Sprung has springed.
We were walking in Central Park for about 30 min when we stumbled upon a massive hawk having a midday snack of fresh kill squirrel. Yes chunks of the squirrel were falling down below as we stood to watch him. He was HUGE and was not at all bothered by all the people gathering in awe as he tore away at his feast.
Seeing as how life is cheap in Michigan, we decided to let Mini__B drive.
When I grew up there, hawks ate their rats in private.
Provincial that I am, I get caught by surprise when I encounter someone who hasn’t read How The Other Half Lives by Jacob Riis. Yes, Riis was a man of his times and the book is therefore paternalistic and mildly racist. But he was legitimately outraged at how New York’s poor were forced to live and he used the relatively new technology of publishing photographs to shock the hell out of people.
His chapter on homeless orphans (and children who were effectively orphans) and his chapter on the lodging houses for men too poor to rent a room are horror stories that can’t be unseen. Unfortunately, some of the other chapters seem, to modern eyes, to be almost picturesque, although that’s not how they were read in 1890.
We need more people like him. Always.
New Yorkers have a longer life expectancy than the average ‘merkin. There are all sorts of possible explanations, including Mayor Mikey’s self-congratulatory health laws, a lower-than-average percentage of farm and industrial employment, greater median wealth, good access to healthcare and high-end hospitals, more walking and less driving, and so on.
I’d add a few pet theories: joy at knowing that whatever outer-borough pit you live in is still not in New Jersey, food options that include chino-latino, karmic payback for the Mets, egg creams.
*Also, if you’re wondering about the title: Queens slang circa 1975. Means, roughly, “I won.”