New York City Comptroller John Liu again made a visit to our neighborhood, this time to speak before Community Board 15 on Tuesday about budget issues, fiscal efficiency and to hear out neighborhood concerns about city spending. In doing so, the visibly exhausted comptroller took a shot at dispelling popular myths about public pension plans and pension padding, among other topics.

“It’s not an easy time to be the CFO of anything, let alone the City of New York,” the comptroller said. “My priorities have been to find the waste – and there still is a fair amount of waste in city government – and root out the fraud and abuse that unfortunately has continued to occur in some quarters,” returning that money to be used towards important government programs.

Keep reading for highlights from Liu’s appearance.

It looks like we weren’t the only ones disappointed with State Senator Marty Golden’s attempt to take away what little marriage rights gay couples have in New York State. His attempt to halt the state’s practice of recognizing out-of-state gay marriages is bringing ire from residents, seizing on the pol’s claim that constituents “don’t give a rat’s ass about social issues.”

So they’re protesting in front of his office.

An anonymous blog titled “What Senator Golden Says” is promoting a rally for gay rights in front of Golden’s office (7408 5th Avenue) on Monday, June 6 at 6:30 p.m. According to the site:

Not only does Senator Golden vehemently oppose marriage equality, he now wants to TAKE AWAY RIGHTS WE CURRENTLY HAVE and stop New York State from recognizing same-sex marriages that were performed outside of New York.

Golden boldly told reporters that the people in his district “don’t give a rat’s ass about social issues.”

Come down and let him know how you feel!!

The protest apparently has the support of a number of local Democratic clubs, including Bay Ridge Democrats, Central Brooklyn Independent Democrats, Lambda Independent Democrats and the New Kings Democrats. Notably absent from the list? Sheepshead Bay’s only two local clubs: Kings Highway Democrats and Thomas Jefferson Democratic Club. The former endorsed Golden back in 2002. The latter is State Senator Carl Kruger’s club, the only other Brooklyn state senator that voted against gay rights.

Oh, shoot. Did I just post this? Whoa, dude, this was totally an accident. I didn’t mean to.

Maybe Robert posted it. You posted it, didn’t you Robert? No? Well, your account must have been hacked and the hacker posted it.

Regardless, I can’t say with certitude whether or not I’m going to end up eating the hot dog for lunch. Waste not, want not – am I right?

Oh well. Embarrassing photos happen to the best of us. Let’s get back to real news now, please.

Welcome back to The Bite, Sheepshead Bites’ weekly column where we explore the foodstuffs of Sheepshead Bay. Each week we check out a different offering from one of the many restaurants, delis, food carts, bakeries, butchers, fish mongers, or grocers in our neighborhood. If it’s edible, we’ll take a bite.

Ever have an “Angry Lobster?” No, me either. As a man, I didn’t think I could experience an angry lobster. I’ve given a few in my time and liked it, so when I saw that Celemente’s Maryland Crab House had “angry lobster roll” on the menu, I knew I had to give it a try.

Lobster rolls are standard New England fare. In New England, a traditional lobster roll contains the cooked meat of a steamed lobster which is cut into chunks and tossed with just enough Hellman’s mayonnaise to hold it together. Traditionally it is served stuffed into a side-split, lightly toasted and buttered, white bread hot dog roll.

To the best of my knowledge, and after a cursory internet search, there seems to be no culinary definition of an “angry lobster.” Acclaimed Chef David Burke has a recipe for an angry lobster that cuts a whole live lobster into pieces and cooks it in hot spices and flavored oils. The crown prince of New England’s culinary world, Jasper White, has a very similar angry lobster recipe in his repertoire. Apart from that, it’s a crap shoot.

To add to the confusion, many sushi restaurants around here serve an “angry lobster roll” which usually consists of some sort of tempura, topped with lobster salad and caviar. Full disclosure here, I don’t eat at sushi restaurants.  I’ve never taken part in a Japanese angry lobster. Wait a minute – I have, but that’s a story for a much different website.

Clemente’s Angry Lobster Roll is none of that. After all – this is a Maryland Crab House, not New England and certainly not sushi.

More on Clemente’s Maryland Crab House’s Angry Lobster Roll.

Hangar B at Floyd Bennett Field

I am of the mind that the hipster ethos, particularly with regard to music and fashion, is simply too avant-garde for me to figure out, particularly as it relates to a concert series in our area… but I shall take a crack at it, for all of you, followed by a long hot shower, because I simply don’t trust where these people have been.

Apparently there is some promoting entity called Jelly NYC and they do, or did, a concert series in Williamsburg — the “Jelly NYC Williamsburg Waterfront parties,” which used to be held in McCarren Park (I think that might be their equivalent to our Marine Park), although, when you go to their [intentionally?] minimalist website, in tiny print all that is stated on the home page is that Jelly, a “full service creative agency based in Brooklyn, New York,” is Paper Magazine’s “Promoter of the Year 2010.” Woo.

In addition to a “contact us” link, a separate follow-through link takes you to a tumblr. page, which hosts a random smattering of abstract images and videos, which do not appear to have anything to do with one another. Check it out — see for yourself. I don’t really get it, but perhaps I am just not cool enough to understand nuance.

So now, Brooklyn365 (whose website is, thankfully, more coherent than Jelly’s, because navigating through the Hipsterverse is like trying to surf the cosmos using a map written in Mandarin) is reporting that Jelly NYC will be holding a concert series in Floyd Bennett Field called “Rock Beach” — the Jelly NYC “Rock Beach” site, indeed, listed a comprehensive playlist with bands and exact dates beginning July 9 — except they later reported that “The Rock Beach’s World Wide Website has now been taken down, as it was actually not meant for public consumption.”

Read it as many times as you need, because I am not drawing a flow chart. Jelly NYC no longer handles the Williamsburg Waterfront parties > Jelly NYC was going to handle something called Rock Beach > Now we don’t know if Jelly NYC will handle Rock Beach, or anything for that matter, because their website is reporting bupkes.

If anyone could shed greater light on this conundrum, feel free to share your thoughts in the comments. Trying to write about our borough’s outdoor concert series[es], replete with soap opera-like story arcs, is not unlike being on that trippy boat ride through Wonka-land.

 

Photo by nolastname.

Smokers’ rights advocates gathered on the Brighton Beach section of the Riegelmann Boardwalk on Saturday to protest the city’s latest smoking ban, affecting parks, beaches, boardwalks, marinas and other Parks Department-owned properties.

“It’s just another day at the beach, friends getting together, in the great outdoors where it can’t possibly hurt anyone,” said Audrey Silk, the founder of Citizens Lobbying Against Smoker Harassment (C.L.A.S.H.), which organized the smoke-in.

Officials “have lied to everybody. There’s absolutely no scientific evidence that smoking outdoors is hurting anyone,” she said. “The one study they hold up gives you the half truth … the author of that study said that if you’re six feet away from a smoker, or upwind, your exposure is zero. [Legislators] have preferred to rescind our civil liberties rather than walk away. What a tyranny we’re living under now.”

About 20 people came from as far as the Bronx to protest the ban by lighting up on the boardwalk in front of news crews, but no police or Parks Enforcement patrols came to enforce the ban. That’s not to say the event went off without a snag, though. A small group of 16-year-olds was already at the location smoking cigarettes when the protesters arrived. C.L.A.S.H. asked them not to join the protest, to no avail.

Silk, a Manhattan Beach native, said she chose to hold her protest in Brooklyn because it has a “completely different attitude” than Manhattan, which fails to represent them, and she chose Brighton Beach in particular because of a Daily News letter-to-the-editor from a Russian resident who, in reference to the smoking ban, said she escaped persecution in the Soviet Union to enjoy such freedoms. Another protester, Anthony Bianco, claimed that Brighton Beach has the largest number of smokers per capita in all of New York City.

“Hey Ned, when are you going to start a site to cover Bensonhurst?” Today! Check out Bensonhurst Bean: Bensonhurst’s Premiere News Blog.

Believe it or not, we got asked that question a lot. Many of our readers live there, following Sheepshead Bites because it’s the closest place they can turn to for online coverage of things going on in the region. Bensonhurst is a hugely diverse and populous neighborhood so totally under-reported and under-represented by media - with almost no coverage in the city press and only one weekly paper with small circulation – Bensonhurst and the surrounding areas need news just like Sheepshead Bay did before we launched Sheepshead Bites.

We’re proud to introduce Bensonhurst Bean, our first expansion into another neighborhood.

Bensonhurst Bean will follow a similar blend of original reporting and features, reader contributions and cultivated online content that Sheepshead Bites is now known for. But it’ll have a uniquely Bensonhurst voice, led by our resident blogger Joe Teutonico (and with contributions from BKSouthie.com’s Brian Hedden). Joe, Brian and a handful of other contributors will be exploring all the issues relevant to Bensonhurst residents, from politics and news to crime, business and real estate. This is a community steeped in history, and full of complex, colorful characters. It’s of similar size and demographics as Sheepshead Bay, and faces similar issues of development, congestion and challenges to small businesses, but has its own unique twists that we will flesh out and explore in our coverage.

It’s a truly proud moment for us to announce this launch, and we hope you’ll show your support by following the Bean on Facebook, Twitter and by e-mail (and don’t forget to share it with your friends!)

The Cymbro-Mobile — coming soon to a library near you!

If you are a constituent of Assemblyman Steven Cymbrowitz’s, and hiking over to his community office in Sheepshead Bay is a bit too much of a schlep for you, fret no more, as the Southern Brooklyn pol’s mobile community office will spend a couple of hours, from 2:00 to 4:00 p.m., June 3 at the Midwood branch of the Brooklyn Public Library, 975 East 16th Street.

At press time, we do not have word if Cymbrowitz, hisownself, will be in the Cymbro-Mobile, but we do have it on good authority that members of his staff will be on hand inside the unit, happy to talk with local residents about any concerns and/or issues they may wish to discuss. According to his press spokesperson, Oswalt Heyman, the assemblyman “tries to get to the mobile district office as often as his schedule allows.”

Stay tuned, friends — the intrepid assemblyman’s mobile community office may soon be visiting your neighborhood next, and when it does, you can count on Sheepshead Bites to bring it to you first.

For more, call (718) 743-4078.

It has been almost a year since we announced that an unnamed “beer garden” would be opening up in the basement of the commercial building at 30 Dooley Street, but we’ve just discovered that it will be the latest outpost of the locally-owned Draft Barn.

Find out more about the Sheepshead Bay Draft Barn, and view more photos of the interior.