Here's some Digital Age progress coming to a street near you: NYC is replacing those dinosaur payphone stalls used now as gum receptacles (and the occasional toilet) with super useful Wi-Fi hubs. Last Wednesday the Franchise and Concession Committee voted unanimously to allow a city group called LinkNYC to place 500 kiosks all around NYC starting in 2015. The kiosks will serve as Wi-Fi hubs so you don't have to steal wireless from your neighbor's open network. They'll also allow you to make free US phone calls on your cell phone, and charge your phone.
Park Slope homeslice Mayor Bill de Blasio was so in favor of this initiative that the city helped to create LinkNYC as a public and private partnership. And don't worry, according to the city, it doesn't cost taxpayers a thing. It's all funded off of advertising revenue. Basically these kiosks are going to be covered in digital "intelligent" ads so they can pay for themselves, which is fine by me.
de Blasio was quoted by the Brooklyn Daily Eagle saying:
On a recent visit to famed Park Slope institution, the Tea Lounge, while sipping an Iced Americano on the mangy couch nearest the entrance after dropping off laundry next door, I said to my husband, “I pretty much never need to come in here again.”
What I didn’t know then is that as of December 14th, I won’t have a choice; As we mentioned in Whassup yesterday, TL is closing after 14 years in their cavernous Union Street space (their first location was on 7th and 10th, and closed in 2008).
How many times has FIPS -- or for that matter, many many Park Slope residents -- declared “It’s the end of an era!” when some local staple has closed? Most notably Boing Boing and Two Boots (which, controversially, I really didn’t give a shit about, because it had outlived its usefulness to me -- why should I care if your kid never gets another ball of dirty pizza dough to lick? And yeah, it’s back anyway; go eat raw dough).
What's that? You're looking for a bed-bug ridden condo with sticky floors? You may be in luck! That's right, FiPS' old sparring partner (ok, punching bag) the Pavilion Theater is rumored to have a future as a residential building (or not). Honestly, by all rights, Pavilion should have been gentrified out of its own misery years ago. But Park Slope, and Brooklyn as a whole, are surely going to keep it up with the rapid change, whatever happens to good ol' Pavilion. See below, f'rinstance, and welcome to Whassup: Lounge No More Edition:
* Until Saturday, Dec. 20: Galapagos NY Goodbye! (DUMBO): Long-time art incubator Galapagos, which opened in Williamsburg (long before ALL THIS) in 1995 and moved to DUMBO in 2007, announced this weekend that it is fleeing Brooklyn for…Detroit. As of now, there are JUST FOUR shows left for the NY incarnation: the 5th Annual GUMBO (Gay DUMBO) party this Friday, Floating Kabarette (a circus and cabaret) on Saturday, a TED holiday party next Thursday, and the final Kabarette on Saturday, Dec. 20. That's it! Then, all the galapa-goes to Detroit, where the cheap prices of urban decay have created the kind of bohemian artists' haven that died long ago in New York (at least that's the idea). Come see a Galapagos show before you have to travel to fucking Michigan to do it.
* Until Sunday, Dec. 14: TEA LOUNGE'S LAST DAYS!: Whoa. This one is big (for Park Slope dwellers, anyway.) Tea Lounge -- THE TEA LOUNGE -- that place of copious seating being blocked by copious strollers -- has only four days left! No word yet on why (likely, given the way everything goes in Brooklyn these days, it's because of rising rent), but the neighborhood institution announced yesterday that it would be closing Sunday, Dec. 14. Stop by for a final mocha and/or beer. They've got a few events left, too, with musicians playing the next few nights. Open mic still on the calendar for Sunday, but who knows? The original Tea Lounge closed back in 2008, and the company started franchising a couple years ago. According to their website, there's one in Kuwait and one "coming soon" to Williamsburg. (But anyone know how long it's been saying that?) Anyway, unless you travel frequently to Kuwait, this is your last chance for Tea Lounging.