Thanks to the alarmist article published by am New York today, the guys at Alphabeta have had the pleasure of hosting not one, but TWO television crews. The latter, from WNBC, made sure to interview some neighborhood youngsters before departing. Amusingly enough they didn’t seem the least bit interested in asking me, a boring old grown-up, what I thought. Go figure.
Those of you who have not read this article, please do so. Among other things you will learn that Peter Vallone Jr. (who does not even represent our district) has set his sights on this store and a graffiti artist is described as using spray paint “outside” Alphabeta. While this statement is technically true, it is also incredibly deceptive: the gentleman in questions was using spray paint ON THE PREMISES behind said store.
What’s the difference, you ask? Very simple: the wording of the am New York article insinuates that this gentleman is painting someone else’s property, e.g.; he is committing a crime. Sorry to disappoint all the folks who were put in a dither by this misleading statement, painting one’s own walls is not against the law— and if it ever is, we’ll probably be kissing many more of our civil liberties goodbye. I don’t know about you, but that is not the kind of world I want to live in.
Speaking for myself, I fail to see what the issue is. If someone is going to use spray paint for illegal purposes, (like this delightful example from the St. Alphonsus School I shot today)
…they are going to do it— and I seriously doubt Alphabeta is going to be the either the instigator or enabler*. In fact, by providing a space for artists to create and show their work, this establishment might actually be part of the solution, not the problem. Seriously. The fact this piece of rubbish is supposed to pass as “news” absolutely boggles my mind. It sounds more like a politician doing a little rabble rousing in the hopes of getting some free publicity to me.
*Back in 1996 I knew a guy who “accidentally” got a pencil stuck up his ass. I was even there when the emergency room doctor asked him how it got there, which was sort of uncomfortable. Does this mean we should go after the business who sold this chap said pencil? If you follow Mr. Vallone’s line of “reasoning”, the answer would be yes.
Friday is July 4th, a time of celebration, fireworks, barbecuing and beer. Getting ready for said festivities is scarcely as, well, festive. In addition to my usual routine this week I have been hastily prepping the apartment for visitors who are unacquainted with the usual “state” of Chez Shitty: total and utter chaos. And I wish to keep it that way.
Therefore, out of sheer laziness I am going to bring back one of my favorite stories about Greenpoint and fireworks. I originally posted it back in March of 2007, but some stories are simply too good (and by that I mean, too Greenpoint) to get old. Enjoy!
For reasons I will go into another time, I have been spending a lot of time researching Greenpoint history of late. As I parsed through page upon page of old newspapers, I came to the realization that this neighborhood has not changed much over the last 150+ years. Greenpoint is a strange place; its inhabitants are even stranger. Yet, by the grace of god, not much in the way of serious criminal activity goes down here. But when something does happen, you can bet your bottom dollar:
- It will be a doozy.
- Alcohol consumption and/or arson will be involved.
Take the following gem of a crime blotter entry I found recently from the Brooklyn Daily Eagle:
Arrested on suspicion is not a satisfactory explanation to Miss Heather. I needed closure and I wouldn’t rest goddammit until got it. I did: courtesy of the “Brooklyn Intelligence” section of New York Times published the same day!
Not only does Mr. Wendt deserve induction into the Best Friend EVER Hall of Fame (if there is such a place), but this has got to be one of the most inspired acts of revenge against a former employer I have ever read. Someone should make a buddy movie based off this tale. I think Will Ferrell has the acting chops to depict Uriah Hoare with dignity and respect he so richly deserves.
Uriah Hoare, on the behalf of everyone who has ever wanted to rip their (ex) boss a new asshole, I salute you.
After dedicating a substantial amount of my time to reading about New York City’s sewage treatment facilities I thought it would be appropriate to pull a photo from the New York Shitty photo pool whose subject matter dovetails nicely with the such subject matter: shit.
This missive (which pretty much speaks for itself) hails from Kingsland Avenue and comes courtesy of (once again) ecstace.
It’s been over a month since I have checked in with Greenpoint’s favorite varmint who I have taken to calling Gertie the Gopher. Lest you are wondering, she’s still hanging around Huron Street.
And it looks like she’s prepping for one hell of a 4th of July soiree!
At handling #2, that is. Some of you might have noticed the offerings on New York Shitty have been exceptionally light of late. This is because I have been asked to write about one of my favorite subjects. The above map should give you some clue as to what it is. More to come soon!
In the meantime if you want to creep yourself out give Habitat Map’s material about Newtown Creek a look see.
Map: Courtesy of nyc.gov
It should be known that I am a big fan of sangria. Thus it is very fortuitous that I live in Greenpoint. The Garden Spot has a number of establishments that make the stuff— and for the most part, it is all quite good. Casa Mon Amour and Papasito’s serve sangria of the red variety. The previous is absolutely wonderful, the latter is tiny bit too sweet for my taste but delicious nonetheless. I have also heard the Habitat sports some good sangria but I have yet to taste test. (If anyone out there has, do give me your assessment!)
As tasty as the previously mentioned sangrias are, the fact of the matter is I am somewhat doctrinaire in my wine consumption. In colder months I veer towards reds, in the summer I stick to roses and whites. Which brings me to the above photograph. This is the tropical sangria from Cafecito Bogota. I tried this concoction last weekend and have to confess: it’s fucking amazing.
As you can see it is of the white variety. What you can’t see is this is essentially a fruit salad served in booze. Bits of banana, cantaloupe, honeydew melon and apple grace this beverage. When topped off with passion fruit juice (providing the frothy foam) the effect is quite amazing. At $8.00 for a hefty glass, the price is right as well. I highly recommend giving this beverage a try. Check it out!
1015 Manhattan Avenue
Punta Verde, New York 11222
Be sure to get a fork. You WILL want to eat the fruit!
P.S.: Just a quick reminder— tonight the Black Rabbit will be unveiling their latest batch of ginger beer!
From Manhattan Avenue.
This was the hilarious sight that awaited me when I was walking down Green Street yesterday. Anyone who lives on Green Street between Manhattan Avenue and Franklin Street will attest that the Viridian has been quite busy installing styrofoam insulation over the last week. As a result the entire block and some of the people on it are blanketed in white flecks of foam. A little touch of winter on the cusp of July. To alleviate this problem, the above chap is vacuuming the sidewalk. Priceless.
I mention this anecdote because I was recently forwarded one of the finest complaints to the Department of Buildings I have ever seen. Jonathan writes:
look at the recent complaint for 156 Guernsey St! love it
It would appear that Green Street is not the only block afflicted by summertime snow storms. What’s more, one of the more attractive blocks in Greenpoint is set to get its very own Belvedere! Lucky them. Interested to see what a building “covered in styrofoam” looks like, I headed to 156 Guernsey without delay.
Styrofoam? What styrofoam?
The front of this building looks like a piece of Swiss cheese.
Swiss cheese with Friedrich boxes that is.
The building on the left was meticulously restored and put on the market by Corcoran. Given the recent absence of a “For Sale” sign, I would presume it has sold— probably for a very tidy sum. I wonder what the buyer thinks of its neighbor’s face lift?
Filed under: Greenpoint Magic
I imagine many of you have noticed there are some new faces at the Franklin Corner Store of late. This is because two weeks ago it changed ownership. Andre’s uncle, the owner, divested of all his property in New York City and has moved on to Pennsylvania. Andre is still on hand to make sure the transition goes smoothly. The same great sandwiches will still be served by the same staff. This includes Oreo, who as of today was making sure no one was trying to steal the Pirate’s Booty under her watch.
Andre’s last day will by July 13, 2008. The very next day he and his fabulously adorable son will fly to the Dominican Republic to spend two WHOLE MONTHS with his parents. Now that’s what I call a vacation!
Why not swing by and wish him safe trip and thank him for seven years of fantastic Cuban sandwiches?
P.S.: I have also been told the new owner plans to do a complete renovation of the store, so if you want to capture the old Franklin Corner Store grab your camera and get down there!
Filed under: Greenpoint Magic
Different people have different ways of starting the day. I for one like contemplating street meat over my morning coffee. Keeping the previous in mind, the above photograph taken in (where else?) Greenpoint by ecstace kicked off my Monday smashingly. Be sure to check out her “Greenpoint Glory” set on Flickr. When you do you will realize that not only does ecstace have a great sense of humor, but she is curiously adept at finding sea creatures roaming about the Garden Spot.