Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Always a Double Feature Playing in Yorkville

Yorkville was my universe. My earliest memory, 1956, sitting in the baby pool on a hot day in Carl Schurz Park looking up at Dad with his camera and Mom making one of her best faces - touching her nose with her tongue and pulling her ears out.

Another Carl Schurz Park memory, taking cover in the Checker Pavilion during a thunderstorm with my Aunt Joan and Aunt Barbara double pushing my stroller away from the swings.

When I was old enough to wander away from Mom without her having a heart attack I'd get in trouble by going all the way down to 90th Street on the Drive past Gracie Mansion to see the Fire Boat on the East River. 

Rolling around, I have a strong recollection of the variety of newspapers on each newsstand that seemed to be on every corner of the neighborhood, especially 86th Street. 

Once I was crossing streets on my own then it was time to venture straight over to Fifth Avenue to Central Park, my community backyard and personal playground. If I was with friends and we got caught in the rain that far over, we'd run into one of the museums, the Met, Guggenheim or the Natural History if somehow we ended up on the west side. We'd stay in the shelter aware of the art but not doing much about it until the weather cleared or we got thrown out of the place because of our relentless horseplay.

We only left the confines of Yorkville when we all had bikes and rode as a  pack to mysterious destinations like the United Nations two miles away, may as well been 500 the way we told the story afterwards.

Today, these memories fuel my  curiosity to revisit the old places and see what comes up old and new.  Having 1500 photographs of Yorkville going back to 1906 is a gift my family gave me that I never take for granted. My stories come out of these snapshots like a burst of light in a movie theatre and there is always a double feature.

October 24th, I'm bringing "Stoops to Nuts" home for a special show ~ my first Yorkville storytelling show @ Ryan's Daughter. It shivers, me timbers!

It happens on Wed, Oct 24th @ 7pm at Ryan's Daughter, 350 East 85th Street, (bet. 1st and 2nd Ave).

The Yorkville bound artists will knock you out: Daniel Guzman, Nicole Ferraro, Thomas Pryor, Francesca Rizzo ~ featuring music from our dreamy memories by Eric Vetter, Carlo Fortunato & Alex DeSuze & friends.

At the Ryan's show, I'll sell and sign "River to River: New York Scenes from a Bicycle," for $10. $3 off the list price just because I love Yorkville, neighborhood of my youth.

"Yorkville: Stoops to Nuts"
A Neighborhood Storytelling Show
@ Ryan's Daughter
350 East 85th Street (bet. 1st and 2nd Ave) 


Anonymous said...

Tommy, you are doing such a fantastic job of allowing all of us from yorkville to remember all the fun we had when we were younger. I hope Ryan's Daughter goes great.....Sissy

Rosanna said...

Aha! 1540 Me thinks it's York Avenue? Knock-knock J&J it's your cousin stopping by.