One of the saddest architectural sights on the blocks near San Francisco’s Civic Center is the backside of 1455 Market Street . The ground floor is coated in speckled beige concrete that looks as if it was patterned by pushing giant egg cartons into wet cement. The walls above are the same concrete, but here the facade shifts to a ribbed corduroy finish that’s not necessarily an improvement. The stubby, 16-story tower atop the five-story base has a certain blunt rigor. The scene along Market Street does its best to be inviting, no easy task within two blocks of misery-filled United Nations Plaza. Overall, though, it’s hard to imagine why anyone would want to work here — and no surprise that the tech firms that briefly made this a coveted address have packed or are packing their bags. Once again in San Francisco, as in all cities, the underlying power of place is reasserting itself. Or to put it in real estate terms: location, location, location. I visited 1455 Market … [Read more...] about From tech hub to empty husk: How S.F. building shows city’s latest cycle of boom to bust
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$20,000 Pants … and Other Adventures in Men’s Luxury Resale!
In a floor-through loft in SoHo one Friday night in January, Vincent Ferraro was selling luxury clothing. Sort of. On one side of the room, a tattoo artist covered a young woman’s palm in an illustration of a bankroll. Some people flipped casually through the racks of Chrome Hearts and Enfants Riches Déprimés, but Mr. Ferraro — sinewy, with a shaved head and covered in tattoos — didn’t pay them much mind. Instead, he poured shots of Patrón, posed for Instagram photos and occasionally disappeared with one of the several women who had come to vie for his attention. On the men’s resale clothing site Grailed, Mr. Ferraro, who before the pandemic worked in nightlife, most recently as general manager and creative director of Rose Bar at the Gramercy Park Hotel, sells under the handle 4GSELLER , and in the last couple of years, has become the go-to for rare Chrome Hearts, recent-season Louis Vuitton statement pieces and thrashed vintage dirtbag T-shirts, building a business that he says … [Read more...] about $20,000 Pants … and Other Adventures in Men’s Luxury Resale!
Fuzzy Haskins, Who Helped Turn Doo-Wop Into P-Funk, Dies at 81
Fuzzy Haskins, a foundational member of the vocal group that morphed into Parliament-Funkadelic , the genre-blurring collective led by George Clinton that shook up the pop music world in the 1970s, died on March 16 in Grosse Pointe Woods, Mich. He was 81. His son Nowell Scott said the cause was health problems complicated by diabetes. Mr. Haskins, one of Parliament-Funkadelic’s vocalists and songwriters, was a distinctive presence onstage during the group’s propulsive performances, often wearing tight long johns and sometimes suggestively straddling the microphone. “Fuzzy was always able to capture your attention,” Mr. Scott said by email, “rhythmically gyrating the audience into a deeper consciousness where night after night they were forced to consider if they were really getting it on.” Mr. Haskins was living in Edison, N.J., and was in his last year of high school and singing in a vocal group when he met Mr. Clinton, who had a barbershop in nearby Plainfield and his own … [Read more...] about Fuzzy Haskins, Who Helped Turn Doo-Wop Into P-Funk, Dies at 81
Who Fears a Free Mikhail Khodorkovsky?
Mikhail Khodorkovsky, once his country’s richest man, has resided in “gulag lite,” as he calls the Russian penal system under Vladimir Putin, for six years. Since the spring, on most working days he is roused at 6:45 in the morning, surrounded by guards and packed into an armored van for the drive to court. For two hours each way, the man who once supplied 2 percent of the world’s oil crouches in a steel cage measuring 47 by 31 by 20 inches. Convicted of tax evasion and fraud in 2005, Khodorkovsky now faces a fresh set of charges that add up to the supposed theft of $30 billion. In the dark of the van, Khodorkovsky tries to prepare for his trial, replaying in his mind his night reading, the daily stack of documents from his lawyers. But Russia’s most famous prisoner worries too about what would happen if a car slammed into the van. (Collisions are routine in Moscow’s clotted avenues.) “Your chances of making it out alive,” he wrote me one day this summer, “at any speed, are next to … [Read more...] about Who Fears a Free Mikhail Khodorkovsky?