Amazon Hurricane Registry Organizes About $75K in Donations -- No Thanks to Amazon

A group of do-gooders have come up with a rather ingenious way to get the victims of Hurricane Sandy the supplies they need to help rebuild their communities after last week's freakish "Frankenstorm" destroyed large sections of Long Island, Staten Island, and Queens: an Amazon wedding registry for hurricane victims.

So far, the group behind the registry estimates they've gathered roughly $75,000 in supplies -- things like sleeping bags, demolition equipment, etc. -- and they've done so with precisely zero help from Amazon.

Organizers say Amazon's shipping costs -- which in some cases are hundreds of dollars -- are dissuading people from donating supplies. It would be helpful, they say, if the retail giant would waive shipping fees for people donating to the relief effort. Amazon, however, has declined.

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Fired Autistic Janitor Mel Turner Gets His Job Back (Kinda)

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Mel Turner
A man with autism who was fired from his job as a janitor at a Long Island school is probably going to get his job back following outrage directed at the school administrators who gave him the boot.

For now, school officials said Friday, 45-year-old Mel Turner is back on the payroll at the Wantagh Union Free School District, where he's been a janitor for the last five years, but isn't allowed to actually return to work until a doctor determines whether he's a safety threat -- which he isn't; he's just a nice guy who's forced to put up with teenage bullies who make fun of his disability.

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Here's The Contact Info For LI School Officials Who Fired Beloved Autistic Janitor

This is Wantagh Union Free School District Superintendent Phil D'Angelo. He fired a beloved autistic janitor over some bureaucratic BS. We've published Phil's phone number below.

A man with autism was fired from his job as a janitor at a Long Island school earlier this year after a brief outburst panicked bureaucratic school officials. Those officials decided last night to not give him his job back -- despite overwhelming calls from students and parents to do so.

Given the circumstances of the firing -- and the fact that 45-year-old Wantagh Union Free School District janitor Mel Turner seems like a hell of a guy -- we've decided that perhaps school officials could use a little (ahem) encouragement to do the right thing. So, we're publishing their email addresses and phone numbers with the hope that faithful Voice readers will bombard them with requests to stop being such by-the-book jerks about the whole thing.

See a video explanation of Turner's firing below (compliments of WABC).

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Urban Etiquette Notes, Now With Dog Poop

Sometimes it must be asked: Have we gone too far with urban etiquette missives? I mean, we live in a large city surrounded by millions of other, often annoying in some way or another, people. There's bound to be shit that happens. Yet in one neighborhood, reports Fucked in Park Slope, the shit has gone past hitting the fan and is instead being bagged, along with a kindly urban etiquette note asking the poo-creator's (a/k/a, dog's) owner to please stop letting the dog go to the bathroom in the "tree pits" and then also, to please stop just leaving the poo there.

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Naked Cowboy Robert Burck Will Marry Gay Couples in Times Square for Free on July 3

Ever-ready for publicity, the Naked Cowboy, Robert Burck, has thrown his support behind the movement for marriage equality in New York and declared July 3rd "Gay Marriage Day." To celebrate the holiday, Burck, who happens to be an ordained minister, will be performing free same-sex wedding ceremonies in Times Square all day on Sunday, July 3 -- and every July 3 that follows. Via press release, he said "I'm not a homosexual or a hypocrite, I am an American. It is hypocritical, in my opinion, for our legislature to discriminate against gays and lesbians regarding same-sex marriages. Gay & Lesbian Americans should be provided the same freedom and equal rights as heterosexuals allowing them to be legally wed if they so desire, and it should be regarded as 'moral' for anyone to be willing to commit to a monogamous relationship bound in holy matrimony." We spoke with him today to find out more.

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