ok, i’m in nyc and i don’t have my big fancy camera and all i have is my cell phone, so here are some pictures taken with my cell phone and i do apologize for the lack of fancy-ness. but, in any case. the geographic (figurative and literal) center of downtown is washington square park. when i was growing up in/around nyc in the early 80’s my friends and i spent a lot of time in washington sq park: sitting by the fountain, watching girls, listening to the patter of the drug dealers (‘smoke, smoke, mescaline, smoke, smoke, weed, smoke, dust, smoke’), trying to look cool, hoping some passing girls would think we were cute, talking about records, etc etc etc.
washington square park in the early 80’s was amazing and menacing and bucolic all at the same time (in fact, all of the parks in manhattan in the early 80’s were amazing, menacing, and bucolic. union square was the scariest, in many ways, as it was where the meanest addicts hung out).
the 2 centers of washington sq park are the arch and the fountain. and yes, it seems absurd to post pictures of washington square arch, as it’s been photographed by about 14,000,000,000 tourists, but i’ve decided to put up some pictures as:
- it’s figured so prominently in the 35 years i’ve been living in or hanging out in nyc.
- it’s nice to look at.
- it’s 100 degrees today, and washington sq park seems especially germane when it’s 100 degrees(although washington sq park is at it’s best when it’s snowing. clearly it’s not snowing today. it’s just hot).
- marcel duchamp once climbed to the top of washington sq arch and proclaimed, drunkenly, that greenwich village was it’s own country.
to that end i’ve included a picture of the door in the side of the arch through which marcel duchamp and his pals supposedly entered the arch en route to the roof.
here’s the story.
i’ve also included a couple of pictures of the fountain, as it’s not everyday in nyc that people are so overcome by the heat that they just sit in the middle of fountain. the water is, well, um, not exactly what most people would consider ‘clean’ or ‘free of plague’.
but maybe sitting in bacteria laden water is good for people’s immune systems.