THE WEEKLY NEWSPAPER OF LOWER MANHATTAN | Volume 19 Issue 33 | December 15 - 21, 2006

Pataki’s Downtown legacy
Even if George Pataki is not campaigning in Iowa a year from now or is not in a smoke-filled Minneapolis room in 2008 angling for a spot on the G.O.P. ticket, his 12-year rule as New York’s governor will still be judged largely on his record in Lower Manhattan after 9/11.

Letters to the editor

Police Blotter

Under Cover

The Penny Post
An odyssey with Homer
By Andrei Codrescu
An ancient Greek audience listened all night to Homer. In the morning, minds full of Calypso’s sinuous hips, Circe’s beguiling sigh-songs of globular delight, the clang of terrible weapons, and, most of all, a world-classical hangover, your typical Homeric audience straggled home through the dew-fresh grass of the Aegean hills, transformed into believers in epic poetry.

In Briefs
Fire can’t stop hot sales

Trapeze heroes up for award

Let there be lights

Gifts for ‘Masters of the Universe’

This lane’s for you

Downtown Express photo by Jefferson Siegel
“Africa Rising,” a sculpture by Barbara Chase-Riboud, always decorates the lobby of the Ted Weiss Federal Building in Lower Manhattan, but it was a particularly fitting display last Saturday for the African Burial Ground National Monument’s annual Kwanzaa celebration. Turnout was light for the event.

Downtown Express photo by Elisabeth Robert

Jennifer Sakas, who was working near the Twin Towers at the Burlington Coat factory Sept. 11, 2001, wrote a message on a beam for the Freedom Tower Sunday in Battery Park City.

Tower’s beam draws personal stories, as visitors draw marks on history
By Skye H. McFarlane
It didn’t look like much from the outside — an off-white steel beam atop a plywood platform inside a gravel-covered construction site. Yet people came from as far away as Texas, Florida and Ireland to see it, to touch a piece of the future and to remember the past.

Eight members are appointed to new Chinatown Empire Zone board
Mayor Bloomberg two weeks ago named eight members to the new Chinatown/Lower East Side Empire Zone Administrative Board. The board was established last year to stimulate private investment, development and job creation through financial incentives and tax credits.

City lets Trump resume work; partner admits mistakes
By Lincoln Anderson
Donald Trump and partners resumed work building the foundation for the Trump Soho condo-hotel at Spring and Varick Sts. Wednesday following the discovery early last week of human remains at the construction site.

Big money pushing children’s group to smaller space
By Theresa Juva
The sorrowful drone of the saxophone melted out from an open door onto the dark street as a small crowd gathered inside around tubs filled with bottles of beer. The children were gone for the day, but their presence remained.

From comedian to filmmaker
By Steven Snyder
There’s a sense of inevitability — a mix of fatalism and destiny — at the center of Woody Allen’s best films. Somewhere behind all the silliness, all the self-deprecation, all the angst, there’s the sense of a filmmaker trying to grab hold of the sand that is our lives, and draw out the fleeting wisdom to be gained as it slips through our fingers.

‘Apple Tree’ stands tall among this year’s revivals
By Scott Harrah
The Roundabout Theatre Company is one of finest resources in New York theater because they revive lesser-known musicals from yesteryear and introduce them to a new generation.

A few cures for Christmas musical kitsch
By Michael Clive
Colds, flu and Seasonal Affective Disorder have nothing on a pandemic that overruns us every year, contaminating public spaces and defying attempts at control. Yes, like a tide of toxic treacle, the commercial glut of Christmas pop music is back, giving rise to symptoms including nausea, rage and violent antisocial urges.

Hotels bullish near Wall St.
By Skye H. McFarlane
Lower Manhattan’s construction surge is no longer limited to condos and commercial office space. Research from New York City’s official tourism agency shows that Downtown is in the midst of a major hotel-athon, with the neighborhoods south of Houston St. now second only to Midtown in new hotel developments.

I saw Santa riding a pedicab
By Priya Idiculla
It was a breezy Sunday afternoon at Washington Market Park. There was the usual assortment of tots tumbling around the park, throwing and kicking soccer balls.

Cornering the market on bike security in Tribeca
By Tequila Minsky
While walking down Greenwich St. you can see two rows of contraptions running parallel to Hubert St. along side 390 Greenwich. Even as balmy fall breezes turn to soggy moody days and winter chills the air these unusual looking things are put to use; they’re bike racks provided by Citigroup.

School’s spikers get up early after late start
Continuing upon their landmark athletic season, the Manhattan Academy of Technology Dragons added another first: the first girls volleyball team in school history. 

Art books for pockets deep and small
By Stephanie Murg
If bookstores were people, Barnes & Noble would wear sensible shoes, The Strand a tweed jacket rundown at the elbows, and Taschen — well, Taschen would rock a Victor & Rolf runway sample and smell slightly of sin.

Land grab: man versus nature at GAS’s group show
By Shane McAdams
It is often said that art is one of the best windows through which to view the wider cultural landscape. If this is true, you would expect to see a lot of art that reflects what seems to be a growing, palpable concern about our country and who’s in charge of it.

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Courtesy photographer Max Ruby
’Twas The Night Before... The Flea Theater commissioned award-winning playwrights Christopher Durang, Len Jenkin, Roger Rosenblatt, Elizabeth Swados & Mac Wellman to create short plays based on the classic holiday poem. Expect an evening of spirited riffs featuring a company of emerging artists delivering holiday cheer with a Downtown twist. Dec., 13-16 at 10pm, Dec. 20-30 at 8pm and 10pm. Thru Dec. 30. $20. 41 White Street, 212-352-3101.

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