Author Archive

The Waterfalls Look Fake—Just the Way They Should

Written by Jerry Portwood on . Posted in Arts & Film, Posts


By now everyone’s had a chance to check out “The New York City Waterfalls” and, if the media’s done its job (you can check out our slideshow here), you’re probably sick of hearing about the damn things. Good. That’s actually the best thing that could happen to Olafur Eliasson’s installations in the East River.

I attended last week’s press conference, heard the big ideas trumpeted by Susan K. Freeman, president of the Public Art Fund (“the most important art project of this century”), and the even bigger rhetoric blandly intoned by Mayor Michael Bloomberg (“biggest waterfall attraction between Niagara Falls and Victoria Falls”), and I could sense the “greatness” of the project quickly kill its chances of having any “transcendent” effect on viewers...

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Daddy Ben Karlin Ain’t Ashamed When His Son Farts (and Other Stuff About Raising a Kid in Brooklyn)

Written by Jerry Portwood on . Posted in Arts & Film, Posts

Ben Karlin gets a lot of flack for his attitude and creative practices, but the man who was responsible for a lot of the funny on The Daily Show and The Colbert Report also has a softer side. Not much has been said about Karlin the daddy, so until we read this interview in New [&hellip
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Latex & Leather: Folsom Street East Returns to West Chelsea

Written by Jerry Portwood on . Posted in Arts & Film, Posts

Perhaps few people noticed the longest day of the year on Friday (slow news day?), but the Summer Solstice is still celebrated in varied ways in the city. Folsom Street East, an annual tradition that also serves as a kickoff to the city’s Gay Pride celebrations, attracted a horde of leather and latex clad locals [&hellip
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Central Parks’ Rainy Days Cancel ‘Hamlet’ but Doesn’t Halt Vampire Weekend

Written by Jerry Portwood on . Posted in Arts & Film, Posts

Saturday was all about rain, but that didn’t stop hundreds of us from taking the chance of a little dampness to enjoy some outdoor fun. During the afternoon, the Central Park SummerStage was packed with eager kids looking for a good time with Vampire Weekend. How did they go from barely attracting a crowd last [&hellip
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A Cockettes Symposium and Plenty of Gender-Bending Fun

Written by Jerry Portwood on . Posted in Arts & Film, Posts

Earlier this week several of the original Cockettes were at the Theatre for the New City, along with fanciful Faeries and the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence. If you don’t know about the ’60s psychedelic group The Cockettes, it’s time to check out the doc that focuses on them, including their disastrous 1971 NY debut and [&hellip
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Building on the Move: Hamilton Grange Free at Last

Written by Jerry Portwood on . Posted in Posts

It’s easy to forget about New York’s other historic monuments at the north end of the island of Manhattan with all the attention heaped on those famous downtown spots. The locations of Revolutionary War battles and burial sites of war generals get overlooked and don’t seem as exciting to those interested in the next trendy [&hellip
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Sex (Solipsism) and the City: Please Let the Girls Grow Up to Be Women

Written by Jerry Portwood on . Posted in Arts & Film, Posts


"It’s fascinating to watch a someone in their twenties try to figure it out. It’s not so interesting to watch a middle-aged person still trying to figure it out." It was a bit of wisdom someone in their fifties offered to me the other day (in reference to Emily Gould's disappointing, self-absorbed New York Times Magazine story), but it was also the line running through my head as I watched Sex and the City last night. Instead of adult women acting "adult"—making choices and reacting to situations with some amount of wisdom and dignity—the women of SATC are still so self-absorbed that, although they may no longer have the energy to chase men and gab about sex indiscriminately, they still appear to be little girls rather than women.

Perhaps it's a more realistic representation of New Yorkers in general. Even at the press screening last night, the “press” became pushy, shrill and obnoxious as they tried to ensure they had a prime seat in a theater full of “press.” Being self-obsessed is just the name of the game, and everyone was there to workout some sort of Cinderella fantasy.

The movie is all the things that folks who love the show hoped for: it is indeed the finale the should have had. It can also be used as proof that women past 40 can indeed carry a summer blockbuster (it just takes four of them to do it). I was most disappointed in the fact that fortysomething (and one fiftysomething) women have to do it by acting like little girls—with Sarah Jessica Parker as the main offender.

I’ve watched my female friends switch gears from normal speak to a mousy whisper whenever a straight, available man is in the room, but the way Parker/Carrie moons over Big (Chris Noth), coos, meows and whispers, forever making little-girl eyes at him, you wonder how they’ll ever have a fulfilling relationship. And the more Carrie twitters with her little-girl affectation, Noth retreats into big, quiet (stiff) male-type.

Even when Carrie is supposed to be “real” (meaning, sans makeup)—during her “Mexicoma”—she’s coddled by her girlfriends as if she were a fragile bird. I finally reached my breaking point when Samantha (Kim Cattrall) actually feeds Carrie with a spoon, making the infantilization complete...

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