Sunday, April 24, 2011
NYC - Notes From Above Ground
Best overheard conversation: Security Guard, “You want Bison Shoes?” Foreign tourist, “Yes, Bison Shoes.” SG, “Oh, you want to buy-some-shoes?” FT, “Yes, buysome shoes.”
Worst tactical mistake: Trying to outthink the subway map. The D train does NOT stop at 81st Street, just like the map says. The D Train does go straight to Harlem…just like the map says. This becomes very clear as you rocket by the 81st Street station.
Craziest Person: The black guy in the Jesus robe at Grand Central Station, preaching about somebody or something being a motherfucker. (Second place goes to the three girls in Greenwich Village who were wearing what appeared to be prototype Snuggies.)
Most awkward moment: The simulated sex scene in the musical, American Idiot. My kids agree with me on this one.
Best celebrity sighting: Samuel L. Jackson almost running me over as he was coming out of our hotel. (Second place goes to seeing Robin Roberts outside the Good Morning America studios. That is second place because she was the only other celebrity we saw. I am not counting Billy Joe Armstrong from Green Day since we were supposed to see him in the awesome musical, “American Idiot.”)
Biggest Adventure: Trying to cross Times Square Saturday morning to get to McDonalds…while they were filming a movie (with Sam Jackson) and had half of it closed. The problem was, we didn’t know exactly what was closed and were constantly shepherded by people in black cargo pants with walkie-talkies. We finally made it - via Staten Island. (Sure, McDonalds may not have been your choice for breakfast, but after dropping eighty bucks the previous morning on breakfast…well?)
Uh-Oh Moment: When the cab driver that is taking you to the airport comes to a stop sign in Queens, looks both ways and says, “Hmm…let me think.”
“Really?” Moment: When tourists pose in front of the Dakota Apartments, where Lennon was shot, with a big smile on their face.
The “WTF is this about” until you figure it out: The elevators in our hotel. There is a keypad at the elevator bank. You enter the floor you want to go to, and it assigns you an elevator. Hence, there are no floor buttons in the elevator. Hence, many people rush on when the doors open, only to realize there are no floor buttons inside…then say, “wha?” as they ride to the 40th floor with you. (This hotel also had the lobby on the unusually high eighth floor.)
What we didn’t bring that we should have: A podiatrist to care for our feet after the end of each day.
Misguided assumption about New Yorkers: They are impatient. Actually they couldn’t be more patient. Otherwise, the 24/7 glut of traffic and pedestrians (compounded exponentially by wandering tourists like us) would drive people to mass homicide.
Best part of the trip: Spending four wonderful days with my family.
Worst part of the trip: Knowing it will be awhile until we take our next family adventure