Good morning, mysterious "weekend" readers! Where are you rising and shining from today? New York City? Kansas City? A garbage-strewn gutter somewhere in Mexico City, wondering what happened to your wallet and your dignity? Hey, at least you're not waking up in New Jersey, amirite? Zing. Apologies to those of you who are waking up in New Jersey. But not to fear: the reputation of postindustrial wastelands like Newark and Trenton is being revived. Not by reality itself, but by luxury real estate developers. Open your wallets! The Times examines how developers of luxury apartment buildings in Newark and Trenton are pushing their inventory. Answer: lots of lipstick for the pigs.

They got through it by using every stigma-fading technique they could think of. One was to put cheery pro-Newark ads on thousands of coffee cup sleeves for commuters between the Pennsylvania Stations in Manhattan and Newark; another was to install $800,000 worth of safety-enhancing new lighting on the exterior of Eleven80, a converted Art Deco office structure.

How could you not get that $3,895 per month unit? Coffee sleeves and all. In sunny Trenton, a developer put together a website with all the sweet restaurant deals nearby:

(Representative headlines from the site include "Divine Guatemalan Dive" and "North Trenton Brewskis.")

Sold. [NYT]