We sent our reporter to watch him as he went through the first 24 hours of his 60-hour stint of hanging upside-down in Central Park. He doesn't look so hot. Anybody remember when that dude used to do magic?
Harlem residents suspect gentrifiers are the cause of a raccoon outbreak, a miffed man burns down his neighbor's house on Staten Island, and government workers from separate departments deliberately, sneakily sabotage one another in the East Village. All this and more in our daily boroughs report.
Vanity Fair style arbiter Amy Fine Collins went to the Mohegan Sun casino in Connecticut. Central Park carriage owners responded to Pink's animal-cruelty charges by deriding them as the "ignorant comments of a B-list pop star." Nets chairman and real-estate developer Bruce Ratner is getting married to plastic surgeon Pamela Lipkin. At Sundance, Paris Hilton gave a lap dance to Jared Leto, David Katzenberg took pictures of his privates for girlfriend Nicky Hilton, Cisco Adler got into a shoving match, Reggie Bush and Kim Kardashian made out, and Adrian Grenier lost his drumsticks. John Legend says he doesn't get caught up with dating models and that he's "more concerned with (his) happiness."
Ethan Hawke is dating the woman who used to be his kids' nanny. Mayor Bloomberg hit Joey Pantoliano with his car. Former Condé Nast chairman Steve Florio is still in the hospital despite having suffered a stroke two weeks ago. Former Sopranos star Aida Turturro left Stereo the other night after finding out that the stagehands' strike was over. Fergie took the stage twenty minutes late at a Wilhelmina party because of a wardrobe malfunction. A fourteen-acre property in Southampton is going on sale for $59 million.
After the opening-night performance of A Midsummer Night's Dream at Shakespeare in the Park last night, featuring creepy Victorian zombie-kids as Titania's fairy crew, a jazz-handsy Puck, and a Martha Plimpton as slapsticky as in her Goonies days, the audience retired up to Belvedere Castle to celebrate. "It's beautiful the way they've lit it up like this," Plimpton gushed, all pixielike. "It's a magical fairyland." The misty, late-summer fête was the perfect setting to drunkenly talk about fairies, Central Park memories, romantic obsessions, performing en plein air, and iambic pentameter. Despite a few notables snacking on wraps and brownies — Plimpton, Rashida "Don't Call Me Ubiquitous" Jones, a thuddingly dull Jeff Goldblum — the affair felt like a high-school cast party, but with a better sound system and free-flowing booze. We mean this in the best possible way: Hooray for no red carpets and lots of impromptu dance circles. A magical fairyland, indeed. —Justin RavitzBonus Party Lines: Read about celebs trying to speak in iambic pentameter in our coverage of the Midsummer opening night.
Earlier:21 Questions for Martha Plimpton
We're not quite sure why, but Polaris Images sent us a set of photos of Ana, a Russian immigrant, picking wild boysenberries yesterday in Central Park. So there you have it: There are fresh wild boysenberries, ripe for the picking, waiting for you in Central Park, apparently on the West Side near 106th Street. You know, in case you haven't been feeling enough like a sharecropper lately. (Which is not to say we'd ever say no to a nice cobbler.)
Been shopping for a place on Central Park West? Curbed noticed the listing today for a three-bedroom park-facing duplex penthouse in the famous Beresford, just north of the Museum of Natural History and home to celebrities from Jerry Seinfeld to John MacEnroe. It hasn't been renovated in a while, but it's also only been lightly used: The current owner is apparently an Indian media mogul who only stays there two weeks a year. (It seems it's good to be an Indian media mogul.) The price tag: a mere $28 million. Hey, maybe it can be your uptown pied-à-terre. (Curbed has floorplans, too.)
On the Market: Beresford Penthouse for $28M [Curbed]
Earlier:Rich Uptowners Ruin It for Everyone
Brooklyn Heights: Those who live on Joralemon Street are not pleased about the parade of swimmers on their way to the floating pool. [Brooklyn Eagle via Brooklyn Heights Blog]
Bushwick: Is a developer surreptitiously buying up air rights to build a condo tower? [Bushwick BK]
Central Park: Starting Monday, car-free time in the park on the West Drive extends by one hour in the morning. Now you only have to watch for traffic between 8 and 10 a.m. [Streetsblog]
Chelsea: Chelsea Hotel residents got a note saying that BD Hotels was "no longer the managing agent." An elaborate hoax or what? [Hotel Chelsea Blog]
Clinton Hill: Someone's trying to flip a heinous Green Avenue building for a ridiculous $1.4 million. [Brownstoner]
Park Slope: Thank goodness there's an instruction manual for the summer, lest we forget to watch a baseball game and let our dog crap on some guy's stoop. [Newyorkshitty]
Red Hook: Beware the dog-eating tree on Van Brunt Street. [McBrooklyn]
Williamsburg: Bruce Ratner's crew is looking for an artist's workspace to use in a promotional video for investors. If you're interested, keep your I.D. a secret for your own safety. [Curbed]