Scoopy, Week of Oct. 31, 2013

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Anthony Edwards, left, and Heather Graham, right, filming at Bluestockings bookstore on Monday.  Photos by Patrick O'Reilly

Heather Graham, above, and Anthony Edwards, below, filming at Bluestockings bookstore on Monday. Anthony Edwards was on the scene directing. Photos by Patrick O’Reilly

Graham sleuths on L.E.S. Bluestockings bookstore on Allen St. was the setting Monday for a shoot for the film “My Dead Boyfriend,” starring actress Heather Graham and directed by Anthony Edwards of “ER” fame. The in-production flick is a comedy set in the late ’90s that sees Graham investigate her deceased boyfriend’s life. Bluestockings, of course, is a Lower East Side activist bookstore that caters to feminism, the L.G.B.T. community, environmentalism, political theories, anarchism / Marxism and other subjects.

Don’t vote for me! Don’t!!! His name apparently WILL be on the ballot on Tues., Nov. 5, but Richard Stewart says he is not, repeat not, running for City Council against Corey Johnson. Seriously. Yet, we clearly espied Stewart’s name in the New York

Post this Tuesday in a “Notice of General Election, 2013, Candidates List,” in which he is listed as the Republican candidate running against Johnson, the nominee of the Democratic and Working Families parties. “Let me reiterate again — not running for City Council in District 3,” Stewart told us later that evening. “I still live at 1 Fifth Ave., which is not in the district. I am still in support of Corey — I think Corey is the right choice for City Council. I do not know how that happened,” he said, of why his name is still on the ballot. Stewart, who is on Community Board 2, previously told us he couldn’t run because he lives outside the district, but that the G.O.P. was only using his name as a “placeholder” in case a viable candidate emerged. “Nobody should vote for me. Don’t vote for me,” Stewart stressed to us on Tuesday. “I’m not running for that job now. I may one day, but right now I just want to begin my work as a Republican district leader.” We asked Stewart if, on Election Day — since he’s not running, but his name will be on the ballot, which obviously could cause confusion — he would go out to the polls and exhort people NOT to vote for him. No, he said, he would not do that. O.K., so, just assuming he did live in the district, would he run against Johnson? we asked. “I’m not going to answer hypothetical questions,” Stewart replied, getting slightly fed up and saying that was enough questions. Of course, were he actually running, we would have had to ask him the litmus-test questions for any candidate in District 3: Do you now or have you ever owned a gun, and where is it? And are you now or have you ever been a real estate executive?

Brad to ‘Bad Santas’: Shape up! SantaCon may well think he’s the Grinch, but Brad Hoylman is trying to rein in the unruly annual pub crawl of naughty St. Nicks. The state senator on Oct. 15 sent a letter to SantaCon, addressed “To Whom It May Concern,” to the address blitzen@nycsantacon.com. “I am writing to express my concerns regarding SantaCon and the effects it has on the communities it visits,” Hoylman wrote. “Each year local elected officials, community boards and local [police] precincts are besieged by complaints as SantaCon passes through their neighborhoods. While Santa Con may be a short-term boon to a select group of local businesses,” Hoylman continued, “the many adverse impacts it wreaks, such as vomiting in the streets, public urination, vandalism and littering, disrupt community members’ quality of life. I recognize that at any large event, a few bad actors may disrupt an otherwise orderly affair, but at previous SantaCons bad actors have hardly been the exception. As such,” he went on, “significantly more must be done to combat the neighborhood scourge SantaCon has become.” Hoylman added that the event has become so large as to “completely overwhelm sidewalks and public spaces, creating a public safety hazard for all.” He strongly urged SantaCon to work with the Police Department “in order to come up with a strong and effective plan to combat public intoxication and to ensure all participants are respectful of the neighborhoods they visit, as well as handling the overwhelming crowds associated with an event this size.” (We thought SantaCon’s plan was large-scale, obnoxious public intoxication.) Hoylman further urged SantaCon to make this plan (the nice, respectful, vomit-free plan, that is) available to local affected community boards “well in advance of your event so that they have time to comment and help shape it.” We e-mailed blitzen, and surprisingly got a response back — actually from none other than St. Nick himself. “We here at the North Pole share some of the concerns of Senator Hoylman’s Office,” St. Nick wrote. “This year, Santa will be doing everything in his power to mitigate the negative effects SantaCon had created for the neighborhoods it spreads cheer to. The Elfs are already coordinating with several community boards and police precincts to make SantaCon 2013 a charitable, peaceful and jolly good time for all.” St. Nick even sent a video highlighting all the good that SantaCon allegedly does, including donating three tons of food in 2011. By mistake we clicked on some of the other “official” SantaCon videos, which showed girls in “slutty Santa” outfits getting their butts slapped, a group of 10 guys clinking their flasks together before taking slugs of whiskey, etc. We shall see if the Santas are naughty or nice.

Last call at Union Square: Heartland Brewery’s rent on Union Square West is now $2 million a year, up from $150,000 when they opened there in 1999. It’s just too much, even for Heartland Brewery, which will be taking its famed pumpkin beer and other special brews and leaving the location before the end of the year.

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Construction on the tent-like frame for the structure continued on Thursday evening despite a steady drizzle.  Photo by Scoopy

Something to ponder: A large “think tank” is being constructed at Canal St. and Sixth Ave. at Trinity Real Estate’s open lot, which is programmed as “Lent Space” by the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council. We had recently noticed all the industrial-looking materials — concrete slabs and the like — being stockpiled at the site, and then on Tuesday saw men putting up a large white, metal, arch-like framework. A security guard told us his understanding was it would be a “think tank” but only temporary and would eventually be dismantled. We called Ellen Baer, head of the Hudson Square Connection BID, about it, and after a pregnant pause, she said we really should call Trinity, since it’s their property. We called a Trinity spokesperson, who did not get back to us by press time. Hudson Square resident Tobi Bergman said he’s been poking around, too, but can’t find out any info, and suspects the whole thing is being kept “under wraps.” Well, it’s definitely got us thinking!

Update: According to New York magazine, which saw a building permit for the structure, it is reportedly being referred to as a space for an event referred to as “Talking Transition,” and is not just a “think tank” but a “think tent.” According to New York, the event is scheduled to begin Wed., Nov. 6, and is said to be a staging area for “an opportunity for broad public engagement. Thousands of New Yorkers will participate in public conversations about policy issues, ideas and questions that affect their communities. Over the course of two weeks, starting the day after Election Day, ‘Talking Transition’ will create the space for these conversations, hosting live events in a highly accessible central ‘think tent,’ and reaching deep into neighborhoods in all five boroughs through a mobile, interactive digital engagement in the streets and online, and an event strategy delivered in partnership with the public library systems and neighborhood organizations.” 

The art of survival: Due to a terrific response, Westbeth has extended its show about Hurricane Sandy, “Lost & Found: Scenes From After the Flood,” for three more performances on Nov. 7, 8 and 9. Paul Binnerts wrote the play, which was directed by Nancy Gabor. The Westbeth Sculpture Gallery is also doing a show, curated by Jack Dowling and running through December, featuring 11 residents whose artwork was damaged by Sandy because it was in the complex’s basement.

Flea market keeps hopping: We’re informed by James Lamorte that East Side Community High School plans to continue its “community market” flea market on a weekly basis, every Saturday, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., at 420 E. 12th St., between First Ave. and Avenue A. “We really need to stress it’s a fundraiser for the school and we need the community to come out and support us,” Lamorte said. Vendors and, of course, customers are welcome. For more information, call 718-598-6604.

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