An Observation in Headlines

I went downtown to the Newseum this morning to see the coverage of the fiftieth anniversary of the March on Washington.  Every morning in front of the Newseum the front page of one paper per state is on display.  Since yesterday was such an historic day, I was intrigued to look at all 50 states’ coverage. I went through twice to really “take in” all of the coverage, or, in some cases, the lack thereof.

I was shocked and surprised that some states had no mention of the anniversary of The March.  Some states did not show the President.  Some states showed all of the living (and present) Presidents.  Some states just showed photos of the crowd, some just had a banner mention, some just simply an editorial.  Some just showed Martin Luther King, III.  Some showed Obama greeting Martin Luther King, Jr.’s only granddaughter.  One state didn’t even show one of their own Congressional delegation, who was there 50 years ago as the youngest speaker and who was there yesterday as a sitting elected official. 

It was disappointing to see that AL, LA and MS showed only photos of the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, commemorating the 5-year anniversary of her landfall.

Some states had coverage, but only below the fold. 

A collection of the three top national newspapers, the New York Times, USA Today & Wall Street Journal, each had coverage.

I spoke to a woman who was also intrigued and definitely paying a lot of attention. I mentioned to her, “it’s interesting, isn’t it, to see which states do not have any coverage?”  She quickly responded, indicating she was thinking, too: “it is interesting to see which states don’t show Obama on the front page!”

Now, maybe I was moved because I was a history major with a focus on American studies, maybe because I wrote my senior thesis on Fannie Lou Hamer.  Maybe it is just that I grew up here, but was not there fifty years ago (obviously!).  Either way, I consider yesterday an historic day in our nation’s history…. 

…For red states 

…For blue states 

…For Northern states

…For Southern states

…For the United States!

It was interesting to note the coverage from around this great country.  It was indicative of work left to do.

Here is a link to Rep. John Lewis’ speech. His home state did not show his face at all on the cover of their newspaper this morning.  This honorable man was a Freedom Rider and the youngest speaker 50 years ago in his role as the President of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC).  Yesterday he spoke very passionately and eloquently as a sitting African-American member of the U.S. Congress, where he has served since 1987.  (I was 10.)

The best line he delivered during his speech at the Realize the Dream March Rally on Saturday was:

“I got arrested 40 times during the ’60s, beaten and left bloody and unconscious. But I’m not tired. I’m not weary. I’m not prepared to sit down and give up. I am ready to fight and continue to fight, and you must fight.”  

Listen to his entire speech here.

True to form, President Barack Obama’s remarks were on target and moving.  Listen here.  He wrapped it up with:  

“That tireless teacher who gets to class early and stays late and dips into her own pocket to buy supplies because she believes that every child is her charge — she’s marching.  

That successful businessman who doesn’t have to, but pays his workers a fair wage and then offers a shot to a man, maybe an ex-con who is down on his luck — he’s marching.  

The mother who pours her love into her daughter so that she grows up with the confidence to walk through the same door as anybody’s son — she’s marching.  

The father who realizes the most important job he’ll ever have is raising his boy right, even if he didn’t have a father — especially if he didn’t have a father at home — he’s marching.  

The battle-scarred veterans who devote themselves not only to helping their fellow warriors stand again, and walk again, and run again, but to keep serving their country when they come home — they are marching.  

Everyone who realizes what those glorious patriots knew on that day — that change does not come from Washington, but to Washington; that change has always been built on our willingness, We The People, to take on the mantle of citizenship — you are marching.  

And that’s the lesson of our past.  That’s the promise of tomorrow — that in the face of impossible odds, people who love their country can change it.  That when millions of Americans of every race and every region, every faith and every station, can join together in a spirit of brotherhood, then those mountains will be made low, and those rough places will be made plain, and those crooked places, they straighten out towards grace, and we will vindicate the faith of those who sacrificed so much and live up to the true meaning of our creed, as one nation, under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.”        

 Keep marchin’!

(& thanks for reading!)

As an aside:  I’m newly in love with “Kid President.”  You should check him out.  Here is a link to his firing up the crowd yesterday morning from the Lincoln Memorial. (click on pink word “here” above)

Sunrise on Saturday

What would I do without my iPhone?

The Weather Channel app to tell me when sunrise will be, and my alarm clock to make sure I’m up to attend (with the added snooze feature)!

So I set the alarm for 5:30 a.m., hit snooze once, and then Maza and I headed over to the East River (since the sun rises in the East, after all!) and Carl Schurz Park to watch a beautiful sunrise on this, my final full day in the City.  While it will be nice to see boss man, Tim, I will miss my furry four-legged friend and partner in crime for the past month, Maza.

Some of these “selfies” aren’t really selfies, technically as they include Maza, too, but his expressions are priceless.  I wish I could hear what he’s thinking in these.  Don’t worry, we promptly went back to bed once we got home.  But as the day progressed and I watched the March on Washington 50 years later, did laundry, made beds, packed and did dishes, Maza has started to figure out that something is up and won’t leave my ankles….til Tim walks in, that is!

Friday in Brooklyn, & with that, all 5 Boroughs visited!

There are way too many photos from today’s excursion, so apologies in advance.  However, this is also very likely my last post from the Big Apple and probably for a while.  Thank you to so many of you for following along on this month-long “working vacation”!

I took the subway this morning over to Brooklyn and just walked around Brooklyn Bridge Park and played “traveler” (not tourist) for a bit.  They are setting up the Video Music Awards (live Sunday night!) over there, so I made nice with a member of the security crew and he agreed to take my picture with Manhattan in the background.  He was impressed with my determination to hit “every damn borough” after seeing the Nike t-shirt!

I saw the famous Jane’s Carousel, “Pony Up 2 Bucks to ride” the sign said.  Cute!  I found the Brooklyn Ice Cream Factory which “offers simple, pure and delicious ice cream” so, of course, I had a scoop (not a cone!) of chocolate chocolate chunk for lunch.  I had to photograph  a lot of cool art and graffiti and of course a ton of pictures while walking over the bridge back to Manhattan.

Once back on the mainland I had to go to Foot Locker in Times Square to get myself my “Every Damn Borough” t-shirt!  I have earned it…and every classic NYC carb seen here brought to you by H&H Bagels & Crumbs cupcakes!  I stood with some teeny-boppers outside of the Four Seasons waiting for someone famous to walk out, but when I found out it was One Direction, I left.  All in all, a fun Friday in the Big City!

Deserved!

Deserved!

Earned!

Earned!

An Evening on Staten Island

Today it was rainy and depressing for a majority of the day.  

Once the sun came out I was determined to tackle another borough head-on.

Direct 4 express train to Bowling Green and a jump abord the free

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and I was on my way… just in time for a gorgeous sunset no less!  Today was one of those days I wished I had a better camera.

Upon boarding I could see the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island surrounded by a wispy combination of beautiful clouds and the setting sun. Next to me I saw my fellow seat mate downing a 16 oz. Budweiser from a can.  Klassy! (had to take a pic, only in NYC!)

Once I disembarked the Staten Island Ferry I walked along the water to the Staten Island 9/11 memorial.  Gorgeous, perfectly situated, and quite touching. 

Next, I found yet another ballpark in New York!  Yep, there on the water is the Staten Island Yankees’ stadiumI walked all the way around the stadium and wouldn’t you know, I asked the usher at the gate to take my picture and he handed me a free ticket!  So, I sat down for an inning between the New York Gothams and the Hoboken Nine.  See, the Gotham Baseball Club of New York (19th Century Baseball Club) was having an exhibition game and I received a free ticket!  So cool!  Who would have thought?!  More good clean spontaneous New York fun!  Love it!  These guys have clever nicknames, tho not on their jerseys, swing a mean bat, but use no gloves, pads, cleats or catcher’s gear.  And, they have only one ump who wears a top hat!  Very fun!

Since I went over during sunset that meant it was dark for my return Ferry ride.  Beautiful, but still desperate for that better quality camera! 

Enjoy & wish me luck as I am Brooklyn-bound tomorrow!

(Pray for no rain & not too hot!)

It Had Been 21 Years….

I did the math. I was in 9th grade in 1991-1992.   2013 minus 1992 is 21.

So, follow along:  a guy puts a picture of himself in Times Square on Facebook on Tuesday night. The time stamp says “38 minutes ago” so I messaged him: “What?!  You’re in NYC?!”  “Yep til Thursday!”

Small chit-chat leads to, “no, I don’t want to join you at the 9/11 Memorial tomorrow, I have to get to Queens to see a day game, but yes, let’s do dinner after the game!!!”

Tonight, 21 years later we met up in his hotel lobby in TriBeCa and headed off to dinner.   Of course I made the hotel concierge suggest a restaurant and take our picture!

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See, Remco and I went to Harker Prep together, which is where I attended 9th grade before it closed.  Yes, I was a cheerleader, I’ll admit it. No, not the basketball manager, like my brother, that came in 10th grade at Burke.

Remco is here in the states for 3 weeks vacation from the Netherlands and since we were both in Manhattan, we had to catch up! 

We had a lovely dinner at Balthazar (think SITC) where his hotel concierge told us there was plenty of people-watching to be done, and it was fabulous. I had pasta. He had a burger. For the first time since I can remember, someone finished his meal before I did, and he could have had another serving. We did do warm chocolate cake and ice cream and cappuccino for dessert.

The reminiscing was a lot of fun. We know so many people’s first names, but not their last, so we can’t even begin to look them up, even on Facebook.

I curse it a lot, but am truly grateful for Facebook keeping (and eventually bringing) us together again after all these years. We are both happy and healthy and quite honestly, you can’t ask for much else.

As I said on the Facebook check-in from the restaurant: “Small world. Big people!” 

He’s 5’24”!

No, 6’12” in case you’re wondering.  Hahaha! That’s what a doorman guessed on our walk back to the hotel and we let it go with a long laugh all the way down the block!

Life is good!

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“Play Ball!” (again)

In an effort to make it to all 5 boroughs, today I made a New York Mets day game a good excuse to get to Queens!  While it was a long subway ride, and I had to make the dreaded transfer from the 4 to the 7, I made it to CitiField and the Arthur Ashe stadium at Flushing Meadows (where the U.S. Open will start soon after I am gone) all at the same stop.

I was torn as to whether or not I wanted to see the Mets but since they’re a National league team and we’re currently beating them, I figured a day game against the only team beating us would be worthwhile fun. While that #1 team won in extra-innings, it was still cool to be in the new stadium, Citifield, where this year’s all-star game was just held. Luckily that’s over and all “gear” from it is 50% off at the Mets clubhouse at Grand Central! Ha!  (Couldn’t go without some gear, of course!) 

I was able to witness a home run by the home team and so the big apple popped up in center field.  That was neat.

But the best part of this stadium, aside from its new-ness, is definitely the tribute to Jackie Robinson. Game go-ers enter thru the Jackie Robinson rotunda where his life’s best qualities are recognized:  justice, commitment, citizenship, excellence, persistence, courage, determination and teamwork, with a photo representing each. 

As you head up the escalator, surrounding you is this quote, “Integrity:  A life is not important except in the impact it has on other lives.”        -Jackie Robinson

As we are heading into next week and the 50-year anniversary of the March on Washington, I can’t help but have a heightened sense of awareness of and appreciation for trailblazers, humanitarians and Americans of all kinds. Men. Women. Freedom riders. Baseball players. Blacks. Whites. Young. Old.

Enjoy some fun pictures from the ballpark.

Tomorrow, think I can get both Brooklyn & Staten Island in?  My days “on assignment” are suddenly numbered.

Stay tuned!

If you are ever in NYC – Do NOT miss the High Line!

Come One, Come All, just come to NYC and go to the High Line!

You can read all about this little slice of heaven here on their website.

But what’s more fun is that you can look at a ton of fun pictures of the place here.  I got a little shutter-happy and took a LOT of pics, scenic and otherwise, you’ll have to forgive me in advance.  My iPhone has been my only camera this trip and yes, today, it officially died.  The picture I am most proud of has to be the one of the Statue of Liberty off in the distance. Power to the zoom!

Enjoy!  There’s something here for everyone:  popsicles, art, open space, seats, paletas, benches, water, statues, apartments, flowers, cattails, stairs, churches, tracks, painters, buildings, murals, piers, trapezes, feet, selfies, even Colin Powell.  So much to take in.  All very beautiful and very worth the adventure!  …and an absolutely picture-perfect day weather-wise, too!