Open Thread Wednesday

What’s on your mind? Comment away!

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  • Heightsman

    I feel like our neighborhood has abandoned this blog….just sayin.

  • Jorale-man

    I see the new Thai restaurant, Pinto, has gotten some decent reviews by Yelpers. And it looks pretty nice.
    Is Montague Street turning a corner?

  • rss

    Just migrated to the Pineapple walk thread.

  • StudioBrooklyn

    Anyone know anything about a white Lexus GS 350, NY license GJE 1250, with tinted windows, parked illegally for days on end in the “No Standing” zone on the south side of Pierrepont St just east of Henry? A note on the dash says its with NYPD Fugitive Enforcement Division but it strikes me that such a document would be easy to forge if you have a basic comprehension of Photoshop and really wanted to have an easy time at parking in the neighborhood. Or if it’s legit, why they’re creating an emergency response hazard…?

  • Heights Neighbor

    I’m getting married in the Heights this spring and was wondering if anyone had recommendations for someone in the neighborhood to blow out/curl my hair on my wedding day. Anyone you love? Not exorbitantly expensive? I’d appreciate any suggestions.

  • Andrew Porter

    How about Salon Van Sickel at 34 Middagh Street? Not that I’ve ever had this done by them. See:

    Ask for the owner, Mark.

  • Andrew Porter

    Illegal construction—we don’t ned no stinkin’ permits—included paint on outside, sign, possibly changed the windows on the Henry Street side of the place. Then there’s the illegal use of the back garden as a parking lot for their truck. I don’t patronize places that flout the law.

  • Andrew Porter

    Did you call 311? Or you could just… nah, not gonna suggest illegal action.

  • StudioBrooklyn

    Of course. And you can guess how helpful that was.

  • BrooklynCoffeeLover

    Van Sickel–my wife went there for our wedding last year. Pretty cheep place she says.

  • Concerned

    I have to say, 311 isn’t a joke…
    Now I dialed 311 a long time ago…
    Seriously, I have called 311 twice in the past year for a small water leak on Hicks and a construction safety violation on Henry. Both were attended to within a 24 hour period. I was pretty impressed. So get up get, get get down.

  • Roberto Gautier

    The U.S. Transportation Secretary just announced federal support for driverless or autonomous cars. Google is elated. The initiative is a bit scary because it values digital logic over human instinct and experience. On one level, the shift in thinking assumes that driverless cars are superior to human decision-making. Once put into effect, humans will once again be passive observers in their own lives. No doubt, many of us have brought this on ourselves by messing up so frequently. One thing, though, the driverless car will revolutionize our culture.

  • Banet

    Install the GlamSquad app and schedule someone to come to your house. With everything going on that morning you don’t need to go running around.

  • StudioBrooklyn

    Well, no response yesterday. I’m guessing it may have had something to do with it being a police vehicle, although its presence would have been an obstruction to large emergency response vehicles (which is why the no standing zone exists in the first place!). It’s frustrating that so many in the NYPD seem to think they’re above the law, even when the law is transparently in everyone’s interests.

  • Greg

    I don’t think it values digital logic over human instinct and experience. I think it’s an important step forward in recognizing there’s a balance, and trying to find a healthier balance than exists today.

    There’s tremendous opportunity to advance from an era when tens of thousands of people die yearly and we accept this as “just the way things are”. This alone makes this initiative deeply important, in my opinion. There’s no reason to continue to just “accept” so much violence as a day-to-day reality of our society.

    The trick, of course, is understanding when technology does a better job than humans and vice versa, and ending up with a system that brings out the best in both. Maybe it’ll follow the precedent of airplanes, which obviously are heavily automated much to the safety benefit of all.

    There are real risks here, but I’m really excited for the very real upside ahead.

  • StudioBrooklyn

    What I’ve come to understand is that a driverless car on a road full of human-operated vehicles performs very poorly and is relatively unsafe, because the fluidity of traffic patterns depends so heavily upon human intuition and decision-making. Driverless cars will be a better way to get around once they make up the vast majority of vehicles on the road, especially if this happens in conjunction with the development of clean energy sources, such as electric vehicles on a solar-powered grid with onboard battery components produced from renewable sources.

  • Roberto Gautier

    StudioBrooklyn’s comment gets to the heart of the matter: the transition to driverless cars is fraught with the obstacles of any cultural revolution. A good example is the sudden injection of many heedless, helmetless bicyclists on NYC streets without much preparation. In Holland, to take the other end of he spectrum, cyclists have a long tradition of bicycle transportation paths, well-separated from motorized vehicles. In addition, Dutch motorists understand and are harmonious with the bike culture. Sharing the road is a no-brainer for both groups. In NYC, cars and trucks often see cyclists are pests or even targets that impede the flow of traffic. In sum, it takes time to bring about culture change.
    That said, we cannot ignore the urgent need to find ways to stop the slaughter that takes place on our roads. I can’t but agree with Greg on that point.
    Finally, the integration of driverless cars and human-driven ones on the same roads represents a creative challenge.

  • Roberto Gautier

    Cheers for Van Sickel. It is a calm, helpful and friendly oasis amidst the frenzy of Brooklyn Heights. He cuts my wife’s hair. I’ve just sat there a few times and enjoyed the vibes while my wife was in the chair.

  • Andrew Porter

    I use driverless cars all the time. Well, actually, the driver is in the first car, and all the other cars are attached. They ride underground, in the subway.

    As someone who has never learned to drive, I’ve been following this topic with great interest.

  • StudioBrooklyn

    Thank you, Roberto, my sponsors and I aim to provide a high quality Comment Product.

  • StudioBrooklyn

    Congrats on your upcoming marriage and excellent taste in setting. I’ve heard good things about Boy Luv Girl at 147 Atlantic.

  • StudioBrooklyn

    Andrew, I respect your efforts to accord with those who are upstanding, but shouldn’t your last sentence contain the phrase “places that I KNOW TO flout the law”? Also, who are the victims of the illegal actions you allege, or what risks were posed by them to warrant your response?

  • Andrew Porter

    No permits from Landmarks or NYC Dept of Buildings on the windows, and when I asked them, they were totally unaware of landmarked nature of Brooklyn Heights.

    So, how are your plans coming for wrapping your building in vinyl siding?

  • StudioBrooklyn

    Not good. Christo and Jeanne-Claude seem to have copyrighted the idea ( But some mobsters who own a construction company offered to put up scaffolding and envelop the building in Tyvek sheeting, which would have a similar aesthetic. ;)

  • Heights Neighbor

    All good suggestions. Thanks! Van Sickel was my first thought but didn’t have any firsthand experience.

  • StoptheChop

    I was wondering how they got away with the bright white signage. So what happens now?

  • hungryintheheights

    In any case, the food is fresh and quite good, in contrast to most any of the other restaurants on Montague.

  • Andrew Porter

    Whenever I see a broken street light or missing traffic sign I call and the city fixes it, though sometimes it takes a long time. For a street water leak they respond within a few hours. They will also fix those clanking manhole covers!

  • Andrew Porter

    I heard you’re going with Van Sickel. You won’t be disappointed.

  • StudioBrooklyn

    This just in