Letters, Week of Feb. 11, 2014 | chelseanow.com

Letters, Week of Feb. 11, 2014

Bayview not so beloved

To The Editor:
Re “Bayview’s Future Not Locked Down, but it Won’t Go Condo” (news, Jan. 29):

“Beloved institution?” Women’s prison, tiny rooms for long dead seamen. From the photo, it may be historically significant — but it sure is grim-looking. Nobody made a big deal when they tore down the woman’s prison in the Village. I personally was sad to see it go. I enjoyed the ladies cat-calling the guys waiting at the bus stop across the street. That historic institution was replaced by a garden, closed to the public most of the time.
Richard Kopperdahl

Drug-free labor, just fine

To The Editor:
Re “Midwife’s Memoir a Labor of Love” (profile, Jan. 29):

“A Midwife’s Tale: The Life of Martha Ballard,” about a midwife in Maine in the 18th century, showed she had the same good stats as modern OB today. As a student nurse in the 60s, I saw strapped down, medicated childbirth. Decided wasn’t for me. Gave birth without drugs so I would recover, be awake and the baby wouldn’t be drugged. Worked just fine, thanks.
Hope Conyers

Eighth Ave. article left out thriving newbies

To The Editor:
Re “Parting Ways with the Neighborhood They Helped Define” (news, Jan. 29):

I am excited for the new stores and fresh perspective. A big part of why these other stores closed is they didn’t adapt. Camouflage closed, but Behavior opens two locations. Spruce florists opens and thrives. Foragers is a hit. Montmarte is packed. Westville packed. Grumpy’s, packed. There are a lot of new, independent businesses that are thriving. This article completely fails because it includes one perspective and there seems to be a rush to subsidize businesses that may not have a need or audience anymore.
John Russo 

Knock down, soul out

To The Editor:
Eighth Avenue has been changing for years. I remember when it was mostly bodegas, and Christopher Street, and later, Columbus Avenue, were NYC’s gay Main Streets. Short of creating a BID [Business Improvement District] that proscribes what kind of retail may go into real estate, one can’t get in the way of money.

The problem is that this change is soulless. The sad loss of the Flea on Sixth Avenue and its replacement with high-rises with large retail spaces was not what I call progress. I preferred the smaller individual businesses and the way that multiple small, funky buildings contrast with the newer bigger ones. Problem is, the bigger buildings are created with bigger spaces that are ideal for CVS and Duane Reade.

I’m all for change, but I’ll call it on this — some change is much better and healthier than others. The city has to evolve or it will become useless and quaint. But this kind of change toward large soulless franchises will be much harder to change out of. Any individual store that underperforms can continue in place indefinitely, subsidized by its clones elsewhere.

For a city, architecture and real estate do matter. Every developer should have learned this from Battery Park City and its “Stepford Wives” streetscape. It’s easy to knock things down. You can’t create soul.
Robert Cole 


In “Parting Ways with the Neighborhood They Helped Define” (news, Jan. 29), we indicated that The Dish has been open for 34 years. The correct number is 16 — still an achievement, and certainly enough to qualify it for membership in the list of “longtime remaining eateries” on Eighth Avenue.

Big Brother is watching

To The Editor:

Did anyone really believe that Obama was actually going to do something about the National Security Agency’s spying on the American people? And what is a lackey “third party” going to do with these records anyway? Just as soon as a paid-for judge gives the go-ahead, they are going to turn the records back over to the NSA.

But the government spying on its people shouldn’t come as a surprise; it dates back at least as far as Richard Nixon tapping the phone of his own brother.

And what does the future hold? In the guise or preventing crime and stopping “terrorism,” we will have medium-size drones flying overhead, keeping tabs on the general population, and insect-size drones hovering outside of windows, spying on people at work and at home. Of course, we know every bit of this is unconstitutional; but when anything is said, they will just drag out another paid-for judge to declare it legal.

Then we can all sit back and relax, knowing that Big Brother really is watching us.


Jerry The Peddler



Re “Parting Ways with the Neighborhood They Helped Define” (news, Jan. 29):


‘Rainbows’ his go-to for gay-themed

I am very sad to see the imminent departure of Rainbows & Triangles. It has been my favorite card and novelty shop for about two decades. It is one of the few remaining shops where you can still buy a gay-themed book, gay greeting cards, underwear and much more.





No love for ‘Rainbows’
…or yogurt

One of the reasons the neighborhood is perceived as becoming “less gay” is that increasingly, there isn’t a need for a segregated gay business community. I am gay, I’ve been in this neighborhood since 1997, and I have never identified with the merchandise at Rainbows & Triangles. I am out, but I wouldn’t be caught dead with a “Pitcher” or “Catcher” T-shirt on, nor would I put a shirtless merman ornament on my Christmas tree.

I couldn’t stand Splash. Gay people aren’t as commoditized or ghettoized as they were 20 years ago, and thank goodness for that. However, I have no patience for the increasing corporate presence on Eighth Avenue, the death of the small business makes me sad, and I still can’t walk by a nail salon or yogurt place without wondering how they meet their rent legally.





Thanks for being fabulous

Rainbows & Triangles is an institution in this neighborhood and they provided great service and products. You will be missed guys but thanks for all the wonderful years of faaabulousness.


Tony D



The best part of his twenties

I am very happy to have been a employee of Rainbows and Triangles from 1994-1999. Best part of my early twenties working for that store, experiencing the gay community first-hand and meeting so many wonderful people from all walks of life.





Bayview’s aesthetics
hardly top Trump’s

Website Reader Comment, Re “Bayview’s Future Not Locked Down, but it Won’t Go Condo” (news, Jan. 29):

Having spent most of my life within two blocks of this building, I can confirm it is not much more attractive than the hideous condos Trump is building in the west 60s along the River. Maybe it’s beautiful inside, but hard to imagine. A community space (pool, etc.) would be great — but let’s not pretend that anyone is going to miss this depressing-looking facade.