Friday Flashback #286

Several years ago, I posted an intriguing old want ad on “06880.” It resurfaced recently on Facebook, courtesy of Paula Schooler.

In an era when so many men — Bill Cosby, Andrew Cuomo, Jeff Zucker, Al Franken, Scott Rudin, Harvey Weinstein, Matt Lauer, Les Moonves, R. Kelly, to name a few — have been accused of sexual harassment (with serious consequences) — it’s jarring to see this:

La Crêpe was a popular 1970s restaurant at the corner of the Post Road and Myrtle Avenue — where the William Pitt Sotheby’s office is today.

Seen through a 2020s lens, this is just a cringe-worthy look at a bygone era. Mr. Trupin of La Crêpe comes across as pretty creepy.

But — as Peter Blau noted, when I first posted this ad — “Mr. Trupin” was not just a restaurant guy conducting personal interviews with big-busted women wearing short skirts and high boots.

He was Barry Trupin, who went on to — well, let this 2003 New York Post story tell it, in the tabloid’s unmistakable style:

A 1980s wheeler-dealer whose gaudy Southampton castle once turned stomachs throughout the Hamptons was sent to prison yesterday for evading taxes on the sales of a multimillion-dollar piano and some fancy cars.

Barry Trupin, whose worth was once estimated at $300 million, suffered the latest dip in his roller-coaster career after locking horns with the IRS for six years.

Trupin, 67, was sentenced to four years and five months behind bars for evading nearly $1.3 million in federal capital-gains taxes when he sold an 1880s Alma-Tadema piano and three Rolls-Royces.

The tarnished golden boy was convicted in 1999 of lying to the IRS to avoid paying $6.6 million in taxes on the sale of high-end collectibles and fancy property, including his much-reviled Southampton estate, Dragon’s Head.

Trupin became a poster boy for bad development on the East End in the 1980s after he acquired a 55,000-square-foot Southampton mansion and changed it beyond recognition to the horror of long-time Hamptons residents.

The 60-room mansion was on the ocean at Meadow Road.

And quite a ways from La Crêpe.

18 responses to “Friday Flashback #286

  1. Gloria Gouveia

    Also cringe-worthy —It was want ads like this one that helped fuel the rumors about the use of the third level attic space as a bordello. So seriously were the rumors taken by Town officials that when La Crepe closed in the late 70’s, the Town Planner sent the ZEO (me) out to inspect the space.
    Yes, my inspection put the rumors to bed, so to speak.

  2. seems like Trupin mispelled ‘creep.’ by the way, the food was lousy, too.

    • And I keep reading “Trupin” as “Trump!” Both “pussy-grabbers,” dontcha think?

  3. The job posting kinda makes sense as the most unusual thing this place offered was not on the menu.

  4. Alicia Merritt

    Please remove Al Franken from your list. He did not approach being like the others, who were/are disgusting. Franken should still be in the Senate.

  5. Thanks for crediting me with finding this NY Post piece. Of course the real scandal was the rumored presence of…er…”sex workers.” Ms. Gouveia is being a bit cryptic here. Did she find any evidence to back up the rumors?

    I do think it would be interesting to do a flashback of “Notorious Crimes of Westport.” One I remember was the town’s Tax Collector instructed residents to make checks out to him, personally, and then proceeded to deposit them in his own personal account.

    • Morley Boyd

      Oh, the upstairs thing was for real. And, on a directly related note, the big fire up there wasn’t an accident.

    • Chris Grimm

      I second Peter’s idea for a series on Notorious Crimes of Westport!

      To Arline’s inquiry, Glynn’s was still open when I moved here. While I only recall being there once, it seemed like a run of the mill bar to me – and the people I went with would have been creepy-averse.

  6. Jill Turner Odice

    It was rumored that my French teacher worked “upstairs”.I don’t know if it was true…

  7. Arline Gertzoff

    At some point it was also known as Glynn’sThe place always had a creepy reputation/as did other long gone establishments

  8. Arline Gertzoff

    That same French teacher came to class at Staples one day looking bruised and scratched She told the class it was her cat..Three was also an article in The Town Crier naming names about some altercation.She left Staples.Lots of rumors from long ago.

  9. Here is a scan of a 1971 menu from La Crepe. Quite pretentious…and pricey. The asparagus and gruyere crepe, at a 1971 price of $2.30, translates to $16.25 in 2022 dollars, per the govt’s CPI calculator. And the Chateaubriand for two — a favorite of French-style clip joints — was priced at $25, equivalent to $176.60 today!

  10. Lets’s not get our knickers in a knot over an ad from 40 plus years ago, it was just a different time. The place was a serious meat market and there were several in town back then. Occasionally the party went upstairs. Never saw any prostitution there. However there were some private homes rented for short periods of time that ran high end hookers. They would operate for a week or so and then leave and then surface later at a different address. 70’s and 80’s were some interesting/fun times.

    • Thanks for the caution note, David.
      Al those knoted knickers are forcing the removal of statues and symbols once deemed iconic..I have some money riding on the eventual removal of the Lincoln Memorial (the guy thought white folks should hold sway over them black ones..and said so) and a change to the nomenclature “White House.” After all, such designation surely lacks inclusion.

      Shame on us all!

  11. David J. Loffredo

    I love these posts because the Old School Westporters love to complain about the recent interlopers but ignore their past. Yea, sorry about that McMansion, but wait, we had a whore house!?!?

  12. Linda Pomerantz novis

    Agree with Dave Eason, ‘ 40 years ago,it was just a Different time.’

  13. Gloria Gouveia

    Thanks for the mammaries.