2001-09-08 / Columnists

Boyle-ing Points by Kevin Boyle

Just a couple of weeks ago Little League sensation Danny Almonte looked like the next Sandy Koufax. Now, thanks to a phony birth certificate and evidence of hooky, he looks like the next Lew Simon.

See, a couple years back Lew Simon threatened to sue The Wave because Howie Schwach questioned his teaching credentials. Lew was looking to tutor young students and put out advertisements and posters citing his certified teaching status. Well, long story, short; fat story, thin. Lew was proved a phony.

See, Shameless Lew had the, uh, gumption to show up at The Wave with a teacher’s certificate bearing his name. Problem was, it was no more legitimate than that birth certificate filed in the Dominican Republic this year by Danny Almonte’s father. (And at least that one fooled some people). In Lew’s case, I think his fingers still flaked with White-out

as he threatened Howie and Wave publisher, Leon Locke, with a lawsuit. If my mind serves me right, the White-out hadn’t completely dried on Lew’s certificate and it stuck like glue to the photocopy machine.

Besides doctored documents, there’s another similarity between Danny Almonte and the leading contender for this district’s council seat. Danny and Lew apparently share a distaste for sitting in a classroom. See, Danny played hooky and made claims about attending school in the Bronx. And Lew? Well, Lew played hooky and furnished a resume which claimed he had obtained a B.A. from Brooklyn College and a Master’s from Adelphi University. He had done neither.

But look, even when Lew was caught, he didn’t pause. He didn’t hide; he just got louder. And now it feels worse than root canal to say, but he’s got a chance to win this Tuesday.

Moral of the story? Danny Almonte, forget baseball. Pick up a bullhorn, charter some buses to Atlantic City, take credit for everything good, be rude and insensitive and go into politics.

But don’t think Lew has to be your only role model. Little League shenanigans sure helped another one of our heroes, Al Stabile.

***I asked my mother who she was going to vote for in the primary this Tuesday. She said it depends on what you mean by vote. She just wouldn’t give me a straight answer. Frankly, I can’t believe a word the woman says anyway: she’s got the same kind of haircut as Gary Condit.

***I hate to give Chris Jorge the whammy, the kiss of death, the heebie-jeebies, and

the sure-fire hex because I’m the one who picked Custer to win at Little Big Horn but

I like her chances and hope every voter in Rockaway makes her the choice on Primary Tuesday. I can’t vote for Lew because he gives me the creeps. There’s nothing more elaborate or specific than that. I’m not particularly well-informed on many issues but I always follow a simple rule: don’t vote for a guy if he gives you the creeps.

The Queens Democratic party must get the creeps, too. He’s a District Leader and still they don’t back him? What does that tell you?

I like Joe Addabbo enough. Good, smart guy who would be a helluva lot better than Big Al ever was. But I think Chris Jorge is smart and tenacious and it’s time we tried sending one of Rockaway’s own to the Council. We hear the mainlanders preach unity and concern for Rockaway but that’s a tired song. Chris is capable and is informed---and surely somebody who we could be proud of. She won’t embarrass Rockaway ---she’ll make it shine. We finally have a good, legitimate person running from Rockaway for the City Council---she should get the vote. And every Rockaway vote will count. We always say we want someone to truly represent Rockaway---well, there’s no excuse to vote for a mainlander this time. Democrats have a good, homegrown choice.

***Keep an eye on the rug. Insiders say the tortoise in the mayoral primary, Peter Vallone, will grab enough of the vote to force a run-off. By the way, Vallone’s hairpiece is far more convincing than the teacher’s certificate Lew Simon brought to The Wave.

***I just heard Gateway is going to turn one Flatbush avenue hangar into public housing and another will be used as a juvenile house of detention. And there’s speculation that they’ll be leasing one of the Little League fields at Fort Tilden to LIPA for a toxic soil dump. With the money from such rentals Gateway will be able to improve its fencing for piping plovers. And perhaps provide down pillows as well.

***I’ve found it strange that the Neponsit Homeowners Association hasn’t made a stink as the neighborhood slowly turns into a cemetery. Those are mausoleums being built, aren’t they? For crying out loud, even the bungalows are being encased in stone---and they’ve got peeing statues on the lawn. (Those statues give me a complex). As the judge said, I can’t define it but I know tacky when I see it.

***Anyone else notice the similarities of tone and style between Beverly Baxter and the New York Post’s Victoria Gotti?

***We don’t expect much from Gateway but you think now that they’ve put the impound lot on hold they might convince the concessionaire at the miniature golf course to change a hole or two? It’s only been the same course for 20 years. And how ‘bout some new equipment at the batting cages and driving range. A touch of paint here or there. Then again, maybe the concessionaires are doing what Gateway officials want. They let the place fall to seed and then it fits in better with the rest of Gateway. Gateway officials are big on themes.

***The regular editors at the NY Times must’ve been away for Labor Day because somehow a positive piece found its way into the paper of record. The writer, Field Maloney (I don’t make these kind of names up), works for The New Yorker and he and some friends rented a bungalow for the summer. It captured the spirit of Rockaway without the predictable, dampening condescension we usually get. My favorite line was delivered by a Rockaway denizen who told the writer the beach is marked, to an extent, by ethnicities. "If you see little kids in their underwear you’re at the Puerto Rican beach. If you see grown men in their underwear, you’re at the Russian beach." Mr. Maloney showed he’s a good writer: he let a local to nail the beach scene.

Someone warned Mr. Maloney’s not to turn Rockaway in "another Williamsburg" (i.e., an ultra-hip place for artists who’ll never afford Manhattan). We can only hope. Here’s hoping if Mr. Maloney can’t transform parts of Rockaway, the Rockaway Artists Alliance will.

Anyway, Mr. Maloney concluded the piece by saying he and his friends were extending the lease for a couple more months. Say no more.


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