Or you could eat four croissants and guzzle a quart of coffee at Cannelle Patisserie

Or you could eat four croissants and guzzle a quart of coffee at Cannelle Patisserie

Hey LICsters, the 7-train is down this weekend so you’re stranded like Gilligan and the Captain.  Now if you had Ginger and Mary Ann, Continue reading


Dining Scene?  You can also cook at home with fresh vegetables from the stand at LIC Flea

Dining scene? You can also cook at home with fresh vegetables from the stand at LIC Flea, and get a pumpkin.

“Enjoy every sandwich”  Warren Zevon1

So the news desk has been getting a lot of queries from new LIC mothers regarding trick-or-treating and other local Halloween events for kids.  Fear not, because as veteran parents in the neighborhood know, everything is rolled up into one during the Annual Kids Halloween Parade along Vernon Boulevard.  Where/when/how will it occur? Continue reading

  1. Letterman asked Zevon if his condition (terminal cancer) had taught him anything about life and death. ”How much you’re supposed to enjoy every sandwich,” Zevon answered.

    Weeks later, Letterman was still struck by the reply. ”Here’s a guy looking right down the barrel of the gun,” he said. ”And if a guy wanted to indulge himself in great hyperbole in that circumstance, who wouldn’t forgive him? But that was perfect, the simplicity of that. If this guy is not a poet, who is?” []



57 extra lucky winners will reside here

Three bedrooms are in enormous demand in Long Island City now. Indicative of this is the recently announced sale of two out of three 3-bdrm units in a new townhouse conversion on 47th Road. They were available for a single day before both were gobbled up at the full asking prices of $1.77 million and $1.8 million each.

Fret not, because Continue reading



Where might this Dickensian factory reside?

The destiny of the country is determined here

The weekend is here, let’s dispense with the heavy topics of real estate and affordable housing and script a nice puff piece.  Did you know that Long Island City is home to the largest fortune cookie factory in the United States? Continue reading


There is another way...

There is another way…

So what is one to do if they don’t win or qualify for the HPS Lottery and desire housing that’s affordable?  How about trying the neighborhood right next door to LIC?  In Sunnyside one will find apartments such as this: Continue reading



Nice and tranquil here, one last look at summer.

Nice and peaceful here, one last look at summer.

As the Vernon/Jackson subway platform gets more crowded with each passing day, the question arises “At what point will it be too much?” Continue reading



Just like the line for Lotto when there's a big payday coming

Just like the line for Lotto when there’s a big payday coming

“This is the best apartment deal in NYC” 

“We hired a top-notch design team, they designed the Barclays Center.”

“These are the same buildings we build for people right across the river, for which we receive ridiculous rents” 

Frank Monterisi, SVP of Related Companies and Head of HPS Phase I


I have a saying, “The lottery is for losers.” Think of it, in a typical lottery it goes like this, two million people each pay $1, for a total of $2,000,000, so that one of them wins $1,000,000.  In other words, you put down a dollar with the expected probability of getting back 50 cents.  Hmm, not sure how Warren Buffett would feel about those returns, but I personally find the whole concept despicable, and quite frankly, un-American.

Then there is the Hunters Point South Lottery. In this game of chance they are giving away between $128,000 and $1,275,000 in cash prizes to 925 people, and the cost to play is uhh -zero, …if you qualify.  Furthermore, the odds of winning are better than 20 to 1 if you live in the Community Board 2 district, as opposed to 2,000,000 to 1.

How did we arrive at the “prize” math?1  The first thing we did was take the average rents in LIC from Modern Spaces 2Q 2014 report (see link below).  Then we compared it to the midpoint rent range for each apartment type in HPS, as provided by Related Cos.  The discounts for Moderate Income apartments ranged from 29% – 39% as compared to those paying current market rates.  The discounts for Low Income apartments were an eye-popping 78% to 85%.

Those discounts are where most reporters stop, and readers sit or stand agape.  Not LICtalk, we recognize the importance of a very valuable option embedded in getting an HPS apartment: that of not having your rent go up dramatically.  

The power of compounding is the most powerful force in the universe according to Albert Einstein, and the monetary effect of it might only be eclipsed by the psychological one.  Whether it be in your favor or not.  Thus, we took the percentage discounts cited above, and applied them to the average LIC condo sale prices also found in the Modern Spaces report2, in order to realize what that option is worth.

That is how we arrived at the cash prize values, and based on the throngs that showed up for the affordable housing powwow last night in Hunters Point, I think many others have similarly calculated this bonanza.  Trying to squeeze the SRO crowd into the auditorium was like Continue reading

  1. for a detailed version of the math, were you so inclined, email me at [email protected], and I’d be happy to oblige []
  2. the one exception being 3-bdrm sales, where we used a figure of $1.5 million based on the very recent sale of a new 3-bdrm in a walk-up in Hunters Point, off the water, and w/ no view or amenities.  My guess is that were a 3-bdrm condo hypothetically be available at HPS, it would go for between 1.5 and 2.5 million depending on the view.  What do you think? []


We built this building specifically for a newly uncovered demographic.  Those who engage in...

“We built this building specifically for a new demographic. Those who engage in…”

I really, really, really wanted to write about the menage-a-trois that a 16-year old male in Louisiana had with his 20-something and 30-something female teachers, as all these years later I still find the female teacher/male HS student combo tantalizing and questionably illegal.  The fact that there were two female teachers in the same school willing to conspire and collaborate, I’d guesstimate is probably a five-standard deviation occurrence, …maybe ten.

Sadly, I am constrained by my mandate to focus on local news, whether it is real or not, and no matter how mundane.  Sometimes though, fate intervenes and I am handed a consolation prize.  In this case Continue reading


Future home of new Hunters Point Rec Center

Future home of new Hunters Point Rec Center, and current home of the Hard Hat Cafe

This is all a dream we dreamed one afternoon long ago. 

A new recreation center is coming to Hunters Point, and will be lodged at the base of Hunters Point South (HPS) Phase 2. The 44,000-square-foot space will offer tons of amenities: two pools, including a lap pool and a rec pool with a large slide and water features, a large gymnasium for basketball, volleyball, and indoor sports clinics, a wellness center with cardiovascular and strength training equipment, large group Continue reading


Donut logjam

I brake for donuts!

This Sunday is the annual Societa Sant’Amato Di Nusco processional down and around Vernon Boulevard.1  While the members of the Societa give thanks to their patron saint back in southern Italy, my gratitude will be focused elsewhere, as this week the people of LIC have been truly blessed by the news that Continue reading

  1. it starts at 11:30am []
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