New York Magazine

  The Convention Kicker: Dispatches from the convention center, the parties, and the protests. New York Magazine blogs the RNC.  
  George and the Jungle: The Republicans are leaving New Yorkers with unexpected emotion: envy.  

  Intelligencer: Why Ben Bradlee's birthday bash left Barbara Walters peeved.

  Meet the Press: How Hustler, High Times, US Weekly, and YM are covering the convention.

  Talking Points: The convention proved, in the memorable words of the Bush twins, just how “unhip” the Republicans are.  

  The Big Question: If Bush's presidency ended today, what would it be?  

  Protexting: How are activists monitoring civil disobedience by cell phone? A sampling of the reports.  

  Write Your Own Acceptance Speech in 8 Easy Steps: Former presidental speechwriters explain.

  The Survival Guide  
Commuter Shortcuts  
Convention Calendar  
Political Arts Guide  
GOP Bar Buzz  

Convention Bar Buzz
Because the city's clubs and pubs will be anything but conventional when thousands of Republicans roll into town on August 30.
Crossing party lines at the Ritz.

taste test
The Compassionate Conservative, the G.W. Bellini, and the Texas Two-Step
Ritz-Carlton hotels are putting the party back in politics with three RNC-themed cocktails complete with kitschy names, beautiful colors, and $14 price tags. The Compassionate Conservative (vodka, passion fruit puree, champagne) is a tangy pick-me-up, while the G.W. Bellini (champagne, peach schnapps, peach puree) has a pink-sunset hue and just-picked peach taste. Our favorite, though, is the Texas Two-Step, an electric-blue mix of tequila, rum, and blue Curacao that will have you (line) dancing in your seat. All three will be served throughout the convention at both the hotel's classic Central Park flagship and modern Battery Park outpost, which is hosting the Georgia delegation (hence the peach-y G.W. Bellini), as well as many RNC parties in its ballroom. After indulging in a cocktail at the downtown Ritz's lobby lounge, make sure to visit the Rise Bar on the 14th floor, where the view of the Statue of Liberty is unbeatable.—Emma Rosenblum
Ritz-Carlton New York, Battery Park, 2 West St., at Battery Park Pl.; 212-344-0800; daily, 11 a.m.-11 p.m.; Ritz-Carlton New York. Central Park, 50 Central Park S., between Fifth and Sixth Aves.; 212-308-9100; daily, 11:30 a.m.-12:45 a.m.

republicans take manhattans: a how-to guide

City watering holes may be awash in patriotic potables (see the G. W. Bellini, above), but if visiting Republicans are serious about adopting New York City as their own, then duty calls upon them to order a round of Manhattans at least once. But nonlocal yokels beware: Imitations, like so many Canal Street handbags, are everywhere. And since a mistep could result in Dem reprisal (trust us, they're the worst kind of drunks) or, horror of horrors, shouts of "Go Back to Jersey!," a few pointers are in order:

• The standard Manhattan recipe is two-parts rye whiskey, one-part sweet vermouth, and two dashes of angostura bitters, topped with a maraschino cherry or orange twist.

• Rye whiskey is not the same spirit as bourbon whiskey or Canadian whiskey like VO—a rye blend that Broadway actors masquerading as bartenders often mistake for the real thing.

• If real rye isn't on hand, a Manhattan made with, say, Maker's Mark bourbon is (barely) acceptable, although we have to say, a little bit girlie. But not enough to get you beat up or anything.

• Instruct your bartender to substitute Irish whiskey for rye whiskey and you've got yourself a wisecracking Angela & Mike (Italian vermouth + Irish whiskey = a volatile New Yawk union if there ever was).

• For a Manhattan with impeccable pedigree, head to the venerable Bemelmans Bar (35 E. 76th St.). They'll take care of you. Follow me?

—Carla Spartos
The Penthouse's Red Room.
stripping for amy sohn
Penthouse Executive Club
The 10,000-square-foot Penthouse, which licensed the name from the magazine, has a South Beach vibe, with high ceilings, comfy booths, and an airy, spacious feel. On a recent weeknight, married men in collared shirts ogled a multiracial group of generic and siliconed girls, who gave bored-looking $20 lap dances. I finally discovered a half-French beauty with fake eyelashes and natural Cs, who did a good job of making me nervous as she wriggled down my body before a gathering crowd of leering men (there's nothing sexier in a strip club than watching a woman get a lap dance). Afterwards she tried to sell me another and when I told her I wasn't interested, her expression turned sour. These girls could use a little more sweetness: The trick to doing good business is to make customers feel like they're not buying your attention, even as they are. Upstairs, you can get private lap dances for $500-$1000 an hour in the freezing Harem Room (cool nipples make for better aesthetics), or eat prime rib at Robert's Steakhouse while buying drinks for a blonde with fake double Ds. As one female bartender said, "You got a piece of meat right here and a piece of ass right there. It's the American dream."—Amy Sohn
603 W. 45th St., at Eleventh Ave.; 212-245-0002;; Mon-Fri, 5 p.m.-4 a.m.; Sat, 7 p.m.-4 a.m.; Sun, closed.
The show girls at Tens.

Tens World Class Cabaret
Though sleek and somewhat generic, Tens offers a more tempting variety of strippers than Penthouse. There are more natural girls with real-girl appeal. They parade around in floor-length gowns, stopping to offer conversation and dances to the men, business types still dressed in work suits. Periodically, a voice comes over the speaker system and announces a specialty dancer, who takes the center stage and does a pas-de-deux with a pole. Sports games play on flat-screen TVs and the music is a little loud, but the girls take their time and seem content to do their jobs. After a sensuous $20 lap dance from a longhaired brunette named Mary, a buxom blonde in a tight black dress came up and offered me a massage. "It's the same price as a lap dance," she said, "and it lasts two songs!" With focus and dedication, my massager kneaded out all my knots, and she didn't try anything funny, either. "Sometimes men get mad," she said. "When they find out I really am just giving them a massage." When she finished, we continued chatting. "Oh my gosh!" she exclaimed. "I read your novel!" Though I didn't have an orgasm, I came pretty damn close.—Amy Sohn
35 E. 21st St., between Park Ave. and Broadway; 212-254-2444;; Mon-Fri, 6 p.m.-4 a.m.; Sat, 8 p.m.-4 a.m.; Sun, 8 p.m.-2 a.m.


republican date book

Bryant Park Grill
Attend Bloomberg bash for Log Cabin Republicans—will this federal marriage amendment bizness ever end???

Bryant Park Grill
4pm: "big tent event" with Republican Unity Coalition re gay/straight harmony—can someone pls. tell me what party this is?!

Cipriani 42nd Street
10pm: meet w/ delegates from NY/NJ

Hair & Makeup appts: Who does Laura/Libby? Make inquiries...
**Meet hot Arizona delegate at Campbell Apartment

Sky Club
Republican majority for choice event w/ Bo Derek; give Ralph's Christian Coalition the slip thru back entrance. uggh!!

10pm: Post-convention party @ Times Sq. supperclub. Keep trips to mojito cart to a min.—let's not have Philly repeat!

10pm: "Los Amigos" party. Salsa w/ Pataki. Free buffet!!!
**Caucus w/ Mr. X at 21.

Water Club
10pm: Last post-convention party. Thank you, Lord!! Will NYC secede already?

6am: JFK flight...BUSH RULES IN '04. OUTTA HERE!

—Carla Spartos with Emma Rosenblum

Published on August 19, 2004.