Our future (as witnessed on the 14th St. bus)
Standing in the front of a crowded 14th Street bus on the way to my physical therapy, I looked with envy at all the teens and twenty-somethings packing the seats and thought: “This is the future of America.” But I wasn’t envious because they were young but because they were sitting.
Next to me on this bumpy bus, a frail lady clutched a pole for dear life and an elderly man with a cane struggled to keep his balance. Other white-haired passengers looked on as the laughing youngsters competed for attention, shouting and sharing their latest selfies with their techno-savvy friends who were also busy on their phones, texting or talking animatedly or just staring at something on the screen, oblivious to the reality around them.
I found myself imagining these youngsters as adults standing behind podiums at a televised debate for the President of the United States, competing to get the attention of the TV moderators so they could talk about their many virtues and their life’s goal of helping and caring for the poor and middle class, indeed for all humanity — a verbal selfie, if you will, albeit a bit Dorian Grayish.
When the bus stopped at Union Square, the Future of America finally got up and got off, leaving their warm seats.
Then the elderly and disabled people moved slowly and shakily to the newly-vacant seats, eased their tired bodies down and sighed with relief.
Ah, the future of America!
I hope I’m alive to watch those candidates in a future debate which I think will be exactly like the current debates, just with different faces. I could use a little comedy before my final ride where I’m sure to get a seat or, more exactly, a bed.
John Cappelletti, ST
Step up security at Peter Cooper entrances
I live in Peter Cooper Village. My friend lives in Battery Park City.
Ever since 9/11, when I visit her, either by cab or private car, their gated security looks in the rear and has the trunk opened to look inside. That is because Battery Park City takes their security seriously, unlike PCV/ST.
The other night, we came home by cab. At the 22nd Street security booth (the only manned one!), the guard didn’t even look up from his cellphone, but saw the cab from the corner of his eye, and waved the driver in.
The cabdriver had never before driven into PCV. As we were driving through, he said “beautiful place. Many Jews live here?” Which got us thinking: Is this area a soft target? Or “merely” a target for anti-Semitism?
It is all over the news that the terrorists are looking for “soft targets.” We have many unmanned gates in ST/PCV. I implore you to step up our security, at least as relates to vehicular traffic.
Barbara Zapson, PCV
Proud to be hard working New Yorkers
Re: Letter, “’Entitled’ to affordability?”, T&V, Nov. 26
I asked myself: Why even respond to the letter by “Benita Therock” that appeared in the Thanksgiving Day issue – but I am.
The extreme insult that residents living in rent stabilized apartments in the PCV/ST community are “proud to be poor” and implying they are riding on the backs of others deserves to be dealt with.
“Benita” judges that rent stabilized tenants are lazy. “Benita” ignores that fact that rent stabilized tenants and their parents and grandparents are and were hard working people who perform(ed) the jobs that serve(d) the people of this city; or small business owners providing livelihoods, often sacrificing their own, in order to provide company paid benefits to their employees. The residents of PCV/ST know hard work and carry their weight all right, “Benita.”
“Benita” may not know that most of us grew up in rent controlled or stabilized apartments when they were the norm and chose this community when your name was put on a list. You waited years to be called for an apartment that you moved in to, sight unseen, when PCV/ST had: crank out windows that leaked; un-renovated lobbies with no disability lifts; no carpeting in the hallways; elevators with bright green or red enamel interiors with push open doors; laundry machines that overflowed regularly flooding the floors ankle deep; and fewer transit options.
“Benita” should direct her insults towards those who are destroying affordable rents in NYC, not towards those who have them or who strive to preserve them for future generations of hard working New Yorkers.
PCV resident for 31 years