Pop quiz: Do you remember being interviewed by a New York camera crew outside of McSorley's or Bull McCabe's on Saturday night? No? We asked you how many drinks you had, if you knew who Saint Patrick was, and what "Erin Go Bragh" meant. Then you told us that you used to hate the Irish, that your knowledge of the holiday comes entirely from The Simpsons, and something else we couldn't quite catch. It was late, and you were pretty drunk. So watch the video to see what might come up at your future intervention. And remember: We're just here to help.
Video: Overheard: Saint Patrick's Day [NYM]
At Saint Patrick's Day approaches, the man who might be New York's angriest blogger, Copyranter Mark Duffy, reminds us of an artifact of our not particularly Irish New York youth: Carvel's Cookie O'Puss. Specifically, he found what we think is the TV commercial that initially introduced regular Cookie Puss's Irish friend. It's from 1982, and dig those low-fi special effects. Copyranter, we thank you for your patronage.
Cookie Puss [Copyranter]
The Chinese New Year ended more than a week ago, but Chinese Staff and Workers Association — a militant labor-rights group trying to gain better pay and conditions for employees in the city's Chinese restaurants — held a celebration at P.S. 2 on Henry Street yesterday. "It's the Golden Year of the Pig, and it will be good for workers," said Wing Lam, the group's executive director. It's a moment for the association to be celebrating: Its members refused to sign a contract with the Saigon Grill mini-chain, which led the restaurant to suspend its delivery service last week, and in February a federal judge ruled that managers at the 88 Palace restaurant on East Broadway wrongfully pocketed a service charge the restaurant had imposed on banquet tabs, ordering owners to fork over to eleven busboys and waiters some $700,000 in gratuities and other costs dating to 2002. Lawyers for 88 Palace's owners have filed an appeal, and they're also fighting the workers' attorneys' request for close to $1 million in legal fees. But for now, at least, happy Year of the Pig. —Mary Reinholz
Carroll Gardens: Will a bank, national chain store, or real-estate office replace Bleach House, the Dickensiansly named, now-defunct launderette on Court Street? [423smith]
Chinatown: Party like it's 4705! That's right, the Chinese New Year kicked off this weekend. Welcome to the Year of the Pig. [Gothamist]
Coney Island: The PR firm for development giant Thor Equities has released another homemade-looking "newsletter" about future Coney fun — which yet again makes no mention of Thor's planned condo towers for the area. [Gowanus Lounge]
Greenpoint: From the looks of the floor plan, it seems like the Polish movie house turned Burger King at 910 Manhattan Avenue is due to become Greenpoint's first Starbucks. Rejoice or recoil? [Curbed]
West Village: When special people like Sarah Jessica Parker, Lucy Lawless, or Christine Quinn need to pick up a package, they do it at Something Special, a mailbox-rental place on Macdougal and Houston. [The Villager]
It's nearly Valentine's Day; do you know where the love of your life is? Neither do we. But here's the guidance we learned this week from New York's intrepid band of dating bloggers.
• Threesomes are interesting; lasagne is not. Somewhere in Brooklyn, there is a boy who doesn't want to hear about what his friends had for lunch again, ever. Even if eventually the conversation moves on to the fact they're dating bisexuals. [Forksplit]
• Subway rides are, ipso facto, unromantic. If you're going to try to experience sexual fantasies on the subway in this weather, of course you're just going to feel like a "huge winter muffin in my 5 degree weather outfit"! But the muffin thing's a start. [Virginist]
Bad news for all the single people of New York: Valentine's Day is mercilessly creeping up on us. (Depressing, isn't it?) There are several gastronomic ways to mark the date, as the Underground Gourmet points out on Grub Street today. You could stay at home and order pizza; you could drown your sorrows in a vat of Häagen-Dazs; you could spend the evening with the gallant General Tso, who in such cases we have always found to be both an officer and a gentleman. Or if you're determined to celebrate your singlehood — and perhaps ensure that you remain that way — you could try the sandwich the Underground Gourmet has identified as Sandwich of the Week: the Breakup Burger. Find out all about it at Grub Street.
Sandwich of the Week: Twisted Burger's Breakup Burger [Grub Street]
The Wall Street Journal is breathlessly reporting on an announcement from BlackBerry yesterday that the company is planning to "strike back" against the new iPhone by releasing -- drumroll, please -- a new BlackBerry Pearl. We scanned the article eagerly, excited to find what further features would finally let the Goliath knock Apple's David to the ground, but we could only find one change: The formerly black Pearl will now also be available in white . (To be frank, we're a little mystified that a product called "Pearl" didn't come in white in the first place.) Now, we're fine with the white cell phone riding up to save the day when the black cell phone just can't cut it -- but we're wondering, who decided to announce that on Martin Luther King Day?
BlackBerry Pearl Goes White [WSJ (subscription)]
Now, a White BlackBerry Pearl! [Techtree]
Even at Rockefeller Center, Christmas season eventually ends. Shot yesterday morning at the corner of Sixth Avenue and 49th Street and submitted by reader Prudence. Thanks, Prudence!
[Snap a Photo Op–worthy shot? Send it to us at email@example.com.]
Just a quick reminder from building staffs across New York — this one was posted in a Chelsea elevator and photographed by a correspondent — that tipping is always appreciated. (N.B. to Daily Intel's doormen and porters: We're on it. Really.)
[Snap a Photo Op–worthy shot? Send it to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.]
Everyone knows a good cook is a frugal cook, and no one takes this culinary code more seriously than Josh DeChellis, the skateboard-riding boy-wonder chef behind Sumile (recently tweaked and rechristened Sumile Sushi). In the spirit of the post-holiday season, DeChellis has come up with an idea that is not only environmentally responsible but also would make Euell Gibbons’s eyes goggle and his mouth water.
“I was helping my parents take down the Christmas tree and the perfume was amazing,” DeChellis says. “So I took a few branches off and roasted a piece of grilled beef over the needles in an aluminum-foil pouch and I loved it!” DeChellis was kind enough to pass along a similar pine-scented recipe, below, so that Grub Street readers can recycle any trees or wreaths they have lying around the house instead of just dragging them outside to the curb. DeChellis also has a suggestion for stale gingerbread cookies: “Grind them up and crust scallops with it. Serve with a sauce of brown butter, gingerbread powder, and milk blended in a blender with Brussels sprout leaves on the side.” Delish! — Rob Patronite & Robin Raisfeld
That's about all, folks. And we've got some sad news for you: Daily Intel is going on vacation. We won't be posting next week, but we'll be back bright and early on Tuesday morning, January 2. Thanks for reading these last three months, happy and merry and all of that, and we'll see you in 2007.
Courtesy of the tireless researchers at the magazine, enjoy this comprehensive New Year’s Eve (and Day) guide. And enjoy our best wishes as well, even if that’s all we can give you — Grub Street will be holding steady until January 2, when we resume publication. Until then, we hope you have a world-class holiday.
New York Magazine's Definitive New Year's Eve Guide
Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz — the man, the legend, the boat — is known for his elaborate holiday cards. (Well, among other things.) The minds at Brooklyn Papers have analyzed the latest missive from the beep, which finds Marty, two Santas (black and white), and a rabbi in a curiously uneven volleyball match with two bikini beauties. Us? We're more fascinated with the reindeer referee with a parrot perched on its hoof, a reference we can't quite place.
A Very Marty Xmas [Brooklyn Papers]
For those wanting to take their holiday giving beyond the doorman's tip, the Morning News has put together a great holiday charity guide with some very unique and deserving organizations who'll be happy to receive your last-minute stab at saving the world. Even if you gave at the office, go over and take a look.
Of course, according to an article they're currently running, the Morning News kids also sent their intern to go to the Christmas-tree lighting at Rockefeller Center. Charity begins at home, guys.
Morning Edition [Morning News]
• Several hundreds of people took over Wall Street to protest the police's killing of Sean Bell and what they see as the NYPD's failure to punish the guilty. They were met with almost as many police officers, some undercover; for a march that called for a "war on the NYPD," the protest went without an incident. [amNY]
• The State Liquor Authority is cracking down on all-night New Year's Eve parties, nixing dozens of bars' requests to stay open late on December 31. (The permit is usually easily granted.) [NYP]
• In a similar crypto-Prohibitionist vein, the proposed alcohol ban on Metro-North and LIRR is about to deny suburban commuters one of their few remaining joys in life. Or is it? Meet Commuters Aligned for Responsible Enjoyment, or CARE, a quickly assembled opposition group. Vive la Resistance! [NYDN]
• It's a bit unexpected after all those mayoral pronouncements about the coming population boom, but NYC's birth rate is way down, at a 25-year low, in fact. Officials call it a quality-of-life achievement, however, since the most rapidly declining subset is teenage births. [NYS]
• And the Times tut-tuts the "phantasmagoric, Disney-esque experience" sweeping the suburbs: giant inflatable lawn figures causing an "intramural disagreement among the Christmas crazed." [NYT]
It may or may not be the most wonderful time of the year, but there is no doubt it is the most well-fed time of the year. Indeed, we're all busy shoveling so much stuff into our mouths this month, we may not give proper consideration to what's coming out of it. Fortunately, New York food critic Adam Platt is here to help. How is ravenous different from famished? Stuffed different from sated? Platt considers twenty terms for degrees of hungriness, and he ranks them all on his Gobbler Scale of Rabid Food Consumption. It's at Grub Street.
The Scale of Rabid Food Consumption, From Ravenous to Blacked Out [Grub Street]
Like astronauts spinning in space or marines in battle, restaurant critics don’t often talk about their mortal fear of expiring on the job. The fear is never greater than this time of year, when lavish restaurant openings converge with the usual year-end tsunami of Thanksgiving turkeys, mince pies, and assorted other potentially lethal treats. Recently, the flow of grub has been so relentless and overwhelming that the Gobbler has been moved — before he chokes on a Christmas turkey bone or finds himself being Heimliched by horrified fleets of midget waiters at Gordon Ramsay — to compose a kind of Richter scale for gourmands. It’s a measure, from one to twenty, of how much you’ve eaten, or how little, and it’s designed to be consulted, in the spirit of the holiday season, after a string of large and festive meals. Let’s call it the Gobbler Scale of Rabid Food Consumption (GSRFC).
There was one last big blowout to catch before Holiday Party Season 2006 wound down: The annual Wenner Media extravaganza. With the bank busted on Rolling Stone's 1,000th-issue celebration in May, this year's holiday gathering was less glitzy in the past, with no big-name musical act slated to perform. But that didn't stop indefatigable party reporter Julia Allison. Her wrap-up — her final wrap-up of the season — is after the jump.