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thought i was a donut, ya tried to glaze me


Could This Ad BE Any More Specific?

A little redundant, right?


recession, markets failing, remember...

Goodness is the only investment that never fails.

Henry David Thoreau


Power of the Pen !

I mentioned a few posts back that I had my first Daily News shoutout from a letter I wrote to Dennis Hamill.

People asked for the full body of the letter, so here it is:

Dear Mr. Hamill,

First, let me thank you for your continued articles about the Rockaways. This has been My Backyard for my entire 22 years, and it's rare that it gets much press in the local papers. I appreciate your humanizing of the neighborhood and I respect your obvious appreciation for the most beautiful beach in New York City.

Having said that, I take issue with your article in today's Daily News. I feel you turn a complex issue--of the lack of resources offered to the entire peninsula, of the fact that the city has used our few miles as a dumping ground for decades--into an issue of black and white. In doing this, you not only present incorrect information, you do nothing to help the cause of bringing the community together. You mention that on the western end of the peninsula there are parking permits required--incorrect. Nowhere in Rockaway do you need a permit to park, unless you mean Breezy Point, the private co-op further west, which is a whole other story. The No-Parking rules, which you describe as a way to keep "transients" out, is something the city has created on weekends and holidays between May and September and is as annoying for residents as it is for those looking to park for the beach. Instead of pointing out what you view to be disparities in the neighborhood, why don't you point out the similarities? I'm a typical white kid from the western end of the peninsula, yet just like my counterparts on the eastern end, I have no movie theater, no bowling alley, no youth center, no pool. Growing up, everything I wanted to do was a bus ride away, making me no different than those living in Far Rockaway. If anything, the transportation in Far Rock--with a LIRR stop, more frequent A trains, buses to Jamaica and into Nassau County--is better than that in Rockaway Beach, Rockaway Park, Belle Harbor and Neponsit. You yourself have written about the proposed YMCA, with a pool, in Arverne; a much-needed haven for all of Rockaway and easily accessible to everyone by car, bus, train, bike, or foot. The issue is still unresolved, as the city continues to build new baseball stadiums and spends millions of dollars on new gates at the entrance to the tiny Queens Botanical Gardens. Just one more example of other areas of this borough and city getting more, while we continue to get less.

Both of the two Rockaways you present in your article suffer from the same lack of resources and lack of opportunities, throughout all of the seasons. The issue of the beach, and the number of lifeguards on it, is minor compared to the other problems that exist. While you may choose to separate us by race and money, you fail to see the bigger picture, of want and need. All kids are left with nothing to do and nowhere to go, and while this problem may manifest itself differently in different neighborhoods, the problem still exists for everybody. In a month, the beaches will be closed, and the kids on this peninsula will still be bored out of their skulls. What are you going to write about then?




From CNN.com

" ABC released excerpts of Palin's interview with "World News Tonight" anchor Charlie Gibson on Thursday. The full interview is scheduled to air Friday night on the network's 20/20 program.

Palin said she supported NATO membership for Ukraine and Georgia -- a move Russia strongly opposes. She also said the United States must be "vigilant" about larger powers invading small democracies."

except when that larger power is the US.



I was at Columbia University earlier this evening for a grad school fair (I'm thinking, I'm thinking). Holy. I've never been to the campus, but it is beautiful and a complete oasis from Manhattan.

And there is certainly no doubt when you get on campus that it is an Ivy League school. I went to that other NYC education for higher learning--St. John's--but the two schools can't be more different, and it's noticeable as soon as you walk through those gates on Broadway.

While walking through and getting lost and trying to find the gymnasium, I observed, heard, and saw many things that fit all Stuff White People like stereotypes.

-1 Free Tibet shirt
-6 (!) pairs of boat shoes.
-"Oh, yea, that was on The Colbert Report last night..."
-2 guys wearing manpris
-"Yea, well, I haven't thought about doing the theat-ah at Columbia this semester..."
-tons of student sitting crossed legged on the grass, shoes off, reading shit like Proust and Clarissa

So many white people! I was frightened. Get me back to Jamaica, Queens ASAP.


Think About It

While watching an episode of Family Matters this evening--the one where Steve and a hot jock compete in a ropes-course to win over Laura's affection--I began thinking about Urkel's one true love, Laura Lee Winslow.

I always felt a special bond with Laura because she was a smart-ass, and had high aspirations (hers were to attend Harvard Law School, mine were to meet Mother Winslow). Laura certainly wasn't unattractive, but she also wasn't particularly hot. On top of it, she was a big bitch, and not just to Steve.

So what was it that had all the teenage boys in Chicago ga-ga over Laura? Myra was a lot better looking. What are your thoughts?

This sort of thing makes me sick...

This video played at the RNC. Comments made by Keith Olberman condemning MSNBC's airing of this video ("It is a subject of great pain for many of us still and it was probably not appropriate to be shown") have apparently gotten him removed from the anchor chair. For shame.

Once again, 9/11 is being used to elect Presidents whose intentions are to allow more Americans to be killed. Does anyone else see how disgusting this is--complete with ominous narration and a narrative directly connecting the Iran hostage situation to what happened 7 years ago? Lest we forget who was financially backed by the US and whose family was flown out of the country the morning of the attacks. Bin Laden. The Republicans need to find a way to move forward and stop linking everything to 9/11. More importantly, they need to stop trying to win elections by misusing the memory of the thousands who died in vain.

Her Accent Annoys Me



One of my favorite cereals is Honey Bunches of Oats with Almonds. Anyone who eats this cereal would be lying if they said they didn't eat it solely for the delicious cluster of oats and honey, bunched together to make the perfect sized addition to your morning bite. The oats are dope beyond all belief and make up for the bland and quick-to-get-soggy other stuff (so boring I can only call it "other stuff"). There have been so many times I've thought, why can't they just make a cereal with this stuff?

Oh snap--they did. I saw the ads for "Just Bunches" tonight while watching some Project Runway reruns and can't wait to hit up Waldbaums in the AM to buy some. This here restores my faith in mankind. This cereal will make me feel good all day long. It will make me forget about how much I hate Sarah Palin and when I'm sad, eating this cereal will erase all my sadness and make me start singing songs about butterflies.

It's just going to be that frigin good.


Look who made the Daily News!

A few weeks ago, Daily News columnist Dennis Hamill wrote an editorial piece based on his understanding of the "two Rockaways." Now, I gotta give the guy some credit for even writing about what can often be a very bizarre and precarious dynamic on this tiny peninsula; there is so much weird, screwed up stuff going on, so many different people with various-sized chips on their shoulders, that every time I've attempted writing a sweeping blog post about my hometown, I stop. And that's just a post on my personal little blog.

In Hamill's article, he presented the unfair lifeguard distribution and used it as a way to cleanly explain the disparities between the two very different ends of this town (for an idea of just how different, check the crime statistics from the 100th precint--which caters the western end--and then check the 100th--which services Far Rockaway). I took offense to his writing that those on the Western end were somehow living in some paradise, when in reality we're given the same resources than those in Far Rockaway (read: absolutely nothing). Why hurt the cause of community unity by making things black and white? Nothing is ever that simple.

I was so bothered by this article that I sat down at my computer and wrote Mr. Hamill a letter. Earlier in the day I accompanied many other Rockaway residents to city hall and watched as so many of them spoke to a rather small number of councilpersons regarding the re-zoning of Rockaway. I'll write about that later, as I'm in the middle of gathering more information to substantiate my article. But the main point is that I spent an entire day watching as my neighbors and friends fought, in vain, to protect our hometown. They gave impassioned speeches, even as members of the board came late, checked their Blackberries, and then simply walked out early; the number was so low that although the vote couldn't even be made since they couldn't reach a quorum with so few members present.

Fighting City Hall and corrupt politicians and general, run of the mill assholes can get tiring; coming home, turning on Oprah and cracking open the Daily News to find an article like this doesn't help. I didn't think Hamill would respond, but when I read News today, I found a response addressed to me and scores of other people, all with different opinions on the article.

So kudos, man. You made me feel kinda special. And to my neighbors--mainly Bigblues@aol.com and Mamtwin1@aol.com [you're not anonymous if I can find you via your email addresses on Facebook)--please try to do a better job next time of masking your hate, racism, and ignorance in a public forum. You're venom is misguided and not helping anybody.

I've found that there's nothing with having or being a bleeding heart; it's what keeps you running and writing and believing things don't always have to be as they are.


Passive-Aggresiveness on the Campaign Trail

"Asked how the unmarried teenager's pregnancy would be received by the American people, another senior McCain adviser, Steve Schmidt, replied, "I don't know; I'm not a psychic." "


Other responses to questions asked have been, "How should I know?"; "What do I look like, a mindreader?" and "Here's a quarter, go ask someone who cares."

I wonder if my writing has even improved?