As lovers of cheap Swedish furnishings camped out in Red Hook last week prior to the opening of a new Ikea, others were putting their houses in order. Presumptive Democratic nominee Barack Obama broke a little china by hiring Patti Solis Doyle, Hillary Clinton’s extremely estranged former campaign manager, to act as chief of staff to his future V.P. (Obama and Clinton later promised to clink glasses at a D.C. fund-raiser next week.) Michelle Obama charmed stylish contributors downtown (including some at a party hosted by Calvin Klein in his West Village home) and made a morning stop at The View. Mayor Bloomberg and Governor Paterson pooh-poohed reports that the governor had called the mayor a nasty, self-destructive liar. (A new poll showed that Bloomberg, whatever his temperament, is as popular as ever.) The city rolled out plans to close a seven-mile-long East Side corridor on three August Saturdays for the use of bikers and walkers. The Port Authority quietly explored unloading the Freedom Tower. The late Leona Helmsley’s beloved Pekingese, Trouble, saw her inheritance downgraded from $12 million to a mere $2 million. Two former Bear Stearns hedge-fund managers were arrested and charged with securities fraud. South Pacific, In the Heights, and August: Osage County racked up Tony awards. The curtain finally dropped on Mets manager Willie Randolph, whose firing was announced via a 3 a.m. e-mail. Yankees ace Chien-Ming Wang’s torn Lisfranc ligament threatened to sideline him for the season. Robert De Niro tried to explain to preservationists how the hypertrophied penthouse on his Greenwich Hotel ended up larger than the approved design. A judge tossed out Jared Paul Stern’s lawsuit against surveillance buff Ron Burkle. The romance between Kate Hudson and Lance Armstrong blossomed all over downtown. Same-sex couples flocked to California for June weddings. And not-so-gay divorcée Heather Mills announced her impending arrival in Manhattan by dropping $5 million of her settlement from Sir Paul McCartney on a Richard Meier apartment at 173 Perry Street.
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