What’s going on?

People are going bananas!

Who’s to blame?  Because that’s what we do, right? We look to place blame.

The Police?


School Teachers?

The Coach?


Or, the entitled kids?

I don’t ever recall society being out of control like this.

Everywhere I turn something crazy is happening


We have a lot of smart people who read Container Diaries. Some leave comments, some e-mail and some, well they read an entry and sit it out.  They clear things up for me. Give me hope.

As a teen I recall being afraid of the police, now people want to fight them, scream at them, spit at them and of course, bring a lawsuit down against them.  Doesn’t anyone respect authority anymore?

I miss the days of waking up in the morning and going to the schoolyard to play ball day. You went home for lunch, grabbed a bite to eat and went right back to your friends.  At supper time you went home, ate and returned to the yard.

I miss the days of hanging out on ninth avenue shooting the breeze with my friends. We could be on any street corner having a good time. Talking girls, sports or how we were getting liquored up on the weekend.

We rode the subway back and forth to stay warm when it was too cold outside.

I miss the days of walking into Rae and Otto’s and ordering an egg cream at the counter. Or picking up Street and Smith’s, Basketball Digest and always trying to sneak a peek at Playboy. Otto always caught me.

“Come on Sonny, don’t look at that…”

On a summer night climbing the fire escape out back to hang out up on the roof which gave us a gorgeous view of the Twin Towers. During the day I’d take a blanket, radio and baby oil and try to get a tan from the sun on the roof but with my Irish-white pasty skin, all I ever got was red as a lobster. Burnt to the crisp.

“Ma, where’s the Noxzema?”

I miss the days of, when I was of legal age, ordering a container from Farrell’s and drinking it outside while we leaned up against a parked car on 16th street or Prospect Park West. Before I was legal, I loved hanging out in Farrell’s and chatting with the bartenders about the Knicks.

Who can ever forget the legendary basketball games in the boys schoolyard during the Summer League? The players, fans, refs and of course listening to the stories afterwards.

Speaking of basketball, I miss playing for Holy Name in CYO. Traveling to different neighborhoods by bus, train or car to play other catholic schools. We never had a gym to call our own so we were always the travel team.  There was a season or two where we rented P.S. 10’s gym down on 7th avenue and Prospect Avenue.

I miss the days of hanging out on the Parkside, inside the park or sitting on the totem poles. The bleachers over by the diamonds was a favorite spot.

Snowball fights, Trick or Treating, getting drunk on New Year’s Eve and of course the food at Thanksgiving.

I miss the friends I grew up with from the 70’s and 80’s. We communicated, we didn’t text message each other.

Sleigh-riding down cherry hill, suicide and three devils. Throwing snowballs at anything and anyone who moved.

Playing baseball in the lot without our parents shouting from the stands or choosing up the teams for us or driving us from our doorstep to 16th street.

Whiffle ball on the streets.  Along with two hand touch, slap ball and kick the can.

“Buck-Buck how many fingers are up?”

Hopping on my bike and cruising down Ocean Parkway to Manhattan Beach to play basketball all day.  Afterwards walking on the boardwalk to check out the sights.

I miss walking or taking the bus down to fifth avenue to grab some donuts, buying a board game at Sepe’s or hanging out in Timboo’s.

And why did I spend so much time taking two busses to Kings Plaza shopping mall when I could have hopped aboard the F-train and went over to the city to shop? When I discovered the city in my late teens and early twenties we spent so much time going to clubs, hanging out in the village and chillin’ by Columbus Circle. East side, West side, Mid-Town, uptown, we covered lots of ground.

Thanks to my boy Turk for introducing me to Delancey Street. Especially Katz’s.

Mostly, I miss the days of being a teenager. I miss the nights of hanging out with my steady girlfriend, Maureen.  Holding hands, kissing and laughing together.  Somewhere around nine or ten at night, I’d walk her home, kiss her good-night and then spend another hour on the phone with her.

Boy how I miss those days…



This entry was posted in Basketball, Blog, Brooklyn, Container Diaries, Holy Name and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.


  1. Jim Casey says:

    thanks again, Red
    more connections to the 50s-60s
    i played hoops in the yard early on a saturday morning, then since I lived on Seeley St, too far to go home for lunch, I often went to Anton’s deli on 9th avenue for a ham or american cheese(during Lent) sandwich on a roll—got back to the schoolyard quickly
    those chocolate egg creams in otto and rays were fine
    We also played our home CYO games in P.S.10-1957-59

  2. Jim Casey says:

    my apartment, 176 Seeley, was right next to the bridge

  3. Jim Casey says:

    did not know them

  4. bob terry says:

    I always enjoy being reminded about Rae & Otto. The Bergers were fine people. I loved talking to Rae about theater & the stock market. I remember Katz’s too. I love Jewish delis; in fact, I ate @ Langer’s on Friday with one of my former students. I had brisket on rye & chicken soup. I miss the old neighborhood, but love my present one. Los Angeles is not unlike New York. It’s a big city, a real melting pot of different people. I have had the privilege of living in three great cities: New York, San Francisco & Los Angeles. Memories are great; enjoy the present.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s