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Pete Wentz Runs With Gays

Including us! We caught up with the Fall Out Boy rocker at his bar Angels & Kings last night.

Back and to the Left

A new book by Salon.com founder David Talbot claims that the JFK assassination was the joint work of the CIA and the Mafia. Philadelphia TV reporter Alycia Lane mistakenly sent risqué e-mails intended for NFL Network anchor Rich Eisen to his wife. Pete Wentz wants his new East Village bar, Angels and Kings, to be a place where people can have sex in the bathroom. A lot of bankers can no longer expense meals at Hawaiian Tropic Zone. Alec Baldwin skipped the premiere of his new movie to go to Canyon Ranch in the Berkshires. Good move: The screening — of a movie in which he plays an estranged father after a messy divorce — would have been awkward. Penélope Cruz bought the wait staff at the Waverly Inn a round of shots. Rosie O'Donnell dropped a subtle hint that she may be headed to CBS. Boy George was arrested in London for keeping some guy chained to his wall. Tom Cruise and Brooke Shields gambled together in Vegas.

Truth in City-Mandated Bathroom Signage

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We hadn't been to Commonwealth bar, in Park Slope, for quite some time till this weekend. But we were reminded that we always liked the sensibility there. We suspect the bar staff might feel otherwise.

Employees Only Is Always Crowded, Sometimes With a Brass Band

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At West Village cocktail joint Employees Only, the place is jammed from eight till midnight or so nearly every night, on weekends the line to get in runs down the block, and the upstairs neighbors sometimes throw fruit on revelers in the back garden, according to manager and maître d' Dagny Mendelsohn. But it's also just about impossible to get a bad drink from one of the expert bartenders, she says, and there's a decent chance you might snag yourself a barback. Find out the other secrets of Employees Only at Grub Street, where Mendelsohn is this week's Ask a Waiter. Dagny Mendelsohn of Employees Only Defends Her Customers From Flying Fruit [Grub Street]

Just What New York Needs: Another Fashion-Themed Bar

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Apparently the not-exactly- bumpin' Fashion 40 Lounge hasn't taught people not to open up fashion-themed clubs. On April 12, promoters Greg Barrias and Rich Messina will open Runway at 4 East 28th Street, near Fifth Avenue, which only coincidentally shares its name with the magazine in The Devil Wears Prada. We're skeptical of the Wheresville location and the 25-foot catwalk in the center of the club (after the first couple of times someone reenacts the Zoolander walk-off, it's not going to be funny anymore, no matter how many $10 Chinatown Cosmos are going around), but we at least give Barrias and Messina credit for having Lindsay Lohan host the opening. It's going to be good press when she mows down another photographer outside of the place. —Daniel Maurer CORRECTION, April 2: Runway was the Devil Wears Prada magazine. Not the 13 Going on 30 magazine. Which we originally said. We're dumb. Sorry.

We Just Go to the Penthouse Club for the Intellectual Conversation

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You're not particularly surprised that Sara, a waitress at the Penthouse Executive Club — presumably Frank Bruni's new favorite cocktail lounge — looks like, well, that. You're also probably not entirely surprised that Sara once received as a tip a pair of two-carat, platinum-set diamonds, from a regular customer who, she explains, "always liked to sit with me." But you likely didn't expect that Sara is also working on a doctorate in philosophy, that she calls working at the club her "mind-body dualism" ("I maintain an accurate balance in the social-physical world and the thought-filled world," she says), or that she's never walked in on anything more explicit that PG-13. Learn lots more about Sara at Grub Street. Sara of the Penthouse Executive Club Knows Your Children's Names [Grub Street]

Introducing GONYC, Which We Proclaim the Best Thing Ever

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So nymag.com is launching this new service, and, although we know it's our job to say so, we'd say it anyway: It's pretty amazingly cool. It's called GONYC, and it lets you access the listings info we've got on the site from the comfort and privacy of your cell phone. How's that? It's a text-back service. Send a text message to GONYC — that's 46692, for those of you more numerically inclined — saying, for example, "name planet rose" (we never remember if it's on First or A), and it nearly immediately returns the bar's location, phone number, and whether it's a Critic's Pick. (Avenue A, as it turns out.) You can look up a restaurant or bar by name (type "name" then the name: "name wxou"), bars by location (type "bar" then a Zip Code, borough, or neighborhood), or restaurants by cuisine and location ("food" then cuisine then neighborhood: "food chinese west village"). We've been playing with it all morning, and we're loving it. It's explained with pretty pictures at nymag.com/mobile. Go.

Show Me the Way to the Next Liquor Bar

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For as long as there have been bars, there have been bartenders, and for as long as there have been bartenders, there have been liquored-up customers talking to them. What do they say to you when you're the bartender at Schiller's Liquor Bar? Well, the girls give you their numbers, the guys tell you about the urinary exploits, and a middle-aged guy likes to ask about sex clubs. There's a lot more in this week's Ask a Waiter, at Grub Street. Boyfriend Cheating? Corey Lima of Schiller's Is There for You [Grub Street]

City Proposal Could Limit Bars to One Homicide Per Year

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The City Council is reportedly mulling a curious proposal that would shut down bars as "public nuisances" if more than one person is killed there within a year. That's right — one murder is fine, but two are pushing it. How very Deadwood. Apart from that eye-catching provision, however, the proposal's language frees authorities to close places for pretty much any repeated violations (for instance, regular pot smoking or three "violent felonies" on the premises). Club owners, including the folks behind Sol and Crobar, are crying foul: According to them, the nuisance legislation's language is so vague it can slap the n-word (nuisance, that is) on a bar for virtually any infraction. Which could be a problem. While we're all for the thinning of the progressively vile 27th Street herd, we'd prefer that the culling be done constitutionally. Council Mulls Bill To Tighten Curbs on Bars [NYS] The Short, Drunken Life of Club Row [NYM]

From Bottle Service to Butler Service?

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Think bottle service isn't bad enough? Get ready for, well, bottle-service service. The City Council is chewing over a plan that would ban "unattended" pouring in clubs, which means your $900 bottle of Blue Label could soon come with a chaperone attached. Considering that the bottle service itself began as an unsubtle method of weeding out the riffraff, the new rule would launch the practice into truly stratospheric levels of snootiness. Why is the City Council getting into this? Well, apparently, the current form of bottle service makes it hard to keep underage drinkers from imbibing the sweet liquor. Or, perhaps, it's a job-creation issue. After all, the amendment would result in the city's crappiest new position: that of a chaperone-butler-concierge-nanny stationed at a single booth all night, waiting to personally refresh a reveler's drink. Oh, fun. Plan Would Ban Pouring Your Own [Newsday] Bottle Service: A Brief History [NYM]

Papaya King's Alexander Poulus Serves Franks to Martha Stewart, Referees Fights in Line

Alexander Poulus was working as an engineer five years after graduating from NYU, but when his uncle Gus, the founder of Papaya King, offered to bring him into the company, he couldn't refuse. For 35 years, he has seen the Upper East Side location (which is about to celebrate its 75th anniversary) through stolen tip jars, windows shattered by brawling drunks, and of course the snappy service of countless hot dogs that are “Tastier Than Filet Mignon.”

Hill Country to Challenge Blue Smoke, RUB on Their Own Turf

Hill Country BBQ, we've learned from owner Mark Glosserman, has officially signed its lease and begun construction at 30 West 26th Street, just a few blocks from Blue Smoke and RUB . Isn’t it bad medicine to open so close to a pair of established, busy barbecues? Says Glosserman: “It's a great spot, and the price was right, and we're in a big office building, so there will be a lot of traffic even though it's a side street. We have a lot of faith in our product.” No doubt. But we actually like Hill Country's chances. New Yorkers have shown a willingness to go the extra mile to eat great barbecue: Daisy May's BBQ sat on a desolate stretch of Eleventh Avenue and didn't even have tables; RUB ran out of meat every night; Blue Smoke barely had any smoke flavor during its first year, as a result of chimney malfunction. Glosserman hired the best barbecue cooker in the city, Robert Richter. If Hill Country delivers the goods, New Yorkers will support it … right?

Brooklyn Pinup Girls

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Brooklyn:Get the borough man in your life a Brooklyn Girls calendar (right). But only if he likes white girls. [Trendy Nation via Sunset Parker] • Chelsea: The Limelight is resurrected as retail space. So instead of a "drug supermarket," it will just be an actual market. [NYP] • Clinton Hill: Find all the bars, restaurants, and stores on this new neighborhood map. [Clinton Hill Blog] • Coney Island: Will Big Apple Circus get a permanent performance space on the boardwalk? [Brooklyn Eagle via Gowanus Lounge] • Fort Greene: If the weekend's "Merry Gridlock" event protesting Atlantic Yards is any indication of the traffic from Atlantic Yards, we're screwed. Good thing the vote is delayed till next year. [Dope on the Slope] • Williamsburg: Ride your bike to the Bedford Avenue L station. With wider sidewalks and new bike racks, there will be plenty of room. [Streetsblog]

Feds to City: Get Moving

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We are, apparently, in the money. Charlie Rangel hasn't yet taken over the House Ways and Means Committee, and yet already New York is getting the means to improve our ways. Today's papers report that the U.S. Department of Transportation has given final approval to some $2.6 billion in funding for two major New York transit projects. The Second Avenue subway — pardon us, the T line — will get $693 million of federal money. (Does this mean freelance writer Jane Everhart will get to keep her apartment?) And the East Side Access project, which will linking the LIRR to Grand Central will get $2.6 billion from the Feds, the most money ever earmarked to a mass-transit project. It's weird: It's almost like Washington wants to stay on our good side or something. Long Planned, Transit Projects Get U.S. Help [NYT]

If You Spun It, Here's How It Would Have Happened

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Now that we know Judith Regan was fired from HarperCollins over a volley of anti-Semitic remarks, it strikes us that with the recent bumper crop of Great Moments in Racism — Michael Richards–gate, Rosie-gate, Mel Gibson Über alles — our culture has found a new cottage industry: Awesome excuses for Great Moments in Racism. And nearly all of them have shown up already in the Regan affair. After the jump, a cheat sheet for spinning your next ching chong.

White House Movie of the Week

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Here's the photo that ran in today's Times of the newly refurbished White House Situation Room. Although still not as sleek and/or oppressive as its many Hollywood avatars, from 24 to Strangelove's War Room, at least now it has LCD flat screens, better sound isolation, fiber-optic ca — wait a second. Who's on that screen on the right? It sure doesn't look like Tony Blair or Pervez Musharraf or Dick Cheney. Is it … could it be … yup, a quick canvass of our filmic colleagues provides a consensus: It's Nicolas Cage. Note the thoughtful chin-gripping action — so intense. The scene, then, is one of the earlier sequences from Oliver Stone's World Trade Center. ("God, I do hope it's Con Air," said New York film editor Logan Hill, before conceding it's not.) We're, of course, shocked that the White House would play a movie about 9/11 while showing off the new Situation Room. But ever better is this: The DVD just came out last week. Overhaul Moves White House Data Center Into Modern Era [NYT]

Breaking: Jailing People for Speaking Out May Be Illegal

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A Manhattan federal jury has confirmed something you probably knew all along: It seems throwing political protesters in the slammer, instead of writing them a ticket, kinda sorta interferes with the First Amendment. The NYPD's lock-'em-up policy, born amid the paranoia of 2001, was short-lived (it's already off the books) and resulted in about 30 arrests, which now may mean 30 settlements for NYPD to cough up. The biggest mistake the boys in blue apparently made was committing the policy to the books in the first place: Nothing leaves a paper trail like, well, paper. The demonstrators' side alleged that the practice had existed for years as an unwritten rule — ever since the 1999 Amadou Diallo shooting and the spate of rallies it occasioned. Lacking concrete proof, the jury didn't buy it; if it had, the city would be looking at about 350 more settlements. Darned First Amendment. Jury Rules Against NYPD's Rally Lockups [NYDN]

Another ‘Izakaya,’ to Our Chicken Heart's Delight

Following the lead of newcomers Izakaya Ten and Zenkichi, the once-formal Takayama has reinvented itself as Ariyoshi, an izakaya with a sushi bar boasting a lengthy menu of tempura, yakitori, noodles, and assorted plates like veal-liver sashimi. Though sake barrels and light boxes decorated with bamboo give the narrow, high-ceilinged space a serene vibe a world away from the noisy Japanese St. Marks dives (there’s also a small private room in the back), the prices are reasonable: $2 for two gelatinous hunks of beef tendon in a stock of octopus, egg, radish, and tofu (there are ten other varieties of oden stew, too), and $2 for a skewer of salted chicken hearts. The toro tartar, one of the priciest dishes at $13, is a tuna portion large enough to feed two, topped by a quail egg sitting in a nest of flying-fish eggs. They're not serving cod sperm yet, but the manager says he’s considering it. —Daniel Maurer Ariyoshi, 806 Broadway, nr. 12th St., 212-388-1884.