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Alternative Health: The man who saw angels January 26, 2012

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Do you think Columbia has a good chance this year in the Ivy League, considering how heavily favored 25thranked Harvard is? Yeah, absolutely! You’re not going to accomplish anything saying this team or that team is better than us.

Columbia’s Champ of the Courts Brian Barbour, a 6-foot-1 junior at Columbia, leads the university’s basketball team, the Lions, in scoring with 14.1 points per game. He’s been nominated for the Bob Cousy Award, given to the nation’s best point guard, and is one of the best free throwers in the country. We asked Barbour about this year’s season and his role on the Lions.

Intergalactic Party andrew schwartz

Going intergalactic never seemed this fun in astronomy class. The American Museum of Natural History is holding a Cosmic Cocktails and Space Arcade event to celebrate the oddities of space by way of live music, indie games and an open Eleven-month-old Joseph Burt, with his mother Eva Levine, meets chef Mario Batali bar to “test” the effects of alcohol in a 1g during a book signing at HomeGoods on the Upper West Side. Batali signed copies environment. of his new cookbook Molto Batali: Simple Family Meals from My Home to Yours. The event is Thursday, Jan. 26, from 6:308:30 p.m., at the Rose Center for Earth and Space(enter from 81st Street). Astronauts have been targeted by an influx of mos- nonetheless plaguing residents who dare quitoes recently despite baffled residents’ to leave their windows open. must be 21 or older to participate. The soiree will feature live music by efforts to eliminate potential breeding Digging into NYC One Ring Zero in the Cullman Hall of the grounds and rid the pests from their neighUniverse, where they will play music from borhood. Late last year, Council Member Buildings History Art Brewer wrote to the comThe Municipal Art Society will hold a their album Planets, INSERTION a tribute to ORDER - EmailGale Ceil Ainsworth missioners of the departments series of seminars on how to navigate the the Solar System. Babycastles, a of Health and Mental Hygiene city’s agencies and documents to discovBrooklyn-based video game stu- Media Manhattan (DHMH) and Environmental er the history of buildings. Architectural dio, will offer patrons a chance 63 West 38th St. Protection (DEP) asking that historian Anthony Robins will lead a to play independent arcade-style New York the city repair or address holes four-week course teaching participants video games and explorers willNY 10018 (212) 284-9724 Fax: (212) 268-0502 in the surrounding streets how to unearth documentation on a have a chance to study the exhibit left by construction, which structure’s origins, architects, owners Beyond Planet Earth:email: The Future production@manhattanmedia.com residents said were collect- and builders. Attendees will get a crash of Space Exploration,cc: where visicainsworth@manhattanmedia.com ing water and serving as ideal course in deciphering building records, tors can discover the smell of the homes for the mosquitoes. tracking down information from deeds moon, fly over Mars and partici4.917”W x 2.687”H,Sam 1/8 page Miller, assistant commissioner at and obituaries and sorting through archipate in other space-oriented activities. Please Run on Thursday, 1.26.12 DHMH, wrote back to Brewer to say that val materials for useful artifacts and Tickets are $75 and include twoAd hours of open bar, appetizers and admission to the actual home of the flying bloodsuckers clues about a building’s past life. Sessions will be held each Wednesday the exhibition. For discounted tickets for is the dank recesses of the sewer system. The DEP has been working with the in February, starting Feb. 1, from 5:45– $45, call 212-769-5200 and use the code Department of Transportation to flush 7:30 p.m., with an additional weekday BEYOND. the sewers beneath the afflicted streets field trip to be announced. Classes meet and reports that the mosquito population at 111 W. 57th St., 16th floor. The cost Answer to Mosquito appears to be lessening. The mosquitoes, is $300, or $250 for MAS members and Problem on UWS it should be noted, have not been found full-time students. Call 212-935-3960, ext. Residents of West 83rd and 84th streets to carry West Nile virus, but have been 1234 to register.

West Side Spirit: You guys have won 11 of your past 12 games; are people more excited around campus about the direction of the program? Brian Barbour: We have a great alumni base that’s been very supportive of us. And as students start to come back from break, I think if we can keep it going, it can become a big thing around here. When coach [Kyle] Smith took over [before the start of the last season], that was one of his goals. How do you think your role has changed since the beginning of the year, before Noruwa Agho got injured? Noruwa was a very vocal leader, very strong-minded, and he was our main offensive weapon. Everyone kind of looked to him. You can’t replace a guy like that. I’ve never been much of a vocal person, but I’m trying to step that up. What’s been the key to the success of the team the past two months? Cohesion has been very good. Our defense has been big. But mostly it’s all the different guys stepping up in their roles. Everyone is doing the little parts they can to keep the team going.

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Crime Watch

OPEN THINKING | ON A NEW SCHOOL OF THOUGHT No. 1 IN A SERIES

CAN SUCCESS BE TAUGHT? By Dr. Edward Hallowell Member, School Culture Team, Avenues Author, Childhood Roots of Adult Happiness

Compiled by Megan Bungeroth

Online Scammer Last week, a woman put up a Craigslist ad to sell some of her furniture. She received a response and a check for $2,830, well over her asking price, from a man who instructed her to keep a portion as payment and wire the balance to his shipping company. Lo and behold, the check bounced, the victim couldn’t stop her wire transfer and she lost her money.

Armed Stickup

On Thursday, Jan. 19, at about 9 p.m., a woman was walking on West End Avenue near West 63rd Street when a masked man approached her from behind, pointed a gun at her chest and told her, “Give me your phone and your bag” and “Shut the [expletive] up.” The woman handed over her belongings and ran in the opposite direction to safety. The suspect is described as a light-skinned male, 5-foot-4, 140 pounds, wearing dark clothing.

Most of us were raised to believe that “getting a good education” is the best preparation for success in life. But is “success” something that can actually be taught? Like many leading educators, I passionately believe the answer is yes. This involves creating a school environment in which children experience the fulfillment that comes with the essential ingredients of success: connecting, imagining, working and being recognized for their accomplishments. Continue the conversation with Dr. Hallowell at www.avenues.org/dredhallowell. You’ll find articles, video interviews and details on parent information events hosted by the leadership team of Avenues: The World School. Edward Hallowell, M.D. is a child and adult psychiatrist and renowned author of 18 books. He is a senior advisor to Avenues on school culture. Avenues is opening fall 2012 in Chelsea. It will be the first of 20 campuses in major cities, educating children ages three to 18 with a global perspective.

Unpleasant Homecoming Trouble in Paradise An Upper West Side woman returned home from a trip to Boston to find her $10,000 Cartier watch and $15,000 earrings missing from a tray on her bureau. She reported that her bedroom was unlocked but that only her building manager and cleaning lady had access to the apartment.

Sneaky Tool Thief An independent contractor for the Department of Parks and Recreation reported that he had stored several pricey tools and an air compressor worth $12,000 in a locked facility in Central Park. When he returned to retrieve them, he found the deadbolt cut and everything gone.

Impersonating Impostor An unknown man entered a Bank of America branch earlier this month and attempted to withdraw $6,500 in cash from an account that evidently did not belong to him. The man knew his intended victim’s checking account number, PIN and Social Security number, and had a phony New Jersey driver’s license. When the teller asked for additional identification, the fake fled. The lucky almostvictim told police that his debit card had never been out of his possession. We st Si d e S p i r it . c o m

A man let his girlfriend into his apartment to pick up some things that belonged to her, then asked her to leave. When she refused, he called the police, which prompted her to finally make an exit. After she left, however, the man noticed that a $5,000 gold bracelet, $500 in cash and a framed $50 bill had also vacated the premises.

Electronics Junkie A woman came home last Friday and discovered her apartment in disarray and several items missing. A thief made off with her Nook e-reader, a $400 Sony camera, an iPod Nano and a $150 Canon camera, as well as several pieces of metal jewelry. Police at the scene said that an upstairs window had a weak lock and showed signs of a possible forced entry.

Teenage Phone Snatcher A woman was walking on Amsterdam Avenue near West 73rd Street when a 15-year-old male in a black hoodie and black backpack snuck up behind her and snatched her iPhone out of her hand before running off. The victim chased him a short distance before losing sight of her robber and her phone. The suspect is described as light-skinned, 4-foot-10, 100 pounds.

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Winter’s Grip Doesn’t Deter West Side Hummingbird

andrew schwartz

By Jesse Greenspan according to DeCandido. Birdwatchers have been flocking “It’s really reliable and easy to see, to the American Museum of Natural [though] sometimes you need to wait History—not for the exhibits inside, but because it’s perched in the shrubs and to view a rare rufous hummingbird that is hidden out of sight,” DeCandido said. living on the museum’s grounds. He added that the hummingbird, Rufous hummingbirds normally breed which weighs more than a penny but less in the Pacific Northwest as far up as than a nickel, is more active on warmer Alaska and then fly to Mexico for the win- days than colder ones. ter. But every now and then, one will veer A museum employee first spotted the off course and find itself in New York City. bird Dec. 14. At first, experts weren’t sure “Everyone loves hummingbirds no whether it was a rufous hummingbird or matter when, but to see one in the middle of winter is shocking,” said Bob DeCandido, otherwise known as “Birding Bob,” who has led guided walks in Central Park for the past 17 years. The last time a rufous hummingbird was spotted around Central Park was 2004, according to Deborah Allen, who is currently writing a field guide to the birds of the park. Experts pointed out, A rufous hummingbird has set up camp outside the however, that rufous hum- American Museum of Natural History. mingbirds and other western bird spe- a similar-looking species, but they were cies get lost more often than previously able to make the identification by closely thought. In fact, a second rufous hum- examining the throat and tail feathers. mingbird was found recently in Yonkers At one point, a wildlife rehabilitator and another in Connecticut. unsuccessfully tried to catch the hum“They’re long-distance migrants, so if mingbird in a net in order to keep it they get the orientation slightly wrong indoors for the winter or to transfer it to they end up on the East Coast rather a warmer climate. than down South,” said Paul Sweet, Other wildlife rehabilitators later collections manager in the American approached the museum about a rescue but Museum of Natural History’s ornithology were shot down, according to DeCandido. department. “I think nature should take its course, The rufous hummingbird at the muse- and we should leave the poor bird alone,” um—a female with an iridescent green Sweet said. back, white breast and red-brown colEventually, the various factions comoration on the tail and sides—has been promised by putting up a hummingbird confined to some leatherleaf mahonia feeder. plants outside the Rose Center for Earth Though the bird is hardier than it looks, and Space on West 81st Street between it remains unclear whether it will survive Columbus Avenue and Central Park West. until spring. It may also move on to greenNectar, the main source of food for er pastures, but for now, it is staying put. hummingbirds, is tough to come by this On a recent Saturday, it could be seen time of year. But leatherleaf mahonia, an drinking at the feeder before darting to ornamental shrub, blooms in winter. a nearby branch and sitting still for a “The hummingbird is sort of trapped in few minutes, occasionally flicking out that area because that’s where the food its long tongue. Next, it hovered around plants are,” DeCandido said. the mahonia blossoms, its wings beating Leatherleaf mahonia is located on both more than 50 times per second. sides of the entrance to the Rose Center, “We’ll see how long the blossoms last so sometimes the hummingbird buzzes and how long the hummingbird is with through a crowd of oblivious museum- us,” Allen said. “All we can really do is goers to get from one plant to another, enjoy it while it’s here.”

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Albany Looks to Diversify Stuy By Megan Bungeroth Last May, the West Side Spirit partnered with the Amsterdam News for a special investigation of the Discovery Program, an initiative that had fallen by the wayside of the education system but was intended to increase the substantially low diversity levels at the city’s specialized high schools. Now, citing that investigation as part of his reasoning, Brooklyn Assembly Member Karim Camara will introduce new legislation to address the schools’ admissions criteria, which he says are unfairly biased and don’t account for students who may not be good test takers but are otherwise up to the rigorous academic standards the schools require. “A one-day measurement is not enough to decide the aptitude of a student,” Camara said, explaining that his bill would simply make the schools use additional information when deciding their admissions lists. The call to change the specialized high schools’ admissions process has been echoing down education corridors for a while, as the numbers of black and Hispanic students have fallen to min-

We st Si d e S p i r it . c o m

iscule levels at the top two public high use only an admissions test to make up schools in the city, Stuyvesant and Bronx their student body stems from a 1971 law Science. that was intended to discourage racial While black students make up 32 bias and make the schools open to all percent of all public high schools and students at a level playing field. But the Hispanic students account for 39 percent top high schools have since become less of public school popudiverse, causing lawlations, Stuyvesant makers to step in. State had less than 2 per- ‘New Taste’ Serves Sen. Adriano Espaillat, Comfort Classics cent black students who represents part of and less than 3 percent the Upper West Side Benign Neglect? Hispanic students in ‘Raising the Roof’ and Upper Manhattan, In the Past Decade, the Minorit y the 2009-2010 school at Saint Paul Church has committed to be a ed Populati on at the City’s Top Two Specializ Science— High Schools—Stuyves ant and Bronx year. Bronx Science sponsor of the bill in in 1971 Has Dwindle d. But a State Law Passed Was Suppose d to Prevent This. had just over 3 perthe Senate. Who Killed The Discover y Program of UWS At These Schools? Rock ‘N’ Roll cent black students Roots “The fact that only 5 and almost 8 percent percent of students at Page 8 Hispanic students the Stuyvesant and 11 persame year. The disprocent at Bronx Science has a weekly e-mail blast! WestSideSpirit.com portionate numbers are either black or have been blamed on Hispanic highlights varying factors, but that we have more one that has been repeatedly called out is work to do to ensure that all New Yorkers the inherent bias in standardized testing. have an equal opportunity for a prosper“We’re not saying set particular quo- ous future,” Espaillat wrote in an email. tas for any race. But I do believe that you “We must expand educational access to will have a more diverse group within the students from all communities.” schools,” Camara said. Camara emphasized that the bill, if The fact that specialized high schools passed, would not suddenly make the Healthy Manhattan: Summer Weight Loss May 12, 2011

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schools more diverse, nor would it take away the pressure and importance of the admissions test. State Sen. Tom Duane, who represents the southern portion of the Upper West Side, also signaled his support. “I have long believed that standardized test scores should be subordinate to more holistic and inclusive criteria in elite schools’ consideration of applicants,” Duane wrote in an email. “These tests measure neither the passion nor the talents of all students to whom these schools should be made available.” Under the proposed legislation, the Department of Education would be able to determine what other factors the schools take into account and devise the new process in consultation with the schools. Camara said he expects the bill to get bipartisan support, and that there will be at least one Republican senator sponsoring it. “Most people agree that it’s reasonable to say that a standardized test should not be the sole deciding factor whether someone should be admitted to a high school—especially a public high school,” Camara said.

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feature

5 The

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Buildings on the Upper West Side We took your suggestions and came up with the Upper West Side’s worst eyesores

By Anam Baig and Megan Bungeroth

E

118 W. 76th St. Tales of sketchy politicians and safety violations mysteriously surround this empty sorest of thumbs on West 76th Street between Columbus and Amsterdam avenues, left to breed the city’s assorted refuse for more than 30 years. Built in the late 1800s, this Renaissance Revival brownstone stands in an historic Upper West Side neighborhood where many buildings have been maintained but still have an old-school touch. With a crumbling facade and windows blacked out with tarp, 118 stands out badly beside the West Side Institutional Synagogue. The top half of the building is its original rusting color, but the bottom half has been painted an ugly pale blue that is already peeling. Garbage litters the boarded-up stoop, and a giant wooden board is rudely slapped up against the driveway, a reminder that, technically, no one gets in and no one gets out.

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“Over the years, it has served as a haven for the homeless, who make shelters constructed of old appliance boxes and sleep on the stoop and relieve themselves in the airway,” said 76th Street Block Association member Bill Rooney. Rooney grew up on the Upper West Side in the 1960s, playing stickball in the schoolyard across the street, which is now P.S. 334. He recalled that the building was owned by Elsie, an elderly woman who used it as a boarding house. “Whenever someone hit a home run over the fence, we had to retrieve the rubber ball from Elsie’s property and she would run out and chase us away, swinging a broom at us,” Rooney said. “Every child in the neighborhood thought she was a witch and her building haunted. It was in better condition then, but now it definitely has a haunted house look.” The abandoned building has also been festering with vermin, accounting for many of the 14 complaints and 21 violations it has amassed over its 35-year neglect. After Elsie’s death, the house’s ownership supposedly went to a distant relative in Staten Island, who ignored it until it was purchased by Jean Rudiano in 1976 for $5,000 in back taxes. It has been abandoned ever since. Now owned by Rudiano’s widow, Diane Haslett-Rudiano, following his death

January 26, 2012

andrew schwartz

very neighborhood has a few. Even on the generally wellmaintained Upper West Side, some buildings, whether from construction, neglect or outright abandonment, cause neighbors to flinch when they see them. We asked local residents and community leaders to spot the worst eyesores in the neighborhood.

118 W. 76th St. last year, the building continues to look unjustly neglected. Numerous attempts have been made by the 76th Street Block Association and by Council Member Gale Brewer of District 6 to contact HaslettRudiano, who is the chief clerk of the Brooklyn Borough Office of Elections. But she has not answered many phone calls or letters, two of which were sent by the block association over an 18-month span and one that was sent by Brewer in 2008. The letters cite concerns over trash accumulation and rat infestations that plague surrounding buildings and the horrible physical state of the building that remains. Haslett-Rudiano has been referred to realtors by Brewer and Judith Bronfman, president of the block asso-

ciation, to have her building appraised and sold, but she has either ignored or refused the offers. “It is totally unacceptable and a complete disgrace that someone in a position of political responsibility is allowed to get away with this—maybe, sadly, it is because she is part of the political establishment of the city that she has gotten away with it for so long,” said Joan Wucher King, another block association member. Bronfman agrees, stating that as long as the taxes for the building, which she estimates around $8,000 a year, are paid, it is allowed to be kept in disarray. “It is disgusting,” said local resident Amy Geller. “I’ve been passing this building every day from work for 10 years. It’s still a mess, and is getting worse N ew s YO U Li V e B Y


feature

132 W. 83rd St.

Patricia Voulgaris

400-406 W. 57th St. every year. The one nice thing about the building was the picture of Bob Dylan that plastered the door, street art style, but even that’s been ripped down. It’s a shame, really, that such a nice building goes to waste.”

400-406 W. 57th St. —The Windermere

We st Si d e S p i r it . c o m

315 W. 103rd St. From the outside, this building appears abandoned—there are broken windows, peeling paint, scaffolding and plastic

120 W. 74th St. It’s impossible not to associate this property with vermin, thanks to the graffiti scrawled on the front designating it “The

132 W. 83rd St. Rat House.” Local resident Pat Sill called the property “a real mess” and said that since it was emptied and sold a few years back, it’s been “empty except for the rats.” The landmarked property used to belong to Walter Tillow, who lived there with his family and is on record in 1988 opposing the historic district designation that eventually did envelop his property. It reportedly sold for almost $4 million to a company called 553 West 174th St LLC—and that company filed for bankruptcy in October 2011. It’s not a pretty sight; still, eyesores are in the eyes of their beholders. Julius Caberera, who works on the Upper West Side and was walking by on a recent weekday, said, “Oh, this building is abandoned? I barely every noticed it. That’s nothing compared to the building on 76th—that one is really disgusting.”

Patricia Voulgaris

The Windermere has the potential to be one of the most iconic set of buildings in its Hell’s Kitchen neighborhood, and residents of the surrounding streets can still hope for that day. A hulking apartment building complex currently wrapped from sidewalk to rooftop in scaffolding and bright blue mesh, the structure has been under renovation for several years. While it currently sits as a reminder of how arduous and long a building’s revival can be in this city, underneath the ugly covering is a landmarked treasure. In May 2009, the former owners of the property, Toa Construction Co., settled a lawsuit with the city that resulted in the sale of the building to Windermere Properties LLC. Toa had not been com-

plying with landmarking laws and was allowing the building to crumble into disrepair; they were forced to fork over $1.1 million in civil penalties to the city in addition to selling the building. They were also forced to compensate former tenants of one of the buildings who were forced to move when the fire department determined that it was unsafe and uninhabitable. The buildings were constructed in 1881, and were once considered prime addresses for the city’s elite. While it is currently vacant and racking up complaints to the Department of Buildings (there are 134 complaints since 2009 on the 400 property), Brewer said that the owner has plans for the building and is working to make them happen. Locals are hopeful that it will eventually be restored to its former glory and take its rightful place as a proud landmark on the Upper West Side.

This hideous building speaks for itself and is somewhat of an enigma. Property records don’t show the owner at 132 W. 83rd St., and while it sits empty and boarded up, it doesn’t get too much attention in the neighborhood. An area resident complained to the Department of Buildings in November 2011 that the plywood covering the windows was coming loose and was about to fall, creating a hazardous condition, but there was no violation found by the inspector.

andrew schwartz

Patricia Voulgaris

315 W. 103 St.

slapped over holes. It juts out unnaturally over the other brownstones on the block, standing out in a bad way above the roofline. It could be a candidate for demolition, but in reality, the building is locked in conflict—and still occupied. Neighbors and residents of this property describe a nightmare of an ongoing ordeal. In 2007, Jacob Avid of Dan-Bran Realty LLC bought the eight-unit building and applied for permits to construct a two-story rooftop addition and a rear yard extension. The problem is that Avid apparently reported the building as vacant in order to get the permits approved, when there were actually rent-regulated tenants still living there. Since then, the tenants have been living in a construction zone and the owners currently owe $10,000 in fines to the Department of Buildings, according to their records, for repeatedly violating stop work orders and proceeding with construction. The owner’s building permits were pulled in 2009 and the building now waits in a twilight zone of legality.

120 W. 74th St.

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Solemn Reminder at Park East Synagogue U.N. Secretary General, among many, pay respects at Holocaust Remembrance Day selves that there is continuing injustice in the world. The event also marked the anniversary of the closing of Auschwitz, the biggest Nazi concentration camp that claimed the lives of over 1 million people. The Sabbath prayers were made early in the morning and the diplomats streamed in around 10 a.m. Despite the snow, many people showed up to offer their prayers and support for the victims of hate and discrimination. Countries as different as Australia, Korea, U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon. Sweden and Morocco were present at this commemoration. Every tion. He asked all of the Holocaust surviman donned a kippah before entering the vors in the room to rise. Although there synagogue, symbolizing their respect for were only a few scattered amongst the the Jewish faith and for the house of wor- many in attendance, it was a powerful ship that they entered. moment to see these aged survivors shakThe commemoration ceremony began ily stand up and reveal their brutal pasts. with Schneier addressing the congrega“Hear the cry of the oppressed,” he andrew schwartz

By Anam Baig The U.N. International Holocaust Commemoration Sabbath took place Saturday, Jan. 21 at the Park East Synagogue, where the year’s first snowfall marked the memory of the six million who lost their lives during the Holocaust. Nearly 200 people attended the event, including 63 diplomats from organizations such as the U.N., UNESCO and the E.U., representing 33 countries. Addressing the congregation were U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon and U.N. General Assembly President Nassir Abdulaziz Al-Nasser. The commemoration was led by Rabbi Arthur Schneier, spiritual leader of Park East Synagogue for over 40 years, who is a Holocaust survivor. The U.N.’s International Holocaust Remembrance Day is Jan. 27, and this year the General Assembly will remember children who perished during the Holocaust. But at the Sabbath, Jan. 21, multitudes of ethnicities and religions gathered in a house of worship to exalt the countless victims of Nazi rule and to remind them-

urged the congregation. “Silence and indifference by the free world undermines the survival of the victims.” Ban also expressed his feeling about the event. In his address, he thanked Schneier for continuing to teach the world about the important lessons of the Holocaust and for being a voice for interfaith peace and understanding. “The Holocaust affected so many different groups and so many professions that it is vital to reach new audiences with this history,” he said in his speech. “Our work for human dignity will underpin all we do. And our memory of the years when that dignity was torn from so many millions—so fast, so brutally—is likewise part of the bedrock from which we operate. Let us all work together today to realize human dignity for all and to realize the U.N.’s full potential in building the future we want.”

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arts

Flickers of Dance Lincoln Center’s annual Dance on Camera Festival is a must-see By Susan Reiter Now in its 40th year, Dance on Camera is at a new level of maturity. The annual event at the Walter Reade Theater that once fit into a three-day weekend has expanded to fill five days, Jan. 27–31, and within its brief duration has its own opening night, centerpiece and closing night films. This year’s festival also takes advan-

Andrew eccles

A still from Check Your Body at the Door, part of the 40th Dance on Camera Festival. tage of the recently opened Elinor Bunin Munroe Film Center (across 65th Street from the Walter Reade), which will host free screenings of short films as well as conversations and panel discussions with filmmakers on Saturday and Sunday. Many of the regular screenings will also include appearances by directors and participants. With 14 programs packed into its five days, the festival includes films exploring a wide variety of dance styles, artists and institutions. For New Yorkers, the opening night documentary, Joffrey: Mavericks of American Dance, is an expansive reminder of the rich and often turbulent history of what was once a mainstay of the local dance scene before the company relocated to Chicago. The film’s opening strikes a jarring note: While proclaiming the Joffrey’s record of innovation and originality, it starts off with scenes of Lar Lubovitch’s Othello in rehearsal. A ponderous ballet already performed by ABT and San Francisco Ballet at the time, this is hardly the type of work that made the Joffrey’s reputation. But once the 90-minute film gets going, the performances—and voices—of many talented and personable Joffrey dancers and the company’s never-a-dull-moment history makes for riveting viewing. Coming of age during the 1960s, the We st Si d e S p i r it . c o m

Joffrey also had its finger on the pulse of the times as the counterculture emerged and the Vietnam War dominated the news. The documentary rightly gives significant attention to Joffrey’s choices of Kurt Jooss’ The Green Table and Léonide Massine’s Parade in 1973—painstakingly detailed revivals that made these seminal works live for a new generation. Another American dance institution with an even longer history—Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival—is the subject of Never Stand Still. The Ron Honsa documentary’s choppy approach takes some getting used to as it interweaves the history of this influential festival and school—giving due attention to Ted Shawn and his male dancers of the 1930s—with what amount to substantial mini-documentaries on such worthy and fascinating subjects as Mark Morris, Paul Taylor, Suzanne Farrell, Shantala Shivalingappa and Gideon Obarzanek, who speak not only about Jacob’s Pillow but about their own artistic and esthetic philosophies. An intriguing festival documentary is The Space in Back of You, about the influential but relatively unsung Japanese dancer and choreographer Suzushi Hanayagi. She became part of New York’s earliest postmodern dance scene and made significant contributions to several of Robert Wilson’s elaborate productions. For fans of ballet competitions and their inherent drama, there is First Position, focusing on a particularly interesting and varied selection of contestants at a recent Youth America Grand Prix. Still Moving: Pilobolus at 40 is fun as it chronicles the launch of that distinctive collaborative troupe, offering a glimpse of its founders as shaggy-haired Dartmouth jocks and a touching tribute to the late co-founder Jonathan Wolken. And for the closing night, there is the truly special—and long-awaited—Check Your Body at the Door, which profiles the New York City club dance scene of the 1990s. It offers a full and vibrant portrait of a number of important dancers, displaying their amazing physical skills in both club and stark studio settings. Dance on Camera 2012 Jan. 27–31, Walter Reade Theater, 165 W. 65th St. (betw. Broadway & Amsterdam), and Elinor Bunin Munroe Film Center, 144 W. 65th St., www.filmlinc.com; $12. Ja n u a r y 2 6 , 2 0 1 2

• WeS t S id e S p ir it

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arts

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January 26, 2012

By Mark Peikert In the pantheon of New Yorkers—Dorothy Parker, Andy Warhol, the Ramones—photographer Weegee may not be the first to spring to mind, but he may symbolize the contradictions of New York City better than anyone else. Driven, self-mythologizing and morbidly curious about the curiously morbid, Weegee spent a decade, from 1936 to 1947, chronicling the violence and urban beauty of life in the Big Apple. Currently on display at the International Center of Photography, Weegee: Murder Is My Business (running through Sept. 2) Weegee, “Hold up man killed, November 24, 1941.” collects some of the best of Medium: Gelatin silver print. Weegee’s mostly nighttime work, from a body stuffed in a trunk to the upon the Upper West Side the night crowds at Coney Island. What strikes the before Thanksgiving now). From a disviewer almost immediately isn’t just the tance, the gangland killings that Weegee classic, violent aspects of these photos— followed so avidly thanks to his police bodies splayed awkwardly on sidewalks, scanner have a glamour that we can’t pools of blood congealing—but the flip- assign the random acts of violence we side, the almost embarrassingly sentimen- live through today. tal glimpses at beachgoers or the melanWhat Murder Is My Business reveals, choly of a Santa balloon being inflated for however, is that the famously gruesome Weegee wasn’t always interested in the details of the deaths he covered. Sometimes his photographs were of gawping onlookers, the body an indistinct detail. ICP has helpfully put these seemingly atypical shots in context, surrounding them with photos by police officers of the same scene that are more insistent on the corpse than Weegee’s. As it turns out, crime wasn’t necessarily Weegee’s business, but the business of capturing the filthy, rain-slicked city he loved Weegee, “Line-Up for Night Court,” ca. 1941. in all its rubbernecking glory was. Medium: Gelatin silver print. For more of Weegee’s ceasethe Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. lessly fascinating work, Chelsea’s Steven That Santa photograph is indicative Kasher Gallery is holding its own exhibit, of why Weegee’s work still exerts such Weegee: Naked City, through Feb. 25 at a magnetic pull; these images are frozen 521 W. 23rd St. in time, capturing a New York City that is long gone and still mourned (there are Weegee: Murder Is My Business only a few stragglers surrounding that ICP, 1133 6th Ave. (at 43rd St.), 212balloon, unlike the hordes who descend 857-0000, www.icp.org. © Weegee/InternatIonal Center of PhotograPhy

Another reason to call.

An exhibit of Weegee’s photographs proves that crime does pay

N ew s YO U Li V e B Y


WHAT ARE YOUR KIDS DOING THIS SUMMER? Renee Flax, director of camper placement of the ACA NY & NJ, will be on hand to answer parents’ questions and help guide them in their search for the right camp!

SATURDAY, JAN 28, 2012 Downtown Grace Church School 86 4th Ave. 12PM - 3PM

SUNDAY, JAN 29, 2012 Park Slope Union Temple 17 Eastern Pkwy 12PM - 3PM

SATURDAY, FEB 4, 2012 Upper West Side Bank Street School 610 W. 112th St. 12PM - 3PM

New York Family magazine and the American Camp Association, NY & NJ are teaming up for their winter fairs! Meet dozens of different camp directors from local DAY CAMPS and SLEEPAWAY CAMPS from across the region. Great for children ages 3 to 17! pre-register at:

Newyorkfamilycamps.com For more info on summer camps:

TheRightCamp.com

WestsideSpirit.com

January 26, 2012

WEST SIDE SPIRIT

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seniors

Protecting Against Telemarketing Schemes and Other Fraud Senior citizens are commonly targeted by con artists and other fraud schemers. To help combat this problem, the FBI offers many tips for seniors to protect against telemarketing fraud, Medicare scams and other common schemes. Below is FBI material on senior fraud— to find out more, visit www.fbi.gov/ scams-safety/fraud/seniors. Senior citizens are most likely to have a “nest egg,” own their home, and/or have excellent credit—all of which make them attractive to con artists. People who grew up in the 1930s, 1940s, and 1950s were generally raised to be polite and trusting. Con artists exploit these traits, knowing that it is difficult or impossible for these individuals to say “no” or just hang up the telephone. Older Americans are less likely to report fraud because they don’t know who to report it to, are too ashamed at having been scammed or don’t know they have been scammed. Elderly victims may not report crimes, for example, because they are concerned that relatives may think they no longer have the mental capacity to take care of their own financial affairs. When an elderly victim does report a

crime, they often make poor witnesses. Con artists know the effects of age on memory and count on elderly victims not being able to supply enough detailed information to investigators. In addition, the victims’ realization that they have been swindled may take weeks—or, more likely, months—after contact with the fraudster. This extended time frame

The FBI provides many tips on how to protect yourself from fraud. makes it even more difficult to remember details from the events. Senior citizens are more interested in and susceptible to products promising increased cognitive function, virility, physical conditioning, anti-cancer properties and so on. In a country where new cures and vaccinations for old diseases have given every American hope for a long and fruitful life, it is not so unbelievable that the con artists’ products can do what they claim.

Telemarketing Fraud If you are 60 or older—especially if you are an older woman living alone— you may be a special target of people who sell bogus products and services by telephone. Telemarketing scams often involve offers of free prizes, low-cost vitamins and health care products and inexpensive vacations. It’s very difficult to get your money back if you’ve been cheated over the telephone. Before you buy anything by telephone, remember: • Don’t buy from an unfamiliar company. Legitimate businesses understand that you will want more information about their company and are happy to comply. • Always ask for and wait until you receive written material about any offer or charity. If you get brochures about costly investments, ask someone whose financial advice you trust to review them. But, unfortunately, beware—not everything written down is true. • Obtain a salesperson’s name, business identity, telephone number, street address, mailing address and business license number before you transact business. Some con artists give out false

names, telephone numbers, addresses and business license numbers—verify the accuracy of these items. • Before you give money to a charity or make an investment, find out what percentage of the money is paid in commissions and what percentage actually goes to the charity or investment. • Don’t pay in advance for services. Pay for services only after they are delivered. • Always take your time making a decision. Legitimate companies won’t pressure you to make a snap decision. • Don’t pay for a “free” prize. If a caller tells you the payment is for taxes, he or she is violating federal law. • Never send money or give out personal information such as credit card numbers and expiration dates, bank account numbers, dates of birth or social security numbers to unfamiliar companies or unknown persons. • If you have been victimized once, be wary of persons who call offering to help you recover your losses for a fee paid in advance. If you have information about a fraud, report it to state, local or federal law enforcement agencies.

Isabella House

Acting Young. There’s one thing to feel young but another to act young. The residents at Isabella House have found an entirely different way of acting young. During performance days you might be walking by and hear a dramatic rendition of Macbeth or a famous line from King Lear may capture your attention. But these are not professional actors being brought in to put on a show for the residents. Nope, these are the residents of Isabella. Partnering with the People’s Theatre Project of Northern Manhattan, Isabella began to offer acting classes for their residents. The classes provide the opportunity for our residents to live someone else’s life for a few hours each day. Classics such as Macbeth and King Lear are performed live in front of their fellow residents—who can be the harshest critics. The classes’ help our residents feel lively and vibrant and more importantly, it keeps them fresh. The acting classes are in addition to Isabella House’s Tai-Chi, Chair Yoga, Posture Exercise, poetry and painting classes. For more leisure-oriented activities they offer Game Nights and Movie Nights. Residency at Isabella House also comes with lunch and dinner served restaurant style in our elegant dining room. Getting out and about is easy – whether you choose our weekly transportation to local stores – or decide on local buses, subway or taxi to nearby midtown Manhattan. Isabella House offers the best of life, whether you want a dynamic schedule of activities – or the freedom to relax in the quiet of your home. For more information or to arrange a visit, please call (212) 342-9539. Isabella House is located at 525 Audubon Avenue, New York, NY 10040. Visit their website at www.isabella.org

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Independent Living for Older Adults Join us at our

Open House

Saturday, February 11th 11:00am-3:00pm 525 Audubon Avenue at 191st New York, NY 10040 For additional information, please call:

212-342-9539

OUR AMENITIES INCLUDE: • Spacious studio and one-bedroom apartments starting at $2,000 • Spectacular views • Lunch and Dinner served daily in our dining room • Basic Cable TV and all utilities included • 24-Hour Security • Education and art programs, exercise classes, computer training and much, much more • On-site visitor parking

We’ve thought of everything to enrich and enhance your life. Call us and come visit, we have special Winter pricing.

www.isabella.org

January 26, 2012

BAYARD

ADVERTISING AGENCY, INC

JOB #:

N ew s YO U Li V e B Y


JCC

A WEST SI DE SPI RIT SPECIAL SECTION

O F M A N H AT TA N

CELEBRATING 10 YEARS


PHOTO BY PATRIcIA VOUlgARIS

CONTENTS

A SAlute to tHe JCC

Some people on the Upper West Side undoubtedly still think of the Jewish Community Center on Amsterdam Avenue as new, while others will find it hard to imagine the neighborhood without it. The answer is somewhere in the middle. The JCC is celebrating the 10th anniversary of its building this year. West Side Spirit salutes the milestone with this special section. Twelve years before the JCC had its own building, the center began serving people of all religions with its first two programs, one for LGBT youth and the other for observant Jews and others who could not play basketball on Saturdays. Some thought the neighborhood “was pretty Jewish already” and did not need a JCC, but the center thrived without hurting nearby synagogues. The JCC has an extraordinary range of programs and this salute is but a small sample of what it has to offer.

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Celebrates

American Heart Month 2012

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Thursday, February 2, 2012

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10 AM – 3 PM

Healthy Eating Exercise & Fitness

Screenings, Lectures, Demonstrations, and Mind-Body Techniques FREE and Open to the Public

For more information

www.NYULMC.org/heart2012

J CC M A N H AT TA N : C E LE B R AT I N G 10 Y E A R S | JA N UA RY 26, 2012 | W E ST S I D E S P I R IT

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Alumni Hall NYU Langone Medical Center 550 First Avenue (at 32nd Street)

Learn about:

- Giveaways & Door Prizes -

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JCC History Fly Fishing for Veterans Special Needs Meditation Space Gay Youth

Stress Reduction Risk Factors and More...

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Complete caring, for the complete you

Jewish Home Lifecare congratulates the JCC for 10 years of providing programs and services to the Upper West Side community.

Located on the Upper West Side, Jewish Home Lifecare’s Manhattan Campus provides healthcare services and assistance to elders. Recognizing each person as an individual, our care supports independence and respects human dignity. A not-for-profit organization Jewish Home Lifecare continues to serve New Yorkers as we have for over 160 years. Short-Stay Rehabilitation: Our intensive and supportive therapy is designed for patients who are recovering from surgery or an injury and require comprehensive care to return home. Adult Day Programs: These programs offer safe, caring and engaging home away from home sessions for those who have chronic health conditions, need assistance with personal care and the chance to socialize with others. HealthMonitor ® Kiosks: Our Adult Day and Rehabilitation Centers are now equipped with HealthMonitor Kiosks to help better prepare patients for their return home. The interactive device is designed to help patients monitor personal health indicators and educate them about important issues such as weight and nutrition, medication management and blood pressure.

Caring as individual as you

We welcome anyone who would like a tour. To learn more or schedule a tour, call Connections, our information and referral services. Personal experts will answer your questions and point you in the right direction.

800.544.0304 | www.jewishhome.org 120 West 106th Street © Jewish Home Lifecare 2012

JAN UARY 26, 2012 | J CC M AN H AT TAN : CE L E B RAT I N G 1 0 YEAR S


� JC C: H I STORY

New Kid on the Block No Longer The JCC building opened in 2002, but the group has been serving Manhattan for 22 years | By sara dover

“We wanted to signal to everybody, including the more traditional parts of our community, that we were really here t’s hard to miss the JCC on 76th for everybody,” Levitt said. Street and Amsterdam Avenue. Founding director Debby Hirshman The 14-story building decorated was a major force in building the JCC with colorful flags is immediately from an idea into an $85 million institurecognizable to most Upper West tion. They went from barely any members Siders and is celebrating its 10th anniverto 12,000 practically overnight, from a sary this year. But two decades ago, the staff of 10 to 150 people. Hirshman also Jewish Community Center in Manhattan “gained the support of all 17 Upper West consisted of 10 community organizers Side synagogues, skillfully threading the scattered across synagogues, bars and needle on issues like Shabbat hours,” acplaygrounds. cording to the Spring 2004 issue of Lillith, Since 1990, the JCC in Manhattan has a Jewish feminist magazine. grown into arguably the biggest Jewish But in 2003, a year after the building community center in America with a on 76th and Amsterdam opened its doors, health club, lectures, arts programs, film Hirshman was asked to resign. Lillith screenings, language classes—you name reported the dismissal took her—and it, they have it. It’s a meeting place for others—by surprise because she had everyone, of all faiths and ages, strongly achieved so much for the organization. rooted in Jewish philosophy of tikkun JCC board chairman Peter A. Joseph said olam—repairing the world, or making at the time, “Debby had a wonderful run,” one’s community a better place. The concept of the JCC was not new in but all 14 executive committee members 1990. Jewish community centers had been and 56 of 59 board members wanted someone else to run the large operation. popping up since the mid-1800s to help “Debby was a fabulous visionary and immigrants adjust to life in America and creator,” Joseph’s wife and another board to provide a place to celebrate holidays. member, Elizabeth Joy Levitt, who has “Some people thought the West Scheuer, told Lillith been this JCC’s at the time. “It is Side was pretty Jewish already executive director often the case that since 2007, said —why would we need this visionaries and the institution’s kind of thing?” creators are best at founding memvisioning and creatbers wanted a place ing.” A JCC insider told The Jewish Week in to unite Jews from different synagogues an Oct. 10, 2003, article, “There’s a reason and backgrounds while strengthening the why Moses didn’t make it to the Promised city. Land.” After leaving the JCC, Hirshman Not everyone was on board to create became a consultant for other commua Jewish community center in the Upper nity centers and an interim executive took West Side in the very beginning. “Synaover. gogues probably had some concern that Today, the JCC has 40 different program it would draw people away from synaareas. Behind every one is the spirit of gogues,” Levitt said. “And some people tikkun olam, which Levitt stresses is their thought the West Side was pretty Jewish overarching theme. It is a nondenominaalready—why would we need this kind of thing? But I think by and large, once it was tional and nonpartisan “living room” for the Upper West Side community that “radiclear we were going ahead with it, there was an enormous amount of excitement.” ates Jewish values,” Levitt describes. One of their more Jewish-centered The JCC began with two programs. programs, for example, is R+R, in which The first was a basketball team that relithe JCC offers free programming all over gious Jews could take part in; most comthe building from two to five o’clock in munity sports teams in the city required the afternoon on Saturday for Shabbat. players to take part on Saturday, which But there are also divorce support groups, excluded many Jews because their obspecial needs programs for children and servance of the Sabbath prohibited them a training center that dispatches tutors to from making every game. The second schools in Harlem and the West Side. All was LGBT-themed discussion groups and programs are funded both by donations activities.

I

A portion of Gabriel “Specter” Reese’s new mural commemorating the JCC’s 10th anniversary. PHOTO BY PATRIcIA VOUlgARIS

J CC M A N H AT TA N : C E LE B R AT I N G 10 Y E A R S | JA N UA RY 26, 2012 | W E ST S I D E S P I R IT


� J CC: H I STORY and membership dues. Memberships vary with individual packages and some events have their own registration fee; full access to the health club for an adult costs up to $1,585 a year. Levitt says the JCC doesn’t take sides on any issues, but re-landscaping Jewish education is an area of great importance to her. Levitt, a rabbi in the Reconstructionist movement, created the vision for the Jewish Journey Project, a revamping of pre-bar/bat mitzvah Hebrew school in which kids explore Judaism on an individually carved path with the help of JCCs, camps and synagogues, rather than in an after-school program. As Reconstructionists view Judaism as an evolving civilization, Levitt believes education must change with the demands of modern society. Levitt’s values are undoubtedly intertwined with the core of the institution. Hundreds of activities occur within the 14-story building every week, but at the end of the day, it’s whatever the modern community needs it to be. Addressing “everybody’s concerns, y.commitments and passions at the same time, you can imagine, is challenging,” Levitt said. Challenging is just part of the job.

ng the JCC unit

ations

ears!

Rabbi Joy Levitt is executive director of the JCC. PHOTO BY ANDREW ScHWARTz

Congratulations It is a “Joy” having the JCC in our community.

congratulations and Mazel on

to the JCC on it’s 10 years of great programming and bringing the community together.

10 Years!

2273 Broadway @82nd street JCC Members show your card and receive 10% off all non-sale items until Feb 29th.

www.wmgreenbergdesserts.com

W E ST S I D E S P I R IT | JAN UARY 26, 2012 | J CC M AN H AT TAN : CE L E B RAT I N G 1 0 YEAR S


� J CC: SPORTS

Exer Quinones and instructor David Blinken. PHOTO BY DANIEl BURNSTEIN

A Lifeline for Veterans JCC hosts fly fishing as therapy in Manhattan | By laura shin Twice a month, a small group of New York City-area veterans gather, pick up their fishing rods and practice the art of fly fishing. Though they are “fishing” inside the Jewish Community Center gymnasium on the Upper West Side with no water or fish, these vets are deep in concentration as they focus on their form, symmetry and timing. “Our main goal is to help veterans be better and more confident members of their community by exposing them to something that takes their consciousness away from the violence that they’ve experienced,” said Richard Franklin, a volunteer and officer for the Veteran Anglers of New York (VANY). VANY is a nonprofit organization dedicated to the emotional and physical rehabilitation of disabled active duty military personnel and veterans through fly fishing. It is the official New York City chapter of Project Healing Waters Fly Fishing Inc. Franklin’s wife, Dr. Tamar P. MartinFranklin, a licensed counseling psychologist,

founded VANY in 2008. “I had been working with traumatic brain injury and post-traumatic stress disorder, and I knew that many vets suffered from these and they were not getting adequate service,” said Martin-Franklin, president of the veterans group. “This was a way to reach out to our service members, not through my professional work but through fly fishing.” Martin-Franklin had heard about a Navy captain at Walter Reed Army Medical Center outside of Washington, D.C., who was offering fly casting lessons to military men and women who were struggling with their new stresses and injuries. She visited the group and returned home determined to open up the same opportunity for veterans in New York. “It’s almost meditative; your mind leaves everything when you’re fly fishing, so it’s a great form of therapy,” said David Blinken, co-president of VANY and a certified casting instructor from the Federation of Fly Fishers. “Even if you don’t get proficient at it, the mere act, the process itself is a good way to help your brain relax and refocus and gather some new strength.” More than 50 vets have participated in the group since it was established. Participants

range from Vietnam-era vets to those who have recently returned from current conflicts and include both men and women. Fly fishing can be beneficial for those struggling not only with emotional and psychological issues but physical injuries as well. It improves motor skills, balance and coordination, said Martin-Franklin. She said the vets are excited to learn and quickly develop their skills in everything from tying knots to catching and releasing the fish. “They’re actually translating what they learned in the military to fly fishing,” she said. The organization offers lessons at the JCC in the cooler months and on Central Park’s Great Lawn in the warmer months. In addition to biweekly practices, the organization allows the vets to participate in fishing trips. The organization relies on donations to cover all expenses for the veterans, including equipment and travel costs. A group of three volunteers and four vets recently returned from their biggest trip yet—one week in the Abaco Islands in the Bahamas. But for some of the vets, it’s not about the trips or even the fishing. It’s about the friendships. “They keep telling me it’s supposed to be the fishing, but really it’s the people that I meet,” said Manuel Vasquez, a

veteran who has been participating for 8 months now. “It touches me how forthcoming the volunteers are and how generous they are with their time and effort.” Friendships are often formed not just between the vets but between them and the volunteers. The trips often provide a time for them to talk about their experiences in a nonthreatening environment, Martin-Franklin said. “It’s an opportunity for relationships to be developed, experiences shared,” she said. “They talk about issues in their current relationships, their children, work and things they can’t talk to their families about.” This is important because veterans often hold a lot of feelings inside, Martin-Franklin explained. They are never pressured to share their stories with VANY—the organization simply provides a safe environment for those stories to be shared, she said. “The relationships that are formed here take on a very significant meaning,” she said.

MAZEL TOV TO THE J CC MANHATTAN O N IT S 10 ANNIVERSARY! TH

W W W. F A C E B O O K . C O M / 1 6 H A N D L E S

J CC M A N H AT TA N : C E LE B R ATI N G 10 Y E A R S | JA N UA RY 26, 2012 | W E ST S I D E S P I R IT


Happy 10th, JCC! Thanks for allowing us to celebrate this and every occasion with you! Simply Divine is proud to be the JCC’s exclusive caterer. We are New York’s premier kosher caterer and event designers for weddings, bar/bat mitzvahs, corporate parties and special events. Come visit our Café at the JCC, where every morsel is made from scratch using natural and fresh ingredients. 212-541-7300 9 email: info@simplydivine.com www.SimplyDivine.com 9 334 Amsterdam Ave., NY

B’nai Jeshurun CONGRATULATES THE JCC ON 10 YEARS of outstanding programming that helped build and strengthen the Upper West Side Jewish community, and looks forward to its continued success. Rabbis Matalon, Bronstein, and Sol and Hazzan Priven

257 West 88th St. www.bj.org 212-787-7600

Congratulations to the JCC on 10 great years.

c at e r i n g & e v e n t d e s i g n

2130 Broadway New York, NY 10023 T212.877.2888 WWW.VIANDNYC.COM

F212.877.7007

JAN UARY 26, 2012 | J CC M AN H AT TAN : CE L E B RAT I N G 1 0 YEAR S


� J CC: SPECIAL N E E DS Programs Train Babysitters and Help Adults With Dating | By Paulette Safdieh The JCC has been serving the special needs population, their families and friends for the last eight years. From babysitting services for children to an upcoming online dating site for adults, the department has established a wellrounded community within the building’s walls. The school-age programs provide after-school and weekend classes for children ages 5 to 16, including swimming, gymnastics and art as well as exercises in social cues and babysitting services. The separately established Adaptations program serves non-college-bound young adults, hosting social events and providing job placement and matchmaking services. Support groups and workshops for siblings and parents also contribute to the program. “It’s a place where people who don’t fit into mainstream society can come feel like they’re part of a community,” said Allison Kleinman, director of Adaptations and the Center for Special Needs. “They

can feel normal. It doesn’t have a hospital or clinic feel.” Because facilitating communication between people with social impairment can be difficult, bringing in volunteers and peers from the outside establishes a friendly and encouraging environment. For the babysitting program, local teens lend a helping hand. The babysitting program trains teenagers in a six-week course on child development and working with special needs children. Many students who enroll in the course acquire CPR and first aid certification as well. Taught by a social worker, the course emphasizes hands-on experience and often brings the teens to volunteer in other special needs classes and help out in the child’s home. “It’s a brilliant strategy,” said Jenn Choi, a parent of two special needs children participating in the program. “Having a capable teen work alongside me gives me more time to just play and relax with my kids and that kind of time is priceless.” The babysitting program has between

CONGRATULATIONS TO THE JCC FROM YOUR FRIENDS AT 4over4.com

The JCC’s Lisa Karlin, right, teaches babysitters how to care for special needs children. PHOTO BY ANDREW ScHWARTz

six and eight students currently enrolled. The JCC provides a list of these teens to parents, who then interview the babysitter and make arrangements. Choi paid for a teen in her building to enroll in the program after witnessing how well she interacted with her special needs toddler. “We have a lot of parents telling us the difference in their child’s life has been amazing,” said Melissa Lader, 34, director of the child, teen and tween special needs programs. For some high-functioning clients, Adaptations serves as a continuation of the school-age programs. A big part of Adaptations focuses on improving social skills, setting up friendships and romantic relationships. Like the babysitting program, Adaptations relies heavily on outside participation, like adults joining their socials. Through events like “Chat ‘n’ Chew,” a monthly dinner party, and “Guys and Gals Night Out,” where participants plan their own outings, the Adaptations staff attempts to encourage socialization. The staff also plans to launch an online dating site over the next six months. “We’re going to know everyone on there and help each person with their profile,” said Kleinman. “They want to

find friends and their mate just like everyone else. We’re going to support them in the process of finding their match.” In addition to matchmaking, the Adaptations staff provides job placement services in a joint effort with Job Path, a Midtown-based organization helping people with developmental disabilities find work and independence. Ten Job Path members work within the JCC, meeting with people individually and assisting them with job searches. “It’s not a science, but we really get to know each individual and guide them through,” said Kleinman, 30. “We help build a life for you and help connect you with friends and find a job. It’s a place where you can feel healthy and work out, too.” In order to best serve the special needs community, both the children’s and adults’ programs offer financial aid and scholarship options. A JCC membership is not required to participate in the special needs programs. “Raising children in New York in general is expensive,” said Lader. “Throwing in a special needs child makes it even more expensive. We never want the cost factor to be a reason someone can’t participate. Our goal has always been to better serve this community.”

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� J CC: M E DITATION CE NTE R A Room to Think About at the Center | By Paulette safdieh

has worked with Makom since it first started. “It’s the heart and soul of our institution.” In a city where the streets constantly Weekday mornings at Makom start with bustle and quiet seems hard to find, the a free drop-in meditation class at 7:30 a.m. Center for Meditation and Spirituality at the Between 75 and 100 people attend its free JCC helps the Manhattan community find classes each week, including the afternoon peaceful relaxation. Also known as Makom, class offered at 5:45 p.m. Makom also offers the Hebrew word for “place” and “God,” the introduction to meditation courses throughcenter opens its doors daily for free meditaout the year as well as Shabbat and recretion classes. ational programs on the weekends. Yoga The program started even before the classes, reiki sessions and group drum circles Jewish Community Center’s building opened round out the offerings. on West 76th Street, While students operating out of come from different The meditation center is “the various Upper heart and soul of our institution.” backgrounds and West Side locacorners of the city, 75 tions since 2002. percent are Jewish. The classes are now run in a special space Teachers often lead classes with a Jewish designed specifically for them. The unusual, twist, drawing on the weekly parsha (Torah elliptical shape of the room encourages reading), holidays or Kabbalah, Jewish contemplation and relaxation, according to mysticism. the program director, Susie Kessler. “The JCC has a holistic view of the hu“The program is so important that we set man being, not just a body that needs exera physical space for it,” said Kessler, 62, who cise or a mind that needs a Hebrew lesson,”

The JCC”s meitation space, Makom, has an eliiptical shape to encourage contemplation. PHOTO BY ANDREW ScHWARTz

said Kessler. “Here we have classes for the whole human experience.” As part of that experience, Makom staff introduced a mindfulness-based stress reduction program at the JCC four years ago. It teaches participants how to be calm and centered while confronting the pressures of daily life. Over 300 people from 20 to their mid-eighties go through the eight-week program, Kessler said, some hoping to cope with economic stress, others with anxiety and high blood

pressure. “People want to take part in their own healing, so we try to create a program that allows multiple doorways for people,” said Kessler. Adrienne Schure, 62, first started attending the meditation classes five years ago. “[The teachers] believe we meditate to know our minds better and to operate in the world from our highest selves,” said Schure. “Makom helps me be the strong, compassionate, kind person I strive to be.”

� J CC: LB GT SU PPORT Helping Gay Tweens Who Struggle with Bullies | By sara dover The 14-year-old son of a priest meets with other kids at a Jewish institution to talk about their queer identities. It sounds like an unlikely situation, but to the program directors at the JCC in the Upper West Side, it’s a much-needed part of the community. At Cometfire, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or questioning tweens and teens ages 11 to 14 of all religions and backgrounds meet to talk about their identities and make friends about twice a month. Mary Foulke, a priest at the Church of St. Luke in the Fields, said she told her son about the discussion-based program two years ago because she wanted a place for him to be comfortable. “He felt really alone in school,” explained Foulke, who also works with LGBTQ programs at her church. With bullying and suicides continually making headlines, younger gays, lesbians and transgender people are getting more attention for the struggles they may face in their adolescent years. LGBTQ program director Sarah-Kay Lacks created the group in



sitive and politically volatile issue. Quasha March 2010 when she realized there weren’t said any complaints he gets about Cometfire programs for regular kids just trying to get are usually about the age group—people through middle school. feel it’s too early to talk about it, “whether it’s “A parent came to us and said, ‘OK, I stemming from religious beliefs or whatever really want to create a program for my son. you call family values.” His queer identity is emerging, but so many They’ve never had large groups protest programs are social-service driven, for the the program, but Quaneediest kids, the “I just want a normal aftersha said he has dealt homeless’.” Lacks with concerns from explained. “[The school program for my comparents; for example, mother said] ‘I just pletely well-adjusted gay kid,” one parent may think want a normal afone mother told the JCC. their child should atter-school program tend Cometfire while for my completely the other worries their kid will be pressured well-adjusted gay kid.’” to act a certain way. Middle school is a tough terrain for even Those situations are usually handled on a the most well-adjusted children. Dr. Scott one-on-one basis. “You have the rest of sociQuasha, a school psychologist who leads the ety pressuring you to be the other way, so this program, said adolescence is a critical age for is an opportunity to see it through another building confidence. lens,” Quasha said he explains to parents. “Kids are bullying them, people are not But Cometfire is just one of many being nice to each other,” Quasha said. “It’s LGBTQ groups or events the JCC hosts for such an important time to address stuff like all age groups—there are over 15 programs this.” listed for the fall season on the JCC website. As a community center based on reliLacks said criticism of any of their projects gious values, the JCC has experienced its fair is never a “game changer” for them beshare of criticism for addressing such a sen-

J C C M A N H AT TA N : CE LE B R AT I N G 10 Y E A R S | JA N UARY 26, 2012 | W E ST S I D E S P I R IT

cause they are operating from a place of pride. “The truth is LGBTQs are a reality of the Jewish community—if something is a reality of the Jewish community, we are a mirror. We are here to reflect,” she said. That has been a theory that has propelled the JCC in Manhattan for two decades. When the JCC’s Upper West Side branch was founded in 1990—before the building on Amsterdam and 76th Street even existed—its first two initiatives were basketball and an LGBTQ department. The nonprofit’s founding director, Debby Hirshman, is a lesbian. “Our desire to do that was to tell the Orthodox community that we were going to be here for everybody,” said Joy Levitt, the JCC’s executive director.


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celebrating the JCC’s 10th anniversary. The addition of this superb facility brimming with its admirable array of programs and services has contributed greatly to making the Upper West Side the vibrant community that enriches all who live here. We salute the JCC’s commitment to education, diversity, and Jewish values and wish it all the best as it continues to serve our community. Rabbis Rabbi Robert N. Levine, Lisa Grushcow, Sari Laufer and Ben Spratt Cantors Rebecca Garfein and Shayna De Lowe Karen L. Berman, President Michael Kimmel, Executive Director

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onas Elrod is a filmmaker in New York who woke up one day to discover that he was having visions and could see angels, demons, ghosts and auras. “My first vision was pretty personal,” he said. “I was in San Francisco working on a film when I woke up in my hotel room and started seeing energy and feeling energy. I saw these geometric figures and shapes—it was all very overwhelming and I didn’t understand what was happening to me.” To get some answers, Elrod traveled the country with his girlfriend Mara, focusing on all things spiritual and religious—even the occult—to find out what was happening to him. He went to several doctors to check if there was anything physically wrong with him, but to no avail. Elrod filmed his cross-country experi-

The Wild West of Yoga Apps Sifting through the mass of meditation apps By Paulette Safdieh Bundling up and walking to the gym for yoga class seems less and less appealing as the New York winter rolls on. The hundreds of yoga apps offered on smart phones and tablets mean you can still roll out a mat and enjoy a moment in shavasana pose after a long day’s work in the comfort of your apartment. Yoga junkies can use apps for guided instruction, playlist curating and class locators to enhance their regular routines. Hundreds of yoga apps, both free and for purchase, have competed for yogi love since the 2007 release of the iPhone and the subsequent launch of Android, the Google operating system. According to Sergio Tacconi, the mind behind the Pocket Yoga app, necessity was the mother of invention. “I needed a way to do yoga any time,

26 18

Still from Wake Up.

ence with the help of filmmaker Chloe Crespi, creating the documentary Wake Up to show the world his experience with the spiritual. In the film, he seeks knowledge from a slew of physicians, scientists, religious teachers and spiritual leaders about his sudden metaphysical visions, but no amount of MRI scans or psychological tests determine how or why Elrod sees and hears the supernatural. In the end, he realizes that his visions are part gift, part curse, and he embraces both. Growing up in a Southern Baptist family, Elrod was always surrounded by conservative Christians. “You either grow up the preacher’s son or you completely rebel,” he says. “And I rebelled. It’s not like I despise religion, I certainly believe in and trust Jesus. But I wouldn’t consider myself religious. I’m certainly more of a spiritual person. “When I visited my parents and told

them about the visions, they were hesitant at first, like I was,” he continued. “But it was my mother who embraced it and started asking me questions about it. Our relationship has opened up since then, but my father does not ask me anything about my visions.” The reaction to Elrod’s journey in Wake Up has been overwhelming. It had its festival premiere at the Southwest Film Festival in March 2009 and its New York City premiere, hosted by Sting and Trudie Styler, in April 2010. The film has been on a series of tour and private screenings hosted by Elrod and others. The next New York City screening is scheduled for Feb. 11 at 7 p.m. at Jivamukti

Yoga at 841 Broadway. “The audience reaction has been really reassuring. There are always going to be people who think you are crazy for seeing and hearing angels and dead people. But then there are those who truly believe and are moved to tears by my experiences. There is a bigger reality than the one we’re sold, and people are looking deeper than ever before. Our job as filmmakers is to get people to start asking questions, and we’ll continue doing it despite all the skeptics.”

anywhere,” said Tacconi, 37, whose app sells for $2.99 on both Apple and Android devices. “I started looking at yoga apps and didn’t like the ones I saw, so I made my own.” Tacconi teamed up with Vinyasa Flow Yoga Studios in Dallas, where he practiced for eight years, to select the content. The app offers 27 sessions with varying difficulty levels and styles, default playlists (and the option to draw from your personal iTunes library) and a dictionary of poses. The app has earned a four-and-a-half-star rating in the Apple app store since its launch in 2009 and was made available for Android in 2010. “The app is not a replacement for your full yoga experience, it’s a supplement that will help you along,” said Tacconi, whose app has reached over a half-million users. “I wouldn’t completely replace my yoga class with an actual teacher with the app. It’s a tool that will help you when you need it.” Tacconi also launched Practice Builder in November, an app to help yoga teachers build customized routines. Manhattan yoga teacher Jennilyn Carson, the mind behind the acclaimed yoga news website YogaDork. com, uses a similar app called Yoga Journal. In a city with as many yoga classes as taxicabs, Carson says it helps narrow down the selection. “The apps are great for people stuck in the subway when the train’s delayed and

they need to relax,” said Carson, 31, who uses apps on her iPhone. “It helps you use every opportunity to get your yoga in.” Eighty-five percent of Tacconi’s customers are Apple users like Carson. Like most apps, Pocket Yoga is available for the iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad and Macbook computers. A free trial version of Pocket Yoga is offered on Apple systems, but not for Android users. “The Android market is the Wild West,” said Tacconi. “The Apple market is better for consumers, since they approve and disapprove the apps submitted. You have a guarantee you’ll get what you’re going to get.” For those with the strength to get to class, Yoga Local NYC—available on both Apple and Android devices—caters specifically to New Yorkers. The app pulls up your location using your device’s GPS and provides the addresses of nearby studios, class times, instructor names and, of course, prices. “When the iPhone came out, I expected it to have an app for yoga the same way it comes built in with the stocks,” said Ben Fleisher, 33, who worked to create Yoga Local. “Nobody did it and I thought, ‘This is crazy!’ Everyone here is on the run even when they’re sitting down. When you want to go to class you don’t want to have to look up so many different websites on your phone.” Fleisher works as an acupuncturist and massage therapist on the Lower East Side

in addition to having practiced yoga since 1995. He plans to expand the app to San Francisco, Los Angeles and Chicago over the next few months since receiving positive feedback for the New York City version. “Technology is driving us toward shorter and shorter attention spans,” said Fleisher. “Yoga Local and other technology platforms make it easier to get to classes, stay inspired and stay motivated. To that extent, they make our lives more efficient.” While yoga apps certainly help yogis in a bind, they also change traditional yoga practice. Instead of turning off a cell phone to wind down, app users spend even more time looking at the glowing screens of wireless devices. Achieving mind-body awareness through breath and movement, the goal of practicing yoga, is better reached in a classic, group setting. For that reason, Carson suggests using apps just as a supplement to a regular yoga practice. Some apps, like Relax Melodies, which has close to 5,000 ratings averaging at five stars, just provide soothing music to ease meditation and relaxation instead of poses. “I don’t think apps make up for classes, but they’re really good when you need some inspiration for your practice,” said Carson. “They’re useful to look at and remind or refresh yourself.”

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By Rep. Carolyn Maloney other reproductive health services. Last sunday, we marked the 39th annithe bill also included the pence versary of roe v. Wade, the landmark Amendment, which specifically bars supreme Court decision that guarantees funding for planned parenthood. the a woman’s right to choose. reproductive vast majority of services provided by freedom is at greater planned parenthood are risk now than at any family planning, cancer time since roe was screening and other nonhanded down in 1973, abortion-related care. and family planning is this language would under attack. Women have impacted basic can no longer afford health care for millions of to be silent. women. Fortunately, the Last year, senate defeated it. republicans passed in May, the House an endless parade voted to repeal health of legislation in the care reform and the House regarding republicans approved an reproductive rights amendment that prohiband family planning, ited federal funding to train and this year promises doctors to perform aborto be no better. Many Rep. Carolyn Maloney. tions, even if an abortion of the republican would save a woman’s life. efforts go far beyond choice and would the senate has taken no action on this bill. impact women’s access to birth control in October, the House considered the and basic health care, including can- most dangerous bill of all, the so-called cer screenings. the number and variety “protect Life Act,” which many groups of their attacks on reproductive care is are calling the “Let Women die Act” more than simply breathtaking—it’s dan- because it would let hospitals refuse to gerous. Meanwhile, republicans have provide lifesaving care to women who offered zero substantive bills to create need an abortion and allow them to jobs, the No. 1 issue for the American refuse to transfer them to another instipeople. tution that would provide care. it also early last year, republicans zeroed denies women the right to buy insurout family planning funding in the 2011 ance covering full reproductive care on omnibus government funding bill. this the health care exchanges set up under wasn’t funding for abortions—federal health care reform. Fortunately, the law already prohibits that—rather, it was senate hasn’t taken it up either. aid for birth control, pre-natal care and it has become a time-honored tradition

Carolyn Maloney represents the east side of Manhattan and parts of Queens in the House of representatives.

TweeT SPeAk @jensensalpha Alex Rodriguez just sold his Upper West Side condo only eight months after he bought it. @Organic Avenue So excited for our new UWS boutique opening this Thursday! Just a few short days til LOVE* on the Upper West Side at 461 Amsterdam—will we see you there? @CarolineBassVP The city drafts new rules to address

to point out that roe hangs by a thread in the supreme Court; Whoever becomes president next year will likely determine whether the Constitution guarantees women the right to choose the timing and number of children they will bear. if any of the four republicans remaining in the race win, they have promised to select supreme Court candidates who will overturn roe and have pledged to sign legislation that could restrict women’s access to basic health care. if roe falls, the issue will be turned back to the states. NArAL has identified 69 separate anti-choice measures adopted in the states in 2011, even with roe. Five states have gone so far as to ban abortions entirely after 20 weeks, with no exception for rape or incest or to protect the health of the mother. Fortunately, president Obama has made it clear that he supports choice and that he believes that reproductive health care needs to be protected and funded. Last week, his administration reaffirmed that any organization that is not solely religious will have to comply with the preventive care provisions of the Affordable Care Act, including providing access to all FdA-approved birth control medication. this year could prove pivotal in the fight to protect reproductive rights. For those of us who support roe, silence is no longer a viable choice.

January 26, 2012

single biggest complaint among Upper West Siders: small stores keep disappearing.

@Annie_Rush Why are there so many ginger children on the Upper West Side?

@maxjdubin Watching the Republican debate as God and Reagan intended: with a cup of tea on the Upper West Side.

@mollygaller I though the best spaghetti cacio e pepe was at Eataly, but I was wrong. It’s at Regional on the Upper West Side.

@karbrandt Why are so many banks occupying prime urban storefronts? Upper West Side proposes zoning fix to help momn-pop shops

@hasskhalife Upper West Side of Manhattan has got to be the greatest neighborhood in the world. #UWS #Broadway

N ew s YO U Li V e B Y


MOORe tHOuGHtS

Waking Up with Charlie Rose—and Some Questions A new addition reminds us that our town is still king of the morning show By Christopher Moore Over many years, Charlie Rose spent a tremendous number of hours in my bedroom. Before discovering the life-altering advantages of the DVR, I often ended my day with Rose on public TV. So his move two weeks ago to the CBS morning program sent my routine into confusion. Rose, an official Man About Town, did not just bring a new table and passion for run-on sentences to CBS This Morning. He also came with a couple of new cohosts: Gayle King, Oprah’s official best friend, and Erica Hill, who is not actually new—she’s a holdover from the prevous incarnation of the CBS morning show. The flaws of her new cohosts make Hill look better every day. All of this is important to me because I’m addicted to morning TV. These days, I bounce from the media monster Today to the chatty Good Day New York and the clubby Morning Joe, but I go way back. I was a little kid who knew who David Hartman was. As a fan of fake intimacy, I like watching morning anchors pretend to like each

other. They desperately try to create a sense of community, often copying each other along the way. They sometimes insist they are a “family,” even though in these families, the members get tossed around from show to show with disconcerting speed. Also fun: watching high-profile talents pretend to be interested in the range of topics they tackle. If there was anything more compelling on American television in the last few decades than watching Diane Sawyer appear in cooking segments during her Good Morning America days, well, I missed it. So This Morning is right up my alley. Rose is known in Manhattan and D.C. for being an A-list party guest. Watching him in the morning, all sluggish mien and dead eyes, seems simultaneously hilarious and scary. By the end of week one, he had such a bad cold that it was painful to watch. If he were still alive, Dr. Kevorkian would be on speed dial over at CBS. The new show opened with a thoughtful 90-second review of the news, Eye Opener. Most of the attention during the

premier week, though, went to King’s interview with Michelle Obama. She insisted she was looking forward to campaigning for her husband, but failed to come up with any reason anyone would support him. As usual, the disengaged first lady took a pass on getting involved in important political matters. This is not Eleanor Roosevelt we’re talking about. It takes two, though, to come up with an interview this bad. King was obsequious in talking to someone she described as a friend. Dismissive of Jodi Kantor’s new book, The Obamas, King did not, so far as I recall, bother to mention the extent of her support for the first family. According to a quick trip to Fundrace.HuffingtonPost. com, one of my favorite websites, King gave thousands of dollars last year to Obama Victory Fund 2012. Obviously, it’s a new era in American journalism. We don’t even pretend to be objective any longer. Fine. Objectivity never really existed, but fairness could. So

could full disclosure. Yes, I’ve wondered whether and which candidates deserve my financial support. But did CBS News really need to send King to interview her buddy the same week it ran ads about taking a fresh, hard-news approach on This Morning? Couldn’t Rose have done this interview? Sure, sometimes he answers questions he himself has asked, but he could probably have handled the assignment. Ah, I’m being cranky. King has a certain game presence, and I’m one of 17 people nationally who watched the show she did on OWN. She’s a TV personality; being a newswoman would be a separate matter. King is a natural at fake intimacy. Sometimes, though, news judgment is called for—especially when the bosses are bragging that they have it. Christopher Moore is a writer living in Manhattan. He is available by email at ccmnj@aol.com and is on Twitter (@cmoorenyc).

citiquette

The After-Party Party The two-for-one philosophy of hosting By Jeanne Martinet As most savvy New York hosts know, when you throw a large cocktail party, you can expect approximately 60 percent of the invitees to attend. Of the 40 percent who don’t come, most have a scheduling conflict or illness and are truly sorry to be missing the affair. So, what if you immediately offered these people an alternative—a kind of make-up party? That’s exactly what my friends Ned and Donna did. They held a big cocktail party one Saturday night and invited the people who sent “regrets” to a smaller party the very next Saturday. Now, Ned and Donna are people who do not entertain very much, so at first it sounded crazy to me that they would decide to have two parties in a row. But this nonhosting tendency on the part of this couple is in fact why the double party idea was perfect for them. Once they had managed to find the impetus to entertain, whipped their house into guest-ready shape (cleaning it from top We st Si d e S p i r it . c o m

to bottom, even rearranging the furniture) and stocked the larder with staples like soda, snacks and booze, the second, smaller party was a veritable snap for them. They even had leftover wine and supplies that the guests from the first party had brought them. Having two parties in a row may sound exhausting, but it can be much more efficient than spreading them out. You can pay back everyone you owe an invitation in a spectacular one-two punch. Really, it’s like getting out all the painting equipment to paint a room and then deciding that, while you’re at it, you may as well paint another small room at the same time. Also, having a second gathering is a great way for the hosts to soak up every bit of fun they can; after working hard to make a party happen, hosts can feel it is over too quickly. Most people I talk to who, for one reason or another, had dreaded hosting a party are so energized

afterward they wonder why they don’t host more often. Might as well have another party while you are in the mood! You can also employ a similar version of this kind of party clustering when you find you have more than one dinner party you need to give. Instead of hosting one dinner one month and one another month, have a dinner party weekend. Make one big pot of something hearty and fabulous— say, oxtail stew, boston butt or chili--then hold two dinner parties one after the other. Contrary to what one might think, the second set of guests are not getting shortchanged, because by the second dinner you are probably more relaxed (having cleaned and shopped like a madwoman before the first one), and often the Italian pot roast you spent hours making is even better the second day. Of course, in the case of back-to-back dinner parties, the guests must not know about each other at all. While a make-up

cocktail party is like being offered a wonderful consolation prize, being part of a double dinner party weekend can seem more like a prize cut in half. The one rule to follow when hosting consecutive parties is that you can never let the people at the second party get the idea that your first party was in any way more enjoyable than the one you are having with them right now. You want them to feel fortunate and much sought-after, as if you are going to extra trouble just for them—which, in a sense, you are. The people who could not attend the primary event should feel flattered that you have gone out of your way to extend your hospitality to them. It’s as if you are saying to them, “I want to have you over so much I will even have a do-over just to get you here!” even though it is really a case of a relatively easy two-for-the-fussof-one for you. Speaking of two for one, I somehow got to go to both of the lovely parties given by Ned and Donna. Not fair that they invited me to both? Hey, there’s got to be some perk to this whole Miss Mingle thing! Jeanne Martinet, aka Miss Mingle, is the author of seven books on social interaction. Read her blog at MissMingle.com.

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January 26, 2012

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West Side Spirit January 26, 2012  

The January 26, 2012 issue of West Side Spirit. The West Side Spirit, published weekly, is chock full of information—from hard news to human...

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