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Archive for January, 2016

Michael J. Kennedy, R.I.P.

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Michael Kennedy, a prominent radical lawyer of the Sixties who became a noted Manhattan social figure in the Nineties, died on January 25th at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center at age 78. Kennedy was active to the end, and was last spotted by Gripepad at a screening of The Revenant just before Christmas. New York Magazine has remembered “Ivana’s Avenger,” my 1991 cover profile of Kennedy, a story reported and written without his cooperation in the midst of his highest profile case, representing Ivana Trump in her divorce from current presidential candidate Donald Trump.

Horses (with apologies to Patti Smith)

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In “All The Mayor’s Horses,” on The Awl, writer Brendan O’Connor tackles the ticklish and abiding question of New York’s horse carriage trade, which has been a (forgive this) pet subject in this pillar for several years now. In 2009, Gripepad mocked a proposal to replace the carriages with ersatz vintage electric cars. The actual proposal was then sent to me by a carriage proponent, and Gripepad revealed a possible pecuniary motive behind the move to ban the beloved horses: a hunger for the real estate (what else could it be in Manhattan?) the horses’ stables occupied. The Awl cites … Continue reading

Aby, baby

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“The Rise, Fall and Rise of Aby Rosen,” my Centurion magazine profile of the art-collecting real estate developer and operator, is still embargoed, but Rosen has posted it on the web site for his rising tower by Sir Norman Foster, 100 East 53rd Street (pictured), and you can read all about his life, times and frenemies like Ian Schrager, Peter Brant, and the owners of the Four Seasons restaurant there.

Treasury Dept. will follow in footsteps of House of Outrageous Fortune

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The United States Department of the Treasury announced today that it will begin to do broadly just what the New York Times bestselling House of Outrageous Fortune did for one prominent building, 15 Central Park West, back in 2014, and “identify the natural persons behind companies used to pay ‘all cash’ for high-end residential real estate in the Borough of Manhattan in New York City, New York.” The government press release goes on to say that “FinCEN [The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network] is concerned that all-cash purchases – i.e., those without bank financing – may be conducted by individuals attempting … Continue reading

RIP Ziggy Stardust

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David Bowie at Radio City Music Hall February 1973

Modeling: Reality compared to what?

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Last week, the Telegraph in the United Kingdom ran a story, “Debts, £300 salaries and career instability: the reality of modelling today,” that read like an obituary for the posing trade. “Few girls make it big these days, and fewer still have the backing to convert a smash debut into longevity,” the newspaper’s Ellie Pithers wrote. “For while the Kate Mosses and Gisele Bündchens amass millions, and command thousands for a catwalk appearance, most models work long hours with scant job security and earn very little…Increasingly, the most lucrative fashion campaigns and magazine covers are being won by actresses and … Continue reading