Open Thread Wednesday 6/10/09

What’s on your mind? Comment away!

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  • Out of Gas

    Just a warning to sel-managed buildings in the area regarding National Grid – a repairman appeared on our doorstep on Friday asking entry to replace our meters – all legit, not a scam. However, this repairman replaced 3/4 meters and left the premises without letting anyone know the status or leaving any notices informing us that our gas remained off until we called for appointments to have another repairman check out our appliances and restore service. Calls to customer service were frustrating – first we were told to explain to Nat Grid why their repairmen were in our building – Nice! A 2nd repairman showed up and worked until 2 am Saturday morning before breaking a valve on the 4th meter and leaving. The 3rd and final repairman did not show up until after 4 pm on Saturday. Very annoying and while NatGrid agrees that they ‘haven’t been doing a good job of notifying home owners’, it did not seem like they felt any need to do a better job in the future.

  • TK Small

    James Grant, one of the 2008 inductees to the BHB hall of fame is currently on CNBC right now.

  • paul

    we used all car for our car rental last weekend, the compact car was a lot nicer than many of the ones I’ve gotten from avis, and friday – sunday was 130 bucks, way cheaper than avis. people were friendly, pickup/dropoff was fast.

    highly recommended, thanks again to whoever pointed me in their direction.

  • Bart

    Where do people now shop for groceries?

    I used to do my weekly shopping at the Key Food on Montague. Now I do all of my weekly shopping at Trader Joes. And I’ll shop at Key Food once or twice a month to buy things like Splenda, sponges, seltzer or imported mozzarella. I go to Sahadi’s twice a month rather than every week, and I don’t buy as much. So in general I’ve change my shopping habits so that 98% of my food buying is at Trader Joes.

    But for me the Gristedes on Henry street is actually the closest food market. But I’ve only been there three times since they had the make over. The last time was to buy Seltzer. Because they had two signs that read something like 3 for $2.00 for two different brands, I made sure to get the right brands and the right flavors (not raspberry, mandarin orange, just plain unflavored.) When I brought the 6 bottles to the checkout counter, the total price came to something like 6 bucks. I told the checkout person that they were 3 for $2. She asked the manager who said “Only White Rose Brand.” Now I was sure I had the right brands because I checked. But rather than fighting or walking back myself, I said no thanks and walked out. Then I walked over to Key Food and they had seltzer for 4 for $2.

    The thing for me is that I expect very little from Gristedes. In fact I expect it to be over priced, the cashiers too good for their jobs, and management to be clueless. But I go there so seldom that I forget how what a bad store they are.

    But now the real question – who actually buys food from Gristedes? And to a lesser degree, do people still buy as much at Key Food?

  • alex

    Never shopped at Gristedes. Never will.

    However, I still probably do 75% of my shopping at Key Foods on either Atlantic and Montague. Prices are fairly good, especially when you pay attention to the sales, and it’s nice to be able to get mostly everything I need in one place.

    I love Trader Joe’s, but every time I’ve tried to make a major shopping trip there I’ve been surprised to discover another thing they don’t carry (baking soda, for instance) or are out of (a few days ago, tomatoes). I tend to mostly just shop there for the specialty frozen stuff (dumplings, chicken teriyaki, etc.), which of course is amazing.

  • Love the Heights

    Fresh Direct is the only way to go if you have no car and no time. It is considerably cheaper than Keyfood/Gristides. I can do a whole shopping in about 15 minutes and get it delivered when it is convenient. I use the Delivery Pass and get unlimited deliveries for 6 months for 99.00 (that’s 3.80/per delivery) if you order once a week. I order every 5 days so it is even less – family of 4. There are very few problems but if there are, their customer service is excellent. They have continued to make improvements in their packaging so they are using less than they used to. I have no time to go to Trader Joe’s AND a regular store to get the items they don’t carry.

  • PJL

    Does All Car rent SUVs or the like?

    Would like to move some furniture, but don’t want to deal with/need a truck the size of u-haul….


  • No One Of Consequence

    I’m with LTH although I will go to Gristede’s in a pinch, and Key Food for certain items.

  • Andrew

    I’ve rented a minivan from All Car. I believe they have SUV’s, too. And I think that Zipcar also has some minivans and pickup trucks in or around the Heights.

  • promenade

    you know, DAGs, was overprice, but the shopping experience was so nice – didn’t smell, was clean, big aisles….but I digress
    Fresh Direct is completely inconsistent w/produce and meat (size, ripeness, decent cut, etc.) but I do rely on them for our staples. Key Food on Montague is a nightmare, the one on Atlantic is better but so much farther. I too like Trader Joe’s but they are always out of what I want and the stress of the crowd is insane. Would love a nice green grocer to open up (bc I don’t count the overpriced Garden of Eden as one). Def on my wish list!

  • anon

    National Grid did the same thing in my building. The first time they tried and never got to the meters because three tenants made a fuss for them to call the landlord. I want to say the meterman was very snarky, smirky and lying through his teeth while insulting me that I had no idea what I was talking about. We got him out fast. Then the next time NG got in the building to read the meters they changed some meters without any notice to the landlord or any tenants. The tenants without gas (me and neighbor) called our landlord who called NG. The meterman came to turn on the gas on a Sat. He was nice enough and explained that NG is required to change ALL the outdated meters by the end of the year.

    My issue that we neighbors need to be aware of….our billing. My normal bill is about $15 per month. Please keep each other informed if our gas bills go up. The sleazy way that NG did the change overs makes me not trust them anymore.

  • AEB

    No need to go to Gristedes–ever. Because I live in the north Heights, the trip to Montague for Key Food’s a bit of a schlep.

    My everyday grocery go-to is Peas and Pickles. Not the best prices, but not the worst either, and they really have most everything you need–not of course counting meat or fish.

    And the staff is lovely. Really lovely.

  • bklyn20

    To PJL —

    FYI, Mohammed — late lamented mgr of Key Food on Montague — has started a moving/”man with van” service , I think. Unfortunately I don’t have his # — maybe someone else has it, or Sammy at Pets Emporium would know it. MIght be less than a minivan rental, but I can’t say for sure.

    RE: National Grid — my 3 family coop had a similar experience w/National Grid — they showed up saying they had to read the meter. It was then revealed that they were INSTALLING NEW METERS! I wanted to sprinkle the NG guys with dog kibble and send my dogs into the basement with them afterward! The end result — Iwas late for work, my kid was picked up late at school. and my time was stolen without my permission and at no cost to National Grid.

  • another jen

    i knew NG was installing new meters – what I didn’t know was that they were doing it wrong, and would have to return for two (so far) followup visits. next time I’m going to follow them like a little shadow and ask annoying questions, whether they like it or not. a girl can only file her nails so long during their stupidly long service window (“we’ll show up between 12 and 6″).

  • save the bridge

    Does anyone know of good daycare/preschool that doesn’t cost a fortunate in this or a nearby neighborhood? Or does anyone know anyone who is interested in a nanny share with a toddler?

  • save the bridge

    Does anyone know of good daycare/preschool that doesn’t cost a fortune in this or a nearby neighborhood? Or does anyone know anyone who is interested in a nanny share with a toddler? Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

  • childcare

    Does anyone know of good daycare/preschool that doesn’t cost a fortune in this or a nearby neighborhood? Or does anyone know anyone who is interested in a nanny share with a toddler? Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

  • Monty

    Wow, a lot of people are interested in day care today :) The answer depends on what you consider “a fortune”. I don’t think you can get care 5 days a week for less than $25K around here. not to mention that you will have to spend some time on a waiting list for the privilege to pay it. Kiddie Korner is opening a new location on Montague St that is not full yet. You might want to try the BH Moms mailing list:

  • Hello Brooklyn

    Naked Guy in Empire-Fulton Ferry State Park. What is the deal? Saw him last year off and on, but forgot until the past few weekends that have been so nice. How does he not get sunburned? How is he not indecent? Where does one get a banana hammock like that?

    The park police are quick to bust you for riding a bike, drinking wine or climbing the trees, but this guy gets to offend sensibilities all weekend long. Methinks a poorly thrown football to the ‘nads is in order.

  • Ari

    If you have a car, Fairway is the only place to buy food.

    They have an insane selection. Amazing prices.

    And its a 5 minute drive from BKH…..

  • Monty

    I have seen “banana man” there on any given sunny day for the past several years at least. Yes, he never tans. I assume he is not interested in tanning, but is just an exhibitionist. That tiny piece of yellow spandex is the thin line between public decency and indecency. I have to assume the guards are well aware of his presence and they would have done something by now if they could. My only thought is that if all us show up in banana hammocks one day, he might feel that we are stealing his attention and he will move to another park. Who’s with me!

  • nabeguy

    Now that it appears that virtually every corner of Henry Street from Old FUlton Street to Clark has been torn up by a no-name agency, does anyone know what’s actually going on? Or when the city plans to put everything back together the way it was?

  • GHB

    I saw the Goggle Twins on Sunday over on Pacific near Hoyt. Hadn’t seen them in a long time!

  • paul

    fairway is the greatest grocery store in the world and by far the best place to shop.

    we don’t have a car, live in the north heights and have shopped at fairway consistently for 2 years. the B61, a bike, or jogging are all great options. if you spend more than 200 bucks you get free delivery, otherwise delivery is 5 bucks which is well worth it when you consider the price difference of virtually everything in the store.

  • GHB

    Paul, they deliver to the North Heights for only $5? That’s a deal!

  • LS

    Does anyone have home phone service from Time Warner Cable? Thinking of switching because it’s cheaper but wanted to know about the quality.

  • http://toren Karl Junkersfeld

    From the Red Hook store
    Van Brunt Street

    Available from 11:00AM to 7:00PM
    $5.99 for all areas.
    Deliveries available in Red Hook, Cobble Hill,
    Brooklyn Heights, Park Slope and Boerum Hill.

  • brookie

    @paul: I am glad that All Car was to your liking. We used them so many times we would sometimes get free upgrades. The location is terrific!!!

  • bklynchick

    Hooray! Saw this on twitter tonight…”BROOKLYN: Brooklyn Heights Wine Bar at Henry St. and Cranberry private preview tonight, open for business tomorrow.” I’ve been waiting for this wine bar to open for months!

  • bornhere

    I saw Mohammed (Key Food) a couple of weeks ago schlepping a couch with another man on Montague Street. We spoke for a while, and he says he’s okay, but misses the Key Foodies he had grown to love. Anyway, his business card has two phone numbers: 212.662.4536 and 917.721.9337. The card notes that he does moving, furniture/appliance deliveries, airport delivery, garbage removal, and move-in/move-out cleaning. (And “No move is too big or too small!”)