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DAN'S PAPERS, March 14, 2008 Page 27

Alex McCord

Jill Zarin

Bethanny Frankel

Ramona Singer

LuAnn de Lesseps

The Entitled The Real Housewives of NYC & the Hamptons are in Your House on TV By Janine Cheviot & Victoria L. Cooper Last week, Bravo premiered “The Real Housewives of New York City,” a spin-off of the network’s reality hit series “The Real Housewives of Orange County.” Bravo has made a brand name for women who vow to party as hard as they work (being married or having kids is not a requirement). Although audacious and nouveau, we’re not convinced that these housewives have “real” New Yorker sensibilities. Real New Yorkers, by our definition, have an element of chic. Though they consider themselves savvy chic, we wouldn’t even call these New Yorkers shabby chic. In fact, we’re not really sure what the show’s

allure is, since, in our opinion, these women have little sex appeal and only seem to be trying to outspend one another with their insatiable appetites for luxuries. Reality television is often the result of clever editing and faux environmental situations, but this series should be interesting to watch because the vanity in Manhattan and the Hamptons actually is real. And what a popular genre it is nowadays. Bravo calls it a “docu-soap,” which is a little silly, because we’re not so certain that this series is as unscripted as it appears to be. We’re also counting how many times these new reality stars get name-dropped in the Post’s “PageSix” column.

With the first episode of “The Real Housewives of New York City” shot last summer, it came as no surprise that much of it took place in the Hamptons. If you didn’t get the chance to meet the housewives last week, here is a rundown. Ramona Singer, a career woman who buys excess inventory and resells it to discount stores, hails from the Upper East Side (UES) and starts off the show by saying, “I’m proud of being a sexy Mom, even though at times it drives my daughter crazy.” Her daughter Avery, 12, who was “raised conservatively,” brilliantly upholds this bizarre mother/daugh(continued on the next page)

LIPA VS. ENDANGERED SALAMANDERS ON THE PIKE By April Gonzales In a recent interview with Andrew Sabin, President of the board of the South Fork Natural History Museum and Nature Center, another side of the LIPA power line project came to light. Area residents have been highly focused on the height of the additional telephone poles and their visual impact on the landscape. The public discussion, however, has yet to address the environmental impact of the expansion of the substation off of the Bridgehampton Sag Harbor Turnpike. Sabin wants to draw attention to the ponds and wetlands in the area where the new substation will be built.

Sensitive habitats in that area may include those of tiger salamanders and fringed orchids. The proposed expansion of the existing substation will double the present output of 69 kilovolts. The plan will need to be reviewed by the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation according to Aphrodite Montalvo, a DEC spokesperson. To date the agency has not received a permit application, which is necessary if there is to be any construction within 100 feet of a fresh water wetland. LIPA will not be exempt from any state mandate and a permit from the DEC would be necessary if any wetlands and salamander habitat are involved.

An environmental review has to be done to see if the project is suitable for the location. The wildlife division of the DEC would do a survey to see if there are any protected species in the area. AKRF Inc. was hired by LIPA to prepare an environmental impact statement for the site. Ecologists and environmental biologists have visited the area for a preliminary survey, but more investigation is necessary. So, will it be the substation or the salamanders? Sabin, clearly on the side of the salamanders, has contacted both the DEC and the Town of Southampton in his efforts to protect their (continued on page 34)

Dan's Papers Mar. 14, 2008  

Dan's Papers, the 51-year-old bible of the Hamptons, is owned by Manhattan Media, a multi-media publishing company based in New York City,...

Dan's Papers Mar. 14, 2008  

Dan's Papers, the 51-year-old bible of the Hamptons, is owned by Manhattan Media, a multi-media publishing company based in New York City,...