Commentary, Subway

Second avenue reminds me of Christmas

In 1956 Isaac Asimov wrote a little song about the Second Avenue Subway, set to the tune of a classic Christmas carol. Fifteen years later he published it in his Treasury of Humor. I’ll let you follow the link and read it,

Commentary, Queens, Traffic calming

When Broadway is too broad

This past Saturday, a young college student was killed by a hit-and-run driver while walking on Broadway at 58th Street here in Woodside. I know the danger he felt. Just two weeks before I was walking home from a dinner date in

Commentary, Greenwich Village

Wittgensteinian villages

Last month I guessed that when Ari Wallach said that Hastings-on-Hudson is a village “in a Wittgensteinian sense,” he meant that it was part of a family of things that are called “villages,” but don’t all share the same set of criteria.

Commentary, News

In a Wittgensteinian sort of way

This weekend the New York Times Styles section ran one of their periodic stories about kids growing up and moving to the suburbs, and changing both themselves and the suburbs in the process.  A while back the suburb in question (more of

Commentary, England

Cable cars across the ocean

I’m going on vacation to England soon, so I was intrigued to hear that Mayor Johnson had inaugurated a cable car across the Thames. “Funny,” I thought, “It’s not that hilly there.” Then I realized that “cable car” meant an aerial car,

Commentary, Greenwich Village

Modern towers can respect the street

If you’re walking up Broadway in Greenwich Village, you’ll get to the block between Waverly Place and Eighth Street: Notice how there’s a continuous row of shops (except for the garage) that respects the “build to” line, as do the shops on

Commentary, Greenwich Village

A beautiful residential block

Here is West Tenth Street between Sixth and Seventh Avenues: Whenever I walk here I feel calmer and happier, much more so than on Mercer or LaGuardia, even though those streets have “green space.” Something about the buildings coming up to the