Monday, July 9, 2018


A.G. Underwood Announces Settlement With Brooklyn Auto Dealer Over Deceptive Practices That Targeted Non-English Speakers
BROOKLYN – Attorney General Barbara D. Underwood today announced a settlement requiring Bay Ridge Honda of Brooklyn to reform its business practices and pay over $423,000 in restitution and penalties, after the office received dozens of complaints from New Yorkers about unwanted charges and fraudulent sales tactics that targeted non-English speakers. Many of the consumers who complained were Mandarin and Cantonese speakers who negotiated their sales or lease contracts in Chinese, but were only provided English documents that they later discovered contained different terms and unwanted and costly aftermarket items in their bills.

The Black and White Cookie at the End of the World: Saying goodbye to Glaser’s Bake Shop (Village Voice)
Even though we’d still have another forty-five minutes to wait, the atmosphere was giddy once we turned the corner onto First Avenue, in front of a hardware store advertising a discount for Glaser’s customers, and in sight of both the bakery’s retro mint-green facade and the massage parlor next door. Herb Glaser’s brownie recipe was posted in the window; hopeful customers craned forward to snap photos on their phones. “This is a Seinfeld episode,” the editor said, and he was not wrong. The Ping-Pong instructor pledged to return the next morning, early enough to get in line before the bakery opened, if there were indeed no more black and whites. At least two radio reporters circulated through the crowd. “Why?” 1010 WINS’ Carol D’Auria asked a man who said he’d driven in from Jersey that morning. “Why not?” he replied.

‘Up to Lexington, One, Two, Five’: Camilo José Vergara takes his camera to the intersection Lou Reed sang about in 1967 (CityLab)
I ask myself why I feel so attracted to this messy crossroads. At Lexington Avenue and 125th Street I feel fully engaged, watching several dramas taking place simultaneously. Nowhere else have I seen a neighborhood so vigorously pulling in opposite directions at the same time

Dead of AIDS and Forgotten in Potter’s Field (NY Times)
Trying to pin down the precise number of those with AIDS buried on Hart Island is difficult. A longstanding stigma about the island and criticism that the burial practices are crude and outdated have made city officials reluctant to provide many details. Officials at several city agencies involved in the burials refused interview requests to discuss the issue and insisted that no data or any other information was available on AIDS burials.
But piecing together an estimate is possible by surveying the many hospitals that treated AIDS patients during the epidemic and sent bodies to potter’s field. By that accounting, the number of AIDS burials on Hart Island could reach into the thousands, making it perhaps the single largest burial ground in the country for people with AIDS.

Hairdressers of 1980s London (A London Inheritance)
For this week’s post, I bring you a collection of photos taken in 1985 and 1986 that focus on the Hairdressers of east and central London. These show a type of business that whilst providing the same function, has changed over the years and provides a snapshot of London streets in the recent past. Many have long since disappeared, but good to see that a couple still survive maintaining a continuity of business across many decades.

The Massala Grill (Doreen Fletcher)
With an eye on the current Football World Cup and the England team hanging on in there (at least at the time of my writing this), one cannot help but notice the plethora of St George flags that seem to crop up in the oddest of places… not only displayed on cars, taxis and pubs; but also scaffolding, cranes and even pets. It all had me thinking about my painting, Massala Grill where a lone cyclist is depicted during the last, unsuccessful tournament, cycling with a St George flag protruding from his satchel whilst biking under the railway arch in Parnham Street.

Gareth Southgate’s England team reflect the best of us. It feels good to embrace them.(Guardian)
Underestimated and until now overshadowed by the “golden generation” that preceded them, they are a team who exhibit none of the swaggering entitlement that previous England teams were – wrongly or rightly – accused of. In this, the manager leads by example. Arrogance is the last charge one could raise against Southgate. Composure, humility, integrity and intellect are the words that have been most commonly attached to him during this tournament.

Talking of earlier generations, we can't resist ...

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