A couple weeks back, the Wall Street Journalprinted a story naming trader David Slaine as a key cooperating source in the Galleon insider trading case, having allegedly ratted out several of his friends and co-workers, including nightclub bouncer-cum-hedge fund employee, Craig Drimal. The article also claimed that during his long career on Wall Street, Slaine smashed a keyboard to pieces, started a fistfight over a colleague who wouldn't share his French fries, and punched his Galleon boss, Gary Rosenbach in the face, while the two were stark-naked in an Equinox steam room. We wrote about it, mostly out of empathy for the fries situation (that's something to legitimately get upset about) and a commenter by the name of "Elyse" came along and said that basically everything in the Journal's story was untrue, but especially the bit with the fries (never happened, she said), and the steam room (where, according to E, David didn't punch Rosenbach but rather slapped him, which is different). "Elyse" then emailed us (she hadn't appreciated our tone) to say say that she was Elyse Slaine, the ex-wife of Big D (who she met in 1992, when he was working for Morgan Stanley and she was selling financial technology for Knight Ridder), and to reiterate that the Journal doesn't know shit. Last Friday, the Observersat down with ES to find out why.
First off, she didn't do this for the fame, or the glory.
"I feel," Elyse Slaine said over a nine-dollar cup of coffee at the Pierre Hotel last Friday, "like someone has to tell the truth." The 46-year-old was wearing studded Louboutin boots, a ruby ring on her right hand and a Harry Winston diamond watch on the other.
Someone need to set the record straight! And event though her ex-husband told her not to, Elyse knew that someone was she.
[David Slaine] hasn't endorsed [the crusade]. "I'm defending him because he's a good guy," she said. "He doesn't want me to." Mr. Slaine, who, The Journal said, has pleaded guilty to conspiracy and securities-fraud charges, and cooperated with the government to gain favor, did not return calls.
In spite of the fact that he once ruined one of their date-nights.
His marriage began to end four years ago. "My interests became a little more diverse. I like to travel," Ms. Slaine said. "I enjoy theater. David, the one time we went, fell asleep. It was Bring in 'da Noise, Bring in 'da Funk."
Because Elyse, too, knows what it's like to be standing in the middle of the crisis, to feel like you're drowning, with no one to throw you a life saver.
Earlier this month, Ms. Slaine returned to her Park Avenue apartment, the co-op she used to share with Mr. Slaine, to find massive flooding. A bathroom pipe had burst. "My own personal tsunami," she sighed.
And if she's ineffectual, fine, at least she tried. It's important to her to set the record straight, but it's not the only thing Elyse has on her plate.
Ms. Slaine is on to other things. She said at coffee that she was headed to China, where she wants to produce a charm for women's purses that turns into a hook. She took out a prototype and hung her handbag from the Pierre cafe's table: "Patent pending," she explained.