Bill de Blasio and Assorted New York Children Uncomfortably Sing "I Love L.A."

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Screenshot via Hulu.
Mayor de Blasio brings shame upon our city, these children, and music itself.
At the beginning of the month, Mayor Bill de Blasio and Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti made a friendly wager: If the L.A. Kings lost the Stanley Cup to the New York Rangers, Garcetti would go on "Jimmy Kimmel Live" and perform "New York, New York." If the Kings won, de Blasio would have to sing an ode to the city of traffic jams and immobile, botulism-rich foreheads.

"Start spreading the news," de Blasio said at the time, according to the L.A. Times. "It's been over 20 years since the Stanley Cup has found its home in New York City, and we look forward to it making it's way here."

But that enormous silver spittoon was not to be ours: to no one's surprise, the Rangers lost 3-2 to the Kings on Friday, June 13. Last night, our mayor appeared via satellite on Kimmel's show to make good on the bet. It was uncomfortable.

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What Does Being LGBT (Or Wanting to Get Gay Married) Have to Do with Gambling?

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Like GLAAD promoting a telecom merger, the National Gay & Lesbian Task Force has wound up in the dubious position of weighing in on gambling, a not terribly LGBT-specific issue.

Chris Geidner at BuzzFeed has been beating down the path of a fascinating story over this past week, exploring how and why the National Gay & Lesbian Task Force has gotten involved with the issue of gambling in Maryland. His latest post reports that an anonymous source funded a gaming mailer sent to Maryland Democrats on behalf of the task force's lobbying arm.

We feel like we've been to this rodeo before. In our Voice Pride Issue feature, we asked, "What does a telecom merger have to do with fighting gay defamation?" as we reflected upon how and why the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) supported a proposed AT&T merge with T-Mobile. And now, we must ask, what does being LGBT have to do with gambling in Maryland?

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Cuomo: Looks Like Queens is Not Getting Another Casino After All

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Looks like the Governor is facing yet another monetary failure. Except, with this one, it looks like he's all in.

A few months ago, Cuomo announced that he wanted to a build a casino at the Aqueduct Racetrack in Ozone Park (the price tag: $4 billion). The 3.8-million-square-foot gambling hub, right next door to Kennedy Airport, would be like if we dropped the Jacob K. Javits Center in Queens, replacing those trade shows with a ton of table games like blackjack, craps and Texas hold-em. 

It was Cuomo's centerpiece project; his biggest bet on job creation in New York, mentioned over and over again at his State of the State in January. But, during a radio interview yesterday, he admitted that the plan will cease to exist after failed negotiations with Genting, a Malaysian-based development company. In his words, "The conversations haven't really worked out."

Well so long to that idea.

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Assemblyman Micah Kellner: Let's Bet at NYC Bars Again

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The more, the merrier. Or, in this case, the more vices, the better. At least that's what New York Assemblyman Micah Kellner thinks and just in time for the Kentucky Derby and Cinco De Mayo.

In an interview today on the radio station WCBS 880, he introduced his plan to bring back the betting kiosks of old to local drinking holes in the Big Apple. 

These terminals allowed hoppers and party-goers to legally put money down on horse races, as well as other sporting events, and were usually funded by the now-defunct Off-Track Betting Corp. (better known to us as the dark green letters, "OTB"). It was a supplement of gambling to drinking and, according to Kellner, raised $165 million a year. Now we're listening.

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Aqueduct Racetrack Sets New Horse-Death Record

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This isn't the kind of record any racetrack wants to set.

The 12th and 13th horse deaths of 2012 took place at Aqueduct on Sunday, according to the Daily News -- "more than any other year going back to 2004."

During the third round of competition, Big Polk a Dot and Almighty Silver ran their last, the paper reports.

The growing list of fatalities dates to the inner-dirt track's Nov. 30 opening. Since then, there have been 14 deaths -- "which averages to more than one a week."

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Voters Support Governor Cuomo, Casinos: Poll

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The honeymood period is apparently still going strong for Andrew Cuomo -- a survey of voters from Quinnipac University found that New Yorkers approve of the governor by a whopping ratio of 69-19.

But just because voters love Cuomo doesn't mean they're happy with politics in general -- on that topic, voters said 58-42 that they were dissatisfied with the way things were going in New York.

Perhaps most surprisingly, the poll found that New Yorkers are actually quite keen on gambling in their own state, with voters favoring the creation of casinos 54-38. Gambling in New York could take the form of an Atlantic City-style casino and hotel" at Aqueduct Race Track. Perhaps unsurprisingly, men favor gambling initiatives more than women do, reasoning that it would be good for the economy, and therefore worth the cost it would take to build such a facility.

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Strip Poker Art Project Attracts a Crowd

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Rebecca Nathanson
On Saturday morning, Art in General, an alternative art space at 79 Walker Street in Tribeca, opened a new exhibition called "I'll Raise You One..." in which a group of people sit in the gallery's storefront window space and play strip poker for all to see. The exhibition is now three days into its seven-day run, and the fascination has not begun to dwindle.

At 1 p.m. this afternoon, a crowd of more than 30 had amassed in front of the windows, spilling out into the streets as everyone tried to take pictures of the events unfolding (and undressing) inside. The space itself is a small orange room with a round table in the center. Around it sat six people -- two women, four men. One of the men was the artist, Zefrey Throwell, who has participated in the game each day; the other five were total strangers who were just there for the day.

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Seven-Day Strip Poker Game Starts Saturday in Tribeca (Don't Worry, It's Art)

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Zefrey Throwell/Art in General
Nudity, nudity, nudity. There's more of it coming your way starting on Saturday, when an art project called "I'll Raise You One..." opens at Art in General, at 79 Walker Street in Tribeca. The project, which is the creation of artist Zefrey Throwell (who will participate himself) involves seven men and women playing strip poker. Prepare for a certain contingent of folks to get angry, because the art, and nudity, will be visible from the street, with poker games running seven and a half hours a day for a week, reports DNAinfo.

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Prayer for Money Leads to Money, Rejuvenating Long Island Family's Faith in God

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If you're one of those sorts who snubs religion's "true believers," you should really take a listen to this: A Long Island man, Sal Bentivegna, prayed for his mom, Gloria, to hit the jackpot. The very next day, she won $1 million in the lottery. Hence God exists, and he likes to reward his believers with money in real life. For future lotto participants, here's how it goes. First, your wayward son should mock you for your religion. You should pray for him to accept God into his heart. The day after Easter, the two of you should head to Atlantic City, and there, you will convince him to pray for you to win a million dollars.

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Royal Wedding Betting Odds, Because Degenerate Gamblers Need Romance Too

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British bookmakers William Hill have released odds for a series of events on and around the royal wedding. They are also changing their name for the day to "William & Kate" because what are gambling addicts going to do, not gamble due to a stupid name? The list of odds includes standard offerings like "what time will Kate enter Westminster Abbey" and wacky prop bets like whether or not Prince Harry forgets the ring. More odds after the jump!

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