The Briefly for November 20-12, 2020 – The "Rockefeller the Owl" Friday Edition
Today - Low: 47˚ High: 61˚
Clear throughout the day.
This weekend - Low: 42˚ High: 61˚
The Rockefeller Christmas Tree has arrived and holy shit, it's very sad. (Brian Kahn for Gizmodo) How sad? Crews were seen adding extra branches to the tree to make it look less 2020. (Nicholas Rice for People) The only good part about the tree is the tiny owl that hitched a ride in the tree and was rescued after being discovered. It's a good owl. (Jen Carlson for Gothamist) Rockefeller the Owl joins Central Park's Barry the barred owl as this year's hot duck. (Lisa M. Collins for NY Times) Okay, so school buildings are shut down and all learning is now remote because the city hit the 3% threshold set by the mayor, right? (Christina Veiga with contributions from Alex Zimmerman for Chalkbeat) There is currently no school reopening plan yet. (Jillian Jorgensen for NY1) But some preschools are still open. Nonprofit and private-operated pre-K can remain open, but in education department buildings, pre-K is closed. (Christina Veiga for Chalkbeat) Wednesday was a confusing day if you were paying attention to the news. In the middle of a press conference by Governor Cuomo, the mayor announced schools would close on Thursday. We are past cute with these two politicians who can't see eye-to-eye and we are at a dangerous moment if they can't get on the same page. (Emily Ngo for NY1) Meanwhile, Governor Cuomo says that if the city's positivity rate hits 3%, new restrictions will hit the city's restaurants, businesses, gyms, hair salons, and houses of worship. According to the state on Wednesday, the positivity rate was 2.5%. (Elizabeth Kim and Christoper Robbins for Gothamist) The state says the positivity rate was at 2.5% on Wednesday, the city says 3.0%. A look at why the city and state report different numbers and it's not, as Governor Cuomo put it, "a difference of opinion." (Elizabeth Kim for Gothamist) While the city is closing all school buildings, indoor dining remains open. Why? The mayor controls the closing of school buildings, the governor controls the closing of everything else. (Tanay Warerkar for Eater) There were 11,000 restaurant positions added in the city in October, and over 100,000 jobs have been regained since March. A 3.0% in the state's positivity rate could upend that progress. (Greg David for The City) "I don’t think it’s if the city is going into an orange zone, it’s a when the city’s going into an orange zone." The mayor isn't optimistic about our chances of staying under 3.0% in the state's eyes. (Noah Singer for Brooklyn Eagle) The governor announced new yellow zone micro-clusters in Mott Haven, Parkchester, and Highbridge in the Bronx, and Astoria, Jackson Heights, and Woodside in Queens. (Tanay Warerkar for Eater) A new bill from the City Council would allow restaurants to charge a 15% Covid-19 surcharge if they pay their staff a minimum wage of $15. A law last month allows restaurants to charge a 10% surcharge. (Erika Adams for Eater) The MTA says without federal support, the sky will be falling. For the MTA, the sky falling looks like a 40% cut in subway service, a 50% cut in the LIRR and MetroNorth, and cutting 9,367 jobs. (Christina Goldbaum for NY Times) The City Reliquary, a museum of city artifacts, is fighting to stay open with a new membership program. (Keira Wingate for Bklyner) Apartment Porn: I'll be honest, this might be the most jaw-dropping apartment the city has. A three-level penthouse in Billionaires' Row will be up for auction at the end of the year at 150 Central Park South. Five beds, five and a half baths, and four terraces with Central Park views. (Devin Gannon for 6sqft) A billionaire is teaming up with a real estate developer to put up a billboard in hopes to inspire New Yorkers into believing that New York isn't dead. Are you ready to be inspired by Jerry Seinfeld and Miki Naftali's billboard? (Erin Hudson for The Real Deal) Opponents of the city’s billion-dollar East Side Coastal Resilience project begun putting posters across the neighborhood calling Mayor de Blasio and Councilmember Carolina Rivera "destroyers" of East River Park. (Elie Z. Perler for Bowery Boogie) Remember the eco-yogi slumlords of Brooklyn? They're being sued by the city of New York for violating eviction law, for tenant harassment, and for construction and code violations. (Bridget Read for The Cut) Need a refresher? The Eco–Yogi Slumlords of 1214 Dean Street, Brooklyn. (Bridget Read for The Cut) The fastest places to get a COVID-19 test in NYC. (Collier Sutter for Time Out) Meet the luckiest woman in NYC. She was pushed onto the subway tracks with a train arriving at the station and survived by ducking under the train. (Jake Offenhartz for Gothamist) Photos: Inside the new glass dome atop Union Square's Tammany Hall. (Dana Schulz, Photos by Christopher Payne for 6sqft) One of my favorite things when walking around the city is to look for pieces of history that have outlived the people who built them. The New York Sun clock on Broadway between Reade and Chambers outlived two incarnations of the newspaper. Fun fact: I worked for The New York Sun during its last year from 2007 to 2008 and would pass this clock every day on my way to work. (Ephemeral New York) Earlier this week, rapper Dupree G.O.D. jumped on top of a B26 bus with a flame thrower and began... throwing flames. It was a part of filming a video for a song, but no one on the bus knew they were in a music video. He turned himself in to the NYPD on Wednesday. (Amanda Hatfield for BrooklynVegan) What to expect when you're expecting the Gowanus Canal to be cleaned up. (Kevin Duggan for Brooklyn Paper) The 15 best Brazilian restaurants in NYC. (Matt Tervooren for The Infatuation) Thanks to reader Zlata for today's photo from Central Park!