Gorgeous Crowd at Yotel Party, No Pie at The Bowery Diner

A half a dozen emails and a bunch of texts were a waste as tech problems plagued what was otherwise a stupendous party last night at Yotel. There were three DJs. I needed CDs, Roxy Cottontail, turntables, and Guy Furrow just needed a Serato hook up. I was stunned by minutes that seemed like centuries as techies fumbled with wires. My mood reflected in my set; I have to learn not to let the tech problems, the bad song requesters, and other distractions affect me. I am, after all, a professional disc jockey. Lady Starlight was scheduled as well, but a last minute bit of confusion sent her elsewhere. I caught her as she was leaving and I was arriving. She was fabulous head-to-toe and with a brilliant smile. I’m trying to reschedule to spin with her and interview her as well. Patrick Duffy put together last night’s shindig and he is just undeniable. The crowd was beautiful, fun, and dressed up.

Some old friend of mine was talking my ear off about the good ol’ days and I stopped her and pointed to the room. The crowd wasn’t living in any past. They were reveling in the present and defining the future. Nightlife is expanding in every direction, with every nook and cranny occupied by partying swells, mooks, or trannies. Nightlife is as vibrant as I can ever remember it. Sure, it’s not as druggy as those good ol’ days – although there are some who will disagree as they chase down another Molly. Yes, the creatures that go bump in the night still do bumps in the night, and heroin chic still has its lemmings. With most joints actually closing at 4am and our house party culture not as defined as LA or Miami, we are a bit tamer in the drug department. New York is still a working town, even for the unemployed. Creatures of the night often find creative ways to eat. The hotel club culture continues to lead us into this young decade. Yotel is beautiful, fun, and has a brilliant staff. They could use a techie … if you know anybody.
 
Earlier in the day, I took a meeting at The Bowery Diner, conveniently located around the corner from Elsinore, which I am designing. It is starting to look real solid and soon I’ll tell you all about it. The Bowery Diner looks amazing, has a familiar and brilliant staff, but fell way short of expectations. I read the reviews when I had a moment to see if my experience was unique, but sadly it wasn’t. I seems there are a lot of kinks to be worked out. My experience started at 4:30pm with a couple of business associates. I asked a hostess as we entered if we could sit and get some coffee and pie. We were told yes and seated in a booth. When the waitress arrived I was told that I actually could not get pie until 5pm. I thought she was kidding. I then asked for an egg cream advertised on the wall behind the counter. I was told nope, 5pm too. It seemed silly with only a few minutes between me and double happiness but she denied me both. I settled for a cup of java and a donut. It was a good donut but it didn’t scratch my pie itch. I might come back, but it seemed like they didnt really care about me all that much. The location right next to that art museum and its lovely modern retro d├Ęcor will make them a hit, I’m sure, but I left with a pie itch that can be scratched at other nearby joints.
 
The Biters, one of the bands Handsome Dick Manitoba said he was into in yesterday’s interview are playing tonight at The Bowery Electric. Friends are telling me they are just great. I can’t attend, as I am DJing my regular set of irregular music to an eclectic crowd at Hotel Chantelle tonight. There’s lots of news coming on that front and I will keep you posted.

What’s In a Name? The Elsinore Gets New Moniker Just Days Before Opening

As reported here and elsewhere, I am designing The Elsinore at 17 Stanton Street  -but is this true? Alas, I must say no. In a daring move to correct a glaring problem, the players-to-be-named-later at 17 Stanton are dropping the name and opting to go with a new one. Named after the castle Elsinore from William Shakespeare’s Hamlet, the name didn’t get the desired traction, and hours before opening, the change has been made. I am sworn to secrecy about the new brand, but personally like it a lot more. I thought The Elsinore was an awful name and found few who liked it. On three separate occasions, people heard it and declared "they’ll call it El Snore". At BINGO the other night, a nightlife operator said it was "the worst name he had ever heard." I got all defensive but a thousand "I knows" would not have lessened the feeling of emptiness I felt that something I was building would be saddled with "Elsinore".

William Shakespeare, who I will refer to here as Billy, Willy, Will, the Common Bard, or the Bard of Avon said it best with his "What’s in a name? That which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet." I double-checked the spelling of Billy’s last name and got this:
"During Shakespeare’s career as actor and dramatist, variations seemed to have had decreased considerably, and on many documents concerning Shakespeare’s land deals and theatrical company patents, the name is spelled Shakespere, although Shakspeare, Shakspere, Shackspeare, and Shakespeare also appear, often with multiple spellings occurring within the same document."
The 17 Stanton Street space, which is all blue and beautiful, will soon be known by its new name. The Elsinore will soon be forgotten, the sun, the stars, and the moon will rise and set, and the beautiful people will come and drink and be merry and embrace the change as they embrace all change. If they get a little confused or have to think about it too much, they’ll just pop another bottle. The castle Elsinore still stands in Denmark where it always has and will surely remain oblivious to the usurpers and their flock at 17 Stanton.
 
That movie Anonymous, and a whole lot of sharp people (not just internet conspiracy nuts), think Willy may not have written these plays at all. They think this dude Lord Edward de Vere may have been the real author.
 
The new name of 17 Stanton will be revealed today or tomorrow. As the Common Bard once said (maybe): "Though this be madness, yet there is method in’t." Before you go quoting Will at me with stuff like "Lord, what fools these mortals be!’ I’ll sling some Bard of Avon at you: "If you can look into the seeds of time, and say which grain will grow and which will not, speak then unto me." I agree, for "therin lies the rub" (attribute to Bill or Lord de Vere, your call). 
 
Will the new name have time to catch on as the joint opens in just a few days? Mr Shackspeare might have said "Boldness be my friend!" This is a bold move by experienced players. I heard their misgivings about the name The Elsinore and quoted Billy Bard at them: "For my part, it was Greek to me." Although something in the back of mind whispered Danish. I continued with another Williamism: "Cowards die many times before their deaths; the valiant never taste of death but once." When asked what the hell that meant, I replied, "I’m never really sure with The Bard of Avon." I dug deep into Bill and spat out, "I am not bound to please thee with my answer." And doubled-up with "Come, gentlemen, I hope we shall drink down all unkindness"… to confuse them.
 
Someone sent for some CliffsNotes and slung these Bard bows and arrows at me: "The golden age is before us, not behind us," followed by, "If to do were as easy as to know what were good to do, chapels had been churches, and poor men’s cottage princes’ palaces." I googled Will and offered "No legacy is so rich as honesty," and then quickly, "I hold the world but as the world, Gratiano; A stage where every man must play a part, And mine is a sad one." I could have taken some words of Willy and offered them in The Elsinore’s defense: "Tis better to bear the ills we have, than fly to others that we know not of." I could have tried to make them pause, delay them from this deed with some Common Bard stuff like, "There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy." I did not. I agreed with the change. I was sad to say goodbye to "The Elsinore" on some weird nostalgic level, but agree it was just a bad name. I believe that the place and the players will come out of this smelling sweeter than roses without that moniker.
 
The players weighed living with a name they didn’t love but losing some marketing steam or going with something new and grabbing some publicity (like this) to offset that. There is a lot more to this story, but my designer hat is stifling my writer hat.  I have read, indeed, my Shakspere and offer "the pattern of all patience; I will say nothing." I whipped up my Hamlet CliffsNotes and heeded the words from Act V, Scene ii: "The rest is silence."
 
Alas, poor The Elsinore – I knew him. I close with some predictable words from Lord Edward or William Shakespeare… "Good night, good night! Parting is such sweet sorrow, that I shall say good night till it be morrow."