Table of Contents Meet Our Editors Dead Horse Bay Governorâ€™s Island Christopher Street NYU Moments The Fight for Nevada Wake Up Call Arc Among the Trees Photo Credits
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Meet our Editors Danielle Nissan
Mary Jane Weedman
Sometimes ideas flow easily and come quickly, making perfect sense immediately to everyone involved. But sometimes, the creative process runs a little less smoothly. The latter is what happened to us as we put together this magazine. We knew we wanted something to do with time. Or maybe transition. Or, maybe, transitioning time and time in transition. We spent a few hours talking, and we still didn’t know. We had lots of ideas and thoughts about how our publication should work, whom it should serve, and how we could express our own personal interests in our magazine. Our ideas were many, varied, and, to say the least, disparate. Or seemingly so. But as our publication came together, we found that the ideas weren’t so disparate after all. Certainly, they were multifarious, but they worked well together, and as a whole, formed a magazine that we felt represented all of our ideas. And we hope that, as you read, you’ll get that same sense of community—of communal creativity—that we felt while producing this issue. Thanks for reading, and enjoy, ELAPSE Editors
Dead Horse Bay By Danielle Nissan
Somewhere along the shores of New York there was once an island, but you would not find it today because it does not exist. You may be thinking of a place like Atlantis, but that was fantasy and this is real. Barren Island once lay in New York City’s Jamaica Bay area until it was connected to mainland Brooklyn along with other, smaller marshland islands to create what is today the Floyd Bennett Field airport, part of Gateway National Recreation Area. The city was in need of a landfill; and so, in 1926 Barren Island was filled in, connected, and converted to meet the needs of the growing immigrant population of New York; and just like that Barren Island was no more. But it hasn’t exactly been forgotten. A closer look at old nautical maps that label New York’s shores, inlets, and coves, reveals Dead Horse Bay, an intriguing name that inspires a journey to visit a place not as distant as it seems.
was used to convert horse bones into Where are all the modern explorers? glue, hence the name. Bottle-making facI want Indiana Jones in real life. To “explore” signifies something exotic and tories sprang up shortly after to supply distant, something dangerous and forbid- many companies with packaging such as den, not necessarily a forty-minute car Clorox and Noxzema. Anyone reading ride to Brooklyn’s Deep Creek Marina this article today wasn’t around when and Yacht club. Ignoring the Do Not Noxzema was founded in 1911, and Trespass sign, I skidded down the sand the little blue jar of “basic stuff,” as it was commonly referred to, was used by dunes following the trail on a somewhat ambiguous map. Walking slowly, many American women to treat sunburn inching carefully forward, anticipating on their family vacations before it exwhat is to come, I move down the sandy, ploded into the commercial face cleanser fairly squalid shore. Occasionally, I spot we know it as today. I imagine that on an old tire, containers, a plastic mangled these very shores of Brooklyn women toy, fishnets—a typical polluted beach were using Noxzema all summer long, scene many have unfortunately come and today, June 5th, 2010, I am holding to recognize in the New York harbors. the remnants of that jar in my hand. Focused on every immediate step I forget I discovered the history of the Clorox Company as I came across the various to look up and into the distance, but once I finally do, I am taken aback by bottles dated by their unique designs. It’s the gleaming, sparkling surface ahead not hard to imagine a woman in 1921, of me. It’s not the way the sun hits the knees bent, scrubbing her floors with sea but rather the way it hit the glass what was a revolutionary substance. The growing population of remnants sprinkled on top of the sand. Fully intact glass bottles lay neatly on New York City forced regulators to the shore, old leather shoes roll in and convert Barren Island into a landfill, out of the water with every wave, and connecting it to mainland Brooklyn and metal objects painted red by rust emerge rendering it an even less desirable place from the sand, all within reach. Piles and to visit. Knowing this, there could be piles of junk lie endlessly in the distance. only a few individuals who would find Barren Island attractive: the runaways, I have reached my treasure. “We are here,” I announce to my accomplices. the gypsies, the outcasts, the poor imYou know what they say: one man’s migrants, and, worst of all, the boxers. junk is another man’s treasure. Well, About a hundred years ago boxing no expression is more fitting for Dead wasn’t a highly publicized, provocative Horse Bay. This narrow shore holds cen- sport. Legend has it that in 1907 the turies of history deep within its layers, U.S. Army, unsympathetic to the island’s starting in the 1800’s when the island destitute population, evicted everyone
and leased the land to Winfield Overton, a retired judge, who allowed the former residents to return under one, bizarre condition. The judge would declare himself king of the island and residents would participate in organized boxing matches that were once banned in New York. Being a Polish immigrant myself, I couldn’t help but wonder about the immigrant wife and mother who washed ashore onto this dump, raised her kids amid the stench, learned a new language, and watched her husband come home banged up from another match. Below is an 1899 New York Times article that portrays a picture of life on Barren Island: BILL TO PROHIBIT BONE BOILING AND CREMENTATION OF GARBAGE “This bill is introduced to remedy the suffering of a great number of residents whose health was not alone impaired, but who also suffered financially on account of not being able to let their building or cottages because of the stenches coming from Barren Island.” January 31, 1899.
10 Those who lasted into the 1930’s experienced the eviction by Robert Moses, New York’s “master builder,’” who proceeded to demolish remaining structures on the island and connected it with the Rockaway Peninsula by the Marine Park Bridge. Only twenty years later the landfill cap burst, polluting its shores with artifacts that track years of history. Delicate glass bottles have long been replaced by indestructible plastic; hand-sewn Goodyear welted shoe soles were replace by Nike and Adidas. Handpainted ceramic electric circuits were replaced by, frankly, something far too complex for me to describe in one sentence. And so the times have changed and all that is left are a few memories and vintage artifacts. By the end of the afternoon the setting sun made it hard to distinguish among the glass objects protruding from the sand, and so it was time to call it a day. A teacup that had appeared during low tide was still in my hand, its rim cracked, handle broken, but the little painted picture inside was undamaged. It was an image of a house with a white fence, a red roof, green grass, a sunset behind the silhouette,
and a soft blue sky—a glimpse of the American dream. It was not dated but I didn’t care because someone loved this teacup, loved peering inside it with every sip. What is certain about Barren Island is that it is anything but barren. Everyday, as the tide moves in and out, Dead Horse Bay reveals more artifacts, each one a tiny clue to the island’s complicated history.
By Mary Jane Weedman
Governorâ€™s Island: Past, Present, Future
11 SETTLEMENT to 1900s Governors Island becomes a Dutch settlement in the early 1600s — its previous and sole inhabitants were the Lenape Indians. In the late 1600s the British decide they must secure New York harbor, so they take over the island and reserve it for the leisure use of British governors. In 1776, George Washington leads an occupation of the island, and the grounds are used to hold supplies for the first, and largest, battle of the Revolutionary War — the Battle of Long Island. Britain wins, thus regaining control of Governors Island until the war’s end. For more than 200 years, the island is home to military bases and such leaders as Ulysses S. Grant. In 2002 (six years after military presence has left) the federal government gifted the island to New York State.
2002 to 2009 The island is developed through the National Park Service and opened to the public on a limited basis. On weekends, visitors can take a free ferry from downtown Manhattan to Governors Island, where they can ride bikes, explore former military buildings, and enjoy the beautiful scenery.
Future As the city — not New York State — took control of the island in April 2010, many builders and developers are hoping to change the space drastically. A maritime high school, previously housed in Bushwick, will move to Governors Island in the fall, art tours are currently being conducted, and such huge institutions as NYU are looking to expand there. In spring 2010, NYU president John Sexton said that the island was a serious possibility for a new campus. And with all the expansion, New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg told the New York Post that he’d like to see a tram connecting Manhattan, Governors Island and Brooklyn — currently, the only form of public transportation is by the weekends-only ferry.
By: Danielle Nissan
When I snapped this photo, on a bright day in May, little did I know that, two years later, I would call Christopher Street my home. This is not a story about a bar, or unapologetically outrageous homosexuals. It’s not about race, or money. This is a story about a neighborhood and the people who define it. Tony, the bouncer downstairs is about my age. He has become the gatekeeper to my building, which is over the now-infamous black transgender bar Chi Chiz. He is over six feet tall, with light black skin, and very handsome. Tony is also straight. I caught up with him downstairs as I waltzed out of my building and into what always feels like a dramatic scene of a downtown
urban indie flick. “Actually, I feel safer here,” he says casually. “I mean, yeah, there are drugs, but at least I don’t get shot at anymore.” “What?” I gasp. “Or stabbed. I don’t even gotta wear a vest.” “You’ve been stabbed and shot at?” I gasp. “Shot twice in the back, but I was wearing my vest.” He speaks in the same tone he might use to describe what he ate for breakfast. Around 8pm Friday, I started chatting with Tony in front of the bar, alarmed at the street’s relative quiet; I assumed it was because
of the wind, which had been gusting at 13mph for the past few days. We talked about the drug bust last week. Downstairs, the local cops had charged into the bar, arresting two men for an undisclosed amount of crack. (Both men were black and gay, which set off a whirlwind of controversy.) The bust had shut down the bar for exactly one night. Anywhere else in NYC a drug bust would have shut down a bar for good. But not only did Chi Chiz get its permit up and running the next day; the judge assigned to the case dropped it immediately, fearing that it would leave a serious black mark on his record. Tony claims that all the cops do is “come in here and arrest people” when they should in fact be arresting the thugs outside the bar. “Cops pulling up…. See, they patrol the PATH but they do nothin.’” The Port authority police control one thing on Christopher street: the entrance to the PATH, which is right next to Chi Chiz. Other than that, they try not to get involved. On Wednesday, I approached a baby-faced cop. “[I] got no fuckin’ clue what goes on here but it’s nuts,” he said. He’s “got no fuckin’ clue” because the Port Authority police have made it clear that the West Village is not their district and not their responsibility. Of course, by law, if something were to “happen” under their guard, they must act. David, just about the coolest Irish bartender you’ll find in the West
Village, explains the situation very simply, if you can get past his thick accent. “Those guys don’t control the area here. Just the PATH. But the cops in precinct 6 can’t do much either at this point. It’s a fuckin’ race issue, ya’ see. The cops got themselves involved in a racial mess, as if the homosexuals weren’t enough. Every time they try to shut down the bar, the blacks get all pissed, sayin’ it’s ‘cause they’re black, and if that’s not enough, they say it’s cause they’re gay. It’s a double-sided sword.” David owns the PATH Café next door to Chi Chiz on Christopher Street. One day, David explained to me that in Ireland, “there are gays for sure, but you’re just not sure who they are.” Passing Stonewall Inn on the way home, I wondered if this is what the protesters envisioned Christopher Street to be today. Sex shops every other block, thong straps displayed in the windows, rainbow lighters and bikinis. How do you explain what Chi Chiz is? Well, as one guest put it, “This black gay bar has a mostly older crowd of queens, down low brothers, and a few lesbians sprinkled here and there.” The residents of the affluent West Village aren’t happy about Chi Chiz and the crowd it has drawn. Chi Chiz has loyal customers who have been coming for years. But the junkies and drags who “don’t get into the bar” certainly make their voices heard on the street. “Oh, it’s loud here alright,” as one diva
put it. “Everyone’s gotta make a scene.” Sunday morning, 3am. It’s 90 degrees outside, and both windows are wide open. I listen to the serenade below my window. “Fuck you nigga!” “Fuck you cocksucker!” The cops said they would be here an hour ago to clear up the mess downstairs. Four broken bottles later and no police. The 1960’s was an era of cultural revolution and spirited active social movements. Christopher Street was once an icon for the start of the gay rights movement, legendary for the famous Stone Wall Riots in the late 60’s when the homosexual community fought back against a government sponsored system that persecuted sexual minorities. By day, Christopher Street is just another part of the charming West Village, with its elegant boutiques, quaint restaurants, vintage shops, and coffee stands all leading up to the sparkling Hudson river, gleaming from the end of the street. Sure, it has the occasional sex shop
and tattoo parlor, but it still manages to be part of this affluent neighborhood, by day at least. By night, however, I am awakened by the hollering of the transgender divas (or “divos,” as one of them recently taught me to call them), and by the hustlers and junkies who have claimed Christopher Street as their new domain. The drama unfolds every night around sunset. Rain or shine, the street begins to transition into its alter ego. I watch it all unfold, sometimes as I walk home, sometimes as I sit by my window. “Nah, yo, you gots it all wrong,” Tony clarifies as I catch him on one of shifts. “The guests here are regulars, they’ve been comin’ here for 20 years. They own this place. It’s the junkies you’re pissed about. They come hang out by the PATH, try to get some kind of action. I don’t know. They ain’t getting into the bar, that’s for sure.” Occasionally the yelling gets broken up by the cops, complete with sirens and loudspeakers: “Lets go guys, keep movin’.” The cops either patrol all night, making sure that none of the “trouble makers” sit around too long, or they sit high on their horses in front of the bar, waiting for an excuse to arrest someone. Otherwise, they battle
in court: white cops vs. black transgenders. Paul, the building’s super, works downstairs at Chi Chiz, but mostly during the early hours of the day for clean up and some morning gossip. He caught me early as I waltzed out of the building. “Daniellllllllllleee,, how are you sweetheart?” Paul, in his mid 40’s, is gay, proud, and one of the funniest men on the block. “Paul, I can’t take it anymore, did you hear the mess last night? I finally called the cops and they didn’t even show.” “Yeah,” he said, “the cops are no good, darling. Let this be a lesson to you. Every neighborhood in NYC has two personalities, one by day and one by night! Just like people.” He winked. I smiled. How could I not? But the situation is far more complicated than a bunch of petty hissy fights, some grams of crack, a few bar busts, and angry white residents.
Bars, Parties, Friends 20.5 %
Class and Studying 20%
Sleeping 17 %
Spark Notes of the By: Mary Jane NYU experience Weedman
Travel in Transit 3%
Eating 10 %
Computer and TV 7.5 %
Exploring, Relaxing 6.5 %
We asked one recent NYU grad how he divided his time while at NYU â€” spending, say, 10 hours each week at bars or parties, 3 cooking, and 12 relaxing. Then we thought: how would he have spent his time if all four years had been condensed into a single day? Hereâ€™s what we came up with.
Phone with Mom 1.5 %
The Fight for Nevada By David Teich
This November, United States Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) will seek a fifth term. The following account of his campaign includes real names, as well as some real events and quotations. Nonetheless, it is a work of fiction.
19 April 19, 2010
April 20 “You can’t make this stuff up,” Gary Harry Reid had just finished a campaign Myrick said, hugging his MacBook Pro to rally in Carson City. Now, in a private his chest as he hastily shuffled into Harry plane on the way to an Intelligence ComReid’s palatial office. After hearing the mittee meeting in Washington, Reid, news from his wife via text message, the Myrick, Reid’s campaign manager, BranChief of Staff had leapt off the treadmill don Hall, and recently hired adviser Kelly in the Senate Staff Health and Fitness Facil- Steel discussed strategy. ity, hurriedly thrown his clothes on in the Mostly, they talked about the locker room, and raced to his office to see recently passed health care reform bill. It the video. polled poorly. But Reid had worked tire Now, sweaty, hair ruffled, cheeks lessly for it, and considered it his crowning flushed, collar unbuttoned with no tie, achievement. So the team decided to push he slid the laptop onto the pile of scatChickenCare to death. As Steel had put it, tered papers that his boss was working on, “Nevadans are gonna be reminded every knocking a couple sheets to the floor. Reid day: ‘Harry Reid helped 30 million Amerifrowned. “Is this important?” he sighed. cans get health insurance. Sue Lowden Myrick opened the laptop and wants to repeal that law and replace it with clicked the play button on the Nevada a livestock-based system.’” Newsmakers website. “I think that’s the right path,” “Let’s change the system and Reid concurred. “Either it weakens her talk about what the possibilities are,” said heading into the general [election], or— Sue Lowden1. “I’m telling you that this even better—she loses the primary.” works. You know, before we all started Hall scoffed and said, “Nevada Rehaving health care, in the olden days, our publicans aren’t stupid enough to nominate grandparents, they would bring a chicken Sharron Angle.” to the doctor. They would say ‘I’ll paint your house…’ Doctors are very sympathetic June 8 people. I’m not backing down from that system.” Former State Assemblywoman Sharron “Chickens,” said Myrick. “She’s Angle bounded onto an unvarnished woodactually talking about a barter economy. en platform in rural Nevada, a wide grin Chickens. Unreal.” stretching her lined face to capacity. She A faint smile formed at the cor- stood behind a bulky cedar podium amidst ners of Reid’s mouth. a forest of American flags. Behind her was a fragile paper banner, bearing the word 1.
VICTORY in large red-whiteand-blue block letters. Angle enthusiastically waved to the immense crowd. They erupted in cheers and applause. Many in the crowd were dressed in Revolutionary War regalia. Men, women and children held up signs with phrases ranging from “TeaParty Express,” to “Repeal ObamaCare, to “Stop the Obama-Pelosi-Reid Agenda.” One sign bore images of Barack Obama and Harry Reid with Hitler mustaches, columns of goose-stepping Nazis in the background. Angle wore a thick leather jacket with zippers across the chest, identical to the one sported by Sarah Palin at recent campaign rallies. The jacket seemed strangely at odds with the warm Nevada evening. “Today Nevada,” she said haltingly as the crowd noise subsided, “today you showed everyone that the tsunami of conservatism that is sweeping across our nation is not going away. Today you proved that the Tea Party is a
Former Nevada State Senator [1993-1997] and former Chairwoman of the Nevada Republican Party [2007-2009]. As of mid-April, the prohibitive favorite for the Republican nomination in the 2010 United States Senate Election in Nevada.
20 force to be reckoned with. The primary may be over. But next comes Let’s-Make-a-Deal Harry Reid. A man who’s dead-set on trampling the values our nation was founded on. The values we hold dear. Today you sent the message that he not only has to go—he must be replaced with a good, solid conservative with true American values. And that’s what I am.” June 9 On his campaign bus, heading to a rally in Reno, Reid was still ecstatic that his son, Rory, a Clark County Commissioner, had cruised to the Democratic nomination for governor. “I’m just so proud of him,” he kept telling his staff, a smile pasted to his face. The smile faded as he watched Sharron Angle’s latest ad on a seat-back television. A deep and ominous female voice spoke in voiceover as glowering photos of Reid flashed across the screen: “What has Harry Reid’s ‘leadership’ done for America? Hundreds of billions of dollars in bailouts. A federal ‘stimulus’ package that gave your hard-earned tax dollars to liberal interest groups. A trillion-dollar deficit. A government takeover of health care
21 that will put federal bureaucrats between you and your doctors. Debilitating tax hikes for working families and small businesses. America can’t afford six more years of Harry Reid’s liberal tax-and-spend agenda. Harry Reid. Wrong for the U.S. Senate. Wrong for Nevada. Wrong for America.” ----I’m Sharron Angle, and I approve this message. Reid shook his head in frustration. After 40 years of running for office, he was still rankled when opponents distorted his record. July 7 Reid was constantly stuck in Washington, trying to unite an unruly caucus around one of the most ambitious legislative agendas in American history. Between this and the campaign, he got little sleep. “A 70-year-old isn’t meant to live like this,” he would frequently tell his wife, Landra. He had less time to campaign than Angle did. He just needed to get the message out through advertising. The campaign was reminding Nevadans that having the majority leader as their senator was good for the state: His power allowed him to bring massive amounts of federal money home to Nevada. “It shouldn’t matter whether they like your politics,” Steel would say. “We need to remind people they’d be imbeciles
to vote you out of office.” July 11 Angle’s stance on health care issues provided a perfect opening for negative advertising. Firstly, she was on record as favoring the privatization of Social Security and Medicare—and Reid had the financial war chest to make sure that voters heard about it constantly. The Reid campaign also began flooding the airwaves with a spot attacking Angle’s desire to repeal health reform. The ad featured a young woman’s voice, speaking over images of senior citizens and working families huddled around kitchen tables with bills in front of them, crosscut with grim-looking photos of Angle: “According to Sharron Angle, we should repeal health care reform. Really? Students and young workers should be kicked off of their parents’ health insurance? Insurance companies should be allowed to strip people of health coverage for getting sick? Patients with preexisting conditions should be refused treatment? 30 million Americans should once again be denied health care?
While Harry Reid has been working hard to make sure that Americans receive the health care they need, Sharron Angle has been fighting for insurance companies. Sharron Angle. Too extreme for the U.S. Senate. Too extreme for Nevada.” ----I’m Harry Reid, and I approve this message. August 1 Congress was in recess, and Reid was taking the weekend off from campaigning. He woke up at 10:30am He took a shower and went downstairs to the kitchen. His wife was there, preparing breakfast. As he sat down at the table, Landra placed a plate of eggs and bacon in front of him, along with a cup of steaming coffee, and then sat across from him. He smiled warmly at her. Landra unfurled the day’s issue of the Las Vegas Sun. She sat there, staring silently.
23 Suddenly she pounded her fist on the table. Reid looked up, startled. “I don’t believe this,” Landra said. “This isn’t true.” Reid could tell from her cracking voice that, whatever she was talking about, she was lying to herself. He grabbed the paper and looked it. Adorning the front page was a large, unflattering picture of their son, looking tired and sweaty as he waved off a reporter and rushed into the backseat of a limousine. The headline: “Rory Reid Had Eight Year Affair with Top Staffer.” Harry tightly closed his eyes, shaking his head. ***
Reid and his wife sat in the den. “We taught him better than that, didn’t we?” Landra said plaintively. “Of course we did,” said Reid. “Don’t run for statewide office if you’ve got skeletons that big. I told him that.” Landra glared at him. “I just meant about the affair,” she said. “We taught him not to hurt his family. I’m not talking about elections. Is that all you think about?” *** Harry stood alone on the patio, cell phone to his ear. “You need to drop out of the race now,” he told his son sternly. “Denial isn’t an option. There’s proof. Letters in your handwriting. Your political career is over. Apologize to your family, to your
supporters, and to the [Democratic] Party. Then disappear.” “I’m not doing it,” said Rory stubbornly. “I’ve worked too hard for this.” “You can’t win. You know that, right?” “You’re wrong,” Rory insisted. “You’re wrong!” Harry retorted. “All you’ll do is drag the entire state party down with you! Are you really that selfish? And how could you let this happen in the first place?!” “It was the Angle people!” Rory shot back accusingly. “What?” “The woman, Betsy,” said Rory, referring to his former mistress. “When we stopped getting along, I tried to pass her off onto another commissioner who needed a staffer. She got pissed. Said she’d go to the press unless I paid her off. I didn’t believe her. So I fired her. Then last night, she called me. Laughing. Said she sold evidence to the Angle campaign.” At first, Harry didn’t say anything. Then, gently: “I need to collect my thoughts.” Very softly, Harry placed the phone on the receiver. He stood silently for a few moments. Then he ripped the phone out of the wall and hurled it to the ground, shattering it. August 15 Harry Reid’s campaign plane was having engine trouble, and had been on the runway for over an hour while mechanics examined it. In the meantime, he and Myrick watched Angle’s latest Sean
Hannity interview on the plane’s seatback television. What a vile, ruthless woman, he thought. Reid himself, of course, was no stranger to launching negative attacks. But he had never gone after someone’s family. The interview was about Rory. Angle was always talking about Rory. “Do you think it says something about his father?” Hannity asked. “Well yes, I’m sad to say that it does,” Angle responded. “A man’s behavior in his personal life always reflects upon the way he was raised…” As she spoke, side-byside photographs of Harry and Rory popped up in the corner of the screen. Harry and his son looked frighteningly similar. That was getting to be a problem. Reid shut the TV off. “The idea that she would destroy his life, just to get to me…soulless.” August 27
Reid’s numbers were in freefall. The campaign’s latest internal poll showed him down by 16 points. He felt the way he had in the darkest days before Chickengate, when his prospects at reelection had been so bleak that Democratic senators Dick Durbin and Chuck Schumer were waging not-so-secret campaigns to succeed him as Majority Leader. Those campaigns were now heating up again. And Reid felt like a walking corpse. September 1
Angle’s staffers, whose hardened expressions and identical sickly gray suits gave them the appearance of bodyguards. He tapped her on the shoulder. “Excuse me,” he said. Angle turned around. “Is there something you want to say to me, Senator?” The last word dripped with contempt. Myrick grabbed Reid by the arm and tried to pull him away. Reid shook him off, then closed his eyes to get his thoughts in order. For almost 24 years, Reid had been a member of the United States Senate. The media caricatured the place as a cesspool of anger, distrust, and conflict. But Reid had always found his colleagues, Republicans and Democrats, to adhere to standards of collegiality and decorum. This woman would be different. She would contaminate the institution. It broke his heart. Reid opened his eyes and looked down at Angle, slanting his narrowed eyes so steeply and sharply that they peered out from beneath the rims of his spectacles. “I hope,” said Reid sorrowfully, “for the sake of this country, that somewhere buried deep inside you is the capacity to be civil.” Reid turned around and marched back down the hall. Myrick followed, his face buried in his hands. Angle held back a smile.
Reid was at the Capitol Building in Carson City, having just given an address on energy policy to a joint session of the State Legislature. He labored distractedly through most of the speech. When he finished speaking, he was greeted with a tepid smattering of applause. Reid wanted to get out of the building quickly: Angle was there, visiting a former colleague. He and Myrick headed toward the exit. And there she was, six staffers in tow, gliding across the hall in long, confident strides. Reid and Angle neared one another. When their eyes met, Reid forced a smile and nodded politely. Angle grimaced and turned her away, swiftly moving past him. Reid stopped walking. “Such disrespect,” he said softly. Myrick nodded. Then Reid turned on his heels and marched back toward Angle. Myrick raced down the hall to try to stop him. September 2 Reid navigated his way through
The media reaction was severe. Commentators called Reid condescending. Nasty. Thin-skinned. Angle fueled the outrage, of course. (“I’m uncivil? This from the most negative campaigner in American history?” she had said on Rush Limbaugh’s radio show.) But the altercation inspired Reid. The simple belief that he deserved to be reelected was no longer his biggest motivation. He was genuinely afraid of what this woman’s election would mean for the country. And he began to campaign with urgency. September 3 Reid’s message wasn’t any different. But he was more passionate. His step was bouncier. For the first time during the campaign, his countenance expressed confidence, determination, and concern. At a campaign rally in downtown Vegas, Reid employed the line of attack he’d been using since the moment Angle won the nomination. “My opponent and I have fundamental disagreements about vital issues,” he said. “Take Social Security and Medicare. Sharron Angle doesn’t believe, like I do, that all senior citizens deserve access to retirement funds and health care. If she had her way, Social Security and Medicare would be eliminated.” Boos rippled through the crowd. “Sharron Angle likes to talk
about what’s ‘American’ and what’s ‘unAmerican,’” Reid went on. “What America does Sharron Angle live in? An America that callously ignores the needs of its most vulnerable citizens? “Well that’s not the America I live in!” Reid crescendoed triumphantly as the crowd cheered. “That’s not the America I know! “My opponent may claim to be a conservative,” Reid continued, lowering his voice. “But the truth is she’s something much more than that. Sharron Angle is an extremist. And the thought of her as a U.S. Senator should frighten everyone in Nevada.” October 1 The campaign’s latest internal poll confirmed that the numbers were trending in a sunnier direction. For a while, Reid’s deficit had been hovering at around twenty points. A couple weeks ago, it was 15. One week ago, 13. Now, nine. “Back into singles! [single digits] Who’s your daddy!” Hall shouted. Then he suggested they buy champagne. Reid rolled his eyes. “Nine points isn’t cause for celebration,” he said. “That’s still something of a landslide.” Then, after a pause: “Maybe a glass.” November 2: Orleans Hotel, Election Day. To this day, Reid was amazed at how simple a campaign really was. Impossibly taxing, yes. But simple. Craft a message. Get it out. Round up as many voters as possible. Get them to the polls.
The campaign’s last internal showed Angle leading 47 to 43. Four points. Just outside the margin of error. But Hall got a phone call from Kelly Steel, who was hearing anecdotal reports that turnout in rural Nevada was somewhat lower than expected. “Good news if true,” Hall said. Myrick turned on the TV and flipped to the local news. Seven minutes after the polls closed at 9:00pm, a graphic popped up on screen, displaying side-by-side headshots of Rory and Brian Sandoval, the Republican candidate for governor. Next to Sandoval’s picture was a big red check mark, and the word “Winner.” “That didn’t take long, said Myrick. Reid went into the next room, closed the door, and called his son. They hadn’t spoken since the day the scandal broke. There were awkward apologies— Rory for jeopardizing his father’s campaign, Harry for offering his son no emotional support in a time of personal crisis. Neither wanted to discuss politics or elections. So they talked about other things. Sports. Movies. Family. (Rory and his wife were in counseling.) Periodically, Hall would shout updates through the door, and Reid would shout back, “Got it!” But he wasn’t paying attention. Hours passed. By the time Harry and Rory said their goodbyes and Harry returned to the main room, it was around 12:30am. 98% of precincts had finished reporting. Reid was down by less than half a percent. When all precincts were in, Reid was down by only 53 votes. An hour later, after additional recanvassing, he was up by
3. With most of the remaining recanvassing left to be done in Clark County—Reid’s stronghold—that number was sure to increase. “I’m giving my victory speech,” said Reid. “You haven’t won yet. Expect a recount,” said Myrick. “I’m giving my victory speech,” Reid repeated. “And then I’m going to sleep.” November 3 There had been no dues ex machina. No last-second scandal. No inclement weather in conservative strongholds on Election Day, keeping Angle voters away from the polls. Reid had run a good campaign. He had run passionately. He had a talented staff and a proficient get-out-thevote operation. He had blanketed the airwaves. He had, when it counted, stayed on message. And, of course, the polls had been wrong. Across the country, pollsters had overestimated conservative enthusiasm and turnout. A Republican takeover of the Senate had been projected.
or over four decades, I have worked tirelessly to ensure a better tomorrow for Nevadans. A vote for me in November is a vote for all of Nevada. HARRY REID FOR SENATE IN 2010 // harryreid.com
But Democrats limited their losses to six seats, retaining a 53-seat majority. 54 if Republican-turned-Independent Charlie Crist, the winner of the Florida race, decided to caucus with the Democrats—as most expected he would. Reid was still majority leader. In the end, 211 votes were the difference between being a 71-year-old retiree, and being one of the most powerful men alive.
in Washington until six. Eastern. You need to get there.” That morning, Reid went down Reid looked at his stairs and ate breakfast with Landra at the watch. “I’ll be there as soon hotel restaurant. As he was calculating the as possible. In the meantime, tip, he got a phone call from Myrick. you’re going to tell me every “Good news or bad news. Which single detail you know. Hold on first?” Myrick said. a moment.” Reid covered the “Good,” said Reid. mouthpiece of the phone again. “No recount. She just told Lim “I have to go the airbaugh she’s conceding.” port,” he said to Landra, stand Reid heaved a sigh of relief. ing up. (“Angle’s conceding,” he said to Landra, “Now? Really? Why?” briefly covering the phone’s mouthpiece. “Work.” She grinned broadly and clutched his hand. He kissed her on the “Thank God,” she said.) cheek and rushed out of the res “Probably angling for Ensign’s taurant, holding the phone back 2 seat,” said Reid, returning to the call. to his ear. “That’s my guess, too,” said “I can’t enjoy the vicMyrick. tory for a second, can I?” Reid “Okay, bad news,” said Reid. said, hurrying toward the hotel’s “I just got a call from [Chief of exit. Staff to Senator Ben Nelson] Tim Becker. “This is what winning Ben has ‘concerns’ about the Clapper nomi- means, boss. More fun stuff like nation,” 3 said Myrick. this,” Myrick replied. Reid pounded his fist on the table. “Remind me again why “You’re kidding me. He’s withdrawing his I wanted it so badly?” support?” “I have no idea. I “Threatening to. You need to wouldn’t be caught dead running handle this. We lose him, it’s a disaster.” for office. You people are all “Do you think I can just call him?” insane to me.” Reid asked. “No. Do this in person. He’s only 2.
Reid faced a similar scenario in 1998, when he defeated then-Congressman John Ensign by 428 votes. Ensign’s decision to eschew a costly recount proved popular, and he was easily elected to an open seat two years later. Now, with Ensign’s own 2012 electoral prospects dimmed by an adultery scandal, Reid suspects that Angle is gunning for his seat. 3 James Clapper, controversial nominee for Director of National Intelligence.
Wake up Call By Dhara Vyas
Worldwide, we use alarm clocks to wake ourselves up before work or school, from a nap, and to serve as a reminder for a variety of other events. BUT WHAT DID PEOPLE DO BEFORE ALARM CLOCKS WERE AROUND?
Plato used a water clock. It mathematically determined the time it took for the water to flow from one container to another, and in turn this process eventually weighed down a device holding pebbles, which then would fall onto a gong.
In England and Ireland, during the Industrial Revolution and well into the 1920s, a“knocker-up” performed the duties later relegated to alarm clocks. This individual’s job was to wake sleeping people so they made it to work on time. They banged on windows and doors with long sticks, not leaving until the client had been successfully roused.
A modern-day alarm clock has many variations. A classic wind-up alarm clock is driven by a spring, and the alarm is the result of the spring’s clattering back and forth between two bells. There are radio alarm clocks that play the radio in place of a buzzer when the alarm goes off. Today many people rely only on their cell phone’s alarm feature.
Recent studies suggest that alarm clocks interfere with deep realms of the sleep cycle and cause individuals to wake groggy or exhausted. It is common to become immune to the sound of an alarm and to sleep right through it,. Progressive alarm creators have thus been focusing their efforts on monitoring sleep cycles, and acting accordingly, so that they wake only those in light sleep. But until these methods can be perfected some agencies seem to be reverting back to the days of the knocker-ups. Today, a website company called Wakerupper charges members five cents a minute for wake up calls.
Arc Among theBy TimTrees Fielder
I have always been fascinated by the idea of the future looking like that which is envisioned in popular culture. I want my floating cars, my personal aeroplane in the garage, the robotic house keeper. I want all of these goods and services. We all want
them. At least most of us do. Of course, they should come without the need for maintenance and with a bit of social status. Regardless of the time or place, one always needs status. The point is: We all look to the miracle of technology to provide creature comforts
and a lifestyle that doesnâ€™t flaunt our desire for elitism, yet doesnâ€™t dispense with it altogether. We now live in a time when economic uncertainty coexists with the continual race to keep up appearances. While a huge portion of dense
31 urban areas are home to millions of people chasing that dream of upscale living, the sheer cost makes the task a daunting one. We live, and most certainly many of us simply survive, in a state of constant motion or lack thereof. The city will take it out of you. One simply need walk down Broadway in SoHo and see the hundreds of stores selling good-looking wares that offer us some escape from the race. Thank goodness for Apple, Uniqlo, Urban Outfitters, et al. But there is a major drawback to living in such an environment. The aftermath of the home foreclosure crisis has slammed the brakes on the illusion of living in a beautiful—yet cost effective—space. Sure, a young person might manage to get a Fifth Avenue address. But that person will often share beautifully furnished closets with hordes of well-dressed roommates. It may be cute while they are young, but as they get older and begin to raise families, such close quarters don’t work anymore. Within the context of expansive living, I have recently been driven to get a retreat for living outside of the city. I will still keep my four-bedroom apartment in Harlem; I’m not totally crazy. But like all those who have grown weary of living one way, I now want to live another. As a working
artist and father, I find it ironic that I desire to marry my rural upbringing with my more cosmopolitan traits. This requires the prototypical second home—but, of course, no one has any money any more. And those who do have it certainly don’t have as much as they used to. The McMansions are out of the question and too costly to maintain. As one who doesn’t immediately throw in the towel when confronted with a seemingly helpless situation, I recalled that I spend formative years in a mobile home. (Of course it was on a college campus. Again, keeping up appearances. Black trailer trash does exist.) But perhaps, just maybe, the answer lies in the trailer. Enter: the House Arc. Joseph Bellomo, of Bellomo Architects, has concocted a really innovative construction paradigm that could possibly be the answer to many young, or not so young, families, who want a home that looks like a spaceship that is cheap to buy and build. Bellomo projects that a House Arc should cost as little as $18,000. Anything that is cheaper than a new car catches my eye. I had to dig deeper. The genesis behind the House Arc began as a product called the Bike Arc, which addresses polished and secure design for urban two-wheelers. As Bellomo refined the structural design of the
Arc, he dreamed up more advanced applications. This forethought has already resulted in the Car Arc. The House Arc looks like a woodand-metal iPod, about 10 by 12 feet in size. The modular nature of the home allows for multi-structure dwelling. Perfect for an art or dance studio, guest house, or simply a cool-looking shack. I have already started looking in upstate New York for locations for the House Arc I will get someday. It is possible to conjoin good design, pop culture styling, and low-cost living. It’s being done everyday. Over the last ten years, the pre-fab construction industry has grown to address the needs of those individuals who want either a new, cheaper way to live, or a nicely built—yet ergonomically second home. As I am a visual artist, I have the fantasy of spending my summers in a wooded area—near a coffee shop, of course—doing my work and going on long hikes with my family. My House Arc will be beautiful among the old factories and coffee shops.
photo credits [elapse]
Christopher Street photos on 12 and 15: Danielle Nissan, photo on page 14: New York Public Library digital gallery
Alarm clock photo on page 28: Flickr/H is for Home
Governors Island photos on page 10: middle: Flickr/Katy Silberger, top: Flickr/ army_arch, bottom: govislandpark.com
NYU in a Day photos on pages 16 and 17 used via Flickr using Creative Commons
House Arc photos on pages 29 and 30: Joseph Bellomo
Dead Horse Bay photos on pages 4, 5, 6, 8 and bottom left 7: Danielle Nissan; pages 7 and 9: photos used via Flickr using Creative Commons; advertisement on 7: Noxzema; article on 7: The New York Times
Harry Reid photos on pages 20 and 27: Flickr/Center for American Progress and Flickr/House Committee on Education; page 26, image from Flickr/SenHarryReid, page 18: Flickr/ Studio08Denver