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‘JUNCTION,’ IT’S A GAS, GAS, GAS: Oh, sure, everyone’s talking about the Tribeca Film Festival. But let’s not forget about the Soho International Film Festival, at which “Junction” just took home the grand jury prize — the best competition film of the festival. Matt De Matt, at far right, with cast members in the photo above, who is a partner in Gaslight bar, G2 lounge and Gaslight Pizza in the Meatpacking District, was an associate producer on the new flick, and also plays the character Ross. According to imdb.com’s plot synopsis of the movie, which was written and directed by Tony Glazer, center above, “Junction follows four strung-out meth addicts who discover a dark secret about a homeowner during a burglary, pitting them not only against the police but against each other.” Whoa! Sounds pretty intense. In fact, we didn’t even know, until we checked the “Junction” Web site, that De Matt has an extensive background as an actor, having appeared in a number of movies, including “Searching for Bobby Fisher,” “The Professional” and “Lowball,” among others, and that he has recently developed a “treatment,” as they say in the biz, for a major TV series. As for where he got his moves? He started out as a trained dancer and semipro baseball player. We’re guessing, oh, maybe there was just a small party at Gaslight after they nabbed the Soho Fest best picture award.
THE COMEBACK KID? At the Village Independent Democrats endorsement vote last week we heard a rumor from a few folks that another candidate is mulling entering the race for the Third City Council District. Actually, he’s not exactly “new” in the traditional sense, in that he, in fact, held the seat once before. Yes, word is that Tom Duane may be thinking of throwing his hat into the ring — or at least that’s what we hear. We called Duane on his “super-top secret” cell phone number, which he had given to us while he was still a state senator, but didn’t get a response by press time. If Christine Quinn becomes mayor, the scuttlebutt also has it that Duane could be tapped to be a commissioner in her administration. To be continued… . We also get the strong sense that there’s a pretty heated battle going on within V.I.D. over their upcoming Manhattan borough president endorsement vote. It sounds like two candidates have the most support in the club, Julie Menin and Jessica Lappin, and that these two will be duking it out. Gale Brewer has some fans, notably Frieda Bradlow, but apparently “hasn’t been campaigning” hard within the club to round up more support. Robert Jackson has the backing of education advocate Keen Berger, we’re told, because he was a party to the lawsuit for equal funding for city schools versus Upstate schools.
BLUE BIKES CREW: We were bicycle-commuting earlier this week along the Ninth St. bike lane — watch out for cars zipping out of those parking garages! — when we saw a small convoy of the new blue Citi Bike bike-share cycles. They were pulled over to the side of the road, after having done a promo ride over from the Brooklyn Navy Yard, where a bunch of the bikes are being stored. Asked how the share cycles handled, they said it’s a very safe ride. “Like a car,” one said. “Like a tank!” said another. It sounds like they’re not super-fast though, since one of them, referring to our 10-speed, said, “It’s not like a road bike.” But the bikephobes and, well, haters will, we hope, be happier about that, if these new “blue bombers” do indeed run a bit slower than most rides.
GOING POSTAL — BUT WHERE TO? We got a call from Brenda Santiago, president of the First Houses, who told us that there’s a lot of concern in the neighborhood about the planned closing of the Stuyvesant Post Office on 14th St. between Avenue A and First Avenue. The U.S. Postal Service is saying they’ll relocate the post office — to a site yet to be determined — but that isn’t really reassuring local residents. Although there’s a post office on E. Third St., only the Stuyvesant P.O. offers pickup for packages — though the wait in line is usually a half hour — and the other nearest option for package delivery is all the way down on East Broadway, a long walk away. A major meeting to discuss the Stuyvesant P.O. closure will be held this Mon., April 22, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., at the Campos Plaza community room, 611 E. 13th St., between Avenues B and C. Many — if not all — of the local elected officials are expected to attend, and Santiago and others are hoping for a big turnout to send a strong message that people need their post office and want some clearer, detailed information on exactly what the heck is going on. Santiago noted there are even rumors swirling that N.Y.U. is eyeing the corner of 14th St. and A for a planned new dorm. But university spokesperson Philip Lentz told us on Wednesday, “There are no plans. The rumors are without substance.”
TAYLOR HAS LEFT THE BUILDING: According to Bowery Boogie, Warhol superstar Taylor Mead recently reached a buyout with his landlord Ben Shaoul, for his apartment at 163 Ludlow St., after which he headed out West for a while. Anthology Archives reported that because Mead planned to leave town on April 14, they moved a screening event with him up to April 9. Mead is now said to be visiting family in Denver, and may be going to New Orleans at some point, too. An attorney for Magnum Management, Shaoul’s company, released the following statement: “[Taylor] has vacated his Ludlow St. apartment and any conflict with his now former landlord is behind him. Despite whatever battles took place in the past over conditions Mr. Mead lived with, it is worth noting for the record that he is satisfied and pleased with the deal he made involving the surrender of his apartment.”
GOOD EATING FOR A GOOD CAUSE: Grand St. Settlement is holding its 13th annual Taste of the Lower East food extravaganza on Thurs., April 25, at 82 Mercer St., from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. (V.I.P. tasting at 6 p.m.) Showcasing the area’s historically rich and diverse food and culture, the event is eagerly anticipated by gourmands, restaurateurs and food aficionados alike. DJ Andrew Andrew will be spinning the tunes while folks nosh and nibble for a good cause. T.L.E.S. has raised $3.5 million to date. Tickets are $195 general admission and $300 including the V.I.P. tasting preview. Proceeds go to the settlement house’s JUMP! (Juniors Undertaking Manhattan Possibilities) mentoring program for underserved L.E.S. youth, as well as other Grand St. Settlement programs. One Saturday per month, JUMP! mentors and participants venture out into the metro area for a new and exciting activity. Past trips have included bowling, museum visits and taking in Broadway shows. The outings provide youth with recreational and cultural experiences that expand their horizons while fostering curiosity and imagination. The food fest’s proceeds also help fund all of Grand St. Settlement’s programs for kids ages 3 to 18 in the Lower East Side — as well as on the other side of the Williamsburg Bridge — in Williamsburg and Bushwick. For more information and to buy tickets, go to http://tasteofles.org/ .