The Day | Strand Workers Reject New Contract

The Strand: Army of One, Let Art Be Your WeaponScott Lynch

Good morning, East Village.

City Room reports that unionized workers at the Strand have rejected a proposed new contract because it would’ve cut vacation days, frozen pay for a year, increased the cost of health care, and cut benefits for newer employees. The bookstore’s management says the move is to compensate for sales that have fallen roughly 5 percent over all since 2008.

Though citywide rents remained relatively high throughout the winter, an MNS report picked up by Curbed brings good news about the East Village rental market: “The biggest decreases in rents from February to March took place in the East Village, where non-doorman studios are now 6.5 percent less.”

Gothamists sees bitter irony in the fact that upscale boutique Blue and Cream is paying tribute to grungy Mars Bar via a new photo exhibit: “Because if there is one thing we can all agree on about the old girl’s clientele, it was how much they just loved the kind of people who buy and sell $220 black t-shirts!”

A bit north on the Bowery, Joe Jonas made an appearance outside of Gemma on Wednesday, “hardly ignoring the crowds of young girls snapping pictures of him on their smart phones,” according to Socialite Life.

Speaking of celebrity sightings: “30 Rock” star and East Village local Katrina Bowden talks to FHM about people stopping her in the street. “Sometimes people come up and are like, ‘Wow, you’re actually really normal! I figured you’d be just like Cerie!’ Or they’ll comment on the way I’m dressed: ‘Wow, you’re not wearing, like, a tiny outfit with colorful knee-high socks!’”

The latest development in the Gathering of the Tribes eviction case, per the Villager: “[The] East Village arts organization’s future continues to hang in the balance, following a Housing Court judge’s recent decision to hold off on a ruling that could see the bohemian hangout close after 20 years.”

Former Pulino’s chef Nate Appleman tells Grub Street how he felt about his stint at Keith McNally’s Bowery pizzeria: “I hated my life during that time, at that restaurant. I wish everything was roses at Pulino’s. But it wasn’t.” He goes on to say: “Maybe it was the person I teamed up with when I opened the restaurant, and that’s just the crowd he draws, and that was my mistake. But it exposed me to something I did not like.”

Josh Ozersky, last seen not-exactly-enjoying a bagel burger, eats balut (embryonic duck egg) with the owners of Maharlika in a video that Grub Street says is “pretty, well, foul, squelchy sound effects included.”

The Times visits Beauty Bar’s new Park Slope location and hears from Paul Devitt, the owner, that the crowd is “a little more mainstream” than the Bushwick outpost and presumably the East Village original.

Update | 5:25 p.m. An earlier version of this post mistakenly reported that the bar Blue & Gold would host the tribute to Mars Bar. The exhibit will be at Blue & Cream boutique. Obviously we spent too much time at Blue & Gold last night. The Local regrets the error.