"A New York Treasure" --Village Voice
Category: NYC

Where & When: Season 2!

Greetings ladies and gents and welcome to a new season of Where and When! No, it wasn’t a dream or a passing fancy of some lunatic minds, it was and is a rather fun puzzle game for our readers to utilize their deductive skills in tracking down the answers to life’s important questions… well, trivial maybe, but all games involve a certain amount of seemingly useless knowledge. Back by popular demand (and a moment to spare in a busy work schedule), I’ve brought to you something new to disseminate and ponder.  But before we get down to the nitty-gritty, a little background for the newcomers to Bronx Banter and/or this game we play…

Earlier in the year, Alex posted an interesting picture here from another site of a New York City landscape from the early part of the 20th century (so near, and yet so far) in which the writer asked help in identifying the location depicted in the picture.  After some pondering and sharing of our observations within the picture, several of our loyal readers (myself included) concluded that the picture was an early photo of Manhattan’s West Side along the Hudson River; facing north from the busy piers near Midtown and peering far into the distance where the George Washington Bridge was just under construction.  By this we were also able to determine the probable date the photo was taken.  Riverside Drive was the dominant roadway, but the Henry Hudson Parkway was also under construction at the moment the picture was taken.

It was a fun undertaking, as I later wrote to Alex, and I suggested making a game out of it.  “You’re hired” he responded, and I’ve been the administrator of this effort ever since. I’ve experimented with rules and formats throughout, trying to make it fair and more involving for everyone as our readers are so widely dispersed that some miss out on the game due to the difference in time from here to there part of the globe, but I’ve compensated in creative ways to involve them as well.  In the end, I settled for a free exchange of ideas and suggestions with the stipulation that whoever answers he questions fully explain the process they used to find the answers (the journey can be equally as, if not more entertaining than the destination itself).  The winners (the first person to answer the questions correctly) would receive a theoretical root beer; a Banter tradition that began with the jinxing of anyone who posted an identical comment to the comment prior to his or her own.  The rest of the players were given cream sodas as a consolation prize for playing.  I had something special in mind for the person who tabulated the most wins in a year, but because my work schedule began to interfere with regularly scheduled postings, I tabled that idea for the time being (but it’s still under consideration).

About the scheduling; I tried to adhere to a two or three-a-week schedule of games, but I ran into two big problems: life (big problem, supersedes everything fun) and supply.  I am a bit of a perfectionist, so I try to find interesting challenges for these games and generally avoid stock footage of standard New York City easy-to-identify landmarks. There are many sites with different photos of many places around the city, but even some of those are nondescript and would not provide a fair amount of clues to present as a challenge.  So with those limitations, I’ve often found myself painted into a corner concerning what to present.  Alex and I have discussed this at length and he has encouraged me to open my definition of what I consider interesting challenges as it were, bearing in mind that some people may be seeing these locales for the first time.  With that in mind, I am being more open minded about what to present so that I don’t run out of material and also to allow one of my main goals to come into fruition: to educate and enlighten our readers and players about the history and appreciation of our great city and its region of influence.  The most important thing to remember is that it is a game and was born from and meant for fun.

So let’s have some fun, shall we?

Where & When S2 G1 C

Here we have an aerial photo of a region within the city that you may or may not recognize from certain features within the picture.  I think this is an easy one, but I’m sure that those of you not native to the region will want to look up some of the details in whatever manner you use to research. I can say this much, the features in this picture give a good indication of the time period of this photo, so I don’t have to drop many hints.  If you get it within the correct decade, you’ll get credit for the when answer.  So, if you answer Where this picture dipicts and When it was likely taken, you will win our traditional first prize, a frosty mug of high-quality root beer (which is always up for discussion).  As a bonus, if you can identify at least two major features within this photo with proper names from the time it was taken, you will get a scoop of ice cream to add to your root beer, making it a root beer float of course.  All players who participate in the discussion will receive a cold mug of cream soda for your efforts.  I will try to return during the latter part of the day to reveal the answers and discuss any trivia or history that’s associated.  You are all free to discuss whatever you like about it, but please avoid using the direct link in the photo credit (unless you find it during your research) and also as discussed before, show your math.

So ladies and gents, welcome back and have fun!

photo credit: Wired New York

New York Minute

gcarlin

So good. 

Photo Credit: Ozier Muhammad/The New York Times]

New York Minute

umbrellaz

Every day when I get out of the subway on my way to work I see this dude selling the papers.

I walk up to him and bow. We smile and say hello. That’s it.

I admire the hell of him because he’s out there no matter the weather. Like this morning, a cold, rainy one in Manhattan.

New York Minute

munshin-break_opt

The Bronx is Up…

New York Minute

footballnyc

Hut, hut…

Picture via Kateoplis.

New York Minute

secondave

Ah, the 2nd Avenue Deli…

[Photo Via: Indy Pendent Thinking]

New York Minute

bbcnews

Michael Goldfarb’s memories of driving a cab in New York.

Photo Via: BBC.

New York Minute

clockfoot

Coolness from Gothamist.

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OY

If only I liked Oysters. There are a few places that held a certain mystery for me as a kid and the Oyster Bar is one of them. My parents talked about it with reverence. I’ve actually been once as an adult–I had a drink there with a friend a few years ago–but still haven’t had the Oysters.

[Photo via NYC Nostalgia]

New York Minute

Bronx Boys book - University of Texas Press, 2014

Stephen Shames’ Bronx Boys. 

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freefly

Droppin’ some NYC. 

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chrys

But beautiful.

Picture by Hiroshi Sugitomo.

New York Minute

cabbie

Mr. Cab Driver…from Pete Hamill:

Taxi drivers are the most enduring oppressed minority in New York City history. Race, ethnicity and religion are not sources of the oppression. It lies entirely in the nature of the work. Trapped for about 12 hours each day in the worst traffic in the United States, taxi drivers must suffer the savage frustrations of jammed streets, double-parked cars, immense trucks, drivers from New Jersey — and they can’t succumb to the explosive therapy of road rage. Their living depends on self-control.

At the same time, they face many other hazards: drunks behind them in the cab, fare beaters, stickup men, Knicks fans filled with biblical despair, out-of-town conventioneers who think the drivers are mobile pimps. Some seal themselves off from the back seat with the radio, an iPod or a cellphone. All pray that the next passenger doesn’t want to go from Midtown to the far reaches of Brooklyn or Queens. They hope for a decent tip. They hope to stay alive until the next fare waves from under a midnight streetlamp.

[Photo Credit: Matt Draper]

New York Minute

bookstoressssss

Hello; Goodbye.

New York Minute

subwayin

Going, going…

[Photo Credit: Forgotten New York]

New York Minute

watert

Water towers.

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tumblr_n9h5hqtHFm1sovzrpo1_1280

That there’s the Brill Building in midtown, Manhattan. I got my first job working in the movie business there when I was 17. Summer of 1988. This is what it was like back then. Surrounded by pornography.  Why, there she is, one of the Queens, herself: Vanessa Del Rio.

[Photo Credit: Ghislain Bonneau]

New York Minute

worldtrade

Emily and I were at the Yankee game last on Friday night. On the subway ride up to the Stadium we saw a middle-aged man wearing a Lawrie jersey. Brett Lawrie,  who looks more like a jacked-up MMA fighter than a ballplayer.  I couldn’t resist, so I went up to the guy and said, “Why Lawrie?”

He said, “He’s Canadian.”

Cool. Made sense to me. We saw a lot of Lawrie jerseys that night. After the game we rode on the subway for a few stops with a Canadian couple. They were charming. Em and I were reminded of all the things we haven’t done in our city, like visit Ellis Island. I’ve been to top of the Empire State Building but not in 30 years. Haven’t been to the Statue of Liberty since I was a kid either.

Still so much to see here, right?

[Photo Via: SimplyMyView Photography]

New York Minute

georgecar

So good.

[Photo Credit: Kelly Carlin]

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"This ain't football. We do this every day."
--Earl Weaver