“In America, anyone can become president. That’s the problem.” -George CarlinPolitics aside, it’s easy to find your polling place here.
Some good news over the weekend. Subways are mostly up, power is coming back, and a lot of people are back to work today. This is progress. However, we must not forget that there are thousands of your fellow New Yorkers who are cold, hungry and without shelter today. Here are just a few links in case you wish to donate or help out in any way you can.
- The Carl V. Bini Memorial Fund is actively seeking donations to benefit those effected and displaced by Hurricane Sandy. In addition to accepting cash donations, they are also accepting donations at our offices located at 18 Hervey Street. All donations will be given directly to Staten Islanders in need. Donate here.
- WNYC has a great and continuously updated list of who needs what by borough as well as financial donation and volunteer information.
- Occupy Wall Street is now shifting it’s focus to aid. They are actively helping the victims in Downtown Manhattan, Brooklyn & Queens. They are looking for more volunteers.
- Still no heat or hot water? NYSC has opened the doors to all their area clubs for people impacted by Sandy to shower and warm up.
- The Home Reporter and Brooklyn Spectator will be collecting non-perishable food items and coats for all victims of Hurricane Sandy in the neighborhoods of Gerritsen Beach, Sheepshead Bay, Brighton Beach, Coney Island, Seagate, Breezy Point, Belle Harbor, Rockaway and much of the south shore of Staten Island. Details here.
- Restore Red Hook. Please consider making a donation to help Red Hook’s independent small businesses rebuild loved locations like Home/Made, The Good Fork, Sunny’s Bar, Fort Defiance, Bait and Tackle, The Ice House, various galleries, and more.
- NY Daily News has organized a donation drive. Details here.
- Citymeals on Wheels, while typically focused on elderly home-bound populations, is in high gear delivering food to those stranded without supplies in the wake of Sandy. Right now, they are most in need of volunteers.
- RockawayHelp is a site dedicated to information on how to help the people in Rockaway who have been impacted by Sandy.
- Pets need help, too! Here are post-Sandy resources for NYC pet owners.
- And be sure to patronize restaurants that have pledged to donate proceeds to Sandy relief. Our friends at Eater.com put together a great list here.
Quite a few months ago, we scouted the Brooklyn Army Terminal (or BAT) for a possible new On The Real episode. We were amazed at the hulking immensity of this Cass Gilbert designed fortress and intrigued at what a critical role it played in our nation’s military past. Just an incredibly cool building with a million stories to tell, sitting quietly and without fanfare today on the Brooklyn waterfront. We loved that the BAT has evolved from serving the military industrial complex and today hosts thriving private sector businesses in dozens of different industries.
The cherry on top was that the life story of the Brooklyn Army Terminal dovetails into one of our favorite assertions: that the most consistent narrative of the Big Apple is the one of change. There’s no other place we have seen like the BAT, and it was a real privilege and lots of fun to have an all-access pass to shoot there. We hope you enjoy the results.
On this day (actually this coming Friday, but whatever), 520 years ago Christopher Columbus first landed in the Americas thus setting in motion the long chain of events that would lead to you, our dear reader, sitting in your chair reading these prophetic words.If you’re looking for something to do on your day off, head up to Columbus Circle to check out Tatzu Nishi’s public art exhibit around the statue. He actually built a modern-day living room complete with bookshelves, rug, sofa and chairs around the 13 foot granite statue 75 feet in the air. It’s six flights up, but well worth the trip. We’re sure the lines will be fine today. Really.
If you take the Downtown 6 train to the last stop at Brooklyn Bridge-City Hall and then stay on the train while it winds around underground to become the Uptown 6, you’ll get a nice little surprise out the window to your right.
Mayor Robert Van Wyke presided over the ground breaking of the City Hall Station for the IRT Lexington Avenue line in March of 1900. Originally designed to look like the other stations in the line with simple white utilitarian tile with inlaid mosaic labeling each stop, this curvy station got an upgrade when the new mayor, George McClellon, declared that his stop under City Hall had to be “more beautiful than the rest.” He got what he wanted and on October 27th, 1904 he turned the silver key official opening this amazing underground hub for business. It was never the busiest station, but certainly the most beautiful with its Romanesque Revival architecture, intricate tile work, arched blue leaded glass skylights and massive brass chandeliers.
Even the oak ticket booth with cast iron bars on its windows was more ornate than ones at the rest of the stops. Unfortunately, with the expanding size or the trains, the tight curve in the stations design created a tremendously unsafe gap for passengers to navigate and the station closed on December 31, 1945. Sealed with concrete slabs, it became a virtual tomb until 1995 when it was intended to be reopened as a part of the New York Transit Museum. Plans were halted for that project when the Giuliani administration deemed it’s location a “highly secure” area due to terrorist threats. So today, this incredible piece of transit history remains unused except for the occasional tour given to members of the Transit Museum.
Long ago when I lived in a ratty little abode on Third Avenue between 18th and 19th Streets, there was a dark, musty and oddly wonderful sanctuary just up the way past 22nd Street. It was the perfect toasty hang out for a tall stout on a bitter snowy night or the perfect meatlocker-esque refuge from a sweltering summer evening for fish and chips and a cold glass of something. I found out yesterday that some things (thankfully) do not change.
Dark mahogany bar, beamed ceiling, sawdust packed floor and all, the folks at Molly’s Shebeen on Third Avenue between 22nd and 23rd make sure the place feel like midnight all day…in the best possible way. It stands at the top of a long list of classic Irish bars/restaurants that must be visited and/or frequented in this town so rich with a long and sorted Gaelic past. A drinking and eating establishment in one form or another since 1895, Molly’s has some of the best Shepherd’s Pie and Fish and Chips around. You also need to give the Corned Beef and Cabbage a shot. But the real winner here is the smooth and creamy perfectly poured pint of Guinness. It was good to see my old friend. I’ll make sure to visit again soon, sweet Molly.