Bloomie’s sleepover no biggie
said earlier this week that if there is a transit strike, he would sleep
at a city office in DUMBO so he could walk to City Hall over the Brooklyn
The remark, predictably, set off intense preparations by city officials
to accommodate the mayor. Meanwhile, a different set of preparations were
being made in DUMBO.
Entirely Brooklyn preparations, that is.
“What the hell do I care?” asked a counterman at Grimaldi’s,
the famous pizzeria that stands less than a quarter-mile from the mayor’s
Given my reputation as a newshound (or a pizzahound, I sometimes get them
mixed up), I asked the manager if he’d make a special pie for the
mayor. “What are you talking about, special pie?” the man said.
“Get out of here.” (Note to self: ouch!)
This reporter had gone to the legendary pie shop — no slices! —
to find out how the locals were preparing for the mayor’s relocation.
Expecting excitement, or at least a soupcon of mild interest, I found
instead that the “Bronx cheer” may be misnamed.
At The River Cafe, general manager Scott Stamford could not have been
more bored by the topic of the mayor bedding down 15 feet from his front
door (is it just a coincidence that the mayor chose to sleep RIGHT NEXT
DOOR to one of the best restaurants in town?).
Stamford treated me like I was a health inspector on an unannounced visit.
“You know,” he
sniffed, “the mayor has eaten here before.”
Yes, I suggested, but this time, it’ll be different. If the mayor
is truly in emergency management-mode, he’ll be wearing one of those
fancy OEM “man of action” fleece pullovers — a clear violation
of the River Cafe’s “Jackets required in the dining room”
“I think we can waive the rule for the mayor,” Stamford said.
“He could come in with a bomber jacket if he wants.”
Across the street at Pete’s Downtown, owner Pete Thristino said he
was planning nothing special for the mayor (although perhaps Thristino
should remove the penne arrabbiata from the menu, lest the mayor order
a plate of this ethereal, but vaguely Middle Eastern-sounding, dish and
then be accused of not supporting our brave troops in Iraq).
Frankly, Thristino isn’t too focused on the real mayor. “We
had Pacino in here once,” he said, referring to the star of “City
Even the mayor’s hosts at the OEM headquarters — officially
surplus warehouse B-53 — were subdued at the prospect of late night
games of “Twister” or making prank calls to 311 with their boss.
I stopped by the warehouse, you know, to welcome the mayor and offer him
a pillow, but was stopped by a cop who called inside. Within a few minutes,
OEM deputy press secretary Andrew Troisi (what, I don’t rate an ACTUAL
press secretary?), came out.
Everything Troisi said was off the record (which was odd, considering
that all he said was that the OEM staff would be happy to accommodate
the mayor), but Troisi did confirm that the mayor would, indeed, be sleeping
on a cot.
“We’re OEM. We have plenty of cots inside,” Troisi said
before nervously putting the rest of the conversation again off the record
(too bad, because he told me the secret burial site of Judge Crater).
From the OEM office, the mayor would have a half-mile walk to the Brooklyn
Bridge. But he should not expect people along the route to be throwing
rose petals before him.
The first place the mayor will pass on his pedestrian commute to City
Hall is St. Ann’s Warehouse, a performance space. Given the mayor’s
support for the arts, I figured the folks there would be excited to sell
Bloomberg a ticket (“Measure for Measure” opens Tuesday).
Then I remembered I was in Brooklyn.
“And why, exactly, should I care?” the box office clerk asked,
Grimaldi-like, when I mentioned St. Ann’s proximity to the mayoral
In fact, as I walked the route, I discovered that the only friendly face
the mayor may encounter belongs to Marta Krawiec, a bartender at Water
Street Restaurant and Lounge, who vowed to have a steaming cup of Irish
coffee waiting for Hizzoner every evening when he comes home over the
“I’ll hook him up — on the house,” she said, quickly
remembering that the billionaire mayor certainly doesn’t need a free
anything from anyone at anytime.
It’s no surprise Krawiec was so welcoming — OEM was having its
Christmas bash downstairs at the time.
And man, those guys know how to party when the boss isn’t around..
Updated 4:00 pm, November 10, 2010