In the News: Pier Cracks

••• Hilton Als, meditating on Gone With the Wind in The New Yorker: “I live in Tribeca, or what one witty friend has called ‘Triburbia.’ Here, the black women one sees, generally, look after white children, and black progeny of any age are more or less regarded as a threat. Taking a walk down streets where gentrification has pretty much completed it’s [sic] work (the area was once known as New York’s spice district), it’s not unusual to see (unmammyed?) children eye one with alarm, let alone their seemingly less-than-engaged elders: whiteness defines this world of hotels and mediocre restaurants and the ‘new’ West Side piers; whiteness sets the prevailing tone: money buys safety and homogenity; blackness perverts and alarms all that—and I hope it always does.
Not too long ago, I was standing on Greenwich Street, near the public school, when I ran into a sometimes friend—a young, white, single mother of three. The conversation consisted, largely, of her describing her various hardships—public-school lunch fees, unavailable men, and so on. When I said something to the effect that I didn’t remember my mother paying for our lunch when we were in school, the woman snapped: ‘She didn’t have to pay for you! You were poor or something!’ But before I could correct her—our mother actually made our lunch—I realized I couldn’t: the fantasy of her class prevented her from imagining any other reality apart from her own. And for me to point that out would have been an injustice, a form of violence: I could see her, but she could only see the me that confirmed her ultimately small, rigid, and limited view of herself.” Talk about imagining an alternate reality! I find Als’s reasoning impossible to relate to, and I don’t think my race has anything to do with it. I’m not going to defend the “sometimes friend,” who said something inane; that’s for the two of them to work out. In the line “black progeny of any age are more or less regarded as a threat,” however, the use of the passive voice indicts all Tribecans, which includes me, and I call bullshit. Moreover, what does “more or less regarded as a threat” even mean? UPDATE 7/4: The first paragraph has been removed from the essay, and the second paragraph has been tightened.

Pier 25, pre-cracks

••• “Investigators hired by the Hudson River Park Trust are pulling up the multicolored concrete slabs on Pier 25 this summer, trying to solve a construction mystery: why the walkway pavers are breaking apart just months after the pier opened. The cracks, which began to appear at the end of the winter, seem to be getting worse.” (Tribeca Trib)

••• The New York Times says Detroit is on figurative fire: “‘It feels like Tribeca back in the early days, before double strollers, sidewalk cafes and Whole Foods,’ said Amy Moore, 50, a film producer working on three Detroit projects. ‘There is a buzz here that is real, and the kids drip with talent and commitment, and aren’t spoiled.'” Dripping kids are progeny I’d absolutely regard as a threat.

••• Manhattan Loft Guy: “At first glance, you’d think the seller of the ‘2,881 sq ft’ Manhattan loft on the 3rd floor at 46 White Street (Woods Mercantile Building) would be thrilled selling on June 3 at $1,423/ft ($4.1mm). On second glance, same projection, as the most recent sale in the building was the 4th floor almost a year ago, on August 23 at the funny number $3,563,875. But but but, take a third glance…. But: the recent 3rd floor sellers were buyers from the sponsor only a year ago. Look again at the 4th floor August sale price above, then read the July 12, 2010 3rd floor sponsor sale price v e r y  s l o w l y… four million nine hundred ninety-six thousand one hundred and seventy-two dollars ($4,996,172). Not only did the 3rd floor original buyers pay the sponsor 40% more than the upstairs neighbors, they just resold in a year 18% below what they paid. O. U. C. H. and O. U. C. H.

••• Cercle Rouge‘s “Bastille Day celebration is returning to West Broadway after a year hiatus. ” (Tribeca Trib)

••• How Niche Media founder/chairman—and Tribeca resident—Jason Binn spends his Sundays in Southampton. (New York Times)

••• “Opponents of the mosque and community center near Ground Zero are planning a major rally in Lower Manhattan on the 10th anniversary of 9/11.” That’s the last you’ll hear about it here. (DNAinfo)


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