You are currently browsing the stories about the Union Square neighborhood

Rejoice for the Winter that Was

by 03/28/2014
Neighborhood: All Over, Brighton Beach, Central Park, Union Square

Long lines at Whole Foods in Union Square again. It feels like the Russian bread lines, but no, it’s another snowstorm shopping spree. I’m not the only one anxious about running out of food—even though the streets are always plowed before my stomach growls uncomfortably. Everyone is complaining. Too cold, windy, snowy, sleety, Too much […]

No Slices

by 02/04/2014
Neighborhood: DUMBO, Union Square

Pizza had been on my mind that summer. Who could forget the ever-present sensation of melting? Our skin like sweating cheese, like crusts toasted to a golden brown. We stank, all of us — the garlic you had for lunch, everyone could smell it in the subway car, hiding behind a juicy fragrance. Even nature […]

Found in Transit

by 02/09/2013
Neighborhood: All Over, Grand Central Station, Union Square

A woman once offered me her seat on a rush hour 3 train. New Yorkers only donate seats to the elderly, the injured, and the pregnant, so it was obvious what she thought. “Not pregnant – just fat,” I told her, matter-of-factly, compelled to set precedent before this woman’s so-called generosity spawned an outbreak of […]

New York Is Oakland

by 09/08/2012
Neighborhood: Featured, Financial District, SoHo, Union Square, Zuccotti Park

Two days after the Occupy Oakland police raid, where an Iraq War vet was shot in the head with a police projectile and hundreds more were sprayed with tear gas while they were sleeping, I get a text from Denise as I’m wrapping up dinner with some friends at Teresa’s Diner in Brooklyn Heights: Show […]

Passing For 62

by 12/15/2011
Neighborhood: Uncategorized, Union Square, Williamsburg

Every Spring, tennis players in New York City who want to play on the city courts have to buy a tennis permit. The Parks Department doubled the price this year to $200 for an adult permit. Seniors only pay $20 . If I can pass for 62, I’ll save $180. I'm unemployed. The first time […]

October 7, 2001

by 09/11/2011
Neighborhood: Uncategorized, Union Square

When I got the email from Sir Beller about revisiting 9/11, my thought was to delete it. After double-checking, I can say I'm proud of the piece I wrote, “October 2001,” only because I just reported what I saw and didn’t try to make sense of it. Had I gone the “this is how I […]

The Three Women

by 02/28/2011
Neighborhood: Union Square

“There’s three women in your life that will always be there,” he said. He had just sold me three pairs of socks for my daughter, and after he took my five-dollar-bill was ruffling through his wad of money. We were on the sidewalk across the street from Manhattan’s Union Square, and it was a warm […]

The Strangeness of Living in New York

by 09/11/2010
Neighborhood: Featured, Union Square

I don’t tell people about Jon very often. I want people to get to know me, not feel sorry for me. Last week I was at a friend’s anniversary party and a man who must have been on speed or something like it, talked about the planes hitting the towers. He said that he could […]

José and the System

by 09/01/2008
Neighborhood: Union Square

As he sits on the railing in Union Square Park, surrounded by hundreds of young men and women absorbing the first warm day of the year, José’s hands move nervously over a bottle of orange juice. On the label is an idyllic American farm, no doubt in some far-off corner of the country, where the […]

Get Off the Train Now!

by 06/08/2008
Neighborhood: Union Square

As the glass doors to Trader Joe’s swing away from me I struggle to enter the real word again: the one without cheap organic produce, and shelves of exotic cookie combinations like cashew caramel chip. Water spits down from the darkened sky, frizzing up my hair. All at once I’m balancing three overstuffed shopping bags, […]

“An Orthodox Jew Walks into a McDonald’s…”

by 10/31/2006
Neighborhood: Union Square

I am not expecting it to be so pink. The floor is tiled light mauve-ish, though it’s having a brown sort of day, what with the rain and the customers tracking in the muck from outside. The counters and tables are a marbleized pink and the occasional wall panel is deep purple. I had been […]

Like the Tears of a Clown

by 06/22/2006
Neighborhood: Union Square

The other week I was waiting for the subway at Union Square. I was glancing around the station looking to see if the train was coming, when all of a sudden I caught the eye of a man in a clown outfit. He winked at me and started walking in my direction. I’m not usually […]