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The Ancient Swirl of Time that is Always Present Over Coney Island

by 10/20/2014
Neighborhood: Coney Island

It’s a bone chilling day in winter as I park my car on a side street next to the Cyclone roller coaster. My head is spinning with all these old Brooklyn memories, and I’ve come back here now looking for signs of them, looking for pieces left behind from the sad sweep of time. Sometimes, […]

COFFEE, MY FAMILY

by 06/14/2014
Neighborhood: Chelsea, Featured, Washington Heights

It had become a habit that week—reading Richard Rodriguez’s “Brown” on the A train, riding a gradient line between the ochre of Washington Heights and the powdered white walls of NYU. I reveled in holding the book upright, spine stiff, and the bent paperback cover like a sail at full mast. It was a silent […]

Uninvited Guest

by 05/28/2014
Neighborhood: Bronx, Featured

We were living in a tenement apartment building in the Bronx, and it was full of all things common to such. I was doing the breakfast dishes one Saturday morning when I felt something feathery run over my bare foot. Of course, I already knew what it was, but I screamed anyway. Ahhh!!!!!!!!!!!! My four-year-old […]

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 […]

Sliced Tomatoes

by 03/16/2014
Neighborhood: Boro Park, Featured

In the Jewish neighborhoods he was “Morris, the Maven of Tomatoes.” The orthodox women hardly talked to him, except to call out their orders in Yiddish, enough of which he understood, or to haggle about his high prices or to complain about the accuracy of the scale that hung from the side of his wagon. […]

Flat Fixed

by 02/13/2014
Neighborhood: Featured, Staten Island

The strip of Bay Street that runs through Stapleton is an example of conspicuous gentrification. There's a Spanish tapas bar, and a Japanese Bistro, and a Sri Lankan clay pots restaurant, all opened in the last few years. In counterpoint, the old Paramount Theater has failed at numerous incarnations, and a White Castle sits stripped […]

Pimping Trixie

by 02/02/2014
Neighborhood: Featured, Upper West Side

I won’t go into how our two-year old standard poodle got Lyme disease and died horribly, triggering a deep depression in my then 14 year old son, Jake. Lulu was smart and devilish and silly. She chewed a carved leg of our 120 year old Steinway, the molding on the walls, and anything she could […]

Will Probably Be Late to the Party

by 01/21/2014
Neighborhood: East Village

I am apologizing to Michelle because I’m crying and I don’t know why. I’m not sad or anything, I’m actually having a good time. This is one of the first times that Michelle and I are hanging out outside of class, and we don’t know each other well yet. But tears keep running down my […]

Just Another Night

by 01/12/2014
Neighborhood: Featured, Fort Greene

Last night was New Year’s Eve. My redheaded poetess friend Irene phoned to invite me to a 20-something party in Bushwick. “You’ll be the oldest man there.” Irene was going solo. “Almost three times older.” We were just friends. “I think of you as 16.” She had seen me being silly on more than one […]

My Neighbor Cries a Chain Link Fence

by 12/31/2013
Neighborhood: Astoria

To the young beautiful woman with tears in her eyes who lives above me: now I know why you run in the apartment for hours backandforth backandforth. I know why you don't talk in the hallway. I know because the building is old and my ceiling is thin. I heard the furniture thunder last night […]

The Dress

by 06/18/2013
Neighborhood: All Over, Greenwich Village, SoHo, West Village

For thirty-five years its posture has been folded into a deep curtsy, dormant over a hanger, as if waiting for a curtain call. After that one moment in the spotlight, it’s never been worn again. Unless we consider fleeting fantasies of varying scenarios I’ve had over the decades that flash-forwarded to, well, the age I […]

Dreams of Taylor

by 06/18/2013
Neighborhood: Featured, Midtown

The term ‘generation gap’ was coined during the tumultuous Post WWII years, as the focus of the American media swung from the conquerors of the Axis Powers to their spawn, the Baby Boomers. Bing Crosby gave way to Elvis and the King was deposed by the Beatles, as each succeeding wave of teenagers attempted to […]