As part of the Turkish Cultural Center Brooklyn’s (TCC Brooklyn) “Media Talks” series, the Amity School will host Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and Marine Park resident Paul Moses, who will discuss “How to Build a Career in Media,” Monday, February 4 at 3:00 p.m. The discussion will be held inside the Amity School, 3867 Shore Parkway between Brigham Street and Knapp Street, right off the Belt Parkway.
If Moses’ name rings a bell, that’s because, in the days following Superstorm Sandy, the teacher of journalism at Brooklyn College and the City University of New York Graduate School of Journalism submitted to us his first local reporting piece in decades, about hard-hit Gerritsen Beach being virtually ignored both in their recovery efforts and by much of the mainstream media.
Paul Moses, a Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter and Marine Park resident, spoke before the Madison-Marine-Homecrest Civic Association on Thursday, discussing the media’s lackluster response to Southern Brooklyn’s disaster zones in the wake of Hurricane Sandy.
“There’s been some brilliant journalism in recent days, but there was a slow start in reporting the extent of the storm’s impact,” said Moses. “I think it’s fair to say that Southern Brooklyn has gotten relatively little media attention.”
Moses said that the citywide press did some stellar reporting, exemplified by stories about the state’s and city’s role in the gas shortage, the Long Island Power Authority’s failures, and the struggles at city housing projects.
But in the first days after the storm, Moses said there were few stories that focused on Southern Brooklyn and Queens, though the press was quick to report in the immediate aftermath at locations like downtown Manhattan, Red Hook, New Jersey and Staten Island. It wasn’t until several days – and sometimes more than a week – that communities like Gerritsen Beach, Manhattan Beach and Sheepshead Bay found their way into the newspapers.
But media should have been on the scene in these neighborhoods immediately after the storm, he said, in order to convey the most important and useful information for victims and those looking to help.
“In a time of disaster, the journalist’s role is to notify the public of impending danger and to give people the vital information they need, and to tell people where the damage is, and to tell the stories of the people who’ve been affected,” said Moses. “Through what we report on, the public at large finds out where the greatest needs are after the disaster and often will respond accordingly.”
“I really found the overall coverage in the first few days disappointing,” Moses added.
A typical street scene in Sheepshead Bay. Nope, no culture here. Photo by Boris Shekhman
Here is the sort of thing that sticks in my craw, and I think it should chap the behinds of all artists, photographers, writers, restaurateurs, merchants, activists, and Southern Brooklynites, in general, who are imbued with a modicum of civic pride (as they damn well should be!).
It doesn’t take long to figure out what is so very wrong about L Magazine’s “Brooklyn Neighborhood Power Rankings.” What a hunk of rotten baloney. Okay, let me take that back, because as one of the purveyors of “news” around here, I should let all of Sheepshead Bites’ readers form their own opinions on the matter, but here are the facts (as I see them): L Magazine selected 12 neighborhoods throughout Brooklyn to give gold stars to, using a very suspect criteria “scientific approach.”
Sheepshead Bites has teamed up with Beer Saloon – the bar closest in proximity to Rasputin – to throw an impromptu premiere party. And, no, it’s not necessarily to celebrate this bit of horrific television programming – it’s more to get together, have some fun and bounce reactions off one another.
After all, why would we celebrate a show that the New York Times reviewed by saying, “If the Soviet authorities had wanted to torture Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn beyond endurance, they would have forced him to watch ‘Russian Dolls.’” Oof, that’s got to sting.
Well, good or bad, revolting or alluring – we’re packing into Beer Saloon to enjoy the show on their numerous big screen TVs.
And to help numb the pain of watching the show, Beer Saloon is offering our readers a buy-one-get-one-free draft beer special.
So come on down and raise a glass of one of Beer Saloon’s many premium draft choices as we watch the television apocalypse unfold before our eyes!
Festivities begin at 9:30 p.m. There is no cost for admission. Must be 21+.
Beer Saloon is located at 1188 Gravesend Neck Road, corner of Sheepshead Bay Road. In addition to beverages, Beer Saloon has a full dinner menu.
(FYI: Beer Saloon is a SMALL place. First come, first serve!)
Now that we’ve got our first real glimpse of Russian Dolls, the new Brighton Beach-based reality show to air on Lifetime, it was just a matter of time until the reviews came in from Russian leaders. After we published the video on Friday, Ari Kagan – whose credentials in the Russian-speaking community include a journalism career, a one-time candidacy for the State Assembly, being the current liaison to the Russian-speaking community for Comptroller Liu, and a rumored contender for Michael Nelson’s City Council seat – sent us the following note condemning the show:
There is no question in my mind that the Russian Dolls series will depict the Russian-speaking community in a distorted way, as a caricature, as a joke. Lifetime does not care about the thousands of great, beautiful, funny, smart and hard-working young Russian speaking women who attend colleges and universities, make money as paralegals, librarians, nurses, journalists and computer specialists. They are great daughters, sisters, wives and mothers. They don’t spend most of their time in nightclubs, bars or lounges. They don’t speak this dirty language and they hate vodka.
Of course, we do have our own bad apples, low lives and criminals, but they constitute a minority in the Russian speaking community. Lifetime wants to create a lot of fun and entertainment by throwing the reputation of Russian-speaking New Yorkers under the bus.
It looks like Kagan is throwing his lot in with John Lisyanskiy, who condemned the show’s title as synonymous with prostitution, and who authored a letter to Lifetime expressing concerns that the channel will be “reducing would-be contestants to vodka-drinking ethnic caricatures who ‘love attention’ and do little more than ‘eat, drink and party.’” Lisyanskiy is the founder of the Russian-Speaking American Leadership Caucus, and the letter was co-signed by 42 elected politicians and Russian-speaking activists.
We have a feeling, as the show gets closer to its August 11 premiere, Kagan won’t be the last voice we hear from.
Sheepshead Bites has snagged the first publicly-available look at Russian Dolls, the new Brighton Beach-based reality show that will air on Lifetime on August 11 at 10:30 p.m.
Lifetime says the show, which had the working title Brighton Beach, provides a “rare and entertaining look at Brighton Beach’s colorful multi-generational families whose dramas and dreams contend with their Russian heritage while living in this famous, alluring, vibrant and highly protective community.”
We’ve been asked not to give too many details about the show away – and, yes, we’ve seen full character bios and episode synopses – but we will tell you that it focuses on eight local Russian-Americans.
We’ve been receiving a lot of complaints this year about the filth left behind by crowds on our public beaches. Cigarette butts and broken glass mingle in the sand, beer cans and fast food wrappers float along the waters, and the boardwalks – oh, the boardwalks! – have almost as much garbage as people.
That is a problem, and if the city can’t afford to clean it up, they should at least be pushing a proper public awareness campaign to leave with what you came with, as some of us classier folk were taught as children. But that’s not the problem we’re talking about today when we talk about dirty beaches. We’re talking about the water, and pollution from sewage and runoff.
A new report issued last week by the Natural Resources Defense Council suggests our beachwaters are contaminated with bacteria that can cause dysentery, hepatitis and pink eye, among other gross-out conditions. The report sparks off some alarmist coverage by our colleagues over at the Brooklyn Paper and Metro, who portrayed Brooklyn’s beaches as cesspools. But things may not be as bad as they appear.
Michael and Marina Levitis, two of Russian Dolls' stars (Source: James Edstrom)
Lifetime’s newest show, the Brighton Beach-themed reality series Russian Dolls, is taking another round of flack as Russian leaders zero in on the new title, saying it’s synonymous with one of their community’s bugaboos: escort services.
But the name may be beyond the pale. “Russian Dolls” is a term frequently used to advertise Russian escort services and prostitution fronts, a detail not overlooked by the community’s leaders.
“It’s the most ugly name I’ve ever heard,” said Raisa Chernina, director of the Be Proud Foundation, a non-profit with roots in the Russian-American community. “The name speaks for itself. Russian Dolls is a very polite way of saying escorts.”
“They told me it was Russian Dolls and I said ‘My God.’ It’s like those Danielle Steel books,” Chernina added.
Time Out New York is out with it’s annual cheap eats issue, and once again, there’s no love for the restaurants of Southern Brooklyn. This Manhattan-centric rag only mentions one restaurant that barely qualifies as being in our part of the world; Di Fara Pizza (1424 Avenue J) in Midwood. Take a look…
Hecklers shouted “Pervert!” and demanded detailed information about Congressman Anthony Weiner’s genitals at this afternoon press conference, in which the beleaguered pol resigned, barring any chance of allowing a man with 26 years of public service in his wake to end the most embarrassing chapter with a modicum of dignity.
The most vocal of the hecklers was The Howard Stern Show‘s Benjy Bronk, who stood up in the middle of Weiner’s statement and demanded to know if the congressman was “fully erect” in the now infamous photos mistakenly posted to Twitter, and also demanded to know the length of his penis. Members of the press bristled at Bronk’s antics and later blamed him for spurring the congressman to leave the conference without taking questions, and police ultimately removed Bronk from the Midwood senior center where Weiner delivered his statement. Bronk’s attacks were an encore; he shouted similar comments during Weiner’s confessional press conference earlier this month.
A member of an unidentified publication also shouted “Yeah! Bye bye, pervert!” when Weiner said he was stepping down.