Who are those young kids? Caleb has had this roll of black and white film sitting around that yesterday we finally got developed. And what a pleasant surprise, there were a bunch of pictures from when we first met and our apartment, know affectionately by those who lived there as ‘718’, named for both its address — 718 Washington Avenue — and its area code. Some of the pictures had the date 06-20-99 imprinted on them.
Here is a picture of me just in from a run. I imagine that this is what I look like when I met Caleb, drenched in sweat and wearing running clothes.
I’m sure my loyal blog readers know that Caleb and I met b/c I (or me, Kate, and Teresa) rented him a room after Cherith moved out. Kate and Teresa pretty much hated everyone we interviewed for the room, but luckily Caleb could talk about punk rock music with Kate in the interview and I think that warmed her up to him.
Caleb took a bunch of pictures of the view from our house which reminder of what a funny place that was. 718 was right on the corner of three neighborhoods, Prospect Heights, a very nice neighborhood, Crown Heights, a dubious neighborhood that had some rioting in the early 90s, and some kind of unnamed no-mans-land at the bottom of the hill. Our landlord made a habit of buying property in such neighborhoods, not fixing them up, and then renting them to white kids who would pay a little extra. We shared the building with some NYU students downstairs, and upstairs two forty year olds and two twenty year olds united in their quest to free Mumia Abu-Jamal. Our apartment was enormous, the living room as big as my current house, because if the landlord cut it into smaller units a zoning restriction would have made them rent controlled.
Here is a picture of the “police crime unit”. We’re not really sure what it was, but it has some loose affiliation with the police. When Kate and I first checked out the apartment we stopped in to ask about the neighborhood. The officer behind the desk had a bloody gash on his face and said “I’m not gonna tell you it’s a safe neighborhood, b/c then if you move in and something happens your gonna blame me”.
So the neighborhood was getting gentrified, but it got a little worse before it got better. Soon after we moved in a Hunter social work student was brutally murdered carrying her groceries home (in the nice neighborhood no less). I’m not sure what this fire picture is, but at some point the building next to us had an electrical fire and then all sides of our house looked at burned out buildings.
Before the outer-borough chain, Kennedy Fried Chicken, bought this restaurant, it used to have the delightful name “The Washington Fried Chicken Burger”. Cherith went in one time to order fried chicken. When then asked her what kind of meat she liked, her pronouncement “I like dark meat” brought cackles from the crowd of African Americans in the restaurant.
Here are Kate and Teresa. Kate is the sleeping one. Kate and her fiancé will be visiting for Christmas so maybe I can get a more flattering picture of her. Yes, Kate is engaged. I know it’s hard to believe.
This picture was taken before Caleb and I went on one of our first dates.
Across the street from the Peruvian restaurant there was a purple neon sign flashing the word psychic so we went in to get a love reading. Anyway we felt a little gypped from the whole experience — the psychic was hardly any good. Before we started dating a psychic at Coney Island told us we were going to so we were hot on psychics at the time. The lady did our reading at a table while the rest of the family (3 generations) watched TV. As we were leaving a little boy shouted out “see ya later dorky!” Well this is what I heard, b/c look at how dorky Caleb looks in that picture. Caleb was convinced that the boy shouted “See ya later Dorothy!” b/c I was dressed like Dorothy from the Wizard of Oz and even had a funny little purse that you could imagine a little dog in. Looking at the picture now, I think either of us could pass for “dorky” and I’m pretty sure that’s what the boy must have said.