop Films & the filmmaker
describes it, he wanted to learn “where commitment to confronting the pressures
that cadence was coming from.” Coupled P-Star dancing in foreground, looming and responsibilities that come with dual role
with P-Star’s precociousness and passion for large in background one another appeared natural and candid of manager/father, the intervention of hum-
performing was also the consciousness of throughout. This sense also remained strong bling realities cannot be prevented. Solsky
wanting to bring forward the dream that had documentary. The process of filming brought in moments that highlighted character weak- must learn the importance of self-expression
seemingly eluded her father. Noble and the Diaz to form a close bond. nesses, poor judgment, disappointments and in a shadow role. While this is in many ways
Five years have passed since Noble’s first Noble described it as feeling like a member defeats. a distinctly New York story, its disarming
encounter with the Diaz family. During that of their family. The comfortable rapport Particularly noteworthy in this regard authenticity and emotional rawness give
five year period, Noble (with the help of pro- between the director and the family certainly was Jesse Diaz. Armed with scant resources it universal appeal. Noble, whose future
ducer Marjhan Tehrani) has spent four years comes across in watching the documentary. and cast in an emotionally challenging famil- projects include a documentary on gypsy
getting to know the family intimately and All of the family members seemed at ease ial situation, this single father did not have children in Romania, tells P-Star’s story with
filming them for this tour-de-force feature playing themselves. Their interactions with an easy time at bringing up two young sensitivity and respect.

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August 27 - September 9, 2009 21

Funny Ladies
Marvelous Marilyn, delightful Dawson, holy Toledo, Kate the Great
these days, having recently gotten married again York made it meaner, making me hear things
IN THE NOH to Steven Portnoff, a lawyer she met on JDate.
At first, her friends were horrified that she was
I’d hear at auditions or from agents or casting
directors. That’s when it got nasty. I’d studied
BY DAVID NOH going online, but she said, “I’m like, ‘Hello!?’ opera in college, and always had more of a legit
I recently caught up with two performers You know, sit there or do something! The well sound than Broadway belters like Sutton Foster.
who stand firmly in the glorious tradition of of introductions had somehow dried up, and I This did limit me in a period when everything
hilarious broads who also really know how was like a kid in a candy shop. I ended up meet- they wanted was ‘Rent’ stuff, which I don’t do
to sell a song — Fannie Brice, Sophie Tucker, ing many people who became an important part or want to — and most of those kids don’t have
Judy, Barbra, Judy Holliday, Barbara Harris, of my life at a time when I needed supportive a voice any more. But it was pretty hard seeing
and Bette Midler. I grew up watching Marilyn friendship — a financial guy, a psychiatrist, and Kelli O’Hara and Laura Benanti, the same type
Michaels doing her convulsive imitations of all now a lawyer.” as me, soar to the top. You wonder what did
the famous divas on the Ed Sullivan Show, and With her friends hissing, “He just wants to you not do — maybe you need to lose weight,
she has a new CD out, “Wonderful at Last,” get into your pants,” even coming off as a perfect go blonder, a makeover. I became very insecure
in which her voice sounds as fresh and clarion gent did not completely win her over, desperate about my looks because nothing seemed good
clear as ever. She sings standards like “Here’s as she was to maintain her anonymity — which enough.”
that Rainy Day,” as well as selections from a was blown when she finally succumbed to his Dawson feels blessed to have assembled
musical “Alice,” based on Lewis Carroll, which request for a photo and mistakenly sent him a “dream team” around her: Director “Don
she is writing with her son, Mark Wilk. her headshot, before cutting off her name in Amendolia came in while he was acting in ‘33
“Talk about working with your mother!” the caption. But the clincher occurred when he Variations.’ It didn’t have a directorial struc-
Michaels told me in her West Side apartment, wrote a letter to her describing how he’d taken ture. You get so close while you’re writing it.
the walls of which are covered with her skill- Photo by John Hart his dementia-suffering father on Father’s Day to He said, ‘Okay, this song is not your opening,
fully executed paintings. “Now I see why writ- Marilyn Michaels see her show “Catskills on Broadway,” and, at the second one is, and we need to move these
ers become alcoholics, because it’s so hard to the end of it, a lucid Dad said, “She was very three. It’s a very emotional show for me, and I
work alone, sitting in front of this blank page, Michaels starred in the original road com- funny.” really had problems not crying. But he’d say,
making it fresh.” pany of “Funny Girl” and naturally met its As for Ed Sullivan, Michaels said, “He ‘Let us cry, you can’t,’ which is a hard lesson for
One entire wall displays photos of Michaels original star, Streisand: “I was in rehearsals, and was wonderful to me and my family, but he actors because you get such rewards for crying,
taken with a jaw-dropping array of celebrities, Larry Kasha, the assistant director, took me to had a habit of standing on the stage while you like Julianne Moore, that’s all she does and I’m
from presidents to George Steinbrenner, with meet her for a night out on the town. This was performed, another situation of somebody not a fan.”
whom she worked on an early show and who before she became a monstrous movie icon, wanting so desperately to be a part of that The brilliant Doug Oberhamer replaced
gives her Yankee tickets when she calls. I want- but she was already a huge star. We went up to moment. He just wouldn’t leave, and I’d be Dawson’s original music director: “He loved
ed to hear about them all. “I performed at the her beautiful dressing room, all done in paisley performing and looking over at him. It was so and believed in this, found the band, and is
old Huntington Hartford Museum, and Bette –– she already knew how to live like a star. fucking weird! Sometimes I want to say that to someone who really takes charge, so organized
Davis was there. I was a big hit that night and “We went out with her coterie in a limo, and [‘Broadway By the Year’ producer] Scott Siegel and such a great musician. After we did our
noticed her daughter, B.D. — horrible woman she was wondering what ever happened to this [laughs].” first show, Don said, ‘We’ve got to cut a song
who wrote that tell-all book about Davis before certain girl singer from the ’50s and ’60s who Representing the new crop of funny musi- –– “How Glory Goes.”’ I didn’t want to, but
she was even dead — walking around with a had disappeared. Barbra was very aware of her, cal ladies is Kate Dawson, whose delightful Doug agreed, and now it’s one of the best parts
crown on her head, acting like she was Bette and reading between the lines, it was as if to say show, “The Asshole in My Head,” I caught at of the show, because when I start to sing it, my
Davis and Bette was her lady-in-fuckin’-wait- that she was never going to disappear. We went the Triad on July 26. In it, she recounts the asshole [deliciously played by Lauren “Coco”
ing. Such an attitude! I just worshipped Davis to a screening of a Marcello Mastroianni film, travails and daily life of someone who came to Cohen] screams, ‘Not another ballad!’
and she was sweet as could be because all of and at the end a reporter came over and wanted New York with Broadway dreams and, instead Two free exhibits you should catch before
a sudden I find myself in an elevator with her, to shoot us talking together. He was directing the of making it big, made it “a little.” It’s the story they end are “Isabel Toledo: Fashion from the
and in the 1960s, she still looked good, and she shot, with me, just a kid at this juncture and the of so many of our lives, and Dawson managed Inside Out” at Fashion Institute of Technology
said, ‘You are fan-tas-tic! What a talent!” new girl on the block. He was like, ‘What’s new? to be both sidesplitting and poignant, while (www3.fitnyc.edu/museum/Isabel_tole-
Joan Crawford went even further “at a Who’s this one?’ and I could suddenly feel her displaying a ravishing voice which ranged do) through September 26, and “Katharine
Pepsi-Cola event I did. She was very gracious, entire body go like that — how threatened she over material from “Great Big Stuff,” an ode Hepburn: In Her Own Files,” at Lincoln Center
MGM-trained, but I noticed that she dressed was. I could understand it and felt for her. That’s to materialism, especially her beloved Chanel Library for the Performing Arts (nypl.org/
very strangely. She didn’t have Adrian to dress the nature of our business, but it was a fantastic bag, to “The Light in the Piazza,“ all in strict, research/lpa/) through October 10. The first
her, so she wore these little plastic Cinderella night and I know she had heard my just-released succinct service to her universal, but individu- features the genius, innovative work of the
shoes and I was like, ‘Those are so 1962 and no first album — with all this fabulous singing. I ally wrought, theme. woman who may be America’s greatest living
one is here from MGM to tell her.’ I’d finished remember her looking at me and saying, ‘You Dawson told me, “I had been really unhap- designer, and you can see the famous Inaugural
performing, and she ran out and grabbed me, have nice lips.’ And I thought, ‘What a very nice py in the business and stopped auditioning. I dress she made for Michelle Obama.
took me by the hand, and ran me around the compliment.’ didn’t know what I wanted to do, but I got a The second is a mesmerizing survey of
dance floor introducing me to everyone. She “She was a big movie star by the second regular job with real benefits and got married. I Hepburn’s career, culled from her personal
was doing two things — she wanted to be a part time I met her, at this Vegas New Year’s party. got the book ‘The Artist’s Way,’ and did one of papers she left to the library. The emphasis is
of it and was jumping into my act, but she was Everybody was there, and at this point she was the exercises — writing the morning pages — on her stage work, with her diaries and opening
also extolling my performance. Everyone was just in another sphere, but I sensed that there was every morning for two and a half years. night telegrams from famous friends reflecting
standing back and applauding, and of course I a loneliness about her.” “I knew I wanted to say something and Broadway’s Golden Age. I respectfully dis-
got the requisite thank you note from her on the Joan Rivers was another story: “I worked with would think, ‘Maybe I could do a show about agree with curator Barbara Cohen Stratyner,
famous blue stationary which I treasure.” her, not a very gracious person. It was on her this,’ but as soon as I said that, I’d think, ‘Well, who opined at the opening that Hepburn’s
In Vegas, Michaels opened for Roger Miller, show and she was very competitive, even though that’s stupid. That doesn’t make any sense.’ stage photographs are more telling than those
who took her to a party to meet Judy Garland: there’s nothing to be competitive about –– I don’t This went on for weeks until I got angry and taken by Hollywood photographers, who tried
“I was going to see my idol and I remember do stand-up. But anybody else who’s funny… it realized no matter what my idea was, I always to impose the look of, say, Garbo or Ingrid
she was extremely diminutive, very thin. She was just a feeling and it was not nice. had a reason not to do it. I realized that I Bergman, on her. Hepburn adored being photo-
appeared to be the hostess of the party, like “First of all, I’ve never had anything done to was talking to this asshole in my head, telling graphed, and her work with studio lensers like
something you do –– you’re the star, you my face, which is not to say I never will, but I me things I didn’t want to think about. That’s Hurrell, Clarence Bull, and RKO’s marvelous
host. But she seemed to be on something and don’t understand that kind of thing — to do that where the title came from, and what’s interest- Ernest Bachrach comprise some of the most
extremely vulnerable. Speaking to me, she was much? There is no stop sign, as with anything — ing is that, in a way, it has freed me from that exciting feminine images of the last century.
pleasant, but going through the motions with- drinking, eating, sex — and it doesn’t look nor- asshole. I’ve become friends with it more, but it
out really being there. It’s like it was yesterday. mal, like the children in ‘Village of the Damned,’ still gives me a hard time. Contact David Noh at Inthenoh@aol.com
I didn’t expect her to look robust but did expect a science fiction person.” “When I was growing up, the asshole in and check out his new blog at http://nohway.
her to be present, and it was very sad.” Michaels is a very happy lady, personally, my head was nicer to me. But 13 years in New wordpress.com/.
22 August 27 - September 9, 2009

My brother Frank: the teacher who walked beside me Still he tosses. We can’t settle him, can’t seem mystery to me.” And he would sink back on his I doubt that he would want them. Instead, I
Continued from page 15 to relieve his discomfort. We decide to use the pillow, resigned, as always, to our vagaries. That believe, he had been getting himself into fight-
emergency device to call the nurse. “Where is was my imagining. ing trim, accepting change as it came, as he
endured chronic conjunctivitis. In the 1980s it?” I ask Malachy. “It’s hanging by the side of In the event, Malachy’s wife, Diana, had always did, shedding all excess baggage and
he would survive cancer. Having thorough- the bed,” Malachy answers. I look for it, without gone to summon the nurses. Frank never had preparing for the trip.
ly embraced and enjoyed his dozen years of been overweight, and now there is not an Then the nurses come. With care and ten-
fame, he was now afflicted with melanoma. ounce of excess. His spirit, whatever that is; derness, they move him up in the bed, adjust
Treatments and hospital stays would follow, all his dreamer, his inspiration, the fine tuner of all and plump up his pillows and settle him. Soon
to no avail. I hadn’t seen or sensed any his lives and of his brilliant articulation, all are he is asleep, and he will continue in sleep. There
During his last days, in the hospice, he lies pulling away. is talk of seizure, of complications. I think I
propped up in bed. Two or three other people angels at Frank’s bedside. He tosses and turns from side to side. No know better. On his left side, now, and with his
are in the room. I indicate to him that I must matter how he has been positioned in the bed, left palm under his chin and his chin slightly
leave and that I will be back tomorrow. Frank No secular spirit-guides- his feet always seem to find purchase against the raised, in the thinker’s classic pose, peacefully
raises his right hand, the first and second fin- rail at the foot. Now he moves his legs up and he sleeps.
gers extended; the middle finger and the pinkie for-hire, either. I doubt down, as if practicing for takeoff. A distillation Only days later, on Sunday afternoon, family
folded back, the thumb lying flat. is taking place, a fever without fever, as his spirit and friends were present at the hospice. I was
Smiling as he is, this gesture means some- that he would want them. gains its complete ascendancy. And a smelting, not. Having stayed with him all night, I was at
thing. I can tell. The others in the room are as his body, reduced to its essentials, takes on a home when the call came. At a little after 3 p.m.
watching him, and they laugh when he raises his sheen and an extraordinary beauty. Frank had stopped breathing. His body had
hand. With the crinkle of a joke at the corners Years ago Frank told me that he was strongly finally wound down. It is very sad. The knowl-
of his smile he forgives the others their laughter. success, and I continue to search, while Malachy attracted to the writings of J. Krishnamurti, to edge of his absence is sometimes overwhelming.
Still looking directly at me, and with the same insists. In the end, I get down on my hands and the idea that we should abandon all the grandi- The memory of that earlier day, that day of
wide smile, he moves his right hand: upward, knees. Malachy, with his busted leg encased in ose notions and practices of established religion, exaltation, offers some consolation.
and slowly downward, then left to right, in a the big black boot, begins the search on his side that we should look with wonder at whatever A few years ago he said to me: “We are
continuous motion. Oldest to youngest, father- of the bed. Neither of us can find the device. is before us, and that, toward everyone and all we have, the brothers, the women and the
less now as we have ever been, in timeless I have a fleeting vision of Malachy, Mike and everything, we should behave in a just, loving children.” Now, of course, we are one less. But
rhythm he gives me his blessing. And without a myself, all of us under the bed searching for and compassionate manner. He didn’t say this maybe, after a nice rest, and God knows he
thought I cross myself. the device, and the nurse arriving in. “Where is in so many words, but that was the message. deserves it, in another 66 years, or however
The next day Malachy and I are with him in everybody?” she would ask Frank. “Where have Be guided by justice and love. That’s the most long it takes to reach retirement age, Frank will
the room. Frank’s wife, Ellen, is away, briefly, your brothers gone?” practical approach. break away from the mass of the great vibration
on an errand. Frank becomes agitated. His shirt “Damned if I know,” would be his response. I hadn’t seen or sensed any angels at Frank’s and, once again, lend his voice to the shunned
is bothering him, and we help him remove it. “The behavior of my brothers has always been a bedside. No secular spirit-guides-for-hire, either. and the excluded.

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Apartment WANTED NYU-trained filmmaker needs part-time Forms, Inc. Reupholstered
help/volunteers. No exper. nec. Established 1971 polished & repaired. Hand rubbed fin-
to BUY or RENT Info@manyh.com; 212-203-2168.
Seniors welcome!
New service - Shredding of your ish if desired in your home. Antiques
personal papers. restored. Over 45 years exp.
Continuous Business forms, Free estimates.
Large Studio in COMPUTER SERVICES Snap-a-part Forms, Laser Forms & Call Alex
Lower Manhattan, PERSONAL COMPUTER SERVICES Checks for all systems. Offset form, 1-800-376-6757
UWS or Hells Kitchen. Reliable! 4-Color Post Cards. Announcements, Cell: 917-837-4012
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troubleshooting, instruction, Business Cards, Xeroxing, Bindery & DRORI ANTIQUE RESTORATION
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HOME IMPROVEMENT 233 West 18th Street, NYC 10011
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Free estimate Call 212-675-0631
August 27 - September 9, 2009 23

THE
COMPILED BY
SCOTT STIFFLER
ALIST
Scott@chelseanow.com

ART
ART
NIGHTSHIFT III
This group gallery show pulls back the curtain to reveal the talents of those
who toil during the daylight hours as arts institution staff and/or artist
assistants to big names in the established art world. By night, however, this
sub-community spends their hours maintaining disciplined studio practices
of their own. Show up and find out what they have to show for it — and
you might just end up pinpointing that moment in time when the student
becomes the master. Through October 6. Viewing Hours: Tues through Fri,
10 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Sat, 1 to 4 p.m.; at Hudson Guild Gallery, 441 West
26th Street. Call 212-760-9837. At the closing party on Oct 6, 6 to 8 p.m.,
you can meet the artists and take in some performance art.
Image courtesy of the artist (Sara Pringle)

“Blue Tony” (2009)

Image courtesy of Rubin Museum of Art
DANCE/ART
The Enlightened One, Jewel Born (Tibet; 14th cen- DANCES FROM HOME
tury; pigments on cloth) Born in Japan, choreographer and perfor-
MANDALA: THE PERFECT CIRCLE mance artist Maureen Fleming is an American
Buddhist Cosmic Diagrams come to life in this exhibit which master of Butoh (an avant-garde movement
thoroughly transports the viewer from the 8th to the 21st developed in post-war Japan). This gallery
century — by displaying some of the oldest known mandalas installation/performance celebrates her 25
(large paintings found in the Dunhuang caves in northwest- years as a NYC artist with a retrospective
ern China) alongside virtual, computer-generated varieties. of her photography, video and live work.
This exhibition is the first of three in “The Cosmologies By the time you exit, Fleming hopes you’ll
Series” — RMA’s continuing investigation of how different have reconsidered the notion of home as
cultures visually represented the universe. Come for the the crossroads between place of origin and
mandalas and your own search for meaning; stay for the wide that ultimate dimension beyond death which
array of Himalayan art! Through January 2010; at The Rubin we’ve all got an appointment with. Plus, the
Museum of Art, 150 West 17th Street (between 6th and 7th dancing is nice. On view daily from August
Avenues). $10 admission (special rates for students, seniors, 22 through September 4. At La MaMa La
artists, neighbors). Call 212-620-5000 or visit rmanyc.org. Galleria (6 East 1st Street, between Bowery
& 2nd Avenue). Admission is free; donations
Photo by Lois Greenfield
encouraged. For more information, visit mau-
Maureen Fleming: The Immortal Rose
CHARLIE reenfleming.com.
PARKER JAZZ
FEST
City Parks Foundation’s
KEEPING THE

FILM
17th edition of the
INDEPENDENT FLAME
First Run Features gets a respectful retrospective,
Charlie Parker Jazz
as the Film Society of Lincoln Center celebrates
Festival features two
thirty years of fiction and documentary films from
afternoons of free jazz
the company founded in 1979 by a group of film-
headlined by Frank
makers dedicated to (OK, obsessed) with advancing
Wess Quintet and
the distribution of independent film. The gay his-
Cedar Walton Quartet Photo by Gene Martin

Cedar Walton, performing with tory documentary “Before Stonewall” is on the bill
— all in the service of
his quartet, Aug 29 (Sept 3), as is “49 Up” (Aug 30, 31) — part of a
paying tribute to the
decades-long doc which checks in with a group of
great Charlie Parker. Also appearing are Gary
Brits every seven years. Several of the filmmakers
Bartz, José James, Aaron Parks, Papo Vazquez
MUSIC

whose works are screened will be making personal
Pirates Troubadores and the Dred Scott Trio.
appearances. August 26 through September 4 at
Free. Performances begin at 3 p.m. on Sat, Aug
the Walter Reade Theater (165 West 65th Street).
29 (at Marcus Garvey Park (124th Street and
Single Screening Tickets: $7; series Pass, for $40
Mt. Morris Park) and at 3 p.m. Sun, Aug 30 at
admits one person to five screenings. For a com-
Tompkins Square Park (E. 8th Street, between Photo courtesy of First Run Features
plete schedule, visit www.filmlinc.com.
Aves. A and B). Retro drag party, from “Before Stonewall”
24 August 27 - September 9, 2009