Why does writer Norman Mailer's old apartment at 142 Columbia Heights in Brooklyn Heights look so nautical? Because Mailer was afraid of heights, so when he renovated the place, the Times explains, he decided to face his fears with the help of crow's nests, galley rooms, and ladders. Mailer died in 2007, and now the apartment is up for sale, with the proceeds to be split among his nine kids. Which is some justification for the hefty $2.5 million price tag on the place (plus a guest room downstairs, not accessible from the apartment). We don't see a listing online yet, and the Times notes that it "defies easy description" before proceeding to describe it: it's a 2BR with one small bathroom and a renovated open kitchen. The Mailer decor might also be available to a buyer.