VOLUME 5, NUMBER 31
THE WEST SIDE’S COMMUNITY NEWSPAPER SERVING CHELSEA, HUDSON YARDS & HELL'S KITCHEN
NOVEMBER 6 - 19, 2013
POWER TO THE PROGRESSIVES De Blasio’s Landslide Leads Citywide Democratic Sweep
Photo by Sam Spokony
Mayor-elect Bill de Blasio makes contact with one of the “people of this city” who “have chosen a progressive path.” See page 3.
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2 November 6 - 19, 2013
General Election Still a Sweet Treat for Quinn
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City Council Speaker Christine Quinn no doubt had once envisioned November 5 as the day she would cast a vote to help make herself mayor. But whatever sadness she might have felt inside, we saw no signs of it as we bumped into her at the PS33 bake sale, just after she voted in Chelsea.
Her spirits were no doubt lifted by longtime supporters who said they were disappointed her name was on the ballot. It was not something Quinn could readily agree to, since she had endorsed Mayor-elect Bill de Blasio. “My response is, let’s buy some sugar,” said Quinn.
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November 6 - 19, 2013
De Blasio Pledges Commitment to Progressive Ideas BY WINNIE McCROY Democratic candidate Bill de Blasio handily won the New York City Mayoral race on November 5 — beating out by 49 points Republican hopeful Joseph J. Lhota, former Deputy Mayor and former Chairman of the Metropolitan Transit Authority, and unaffiliated contender Adolfo Carrion, Jr. Although it was the largest victory in a mayoral race since Ed Koch won in 1985 by 68 points, de Blasio’s rise from low-polling primary candidate to 2014 Gracie Mansion resident was tempered by the fact that voter turnout was at or near a record low. De Blasio’s landslide victory, foretold by the polls for weeks, gave the impression of an inevitable outcome — and could have kept larger numbers from feeling it necessary to come out and support the former Public Advocate. De Blasio went into the election with a historically large margin of 43 points among likely voters, compared with Lhota’s 24 percent, according to a Wall Street Journal/NBC 4 New York/Marist survey released on November 3. That lead remained consistent in multiple polls in the last six weeks leading up to the election, as reported by a New York Times/ Siena College poll, and the final breakdown was 73 percent de Blasio to Lhota’s
24 percent, with Carrion getting only 1 percent of the vote. “My fellow New Yorkers, today you spoke out loudly and clearly for a new direction for our city,” said de Blasio at the Election Night headquarters at the Park Slope Armory, close to his home. “Make no mistake: the people of this city have chosen a progressive path, and tonight we set forth on it, together, as one city.” In his concession speech, Lhota was gracious, wishing de Blasio the best while simultaneously offering warnings for the future, and closing with the off-the-cuff rejoinder, “You won’t have me to push around for a while.” Because Democrats heavily outnumber Republicans in New York City, de Blasio was seen as the de facto winner before Election Day, despite the fact that Republicans have held the city’s top post since 1989. De Blasio is the first Brooklynite to be elected Mayor, and the first Democrat since David Dinkins. But De Blasio surprised many when he ran away with the Democratic primary from longtime City Council Speaker and presumed frontrunner Christine Quinn. While Quinn’s alliance with Mayor Photo by Sam Spokony
Continued on page 17
Our next mayor returns the favor, after getting the thumbs up from voters.
Johnson to Succeed Quinn as District 3 City Council Rep BY SAM SPOKONY Corey Johnson, chair of Community Board 4 (CB4), was elected on November 5 to be the new City Councilmember for District 3, after running virtually unopposed. Johnson, a Democrat who also ran on the Working Families Party line, took about 86.5 percent of the vote in a district that includes the West Village, Chelsea and Hell’s Kitchen, defeating Republican Richard Stewart, a New York University professor, who took about 13.5 percent. “People keep asking me, ‘how does it feel?’ Honestly, I don't feel different at all,” said Johnson on the night of the election, when he was declared the winner just minutes after the polls closed. “I’m the same old Corey, just in a new office.” The District 3 seat has been held by Christine Quinn for the past 14 years. Johnson will take office on January 1. “It’s an honor and a privilege to be elected to represent the incredible people and neighborhoods of our district on the City Council,” he said. “I’m looking forward to continuing to fight for more affordable housing, classroom seats and open space on the West Side so that our communities remain vibrant and affordable for all New Yorkers — but especially
Photo by Sam Spokony
Corey Johnson chatted with Edie Windsor, the famed plaintiff in the recent Supreme Court case that struck down DOMA, at the West Village’s LGBT Center on the night of his election to City Council.
those of us who have fallen behind and need help.” In September, Johnson defeated civil rights lawyer Yetta Kurland by 25 percentage points in the District 3 Democratic
primary. During that race, Kurland constantly tried to sling mud at Johnson — especially regarding his past work for real estate developers. But voters still trusted the CB4 chair’s leadership, and he emerged
as an even stronger candidate after several primary debates. In the primary, Johnson won a majority at virtually every polling place in the district. In the general election, he captured over 22,000 votes, and his 63 percent margin of victory paralleled Quinn’s election wins over the course of her tenure in heavily Democratic District 3. In interviews with this newspaper, Johnson has said that he plans to join the Council’s Progressive Caucus once he is in office. To that end, he has already signed on to a proposal, led by Councilmember Brad Lander of Brooklyn, to institute progressive reforms to the Council’s member item and discretionary funding rules. “This is the first order of business, so people really should be watching over the next few months, as we plan to make some significant reforms in the Council,” said Johnson in that Chelsea Now interview (published September 25). “I’m looking forward to teaming up with all these good folks in the Progressive Caucus who want to reform the Council to make it more democratic, to empower individual members, to take favoritism out of the member item process and to make staff allocations and committee assignments more fair.” The reform proposal is currently supported by a majority of the City Council.
4 November 6 - 19, 2013
Spectra Pipeline Active, and so are Protesters BY SAM SPOKONY A day after the underground Spectra Pipeline began pumping natural gas into Manhattan’s Lower West Side, around 150 residents, environmental activists and elected officials gathered at the site of the pipeline on November 2 to continue their protests against what they consider to be its dangerous impact on the neighborhood. Thirteen people were arrested after they unfurled a banner reading “Shut Down This Pipeline” across West Street, near Gansevoort Street, and blocked traffic for several minutes around 4pm. Among those arrested was City Councilmember-elect Corey Johnson — who had not yet been elected at that point — and his chief of staff, RJ Jordan. In his role as Community Board 4 Chair (which he will vacate upon taking office in January), Johnson has frequently spoken out against the pipeline — especially because he and many others have stated that it was installed without the approval or feedback of any local community groups. “Hopefully we can draw a line in the sand here, because this is not the only pipeline they’re going to try to lay,” said Johnson, in an interview before the protest — which was organized by the activist groups Sane Energy Project and Occupy the Pipeline. “They’re going to try to lay pipeline after pipeline,”
Photos by Sam Spokony
Protesters unfurled a banner across West Street and blocked traffic for several minutes before they were arrested and charged with disorderly conduct.
Johnson warned, “with fracked gas, with high concentrations of radon and the public needs to know about this.” The pipeline transports approximately 800 million cubic feet of natural gas per day, according to the Spectra Energy Corporation, whose headquarters are based in Houston, TX. A spokesperson for the company said that gas flowing through the pipeline will come from
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wells in the Appalachian Basin in Pennsylvania, the Rocky Mountains, the Gulf of Mexico and off the coast of Nova Scotia in Canada. In a statement released on November 1, the day it became active, Spectra CEO Greg Ebel said that successfully completing the pipeline was “a testament to our ability to secure, permit and execute on large and complex growth projects.” In the same release, Bill Yardley, Spectra’s President of U.S. Transmission and Storage, claimed that people in New York and New Jersey could save $700 million in energy costs per year as a result of replacing fuel oil with the pipeline’s domestically produced natural gas. Spectra also estimates that use of the pipeline’s gas will eliminate approximately six million tons of carbon dioxide emissions per year. “We’ve invested the past five years speaking with stakeholders and officials, planning and re-planning, designing and constructing this
pipeline, all to ensure it was completed safely, efficiently and to the highest standards,” said Yardley. But many residents in the West Village and Chelsea remain unconvinced about the safety of living above the hub for hydro-fracked gas, which is believed by many to contain unsafe quantities of the dangerous chemical radon. “A big problem for us is that the gas is also coming through the Con Edison pipes, and frankly Con Ed doesn’t have a very good record of maintaining its infrastructure,” said Bill Borock, president of the Council of Chelsea Block Associations, at the November 2 protest. “So in addition to the main problem of whatever toxic chemicals are coming into our homes through the gas, we have the problem of what happens if something goes wrong with the pipeline.”
Continued on page 19
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Bespoke Matchmaking|1180 Avenue of the Americas, 8th Floor|1-888-4226464|www.BespokeMatchmaking.com Bill Borock, president of the Council of Chelsea Block Associations, gave a speech at the Nov. 2 protest.
November 6 - 19, 2013
On Halloween, Striking Workers Parade Their Discontent
Photos by Dave Sanders
No wind, no rain: Drizzle didn’t dampen the spirits of a Halloween rally to protest nonunion working conditions.
These Halloween parade marchers didn’t let the fear of unemployment prevent them from dragging their grievances into the vampire-vaporizing light of day. Striking workers, in costume, were joined by members of the building service union they aspire to join — 32BJ SEIU — for a rally held on the afternoon of Thursday, October 31. Just a day before, six doormen, porters and concierge workers began an “unfair labor practice strike,” in response to an atmosphere of intimidation at their place of employment — a high-priced building near the High Line, where a one-bedroom recently sold for close to a million dollars. The Halloween-themed protest, which originated at the contested building (520 West 23rd Street), morphed from a rally into a costumed procession making stops
at three other nearby non-unionized luxury residences. Perhaps the pressure generated from masked crusaders, a cutlass-carrying Zorro and dead ringers for Assemblymember Richard Gottfriend and then-aspiring City Councilmember Corey Johnson had an effect. The next day, the workers were back on the job — in what a 32BJ spokesperson described as a “show of good faith,” after the building’s management service scheduled a November 5 meeting with the condo board. No agreement came from that meeting, noted the spokesperson, who remained hopeful that the situation could be resolved without further costumed actions.
That’s no costume, folks. The real Assemblymember Richard Gottfried lends his voice (and megaphone) to a pro-union piece of Oct. 31 street theater.
6 November 6 - 19, 2013
Pol Makes a Good ‘Point’ About Tiny-Print Ballots BY SAM SPOKONY Aside from their choice in the mayor’s race, there was one thing that many New Yorkers agreed about on Election Day — they could barely read the ballots. The six-point font used by the city’s Board of Elections (BOE) caused both figurative headaches and literal eye strain throughout the day, as many voters took to social media to gripe about the tiny print. But state Assemblymember Brian Kavanagh replied with a tweet of his own Tuesday, reminding New Yorkers that he has sponsored pending legislation that would require the BOE to use the largest possible print size on ballots — up to 12-point font for candidates’ names, and up to 11-point font for all other words. “Poll workers have told me that up to half of all voters are saying that they can’t read the ballots,” Kavanagh told NYC Community Media in a phone interview Tuesday evening. “That’s just unacceptable.” The East Village assemblymember asserted his belief that if the bill were to become law, the BOE would in fact use a more reasonable font size, allowing voters to see their ballots without squinting. Kavanagh’s bill was passed by the Assembly in both 2012 and 2013, but has yet to make it through the state Senate — something Kavanagh chalked
Brian Kavanagh says candidates’ names should be printed in the largest point size possible.
up to “some minor differences in language” on the Assembly and Senate versions of the bill. But he remained optimistic about the future of the legislation, especially since Tuesday’s voter complaints will bring plenty of buzz back to the issue. “I think the Senate will work with us on it,” Kavanagh said.
Chelsea Voters Weigh in on the Fine Print
Photo by Don Mathisen
When Chelsea Now stopped by West 18th Street’s Bayard Rustin High School on the morning of November 5, there was little tension in the air as to who our next mayor would be. As with much of the city’s electorate, not a single person in our informal poll came to the polls intent on voting for Lhota. But the six voters who participated in
our on-camera interview had no shortage of opinions on Christine Quinn, Bill de Blasio, casino gambling, “age limits” for judges and the fine (as in, very small) print that made reading the ballots a challenge (for some). To see what they had to say, visit ChelseaNow.com, and access the video (“Poll Positions”) from our home page.
November 6 - 19, 2013
High Line on Track for Final Section, New Leadership BY SAM SPOKONY When the third section of the High Line opens in 2014, it will have been 15 years since Chelsea residents Joshua David and Robert Hammond founded the nonprofit group that helped turn the abandoned elevated railroad tracks into one of the city’s most popular tourist destinations. The Friends of the High Line, which undertakes fundraising and oversees maintenance of the nearly 1.5-mile park, has by all accounts become a model for others across the world who want to successfully operate a modern, engaging and elevated public space. “When we started in 1999, this was very much considered to be an underdog project,” said David, in a November 1 phone interview. “We just had this dream of going all the way from Gansevoort to 34th Street. And now it’s actually going to come true. At first I was thinking that 15 years is a long time…but I realize that it’s actually not so long at all.” While the High Line’s entrance into the city landscape has certainly been swift, both the park and the Friends are now transitioning into changes that will define its future as a Downtown icon. Hammond announced in February that he would step down as executive director of the Friends at the end of this year, after which David will remain as president of the organization. The Friends’ new executive director, Jenny Gersten, was announced in October after her selection by the group’s board of directors. She will take over the position in January.
NEW HIRE WILL BRING MORE DIVERSE PROGRAMMING
While the High Line has hosted plenty of unique events since the park’s official opening in 2009 — from public art exhibits to community engagement for teenage and adult residents of Chelsea’s public housing developments — Gersten’s hiring represents a shift towards further emphasis on new programming. Currently the artistic director of the Williamstown Theatre Festival in the Berkshires, Gersten comes from a strong background of theatre production, which includes past work on several Shakespeare in Park productions in New York City. David acknowledged that more diverse programming that focuses on the arts, family activities and niche interests will be a “greater part” of what people can expect to find at the High Line in the years to come. “We knew that programming was something that we really wanted to expand for the future, and that made [Gersten] a great candidate,” said David. “I’m really excited about her coming on board, because she’s a really wonderful and talented person, and I think this entire community will see how valuable her skills are.”
THIRD SECTION SIGNIFIES FIRST PUBLIC PRESENCE IN HUDSON YARDS
In addition to new opportunities for events, tourists and residents alike will have more park to enjoy in 2014 — when construction on the
Photos courtesy of Friends of the High Line
In January, Jenny Gersten will succeed Robert Hammond, as Friends of the High Line’s executive director.
third section (nicknamed “High Line at the Rail Yards”) is completed. The final piece will not only extend north from West 30th Street to West 34th Street (linking the West Village to the entirety of West Chelsea), but it will also bring visitors to the waterfront, by swinging west from 10th Avenue to 12th Avenue. “It’s a whole new thing for the High Line, which is fantastic, and I think that the connection to the riverfront will make a big difference for us, and for people visiting the park,” said David. And once that’s finished, the Friends will be on the cusp of yet another turning point as the Hudson Yards development — which will span the 26-acre space between West 30th Street and West 33rd Street, and 10th Avenue and 12th Avenue — continues its own road to completion. Construction on the mixed-use Hudson Yards site began in 2012, and the first buildings are expected to open in 2015, with the rest of the site to follow over the next several years. With 13 million square feet of new commercial and residential development, Hudson Yards will undoubtedly have an effect on the entire west side of Manhattan, and David pointed out that High Line visitors — whether they live around the area or not — will be able to experience that growth firsthand. “It’s really great for us that the rail yards area, which is a place that people generally had very little awareness of, will become a very dense, multi-use neighborhood,” he said. “And the thing that’s particularly thrilling is the fact that people on the High Line will have a front row set to urban transformation.” With regard to public art in the area, it was recently reported that Hudson Yards developer Stephen Ross, chairman of Related Companies, plans to spend as much as $75 million on a work of art — not yet designed — that will become the centerpiece of the development’s public plaza.
A rendering depicts the 11th Ave. bridge, along Section III of the High Line.
Thomas Heatherwick, the British designer chosen to plan both the four-acre public space and the crowing artwork, has called it a “once-in-a-lifetime opportunity” — and sources cited in the Wall Street Journal said they believe the space will draw inspiration from Rockefeller Center
and the famous Piazza del Campidoglio in Rome. David said he thinks it’s “very exciting” that Ross is investing heavily in art to anchor the public realm of Hudson Yards, although he
Continued on page 21
8 November 6 - 19, 2013
Being Prepared for the Next Hurricane It’s hard to believe that a year ago, we were in the throes of the post-Superstorm Sandy blackout. There was no electricity or heat, many residents lacked elevator service and running water (even cold water) and flushable toilets — and, just our luck, it was starting to get cold. We survived, but it took a long time for things to return to normal. Things don’t just snap back like nothing happened. Many merchants and restaurants still haven’t fully recovered from the financial hit they took (and some of them have since closed their doors). For our part, we unfortunately lost most of Chelsea Now’s archives when the surge poured into our Canal Street basement. Our part of the city wasn’t slammed as hard by Sandy’s surge as places like Breezy Point or the Rockaways, where entire swaths of homes were obliterated by water and fire. But the loss of electrical power was crippling and dangerous. We pulled together, as communities do — and when electricity and heat came back on, we realized how deeply we depend on our utility services. For this part of the city, the most important thing was for Con Ed to harden its East 14th Street plant against another abnormally large super-surge like Sandy’s. Sandy’s unexpectedly high waters had flooded the plant, and then Con Ed powered the facility down to keep from damaging it further, leaving us blacked-out south of the 30s. It’s reassuring to see — in a video Con Ed recently posted on its Web site — that it has taken these steps. Important infrastructure has been raised higher off the ground, doors now have watertight seals, electrical conduit pipes have been filled with rubber sealant to waterproof them and the complex’s walls have been raised. Another change Con Ed should consider, is making sure hospitals are on networks that don’t need to be shut down during emergencies. For example, Downtown Hospital was shut down when Con Ed powered down its East 14th Street plant. Luckily, some area merchants who had generators (and many businesses just above the blackout zone) opened their doors to the community, letting people charge phones and use laptops. But Sandy also showed the need for an area hospital with its own generator, like St. Vincent’s. We think Mayor Bloomberg’s plan for removable storm barriers along Lower Manhattan’s edge is a good idea. These would be set up on land and basically work as a large fence against the waters. For now, it’s a much cheaper alternative to full-on storm-surge barriers in the harbor. Great work is being done by the Long-term Recovery Group; GOLES and Two Bridges are organizing to ensure future storms don’t cripple and imperil residents of high-rise public housing and low-income housing, as in Sandy. By now, we’ve all learned how we should have “go bags” ready, just in case. We’re eager to hear more about the sustainable energypowered WiFi-NY People’s Emergency Network that the Long-term Recovery Group is working on. In emergencies, communication is key. Our new understanding of flood zones is also affecting discussion about Hudson River Park, development on piers and the waterfront and air rights transfers from the park. Everything is being reassessed. When we interviewed Bill de Blasio before the primary election, he was open-minded about storm protection — but favored the more affordable natural barriers, like wetlands and dunes. De Blasio’s a very intelligent man, and we’re confident he’ll make the right choices for the city’s protection. For now, we’re glad to know people are doing their best to make sure that, if another Sandy hits, we’ll be ready.
letters to the editor SantaCon’s laughs are worth the headaches To The Editor: Re “SantaCon Needs a Plan” (Talking Point, Oct. 23): SantaCon is hilarious. Granted, I’m not the one having to clean up patches of vomit post-facto, but hopefully those that do have a strong pair of gloves and an even more vigorous sense of humor. I don’t participate, mind you, but I love watching giant elves with their underwear sticking out, ill-fitting Santa suits and reindeer heads on pajama bottoms. Each “costume” is just sillier than the next. Anyways, it’s ONE day/night a year — and it’s nationwide. You’re not going to stop SantaCon, so you might as well seek out its funny side. And its funny side is very, very funny. Sincerely, Deborah Fenker
Franchise from another planet? To The Editor: Could it really be? As I strolled past what was once Chelsea’s 99 Cent store [on 23rd Street, between Seventh & Eighth Avenues], what do I see? Yet another 7-Eleven opening up, and even bigger than the two on Eighth Avenue (within a three-block radius) — Eighth at 25th Street, and at 28th Street. That’s not counting the one on Sixth Avenue and 23rd and the double-size, two-story 7-Eleven on Fifth Avenue, across from the elegant Flatiron building! And, worse yet, there was a sign in the window of our former 99 Cent store telling us that there were lots of opportunities for franchisees to open more 7-Eleven stores! Well, I wondered, with rents for these stores costing $25,000 a month and up, something seems strange. 7-Eleven has now replaced many of our neighborhood stores — even though, to my untrained eye, it seems to be a highly questionable business venture. How can one neighborhood digest this unending flow of junk food? In fact, it seems to me that this might really be an invasion from another planet, sending these 7-Eleven-ers down to Earth with an unending flow of money to open yet more stores. What could they have in mind? Why are we being invaded? In my memory, a stop at a 7-Eleven would be made because that was the only option one had when traveling small country roads with no McDonalds in sight. And now, 7-Elevens are cropping up everywhere and the money for renting space flows like water. Who is behind this? Will Chelsea Now be forced to patronize 7-Elevens because there is no choice? Are the unfortunate franchisees being held hostage? Are we being invaded by creatures from another planet? Gloria Sukenick NOTE: 99 Cent Creation — the former tenant of the 7-Eleven store on 23rd Street — is open for business, at 149 West 24th Street (btw. Sixth & Seventh Aves.). For info, call 212-6272983.
Carpe Diem, Mr. [new] Mayor! To The Editor: Now is the time to secure an improved city for our children and grandchildren. What better way than to replace lost Stuyvesant Town and Peter Cooper Village
with affordable homes on the Hudson Rail Yards? Why shouldn’t the rest of us profit from the $330 million gift/ tax break the city recently presented to Related? It is prudent to remember that Stuy Town and Peter Cooper were created with returning GIs in mind. What about our veterans now? Where are they and their kids to live? Be bold! Forget office towers. Middle class New Yorkers desperately need homes. Who will fund such a vision? Why not the high-flying Related Development? Mr. Bloomberg has taught us how often ‘deals’ can be renegotiated. Why not, this time, in our favor? Permanently affordable housing. What a genuinely meaningful gift that would be for the citizens who make New York the greatest city in America. Kathleen McGee Treat, Chair Hell’s Kitchen Neighborhood Association (hknanyc.org)
Hail Mary — she’s right on target To The Editor: Re “Senators stymie women’s agenda” (letter, by Mary L. Jenkins, Oct. 23): I appreciate Mary L. Jenkins’s letter calling on the New York State Senate to return to Albany and pass Governor Cuomo’s Women’s Equality Act in its entirety. As Ms. Jenkins notes, the Assembly has already passed all 10 provisions of the act. Shamefully, though, the Senate failed to bring to the floor the crucial tenth provision that would codify the reproductive-health protections won by women more than 40 years ago in Roe v. Wade. I agree with Senate Democratic Conference Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins and my Democratic Senate colleagues that it is imperative the full 10-point package be passed. I strongly believe the Senate should heed Ms. Jenkins’s call and return to Albany as soon as possible to finish our work on the Women’s Equality Act. Brad Hoylman Hoylman is state senator, 27th District
What’s with the Deli deluge? Why has yet another deli arrived on the corner of 21st Street and Seventh Avenue? There is already one on that same block, on the corner of 20th Street, and another large one directly across the street from that. There is also a newly renovated full-service deli near the corner of 19th, not to mention the new 7-Eleven (which we neither wanted or needed), in addition to the smaller bodegas across the Avenue. Where is the zoning? Dianna Maeurer E-mail letters, not longer than 250 words in length, to email@example.com or fax to 212-229-2790 or mail to Chelsea Now, Letters to the Editor, 515 Canal St., Suite 1C, NY, NY 10013. Please include phone number for confirmation purposes. Chelsea Now reserves the right to edit letters for space, grammar, clarity and libel. Chelsea Now does not publish anonymous letters.
November 6 - 19, 2013
Community Activities more info on “The AIDS Generation” as well as video excerpts from its recent book launch event at NYU, visit ChelseaNow.com and access the article “Learning From Men of The AIDS Generation.” The panel discussion is free, and open to the public. Thurs., Nov. 21, from 7-8:30pm. At SAGE (305 Seventh Ave., 15th floor; btw. 27th & 28th Sts.). For more info, visit ghmc. org and sageusa.org.
BY SCOTT STIFFLER
HOLY APOSTLES SOUP KITCHEN ANNUAL FAST-A-THON Thank God for dirty dishes They have a tale to tell. While others may go hungry, We’re eating very well.
Image courtesy of Oxford Press
On Nov. 21, author Perry N. Halkitis and three of his contemporaries discuss lessons learned frotm “The AIDS Generation.”
PANEL DISCUSSION: THE AIDS GENERATION
We’re happy, and proud, to add “author” to the many list of credits earned by NYU’s Dr. Perry N. Halkitis. The frequent contributor to Chelsea Now, who holds the title of Associate Dean of the Global Institute of Public Health, is also Director of the Center for Health, Identity, Behavior and Prevention studies — as well as a Professor of Applied Psychology and Public Health (Steinhardt School) and Population Health (Langone School of Medicine). Halkitis brings all of this experience, and his own identity as a gay man, to “The AIDS Generation: Stories of Survival and Resilience” (which was published by Oxford University Press last month). On Nov. 21, the Gay Men’s Health Crisis will present a discussion with Halkitis and special guests Eric Bartley, Scott Jordan and Sean McKenn — three of the 15 whose journeys from HIV-positive young men to middle-aged survivors are documented in the book. For
Weekdays from 10:30am-12:30pm, New York’s largest soup kitchen takes the words of that anonymous poet to heart — by providing meals to some of the one-in-six city residents who spend every day of the year without having their basic nutritional needs met. Holy Apostles Soup Kitchen’s Second Annual Fasta-Thon is your way to help keep their doors open through Thanksgiving and beyond. By signing up, you commit to eating only one meal on Thursday, Nov. 21 — the way most of their guests do every day. Friends and family can sponsor your fast, or you can donate the money you would have spent on food that day. Either way, you’ll be raising vital funds
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he 2004 federal budget proposed by the Bush administration on February 3 is drawing both praise and criticism from gay and AIDS groups. “Generally, we have a mixed reaction to it,” said Winnie Stachelberg, political director at the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), even as some leading AIDS groups, including the Gay Men’s Health Crisis (GMHC), were more critical. The proposal includes a $100 million increase for the AIDS Drug Assistance Program (ADAP), a $5 million dollar increase in the Housing Opportunities for People With AIDS
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P. 6 K
COMMUNITY MEETING ON HUDSON RIVER PARK AIR RIGHTS PLAN
The State Legislature recently passed a bill allowing the sale of air rights from Hudson River Park piers for development along the waterfront — and as Chelsea Now went to print for our November 6 issue, that bill was still languishing on Governor Cuomo’s desk. Up in the air is a very uncomfortable place to be. With that in mind, a community forum has been organized — at which residents can discuss development along the waterfront and strategize how to “ensure that our neighborhood is protected from overdevelopment!” The Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation, the Chelsea Reform Democratic Club, Save Chelsea and the Council of Chelsea Block Associations are among the broad coalition of groups sponsoring this event. Wed., Nov. 13, at 6:30pm. At Our Lady of Guadalupe at St. Bernard’s Church (328332 W.14th St., btw. 8th & 9th Aves.). Due to limited space, please RSVP to email@example.com if you plan to attend.
Community Contacts To be listed, email info to firstname.lastname@example.org. COMMUNITY BOARD 4 (CB4) CB4 serves Manhattan’s West Side neighborhoods of Chelsea and Clinton/Hell’s Kitchen. Its boundaries are 14th St. on the south, 59/60th St. on the north, the Hudson River on the west, 6th Ave. on the east (south of 26th St.) and 8th Ave. on the east (north of 26th St.). The board meeting, open to the public, is normally the first Wednesday of the month. The next meeting is Wed., Dec. 4, 6:30pm, at the Hotel Trades Council Auditorium (305 W. 44th St., btw. 8th & 9th Aves.). Call 212-736-4536, visit nyc.gov/mcb4 or email them at email@example.com. COMMUNITY BOARD 5 (CB5) CB5 represents the central business district of New York City. It includes midtown Manhattan, the Fashion, Flower, Flatiron and Diamond districts, as well as Bryant Park and Union Square Park. The district is at the center of New York’s tourism industry. The Theatre District, Times Square, Carnegie Hall, the Empire State Building and two of the region’s transportation hubs (Grand Central Station and Penn Station) fall within CB5. The board meeting, open to the public, happens on the second Thursday of the month. The next meeting is Thurs., Nov. 14th, 6pm, at Xavier High School (30 W. 16th St., btw. 5th & 6th Aves., 2nd fl.). Call 212-465-0907, visit cb5.org or email them at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thurs., Nov. 21, go without food — so somebody else doesn’t have to.
Member of the New York Press Association
for the Soup Kitchen’s mission. You can also join as a team and work with family, friends or colleagues towards a shared fundraising goal. The soup kitchen is located at Holy Apostles Church (296 Ninth Ave., at 28th St.). Sign up for the Fast-a-Thon at fastathon.causevox.com, or call 212-924-0167. You can make a direct donation at holyapostlessoupkitchen.org/HowCan-I-Help/donate-now.html.
Member of the National Newspaper Association Chelsea Now is published biweekly by NYC Community Media LLC, 515 Canal St., Unit 1C, New York, NY 10013. (212) 229-1890. Annual subscription by mail in Manhattan and Brooklyn $75. Single copy price at office and newsstands is 50 cents. The entire contents of newspaper, including advertising, are copyrighted and no part may be reproduced without the express permission of the publisher - © 2010 NYC Community Media LLC, Postmaster: Send address changes to Chelsea Now, 145 Sixth Ave., First Fl., New York, N.Y. 10013.
PUBLISHER’S LIABILITY FOR ERROR
The Publisher shall not be liable for slight changes or typographical errors that do not lessen the value of an advertisement. The publisher’s liability for other errors or omissions in connection with an advertisement is strictly limited to publication of the advertisement in any subsequent issue.
PUBLISHER Jennifer Goodstein
SR. V.P. OF SALES AND MARKETING Francesco Regini
EDITOR Scott Stiffler
RETAIL AD MANAGER Colin Gregory
REPORTERS Lincoln Anderson
Sean Egan Maeve Gately
PUBLISHER EMERITUS John W. Sutter
Rebecca Rosenthal Julio Tumbaco
ART / PRODUCTION DIRECTOR Troy Masters SENIOR DESIGNER Michael Shirey GRAPHIC DESIGNERS Chris Ortiz Arnold Rozon CIRCULATION SALES MNGR. Marvin Rock
CONTRIBUTORS Jim Caruso Martin Denton Heather Dubin Sean Egan Ophira Eisenberg Duncan Osborne Paul Schindler Sam Spokony
DISTRIBUTION & CIRCULATION Cheryl Williamson
VIDEO SEGMENT PRODUCER Don Mathisen
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PoliCe Blotter Grand Larceny: Moving target takes hit in the wallet Wheels in motion weren’t enough to deter a thief from pinching the wallet of a vacationer from pedal-centric (and petalplentiful) Holland. The 30-year-old was making his way down Eighth Ave. on a CitiBike, at around 12:15pm on Sun., Oct. 27. While nearing the corner of 26th St., he felt a person pull on the right side of his sweater — causing his iPad (which was balanced on the handlebar rack) to fall off. The man stopped to pick up the iPad, and then realized his wallet had been removed from his sweater pocket. The criminal’s smooth maneuver was a costly one for the victim, who was out $580 ($300 for his black Paul Smith brand wallet, and $280 in cash). Damages were also sustained to the iPad.
Criminal Trespassing: Occupant ignored vacate order In mid-October, the NYC Department of Buildings issued a vacate order for the building at 92 Eighth Ave. (btw. 14th & 15th Sts.), whose facade collapsed during Hurricane Sandy. Just over two weeks later, police charged a 21-year-old man with entering and remaining illegally in the building. A day before his Oct. 27 arrest, the man was escorted from the premises (along with several others), and told by the super and the police not to return.
Burglary: Chelsea Hotel’s Copper Caper Stanley Bard might have run a loose ship, but the Chelsea Hotel’s unceremoniously canned longtime captain usually had a pretty strong grip on the keys to his
kingdom. Not so on Fri., Oct. 25 — when a scenario smelling of an inside job cost the iconic building’s current owners a cool $7,000. That’s the estimated value of the copper fittings stolen from a storage room. Police were told that five people have keys to the room’s padlock — and one additional key was lost. Upon checking surveillance footage from unblinking eyes throughout the building, it was discovered that the camera focused on the area where the incident took place had been turned in the opposite direction. No one was authorized to be in the storage room at the time of the incident — and no prints could be taken from the scene.
Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance: Card-carrying criminal At 4pm on Mon., Oct. 28, police approached a 53-year-old man sprawled out on a bench in Chelsea Park (9th to 10th Aves., btw. W. 27th & W. 28th Sts.). Obstruction was the offense — but the charge was upgraded, when the man was found to be in possession of a stolen credit card and a quantity of marijuana.
Robbery: Cash recovered after ATM grab A “loaded finger crime” netted a 53-yearold man $800 — for a few minutes, at least. The man was arrested on the southeast corner of 9th Ave. & W. 26th St., shortly after 1:30am on Fri., Oct. 25. That’s where he fled to, after having approached two females (ages 28 & 25) just moments before, at an ATM on W. 25th St., btw. 8th & 9th Aves. The man, who simulated a firearm by making the shape of a pistol with his hand (and placing it inside an article of clothing) told the victims that he would shoot them if they didn’t give him money.
They gave him $800 — at which point the man attempted (unsuccessfully) to remove an additional $20 from one of the victim’s hands. He fled westbound on W. 25th St. and was caught based on a description given to police. The $800 was recovered and returned to its rightful owner.
Obstruction of Government Administration: He clings to Beamer A Californian and his car are soon parted — at least when the NYC Department of Transportation is determined to give him the boot. At 8:30pm on Tues., Oct. 29, the 26-year-old Golden State resident caused a scene at the northeast corner of 12th Ave. & W. 38th St. According to police, the decidedly unmellow dude “entered his vehicle [a black 2009 BMW] and refused to leave, preventing the tow truck operator from performing his lawful duty.”
THE 10th PRECINCT Located at 230 W. 20th St. (btw. 7th & 8th Aves.). Commander: Captain David S. Miller. Main number: 212-741-8211. Community Affairs: 212-741-8226. Crime Prevention: 212-741-8226. Domestic Violence: 212-741-8216. Youth Officer: 212-741-8211. Auxiliary Coordinator: 212-741-8210. Detective Squad: 212741-8245. The next Community Council meeting, open to the public, takes place at 7pm on Wed., Nov. 20.
THE 13th PRECINCT Located at 230 E. 21st St. (btw. 2nd & 3rd Aves.). Deputy Inspector: Ted Bernsted. Call 212-477-7411. Community Affairs: 212-477-7427. Crime Prevention: 212-477-7427. Domestic Violence: 212477-3863. Youth Officer: 212-477-7411. Auxiliary Coordinator: 212-477-4380. Detective Squad: 212-477-7444. The Community Council meeting takes place at 6:30pm on the third Tues. of the month.
AUNT CHELSEA & MYSTICO!
CASH FOR GUNS $100 cash will be given (no questions asked) for each handgun, assault weapon or sawed-off shotgun, up to a maximum payment of $300. Guns are accepted at any Police Precinct, PSA or Transit District.
If you have info regarding a crime committed or a wanted person, call Crime Stoppers at 800-577-TIPS, text “TIP577” (plus your message) to “CRIMES” (274637) or submit a tip online at nypdcrimestoppers.com.
November 6 - 19, 2013
chelsea: arts & ENTERTAINMENT ‘The Mutilated’ is a Magical Gumbo You Won’t Soon Forget Arcade and Stole ‘sordidly symbiotic’ as two sides of the Tennessee coin THEATER THE MUTILATED
By Tennessee Williams Directed by Cosmin Chivu Original music by Jesse Selengut Music performed by Tin Pan Previews: Nov. 7–9 at 7:30pm, Nov. 9 at 3pm Regular Performances: Nov. 10 at 7pm, Nov. 12–16, 19–23, 26-30 at 7:30pm and Nov. 16, 17, 23, 24, 30 & Dec. 1 at 3pm At the New Ohio Theatre 154 Christopher St. (btw. Greenwich & Washington Sts.) For tickets ($35), call 888-596-1027 Visit newohiotheatre.org Also visit pennyarcade.tv and minkstole.com
BY TRAV S.D. (travsd.wordpress.com) What a pleasant surprise! I went to the current revival of Tennessee Williams’ 1965 “The Mutilated” to watch two heavyweights slug it out and received that spectacle in spades, plus a good deal more. Mink Stole and Penny Arcade are both larger-than-life as Williams’ sordidly symbiotic odd couple, Trinket and Celeste, who bide their time at the down-at-theheels Silver Dollar Hotel in New Orleans. The two characters in some ways seem to embody the two sides of Williams the playwright (realism vs. expressionism). As directed by Cosmin Chivu, the actresses seem to play it in just that way. As Trinket, a lonely Texas oil heiress who has been “mutilated” by a mastectomy, Mink Stole is by turns hilarious and heartbreaking — and much in line with our expectations for a traditional interpretation. If there is a “way” to do Williams’ dramas, she is doing it the way we want it done. On the other hand, Penny Arcade as the manipulative low-life Celeste (who lives by sponging off Trinket) is a more Brechtian presence, working the crowd
Photo by Scott Wynn
Mink Stole (left) and Penny Arcade are a spectacular study in realism vs. expressionism.
like a music hall mama (she reminded me a little of Martha Raye). This style of performance is well within Williams’ tradition too, though more in line with his lesser-known experimental works, which of course “The Mutilated” happens to be. The play is full of fourth-wall-smashing direct address and similar techniques (such as poetry and songs). Chivu amps up the theatricality with a Greek chorus of seedy NOLA denizens, and lots and
lots of terrific original music composed by Jesse Selengut and played by his jazz quartet Tin Pan. It all adds up to a magical gumbo and an evening of theatre you won’t soon forget.
et al. His books include “No Applause, Just Throw Money: The Book That Made Vaudeville Famous” and “Chain of Fools: Silent Comedy and its Legacies from Nickelodeons to YouTube.”
Trav S.D. has been producing the American Vaudeville Theatre since 1995, and periodically trots it out in new incarnations. Stay in the loop at travsd.wordpress.com, and also catch up with him at Twitter, Facebook, YouTube,
for a TWO-PART VIDEO INTERVIEW with PENNY ARCADE & MINK STOLE
1 2 November 6 - 19, 2013
Questioning the Unanswerable Paranormal is business as usual, on The Psi Show
Larry Hewitt (L) and Dan Sturges go in search of answers, on “The Psi Show.”
BY SCOTT STIFFLER Until a UFO lands in Times Square for a press conference, Bigfoot consents to a fireside chat or a spirit materializes to dish on the afterlife, “The Psi Show” hosts Larry Hewitt and Dan Sturges will be there to shed as much light as possible on things that lurk in the shadows. Broadcast live from Hewitt’s East Village apartment, “The Psi Show” uses the medium of Internet radio to make contact with psychics, paranormal experts, academics and the occasional crackpot. You can’t actually see or touch the zeroes and ones that translate the sound created by their voice boxes into the discussion that emanates from your speakers — but the fact that it’s intangible doesn’t mean it isn’t real. Keep that in mind later when they make the case for, or against, things like reincarnation, ectoplasm and haunted houses. Hewitt and Sturges have been conducting their Q&A sessions almost every Monday night, from 7-8pm, since October 9, 2011. Call it a chance encounter or a preordained meeting of the minds facilitated by a universe in which past, present and future exist on the same plane. Either way, it’s certainly ironic that the seeds for “The Psi Show” were planted when the two strangers were booked as guests on…a radio talk show. The chemistry (another one of those intangibles that everybody knows is real) was instant, and the two were soon conducting investigations together while occasionally mulling over the idea of providing a forum where informed guests and curious Chat Room listeners could dig into the marrow of paranormal phenomenon. The show was also created as a way to counterbalance the misleading — and sometimes manufactured — “evidence” uncovered by those cable shows where a night vision camera follows a team of investigators who recoil in fear or cackle with delight when they
encounter a sudden change in temperature or an unexplained noise. Lately, the genre has moved from ghost hunting in haunted prisons, hospitals and castles to shows touting ghosts who possess, attack and even murder. From the looks of it on TV, you’d think we’re being overrun by angry souls from the great beyond. If so, who you gonna call? Hewitt and Sturges would be a solid choice. I say this (in the spirit of full disclosure) based on witnessing several investigations they’ve conducted at the Merchant’s House Museum (29 E. Fourth St.). Sturges (who has logged dozens of trips to the house) notes, “There is obviously something happening at the Merchant’s House Museum. There is no doubt that people are having experiences. The question is, are people experiencing communication from the deceased Tredwell family and their servants?” The audio and video recordings he’s collected “suggest that there is some kind of communication happening. It’s impossible to say if the communication comes directly from the Tredwell family and others who are connected to the house or is just some form of telepathy between living people who are sharing information. I’m not exactly sure, but I feel that sometimes the Tredwells and others are indeed making some kind of connection to us living folks.” Sturges refuses to use the word “ghost” to identify the source of materializing objects, disembodied footsteps and bumps in the night he’s personally witnessed. Hewitt is similarly on the fence — willing to acknowledge that something is happening, but steadfast in his refusal to say that anything he’s encountered over the years proves…anything. That may be very unsatisfactory for those seeking definitive answers. But a healthy sense
Continued on page 15
November 6 - 19, 2013
Just Do Art
Photo courtesy of the artist
A fabulous, funny mess: Kelly Kinsella’s “When Thoughts Attack” runs through Dec. 22, at the cell.
BY SCOTT STIFFLER
KELLY KINSELLA’S “WHEN THOUGHTS ATTACK”
Swirling around the deeply conflicted head of Kelly Kinsella, there’s a still small voice telling her she has the moxie to “move upstate and get a farm house with a garden and have all of my artist friends over for dinner and a drum circle.” There’s another voice that keeps her from accomplishing the monumental task of deciding between the chicken or the steak. But wait, she’s in a seafood restaurant. It’s all so clear now. Her only two choices are “the salmon or a complete nervous breakdown.” In “When Thoughts Attack,” the simple task of perusing a menu triggers an epic (albeit typical) case of high anxiety. It’s no wonder the closest Kinsella ever came to that idyllic farm house is the time she was booked to do stand-up at a Renaissance Fair. But there’s a bright light at the end of the tunnel — and this time, it might not be an approaching train. Clinging to her sense of humor and an emergency Xanax, Kinsella sits at a table for one, navigating the restaurant’s menu while tracing the “whirlpool of anxiety over every life choice” that has led her to this meal — which will either culminate in a victorious order of intestinal fortitude or a doggy bag of indecisive shame. Either way, it’s a raw tale that’s ripe for laughs. Sun. at 7pm, through Dec. 22. At the cell: A Twenty First Century Salon (338 W. 23rd St., btw. Eighth & Ninth Aves.). For tickets ($20), call 800-838-3006 or visit brownpapertickets.com. For venue info: thecelltheatre.org. For more info on the artist, visit kellykinsella.com.
Image courtesy of the artist and The ArtQuilt Gallery
On view at The ArtQuilt Gallery (Nov. 12-Dec. 28) as part of her “Daily Inspiration” exhibit: Cécile Trentini’s “Synthesis” (2009, hand-dyed and handprinted fabrics, 29.5" x 39.4").
QUILT EXHIBIT: “DAILY INSPIRATION”
New York City’s only gallery devoted to contemporary art quilts presents “Daily Inspiration” — a solo exhibit from Cécile Trentini. The Zurich, Switzerland-based artist began her career as a painter. Recalling how a
Continued on page 14
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Just Do Art again display Witonski’s mural — revealing it during a special Mass to honor U.S. veterans of all faiths and their families (a timely observance taking place just prior to Veteran’s Day). Sun., Nov. 10, during the 10am Mass at St. Peter’s Episcopal Church (346 W. 20th St., btw. Eighth & Ninth Aves.). Call 212-929-2390 or visit stpeterschelsea.com. Also visit facebook.com/StPetersChelsea and follow them at twitter.com/StPetersChelsea.
Continued from page 13 fascination with the geometrical elements of traditional patchwork led her to quilting, the artist says she “immediately felt at home in the world of fiber, replacing brush, canvas and paints with the sewing machine, fabrics and thread.” Her experience as a sculptor drawn to the use of unconventional materials informs the tactile element of her quilt art (foil chocolate wrappers comprise the grayish work “Daily Sweets”). Trentini used cotton makeup pads to create a quilt, then took a collection of photos showing close-ups of its individual blocks. Released earlier this year by C&T Publishing, “Daily Beauty: 365 Ways to Play with Everyday Quilt Embellishments” is the book — and its namesake quilt, “Daily Beauty,” is part of the gallery exhibit. Free. Nov. 12-Dec. 28. Opening Reception: Mon., Nov. 11, 6-7:30pm. At The ArtQuilt Gallery (133 W. 25th St., btw. Sixth & Seventh Aves.) Hours: Tues.-Sat., 11am-6pm. Call 212-807-9451 or visit artquiltgallerynyc. For more info on the artist, visit stoffwerke.ch.
HUDSON PARK LIBRARY’S ERROL FLYNN BLAST
WWII MURAL REVEALED
Regarded by the St. Peter’s congregation as too militaristic, “Our Lord Blessing a Soldier and a Sailor” has been covered from sight for the past 59 years. Painted by
Photo courtesy of St. Peter’s
Pay attention to that man beside the brocade curtain: Fr. Harding preps for the big reveal — at St. Peter’s, on Nov. 10.
parishioner (and Army veteran) Col. Ted Witonski, the 1946 mural depicts Jesus, St. George and the Archangel St. Michael blessing two praying WWII servicemen. By 1954, the country had gone from the “good war” to a cold one — and the painting was covered from view by a curtain. In a Nov. 10 ceremony, St. Peter’s will once
n io at . c w i t l No pp en a llm g in ro pt en ce for c a
Proven Method. Two Campuses.
He wasn’t all swashbuckling and Sherwood Forest. Although his icon status comes from physically demanding roles in popcorn pleasers like 1940’s “The Sea Hawk” and 1938’s “The Adventures of Robin Hood,” the final phase of Hudson Park Library’s “Errol Flynn Blast” plunges the moral high road occupant into the murky, violent realm of World Wars I & II. Not to worry. This is Hollywood, after all — so fisticuffs and grit end up saving the day, no matter what genre or era our hero is navigating. On Nov. 7, 1943’s “Northern Pursuit” casts Flynn as a Mountie whose bad guy act is just that — a clever ruse meant to snare his Nazi quarry. On Nov. 21, 1945’s “Objective Burma” has Flynn as an Army paratrooper who must lead his decimated ranks through the Burmese jungle. The series’ final film, 1938’s “Dawn Patrol,” teams Flynn with David Niven and Basil Rathbone — as a trio of British World War I flying aces. That one unspools on Dec. 5. Free. All screenings are at 2pm. At the Hudson Park Library (66 Leroy St., btw. Seventh Ave. South & Hudson St.). For more info, call 212-243-6876 or visit nypl.org.
State–of–the–art facility ~ Children ages 2–5 Morning and full day programs Early drop off and extended day options For information, please contact email@example.com
Tel. 212 633 0600 • www.themontessorischools.org Flatiron – 5 West 22nd Street SoHo (Opening Fall 2014) – 75 Sullivan Street (between Spring and Broome)
MAF+MIS_GPM Ad_4.85x5.63.indd 1
Image courtesy of Warner Bros.
Hollywood heavies, as Brit flyboys: Errol Flynn, David Niven and Basil Rathbone soar on the Hudson Park Library screen (Dec. 5). 11/4/13 10:58 AM
November 6 - 19, 2013
Gotham-Based Web Talk Show Chats Up Paranormal Experts Continued from page 12 of skepticism is what makes “The Psi Show” such a compelling listen. It also helps that Hewitt and Sturges don’t take their line of inquiry too seriously. Each show is unofficially sponsored by an adult beverage, and a guest’s comments are often punctuated by sound effects. The light tone is a pleasant departure from shows like “Ancient Aliens” — whose talking heads speak with such authority and certainty that their outlandish claims thrust the proceedings into the realm of camp. There are plenty of laughs on “The Psi Show,” but not at the expense of serious (if not entirely sober) inquiry. With that in mind, we decided to turn the tables on Hewitt and Sturges, by putting them on the receiving end of a Q&A session. How many investigations have you been on? What are the most notable experiences, and why? Hewitt: Maybe 11 or 12? The best one was the Lutheran church in Queens — amazing EVP [Electronic Voice Phenomena], and I was physically attacked. I had a group at the time, the Afterlife Research Group of New York. We were called by someone who worked at the church. At night, they’d often hear voices, footsteps. I arrived with four other investigators. One of them was a psychic, who told us that in the front of the church, there was a spirit, an older man who was angry in life, is angry in death and is angry that we’re there. The church had a mezzanine. I went up the stairs along with two others. We got about half way up, and the guy in front of me suddenly, violently, flew backwards. His feet literally went up in the air. I tumbled down, the guy in back of me tumbled down and the guy in front of me broke his ankle. When we hit the bottom of the stairs, all of the EMF [Electromagnetic Field] meters went off at the same time, which is very unusual. I always say that when you go on an investigation, it’s not like it is in the movies. But this place was. We really felt attacked. Sturges: I guess I’m closing in on the triple digits, in terms of investigations. For me, the most notable experiences are the ones that multiple people witness. It’s so educational to get “takes” on the same experience. It’s amazing how different people can perceive the same event. For example, the loud, “bang” or “door slam” that happened in 2011 [at Merchant’s House Museum]. Some people thought it was angry, some thought it wasn’t. But we all heard the same noise. What guest said something that significantly changed or expanded your opinion of a psi matter? Hewitt: Professor Stephen Braude [Oct. 14, 2013 guest], who has done research on ectoplasm, really added credence to a subject I thought was complete fraud. Sturges: Stephen Braude. I’ve always considered some aspects of Physical Mediumship to be too good to be true. Here is a tenured
professor for 40 years and past president of the Parapsychological Association, who says he has witnessed levitation, bookcases bouncing across the room and has even photographed and video recorded a medium producing Ectoplasm. If someone as credible as Dr. Braude says he has seen this type of phenomena, I’m inclined to believe him. What guest was clearly a looney, and how you did deal with them for a whole hour? Hewitt: The UFO guy and the dog psychic woman. Sturges: We did have someone on who had written a book about a possessed dog who clearly wasn’t happy with Larry and I asking too many questions. Especially Larry, who doesn’t tolerate loonies so well. We also had a UFO fella on this past summer who was interesting for the first 40 minutes or so, and then went on a long rant about religion, ancient languages and who knows what. Larry and I turned our microphones down, had a drink and just let him go until we finally had to cut him off to end the show. Even the people in the Chat Room turned on him! What investigative equipment is, and is not, helpful? Hewitt: Not helpful: spot thermometers. Helpful: EMF meters and, although Dan scoffs, I’ve had interesting results from the Ovilus. It’s basically an EMF meter. But instead of lighting up or showing how powerful the field is, it has an onboard vocabulary of words. The theory goes, ghosts can pull words out of the device to express themselves. I was using one at this location where a psychic started telling a story about a friend who was a Catholic priest, who gave up the priesthood to become a witch. He’d do cleansings using a hybrid of Wiccan and Catholic prayers. Right after she said that, the Ovilus said three words in succession: priest, witch and prayer. You could say it was a coincidence, but it was contextually accurate. A few minutes later, we were going room to room and the Ovilus kept saying “angel” and “stairs.” It repeated those words a few times. After the second or third time, the psychic and I went down the stairs and were talking. She turned and said, “Look.” There was a two-foot tall statue of an angel. It was as if something was saying [through using the Ovilus] that I’m here, and I can tell you things. Sturges: I see a lot of people who like to, “go dark,” and shut out the lights, which just isn’t very practical. What if you trip over something? How are you supposed to see if something happens or moves? You’ll hear a lot of people saying that spirits or apparitions can only be seen in the infrared or ultraviolet (non-visual) light spectrum. I always ask, where’s the proof? First, we have to determine if consciousness can survive bodily death before we start setting rules and deciding what it/they can and cannot do. How were people experiencing apparitions before the ability to see into different light spectrums was even developed? C’mon! Also, I see a lot of people running around with AC (alternating current) EMF meters. Anybody who has
the slightest knowledge of science knows you can’t detect ghosts or even living people with a device that measures man-made electromagnetic fields. They can be used to eliminate man-made sources of EMF, but that’s about it. I think the best piece of equipment you can have is a levelheaded approach and a good, reliable psychic medium — someone who has been tested and examined (they’re out there) in a scientific manner. I feel that science should be paying more attention to people who seem to have this type of ability. What books do you most often consult, or refer to and/or recommend? Hewitt: My specialty is reincarnation, and Dr. Ian Stevenson is the real expert. His book, “Children Who Remember Previous Lives,” is the one I often refer to, or refer other people to. Sturges: Anything by Loyd Auerbach. I go back and read his books often. There is also a great book called “The Quantum Enigma.” I think people starting out in the field should read up on the history of psychical research. It would open their eyes to all the research and techniques that were happening before the current crop of ghost hunting shows started airing. Image courtesy of the author
“The Psi Show” airs Mondays, 7-8pm, at thepsishow.com. Email questions to dan@ thepsishow or larry@thepsishow or call 3472011-BOO. Visit sturgesparanormal.com.
He wrote the book on it: Dan Sturges says Loyd Auerbach is his paranormal go-to guy. This book is available as a pdf, at mindreader.com.
1 6 November 6 - 19, 2013
November 6 - 19, 2013
De Blasio Wins Mayor’s Race, Promises Progressive Path Continued from page 3 Michael Bloomberg raised many voters’ hackles, de Blasio’s campaign — replete with suggestions that he would crack down on issues like Stop and Frisk — resonated with voters. “I think we see a mandate for a very progressive administration,” said openly gay Queens Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer, who was present at the Armory event. “I think that because he was a councilmember, he’ll work with us well. I’m a member and founder of the Progressive Caucus, so I expect to be working closely with Mayor de Blasio on a lot of issues that are important to me and my district,” citing affordable housing, expanding pre-K, taxing the wealthy and reforming Stop and Frisk. During his acceptance speech, de Blasio thanked his staff, volunteers and family for their support, including his Italian family and friends in Rome, adding, “To them I say: grazie a tutti!” De Blasio had great success in his proposals to raise taxes on the rich to pay for city services, and to have greater oversight of the New York Police Department. And although pundits underscored the difficulties of getting his legislation through Albany’s conservative forces, this did not hamper the public’s enthusiasm for him.
Photo by Sam Spokony
New York City’s mayor-elect makes his way to the podium for a victory speech.
He spoke during his speech on Tuesday of his much-touted “Tale of Two Cities,” saying, “that inequality — that feeling of a few doing very well, while so many slip further behind — that is the defining challenge of our time. Because inequality in New York is not something that only threatens those who are struggling. The stakes are so high for every New Yorker. And making sure no son or daughter falls behind defines the very promise of our city.”
DE BLASIO COOL & COLLECTED IN FINAL TELEVISED DEBATE
De Blasio and Lhota agreed to postpone their final televised debate, set for Tuesday, October 29, in light of the first anniversary of the devastation of Hurricane Sandy. In a rare joint statement, the two candidates said, “This is the most respectful and appropriate way to honor the memories of those who were lost, and to
stand with those who are still struggling to recover.” When the rescheduled 60-minute debate was held on Wednesday, October 30 on WNBC Channel 4, and the candidates spent time undermining each other’s experience and campaign promises. Lhota attacked de Blasio’s experience managing large organizations as “midlevel jobs,” and de Blasio responded that the Republican candidate’s experience in the Giuliani Administration would be disastrous for the city’s budget. Less than a week before Election Day, the two sparred on how they would run New York. De Blasio pounded home his representation of “everyday New Yorkers who live in neighborhoods throughout New York who often haven’t gotten the support they need from City Hall.” De Blasio ran his campaign on promises of addressing economic inequality in the city, strengthening the education system, expanding and protecting affordable housing and creating strong jobs. He angered some with his plan to create a universal pre-K by asking the wealthiest to pay more in taxes. Lhota called his opponent’s proposals and promises “hopelessly naïve,” and forecast a future of high crime, failing schools
Continued on page 18
1 8 November 6 - 19, 2013
De Blasio Scores Landmark Landslide Continued from page 17 and rampant government spending. De Blasio said that under Lhota’s leadership, the current problems experienced under Bloomberg would remain unaddressed. During the Election Night event, Greenwich Village resident and former AP History teacher Bruce DeSandre said that while it might be difficult for de Blasio to get his reform measures through conservative forces in Albany, “I think the direction will be right and certain policies that are unpopular will be reversed.” DeSandre, a native New Yorker, touted de Blasio as an early fighter for the preservation of St. Vincent’s Hospital, and hoped that under his administration, these emergency health care resources would be returned to the city. “Not that he’ll turn it around overnight, but even if some of the development slows and resources go to making some of the developers pay for some local services as well as getting tax breaks, it will be an improvement,” said DeSandre. “I think a lot of them have reneged on promises to build schools and parks… and I think de Blasio will be on top of that. I’ll let you know how Chelsea Market looks with 20 stories above it in a couple of years, and Pier 40 will be one to watch, too.”
AD CAMPAIGN FEATURING BIRACIAL FAMILY RESONATES
A successful ad campaign featuring de Blasio’s biracial son Dante also resonated with voters who were concerned about community/police relations strained by the NYPD’s Stop and Frisk campaign. De Blasio called for true reform for this program, and strong legislation to ban racial profiling. This campaign targets youth of color much like de Blasio’s son, and the immigrants that he calls an essential part of our city. “The change in this campaign happened when his son, Dante, came out with that big Afro and every politician had to put his family out front,” said Henry Singleton, a member of LU1199, on Election Night. “New York is a diverse town and now they see an interracial family within Gracie Mansion and I think that’s a great accomplishment.” During the WNBC debate, the moderator cited statistics that show that 90 percent of Stop and Frisk actions don’t apprehend criminals. De Blasio called for reform to make sure these tactics were only used in response to a targeted suspect, and conducted in a way that was constitutionally appropriate. “What’s to stop people from going into someone’s home? There might be a gun in there? This is a matter of balancing security and civil liberty,” said de Blasio in an conversation with NYC Community
Media’s publisher and editors, before the newspapers announced their September 10 Primary endorsements. He also called for an end to tax breaks for the wealthy and for corporations, proposing a five-year income tax raise for those making more than $.5M, to fix the school system. He also called for mandatory inclusionary zoning, saying that real estate firms would include affordable housing options before they would walk away from important property acquisitions in the city.
An ad campaign featuring de Blasio’s biracial son Dante resonated with voters concerned about community/police relations. For the 52-year-old de Blasio, his decision to have his black, formerly lesbian wife Chirlane McCray and their children Dante and Chiara figure prominently in his ad campaign marked a turning point, making him more relatable to voters in terms of diversity, race and class issues, and showed him to be solid family man. That his son attends public school gives credence to his proposals on education reform. And for those in Chelsea and Hell’s Kitchen, where construction is currently booming, de Blasio’s promise to “speed up and define the pre-certification timeline” for the ULURP process, as reported in an August 28 Chelsea Now article (chelseanow.com/2013/08/candidatestalk-ulurp-reform) is welcome news. When questioned about homelessness in the WNBC debate, de Blasio and Lhota defended the city’s “right to shelter” law, more or less, but de Blasio said the 51,000 people in shelters was an all-time high, and that the city should focus on keeping families in their homes with a living wage and paid sick leave, rather than in shelters. It is likely that once de Blasio moves into Gracie Mansion, he may also move to a more centrist position on some of these issues. But with a campaign that promised New Yorkers just about everything they wanted to hear, even a slight rollback could still mean big changes for the future of the city. As de Blasio noted in his closing comments on Election Night, “Progressive changes won’t happen overnight, but they will happen. There will be many obstacles that stand in our way, but we will overcome them. And know this: I will never stop fighting for the city I love. And I will never forget that as mayor, I work for you.”
November 6 - 19, 2013
As Spectra Pipeline Starts Pumping Gas, 13 Protesters Arrested Continued from page 4 Borock alluded to the disastrous breakdowns in Con Ed’s plants and supply lines during Hurricane Sandy last year, and said he fears the potentially catastrophic result another Sandy-like storm could have on the gas lines. Other elected officials at the protest included Councilmember and Borough Presidentelect Gale Brewer, and Assemblymembers Dick Gottfried and Linda Rosenthal. Rosenthal currently sponsors a bill that would require utility companies across the state to monitor and mitigate radon levels before natural gas is delivered to consumers. The bill was introduced in April, but has not yet reached the floor for a vote. Before Johnson prepared to block the street and get handcuffed on November 2, he mentioned a conversation he had that morning with Bill de Blasio, now the city’s Mayor-elect, who has had his own experiences with civil disobedience. “I told [de Blasio] I was going to get arrested today, and he just told me, ‘Be patient, because it can take a while,’ ” said Johnson. Along with the dozen other people arrested at the protest, the Councilmember-elect was charged with a violation for disorderly conduct and spent several hours in a holding cell before
Photo by Sam Spokony
Councilmember-elect Corey Johnson was one of 13 people arrested at the Nov. 2 protest.
being released, according to a police source at the Sixth Precinct. Johnson said that he has not yet had a
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“substantive conversation” with de Blasio about the Spectra Pipeline, but added that he feels confident that “with a Mayor de
Blasio, we’ll have someone who actually wants to listen to community concerns on issues like this.”
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November 6 - 19, 2013
High Line Extends its Reach to Hudson Yards Continued from page 7 added that the High Line isn’t currently planning to collaborate directly with Related on any public art projects. “There are some parallels between what we do and what Related wants to do, but I think they’ll be separate programs that serve to complement each other,” he said. High Line visitors can sign up to take walking tours to view sculptures by Brooklyn-based artist Carol Bove, which have been placed along the unfinished third section of the park. Reservations can be made by visiting thehighline.org.
TRUE TO PRESERVATINIST ROOTS
During his interview with Chelsea Now, David also mentioned that, earlier that day, he gave a particularly emotional walking tour of the High Line to members of the Obletz family — which carries a name that any lover of the park should hold in the highest esteem. Peter Obletz, a former West Chelsea resident and chair of Community Board 4, was the passionate train enthusiast who spent over a decade of his life attempting to save the elevated railroad tracks when they were in danger of being demolished in the ’80s. Obletz unexpectedly swooped in to buy the High Line for $10 in 1984, after the private owner of the
Photo by Scott Stiffler
Gateway to Hudson Yards: Beyond the fence, a construction crew works on Section III of the High Line.
site was in the process of abandoning it. While that sale was eventually overturned by a federal judge, and his dream was not achieved within the span his life (which ended in 1996, after a
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And so, on the morning of November 1, the co-founder of the High Line’s current preservation group met with Peter Obletz’s brother, Doug Obletz, who was visiting New York with his family from Portland, Oregon. It was the first time that an Obletz had ever seen the vibrant, pulsing green space that is the High Line of today. More than 15 years after Peter’s death, and three decades since he made that famed purchase, Doug Obletz was able to witness the realization of his brother’s vision. “It was so moving to show them something that’s basically a continuation of what Peter had done,” said David. “Robert [Hammond] and I have stayed in touch with his family ever since we started in 1999, but it was incredible to finally be able to share this experience with them.” On the cusp of such new growth for the High Line, walking the tracks alongside the Obletz family didn’t just give David a chance to reminisce — he was thinking about the future, too. “Plenty of people come to the High Line and think it’s beautiful, but very few of them really understand what it took to do this,” he said. “There have been challenges for all of us along the way, and I still think it’s amazing that we’ve made it through them. And it’s a privilege to be one of the people who knows the story of what Peter did, so now we’re going to keep our own story going.”
2 2 November 6 - 19, 2013
July 18 - 24, 2013
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November 6 - 19, 2013
c s e o o s p r H o
Dear Aunt Chelsea:
simmering rage every time somebody says, “I can’t believe it’s getting dark so early!”
My roommate recently adopted a cat. Now, I like cats, or at least funny cats as seen on YouTube — but I never had pets growing up and don’t really understand the appeal of owning one. Sure, she’s cute. But she also likes to attack my feet, wakes me up at five in the morning for food and sheds her weight in cat hair every day. Because my roommate works odd hours, it’s now become my job to take care of this thing! But he is very attached to the cat, and I don’t want to make him get rid of it. But what can I do to take back my apartment and free time from the feline menace?
Gemini Keep an open mind where cranberries and kale are concerned —
Aries Peek at the contents of a quirky stranger’s grocery cart and discover the missing ingredient to a pilfered recipe you recently botched. Taurus Be truthful with yourself when examining the source of that
and score a coveted supper club invite from a powerful ally who respects evolving tastes.
Cancer Take the scenic route to work, and a great idea for that difficult person on your holiday gift list will present itself — as a metaphor you interpret, after glancing at a bus stop ad. Leo Corduroy is your new denim, green is your new black and piercing insights are your new cutting remarks. Adjust your wardrobe, and attitude, accordingly.
This short letter speaks volumes. You have tellingly cast yourself in the role of a reluctant caretaker who puts the wants of a roommate — and the needs of his cat — above her own. Yet your excessive use of the word “but” tells me you “want” somebody to point out that this situation is in “need” of fixing. Consider it done. It’s just too bad you lack the killer instincts of a “feline menace” — otherwise, you would have pounced on the opportunity to get rid of that unwanted third wheel before it had a chance to shed all over the welcome mat. That was your now-closed window to fake an epic sneezing jag, thereby obligating your roommate to show Little Mr. Scratchy Paws the door. No matter. Without haste, you simply must deploy “the best policy” as your fallback plan, and be brutally honest. Tell him to banish that frisky critter from the apartment’s common areas and become its singular keeper, or they’ll both be out the door. Stand tough. There’s no shame in giving the boot to a species that steals your breath and clomps its choppers on you about a second after your corpse cools down. I know I’ll get letters for that last remark, but it’s true. There’s a dark side to those Internet kitty videos that nobody seems willing to talk about!
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Published on Nov 7, 2013