Bernie Madoff hasn't had anything to say to the public since the revelation of his $50 billion Ponzi scheme. But to the few dozen residents of his luxury apartment building on New York's Upper East Side, the disgraced financier, who earlier resigned as president of the co-op board, recently sent a few words. "Dear neighbors," wrote Madoff, "please accept my profound apologies for the terrible inconvenience that I have caused over the past weeks."
For New York Times writer Susan Dominus, the short letter "sounds like a missive from an alternate reality," as if Madoff truly believes that his only shortcoming was inviting obtrusive photographers into the apartment lobby. Residents of 133 East 64th Street, home to Matt Lauer among others, have little contact with one another. One neighbor said she had met him only once, when she was seeking board approval to buy her apartment years earlier, and barely recognized him in the paper. "I think I blocked it out," she said.