Thursday, November 29, 2012

Insane in the Membrane

Pop quiz: what island hosted an infamous insane asylum as well as a penitentiary facility, was formerly known as Welfare Island, and provided inspiration for various creepy films and books? 
That island would be Roosevelt, of course
In the terrible aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, I've been inundated with requests to inspect buildings that were flooded during the sea surges. I was excited to learn I'd be doing one such investigation at Roosevelt Island. I had heard tell of its historical nut hut and was eager to see the place (let's not kid ourselves, I also wanted an excuse to ride the tram!). Little did I know that not only was I going to the island that once was home to the famous loony bin, I was investigating THE loony bin itself! 
Dreams do come true!
Today only a portion of the insane asylum remains after time and a serious fire took their tolls. This portion is a gorgeously restored circular/geometric building, complete with spiral staircases called "the Octagon". Apparently it used to be the reception area of the crazy home. Now it's a combination of residential apartments, office spaces, and a preschool. Not gonna lie, kind of a letdown. Let's hope that they're crraaazzzyyyy apartments and office spaces and that the ghosts of tortured souls roam the preschool halls. 
And one of the approximately 20 photos I took on the ~5 minute tram ride. I guess I was a tad overeager. 
Photo credits: Roosevelt Island Tram, Who Framed Roger Rabbit

'Tis the Season

Yup, it's that time of year again. The act of cramming that last bite of pumpkin pie down America's throat to conclude yet another uncomfortably bloating Thanksgiving meal signifies one thing — it's Christmas time bitches! That means Christmas sweaters, Christmas cookies, Christmas decorations, and especially Christmas music in your face, everywhere, at all times. 
Most utterly painful Christmas song ever? Survey says: Wham's "Last Christmas"
For those of you unfamiliar with NYC winters, you many wonder how New Yorkers obtain Christmas trees given that nobody owns a car and there certainly are no magical sleigh rides to Santa's Christmas tree forest. One must purchase their Christmas tree at a stand found at various street corners throughout the city. Last year I saw so many tree stands on the Upper West Side, that I counted one every two to four blocks. Redic. Anyway, this is the case only if you live in Manhattan. In other boroughs, residents are not so lucky. The tree lots are much fewer and farther between. 
Christmas tree shopping, aka the annual arboreal mass murder frenzy
On the subway today it was quite hilarious to see that one family decided to purchase and haul their Christmas tree from Chelsea all the way to Crown Heights. Did I mention that this very robust and bushy tree was seven feet tall? After witnessing this, let me tell you this is no easy feat! The family was so adorable. Everybody on the train came over to comment. The dad was clearly mortified with all the attention while the mom and daughter were lapping up the compliments. *Note to all the menz out there: follow this guy's example and keep your ladies happy!* 

One woman could not get over this train-traveling tree. She was so blown away that she laughed hysterically for approximately ten straight minutes. Apparently she really, really, REALLY loves Christmas and even had to take a picture as documentation. This woman indicated the shopping bag in her hand and mentioned that she had just purchased decorations for her own tree. As she was leaving the train, she goes over to the family and generously hands over her bag of ornaments. This is why I love New York. Whoever thinks we're all a bunch of jerks obviously doesn't know this town! 
And what happened then? Well in New York they say, that this random act of kindness made our hearts grow three sizes that day!
Despite how mortified I am to admit this (I am a serious anti-belieber, and for that matter not too keen on Mariah Carey either) I will leave you with one of my absolute favorite Christmas songs. Feel free to judge. Happy challah-days everyone :)
Let's count, how many times can Mariah Carey sing over the shoulder in order to flaunt her aging ass in 4 min. 14 sec.?


Hey, anybody interested in picking up an STD or two in the South Bronx? Lucky for you, I know a place! Today I was in the charming industrial warehouse district of the Bronx neighborhood Hunt's Point. I've heard stories about this particular area (come sundown it's hooker heaven), and was bit concerned for my personal safety. Fortunately things were not that bad. I did run into a couple of junkies and saw a few more scrubs than usual, but other than that everything was fine. Today's job site was a rather disgusting warehouse that was conveniently located adjacent to the "King of Clubs NYC Upscale Gentlemen's Club". Nothing says upscale like excessive amounts of barbed wire.
This place meets all my needs: I can sell my excess pellet crates (red sign) and lust after some sexi ladiez all at the same  convenient location!

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Hurricane Sandy

Hello all! As pretty much everyone is aware, the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy has wreaked havoc in the Tri-State area over the past week. Power stations have exploded. Fires have started. People have been without electricity or heat for days. Homes have been lost. Subways aren't running. The list goes on and on. It has been an absolutely crazy few days. My thoughts and prayers go out to all those who have been affected. I am so, so grateful to have been only mildly inconvenienced during the past week. I have much to say on the aftermath of Sandy, but I'm too exhausted from walking eight, yes eight, miles today from a relative's apartment in Midtown Manhattan where I rode out the storm, to my own place in Brooklyn. It breaks my heart to hear the news stories of the devastation Sandy has caused, although I just saw this article and couldn't stop laughing. I thought it was a needed remedy to all I've been hearing and reading. Enjoy, and I hope everyone is okay!!