When I was six my father left our family. I was the middle kid. My brother was ten, sister was three.

I had no idea where my father went. From time to time he would come around and crash on our couch.  He would come home real late, get up at the crack of dawn and vanish.

One day while sitting at the kitchen table eating a bologna sandwich with mustard,  I asked my mother, “where’s daddy?”

“He found a new family,” she answered.

Found a new family? I asked myself.

Little did I realize right around that time I would discover something that would take his place.

Me in the Yard



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Seven years ago right around this time, Michael Bundrick passed away.

“Bunny” was a good guy and a good basketball player. I loved him. He once had a classic line.

Corner shot of schoolyard

We can all agree that the Holy Name Summer league gave us some kind of drama each and every night of the week.

You had great players and not so great players.

Excellent teams and not so excellent teams.

You had your characters and you had your serious ball players.

You had your funny guys, that almost everyone liked and you had your schmucks whom not many people liked.

I used to love to watch Bunny play ball in the summer league.  He was one of the taller guys in the neighborhood and by far one of the better inside scorers.  If you knew Holy Name schoolyard you were aware of the baskets being held up by a pole.  Bundrick was great at utilizing the pole to break free from his defender and shoot a sweet looking reverse lay-up.

One night during a game in the summer league Bundrick went up and grabbed the rim on an attempted lay-up.  In the summer league, dunking was prohibited. You stayed off the rims.  It was at this time when I heard one of the funniest lines ever at a basketball game in the schoolyard (and let me tell you, there have been many classic lines shouted out by some of the funniest guys to ever walk in the yard).

Danny Pisselli ran the league at the time was a master at discipline; he didn’t like anyone that disrespected the game or the rules;  he was Roger Goodell before Roger Goodell.

After shouting to Bundrick to stay off the rim, Bunny replied;

“Danny, I’m sorry I slipped in the air.”

Here is my “Top 10 Coolest Dudes” in the neighborhood from back in the day:

1-John Corrar  (“I can go for a slice, ya got wheels?”)

2-Gerard Trapp (Best basketball player to ever come out of Holy Name)

3-Jimmy, Michael and Georgie Rauthier (Tie) (Great trio of brothers)

4-Tom Brady (Old Buttercup)

5-Michael Bundrick (“I slipped in the air…”)

6-Joe Farrell (Fonz) (He once wore a white shoe lace for a headband)

7-Cadge (Awesome dude, always hanging out on the corner with his 10-speed bike)

8-John Powers (Duffer) (“Get outta here or you won’t get a piece of cake”)

9-Kenny Lawson ( I once saw him walking down Windsor Place wearing a Baltimore Orioles helmet)

10-Joe Sullivan (Breezily Bruin.  ‘Ay muscle-head, get off the field’)




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Disturbing story from Prospect Avenue (Under the Seeley Street Bridge)

Hopefully someone knows something.

The father, who asked that his name be withheld for privacy reasons, said that shortly after 6 p.m. on Aug. 8, his daughter was riding her bike down Prospect Avenue between the Seely Street bridge and Vanderbilt Street when she was struck by a car, sending her flying off her bike and knocking her unconscious. The car then fled the scene, he said.



The Cullen’s, from 175 Windsor Place are renting an apartment in their lovely home. I recently was poking around at some of the prices in the neighborhood.

175 Windsor Place

All I can do is shake my head at what people are asking.



If you are following the Olympics (and I know you are) you know about the story on USA swimmer Ryan Lochte (I’ve never heard of him before) Sorry, not a big swimmer. I almost drowned once when I was like six.  But I do know Michael Phelps, who doesn’t?

Anyway, Lochte says he was held up and had a gun pointed at his head. Or pressed against his head. There’s speculation as to whether the story is legit?

Who cares?

On the other hand, yours truly DID have a gun pressed to his head back in the day.

Card store on 9th ave

As a teenager I worked at Key Food on month avenue.  One night while we were getting ready to close up shop I was sweeping by the front counter.  Max, one of the owners was pulling the cash from the register.   At this time, I noticed two guys walk in the front door.  These guys looked suspicious.

All of a sudden I heard them screaming for us to get down on the ground.

I was like, “SHIT!” It’s a stick up.  I had seen this kind of scenario in the movies but now I was part of it.


Where’s Adam-12 or Dan-O from Hawaii Five-O when you need them?

I’d even take Starsky and Hutch, or even Baretta to come crashing through the doors.

But this wasn’t Hollywood, this was the real deal.

I put my broom down gently and dove on the floor like I was going for a loose ball in basketball.

I had thoughts of whacking one guy but then his partner probably would have splattered my brains all over the walls.

Without looking up I could hear them talking in Spanish. I had no idea what they were saying.

They were behind the counter snatching the cash from Max.  Just when I thought they were done, one guy comes over to me, bends down and looks me in the eye.


His breathe reeked of booze.

I was now face-to-face with the guy and out of the corner of my eye I saw his gun.  It actually looked fake, sorta like the shiny steel colored ones kids play cops and robbers with. For all I knew he could have bought it in Rae and Otto’s?

All kinds of shit raced though my head.

Was he going to blast my head off and watch it roll down the aisle.  Was he going to shoot me in the leg, the ass?


Why did I come to work today?

You never wanted to see officer Doyle from the seven-two  but right about now I was praying he would walk in.

The fuck with the gun spared my life but winds up snatching a gold chain off my neck that my girlfriend Maureen had bought me for my birthday.

After what seemed like an hour, I finally got up off the ground when I heard Max calling the police.  I walked to the front door to take a peek out onto the avenue.

“STEVEN, STAY INSIDE!” Max screamed at me while I looked out the window.

Deep down I wanted to chase the scumbag and get my chain back.

But Max was right, so I stayed inside.