New York Shitty Day Ender: Kicking It At North 7th & Bedford Avenue

July 9, 2009 by
Filed under: Williamsburg 


Today the sun was shining and although I wasn’t at 100% (due to whatever cold/sinus problem that has been and still is afflicting me) I went out for a six hour walk. My final destination: Tony Avella’s “meet and greet” on Bedford Avenue. Truth be told I came away from the experience depressed.


This had nothing to do with Mr. Avella’s fitness for being our next Mayor. I like his platform and found him to be very amiable in person. What’s more, he’s a lefty. Handed, that is. Both the Mister and I are “southpaws”.*


Rather it was the apathy…


and narcissism of the local citizenry that got to me.


Then came along Lisa Marie. Avella’s helpers attempted to hand her a flier and she said:

I don’t need this. I’m a registered Democrat. Give me the petition!


As she was signing Avella’s petition (to get on the ballot) Lisa Marie explained that she grew up on the Northside and was none too happy about the recent spate of luxurification in her neighborhood. These are my words. Hers were much more colorful  and piquant.

Lisa Marie is a sad reminder of what Williamsburg has become— and what Greenpoint might be.

I told Tony to come to Greenpoint. If he wants to see a real community (not a bunch of transplants, effete artist-wannabe types and stroller moms) that has been on the business-end of Mr. Bloomberg’s malfeaseance he should come here.

I have been told he will.

To close on an “up” note as the Mister and I were waiting for the B61 bus we saw a glimmer of hope.

I love this guy.

Miss Heather

*The Mister is a registered Democrat and signed Avella’s petition. I didn’t: I’m an independent.


10 Comments on New York Shitty Day Ender: Kicking It At North 7th & Bedford Avenue

  1. Tony From Kent Street on Fri, 10th Jul 2009 12:25 am
  2. Greenpoint is the best neighborhood I’ve lived in and my personal sense of community makes the place very worthwhile. Old ladies and I shoot the shit on the avenue and a ton of us really care about all that goes down in the 11222. Avella wasn’t going to find any of this on NYU Blvd in Williamnsburg. He didn’t know that?

  3. missheather on Fri, 10th Jul 2009 12:29 am
  4. He’s on a junket. Greenpoint is on his list. I’ll make damned sure of that.

  5. rheingold on Fri, 10th Jul 2009 3:19 pm
  6. Thanks for the video of the tricycle umbrella guy. God, I miss summer in Brooklyn.

  7. missheather on Fri, 10th Jul 2009 3:35 pm
  8. I’ve seen this guy before but never managed to get him “on film” so to speak. As you can see he totally rocks.

  9. guernsey on Fri, 10th Jul 2009 7:30 pm
  10. “Stroller moms” aren’t part of a “real community?” Does this include the many young Polish moms on my block who have children? What about the Latina moms of Greenpoint, who also have children and transport them in strollers? Love the site, but this seems harsh toward all women (not men, strangely) who have children. Which is odd, because I think that children and families are a big part of what makes a neighborhood considered “real” or “authentic.”

  11. ck on Fri, 10th Jul 2009 8:47 pm
  12. Thursday – the crazy guy who preaches in the intersection of n7/bedford freaked out on the guy on the bike. he was plugging his ears and screaming at him that he was changing reality. then he kicked the guy’s bike, and the guy got pissed and got off. then the crazy guy basically led him down the street, plugging his ears and ranting.

  13. ck on Fri, 10th Jul 2009 8:48 pm
  14. also – we sometimes push my kid around in a stroller in greenpoint. sorry for polluting the hood. we’ll try to keep her on her scooter from now on.

  15. missheather on Fri, 10th Jul 2009 9:26 pm
  16. The crazy guy who preaches at Bedford Ave and N. 7th freaks out a LOT of people. That said, I sort of regret I missed that piece of street theater, sounds like it was *quite* something.

    Otherwise there are women with strollers and “stroller moms”. The people Guernsey is lists off fall into the first category. You strike me as being someone who is interested in the future of this community so I would hazard to guess you do as well. What I saw yesterday falls under the latter: affluent individuals for whom Williamsburg is a bedroom community/”their” neighborhood and as such are not interested in working with their less well-off neighbors to improve the quality of life for everyone. They usually see their less affluent neighbors as an inconvenience at best, a nuisance at worst.

    For example: instead of wanting to improve the existing conditions in their public schools (for the betterment of everyone) they want to establish charter schools within said schools.

    I think we can all agree that the scenario I just described (which is a real life example) is not only VERY uncool, it also serves to UNDERMINE a sense of community. It is a matter of class and race, not gender.

    It should also be noted there are also “stroller dads”. They’re just as bad— if not worse. 😉

  17. Turqi on Sun, 12th Jul 2009 7:01 am
  18. Dear Ms.Heather: you capture the picture of apathy so well. We have petitioned for Tony Avella in Chelsea. The majority of people have never heard of either him OR Bill Thompson. We learned this when they deigned to slow down and speak to us. But most are on cell phones; ear podded or on their way to shop till they die. This is America, land of the free. And yes, sometimes someone could not get to us fast enough to sign the petition. But most people are clueless.

    I learned how impossible people were when I collected petition signatures in a very so-called progressive part of Manhattan with a respected community group several years ago. It was to stop changes to social security threatened by our then leader, Mr. B. Most people would not stop to sign or even inquire about our efforts. Some did not even understand the issue. But we got our signatures and thwarted those draconian efforts.

    People get the government they deserve by not caring and being apathetic. And when that happens, they have no right to complain. Look what is happening in Iran. The spirit of those oppressed people should be a lesson to all of us. They have the guts to be out on the street fighting for democracy — while most of us are thinking about our own little worlds.

    It is sad. Very sad.

  19. Mr. Vos on Thu, 16th Jul 2009 1:59 pm
  20. Wait a second. People living somewhere for a long time, or first, or whatever do not a community make. I live on the south side of Williamsburg (South 1 & Havemayer) and have for about 6 years. We have a baby, and god forbid, a stroller but I would argue that we care more about the ‘community’ than those who have lived here longer.

    We do not throw our trash in the streets, we do not play reggaeton crap at 4 in the morning out of our car, we do not leave dog shit on the street, we do not leave 40s on the stoops, we do not deal drugs out of the bodega on the corner, we do not cat-call women, we do not call people ‘fags’, or ‘weirdos’. It is the fucking locals who do all of this.

    I had a run-in with a local teen a few weeks ago after seeing him finish a soda and simply drop the bottle on the street. He was, to say the least, upset that I called “bullshit” on this and explained to me that “this was a Spanish neighborhood” and that “I should mind my own business or else”. I was tempted to respond “that explains all of the garbage and fat chicks” but thought better of it…

    Is that the kind of community you are referring to? If so, I’ll take stroller moms and stroller dads any day of the week.

    We attempted to reach out to our “community” but it became pretty clear that they were not interested in being friendly or even courteous. We were not brash, arrogant, rude, just different and they did not like that.

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