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Saturday, December 1, 2012

Columbus Day, Hispanic Day...Hurricane Sandy & Thanksgiving in a #KONYH Minute

 I was planning on visiting all the parades in October beginning with Columbus Day, following with the Hispanic Heritage Day Parade, and ending on Halloween for a great collection of photography to share...but Halloween was cancelled...and then the Marathon thankfully...families were living on the beach having lost everything, all resources were needed no matter what anybody tells you. Myself being from Staten Island as I wrote about in my last blog post in September...we were hit again very hard, this time not by a terrorist, but by Hurricane Sandy..

I'll be brief ( yeah right !, I tried..but I posted 40 pics with my thoughts, its worth it, would i lie to you ? )  with this post because I was affected by it personally and was without power for about 2 weeks with flood and lots of other damage...then between helping family member, friends, volunteering in the communities...on top of just trying to make it through the day has kept me from posting here...I've done it on Facebook as often as I can, but my blog is where I started and where I will continue to update always... I hope you enjoy the photos from the good NYC times of October, but be warned some of my Hurricane pics are graphic, and show that we don't all have 9 lives.

I'm not going to go into detail about the Hurricane, but I will tell you it has been DEVASTATING...and I've personally seen and heard many life and death stories associated with that night, and the recovery that is still ongoing...With all the warnings & Maps of vulnerable points along the New York City and Long Island shores, most agencies have failed...The people have been doing it themselves from day one...but that's for another post...and I don't want to discount the tons of help that came from all over and is still coming.

Wonder how many storms ole Columbus saw as he sailed his way here...

Being half Italian this dog looked at the King right away and gave me the ole Italian nod...
DOG: "Howyadoin' Paisan ?"
King: " Meet me in Little Italy after the parade for a big bowl of Italian Snausauges"
DOG: "You're all right King, even for a half a paisan"

 Most of the children on the Pinocchio float already took off their hats &noses, I was near the end of the parade and the kids were having a great time and tired of wearing the costume...but not this beautiful Italian Pinocchio, she was so proud to be Italian and looked right into my camera and WAS Pinocchio...gotta love it ay paisans ??

 Then a week later the Hispanic Heritage Day Parade which recognizes all Hispanic heritages from Argentina to Venezuela and has floats and dancers for every one is a brilliant and really fun parade...if that doesn't convince you, these three Hispanic beauties will....see what I'm sayin ? ;)

...and no matter who sees the King on the streets, they just feel like dancing with me !!

From this young beauty !!!

 To this young beauty, the King was a lucky man on Hispanic Heritage Day :)

 We've come a long way from Columbus as a proud and of of NYPD's Hispanic Finest represents with pride...No she didn't give me her number but did tell me she's a good shot..nuff said lol

Even Ernie Anastos came by from the Kidney Walk to attend the parade...Ernie is one of the most famous newscasters here in New York City, he is Greek and I always see him in the Greek Parade, so it was cool seeing him here...I've met Ernie a couple of times and always goof with him about his on air flub about "fucking a chicken"...BWAHAHAHAHA..yeah , you read it right...I'm serious, here's the YouTube link  Keep Fuckin That Chicken  , its hilarious and he always has a great sense of humor when I ask him about chickens !! Very cool dude.  :D

 ...and Mexico had a beautiful Senorita getting the whole crowd going with that huge flag !!

 ...and then, a couple of weeks later when I heard the storm warnings..I went to the shore to see the prior High Tide and judge how bad it might get...the waters were much higher than usual, and I warned my family members that we'll be in for real one, and lets hope for the best...the tide hardly went out for low tide, and thats when I knew it would flood, but didn't think we'd have the surge that came with it...nobody saw that coming...except one North East Weather guy, a teacher I follow on Facebook named Steve Turk who's FB page says "Weather predictions so accurate, you would think that Mother Nature and The Amazing Kreskin had a baby and named that baby Steve Turk!" He aint kidding !! The Weather of Steve Turk who was spot on and said the TIDES: MAJOR CONCERNS....MAJOR!!!! ..and ...THEY WERE !!  Follow him !!

I went and saw the tides, and I was concerned, as they kept rising...

 This was the first sight I saw when I left the morning after the storm..I lost power at 2:29 PM the prior day, and it was a long night...just beyond this boat is the ocean, it placed it onto this person's backyard almost unscathed...and yet when I walked near the sea wall, the water was still crashing and I saw the remains of a demolished boat's remains floating...

 These waterfront condos were annihilated...

 Every block I walked to had a boat or boats dropped all over the place...this crashed through a concrete sea wall and was left in the middle of the street...the house owner told me if it weren't for the damn boat he might have had a lot less damage from the surge...he told me he watched it coming thinking it would enter his house and just veered off...fate.

 At the end of this street used to be one of those guardrails that are bolted deep down into the concrete...its gone, but I saw it up the street in front of someone's garage...there was a statue here too, that was there since I was 8...helluva surge to rip that up...

 This beach home was half ripped into the sea as if a giant shark took a bite out of it...I delivered the paper to this house when I was a kid, it was a farm with chickens...

 When I took this picture a wave came in and wet my feet...thats how close the water was still...

 ..and then as I went to streets that were at a lower sea level, more and more damage occurred...

An entire Marina of docks and boats were ripped up from across the harbor and  went through homes like torpedoes...

 People were happy to be alive as half of the deaths in New York City were from Staten Island....

 It was surreal seeing boats on top of cars and homes while walking the streets...

 This is a field filled with rooftops that were swept off the top of their homes by the surge...

 Like little toys placed randomly, nature has power...boy does it have power.

 Wreckage was everywhere I went...the atmosphere was utter devastation....

 I was finding dead animals caught and buried buried from the outgoing tide...RIP Cat.

 Welcome mats on a porch once attached to a house that held a lifetime of memories...swept away..

So many memories...just...swept away...

 Spent some time in Midland Beach trying to help peeps that need it and next to a house I spent some time at was this one..This is the home of James Rossi, an 85-year-old Midland Beach resident who didn’t make it out alive. There was a memorial to “Jimmy” on his front door with a sign that says "RIP JIMMY we love you " and some tribute candles on the stoop. He was a retired longshoreman who told his neighbors he was leaving, but stayed to tough it out on his own...he drowned. RIP Mr. Rossi.

 ..the recovery continues and is a long way off from normalcy my friends...People are displaced, with no where to if you can help NYC , please do we need it...but give to people you know are really helping...thats my recommendation, not to the large agencies with CEO's who have 7 figure salaries...

 Is spite of it all the day after, I saw this flag, and it was reminiscent of 9/11..and gave me hope.....

 ...and for a brief moment during this recovery that in my opinion will take years...Thanksgiving Day was not cancelled..and with all the volunteering and community help since the storm, I met a great many people who were making sure that many of the displaced were getting hot meals, and I took my own break and went to see my family in Queens, jumped off the subway for some quick parade pics, then to the best dinner I had in a month cooked by my Aunt God Bless Her...She had to take in my cousin's entire family as their house was devastated too...Thank God my family was lucky to have places to go, I've met people camping on the beach...Never would I think NYC would react so poorly to this..but again, thats for another post...

Even the subway train was decorated for Thanksgiving and its newest balloon...

 I wasn't happy that they took Snoopy out of the parade this year, but Papa Smurf made lots of kids smile too...but c'mon , Snoopy ??? I guess a lot of people felt like that when Bullwinkle was retired.. ;)

Elf on the shelf instead of Snoopy ???
OK, I never grew up with this guy creeping me out on the shelf,  so maybe I'm really out of the loop,
but this elf looks like he's taking a poop !!! Bwahahahahaha !! Snoopy Rules and is potty trained !!!

 This picture below really wasn't there, and for those who know me understand it was just my Anatidaephobia playing tricks on me. Should any of you know a cure please let me in on it.

 Ronald McDonald skating down 5th Ave is kinda funny since the fast food workers were striking the other day and walked out of all the fast food places for higher wages...can't blame them, work in a food place but have to be on food stamps...nuff said..Cool balloon, but I eat at local burger joints since they cost the same and are better quality..oh wait, thats also for another post ;)

 ...and Santa always makes the crowd go wild...but all I felt like was a photographer this year...thinking about all the people I've met and the hell we are all going through together...and thats how we have to look at it, they are in hell, so we are too until we can bail everybody out. Hmmm bail out...the banks got a check pretty quick, how about the people who lost it ALL  ?? What do you think Santa ?

 Lives were lost, property lost, memories lost...Lost is how a lot of people feel right now a month later in this picture below it explains so much, a mattress, a child's toy, an boat where it doesn't belong amongst ruined homes...

 These were the remains of the boat I told you I was looking down at from where the surge placed the othe boat almost unbroken....fate is fickle indeed.

 ...and the name of the boat is just the opposite of what we'll be doing for the long winter ahead, but with the help of the people,  hopefully one day we can again ...

 This was the flag that was on the ground earlier, I knew I couldn't leave it on the ground so I tied it to the bow of the boat, and it was there a day later when i took this picture and met the owner of the boat who was  happy to find his vessel, and used the gas left in it to fill up his car and a few family members cars who were helping him...its been a roller coaster month as you can see, and the ride isn't over...

 ...but as I look into the horizon I have faith that we'll recover, but not without the help of many or the Government doing the right thing by all who have been damaged...Physically, mentally, & Fiscally, all the people with damage need help.... this is a new 9/11 for NYC... so as we look into the horizon, we must hope...and more than ever help...

In closing, I posted this on Facebook the other day, but I'm going to post it again here...I think its significant in some way... perhaps so you can see the person who instilled values into me that make me react to people in need, and my want to help people, as my father did and still does...together, they made the original dynamic duo taking care of me and my bro.. 

 I am fortunate...

So the reason I posted it here again was,  the other day would have been my Mothers 70th birthday had it not been for that damn disease Cancer...she kicked its ass often...(and mine heh heh heh, I did deserve it :) ) and she went into remission twice during her battle...


Tough as they come I tell ya. 

She woulda held Hurricane Sandy off, or at the least softened the blow.

She had two favorite quotes, but in the last month I have done my best to live by one, "Be an Angel Practice Random Acts of Kindness" which she had as a bumper sticker on her car to remind others of...I did some acts that were known through the month, but coupled them with as many random ones that I could and will continue to do so... hoping it made me whole for her birthday, and as a person (I'm a work in progress) ...She taught me well, and my Father continues to do so God Bless him...I am a very lucky person...these are the things you think of when you see up close, people lose EVERYTHING...just swept New york go hug your loved ones and come back...serious...well, don't stop reading, call them over and hug 'em. Heck, do both  ;)

 ...shame she never got to see me crowned as King, but I know she's watching anyway ;)  and...thats called faith...another item I owe her & my father for  :)  ...and faith is what I have in the future because of them, no matter what obstacles lie in my way....or anybody else. Faith. Hold on to it.

How my Father caught this beautiful gal ?? You'll have to ask him that one :)  ...although he'll probably tell ya its the charm I inherited from him...heh heh heh ;)  Love him.

I may not be as good as my Mom, or my Dad... but like i told ya, I'm a work in progress, and if you feel like donating to a real cause that is helping the people of Staten Island and New York City, I recommend the link below to which I know for sure is going to people who need it the the King on this one.

We need help, and are rebuilding, recovering , and relying on others just like the World does when it happens to them.

Please Donate:
OLQP Hurricane Sandy Relief Fund. by Ingrid Gumb

I may not have a balloon made of me in the Thanksgiving Day Parade...yet, ( Hellloooo Call Macy's Please ) .. but no matter what hits NYC I'm here to report it to you with the truth I remain, one lucky son of a gun,  Edward...

The King of New York Hacks.

Much <3 and Peace Peeps..and Thank you all who have donated through my Facebook page, I can never repay you for your kindness but will do my best. Cheers. #KONYH 


  1. Such heart wrenching sites here, Edward. It's been a terribly rough ride for your state, NJ and others.

  2. you have my heart, brother. xoxoxo

  3. thank you for this post. from highs, lows, devastation, despair, hope and faith. bless you.

  4. I'm far away from the devastation there as I live in England...but your post and pictures were very moving. Especially though I was touched with what you wrote about your Mom....I'm so sorry for your loss. I lost my Dad this year in April and I loved him so, so much. I'm sure your Mom is watching with a smile at all you do. I have a child and she is the only thing that keeps me going! Tracey P xxx

  5. It's heartbreaking to see the damage from the storm. Thank you for sharing pictures. Over here on the west coast, we really have no concept of how bad it was.

  6. Ye's are a good man KONYH! :¬)

    and fukkit, I don't usually give these to other guys but...


  7. Your photos of Sandy's wrath are both amazing and heart-breaking, King. I hope you all get the help you need.

  8. Beautiful and touching post, King Edward, as I'm slowly catching up on blogs. I'm so far behind!

    Got home on the 16th from my 5 month India sojourn...will be in SF for six months. My first grandchild arrives in late Apr...and I have to have left shoulder replacement surgery in Feb...hope to return to India by late May.

    It's still hard to believe all the trauma suffered by you guys on the Eastern seaboard. My prayers continue with you! You're one terrific bunch of people.

  9. Wow. Seriously good writing and photos. My bro-in-law lives in Brooklyn, but the closest water is the Gowanus, so he wasn't affected except by the subway and el being out of service. Thanks for sharing this stuff. Truly moving.

    (I drove cab in Boston for 6 months, about 35 years back. Still haven't told any tales on my blog about that experience yet. I'll have to do that after the holidays are done.)

  10. Hi Edward, I don't know how I missed this post when it first went up-- Sorry I'm late.

    Your photos are amazing and heartbreaking and gorgeous all in one fab post. I had tears in my eyes when I saw the hurricane damage, but when I got to the part about your mom, I was full-out crying. What a beautiful lady who did a great job of raising you.

    I hate cancer-- the bastard, and am so sorry it gave your mom such a tough time before it took her far too early.

    I've always known you're a really good guy and now I know where it came from. God bless you, your folks and your family.

    Merry Christmas, King. jj

  11. King, I know you ARE as good as your mom and dad. We are ALL works in progress. We are made of and from love and are here to celebrate it -- which you do in your kind acts and big heart.

    Glad you post here. -- I'm really not much of a FB person.

    Hope it's all getting back on track after Sandy.

    You Rock, as always!!


  12. "Ein frohes neues Jahr!"
    ...liebe Grüße aus Deuschland, Petra

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