More Than A Trifle For Truffles

Thursday, Nov 30, 2006 4:33pm  |  COMMENTS (23)

Truffel_2Montclair’s A&P, with its new renovation, is starting to look more and more like a poor man’s Whole Foods. There’s an exotic fruit display, a new cheese counter, beautiful pastries, even the pile of roughly hewn hunks of chocolate. Now, they’ve kicked it up a notch. Taking center stage at A&P’s exotic mushroom case are small black truffles from Spain. Resembling little dirt clods or something grosser, which we won’t say, the prized truffles displayed on a bed of white rice, are capable of sending extreme foodies into a gastronomic climax. Locked in a Plexiglass container, they are also selling for a jaw-dropping $499.99 per pound (no word on whether we get a discount because of the sign’s typo.)

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I’ll Be Packing Heat For Christmas

Thursday, Nov 30, 2006 2:32pm  |  COMMENTS (88)

urbangun.jpgWe’re not sure what’s more amazing — the soldout handgun ornament making news from Urban Outfitters, or the fact that in such close proximity to Sopranoland, there are still a few left at Montclair’s Urban Outfitters. Could the timing be any worse in light of the tragedy in Queens this week? Meanwhile, if you intend to buy one, do not take the gun out of the bag until you get home.

News of the ornaments, which the company says it means as an “ironic twist” on the holidays, prompted protests this week from Men United for a Better Philadelphia. It considered the gun ornaments “inappropriate” in a city with more than 360 homicides – most by handguns – this year.
Yesterday, stores in Center City and West Philadelphia told a reporter they were out of the ornaments, but suggested calling their counterparts in Montclair, N.J., and Pittsburgh. Employees there said they each had a handful left.

As of this afternoon, the Montclair store still had a few.

Gill Says Listen To This

Thursday, Nov 30, 2006 1:07pm  |  COMMENTS (52)

Ted Mattox’s Listening Tour is still a go for December 6th, but Senator Nia Gill is NOT coming. Gill sets the record straight in a letter to the Montclair Times today…

I would like to take this opportunity to correct the misinformation in Councilman Mattox’s “Councilman Mattox schedules ‘listening night’ for community” news release. I was not invited to “Listening Night.”
As a legislator, I value constituent input on state issues and consider community participation an integral part of the democratic process. My office is active within the district responding to and making inquiry for many constituents.
I respectfully request that the inaccuracy in this article is corrected so that my attendance is not misrepresented.
The writer is senator, 34th Legislative District.

So if you were invited, would you come, Nia? And Ted, how did this whole miscommunication occur — was someone not listening?

Strahan, The Team Player

Thursday, Nov 30, 2006 11:26am  |  COMMENTS (26)

images.jpg Montclair’s bad boy of football, Giants defensive end Michael Strahan, mouthed off during a radio interview Monday on WFAN, criticizing team mate Plaxico Buress for “quittin on us”. Yesterday, he shot his mouth off again, getting into a tirade at ESPN reporter Kelly Naqi and fellow press members for reporting on his apparent feud with the wide receiver. From The Star Ledger:

“Come here, I want to see your face when you ask this question, the way you are going to ask it,” Strahan, the final bite of a peanut butter and jelly sandwich in his hand, barked at Kelly Naqi. “I know you are going to ask it in a way there is more division and more of a negative way than it was, so come here. I want to see your face, please.”
Naqi pushed her way to the front of the media pack and asked again: Had Strahan spoken to Plaxico Burress since he used the word “quit” four times to describe the receiver’s lackadaisical play on an Eli Manning interception, one of the turning points in the Giants’ 24-21 meltdown in Tennessee?
“I haven’t spoken to YOU about them. I’ve spoken to Plaxico,” he said, even though he later confirmed he hadn’t. Strahan was rolling, behaving like a bully who already had the milk money but was moving in for the wedgie.

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Strictly For The Holidays

Thursday, Nov 30, 2006 10:32am  |  COMMENTS (7)

A Christmas Carol at Bloomfield College Westminster Arts Center
Bloomfield College has Scrooge for the holidays with a musical performance of “A Christmas Carol” on Sunday, December 10 th at 1:00 pm & 3:30 pm.
Performances are at the Robert V. Van Fossan Theatre. Tickets are $10 for adults; $8 for kids. Call 73-748-9000 ext 279 to reserve tix For more info, click here. Click here for directions.
Continue reading for a whole lotta tree lighting, carol singing, and Santa sightings going on in Baristaville.

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Glen Ridge Turf Battle Heats Up

Thursday, Nov 30, 2006 8:49am  |  COMMENTS (98)

The Glen Ridge’s contentious Turf Wars will soon be decided at the polls. The borough Council voted Tuesday night to have a referendum on the two municipal bond ordinances which have divided the community. The ordinances would finance the renovation of public buildings and turf two athletice fields. Recently, a petition with more than 1,100 signatures opposing the two bonds was presented to the council. The referendum date is tentatively set for February 6th, 2007 says Mayor Carl Bergmanson.
A reader who attended the meeting reports the council vote was five in favor, one abstention. Councilman Sachs abstained, stating he would rather have separated the Hurrell field part of the municipal ordinance before it went to referendum.
The cost of a special election is estimated at $10,000 to $12,000. The proposal to turf the two athletic fields will cost over $2 million.

Taking Off The Chill

Wednesday, Nov 29, 2006 4:30pm  |  COMMENTS (5)

For the past ten years, Jersey Cares volunteers have collected, sorted and found new homes for thousands of gently used coats. These coats help the poor, the homeless, orphans, seniors and others in need survive the winter. This year’s goal for the 11th Annual Jersey Cares Coat Drive is to collect 20,000 coats. (Scarves, gloves, sweaters and other winter accessories not accepted.)
There are two coat drop off sites in Baristaville. In Bloomfield, Dr. Ronald A. Silver will be collecting gently worn coats (adults and children) in his reception area at the Bloomfield Dental Center located at 326 Broad Street in Bloomfield (across from the CVS) through December 14th. Call the office at 973-743-7575 for more information.
The Montclair Art Museum will also be collecting coats Tuesdays through Sundays, beginning Dec. 1 through Dec. 20, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information call the museum at (973) 746-5555, ext. 210 or visit the Jersey Cares website here.

Pedestrians Running Track

Wednesday, Nov 29, 2006 2:43pm  |  COMMENTS (114)

Baristanet reader Teri Festa tells us she had a not-so-merry holiday encounter with NJ Transit police yesterday at Montclair’s Walnut Street Station.
Festa was ticketed for running across the train tracks yesterday to make the 7:47 a.m. train to NYC. She says she crossed just as lights started flashing and the gate was coming down over the tracks. Then she was stopped by a transit police officer who emerged from an unmarked car. “Lady, you’re going to miss that train” he said. Festa answered “Aren’t you even going to give me a warning? I didn’t know there’s a law against it.” The officer’s responsed saying he could write the ticket as a criminal offense, but was making it a motor vehicle offense.” Huh? According to the officer, this kind of risky behavior has been a chronic problem and the transit police will be cracking down on offenders.
Festa produced ID and was cited for “improper crossing of a roadway”, which she learned from a clerk at Montclair Municipal court, carries a mandatory court appearance.
Ouch! Aren’t we all thinking…”that could’ve been me”…Bah, humbug.

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Bloomfield Redevelopment: It Ain’t Over Til It’s New

Wednesday, Nov 29, 2006 12:00pm  |  COMMENTS (53)

The buzz about Bloomfield’s eminent domain debacle is all about what a colossal waste of time and money it’s been. Yesterday’s announcement didn’t come as a surprise to attorneys at Carlin & Ward who represented shop owners fighting the threat of a property takeover. “Three judges of the appellate court upheld Judge Costello’s original ruling. We didn’t expect the Supreme Court to even consider reviewing it again” says attorney William Ward. “It’s the end of the road as far as what the town can do legally. But it will be interesting to see what this means for other store owners. Eminent domain won’t go away.”


Mayor McCarthy put a positive spin on the huge blow inflicted upon the redevelopment project. “I’m glad it’s over. We’ve been waiting for two years to get some decision. Now we have it, and we can get off the dime ” he says. “We found out eminent domain is not the way to proceed with redevelopment, so now we have to approach it differently.” McCarthy says the subcomittee and developer Forest City will meet in the next 10 days to explore other options and “tweak the plan”.
That plan is heavily dependent on the deep pockets of Forest City. McCarthy mentioned potential cash buy outs, more negotiations, and yes, even perhaps a “Stop ‘N Shop”.

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Bikes Taking Back The Streets

Wednesday, Nov 29, 2006 10:20am  |  COMMENTS (17)

Less traffic, less congestion, safer streets – got a problem with that? Jerry Fried, President of Bike Montclair recommends we all watch the clip for “Contested Streets” a new film touted on their website.

Contested Streets is a documentary that explores the rich diversity of New York City street life before the introduction of automobiles and shows how New York can follow the example of other modern cities that have reclaimed their streets as vibrant public spaces.
Contested Streets features new footage of reclaimed streets in London, Paris and Copenhagen and interviews with New York savvy notables such as Ken Jackson, Mike Wallace, Bob Kiley, Majora Carter, Kathryn Wylde, Enrique Peñalosa, James Howard Kunstler and many more.
…Support the movie by buying a copy. Show it around and spread the message.

You can watch the trailer here. Find out more about Bike Montclair’s activism and their bi-weekly family rides here.
Bike Montclair presented the town with a Bicycle and Pedestrian Action Plan in February 2005 that was funded by a NJDOT grant. So what’s being done to improve pedestrian and bike safety in Montclair? According to Joe Hartnett, it’s not getting any safer before next summer.

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I'm struck by how much attention is being paid to the details of a parking lot, as opposed to the attention paid to the future impact of the monstrous projects being planned.

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