After a insignificant in prison and also some consulting work, the previous congressman is to run a firm that makes countertops out of concrete and crushed Heineken bottles.


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Not long ago, at the Brooklyn navy Yard, Anthony Weiner, the previous seven-term congressman, mayoral hopeful, registered sex offender, and also cameo star the “Sharknado 3: five Hell No!,” spicy a temperature gun at a guest, got hold of a bright-green tough hat, and stepped onto the factory floor that IceStone. “So, us make countertops here,” Weiner said, the the company that he’s been running due to the fact that May. Remarkable clients: NASA (bathrooms), entirety Foods (salad bar), Ed Norton (residence). “Fairly low-tech. It’s favor what friend did in elementary college making pottery.”


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Weiner wore one orange zip-up sweater, blue khakis, and tennis shoes. “This confirm a lot of boxes for my dream following thing,” he said, rapping his knuckles versus a five-hundred-pound slab of Portland cement blended with broken Heineken bottles, which developed the flecked appearance of granite. “I’ve done a lot of consulting in the years due to the fact that I left Congress. Being the 5th guy attract a suit and also tie ~ above a Zoom call, do the efforts to figure out how to assist some large company get also bigger—it has actually some value, and it payment the bills, however it’s no something where I hung up and also thought, Oh, ns can’t wait to perform that more. Countertops are about as actual as you deserve to get.”

Reality was all approximately him: forklifts, calibrators, one overhead crane rolling along tracks near the ceiling. Sacks of damaged glass sat in a corner. Weiner hurry a hand into one and also came out with a fistful the sage-green particles—“aggregate,” in countertop parlance. “Looks a tiny bit prefer a car windshield, i m sorry is a big source that our irradiate greens and light blues,” he said.

The glass is combined with cement and also natural pigments and also poured into long rectangular molds, i beg your pardon cure for a day and also a half in kilns before being levelled and polished. Nearby, an employee in one apron and also a do-rag buffed a nearly finished slab. “Everything before it goes out gets one critical round of soft loving care,” Weiner said, sidling up to the man. “How’re friend doing, brother? call me how it’s walking today.”


The sleeve politician comes lively in the warehouse. “I still acquire to scratch that itch,” that said. “But ns don’t, like, was standing at mine desk and also give a decided on whatever outrageous thing the Iranians did this week.” What the Iranians to be doing hadn’t been a priority because that Weiner since the loss of 2017, as soon as he started a twenty-one-month prison sentence because that sexting with a minor. Asked about life on the inside, the said, “I i will not ~ recommend it to others.” among his prison travellers was Dal LaMagna, the beauty-tools magnate recognized as Tweezerman, who later on pivoted to environmentally trusted countertops. The two had met, years ago, ~ above the political circuit. (LaMagna thought about running for mayor and sought Weiner’s counsel. Weiner advised against it.)


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“When COVID was crushing the company, and crushing whatever else, Dal approached me and also said, ‘what if i stepped earlier and simply kind of gave you the keys?’ ” Weiner recalled. IceStone, a certified B Corp, has a background of helping the downtrodden, including formerly incarcerated people. “I would be a high-profile example of the category,” Weiner said. “For years, this firm has additionally hired refugees from Tibet.”

In Congress, Weiner was an exacting boss, recognized for throwing salads and BlackBerrys. Nowadays, he is mellowed. “Back then, I constantly had the feeling that ns knew exactly how to perform my staff’s job far better than they were doing it,” Weiner said. “Here, I count on civilization who space a lot of smarter 보다 I am. It’s a much more collaborative environment.”

The switch from public service to private life there is no been completely smooth. Vocal citizenry still desire Weiner to settle scores and log complaints. “A male stopped me this morning, as soon as I was acquiring my Citi Bike,” Weiner said. “Tell Biden this. Exactly how come Harris didn’t say that? sometimes it’s about politics, sometimes it’s about the price of points at the supermarket. For whatever reason, I’ve constantly been who who civilization come up to, and also they feeling they can say ingredient to me.”

That afternoon, Weiner would turn his attention to IceStone’s warranty, i m sorry he wanted to beef up from ten years to lifetime. “It’s a an extremely durable product,” the said. Also slabs that break in the production process get saved. “We store them around for smaller jobs,” that said. “Very tiny goes to waste.” ♦


Published in the print edition of the January 4 & 11, 2021, issue, with the headline “Counterintuitive.”


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