(Everybody sing:) I love New York!

It probably started with the New York Yankees, Mel Allen and a radio program called Grand Central Station.  Growing up in Hartford Connecticut my first contact with New York City came by way of the big console radio we had in the living room.  By the 1950’s and Allan Freed’s Saturday morning “Top 50”, usually hosted by (was it?) Paul Sherman because Allan was touring the country with his live Rock ‘n’ Roll show–which, of course, I would faithfully attend at the State Theater in Hartford, sitting as far forward as I could both to get closer to the performers (Frankie Lymon and the Teenagers, The Cadillacs, the Spaniels, Sam “The Man” Taylor and that woman in the incredibly short skirt whom everyone was convinced was Alan Freed’s you-know) and as far away as possible from the back rows filled nodding junkies and couples doing what they do.

In 1949 my Dad and Uncle Jack took me to New York and Yankee Stadium.  Coming in on the 8:04 New York, New Haven and Hartford train it was just the way the announcer on Grand Central Station described it: “…past a long gray line of tenement houses…tunnel…ta da”  Remarkably, 68 years later and nothing’s changed.  Stepping out of that train, walking along the platform and up the steps, entering the vastness of–!  Even today I can’t step into the main hall of Grand Central without gasping at its sheer magnificence.  Every change in that space, from the removal of the Kodak exhibit at the north end to the cleaning and revitalizing of the ceiling (with the exception of that one small square to remind us of how it had been corrupted by cigarette smoke) only brings my memory-fantasy back into vivid being.

But–as is my privilege as creator of this blog–I joyfully digress.  Before I end my digression, however, here’s this:

Grand Central

Grand Central

The caption and the little grayish frame around the photo, I don’t know where they came from or how they got there so that we can see them.  Along with knowing more and more as I slide into my seniority, an equal amount of more and more–maybe even more–becomes a mystery. 

But where was I?

Ah, yes.

I was regaling you with my love of New York City and how often that love is expressed in ways which only confuse or bore those unwillingly positioned to endure my carrying-on–as are you, Dear Reader, having endured up to this point and perhaps boldly continuing on past this point.  Ahead of you await four haiku written in the English Language style and one photograph, all conveying to my satisfaction my love of my city.  It is my hope, certainly, that you, too, will find delight in these expressions.  Whether you do or not, I can only glean from reading your comments.  First the haiku:

the light changes
a bus heads uptown
a woman laughs
late afternoon
Chinese take-out joint
surrounded by bicycles
Avenue D & 6th
an old man’s tag
still there

tattoos appear up and down
Fifth Avenue

Now the photo, taken from the new Whitney Museum:

From the Witney

From the Whitney

Seriously–if I may step out of character for a sentence or two–I truly benefit from your comments.  So, should you wish to benefit me, please comment.

Be well.

Published in: on June 29, 2015 at 6:39 pm  Comments (5)