Volume 75,Number 13
August 17 - 23,
2005


Editorial
A writer’s death and reflections on Tompkins Sq.
The murder on Aug. 2 of Steven Vincent by Iraqi thugs is a tragedy, depriving us of an immensely talented writer and a man who cared deeply about his East Village neighborhood and who, in his own way, worked diligently to try to improve it. The same passion and combativeness that Vincent brought to his writing back in the late 1980s and early 1990s when he took on certain groups in the East Village proved to be deadly in Iraq, where some people don’t want the truth exposed and are willing to kill to keep it suppressed.

Talking Point
Why the plan to move Wash. Sq. fountain is all wet
By Luther Harris
As the author of the book on Washington Square, I’m perhaps best able to explain its significance and what’s about to be lost in the upcoming renovation.
The square’s original 1826 design gave us formality appropriate for its time: geometrical pathways, greenery and fence, a humdrum version of squares in Paris and London. This square of Henry James sported a wood fence and walks lined with ailanthus trees — nothing fancy. An iron fence and fountain arrived in 1852 as the neighborhood became increasingly chic.

Notebook
New Orleans Geographic
By Andrei Codrescu
Tourists used to unnerve me. They occupy my historic neighborhood in large numbers, to gawk at improbable landmarks, following tour guides who fabricate stories to amuse them. Some of the stories are so preposterous it’s a wonder how anyone could listen with a straight face. Some of the visitors are sober and responsible citizens in Iowa, leaders of the community and professionals, but as soon as they get to New Orleans they turn into children.

Scoopy's Notebook

Police Blotter

Letters to the editor

Thanks to ‘mayor,’ baseball’s a hit in Fulton Houses
By Judith Stiles
The teenagers at the Fulton Housing complex think of Miguel Acevedo as the “mayor” of the neighborhood who also wears many other hats such as, coach, uncle, P.T.A. president, dad, director of Fulton Youth of The Future and community activist.

Gauchos gallop to Felix Millan Championship 3-peat

"Serving West and East Village, Chelsea, SoHo, NoHo, Little Italy, Chinatown and the Lower East Side"

NEWS
Bathhouse just needs scrub, says candidate
By Ellen Keohane
With their little arms raised high in the air, about 50 children stood on the steps of the abandoned Baruch Houses bathhouse in the Lower East Side on Monday afternoon in the rain, shouting chants and holding homemade poster board signs in support of Michael Beys, a candidate for City Council in District 2.

This one’s for Allen: HOWL! III waxes poetic
By Jerry Tallmer
 … who wept at the romance of the streets with their
pushcarts full of onions and bad music,
who sat in boxes breathing in the darkness under the
bridge, and rose up to build harpsichords in their lofts …
who cooked rotten animals lung heart feet tail borsht
& tortillas dreaming of the pure vegetable kingdom,
who plunged themselves under meat trucks looking for an egg,
who threw their watches off the roof to cast their ballot
for Eternity outside of Time …
— Allen Ginsberg, “HOWL!” 

Villager photo by Ramin Talaie

Lisa Ramaci gets a hug after the funeral of her husband, Steven Vincent, on Monday.

'Soldier with a pen' comes home to Village a last time
By Lincoln Anderson
Steven Vincent came back to the East Village from Iraq last week, about the time he had been planning to.
Vincent, 49, had intended to come home to E. 11th St. this month to work on a book on the historic city of Basra, from where he had been reporting. But on Aug. 2 he was kidnapped and shot to death by masked gunmen in that city, becoming the first American journalist to be attacked and killed in the Iraq war. It’s believed his exposés on the rise of Shiite fundamentalists and insurgents in Basra are what led to his death.


Inside
Coming soon to the Market…then again, maybe not
By Lincoln Anderson
Last month, James Ortenzio told The Villager he would know in about a year what he’s going to do with his property in the Meat Market. But a Web posting by a real estate broker has some thinking that Ortenzio — one of the few private property owners in the Market still renting to meat businesses — may already be close to deciding.

Cemetery could benefit from some glee at concert
By Albert Amateau
The New York City Marble Cemetery, where the bodies of 19th-century social luminaries have been resting since 1831, has a problem with the collapsing wall that separates it from the backyards of neighbors to the north.

Trying to shed some light on Village View finances
By Albert Amateau
The panic that swept through Village View Houses in the East Village when Con Edison threatened on July 7 to cut off electricity to the 1,235 apartments for nonpayment, calmed down a week later when the building manager said the bill had been paid, albeit a few days late, and that there was no danger of residents sweltering in the dark.

Duane and Stringer call for buildings to shed ads
By Jefferson Siegel
Advertisers crave eyeballs. In New York, they’ve found some newly creative, and often illegal, ways to reach those already overwhelmed eyeballs.

Obituaries
Al Carmines, 69, creative genius of Judson Church
By Jerry Tallmer
There are several things particularly to be remembered about “Home Movies,” a wacky, naughty play by Rosalyn Drexler that, hopscotching out of the Judson Poets’ Theater at Judson Church to the nearby Provincetown Playhouse, cracked open the constipated New York theater scene in the early summer of 1964.

Abe Hirschfeld, eccentric developer, is dead at 85
By Albert Amateau
Abe Hirschfeld, the multimillionaire developer whose monumental chutzpah fueled bizarre business, publishing and political forays and whose extravagant public statements made him sound like a Yiddish comedian, died on Aug. 10 at the age of 85.

Crandell is remembered at St. Mark’s
About 200 friends and family members gathered at St. Mark’s Church in the Bowery for a memorial last Saturday afternoon for Keith Crandell, “the mayor of Noho,” who died on May 28 at the age of 77.


VILLAGER Arts & Entertainment

Spiritualism at the Fringe Festival
Todd Robbins trickery sets up a 19th–century-like séance
By Jerry Tallmer
Todd Robbins hadn’t picked the place for us to meet. I had, about an hour earlier – the Brooklyn Diner, on Manhattan’s West 57th Street, because I had to be in that neighborhood anyway. “Weegee,” he said when we sat down. He gave a nod of his head toward the huge blown up photo that covered the entire wall just behind me – a photo by, yes, that hardboiled world-famous tabloid lensman of the 1930s and ’40s, a wide-angled shot of about a thousand people on the sand all looking enthusiastically straight at the camera. “Weegee,” Todd Robbins said. “Coney Island, 1949. The question is: What did he do to get them all looking his way?”

Theatrical tribute to a special grandmother
Libby Skala ‘writes a part’ for grandmother Lilia Skala
By Jerry Tallmer
Thumb sucking, says the exacting, Austrian-backboned Lilia Skala to her 4-year-old granddaughter in New Jersey, “is a very bad habit. It makes the teeth grow crooked… Remember, I gave up smoking cigarettes. You can stop sucking your thumb.”

An ever-changing New York
Photographers 60 years apart document the evolving landscape of New York City
By Jerry Tallmer
In 1929, when she was barely 31 years old, Ohio-born, Greenwich Village-bred Berenice Abbott (she had, while abroad, added the middle “e” to her first name, French-style) returned from Paris, expecting not to stay in New York very long.

Koch On Film
By Ed Koch
“Oyster Farmer” (+)
The characters in this Australian movie live in trailer park facilities and harvest farmed oysters.
“9 Songs” (-)
It is pure porn, gross, uninteresting, and utterly without mystery or vicarious pleasure.

Kids, wigs, slams ’n’ jams at free HOWL! in the park



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