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The Shtetl Next Door

by 09/26/2021
Neighborhood: Upper East Side

On the first of the month, I visit Benjamin Benowitz. Ben lives three blocks north and three avenues east from the apartment I rent.  The lobby of Ben’s’s building reads like the lobbies I have seen in movies about New York old money; all ostentation with marble and central air.  The walls in my own […]

Yorkville 1960s–A Neighborhood in Transition

by 06/06/2021
Neighborhood: Yorkville

Early 1960s, Yorkville. My block, 81st street between 1st and York avenues.  During my early years, I witnessed a predominantly working-class immigrant neighborhood of Irish, Germans, and Hungarians being replaced by new wealthier residents. The transition started with the construction of high-rise apartment buildings on the avenues. These characterless buildings were replacing the five-story walk-ups […]

Reading at Trump Tower

by 05/09/2021
Neighborhood: Upper East Side

Part I. Project Runway She sauntered by at noon, shopping bags swinging from both arms, striding toward the infamous golden escalators. She was attractive with a flowing mane and long gait. Mostly, I noticed the grey raincoat she was wearing; it was a bright, summer day outside. Then she got swallowed up in the atrium’s […]

Next Stop the Twilight Zone

by 02/28/2021
Neighborhood: Subway, Upper East Side

One afternoon this summer I was on the subway. All was normal. Well, except that we are in a pandemic, which makes venturing down into NYC’s netherworld — one with poor ventilation and tons of non-mask wearers – feel like I am putting my life in my overly sanitized hands. It all seemed surreal. The […]