Monday Bulletin: Socialist Penguins, Jeffrey Toobin’s Return, Best Sandwich

Sunrise, the Reservoir in Central Park. Photo by Victor Nicolescu.

June 14, 2021 Weather: Rainy on and off, with a high of 72 degrees.

Our calendar has local and virtual events.

Early voting is underway. We didn’t cover all the races, but The City news website and Gotham Gazette have good coverage.

Protests over planned tuition raises at The Julliard School, on Broadway between 65th and 66th, resulted in students being barred from a campus building and “public safety” being called, The New York Times reported on Friday. “Students returned to the Diamond building…marching through the halls and stopping outside the door of the school’s president, Damian Woetzel…they knocked on his door, chanting: “We know you’re in there. Will you meet students’ needs and freeze tuition?” According to Rolling Stone, “The wave of protests and occupancy over the past week…has been organized by members of The Socialist Penguins, a student group, created in 2021, that is ‘working to build collective power and radical consciousness” for arts workers at Juilliard and beyond.'”

Jeffrey Toobin, who lives on the Upper West Side, returned to television as CNN’s chief legal analyst on Thursday, after an eight-month absence, following an incident that occurred during a meeting with colleagues at The New Yorker, wrote the Washington Post. “Toobin appeared on an afternoon show hosted by co-anchor Alisyn Camerota after a long absence from public view that began in October, when reported that he had been seen inappropriately touching himself during a Zoom video call with colleagues at the New Yorker, where he had worked as a staff writer since the 1990s. Toobin apologized at the time for what he called “an embarrassingly stupid mistake, believing I was off-camera.”

Fifteen photographers under the age of 25, including students from LaGuardia High School on West 65th Street, were enlisted by The New York Times to document the reawakening of New York City after the pandemic, “through young eyes,” for the cover story of this week’s Magazine. “’We wanted to tap into the youth culture in the city,’ Kristen Geisler, lead photo editor on the project, said. ‘Teens and adolescents were so affected by the pandemic and will be over the next year.’ They headed to Little Island’s grand opening, Mother’s Day brunch at the Rainbow Room…to proms, protests and block parties. They even captured a woman meeting her great-grandchild for the first time….”

The pandemic roiled the New York City real estate market. Word was that people were moving out in droves, but The New York Times points out that they were also moving back, to, and within the city — many of them realizing their dreams of living in Manhattan, because of lower rents. “Douglas Lucas, 32, and his partner, Michael Walters, 49…left behind a house in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. to move into a 700-square-foot one-bedroom on the Upper West Side…’We knew the vaccine was coming out and that rents would start to go back up,” Mr. Lucas said. The surprise was that they could afford the Upper West Side. And not only the Upper West Side, but a doorman building with an elevator, for $2,100 a month.”

On Sunday, sixth graders from Booker T. Washington Middle School raised a record (for them) $330 at a bake sale to benefit the West Side Campaign Against Hunger, held on 96th Street and CPW. “It was fun to bond with people over something that was a good cause, especially because we don’t get to see each other in person so often,” said Sophia Conijeski. “Also, I was not expecting us to raise so much money!” “It feels very good to be able to make a difference and have fun at the same time,” added Naomi Redlener.

Finally, there’s another “hidden gem” in the neighborhood in the form of a sandwich, says Robert Sietsema in his 11 Sandwiches that I Liked Best column in Eater: Lamb Shawarma at Sido Falafel & More. “Sido makes superior shawarma on its home turf of Columbus Avenue on the Upper West Side. Tahini, raucous raw onions, just-ripe tomatoes, and greenery fill out the pita, and the slightly gamy taste of its wonderful lamb shawarma is always front and center in this $10 bargain. 267 Columbus Avenue, between 72nd and 73rd, Upper West Side.

Addendum: The rushing writer stopped scrolling at the first UWS-sandwich mention, assuming no one neighborhood would have two. In fact, the #1 sandwich on Mr. Sietsema’s list is also from the UWS: “Potato Croquette Sando at Curry Mania…the perfect sandwich, an arrow of raw carb energy shot straight to the musculature…pure pleasure, and you’ll get up and run a mile after you eat it. 267 Amsterdam Avenue, between 72nd and 73rd streets, Upper West Side.

Also, is anyone else noticing long train waits?

NEWS | 16 comments | permalink
    1. Mark Moore says:

      The top sandwich on that list is also in the neighborhood.

      • WSR says:

        Mark, thank you. See above.

      • Jay says:

        Mark Moore,

        Only sort of is Curry Mania a sandwich shop.

        It’s a stand (“pop up”) within a tiny noodle shop.

        Whereas Sido has been there (not temporarily inside another restaurant) for decades.

    2. Paul says:


      Excuse me, but doesn’t the sun rise over the UES and set over us?

      • WSR says:

        That’s the Reservoir in Central Park. Added caption.

      • david says:

        Just because you live in an area with the word ‘west’ in it, doesn’t mean you can’t look east.

        The more you know…

      • Boris says:

        All right, now the sun sets in the East, right?

        No! The sun sets in the West.

        That’s if your *in* the East, but we are way out West now, so we are past where the sun sets.

        You can’t be *past* where the sun sets, and if you think you can, then I am directly South of an idiot!

        Which is down!


        – City Slickers 2

      • Juan says:

        Is this the little girl I carried?
        Is this the little boy at play?
        I don’t remember growing older
        When did they?
        When did she get to be a beauty?
        When did he grow to be so tall?
        Wasn’t it yesterday
        When they were small?
        Sunrise, sunset
        Sunrise, sunset
        Swiftly flow the days

    3. EdNY says:

      I ride the subway frequently and have not noticed any major changes in service frequency. In my experience, the BC and D tend to have longer headways than other lines. What’s pictured above almost certainly reflects some kind of service disruption. The “B” rush hour headways are generally 10 minutes on average (not great, but that’s another story).

    4. Christine E says:

      Sido has great tabouli too! Can’t wait to try the lamb shawarma.

    5. lauren says:

      Longer train waits YES! I am an essential worker and have therefore been working outside the home since the beginning of the pandemic. For months, I was amazed and pleased that train service was, if anything, better than before. But in the past 2 weeks or so, the B/C line has become terrible. Waits of 12-15 minutes between trains are not rare and 8 – 10 minutes has become the norm. Does anyone know what is going on?

      • EdNY says:

        Unfortunately, 8-10 minutes is consistent with the schedules for those lines, even in rush hours.

    6. Jim Cash says:

      I could only watch a minute or two of that Too in interview. It was a crystallization of much that is wrong with media.

    7. ben says:

      The wait for the B/C trains has been ridiculously long since the MTA cut service on the C. I’ve been taking the subway to and from work since returning about a year ago now and C is still nowhere close to being back at what it used to be, despite MTA’s promise to restore frequency.

    8. babrarus says:

      Toobin’s return from the “incident” was indeed very touching.

    9. nemo paradise says:

      You can almost hear the national sigh of relief now that Toobin has been restored to the airwaves. Now everyone can just forget about his little mistake, and try to keep a straight face when he starts talking.