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Stephin Merritt Tells East Villagers to ‘Be True to Your Bar,’ in a New Magnetic Fields Song

(Photo: Daniel Maurer)

(Photo: Daniel Maurer)

This weekend, during the course of two nights at BAM, the Magnetic Fields will preview their next album, 50 Song Memoir, before its release in March. As the title implies, the album is a year-by-year recounting of frontman Stephen Merritt’s life and times up until his 50th birthday, when he started working on the opus. According to Merritt, the lyrics are “a mix of autobiography (bedbugs, Buddhism, buggery) and documentary (hippies, Hollywood, hyperacusis).”

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These Holiday Nostalgia Trains Will Totally Sleigh You

(Photo: MTA New York City Transit / Marc Hermann)

(Photo: MTA New York City Transit / Marc Hermann)

Between the looming Metrocard fare hike and the L-pocalypse, your feelings about the MTA are probably pretty grinchy right now. But let this serve as a cheery reminder that the Transit Museum’s Nostalgia Trains are back on the rails for the holiday season. They made their debut on Saturday, as you can see from the ‘gram below, and will creak back to life December 4, 11, and 18. The train cars, which were in service from the ’30s through the ’70s, will leave from Second Avenue F stop at 10am, 11:30am, 1:00pm, 2:30pm, and 4pm on those Sundays, and make all stops to Queens Plaza.

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Live in the Domino Sugar Factory For Cheap; ‘Nasty Women’ Art Show

Police released a photo of the teenage boy who threatened to shoot or stab three people on the Lower East Side between November 14 and 17, making off with a combined $21 cash. [DNA Info]

A 79-year-old saxophonist claims his landlord planted bedbugs in his $380/month East Village apartment. [NY Post]

According to a study by the Association for Neighborhood & Housing Development, only about 40 percent of New Yorkers have three months worth of household expenses saved in case of an emergency. [DNA Info] Keep Reading »

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The Future of ’80/20′ Affordable Housing Hangs in the Balance: Can 421-A Be Fixed?

(Photo: C Ceres Merry)

(Photo: C Ceres Merry)

You may not have realized it, but the city has been in the midst of a “developocalypse” since January, when the state’s 421-a program expired. For decades, the program had fueled development by excusing building owners of property taxes for up to 25 years so long as they devoted at least 20 percent of their units to affordable housing. Earlier this month, it was announced that the stalemate that brought on the developocalpyse, or at least that’s how developers understood it, was over. As the state legislature now mulls over whether to approve the reauthorization of 421-a, City Council members are seeking ways to fix it, and make sure the program fulfills its original mission of creating affordable housing.

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Snag This Rick Ross Christmas Card at Hester Street Fair’s Holiday Market

il_570xN.900198098_hzsdThe Hester Street Fair folded up its tents last month, but this weekend it’ll pop back up near the South Street Seaport– with bells on! The folks behind the seasonal bazaar are opening their holiday market on Black Friday. Trust us, it’ll be way better than macing someone for a Nintendo Classic.

Here’s a rundown of what’ll be on offer, directly from the organizers.
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Latinx Comedy, Festival to ‘Improve the World,’ and Exposing Racist Fairy Tales

(image via The PIT)

(image via The PIT)

WEDNESDAY

Latinx
Wednesday, November 23 at The PIT Underground, 7:30 pm: $5

It seems like a sensible enough idea to ready your stomach for the inevitable large amounts of food you are going to funnel into it come Thursday. Some may do this through going to the gym or going for a brisk walk. If that’s not your style, consider stretching out the old gut with some hearty laughter at The PIT’s night of comedy by an all-Latinx (for the uninformed, a gender-neutral term for Latina/Latino) lineup. You’ll be treated to stand-up, improv, storytelling, and other ways of spinning words in a humorous fashion. Plus, the event hints at “perhaps some delicious treats.” Whether this means metaphorical treats in the form of comedy or actual snacks, it sounds like a good evening to me.

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KKK Graffiti at W’burg Housing Projects; NYU Students Shack Up With Seniors

(Photo: Daniel Maurer)

(Photo: Daniel Maurer)

Around 2am Sunday at the Lower East Side Coffee Shop on E. 14th Street, a loud Mike Pence supporter launched into racist and sexist invectives against two Chinese-American women who asked him to quiet down (and eventually threw glasses of water in his face), before he pepper sprayed a Latino man who came to their defense. [Mic News] The Pence supporter, a 56-year-old white man, was arrested for assault and harassment. [Gothamist]

Police are investigating anti-Semitic graffiti (interspersed with the words “Trump” and “KKK”) found in the public housing developments at both 85 Taylor Street and 99 Wilson Street in Williamsburg. [DNA Info]

Next year, thanks to a partnership with the Lower East Side non-profit University Settlement, NYU students will have the chance to live with local senior citizens who have space for rent, potentially slashing their room and board costs by half. [NBC NY] Keep Reading »

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Tenants Demand Cooking Gas, Say Their Landlord’s Response Is ‘Tough Turkey’

Brad Hoylman and Toledano Tenant Coalition.(Photo: Katherine Barner)

Brad Hoylman and Toledano Tenant Coalition.(Photo: Katherine Barner)

While many of us are prepping for a Thanksgiving feast, the tenants of 325 East 12th Street are stocking up on TV dinners. They won’t be able to cook a proper Thanksgiving meal in their own homes this year and haven’t been able to cook for quite a while. Their building has been without gas for over six months since demolition forced Con Ed to turn it off. With the holiday season upon them, they’re feeling the frustration more than ever.

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John Barclay of Bossa Nova Is Now Brewing Brooklyn’s Own Yerba Mate Soda

(image via White Label/ John Barclay)

(image via White Label/ John Barclay)

There’s no doubt Red Bull has staked its claim on the music industry (it just launched a web series, “Mavens,” dedicated to women in the industry), but how would you feel if we told you that things were going in the other direction, now that the music people are getting involved in the business of energized-drink making? It’s true: John Barclay of Bossa Nova Civic Club recently launched a yerba mate soda company called White Label. And the stuff ranks right up there with the energy-drink heavy hitters.

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Angry Women, Grab Your Brushes: This Art Show Wants You

(image via The Untitled Space)

(image via The Untitled Space)

If you’ve been saving up all your anger from the last two weeks and would perhaps like to slap it on a canvas in a blind rage to create art that will then be shown to the public, keep reading. Tribeca gallery The Untitled Space has put out an open call inviting women artists to submit work for a show called Angry Women, to open in mid-January. Artists are asked to “respond to the political and social climate as well as explore themes revolving around feminism today and female empowerment.”

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Tis the Season: Unsilent Night Gets Bounced By ‘Big Political Rally’

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In the past, the East Village holiday tradition known as Unsilent Night has proceeded undeterred against the red menace that is SantaCon (remember UnsilentaCon?), so it’s surprising that something would stop it in its tracks on its 25th anniversary. But this is a brave new world we live in, and the annual roving sound collage orchestrated by composer Phil Kline has announced that it has moved the date of this year’s stroll “due to a large political rally in Washington Square Park planned for the same evening.”

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