My Love-Hate Relationship with NYC

HUGE INFLATABLE RATS

As seen in different spots on Fifth Ave, installed by union guys to protest a building’s employment of non-union laborers. In one of those if only I had my camera photo ops, I walked by this same rat the day after I shot the above photo and the rat was half-deflated.

A burly, no-neck, crew-cut union guy in a sweat suit and lots of bling, along with two sidekicks who were busy pumping air out of the rat, was in a face-to-face with this building’s concierge. The concierge, a business-suited, 20-something, congenial guy was explaining to the beefsteak why the rat had to go.

By his body language, the beefsteak feigned understanding, seemed not to blame the concierge. He demonstrated this sentiment with a succinct , “Yo. Hey. Yo.” And with a final wave of his hand, “Hey.”

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MASSIVE CROWDS IN FRONT OF THE APPLE STORE

The hordes of humanity I must plow through each and every Monday through Friday at 5:00 p.m. to reach the subway entrance. I have a bicycle bell, a gift from a friend, which I will once again carry undercover now that Spring has sprung. A single jing jing of the bell and the masses part like the Red Sea. It’s amazing.

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READING AT LUNCHTIME  in Central Park

Especially anything by author David Vann. When I read his engrossing, critically acclaimed collection of short stories, “Legends of a Suicide,” I couldn’t put it down. It’s the same with this novel. He’s an amazing writer with a brilliant understanding of, and compassion for, the darker side of humanity. Set in a remote region of Alaska, a forbidding place where the lost souls of the world seem to gravitate — or hitchhike — hoping for escape or to find themselves.

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MAKING OUT ON THE SUBWAY

If I am forced to witness one more couple (pick a gender, any gender, or combination of genders — a lack of boundaries does not discriminate) embracing, stroking, tongue-kissing and humping one another on the subway, crowded or empty (or even worse than that — my husband came home one night disgusted at having witnessed a girl popping pimples on her boyfriend’s greasy face on the F train) — I will scream! What is wrong with you people?

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HORSES AT REST

Look how they go bi-level – front feet up on curb, back feet down on asphalt.

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SPITTERS

I remember the very first time I saw a No Spitting sign posted on a subway train. What? I thought. Who would spit on the subway? I was so naive. The only thing nastier than spitting is airborne nose-blowing. I know someone victimized by this practice. A glob of snot landed on the cuff of his pants — which he later threw out. Of course, brawling on the subway is the worst:

Welcome to the Jungle well…

Spitting warranted an op ed in The N.Y. Times

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Watching A SKYSCRAPER GO UP

Absolutely breathtaking.

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CONGA DRUMS ON THE SUBWAY

If you read this blog regularly, you know I’m a music lover. But there is a time a place for everything, especially conga drums and especially at 5:00 p.m., after you’ve just escaped an 8-hour workday with a headache as poundingly intense as those drums.

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THE DIAMOND DISTRICT IN MIDTOWN

What can I say? 47th Street is one of my favorite places to traverse  in the city. I often mosey on down there at lunchtime to soak up the color and energy of the place. Commerce in action!

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HORN HONKERS

Signs are posted all over the city: NO HONKING $350 FINE. Yeah, right. Try and enforce that one, Mr. Policeman.

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JOKES ABOUT NEW YORKERS

Nothing is funnier than the truth.

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TOURISTS HOGGING THE SIDEWALKS

Families strolling five abreast on crowded Fifth Ave., holding hands, no less.  Trying to get back to the office when lunch is over is like trying to break through a roller derby jam. But then I’ll feel guilty because one of them will stop dead in his tracks, stretch his head back and peer at the sky, spread out his arms and say out loud, “I’m in New York!” or “!La Quinta Avenida!” — reminding me that, yes, I do live in a great city. It makes me want to thank them – but that’s something I would never do. They might think I was crazy.

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AND

CRAZY NEW YORKERS

You’vee got to be a little crazy to live here.

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