There was a big bust in Chinatown yesterday…32 vendors selling counterfeit watches, sunglasses, and handbags were shut down. All up and down Canal St today, not only are the busted stores closed but all the other shops selling fake goods are shuttered as well. And not a single person asked me if I wanted to buy Juno on DVD.
What’s funny about the whole thing is how open the vendors are about what they’re selling. These are actual physical shops like the Apple Store or the Gap, not a bunch of purses out of a garbage bag set up on a rickety card table. And uniformed police are around all the time, doing absolutely nothing about it. And then all the luxury fashion houses get the mayor’s ear, he can no longer ignore the problem, and Bloomberg ends up at the scene, grandstanding for the cameras and calling the whole thing a big problem that they’re working on tirelessly. A friend said this morning it reminded him of the “dope on the table” scenes in The Wire…little more than constabulary theater.