Let's take a moment from our busy Sundays to remember the plight of New York City's fancy restaurant owners, who—because of "draconian state regulations" passed earlier this year—have become increasingly vulnerable to lawsuits filed by employees seeking back pay and tips. Why can't those workers just enjoy the privilege of working and "being seen" in popular restaurants?
It's a big birthday for Jennifer Lopez. She's celebrating the big 4-0 today. Other people who will be blowing out candles this fine Friday: Broadway star Kristin Chenoweth is turning 41. Anna Paquin is 27. Director Doug Liman turns 44. Director Gus Van Sant is turning 57. Billionaire investor Nelson Peltz is 67. Artist Alex Katz is turning 82. Senator Claire McCaskill is 56. Governor Charlie Crist of Florida is 53. Barry Bonds turns 45. Retired basketball stars Rick Fox and Karl Malone are turning 40 and 46, respectively. Michael Richards of Seinfeld fame is turning 60. Actor Dan Hedaya is 69. And Wonder Woman—actress Lynda Carter—celebrates her 58th birthday today. Weekend birthdays after the jump.
• Danny Meyer's latest outpost, the concession stand in Central Park called Public Fare, officially opens its takeout window tomorrow. [Eater, GS]
• The paper is off the windows at the Standard Grill, the new resto inside Andre Balazs's Standard hotel. Grub Street snapped some pics through the glass. [GS]
• Geoffrey Zakarian has had some trouble as of late, but he has two projects to look forward to: Lamb's Club at Vikram Chatwal's hotel on East 44th, which opens in September (with a bar by David Rabin and Will Regen); and he's also taking over The Emery Bar at The Benjamin hotel next year. [Crain's]
• A sneak peek at Charlie Palmer's new Aureole at One Bryant Park. [Eater]
• It looks like Geoffrey Zakarian's Town has closed its doors. [GS]
• A roundup of other spots that have closed in the last couple of days. [Eater]
• More cheerful: This roundup of places slated to open next week. [TONY]
• Jim Lahey has a few, not-so-kind words for Times critic Frank Bruni, who had the audacity to award Lahey's Co. a single star earlier this week. [NYO]
• Why was the Beatrice Inn shuttered this week? It may have been the work of "haters" who "couldn't get in," explains Chloë Sevigny. [GS]
Happy 42nd, Christine Quinn! Other people around town celebrating today: Iman is 53, Mets pitcher Billy Wagner is 37, and restaurateur Geoffrey Zakarian is turning 49. Celebs celebrating this weekend: Kevin Spacey will be 49, Kate Beckinsale will turn 35, Mick Jagger will celebrate his 65th, and Sandra Bullock will be 44. Misshapes' Leigh Lezark will turn 24 tomorrow. Artist Tom Sachs will turn 42. Architect Hugh Hardy will be 76. On Sunday, Alex Rodriguez will turn 33. He shares his birthday with Taxi & Limousine commisioner Matthew Daus, hedge fund manager Timothy Barakett, and artist Dash Snow.