The local paper for the Upper East Side
WEEK OF JANUARY BEYOND MUSEUM MILE
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Judy Crawford and John Doyle of Crawford Doyle booksellers. Photo: James Freund
A BOOKSTORE’S ‘BITTERSWEET’ END
A bicyclist on the new Second Avenue protected bike lane near 76th Street. Photo: Michael Garofalo
Fans turn out from near and far as Crawford Doyle closes on Madison Avenue
SECOND AVENUE BIKE LANE DEBUTS
BY CHRISTOPHER MOORE
The booksellers were on duty, even during the Jan. 5 reception marking the closing of Crawford Doyle, a retail mainstay on Madison Avenue for the last 21 years. A customer came up to co-owner Judy Crawford and said, “You can give me advice,” and then wondered aloud about what to read next. As longtime fans of the store drank wine, ate cheese and shared memories, Crawford suggested Ian McEwan’s new book, “The Nutshell,” explaining, “It’s very clear and it’s not too long.” The customer seemed satisﬁed with the suggestion. Crawford and her husband John Doyle had another ongoing task that night: comforting customers upset at the loss of a bookstore in the neighborhood. “This is bittersweet,” Crawford acknowledged. “We didn’t want to wait until we were forced to make a decision.” One staffer, Emma McNairy, said it was weird to see the store being physically dismantled. “It’s like a wake,” she said. Customers came from near and far. Maureen Berescik lives in Connecticut, but showed up for the farewell because she treasured her memories of
The thoroughfare’s protected path now extends nearly uninterrupted from 68th Street to 125th BY MICHAEL GAROFALO
The long-awaited completion of the Second Avenue subway dominated the Upper East Side news cycle in the ﬁrst week of 2017, but with the opening of the Q train came another signiﬁcant, if lessheralded, project at street level: the implementation of parkingprotected bike lanes along Second Avenue above 68th Street. The Department of Transportation recently ﬁnished the construction of a designated bike lane along the east side of Second Avenue from 105th Street to 68th Street. Parallel street
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parking and pedestrian crossing islands form a buffer protecting cyclists in the bike lane, which is painted green, from southbound motor traffic. The protected bike lane now runs uninterrupted from 125th Street to 68th Street, with the exception of the block between 70th Street and 69th Street, where parked vehicles do not separate the bike lane from motor traffic. The Second Avenue lane joins a similar northbound lane on First Avenue in providing protected north-south thoroughfares for cyclists on the Upper East Side. Joe Enoch, an avid biker who is familiar with the area, said that the new lanes are “very visible” and offer “just about all you could ask for as a cyclist when it comes
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to convenience and safety.” The bike lanes remain a contentious topic for some residents, however, who say that bikers contribute to dangerous conditions for pedestrians. Cyclists, they say, too often make illegal turns, disobey traffic signals and ride in the wrong direction in the one-way bike lanes. Miriam Silverberg, who lives near 57th Street and First Avenue, said that the bike lanes themselves are a good idea, but that police need to ensure that cyclists use them properly. “They act like pedestrians when they feel like it and like autos when they feel like it,” Silverberg said. “If you’re not watching they will slam right into you,” she continued.
A pedestrian was critically injured after being struck by a cyclist in a hit-and-run incident near East 70th Street and First Avenue in November. DOT also plans to install a protected bike lane from 59th Street to 43rd Street on Second Avenue. What that phase of the project is completed, the only remaining stretches of Second Avenue with-
CONTINUED ON PAGE 6 Jewish women and girls light up the world by lighting the Shabbat candles every Friday evening 18 minutes before sunset. Friday, January 13 – 4:33 pm. For more information visit www.chabaduppereastside.com
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MEET THE CHEF: 5 NAPKIN BURGER’S ANDY D’AMICO Taste what Andy D’Amico is serving up at Our Town’s Art of Food at Sotheby’s on February 4. Tickets available at www.artoffoodny.com What’s the story behind 5 Napkin Burger? In 2003 I opened a French restaurant, Nice Matin, on the Upper West Side with my partner Simon Oren. He asked if I’d put a burger on the menu—he had an idea for the name, “5 Napkin Burger,” so I said sure, and I built a burger that was somewhat provençale: it has rosemary aioli, comté cheese, and caramelized onions. The burger itself got a lot of press, and down the road Simon wanted to open a restaurant called 5 Napkin Burger—he always did. So we opened the ﬁrst one in 2008. The same burger is on that menu, and is still the best selling one. So 5 Napkin is a premium burger concept featuring 10 ounce burgers. We’re one of the only premium, chefdriven, burger chains. And along with the burgers, we serve both comforting and interesting sides and appetizers;
time to do something else. It was one of those odd things, I had started to set myself up to go back to school and ﬁnd a job, and I wound up working with a friend in the restaurant at the front of the house, and I worked my way to the back because I wanted to work in the kitchen. And a friend of a friend told me to look into the Culinary Institute, and one thing led to another and I ended up leaving community college and going to the CIA. I did it on the ﬂip of a switch. I got straight to work in a hotel in Manhattan when I finished school—it was 1978, which was right at the beginning of the American Renaissance of food. It just so happened that Wolfgang Puck was the consulting chef on the job at this hotel at the time, and Emril was the cook that was next to me. It was a typical hotel staff of young guys like us.
we do a nacho dish with waffle fries that is very popular. The newest burger we’ve been featuring is a truffle egg burger. It has truffle butter on it, a fried egg, and mushroom ketchup. It’s very good. But I’m not doing a burger for the Art of Food Event.
Why not? I knew right away, after reading about The Art of Food, that my dish was supposed to have an artsy quality to it. I had, at the time, just started doing an avocado hummus that I’m really fond of. I knew right away, plating wise, that I’d be able to do an abstract kind of plate using the garnishes on the dish, and that I could make something pretty and artsy while showing the other side of 5 Napkin. We do burgers, and we’re famous for them, but we also have these very creative appetizers and sides, so I wanted to show this other dimension of who we are.
What’s your number one cooking tip?
How did you get started in the culinary world? I wasn’t cooking since I was 15, or doing dishes as a child. I got started late, and it really was a second career for me.
My father was a musician, so I grew up around music. I was always in the school band, and ended up picking up the base guitar in high school, wanting to be a young rock musician. I wound up in a club band. We’re talking early-seventies, so we played rock and disco. But, I eventually decided it was
People don’t realize how important it is to work with a sharp knife. When you go to school it’s the ﬁrst thing you learn: the different cuts. It’s endlessly boring, and you’re terribly scared of cutting your fingers off, but there’s just a real difference when you prep ingredients properly with a sharp knife. Even if you’re just garnishing with cilantro or parsley—if you don’t cut it properly it bruises and doesn’t taste right.
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CRIME WATCH BY JERRY DANZIG STATS FOR THE WEEK Reported crimes from the 19th precinct Week to Date
Tony Webster, via ďŹ‚ickr
A man was robbed at knifepoint on East 73rd Street in the early morning of Friday, Jan. 6, police said. The 20-yearold was walking west between Third and Lexington Avenues about 3 a.m. when two men approached him from behind him and threatened him with a knife. They wound up cutting the back of the victimâ€™s jacket with the knife before taking his wallet and ďŹ‚eeing on foot. The stolen wallet contained four credit cards, a MetroCard, and $25 cash. The victim was not injured, police said.
Pickpockets continue to ďŹ nd victims on crosstown buses. On Dec. 29, a 55-year-old woman got off the crosstown bus at Fifth Avenue and East 86th Street and found that her closed bag was now open and her wallet missing. The items stolen included a $1,500 Louis Vuitton wallet, $500 in cash, six credit cards, a Metro North card, a driverâ€™s license and store cards. No unauthorized usage had showed up at the time of the police report.
Most people enjoy cheese, but one man may come to fear it. At about 9 p.m. Jan. 4, a verbal dispute at the Morton Williams store at 1066 Third Ave. escalated to a case of assault when a 62-year-old male Upper East Side resident threw a block of cheese at a 38 Matt-year-old man from Brooklyn who was entering the store. The 38-year-old experienced substantial pain as a result of the assault, and the older man was charged with assault 2 for using cheese as a weapon.
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Grand Larceny Auto
FITTING END Score another win for police and the Bloomingdaleâ€™s loss-prevention team. On Jan. 2, three women â€” a 41-yearold from Brooklyn, a 29-year-old from the Bronx, and a 30-year-old from Brooklyn â€” took items of merchandise worth nearly $6,000 into the ďŹ tting rooms at Bloomingdaleâ€™s, hid them in shopping bags, and attempted to leave the store without paying. Loss prevention personnel intercepted the women and found the missing items: jackets, a coat, two pairs of jeans, a dress and a Burberry jumper, with a
combined value of $5,807. The three shoplifters were arrested and charged with grand larceny, criminal possession of stolen property and possession of burglar tools.
BB BOMBARDMENT BB pellets are more than toys, as one local establishment discovered. On Jan. 5, someone shot the front glass window of the Passion cleaners at 1805 First Avenue with BB pellets, causing $800 in damage. No injuries were reported.
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Useful Contacts POLICE NYPD 19th Precinct
153 E. 67th St.
159 E. 85th St.
FIRE FDNY 22 Ladder Co 13 FDNY Engine 39/Ladder 16
157 E. 67th St.
FDNY Engine 53/Ladder 43
1836 Third Ave.
FDNY Engine 44
221 E. 75th St.
CITY COUNCIL Councilmember Daniel Garodnick
211 E. 43rd St. #1205
Councilmember Ben Kallos
244 E. 93rd St.
STATE LEGISLATORS State Sen. Jose M. Serrano
1916 Park Ave. #202
State Senator Liz Krueger
1850 Second Ave.
Assembly Member Dan Quart
360 E. 57th St.
Assembly Member Rebecca Seawright
1365 First Ave.
COMMUNITY BOARD 8
505 Park Ave. #620
222 E. 79th St.
112 E. 96th St.
328 E. 67th St.
1465 York Ave.
100 E. 77th St.
HOSPITALS Lenox Hill NY-Presbyterian / Weill Cornell
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The New York State Senate Chamber. Photo: Wikimedia Commons.
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STATE LAWMAKERS GET TO WORK Democrats, Republican start session bickering about transparency
BY DAVID KLEPPER
New York state lawmakers began their work for 2017 last week with a vote to prohibit the use of cellphones as recording devices in the Senate chambers. The ban is intended to protect the chamber’s decorum, according to lawmakers who included it in the Senate’s internal rules. Democrats, however, called it an infringement of free speech that could make it harder for journalists and the public to share information about state government. “It’s an insult to New Yorkers,” said Senator Brad Hoylman. “We are curtailing an opportunity to bring transpar-
ency to this chamber.” Photojournalists have long had permission to take pictures from the Senate gallery, a practice that Deputy Majority Leader John DeFrancisco said would continue. He dismissed concerns over the ban, noting that live Senate proceedings are already broadcast on the Senate’s website and that traditional photojournalists will still be allowed to shoot photos from the public gallery. “It’s pretty logical,” DeFrancisco, R-Syracuse, said of the rule change, which passed on a voice vote. “We are as transparent as (we) could possibly be.” Highlights of the six-month session will likely include state voting laws, Uber’s proposal to expand upstate and a proposal from Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo to make state university tuition free for middle-class residents.
Other proposals expected to draw debate this year include bills to end the practice of prosecuting and imprisoning 16- and 17-year-old offenders as adults and to authorize people with terminal illnesses to request life-ending drugs from a physician. Speaker Carl Heastie, a Bronx Democrat, said lawmakers will also work to resist Presidentelect Donald Trump if he and congressional Republicans move to rein in abortion rights, immigration, health care beneﬁts or efforts to ﬁght climate change. “There is little doubt that the change in our federal government will create serious challenges for us in New York,” he told the Assembly. “We will continue to stand guard for all of the constitutionally-protected freedoms and inclusive public policies that we have always championed.”
Republicans, however, said lawmakers must devote the year to improving the state’s business climate. “We’re going to stay very, very, very focused on job creation,” said Senate Leader John Flanagan, R-Long Island. Cuomo skipped the Legislature’s first day. He has had frosty relations with lawmakers in recent months and chose to hold an event in New York City at the exact hour the Legislature was set to convene. Cuomo is also choosing to forego the traditional state of the state address to lawmakers this year, instead planning a series of six regional addresses delivered next week at locations around the state. Many lawmakers blamed Cuomo late last year when talks about a legislative pay increase — the first in 18 years — fell apart.
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BOOKSTORE CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1 the shop, which she used to visit when her daughter lived nearby. â€œThis was my favorite place to be,â€? she said. â€œSo I had to make the closing night. Itâ€™s so worth it.â€? Marjorie Hilton, an Upper East Sider and self-described â€œinterior decorator to the stars,â€? described how a friend of hers, during a difficult time, visited the store every day. â€œShe felt safe here,â€? Hilton said. â€œThatâ€™s the kind of thing people need to know.â€? As booklovers mingled, another fan of the store asked Doyle, â€œWas it profitable? I know you owned the space.â€? â€œBookstores are never profitable,â€? Doyle quipped. â€œIt wasnâ€™t meant to be.â€? The store, he explained in an earlier interview, was really a post-retirement exercise after his years working for IBM. â€œI was 59 at the time,â€? said Doyle, now 82. â€œWe thought we could maybe do a 10-year project at that time. A bookstore sounded like a good idea, so we got it going. Time passed and the storeâ€™s done pretty well.â€?
The storeâ€™s ďŹ nal day would be Jan. 10, but Doyle plans to continue selling ďŹ rst editions and unique books out of his home. â€œWe have a library attached to our apartment on 90th Street and itâ€™s accessible to the public the way itâ€™s built,â€? he said. Manager Thomas Talbot was a key reason for the storeâ€™s success, Doyle said. Talbot and his team offered advice to customers. â€œThatâ€™s the difference with the chains or even Amazon,â€? said Doyle, pointing to the interaction between booksellers and customers. New Yorkers think of themselves as sophisticated and steeped in literary tradition, but the city has provided a challenging retail landscape for independent bookstores over many years. While Doyle says such stores will â€œnever play the role they once did,â€? he heralds his location between 81st and 82nd streets. â€œFor any retail business, it starts with the location,â€? he said. Even without Crawford Doyle, there will be independent survivors. The Corner Bookstore, north on Madison
Avenue, may inherit some Crawford Doyle customers. Shakespeare & Company survives to the south on Madison Avenue, near Hunter College. On the West Side there are three Book Culture shops, owned by Chris Doeblin. â€œIndie bookstores are having a moment and several, even in New York, are expanding,â€? Doeblin said. He explained how Crawford Doyle was aided by Doyleâ€™s having purchased his retail space, but insisted there was another secret to success: â€œJohnâ€™s love of books and his ability to select the people that could run the place. They probably deserve a great deal of credit.â€? Doyle said heâ€™s hoping to send some of his staff members to Doeblin and Book Culture. On the night of the closing reception, though, Doyle took a moment to wonder about the future. He looked down from his upstairs office to the bookstore below, customers bustling, and thought about what would come next for the space. â€œIt will be full of womenâ€™s clothes or perfume,â€? he predicted.
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out protected bike lanes will be from 68th Street to 59th Street, along the approach to the Queensboro Bridge, and from 42nd Street to 34th Street, near the entrance to the QueensMidtown Tunnel. â€œDOT will continue to work closely with the MTA to build out the 2nd Avenue bike lanes and bus lanes,â€? a DOT spokesperson said in an email. Second Avenueâ€™s 59th Street and 34th Street intersections are both among the most dangerous in Manhattan. The 59th Street and Second Avenue intersection is the single most dangerous in the borough, and is the site of 150 collisions per year, on average. The bike and pedestrian advocacy group Transportation Alternatives recently issued a report calling on DOT to extend the Second Avenue protected bike lane from 68th Street to 59th Street. Currently, the parking-protected lane shifts to an unprotected lane, running adjacent to motor traffic, at 68th Street. The bike lane then ends altogether below 63rd Street, in the blocks lead-
praised DOT for the recent improvements to the neighborhoodâ€™s bike infrastructure, but acknowledged that the 59th Street intersection remains a problem area. â€œThe location is complicated because it impacts inter-borough commutes,â€? he said. Kallos said that he has been in communication with DOT about potential changes to the intersection. â€œWe have to balance commerce and safety, making sure people get where they need to safely,â€? he said. White, of Transportation Alternatives, says that his organizationâ€™s proposal for the intersection, which calls for a protected bike lane, wouldnâ€™t impact traffic flow and could even have a positive impact by making it clear where bikers and motorists belong in the street. White said that Transportation Alternatives will issue a report with proposals on protected bike lanes for the area of Second Avenue near the Queens-Midtown Tunnel later this year. â€œTraffic flowing to and from the Queensboro Bridge and Queens-Midtown Tunnel is important, but itâ€™s not more important than peopleâ€™s lives,â€? he said.
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ing to the complex 59th Street intersection, where drivers turn left to access the Queensboro Bridge or continue south on Second Avenue. Bikers in this area must enter the trafďŹ c ďŹ‚ow and avoid left-turning vehicles in order to continue south on Second Avenue, though there are currently no street markings indicating shared bike lanes. The 59th Street intersection â€œhas always been the most dangerous part of Second Avenue for a bicyclist,â€? Enoch said. â€œThereâ€™s no bike lane there. The drivers are very tense and angry there because theyâ€™re trying to get on the bridge or around traffic.â€? Transportation Alternatives recently published a report calling on DOT to extend the protected bike lanes from 68th Street to 59th Street. â€œItâ€™s irresponsible to have a lane that funnels cyclists to one of the most dangerous areas of the city without any protection,â€? said Paul Steely White, the nonproďŹ tâ€™s director said. â€œThat was the impetus for our report: the lane is failing cyclists when they need it the most,â€? he said. Councilman Ben Kallos, who represents the Upper East Side,
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MEMORIES AND BOUNDARIES EAST SIDE OBSERVER BY ARLENE KAYATT
Manhattan moms’ memories: New Year’s Day, longtime neighbors standing in apartment building lobby. First neighbor reminiscing, “My daughter just got married at Tavern on the Green. Made me cry a little when I remembered her sitting in a high-chair in the Crystal Room.” Second neighbor, “Oh, do I remember her. She was a real little brat, always terrorizing my 3-yearold.” First mom, “I like my memory better. Happy New Year.” In praise of public service ads: In a recent 2016 end of year issue, the Wall Street Journal took notice of The Best and The Worst in some advertising campaigns in an article headlined, “Ads Flirted With Boundaries of Taste.” They gave thumbs up
to Sprint’s successful ads resulting from their having poached Verizon’s pitchman, and to Taco Bell’s ads with selﬁes transforming heads into giant tacos with drizzling Diablo sauce. And then there were The Worst. Will pass on those. Don’t know why a really effective public service ad wasn’t recognized among The Best. Other no-smoking ads have graphically emphasized the devastating physical consequences of smoking. Never being a smoker myself, I could only wonder how anyone could smoke after seeing those ads. Friends who are or were smokers found them a turn-off because, you know, thatwouldn’t/couldn’t-happen-to-me attitude. But the “Que Sera, Sera” no-smoking ad deserves recognition and takes the issue to another level. A couple, probably husband and wife, at home, and a young child sitting at a table probably doing homework is looking on. Husband,
in his 40s, rises out of bed in hospital type PJs, oxygen tube through his nose circling his ears, into the arms of his wife. The couple hold each other, dance in place, and look soulfully, sadly into each other’s eyes as their child looks on. No talking. Just words and music of “Que Sera Sera” in the background with the public service announcer saying, as the words appear on screen, “What will be doesn’t have to be,” along with 1-866-NYQuits phone number on the screen. Tasteful. Powerful. Deserves recognition. Online sales the old-fashioned way: Long lines are the dream of all businesses. Nowadays customers are willing to wait. You can’t sell iPads or Apples or iPods by giving them to those standing on line. But if you’re in the food business in a brick-andmortar store, you can boost sales by enticing the on liners with a taste — maybe of lobster or shrimp salad or some gravlax or a chopped liver nosh — as they wait. That’s what happened at a local appetizing store during Christmas-Hanukkah week
as behind-the-counter staff passed canape-sized servings to those waiting on line. It worked. Sales picked up. The immediate feedback, literally and ﬁguratively, worked. And everyone was smiling. Doesn’t happen with Amazon. For sure. Right of way: City street traffic needs an intervention. Some higher authority to let the public know who and what goes ﬁrst. It’s maddening. A corner on almost any avenue is home to a supermarket or a CVS or a Duane Reade with a good deal of foot traffic going in and out of the establishments. Supermarkets such as Whole Foods, Fairway, Trader Joe’s and the like have food carts and delivery people as a continuing presence on the street. So what’s a pedestrian or cyclist or skateboarder or someone in a wheelchair or with a walker or a stroller or a dog to do? Or maybe a street vendor or two selling food or wares. Everybody’s got the right to be there. Right? But who goes ﬁrst when they’re all there at the same time? Can’t ask the City Council because they’ll come up with
WHAT MATTERS MOST GRAYING NEW YORK BY MARCIA EPSTEIN
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about 50 percent of Americans older than 60 have no living will or advance directive spelling out end-of-life preferences. This is foolish, as many of the treatments that are implemented at the end of life are ineffective and can be very expensive. One way to circumvent this problem is to participate in the Stanford Letter Project, an initiative of the Stanford Successful Aging Program. The project includes a “What Matters Most” letter and is very speciﬁc as to one’s wishes. You complete a simple online questionnaire, addressing multiple topics about end-of-life wishes, such as how much sedation you might want and who should make decisions. It also includes questions about whether you’d want hospice care, to be at home or in a hospital and when
your appointed decision-maker should take over. After the form is completed you simply click print and the computerized tool at Stanford gives you a preﬁlled advance directive, along with a letter to your doctor stating your wishes. The advance directive should be notarized and copies given to several different people and agencies, such as your healthcare agent or proxy, your local hospital, your family doctor, your state’s Advance Directory Registry and others. Much more information about this new and important project can be obtained by emailing email@example.com (Dr. VJ Periyakoil is clinical associate professor of Medicine at Stanford University School of Medicine). You can also call 650-493-5000, x65039. I am going to use this tool myself and hope that this information prompts my readers to research the project for more speciﬁc details. Maybe someday I’ll understand how the government computes annual
Photo: 401(K) 2012, via ﬂickr Social Security increases, but as of now I don’t have a clue. All I know is that after waiting to hear how my 0.3 increase would affect my Social Security, I was sent a letter and found out that my annual increase is ... nothing. I’m getting the exact same amount as last year. However, my drug premium is going up, my monthly Medicare Supplement is going up, and undoubtedly my medications are going up. So where is the logic here? Something to do with gas prices? Can’t they ﬁnd a better way to decide what kind of increases people really need? We do have to eat, after all. Maybe I should be thankful that I still have Medicare and Social Security, what with the new administration determined to deprive
us of what we did, after all, pay for all those years of working. I can’t take my eyes off the news, but it’s more like rubbernecking a car wreck. You know how traffic slows just so people can see how bad the accident is? That’s me and the cable news stations. MSNBC, CNN, back and forth, back and forth. I have to put it on mute with sub-titles because John can’t stand to listen anymore. But I can’t stop. I need to hear the scary parts, just to be prepared. Sorry, I know that 20 percent of New Yorkers voted for our president-elect; most of us are terriﬁed. However, recently I was energized and uplifted by hearing Sen. Chuck Schumer and Sen. Bernie Sanders on the Rachel Maddow show voic-
Photo: Eden, Janine and Jim, via ﬂickr someone or something else giving them the right to be there. Right? What’s a person to do?
ing their plans for engaging people in the ﬁght to preserve and expand the things that really do make America great. For the ﬁrst time since the election, I felt a ray of hope. What a great show it was — just the boost many of us needed. I felt some of the awful fear melt away listening to the two of them voicing their plans and strategies. Especially important for us seniors was their total commitment to seeing that Medicare and Social Security, as well as the essence of The Affordable Care Act, not be easily overthrown by the new leadership. Organize, be involved, and don’t give up hope. That’s their message, and it lifted my spirits immeasurably. I thought you might want to know about an organization called Friends in Deed. It provides supportive programs and services to people with life-threatening illnesses. Also to their family friends and caregivers and people dealing with bereavement. There are facilitated Big Group meetings six times a week and also groups targeted to caregivers. All services are free and open to everyone. The location is 594 Broadway, Suite 706. The telephone number is 212-925-2009 or go to www. friendsindeed.org on your computer.
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IF YOU’RE CARING FOR A FAMILY MEMBER WITH MEMORY LOSS, WHO’S CARING FOR YOU?
INTRODUCING THE ALZHEIMER’S DISEASE AND RELATED DEMENTIAS FAMILY SUPPORT PROGRAM. Caring for a family member who has trouble with thinking and memory can be extremely challenging. So challenging, in fact, that caregivers may feel overwhelmed, struggling to maintain their own health and well-being. The Second Avenue line’s 96th Street station. Photo: Kevin P. Coughlin/Office of the Governor
BEFORE THE SECOND AVENUE SUBWAY To the Editor: As the Yorkville/Kleindeutschland Historian, (ykhs-ny.org) I can say that the Second Avenue subway is a welcome asset to the U.E.S! Born and raised here, I have seen my “village” disappear. My exhibit/lectures depict the times long gone by, including the traveling by trolley, and train. I vaguely remember the 2nd Ave. El with its potbelly stove at the turnstiles and my father rushing up the stairs, me clutched in his arms, to catch the oncoming train with its warming stove and soft fabric upholstered seats. After it was torn down there was this vast emptiness on the two way avenue. I also remember hearing Barry Gray’s outrage in the 1940s, on WMCA radio about the halt of the designated building of the started Second Avenue Subway, (no TV or computers then). I also remember riding the Third Avenue El up to 77th Street, where it eventually was halted in the late 50s, after the upper stations were torn down. I could see the end of the tracks on 77th Street, and remember sitting in the hard yellow woven metallic seating with its heating beneath, warming my legs. I loved
those old trains, and the mom and pop shops below, vehicles jockeying roads below around the posts, and peaking into the windows of the offended residences whose buildings lined the path. But alas, progress looms and I was delighted to visit on New Year’s Day the long last delivered Second Avenue subway. What a treat. I did not believe that I was in NYC, but in some modern underground in a European city. My only fears now are the ﬁeld day the graffiti artists will have using the white walls as their canvas, and painting mustaches on the women depicted in the art work. But many tell me that will not happen. I also, although enjoying the lack of belly to belly crowds on the Lexington Avenue Line, am afraid of the cutback in its service. But now that the Second Avenue “train” is back, we have come full circle. Even though it is in a different time yet in the same place, it has moved underground. Regardless, is still the Second Avenue subway. Kathy Jolowicz President, East 83/84th Street Block Association
NYU Langone’s Family Support Program provides convenient, personalized, and ongoing support to people caring for someone with Alzheimer’s or other thinking and memory disorders. The program is provided free of charge to individuals living within the ﬁve boroughs. You will receive access to counseling; connections to doctors and support groups; and compassionate guidance by being paired with a caregiver who has had a similar experience. Join a community dedicated to providing the support and guidance you need, for as long as you need it.
For more information or to enroll, call us at 646.754.2277 or visit nyulangone.org/memorydisordersupport. The Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Dementias Family Support Program is supported by a grant from the New York State Department of Health.
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Photo from new-york.czechcentres.cz
Thu 12 Fri 13
▲ ‘MYSTIC K2’ | LECTURE
‘MONSTER TRUCKS’ | FILM
Czech Center, 321 East 73rd St. 7 p.m. Free Exhibition of photos by Czech scientist and photographer Petr Jan Juraand, accompanied by a one-night special event. RSVP. 646-422-3399. czechcenter. com
GALETTE DES ROIS FIAF, Le Skyroom, 22 East 60th St. 6:30-8:30 p.m. $35 Celebrate the new year with an event that dates back to the middle ages, with a slice of galette des rois, a glass of cider and savory bites. 212-355-6100. ﬁaf.org
RUSSIAN PARTY Vella Wine Bar & Kitchen, 1480 Second Ave. 6:30-8:30 p.m. $100 Old Russian New Year’s Eve: live band and DJ, 4-course dinner (tip and tax included), drink a la carte. Pre-register. 212-335-0456. vellanyc.com
RAMAH MINYAN Park Avenue Synagogue, 50 East 87th St. 7-8:30 p.m. The ﬁrst Ramah Minyan of 2017, including singing Ramah Shabbat tunes. Friends of Ramah welcome. Oneg to follow. RSVP. 212-369-2600. pasyn.org
City Cinemas, 210 East 86th St. 1 p.m. $15 adult; $12 child Cutting edge visual effects and state-of-the-art CGI, ‘Monster Trucks’ is an actionﬁlled adventure for the whole family. 212-744-1999. citycinemas.com
SQUASH CHAMPIONSHIP Grand Central Terminal, 100 East 42nd St. 8 a.m. $8-$170 World’s squash stars in week of international competition played beneath iconic chandeliers in Vanderbilt Hall with stadium for 500; free standing room area. Through 1/19.
Our Town|Eastsider ourtownny.com MUDDY PAWS RESCUE, K9 KASTLE, LINDAS CAT ASSISTAN NORTH SHORE ANIMAL LEAGUE AMERICA
Adopt A Pet 860 Broadway @ E. 17th St. 7 7 7 333 First Ave btwn 19th & 20th St. 7 7
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Your neighborhood news source 877-946-4868. tocsquash.com
Sun 15 BROWN COMEDIANS Comic Strip Live, 1568 Second Ave. 8 p.m. $15 plus two item min. ‘The Big Brown Comedy Hour’ features top ‘Brown’ comedians Arab, Indian, Iranian, Pakistani and others — “the last laugh before Trump deports us.” 212-861-9386. comicstriplive. com
FRENCH PARTY Consulate General of France, 934 Fifth Ave. 6:30-8:30 p.m. 100 CEOs and C-levels of French retailers and e-commerce entrepreneurs in New York for the occasion. 212-472-3933. NRFrenchParty.com
FLASH MOB Flash Mob America, 79th Street & Fifth Avenue 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Pre-register Want to be in a ﬂash mob? Now’s your chance: “We Choose Love” rehearsal 10 a.m.-noon, mob at 1 p.m.; directed by Lynne Taylor-Corbett. ﬂashmobamerica.com
Tue 17 FIREMEN PARTY Mad River, 1442 Third Ave. 7-11 p.m. $15-$25 This party is only open to men that are legitimate and active/ retired ﬁreﬁghters and EMS providers. Open to women of all professions. 212-988-1832. OnSpeedDating.com
MEMOIR | READING
The Corner Bookstore, 1313 Madison Ave. 6-7:30 p.m. Free. Sheila Kohler reads from her memoir, “Once We Were Sisters.” 212-831-3554. cornerbookstorenyc.com
Wed 18 READING GROUP Barnes & Noble, 150 East 86th St. 7 p.m. Free. A discussion of Fredrik Backman’s “A Man Called One.” 212-369-2180. barnesandnoble.com
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PIANO TRIO ▼ Consulate General of the Republic of Bulgaria, 121 East 62nd St. 7 p.m. Free Program includes the compositions of Schubert (Trio in B-ﬂat Major) and Haydn (Trio).
▲ MLK ACTIVISM FAMILY Museum of the City of New York, 1220 Fifth Ave. 10 a.m.-6 p.m. $14 Celebrate the life and work of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. with performances by The NYC Gospel Choir. 212-534-1672. mcny.org
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BEYOND MUSEUM MILE Off the beaten path: hidden gems of New York’s art world include ancient and modern works BY VIRGINIA RANDALL
Although New York’s Museum Mile has the title, there are plenty of hidden gems off the beaten bath, offering a variety of options for culture, art or history — both ancient and modern — with the start of the new season. For instance, behind the wooden doors of a stately townhouse near The Met Fifth Avenue is a world-class center of scholarly research and graduate education. Since 2006, The Institute for the Study of the Ancient World at New York University at 15 East 84th St. has welcomed scholars and visitors alike. The inside looks as if Indiana Jones might barrel down its spiral staircase two steps at a time to lecture on its current exhibit: “Time and Cosmos in Greco-Roman Antiquity,” on view through April 23. However, it’s not Indiana, but Alexander Jones, interim director of the ISAW, who curated this exhibit. Professor of the History of the Exact Science in Antiquity, Jones explained recently that sundials didn’t just tell time for the ancients. “Sundials represent what they thought the world looked like,” he said. “They were also status symbols, since many of the sundials would have been on private estates.” Unlike modern sundials, the ancients used hollow inverted bowls with a hole at the top to admit sunlight, which moved around the inside to highlighting the hours carved in-
side the domes. Beautifully mounted and lit, the current show packs a lot into two rooms, with additional context via touchscreens. Besides intricately carved sundials and sculptures, the show features artifacts like “pocket sundials,” used by the wealthy, a surgeon’s ﬁeld medical kit, and vibrant mosaics of philosophers (“You can tell by the raised drinking vessels” Jones noted) or meditations on mortality. Viewers can reorient themselves to the present day by visiting the small gift shop near the entrance. Meanwhile, around the corner from Versace and Cartier, there’s a highrise tower that can transport visitors from midtown to antiquity with a walk through the lobby, or a trip downstairs. The lobby walls at 645 Fifth Ave. (aka the Olympic Tower) are adorned with plaster cast replicas of fragments from the Parthenon, cast directly from original molds made in the early 19th century and lent by the City College of New York. The display hints at the tower’s role as home to the Onassis Cultural Center of New York. Guided by Amalia Cosmetatou, its new executive director and cultural director of the Onassis Foundation USA, the Center aims to demonstrate how ancient Greece’s ideas still impact present day, using visual arts, performing arts, lectures and exhibits — all free to the public in its newly renovated space downstairs. Although open since 2000, according to Maria Galanou, a Center representative, the Center’s recent, museum-level quality renovation lets it present major antiquities, such as
The Czech Center, on East 73rd Street, puts on contemporary art shows. In December, the center previewed the animated narrative feature “Too Loud a Solitude.” Photo: the Czech Center those in “A World Full of Emotions: Ancient Greece, 700 BC-200 AD,” (March 9 -June 24, 2017). Many of the more than 130 items — vase paintings, sculptures, theatrical masks, artifacts, coins and more — will be on view in the U.S. for the ﬁrst time and have been drawn from the Acropolis Museum, the Louvre, the British Museum, the Vatican Museums and elsewhere. Some works will leave Greece for the ﬁrst time, speciﬁcally for this show. The collection will show the range of emotion — some familiar, some not — depicted in antiquity, to provide a
“Time and Cosmos in Greco-Roman Antiquity” at NYU”s Institute for the Study of the Ancient World on East 84th Street.
way to consider the role of feelings in our own personal, social and political lives, while helping to advance the relatively new field of the history of emotions. At the other end of the time spectrum, there’s no need to go to the Guggenheim when the Czech Center of New York mounts contemporary art shows and much more. The center, housed in a landmarked Renaissance Revival building on 73rd Street, uses the arts to strengthen cultural ties between the Czech Republic and the U.S. Visitors can see ﬁlms, borrow books from its library, hear lectures and enjoy art in its gallery from contemporary artists and up and comers. Through Jan. 26, the gallery will show dramatic photography (both drone and still) by Petr Jan Juracka and Czech expert climber Klára Kolouchová when they scaled K2, the world’s second highest peak, as part of the USA International K2 expedition. The center also offers opportunities to see the work of aspiring artists in different mediums through its Bohemian Creative Hub. Inspired by Thomas Messer, the director of the Guggenheim Museum for 27 years (who was of Czechoslovakian heritage), visual and performing artists under 30 years old can apply to exhibit or perform at its gallery and cinema space in July and November of 2017.
Although not a niche in terms of sheer size (it takes up an entire city block), the Park Avenue Armory is becoming a source of some of the most unusual art experiences in the city — without a long trip to Brooklyn or downtown. Within its wood-paneled rooms and galleries, and especially in its huge (55,000 square feet) Drill Hall, the Armory hosts concerts, lectures and modern or original, commissioned art. A recent show at the Armory, “Manifesto,” by artist/filmmaker Julian Rosefeldt, featured a history of the manifestos of 20th century art movements, edited and re-imagined as dramatic monologues by 13 different characters, all played by Cate Blanchett. Blanchett assumed the personas of a Russian diva, a day trader, a teacher, a homeless man, a CEO, a puppeteer, a punk rocker, a news reader and more — all portrayed in huge video screens hung throughout the cavernous Drill Hall. The Armory’s Manifesto was the kickoff to a new cultural season at the Armory (the next big event is O’Neill’s “The Hairy Ape” with Bobby Cannavale in March), and proves that there’s more to New York’s art scene than Museum Mile, SoHo or Brooklyn. Dive in.
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WHERE HAVE ALL THE WOMEN GONE? Rosenthal and Mark-Viverito push to get more female politicians to run for City Council BY MADELEINE THOMPSON
By the end of 2017, the New York City Council’s 51-member body could have fewer than 10 women. That’s a sharp decline from a high point of 18 women in 2009. What accounts for the falloff? One reason is a coincidental alignment of female members whose term limits are approaching, as well as the resignation of one member and another moving to the state Assembly. But the larger reasons are unclear. “I don’t know how the number got to be so small,” Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer said. “It’s very, very small and it shouldn’t be. That should be 50 percent, particularly at this local level.” Council Member Helen Rosenthal, who represents the Sixth District on the Upper West Side, is taking matters into her own hands to remedy the situation. Rosenthal hosted two fundraisers on Jan. 8 and 10 for three female Democrats in the Bronx who are running for election this year. “A lot of times, women don’t even get to have a platform to engage with the people who are making endorsements, or who are contemplating giving money,” Rosenthal said. “That certainly was what happened to me. And now I’m in office and I can help give these women a platform so they can present their ideas.” Democrats Diana Ayala, Amanda Farias and Marjorie Velazquez beneﬁted from the fundraising, which Rosenthal and Brewer both cited as a particularly challenging endeavor for women. “It’s hard to call people and say ‘Believe in me, this is a political campaign. You’re not going to get a tax deduction, and could you please give me whatever you can,’” Rosenthal said. Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, who co-hosted Rosenthal’s event, has made a point of speaking out against the male-dominated political climate of the city. “When you’ve got such a disparity in this legislative body in this most progressive city, it should be alarming to everybody,” Mark-Viverito told the New York Daily News last week. A 1991 report by the Center for the American Woman and Politics at Rutgers University, “Gender and Policymaking: Studies of Women in Office,”
Councilwomen Helen Rosenthal, third from right, and Laurie Cumbo, co-chairwomen of the Women’s Caucus of the New York City Council at an event in April. Photo courtesy of Councilwoman Cumbo’s office. showed that women’s paths down a little bit,” said McSweedo not get easier once they are ney, who also co-hosted Rosenelected. Based on the report’s thal’s fundraiser. ﬁndings, women are equally as The New York City Council is successful at passing and sign- at a record level of racial divering legislation as men, but their sity, however, with 26 members proposed bills tend to receive who are black, Latino or Asian, twice as much “hostile witness according to the Daily News. testimony” in opposition. “To Women of color who hope to argue that we need women pol- achieve political office face iticians, or ethnic minorities, a different set of challenges often implies more than simple from white women, both durequal opportunity,” the report ing their campaigns and after states. “It implies that public they are elected. According to policy would be better served, Political Parity, a nonpartisan more sensitive and responsive organization that aims to elto differing social needs, if our evate women in government, body of lawmakers were drawn “The typical politician is a nonfrom our many diverse societal Hispanic white male, meangroups.” ing that women of color are Brewer pointed out that being likely to have a higher credibila woman in politics can have ity threshold to surmount with its advantages, like loyalty and voters compared with other big voter turnout. “The women candidates.” Stereotyping, rehave always been my base,” cruitment and even the composhe said. “Men, too, are always sition of the districts they run looking for women’s votes be- in are other barriers women cause the women vote in bigger of color face more acutely than numbers than men.” Brewer anyone else. emphasized the importance A special election will be held of county leaders in endors- on Feb. 14 to ﬁll former Council ing female candidates. Each Member Inez Dickens’ seat, as of the city’s five counties has she was recently elected to the a Republican and Democratic State Assembly, and McSweecounty leader — Adele Malpass ney urged voters to participate. and Assemblymember Keith “Women running at state and Wright in Manhattan — who local [levels] and the impact represent each party’s mem- that state and local governbers and endorse candidates ment has in our lives, especially for various offices. “That’s in [President-elect Donald] something to look at very, very Trump’s America, can’t be overcarefully,” Brewer said. “How stated,” she said. “All of those many women are the county calls to action have to go not leaders really supporting?” just down to the Beltway but up Still, the speciﬁc case of the to Albany and to our city halls.” City Council and its declining New York City has never had number of female members a female mayor and, of course, is difficult to pinpoint. Brette the highest office in the counMcSweeney, president of Elea- try remains closed to women. nor’s Legacy, an organization But Hillary Clinton’s historic that supports Democratic, presidential campaign and pro-choice women in politics just-as-historic loss may well throughout the state, said it energize women and minoriwas something she had spent ties rather than discouraging considerable time thinking them. This November’s City about. She described state and Council elections will begin to local politics as a “carousel that reveal whether the uptick in never stops,” and stressed that post-election grassroots orgathere is always room for more nizing has paid off. groups to support female can- Madeleine Thompson can be didates. “It’s up to us to provide reached at newsreporter@ opportunities to welcome them strausnews.com aboard and to slow the carousel
ACTIVITIES FOR THE FERTILE MIND
thoughtgallery.org NEW YORK CITY
The Curious Science of Your Brain’s Ability to Deceive, Transform and Heal
THURSDAY, JANUARY 12TH, 6:30PM 92nd Street Y | 1395 Lexington Ave. | 212-415-5500 | 92y.org Journalist Erik Vance speaks on our “internal pharmacy”—brain chemistry’s self-protective instincts, marshaled against stimuli both actual and suggested. ($25)
Writers Resist: #Louder Together
SUNDAY, JANUARY 15TH, 2PM Stephen A. Schwarzman Building | 476 Fifth Ave. | 917-275-6975 | nypl.org Dozens of major names (Laurie Anderson, Rosanne Cash, Michael Cunningham, Jeffrey Eugenides, Siri Hustvedt, Robert Pinsky, Francine Prose, and Andrew Solomon among them) will read and perform at the beginning of a long season of resistance. (Free)
Just Announced | An Evening with Deepak Chopra: You Are the Universe: Discovering Your Cosmic Self and Why It Matters
TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 7TH, 7PM The Riverside Church | 490 Riverside Dr. | 212-870-6700 | opencenter.org Chopra looks at higher consciousness, transformation, and healing at a lecture and book signing concerned with our place in the world. ($37, includes copy of Chopra’s new book)
For more information about lectures, readings and other intellectually stimulating events throughout NYC,
sign up for the weekly Thought Gallery newsletter at thoughtgallery.org.
Our Town|Eastsider ourtownny.com
RESTAURANT INSPECTION RATINGS DEC 30 - JAN 6, 2017
2Nd Ave Blue 9 Burger
1415 2 Avenue
Closed By Health Department (51) Food, food preparation area, food storage area, area used by employees or patrons, contaminated by sewage or liquid waste. Hand washing facility not provided in or near food preparation area and toilet room. Hot and cold running water at adequate pressure to enable cleanliness of employees not provided at facility. Soap and an acceptable hand-drying device not provided. Food not protected from potential source of contamination during storage, preparation, transportation, display or service. Food contact surface not properly washed, rinsed and sanitized after each use and following any activity when contamination may have occurred.
1452 2 Avenue
Finnegan’s Wake Pub
1361 First Avenue
1411 3 Avenue
Mochaburger + Subs Express
1603 2nd Ave
The following listings were collected from the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene’s website and include the most recent inspection and grade reports listed. We have included every restaurant listed during this time within the zip codes of our neighborhoods. Some reports list numbers with their explanations; these are the number of violation points a restaurant has received. To see more information on restaurant grades, visit www.nyc.gov/html/doh/html/services/restaurant-inspection.shtml. Up Thai
1411 2Nd Ave
406 East 73 Street
Grade Pending (19) Evidence of mice or live mice present in facility’s food and/or non-food areas.
525 East 71 Street
Marymount College Nugents Cafe
221 East 71St Street
Shanghai Chinese Restaurant
1388 2 Avenue
1610 York Ave
The Pony Bar
1444 1 Avenue
1167 Madison Avenue
1294 3 Avenue
331 E 81St St
1303 3 Avenue
1613 2Nd Ave
1331 2 Avenue
1536 3Rd Ave
Vanguard Wine Bar
1372 1St Ave
1603 2Nd Ave
864 Madison Ave
1200 Lexington Ave
945 Madison Ave
1659 1St Ave
1307 3Rd Ave
1588 York Ave
404 E 69Th St
Ryan’s Daughter Cafe
350 East 85 Street
Pj Bernstein Deli & Restaurant
1215 Third Avenue
1617 2 Avenue
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RICHARD SANDOVAL PREPS FOR THE ART OF FOOD Taste what Richard Sandoval is serving up at Our Town’s Art of Food at Sotheby’s on February 4. Tickets available at www.artoffoodny.com What sparked your interest in the culinary world? My love of cooking started by watching my grandmother cook in Mexico City when I was growing up. I would always gravitate into the kitchen and watch her cook. She would prepare these huge feasts for my whole family, I’ll never forget the authentic and fresh ingredients she used and how her food brought everyone together. My father was also a restaurateur in Acapulco who taught me how to run a business. Between the two, I was almost destined to have this profession. How did you get started in the culinary business? I actually started out as a professional tennis player and had the privilege of traveling around the world and playing – which would later play a huge role in my culinary career.
Somewhere along the way, I realized that I wasn’t going to make it on the satellite circuit, so I needed to decide if I was going to teach tennis or ﬁnd a different career. I thought about what I really enjoyed and kept going back to cooking. It was then I took the leap & enrolled in the Culinary Institute of America. After graduating, I moved to Acapulco to work at my father’s restaurant. After four years there, I set off to New York with the dream of opening my own restaurant. What inspired the menu at Maya? What are some of the signature dishes? My vision with Maya was to achieve “Modern Mexican” which is what I like to describe as simply old ways in new hands. Elevating Mexican food has been my goal from the start. When I began my career, I wanted to overcome the perception that Mexican food was just “Tex-Mex” cuisine: smothered burritos, chimichangas, and so on.
What is your favorite ingredient to work with? Huitlacoche, or “corn smut.” It has a soft and velvety taste that is unlike any other ingredient. I also love working with all kinds of chiles, both fresh and dried; they add a flavor depth without added fat. What have been some of your career highlights along the way? The amazing restaurant teams I’ve created over the past twenty years, receiving Bon Appetit’s Restauranteur of the Year award & my James Beard nomination. This is Maya’s second time participating in the Art of Food event at Sotheby’s. Any favorite memories? The Art of Food does a wonderful job capturing the food scene in NYC. I loved getting to see some familiar faces of chefs that I started out with and chefs I look up to. Your number one cooking tip? Taste as you go!
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CUOMO OUTLINES PROGRESSIVE PATH In state of the state address at World Trade Center, governor prioritizes infrastructure, education, high-tech BY DAVID KLEPPER
New York state must stand as an alternative to the policies and pronouncements of President-elect Donald Trump and show the nation progressive achievements, racial and religious tolerance and that big investments in education and infrastructure can create a dynamic economy that works for all, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Monday. Cuomo, a Democrat, did not men-
tion the Republican president-elect by name in his state of the state address at Manhattan’s World Trade center, but he returned again and again to the political upheaval that propelled Trump to the White House. “We all heard the roar on election day, and we must respond,” Cuomo said. “The nation once again looks to New York to find the way up,” the governor said. Cuomo’s answer: a focus on infrastructure, like an overhauled Kennedy Airport, the new Tappan Zee Bridge and an upgraded New York subway system; big investments in education, including free state uni-
versity tuition for middle-class students; subsidies for growing hightech industries and ﬁscal discipline that keeps taxes low. Cuomo said his approach is intended to improve the lives of all New Yorkers by helping people rise out of poverty, expanding their career opportunities and supporting those most vulnerable. Other proposals from Cuomo include an expansion of ride-hailing services like Uber and Lyft into upstate cities such as Buffalo, Syracuse and Rochester; an expanded child care tax credit and signiﬁcant changes to the state’s cumbersome and outdated voting rules. Monday’s speech was the first
Gov. Andrew Cuomo during his state of the state address at the World Trade Center this week. Governor’s Office, via ﬂickr of six addresses planned for locations around the state this week. Governors traditionally deliver the address to lawmakers in the state Capitol, but Cuomo’s administration said this year’s approach is an effort to communicate directly with
New Yorkers. Top lawmakers are skipping the speeches in a sign of the tense relationship between lawmakers and Cuomo. Many lawmakers blame the governor for killing their ﬁrst pay raise in 18 years last month.
LATE-YEAR BOOM IN CITY REAL ESTATE PUNCTUATES 2016 How well Congress and Trump administration work together will help determine sector’s health this year BY FREDERICK PETERS
Like the presidential elections, the 2016 New York real estate market ended with a bang. Within a week of November 8, the market, which had been idling since July, kicked into gear. The early weeks of December saw more transactions over $4 million than any time since the spring, and other sectors beneﬁted as well. The last six weeks of 2016 saw a level of transactional activity which ordinarily accompanies a looming tax change. But no tax change loomed. Instead, anticipation of a business-friendly administration on Capitol Hill, combined with relief that the whole wrenching election process was ﬁnally over, generated a dynamic response to well-priced listings, even those which had been languishing on the market for months. The turn was most dramatic in the upper market. While there still exists an oversupply of ultra-high-end condominiums, buildings like 432 Park have experienced renewed market activity as they move into their ﬁnal selling phase. In the oversupplied areas, like the greater 57th Street corridor and river to river below Canal Street, this renewal has been spurred by substantial discounting, both in the form of developer-paid closing costs (usually a buyer’s responsibility) and prices agreed at 5 to 10 percent below
the ask. The co-op market will recover more gradually; many of the luxury co-op units are still overpriced and in relatively poor repair. The prospect of facing both the board approval process and a renovation sends increasing numbers of buyers, both local and foreign, ﬂeeing to the condo market, where they can acquire spacious, toothbrush-ready homes with every modern amenity. The more moderately priced condominiums being built in the 80s and 90s on the Upper East and West Sides fared extremely well during the latter half of 2016 (of course, “moderately priced” is a relative term, as these units tend to cost between $1.5 million and $8 million.) These units, constructed in established residential neighborhoods and offering modern conveniences close to schools and parks, entice families and other buyers looking for spacious new quarters; the opening on January 1 of the Second Avenue Q line subway will only add value to these new residences east of Third Avenue. For this constituency co-ops increasingly attract by relative value; when the discount compared to a new building is substantial enough, the hassle of board approval and upgrading become tolerable. Smaller apartments drove real estate markets in every borough throughout the year. One- and twobedroom apartments, priced under $2 million, outperformed every other sector both in volume and in relative sales prices. These smaller homes
Sales of very-high-end condominiums buildings, such as 432 Park, had increased market activity at the tail end of 2016. Photo: Carl, via ﬂickr experienced enormous demand with which supply could not keep up. Even during the early fall, when demand for most offerings slowed to a trickle, buyers were still competing for 3-, 3.5- and 4-room apartments – with the caveat that they were sensibly priced. 2016 was not a year during which buyers overpaid in any price range. Usually the rental market surges when sales are weak. Not so this year. Even last spring, luxury rentals were signing leases at 10, 15, even 20 percent below what they had achieved two years earlier. While overpricing hobbled some segments of the rental
market, even those units at the lower end which usually enjoy quick turnaround have been slow. Since the winter market for rentals is historically in the doldrums, we will have to wait for spring to get a sense of how strongly, and at what prices, this market will bounce back. While the Brooklyn market experienced the same ebbs and flows as those described above, the ongoing demand/supply imbalance protected prices in most neighborhoods. Competitive bidding remained common throughout the year, and prices in Brooklyn today have risen enough so that many buyers are turning back to Manhattan because neighborhoods such as the far East Side, upper Harlem and Washington Heights offer them better value. Overall, the two most signiﬁcant real estate markers of the past year pertain to co-op values and shifting market dynamics. 2016 made evident in no uncertain terms the ongoing challenges implicit in co-op ownership: Board expectations and demands on the one hand and condition on the other. With a number of perfectly qualiﬁed candidates rejected by boards who believed the sales prices were too low, agents and sellers alike are placed in a quandary. No one WANTS to accept a low price; the deal that gets made is always the best deal available at the time. For boards to then reject the opinion of the market diminishes the quality of the co-op asset and drives more buyers towards the relative ease of condo-
minium purchases. For buyers to jump through the hoops required for co-op approval, only to learn that the board feels they are not paying enough, frequently drives a decision to cross coops off the list. Furthermore, almost every co-op needs SOME renovation. Little wonder that for many buyers, value versus condominiums becomes one primary motivation to consider a co-op purchase, the other being location. 2016’s other most signiﬁcant development was the shift from seller’s market to buyer’s market. Increasingly, as the year went by, buyers possessed the upper hand; they balked at overpricing and waited sellers out. On the listing side, 2016 was a year of price drops, often multiple, to position the subject properties for sale in the changed marketplace. While the year began with sellers ﬁrmly in charge of the market, December saw almost every sale negotiated, often from prices which had already been reduced several times. As to 2017, we face the wild card of the Trump presidency. While I anticipate our market, like securities, will remain strong for the sale of properly priced property, predicting out beyond four to six months seems specious. Given how little we know about how well Trump and the Congress will work together, and what their disparate priorities may be, we will just have to wait and see. Frederick Peters is chief executive officer of Warburg Realty Partnership.
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MAPPING HISTORY IN GREENWICH VILLAGE A new project pinpoints key sites in the LGBTQ, womenâ€™s and civil rights movements BY MADELEINE THOMPSON
What do the Oscar Wilde Bookshop, CafĂŠ Society and 18 West 10th Street have in common? These sites are all significant to civil rights and social justice movements that have taken place in Greenwich Village. They are some of the nearly 100 important places listed on a new map created by the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation (GVSHP) to raise awareness of key moments in history relating to LGBTQ, womenâ€™s and minority rights. The inspiration for the map came out of the current political climate. â€œBeing conscious of whatâ€™s going on in the country and the world around us right now, we just thought it was especially important to document and celebrate these accomplishments, these people, these institutions,â€? said Andrew Berman, president of the GVSHP. â€œI think that you never appreciate something so much as when you know itâ€™s under threat and that itâ€™s in danger of being lost.â€? One key site on the map is 18 West 10th Street, home to writer and immigrant rights activist Emma Lazarus during
To see the full interactive map, read the article online at: ourtownny.com
the mid-1800s. Her best known poem is the sonnet that graces the monument of another famous New York City woman: â€œGive me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free.â€? Barely ďŹ ve blocks from Lazarusâ€™s former home is the original location of the Oscar Wilde Bookshop. According to a New York Times article from 2009, it was believed to be the oldest LGBTQ bookstore in the country until it closed in March of that year. â€œIn 1967 Craig Rodwell started this landmark store that not only sold Gay and Lesbian literature but also became a meeting place for the LGBT community,â€? Kim Brinster, the storeâ€™s then-owner, said at the time. Across Washington Square Park from the former bookstore is CafĂŠ Society, where singer Billie Holiday ďŹ rst performed the song â€œStrange Fruitâ€? to protest lynching and racism. Barney Josephson opened the nightclub in 1938, and it became the first in the city to integrate. â€œVery few people know that this part of town was the cen-
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ter of African-American life in New York City in the middle of the 19th century,â€? said Berman. â€œThere were a variety of churches and institutions that were connected to that community there, almost all of which have been demolished or gone.â€? Donna Schaper, senior minister at Judson Memorial Church, is planning to use the map in some of her classes. Berman said that thousands more sites could easily be added to the map. â€œWe consider it a work in progress,â€? he said. â€?In fact, weâ€™re inviting the public to submit nominations to us, of which weâ€™ve already received some great ones.â€? Bermanâ€™s team researched each location thoroughly in the six months between the inception and execution of the idea. â€œItâ€™s not just about the past,â€? Berman said. â€œThese are the underpinnings of our present. They tell us a lot about how we got where we are and where weâ€™re going.â€? Madeleine Thompson can be reached at newsreporter@ strausnews.com
Billie Holiday, pictured performing in New York in 1947, ďŹ rst sang the haunting â€œStrange Fruitâ€? at CafĂŠ Society in Greenwich Village, one of dozens of sites on a map where signiďŹ cant events of the LGBTQ, womenâ€™s and minority rights movements took place. Photo: William P. Gottlieb
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TOASTING THE PAST — AND WHAT’S TO COME Tommy Burke reflects on his first deli and a forthcoming Victorianthemed bar channeling Oscar Wilde
The BBC did a miniseries in 1977 and I saw that on television and was fascinated by her. She was born in 1853 on an island called Jersey, which is off the coast of England. She met Mr. Langtry who was a shipping magnate out of Belfast because he used to vacation there. And eventually he asked her to marry him. She was still very young, like 17. So he moved her to London and put her up in a beautiful house on High Street and then he went about back to doing what he did around the world. She genuinely loved him, but he left her alone. So she met friends, including Oscar Wilde, who wound up becoming her best friend. She became the mistress of the Prince of Wales and he sent her to Paris to acting classes. And that’s how she became an actress and became very famous.
BY ANGELA BARBUTI
When I asked Tommy Burke what one of the keys to the success of his longstanding New York establishments is, he said, “We’re basing them on a time a long time ago. It’s not trendy. This time will never change because it’s gone, so it will last forever.” The Irish native, who came to New York in 1985 and got his start in the industry working in his family’s deli, owns several popular establishments in the city — Papillon in Midtown East, Lillie’s in both Union Square and Times Square and Ashby’s on Wall Street and in the Flatiron District. His newest venture, Oscar Wilde, is slated to serve its ﬁrst cocktail next month. The bar is inspired by its literary namesake, who also happened to be the friend of actress Lillie Langtry, after which two of his places are named. Oscar Wilde, at 45 West 27th Street, near Broadway, is ensconced in a building with a rich history. “We found out that Prohibition had their headquarters there and that the Maﬁa took the ﬂoor above them so they could listen in and spy,” Burke said. The bar will pay homage to the period with its cocktail menu, created by Johnny Swet. “We’re going to have an extensive cocktail list because Oscar liked cocktails and champagne. We’re also going to have a section for Prohibition-era cocktails,” Burke said.
Tell us about when you came to New York and how you got your start in the industry. I grew up in the west of Ireland and after I graduated from high school and worked for my father for a while, I decided I needed to get out of there and go to America. So I came to New York in 1985. I had a relative who had a food store, like a deli, on 23rd Street and Broadway and I started working there. And that was my start in the business. I worked for the family business until ’92. And then I got some money together and opened a little store on 46th Street, between Fifth
What’s a memorable customer story?
Tommy Burke at Papillon on East 54th Street. Photo credit is Papillon Bistro & Bar. and Madison and called it Ashby’s. It was a coffee shop — soup, salads, sandwiches and coffee. Then I opened a rotisserie store on Ninth Avenue and 46th Street as well. That was 1994. The chicken store, I eventually sold. The Ashby’s concept I kept going, and still have it today. I don’t have that location on 46th Street, but I have one down at 120 Broadway, one block north of Wall Street and another on Sixth Avenue and 22nd Street.
The ﬁrst bar/restaurant you owned was Papillon, which has been on East 54th Street since 1999. In 1999, I got into the bar and restaurant business, which is now Papillon. The building has a lot of history, 22 East 54th Street. It was owned by the Reidy family, who had it since 1944. Developers came in the ‘80s and bought all the buildings for demolition to put up a high-rise. But Mr. Reidy wouldn’t sell. He held out. And
there’s been books written about him since. When you go to Papillon, even today, before you go in and look up, you see it’s a little building. The developer had to buy the air rights and build over them; it’s a 60-story building. So I met William Reidy in 1999. He was an Irish Catholic from Riverdale and had nine children. He raised his kids and sent them all to school and it was time for him to retire. And he wanted someone he could trust to take over the business and rent the space ... I said to my best friend, Frank McCole, who I met in Murphy’s on Second Avenue in the early ‘90s, “Come in with me and we’ll build something amazing.” And that’s what we did. He was always in construction and in the bar business in Ireland as well, so knew the industry. We built Papillon together. It’s based on the true story of Henri Charriere, a man who went to prison for a crime he never committed. He broke
out like three times and they caught him and put him back in again. And he got released because he was innocent and moved to Venezuela and opened nightclubs and had a very colorful life. It’s a movie with Steve McQueen and Dustin Hoffman.
You met your wife at Papillon. How does she handle you working in the restaurant business? I met her in 2002. She was a customer and came in all the time. She was going to school. And then she worked with me for a while. And we got to know each other and that was it. I met her in the business and she saw what I did, so for that reason, it worked. And we’ve been together ever since. And the funny thing is, Mr. Reidy met his wife there as well. So good things happen there.
Explain who Lillie was and what intrigued you so much to name your next venture after her.
Bill Clinton was memorable. He used to come to Papillon unannounced. One night he came, he was dressed down in jeans and a jacket. It was a Wednesday night. He was with another man and went to the upstairs bar. So when he’s dressed down, his security is dressed down. He was at the middle of the bar with his friend and drank vodka and soda with a piece of lemon. The restaurant was full, and little by little, people noticed him. Everyone got excited. The memorable part about it was that when he was ready to leave, all my staff, from the kitchen and everybody, wanted to meet him. They were at the top of the stairs, 15 people lined up. This all happened spontaneously. And he went and shook every single one of their hands. And for 15 minutes he talked to basically the lowest of them, a runner from India. And that was why he was so successful. Because he made everybody feel like they were the only person. www.oscarwildenyc.com/
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