Been thinking this over. I don't like the smell of it, and I'll come right out and say it. There's something rotten in Denmark about that article I just posted about. I'm a fairly good judge of bullshit, and I'm starting to sense either a tad bit or a big pile. I might be wrong, but here's what I was thinking on my bike ride over the Manhattan bridge. (Spectacular by the way, except that weird Apocalyptic wind brewing.)
I'm not saying Gibson went for the marketing jugular here. Actually, that is what I'm saying. His book just came out, and this stuff is going through the roof on social media. I'm sure Mr. Gibson will profit quite handsomely off his oral history of gentrification. Imagine that. A white guy making money off gentrification.
What bothers me is that this very big issue of real-estate-ambulance-chasing is being reduced to some offhand and (literally) under the breath comments by a single guy. If in fact everything he's saying is reported accurately (I have to assume in the age of high profile writer's fraud that NY Mag listened to the tapes...yes?) then there are THREE hard-to-fathom things happening.
1. White people are moving in and expressing their displeasure in having to live in the same building as black people. Really? Privately they might be uncomfortable, but in 2015 it's REALLY uncool to express your racism publicly. And newcomer Brooklynites are painfully cool. And saying it to your landlord or management company is pretty darn public. I'm guessing it happens...um...not a hell of a lot. The fact is, buildings are changing so fast the racists hardly have to say much of ANYthing and their dreams will come true.
2. Even if they ARE uncomfortable with the old-school neighborhood types, they're DEFINITELY not going to be uptight about roommates of color, as expressed in the article. I mean these kids mostly went to liberal arts schools and bent over backwards to be cool on race. And if you hadn't noticed, interracial dating and groups of partiers is hardly uncommon. Middle to Upper Class people don't generally have a problem hanging out with a diverse group of other Middle to Upper Class people.
3. This Ephraim fellow must be having a bad common-sense day, or why would he be sharing this stuff so openly? One reason would be if, in a warped way, he's trying to impress Gibson. If that's the case, all bets are off. He could just be lying in that way that braggarts do, or exaggerating. Hell he basically says he has to lie to do his job. Why should we take him at his word here?
No, I'm not excusing this guy's behavior, or doubting that the actual transactions themselves are happening. For the most part, it's public record. But my instincts tell me this is more about selling books than in telling the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.
The Q at Parkside
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.