Lindsay Lohan Pays Fitting Tribute to Baird JonesOn Friday we dropped by the Plumm for the memorial celebration for Baird Jones — the promoter, art collector, and gossip reporter who was a New York party-scene fixture for three decades before being found dead in his apartment last month. We expected a sea of eighties clubbers, fellow gossip writers, and open-bar-hoppers. We did not expect Lindsay Lohan.
Yet as the aging crowd nursed its final free drink, the starlet arrived and installed herself on a couch in the back. It was surreal yet, in a way, the perfect homage to a man who devoted himself to celebrity gossip and often put random kooks in the same room as A-listers at the parties he threw.
Baird Jones Memorial Party at the Plumm Might Have Actually Pissed Him OffSo on Friday night there will be a big, open-to-all bash to celebrate the memory of New York nightlife mainstay Baird Jones at the Plumm. The art collector, promoter, and gossip stringer died two weeks ago of a heart attack, and now everyone’s invited to toast his memory. Except, according to Grub Street, the venue might not be one that Baird himself would have been too happy about. In fact, at times he even worked to shut the club down. Baird called New York to complain of some of Plumm owner Noel Ashman’s poor business practices, including paying for underage models to visit the club and ripping off promoters. (He didn’t complain about how Plumm publicists incessantly exaggerated celebrity items to gossip columnists, but we’ll throw that in there because it’s always annoyed us.) Baird’s fellow promoter, Ivy Supersonic, says that she and the Webster Hall curator had a whole bunch of correspondence over the issue. Click on through to Grub for the whole story and Noel Ashman’s response.
Baird Jones’s Memorial Party to Be Held at Club He Secretly Tried to Close [Grub Street]
Related: Gossip Guru Baird Jones Reported Dead
Something We All Hate in Common: Terrible DoormenSo, recently, we had a bad experience at a club. It was one of perhaps one million bad experiences we’ve had at clubs, and it got us thinking about the universality of such events. We were waiting to get into Suzie Wong for a party for which we were on the list. We even knew the people throwing it. But for some reason, the doorman wouldn’t let us in. Cell phones didn’t work inside the club, so we couldn’t reach our friends. We patiently explained the situation to the doorman, who responded with disdain and rudeness. (We’re apparently not the only people to have trouble at this club.) We decided to sit and wait politely, which is humiliating but almost always works eventually. But as time went by, and we kept getting the “We’re at capacity” excuse, even though the doorman was letting other (much more trashy, might we add) guests in ahead of us, we started getting mad. This guy may be an idiot, we thought, but surely he recognizes the face we are making. You know, the “I’m going to be patient, but you have NO idea who you are messing with” face?
in other news
Even the Tabloids Don’t Think the ‘Box Rapist’ Is Very PunnyWe have to hand it to the Post and the Daily News. They’ve treated the story of the serial rapist who preys outside of the trendy Box nightclub with relative sincerity. Not even a “BEHIND THE VELVET RAPES” headline. It’s probably because this is the intersection of the two kinds of stories the tabloids do best: serious, grim-faced crime reporting, and salacious celebrity fixation. It turns out that a man posing as a livery driver abducted and sexually assaulted two women (one in September and one on Friday) from in front of the club at 3 a.m., while partygoers stumbled in and out. The club is popular with celebrities, who perform on its tiny stage and line its cozy banquettes nearly every night. In both cases the stalker stole money using the women’s ATM cards, raped them, and then dumped them in an outer borough. Luckily, both women gave descriptions of the man and there were witnesses who saw the cars he was driving, so police have several leads.*
Hunt on for Lower E. Side Club Rapist [NYDN]
Fiend Rapes 2 Club Gals [NYP]
*If the tabs aren’t going to crack a joke, we aren’t touching it with a ten-foot pole.
Rob the Bouncer Sleeps All DayName: Rob Fitzgerald, a.k.a. Rob the Bouncer
Job: Bouncer and writer; author of the Clublife blog and the Clublife book, on sale this week
Neighborhood: Long Island
Who’s your favorite New Yorker, living or dead, real or fictional?
Richard Feynman. (He grew up in Far Rockaway.)
What’s the best meal you’ve eaten in New York?
Steak at Uncle Jack’s on Bell Boulevard in Bayside.
In one sentence, what do you actually do all day in your job?
I sleep, because I work nights.
Last Night at Rose’s Turn: Mama’s Gotta Let Go
The piano bar Rose’s Turn, a West Village institution for seventeen years, and for a lot longer before that when it was the first home of the Duplex, closed Sunday night, and New York contributor Tim Murphy was there with his microphone. He caught people singing, people playing, and people both having a lot of fun and being quite sad. (They were sorry-grateful, you might say.) Check out the video report for now-former owner Henry Pham’s rendition of “Don’t Let Me Be Lonely Tonight,” accompanied by our Tim, plus saxophonist Chuck Hancock’s explanation of what this all means. “This place has heart. These people have heart,” he said. “And the heart is being stolen from New York.”
Street Level: Rose’s Turn [NYM]
in other news
‘NYO’: Hamptons Running Low on Celebrities!There’s a celebrity shortage — or simply a party surfeit — in the Hamptons this year, and the clubs are duking it out for boldface guests. Today’s Observer quotes club owners gleefully smearing each other with intimations of the ultimate scene-faking cheesiness — paying celebrities to put in an appearance. Mike Satsky of Southampton’s Stereo by the Shore narcs on Star Room and Pink Elephant, “the big payers this year.” According to him, Pink Elephant shelled out about $10,000 for the privilege of hosting Rachel Hunter (yes, the wilting ex-Mrs. Rod Stewart). Another source says it paid the same price for Lil Jon, who frankly seems like a better investment. Star Room’s Charles Ferri strikes right back: “The Stereo guys are notorious for paying people.” Of course, there’s only a technical difference between an out-and-out bribe and the star treatment that Satsky readily cops to: If you’re a Pete Wentz or a Mandy Moore, Stereo springs for transportation, free tables, booze, and, best of all, housing (at Satsky’s own pad). Um, hey, Mike, Daily Intel’s kinda famous! Oh, never mind.
Hamptons Heat Up! Cash-Addled Club Owners Claw for Celebrity Customers [NYO]
Now It’s Rose’s Turn to Cry — for $3.5 Million
Rose’s Turn, the Grove Street piano bar that’s been a West Village institution for seventeen years, will close Sunday after a last round of drinks and show tunes. Henry Pham, who owns the bar — his mother’s name is Rose — told Daily Intel that his family sold the building for $3.5 million. (The Observer’s the Real Estate blog reported the bar’s imminent demise yesterday.) “It’s time to move on,” he said. “There just isn’t much demand for this type of establishment anymore,” which would come as news to anyone who’s seen how packed it and its neighbors, like Marie’s Crisis next door, can be on a Saturday night. Renovation begins next week, he said; rumor is it will become a real-estate office.
A Fannypackahontas Bought Her Outfit for $24 in Trinkets
Species: The Fannypackahontas.
Etymology: A Fannypackahontas takes her fashion cues from a tribe that is clearly not her own (unless of course she’s actually one-sixteenth something or other); she steals her look and style from Native Americans, making her a latter-day Peter Minuit. (Haven’t these people suffered enough?)
Distinguishing characteristics: Fannypackahontases wear, well, fanny packs, a trend that should never have been resurrected. Unlike your grandmother’s nylon sack, however, this one is all leather and sterling silver, even with studs, baby. The unfortunate placement of the fringe is intentional: Fannypacks worship one other idol, and that is Samantha from Sex and the City. The blonde hair, the come hither stance, the completely sheer top (and that is a top, not a dress), the exposed nips — this girl knows what she wants and, damn it, she wants it now. We should note that these women do have one thing going for them: great shoes.
Known locales: Kokopelli, loading up on more bangles; Rodeo bar.
Diet: Dakota bison burgers, anything with cactus in it, peyote.
How to approach: “So, what’s in your pack?” Of course, you probably don’t want to know.
Endangerment status: At risk. Remember what happened to the Lenape? —Amina Akhtar
the morning line
Going Your Way, Slowly
• Breaking news! After a comprehensive study, the MTA can now tell you that numbered subway lines are overcrowded, and that Lex lines often run behind schedule. (Who knew?) Apparently there’s nothing officials can really do about it, as those lines are already operating at capacity.
A Corey Keeps Dreaming a Little Dream
Species: The Corey
Etymology: Coreys, named after eighties stars Corey Feldman and Corey Haim, are a confused mash-up of the decade that refuses to die — much like their namesakes’ drug habits.
Distinguishing characteristics: Coreys always travel in packs of two and divide themselves along the H/F line: One is a Haim (left), the other a Feldman (right). Notice Haim’s short curly hair, super-skinny legs, and piercing eyes. Feldman, the larger of the two specimens, is the wilder one. His hair is more unkempt, his wardrobe even more confused: leggings, boots, bedazzled cropped jacket. The two Coreys can’t keep their clothing genres straight and instead try to pay homage to their one good decade.
Known locales: Luca Lounge, hoping to get a glimpse of the real deal; Coney Island, hunting for vampires.
Diet: Blow and booze (pre-hab, natch).
How to approach: While Coreys may look intense, they’re actually very sweet and affable. Haim is generally the nicer of the two. But to win Feldman over, just talk about him. All night.
Endangerment status: At risk. Three words for you: Death by stereo. —Amina Akhtar
Gypsy-Tramp-Thieves Want to Turn Back Time
Species: The Gypsy-Tramp- Thief
Etymology: Gypsy-tramp-thieves ill- advisedly take their wardrobe cues from Cher. From vintage Cher, it’s true, but from Cher all the same. And you can’t turn back time.
Distinguishing characteristics: GTTs relive the glory days when Cher was still paired up with Sonny. Remember when Cher dressed up like a fortune teller on the duo’s variety show? A GTT does. The silver bandana, puffy shirt, and Crayola-red lips can attest to that. A GTT lives in a world of fantasy, where high-waisted shorts seem a good idea. The superfluous belt adds a hippie flair — and unnecessary attention to her hips. GTTs’ great secret, of course, is that though they can’t style worth a damn, they do have great pieces. The shoes? We love ‘em. The socks? Really?
Music and Passion Not Much Longer the Fashion: Copa to Close July 1
The famed — if these days sort of down-on-its-heels — Copacabana nightclub is set to close in its current 34th Street location on July 1. It’s been known for some months that the club will become a casualty of Hudson Yards redevelopment: A stop on the extended 7 line will go in its spot. But the actual closing date was first confirmed to us yesterday afternoon by a club publicist. The original Copa was on 60th Street; it relocated first to 57th Street and Eleventh Avenue, and it has been at its current location for the past five years. Some of the club’s current parties will move to Columbus 72, which is also owned by the Copa crew, but there’s no new location yet for the famous club. “Eminent domain,” grumbled the club’s publicist. —Tayt Harlin
A Norma Desmond Is Still a Star
Species: The Norma Desmond
Etymology: Norma Desmonds are aging performers whose time and has come and gone. They’re still big; it’s the nightlife scene that got small!
Distinguishing characteristics: Normas are often surrounded by a crowd of older cougars — the comparison makes them look younger — and Viagra’d men who hang on their every word. They know how to play it up and show off their best assets — usually their legs, in a too-short dress. The hair is an unnatural hue that recalls Carrot Top. The first thing a Norma Desmond will tell you is that she’s in an upcoming film with a major star. IMDb will disagree.
Known locales: The Pen-Top bar at the Peninsula; the Stone Rose, mingling with other ladies past their prime.
Diet: Normas keep it old-school: Valium and Benzedrine.
How to approach: “Are you in movies?” is the best way. Normas love to be recognized; their lives depend on it. Without some attention, they wilt. But once you get them talking about themselves, they won’t stop. Run. Fast.
Endangerment status: Slim. You might end up face-down in the pool, but she’ll always be ready for her close-up. —Amina Akhtar
Will Someone Please Call Family Services on Dina Lohan?Dina Lohan, the “white Oprah,” is in talks to do a reality show for E! in which she’ll try to turn her two youngest kids into stars. And Lindsay’s DUI arrest made it tough for underage girls to get into L.A. clubs after the MTV Movie Awards. Michael Moore has lost 30 pounds eating whole grains and sleeping more. Harvey Weinstein is an investor at Bungalow 8 doorman Armin Amiri’s new club, Socialista. Angelina Jolie is spending time with her children at the expense of spending time with Brad Pitt. Gwyneth Paltrow and David Byrne are bad tippers. Cameron Diaz gave André Balazs a neck rub.
Talking About the BoxIn our continuing coverage of Simon Hammerstein’s new Lower East Side rich-people-pretending-to-be-bohemian playground, the Box, we’ve remembered a conversation we had with Hammerstein last week at that Queen Mary 2 party, in which he once again describes a venue that seems almost nothing like its reality:
New York: Everyone’s talking about the Box. How are you handling the hype?
Hammerstein: One day at a time. It’s too early to smell the roses. We’re trying to transform the space every season. The feedback has been remarkable, but that doesn’t mean my job is over. It’s a full-time job.
New York: How do you cultivate a fun, engaging place to be without alienating everybody?
Hammerstein: It’s a job unto itself. For me the quintessential night in New York is a diverse, mixed room: freaks to conservatives. As long as we appreciate all walks of life and we’re open to that. People are people.
New York: Ever been disallowed entrance into a club yourself?
Hammerstein: Oh, God, everyone has. I remember being drunk at Marquee and my own friend wouldn’t let me in because he said I was too drunk. I threw my driver’s license at him and reminded him who I was. Embarrassing.
In so many ways.
‘Radar’ Throws a Party, and We Discover We Are Not Cool Enough to Buy Drinks
Related: Britannica Ball [Interactive Party Lines]
Mall Singers Could’ve Been Something ElseSpecies: The Mall Singer
Etymology: Mall Singers make a desperate bid at coolness by trying to emulate more “hip” eighties styles — and failing, much like the ultimate mall singer, Tiffany Renee Darwish.
Distinguishing characteristics: Mall Singers, also known as Tiffanies, glom onto overly trendy concepts — in the case of the specimen at left, hot-pink tights, big silver belt, tunic top — and yet fall short of hitting their mark. They sport denim jackets in an ode to their leader, whom they last saw in Dayton, Ohio, in yes, 2006. Confused, Mall Singers have no real identity of their own and instead have it formed for them. (Think pre-fab boy bands.) The shoes? A last-ditch attempt at asserting their own style — and a cry for help.
Known locales: Culture Club; Winnie’s, belting out Tiffany’s greatest hit.
Diet: Who has time to eat when there are albums to promote?
How to approach: Mall Singers want nothing more than fame. Ask about their last appearance and they’ll happily sign autographs, or talk for hours about Tiffany’s hair. It’s! Just! So! Pretty!
Endangerment status: Fragile. She thinks she’s alone now. —Amina Akhtar
Boxed OutRemember when we told you that the Box, Simon Hammerstein’s new, insufferably pretentious so-called “dinner theater” non-club on the Lower East Side was in fact so insufferably pretentious that we’d never set foot in the place again? Well, we rest our case.
Michael Herr of the Box Serves Scarlett Johansson, Experiences a ‘Brush of Excitement’ [Grub Street]
Earlier: ‘Radar’ Throws a Party, and We Discover We Are Not Cool Enough to Buy Drinks
Related: What’s In the Box? [NYM]
The Misshapen Are Party Kids With Day Jobs
Species: The Misshapen
Etymology: The Misshapen are ardent followers of pin-thin spinners Leigh, Greg, and Geordon, but they have one fatal flaw: day jobs.
Distinguishing characteristics: Misshapens will always sport at least one terribly cool item. (In the sample at left, it’s the overcoat.) But look closely and you’ll notice the perfectly pressed Dockers (a gift from mom, no doubt), and the sweater with a button-up underneath. It’s workwear disguised as party gear, and, come 5 p.m., the shirttails rip right out. Misshapens are chameleons, not masters of the craft, but, gosh darn it, they try. Their greatest asset is their hair. In day hours, it remains carefully combed back; as night falls, it is artfully mussed.
Known locales: Don Hill’s, Ruff Club at Annex, skulking around Leigh’s MySpace page hoping to be added as a friend.
Diet: Vodka, Adderall (gotta stay thin, kids)
How to approach: Unlike their idols, the Misshapens have yet to master a cool, cold façade. In fact, they’re as easy to talk to as a puppy dog. Friendly, smiling, pleasant … damn, it’s all a sham!
Endangerment status: Er, are those fifteen minutes up yet? —Amina Akhtar
‘Radar’ Throws a Party, and We Discover We Are Not Cool Enough to Buy DrinksAnd what [owner Simon Hammerstein] absolutely doesn’t want is for the Box to be known as a club. “It’s a dinner theater!” Simon interjects sternly whenever you mention the C-word. “It could be the hottest club in New York,” adds Lucas, one of 30-odd investors. “But if that’s all it is, then it is a failure. If he turns it into a club, then I’m going to kick his ass.”
— “What’s in the Box,” New York,February 5, 2007
Last night Radar magazine fêted its seventh issue at Hammerstein’s non-club. The invitation said the party would run from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. It was a pleasant affair. A few minutes after ten, we tried to order another drink. We expected the free bar to be closed; we pulled out our AmEx to open a tab. The barman would not accept it. No, no, we said, we know the open bar is closed, and we’ll pay. We were not permitted to. We were not cool enough. Our money was not good enough. We were to leave. We did.
Sounds an awful lot like a club to us, no? Oh, also: We will never set foot in that place again.
The Party Monster Is a Resilient OrganismYour guide to the species of the nightlife habitat.
Species: Party Monster
Etymology: Party Monsters are leftover, aging club kids who can’t quite wash away the glitter.
Distinguishing characteristics: Spandex, and lots of it. Also lots of makeup and Manic Panic hair dye. Let’s not forget the vinyl, faux-exotic-skin leggings and Joan Collins shoulder pads. But, still, don’t let the saucy eye makeup fool you: This isn’t Limelight, circa 1996, and these aren’t Michael Alig’s boys. They could be, though, and that’s the beauty of Party Monsters.
Known locales: Room Service, haunting the halls of NYU’s Palladium dorm, looking for the ghosts of club kids past.
Diet: White wine, vodka tonic (no calories if it’s clear, bitches), Ecstasy.
How to approach: Party Monsters are very friendly, and very keen on flattery. Compliment their hair, makeup, crotch bulge, or even pit stain and they’ll rub up against you like a kitten. But be warned — one wrong look and you may end up strangled to death. Endangerment Status: Moderate. Most of the population long ago evolved into regular grown-ups. There are now additional threats from the oh-so-confusing Gay Hipster. Skinny, pale, and unwashed, you just never can tell —Amina Akhtar
A Tubbs-and-Crockette Can Actually Pull Off a Boxy BlazerYour guide to the species of the nightlife habitat.
Etymology: Specimens rock the Miami Vice look — and, remarkably, get away with it.
Distinguishing characteristics: Though males are more often sighted than females, the rare female Tubbs-and-Crockette is occasionally spotted with its telltale plumage: pastels and an oversize blazer. Though men in such attire rarely achieve the look they want (fierce, drug-lord busting, gun-toting hotness), women are more successful. Notice the white pants, the pale pink button-up, and the boxy fit of the jacket. The specimen in the photo, however, suffers from one mutation: Her lack of loafers worn without socks.
Known locales: Running along the waterfront, looking for drug boats; the Diner
How to approach: Fierce creatures, Tubbs-and-Crockettes are terrifying to behold. Tread lightly — they could be packing. But after sending over a cocktail or three, you’ll get off with a smirk. If you ask nicely enough, she may even frisk you.
Endangerment status: Fragile. In the immortal words of their leader, Sonny Crockett: “You want to be dead? Bang, you’re dead.” —Amina Akhtar
A Guide to Recognizing Your Partygoers: A Brenda Walsh Is Best AvoidedYour guide to the species of the nightlife habitat.
Species: Brenda Walshes
Etymology: Hipsters attempting to dress like the 90210 character. Ironically, of course.
Distinguishing characteristics: Brenda Walshes derive all their power from blinding people with tacky accessories. Examples include denim vests, like those last seen on George Michael circa Wham, and brown chapeaus, in homage to both the Amish and John Hughes’s flicks. A typical pièce de résistance, however, is the wallpaper-like floral explosion tights, which at first glance give the appearance of lesions.
Known locales: Lit, Drop Off Service, the Bedford Mini-Mall.
Diet: Sex on the Beach. Also ironically.
How to approach: Brendas are a very dangerous breed. As their famous fictional counterpart so gloriously demonstrated, a hello can quickly lead to a catfight. Warning signs include eye rolling, sighing, blowing of the bangs, crossing arms, and, most dangerous, the raise of one eyebrow while pursing the lips. Whenever possible, avoid Brendas all together.
Endangerment status: Fragile. Easily replaced by a more attractive Kelly Kapowski. —Amina Akhtar
Back and to the LeftA 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
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.
A Guide to Recognizing Your Partygoers: Introducing the Lady SovereignettesYour field guide to the species of nightlife habitat.
Species: Lady Sovereignettes
Etymology: Mini-clones of their idol, British rapper Lady Sovereign.
Distinguishing characteristics: Easily identified by their high side ponytails, Lady Sovereignettes are unofficial parts of any rapper’s army of pint-size wannabes. Often seen sporting large gold earrings or fake diamonds, shod in white Adidas sneakers (like their famous leader), and wearing oversize white tees with tribal designs, and, unadvisedly, leggings.
Known locales: Fulton Street Mall, Hip Hop Karaoke at the Knitting Factory.
Diet: White Castle slyders and Doritos.
How to approach: Though they appear to be threatening, Lady Sovereignettes are quite docile and harmless. They front well, but give one a good head petting and she’ll be purring like a kitten. Don’t try to touch the ponytail at first, however — a savage scratch will be in order. Smile, say hello, and compliment her loud shirt before any attempt at touching.
Endangerment status: With their leader proving insufficiently popular to dominate in the wild, these creatures will have to change their camouflage to survive. Likely to morph into Amy Winehouse imitators within three months. —Amina Akhtar
in the magazine
Inside Norwood, New York’s Forthcoming New Faux London Club
Another London-style for-profit club is coming to the lower West Side, and, as Geoffrey Gray reports in this week’s New York, the new entry will be Norwood, located in an 1845 townhouse on West 14th Street. According to the prospectus, there will be a “buzzing and spacious Grand Hotel-like bar” on the parlor floor, a private dining area and reception space on the garden floor, dining rooms on the second floor, “a less formal salon with lounging areas of decadent grandeur” on the third floor, and up on the fourth floor a “penthouse” space for meetings, screenings, and special events. What will it all look like? As yet unknown. But the brochure provides photos of what the townhouse looked like as the previous owner had furnished it. Above, the front entrance and main stairs. More pix after the jump.
Employees Only Is Always Crowded, Sometimes With a Brass BandAt 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]
Designer and Print-Ad Star Kenzo Minami Gets His Coffee at Cafe GitaneIntroducing you to the faces you see out and about.
Name: Kenzo Minami
Profession: Graphic designer, T-shirt designer, and immaculately coiffed and goateed star of Reebok’s “I Am What I Am” ad campaign. His piece Synchronization appears in the current Mercedes Benz Presents Andy Warhol show.
Provenance: Hyogo, a factory town in Kobe, Japan, via the Lower East Side
What You Know Him From: After making his name as a graphic designer, Minami launched a garment line that sells at Barneys New York and Seven (where Axl Rose bought a shirt) and is worn by the types who remember the height of Sway’s Morrissey night.
Just What New York Needs: Another Fashion-Themed BarApparently 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.
A Hargitay’s Work
The theological battle over Mariska Hargitay rages on. Last week, Daily Intel named her “the patron saint of Party Town” for her regular appearances on our end-of-day wrap-up of boldfaced parties scheduled for that night. But dedicated Mariskavites were having none of it, and by Monday we’d received more than a few angry missives from her devoted followers. (“What is your problem with this wonderful woman?” was a not untypical bit of protest.) Then, Tuesday, we crossed paths with The Hargitay herself, who also objected to the honor, though more genteelly. “I never go out,” she told us. “I’m a mom now.” Oh? A quick search of the PatrickMcMullan.com archives — okay, actually a grueling slog through those archives, as is par for the course with the barely functional McMullan site — reveals no fewer than five Marish appearances already this year: a dinner to honor Olivier Theyskens on March 19; Talk Radio’s opening night on March 11; a Liz Claiborne event on March 6; Dining by Design on February 26; and the SAG Awards on January 28. All that, plus the Gotham Magazine party in her honor on March 21, which prompted our initial canonization. Is that a sufficiently miraculous performance to warrant the sainthood? We’re sure you’ll let us know.
We Just Go to the Penthouse Club for the Intellectual Conversation
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
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.
the morning line
Caffeine Is It!
• City Councilman Simcha Felder has either great timing or way more power than we thought. Two days after he embarked on a public crusade to get caffeine content included on food labels, Coca-Cola did what he wanted. [AP via Newsday]
• Ooh, a big twist in an otherwise uneventful election! Dr. Mathieu Eugene, the new councilman elected to replace Congresswoman Yvette Clark, has to prove that he actually lives in the district before he can legally take the seat. [NYP]
• A five-judge state appeals court has unanimously upheld the constitutionality of New York’s long-in-the-tooth Cabaret Law. (A lawsuit claimed that the dancing ban in bars and clubs infringes on free expression.) At least there are no plans to beef up the silly rule’s enforcement. [MetroNY]
• NYU’s College Republicans got exactly what they wanted — scandal and press — when they staged a “Catch the Illegal Immigrant” game on campus. (The objective was to spot a student with an “immigrant” tag for a $50 reward.) The event drew 300 angry protesters instead. [NYDN]
• And André Balazs isn’t the only one bringing Beaver back to New York. For the first time in 200 years, the actual North American beaver is setting up camp in the Bronx River, a testament to a recent, $15 million cleanup. [NYT]
Designer Kuhne’s Sway Problems Are Nothing New“Page Six” reported yesterday that designer Kai Kuhne had been ejected from the Soho club Sway, and the news came as no surprise to night owls who’ve seen the beleaguered designer boozing it up all over town lately. At a Fashion Week blowout at the Anchor, Kuhne was thrown out for ripping the bathroom door off a stall, startling a nearby Olsen twin. Indeed, Fashion Week was generally a mess for Kuhne, most notably at his own show, at Gramercy Park’s National Arts Club. People’s Revolution was set to produce the show, but they either dropped Kuhne or were fired by him, depending on whom you ask. It went on anyway — but not so smoothly.
Crobar’s Second Verse: Same as the First
With BED freshly closed and rumors floating that Bungalow and Cain are looking to flee West 27th Street, it’s good to know Crobar, for one, is soldiering forward. It reopened last weekend as a new venue — now it’s called Studio Mezmor — and it’s doing double duty as an arts and events studio, and possibly a rock venue. (Don’t tell that to the Bowery Ballroom guys, who are looking to open a music venue in the space that once housed Exit.) But other than the name, not a lot has changed. A few columns have been knocked down, sound systems upgraded, and the annex that was once cluttered with bamboo reeds will now be called the SideBar. The picture above is of the new, awfully familiar-looking VIP mezzanine. After the jump, the new, even more familiar dance floor. Daniel Maurer
CORRECTION, Feb. 22: We’ve been informed that the above photograph is actually of the SideBar, which does indeed look quite different now that the bamboo has been chucked. Which basically undermines our whole argument here. Sorry about that.
Tom Brady Does Not Love New York, or Bridget MoynahanTom Brady put his New York pad up for sale as soon as he found out ex-girlfriend Bridget Moynahan was pregnant. Speaking of officially pregnant: Naomi Watts. Speaking of maybe pregnant: Christina Aguilera. Hillary Clinton, or someone from her office, got mad at David Geffen for throwing a party last night for Barack Obama. Former As Four designer Kai Kuhne flipped out after his credit card was denied at Sway. A Chelsea nightclub doesn’t want handicapped customers upstairs.
CB3 Loves Petraske, Hates His PlansOne thing was clear at the Community Board 3 meeting last night: The East Village board loves Milk and Honey proprietor Sasha Petraske. “He is probably the only owner in nine years who has run [his bar] according to his representations,” said committee chair Alexandra Militano, who also noted he’s received no complaints in nine years, as Daniel Maurer reports on Grub Street. So does all that good behavior and good will mean they’ll allow him to open his planned Mighty Ocelot wine and beer bar on East 5th Street? Of course not. Noisily angry neighbors flooded the meeting, complaining that Petraske’s establishment would create too much noise. And the board voted to recommend the State Liquor Authority deny his application. The full tale is at Grub Street.
Neighbors Tell Milk & Honey’s Sasha Petraske, ‘Welcome to the East Village, Now Leave [Grub Street]
in other news
City Proposal Could Limit Bars to One Homicide Per YearThe 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]