You are currently browsing the stories about the Lower East Side neighborhood

The Landlord’s Uncle

by 02/24/2019
Neighborhood: Bowery, Lower East Side

  The door to my apartment building is the color of the rough red wine men drink in small towns in Italy. In fact, Mr. Chinnici, who lives in my building, might look at home in a café in a Mediterranean village, drinking claret from a water glass. He wears a sooty, mushroom-colored cap; the […]

Car Pool, 1994

by 02/03/2019
Neighborhood: Lower East Side, Williamsburg

Got to pick these kids up. Oh why did we start a stupid car pool? Maybe car pools made sense in the suburbs of 1972 but…in Williamsburg, 1994? Still, it beats trying to get four five year-olds from Brooklyn to Avenue D in Manhattan by subway and bus. One big problem is our car. I […]

In a galaxy far far away: The East Village Years

by 12/09/2018
Neighborhood: East Village, Lower East Side, Murray Hill

Some prescribe the medicine of looking forward not back; don’t dwell on the past they advise, move along. Usually a proponent of such sentiment, I found it diminished when my attention was redrawn to an almost forgotten tale that I’d penned about my early life in New York. A story of the kid fresh off the […]

One Wheel, Two Towers

by 08/19/2018
Neighborhood: Lower East Side, World Trade Center

  They say everything happens for a reason. Construction began on the World Trade Center in August of 1968. Some months before that when I was in the second grade, our teacher, Miss Spellman, handed out a Weekly Reader, an eight-page magazine with short articles designed to encourage the habit of reading in elementary school […]

My Mother, My Hair

by 07/26/2018
Neighborhood: Brooklyn, Lower East Side

Last night, I dreamed about my mother. She was floating over the threshold of my room, a sweet smile on her face.In her raspy voice with its crazy Brooklyn accent, she said, “It’s been so long since I’ve seen you, darling. Look how long your hair got.” Because even in death, Mom was all about […]

Street Beast: The Real Estate Ninja

by 07/15/2018
Neighborhood: Lower East Side

I’d already seen the apartment several times– once with Joey and the other time with the two Jeffrey’s. The two Jeffreys were thinking about moving out of their apartment in the East Village and wanted “something more fun and interesting,” which is another way of saying “we’re going to fuck your schedule in the ass […]

You’re Out of the Night

by 06/17/2016
Neighborhood: Flushing, Lower East Side, Queens, Uncategorized

On Match.com, Ken’s moniker was “Dull.” He wrote that among his favorite things were office carpeting, spam, and waiting rooms. “I bet he lives in one of those storage units off the highway,” my friend Meg said as she read over my shoulder. My own profile was styled after Nancy Drew. Hair color? Titian. Hobbies? […]

Jews Playing Basketball

by 11/06/2014
Neighborhood: All Over, Bronx, Brooklyn, Lower East Side

New Yorkers of a certain age who dig hoops can tell you that there is a lot of Jewish DNA in the city game. Basketball was invented in 1891 by James Naismith, an instructor at a YMCA in Springfield, Massachusetts, but the game’s popularity really took off early in the 20th century in the settlement […]

Direction By Mercy

by 09/28/2014
Neighborhood: Long Island City, Lower East Side, Queens

“Here, going? Here, here!” The woman says to the drive and points to the paper in her hand. “This bus is going to Rockaway Beach!” The bus driver looks at her and answers. The woman doesn’t seem to understand and starts to talk to the bus driver in Chinese. The bus driver looks puzzled and shakes […]

Good Humor

by 12/06/2013
Neighborhood: Bowery, East Village, Lower East Side

The week before my high school graduation, I wandered into the Good Humor ice cream garage on East 3rd Street between 1st and 2nd Avenue, just a block from my apartment. I was looking for a summer job. A friend of the family, a college kid named Keith, was working the books there, and he […]

Below 14th

by 05/30/2013
Neighborhood: East Village, Lower East Side

In the summer of 1984, I sublet an apartment on East 3rd Street between Avenue A and B, about one hundred yards from the building in which I had spent the first 18 years of my life. I’d been away for six years—the first four at a small college in the midwest followed by two […]