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September 13, 2017

The New York attorney general has "opened an inquiry" into an appallingly lame pizza festival in Brooklyn that left hungry attendees comparing it to the disastrous Fyre Festival, WNYC reports. "This was a rotten scam, they promoted this as a pizza festival and a hamburger festival," wrote one Facebook group quoted by Gothamist. "People who arrived early said there were about five pies cut into micro slices of really bad pizza. There were no hamburgers! Clearly this is a scam and the organizers should be held accountable."

"It was nothing but Jesus [that] stopped me from flipping over those tables," wrote another attendee of the New York City Pizza Festival. "I also pray for them because God will deal with them accordingly."

The New York City Pizza Festival ran attendees as much as $74 a ticket and was marketed as a "day long celebration of ... dough, cheese, tasty sauces, and delicious toppings." Instead, one attendee told Gothamist that they arrived only to find "three pop-up tents to my left, one where they're taking cold pizzas out of delivery boxes and cutting them. Those pictures don't do it justice, because they look like they're normal-sized plates but they're actually cake-sized, like what you'd use for cake at a children's birthday party. They're small, tiny little slivers of pizza."

"We are concerned about the online complaints that we've seen," a spokesman for New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman's office said, encouraging attendees to submit formal complaints. Jeva Lange

September 24, 2015

Two million people across Washington, D.C., New York, and Philadelphia are expected to flock to various Pope Francis peeking-grounds throughout his holiness' U.S. stay. Of course, that means just about everyone is panicking about the traffic situation. As the Mid-Atlantic manager of AAA warned USA Today, "This is not the time to just wing it; it is a time to plan ahead and prepare accordingly, similar to planning ahead of a snowstorm."

On the contrary, now might be exactly the time to wing it, at least if you've got $95 to spare and live in New York City. Blade, a company that's basically Uber for helicopters, is offering short-hop 'copter rides to users for $95. Let's put it this way: For the cost of about 17 NYC-priced venti pumpkin spice lattes, you can get shuttled above the heads of Pope gawkers on Friday and wave so-long to the poor, unfortunate souls navigating around the NYPD's labyrinth of closed streets.

On Friday BLADE breaks new ground. BLADE BOUNCE-X. Details to follow.

A photo posted by BLADE (@flyblade) on

Blade plans to ferry people between helipads on East 34th Street (near FDR drive) and West 30th Street (near the West Side Highway), The New York Post reports. The helicopters will run every 15 minutes from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. and from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.

For comparison: On a normal day, that cross-town trip would be about a 37-minute walk (free), a 25-minute bus or subway ride ($2.75), or about a 20-minute ride in a ground-tethered Uber (between $13 and $18). But of course, when the Pope is in town, it's never a normal day. Godspeed out there, everyone. Jeva Lange