Players: Elliot Larkfield, who is known on his site as Robert Schnakenberg, creator of the "What's On Steve Buscemi's Stoop" Tumblr; Steve Buscemi and his Park Slope Neighbors
The Opening Serve: Elliot Larkfield created his "What's On Steve Buscemi's Stoop" in 2009. "One day, I was walking my dog past his house and I saw the doll head there so I took a picture," said Larkfield to Park Slope Patch. "That’s how it all started. Then I realized it needed its own dedicated forum, and that was how the Tumblr was born." The postings were irregular but in each post Larkfield documented the objects left on Buscemi's brownstone. Things like decapitated doll heads, a bag of batteries, a "bath seat," a free Pachysandra plant--they all helped in garnering him around 300 Twitter followers and a blog following. "You could go through it and see the process of his mind over the years. Hats from various films he worked on, like "The Big Lebowski hat, which I keep in my office," Larkfield told Park Slope Patch. "That hat and the Iowa Manchester Centennial tie are the two things I have kept. The ceramic coaster with his son’s name on it, was there a riff there? We don’t know. The door was interesting, is he building his Emmy room?"
The Return Volley: While Larkfield began solving the mystery that is Buscemi, Mr. Pink's neighbors turned against the blogger and defended the neighborhood star. Kerri Doherty, editor of the Fucked in Park Slope, pointed out the safety issues. "Though I am fascinated with Booshems, I do find this site invasive," Doherty wrote in a post that pointed to the blog. "It's one thing to photoshop his eyes onto a bunch of chick's faces, but the blogger makes no attempt at concealing the street name and house number." Kurt Schamann, who has lived in the neighborhood for 38 years, was more explicit. "What the blogger is doing is weird, he’s a stalker. If I was posting pictures of a female actress['s] house I’d get arrested for stalking,” Schamann told Park Slope Patch. “I am looking out for him, I am going to give him a good camera broken." And Susan Desocio, who lives in the Slope, told The Brooklyn Paper that people should go through the blogger’s garbage as payback."He was psychoanalyzing Steve Buscemi’s stuff," Desocio told the Brooklyn Paper. This guy needs some medical attention."
"If someone were taking pictures of the crap I put out on my stoop, I couldn’t care less," said Larkfield in The Brooklyn Paper. "Rooting through someone’s garbage or peeping in someone’s windows, that’s totally different. But that’s not what was going on here." Whether or not Larkfield was rummaging, he received the "nicest cease and desist letter [he] could ever hope to receive" from Buscemi's son, and has since taken down the blog. "I am glad the blog ended without any acrimony between me and the Buscemi family," Larkfield said.
What They Say They're Fighting About: Steve Buscemi's stoop.
What They're Really Fighting About: Park Slope. Both sides believe they're doing something good for the neighborhood but are going about it in completely different ways. Larkfield's blog was arguably as much a testament to the fascinating objects on Buscemi's porch as it was letting everyone in on a neighborhood secret--which makes living in Park Slope pretty enviable. Larkin's opponents believe that the anonymity and privacy of Park Slope is the reason icons like Buscemi choose to live there--and that Larkin's fan-boy adoration is ruining that vibe.
Who's Wining Now: Steve Buscemi. From the "nicest cease and desist letter" to the blog and its eventual death--it all adds to the mystery that is Steve Buscemi. Why is this man's family putting out decapitated doll heads and free plants? And why can't the Internet get enough? His neighbors however, don't come off as well, depending whose side you've taken. Those wishing harm on Larkfield and for the downfall of his blog run the risk of being seen uber-sensitive killjoys while Larkfield himself could come off as a stalker.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.
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