Sunday, June 01, 2014

New York, New York

I suppose if I had a novel to write or a script assignment I would like to be in some exotic place. Some cabana on the beach or some cabin on the mountain would be great to find some isolation to write,  a place where concentration is really important. For projects like that you need to have calming and bucolic images to look at.
But so far that is not the kind of writing I do most often.  Mostly I am just living life and trying to explain it to myself within the limitation of words. For that kind of writing I can't think of anyplace better to be than New York City.
I started this blog while living in New York City.  I found that New York was a constant source of inspiration.  All one needs do is get out onto the street.  Suddenly this stream of humanity is passing by close enough to smell. The energy of that experience can amuse, insult, horrify or mystify but never fails to inspire.  New York inhabitants are just in your face. At any given hour of the day or night there are crowds, hoards, throngs of New Yorkers going about their hurried lives unaware that anyone is watching, or at most uncaring that they are being observed by a curious ventriloquist who likes to write.
Like this morning for example.  I was at the corner of 57th and 7th ready to cross the street.  The pedestrian light was down to three seconds. There was a large truck half way into the crossing. I looked at the light, considered the truck and decided not to cross.  At just that moment two tough looking guys on the other side of the street make the opposite decision and cross. But they don't rush they stroll like they have all day. Evidently they took notice of my hesitation and say loudly, "Oh come on you had three seconds."  Welcome back to New York. 
A block away I run smack into a tourist who is not paying attention to where she was going.  Rather she is looking skyward with ear buds on narrating a skype video tour of Times Square on her iPhone. 
Yesterday I walked around my old neighborhood Mid town.  I passed by the David Letterman theatre at the corner of 7th and "Senor Winches Way".  Since Letterman used to be the Ed Sullivan Theatre they named that section of 50-something after that frequent ventriloqual guest of the Sullivan show. 
I will do a tribute show to the Tony Awards tonight and then be off to North Carolina. Big happenings there as a theatre troupe is doing a staged reading of a play I co-wrote with my partner. It will be very interesting to hear other voices speak those lines for a change. I am getting tired of the ones in my head.
Okay. Time for another session of inspiration, so I shall leave Starbucks at 51st and Broadway to wonder the busy streets. Tune in tomorrow for that event.
As you were,


P. Grecian said...

Ah...I lived on 57th just a few blocks from Broadway and walked past the Ed Sullivan theatre almost daily. I'd heard that Senor Wences lived just down the alley from the theatre and, when Ed had a guest cancel, he'd call and Wences would bring his act down the alley and in the side door. Loved the rhythms of New York. You brought it all back with your post. Thanks, Jay.

Bob Conrad said...

Way back in 1958 I was on the Star Time Kids show and we used to rehearse in a rehearsal studio above the Ed Sullivan Theater in the same building.

Bob Baker said...

Welcome back to where you once belonged!

Sounds like NYC suits you, Jay. You should come around more often.