Sunday, June 19, 2011

The Gentle People of New York

I love those dear hearts and gentle people
Who live in my home town
Because those dear hearts and gentle people
Will never ever let you down - "Dear Hearts and Gentle People", Sammy Fain and Bob Hilliard, 1949

New Yorkers Sun Baking at Carl Schurtz Park
Yesterday I decided to walk across to the Carl Schurz Park to see and hear the "Sing for Hope" piano there. Sophie Matisse (yes she's the great granddaughter of Henri) and a number of other New York artists have painted a bunch of pianos and we are all invited to come outside and play. The painted pianos have been set up all over Manhattan, and looking up the "Spring for Hope" website" I saw that the closest was on the East River at the Carl Schurz Park. I took my camera, thinking to take a photo of our "local" piano for my readers.

On my way to the park I couldn't help noticing several signs of the honesty and civic responsibility of my fellow New Yorkers. Traits not often associated with the Apple people.

So I took photos - as EVIDENCE!
In the space of a few blocks I saw several items of lost property hanging on railings, put there by whoever found them, in the hope that they'd be claimed. You can see a couple of them in the photos above. The red cardigan in particular looks very stylish.

Volunteer Dog Walker, East 92nd Street
More evidence of New York's community spirit was found closer to the the park on 92nd Street and York Avenue. Volunteer dog-walkers from the nearby ASPCA walking "rescue dogs". I took a photo of one of them resting at a small plaza.

At the park. It was a good day for being outside and there were heaps of people sitting in the shade, reading, sun-baking, roller-skating, walking and riding bikes. I looked everywhere but could not see or hear any evidence of a piano. It was hot and I was too lazy to ask anyone if they'd seen one.

I turned back. I walked along 91st Street this time. I stopped at "The Vinegar Factory", a designer supermarket, known for its expensiveness and pretentiousness. Now I DID hear music. Bach's Brandenburg Concerto No. 6. "So Upper East Side," I was thinking, when it occurred to me that perhaps I was being Upper-East-Side-pretentious for recognizing it.

Somehow hearing classical music playing at supermarkets reminds me of people who brew coffee when their house is open for inspection - the aroma is said to attract buyers with money. Enough already. I bypassed the one hundred brands of virgin olive oil, ducked past the ducks à l'orange, bought a cornish hen, and left.

Manhattan for Yard Sale
A few meters on I and almost blinked and missed a Manhattan-size yard sale (Australians, read "garage sale"). I bought two glass tumblers from the Polish girl, who seemed as Poles do "in charge". I accidentally gave her two dollar notes and a twenty instead of three singles - I hate the way that American notes are not color-coded like Australian ones! The nice Polish girl called me back. I thanked her for her honesty and walked on.

I strolled along, thinking about New Yorkers and how we are much maligned, then stopped to take my final photo of the day.

A bike, still chained to the railing, sans wheels.

Oh well, who said that New Yorkers were perfect?

1 comment:

Vanessa said...

Who said New Yorkewrs were perfect? Why, none other then NYers would make such a statement.

Still you seem to always find the best NY has to offer in your walks and travels. Love the photos.

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