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Serving Tribeca, Battery Park City, the Seaport and the Financial District VOLUME 30, NUMBER 18

SEPT. 21 – OCT. 5, 2017

Occupy Wall Street in the age of Trump Page 9

Photos by Tequila Minsky

Six years after Occupy Wall Street took over Downtown’s Zuccotti Park dozens of die-hard Occupiers and activists gathered at the place where it all began on Sept. 17 to declare that the movement still has work to do — now more than ever.



1 M E T R O T E C H • N YC 112 0 1 • C O P Y R I G H T © 2 0 17 N YC C O M M U N I T Y M E D I A , L L C

The ďŹ x was in Squadron seat ‘stolen’ in a back-room deal, says grass-roots favorite Newell BY COLIN MIXSON A candidate vying to fill Downtown’s vacant state Senate seat is crying foul after Democratic party bosses maneuvered to install his establishment-backed rival despite his overwhelming grassroots support at a party committee meeting on Sunday. Members of the Manhattan Democratic County Committee cast nearly three quarters of their votes for Paul Newell to represent the party November’s general election to replace former state Sen. Daniel Squadron, who announced his shock resignation after it was too late for a primary. But machinations by the party bosses in the two borough the district spans nonetheless swung the decision in favor of Assemblyman Brian Kavanagh to be the likely nominee — an outcome, which is not yet official, that one Brooklyn Democratic Committee member called “the worst case scenario.â€? “I think this demonstrates the naked power of the machine,â€? said David

Bloomfield. “There is nothing good to say about it. It forever marks Kavanagh as a product of the machine and a phony reformer.� When Squadron stepped down from his seat in the 26th Senate District, he announced his resignation after an important petition-filing deadline for would-be candidates, thus robbing rank-and-file Democrats of the opportunity to choose their party’s nominee in a primary. Instead, candidates for the crossborough district are being chosen by county committees on both sides of the East River — an arcane process that allowed party bosses Keith Wright in Manhattan, and Frank Seddio in Brooklyn significant leeway in determining how a decision would be made. In Manhattan, committee members voted by 72 precent in favor of Newell at a meeting on Sept. 17, with Kavanagh taking the remaining 28 percent after a third candidate, former City Councilman Alan Gerson, suddenly

CNG File photos

After party bosses picked Assemblyman Brian Kavanagh, left, to succeed former state Sen. Daniel Squadron, Paul Newell, right — who won the overwhelming vote of Manhattan committee members — blasted the maneuver.

withdrew from the race. Seddio, however, refused to call Kings County committee members to a vote, and instead took it upon himself cast all of the Brooklyn committee’s votes for Kavanagh, pushing him over the top with 53 percent of the district’s total vote. If the process had been organized any differently Kavanagh would have almost certainly lost, leaving many grass-roots Democrats to suspect that the fix was in well before any ballots

were cast, according to a member of a Manhattan political club. “Manhattan voted proportionally, Brooklyn voted as a bloc, and that’s the game they’re playing,� said Sean Sweeney, treasurer of the Downtown Independent Democrats. “That’s the corruption.� Because more registered Democratic voters live on the Manhattan side of the district, the county committee’s votes are FIX Continued on page 18

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Sept. 21 – Oct. 5, 2017




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Sept. 21 – Oct. 5, 2017


Real street art Painted pavement beautifies Tribeca street BY COLIN MIXSON An artist labored for nearly a week beautifying a stretch of Tribeca pavement with a massive on-the-street mural, using vibrant colors and tribal imagery to evoke the work of one of South Africa’s most celebrated indigenous painters. Imani Shanklin Roberts looked to artist Esther Mahlangu — who made a career channeling the creative traditions of her native South Ndebele people — as inspiration for her more than 2,200-square-foot mural, “XOLA,” which uses images that are at once specifically South African, and universally feminine, she said. “I’ve inserted in the piece a divine feminine symbol, which embodies the idea of inclusion and connectedness and fullness, and invites everyone to kind of step into a feminine kind of mind frame,” the artist said. The mural was officially unveiled on Sept. 13 in celebration of a partnership between Citi Bike and South African Tourism, but pedestrians and curious office workers had nearly a week to

grow acquainted with Shanklin Roberts and pry into the unexpected alterations she was making to the familiar block of Franklin Street between Varick Street and West Broadway. “You’re met with a lot of intrigue,” Shanklin Roberts said. “If you’re doing something that’s semi-permanent in a neighborhood they live in, they’re interested in knowing what happens and what it will look like.” The intricately angular mural proved to be a mathematically exacting work, with large, reoccurring patterns that required impeccable planning and measurement to execute. “I really massaged my geometry brain, and just understanding shapes, I did a lot of math in this process,” she said. And being her first pavement painting, Shanklin Roberts can’t say exactly how long it can be excepted to last, although it seems safe to assume it will suffer a shorter lifespan than her vertical murals, and will probably start fading away sometime around its third birthday. Ironically, the main trouble facing

Photo by @EricMTownsend

Artist Imani Shanklin Roberts spent a week paining a block of Franklin Street between Varick Street and West Broadway with a design inspired by iconic South African artist Esther Mahlangu.

the mural may be from its sponsor, Citi Bike, and locals are concerned a nearby docking station may be the ruin of the neighborhood’s new addition, with hordes of bike-renters tram-

pling it to early obliteration. “Some people treat the work as if it’s precious, and I receive comments about how the Citi Bike will speed up its leaving,” Shanklin Roberts said.

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Sept. 21 – Oct. 5, 2017



Museum of Jewish Heritage marks 20 years with an exhibit for the ages BY LEVAR ALONZO The Museum of Jewish Heritage marked its 20th anniversary on Sept. 13 with the opening of a new exhibit meant to preserve the eyewitnesses of history to educate future generations. The interactive exhibit, New Dimensions in Testimony, allows visitors to virtually converse with holograms of two Holocaust survivors — Pinchas Gutter and Anne Frank’s stepsister Eva Schloss — in an initiative started by the University of Southern California Shoah Foundation, which was formed by director Steven Spielberg to further the remembrance of the Holocaust. The high-tech exhibit ensures that the museum will stay true to its full name — the Museum of Jewish Heritage: A Living Memorial to the Holocaust — far into the future, according to the museum’s president and CEO. “Most times, we are just able to read of these stories” said Michael Glickman. “How remarkable is it to be greeted and have a conversation with, and see the emotions of these survivors telling their story.” New Dimensions uses sophisticated artificial-intelligence algorithms to interpret visitors’ questions and mine extensive interviews filmed with the survivors and allow their holographic avatars to provide a natural answer. It will provide a personal experience of their eyewitness testimony of the Holocaust long after the last survivors have passed away. Glickman said that even a 100 years from now, future generations will

be able to hear the first-hand accounts of the horrors and also the feeling of liberation felt by the survivors. And the exhibit will continue to get better for as long as Gutter and Schloss are around to participate, because USC tracks the questions that the avatars can’t answer and updates the library of responses so the next time a similar question is asked the answer will be in the database. Gutter’s database already has responses to about 20,000 to 30,000 possible questions, according to the museum. His story is harrowing — surviving numerous death marches and six concentration camps, but he conveys palpable joy when recalling how he was liberated from Theresienstadt by the Soviet Army in 1945. His avatar will even joyfully belt out songs from his childhood on request. The experience allows visitors to see the sadness of these survivors when asked for a memory that stood out in their minds. The interactive installation captures the tears and draws in the visitor as Gutter and Schloss recollect on the most painful time in their lives. “My testimonies are the most important way to capture the history, my history,” Schloss’s hologram answers when asked what was her reason for wanting to be part of the project. Schloss is a survivor of Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp. In 1942, her family went into hiding, but in 1944 — on her 15th birthday — they were betrayed, separated and sent to the death camps.

Photo by Georgine Benvenuto

MJH Center for the Study of Anti-Semitism head Abraham Foxman, center, with museum trustee Gladys Pickman, at left, and Teresa Pickman. DowntownExpress.com

Photos by Georgine Benvenuto

(Above) The Museum of Jewish Heritage’s interactive exhibit New Dimensions in Testimony allows visitors to ask questions to Holocaust survivors Pinchas Gutter and Eva Schloss and receive natural answers from their holographic avatars. (Below) Left to right, Pinchas Gutter with museum trustee Dr Ruth Westheimer, and museum president Michael Glickman.

The museum invited many Holocaust survivors and their families to its Battery Park City campus for the unveiling of New Dimensions, and they sat in the front row as guests of honor as speakers explained the new exhibit and extolled the mission of the museum and their importance to it. Speakers included Abraham Foxman, former long-time national director of the AntiDefamation League and now head of the MJH Center for the Study of AntiSemitism, and museum board chairman Bruce Ratner. Lawyer Judah Gribetz read a letter from former Manhattan District Attorney Robert Morgenthau, who could not attend. Museum board trustee Dr. Ruth Westheimer — who lost both her parents to the Holocaust — was also there, taking in the exhibits and viewing the museums extensive col-

lection of artifacts. “It was wonderful, it was good seeing the exhibit but you know everyone has their own stories to tell, I was in Auschwitz myself,” said survivor Peri Hirsch. “Seeing this exhibit, I would also like to give the museum poems and photos I have to keep the memories.” Glickman said that the museum may even try to expand the New Dimensions exhibit by adding more stories of survivors. As part of the 20th-anniversary commemoration, the museum also hosted talks with Omer Malkin, the son of Peter Malkin — the legendary Israeli intelligence agent who directed the surveillance that led to the capture of Nazi war criminal Adolf Eichmann in NEW DIMENSIONS Continued on page 18

Sept. 21 – Oct. 5, 2017


Marte set to concede Challenger to throw in the towel after excruciatingly narrow loss to inculbent BY LINCOLN ANDERSON Christopher Marte was still waiting this week for the results of the Sept. 12 primary election in the First City Council District to be certified — but he indicated that he is, in fact, on the verge of conceding the race to Margaret Chin. And yet, he also claimed a moral victory. “I think losing by 200 votes shows we defeated her,” Marte said. “We need change. Having been a two-term incumbent, she’s entrenched. She had all the publicity. And having two other candidates take 10 percent of the vote.” Had two other candidates — Aaron Foldenauer and Dashia Imperiale — not also run, Marte is certain he would have won. “If either one of them had backed down, it would have changed everything,” Marte said. There is some talk of Marte run-

ning in the November general election on a third-party line. Marte said he’s not ready to announce anything yet, but said that he might have secured the Independence Party line for the general election, because six registered Independence Party voters penciled in his name as a write-in on primary day, which may have been enough to win him the line. As of press time, the Democratic primary election results still had not been certified. He said he’s hoping it will happen as soon as Thursday. “No certification yet,” Marte reported. “According to our hand tally based off the counting of the affidavit and absentee ballots, Margaret ended up being 207 votes ahead. Absentee ballots trended toward Margaret because of the senior centers, but affidavit ballots trended toward me because of the lastminute poll-site changes for my home electoral districts, and the EDs where I

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Sept. 21 – Oct. 5, 2017

was expected to do well.” According to Marte, many supporters of the Elizabeth St. Garden in and around Little Italy had their poll site changed from Allen St. to E. Fifth St., while residents of the Smith Houses had their usual poll site — one of the largest in the district — divided at the last minute into two different sites, causing confusion. Affidavit ballots are used when a voter shows up at a poll site but his or her name is not on the list of registered Democrats for that district. On Tuesday, the candidates were down at the Board of Elections office to observe the counting of 300-plus valid affidavit and 250 absentee ballots. Even after the counting of the more than 550 ballots, the overall numbers didn’t change that much. “Margaret did hold her margin,” Marte conceded. “We counted [a difference of] 207 [votes]. They counted 220. She prevailed. It’s sad for all of us,” he said. “We worked really hard and we did everything we could. We had a really good showing.” Though he had not officially conceded as of press time, wanting to await the election’s certification, he clearly indicated that he planned to do so. Marte said the margin of difference would have to had to have been lower — 0.5 percent — in order to go to court and demand a recount. Plus, he added, “We don’t have solid evidence of irregularities.” While the poll-site changes were inconvenient and confusing, they were not illegal, he said. Later that evening, Marte spoke at the full-board meeting of Community Board 2 and received an ovation, as he thanked everyone who supported his upstart campaign that shockingly nearly toppled a two-term incumbent. Marte said his candidacy resonated with voters in Greenwich Village, Soho and the South Village “who had their platforms heard” through his campaign. On the other hand, voters in those areas were frustrated by “just the unresponsiveness of [Chin’s] office,” he said. He also had strong support at the polls in the Two Bridges area — between the Manhattan and Brooklyn bridges — where a coming explosion of “supertall”

Challenger Christopher Marte says he will concede the Democratic primary to incumbent Councilwoman Margarted Chin once the vote is certified.

towers adding to one that has already been built threatens to radically transform the area. Marte also ran strongly in northern Tribeca and in the area around his home on Rivington St. between the Bowery and Allen St. up to Houston St. Meanwhile, Chin did best in her core support base of Chinatown and Confucius Plaza. Even in many electoral districts that Chin won, she only bested Marte by one vote, he noted. For his part, Foldenauer last week said he is definitely running again in the general election — in his case, on the Liberal Party line. “Voter turnout was abysmal in the Democratic Primary, and only 5 percent of all registered voters cast their ballot for Margaret Chin,” Foldenauer said on Wednesday. “As the Liberal Party candidate, I look forward to reaching out to all 97,000 registered voters in Lower Manhattan and working to defeat Margaret Chin on Nov. 7.” Both he and Imperiale have defiantly rejected being branded as spoilers in last week’s Democratic primary. Marte thanked The Villager for hosting a debate among the primary-election candidates a few weeks ago at Judson Church. Though Chin ducked the event, Marte said, “it was the toughest debate” of the election season, and was a good way for the candidates to get their messages out to the community. After the debate, one Soho activist, a Marte supporter, remarked that he was very worried at the presence of Foldenauer and Imperiale in the race. “Chin always gets her 6,000 votes,” he said, worrying that the other three would divide up the rest. The two alsorans ultimately did rack up more than 1,100 votes between the two of them. DowntownExpress.com

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Dates: Thurs., Sept. 21 – Wed., Sept. 27

ALTERNATE SIDE PARKING RULES ARE SUSPENDED THURSDAY AND FRIDAY FOR ROSH HASHANAH POTUS alert! President Trump will leave town on Thursday, but not for long. Thursday afternoon he hits the road, and to Downtowners that road is the FDR. He departs via the Wall Street Heliport which means shutdowns on the FDR, South Street, and the Battery Underpass. Drivers, stick to the West Side Highway. On Tuesday, he’ll be back for another quick visit in the Big Apple, this time for just a few hours to attend an RNC event, with a Wall Street Helipad landing in the late afternoon, and from there closing the FDR from the Battery to Midtown. He’ll return to the helipad for a midevening departure that same day. Again, his presence will have the same impacts as above but in both the afternoon and evening. Of course, the president’s visits aren’t all Lower Manhattanites have in store this week: The Stephen Siller Tunnel to Towers Run and Festival, from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, will send runners through lower Manhattan, between Warren Street and the Battery, and between West and Hudson streets, also shutting down the Battery Tunnel. Once they’re through the tunnel, they’ll head into Red Hook, Brooklyn. This will

likely cause turbulence at the Brooklyn Bridge. On Sunday, the Jets will battle the Dolphins at 1 p.m. at MetLife Stadium. Lincoln Tunnel traffic will spill over to the Holland, causing backups at its entrances, and along Hudson, Varick, and Canal streets, starting around 11 a.m. Return traffic into Manhattan should pick up around 5 p.m. Fans can avoid the jams by taking New Jersey Transit to Secaucus Junction, and from there, a free rail shuttle to the stadium. The San Gennaro Festival will continue this weekend, closing Mulberry Street between Canal and Houston streets, and Grand and Hester streets between Mott and Centre streets from 11:30 a.m. to 11 p.m. Thursday through Sunday. On Saturday, the Chelsea Fall Pop-Up Fair will close Eighth Avenue between 14th and 23rd streets from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., affecting Sixth and Tenth avenues. The Seaport Festival, on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., will close Water Street between Broad and Fulton streets. Remember that Rosh Hashanah will mean public schools close Thursday and Friday, so drive extra carefully and look out for excited kids in the streets. As always, for the latest traffic news, follow me on Twitter @GridlockSam.




DENIM DELINQUENT A thief stole more than $1,500 worth of jeans from a Mercer Street denim store on Sept. 1. An employee told police that the suspect waltzed into the store between Broome and Spring streets at 3:40 pm, and nabbed seven pairs of pants before fleeing.

of laxatives and other drugs from a Broadway pharmacy on Sept. 9. An employee told police the suspects walked into the store between Murray Street and Park Place at 10:30 am, before stuffing bags with Walg-brand colon cleansers, fiber pills, and some Tums, along with about $500 worth of children’s Flonase.

PANTY PERP A 54-year-old woman was arrested for allegedly nabbing about $1,000 worth of clothes from a Liberty Street lingerie store on Aug. 20. An employee told police the suspect entered the shop between Liberty Street and Maiden Lane at 5:20 pm, before grabbing a small fortune worth of feminine wear.

HIGHLY IRREGULAR Two punks walked off with more than $1,300 worth

PEDDLING CRIME A thief rode off with a woman’s rental bike she left on Moore Street on Sept. 10. The victim told police she set the Citi Bike she rented down near West Street at 2:50 pm, before walking into a nearby winery to grab a drink. She was inside for about five minutes, when she returned to find her Citibanksponsored rental stolen. — Colin Mixson

Teen stabbed over a beer BY COLIN MIXSON Cops are hunting the man suspected of stabbing a 16-year-old boy near the Staten Island Ferry, after the teen refused to give the alleged knife man a beer. The victim told police he was on Whitehall Street near South Street at 1:25 pm, when the suspect approached him and asked for a beer. When the kid refused, the man pulled a knife on him and stabbed him in the gut, before fleeing into the nearby South Ferry Subway Station, according to police. Paramedics rushed the victim to Bellevue Hospital in stable condition, cops said. The suspect is a bald man in his 30s, standing at 5-foot-7-inches, and weighing about 210-pounds, according to police. Anyone with information regarding the incident is asked to call Crime


Police say this man stabbed a teenager for refusing his requst for a beer.

Stoppers at (800) 577–8477. The public can also submit tips by logging onto the Crime Stoppers website at www. nypdcrimestoppers.com or by texting tips to 274637 (CRIMES) then entering TIP577. All tips are strictly confidential.


Sept. 21 – Oct. 5, 2017

www.downtownexpress.com DowntownExpress.com

Occupy Wall Street in the age of Trump BY LEVAR ALONZO It has been six years since the movement calling itself Occupy Wall Street took over Downtown’s Zuccotti Park for a weeks-long demonstration that spawned similar actions across the country protesting corporate greed, social and economic inequality, and the domination of the “One Percent.” The encampments have long-since dispersed but dozens of die-hard Occupiers and activists gathered at the place where it all began on Sept. 17 in Zuccotti Park to declare that the movement still has work to do — now more than ever. The organizer of the rally and press conference, Marni Halasa — who is running as an independent for the City Council seat in District 3 on a platform of saving small businesses — said that even though the demonstrations fizzled, the movement spawned advocacy groups and inspired activists, taught people how to protest, and prompted many progressives to run for public

office in the years since. The ascendancy of Donald Trump to the Oval Office has re-energized many of the same protesters to become leading voices in resistance against his agenda. Jerry Ashton, who came to the anniversary to share his admiration for all those who protested six years ago, was inspired in the wake of Occupy Wall Street to create a charity, co-founding RIP Medical Debt, which takes in donations and uses that money to pay off people’s medical debts. With Trump and the Republican Party’s again pushing to repeal Obamacare, Ashton said it’s more important than ever to help the 64 million Americans struggling to pay off their medical bills. “There should be a desire to relieve this burden,” said Aston. “They have to realize that this struggle goes across party lines.” Halasa said that she sees Trump’s rise as not only energizing but sharpen-

Photos by Tequila Minsky

(Above) Occupy Wall Street alum and independent City Council candidate Marni Halasa, at right, organized the 6th-anniversary return to Downtown’s Zuccotti Park on Sept. 17. (Right) An activist called “Miss K” was inspired by the protests in Zuccotti Park six years ago to become a crusader for affordable housing.

ing the often disparate Occupy movement, giving it a focus it sorely lacked in the beginning. “Groups are more focused, one demand is to get Trump out of office,” said Halasa. “In Occupy, we had a host

of issues we were fighting for, but these groups, such as Rise and Resist, their whole focus is to drive Trump out of office.” OCCUPY Continued on page 18

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Sept. 21 – Oct. 5, 2017



Little Italy shines with a celebration of San Gennaro

BY COLIN MIXSON The Feast of San Gennaro kicked off on Sept. 14 along Mulberry Street in Lower Manhattan, and lovers of all things Italian flocked to the former immigrant enclave to celebrate the tastes of the old country. “I love San Gannero,” said New Jersey resident Scott Hersh, who won a cannoli eating contest at the feast on Friday. “Being around Italians, and the cannoli and sausage — San Gannero’s just been one of those things I enjoy going to all the time.” Italian immigrants first brought the festive tradition to the Lower East Side in 1926, when a feast dedicated to the Photos by Georgine Benvenuto

(Clockwise from Left) Actor Chazz Palmenteri, center, served as Grand Marshal for the San Gennaro festival’s Saturday parade. Patriotic eater Joe Rose put on a show for the crowd, in the cannoli-eating contest, even as the eventual winner, Scott Hersh, calmly downed 24 of the creamy pastries. Second-place winner Grant Hubsher struggled to get his 23 cannolis down his gullet. The parade featured floats carrying a variety of local bands. And what parade in Little Italy would be complete without a guy dressed up as a cannoli?

Patron Saint of Naples, Saint Januarius, first sprang up around a small chapel on Mulberry Street in Little Italy. The Lower Manhattan immigrant enclave has since dwindled to a few shops and restaurants, but the feast itself has expanded in to a massive, 11-day celebration of Italian heritage, culture, and — above all — food. As many as two million people are expected to attend over the course of the feast, which snakes through 11 blocks of Mulberry, Grand, and Hester streets, and boasts more than 200 vendors selling every Italian delicacy known to man, according to feast organizer John Fratta. “Saturday alone we had easily 300,000 people,” explained Fratta, who sits on the board of directors of Figli di San Gennaro, a charity group which produces the event. “You couldn’t move, that’s how crowded it was.”


Sept. 21 – Oct. 5, 2017

The event has become so popular that a news crew from Naples came to document New York’s feast for their Italian audience, who were surprised to see that what in the saint’s hometown is a one-day event had become a truly gigantic affair in America, Fratta said. “The way they honor him, it’s a oneday festival, but when this crew came down and saw the parade and the procession last night, they were shocked, they couldn’t believe the amount of people and the way we do it,” the organizer said. Even among the crowded vendors, the 2017 Feast of San Gannero Cannoli Eating Contest managed to attract hordes of onlookers, who cheered as Tony Danza MC’d the confection-based competitive-eating event. Hersh, who looked up eating strategies on his phone just before the event, ended up winning after putting away 24

cannoli in six minutes — an average of one cannoli every 15 seconds. The New Jersey resident claims his victory at San Gannero isn’t his first big eating contest win — he once emerged victorious in a Hyatt Hotel-sponsored event where he ate 59 jalapeno peppers — a far more physically taxing feat, he said. “With the jalapeno eating contest, my mouth was burning, I was sweating, there were physical things going on,” Hersh explained. “With the cannoli, I didn’t feel nauseous at all.” On Tuesday, supplicants gathered at the Most Precious Blood Church for a Celebratory Mass in the evening, before spilling into the street for a grand procession, which saw a statue of the martyr marched up Mulberry Street from Canal to Houston streets and back down Motts Street before ending where it began. The 16-block parade route — especially when marching beneath the weight of the hefty, metallic saint — is no small trek, according to one marcher.

“It’s heavy,” said John Napoli, who carried the statue along with seven other men. “We rotate frequently so guys aren’t killing themselves.” Napoli, who has carried the saint in procession for the last four years, said the parade is an opportunity for him to connect with his heritage, and carry on a tradition that’s been in his family for generations. “He’s the patron saint of Naples, which is my ancestral home, so it’s a matter of keeping the traditions of my ancestors alive,” Napoli said. DowntownExpress.com

Bikes begone! BPCA wants to steer bicyclists away from esplanade toward Hudson River Greenway BY LEVAR ALONZO The Battery Park City Authority wants to direct cyclists off the crowded waterfront esplanade and onto the bikefriendlier greenway, according to the working group set up by the authority. The BPCA is hoping that signs placed along the heavily walked promenade and a modified New York City bike map will encourage cyclists to use the Hudson River Greenway along West Street, which offers less hassle when riding north or south. Battery Park City resident and cyclist Steve Wilson said that he could see why the authority would want to nudge bikes to the greenway. “Bikers and walkers can’t interact safely,” he said. “When I bike I tend to stick to the greenway — or if I do come down on the esplanade, I look out for walkers and joggers, because in the end its about everyone’s safety.” Battery Park City Committee of Community Board 1 passed a resolution endorsing measures to encourage cyclists to avoid the esplanade by a vote of 5-1 on Sept 7, with one member saying it didn’t go far enough to protect pedestrians along the waterfront walkway. The resolution, crafted by a bicycle working group of representatives from the BPCA and residents, called for placing signage along the esplanade encouraging cyclists to use the greenway, asking the Department of Transportation to modify the NYC bike map to clearly mark that the esplanade is not a bike path but rather a shared space for cyclists and pedestrians, and pushing to relocate Citi Bike docking stations that are currently near the esplanade. As the waterfront area around Brookfield Place and North Cove Marina has gotten more crowded, the BPCA has seen a need to slow cyclists along the esplanade in the interest of pedestrian safety. Last summer the authority imposed a cyclist-dismount rule at the North Cove Marina and formed the bicycle working group with residents to formulate new bike-safety policies, with the aim of making the esplanade a enjoyable place for locals to relax, rather than a track for cyclists — which is really what the nearby greenway was designed for. “This resolution is to improve safety on the esplanade, to give people a DowntownExpress.com

greater experience there,” said acting Battery Park City Committee chairwoman Tammy Meltzer. “The greenway gives cyclists more freedom.” Liberty, West Thames, Albany and Vesey streets are the routes being considered for signage to redirect cyclists off the esplanade and onto the greenway. Other signs would tell cyclists that they are entering into a dismount zone, with still other signs warning that they must slow down and yield to pedestrians if they continue along the esplanade. The authority was at pains to stress that it is not pushing to ban bikes along the BPC waterfront, but rather suggesting measures to encourage cyclists use the greenway that was designed for them. “We are not banning cyclists from the esplanade,” said BPCA director of communications Nicholas Sbordone. “We are just trying to let folks know that there is easier access to get to the Battery or uptown.” To that end, Meltzer said the resolution calls on the DOT to modify the city’s bike map and the ground markings to make a clearer distinction between the esplanade, which must be shared with pedestrians, and the greenway, which is a dedicated bike lane — not only to keep cyclists from treating the esplanade as a bike path, but also to keep pedestrians from treating the greenway as a sidewalk, which is just as dangerous. The group also agreed to push Citi Bike to relocate the docking station at 200 Liberty St. at the north end of South End Avenue, moving it farther east on Liberty Street, closer to the greenway. “If the Citi Bike station was closer to the bikeway, you could see that people would think that it was for [the greenway] there,” Sbordone said. “But you can also see that if it was closer to the esplanade, people might make more use of it for there.” Sbordone said that the new signs are likely to be rolled out over the next 18–24 months. Currently, signs along the esplanade point cyclists to use the lower part of the esplanade closer to the water and others ask cyclist to dismount as they approach the North Cove Marina.

File photo by Milo Hess

The Battery Park City Authority wants to find ways to encourage cyclists to avoid the waterfront esplanade in favor of the nearby greenway.



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Sept. 21 – Oct. 5, 2017

BY LENORE SKENAZY When Emma Johnson was growing up, she was certain of one thing: She would never be a single mom. After all, she’d been raised by one. And while she appreciates her mom’s hard work and how it paid off — “My brothers are really good guys, we all turned out okay.” — bottom line: They were broke. Emma didn’t ever want to be scrimping and scraping and sad like that. So she left Illinois for the big city (well, Astoria), became a journalist, found a great guy, got married, had the kids… And now she is a single mom of two. What happened? Shortly into the marriage, her husband was on assignment as a cameraman in Greece when he fell off a cliff and suffered a brain injury. Things never went back to normal. In fact, they grew harrowing. Before the kids were even in kindergarten, the couple divorced. And that is how Emma started her journey to become the person who you’ll find in the title of her honest, wrenching and ultimately stand-up-and-cheer memoir and self-help book coming out in October, “The Kickass Single Mom: Be Financially Independent, Discover Your Sexiest You, and Raise Fabulous, Happy Children.” “For a long time I was alternatively livid, confused, overwhelmed, accepting and thrilling in that role — a process that I have seen countless women go through in my work, which is now committed to the empowerment of single mothers,” she writes. Empowerment is a word we hear a lot, but for Emma it’s a mission: She doesn’t want any moms to be downtrodden just because they’re not married. After all, she says, 57 percent of mil-

Posted To SQUADRON SEAT ‘STOLEN’ IN BACK-ROOM DEAL, SAYS GRASS-ROOTS FAVORITE (SEPT. 18) Squadron and Kavanagh = No better than Silver and deSapio. Kavanagh will try to act like nothing untoward has happened, and, being polite, we will be cordial to him. But Brian, let me tell you, we all know you are as counterfeit as a $3 bill. Brooklyn Reformer

SAL ALBANESE REALLY WANTS TO BE MAYOR (SEPT. 11) The plaque on the wall of City

lennial moms are single. And they’re so young that we don’t even know yet if the married ones will stay hitched. Commonplace or not, single motherhood often elicits the gloomy assumptions Emma set out to bust: You’re a failure. You’ll never make a decent living. You’re screwing up your kids. You won’t find love. Her own story proves the power of positive doing. Realizing she’d have to be a breadwinner from now on, “I just buckled down.” She started calling all her editing contacts and threw herself into work. She hired childcare and determined not to feel guilty about it — “I can’t make money if I’m cleaning my house an doing laundry all the time.” She also ditched the idea that kids needed a stay-at-home mom. She did the research and learned that, empirically, “The things that hurt kids are conflict between parents inside or outside a marriage.” Not having a mom who works. As she went out into the world, she found herself drawn to the stories of women like her, women whose Plan A did not work out. Some were thriving, many weren’t. So five years ago she started a blog, “WealthySingleMommy,” which just may go down as one of the most radical ideas online. We are so used to Barely Making It Single Mommies that the idea that a mommy can be single, wealthy, and fine is rewriting an entire demographic’s story. In her book as on her blog, Emma uses journalistic research to provide

Hall should read “DEBLASIO SLEPT HERE.” Way to go Sal! You’re a real mensch, not like that fool Bill. Agent99

BATTERY BARK CITY VS. FIDI FIDOS! (SEPT. 12) While you correctly point out that BPC is “suffused with open green space,” you forget to point out that NONE OF IT is accessible to dogs — making it irrelevant as being a plus for dog owners. At least in The Battery, we can take our dogs ON LEASH onto the grassy areas AND we have access to a dedicated Off Leash area from 9:00 pm–9:00

strategies for finding work, getting over guilt, and demanding a decent life. For instance, how do you keep a father involved in his kids’ lives? You let them. “When dads only get weekend visits with their children they are much more likely to drop out of the picture,” Emma learned. But if you start custody negotiations assuming a 50–50 childcare split (so long as the dad is not abusive), it is much more likely the ex will become and remain an involved dad. Similarly, when it comes to dating, single moms should face facts: If they are earning a living, they will be less needy and hence more attractive. And by the way, she says, “You probably already had a husband, so why are you in such a rush to find another one?” She profiles women like the stay-athome mom of three who was pregnant with her fourth when her husband ran off with another woman he’d also knocked up. At first, the abandoned wife was declaring, “ ‘I’m going to take him for all he’s worth!’ She was in that angry, miserable spot,” Emma recalls. But for all that, she went and got her real estate license, started working and a year later was making about $100,000. “Now she looks awesome and she started to date,” Emma reports. More amazingly, the mom just posted a photo of her, her ex, the “other woman” and the five kids they have between then, out for a day at the water park. Kickass single moms may be the silent majority we just haven’t heard of — untill now. Lenore Skenazy is founder of FreeRange Kids, a contributor to Reason. com, and author of “Has the World Gone Skenazy?”


After removing Petain’s plaque, they can now remove the statue of Gertrude Stein from Bryant Park. During WWII she gratefully accepted the protection of Nazi collaborators and wrote a flattering biography of Petain. No doubt that statue will be next on DeBlasio’s list. Harry POSTED Continued on page 18


Terrible Presidents, Tattooed on the Backs of Two Generations BY MAX BURBANK Several years ago my bride, a woman of excellent judgment, exercised her marital veto and forbade me to get a tattoo of Richard Nixon. While I recognized and accepted her authority in the matter (all marriages have bargains), I fear she thought I was being impulsive. I was not. I’m not a Nixon fan, and I wouldn’t permanently mark myself to be ironic any more than I’d vape. “Ink” is forever and should be of the utmost personal significance. Anything less becomes a permanent label advertising crassness in 12-point Gothic Bold. Who, though, is the most omnipresent figure of the time I was born into? Whose rise and fall gouged his signature into American history, vile tendrils scrabbling forward into the future long after death, growing thinner, grayer, harder to discern, but never, ever vanishing? Who, in short, is the most tattoo-worthy? Muhammad Ali? Elvis? Hah. Richard. Milhous. Nixon. I have no personal memory whatever of Lyndon B. Johnson, but remember walking across the schoolyard with the other boys, arms over shoulders, a Red Rover-style phalanx, chanting, “Humphrey is the one! Nixon is a bum!” I remember what seemed at the time like a landslide loss. Richard Nixon is the first president of my mental landscape. I was 10. My parents hosted antiwar slide shows, real hippies crashed in our barn all summer, and George McGovern was my hero. The Senator from South Dakota, soft-spoken, rangy, a World War II Air Force veteran awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross, now a soldier for peace. Forever confused and tangled in my memory with Jimmy Stewart, he was the sun that dwarfed, yet cast, Nixon’s twisted shadow. Though they campaigned for McGovern, my folks told me he didn’t stand a damn chance. I never believed them. He was the good guy. Black hats lose, and Nixon was a very black hat. Then I found out what a landslide really was. My parents slapped a “Don’t blame me, I’m from Massachusetts” sticker on the bumper of our Jeep, a perfect bookend for the brass Buddha my dad bolted to the hood the previous year. (Did I mention I’m from a family of freaks?) In 21 months, Nixon would resign in disgrace — but it’s DowntownExpress.com

Courtesy the Burbank family

Max Burbank’s grandfather, Irving Fagan, in his office at The Philadelphia Record.

not like I knew that. I cried a lot. The summer of 1973, I was 11. My grandfather was working on dying in an upstairs bedroom. I think he’d have checked out a good deal sooner, but having spent his whole adult life as a reporter for the Philadelphia Record and the International Labor Press Association, he sure as hell wasn’t going to miss the Watergate hearings. The Grim Reaper could cool his boney heels in the hallway. After sundown he’d get weird, scanning blankets held between his hands like Sunday papers, often entertaining the delusion he was a passenger on a riverboat full of gamblers, prostitutes, and thieves — but as long as the hearings were on, he was lucid as hell. He hardly spoke anymore, his skin was stretched across his bones like the doped paper on a model airplane, but his glittery eyeballs tracked every movement on the screen like a couple of sentient

marbles. He hung in for a while after the final gavel, but never came downstairs again. I hope the Angel of Death came to him as Representative Barbara Jordan (D-TX), that rich butterscotch voice letting the old reporter know his story was told, walking with him down the gangplank of that seedy riverboat onto a peaceful shore. So the Founding Fathers built well, right? The system worked, the black hat got his comeuppance, albeit with a pardon. The memory of a shadow is a potent thing, though. We’re Nixon’s kids, and this is his world. The emotion that typifies us most is anxiety. We’ve spent our lives climbing up and away from the time the President of the United Sates was such a bad guy he had to resign. We can never totally relax. You know in a slasher flick, how the monster is laying there dead at the end? He’s getting up again before the credits. And there’s

always a sequel. Nixon’s Southern strategy sucked the demagogues and white supremacists from the Democrats with red meat and dog whistles. Appeasing new red voters made it ever harder to run as a moderate Republican. Nixon’s culture wars and targeting of “elites” was successful enough to never go out of fashion. Republican intellectuals turned a blind eye at best, cynically exploiting racial tension and religious tribalism, eventually birthing the Tea Party. Nixon’s signature scorn for Washington “eggheads” blossomed into the denigration of education and science, until the Republican Party became a perfect tainted Petri dish, ideal for spawning a monstrosity like Trump. My kids saw marriage equality become the law of the land. They watched an African-American person become president. It felt like we’d left Nixon in the past, but he was right there with us the whole time, just beneath the surface. You can’t bury a real monster deep enough. And in a sequel, the monster is stronger. Shoot this one in the head with proof of high crimes and misdemeanors, he’ll look at the smoking gun, yell “FAKE NEWS,” and keep on coming. Bright side? I think it’s only a matter of time before Trump selfdestructs. Should he avoid impeachment, he’s still seventy-one years of bloated, old crazy-guy with a less-than-healthy lifestyle. He’s not designed for the long haul. But there are kids out there for whom Trump will be the first president they remember. When he blows up, it won’t be a shadow they live under, it will be a pureed spray of rotting carcass they’ll be cleaning up their entire lives. They’ll never stop worrying Trump wasn’t a mere sequel, forever doomed to think he was the second installment of an endless franchise. It’s just as well my bride wouldn’t let me get that tattoo. You know who has an ink Nixon on their back? Roger Stone. Stone cut his nasty, pointed teeth working in the Nixon administration. He founded a political firm with Paul Manafort. He ran public relations for Bush during the Florida recount. He was an advisor on Trump’s campaign. Roger Stone is the fetid, vile tendril directly connecting Nixon to Trump. Anything that weaselly bag of crap has on its skin? I want nowhere near mine. Sept. 21 – Oct. 5, 2017


We Can Still Fly A refusal to grow up clashes with the march of time BY DAVID KENNERLEY More often than not, theatrical meditations on mortality tend to be dismal affairs. But red-hot playwright Sarah Ruhl, who has earned plaudits for plays such as “Stage Kiss” and “Dead Man’s Cell Phone,” has solved the problem in her latest effort by expertly grafting on elements of the beloved children’s story “Peter Pan,” injecting a fantastic dose of whimsy while embracing the tale’s dark undercurrents. “For Peter Pan on her 70th birthday,” now at Playwrights Horizons, is set in Davenport, Iowa, in the 1990s and in timeless Neverland. The first part features a protracted, tense scene in a hospital room, where an elderly father lies on his deathbed, attached to a web of monitors and drips, surrounded by his five doting offspring. The siblings have put their lives on hold to stand vigil by their dying father (Ron Crawford). Ann, portrayed by the legendary, luminous Kathleen Chalfant, may be the oldest chronologically — she’s pushing 70 — but not emotionally. Her fondest memory is playing the role of Peter Pan as a teenager, and she still identifies with the boy, sharing not only his love of flying but also his refusal to grow up. John (Daniel Jenkins) is a college professor, while Jim (David Chandler) and Michael (Keith Reddin) are doctors who have followed in footsteps of their father, a local pediatrician back in the day. The youngest, Wendy (Lisa Emery), the apple of her father’s eye, appears particularly distraught over the dire circumstances. “Peter Pan” aficionados will notice that these names match those of key characters in the book. The achingly poignant drama finds poetry in the peculiar dynamic of a family reunion, studded with reminiscences of key childhood moments anyone can relate to. Occasionally, each of the old man’s children reverts to their role when growing up, stirring old rivalries and recriminations. Under the resourceful direction of Les Waters, the characters are richly drawn and expertly portrayed. Ann is based on Ruhl’s mother, who actually


Sept. 21 – Oct. 5, 2017

Photo by Joan Marcus

Kathleen Chalfant and Ron Crawford in Sarah Ruhl’s “For Peter Pan on her 70th birthday,” directed by Les Waters, at Playwrights Horizons through Oct. 1.

played Peter Pan in her youth, and some of the dialogue is lifted from interviews with her extended family. The lead role is tailor-made for Chalfant, whose mischievous grin and sprightly demeanor conjures Peter Pan even before she dons the famous green tights, tunic, and feathered cap. Arguing is a family sport. The siblings spar about politics, religion, afterlife, and euthanasia. By liberally upping the dose of their dad’s morphine, is it murder or simply palliative care? “It’s about staying ahead of the pain,” says Jim defensively. Ann recalls an earlier trauma putting down the ailing family dog. The pooch, played by Macy, who starred in the recent touring production of “Annie,” makes several heart-

warming, ghostly appearances and hits all of her marks. After their father finally takes his last breath, the siblings breathe a sigh of relief. The second part finds the family at a large dining table at the family homestead, holding an Irish wake — drinking Jameson’s whiskey, cracking jokes, and trying find solace in their shared experience. “I pride myself somehow on not growing up,” Ann says, equating that with being “programmed” and “ossified.” Michael’s mantra used to be “immortality through immaturity.” In the final part — a metatheatrical fantasia set in their childhood bedroom and a warped version of Neverland — the siblings play roles in an otherworldly

production of “Peter Pan.” Tinker Bell is there and so is Captain James Hook, embodied with dastardly panache by Chandler. They discover the Lost Boys and the Jolly Roger. And yes, there is an abundant amount of jubilant flying involved. To this tenderly affecting drama’s credit, the cables miraculously disappear in our imaginations, and we are convinced the fairy dust is real. Runtime: 90 minutes, no intermission. Through Oct. 1 at Playwrights Horizons (416 W. 42nd St., btw. Ninth & 10th Aves.). Tues.–Sat. at 7:30pm; Sun. at 7pm; Sat.–Sun. at 2pm. For tickets ($59-$99), visit ticketcentral. com or 212-279-4900. Artist info at visit playwrightshorizons.org. DowntownExpress.com

Just Do Art: The Awkward Adolescence Edition BY SCOTT STIFFLER

AUTHOR READING: “LORDS OF THE SCHOOLYARD” Set in 1970s southern suburbia, long before kids would be driven to suicide by cutting remarks hurled into cyberspace, the merciless tormentors in Ed Hamilton’s debut novel get their results the old-fashioned way — through face-to-face intimidation, made all the easier by adults who look the other way. “We were doing part of their job for them,” says the narrator of his coaches and teachers, “by showing that difference and weakness were prohibited.” An indictment of suburban boredom and banality as well as the rush we get from grabbing power and being given attention, “Lords of the Schoolyard” is told in fl ashbacks by Tommy Donaldson in adult form — whose candid observations about cruelty, alienation, opportunism, and betrayal never quite confi rm that the “classroom cop” has evolved to the point of rehabilitation and regret; only steely self-awareness. Released last week to coincide with October’s National Bullying Prevention Month, “Lords of the Schoolyard” follows Hamilton’s 2015 collection of short story sketches (“The Chintz Age: Tales of Love and Loss for a New New York”) and 2007’s true tales of living in an iconic NYC landmark (“Legends of the Chelsea Hotel: Living with Artists and Outlaws of New York’s Rebel Mecca”). Whether through nonfiction or pure fl ights of fancy, Kentucky native Hamilton’s knack for hurling gritty little details at the reader will leave lasting marks long after the fi nal page has been turned. Get the vocal version of that sensation when the Chelsea resident reads from “Lords” at a Lower East Side venue, next Friday. Sept. 29, 7pm at Bluestockings Bookstore, Café, & Activist Center (172 Allen St., btw. Stanton & Rivington Sts.). Free (donations accepted; $5 suggested). Visit edhamilton.nyc, bluestockings.com, and stompoutbullying.org.

Courtesy Sagging Meniscus Press

Photo by Skye Morse-Hodgson

Chelsea’s Ed Hamilton reads from his debut novel, “Lords of the Schoolyard,” at a Lower East Side bookstore.

Sam Soghor, pictured, blends his own bio with that of co-writer Ben Gassman to flesh out the guy who runs “Sam’s Tea Shack.”

Ben Gassman and Sam Soghor. Directed by Meghan Finn; featuring Sam Soghor with Design by Normandy Sherwood; special guest performances by Adam Leon (9/21), Eliza Bent (9/27 & 9/28), and Rebecca Patek (9/30).


“SAM’S TEA SHACK” For the hard-partying, soft-spoken, rap-loving, storytelling shape shifter who presides over “Sam’s Tea Shack,” all roads, even the ancient ones, lead back to Queens. While serving up the titular beverage, your host recalls colorful tales of his youth (schoolmate of Lin-Manuel Miranda; guest of honor at a coke-flowing, adult-oriented, Studio 54-set bar mitzvah) while bringing all of the curiosity, albeit none of academic qualifications, of a genealogist, anthropologist, and psychoanalyst to his “Ashkenazi Jewish boy’s fantasy he is amongst his ancestors: central Asian nomads.” Throw in sizable side orders of pop culture punditry, food criticism, and fatherly anxiety, and you’re right back where we started — in that culturally diverse borough accessible along the F train. Whether connected to the past (his grandmother on her death bed “looked quite Chinese”), summing up the present (“If the city had a king there would be more order; but the city doesn’t have a king, and I don’t want more DowntownExpress.com

Photo by Olivia Ellis

Jacob Grover’s first full-length production is no wreck, but you’ll still be rubbernecking “Demonstration of a Drunk Driving Accident.”

order”), or planning the future (he’ll book Tuvan throat singers for his son’s coming of age ceremony), Sam never met an observation he didn’t want to premise with “I’m just saying.” Beware of that phrase, because something big is about to drop. And if not, well, you can’t fault a show that keeps trying to ply you with rugelach. Through Oct. 1; Thurs., Sept. 21/28 and Wed., Sep. 29 at 9:30pm; Tues., Sept. 26, Fri., Sept. 20 & Sun., Oct. 1 at 7pm. At The Tank (312 W. 36th St., btw. Eighth & Ninth Aves.). For tickets ($12, 1 drink minimum), visit thetanknyc.org. Written by

Students stage a cautionary play about drunk driving while facing some sobering facts about themselves, in recent NYU Tisch graduate Jacob Grover’s fi rst full-length production. Mr. Grover was seldom if ever asleep behind the wheel while taking the classes that earned him a BFA in dramatic writing, because “Demonstration of a Drunk Driving Accident” is, well, the hack phrase of choice that comes to mind is “remarkably assured.” Rest assured, the playwright doesn’t go down the easy road. The group of high school seniors who struggle to put on the play are a complex bunch, with the requisite amount of skeletons, rivalries, and anxieties that tend to come to a boil when a group of young people are put in a confi ned space and forced to bond. Compared to the library in “The Breakfast Club,” the gutted car body that serves as the set piece for their at-risk production seems positively claustrophobic — all the better for coaxing things to the surface. Thurs./Fri., Sept. 21/22 at 8pm; Sat/Sun., Sept. 23/24 at 7pm. At the Alchemy Theater Laboratory (104 W. 14th St., btw. Sixth & Seventh Aves.). For tickets ($10), visit brownpapertickets.com. Artist info at jacobpgrover.com. Sept. 21 – Oct. 5, 2017


Ground Zero Museum Workshop Offers Intimate Glimpses of 9/11

Photo by Gary Marlon Suson

“FDNY Honor Guard for Fallen Brother” (March, 2002) is one of many photos by Gary Marlon Suson at the Ground Zero Museum Workshop.

BY LEVAR ALONZO A museum founded, and often funded, by a photographer who spent seven months at Ground Zero is facing a challenge far greater than the struggle to keep its doors open. “It’s surprising to realize that it has been 16 years since the 9/11 catastrophe, and more and more people I meet forget what really happened surrounding America’s worst terrorist attack in US history,” said Ground Zero Museum Workshop curator Gary Marlon Suson, shortly before the Sept. 7 unveiling of a new sculpture and companion documentary timed for the 12th anniversary of the interactive museum dedicated to education and reflection. Suson, an FDNY Honorary Battalion Chief, was the official photographer at Ground Zero for the Uniformed Firefi ghters Association — one of only two photographers (and the only one with full access) allowed at the site past the fi rst few weeks, when then-mayor Rudy Giuliani closed it to press out of respect for the families of those whose bodies were still being pulled from the site. Suson’s capture of the North Tower in mid-collapse was shot on the rooftop of the museum he later founded (located on W. 14th St. in the Meatpacking District). Unlike the considerable distance from which that shot was taken, Suson’s work at Ground Zero consisted largely of close-ups, to emphasize the intimate nature of recovery efforts. “I focused more on people, and the emotions of Ground Zero,” Suson noted of the many “private moments, like the honor guards.”

In addition to over 100 of Suson’s photos, the 1,000-square-foot second floor space that houses the museum also displays dozens of images and artifacts of love, death, and sacrifice — including window glass, a ticket stub of the last PATH train to arrive at World Trade Center, and white lobby marble from the towers. The museum pales in comparison to the much larger, more wellknown, and better-funded National September 11 Memorial & Museum. Suson said that on slow months, he has had to put up his own money to keep his own museum going. He has also started to work with the Memorial & Museum by allowing them to use his photographs. “I’m just happy that my images are going to be in a place that more people can see them,” Suson said. “As challenging as it is to keep the [Ground Zero Workshop] museum’s doors open, it’s minuscule compared to the challenges faced by the victims’ families on a daily basis.” What sets the museum apart is its interactive nature. Visitors can pick up the artifacts, and hear Suson’s detailed and emotional fi rst-hand accounts of being in the pit (he not only shot photos, but was also part of the recovery effort, working with rescuers in the search for survivors). One thought-provoking photograph shows a bunker jacket discovered in January 2002 among the remains of the South Tower lobby, which belonged to FDNY Chaplain Father Mychal Judge. A Franciscan friar and Catholic priest, Judge rushed Downtown from St. Francis of Assisi Church (135 W. 31st St.) following the fi rst tower’s collapse, and was

Photo by Rachel Lenihan

Photo by Gary Marlon Suson

A visitor listens to Suson’s narration while viewing his photograph of Father Mychal Judge’s bunker jacket, found among the collapsed remains of the South Tower.

January, 2002: Gary Marlon Suson, 100 feet below Ground Zero at the remains of Commuter’s Cafe in the PATH subway station.


Sept. 21 – Oct. 5, 2017


“North Tower Collapse from Meatpacking District, 10:02 A.M., 9/11/01.”

fatally injured during the second tower’s collapse. Suson has worked hard to offer a frank and respectful presentation of the grim subject matter. By focusing on recovery efforts rather than images of the tower collapsing, the museum is very kid-friendly — and its simple design and aesthetic, Suson recalled, stems his 2004 visit to the Netherlands, when he toured the home of Anne Frank, the Jewish teen who wrote a diary of her life before being sent to a Nazi death camp. “The Anne Frank [Museum Amsterdam] amazed me at how small her room was, yet almost 10 million people go a year to see her room,” he said. “There is nothing in the room but it was the importance of being there.” The experience being in Anne Frank’s room inspired him to “come back home to build something similar in theory” where education and respectful remembrance went handin-hand. That mission was further realized on Sept. 7, when the museum unveiled a new sculpture entitled “Metamorphosis,” created by Belgium-born, New York City based artist Marie-Hélèn. “The artist used her own original DowntownExpress.com

photo of the World Trade Center that was then heat pressed onto trade center metal,” Suson said. “We gave the artist glass from the towers that she chipped and placed throughout the project.” In the center of the fl ag that is fashioned to the top of the artwork is a gemstone that was made from World Trade Center glass. The glass was shaped into gems to be placed in rings for 9/11 families. One side depicts the towers engulfed in fl ames, with broken glass representing the past. On the other side is an untouched tower. This new tower represents hope. “My goal,” Suson said of his own hopes, “is to keep the memory of 9/11 alive through images and artwork — so that our world doesn’t forget.” At 420 W. 14th St. (2nd Floor, btw. Ninth & 10th Aves.). Museum Hours: Wed.–Sun., 11am–3pm. Admission: $25 ($19 for ages 4-12 and seniors 65+, free for 9/11 family members; $15 for military. Discounted rates for groups of 20+ (maximum guests per tour, 30). For more info, visit groundzeromuseumworkshop.org or call 212-920-4264.

Photos by Gary Marlon Suson

Now on permanent display, Marie-Hélène’s recently unveiled “Metamorphosis” (2017; 10.5 x 3.4 in.; steel, hydrographic transfer of image, paint, glass).

Sept. 21 – Oct. 5, 2017


OCCUPY Continued from page 9

An activist who goes by the monicker “Miss K� was also inspired by Occupy Wall Street to become a crusader for affordable housing, which see sees as the only solution to the city’s homelessness crisis. “My activism started right after the protesters were moved out,� she said. “I was there this year to let people know that finding affordable housing is a crisis and homelessness is on the rise.� She is apart of an organization called

NEW DIMENSIONS Continued from page 5

Buenos Aires — and Michael GoldmanGilead, a member of the special Israeli police investigative unit created to gather evidence for the 1961 Jerusalem trial of Eichmann, which finally brought him to justice 16 years after the war. The museum is currently hosting the exhibit Operation Finale: The Capture and Trial of Adolf Eichmann, which recounts the infamous Nazi fugitive’s discovery and capture by Mossad, the Israeli national intelligence agency, and the subsequent trial that led to Eichmann’s death by hanging in December 1961. The exhibit features

Picture the Homeless which is fighting against landlords who hold on to vacant property or empty housing units until they can sell them for profit. The organization is also pushing the city to compile a public list all vacant properties throughout the city. “Many of the groups that you see protesting are from people that learned from Occupy. They were there during the protest, they watched and learned,� said Halasa. “I must say the legacy of Occupy Wall Street will forever live on.�

FIX Continued from page 2

weighted considerably in the Big Apple’s favor, leaving Wright the opportunity to gather his members’ votes into a block and choose Newell as the nominee, according to the grass-roots favorite. “New York’s county leader still have the opportunity to do the right thing,� Newell said Monday morning. “I know that Brian claims victory based on a back-room deal, but that’s not inked yet.� That would mean Wright snub-

bing some of the state’s most powerful blue-party honchos, including Mayor de Blasio and Gov. Cuomo, who — in a rare moment of agreement — have both thrown their weight behind Kavanagh. But if he doesn’t, it proves that Tammany Hall levels of corruption are at work, Newell said. “The last time a county committee vote in New York was ignored was in the 1950s under Tammany Hall,� Newell said. Assemblyman Kavanagh could not be reached before deadline.

POSTED Continued from page 12

declassified artifacts from Mossad that illustrate a historic moment of justice that unfolded more than 50 years ago. Both Operation Finale and New Dimensions offer visitors a powerful and visceral connection to the Holocaust and its aftermath that goes far beyond what you can get from history books, according to one museum volunteer. “Everything here is a completely different experience from just sitting and reading — you get to see, listen, and interact with emotions and history,� said Councilman Rory Lancman (D–Queens), as he guided on a tour of the museum.

Photo by Georgine Benvenuto

New Dimensions in Testimony participant and Holocaust survivor Pinchas Gutter stands next to his question-answering holographic avatar.

This is flat-out stupid. These sidewalk markers indicate who was honored with a ticker tape parade on Lower Broadway. PĂŠtain and Laval were so honored before they disgraced themselves by bad behavior. The parades happened and the markers should stay. AND I want to know how the group to make the decisions about removing “statuesâ€? will be constituted!! Maryanne Braverman

DISCOVER REAL POSSIBILITIES ACROSS THE FIVE BOROUGHS.          future. Come to one of our free AARP MoneySmarts workshops featuring unbiased information to help you                             866-227-7442   aarp.org/nyc.

/aarpny @aarpny Rea al Possibilit i ie es is a tra adem d ark of AARP.


Sept. 21 – Oct. 5, 2017



Sept. 21 – Oct. 5, 2017



TOP DRIVER DISTRACTIONS Using mobile phones Leading the list of the top distractions behind the wheel are mobile phones. Phones now do more than just place calls, and drivers often cannot pull away from their phones, even when driving. According to the California Department of Motor Vehicles, studies have shown that driving performance is lowered and the level of distraction is higher for drivers who are heavily engaged in cell


Sept. 21 – Oct. 5, 2017

phone conversations. The use of a hands-free device does not lower distraction levels. The percentage of vehicle crashes and nearcrashes attributed to dialing is nearly identical to the number associated with talking or listening.

Daydreaming Many people will admit to daydreaming behind the wheel or looking at a person or object outside of the car for too long. Per-

haps they’re checking out a house in a new neighborhood or thought they saw someone they knew on the street corner. It can be easy to veer into the direction your eyes are focused, causing an accident. In addition to trying to stay focused on the road, some drivers prefer the help of lane departure warning systems.

Eating Those who haven’t quite mastered walking and

chewing gum at the same time may want to avoid eating while driving. The majority of foods require a person’s hands to be taken off of the wheel and their eyes to be diverted from the road. Reaching in the back seat to share some French fries with the kids is also distracting. Try to eat meals before getting in the car. For those who must snack while en route, take a moment to pull over at

a rest area and spend 10 minutes snacking there before resuming the trip.

Reading Glancing at an advertisement, updating a Facebook status or reading a book are all activities that should be avoided when driving. Even pouring over a traffic map or consulting the digital display of a GPS system can be distracting.


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Downtown Express  

September 21, 2017

Downtown Express  

September 21, 2017