The Briefly for April 24, 2020 – The “Someone Told Me It Was the Weekend” Weekend Edition

Today’s daily NYC news digest: 21.2% of the city may have already been exposed to COVID-19, a cocktail delivery guide, you cannot have friends over for dinner, and more

Today – Low: 44˚ High: 50˚
Rain until evening.
This weekend – Low: 44˚ High: 61˚

Quick note: Yesterday I said that “At 40,000 a day, it’ll only take 13 and a half years to test the whole state” talking about COVID-19 tests. I mistakenly did the math for 40,000 a month, not 40,000 a day. At 40,000 a day it’ll take 486 days to test everyone in the state once. Thanks to reader Stacy for catching the error

Alright, some cats are getting COVID-19, here’s an interview with experts on what to worry about and what to relax about. (Shame Weaver for Time Out)

A new survey suggests that 21.2% of New York City residents have COVID-19 antibodies, meaning a whole lot of us have already had the virus and never knew it. (Dana Schulz for 6sqft)

A new study from the medical journal JAMA showed 88 percent of COVID-19 patients who received invasive mechanical ventilation in the Northwell Health system lost their lives. The study looked at 5,700 intubated patients. (Kathleen Culliton for Patch)

The cocktail delivery guide, because I heard somewhere that it’s the weekend. (Nikko Duren for The Infatuation)

Mayor de Blasio has never let advice from professionals stop him from making a decision that he wants to make. The entire city told him not to run for president and he did anyway. He doesn’t want to open the city’s streets up for pedestrians and cyclists and he won’t unless he’s forced. He’s canceled two months’ worth of summer events but has decided that the Fourth of July fireworks must go on because it would “hurt the morale of New Yorkers as they’re fighting this fight.” Buddy, 11,000 of your citizens have died. Fireworks aren’t gonna save the city. (Jeff Arnold for Patch)

Shame is a powerful weapon. Ruth’s Chris is going to return their $20 million from the federal government. (Alan Sytsma for Grub Street)

Sweetgreen, not wanting to be left out, will return the $10 million the government loaned to it. (Nikita Richardson for Grub Street)

Briefly favorite Jen Carlson has a question. Is it snowing outside? Seriously, when was the last time you were outside? (Jen Carlson for Gothamist)

Can you have friends over for dinner? For god’s sake, NO! (Ronda Kaysen for NY Times)

People who have dogs live longer. Are people in dog-friendly buildings happier than their dogless counterparts? Yes they are! (Susan Lehman for NY Times)

Pairing takeout with a movie, because there’s only so many times you can heat up something frozen and watch Friends. (Hannah Albertine, Nikko Duren, Bryan Kim, Katherine Lewin, Hillary Reinsberg, Arden Shore, & Matt Tervooren for The Infatuation)

Feeling like going out? Well, you can’t, but you can try out NYC’s best attempts at recreating nightlife virtually with this list of the best clubs to party at online. (Collier Sutter for Time Out)

A look at “Tiger King” with Harlem’s Tiger Man, Antoine Yates, who kept 425-pound Ming the Tiger in his apartment. (Corey Kilgannon for NY Times)

The City Council is moving on helping small businesses with legislation that would put it place a pause on evictions for commercial and residential tenants that would remain in place through April 2021. (Tanay Warerkar for Eater)

If you find a wedding ring on the corner of 87th and West End, please return it to the woman who lost it during the 7pm clap out her window. The ring is a plain platinum band and the couple who lost it has been together for over 50 years. (Mike Michkin for I Love The Upper West Side)

As food suppliers and farmers are looking at having to destroy or dispose of the food they create, State Senator Joseph Addabbo is looking to pair those farmers with those in need to prevent waste and hunger at the same time. (Bill Parry for QNS)

Apartment Porn: A $9.3 million Tribeca penthouse with an irrigated roof garden and outdoor kitchen, two living rooms, a walk-in pantry, and three bedrooms with en-suite bathrooms, on top of everything else. (Dana Schulz for 6qsft)

Here’s how the city ould address its sidewalks after it has become abundantly clear that they have failed us as a place to practice proper social distancing. (Caroline Spivack for Curbed)

Looking to get into a Trader Joe’s? Now there are Twitter accounts telling you how long the lines are. Right now, they’re run by people who live nearby and want to be helpful while quarantining. (Dana Schulz for 6sqft)

An ode to an unlikely restaurant pick, especially in NYC, Blimpie. (Kevin Walsh for Forgotten New York)

This year’s AIDS Walk will now be a virtual happening, with its date moving from May 17 to June 7. (Paul Schindler for Gay City News)

The state’s Department of Health and Attorney General Letitia James are investigating New York nursing homes to determine if management complied with COVID-19 regulations, with violated facing fines and the potential loss of their licenses. (Brendan Krisel for Patch)

The city’s 140,000 coronavirus cases are only the tip of the iceberg. According to Health Commissioner Oxiris Barbot, “we have probably close to a million New Yorkers who have been exposed to COVID-19.” (Erin Durkin for Politico)

The percent of NYPD officers calling out sick has dropped for two weeks straight. (Todd Maisel for QNS)

Spruce up your Zoom backgrounds with some of these images from Parks@Home, historical photos from the Records Department, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, or the NYPL. (Valeria Ricciulli for Curbed)

Know someone who needs a sugar rush? Economy Candy is now selling CandyCare Packs. (Scott Lynch for Gothamist)

When you call a restaurant using the number listed on GrubHub/Seamless, the restaurant is charged a fee from the company, which some are complaining to be as high as $7.17. If you’ve got a question or a problem with your order, look up the restaurant’s phone number using a different method and stop making orders through GrubHub/Seamless. Call the restaurant directly and make your order. (Tanay Warerkar for Eater)

I am 100% on board for Governor Cuomo’s shit-talking on Mitch McConnell. (NY1)

SNL has another quarantine episode this weekend. (Ben Yakas for Gothamist)

Ample Hills is putting itself on the auction block to companies like Cinnabon and Auntie Anne’s owner Focus Brands and Unilever. (Erika Adams for Eater)

A look at Rockefeller Center under construction in 1932. (Matt Coneybeare for Viewing NYC)

8 books for when you miss New York City, even though you’re quarantined here. (Isabel Crabtree for New York Cliche)

A free adult coloring book, full of color from city life, is available for download from Subway Creates and artist David Regone. (Collier Sutter for Time Out)

Take a tour of the first NYC public health lab to test for COVID-19. (Courtney Gross for NY1)

Your questions, answered by The City. (Lauren Costantino and Allison Dikanovic for The City)

40 pizza parlors still open for the best possible Friday night meal. (Diana Hubbell for Eater)

Thanks to reader Annie for today’s featured photo.

The Briefly for April 23, 2020 – The “No One Cares Why You’re Leaving New York” Edition

Today’s daily NYC news digest: The City Council pushes forward with its open streets plan, an “Essential Workers’ Bill of Rights,” standout sushi takeout and more

Today – Low: 47˚ High: 53˚
Light rain overnight.

Despite the Governor’s orders, some hospitals are not allowing one support person in labor and delivery settings. (Virginia Breen for The City)

7 things you didn’t know about Central Park. (Devin Gannon for 6sqft)

A look at the positive contributions of David Penepent, a mortuary sciences professor at SUNY Canton, who is helping with the transportation, care, and cremation of New York City’s dead during this pandemic. Very often you’ll hear about how bad of a job someone is doing in a moment of crisis, this is the exact opposite. (Alexandra E. Petri for NY Times)

15% of pregnant women in NYC tested positive for COVID-19 in a limited study in Manhattan over a two week period. The findings may give a better look into what’s happening with the general population and highlights a need for universal testing. (Bobby Cuza for NY1)

No cares about your “why I’m leaving New York” essay. That goes double during a pandemic. Just leave and take your guilt about leaving with you. (Claire Fallon for HuffPost)

A “plaque” was put up in Park Slope near Methodist Hospital by an unknown guerilla street artist honoring “grocery workers, nurses, hospital staff, doctors, mail carriers, immigrant laborers, and other true heroes” of the pandemic. (Michelle Young for Untapped New York)

The City Council is looking for ways to resuscitate the city’s summer jobs program. (Reema Amin for Chalkbeat)

City Council Speaker Corey Johnson pushed a 75-mile open street plan forward on Wednesday. Johnson and Council Member Carlina Rivera dismissed the mayor’s concerns about the plan as irrelevant. The mayor has recently blamed the failure of his open streets plan on New Yorkers. (Joe Anuta for Politico)

The City Council introduced an “Essential Workers’ Bill of Rights” on Wednesday, which would require large employers to provide additional protections and hazard pay to those hourly workers helping the city continue to operate during the COVID-19 pandemic. (Christopher Robbins and Sydney Perreira for Gothamist)

Looking to make your Friday night Zoom hangout feel a little more regular? Check out Virtual Cheers, which in return for a donation to the staff of the bar will give you a photo of the bar of your choice. (Beth Landman for Eater)

The organizers of the city’s Pride parades have decided to collaborate to take their events virtual. Global PRide is June 27, but the city has already canceled all public events in June. (Michael Dorgan for LIC Post)

What’s the first thing you’re gonna eat when quarantine is over? 21 famous New Yorkers on the first thing they’re gonna eat. (Alyssa Shelasky for Grub Street)

The mayor has continued to talk publicly about what it will take to reopen the city, including a “Trace and Test” program, which will move people who test positive into isolation, possibly in one of the 11,000 hotel rooms the city has set aside. Right now the city is aiming for 400,000 test kits per month, which isn’t nearly enough for the city’s 8.5 million people. (Kathleen Culliton for Patch)

Mayor Bloomberg volunteered to develop a contact tracing program for the tri-state area. Bloomberg Philanthropies has also made a financial contribution of $10.5 million through the Bloomberg School fo Health at John’s Hopkins. This is separate from the Mayor de Blasio’s plan. (Dana Schulz for 6sqft)

Governor Cuomo is looking to double the number of COVID-19 tests in the state, from 20,000 to 40,000. The 40,000 is “ambitious,” in his own words, with the state’s 300 labs working 24/7 to meet the demand for 20,000. At 40,000 a day, it’ll only take 13 and a half years to test the whole state. (Jeff Arnold for Patch)

Foot Locker, H&M, Old Navy, Nordstrom, Party City, and The Gap, welcome to the non-rent paying party. (Erin Hudson for The Real Deal)

The underground, hydroponic farm on Worth St, Farm.One, is still operating, but its produce was originally intended for bars and restaurants. Now they are opening up orders to the public. (Tribeca Citizen)

This is a celebration that has to happen.” -Mayor de Blasio on the Fourth of July fireworks. Fourth of July is six days after NYC Pride was scheduled to end. (Kathleen Culliton for Patch)

Bodega-inspired streetwear. (Emma Orlow for Time Out)

The MTA’s 250 construction projects are moving forward, albeit with some new safety precautions, being deemed essential. With so few people riding the trains, this may be the optimal time to get that work done.(Stephen Nessen for Gothamist)

Everyone’s made a mistake when ordering groceries, especially now, but what do you do with ten bunches of bananas or 1,200 coffee filters? (Madison Malone Kircher for Grub Street)

Where to get Mexican takeout and delivery in NYC. (Hannah Albertine for The Infatuation)

50 things the RESY staff misses most about New York. (RESY)

An interactive map of where to avoid where sidewalks make social distancing impossible. (Shaye Weaver for Time Out)

Now remains a great time to adopt a dog or a cat. The Briefly home has two amazing toy poodles, Scooter and Pepper, and we couldn’t be happier. (Jeff Arnold for Patch)

It’s like “ballet or break dancing on a bike.” Meet BMX champ Matthias Dandois, who is doing tricks inside his Tribeca apartment. (Alex Mitchell for Bronx Times)

Here is the recipe for Junior’s famous cheesecake from scratch. Now I know what I’m doing to try (and fail) this weekend. (Bao Ong for Time Out)

Two NY housecats have tested positive for COVID-19, as well as four tigers and three lions in the Bronx Zoo. (Jen Chung for Gothamist)

Meet Jennifer Marino-Bonventre, an English teacher who is bringing some joy to the city with some fantastic sidewalk chalk drawings. (Debora Fougere for NY1)

The Times found out what the rest of us already knew: New Yorkers want cheap wine and a lot of cheap wine. (Alix Strauss for NY Times)

New York City, a city of winners, and Boston, which is a different city, have different sports teams, different coffee choices, different clam chowders, and two genetically different types of pigeons. (Joshua Sokol for NY Times)

22 standout sushi spots still open for takeout and delivery. (Melissa Kravitz Hoeffner for Eater)

Thanks to reader Melissa for today’s featured photo from the East Village.

The Briefly for March 12, 2020 – The “Why is Mayor Bill de Blasio So Hated?” Edition

Today’s daily NYC news digest: Expect six months before we return to pre-COVID19 normalcy, the best of Midtown East, Modell’s says goodbye, Harvey Weinstein is off to rot, and more

Today – Low: 46˚ High: 49˚
Light rain in the evening and overnight.

The census begins today. Last time around, the city’s participation rate was 62%, compared to the national average of 76%. With as much effort the city and state have put into marketing the census, it’s gonna be mighty embarrassing if we maintain that low rate. (Alex Williamson for Brooklyn Eagle)

Why is DeBlasio so hated? (AskNYC)

Rapist and rotting ghoul Harvey Weinstein was sentenced to 23 years in prison. His layer had previously said that he may not outlive any sentence over five years. May he live a long life to experience every single day of that sentence. (Jen Ransom for NY Times)

Even Harvey Weinstein’s own body hates him, as he was hospitalized again with heart problems and chest pain. Let’s all hope he’s got great doctors because he has at least 23 years minus a day to live. (Dean Meminger for amNewYork Metro)

RIP Modell’s, who will be liquidating all of its stores starting Friday. The company is pointing to an unusually warm winter as the final nail in the coffin. If you gotta go to Mo’s, make sure it’s soon. (Crain’s)

The $3.2 million revamp of Woodside’s Little Bush Playground is set to start next month and should take about a year to finish. (Michael Dorgan for Sunnyside Post)

The Chelsea Hotel renovations continue to be an utter mess. Work has stopped because the building did not qualify for a Certificate of No Harassment with multiple tenants complaining about unlivable conditions dating back years. (Michelle Cohen for 6sqft)

Governors Island announced its free programming for the 2020 season, which starts on May 1. (Devin Gannon for 6sqft)

May we all be lucky to have birthday parties half as wild as 87-year-old Ray from Ray’s Candy Store. (Bob Krasner for amNewYork Metro)

Sometimes you don’t even have to go outside to birdwatch. (Mike Mishkin for I Love the Upper West Side)

Crown Heights has a new vegan Ethiopian restaurant in Ras Plant Based. (Scott Lynch for Gothamist)

The number of families in shelters each night was 46 percent higher last year than it was in December 2009, and one out of every 100 babies born in the city was brought to a shelter, rather than a permanent home. Needless to say, Governor Cuomo and Mayor de Blasio did not earn high marks on The Coalition for the Homeless’ annual report. (Janaki Chadha for Politico)

“I can now proudly call myself an NYC housing lottery winner.” One person’s story of how they won the lottery. (Kim Turner for StreetEasy)

Frank’s Cocktail Lounge in Fort Greene has been the backdrop to a changing neighborhood since the 1950s, and on April 10 of this year, that comes to an end. (S.E. Blackwell for East New York News)

Photos: A first look from the observation deck of Edge. (Michelle Young for Untapped New York)

The lone Yelp review gave it four stars, but still called it “crack head city.” KN Mi Delicia Bakery and Coffee Shop in Mott Haven was part of a drug ring and multi-state 14-person arrest, with a raid finding $50,000 cash and bags stuffed with what is suspected to be heroin and cocaine. (Kathleen Culliton for Patch)

Brooklyn Democratic Party’s leaders have endorsed Councilmember Donovan Richards for Queens borough president. (Alex Williamson for Brookly Eagle)

The city is beginning to experiment with, get this, actual dumpsters for businesses that will be set on the street to remove trash bag mountains that pile up on our sidewalks. It’s almost like the sidewalks should be for people to walk on, not for businesses to store trash on. (Gersh Kuntzman for Streetsblog)

26 excellent Midtown East bars and restaurants to try. (Alexandra Ilyashov for Eater)


Six months. According to the mayor, that’s how long the fight against COVID-19 will take before things return to normal again. Get ready for the worst summer ever. (Adam Nichols for Patch)

The economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic on restaurants will be akin to a major natural disaster. (Serena Dai for Eater)

Restaurants, open-air markets, and catering companies are expected to take a hard hit, Grub Street takes a look at how businesses are preparing to support their hourly staffs if at all. (Chris Crowley for Grub Street)

“We’re not in a position where we can rely on the CDC or the FDA to manage this testing protocol.” -Governor Cuomo. New York will start contracting 28 private labs to help administer coronavirus testing for New York residents. (Emily Davenport for amNewYork Metro)

Daytime talk shows filming in New York will be forgoing live studio audiences during the COVID-19 outbreak. (Kimberley Richards for HuffPost)

SUNY and CUNY schools will halt in-person classes for the rest of the semester, beginning on March 19. The dorms won’t be closing and classes that are impossible to hold remotely will still be held. (Niedzwiadek and Madina Touré for Politico)

Coronavirus fears may jeopardize the election process, which requires candidates to collect up to thousands of signatures of supporters. This may lead to the governor altering election law, as he did following Superstorm Sandy. (Max Parrott for QNS)

If you’re healthy, you should still consider dining out. The virus is not transmitted via food or drink. (Serena Dai for Eater)

An usher for “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?” and “Six” has tested positive for COVID-19. Both theaters underwent a deep clean, the shows are continuing, and the usher is now in quarantine. (Michael Paulson for NY Times)

Manhattan’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade is officially canceled. (Todd Maisel and Robert Pozarycki for amNewYork Metro)

How to help during the coronavirus outbreak. (Azi Paybarahf or NY Times)

A big thank you to reader Taina for today’s featured photo, taken in Red Hook.