Another Hot Saturday Night in The ‘Burg

January 6, 2008 ·
Filed under: Williamsburg 

Last night I wanted to mix things up a little bit, so my husband and I had dinner in Williamsburg. The gnocchi at Baci & Abbracci was delicious. What’s more, we got a little post-meal entertainment on our walk home courtesy of 156 North 12th Street:

156 North 12 Street

New York’s Bravest checking out yet another site slated for demolition.

156 N. 12 Street Demo Permit

Hmm. The only valid permit I could find on the Department of Building’s web site was for a construction fence. They barely let the ink dry on this one: it was issued December 19th. Just in time for Christmas!

156 N 12 Street Complaint

Looks like someone complained about unsafe demolition the month before. Of course, I am not a building inspector. If I was I’d have one of those funny little cars with a plastic chihuahua on the dashboard like the one I saw on Lorimer Street earlier in the afternoon). So if they said everything was okay it must be okay.

156 N 12 Street 2

Right?

Miss Heather

Goys Don’t Want To Have Fun

January 2, 2008 ·
Filed under: Area 51, Crazy People, Williamsburg 

One of the pleasures of the holiday season is taking the time to catch up with your buddies. Usually this entails mundane chatter like “How’s the job going?”, pet-related banter, etc. Not this year. I thought I would have the biggest bombshell of a story (being detained by the police), but this ended up not being the case. Not by a long shot. The very same day I had my little tete a tete with the police, a good friend of mine had an interaction of a distinctly different caliber. Here is her story:

It was a Wednesday night and I was walking my dog at 11:00. This is NOT a particularly spooky time of night around here, what with all the hipsters and families. True, a few years ago my cell phone was stolen out of my hand in broad daylight, but that was by bored preteens in the summer, and it was entirely non-violent in nature. I no longer try to text people and walk the dog at the same time, nor do I wear girlie sandals to walk the dog anymore.

On this particular fateful night, I looked dumpy because I’m walking my dog and don’t give a shit. Jeans, messy hair, no makeup, big winter coat, e.g; I don’t look like a hooker in any way, shape, or form. I notice a heavyset Hasid standing alone on the corner of Montrose and Leonard next to the softball diamond. There is a park right next to said softball diamond, with swing sets, jungle gyms, benches, picnic tables, and a restroom which I have never investigated. I have often seen fathers bring their kids out here at 11:00 at night. There are often other dog walkers about. Tonight, no one else is out at this precise moment, although a number of cars passed. There are many street lights on.

I hesitate, then go ahead and let the dog lead me across the street so I am within earshot of Hasid. I know he can’t touch me anyway. I am now 3 feet away. This was when Hasid asks me for the time. I say I don’t know and show him I have no watch.

Hasid: Oh ok. Um, you wanna have fun?
Me: No.
Hasid: No, you don’t want to have fun?
Me: NO.
Hasid: Oh, ok. (hesitates, then quickly) You know where I can get some fun?
Me (shrugging): There is a bar up Montrose a few blocks.
Hasid: Oh. I can find some fun there?
Me (corralling dog): Maybe.

This is when my dog suddenly looks up from sniffing other dogs’ pee. He notices my potential suitor and takes two steps towards him. Hasid lurches back in reflexive terror. Dog, who thinks everyone must be his friend, looks at Hasid, perplexed. I begin to lead dog away from the scene of potential fun, averting my gaze. Just before I’m out of appropriate communication distance, me makes his final offer:

Not even for money, you don’t want to have fun?

Me: NO.

I begin to lead dog briskly away, head still down. I am not frightened in the least. I am somewhat amused, but would like to end the conversation nonetheless. The Hasid stands a moment alone, puts his head down and then hurries back across Broadway with the urgency one usually has to get out of a cold, driving rain or perhaps as though pursued by invisible harpies. This is the exact opposite direction from the bar I told him about. I continue to walk my dog, chuckling to myself from time to time. I see occasional passersby. The dog is once again lost in checking his peemail, oblivious to the recent affront to his owner’s honor.

I dunno, this is pretty damn funny, but not as funny as the guy who was taking a piss on a tree right out in the open and shouting after me “God bless you, Mommy!” What do you think?

New York Shitty analysis: Ah, “East Williamsburg!”. If this chap wanted to have the kind of fun I think he was seeking he could have easily hopped on the G train, taken it the 21st Street in Long Island City and found him some. Dilettante. Then again, maybe he simply wanted a partner to play miniature golf with at The Bushwick Country Club. Alas, now we’ll never know.

I thought being detained by the police for being “a suspicious person” was pretty shitty. I have never, however, been mistaken for being a “working girl” and I take a certain amount of solace in this fact.

Maybe it was the dog?

Miss Heather

Happy New Year From New York Shitty!

January 1, 2008 ·
Filed under: Williamsburg 

Jackson Street Cherub

From Jackson Street in Williamsburg: one hungover cherub.

Miss Heather

P.S.: Tomorrow I will more or less resume my usual number of posts. During the last two weeks I taken a break from writing and have put a (VERY) small dent in my “to read” pile. I am currently reading “Noxious New York: The Racial Politics of Urban Health and Environmental Justice” by Julie Sze. Not surprisingly, Greenpoint/Williamsburg is one of the neighborhoods featured.

Last Sunday I read “Hack” (by Melissa Plaut) in one sitting. I strongly recommend this book. Among her many work-related anecdotes, Ms. Plaut recounts an incident on Greenpoint’s very own McGuinness Boulevard (pages 168-169) that required the attention of the 94th Precinct. And attention she got, sort of. Read it for yourself.

A Tempest Over A Teapot

December 31, 2007 ·
Filed under: Area 51, Williamsburg 

I have recently learned that there is one serious downside to Mr. Heather having a digital camera: I now have a companion on my picture-taking sorties. This probably sounds touching to some of you— and I suppose if you are not married to Mr. Heather it is. If you are, however, married to Mr. Heather (as I am) you would realize it is but only another facilitator for our (numerous) verbal skirmishes.

Do I hate Mr. Heather? No. Am I going to set the bed on fire one night while he sleeps. Absolutely not. Some couples gaze at each other with starry-eyed expressions. Their more medicated brethren engage in coke-induced foreplay on Bedford Avenue or Berry Street. Still others send cutesy text messages to each other in “LOL” speak. Mr. Heather and I argue: it is the foundation of our relationship.

Verbal altercations are foreplay to us; after cutting our teeth on each other we usually join forces and ridicule the above-listed public displayers of affection. Screw romance. In 10-20 years you’ll just grow to loathe each other anyway, so why not skip the preliminaries? Mr. Heather and I have. We have crammed at least 30 years of acrimony and repressed anger into two years of marriage. This is no small accomplishment. But I digress.

Today Mr. Heather accompanied me on my walk, and true to form, he soon got on my nerves. First it was what to have for lunch: we argued. Then it was which wines to buy: I told him I didn’t care. Lastly (and most crassly) we bickered over a teapot.

Pink Kettle

This teapot, which now graces our rather filthy stove top.

When my parents asked me what Mr. Heather wanted for Christmas, I told them to get him a gift certificate at The Brooklyn Kitchen. I suggested this because:

  1. Mr. Heather thinks with his stomach— and given the capacity this organ has, I’d hazard to guess he thinks a lot. Mostly about food.
  2. When my parents bought him a gift certificate there for his birthday, Mr. Heather left longing for a teapot.
  3. The peeps who operate The Brooklyn Kitchen are really funny, down-to-earth and helpful people. The previous qualities are good ones to have when dealing with Mr. and Miss Heather. Today was no exception.

When we arrived I was more than a little unnerved. I asked a woman working there if she would be willing to trade Woody (the resident canine) for my my husband. She seemed a little confused by this at first, so I reiterated my offer:

Are you willing to trade him (pointing at Woody) for him (pointing at Mr. Heather)?

Wisely, she declined.

After quibbling over knives, knife holders and a salad mixer (the latter of which, we’d probably never use), Mr. Heather set his sights on the object of his desire: a Le Creuset teapot. He asked me no less than three times if he should get it.

Me: Get it, you clearly want to.
Mr. Heather: (hemming and hawing)
Me (to Taylor, an employee of The Brooklyn Kitchen): Please tell him he wants that teapot.
Taylor: You want that teapot.
Me: Thank you. Get the pink one, it will match our kitchen.

He did. As we were checking out, I quipped:

Nothing says “I have been emasculated” like buying a pink teapot.

To wit, Taylor replied:

No, nothing says “I have been emasculated” like asking your wife if you can buy a pink teapot.

How very true.

I’d like to give a big shout-out of thanks to the folks at The Brooklyn Kitchen for their patience with/tolerance of our Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf shenanigans. I am pleased to report that Mr. Heather has used his new teapot with success. What’s more, that atomizer for salad vinegar we bought works smashingly for spritzing Pernod (to make Sazeracs).

Miss Heather

P.S.: The Brooklyn Kitchen is still accepting canned goods on behalf of the Greenpoint Reformed Church’s food pantry. You can drop off canned goods at:

The Brooklyn Kitchen
616 Lorimer Street
Brooklyn, New York 11211
(718) 389-2982

The B43 Stoop

December 30, 2007 ·
Filed under: Williamsburg 

Bus Stop Stoop

Now that they have decided to raise our fares, I hope the MTA will hire somebody to raise this bus time table as well.

Miss Heather

More Harassment Courtesy of the N.Y.P.D.

Last night I approved a series of comments regarding my recent interaction with New York’s Finest. Among them was this turd posted by “MASKEDMAN”:

Ahhh Miss Heather
But if your house was broken into by someone who had been casing your neighborhood, so upset you would be at the Police Department for not doing there job.
How you would say they were at a donut shop or such, instead of properly investigating a 911 call of a suspicious person.
You say “Was I dressed in a manner that would be construed as menacing? How would the police know that? Because if they thought that, they would be profiling ooohhhh and just think of the story you would have then!!!!
Give the Officers a break really.

To wit I replied:

I have a better idea: they should cut us a break and (as I said in the comment previous to yours) go after real criminals.

It’s easy to criticize when you have not had an experience like mine and I hope you never do. Your cynicism saddens me. Nonetheless, I wish you happy and healthy holiday season.

“MASKEDMAN” got diarrhea of the mouth— or would that be of the keyboard? Either way it is fear-mongering bullshit:

I find it very funny
People riding their bicycles on the sidewalk, people drinking in public. all against the law.
How can you be upset about getting a summons for beaking ther law?
Don’t know if anyone has kids, but have you ever tried to walk on the sidewalk with a stroller while bicycles wiz by you it’s not fun.
Laws are there for a reason, if you want to play, you have to pay my friends.
Oh how everyone would complain if they were sleeping, and some people were outside drinking beers and making noise keeping them up. But I’m sure you weren’t making any noise, right?
Maybe the cops should just do NOTHING.see how you like it then.

Cut you a break for what Miss Heather? Just don’t investigate the complaint. You can’t be serious

Thinking this guy was just some angry jerk-off, I humored him:

If you are going to be abusive, Maskedman I am going to revoke your account. I have gone through enough hell this week. I am the victim in this situation. Not you and certainly not the NYPD. Simple as that.

Here is his piquant reply:

Well Miss Heather, I’m sorry you took me as abusive, I was simply asking a question and not trying to be abusive.
But, if you think that is abuse, NOW I can understand why simple questions by the Police to understand your actions causes you to call the Officer names like Barney Fife. You’re way too sensitive.
By the way, you should really THANK the Police for the job they have done there in the 94 Pct. THEY are the reason you can walk around that precinct looking at decorations, instaed of looking at hookers, pimps and drug dealers (as it was years ago). But instead you get mad at them for simply doing their job.
Victim? Victim of what?
You really have to think about this Miss Heather.

PS Please don’t assume you know me, or know my experiences, as I quote you “when you have not had an experience like mine”. I was pulled over by the Police all the time when I first started driving because I looked so young. They would pull me over, ask me for ID, question me, then send me on my way. I didn’t mind, ya know why? because I wasn’t doing anything wrong, I had NOTHING to worry about and they were just doing their job. Have a very Merry Christmas Miss Heather, and enjoy your New Year.

I did “think” about this. I also looked up “MASKEDMAN’S” I.P. address. Guess what? He and the N.Y.P.D. are one and the same:


“MASKEDMAN” writes:

Please don’t assume you know me, or know my experiences…

The sentiment is mutual: I do not want you to know me or my experiences. Ever read the Bill of Rights “MASKEDMAN”? I suspect you haven’t so here it is via Wikipedia:

The Preamble to the Bill of Rights

Congress of the United States begun and held at the City of New York, on Wednesday the fourth of March, one thousand seven hundred and eighty nine.

The Conventions of a number of the States, having at the time of their adopting the Constitution, expressed a desire, in order to prevent misconstruction or abuse of its powers, that further declaratory and restrictive clauses should be added: And as extending the ground of public confidence in the Government, will best ensure the beneficent ends of its institution.

RESOLVED by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America, in Congress assembled, two thirds of both Houses concurring, that the following Articles be proposed to the Legislatures of the several States, as amendments to the Constitution of the United States, all, or any of which Articles, when ratified by three fourths of the said Legislatures, to be valid to all intents and purposes, as part of the said Constitution; viz.

ARTICLES in addition to, and Amendment of the Constitution of the United States of America, proposed by Congress, and ratified by the Legislatures of the several States, pursuant to the fifth Article of the original Constitution.

First Amendment: Establishment clause, freedom of religion, speech, and press, and peaceable assembly as well as the right to petition the government. Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

Second Amendment:
Right to keep and bear arms. A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.

Third Amendment: Protection from quartering of troops. No Soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of the Owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law.

Fourth Amendment:
Protection from unreasonable search and seizure. The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

Fifth Amendment: Due process, double jeopardy, self-incrimination, eminent domain. No person shall be held to answer for any capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.

Sixth Amendment: Trial by jury and other rights of the accused. In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district where in the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the Assistance of Counsel for his defense.

Seventh Amendment: Civil trial by jury. In suits at common law, where the value in controversy shall exceed twenty dollars, the right of trial by jury shall be preserved, and no fact tried by a jury, shall be otherwise reexamined in any court of the United States, than according to the rules of the common law.

Eighth Amendment
: Prohibition of excessive bail, as well as cruel and unusual punishment. Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.

Ninth Amendment: Protection of rights not specifically enumerated in the Bill of Rights. The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.

Tenth Amendment: Powers of states and people. The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people.

Now that my history lesson is over, I’ll tell you something: I forwarded “MASKEDMAN’s” IP address to a lot of people. Here’s what one anonymous tipster had to say:

Good for you for putting word out.

I think he is probably harmless — the kind of guy who won’t hear anything critical about the police force. Interesting, though, that he is spending considerable amounts of time reading and posting to blogs from his office.

Have you seen this? The NYPD censoring this Wikipedia page with more or less the same IP info and location. (They also apparently notified the NYTimes–see Wiki comments.)

also naming Sara Berger & male colleague (albeit a different one) in NDSS room 701
maybe Sarah and the lads are just “techs.” But the room appears to be the “we watch the internet” room. Who knew?

I guess it’s probable that’s the location of NYPD’s IT and they’re not really in room 701.
It still raises the question of why maskedman isn’t doing some work.

Isn’t it nice to know your tax dollars are paying “MASKEDMAN” to surf the Internet and harass civilians who have the temerity to stand up for themselves? The timing of “MASKEDMAN’s” missives is also interesting: they came to pass after a lot of negative press via the ‘blogosphere’ and on THE SAME DAY Channel 12 contacted the 94 Precinct regarding my “incident”.

Miss Heather

Public Service Announcement

December 18, 2007 ·
Filed under: Asshole, Williamsburg 

Anyone who has checked out Queens Crap recently has probably learned that sending Ms. Lancaster (the Commissioner of the Department of Buildings) an angry email may very well net you a visit from New York’s Finest. While I personally would have used different rhetoric than what this chap employed (I think asking if she is incompetent or merely corrupt would suffice), the fact of the matter is his missive scarcely merited the “response” it received.

Unlike our friends at New York City’s most-maligned municipal agency, I am a big fan of the Bill of Rights. What’s more, I understand the therapeutic value of blowing off steam when dealing with intransigent public officials. To this end I wish to introduce “Hard Hat Hannah”.

Hard Hat Hannah

Since the Department of Buildings has such a heavy workload and their enforcement “activity” in my neck of the woods is virtually non-existent, I decided to make my own building inspector. Recently we went for walk.

Fence on Roebling

Here is Hannah tut-tutting over a downed construction fence on Roebling Street.

Grand Street Crackhouse

The crack house over on Grand Street did not sit well with her either.

MAKE IT STOP!!!

In fact, by the time we hit Frost Street she was begging me to put her back in my backpack.

If you, dear readers, need to vent a little frustration at a “building inspector” but do not want to risk intimidation from the cops you can shoot Hannah an email at:

missheather (at) newyorkshitty (dot) com

or you can post your thoughts in the comments. I will make sure she gets them.

Miss Heather

A Couple Events Tonight

December 18, 2007 ·
Filed under: Greenpoint Magic, Williamsburg 

Snowman

Tonight at 7:30 p.m. Bob Eckstein, the author of The History of the Snowman (recently featured in The New York Times Holiday Books section) will be giving a slide presentation and Q & A session at Word Books. To facilitate extra holiday cheer, spiked hot cocoa is promised.

Word Books
126 Franklin Street
Brooklyn, New York 11222
(718) 383-0096

Property Profile 135 N. 9 Street

Those of you who are more civic-minded (or simply have a dark sense of humor) might be interested to know what is on tonight’s agenda over at Community Board 1:

  1. 53-65 HOPE STREET (BLOCK #2369, LOT # 38, 40 & 47) is applying for a partial waiver of the required accessory off-street parking spaces required by the conversion of the building location at 65 Hope Street to 92 residential units, generating a requirement for 46 parking spaces. The Special Permit seeks to reduce the number of required parking spaces provided from 46 to 11.
  2. Krzysztof Rostek of Belvedere III LLC wishes to file an application to extend the time to complete construction the four story, six (6) family dwelling facility at 135 NORTH 9th STREET (BLOCK #2324 LOT# 36)
  3. Ten Eleven Holdings LLC, better known as The Pencil Factory, seeks a renewal of their permit to operate a sidewalk cafe.

Tonight’s meeting will commence at 6:30 p.m. If you are interested in asking Mr. Rostek about the above “partial” stop work order, the Borough Commissioner’s ten day letter of intent to revoke his application to build (yet) another Belvedere, his failure to protect adjoining properties and (my personal favorite) working without a permit, you need to sign up no later than 6:15 p.m. at:

Lady of the Snow Society
410 Graham Avenue
Brooklyn, New York 11211

And, oh yeah: be sure to tell him Miss Heather says “Hi”.

Miss Heather

A Couple Weekend Events

December 14, 2007 ·
Filed under: Greenpoint Magic, Williamsburg 

THE GIFT on Grand

This Saturday, December 15, THE GIFT on grand holiday sale will be conducted at Secret Project Robot (which, ironically enough, is not located on Grand Street). Per Sodafine’s announcement:

We’ll be taking over the main gallery space of Secret Project Robot as well as the basement for the afternoon of Saturday, December 15 from 11 a.m. -7 p.m. Just in time for all of your last minute holiday shopping!! We’re rounding up a terrific group of artists this year, including a bunch of designers that participated last year as well as a lot of new faces. There will certainly be gifts of all types to suit everyone on your list!

Those wishing to get a sneak peek at the participating artists should point and click your way over to THE GIFT on grand’s blog. While you’re there, be sure to check out this insanely stylish doggie sweater.

THE GIFT on grand
at Secret Project Robot
210 Kent Street
Brooklyn, New York 11222

Open Studio, 649 Morgan Avenue

After doing a little shopping, why not check out some art? Per the Cheryl Molnar Projects web site, 649 Morgan Avenue will be hosting an open house right here in Greenpoint:

The 649 Morgan Avenue- Fine Arts Building in Greenpoint, Brooklyn announces that it will be holding an Open Studios event that will be held from 6:00 to 10:00 p.m. …December 15, 2007. The building has over 20 artists studios – many of which will be participating. A variety of work will be showing including painting, drawing, sculpture and installation.

For more information you can email Ms. Molnar at cheryl (at) cherylmolnar (dot) com or visit her web site.

Fine Arts Building
649 Morgan Avenue
Brooklyn, New York 11222

Note: Both of these events are free to the general public.

Miss Heather

‘Tis The Season: Wythe Avenue

December 9, 2007 ·
Filed under: Greenpoint Magic, Williamsburg 

Love Thy Everyone

Analysis: before one can love others he/she needs to learn how to love him/herself.

Miss Heather

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