the Catholic Diocese of Brooklyn recently launched ads that speak directly to that borough’s natives in a language they understand—by referring to Jesus as “the original hipster.” The ad doesn’t explain this statement other than to suggest Jesus wore robes and was probably somewhat dirty a lot of the time—also (in a bit of clear revisionism) that he wore Converse sneakers. The point is rather that he was incredibly cool, though not seen by many as such, and certainly misunderstood in his time. There is also no record that he ever actually turned water into PBR. The ads point to the “All Faces” section of diocese’s website, showing the diversity of its worshippers.
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A Williamsburg neighborhood group is waging a war on brunch — pressuring restaurants in one of the city’s mimosa-strongholds to open later, hush their patrons, and keep their diners inside.
Community Board 1 members want the city to enforce a little-known rule prohibiting restaurants from serving diners at outdoor sidewalk cafes on Sunday mornings.
“This would keep the sidewalks open for Sunday morning walks to church,” said Community Board 1 public safety chairman Tom Burrows. “Lokal, Enid’s, and Five Leaves consistently open their sidewalk cafe hours before noon on Sundays.”
But cafe owners say they will continue to defy a regulation barring them from serving poached eggs with duck hash to hungry outdoor diners before noon rather than risk losses to their bottom line.
“This is bulls—, it’s not good,” said Lokal owner Gino Kutluca, who starts serving sidewalk patrons at 10 am. “We get 60 percent of our business on Saturday and Sundays.”
The front lines of the bloody mary battlefield is a three block area near the northern tip of McCarren Park where several restaurants operate sidewalk cafes.
The community board has already fired its first shots at Greenpoint brunch mainstay Five Leaves, which preemptively removed two sets of unsanctioned outdoor benches last weekend after a warning from the neighborhood group.
The eatery’s owners hauled away the wooden planks from their 20-seat sidewalk cafe to avoid heavy penalties after residents complained the benches draw a cacophonous crowd that lingers while waiting to order ricotta pancakes, egg sandwiches, truffle fries, and brussels sprouts beginning at 8 am.
“Do they need a threat to be good neighbors?” said Burrows, who has adopted the rule of General Patton in the board’s war on brunch. “Take reservations so there aren’t hordes standing around not moving out of the way!” [...]North Brooklyn’s brunch lovers — the foot soldiers in the conflict — vowed to continue dining in the face of a law they consider unjust.
“It doesn’t seem very relevant for city life,” said Williamsburg resident and brunch fan Jay Tate. “People in New York work a lot and if they want to be able to enjoy brunch on a Sunday, they should.”
Today, the organization American Atheists unveiled the billboards that have been stirring up controversy since first announced last week. The Williamsburg sign, which features both Hebrew and English writing, is located near the Williamsburg Bridge.
To the non-religious eye, the billboard seems controversial in its message and location, but JewishPress.com sheds new light on just how offensive the sign is to the local religious community. According to the site, not only does the billboard’s unveiling coincide with the important Jewish holiday of Purim, which begins on Wednesday, but also it contains a Hebrew word that cannot be erased. This makes trashing the billboard a sin.
“The Hasidic Jews of Williamsburg have certainly not been involved in pushing a national agenda of any kind,” writes JewishPress. “Posting an intrusive and insulting billboard in the midst of their neighborhood is nothing short of an unprovoked attack.”
Meanwhile, Dave Silverman, the president of American Atheists who ironically has a Jewish-sounding name, told CNN, “The objective is not to inflame but rather to advertise the atheist movement in the Muslim and Jewish community.”
Update: I’ve been having trouble finding a photo of the billboard. Turns out, it wasn’t unveiled on Monday as planned.
Are you a street preacher screaming through a bullhorn day-in, and day-night, but feel like you just aren’t connecting with those sully New Yorkers? Are you a subway prowler, constantly warning sleepy commuters of the impending wrath of God, but feel like nobody hears your cries? There’s good news! The reason, I would argue, is you’re being unoriginal. OK, we get it, God’s coming and he’s going to destory New York first. We’re not all that surprised. It’s time you step out of your comfort zone and try something new — like your own religion.
Thankfully, 3rd Ward’s offering a class to help you find your own spiritual path. It’s “Start a New Religion.”
In this class students will each write, design and craft a new spiritual path (as far out or traditional as desired), to be summed up and presented at the end of the course through presentations, handouts and booklets. Over the four weeks students will create hymns that can be used to exalt their beatitudes, define the tenets of their path so others will know what it’s all about, produce propaganda in order to call the willing to the Light, as well as explore the role of (read: draw/mold/create) deities in their new spiritual path.
Bob Doto’s teaching. It’s $185 for non-members, starting October 27th. Sign up now before the Gate closes its doors!