This East Village Woman Wants to Put Your Food Waste to Work

Lara Zarum
Laura Rosenshine
Three fifth-graders bound down the back steps of Friends Seminary, a private school on the southern border of Gramercy Park, each hauling a white plastic bucket. Claire Brennan, the school's service coordinator, follows behind them, gripping a metal scale. Their destination is a bicycle-driven cart parked on E. 15th Street that holds two empty rectangular black bins fitted with bright-yellow lids.

"That's like, twelve and a half pounds," one boy says after resting his bin on the scale.

"So if the bucket weighs one pound, how much compost is that?" Brennan asks.

"Oh — eleven and a half!"

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Want to Become an NYC Sanitation Worker? If You're Lucky, It'll Only Take Seven Years

Photo credit: mugley via Compfight cc
Getting one of New York's toughest jobs is half the battle.

The race to join New York's Strongest is about to begin. The New York City Sanitation Department exam, which will be held in February 2015, is open for applicants until the end of the month.

Getting in with the crew, though, sounds like a lottery -- or some kind of Kafkaesque shit-show -- only with feats of strength.

First, you've got to be 17 and a half years old with a high school diploma to be eligible for the exam. And you'll have some competition: If 2007 -- the last time the test was administered -- was any indication, you'll be taking it with more than 30,000 other people.

If you pass the test in February, you get to take another test, one of physical strength, known as the "Superman" test, which involves lugging around 30-pound trashcans and may or may not have caused heart attacks. You're then placed on yet another list and ranked according to your overall scores. Along with the written and physical tests, you'll have to pass a medical exam and possess a commercial driver's license. And once you've done all that...keep waiting.

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Joe Lhota Has a Murky Past With the East 91st Street Marine Transfer Station

The reopening of the East 91st Street marine transfer station's a controversy a decade in the making. Sparked by Christine Quinn's "environmental racism" comment, the waste disposal spot has infiltrated the mayoral race discussion, leading candidates to pick a side on an issue that involves how we New Yorkers dispose of millions of pounds of trash every day. Republican frontrunner Joe Lhota has pledged to close it if he becomes mayor, but his reasoning is a bit misleading, given his past as Giuliani's go-to garbage defender.

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New Yorkers Think Ray Kelly Is a Great Guy, Like to Shame One Another Publicly: Poll

New Yorkers think that Ray Kelly is just swell and really like to embarrass one another, according to a new poll.

Indeed, the stats suggest that many city-dwellers are a strange bunch.

Even though Kelly appeared in an Islamophobic vid used for cop training, most New Yorkers don't think the NYPD is anti-Muslim, according to a Quinnipiac University Polling Institute Survey.

Sixty percent say that the police have acted "appropriately" in dealing with Muslims.

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NYC Trash Can That Housed Improperly Discarded NYPD Docs Found in Trash

Bucky Turco at Animal NY, who is either the most vigilant police precinct passerby (or, if you listen to NYPD spokesman Paul Browne, something of a dumpster diver) has noted on two separate occasions that the NYPD might not be discarding their police paperwork properly. In one case, the very public trash can outside of the NYPD's Manhattan South Task Force station on 42nd Street was found to include an NYPD counterterrorism plan marked "law enforcement sensitive." More recently, police documents on how to identify drunks (and how much cops can drink, themselves, on duty) were found in that very same trash. At that point, we wondered not only about the wisdom of discarding business docs in a public garbage bin as a matter of security...but also, isn't it illegal to do that? Didn't a granny just get busted, with a hundred buck fine? (She did.)

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New Yorkers Find New Dumb Thing to Complain About: Noisy Snow Plows

​It's official: New Yorkers will complain about anything snow-related. Oh, the street didn't get plowed fast enough? Complain! Slush is gross? Salt stains are annoying? Train's a few minutes late? Flight's delayed? Complain! Complain! Complain! Now the city overcompensates for its prior fuck-up by plowing your street in the middle of the night so you have pristine roads and sidewalks in the morning? Yeah, that's right: Complain!

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As Another Snowstorm Heads for NYC, City Council Flogs City Hall on Blizzard Response

Another blizzard is expected to hit New York this week as the city continues to reel from the post-Christmas snowpocalypse. City council members and agency officials spent several hours in hearings this afternoon, while the mayor's office published its first preliminary report on the clean-up disaster. Details on this week's storm and the city council's snowy inquisition after the jump.More »

Day Four: Your Blizzard Post-Mortem Roundup

Daily News
Mayor Bloomberg has promised to find out why the city's blizzard response was so crappy, but the tabloids may have beat him to the punch. The Daily News has a thorough look today at what happened, while a New York Post report accuses sanitation saboteurs of purposefully slowing down the clean-up effort. Meanwhile, the New York Times thinks the city missed its 7 a.m. deadline and is wondering, yet again: has your street been plowed yet? (Hint: If you live in Brooklyn, the answer is probably "no.") Highlights of what went wrong after the jump.

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