The Briefly for February 19-20, 2021 – The “Cuomo Versus the World” Friday Edition

The latest NYC news digest: Pearl River Mart has a new home, where to go sledding, the greatest fictional NYC mayor, Amazon gets sued, Block-owned coffee shops, and more

Today – Low: 25˚ High: 34˚
Snow (1–2 in.) in the morning and afternoon.
This weekend – Low: 22˚ High: 34˚

• Ask An Epidemiologist: Should you wear two masks? Dr. David Chokshi, the city’s health commissioner and guy in all those commercials on Hulu, says two are better than one. (Caroline Lewis for Gothamist)

Farewell to Park Slope’s Mission Delores, a fantastic bar. (Jason Diamond for Grub Street)

17 spots to go sledding in New York City. (Devin Gannon for 6sqft)

A timeline of Governor Cuomo’s nursing home controversy. (Nick Reisman for NY1)

• Not everyone is fighting Governor Cuomo. Cuomo took $145 million from the MTA’s budget and they aren’t challenging it. Of the $145 million, $107 million is being taken from an operating fund that is supposed to be dedicated to fund mass transit. Cuomo has not stated the reason for removing the money from the MTA’s budget. (Dave Colon for Streetsblog)

• The Department of Justice and FBI are investigating Governor Cuomo’s administration over the nursing home issue. (Jen Chung for Gothamist)

• Assemblyman Ron Kim has been criticizing Governor Cuomo for months about how Cuomo handled the state’s nursing homes. When Kim said Cuomo was “trying to dodge any incriminating evidence,” it resulted in the governor calling up Kim to let him know Cuomo would “destroy” him. (Luis Ferré-Sadurní and Jesse McKinley for NY Times)

• Answering the question of who is Ron Kim? (Christine Chung for The City)

Pearl River Mart has found itself a new home at 452 Broadway, near Canal St. (Bowery Boogie)

• Gothamist held a vote for the greatest fictional mayor of New York City, using ranked choice voting, and the results are in! Mayor Lenny from Ghostbusters is the city’s greatest fictional mayor, who also has one of my favorite quotes in history about NYC: “Being miserable and treating other people like dirt is every New Yorker’s God-given right.” (Jake Dobkin and Jen Carlson for Gothamist)

• Photos: 16 stunning photos of NYC landmarks blanketed in snow. (Shaye Weaver for Time Out)

• Where does Greenwich Village end? What are the boundaries of Bed-Stuy? How far So of Ho does SoHo extend? The fight over perceived neighborhood borders is heating up again. (Anna Ben Yehuda for Time Out)

• Interview: Did you watch us land on Mars on Thursday? Meet Vishnu Sridhar, a Queens boy who is the lead systems engineer for the SuperCam on the Mars 2020 rover. (Sydney Pereira for Gothamist)

A look into keeping pigeons, a dwindling hobby in NYC. (Allie Conti for NY Times)

Coney Island will be able to reopen on April 9 at a 33% capacity, but if you want to get in, you must buy tickets in advance and wear face coverings, and the parks must conduct temperature checks and clean the rides frequently. (Rose Adams for Brooklyn Paper)

The city has new guidance for indoor dining, which includes limiting parties to 4 or fewer, wearing a mask whenever you are not actively eating or drinking, and more. (Tanay Warerkar for Eater)

“I’ve had to cancel counseling sessions to stand by metal detectors that children are required to go through, to monitor the hallways, or to “watch” a group of suspended students. I could fill pages with all the jobs I’ve done that have nothing to do with social work. The rationalization is that any type of human interaction automatically translates into “social work.” That’s because most people have no idea what a social worker does.”
– Vanessa Vélez, Nobody knows what a social worker does. That is hurting our students., for Chalkbeat

• Maps: How Covid-19 impacted internet speeds across the city. (Jameson Zimmer for Untapped New York)

Mount Sinai Health System has been canceling thousands of first dose vaccine appointments in the last few days due to low supply. (Caroline Lewis and Sydney Pereira for Gothamist)

• Sections of Queens, Hunts Point in the Bronx, and East New York and Brownsville in Brooklyn had among the lowest percent of residents who have received at least one dose of a Cocid-19 vaccine. (Sydney Pereira and Jake Dobkin for Gothamist)

• Maps: Vaccine data by zip code. (Davin Gannon for 6sqft)

• The case against Amy Cooper, the woman who falsely called the police on a Black man in Central Park for “threatening” her, was dropped on Tuesday after she completed a therapeutic program that included instruction about racial biases. (Jonah E. Bromwich for NY Times)

How New York City’s delivery workers survive snowstorms. (Jasmine Fernandez for NY City Lens)

• Amazon tried to block it with a lawsuit of their own, but Attorney General Letitia James is suing Amazon over the company’s failure to provide safety measures for its NYC workers during the pandemic. (Sophia Chang for Gothamist)

• Barstool Sports is 100% garbage and founder Dave Portnoy is a piece of human shit. I hold these opinions for reasons outside of Portnoy calling New Haven the pizza capital of the world. The Coney Island Blog makes the (correct) argument that the best pizza int he world is made in Brooklyn. (The Coney Island Blog)

• Check out BKFoxx’s new mural for the Year of the Ox in Chinatown at Dr. Sun Yat Middle School on Eldridge and Hester. (Anna Ben Yehuda for Time Out)

• The State Liquor Authority has begun to crack down on obvious violations of the rules of outdoor dining, suspending the liquor licenses of nine restaurants and bars. Most suspensions appear to be as a result of fully enclosed outdoor dining structures. (Tanay Warerkar for Eater)

• Real Estate Lust: A $2.3 million Brownstone in Brooklyn Heights with two outdoor spaces and three fireplaces. (Devin Gannon for 6sqft)

Governor Cuomo has gone back to the drawing board on his marijuana legalization bill after being widely criticized for his last attempt over not doing enough to address communities hit hardest by the war on drugs and still criminalized offenses in ways that would disproportionally impact people of color. (Caroline Lewis for Gothamist)

Where to find a work from home snack break in the East Village. (Hannah Albertine for The Infatuation)

• New York region’s subway system is the worst for air pollution in the Northeast. We’re #1! We’re #1! We’re #1! Suck it, Boston and DC, you can’t keep up with our air pollution in the subways. Maybe after reading this I’ll keep wearing a mask on the subway forever. (Shaye Weaver for Time Out)

Overanalyzing Andrew Yang’s Instagram meals because sometimes we need a break from criticizing the stream of dumb things this guy keeps saying in public. (Hannah Albertine for The Infatuation)

28 Black-owned coffee shops in NYC. (Hannah Albertine and Nikko Duren for The Infatuation)

The Briefly for December 13-14, 2020 – The “Second Wave” Sunday Edition

The latest NYC news digest: Indoor dining shuts down on Monday, stay the night at FAO Schwarz, a Manhattan sushi delivery guide, Mayor de Blasio makes a threat, and more

Today – Low: 41˚ High: 60˚
Partly cloudy throughout the day.

Tonight is the peak of the Geminid meteor shower for those in the darker areas of the city with “relaxed” eyes with up to 120 meteors per hour. (David Cruz for Gothamist)

Rendering: A look at the giant apartment complex coming to Coney Island, complete with roof pool, in the old Gargiulo’s Restaurant parking lot of.

The Tompkins Square Park Holiday tree is lit. (EV Grieve)

The state’s pension fund will divest from many fossil fuels in the next five years and sell its shares in other companies that contribute to global warming by 2040. (Anne Barnard for NY Times)

Looking for an interesting place to spend a night in the city? You can Airbnb FAO Schwarz for a night. (Nicole Saraniero for Untapped New York)

Here’s an explanation of the NYC Sheriff’s office, because if you’re confused about the distinction between the NYPD and the NYC Sheriff, I don’t blame you. (David Cruz for Gothamist)

A guide to the Victorian mansions of Flatbush. (Nicole Saraniero for Untapped New York)

Two officers lied in paperwork and in court about their arrest of a Black Lives Matter protester in 2016. Manhattan DA Cy Vance’s office cleared them of perjery. (Nick Pinto for Gothamist)

Where to go ice skating in Brooklyn this winter. (Jessica Parks for Brooklyn Paper)

If you never stepped inside CBGB, this virtual version of the club from 2006 will be the closest you’ll ever get. Yes, it includes the bathrooms. (Alex at Flaming Pablum)

DCLA and Borough Arts Council funded artist and cultural organizations, venues, or institutions to be able to utilize public outdoor spaces for ticketed events and performances starting on March 1 thanks to a new Open Culture bill passed by the City Council. The maximum charge for a program will be $20. This will be the first ticketed live entertainment legally allowed in the city since March 2020. The Open Culture program is an extension of the Open Restaurants, Open Streets, and Open Storefronts programs. (Ben Yakas for Gothamist)

If you’re feeling like you just have to get out of the city for good, may I suggest Topeka, Kansas, which will pay you $10,000 if you are a remote worker and move there. There are many cities that will pay you to move there. (Matt Troutman for Patch)

Kathleen Casillo was charged with reckless endangerment after she drove her sedan into a crowd of ICE protesters in Murray Hill on Friday, sending six people to the hospital. Casillo says she panicked and hit the gas when protesters were banging on her car. (Sophia Chang for Gothamist)

It seems New Yorkers got an early jump on buying Christmas trees this year. (Caroline Lewis for Gothamist)

If you’ve had your usual Christmas plans canceled, this year presents a great opportunity to shake things up and join the Audubon Society’s Christmas Bird Count. Don’t lie, you’ve loved following this year’s bird news. (Matt Troutman for Patch)

Max Rose, fresh off a defeat for Congress, filed paperwork to run for mayor. (Rose Adams for Brooklyn Paper)

The Google Doc of holiday light displays, that everyone could edit as they please, from Time Out has been updated into an interactive map. (Shaye Weaver for Time Out)

The Manhattan sushi delivery guide. (Matt Tervooren for The Infatuation)


The city is well beyond its thresholds for new hospitalizations, the 7-day average of new cases, and the 7-day rolling positivity average. “This is clearly a second wave in New York City” -Mayor de Blasio. (Jake Offenhartz for Gothamist)

The governor has shut down indoor dining in the city (again) starting Monday the 14th, thanks to an increase in every single Covid-19 metric the state and city have established. (Michael Gold for NY Times)

Eight hospitals in the city have reached more than 90 percent fullness in their ICUs. Flushing Hospital in Queens is at over 100% capacity. (Anna Quinn for Patch)

Only 1.4% of the state’s Covid-19 spread comes from restaurants and bars, but that number doesn’t specify between indoor and outdoor dining. 73.84% of COVID-19 cases spread through private gatherings. (Erika Adams for Eater)

The reactions from restaurant owners ranges from sad, but understanding, to absolutely delusional. (Christina Izzo for Time Out)

“Anyone who thinks that their privilege puts them ahead of other people in greater need, that’s not going to happen in New York City.” -Mayor de Blasio. (Matt Troutman for Patch)

An ultra-Orthodox synagogue in Williamsburg seems to have broken social distancing rules for the last time. The mayor stated this week that the city will “move to shut down the building once and for all” after a funeral on Monday brought hundreds of people into the building with no masks. The article threads the needle between the recent Supreme Court case the state lost about religious gatherings and the rules that are still in place regardless of the lawsuit. But also this is a threat coming from Mayor de Blasio, who regularly ignores his own deadlines and threats. (Jake Offenhartz for Gothamist)

Staten Island’s Mac’s Public House liquor license has been suspended, finally. It was one of 23 city businesses whose licenses were suspended last week. (Robert Pozarycki for amNewYork Metro)

The Brooklyn Monarch is also on the list of businesses whose liquor licenses were suspended after city sheriffs broke up a party with nearly 400 people inside. (Amanda Hatfield for BrooklynVegan)

Congrats to Gravesend, which has the highest Covid-19 positivity rate in the city. (Anna Quinn for Patch)

The city clarified when outdoor dining can remain open during snow and when snow removal is happening. When a Winter Operations Advisory is given, outdoor dining will stay open, but during a Snow Alert, outdoor dining will close. (Ben Yakas for Gothamist)

How scientists are tracking the flow of the city’s Covid-19 outbreak, using your poop. (Corey Kilgannon for NY Times)

A day in the life of a contract tracer. (Fred Mogul for Gothamist)

Find your public school’s Covid-19 testing rate online. (Sophia Chang for Gothamist)

The New York City Board of Health passed a measure extending the order for total mask compliance at every school in the city, not just public schools for students, staff, and faculty. Yes, before this order, there was no enforcement of masks in non-public school buildings. (David Cruz for Gothamist)

Thanks to reader Francesca for today’s featured photo of Fortitude, the NYPL lion, dressed for the season, and the pandemic.

The Briefly for July 22, 2020 – The “$400 Million Extra in Overtime” Edition

Today’s daily NYC news digest: A guide to Governors Island, the state’s legislature sets an agenda for its summer session, where to heat outside in the East Village, and more

Today – Low: 78˚ High: 88˚
Possible rain in the evening.

What to expect when you’re expecting the state legislature’s summer session to start soon. In focus will be nursing homes, automatic voter registration, redistricting, contract tracing privacy, and more. (Ross Barkan for Gothamist)

Following the June 23 primary and election, State Assemblymember Jeffrey Dinowitz is pushing legislation that would extend the state’s relaxed absentee voting rules until January 2022, which is the earliest the state’s constitution could be amended. (Norwood News)

What’s open, what’s closed, what to eat, and what to wear (a mask). A guide to Government Island. (Scott Lynch for Gothamist)

A Queens man claimed NYPD officers beat him, twice Tased him, and yanked out one of his dreadlocks, according to a federal police brutality lawsuit. (Matt Troutman for Patch)

The NYPD pledged to cut overtime by $335 million in an attempt to cut its budget by $1 billion. Instead, they are predicted to overspend on overtime by $400 million by the Independent Budget Office. (Erin Durkin for Politico)

Our absentee voting mess is giving the White House ammo against main-in voting. Great. (Daniel Marans for HuffPost)

12 ways to picnic in Tompkins Square Park. (Rob Patronite for Grub Street)

New York Attorney General Letitia James along with 23 other Democratic attorney generals are suing the Trump administration to stop a new rule that removes non-discrimination protections against LGBTQ people when it comes to health care and health insurance, which is set to take effect in mid-August. (Alejandra O’Connell-Domenech for QNS)

The latest Black Lives Matter / Blue Lives Matter protest clash happened in Marine Park in Brooklyn, but this time there were words exchanged without violence. (amNewYork Metro)

Photos: The new take-out only Smorgasburg. (Scott Lynch for Gothamist)

A woman was found floating in the East River on Monday night with no signs of trauma on her body. (Emily Davenport for amNewYork Metro)

Jonathan Rodriguez was the second person arrested in connection with the death of Richard Hamlet, whose body was discovered wrapped in plastic atop a Bronx McDonald’s last week. (Matt Troutman for Patch)

If it didn’t fully set in the other day, the F train will be shutting down on nights and weekends for eight months starting in August. Ruining subway reliability? Now THAT is how we start feeling normal again. (Dana Schulz for 6sqft)

Is it possible that the Mets’ deal with Jed Lowrie is the worst in the franchise’s history? The Mets started paying him $20 million a year last year, he’s made eight plate appearances, was injured for the rest of the season and is already on the injured list. (Joe Pantorno for amNewYork Metro)

In an attempt to “resolve problems outside the court system,” Mayor de Blasio announced a mediation project for the city to work with landlords and tenants. Renters will receive legal assistance and advice to negotiate with landlords. (Matt Troutman for Patch)

After 21 years, radical bookstore, cafe, and activist center Bluestockings is looking for a new home. The bookstore is being pushed from the location by their landlord’s demands for higher rent. (Amanda Hatfield for BrooklynVegan)

Interview: Storm King Art Center’s Director of Facilities Mike Seaman on what it takes to maintain Storm King year round, keeping it a beautiful place that everyone is already tired of seeing your photos of on Instagram. (Luna Shyr for Atlas Obscura)

The closing Fairway grocery stores in Red Hook and Douglaston, Queens will become Food Bazaar stores. (Sophia Chang for Gothamist)

Rooftop Films is back to create a summer movie drive-in theater in Flushing Meadows Park. It started on Friday night with John Lewis: Good Trouble, which was a few hours before the news of Lewis’s beath became public. (Daniel Maurer for Bedford + Bowery)

Interview: Melba’s restaurant’s Melba Wilson on the future of NYC restaurants. (James Ramsay for Gothamist)

M.I.A. and Brik Bar in Astoria and Maspeth Pizza House in Maspeth have all had their liquor licenses revoked. (Robert Pozarycki for amNewYork Metro)

The Brooklyn Botanical Garden will reopen on August 7. (Noah Singer for Brooklyn Eagle)

Meet Street Riders NYC, the mobile protest movement with over 60,000 among its ranks. (Peter Rugh for The Indypendent)

Wear your damn mask on the subway. That’s the message of the MTA’s Mask Force, an arm of “Operation Respect.” (Shaye Weaver for Time Out)

Upper East Side for Black Lives Matter has held 50 consecutive nights of vigils in Charles Schurz Park. (Amanda Hatfield for BrooklynVegan)

Black Tap is selling its Instagram-ready milkshakes to-go for the first time. (Bao Ong for Time Out)

I don’t know a single person who would say that the COVID-19 pandemic has been easy to get through, but as a disabled New Yorker, it came with extra challenges and stressors. Politicians talked about the importance of protecting the elderly but failed to mention disabled people as if we didn’t exist. Do you know what it’s like to be erased during a pandemic?
-Michele Kaplan, disability rights advocate, Disability and dignity in the age of COVID-19 for amNewyork Metro

From Tuesday to Saturday from 12-4 pm and 5-9 pm at Lincoln Center until August 1, Lincoln Center will be playing music in the Josie Robertson Plaza, the initiative is being called Sounds of Lincoln Center. (Mike Mishkin for I Love The Upper West Side)

Riders are up on the city’s buses, but speeds are down. New York City is healing herself. (Dave Colon for Streetsblog)

Someone is using Republican Assemblymember and congressional candidate Nicole Malliotakis’s name to talk shit about the mayor and governor on flyers in Bay Ridge. Malliotakis says someone is trying to defame her by putting up the flyers. (Jamie DeJesus for The Brooklyn Home Reporter)

Councilmember Donovan Richards won the Queens borough president primary and will go on to the general election in November to likely become the first Black man elected to the office. (Clarissa Sosin for Queens County Politics)

Interview: Joycelyn Taylor, candidate for NYC mayor is 2021.(Liena Zagare for Bklyner)

Photos: As the summer heat cooks the city, the city is no longer just living through the pandemic, we’re living with it. (Ben Fractenberg for The City)

Where to eat outside in the East Village. (Hannah Albertine & Matt Tervooren for The Infatuation)

Thanks to reader Zlata for today’s featured photo from a recent Bowery walk!