The Briefly for January 10, 2020 – The “Soho Karen was Arrested” Sunday AMA Edition

The latest NYC news digest: A first-person vaccine story, what’s news for NYC dining, Nicole Malliotakis votes against the election results, and more

Today – Low: 30˚ High: 40˚
Clear throughout the day.

Today’s digest is starting with something different. Today’s photo came from to reader Michele, who I asked to talk about her experience receiving the Covie-19 vaccine. If you’ve got your own story, please feel free to email it to thebriefly at gmail.com.

I’m an optometrist in NYC, and I was surprised how quickly I was able to get an appointment to get the Covid vaccine after I saw the announcement on nyc.gov that new slots had opened up for healthcare workers. I got an appointment the first week at a “pop up” clinic in a city government building in Manhattan, and the process was streamlined and efficient even though it had only been up and running for a few days. My site had appointments every 15 minutes, and I didn’t have to wait at any point in the process — initial screening/paperwork, vaccination station, post-processing (you sit for 20 minutes afterward to make sure you don’t pass out). Everyone working there was helpful and excited, and the entire experience was lovely. I asked the nurse if I could take a picture (like 900 people before me probably had) and he even suggested how I should stage it. After I finished my 20 minute post-vaccine chill period I saw a man ask two nurses if he could take their picture with his dog, and they were really sweet about it. The one thing I would say surprised me was that the nurse who gave me the vaccine said he hadn’t gotten it yet, though he was on the schedule to have it soon.

As promised, today’s digest is centered around a few Ask Me Anything questions I received from the readers of The Briefly.

Q from Katie: Hi Rob, Happy New Year! I hope 2021 is going okay so far. :) I had one (two) question(s) for your AMA, which I assume someone has already asked but just in case: what is your strategy for choosing articles to highlight? And my follow-up: how many articles do you usually read to get enough good ones for one email? Take care, be well, and all the other hopeful clichés for the new year.

In terms of a daily volume of links for a newsletter, it’s about 300-400 a day from 100 different sources. From there I usually narrow that down to about 50 before I start writing, and by the time I’m done writing it’s somewhere between 25-40. When I look through the news, I usually look for something that’s important, interesting, different, or time-sensitive. I’ve been writing The Briefly for a few years and have some idea of what the readers are most interested in (check out 2020’s top ten stories), so you’ll see something things pop up regularly like lists of restaurants, public art, ridiculous apartments, and things like that. I also tend to favor certain newsrooms when it comes to certain types of news. I love The City and have an immense amount of respect for their writers, I’ll trust Chalkbeat above all else for educational news, Gothamist is a regular favorite of mine for daily stories, and I have a deep love for the most niche blogs I can find like Urban Hawks and Laura Goggin Photography for their bird photos or The Q at Parkside, which has the smallest area of coverage of anything I regularly look at, and I really enjoy Mary Lane’s writing at New York Cliche. I’ve had a post from her saved since March 12 about how to get tickets to see Last Week Tonight and her experience seeing the show in person that I will eventually include.

Q from Brigid: Hey Rob! I’d love to know what your favorite NYC bridge is. Asking because I started an Instagram account where I post different bridges throughout the city (@brig.on.bridges) and would love an established New Yorker’s take on the best bridge in the city. Hope you and yours have a happy and healthy new year!

My favorite NYC bridge is going to be unexpected. It’s the Hunters Point Avenue Bridge! Let me explain why. The bridge was built in 1910 but rebuilt in 1983 and my father did the redesign for it. My father was a civil engineer and worked in NYC for nearly 50 years. I had known most of his work as being in the sewers, so having something above ground that he worked on has always been very special to me. If you were to tell me that a 60-foot bridge doesn’t count, I’d pick the Manhattan Bridge. It’s the best bridge to walk or bike over, and you can’t beat the views.

Q: NYC question just based on your time in the City since I’m always looking for ideas! What has been one of your favorite day activities around the City where you didn’t spend any money?

My favorite zero-cost activity in the city is a bike ride and a bike ride to Coney Island (I live in Brooklyn) is my favorite of all my bike rides. Coney Island is my favorite place in the city when it’s warm. I’m not someone who feels a strong need to spend money there because there’s so much people watching to do and things to see in general. If you’re willing to spend a few bucks on snacks, I recommend the bodega near the subway station on Stillwell Ave, where you can grab some cut up fruit and a drink and the sideshow is probably the best $10 you could spend for at least an hour of entertainment (plus it’s air-conditioned). I could walk around Coney Island for hours.

Most of the other ideas that came to mind are trips and long walks in and around parks. Challenge yourself to walk the length of Riverside Park, get lost in Chinatown, wander Flushing-Meadows Corona Park, find John Randel Jr.’s authentic survey bolt from 1811 in Central Park, walk through all the arches of Prospect Park, and lastly I’d always recommend taking a look at the skint on any quiet day, because there’s always something going on that’s cheap or free.

A few news bits to close out today:

Soho Karen, aka Miya Ponsetto, was arrested for falsely accusing a Black teenager of stealer her phone and tackling him in a Soho hotel. It was a bad week for this idiot, who decided to do a CBS This Morning interview that was so bad even her lawyer said she was embarrassed. She was arrested in California and brought back to New York. (Edgar Sandoval for NY Times)

Prince Street Pizza owners Frank and Dominic Morano are stepping down from day-to-day operations after accounts of racist comments made to customers on Yelp, Facebook, and Instagram. They aren’t removing themselves from the business, just from day-to-day operations. (Hannah Albertine for The Infatuation)

Now’s a good time to go wander around Chinatown because hundreds of paper lanterns were installed on Mott St with plans to expand. (Shaye Weaver for Time Out)

There is a silver lining to this winter, which is that the flu season only a fraction of what it was in years past. (Matt Troutman for Patch)

The Brooklyn Public Library is holding a contest to design a library card in celebration of Black History Month and will award the winning artist with $2,000. (Shaye Weaver for Time Out)

NYPD Commissioner Dermot Shea tested positive for Covid-19. (Matt Troutman for PAtch)

Someone tied a confederate flag to the door of the Museum of Jewish Heritage – A Living Memorial to the Holocaust after the attack on the Capitol this week. (Jen Chung for Gothamist)2

Staten Island’s congress member and Republican Nicole Malliotakis voted against certifying the election results after the attack on the Capitol building. Malliotakis’s district will be redrawn by the state’s Democratic legislature after the 2020 Census. Don’t expect Malliotakis to hold that seat for long. (Clifford Michel for The City)

Photos: Thursday’s anti-Trump rally in Brooklyn. (Brian Braiker, photos by Statia Grossman for Brooklyn Magazine)

The Brooklyn Democratic Party passed a law that allows non-binary and transgender people to run for county committee seats. It seems ridiculous that it was necessary, but there was a gender quota in place before this. (Julia Kott for Greenpointers)

20 local chefs forecast what’s next for NYC dining. (Christina Izzo for Time Out)

Everything you always wanted to know about sex work (but were afraid to ask). (Brian Braiker for Brooklyn Magazine)

The Briefly for January 9, 2019 – The “Great Pizza Recipe Caper of 2019” Edition

The mayor wants to give healthcare to all, Corey johnson wants control of the subways and buses, $26 million was saved in rent thanks to the L train shutdown, and more in today’s daily NYC news digest.

Threats of the L train shutdown saved renters in Williamsburg over $26 million in rent. A different version of this story could say “The L train shutdown cost landlords over $26 in rent. (Metro)

“Back of a taxi” is becoming a popular birth spot, with the second baby of the year being delivered while the meter was running. (NY Post)

The second large scale project Staten Island has lost in the last few months when the developers of the Riverside Galleria withdrew their plans after facing pressure from politicians. (The Real Deal)

For now, it seems like you can get a taste of Nolita uptown. The man behind Prince Street Pizza is suing a former chef for allegedly stealing the recipe for his famous spicy pepperoni slice and bringing it to the former chef’s new restaurant Made in New York Pizza on the Upper West Side. (Eater)

Mayor de Blasio announce that the city will spend $100 million to provide health care for undocumented immigrants and others who cannot qualify for insurance. His vision is that the city would provide comprehensive care to everyone, including 300,000 undocumented New Yorkers. (NY Times)

The debate over Amazon’s HQ2 has unions squaring off with the Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union’s opposition at odds over the project with the Service Employees International Union and the Building and Construction Trades Council’s support. (The Real Deal)

The best coffee shops for meetings. (The Infatuation)

Welcome to 2019: the home of New York’s worst measles outbreak in decades. (NY Post)

It’s seemed inevitable that Willits Point was headed towards mega-development, but that inevitability has loomed overhead decades. A stadium for the Mets, a mall, and now the Queensborough Football Club have laid claim to the neighborhood, despite decade-old plans for mixed-income housing. (Gothamist)

SNL’s Michael Che is putting together “A Night for NYCHA” this Friday at Irving Plaza to benefit the Fund for Public Housing, featuring Jeff Ross, Michelle Wolf and a “top secret” lineup of comedians. There is a GoFundMe page for people who can’t attend but still want to donate (amNY)

A lawsuit was dismissed that claimed that Danny Meyer sat atop a New York restaurateur illuminati-esque group which sought to pocket tips intended for their staffs. (Eater)

Whatever happened to the toxic dust the MTA claimed would make a partial L train shutdown impossible? (Gothamist)

A Bronx pedestrian was killed by a driver of a city sanitation truck who was preemptively salting Willis Avenue at E. 138th Street. The driver was suspended and is cooperating with the NYPD. (Streetsblog)

What you need to know about the city’s special election for public advocate. (Curbed)

A dog museum? A dog museum. The AKC Museum of the Dog is opening on February 8 at 101 Park Avenue, bringing paintings, prints, sculptures, porcelain figurines, displays and more to two floors, including the first exhibition “For the Love of All Things Dog.” (USA Today)

Mario Batali, famous for orange Crocs, an apology that pairs with pizza dough cinnamon rolls, and being accused of sexual misconduct, will not be facing criminal charges for two sexual assaults that allegedly took place in 2004 and 2005. (Eater)

City Council Speaker Corey Johnson will reveal a plan to wrestle control of the MTA’s subways and buses from the MTA within the next two months. Will he shutdown the shutdown of the shutdown? (Streetsblog)

A judge blocked Mayor de Blasio’s attempt to move carriage horses inside Central Park instead of being alongside cars on the streets. A full hearing will take place February 8. (NY Post)

Politicians can’t constitutionally block critics on official social media accounts. Looking at you State Senator Kevin “Kill Yourself” Parker and City Councilmember Jimmy Van Bramer. (Metro)

38 essential restaurants, winter edition. (Eater)

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