Thursday, September 16, 2010


Let’s start with the brighter side of New York City; the neon lights of Broadway. I recently went to the Quad Cities. Those are four cities located along the Mississippi River where the water flows East and West and consists of two cities in Iowa and two in Illinois.

The Quad Cities Symphony Orchestra was having a Riverfront Pops at LeClaire Park in Davenport. It was comprised of Broadway songs and featured three Broadway stars: Stephanie J. Block (9 to 5), Lisa Vronman (Phantom of the Opera), and Hugh Panaro (Phantom of the Opera). In fact, Hugh had just begun his second Broadway run in the role of the masked phantom the week before. Coincidentally, I was already slated to review the recent two role changes just a few days after this concert. I must admit that having seen this production once on Broadway and once in Toronto, his performance was the most outstanding in regards to both his acting and vocal ability.

Hugh originally took the role of Raoul in 1990 and was later cast as “the man behind the mask” in 1999. He either must have been quite young as Raoul or keeps himself from not looking his age now. I can’t wait for the CD to come out with this cast. That’s not to say that Sarah Jean Ford’s role as Christine produced any less enjoyment.

Mayor Bloomberg and the planting of trees. Perhaps the old ones should have been cut down before these new ones went up. I got one in front of my house. They want me to maintain it. I didn’t ask for it. There are enough trees across the street in Forest Park. We just had a whole bunch of trees knocked down from last week’s storm. If any of Bloomberg’s trees fell down and caused damage, can he be sued? I don’t mean suing the City as he is the one that made the decision to “go green”.

The Department of Transportation has been going around issuing violations regarding the sidewalks. I was told that due to the cracks or whatever in the pavement that it was a hazard. I have choice of applying for a permit and contracting a company to have it repaired (they have decided that 60 square feet of it was necessary), or they will do it for $8 per square foot. I had patchwork done and it is no longer a hazard. However, they have decided that it is not good enough. I can appeal this by first filing a petition of appeal that costs $30. I’m trying to first get that they own the sidewalk but I have to maintain it. What puzzles me is why this is under the jurisdiction of the Department of Transportation. Are they concerned that if someone were to ride on my sidewalk that the cracks would cause the vehicle to skid and go into the street?

I have come across many sidewalks that have a section raised due to the roots of a tree. Patchwork has been done, but it is still a hazard. Perhaps that can raze that tree which will make one less to crash down on a car or pedestrian.

A law gets passed to help homeowners, especially, to not have to deal with fliers, etc. Despite the sign I have in my window, I still get the pesky stuff. What’s more is that if I don’t recycle it, I can be fined by the Dept of Sanitation. They, of course, don’t make it easy to have the City enforce this law and make it extremely difficult for you to complain, as you are responsible for mailing the advertisements along with forms. I would love to know if any company paid the $250 fine.

Quality of Life. Another one from Bloomberg. Noise and not necessarily after 11 p.m. My neighbors blast their music for hours as it echoes throughout the backyards. I tried going to the neighbor and was told that someone else’s music was loud. So, therefore it’s okay to make yours louder to compensate? At first she said that she would lower it. I heard the conversation afterward as that echoed in the backyard. It lowered a bit but then the party attendees basically told her that I should go screw myself and the volume was back. Despite the many times that I called 311 or the local precinct, no one came over.

Water meters. First they were insistent on putting in new meters so they could read them from outside your house. They then decided that the employees feet must have been in pain from so much walking. They came to install yet another gadget so that it could be read my computer or cable, or whatever. DEP came to my house and wanted access to the meter threatening me with “denial of access charges”. What’s the matter, they are having a problem with their new idea or did they forget that they already installed the gadget?

Now, let’s see how this goes. If New York City can make money by giving you a fine or employing them, there are enough employees to enforce the laws. However, if the laws look as if they are on your side (Oh, look what Bloomberg is doing for us), there’s either no one available to enforce them or you’re forced to “give up”. I, personally give up on New York City.

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