The Thing That Wouldn’t Leave…. Dealing With Guests that Don’t Take Hints!

It’s about a week to go till all hell breaks loose here in the Hamptons.    We’re of course talking about the official beginning of the summer season.   So while we trumpet the return of warm weather,  the traffic jams and Lyme disease there’s also something else on the horizon.   As anyone who lives on the east end can tell you….. it’s the return of the house guests!

Now, I know that my house is definitely much more fun now that ice has finally melted on the driveway.     So, it comes as no surprise to me that the casual requests for weekend visits increase ten fold when the mercury starts rising.

While I love the guests there are times when having visitors can become a scene more frightening than a Steven Segall movie marathon!     In fact it reminds me of the old Saturday Night Live skit (back when it was funny) of “The Thing That Wouldn’t Leave” (see the video below).     So, what do you do with guests that really believe “mi casa is su casa?”

Can you get them to leave with out being insulting?   Of course you can and I’m here to tell you how to do it!   It’s a simple three phase tactic that Martha Stewart would love and yet you’ll still have them running for the doors.  You might even get a thank you note later too!

The Thing Wouldn’t Leave from AFTRS Radio on Vimeo.

Phase 1:  Internet Interception – It’s a fast paced world and one would think that when visiting one of the most beautiful locations on earth, visitors here would actually enjoy shutting the world off!   HA!  Right!   In the Hamptons where dinner tables are silent only because everyone is texting someone else more interesting at another table, staying in touch is like air to breathe.    So what better way to give a guest a gentle nudge then to cutting off their connection to the world in addition to severing them from Netflix and sending their “House of Cards” addiction into a tailspin…. unplug the wifi router!    The fear of actually having to carry a conversation is often all you need to get your life back again and send your guest fleeing.  By the way, if my sister is reading this it actually did go down when you were here last time!  I swear!

The breakfast of chumps!

Phase 2: The Morning Jolt –  They say breakfast is the most important meal of the day.   So what better way to suck the energy out of the overly intrusive guest then starting their day on the wrong foot!  Here’s how you do it!  You hide the Keurig, the Starbucks and the bagels and instead replace them with something terrifying;   Instant coffee, generic cereal and tang!    Nothing says you couldn’t care less than spending less!     After day one of having to run to town to actually get something potable and edible your guest will be dreaming of a blanket in Sheep Meadow!   “Trust me guys, Toasted Oats are actually better tasting than Cheerios!  Really!”

Yes, they’ll have a headache and you’ll get rid of one!

Phase 3: The Cold Shoulders – After a day of Soulcycle, beach combing and a walk down Ralph Lauren Boulevard….errrr… I mean Main St. East Hampton,  there is nothing more refreshing than a hot relaxing shower.   So what’s a guest going to do when the hot water runs out before they have a chance to freshen up!   But alas you won’t have to fib to your guest about a faulty hot water heater, you’ll merely tell them it’s part of your fitness routine…. you know using the cold to burn fat!     Think about this way, you’re also helping them prevent their skin from drying out and invigorating their day since they didn’t have any coffee that morning!     It’s the alternative to Canyon Ranch and the only cost is you leave the house a day early!

In summary, this blog was done in the name of helping OTHERS.   All of the guest in my house are welcome to stay as long as they want… family is welcome to stay the entire month of July….. and guests of guests of relatives of guests are also welcome!  ANYTIME!

MY FINAL THOUGHT OF TODAY:  I see they’re advertising a “new” production of Les Miserables on Broadway.    I was wondering do you get a choice of fish or chicken with this production?!

It’s so good you’ll drop your fork!


Ralph plays a new game of Polo… Old Stove gets a few searing reviews… plus snapshots from Parish Spring Fling!

Ralph Hampton! Polo’s new street Position
In spite of the Arctic blasts we are currently experiencing, summer prepping is in the air.    One of the more notable changes happening right now is the overhaul of the old Ralph Lauren Rugby store.  If you thought for a second the King of East Hampton would be relinquishing any of his main street real estate, you would be wrong!    It turns out the site will not become a home furnishing store as long suspected but rather a Polo store.    The designer is keeping his location across the street where he’ll continue to sell his higher end wears such as “Purple Label.”   Look for the new POLO store to open by the end of this week!
So just in case you forgot just HOW many stores Ralph owns in town, let’s count these together; the original store, the children’s store, the vintage store and now the polo store… oh and let’s throw in his daughter Dylan’s Candy shop and according to some rumors he actually owns the historic village hall?!?!?    One man single handily keeping the Hamptons economy strong.  The only problem I have with all of this is that it’s not me.  The least he could do is give the whole town a friends and family discount!
Meanwhile,  I’m always looking for a great new place to chow down on the
East End.   Well, recently I said to some friends, “how about the Old Stove Pub in Wainscott?”   Well, after four personal and blistering critiques, my friend Simon said to check out the Yelp reviews for the restaurant.  Normally I have to go to the police blotter in Dan’s to get such entertainment.   So what is the consensus?  I’m now highlighting some of my favorite comments for you.  Now, mind you I’ve not yet been to the new Old Stove Pub and I’m hoping to try it myself sometime before the summer.   Here’s hoping I have a better experience and they get it together.   Now for those too lazy to read their own reviews of the restaurant, the cliff notes version.
“The good-the host was friendly and the spanakopita was fantastic…. The bad they killed the cow twice!”  Krystyna H
“Just close Old Stove Pub, it would make a cute antique shop.”  Scott S.
“I wish there was a choice of zero stars… the veggie side dishes were covered in parsley, after our dinner mate had clearly told the server that we had a major parsley allergy at the table.   Fun times!”   Lisa H.
“How can you serve a salad that is still frozen the center?  It took 2 hours before our food was served.”  Allan G.
“Just before our food arrived they served us one piece of random something in a dish that looked like a pig ear.”   Hampton E.

Wow, I haven’t seen these kind of reviews since Sylvester Stallone did King Lear on Broadway.  Anyway, there’s still time to fix this before the season starts guys.   I’ll see you soon but remember, I didn’t write these reviews!!Meanwhile, the Parish Art Museum held their sold out annual Spring Fling this Saturday.  So I took my camera and snapped a few of the merry makers at the event!


Debra Halpert, Christine Curiale


Kelly O’Halloran


Tommy Hill and Ruth Katz
Ken Wyse, Mary Slattery, Andy Volet, John Leonard
Jim Saladino and Elaine Hammond


David Gilmartin, Robin Long

Something to chew on for Sag Harbor and East Hampton Rugby is in overtime


Hi everyone, it feels good to be back.    I took a few months off (as I often do from this blog) and I promise I’ll be more consistent this time (I promised that before too).  So much has been going on but if I seem a bit blurry eyed, it’s mostly due to my puppy Bella.  Yes, I have a new dog since the passing of Boo.  But I have to say, that while she does look a lot like her older sister, she’s her own girl.  She’s full of spunk and quite the terror on my other dog poor Russell.  In fact, when we asked Russell what we should name her, he suggested Bu-jo (think Boo with Cujo).   So, if I’m a bit rambling here it’s because of my need for sleep.   I’ve been doing too many 2 am bathroom breaks.  Here she is!  Yeah, it’s actually easier when they’re cute!


A new tenant!

Well you might have already heard but the “Paradise Cafe” in Sag Harbor shuttered it’s doors a few months ago.   Apparently, negotiations to renew the lease went nowhere.    Luckily,  you can still enjoy Chef and owner Robert Durkin’s cuisine at “Robert’s”in Water Mill.   Well last night I ran into restaurateur Michael Gluckman who told me he’s going into the space that was Paradise right in the heart of Sag Harbor.    While I’m disappointed to see Paradise go, I’m happy to know  there will be something good going in it’s place.   Michael has always had solid restaurants that were reasonably priced with a great menu and good food.   I found his “Lodge” to be one East Hampton’s best watering holes with a diverse and satisfying menu, he tells me he’s hoping to do something similar here.

In the meantime, I’m hoping Paradise returns to Sag Harbor soon, I miss the Bolognese pasta, the best I’ve ever had and the Roast Chicken with Rosemary was sublime… wait I can’t say sublime, that sounds pretentious… It was AWESOME.   Better.   Anyway, maybe Paradise can go into the spot that was Phao in Sag Harbor,  because apparently twice wasn’t the charm and according to sources, they’re going the way of the 8-track tape.
Soon to be a collectors item!
OK, enough talking about food.  I’m getting hungry and I have to work out first.   If I don’t I won’t be able to fit into my Ralph Lauren Rugby shirts, which will soon be collectors items.    Yep, it’s true the Rugby brand will soon be no more.   I’m not sure why because the store in downtown Manhattan and the one in East Hampton were always packed.  But fear not lovers of the Earl of East Hampton (Ralph Lauren-he virtually owns EH  retail) my poorly placed sources have hinted that it will soon be a RL Home store.   I guess we’ll have to wait and see.
Finally, I hope I made up for a long, long, long absence from the blogosphere.   If I haven’t here’s one last bit of good advice, at STAPLES they’re selling cases of Pelligrino water for $4 a case!  Yes, $4 a case.  It’s an amazing deal.

Paris… Manhattan.. San Francisco… and Sag Harbor! We’ve finally made it!!

Its a good day for style hounds in the Hamptons… particularly the men. Finally there’s a place to shop for NICE men’s clothing in the Hamptons. Over the past few years we’ve seen Latham House… Mark, Force and Strike… and Brooks Brothers bite the dust. Now, I know there’s tons of Ralph Lauren shops in East Hampton but sometimes I don’t like wearing the same clothes as 95% of the population! But I digress…. designer Emile Lafaurie is now available at SEAN on Main St., Sag Harbor.

Brilliant colors and sleek designs are abundant in this chic boutique. Owner Sean Cassidy… and no he was never on The Hardy Boys.. has set up shop across the street from the American Hotel! You might SEAN from some of his other locations in Soho and the Upper West Side or even the Marais in Paris. This clothing is not for geeks!!! Anyway, stop by and say hello to manager Vincent Brandi (see photo) he’s friendly, cute and very helpful!

Now speaking of fashion or lack there of…. is it just me or do Lisa Perry’s designs look like they were made as part of a high school “Home Ec” project?! Personally, I think anyone wearing one of her Puke-a-dot designs is a few sandwiches short of a picnic. YOU PAID HOW MUCH!!? I know a 13 year old who’ll do the same dress for about 50 bucks.

Finally, sorry I’ve been busy actually making money and haven’t blogged as much as I should. I heard your nasty sniping I’m lazy, etc. Now, if you don’t stop it, I’ll abandon this blog for ever! We need to all just get along folks!!!

P.S. The English Beat is at the Stephen Talkhouse Friday night!! I’ll write more on this tomorrow!! !