The Q at Parkside

(for those for whom the Parkside Q is their hometrain)

News and Nonsense from the Brooklyn neighborhood of Lefferts and environs, or more specifically a neighborhood once known as Melrose Park. Sometimes called Lefferts Gardens. Or Prospect-Lefferts Gardens. Or PLG. Or North Flatbush. Or Caledonia (west of Ocean). Or West Pigtown. Across From Park Slope. Under Crown Heights. Near Drummer's Grove. The Side of the Park With the McDonalds. Jackie Robinson Town. Home of Lefferts Manor. West Wingate. Near Kings County Hospital. Or if you're coming from the airport in taxi, maybe just Flatbush is best.

Friday, December 31, 2010

New Nails For A New You in the New Year

Things were poppin' at Envy Nails tonight! Every self-lovin' lady was busy gussying up for a glamor-filled New Year's Eve.

Me and Mrs. Q are settling in for a night of NetFlix, so don't expect to see us cuttin' the rug down at the Salty Dog. We've got a Korean thriller called "Mother" and a doc on Zimbabwe queued up, so we might just make it to midnight. I've got the Seltzer already on ice!

There once was a time, many corked bubblies ago, when we'd both have been workin' a night like this at some old pre-hipster hipster joint. And now that we could potentially do something NICE for ourselves on NYE, I really can't think of anything I'd rather do than chill in front of a warm cracklin' DVD player. I mean, god love those Time Square knuckleheads, but I'd rather gouge out my eyes with a rusty spork than spend six hours Auld Lang Syne-ing it with half of Jersey and some Euro-zoners. Nothing against either, mind you. In fact, I hear New Jersey is next in line to JOIN the Euro.

Thanks, all ye, for a fun year. One last brain tease for 2010...what's this?












Many happy returns, of course.

the Q

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Special Report: The Blizzard of '10

You may have wondered where the Q has been during all the mid-winter mayhem. Perhaps he's stuck in his car, fingers frozen, unable to touch-screen even a simple S.O.S. on his i-Phone. Perhaps his internet has yet to be plowed. Maybe he's too busy handing out food to the trapped commuters on streets in the "tight-knit community" of PLG as reported by our intrepid friends at Hawthorne Street. (Who, by the way, have done a great job of staying on top of the Q/B MTA sitch.)

But you needn't have worried because A. I don't have a car, B. I always wear gloves, C. I don't own an iPhone D. I don't know morse code E. My internet enters the house via cable and F. I've been away for the past few days in the redneck South.

What's really incredible is that the NYC Blizzard, and Brooklyn in particular, is such national news even way down here in the Bible Belt. As the fam was driving through Dothan, Alabama we stopped at a Chick-Fil-A only to hear a couple good ol' boys talkin' about Bloomberg's Blooper in the parking lot. By the way, the sandwich is delicious, so if you haven't tried Chick-Fil-A give it a whirl. They're ever-so-slowly franchising their way northward...I suspect they'll be in suburban Jersey by 2012 or so. Just remember, they're ALWAYS closed on Sunday. These are Christian chickens.

I feel terrible not being in the thick of things, helping shovel people out of their parking spaces and such. I really do love a good blizzard, and now we're hearing that the post-blizzard mess was really a shittily-timed job-action by the NYC's Strongest - the Dept of Sanitation. All I can say is this: the word strongest is SO lame and inaccurate that if nothing else comes of the post-snow investigation I hope they're forced to relinquish the whole strong moniker once and for all. Hell, I had to help a garbage man lift some furniture into the truck once, and I wasn't just being nice. That chifforobe wasn't gonna get from point Curb to point Truck without some REAL corn-fed muscles.

Anyhoo, while y'all were havin' the time of yer lives, we were busy taking pictures of our mom on the deck of our rental house on St. George Island down in the Florida panhandle, doing our patriotic best to see that tourism dollars return to the Gulf of Mexico where they belong. After all, the Coug had it in right in his 1983 opus "Pink Houses" where he gets all excited during the line about people vacationing down there. In fact, the song has so many great incites into America's troubled soul, I think I'll just drop the whole tune, er poem, on ya right here.

There's a black man with a black cat livin' in a black neighborhood
He's got an interstate runnin' through his front yard
You know he thinks that he's got it so good
And there's a woman in the kitchen cleanin' up the evenin' slop
And he looks at her and says, "Hey darlin', I can remember when
you could stop a clock."

CHORUS:
Oh but ain't that America for you and me
Ain't that America somethin' to see baby
Ain't that America home of the free
Little pink houses for you and me

There's a young man in a t-shirt
Listenin' to a rockin' rollin' station
He's got greasy hair, greasy smile
{ From: http://www.elyrics.net/read/j/john-mellencamp-lyrics/pink-houses-lyrics.html }
He says, "Lord this must be my destination."
'Cause they told me when I was younger
"Boy you're gonna be president."
But just like everything else those old crazy dreams
Just kinda came and went

:|| CHORUS

Well there's people and more people
What do they know know know
Go to work in some high rise
And vacation down at the Gulf of Mexico
Ooh yeah
And ther's winners and there's losers
But they ain't no big deal
'Cause the simple man baby pays for the thrills, the bills,
the pills that kill

Copyright JCM, 1983, courtesy of Classic Rock radio

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Worst Christmas Ever


Normally I wouldn't bother to repost a story off the wire...but this one is too horrible to ignore, and takes place down the street (Clarkson that is). A woman got her leg trapped in the elevator at Downstate Hospital, and as it sped through the shaft her appendage became so horribly mangled it took the Jaws of Life to rescue her as she drifted in and out of consciousness. Full Story. Christmas Miracle not included...

The only thing that saves this story from utter awfulness is the terrible irony of the poor woman being taken from the hospital's elevator TO the hospital across the street - Kings County. I think that may qualify as shortest ambulance ride ever. I do hope she recovers, though the leg looks like a goner.

And for the record I chose NOT to write about that neighborhood crazy naked man named Mann who, geez I can't do it justice, so I'll quote the witness who put it: "He holds the baby in one hand and swings the Christmas tree that's on fire."

You can read that one yourself; sadly no pictures: Naked Mann Flaming Xmas Tree Story

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

PWHFRMMLLS Empire

Perhaps you've only recently moved to the neighborhood, and you're still having trouble remembering the names of the streets as you walk from the Lower PLG to the Upper. By the way, this is roughly analogous to walking from the Lower East Side to the Upper East Side, with Peppas as the new New Museum and Fat Albert's the Met.

Early on I coined a Mnemonic to help me sort out the streets. From South to North, the streets go Parkside, Winthrop, Hawthorne, Fennimore, Rutland, Midwood, Maple, Lincoln, Lefferts, Sterling, Empire. Tough stuff til you've lived here awhile. I suggest you write your own, but in the meantime you can borrow mine:

Poor White Hippies Feign Rastafarianism Making Marijuana Life Look Simple, Man (Empire was called Malbone til the infamous Malbone Street Wreck, the deadliest crash in NYC Mass Transit history.

I know the two M's and L's complicate things, but soon into my use of the Mnemonic I noted that Midwood comes before Maple in the alphabet and Lefferts before Lincoln, making them opposite of how they'd come when walking South to North and thereby creating an inverse rule from which the answer was only too obvious in my mind which was which.

Want to come up with some better Mnemonics, and perhaps extend the list down to Church? By all means, post away! (Btw, I still use it to this day, though I've begun to internalize the order by now). (BBtw, I have nothing against hippies or Rastafarians, or marijuana, life, or the poor for that matter.

video

Monday, December 20, 2010

When is a Cafe not a Cafe?

I'm fond of The Little Photo Shop That Could at 727 Flatbush, next to the much ballyhooed Jamaican Pride Bakery. When we first moved here in the early 00's it was all about photos - passport photos, cute pics of your kids, or sexy pics of your girlfriend all posed up nice and sexlike. But there's not so much need for pro photos now that everyone has a Flip or three. So they adapt, like a cat with three legs, or a fat man with a fridge full of spinach. They now make most of their dough on computer repairs, and lately the place has been packed with internet users, making this the go-to internet cafe on the block. Of course, this is horribly ironic, given the actual Internet Coffee House just around the corner on Parkside. But people are drawn where the action's at, and the ICH still hasn't found its groove.

The only beef patty I have with the place is the name "Internet Cafe." I know what they're getting at, but they haven't any food or drink. I'm not completely sure of the meaning of the word "cafe," but I'm pretty sure food and drink is part of the equation. I guess "Internet Rental Establishment" (IRE) doesn't have the same cache.

One last thing about their sign; I like the graphic depicting the computer repair situation going on. But that diamond shape means "warning" in traffic lingo, so it kinda looks like the stick-dude is getting electrocuted, or is about to view some really vulgar stuff on the internets...believe me, I know how he feels. That "man oh man I didn't know humans were INTO that kind of thing" feeling.

You can fix a computer, but you can't fix that stuff. It's WAY deep down in there.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Longtime Non-PLG Resident Capt Beefheart Dies at 69


I'd say they don't make 'em like this guy anymore, but I don't think they ever made 'em like this guy. The Q at Parkside will always have a sweet spot for people who make art because they must.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

If You're Thinking of Living In...

Is the Q Stop a G Spot? That is, is North Central Flatbush really a comer?

As of about 20 minutes ago, I decided to call the plethora of Brooklyn neighborhoods giddy with gentrification G-SPOTS. After 20 years of 'hood-hopping, I've seen my share of radical transformations. Little pockets of change turned into radical redefinitions in a matter of a few short years. Bedford Avenue. Manhattan Avenue. Smith Street. South Slope. Ft. Greene. And to me, the king of them all: DUMBO. I mean there was NUTHIN there. NUTHIN AT ALL. I'd take dates down there because it was so romantically desolate, maybe a Lincoln Town Car parked suspiciously with its engine running. I'm talking dead body stuff here. Did I mention there was NUTHIN going on? NUTHIN. A few people living in mammoth lofts, cheap giant rehearsal spaces for rock bands (like BIOHAZARD, who's door had a sign that said "No Girlfriends Allowed." But now I'm waxing nostalgic...)

If you're lucky enough to own your place in one of these G-SPOTS, your self-interest assures that no matter how much you pine for the old days, there will be plenty of dancing dollar signs to help ameliorate your grief. But if you're one of the 90% of residents who don't own or don't have rent regulated apartments, you start to smell the vapors when the NY Times starts appearing on doorsteps.

The days of staying in a single rental apartment your whole life are over. If your pay doesn't keep pace with your neighborhood's sex appeal, it's time to find a less hip address. Dems just the breaks, the price of living in the Big Apple, City of Dreams, the Boroughs of Bagels, the Town So Nice They Named It Twice, The Capital of the World, The Melting Pot, The Nippy City, The Cultural Capital of America, The Frog and Toe, The City of Superlatives, Father Knickerbocker, Immigrant City, Gotham, The City That Never Sleeps, Baghdad on the Hudson, The City of Broad Broads...the list goes on and on, and yes, I made a couple of those up. Though "The Frog and Toe" is for real.

The City, nay, the Country, has no love for renters. Even though NYC has strong tenant protections by American standards, most folks quietly resign to moving when the writing's on the wall. I did it myself half a dozen times before losing my mind (quite literally) and (unrelated to said breakdown) dropping a $50,000 down payment on a slumlorded, sewage-soaked, unheated boarding house on a treeless street on a bus route so my lady and I could play out the American dream on a 100'x20' parcel just a couple blocks from the undisputed best side of the second best urban park in North America and within sniffin' distance of the best dang jerk chicken north of the Mason-Dominican line. (Did I mention the Gem? I should have.)

For seven years we've lived here, getting to know our neighbors bit by bit, learning the rhythms of a cranny of Brooklyn that defies expectations placed on it by outsiders. Even people FROM here for decades have a hard time defining the neighborhood as this or that. The dilapidated clock-towered Fat Albert's and the roughed-up green Flatbush Trees sign at the Wendy's Parking Lot/Brooklyn Botanic Gardens corner of Empire Boulevard tell the story: abandon reason...you're entering a special Twilight Zone where old-timers and newcomers alike can't quite put their finger on the what and why of it all.

Here at the end of my first year of bloggedy blog, I thought I'd try to capture some thoughts about this neighborhood, and why after all is said and done, I don't think we're going to see the kind of widespread bourgeoisization of our hometrain nabe like so many other G SPOTS. I've got reasons, and I may of course be completely wrong. I notoriously once guessed that Wesley Clark would become the next President of the United States.

First, the bad news. Rent Is Too Damn High. Houses Cost Too Damn Much. That's right, I'm going on record as saying landlords and owners want too friggin' much cash for the privilege of living and/or running a business here. Everybody seems to think real estate in PLG+ should be about half of prime Park Slope, but let's get real. Park Slope has 40 years of being THE gentrified neighborhood - they practically invented the concept. It deserves to be overpriced and overhyped and overdissed, and closer to 3 times what we pay. $1,000 should get you a decent sized one-bedroom apartment in this part of town, and at that price, landlords could count on their tenants staying put for more than a year or two. Hey Mr. Slumlord, wouldn't that be a better longterm strategy? But hey, if longterm strategy was your game, you wouldn't be a slumlord would you?

Aside from the cost, I'm telling youse - the 'hood has barely changed a bit. Yeah, I know, there's more white faces - some freshly scrubbed and recently baccalaureated even. And people whisper things like "the area's really changed" and "things are really happening here" and I'm like, huh? what? changed? I mean that cute little block of stores on Bedford between Clarkson and Parkside still looks like this:

And don't try to tell me an Indian restaurant with decent takeout qualifies as upscale!

Parkside across from the train has NEVER LOOKED DUMPIER. Don't get me started about 225. And Woodruff - still Woodruff. St. Paul's? Same. Caledonian hospital? Sinking deeper into ruin. Section 8 is still coin of the realm in most buildings. People are still wacking their kids in public and throwing refuse on the ground. No pricey bistros or artisanal cheese shops have opened. There's still the occasional gang flare-up, stinky bags of dead fish on the Flatbush sidewalks, loud Dancehall parties, drunks hanging outside the liquor store near Caton at 8:30 AM, 18-wheelers barreling down truck routes at 3 in the morning, frost-bit vendors selling cheap hats and gloves and incense and hair care products...I mean, yeah there's a coffee shop, a dive bar and a half-assed Mexican restaurant up north, but I guarantee ain't no Michelin Man going to be taking the S train out to Lincoln Road.

The fact is, I really don't see ANY evidence that the neighborhood is going through some sort of renaissance AT ALL. All I see is Rents that are TOO DAMN HIGH and the occasional midwestern looking dude and his girlfriend walking down the street with a couple of Trader Joe's bags. And still...

There are little things that brighten my walk to and from the train or stores. As CeeLeeDee points out, there are Asian faces and burkhas and young Latino families along Ocean. New people ARE moving in, and it's not just whitey. People are finally recognizing the value of the park and the convenience of the Q at Parkside. Dan, who owns the hardware store on Flatbush south of Parkside, has been in that location since the mid-90s. I used to come in their twice a day when I was madly trying to fix up our house (having no clue) and he said I was among the first of a string of new neighborhood homeowners. Now people come in there all the time asking about boilers and plaster and plumbing - people who clearly aren't renting because renters don't worry about stuff like that. He's noticed, too, that it's a more diverse crowd.

So what if what's happening is actually different from what's being loudly trumpeted by the Ditmas Park Blog as progress on Cortelyou? Maybe with a little effort and some eyes on the real bad guys - the three big D's (Dealers, unscrupulous Developers and Dumbass politicians) - we might be able to hang onto all that makes our neighborhood unique without losing that diversity. Idealistic, I know, but we're actually at a point where we could DO something, rather than talk about it in hindsight.

There's lots you can do. Best places to start? Block associations, PLeGNA, Community Board meetings, Precinct Council meetings, even blogs if you're so inclined! Reach out, and most important, smile. I can't tell you how much it brightens my day to see someone flash a sweet grin for no damn good reason at all.

Nothing's really changed in a BIG way. But what happened for me was that I changed. I simply stopped watching like an observer and actually started LIVING here. Do you know what I mean? That difference is HUGE.

These days what I notice most is that there are lots and lots of people doing their best to get by, treating each other decently (for the most part) and saying sweet things to my little girl when we walk down the street. The other day I was so entranced by the love on my block I half expected Big Bird to pop (his?) head out from the African Braiding place down 10 doors down...that's how nice it felt just to be in a place that was just being itself, like Sesame Street, or Wisconsin Dells. If you've ever been to the Dells, you'll know what I mean. The Dells can't help being the Dells.

This is NYC. Just like I pictured it; just why I moved here; and just why I intend to stick around.

I could do without the poop on my shoes, though.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Council Member Eugene Not a Fan of Domestic Violence

If you're like me you may be wondering about the capabilities and passions of your elected officials. Here in the heart of the 'bush, we've placed our votes and trust in Dr. Mathieu Eugene, the first Haitian-born elected Councilperson in the City of NY. You might recall the controversial election that brought him to the throne in 2007. He wasn't living in the district on election day (which for most NYC races offices is actually the lower turnout PRIMARY day), so we had a second election which he won with 51% of the vote (just a couple thousand is all it takes to get elected to perhaps the country's most powerful civic body).

Most City Council members have a fairly high profile and its possible to find out what they're up to. Not so with Dr. Eugene, though he did make a very powerful series of appearances when the Haitian earthquake hit. He also got skewered for trying to give a bunch of dough to a non-profit that he himself started. And he was fined a few tens of thousands of dollars for breaking election laws. But nobody's perfect.

So I was heartened to see that he's taken a hard stance on an issue that can be quite controversial. Whether you're for or against domestic violence, you really can't argue with Dr. Eugene's performance here, particularly given the hardball tactics of the interviewer:

Dr. Eugene's Thoughts on Domestic Violence

Anyone want to speak up on the councilman's behalf? I can't seem to find any positive things in the press. Is this anti-Haitian bias? Do we need to give him more than his three full years in office to distinguish himself? Is he given short shrift by the mainstream media?

Or is he, perhaps, a bit of a dumbass?

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Still Shopping For That Special Simian?


Those of you unfortunate enough to afford the indignity of air travel may have noticed this special offering in Sky Mall - The Garden Yeti, a swift spin on the Garden Gnome phenomenon. You can pick one up at Design Toscano's website.

Clearly you needn't have a garden to enjoy a garden yeti, or gnome for that matter. Just beware of the Garden Gnome Liberation Front, which in all seriousness has been known to steal the lazy green-thumbed little be-bearded fellows and release them into the wild. Proof that Americans really can sell other Americans just about anything, the Free the Gnomes website will sell you a T-Shirt advertising your solidarity with the movement.

In order to better cash in on the seeming endless need to own crap, I'm thinking of starting a website devoted to pre-Stalinest memorabilia. I'm calling it Trotsky's Tchotchkes. (five times fast, anyone?)

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Paradise Venus Scores 100!

I gotta say I love the name of local joint "Paradise Venus." And this lower PLG restaurant scores a perfect 100 on its latest NYC Dept of Health inspection. But before you make a beeline to the corner of Clarkson and Rogers, you might want to consider this: A score of 100 means 100 violations, or to put it another way: BYOBB - Bring Your Own Barf Bag.

I first saw this mentioned at The L Magazine site, but that led me to this incredibly helpful corner of the internets: Barely Legal Restaurants. While 100 gives Paradise Venus the Bronze medal for filthiest restaurant in all of Brooklyn, there are no lack of contenders in zip 11226. Bon Appetit!


For those of you who are link-averse and stomach-strong, the violations in question are listed here:


1) Hot food item not held at or above 140° F.
2) Cold food item held above 41° F (smoked fish and reduced oxygen packaged foods above 38 °F) except during necessary preparation.
3) Appropriately scaled metal stem-type thermometer or thermocouple not provided or used to evaluate temperatures of potentially hazardous foods during cooking, cooling, reheating and holding.
4) Evidence of mice or live mice present in facility\'s food and/or non-food areas.
5) Live roaches present in facility\'s food and/or non-food areas.
6) Filth flies or food/refuse/sewage-associated (FRSA) flies present in facility�s food and/or non-food areas. Filth flies include house flies, little house flies, blow flies, bottle flies and flesh flies. Food/refuse/sewage-associated flies include fruit flies, drain flies and Phorid flies.
7) Hand washing facility not provided in or near food preparation area and toilet room. Hot and cold running water at adequate pressure to enable cleanliness of employees not provided at facility. Soap and an acceptable hand-drying device not provided.
8) Insufficient or no refrigerated or hot holding equipment to keep potentially hazardous foods at required temperatures.
9) Personal cleanliness inadequate. Outer garment soiled with possible contaminant. Effective hair restraint not worn in an area where food is prepared.
10) Food not protected from potential source of contamination during storage, preparation, transportation, display or service.
11) Food contact surface not properly washed, rinsed and sanitized after each use and following any activity when contamination may have occurred.
12) Facility not vermin proof. Harborage or conditions conducive to attracting vermin to the premises and/or allowing vermin to exist.
13) Plumbing not properly installed or maintained; anti-siphonage or backflow prevention device not provided where required; equipment or floor not properly drained; sewage disposal system in disrepair or not functioning properly.
14) Non-food contact surface improperly constructed. Unacceptable material used. Non-food contact surface or equipment improperly maintained and/or not properly sealed, raised, spaced or movable to allow accessibility for cleaning on all sides, above and underneath the unit.
15) Proper sanitization not provided for utensil ware washing operation.

Eatymology: More to Pepa's Than Meets Eye

Ever wonder what the Genius of Jerk looks like? Ladies and Gentlemen, Don Peppas:



Remember when it was Danny and Pepper's Chicken, down below Clarkson on the Ultimate Dentistry side of the street? (who needs an Ultimate dentist? a decent, clean and reasonably gentle dentist is all i ask...no heroics).

Well here's what I can't figure. Don Peppas owns the current joint, and opened the 2nd Peppa's Jerk Chicken down in Hollywood, Florida! He's also frequently called "Dan Peppas" instead of Don. Or are they twins? Still in biz together? Father, son? I can't get anyone to talk on the record about the split.

In a new series (of one) titled Eatymology, I ask for your thoughts on the matter. Either way, there's no denying that Don (Dan) Peppas frequently smokes out the entire neighborhood with his 24-hour a day barbecue action. One of the many charms of living near The Q at Parkside.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Time To Do Your End-of-Days Shopping

Today at our beloved hometrain a nice looking lady of a certain age handed me this helpful reminder about the end-of-days. With all the hoopla about 2012, it's easy to forget that Harold Camping and his Family Radio Ministry have placed the date a whole year earlier. Camping has been "studying" the issue for more than 50 years, so it's safe to say that his is the more accurate reading of the bible.

You know Camping's voice. If you have even an occasional interest in broadcast radio, you've certainly flipped past his phlegmatic baritone. He's one of the most distinctive characters on the airwaves. I used to think he sounded like a confused man-child, or perhaps a stroke victim. Now, however, I realize he's 90 years old, and has been for the better part of the last quarter century.

He has a couple teachings that deviate from the usual Rapture narrative. He doesn't believe in hell; rather the wretched will simply cease to exist. And he believes that we've entered the era of churchlessness, meaning no organized religion accurately portrays God's wishes. He does believe in predestination for a relative few, meaning you might as well give up on that random acts of kindness routine. It ain't gonna do you a lick of good.

Mark your calendars! In pen, cuz this ain't no dry run!

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Know Thy Neighbor - Johnny "Greenman" McBride



In the second of my 98,643 part series "Know Thy Neighbor," I bring you a man, husband and father who might come in handy if you're looking to upscale your garden, yard or stoop. Meet Johnny McBride, and he's a good guy to know.

A former resident of Connecticut, Queens and Park Slope (all 3 won't be held against him), Johnny first made a name for himself as a chef in CT. When he met the beguiling lady of his dreams (now Mrs. Greenman), he threw caution to the wind and followed her down to the big city, where he quickly landed a kickin' gig and cooked for the stars. Something in the kitchen just never quite felt right, so with typical McBride pluck and gumption he radically changed careers (at the ripe old age of 30). He'd always loved plants and the outdoors, so he decided to take some classes at the Botanic Garden and learn from the roots up (as they say in the profession). He landed a job as a horticulturalist/landscaper with the City zoos...you can see his handiwork at our very own Prospect Park Zoo. (Two of his before and afters below).

After he and Mrs. McB had a beautiful baby girl just last year, he STILL found time to ramp up his business - Greenman Gardening. I checked out some "before and afters," as well as some drawings. The guy is good...has a real 6th sense for this stuff. While personally I prefer to fail on my own, I highly recommend him for jobs big and small, since he's as comfortable building whole gardens and walls and water features as dropping by some holiday wreaths and doing plant recommendations and deliveries.

And how did the Q at Parkside become his "HOMETRAIN?" Easy. 450 square feet didn't cut it for a family of three (more to come?), and a rental became available on Clarkson - a floor-thru w/garden. His sweet Portuguese water dog Fischer loved this side of the park anyway, so it was really a no-brainer. Plus, by acting as super for his four-story brownstone, he gets a few bucks off the rent.

Just like my previous profilee, life hasn't always been a bed of roses for this gardener, and there's been grief and struggle like the rest of us. But I'm better for knowing him, and I'll bet you would be too. Give him a holler at: Greenman-Gardening@hotmail.com, or call 917-647-2223.

And yeah, now that the cat's outa the bag, I'll be happy to recommend your services too...if I can verify that you're good! If the Q is your hometrain and you've got services to sell, I'm happy to post about it in the form of a profile. - Clarkson

b&a's:

Thursday, December 2, 2010

The Park for a Song?

This Q ain't no brown-noser. Nor Brownstoner. And real estate ain't my bag, so take anything I say (er, everything I say) with a bucket of salt. But this caught my eye...



A no-board-approval coop for sale, right along the park on Ocean, in the coolest looking apartment building on the block...for under $300,000. I know, I know, there's probably a catch. A murder perhaps. Ghosts. Current owner Republican. Maybe the Super is a cannibal. But still, if you're looking to own a big one-bedroom...

(did I happen to mention it's right across from the park? Not Umma. Prospect.)

Here's the details: Times Listing. They know they have a hot one, cause the Corcoran agent listed it before taking pictures of the insides.