Comments: Week of May 18, 2009

1. Lisa Cohen’s story about the 6-year-old boy who disappeared off the streets of Soho 30 years ago and his family’s conviction that they know who killed him (What Happened to Etan Patz,” May 11) stirred up a lot of passion among readers. “This story is heartbreaking,” wrote one. “My deepest wish is for the Patz family to find peace. Sadly, I doubt that will ever come for them.” Another wrote, “I will never forget Etan Patz’s face and story as long as I live, and have often thought about him and his family over the years.” A few readers expressed reservations about the unbridled anger of Stanley Patz, Etan’s father, at District Attorney Robert Morgenthau for not prosecuting the suspected killer. “I would need a lot more information before forming an opinion about whether or not Morgenthau should have proceeded,” wrote one. “I don’t believe he has a reputation for being timid. In fact I believe the Manhattan prosecutors are the most aggressive of all the boroughs. It could be that his judgment that they don’t have enough to proceed is correct.” Another took an even harder line against Patz: “The unvarnished words of Stanley Patz in the Daily News, however, should give us all pause: ‘We’re hoping to get a bunch of New Yorkers up in arms saying, “Hang the bastard!” Patz said. “Get the pitchforks out.” ’ Please, let’s not lose sight of justice in this case. A fresh look at the case may be warranted, but the still-raging emotions of a victim-survivor should not rule the day.” But Morgenthau also had his detractors: “This inaction is typical of Morgenthau’s office over the last ten to fifteen years. It is really a shame that he and his cronies have run the criminal-justice system in Manhattan with an iron fist. They pick and choose which cases they prosecute, always going for the definite wins versus taking the tough cases where they may have to actually work.”

2. New Yorkers can be a hard lot, particularly when it comes to judging the appearances of celebrities on red carpets, and on’s fashion blog The Cut last week, readers let loose with their nominations for the worst dressed of the attendees of the Costume Institute Gala at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

“Ridiculous.” … “Please tell me she was in on the joke.” … “Finally proving she’s going through her middle-age crisis.”

Blake Lively
“Trying too hard.” … “Seriously, this girl needs to cover up.” … “Get fitted. The color is stunning, but you’re starting to take that skanky Serena-ness into your real life.”

Three-way tie
Tyra Banks
“I’m sure people advised Tyra against that, and she probably had them killed.” … “HOT MESS.”
Rose Byrne
“I don’t think her body can support her hair.” … “Looks like an escaped prom-queen hostage from 1987.”
Rachel Weisz
“Should sue her makeup artist.”

3. Of all the interiors in the “Home Design” issue last week, it was college student Maximilian Sinsteden’s lovingly appointed dorm room at Drew University (No Sense in Waiting,” May 11) that dropped the most jaws. “His dorm room is better than any I’ve ever seen,” wrote an admirer. “I got most of my dorm furnishings from the clearance section of Target.” Blogger Dapper Van reminisced: “I remember his first dorm-decorating job as a senior at Choate. The walls were wallpapered with nautical charts (from Papa), there was an antique trunk at the foot of the bed full of cashmere cable-knits, and part of our hallway was commandeered for use as a dressing room. Max could often be found on the fire escape, starching and ironing his white Frette hotel sheets. One of our first design collaborations? A set of pink-and-green china for the dorm, $10 from a local thrift store. Takeout from Wallingford Pizza never looked so good.” Others were less kind, spewing personal attacks, as well as casting aspersions on Drew University. But his supporters would not bend: “I love this young man’s talent and cleverness. It is very clear that he has a strong design identity, and I wish him well in all his future endeavors. I hope he doesn’t let the trolls in this comments section get him down!” Design Glut’s bright-as-Starbursts apartment was well liked (“I want this room transported to my house immediately”), as was Jason Wu’s immaculate one-bedroom. (“Unlike some of his American counterparts, he obviously listened to his mother when she taught him how to keep house. A true Renaissance man for the 21st century.”)

Correction: In “Intelligencer: Posts” (May 11), the photograph of the Americans Feeding Americans Emergency Caravan program attributed to Ray Stubblebine/Reuters should have been credited to Anthony Suau.

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Comments: Week of May 18, 2009