Saving the M.T.A.
Unlike the New York State Senate, we are not at all shocked, shocked, that the Metropolitan Transportation Authority has a $400 million budget gap that it’s looking to close with severe service cuts to the subways and buses. When Albany approved its “Save the M.T.A. Plan” seven months ago, it was clear to all commonsense observers that it was a stopgap measure that could not last more than a year or two.

Letters to the Editor

Scoopy's Notebook

Talking Point
Outlook on Middle East peace
By Ed Gold
More than a year ago, the Times’s erudite Tom Friedman outlined what an Israeli-Palestinian peace might look like:
The Palestinians, through the P.L.O. would sit down and negotiate details of the so-called “road map,” would reiterate their intentions of living in peace alongside an Israeli state, and would urge their supporters in the Arab world to accept the reality of a tiny Jewish state living in their midst, a historic change from their desire to eradicate Israel.


Hotel goes from seamen to seamy to see and be seen
By Patricia Fieldsteel
NYONS, France — Last spring, friends in Berlin e-mailed asking if I’d heard about the hotel at the end of my street. Somehow, I knew they didn’t mean the Rue Balzac. And yes, I knew all about the goings-on at The Jane. In many ways, this was nothing new, but it set me to reminiscing.


Police Blotter


Ira Blutreich

Mixed Use

The A-List


Jeanne-Claude, Christo’s force: Extinguished flame
By Jerry Tallmer
Don’t call her Mrs. Christo. If you please.
It is, it was, Jeanne-Claude and Christo or Christo and Jeanne-Claude, joined at the hip. Not biologically, but — even stronger — welded together in love and art. Maybe one should say: Wrapped together.

In Pictures

Tree’s lighting was sweet

Let there be more lights




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

Villager photo by J.B. Nicholas

SantaCon converges in park
Washington Square Park was a sea of red Santa suits Saturday, as revelers in SantaCon — a Christmas-themed bar crawl — cavorted, including jumping rope, above. Andy Stimus, a Sixth Precinct community affairs officer, said there were about 1,000 Santas in the park. Police issued 33 summonses for open alcohol containers.

Parks reverses its tracks; Now lets artists sell on the High Line
By Lincoln Anderson
Robert Lederman had a smile on his face beneath his winter cap on the High Line Saturday morning. He and three other artists were freely vending their art in the brisk air.

Police officers cop top honors for outstanding work
By Patrick Hedlund
The Greenwich Village-Chelsea Chamber of Commerce held its sixth annual “Safe Cities, Safe Streets” event on Tues., Dec. 8, to honor the work of local police and recognize the contributions of area merchants to the vitality of Downtown’s business community.

Former coffee-cart vendor could face more charges
By Mary Reinholz
Federal prosecutors may seek additional charges against suspected terrorist Najibullah Zazi, the bearded 24-year-old Afghan immigrant and former Stone St. vendor who once sold donuts and coffee minutes from Ground Zero.

Tribe names Mike in cig suit
By Mary Reinholz
New York’s tobacco wars flared up last week as a tiny Long Island Indian nation beset with several lawsuits over untaxed cigarette sales filed an amended civil rights complaint in Brooklyn Federal Court.


Art squat reviews its history, finds more in backyard
By Lincoln Anderson
An art exhibit marking the 25th anniversary of the founding of an East Village squat is a powerful shot of history, encompassing the tumultuous scene of the 1980s and 1990s — but also extending as far back as the 19th century, thanks to a fascinating new excavation in the building’s rear yard.

Girls Prep ‘storms’ City Hall; School must grow, they say
By Helaina N. Hovitz 
Two school buses dropped 100 students and teachers wearing orange hats off at the gates of City Hall on Tuesday afternoon. The students and teachers, along with parents, of Girls Preparatory Charter school then “stormed the steps” and screamed with excitement as they waved signs that read “Let Great Schools Grow” and “Our Students Share In Class, Can’t We?”

Perfectionism is the key to a locksmith’s success
By Thomas Chan
Greenwich Locksmiths is not a hardware store with keys.
“We don’t sell toasters. We don’t sell lamps,” Philip Mortillaro emphatically stated on a recent evening. “We’re locksmiths.”

Engraver carving out careers in glass and in show business
By Les Schecter 
Joseph Anthony Callari is truly a 21st-century Renaissance man. A native New Yorker born and raised in Brooklyn, he knew at a very young age that he wanted to be an actor and singer, much like the star whose songs he heard on the family record player every day while he was growing up — Frank Sinatra.

Villager Arts & Entertainment

Koch on Film
By Ed Koch
“A Single Man” (+).

Characters, audience and author are all orphans
Insights from Hallie Foote: Horton’s daughter, favorite actress

Thompson Street poet finally gets his due
Compositions are ‘compressed, crystallized, evocative and lyrical.’

Art museums offer holiday season exhibitions
Worthy works include Pakistani, Indian, Scandanavian, Neapolitan

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Volume 79, Number 28 | December 16 - 22 2009