Volume 75,Number 29
December 7 - 13, 2005


Editorial
City must balance needs of residents and nightlife better
When one thinks of New York City one of the things that springs to mind for many is nightlife. As everyone knows, the Big Apple is known as the city that never sleeps. Yet, the fact is, most people who actually live here do usually want to sleep at night, and therein lies the problem.

Talking Point
We saved the library once before; here we go again
By Carol Greitzer
“Yonduh is the castle of my fadduh.”
I somehow found myself recalling that Tony Curtis parody (from some movie I never saw) when I was walking up Sixth Ave., approaching the Jefferson Market Courthouse from the south. I looked upward, and even though I pass the site nearly every day, I was surprised anew both by the number of turrets and towers, and the variety of their sizes and shapes.


Notebook
Tone of voice; phone and e-mail rage is boiling over
By Andrei Codrescu
The hardest task of the ordinary citizen now is to know just what tone to take with those who decide one’s fate. It was easier back when one might, theoretically, encounter the powers face to face. In those days, words were accompanied with body language, and when one got to the end of words with a boss or a bureaucrat, one could simply end the conversation by slugging him.


Scoopy's Notebook

Police Blotter

Letters to the editor


Obituary
George Philactos, 87, engineer, radio expert, veteran
By Albert Amateau
George Philactos, a retired electrical engineer, ham radio operator and officer in the U.S. Naval Reserve who lived in the Village for more than 50 years, died Dec. 2 at St. Vincent’s Hospital at the age of 87.

Profile

From Cuba to Cornelia St., never losing the flavor
By Karen Kramer
In the enclave of restaurants that form Cornelia St.’s restaurant row there is a small shoebox of a place that feels personal and intimate rather than cramped. That’s because the owner of Little Havana — Lydia Mesa-Marti Betancourt Sharpe, a warm, energetic woman with an open demeanor — tries to bring a feeling of family to everything she does.

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

Villager photo by Bob Arihood

Officers from the Mounted Unit rode up and down Avenue B all Friday night, providing a visual presence along the busy bar-lined strip.


Avenue B dragnet targets clubs, cabs, rowdy drinkers
By Lincoln Anderson
Inundated by complaints about noise from raucous bargoers and taxi horn honking, police blitzed Avenue B with a full-scale “shock-and-awe” operation last Friday night.

NEWS

Facade fix is overdue, say Ol’ Jeff advocates
By Albert Amateau
Longtime Village residents last week told New York Public Library officials and elected representatives just what they thought about proposals to redesign the interior of the beloved Jefferson Market Library.

With magic bus, former punk plies fuel frontier
By Daniel Wallace
Imagine sunlight turned into music. Imagine motion powered by plants. Imagine all the people, living in harmony. O.K., scratch that last line, and instead of a poetic future vision you’ll have the realistic portrait of a modern machine.


Inside
Chelsea club boom has neighbors looking for answers
By Albert Amateau
West Chelsea, where more than 20 nightclubs and lounges with a total capacity of more than 10,000 patrons are clustered between 10th and 11th Aves., is a magnet for revelers and a nightmare for residents.

On 3rd St., rapping about graffiti’s pros and cons
By Sara G. Levin
It’s 2 o’clock in the morning and an elderly woman is awakened by aerosol fumes wafting through her ground-floor window on E. Third St. near Avenue B. Penny, who did not wish to give her last name, said asthma makes her sensitive to the paint, and that she was enraged last month when she woke up to find a young man photographing his freshly painted bubble letters underneath her sill.

Market mainstay Western Beef to leave W. 14th St.
By Roslyn Kramer
Stella McCartney, Jeffrey, La Perla, Alexander McQueen — luxurious shopping havens that define the stunning new face of the Meat Market on 14th St. However, beyond any doubt the biggest customer draw belongs to the old face: Western Beef Inc., standing on the corner of Ninth Ave. in all its stubborn grittiness, a reality check playing off the pricey chic of its rent neighbors.

Girl dies suddenly from unknown cause at Chinese bilingual school
By Daniel Wallace
Tragedy befell the Shuang Wen School on the Lower East Side on Tues. Nov. 29 with a small, but sickening thud. A 5-year-old girl, Jasmine Man, died after she fell unconscious in her first-grade class at the school at E. Broadway and Grand Sts.

Hudson Park officers to get sensitivity, courtesy training
By Lincoln Anderson
Park Enforcement Patrol officers in the Hudson River Park will receive supplemental training to equip them to deal with specific conditions and complaints of park users that have arisen in the 5-mile-long park in the two years since it opened.

Village Nibbler
By John McGarvie
Balducci’s is set to reopen imminently, in the landmark bank building on the northwest corner of 14th Street and Eighth Avenue, along the border of Chelsea and the West Village. I called Balducci’s headquarters in Maryland to get the exact date, but was told only that the store will open in December. They could not tell me the day, and I was not surprised. I walked by the location Thanksgiving week, and just by looking through the giant windows I could tell the renovation of the interior was nowhere near completion.


VILLAGER Arts & Entertainment

The master of improvisation
By Jerry Tallmer
Mike Leigh has for 40 years now employed his own unique method of starting and building a play or a movie, and he has built plenty of both, gathering praises and prizes along the way. “First, the actors take part without any idea of the process,” he says. “Second, each actor only knows what his character would know.” 

For one tiny dancer, dreams do come true
By Steven Snyder
Come winter, find a ballet company just about anywhere, and there is bound to be a production of “The Nutcracker” nearby.
For more than a century it has become a staple of the holidays, one of those rare artistic events that has attained a sense of timeless longevity, awaited every year by eager families and children for whom “The Nutcracker” is not only an introduction to ballet but, for some, the genesis of a larger dream: To become a dancer.

A Latin twist on a Greek classic
By Sara G. Levin
The premier of Alexandre Magno’s “Orfeu in the Carnaval of Souls,” a Brazilianized version of Orpheus’s descent into the underworld by Ballet Hispanico, was splendidly seductive on Tuesday, November 29.

Indirect sunlight
By Laura Silver
“Borrowed Sun” by Los Angeles artist Edgar Arceneaux brings together three seemingly disparate luminaries in his new exhibit at The Kitchen. There is Galileo, who insisted against popular belief that a fiery star, not Earth, was at the center of the heavens. Musician Sun Ra, who considered himself Saturn-born and used jazz to further his Afro-Egyptian galactic view. And Sol Lewitt, whose 50-year career includes pioneering explorations of text and groundbreaking forays into minimalism and conceptual work.

Koch On Film
By Ed Koch
“Walk the Line” (-) Believe me, notwithstanding that this movie about the life of Johnny Cash has received great acclaim, it is a bomb and a waste of your time.
“Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire” (-) I drank from the goblet and was bored and felt nauseated. Yes, I know that the Harry Potter books and movies have made billions, and I am going against the popular mood of critics and audiences, but I often walk to the beat of a different drummer.


Sports/ Health

If you can’t dribble, then try giving korfball a shot
By Vicki Kellaway
“Holland. When the waters rise, it’ll be the first place to go.”
That’s the standard reply of any European when asked about the effects of global warming. Holland, they joke, where 60 percent of people live below sea level, will be the first casualty.

‘Zen master’ swimming coach has gone the distance
By Judith Stiles
When swimming coach Leon Katz blows his whistle, the veteran swimmers in the pool interpret the short and peppy tone to mean speed up, while the long slow blow means relax and don’t rush. For swimmer Gerry Griffin, who has been training under the tutelage of coach Katz since 1985 at the Sol Goldman Y on 14th St., sparse words of instruction and distinct types of whistle-blowing guide her through a vigorous and healthy workout every week.



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