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Sunday, May 3, 2009

The King, The Spring, and The Kid from Brooklyn BADA-BING !!!

Well, Spring is here and the King is roaming the streets of New York feels good.... damn good.

It's good to be back, and it seems as if every corner I turn there is a moment I have missed and another opportunity for a frozen moment of the city that I could have juxtaposed for you , and me.

The seasons changing, the smells exchanging, and the King, well... aging...slowly I remind you.

They all fit together quite appropriately I guess, however not to my liking. One of the great visuals of New York City which is what many of us see in the Big Ole Apple, and forget to stop and look sometimes is the lighting. This is where I introduce the "El"and what the "El" can bring. "El" is short for elevated platform that a train runs on here in NYC, doesn't matter what train it is , the R, the 7, the G...You're on the "L"...These days , most don't call it that but no matter, you are on an "EL", an "Elevated train". They might be my initials too , but that's for another time. My first pic is how the sun BEAMS through the rails of an "EL" and the unique sight it brings, aside from hearing the train run through as you are below it , this is as good as it gets. I'll get a video of it when a train goes by in the near future since now it's warm and I can stand outside my car for a while.

This is 37th ST Queens on my way to LaGuardia Airport to hopefully pick up a fair REAL quick....if you click on the pic, you can actually see the petals blowing off the tree on this great unnatural 85 degree day. It also makes the pine tree on the left look as if it has Christmas lights on it from the petals blowing by. Click the pic to see.

Now these following lanterns are not associated with my prior Chinese New Year post... this was actually a movie set for a movie they were filming in Chinatown starring Nicholas Cage as a wizard or a magician. You don't see lanterns strewn across the street like this often, so kudos to the King please..........just kidding, ..........about the kudos not the facts.

This is the dude who was guarding "all the SH*T" from the movie as he put it ....he did not want fame so he declined on being named.

Very nice to see the courts being used once again after a long winter slumber.

People just chillin' in the park, albeit they still NEED their cell phone.

The layers of clothing not needed and soon will hang in the closet for a while.

Another great thing about New York City is moves crawls ....sometimes it RUNS !!!! .....but if you have a chance, and see something you like, ...STOP...breathe , and REALLY take a look at what you are experiencing, it may be the one of a kind you are looking for, or it is a piece that will make you smile under the Mona Lisa asking price. For example, take a good look at the following involved....Bruce Lee, The Wall Street Bull and John Lennon....they would be a nice trio in the backseat of my yellow cab...or on my wall. I had the exact same poster of Bruce Lee on my wall when I was growing up...Good times.

An interesting sight to see when the sun is beaming down on us is the Chinese people in Chinatown opening umbrellas or parasols to protect their skin from the sun. Better than sunblock and a lot cheaper too, not to mention it's a smart thing to protect your body.
In ancient China, they oiled paper and bamboo parasols to represent wealth and royalty, just a little King history lesson folks.

This cool cat couldn't keep still as I watched him sit down and get up three times on this hot day during a long red light. I could not see what the sign said, so I pulled up next to him as he was walking away and snapped this pic only to read what it said at my next red light.

....and I must have looked like a looney tune laughing to myself as I read his needy quote to raise funds for himself. He is on my "need to get a video of " list. I wonder how much money he raises for his cause every day. I haven't tried his website yet either, but I know I'll probably try LOL !!

This is the new taxi hybrid to save fuel by giving the passenger some real air conditioning and to have a better riding experience of the city. Kidding. This is actually a picture of what happens when passengers who do not tip us are in our cab. We have a secret button which ejects the entire back end of the car and we don't have to deal with you, and you wind up in the East River. Kidding again. ;-) ..........or am I ?

The changing of the seasons is related with changing our sneakers or shoes....and what to do with your old pair ?? Up into sneaker heaven New York City style !! Just tie them together and throw upward to have your expired pair live on with a current of electricity !!
This New York City ritual has always made me smile.

I wonder who takes these down every year....Con Edison ? Must be a funny day at work !!
I'll bet at the end of the day the worker says, "This stinks !"...sorry, I couldn't resist the pun.

I also went up to the Bronx and saw my first Yankee game at the new stadium. I'll do a blog about the stadium after I go to a day game to give you my full opinion of it, but I was disappointed with it. However, the neighborhood never disappoints the experience of a game.
I really don't know what you would call this store, a pawn shop ??
Repair shop ??

Ear piercings...but you sell your earrings after the piercing ? ...or take a loan to keep them !!

MESS WELCOME ?!?!? WTF ?!?!??!???? Only in New York.

.......and even better is the slogan on the security gate when this place is closed. Some people will do anything for a FREE condom. The economy sure brings out the generosity in people.

I was fortunate to have my first visit be a successful win, which is always good. These are the new video screens outside the stadium to let you know who won, and who they are playing next.

Now, here comes the BADA BING part of the story. When I go to Yankee Stadium I always stop by the Yankee Tavern for a refreshment before I go in, and its where I meet my cousin who gave me a ticket to the game. So anyway, as I'm walking in I bump into the infamous Big Man, The Voice of the People, The guy who makes you think about it and is ALWAYS happy to see ya', Mike Caracciolo who is better known as THE KID FROM BROOKLYN !! He made a video a few years ago about terrorism and going to a Yankee game called "Bat Day" which was great, and is how I found him. He has MANY videos on youtube and they are very entertaining.

I used to call him on the phone and suggest ideas to him and also if I needed tickets to an event. He is a ticket broker, but his videos, his Brooklyn stories, and his New York nature are what he is known for best. I told him I'd post about him on my site, he is a real gentleman. I'll post the pic I had my cousin take of The Kid from Brooklyn and The King of New York Hacks when I write about the stadium, but this was truly a great New York moment.

Here is a video of The Kid From Brooklyn ranting about dinner with his friend "Pete The Nut".
Every neighborhood has its own ''nut'', and I'm sure we all have a similar story, I know I have a few. There is foul language, but it's true Brooklyn lingo, so you've been warned.

Watching these breakdancers almost made The King start poppin' the robot to the tune....but I didn't want to steal their thunder....or the money they were makin' while breakin' . These cats are in better shape than most of the Yankees and are much more entertaining.

Slick New York City moves, that handstand move is called Hand Hopping or Rabbits in breakdance terminology ...sorry for the poor lighting....and no I'm not breakin' right now........OK...Yes I am....doing the belly swim, Holla !!

I think this last picture sums up how we'll get through these tough economic times, just like Mickey and Minnie do...Living in Harmony....or at least try to.

So in closing, I hope you like the change of the seasons and this small slice of the city, I never did get to see Nicholas Cage on the street of that movie set but I was lucky enough to see the REAL people who make this city beat to the drum of diversity and the moments that help me maintain my own rhythmic journey as I drive these city streets and bring the best of what I see to you as I faithfully remain, The King of New York Hacks. Peace out peeps.


  1. good to have you back!
    Outstanding post! Please note, I chose to comment rather than check out the dude's website!
    Gotta run ;)

  2. good to have you back on the streets! hope your picking up some fares

  3. There are so many good things in all of your posts that by the time I finish and get to comment I'm never sure what to comment on.

    The thought I leave you with today is....

    I think they should keep the lanterns. I just love the color and it really gives the street that extra umph!

  4. What great pictures !
    I feel as though I have been on a trip to NY City after looking at them, and what an exciting place it must be, to call home.
    I assume you have just about seen it all, especially being a cab driver !
    I'll be visiting with you again, and thanks for stopping by my place.....
    Cheers ;)

  5. Welcome back! I loved the tour, as usual.

  6. loved the picture updates, King!
    Nick Cage's pseudo-China Town made me feel at home. And the umbrellas are a familiar sight here. Taiwanese even wear sleeves during the summer just to protect their skin. Much different than the beach bunnies I know back in California!

    BTW... Just got back from Bangkok... Drivers there give cabbing a bad rap. Wasn't into it.
    Keep doin what you do... and do it well. (as you do.)

  7. Thanks for stopping by my site.

    I have never been to NY but this was a great tour. I'm a small town person and I like it that way but I've visited several large cities and have enjoyed them. It's fun to see the sites but I think at the end of the day, I still like my home in the country.

  8. Aw, thanks for the tour! I have never been to NY. I know, I'm ashamed of myself too....

  9. I always like EL tracks. Don't know how much NY has, but we have a lot in Chitown.

    The Sneakers on the line is the kind of stunt we used to do in High School to piss off our friends. Interesting that it looks like it's some sort of ritual.

    Thanks for stopping by…

  10. King: Thanks for stopping by to visit my low-brow blog..:)
    I'm glad you are back on track. How's the nephew, dahling?? Send my love.

    I love the sneakers...I wonder who was and what year that started. I know I remember seeing them swaying in the breeze when I was younger in Jersey City & Bayonne. And that would be late 60's/70's!
    Ok, so i"m old...but, young at heart...I could never do that break dancin...hell, I"m having a hard enough time in my yoga class. :D

    Thanks for the Springtime tour of the city.

  11. You always have the best pictures! That man's sign is priceless - "Need money to get drunk..." *hahaha!* honesty is so admirable these days. And SPECIAL thanks for including some 'public art' as well as the framed kind!
    * ; )
    They had an "el" in Chicago, too...

  12. Aaah - I miss my weekly visits to THAT city. Thanks for I live closer to Philthadelphia - don't get there much though...just where my hubby works. Thanks for stopping by - great blog here!

  13. I just love nature so much...Thanks for visit my blog.....My kindness friend king of America...

  14. I nearly died laughing at both of the hand written signs. You don't find awesomeness like that here in England..or at least I haven't seen it yet.

  15. Thanks for dropping by my place King, I've had a whale of a time visiting yours... There's one thing for sure - ya see all kinds of life out there when you're taxi'ing! I know that from my husband who drove Hackneys in Glasgow and surrounding areas for years here in the land of the Tartan... Hehe,

    He still thinks he drives a cab today and anytime he sees someone standing at a bus-stop he'll stop and say what road he's goin and offer them a lift. Some of them, or very few take him up on the offer of a lift . Mind you King, folk are not so inclined these days to accept, although all they see in the car is an old man and these days they are afraid to take a chance.. I mean he could be up to no good or something... no chance! But they don't know.. He keeps on trying though 'cos he feels sorry for folk waiting ages for a bus, especially when it's raining.

    Cheers from the land of the Tartan, Kate x.

    p.s. I loved the photos, I felt as though I'd been visiting New York today !

  16. loved the tour. totally loved the sign asking for money to get drunk :) thanks for your comment on my blog, if i come to ny i'll definitely bring some macarones and trade you for a tour with the king. have a nice day.

  17. Do you know why people hang their sneakers on telephone lines? When I was a teenager boys would do it after they lost their virginity. There was this one slutty girl who had about 10 pairs outside her houses telephone line....ok that was me. but the sneaker thing is true.

  18. I truly loved the tour of NYC. The picture of the guy carrying the sign cracked me up!

    Thank you for visiting my blog!

  19. Hi King of the NYH, I enjoyed looking at your view of the city. What a delight to see the influence that weather can have on people.

    Also, what a relief to just let the sun shine on bare skin. I live in warm Puerto Rico and have nearly forgotton how seasonal changes bring about a lift in positive emotions.

    Thank you for visiting OWL blog and reading about another aspect of the murder of my mother. You know how to uplift and that is a treasured gift.

    Your photo selections were funny too. (I haven`t yet listened to the videos.) The gold for cash and the man looking for donations were funny and curious.

    I have been to the city but I never saw it through your particular frame of reference! Quite funny. Thank you again for your comment on Oasis Writing Link. <3

  20. Free condoms from the pawn shop? You New Yorkers are so spoiled. We have to get groped at the free clinic if we want free condoms in PA.

  21. Wandered over from the comment you left on my site...this is the coolest idea for a blog I've ever seen, haha. Awesome.

  22. Re the pic of that cab in the shop: I'm guessing your company does the same thing ours does when a cab comes off the road: They salvage reusable parts until there's hardly anything left of the original. Usually it's things like fenders, headlight lenses, and taillight assemblies.
    Of course, if a driver busts a taillight, you can bet we end up having to pay the full replacement cost even if it's a used one.

  23. It's really cool touring with you! Thanks a lot, King! :-)

  24. That guy guarding the movie things would certainly scare me off. So nice that he dresses for work too.

  25. Never a dull moment in NYC! I so enjoy seeing the city through your eyes. You should have your own realtiy show. Only REAL REAL, not staged real.

    Keep it up!

  26. I adore these trips through the city!! When I come up this summer, I am calling YOUR cab.

  27. Only been to NYC 4 times but when I'm there my whole being vibrates from the sheer excitement of it all. The lights, the people, the streets, the noise, something to be taken in with every glance, a glorious assault on the senses... I love that I can come here and catch a bit of that buzz.
    Thanks King!

  28. btw: I always thought the tennis shoes on the power line meant it was a place you could buy drugs? I never tested that theory though.

  29. Great pics! A season change is always fabulous.... one morning you wake up and the trees have just popped.

    I also love when the tree petals fall like a winter snow.

    I am planning to put up our Ohio "art" this spring.

    And... the shoes over power lines? I have never understood this? They also toss the shoes over in Ohio. Just not as many shoes. The New Yorkers must have better shoe tossing skills.

  30. That photo of the tree dropping it's petals into the wind is wonderful.

    Austin is the panhandle capital of the U.S., I think. My husband and I swap "best sign of the week" stories, but, this one takes the prize.

  31. Wow, that was cool! It's like really taking a tour of NY. I'm glad I stopped by. :)

  32. I love NY and I really want to go back. My best (only) neice lives in Brooklyn and she has been begging for us to come pack.

    You do such a great job capturing the 'typical' every day parts of the city. Those are my favorte parts.

  33. I love the visuals. I went to Fordham (Rose Hill campus) and have many great memories of "The City." This was very entertaining - can't wait to read the next one!

  34. Awesome photos my friend.

    I loved the guy's sign. Pure genius.

    thanks for stopping by my place, enjoyed my visit here, I will come back!

  35. Fantastic post and photos, love seeing NY through a native's eyes. Thanks for stopping by, glad I found you.

  36. great stuff, kid, LONG time since i was in nyc last...

    just one thing, that tree ain't no PINE ;) lol

  37. Okay, this post made me want to visit NYC. I've never been but I've always wanted to go. Maybe one day.

    That sign that guy was holding was hilarious.

  38. Woah, where to start?? First NYC is where my heart belongs and where I'd live if I could afford it (and I could make my family live there). I wouldn't even care about bugs, loud neighbors or noise (well not too much). So you're living in my dream city. That's point one to you.

    The pictures are fantastic. That's two points now for you. I love your view of the city, especially the lanterns and the lady with the parasol. Yes they do that all over Asia. I regret not having bought a nice painted parasol when I was in Taipei.

    I love the city and I can't wait to be living near it again soon! I'll be back to visit, I like your blog.

    Thanks for stopping by mine today :)

  39. Spank me harder?! That's hilarious! Also, I see from your earlier posts that you are a handsome cabbie with a great looking family! I'm glad everything is workin out for your nephew and brother.

  40. Thanks for the tour.
    I never got tired of NYC light. It's what I miss the most.
    Happy Spring to ya.

  41. I was wondering what the hell happened to you? You are my window into my hometown. Without you, I'm not a NYer.

  42. I was wondering what the hell happened to you? You are my window into my hometown. Without you, I'm not a NYer.

  43. Hi there from way down here,
    that was really a 'Cooks tour' - now that cook was Captain Cook who discovered much of the Sth Pacific, not Iron chef....

    How much do I owe you?

    Happy Days

  44. Excellent tour of the city. Many thanks for showing a side that folks like me don't get to see too often (if at all).

  45. Well touche ... how could I not take advantage of glimpses of NYC. Oh how I miss it!

  46. o my goodness, i laughed my head off and what great pictures you take! i only hope you aren't shooting these as you are driving, as i have been in many cabs in nyc which leave me bitting off my nails! lol, of course i'm sure not you! :)anyhow, thanks for dropping by my blog, let me know if you make granny's soup and how everyone loves it!
    shelley :)

  47. Hi - just wanted to say thanks for the comment on our blog like a million years ago. Anyone who has a life as cool as you do does NOT need to take 6 months off and hike the Appalachian Trail! Just read a few good blogs on it and you're set! Anyway, it was an honor to get a shout out from the Big Apple.

    Brahma Bull & Sweet Potato

  48. Damn, this all brought back memories. Loved the first picture - I lived near an El for a bit in the Bronx.

  49. I can feel NYC on my skni after reading, looking at the pics and watching the videos ~ so coooool! Haven't been to NYC since '02...I will find your cab when I return...

    Enjoy your day!

  50. I just love the guy with the sign. Can't wait to hear about your time at the stadium and it's a shame you didn't get to see Nicholas Cage. He is one of my favorites.

  51. So loved this spring time tour of your city, King. Fantastic finds on your part and can't wait to see more with your insightful comments!

  52. Oh the things you must see in sweet sweet NYC. I love it so! I particularly enjoyed the picture of the man with the sign and the beautiful lamps and the hanging shoes. I never did understand how those happened!

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