Lost nerds drawn to mysterious numbers


There's a building in the East Village with what looks like the Lost numbers on it. What's going on there?—Annie A., East Village


The giant numerals on the shutters above the bar Professor Thom's (219 Second Ave between 13th and 14th Sts; 212-260-9480, professorthoms.com) are indeed from the show Lost, in which variations of the series 4, 8, 15, 16, 23, 42 pop up weekly to intrigue faithful watchers. The figures were painted in February to advertise the bar's free weekly Lost screenings, a staple of the East Village joint since season three (remember the days of Nikki and Paulo?).

Though new episodes air on Tuesdays at 9pm, lines start forming around 7pm for access to Professor Thom's upstairs loft space, where antique molding and chandeliers surround the giant projector screen. Shots are on the house whenever a preselected event occurs in the episode (Ben slaps someone in the face; someone returns from the dead), and despite the packed house, the bar is always quiet enough to catch all the mystery-laden dialogue. "The biggest question we get is whether you can hear," says bartender Casey Geraghty. "I tell people that because Lost fans are so intense, if it wasn't quiet, it wouldn't be such a big success."—Allison Williams

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