Judging from the plethora of photos of our benevolent political benefactors in every calcimine event that occurs in our area, the film corporations should be printing three shifts daily. The last grand accomplishment, I'm referring to the parks expenditures, is dubiously commendable. In keeping with my cynicism I personally believe we need a turf as good as Giant Stadium, like another political hack. The athletes we should provide for are amateurs not professionals. I never suffered any detriment to my physical prowess by being forced to develop on rubble, cobblestones, plain grass fields or any surface. All our effort and plain kid energy expended to point of exhaustion was all I needed to play any sport without eating or drinking all day, even in over 90 degree heat or snow cleared handball courts. We cleaned them just to play and with a 15 cent Spalding pink ball. Not a care in the world. No vandalism, no thievery, no drugs. Happy with very little.
My wife and I pass these ball fields daily. They are ominous with their no trespassing except by permit and violators will be prosecuted signs. The chains and locks that secure the entrances are probably as formidable such as protect Fort Knox gold supply.
The fanatic and hysterical effort to keep the parks as ideological monuments with political accolades abounding everywhere to every political crony that can in any manner link him or herself for the generosity to the community is cause for vomit. As a contributing taxpayer I have yet to see my name on any of these ads.
If you want to keep youths from going astray open up these playgrounds around the clock. Give them a place where a cheap bat and ball will improve much of their obesity and physical growing bones. At least we'll know where they are and what they're doing. It might even save them from the lies that permeate the screens of the "idiot box."
For those spoilers who will complain that it might encourage truancy, I say let them do it getting healthy and crime free. With many having given up seeking jobs and just out of school let them vent their frustration on the exercise they will benefit from in the interim. For those who worry about wear and tear on the fields maybe all the cronies in the park department will have to put in an honest day's job. What else should they be doing?
Again I chastise the local politicos for not taking advantage of NYC expertise. In 1932 FDR built Roosevelt Park on the lower east side about eight city blocks long. Each block with many varied playing fields such as basketball courts, bike and skating rinks, softball, miniature tennis, paddle ball, wading pool, swings, tetter-totter, monkey bars, parallel bars, dance and music area, indoor table games for inclement weather, and much else I used as a growing healthy youth, just to name some. For sceptics take the bus over to Forsythe & Christie Sts. between Canal St. and Houston where the end of the parks wind up at a dozen or so handball courts and even a bocci alley.
But no. Keep your lovely parochialism alive. Keep knocking the city that, without, Hudson County would still be a wilderness. Don't consult their empire builders you might hurt your dignity, learning something. Keep your local gurus alive. Who knows you might need a crumb, tomorrow.
Angel Nanfro P.S. "Mr. Kruschev, tear down that wall."