Friday, February 01, 2013

That City That Never Sleeps

Had big fun yesterday goofing around Manhattan with Vera. We were staying Newark, and so it was a simple enough matter to take the train over and spend the day.

We arrived at Penn Station around noonish, then decided to hoof it up to the Museum of Modern Art (perhaps a one-and-a-half mile walk). Was a relatively warm day, with the winds that had been whipping pretty hard all week having died down a bit, which made for a pleasant journey. And of course there was no shortage of things to look at along the way.

I mentioned how we’d visited NYC a few times before. There was even one brief moment way back in there somewhere when we had contemplated a grad-school related move to New York, but we never did. As much as we like NYC, we ain’t really made for living in such a place. (Not that there are such places like it anywhere else.)

As we walked up 7th Avenue I thought occasionally about my novel, Same Difference, which I set in NYC back during the 1970s. Some of the story takes my detective into the old grindhouse scene of Times Square, an area which has obviously changed considerably since then.

Indeed, there are barely any vestiges of that era anymore. Am reading this morning about the passing of Ed Koch during the night, another incentive to think back to that time. Koch became mayor of NYC in ’78, just a little after when my novel is set. Thus he came in when all the bars, sex shops, and the theaters still dominated the landscape there at Broadway and 7th. Really wasn’t until Giuliani and the ’90s that it all began to disappear.

We’d been to the MoMA before, but nonetheless enjoyed the return trip to see The Starry Night, The False Mirror, Three Musicians, The Scream, Campbell’s Soup Cans, and more. Again, I couldn’t help but think about writing novels and being creative, as it’s impossible to wander about and look upon such things without being inspired.

We enjoyed a late lunch the cafe on the fifth floor, then made our way back down 7th to Penn.

By then the temps had dropped and the wind had picked up, making the return trip a bit more arduous. But we still enjoyed ourselves, including when we took a moment to stop in front of the interactive billboard at Forever 21 (near 45th and 7th). That’s us in the lower left corner. Vera is waving. (Click to enlarge.)

Now, of course, I’m heading right back out the door as my trip to France begins later today. Will be flying to Paris overnight, and then will be at EPT Deauville for the entire week, with the tourney going from Sunday through Saturday.

Am already thinking about Sunday’s Day 1a and how when play concludes I’ll most certainly be finding some way to watch the Super Bowl which will be kicking off after midnight there. This will be the second time I’ve followed the Super Bowl from France, actually, the last time coming during the year Vera and I lived in Lille. Listened to Denver beat Green Bay on Armed Forces Radio in the wee hours in our tiny apartment, I remember.

Speaking of the Super Bowl, me and the others who write over at Ocelot Sports did a fun little roundtable in which we weighed in on 20 prop bets (from the hundreds) for Super Bowl XLVII. Click here and check out whether we think there will be a safety, whether or not LeBron James will outscore the 49ers on Sunday, and our studious opinions on the coin toss.

While I’m linking out, let me also point you to a contribution I made over at All Vegas Poker detailing “Nevada Taking the Lead for Legal Online Poker.” Kind of an exciting moment for Nevada and online poker, with licenses having been approved for several operators and technology providers, and games likely to launch within a few months.

Meanwhile, I’ll start checking in again here on Sunday once I’m in France to share a few poker pensées from my visit. Definitely looking forward to the trip. Ought to be a scream.

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