It Is Much Better To Give Than Receive

July 7, 2008 by
Filed under: Greenpoint Magic, Williamsburg 

…the finger, that is.

I recently discovered the fine folks at (a nifty site filled with great anecdotes about living in Greenpoint) have discovered me! It was via their message board, which is where I found the following question:

Well it looks like the scaffolding for india and franklin street is going up for another
finger building. I wonder where the other three fingers of the hand will be built… What is a finger building?

I had never thought about it before, but this colloquialism has never been given a standardized definition. I will attempt to do so here and now.

finger building (fing’ er bil’ ding) n. An edifice which is disproportionately larger than its neighbors, thus giving it the appearance of a finger being extended from one’s fist. While usually employed as a casual reference to 144 North 8th Street in Williamsburg, Brooklyn it is also invoked in Greenpoint. SEE: zoning loopholes and Karl Fischer.

What is the difference between a Williamsburg and Greenpoint finger, you ask?

Very simple: Greenpoint gives it back.

Miss Heather


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