Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Chastity Bed 

The rain was falling so hard that it bounced off the slick, black asphalt of Avenue A. I watched through the windows of Doc Hollidays as a man in a soaked suit ran past.

"So, I guess I'd better sleep with her tonight," the girl said. She had clucky jewelry on her wrists that slid down to her elbows when she raised her arms. Her eyes were all pupils and whites, separated by sharp rims of green.

A week ago New York had been thrown into an early freeze but that Tuesday night the thermometers must have been pushing into the mid-fifties. Her landlord had turned on the heat during the chill and now the apartment was unbearabley hot. She had an air-conditioner in her room. Her roommate, a tall blonde Czech who was at the bar getting us another round of beer and whiskey, had just asked if they could sleep together in her bedroom to share the air-conditioning.

"Hot," I told her.

"No. Cool. That's the point," she said.

"Right. Cool."

"At least I have a big bed. Not like those beds in college. You know. The ones that are completely wrong. All long and narrow, barely wide enough for one person, when all you want to do is get someone else in your bed. We used to call them Chastity Beds."

The roommate returned. It was time to start thinking about whiskey and stop thinking about chastity.

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Save Youngna! 

New Hat and Gloves?

My friend Youngna just got back from Barcelona. There are tons of pictures of her trip here. If you click through that link you'll discover it doesn't go to Youngna's photoblog or her flickr account. When she was in Barcelona her bag was stolen. She lost a lot of stuff, including her camera and her lenses. My heart nearly broke when I thought of Youngna deprived of her camera by evildoers.

Dennis has had the brilliant idea of starting a campaign to buy Youngna a new camera. Go there and donate. I've added a button below so you can donate directly to the Save Youngna campagin.

As an added incentive for you to donate to the fund, until the close of business today I will match any donations made to the Save Youngna campaign through the link below on a "dollar for dollar" basis, as they say in the NPR drive.* That's right, if you donate a dollar to Save Youngna, it's as good as donating two because I'll chip in the second dollar. Don't procrastinate. If you wait until tomorrow to donate your donation will only be worth half as much as it would have been today. (I'm not quite sure how I'll confirm you donated to Save Youngna from this site so let's do this on the honor system. If you're a Manhattan Transfer reader and you donate, send me an email to manhattantransfer(at)gmail(dot)com or leave a comment to let me know. I figure I can probably just trust you on this).

[*There will be some reasonable level at which I'll declare this matching offer a victory but I haven't determined that yet.]

Short Shots. 

A couple of quick links for today.

Mimi in New York on the slain stripper.

Riot Porn: Pictures and posts about riots around the world. (via Steve Sailer)

Thursday, November 24, 2005


Happy Thanksgiving!

I'm retreating to the Manhattan Transfer family compound for the weekend and am not expecting to post anything over the next couple of days. But let's be honest. I haven't been posting very much recently so you probably won't even notice.

If you need your Manhattan Transfer fix, however, feel free to read about last year's Thanksgiving Eve. Reading that made me realize that I'm a lot less deep in the drink this year than I was last year. And so is Overserved. It makes my liver ache just reading about that night.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

A Sample of the Spring Social Season 

I was cleaning out my gmail account this morning and came across this email I sent out last spring. I cannot imagine where I found the energy to go through weekends like this. Or maybe I should be wondering where that energy went.

To the Go Team:

I've outlined this weekend's activities below. You should join me at any of these (some of you already are). Or better yet, all of them.

Except if you want to come to the Blue Jean ball you need to help the Children's Aid Society to the tune of $150 because it’s a charity event. Or you can tell them your covering it for the press and demand free admission, like I did. Then you have to live with the knowledge that you cheated needy kids out of $150.

It seems to me that I still have brunch available on Saturday, so if you're not inclined toward any of these, perhaps we should get together then.

All times are approximate (read: I'm going to be late to everything).

Birthday drinks for BM at the Flat Iron Lounge. Seven o'clock.

Birthday drinks for Janelle at the Dove. Eight o'clock.

Birthday drinks for BS at Sweet & Vicious. Nine-thirty.

Spring Saturday BBQ at Jill's apartment XXXXX Street, Apt 5b. May involve a hot tub, weather permitting. Four o'clock.

The opening of From Root to Fruit, featuring the work of Nick Lamia and thirteen other artists, at the Alona Kagan Gallery, 540 West 29 Street. Six o'clock.

Hoe Down at the Sonama Rooftop, XXX East X Street (Second Ave.) Six-thirty.

Blue Jean Ball at Gotham Hall, 1356 Broadway (36th Street). Nine o'clock.

Brunch (organized by Lindsayism) at Miracle Grill, 1st Avenue between 6th and 7th. One o'clock.

Flight of the Conchords, musical/comedy thing, at the Living Room, Ludlow (between Stanton and Rivington). 7:45. $5.

--All the best, MT

Wow. I've really slacked off on my social activities lately. Time to get back on track. The fall social season has officially begun.

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

If Ahmad Chalabi Bought the New York Sun Would Anyone Notice? 

Yesterday Gawker poked fun at the New York Sun's top of the fold editorial page coverage of Ahmad Chalabi's visit to their offices.

After reading the Sun's editorial, I'm still not sure why they were so smitten with Chalabi. Seems to have something to do with the Spanish American War--you know, the one where we won Cuba from Spain and then gave it back to the people who later lost it to the communists. Doesn't seem to me to be a good precedent to cite when talking about Iraq. But sometimes after a too-liquid lunch this foreign policy stuff just goes over my head. Maybe the War Nerd can explain it to me.

The thought occurred to me that maybe Chalabi is about to buy the New York Sun. I mean, he's in charge of all the oil in Iraq, so he's probably got the cash. And now that Judy Miller's leaving the New York Times, wouldn't it make sense for him to look for another foothold into New York media. The only problem with this scenario is that it would be redundant. If Chalabi took control of the New York Sun editorial page, I'm pretty sure no one would notice.

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Champions of Breakfast 

This morning Gawker ran an item about Judith Miller eating breakfast at Balthazar. I guess this marks a new high (by which I mean 'low') in Gawker-stalking but that wasn't really what caught my attention. Instead, I was very shook up by the opening sentence from Gawker's breakfast correspondent:
I have breakfast with a friend every Thursday morning at 8am at Balthazar."

Now who in there right mind gets up, dresses and goes out for breakfast at 8 am on a set day, every week with anyone, anywhere? I'm usually still trying hold down last nights cocktails at 8 am.

I decided to IM my friend T-Muffle to ask what the hell was going on.

ManhattanBlog: Does this makes sense to you? Who gets up, dresses and goes out for breakfast at 8 am every week with anyone, anywhere?

TMUFFLE: Adults, MT. Adults do that.

Now I remember my parents used to get up and read the paper and drink coffee every morning. My father would check how his stocks were doing, because it was before cable television. My mother would read whatever they were calling the women's sections in those days. I don't think the folks ever actually ate very much for breakfast, probably because they too were trying to keep last nights cocktails where they belonged. I guess it's a family tradition.

[An aside: now that I've written the phrase twice, I think lastnightscocktails.com would be an excellent name for a blog. Memo to Krucoff: another one to add to your growing blog empire!]

The thought of actually going out for breakfast in the morning is so foreign to my life that I'm actually strangely attracted to the idea. In the same way I'm attracted to the idea of having super powers that would let me fly or be invisible. Hardly anyone I know eats breakfast, unless you count some rising traders who take their morning nutrients nasally, much less goes out for breakfast.

I decided to check out some likely breakfast spots and discovered an interesting class system operating. Namely, Balthazar opens for breakfast at 7:30 am while Pastis doesn't open until 9:00 am. This means that people who work can eat at Balthazar, while people who don't (or whose work is done while eating out) can eat at Pastis. Balthazar is Pastis for the working class.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Halloween Round Ups 

I cannot believe I haven't got around to posting pictures or telling stories about New York City's four day long Halloween binge. In the meantime, I bring you tales from the Halloweens of others.

Craig's List: Missed Connections from Halloween.

Flickr Pictures Tagged "Halloween NYC."

And since it's Wednesday I'll make this a contest. Prizes for whoever leaves a link in comments for the best picture and best MC.

Friday, November 04, 2005

Local Man Confused About French Rioting 

Ted O'Leary, a resident of the Lower East Side, expressed confusion over recent reports of rioting in France yesterday.

While sipping from his fourth pint of Brooklyn Lager at the Ludlow Street drinking den Local 138, Mr. O'Leary explained that he could not figure out why French youths were rioting in suburban neighborhoods populated by Muslims. "From the news reports, I gather these are football hooligans or something. But I cannot figure out why they are rioting in Muslim suburbs. Maybe they are racists, rioting because of high crime in those areas. Like the Ohio Nazis who rioted," Mr. O'Leary said.

The apparent source of Mr. O'Leary's confusion was news reports issued from the Associated Press and reprinted in many major newspapers. One recent report stated:

Rampaging youths shot at police and firefighters Thursday after burning car dealerships and public buses and hurling rocks at commuter trains, as eight days of riots over poor conditions in Paris-area housing projects spread to 20 towns.

Youths ignored an appeal for calm from President Jacques Chirac, whose government worked feverishly to fend off a political crisis amid criticism that it has ignored problems in neighborhoods heavily populated by first- and second-generation North African and Muslim immigrants

Mr. O'Leary doubted claims that the African and Muslim immigrants populating the afflicted areas were themselves were rioting, telling a reporter, "I don't think that can be right. Wouldn't the press just tell us that?"