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Thursday
Oct302014

Got a Hot Park Slope Tip?

Have you heard some distressing news about your favorite neighborhood bar? Snapped a pic of something that could only be seen in Park Slope? Had an annoying encouter with one of your neighbors?

Drop us a line with your tips HERE or write to effedinparkslope AT gmail DOT com

And if you can't get enough of our whining here on the blog, follow our ranty asses on TWITTER andFACEBOOK!

Thursday
Oct302014

FIPS Rant of the Week -- Ball Fields Edition

Image via goestotwelve.com

While we could endlessly debate the merits of living in Park Slope (see FIPS comments section, daily) there’s no argument to be made against the main attraction – Prospect Park.

Opened in 1867 and now host to 8 million visitors annually, the park has largely fulfilled its destiny becoming – as James Stranahan predicted at the time –  “a favorite resort for all classes of our community, enabling thousands to enjoy pure air, with healthful exercise, at all seasons of the year..."

Thanks to the careful planning of the park’s designers, there’s no shortage of spots for bird watching, dog swimming and general lazing about. Plenty of places to enjoy an afternoon letting your kids off the proverbial leash and letting them get their ya-yas out. And, on this fine, Indian Summer Saturday, when my son and a few of his friends sought to partake of the nation’s pastime, the woman who qualifies as my new favorite neighborhood resident and her two little ones had chosen the last available baseball field for their ya-ya releasing. Now, anyone who’s seen “Field of Dreams” knows this is not a good idea.  As James Earl Jones said, “People will come, Ray. People will most definitely come.”  So, just sayin’, it may be a good idea not to be sitting there when they do.

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Wednesday
Oct292014

Say It Ain't So! Dogs No Longer Allowed At The Gate.

As you may have heard by now, and as Park Slope Stoop reported on Monday, one of our favorite neigborhood bars, The Gate, will  no longer allow patrons to bring their doggies. We asked owner and friend of FIPS, Bobby Gagnon, to give us the scoop: 

So, an anonymous 311 caller reported us to the DOH. The inspector arrived, informing my bartender the call was hours earlier. This is the first I have ever heard of the DOH responding to a complaint same day, especially a non-critical health issue! I have spoken to a couple of insiders who maintain this must have been repeat calls and they finally came out, but that is conjecture. Obviously, the 311 system for businesses can potentially be problematic and outright detrimental if beset with someone with an axe to grind or merely a penchant to harass.  

The inspector issued us a violation, with an order to appear. Under the new letter-grade system we are now on the downward slope (no pun) with the DOH. We will appear, pay the fine as ordered but the presence of dogs henceforth will result in escalating fines, fines per dog present, those dreaded "B"s and (gasp) "C"s and the threat of a DOH shutdown. None of which a small business will survive. The DOH response here reads as zero tolerance and dogs are verboten whether you have a kitchen or not. 

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Wednesday
Oct292014

FIPS CARES: And Did You Know Penn Station Wasn't Always A Dump?

Photo by Aaron Rose courtesy of the MCNY

Little disclaimer: A version of this post ran on Untapped Cities yesterday to commemorate the 51st anniversary of Penn Station's demolition. It also ran to help promote the Kickstarter campaign for my show called The Eternal Space. My hope is that you'll read on and consider backing. We can use all the help we can get even a dollar or five bucks will get us one step closer to our goal. I promise it's a great show involving architecture, photography, NYC history and of course, Penn Station. Oh and we have really cool backer rewards. Check it out! If nothing else look at some of the amazing pics of Penn's demolition we turned up... Ok, onto the post...

51 years ago yesterday, construction crews pulled up to the 33rd Street entrance to New York City’s Beaux-Arts marvel, Pennsylvania Station with orders to begin its three-year demolition. The station was only 53 years old and covered two full-city blocks, making it the largest indoor public space in the world. The bankrupt Pennsylvania Railroad was forced to sell their air rights prompting the company to move its rail operation down into an ill-conceived basement station barely a third the original station’s size. Any of you who have ever had to travel into or out of the current Penn Station know just what kind of hellhole it can be. 

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Tuesday
Oct282014

Going Once… Going Twice… Lyceum SOLD! To Somebody Who Apparently Has a Better Lawyer Than the Previous Owner

FIPS received an email from the Lyceum announcing that the building had finally been sold at auction, but that “…we hope to get it back as the legal dust settles.” What exactly is this “dust?” How will it settle? This dust has been swirling, Pig-Pen-like, around the Lyceum for like 10 years. Sometimes the dust takes the form of endless, incomprehensible emails from the Lyceum’s owner, Eric Richmond. For example, the most recent one was 900+ words, virtually none of which form sentences that make any sense to me. And it includes a melodramatic turn of phrase that might more likely be applied to the trial of an accused serial killer -- “[Judge] Craig's odd and blinkered decisions and her blatant denial of due process raise chilling concerns” – than to a judge ruling on a real estate case.

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