Sunday, November 30, 2008
Verdict: Be thankful for the metal cattle fences.
Nicole Garcia, a spokeswoman for the Transportation Department, said, “Safety is our top priority as we build on the safety enhancements we’ve made along Queens Boulevard and throughout the city, which have led to a dramatic decrease in accidents.” As for a bike lane on the boulevard, Ms. Garcia said, there are no current plans for one. The high number of pedestrians and the heavy traffic, she said, present challenges for building a bike lane there.
So, the traffic is so heavy in Manhattan that we have to charge people to enter it, but it also has most of the new bike lanes in NYC. And are there really more pedestrians on Queens Blvd than on Eighth Avenue (site of the newest protected bike lane)?
Enough excuses, make part of the service road a protected bike lane. Or better yet, toll it (NYC residents exempt) and use the funds to beautify it.
Though I was excited to try Michaelangelo's as I've heard good things about it, it stunk. Thick chewy crust. Very sweet sauce. Goopy cheese. It was like 7-11 pizza. Misshapen due too poor delivery handling. Almost inedible. Over an hour delivery time to boot. Cost $17.50
A&J on the other hand was solid. Yes, it's taken a slight hit since Sal left, but still a top notch above average pizza pie. Sauce had a little spice, not too much cheese. Delivered in perfect shape and very hot in 37 minutes. Cost $21.50.
A&J's in a blowout. Bonus points for Michaelangelo's for having a great looking take out menu.
Didn't like people walking around the green handing out fliers to their stores.
I see they're still pitching "Mr. Bemberlinx". Ditch the saccharine name - it hasn't caught on in three years. Call him King Damon.
You need that bridge store (Best Buy/H&M, etc) to bring the people out of the chain restaurants an into retail mode - but I'm sure you've known that since Atlas Park existed only on cocktail napkins.
The real problem is people around here aren't as affluent as the numbers indicate. They do make money - but the cost of living in Bloomberg's NYC is astronomical. NYC Personal Income Tax, NYS Income Tax, much higher real estate tax, parking tickets, insurance, day care. That median income of $90K or whatever, it's gone by the first of the month.
Good job lowering the height maximum of playing in the fountain to 36". Somedays, you'd see entire families in there with tricked out water guns running around like it's Jones Beach It's a place for toddlers to cool off and let their parents sit for a few minutes.
But I still maintain the biggest drawback is the circular parking lot. Once you park that car and walk through the Art World tunnel, you shouldn't have to worry about a car coming out of nowhere. If you want to really be like Clinton Crossing or that one in Monroe, ban all cars from pedestrian areas.
Sorry for all the Atlas posts, but I really do want this place to make it.
But what struck me about this particular article was the clear tone of fright.
"None of the approximate 10 neighborhood residents who spoke with the TimesLedger would give their full names — or their names at all — and some said they were concerned physical harm could come to them if they spoke out against the occupants of the house in question."
Where are these people's elected representatives? Can you imagine being elected to serve people in America in 2008 and knowing they are terrified to talk to the press? It's f--ing depressing. Get over to 63rd Drive Assemblyman and Councilmember and arrange a sit down with all parties. Have them talk it out and I'm sure it will ease some of the tension. There is obviously a huge (and fixable) concern among your constituents and you're ignoring it. They need your help. You can get back to fundraising the next day.
Friday, November 28, 2008
My heart goes out to Jdimytai Damour, a Haitian born nice man who was just trying to earn a few extra dollars for the holidays. Yes, it's pathetic that we have to pass a law to keep people from trampling each other to buy electronics, but call it Damour's Law and have the stores honor rain checks for all sale items and have them offered all day.
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
Bonfire Grill: Good place for a small group, a little tight for a big one. (72-27 Austin St).
Tap House: Less crowded and a great place to meet up since there's a lot of space. Might be a little lifeless to spend the whole night there. (A few doors west of Bonfire).
Moca: All depends on what college you're going to. Northwestern? Keep moving. Hunter? Come on in. (Restaurant Row).
5 Burros: Pass. Too crowded, not worth the hassle. (Next to Tap House).
Irish Cottage: Not bad, but beware of some Glendale lifer telling you all night that you're being brainwashed by your liberal professors. He's right of course, but tonight's not the night. (72nd Ave between QB and Austin St.).
Dirty Pierre's; Small, but great if you decide to get on the LIRR into the city. (Station Square).
TGI Fridays/Pizzeria Uno's: Are you sure you're in college?
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
The articles cover everything from gripes tenants of the mall have to local residents and their feelings about it.
I haven't wavered in my support for Hemmerdinger's mall. I think what the guy has done with a decrepit industrial complex is amazing. And the Forest Hills Chamber of Commerce could learn a lot from his constant events and aggressive marketing. That Frankie's Haircut/Toystore should be on Austin Street. As should White House/Black Market and a bunch of other Atlas Park stores.
But to be 100% honest, there are a lot of reasons not to go. Mainly, parking is a bitch where I live. On the off chance I've got a good space, I'm not losing it for a quick ride to Gymboree.
- Get rid of the circular parking. Either you're a green or a parking lot - you can't be both. Ban cars and expand the green to the stores.
- I don't mind the $3 parking, but it should be validated with a $10 purchase.
- Close the movie theater and make it a live venue. I know that one's a little radical, but movie theaters bring out too many scumbags, while Central Queens desperately needs a place to see a small concert/professional play.
Good luck Mr. Hemmerdinger. You've got my email address if you need any help.
Energetic Counter Person Wanted For New Dessert Store (Austin Street, Forest Hills)
Energetic, friendly, hard working Counter Person wanted for new, busy dessert store on Austin Street in Forest Hills. Come by in person and bring your resume on Tuesday or Wednesday, November 25th or 26th from 12 noon to 4 pm. Oko, Yummy Naturally, 71-50 Austin Street, Forest Hills. Experience preferred.
Bring your resume? Experience preferred? Good. Better to err on the side of professionalism. Customer service stinks around here and in this economy, I'm not having it. The Key Food by Yellowstone and QB has downright mean people. Not disinterested - but actively mean. What kind of store has cashiers yelling at their customers? I know the elderly can be a pain in the ass, but deal with it.
Then you got Boston Market which is a nightmare. Buster Brown's is nice, but in kind of a condescending tone ('You're the customer and the customer is always right' - I know there's something behind that, but his shoes are great). Bagels Etc doesn't care about you and shows it. Natural Market is hit or miss as is AJ's.
Except my dry cleaner. He's great. No matter how tired he is or how many times I forget my ticket, that son-of-a-gun is always smiling. God bless him.
So my advice to Oko - don't worry too much about experience or resume. Hire the nicest person who walks through the door and you've got my business.
Ten or more minutes late on 3 of 5 LIRR trips into the city last week. Derailments, trains bumping into each other. I don't know if they choreographed that, but I wouldn't put it past them.
Like freaking clockwork.
Cynthia Nixon (aka Miranda from Sex and the City) has written an op-ed piece in the Daily News blasting the Department of Education for its plans to move her daughter's middle school out of the PS 199 building.
Why the move? In her words "The ostensible reason was to ease overcrowding created by Donald Trump and other developers who have aggressively built new residential towers in our neighborhood, but never the schools required to serve the increased population."
She then makes a Carrie Bradshaw-like pun about the school she's fighting to keep her daughter in "a predominantly white school with the percentage of black and Latino students trending down as the area's "Trumped-up" property values rise"
However, nowhere in the attack on The Donald and diversity are the words "Time Warner Center" mentioned - a 77 story condominium building built 10 blocks from PS 199 (though zoned for PS 111). For some reason Ms. Nixon doesn't go after the company who proudly fixes its name on one of the largest and most expensive residential buildings in New York City.
Does Cynthia have some kind of relationship with Time Warner?
Incidentally both 101 and 196 are way more overcrowded that 199 according to independent website insideschools.org.
Monday, November 24, 2008
Sunday, November 23, 2008
Thursday, November 20, 2008
If this is what we can expect in this economy, there will be blood.
6:30pm on Austin Street on a Thursday approaching the holiday season felt like 11pm on a Monday in February. It wasn't the weather. It was empty. I'm talking parking spaces available. You could hear the few leaves left on the trees blowing. I almost longed for a gelled up zippahead blasting Pulse 87 in his Maxima on his way to Bartini's. Silence.
Empty, from the new Oko to the Tap House. Even the always packed 5 Burros had room at the bar - and Thursday ususally sees people spilling on the sidewalk there.
How the hell is anyone going to make their crazy rent? Sukkoth that.
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
- Kidz Care Junior Civic Association is hosting their 2nd Annual Thanksgiving Feast for seniors on November 27nd at the American Legion Hall at 107-15 Metropolitan Ave in Forest Hills, New York. Dinner (which will be free) will be served at 12:00 noon. Free transportation is available R.S.V.P’s are a must!!!! Please call Kidz Care at 917-670-4914 to R.S.V.P. Kidz Care welcomes donations to offset the cost of the meals.
- The Forest Hills Jewish Center Parents' Association is sponsoring a Book Fair on Sunday November 23 and Monday November 24, to be held at the Center. On Sunday, the book fair will go from 9 a.m. to 2 pm. - and will include fun events for the whole family, including a book signing by children's author Naomi Danis, who wrote Splish-Splash. On Monday, the book fair will start at 8 a.m. and go until noon. It's a great opportunity to do some early holiday shopping - and the selection of books and other items is going to be terrific for children and adults alike! For more information, call the Center at 718-261-7000.
Monday, November 17, 2008
The owner seems more interested in greeting his friends than serving the customers (he left our table right in the middle of taking our order because someone he knew walked in).
It seems like Cafe Cami all over again, where the chef and food are great, but a staff that seems in training. Two out of four sneakers and here's hoping they invest in a general manager. Go if you're low maintenance and don't mind minor screw-ups.
Sunday, November 16, 2008
The Midnight Special does not count against the 100 posts by Christmas guarantee. Requests can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org - local bands given top priority.
Saturday, November 15, 2008
Dorothy Lewandowski, the Queens commissioner for the city Department of Parks and Recreation, said it’s doubtful the park, on Yellowstone Boulevard, could accommodate a dog run. The department has the final say on whether to build such a facility.
I don't like dogs - I just can't get past the shitting on the sidewalk thing. However I understand people are freaking crazy about them and I applaud the community effort. I hope they get something out of it.
. . .at Kew Gardens/Union Tpke, when I noticed a strange reflection off the opposite side's window. I saw what seemed to be electronic LED lettering seemingly glistening from a train's display. I instantly remembered what Lost City said about seeing a new R160 train being tested on the F line, and turned around to peer into the station. Sure enough, there was a R160 on the Jamaica-bound tracks departing from the station. . .
R-160's are the new trains you've seen on the 1,2,3,4,5,6 and L lines.
You'll remember last year's disaster where "No Candy!" signs were posted at 4pm. This year, storekeepers were waving kids in, plenty of candy was available, and the houses around the area were fantastic.
100% improvement over last year. Maybe next year we'll have a Halloween parade. Personally, I'd sacrifice a street fair for that.
Friday, November 14, 2008
According to YidVid News, Mr. Aminov was a Bukarian Forest Hills resident. If nothing else, let's try to remember people like Mr. Aminov when we rail against McMansions. He was delivering food for the elderly in a Brownville Housing project - something you and I have never done. He will be missed.
A thug was arrested for stabbing, beating and robbing a man in Rego Park, authorities said yesterday.
Alexander Dediashvili, 16, and several cohorts allegedly attacked a 27-year-old man on Queens Boulevard near 67th Avenue at 10 p.m. Saturday.
One of the suspects threatened the man with a knife while the others punched and kicked the victim, knocking out some teeth.
Put him away before his parents punish him with a Mercedes.
What does that spell? Twin Donuts!
Long known for being the place to go when you get released from Riker's under the 59th St Bridge, Twin Donuts is coming to Contintental Avenue.
A lite lunch at Twin Donuts, some shopping at Value Depot. Maybe a special trip to Payless.
Congratulations newsstand guy - you're the class of the block.
But Forest Hills 72 is back with 100 posts by Christmas starting. . .now.
Went into Nick's a few nights ago. The whole crowd consisted of four couples. Every single one was a white man and an Asian woman. Four for four. I waited there for fifteen minutes for a fifth couple to come in to get the royal flush.
Told my wife about it. Told her it was almost awkward like someone should have said something. There was an elephant in that room (and it thought the pizza was overrated, which it isn't). My wife thought it was a coincidence.
This was no coincidence. Not four for four. I mean, had there even been one Asian man with a white woman I would have let it go. I thought for a long time about the cause. Best I can figure, the white men are realizing that in this new economy, without any real skill - and only doctors and electricians have any real skill - they're going to need a really smart kid for retirement. They're playing the odds.
It's good to be back.