More Gruesome Details From the Trump SohoA little bit more news has come out today about yesterday’s collapse at the Trump Soho. Apparently it was not a bucket swinging into the scaffolding, as we and others reported yesterday, that caused the accident. Rather, a wooden mold in which a worker was tamping down concrete collapsed, and the wet concrete caused the worker to fall 42 stories to his death. Though the name of the worker, who was decapitated, according to the Times, has not been officially released, the Post is still flagrantly identifying him as Yuri. The Daily News points out that the company in charge of the site, Bovis Lend Lease, was also the company whose violations at the Deutsche Bank building led to a fire that killed two firefighters last year, and notes that their projects have “a history of worker injuries and deaths and objects hitting passersby.” Meanwhile, the Times digs up the fact that Joseph Fama, one of the owners of the DiFama Concrete Company of Brooklyn, the subcontractor hired by Bovis, who employed the deceased and the other workers, has been in jail since 2004 for racketeering and extortion, and according to federal authorities is an associate of the Lucchese crime family. And still, no one has heard from the Family Trump.
Construction Worker Dies in 42 Story Fall in SoHo [NYT]
Worker plunges to death at Trump site [NYDN]
Trump Horror [NYP]
Diane Sawyer Forgets to Ask Katie Holmes About the HubbaspermDiane Sawyer interviewed Katie Holmes on Good Morning America yet neglected to ask her about the rumor that she was impregnated with L. Ron Hubbard’s sperm. New York Giants Plaxico Burress, Antonio Pierce, and Ruben Droughns went to Home nightclub in Manhattan after flying back from Dallas and ordered $1,000 of Bacardi, vodka, and Champagne, but forgot to tip their waitress. Waiters at Brasserie 44 in the Royalton Hotel thought they discovered Frank Bruni’s notebook, but it turned out to belong to someone else (and they slipped in some Bruni ass-kissing to boot!). Jil Scott picked up a male model at an Allure fashion shoot and took him to Nobu. Keith Olbermann’s quote to Playboy that “Fox News is worse than Al-Qaeda” did not go over well with many of the magazine’s readers.
early and often
Reading Rudy’s Future: It’s a Dry HeatNow that yesterday’s poll numbers on Giuliani in Florida have sunk in, campaign staffers and political analysts (those that can stand to take a break from dissecting Hillary and Obama’s race kerfuffle) are trying to figure out whether this means the end for the former New York mayor. Yesterday, the Times reported that one of their polls showed McCain edging ahead of Giuliani by a small amount in the southern swing state, where Giuliani has been concentrating all of his campaign efforts. Huckabee and Romney were a mere percentage point behind, putting all four within the same margin of error for the poll. Now, with the arrival of the Michigan primary (Giuliani’s first real chance at a strong finish, some are taking a hard look at his future prospects:
• Today Giuliani’s chief strategist Brent Seaborn saw a bright side in not being part of the brutal Huckabee-Romney-McCain battle in early primary states: “I think we’ve been in the fortunate position that a lot of attacks haven’t been directed our way.” Giuliani may remain remarkably unscathed late into the race, which will be a surprise boon for a candidate with many potential negatives.
• But Matthew Continetti in the Weekly Standard points out that Hillary’s recent stumbles against Barack Obama may have taken the wind out of Giuliani’s campaign, which early on was partially based on his unique ability to take down the Clinton machine in a general election.
• And Joel Achenbach adds that when Super Tuesday comes around, previous voting numbers are going to become irrelevant in the face of delegate accumulation. Giuliani has always been aiming for delegates, not total state wins, and this strategy may serve him well on February 5.
• Finally, Talking Points Memo reads the Romney-McCain-Giuliani tea leaves and declares that the question isn’t whether it’s judgment day for Giuliani, but whether it’s high noon for Mitt.
white men with money
Vikram Pandit Gets a Write-down, Foreign Capital for His BirthdayYesterday was new Citigroup honcho Vikram Pandit’s 51st birthday, and pretty much everyone forgot, since this morning he had to announce the largest quarterly loss in his bank’s history. To be sure, the $18.1 billion subprime-mortgage-related write-down is not as much as the $24 billion that was predicted over the weekend, but it was enough that it led to a fourth-quarter loss of $9.83 billion. But there was a silver lining: The bank says it has plans to raise upwards of $12.5 billion through a private securities sale, which includes $6.88 billion from Singapore. They also expect the Kuwait Investment Authority, Alwaleed bin Talal, and even former Citigroup CEO Sanford “Sandy” Weill to kick in with investments. That’s “a huge vote of confidence on [Weill’s] part,” one analyst told Reuters. “I’m surprised to see his name there.” We wonder if Pandit is surprised. Maybe today after work, he’ll go outside and Weill will be waiting for him in his red convertible. “Me?” Pandit will say. “Yeah, you,” Weill will say, and later that night they’ll share kisses over birthday cake while the Thompson Twins’ “If You Were Here” plays softly in the background.
Citigroup raising $14.5 billion [Reuters]
The Bronx to Get Another Golf Course in 2010Today the city issued a request for proposals to create a public golf course at Ferry Point Park, a patch of covered landfill at the Throgs Neck waterfront, in two years. Would-be developers have eight weeks to propose how that course will lie. (That’s golf talk, isn’t it?) Plans for an eighteen-hole links course at Ferry Point Park predate Mayor Bloomberg’s overarching PlaNYC, but if it gets done soon, it would be a good centerpiece for the master plan. Like many PlaNYC projects, including the conversion of Staten Island’s Fresh Kills landfill into a huge and sumptuous park, this aims to green up a dead place. It’s no easy task: Trees won’t grow on old landfill (hence the brilliance of a golf course), and the winning developer must propose an irrigation scheme to tax the city water table as little as possible. And it must harmonize with “the principles of green design,” which presumably means extra points if a windmill on the course generates electricity for the South Bronx. Is there a Bobby Jones out there for this bog? Your city needs you. —Alec Appelbaum
Construction of a tournament-quality golf course at Ferry Point Park in the Borough of the Bronx [PDF]
Why Heatherette Canceled Their Show: Our ReasonsWe love, love, love Heatherette — even though their show is a glamorous debacle every year, and even though we’re not always sure where to buy their clothes. Traver Raines and Richie Rich, the house’s creative team, are nice, fun, energetic, and brilliant. Every season their train wreck of an exposition is the highlight during Fashion Week. That’s why we are hit hard by the news that they won’t be showing this February. They were supposed to show at Roseland Ballroom this year, too, which would have meant that everyone could have come, and the after-party would have been glorious. We’re trying to find out why they’ve bailed (they “prefer not to comment,” but we’ll get it out of them — we run with the same gays, after all), but in the meantime, we’ve compiled a top ten list of reasons they might have called off the show:
1) They’re only doing a “Cruise” collection this year.
2) They, like so many other small fashion houses, fell victim to great glitter shortage of 2008.
3) The only chaps they could find had asses.
4) Tinsley ate something.
5) Boy Meets Boy went back on the air.
6) A six-foot-eight drag queen has Richie and Traver locked up in a basement somewhere in the Village because she didn’t get into their last fashion show, even though she WAS INVITED.
7) Lady Bunny ate Lydia Hearst. Totally kidding. She flossed with her.
8) Someone actually wanted to buy something from last season’s show, and they had to figure out how to make it again.
9) Richie broke an axle. On his roller skate.
10) Their Amanda Lepore popped.
Heatherette Cancels Fashion Show [Fashionista]
white men with money
Know Your Hedge-FundeseHedge-fund managers use a lot of lingo. The reason they do this is to trick you into thinking what they do is really complicated, and you are too dumb to understand it. Because after all, if everyone knew what “g-7 crosses” were, everyone would start trying to make piles and piles of money, and then there wouldn’t be as much left for hedge-fund managers! But n+1 was not fooled by their trickery. Recently, they sat down a hedge-fund manager and wrung out of him the meaning of some of his people’s most confounding words. After the jump, a starter guide to the Secret Language of Money.
Sarah Polley Will Call You Fat to Your Face If You Give Her a Bad ReviewWhen New York ran into Sarah Polley the other night at the Film Critics Choice Awards, we asked the Away From Her director if she’d ever confronted a critic who had given her a bad review. “Yeah, I have,” she laughed. “He came to a press lunch for a film that I knew he hated, because there was really good free food, and it was in Cannes. He was kind of famous for doing that. And so I sort of confronted him on how much food he had on his plate; not necessarily about the review, but just how gluttonous he was.” How did he react? “He was pretty good-natured about it,” she said. “We actually ended up becoming friends.” Oh, yeah? So who was it? She wouldn’t say. We tried another tactic: Was the film one she directed or one she was in? “It was a film I was in,” she said, before floating off in that ethereal way she has. And so we put the question to you, dear readers. Who was the freeloading film critic shamed by Sarah Polley? To help you guess, after the jump, we’ve compiled some choice lines from reviewers who haven’t exactly fallen at her feet.
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Bill Clinton Accuses Obama Camp of Preparing Dirty Financial AttacksSo we have been watching Bill Clinton’s blistering anti-Obama rant from a New Hampshire rally today, and it’s really juicy. You know, the one in which he calls Obama’s campaign a “fairy tale”? (And not in the good way?) Well, if you listen (and we transcribed below), Bill accuses the Obama camp of secretly drudging up old Clinton financial concerns and preparing a memo about them that was never released. Plus, you know, he goes bonkers. Which is fun enough on its own.
“That is the central argument for his campaign: ‘It doesn’t matter that I started running for president less than one year after I got to the Senate from the Illinois State Senate. I am a great speaker and a charismatic figure, and I am the only one that had the judgment to oppose this war from the beginning, always, always, always.’”
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Stephon Has an Alibi, and It’s a Good OneOkay, remember yesterday when everyone made such a big deal out of Stephon Marbury’s fleeing the Knicks in Phoenix and returning to New York all of a sudden? Nobody knew quite what was going on, not even Isiah Thomas, who had gotten in a nasty fight with Marbury on the team plane when he told the point guard he wouldn’t be starting in the night’s game. This spurred a lot of anti-Marbury sentiment, with columnists and pundits and us grumpily speculating as to what he might have been up to. Today, the Times figured at least part of it out. If you haven’t read about his activities during his two-day break, pick the most likely-sounding scenario from the below list:
A) He was plotting revenge on Thomas and spending his time figuring out how, as he put it, to “fuck him first.”
B) He was having sex with an intern in a truck.
C) He was at a Coney Island housing project grieving with the family of a deceased basketball coach who had mentored hundreds of talented players in the tough neighborhood, including Marbury (who once gave the coach a white Cadillac with vanity plates).
Ding Ding Ding! The Times says it’s C. Who’s the jerk now?
A Mentor of Street Ball Dies, and a Missing Knick Appears [NYT]
Earlier: Marbury Stephs on All Our Dreams
Sheryl Crow Finally Has Something to Say About Ashley and Lance
Sheryl Crow thinks it’s “pathetic” that Lance Armstrong is dating Ashley Olsen. Paris Hilton has been frequenting New York hot spots very late at night (or, rather, early in the morning). Donald Trump Jr. is suing the board members of his West Side condo for kicking him off. Jon Corzine’s ex, 48-year-old Carla Katz, is dating a 32-year-old American soldier and former model. Torch, a new club slated to open tonight, is scrambling to get Tiki Barber and 800 other invitees not to show up because the plumbing isn’t ready. A guy on the subway once told Matthew Broderick that he looked and sounded exactly like Matthew Broderick.
Christopher Hitchens’s Waxed Sack: Open for VisitorsChristopher Hitchens may not have expected to snag a National Book Award last night (his atheist screed God Is Not Great lost to Tim Weiner’s Legacy of Ashes: The History of the CIA in the nonfiction category), but he was in high spirits nonetheless when we caught up with him near his second-row table at the ceremony. He offered to pour red wine into our glass as well as that of a high-ranking female Kirkus editor. We both declined, as we already had other drinks in there. Apparently, his self-improvement efforts for a Vanity Fair article hadn’t gone so far as quitting drinking, though he did report he hasn’t smoked a cigarette in six weeks. “I’m almost 60, and I should have quit years earlier,” he said, before lecturing us about the fact that, “for fuck’s sake,” the little buggers are evil. When we told him we felt mildly uncomfortable in his presence the day after reading about his thorough waxing for that article (in a procedure he referred to as “sack, back, and crack”), he turned to the Kirkus editor and said, “Want to feel?” She didn’t see how she could turn down the opportunity. The Hitch unzipped his fly, we stood guard, and she reached in. We can’t personally vouch for what happened in there (and we’re ashamed to say we demurred when he offered us a grope), but the editor speculates that he’s been doing some post-article maintenance down there. “As smooth as summer cherries,” she said. Looks like the Hitch truly is a changed man. —Boris Kachka
For more National Book Awards coverage, including pictures and quotes from Joan Didion, Toni Morrison, Jonathan Franzen and more, read Party Lines.
Earlier: At Last, Christopher Hitchens Describes His Infamous Waxing
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Marc Jacobs: Backlash to the BacklashEver since designer Marc Jacobs came back from rehab all tanned and buff, some reporters think that he has been “acting out” (clearly said reporters took a one-semester class in child psychology freshman year). There was his infamous Fashion Week show this fall, which was delayed for two hours, followed by infamous verbal fisticuffs with the International Herald Tribune’s Suzy Menkes, followed by the hot nudie pictures in Out and Arena Hommes Plus and the blue — sorry “navy” — hair. A concerned Eric Wilson of the Times sat down with him to find out what it was all about:
“In the most basic way I can say it,” he said, relighting a cigarette, “coming from a psychological place, what I love more than anything is attention. That is about as honest of a statement that I could possibly make. I want a reaction, because I want the attention.”
It’s not that we didn’t already know that. It’s just that, well, for him to just come out and say it makes this whole year of drama just … lovable.
Loving and Hating Marc Jacobs [NYT]
Related: Daily Intel’s Marc Jacobs Obsession
The Surreal Marc Has Designs on TV [NYM]
video look book
Flavio Romeo, Father, Stylist Extraordinaire
Actor Flavio Romeo has two daughters, which means he knows the right hairdo and hot-pink accessories are crucial, especially when you’re taking a trip to F.A.O Schwarz! In this Video Look Book, Flavio explains the look he created for the girls at “The Daddy Salon.”
Video Look Book: Archives