The Pay Phones of Bedford Stuyvesant

March 19, 2008 by
Filed under: Bed-Stuy 

Every neighborhood has its defining characteristics. This is what I have learned as I have expanded my geographical horizons and begun exploring more neighborhoods. Bushwick can be trusted to possess virtually no garbage cans whatsoever. Greenpoint always sports the largest number of discarded liquor bottles. Bedford Stuyvesant probably has the most dubious distinction of all: a disproportionately large number of vandalized pay phones. Follows is an honor roll of the latest victims in this neighborhood’s war against the telecommunications industry.

#1 Lewis Avenue

Lewis Avenue Pay Phone

Observations: Crime scene tape has been wrapped around the receiver, “Jesus Saves” is inscribed above the coin slot and (although it is difficult to see in the above photo) someone attempted to set said device on fire.

#2 Macon Street

Macon Street Pay Phone

Observations: This one is more “artistic” in nature than its predecessor. Some aspiring artiste has spray painted the key pad and instructions blue. The receiver has been balanced on the lock securing this pay phone for added visual interest. A final flourish of communication commentary has been made with the addition of a solitary postage stamp.

#3 Bedford Avenue

Bedford Avenue Pay Phone

Observations: Someone has eviscerated the receiver. No frills but cunning in its simplicity.

Which one is your favorite pay phone? I’m leaning towards #2.

Miss Heather


2 Comments on The Pay Phones of Bedford Stuyvesant

  1. SouthOfNYC on Wed, 19th Mar 2008 7:45 am
  2. You have been blogging a lot of mangled pay phones of late, and I’m curious, with all the cell phones out there coupled with the vandalism run amok – do you see any working phones? And if so, are they actually used? Around here, these kind of phones are fast disappearing.

  3. rowan on Wed, 19th Mar 2008 8:07 am
  4. i’ve always felt the vandalism of payphones is like a serial killer’s signature. each phone is attacked with inventiveness and style unique to that person(s)’ method, right down to the little details. personally, i like the stylings of #1

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