May 17, 2009

Manhattan ALS Walk - May 16, 2009

Team Duffy assembles before 11am on Saturday, on Charles St ( West Village ) before the walk up to 55th Street, along the banks of the Hudson River. It was an overcast day, a good day for a three mile walk.

Team Duffy and its magnificent supporters in America, Ireland, England, and Australia ( yes! ) raised $2680 for medical research and for important services for patients and their families.

Warm thanks to all who contributed. If you'd still like to throw a few bucks to a great cause, it is not too late. Take out your credit card - click on this, follow the instructions, and thank you very much.

C'mon kids. It was only three miles. Get back up there!! Give me three more miles!!

May 10, 2009

Sunday Music: " The Dark Eyed Sailor " by Steeleye Span

In the midst of rock's unquestioned rule, the British "electric folk " band Steeleye Span began its life in 1969.

The voice of the great Maddy Prior leads here. I really like the languid, intentional, lack of sync between her voice and that of Dublin's Gay Woods here.

I heard this song ages ago. It stays in the mind. The usual cut the ring in half / love lost and then found deal.

It's quite wonderful. Steeleye Span is still around. That's even more wonderful.


as i roved out one evening fair
it bein' the summertime to take the air
i spied a sailor and a lady gay
and i stood to listen
and i stood to listen to hear what they would say.

he said "fair lady, why do you roam
for the day is spent and the night is on"
she heaved a sigh while the tears did roll
"for my dark-eyed sailor
for my dark-eyed sailor, so young and stout and bold."

"'tis seven long years since he left this land
a ring he took from off his lily-white hand
one half of the ring is still here with me
but the other's rollin'
but the other's rollin' at the bottom of the sea."

he said "you may drive him out of your mind
some other young man you will surely find
love turns aside and soon cold has grown
like the winter's morning
like the winter's morning, the hills are white with snow."

she said "i'll never forsake my dear
although we're parted this many a year
genteel he was and a rake like you
to induce a maiden
to induce a maiden to slight the jacket blue."

one half of the ring did young william show
she ran distracted in grief and woe
sayin' "william, william, i have gold in store
for my dark-eyed sailor
for my dark-eyed sailor has proved his honour long"

and there is a cottage by yonder lea
this couple's married and does agree
so maids be loyal when your love's at sea
for a cloudy morning
for a cloudy morning brings in a sunny day.

New Bay Ridge Key Food Coming Soon

There's been a lot of activity inside and outside the new Key Food supermarket on 69th Street, between Third Avenue and Ridge Boulevard.

Nothing noticeable going on in the projected parking facility across the street, but this afternoon I saw a couple of construction guys taking a look inside there.

This new supermarket will be a very welcome addition to Bay Ridge and hopefully will give a jumpstart to economic activity in the 69th Street and Third Avenue areas.

May 09, 2009

Support the Greater NY March to Defeat ALS

Brendan ( Pete ) Duffy, with grand-niece Keri, at New York Mets baseball game, July 2006.

Brendan ( Pete ) Duffy grew up in the country in County Monaghan, Ireland. Crossed over to New York in the mid 1950s, the old fashioned way, on the ship. Built a life for himself and his family in the Bronx and nearby.

Strong and cheerful, great with adults, a hundred times better with kids.

With his much beloved children, played the pipes with the Monaghan Pipe Band many times in the NY St. Patrick's Day Parade, and in many other events.

Now, not so good.

In late 2008, he was diagnosed with ALS, or Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. Which was not a surprise. His legs had started to fail long before then. He no longer walks.

On Saturday, I'll be joining Brendan's daughter Annette and many others as we walk in the Greater NY Walk to Defeat ALS. These funds will help the ALS Association provide research for a cure - and to provide essential assistance to ALS patients.

If you care to make a contribution, please click here.

I am registered under the name " The Phantom ", so hit the button above the total calculator that says " Support The " and give what you can. It's a really good cause

Thank you. I will have photos of the march here a week from today.

May 04, 2009

New Yankee Stadium- Authentic or Fake?

I went to the Angels-Yankees game this past Thursday. It was strange entering the new ballpark, with the magnificent old Yankee Stadium still there, on Death Row, right across 161st Street.

As with the new Mets Stadium, this stadium offers a slow and expensive wait for very poor food. Do not believe the hype. My brother in law went to the " Johnny Rockets " fast food place and had to wait a long time. The staff were told in the fourth innning to say that they didn't serve french fries, which is funny as it is a fundamental part of their, ahem, " menu". After 25 minutes at the counter, I think that they discovered that they did have fries after all.
The new ballpark is interesting, but it has a lot of design flaws. There were lines at the mens rooms, which may help curtail beer sales. There are many severely obstructed bleacher seats.

It's mostly good, but is it Yankee Stadium? After so many days and nights, I don't know. Is the new place real or fake, an improvement over the House That Ruth Built or a formula new stadium by HOK Sport for the suits, with a fake facade slapped on the roof?

As fog rolled in, some memories of the old 1973 and before true Yankee Stadium came to mind.

The jury is still out.

May 02, 2009

Flying Monkeys, Green Witches and No More Third Avenue Bus?

I did a little free association search on youtube yesterday, and came up with this little gem. It's as though every word and every note of this Beatles song was made with " The Wizard of Oz " in mind!

The B-37 ( Third Avenue ) has served the Bay Ridge to Downtown Brooklyn communties since 1942. And before then, trolley cars ran the same route.

This important route, a lifeline for our many seniors and others, is slated for elimination unless the MTA finds a lot more money. The politicians claim to be concerned, and perhaps something will be done.

So what is the MTA spending it's money on these days? A couple of weeks ago, they built this fancy shelter at 72nd / Third. Others have been built elsewhere on Third Avenue. For a route that supposedly won't be here soon.

Either someone's bullshitting somebody, or these people cannot be trusted with money.

( The NY Times reported on the same phenomenon - new shelters being built on Cortelyou Road for bus routes about to be eliminated -on April 10)


On the bright side, saw five construction guys clearing debris from the projected new Key Food site on 69th Street. I'd noticed a bunch of fresh permits there the weekend before. Think we'll have our much needed supermarket before too long now.


I treated myself to a lithograph, and it ( along with something they gave me when I left the Navy base in Naples Italy ) needed to be framed. I went to Polizzi Fine Art on 7813 Third Avenue yesterday. The husband and wife team there gave me some good ideas, and I'll have my custom framed works in a week or two. These guys appear really good, and the prices were fair. Can't wait to see the final result.