Daily Archives: June 7, 2010

The NYT will surprise its readers once again today

Yet again, the print version of the Times has another story to spring on its readers: the resignation of Helen Thomas. What? What happened? That makes what, four? five stories just this past year that the Times has ignored for days and even weeks while they swirled around the Internet, only to have to er, cough-cough – finally report on someone’s resignation. If I were a Times reader, I might wonder why I couldn’t rely on it for news reporting until after the fact.

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What happens when you remove government props from home sales

Nothing good. From reader MC, this chart from The Big Picture

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Greenwich Police to introduce online crime mapping

Chief Ridberg demonstrates new technology

At the request of the Greenwich Association of Realtors, Cos Cob, Chickahominy and Byram will be blacked out. “We’d never sell another house in those areas, people learn this”, explained Russ Pruner, GAR president.

No! Just kidding, Cos Cobber – all neighborhoods will be covered. Go on line, see who’s been doing what to whom, get a picture of that sex offender who moved in next door and is right now in your backyard, playing with your kids, and find out what, exactly he was convicted of. It will probably be a useful tool for realtors because for most areas, it should show how little serious crime there is in town. And don’t tell Fudrucker, but for a cost to Greenwich of $199 per month, I think it’s probably a cost saver because it should free up cops’ time for better things like arresting dog poop-scoop  violators rather than answering questions from nosy neighbors.

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We con the world, Part II

Pictures of beaten Israeli commandos taken by the Turks themselves.

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Well of course, but breast or glass?

Once we decide this issue we will, enshalla, invent toilet paper!

The Saudis can’t decide.

(June 5) — Women in Saudi Arabia should give their breast milk to male colleagues and acquaintances in order to avoid breaking strict Islamic law forbidding mixing between the sexes, two powerful Saudi clerics have said. They are at odds, however, over precisely how the milk should be conveyed.

fatwa issued recently about adult breast-feeding to establish “maternal relations” and preclude the possibility of sexual contact has resulted in a week’s worth of newspaper headlines in Saudi Arabia. Some have found the debate so bizarre that they’re calling for stricter regulations about how and when fatwas should be issued.

Sheikh Al Obeikan, an adviser to the royal court and consultant to the Ministry of Justice, set off a firestorm of controversy recently when he said on TV that women who come into regular contact with men who aren’t related to them ought to give them their breast milk so they will be considered relatives.

“The man should take the milk, but not directly from the breast of the woman,” Al Obeikan said, according to Gulf News. “He should drink it and then becomes a relative of the family, a fact that allows him to come in contact with the women without breaking Islam’s rules about mixing.”

Obeikan said the fatwa applied to men who live in the same house or come into contact with women on a regular basis, except for drivers.

Al Obeikan, who made the statement after being asked on TV about a 2007 fatwa issued by an Egyptian scholar about adult breast-feeding, said that the breast milk ought to be pumped out and given to men in a glass.

But his remarks were followed by an announcement by another high-profile sheik, Abi Ishaq Al Huwaini, who said that men should suckle the breast milk directly from a woman’s breast.

It’s a poser, alright.

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Realtorese

A colleague who I am sure wishes to remain anonymous because, unlike me, he has the reputation of being a genuinely nice guy, alerts me to a new listing on Station Drive described as “located in Central Greenwich”. Hmm. It is true that, through a quirk of post office routing, Station Drive is technically across the street from the Cos Cob border, but this house is also located just steps away from the Cos Cob train station. You may call that “central Greenwich”. I’d call it convenient to transportation (I-95 is overhead, too) but not, perhaps, central.

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A mid-range contract

727 Lake AvenueThis reproduction at 727 Lake Avenue was pleasing to the eye when Sally O’Brien listed it back in 2005 for $2.995. It didn’t sell, the owners yanked it and put it back on at something less than that earlier this year. They finally knocked it down to $2.395 million and have now found a buyer, presumably for something less than its asking price.

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A high-end contract

9 Pear Lane

This Belle haven house tried getting $12. 750 million a year or so ago, but no dice. It eventually dropped to $9.995, still not chump change, and has a contract today. That should encourage sellers, eh? Of course, if your house is in that price range and the buyers took this one, you lost.

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Back from the dead

10 Cat Rock Rd

This was a good house on lower Cat Rock that failed to sell at $2.950 in September ’08. It was lowered to $2.795 but still didn’t sell so its owners pulled it from the market a year ago last May. Someone must have remembered it, though, because today it sold for $2.5 million.

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We Con the World – the Flotilla Choir (bumped)

I am so fond of this video that I thought I’d bring it back from its weekend posting.

(If there are ads blocking your view of the subtitles, you can click the “X” in box in the lower right corner of the screen and send them away.)

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Who writes Greenwich Time’s headlines?

From Scuzie’s “Dish:

THE DISH: Frank Gifford, fellow NFL alumni to party in Darien

Kathie Lee and Frank: amazing how losing a fluffy puppy to a coyote will age one

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Coming your way

Arkansas’ 47,000 union members going all out to fight for their candidate. And no wonder – if anyone ever was going to need taxpayer-subsidized health care, it’s the gentleman pictured below.

Dialing for dollars at the union hall

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Oil recovery seems to be working

Up to 15,000 barrels a day, with another ship being moved in in anticipation of increasing that to 20,000. Again, not a solution but mitigation is welcome. BP expects to have a “hurricane proof” recovery system set up by the end of this week (I think) so that ‘s also reassuring. As for the relief wells, to quote a certain politician, “drill baby, drill!”.

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Helen Thomas “retires”

Forty-five years too late, but be grateful for small favors.

UPDATE: I wonder if this promise to release another video of the old bat sent her finally, blessedly, packing.

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This might do it

37 Irvine

This Old Greenwich house has been on for three years (!). It started at $2.795 and today, finally, it’s been dropped to $2.295. It’s been so long since I’ve seen this one that I can’t remember whether its new price is appropriate but it least it now falls into the price range of certain clients of mine and it’s probably worth showing.

Sellers might think that a mere $500,000 shouldn’t discourage bids but in fact buyers quickly grow tired of hearing how “insulted” sellers are when they receive a realistic offer so the buyers back off and will only come back when the seller sends some signal that he’s getting serious.

As I said, I have no idea whether this is now a good price, but the seller is heading in the right direction.

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Spec house, rental, sale

1 Butternut Hollow

This place has been offered for sale since April, 2005, beginning at $5.895 million. I believe the builder has had a few tenants in there during the five years hence but he finally sold it yesterday for $3.7 million. Assessment is $3.561.

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They’re back

348 Sound Beach Ave

 

A number of spec houses built in ’07 that were rented out when they failed to sell are coming back on the market. As far as I can tell, time has not improved their market value. 

This one on Sound Beach Avenue for instance couldn’t get $3.950 and was finally rented in July, 2008. It’s been back up for sale for a month and today was reduced to $3.399. I have no knowledge of the seller’s financial arrangements and thus don’t know whether the rent was carrying this house for the past two years, but an increase in market value has obviously not occurred.

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14 Lake Drive, Riverside

14 Lake Drive

 

I’m surprised that at $1.249, this house is still available. The owner paid a bit more than that in 2005 and did a remarkable job renovating it. Yes it’s small, but I think it makes for an excellent entry house into one of Riverside’s nicest neighborhoods for what passes as not a lot of money. For all I know, there have been offers made and rejected, but if I were a young couple with a small child or two and wanted a nifty little house within walking distance of the train, great schools and a beautiful park right in front, I’d take a run at this place.  

(The owner is another realtor whom I like very much, but who is technically my competitor. I have no financial stake in this property, and he’s never asked me to post on it; I just think it’s a good buy).

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Slowly, they’re being picked off

66 Sherwood Ave

Sixty-six Sherwood started out at $2.895 457 days ago, dropped to $1.9 and is now under contract.

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Will Linda McMahon stop at nothing for publicity?

WWF burial pit

Gladiator burial site uncovered in England.

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