Wednesday, June 20, 2007

The Liberty State Building Statue

-- Andy McCarthy

Taking the pre-ordained route, pistolshot from 42nd
Street and the Westside Highway, on the north corner
of 42nd stands the Consulate-General for the People's
Republic of China. The location of the Consulate is
found quite remote from any city neighborhood
considered Chinese. The Consulate faces the Hudson
River, so its watch-towers do not monitor the bodies
of water off the shores of Queens where boats spilling
Fujianese refugees are capsizing. Look across the
street from the Consulate, to the southside of 42nd
Street: here is where the Entertainment District
begins. The Falun Dafa, like China's Mormons, are
staging their torture tableaux, they make a playhouse
of the corner with water-hoses jammed up noses and
figures in death squad uniforms clubbing hanged
victims and fingernails yanked out. You don't need
TKTS tickets for this show. Not as grand and hallowed
as the USS Intrepid (no longer perched on the West
Side Piers but under repair at the Bayonne Marine
Terminal) – nonetheless passersby get the hot sick

Now up the Henry Hudson Highway you garner a sustained
view of what modernity-maven Le Corbusier considered
the optimus prime of bridge-making: The George
Washington. In this author's opinion, NYC named the
GW Bridge after The General not by respect, but by
punishment. GW lost New York to the Royalists at an
early juncture (1776) in the Revolutionary War –
decisive battles with Hessian Bluejackets took place
not far from where vehicles hit the exit ramps. Why a
punishment? Of course, it's the only bridge from New
York that takes you into New Jersey! (Lincoln and
Holland Tunnels don't count: no Palisade vista).

Instead of cutting further east to the Hutchinson Parkway, I suggest a turnoff to Cabrini Blvd. In this choice lay the experiences of two renowned female
figures. Anne Hutchinson, late in life given land in
New Netherlands where the namesake byway passes, was a
New England orator banished south by the Pilgrims
because of her belief that no Church may dictate the
personal mystery of each his or her own god-made God.
Hutchinson was murdered, along with all her children
save one, by Lenape Siwanoy Indians in 1643. The
Siwanoy believed in giving living things a dead name as way of respect to the killed. The Genovese Family down at the Harbor operated likewise. The Siwanoy
warrior responsible for the slayings adopted Hutchinson's name as his own. Are there brownstones in the Gothic style on Riverside Drive named for Lady

. . . that hook being a detour to the skyway gulch
regions of Columbia Presbyterian Hospital and further
up to Mother Cabrini Chapel. Mother Cabrini,
Patroness of Immigrants, born in the North of Italy
but the first outlander canonized with American
sainthood. She made a miracle of sight to The Blind
Child. Inside the Chapel, at the altar before all
congregants, lay the body of Mother Cabrini, in state,
the women's corpus shroud in a wax likeness, festooned
in robes and flora and sealed under glass. The
Catholics like to keep it morbid, as the Falun Dafa on
Forty-Deuce. The Patroness of Immigrants has been
granted an eternal home at the very top of Manhattan
Island. Now is as good a time as any, for the
venturer, to scamper from these hinterlands and hop
the ferry 10 miles south to The Statue of Liberty. To
The Mother of Exiles. She stands on broken chains,
the land at her foundation the only in America not
interjected by water which can be officially claimed
by both New York and New Jersey. The most blustering
symbol of Immigration on the continent. An act of
perfection on behalf of New York City, too, if only
because the first Dutch colonialists spoke not Dutch
but French, the very language used by the engineers
who rendered Lady Liberty as well as the gift-givers
who stood her staunch and significant in the
all-seeing Harbor.

Thursday, June 7, 2007

Le Pinson en Or in Prison by the Shore

-- Chris Leo

For the sake of New Jersey the Nets must go.
Them making it in Brooklyn will reduce the Knicks to forgotten Clippers status.
"The Knicks?" the shoeshiner says, "aren't they that team that always loses to the Globetrotters?"
"Exactly. And man, do you know the last team to ever beat the Globetrotters?"
"No team ever beat the Globetrotters."
"Not true. The New Jersey Reds beat the Globetrotters in 1971."
"I didn't even know the Nets existed back then?"

And so who will fill this void left in Jersey once the Nets leave?

I have a remarkable suggestion that I do believe the clues have laid out for us.

The Giants football team is already a defacto New Jersey team. They've played in Jersey ever since I was born. Now dogear this thought: the Giants are also a baseball team that a) were once a New York team that aa) have a rivalry with the L.A. Dodgers that ab) dates back to when both teams were New York teams and ac) both teams left New York for California the same year, 1958; and now finally b) currently play at the opposite end of Route 80, the road that connects New York to its frontier doppelganger, San Francisco where ba) their Oakland Atheltic intercity rivals play east from them across a great bay -- not unlike the Giants would now if they were a New Jersey team, but that's going too fast because c) jackie Robinson this, Jackie Robinson that. When the Giants were in New York they faced the Yankees in six world series.

Coincidence?: The last time the Giants faced the Yankees in a World Series was in 1962, the only year they've faced off to them as a San Francisco team and the same year the Mets became a New York team.

So follow me:

Lately the Jets, who play in the Mets territory of Queens, have been acting a lot like the Bears with their hulking defense.

Baby Bears are Cubs.
Baby Cubs are...White Sox!

White Sox!
Like Mets to Yankees
you are Chicago to New York
Like Mets to Yankees
you are White Sox to Red Sox
Like Mets to Yankees
you are White Sox to Cubs

By mixing the defacto Giants at the eastern extreme of Route 80 with the long lost "third team" Giants at the Western extreme of Route 80, I do believe New Jersey's void will be filled with the true Giants at the center of the long road, the Giants who came out of nowhere to snatch the 2005 World Series --

White Sox come home!
New Jersey waits for you!

When the Nets leave New Jersey will be left with only one professional sports team, The Devils. Fine I suppose, but one could argue that the idea of games on ice is more antiquated than even baseball's knickered ye olde curly-cued 'stash icon on the Cracker Jack box. As old as that image is, it still holds relevance. Relevance neither the Yankees nor Mets have yet to balance successfully.

The Mets play good old fashioned baseball, but lack the characters to hook us in.
The Yankees stack the bench with characters, yet lack the sportsmanship to move us towards patriotism with the national anthem at the beginning of the games.
New Jersey on the other hand's got all the characters and all the Americana to back it up.

White Sox come home!

There is only one other option to save baseball in NYC, and it would take knocking it down a notch before bringing it back up:

The Mets have always struggled working the New York colors into their uniforms. It's that orange that throws things off. You can't get rid of it though. It ties us back to William of Orange, our Dutch forfather. Shea Stadium sits less than a mile from Rikers in the Sound. All the inmates there wear orange! I say the Mets mimic the inmates garb, using the blue and white (the remaining colors on the flag) for the letters on their uniforms and nothing more. If the Mets embrace their proximity to Rikers Island they'd finally get the character they need to make us pay attention. Hold that thought though, let's get the White Sox in Jersey first.