Volume 80, Number 28 | December 9 - 15, 2010
West and East Village, Chelsea, Soho, Noho, Little Italy, Chinatown and Lower East Side, Since 1933

Scoopy's Notebook
Brad Hoylman, left, and David Sigal with their new baby daughter, Silvia Verona Hoylman-Sigal.

Baby on Board (2):
Congratulations to Brad Hoylman and David Sigal on the birth of their daughter, Silvia Verona Hoylman-Sigal, above. Hoylman, a leading member of Community Board 2, said he and Sigal, co-producer of “Fair Game,” the new movie about outed C.I.A. agent Valerie Plame, made the decision to have a child several years ago. Silvia Verona was born on Nov. 26 in San Diego, Cal., weighing in at 6 pounds, 15 ounces. Hoylman told us in an e-mail: “We used a gestational surrogate (who has two kids of her own), meaning the egg was anonymously donated from a different woman and therefore the surrogate isn’t biologically related to the child and has no legal connection (although we want to stay in touch with her because of the wonderful gift she provided to us). We both donated to the process and consider each of us to be her daddy, although we have yet to sort out what she will call us when the time comes! We plan to raise her in the Jewish faith.” Asked if he had become an M.O.T. (Member of the Tribe), Hoylman answered, “I’m not Jewish, but our daughter will be.” Also, for those who might not know it, “both donated to the process” is another way of saying they mixed their sperm. As for why the delivery was in California, Hoylman explained, “California has very progressive laws for surrogacy and gay and lesbian couples and their kids. Surrogacy is actually illegal in New York. Plus, California is the only state I’m aware of where both same-sex parents are on the birth certificate. Neither has to adopt. We were both in the delivery room for the birth, which was an amazing experience. They gave us hospital scrubs to wear during the delivery.” Some on Board 2 speculated that Hoylman’s being a new dad might rule out another run for C.B. 2 chairperson, since he’ll be so busy with child-rearing duties. In fact, when we called him the other evening, he professed to be pooped from having been up all night tending to little Silvia. Asked about the baby factor and whether it will put a “baby bump” in his political aspirations, Hoylman said, “As far as how this relates to local politics, I haven’t thought about it at all. Right now I’m trying to perfect my swaddling and diaper-changing skills and taking the odd catnap when the opportunity arises. In this short amount of time, I have developed a profound new sense of respect for parents of young kids. I never knew how much work was involved, and it’s only just begun!” As for the names Silvia Verona, he said she’s named after her great-grandparents and grandmother. “Plus, we like the poem ‘To Silvia,’ by Giacomo Leopardi,” Hoylman added. “And we were in the city of Verona, Italy (not New Jersey!) this summer during our pregnancy and thought it was appropriate.”

Blogger on the mend:

East Villagers might not see Bob Arihood in front of Ray’s Candy Store on Avenue A for a while, or see updates to his blog, Nadie Se Conoce (http://nadieseconoce.blogspot.com/), because Arihood was hospitalized early last Friday for an ongoing condition he’s had for years. On Sunday, doctors started running some tests and they should soon have a clearer diagnosis and be able to formulate a plan of treatment.

Roof watch:
Old P.S. 64 watchdogs have recently noticed some action on the rooftop of the empty, turn-of-the-century school building. Specifically, some “mock-ups” — orange netting and two-by-fours — have been constructed atop the old school, at 605 E. Ninth St. “That’s the sort of thing one does when wanting to add a floor and measure the sky exposure plain and then apply to Landmarks,” our source said. “Word is the owner says these are cooling tower mock-ups, which would need Landmarks approval as well.” The building has sat vacant since December 2001, when developer Gregg Singer evicted the CHARAS/El Bohio community and cultural center. Most recently, it was being marketed for dormitory and school uses.

Candidate on big screen:
“Excuse Me, Mr. Speaker...,” a new movie on Paul Newell’s Democratic primary campaign against Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver two years ago, will screen at 8:30 p.m. on Tues., Dec. 14, and at 7 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. on Wed., Dec. 15, at The Tank, 354 W. 45th St., between Eighth and Ninth Aves. A Q&A with filmmaker Justin Sullivan and Newell will take place after each 8:30 p.m. screening. According to a press release, “With brisk pacing, cinema-verité style and a light touch, the 75-minute ‘Excuse Me, Mr. Speaker…’ captures the campaign in a close-up way that captivates the audience as well as illuminates the peculiar dysfunction of Albany’s ‘Three men in a room.’”

An article on the effort to create a Chinatown business improvement district in last week’s issue referred to “C.B. 3’s Chinatown Working Group.” However, the Chinatown Working Group is not an extension of Community Board 3. All three Downtown boards, — C.B.’s 1, 2 and 3 — are founding and voting members of C.W.G., which now includes 52 voting member organizations. Also, Rob Hollander was incorrectly identified in the article as a C.W.G. member. While Hollander is an active participant in the working group’s meetings, he does not represent a C.W.G. voting member organization.





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