Category Archives: nyc
I wrote this for the local neighborhood association. Since I haven’t been working nights I have been able to go to the last couple of monthly local community meetings, officially, the 24th Precinct Community Council.
I have been really impressed with how much information is communicated, and it seems like Inspector Barry works really hard to maintain good relations with the community. From a cursory search, it looks like she was previously posted to the Lower East side.
This is the version I wrote that has more details. For the “official” much-edited version, see The West 102nd-103rd Street Block Association’s blog entry.
The next 24th Precinct Community Council meeting is on Wednesday, November 20, 2013 at 7:00 pm. The meetings are public and are very interesting, especially if you live in the neighborhood. Meetings are held in the upstairs meeting room at the Bloomingdale Public Library — across from the police and fire department stations on W. 100 Street.
Fingers crossed <knock wood> my long-term temp position will start before then so I won’t be able to go to meetings going forward. #sad. The West 102nd-103rd Street Block Association will continue their great reporting on the meetings.
CRIME CORNER: News from the 24th Precinct
Missing Autistic Boy – Search Continues
Inspector Nancy Barry said the NYPD are still looking for the autistic boy, Avonte Oquendo, who has been missing since October 4. Flyers are located here: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Bring-Avonte-Home/414437158656906?sk=photos_stream. NYPD is asking for anyone’s help if anyone has seen him please contact the detectives.
Spike in Crime in the 28 Day
Inspector Nancy Barry from the 24th Precinct went over the CompStats (http://www.nyc.gov/html/nypd/downloads/pdf/crime_statistics/cs024pct.pdf).
Highlights of Spike in Crime
- A homicide in the Douglas Houses (875 Columbus Avenue) on September 17. Victim Jose Gonzalez found in apt by home attendant with bullet hole to his head. Detective squads working very hard to make an arrest
- Shooting in the Douglas Houses (840 Columbus Avenue) on September 28, 11:30 pm. Corner of West 100 & Amsterdam. Victim shot 3 times, a group of people had a dispute. An arrest not made at this time
- Shooting October 15, 12:30 am at 88th & Amsterdam. Victim Javier Rodriguez in critical condition in the hospital
- Any information please contact the 24 Detective Squad
The Precinct is not used to having shootings, just so happens they have happened recently. The Precinct is getting additional resources, are working closely with the Housing Police, Narcotics.
Additional Incidents / Patterns
- With the shootings two individuals with guns were arrested, one incident involved a police officer taking a .38 loaded gun off an individual (repeat offender) on the street
- Following up grand larceny on supermarkets discussed last week. They were able to make two arrests, have another person ID’d. This was a “pick team” that targeted the elderly. Have picture of another gentleman they expect to arrest. They are closing in on some of these patterns, making good progress
- Three transit patterns where cell phone snatchers in the train. They have someone identified, have his picture, so should be apprehended shortly, a repeat offender
- A chain snatch – two incidents in 28 Precinct, two incidents in the 24. One arrest of a 14 year old, where they had his picture and his principal was able to identify him; another 16 year old, will be arrested soon
- Up in assaults: 12 assaults, but the good news is that 9 of them have arrests tied to them. 3 are open (one is the shooting listed above). 3 were domestic related
- Other two open, one was a friend, swung a bat. Assailant is a known perp.
- Grand larcenies
- Increase in car break-ins, arrest last night officers on Riverside Drive apprehended crime in progress. Midnight officers apprehended 3 juveniles. So are making arrests. Again, some break-ins are classified as grand larcenies because amounts are over $1,000
- A few in restaurants lower end of Broadway (McDonald’s, pizza parlor), victims left bags and pocketbooks unattended. Male and female caught on video so will hopefully apprehend them. Crime prevention: Do not leave bags unattended
- 2 Rapes (SVU investigating both)
- 1 rape, an arrest was made by Housing. In Douglas Houses, female entered elevator, man approached and grabbed her, screaming, got assistance, police arrested suspect and he’s still in jail
- 1 rape, a Not-A-Stranger rape, someone she met, had drinks with, she said she was drugged, so she knows who she is. Still to determine if an arrest will be made
- Farther north of our precinct people are jumping out in the woods on people on bikes
- In 24th Precinct only crimes were unattended property petty larceny at the soccer fields, which turned out to be one of the teen team members, who was arrested
- Below 24th Precinct, Robbery on Riverside and 83rd Street. 70 year old man assaulted by 4 teens who took his wallet and phone, threw rocks
Officers are being deployed into the precinct in and around the area. They are giving the neighborhood a Scooter Taskforce, so you may see police on scooters. The Scooter Taskforce will be going up and down Riverside Drive. Because of spike in crime, on Wednesdays and Fridays you will see anywhere from 15 to 25 foot posts (uniformed police) on Broadway from 86th up to 110th and also on Amsterdam and other areas. At Deployment Meeting asked for and got additional help.
Russell Schmidt, Outreach and Public Coordinator, MTA presented information about the Access-A-Ride service that the MTA provides.
The Access-A-Ride Service website is: http://web.mta.info/nyct/paratran/guide.htm.
The Access-A-Ride newsletter website is: http://web.mta.info/nyct/paratran/onthemove.htm
Access-A-Ride program is for any person who has a physical or mental disability that prevents them from using the mass transit system. The service is mandatory, is a civil right. Any municipality that has a train or bus system must have a para transit system. NYC’s is the biggest in the country, most people registered, most vehicles on the road, most trips. Very innovative to simplify system for the users.
There’s no age limit on using the service. Approximately 19,000 vehicles on road every day, marked with Access-A-Ride, blue and white transit colors. Subcontract service to 14 companies, companies who work for NYC Transit. Each carrier has different name, but is numbered, have Automatic Vehicle Location Monitoring (AVLM) system so they know where the vehicle is at all times. Can go back 15 months into the tracking system to find out exactly where vehicle was, etc.
Operates 365-days 24/7 because the trains and buses also run (i.e., if the trains and buses are running, Access-A-Ride runs). Costs $2.50 each way (same fare as trains and buses). Can be taken one way or round trip.
How does one apply? There is an application process. Call M-F (9a-5p) 877-337-2017, 718-393-4999, TTY 718-393-4259 or TTY Relay 800-662-1220 or go onto website (http://web.mta.info/nyct/paratran/). They will mail application form within 5-7 days (don’t use the online form, it isn’t official, is for reference only!). They require a scheduled face-to-face Assessment Session after receipt of the application and a photo where they will assess eligibility. Must bring doctor’s note / information / diagnosis. They will pick you up and drop you off to get to the interview. You can bring a Personal Care Attendants (PCAs) with you, free of charge. Bring your walker, whatever mobility device you use to get around. They will ask you to show how you get around. Once you have gone through the assessment and have gotten an ID number you can begin using the service, even if ID card is being processed and is coming.
Access-A-Ride goes anywhere in five boroughs, is not only for medical purposes, so you can go to a ball games, museums, etc. If you have ambulette service use that, as it will only take you for the doctor, unlike Access-A-Ride, which will take you anywhere. Save the ambulette service for the doctor and use Access-A-Ride for other trips.
There is a new program, Access-A-Ride (AAR) MetroCard (http://web.mta.info/accessibility/access_metrocard.htm) that is an incentive program that provides a total of four free trips a day using the subways, local buses, and Staten Island Railway (SIR) for free.
DISTRICT ATTORNEY’S OFFICE ANNOUNCEMENT
This month is Domestic Violence Awareness Month. For more information: http://manhattanda.org/resources-victims-domestic-violence
a time of growth, regrowth, renaissance, hard work, learning, growing, absorbing, etc.
this week, which feels like it started today even though it’s Sunday, is going to be a busy one.
today i was so glad that a Milwaukee-based fam-member, Freddi (3rd cousin once removed), gave me a call because she was in town for a quick visit.
our relationship is clear as mud, eh? basically her mom and my grandma — well their grandmothers Brauna and Chana were sisters. our common descendants were Mondral sisters (Brauna and Chana) whose kids (Ben SEGALL ne LOPATKA and Leo STEIN ne Szafirsztejn, among many other LOPATKA and STEINs), cousins from Radzanów, Poland, came to Milwaukee from Poland together. there is another sister, Shaindel, who are also part of the mass exodus from Radzanów, Poland to Milwaukee from abt 1885 to 1939….
basically this is my paternal mom’s branch of Segall and Stein families in Milwaukee.
i don’t usually like to post pics of myself — find the selfie fad to be fundamentally disturbing — but i loved seeing Freddi and i’m smiling like an idiot here so enjoy a rare glimpse.
Broadway Bagel has these mounds of cream cheese, sort of awesome and very New York.
reminds me of the New York chain of Strawberry stores…
so spending a couple hours catching up with Freddi sort of restarted something fundmental in me. i don’t want to say my faith in humanity is restored or anything quite so dramatic, but when i meet up with people who are so clearly mishpucha of loveliness, well it’s a magical thing for me.
it also means in addition to my other summer projects, i’m going to re-focus on the family genealogy. first priority is going to be Frank’s of course (hope he’s doing okay). but then also the Milwaukee branch, who i just love completely.
rest of week plans…
so the rest of the week will be busy.
i am finally sitting down to learn Adobe InDesign CS6. bless you Lynda.com for making tutorials that may take me forever to get through (i get distracted by shiny objects) but are comprehensive and informative.
BagIt/Bagger at METRO
i missed the in-person workshop on File fixity and checksum tools (but got the course materials that i will go over after the InDesign deal).
this Tuesday will be METRO’s BagIt/Bagger workshop. these great workshops are part of the Keeping Collections series, and are excellent. there will be an ExifTool workshop in July that i’m planning on attending.
July 16 (Tuesday) – ExifTool
also this week, in a longer, all-day format, is a MODS workshop called “Using MODS to Describe Cultural Heritage Resources.”
am a little gunshy about attending a cataloging workshop because i have such a low comfort-level with description — haven’t flexed that muscle in any significant sense since taking classes in grad school with the awesome Rick Block. so in other words, no real life experience. but i think that i need to just go and absorb and allow myself to have cataloging anxiety. i hope to surprise myself.
MODS stands for Metadata Object Description Schema and was developed at the Library of Congress. the MODS website is here.
so this week will be intensive skilling up. i need to contact temp agencies and head hunters but i would like to be able to truthfully say i have a familiarity — even if it’s at an Essentials / beginner level — with InDesign. it seems to be a mandatory requirement in addition to Microsoft Office, for word processing jobs in NYC these days. at least for jobs that pay enough for me to work 3 to 4 days a week while i job search and/or work on my passion projects and figure out my future. you know, small stuff!
music discovery of awesomeness ‘o the week!
new Mando Saenz record is out and it is WONDERFUL. produced by Mark Nevers and featuring great folks like Bobby Bare, Jr. and Kim Richey. highly recommend. so so worth it. talented singer-songwriter with a velvet smooth voice.
okay, just wanted to check in here in blog-land. going back to the salt mines of learning! yay….? oy.
i know a lot of folks in the United States are pretty upset about the whole “turn of events” on Downton Abbey this week, but i hope they know things will recover, as they tend to, in a Jullian Fellowes experience.
seeing as i don’t have a steady income right now, i decided to make some adjustments to my budget. for a while now i have been upset at the monopoly of Time Warner Cable in New York City — and have been dismayed and annoyed at the cost of basic cable service. so i actually needed to get my monthly bill down significantly, and had turned off the original programming channels i had (HBO and Showtime) a while ago.
then i did some belt-tightening over the last few years and decided to go down to the Basic and Standard cable packages.
well a week or so ago i decided to go down to Basic. that means no TNT, no Bravo, no E!, no TVLand, no ABC Family.
i thought it was going to really suck, but it has been actually okay. i am watching the network TV shows i usually watch for original programming, so that hasn’t changed much. but now i am watching a lot more PBS. because PBS, quite frankly, is AWESOME.
i am also, yes, watching C-SPAN. it is also quite awesome.
though i don’t seem to get the HD C-SPAN channels, and the Time Warner folks don’t know why. but at least i get the main C-SPAN channel. yay.
i do miss the Rachel Maddow, who has such a fabulously playful and attractive brain. seriously, i have a crush on thee Rachel Maddow’s brain.
i was watching Democracy Now! as well, but now it has now become my main feed for great news coverage. especially in the absence of thee Maddow.
as i am wont to say, ad nauseum, it’s all about content. content is king. and i’m pretty happy with the content that is out there right now.
…long strange trip[p]
Sometimes the lights all shining on me
Other times I can barely see
Lately it occurs to me
What a long strange trip it’s been
Truckin’, Lyrics By: Robert Hunter Music By: Jerry Garcia/Bob Weir/Phil Lesh
one of those things people don’t think or talk a lot about is surge suppression for their electronics equipment.
i found out about these Tripp Lites when i worked at Scott Rudin‘s office, first as an intern and then as an on-site office manager for his business manager, Terry Bird.
the office was undergoing extensive renovations where they were putting in high density storage. the new file room had a lot of networking / VoIP equipment. and i noticed they had these very industrial looking power strips. i had never seen anything quite like them. have to say, it was sort of like love at first sight….
these are not your grandparent’s power strips! in addition to providing reduced noise and interference, there are four fuses that will take the direct hit if there is a power surge. so freaking cool!
HEY YOU GUYS!
We’re gonna turn it on
We’re gonna bring you the power
We’re gonna light up the dark of night like the
brightest day in a whole new way
We’re gonna turn it on
We’re gonna bring you the power
It’s coming down the lines, strong as they can be through the courtesy of The Electric Company
The Electric Company
The Electric Company!
god i miss the 1970s. so many cool things about the pop culture then…
a friend of mine lives in a very large pre-war building near 79th and Broadway. his whole building had a massive electric surge and it fried a large number of tenant’s electronics, including his computer.
i had been singing the praises of the Tripp Lite ISOBARs so he got one for his computer, answering machine, printer, router, etc. the surges happened again but this time the Tripp Lite took the hit and his electronics were protected.
West End Avenue Houses
the image below is from around 1910. none of the stoops remain, sadly. the brownstones are in the Queen Anne and Romanesque Revival styles.
the point is my building is freaking OLD. and it is a wood structure. i worry a lot about the wiring, even though my apartment was renovated when i moved in (over 20 years — gulp! — ago).
so i have Tripp Lites everywhere and plug all of my electronics into these surge suppressors. it really gives me peace of mind that things in my apartment at least are covered.
if you can afford it, i recommend looking into these Tripp Lite ISOBARs.i love these old Sanborn Maps. this is my neighborhood, a view from 1912.
freezing temps here in NYC…. has me thinking of that cheer in the seminal cheerleading movie, Bring It On.
It’s cold in here
I said there must be some Toros
In the atmosphere
always a dicey proposition posting a clip like this in the blog. it will probably expire / get pulled from YouTube due to copyright. and i may or may not notice it and if i do i may try and find a new clip, which will have the same problem. again and again. sigh.
but at a certain point when a movie joins the zeitgeist — at least for me — and it is over 10 years later, the copyright issues and reuse issue get more and more hindersome and impractical. big sigh repeated.
i wish the movie studios would understand what a disservice they do to their own product by not letting anyone have fun with the material, by not capturing the possibilities that people would maybe pay a little bit of money if the usage was clever and smart enough. the MPAA and recording industries take no responsibility for their part in this problem. if the usage and deployment was more usable, their products would be even more popular, and they could actually monetize it more effectively.
aaagh, copyright is just a flipping nightmare.
/rant & handwringing (for now)….
have been trying a different template for the blog in hopes that the load time of the graphics, etc. would be improved, but i haven’t found (a) a good solution and (b) a template i like as much as the Matala template i used for my old blog, so i’m going to stick with the initial one i think….
the things i am looking for in a blog template is a clean graphic, preferably a dark background, and social media icons. i think the social media icons should be available on all of these templates, but it seems to be a relatively new option.
wish i “clicked” with this one the same way i did with the Matala — and could figure out a quick fix to the slow loading of pictures, APIs, etc. that didn’t seem to be a problem with my other blogs. it could just be this buggy and slow Chrome browser. or my lazy approaches to making sure photos are small file sizes.
it might also be the distributed computing i am doing via Boinc that is slowing things down, but i am starting to use other browsers. Chrome performance issues are concerning. though i love so much about the browser. ugh, Google isn’t always better, it turns out. 🙂
i will figure it out eventually. hopefully.
after spending time and energy on applying for jobs via USAJOBS and other job search websites — and at least blessedly hearing back from the USAJOBS folks on the status of my applications, that i haven’t even gotten through the initial filter because of lack of experience. so i have recalibrated my efforts.
i simply don’t have enough quantifiable, relevant, library and/or archival experience. i understand that. own it, as Stuart Smalley says. because i rushed through graduate school and didn’t maximize my internship opportunities, i am in a bit of a pickle. my own damn fault. but i am hopeful, as i have retrenched.
the new plan: i am going to temp for money and will volunteer like crazy, but only at places and/or on projects i feel passionate about.
the benefit of doing internships while matriculated in a degree-granting program is that most internships require there to be some formal structure and connection to your educational institution. i get that, there is protection in some sort of monitoring of the internship.
but now that i am “out the door” on my degree, this is a big problem. not matriculated = no internship. however, not matriculated = volunteering. yay!
i have two excellent potential volunteer options.
until these options become finalized <knock wood> i don’t want to jinx them or go into much detail. yet.
but even if i have to find other options, the best part of this new approach is that i have had positive responses to my inquiries. responses! and i even had a phone interview. an interview! which in this market and with my relative inexperience in the field is just something i am so grateful for, even in the context of volunteering.
i hope to blog these projects if it is allowed. i kept a blog for my one official internship during grad school at the NYPL. i did a blog in lieu of the required paper that was the academic side of the internship. but i initially misunderstood and thought i needed to blog every day, not just once a week or periodically. which was actually a happy accident and got me into a disciplined habit.
so the blog really stretched me, and i was constantly thinking about the work i was doing at the library and how i could translate my learning experience into an interesting and engaging record of what i was doing in the internship. i started to think of the blog as it functioned as a “process blog,” or a “project blog.” the functionality really made sense to me, helped me to document the experience so effectively.
and really, i had such a good time, and i got positive feedback from the librarians, so a love for blogging began.
as far as temping for money while i do these internships, that has been more difficult than i anticipated as well. the temp scene in New York City has completely changed since I temped full time back in the late 1990s. it used to be that you could find a really good paying, interesting, plentiful temp job that was flexible with no problem. and your fellow temps would be other folks like yourself, chasing dreams to be opera singers, actors, directors, filmmakers, undergraduate and graduate students. the jobs were “money jobs” that funded your career, your vision, your life.
these jobs used to be everywhere in New York. in the financial sector, in the legal sector, in publishing, advertising. everywhere. and if you had good computer skills, could type and problem-solve, these opportunities were almost assumed.
post-globalization, post-outsourcing (domestic and international), and especially post-2008 these opportunities are few and far between. and the rates that we used to assume we could make are gone. you need more technical skills in a more diverse set of programs for a guaranteed lower hourly rate of compensation. and getting a temp-to-perm gig that was flexible, like i had, forget about it. and definitely no benefits.
so this is scary and stressful. but not impossible.
i was grateful to have a chance to test at one agency this week, though i am not sure if i passed the very difficult test, sad to say. there were some native tricks that my 15+ years of dependance upon macros meant i was slow and had to dig around for solutions. as well as battle Office 2010, which is always a barrier.
however, the folks at the agency have been sympathetic and amazing and full of really valuable advice. they are familiar with my skills and the market and they will do what they can to use my talents. but the whole setup has changed.
if i can skill up and get some deliverable projects i hope to leverage myself to either a better “money job” and/or start to freelance maybe. the last resort will be a 9-to-5 job doing secretarial work. but i suspect the competition for a job like that — and a good fit for me for a job like that — will also be something i will need to either luck upon or will need to do a lot of legwork to land.
as Stuart says, “Denial ain’t just a river in Egypt….” trying NOT to do that. and taking comfort from places where i can (like Stuart Smalley’s Daily Affirmations).
a tree grows in brooklyn
i remember this book from my childhood. pretty sure the one we had was this cover, but am not 100% positive.
the reason why i wish it was the exact one in my memory bank is because it was the most depressing book cover i remember seeing as a kid. powerfully evoking loneliness and sadness.
memories. memories from childhood. a lot of books on our shelves, a lot of reading. repeated trips to the library and bookstores, and books from school, workbooks, fiction from the school library.
books as entryways to other worlds. worlds like Brooklyn and beyond. pretty exotic after growing up in Lincoln — and especially Omaha — Nebraska.
my mom grew up in Brooklyn with her older brother and younger sister. she and her family lived in various duplexes in what i think was the Flatbush section of Brooklyn.
Flatbush is such a weird word…. and it makes me think of Tina Turner, in my fuzzy mind i think, oh yeah, Flatbush City Limits. but it’s really Nutbush City Limits. Tina Turner is on fire!
so there is this super strong connection to Brooklyn for our family.
my mom’s family moved in with her grandfather, Jacob Chernin, for a while at 603 E. 4th Street, Brooklyn, NY 11218. they lived here during the time of the 1940 census.
according to his daughter, my Aunt Frieda, Jacob Chernin “[d]id ornamental iron works, pretty tables and lanterns. Stuff you don’t need in a depression. The Depression came. So he went to Pratt Institute. He learned to read blueprints and that’s when he went into structural ironwork. Structural is like fireescapes, doors. On Fifth Avenue, the fancy glass doors with the iron works. A lot of it was Jacob.”
“Chernin Iron Works was his company. However, it was not a steel company, but a firm that manufactured iron products like gates, railings, fences, etc. They made the iron railings that were in the front of my parent’s house.” — Aunt Frieda, his daughter
my mom’s family then moved to 3016 Avenue L, Brooklyn, NY 11210 (Avenue L and Nostrund Avenue).
and then moved to 1554 E. 29th Street (Avenue P and Kings Highway), Brooklyn, NY 11210. i remember visiting this last house.
my Grandpa Wertheimer was a tool and die maker, and had a company called Keystone Electronics in Manhattan.
i think this is the last picture of my mom and her brother and sister.
then much later…
Brooklyn this week
my awesome nieces give me hope for the “yout” of america.
i have a thing for trees.