Queens’ Best Week Ever! Katie Holmes, dead people, parking problems


      Time for another installment of Queens’ Best Week Ever! Where we go through the local papers, so you don’t have to.

      This week the Queens Gazette ran ahead of the pack with so many dazzling articles that it was hard to keep track. Whether it was the article about the Greek American Folklore Society performance organized by Chinese librarians or the 411 on all the members of the Vallone family, we were throughly entertained, so thanks.

      The Gazette tackled death not once, but twice, first with its article about the Brinckerhoff Cemetery:

      Numerous photographs made during the past several decades revealed that the original headstones began disappearing year by year. Some believe the markers fell victim to vandals who had easy access to the cemetery, which does not even feature a protective fence. Others believe the stones might have sunk into the ground.

      We think it was the ghosts.

      Another great article reminded people to love Mom before she dies, written by Walter Kanner, who passed away several years ago.

      What I wouldn’t give to have my mother back again. I would give up all I have if I could turn back the clock. If, just once more, I could take her out to dinner today. Or send her flowers. Or wish her a Happy Mother’s Day. But, I can’t. My Mom’s gone.

      Somehow these words have less meaning when the author is himself deceased.

      Astoria Civic invited the Department of Finance to defend itself at a public meeting.

      Scott Adlerberg of the city Finance Department said that traffic violations can raise tempers and blood pressure even faster than can property taxes. He urged those with tickets to “stay as calm as possible” when writing letters pleading their cases…

      Please stay calm while writing, they take your words to heart.

      In other parking news, The Forum reports that parking placard abuse is still going on and residents are not willing to take it. One resident, Robert, of Kew Gardens Road was especially irked.

      “Many of us who have vehicles spend a lot of time trying to locate parking spots that are legal. It’s really a slap in the face to see these clowns pull up and dump their cars for a few hours.” The law-abiding resident says he’s had enough of these “uncivil servants” who abuse their privileges.

      Oh no you didn’t just call them clowns.

      The Gazette goes all TMZ on us with this article about a Katie Holmes sighting on Steinway Street. And again, in a story about everyone’s favorite space shuttle:

      In a ceremony April 27, Assemblymember Michael DenDekker joined U.S. Senator Charles Schumer, Councilmember Jimmy Van Bramer and Star Trek star and screen legend Leonard Nimoy, in welcoming the retired space shuttle Enterprise to New York City.

      The paper also lets us know that a local rabbi is being honored for reaching out to an unlikely ally:

      Weisser is being honored for his interfaith outreach and his loving response to a KKK Grand Dragon that led to transformation and conversation.

      In other Jewish news, residents in Eastern Queens are not excited for annual pilgrimage of Lubavitchers to the grave site of their leader, according to AnnMarie Costella of the Queens Chronicle.

      In years past, residents have complained about blocked driveways, traffic jams, excessive trash and people urinating in the streets…

      “My job is to make sure the community doesn’t get trashed, and that people coming here for their religious observances can do what they have to do, get out, and get home as expeditiously as possible,” said Larry McClean, the district manager of Community Board 13.

      “We are not happy about it. I can tell you that,” Kelli Singleton, president of the Cambria Heights Civic Association, said of the pilgrimage. “There are going to be thousands of people sleeping here.”

      Where do they sleep? We are confused.

      The Queens Courier reports on the continuing Flushing sign controversy, where English speakers want stores to have signs in English. It is unclear who the xenophobes actually are.

      “This is America. This is our country. I’m starting to be rude, and I really am starting not to care,” Sadowsky said. “I’m not racist. I’m not against anybody coming here. But when it comes to the signage, I’m dead against it. They have to change the signs now — not next year, not next month, not next week.”


      The TimesLedger, our favorite source for weird crime stories as of late, writes about the DMV’s role in actually doing something. Apparently they have this facial recognition software that is thwarting borough criminals.

      In one of the most serious cases, the program caught a former Queens man who was on the terrorist watch returning to the country from Egypt. The man claimed he had a religious objection to being fingerprinted at the border and was let into the country, but could not hide the features of his face when he applied for his third New York license, according to McShane, who related other egregious violations.

      Our border people are so understanding.

      In another instance, a taxi driver was caught trying to apply for a new license after his other one had been suspended when he drunkenly chased someone down with his yellow cab and hit them four times

      Good stuff.

      And the best meeting of the week award goes to the Bayside BID, whose meeting is described thusly by TimesLedger reporter Phil Corso:

      There were points where so many people spoke over each other that no words were audible, while at other times one commanding voice dominated and echoed throughout the room.

      What's Happening