You are currently browsing the stories about the Murray Hill neighborhood

Never Mind the Notes

by 09/27/2020
Neighborhood: Gramercy Park, Murray Hill

“If you have to ask what jazz is, you’ll never know.” – Louis Armstrong At the time I fancied myself a budding talent, though I’d have been hard pressed to say at what. Singer-songwriter was my latest label, only I sang mostly in the shower and once toweled dry  could never quite manage to make […]

Special Needs

by 11/24/2019
Neighborhood: Kips Bay, Manhattan, Murray Hill

From 1966 to 1969 — grades 1 to 3—I attended the Adams School. Occupying three separate buildings, in the East 30s near Lexington Avenue, it was a “private school” for roughly 400 students aged four to 21 facing learning or emotional challenges. In reality, the school received most, if not all, its funding from the […]

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 […]

Living In The HOV Lane

by 08/16/2011
Neighborhood: Murray Hill, Uncategorized

My sister Betty and I are in the HOV lane cruising east on the LIE toward her house in Suffolk County. She is in the front seat next to me in the The Silver Fox, my Subaru Forester, wrapped in a light blanket against the still cool April air. Bets is my older sister, ten […]


by 08/16/2011
Neighborhood: Murray Hill

My body fell victim to silence the minute I made impact with the ground that paved the intersection of 39th and 3rd. In the heart of Manhattan, time stood still. The everyday chatter of New York City; the yellow taxis squawking at pedestrians and the orchestra of shoes pounding the cement suddenly came to a […]

Where Is Singer?

by 12/13/2008
Neighborhood: Murray Hill

The old man seated beside me awaiting the appearance of the celebrated Isaac Bashevis Singer at The Workman’s Circle Auditorium is becoming a pest. From a rumpled brown shopping bag he pulls out and shamelessly shows off photographs of his grandchildren to which I offer the obligatory compliments. Light and sound technicians, meanwhile, test the […]

Liquid Straightjacket Works Every Time

by 11/18/2007
Neighborhood: Murray Hill

It’s 1983; I’m on the job ten years and have received my first promotion. Yesterday as a firefighter I carried an axe and fought fires; today as a Fire Marshal I carry a gun and fight crime. In most departments around our country, the title Fire Marshal denotes a person who performs inspectional duties. In […]

Trying on Murray Hill Girl

by 06/09/2007
Neighborhood: Murray Hill

One Halloween, I decided to wear something different than my usual orange shirt from the 1989 Westchester Girl Scouts Jamboree. On the evening of disguises, I tried on a very local one. I dressed as a stereotypical “Murray Hill” Girl, a costume that required an explanation and a bibliography. The costume evoked a particular New […]

The Scorekeeper

by 12/01/2006
Neighborhood: Murray Hill

One of the oddities of growing up in a big city like New York is that the discussion and anticipation of crime enters into everyday childhood rather unremarkably. In many ways it is the first real adult problem children are asked to deal with and conversation about murders in general were, by necessity, exceptionally frequent […]

Lubricated Intruder

by 10/10/2006
Neighborhood: Murray Hill

Golden slumbers. I slept like an heir apparent, drifting in satin oblivion from Sunday to Monday. I had been away for the weekend. I had visited my family: my nieces and nephews, my successful older siblings, my mother and father. We did wholesome things as sign of our shared familial concern and love. And for […]

For the Birds

by 03/12/2004
Neighborhood: Murray Hill

This week’s meeting of the New York Companion Bird Club of Manhattan was held at the Jackson Hole Restaurant. This would be the first bird club meeting of my life. I have never liked birds very well. In my last year of undergraduate college, I transferred to San Francisco State University, and discovered that the […]

Atheist Hit By Truck

by 01/15/2003
Neighborhood: Murray Hill

Photo by Morris Engel McNulty, with cigarette, in his element. This drunk came down the street, walking in the gutter instead of the sidewalk, and a truck hit him and knocked him down. It was a busy corner there at Forty-second Street and Second Avenue, in front of the Shanty, and there’s a hack line […]