Submissions Wanted: Gentrification Bingo
Last weekend I did something I had not done in a long time: allow my husband to go to Williamsburg. I have made it a habit to bar Mr. Heather from accompanying me to this neighborhood because he will invariably get in a fit of pique, start grumbling about hipsters and I end up having to tell him to shut up. Repeatedly.
Last Friday night we discarded our usual habit of staying home in favor of going out to dinner in the mighty B-Burg. Wishing to prevent and/or mitigate any behavioral problems on the part of the Mister, I concocted a cunning plan: as a child I went on many a road trip. One of the activities my parents provided to keep me entertained (and out of their collective hair) was “travel Bingo”. I am certain a number of you know what I am talking about. If you see a red truck (for example) everyone checks it off. You see a stop sign, it gets checked off —and so forth until someone gets five in a row and calls “bingo”. Which brings me to how I kept Mr. Heather occupied.
Gentrification Bingo: a game the hoi polloi can play while walking through gentrified ghettos which were once “neighborhoods”. As we strolled the streets of Williamsburg in search of kibble we called out artifacts that define gentrification. By the evening’s end we netted approximately twenty such items which I carefully noted on the back of an old ATM receipt. Here are a few examples:
- Illegally parked SUV
- Thai Restaurant
- Building designed by Karl Fischer (or Robert Scarano)
- Self-absorbed 20 somethings on cell phones babbling/sending text messages
- Viral marketing posing as street art
- Unattended small children (What business does a toddler have roaming around at 8:30 p.m. on a Friday night? Seriously?)
- Stop Work Order
- Luxury artist loft
- Corcoran (depicted above)
- Homicidal taxi driver
Hence the purpose of this post: I wish to produce actual bingo cards, take them and a few good friends to various neighborhoods, play a round or two of “Bingo” and document the results. As I have previously mentioned, I have roughly twenty items. In order to produce bingo cards I will undoubtedly need quite a few more. Methinks about fifty. At least.
If anyone out there wishes to tender suggestions for this noble cause they can be submitted via comments or email at:
missheather (at) newyorkshitty (dot) com
It is my intention to have these cards designed by the end of the week (so I can post a sneak preview here on New York Shitty). Any and all ideas, feedback and constructive criticism will be greatly appreciated.
We may not be able to turn the tide of homogenization and luxurification afflicting our fair borough —but that doesn’t mean we can’t get a few laughs at their expense. The time for Gentrification Bingo has come New York Shitty. Let’s make this happen!