When you think of The Bronx, is bowling the first word that comes to mind? I would guess to answer no. Gun Post Lanes, though, at the corner of Gun Hill Road and Boston Road, is a look inside the ordinary thrills of The Bronx by engaging in a less-frequented activity. Most New Yorkers usually travel through The Bronx, go to Yankee Stadium to watch a baseball game, or visit local attractions such as the New York Botanical Garden or The Bronx Zoo. What about seeing The Bronx from the inside by doing an activity at a place that is not known for that activity? Being inside Gun Post Lanes, between the sounds of the bowling balls hitting the wooden alley and pins falling to the back drop of a dark hole, you can envision a Friday night in the 1950s with the out-dated wall decor and QUIDNUNCS filling the room and chatting away. In this post-war scenario, you can also hear DIGLOTS VATICINATING the outcome of the ball’s movement and the pins destiny. What if we all engaged with less-frequented parts of New York City from the inside out, thinking about the old and the new?
In 2008, George Kuchar made this short film about his mother’s death for our Abecedarium:NYC project. I gave him the word PELAGIC which means “related to the ocean” and asked him to make a video inspired by its meaning. During this period, he told me, there were just so many tears that this movie came to his mind almost spontaneously. (Lynne Sachs)
“The borough of The Bronx was a wonderful place to shoot movies when I lived there. If you needed jungles and mountain streams there was always either The Bronx Botanical Gardens or Van Cortlandt Park. For prairie settings an area near Bruckner Blvd. was ideal and for seaside vistas there was Orchard Beach. A magnificent setting, bleak and empty (like an Antonioni film), was the wasteland which is now occupied by Co-op City. For bombed out, war locales a vast stretch of tenements that stood in the projected path of the Cross-Bronx Expressway made apocalyptic visions possible. For inspiration there was always the unobtrusive structure named GOLD MEDAL STUDIOS where scenes from the Marlon Brando, Joanne Woodward, Anna Magnani film called, THE FUGITIVE KIND was shot. And then there was the splendor of the PARADISE THEATER on Fordham Road; a true movie palace of incredible opulence. What more could a budding filmmaker want? The sexual frustrations and religious traditions also helped fuel the imagination and the full-bodied figures of many Bronxites added fuel to the furnace of seething passions. Though the scenery may have shifted and changed here and there the dreams continue so follow that yellow stained brick road, who ever you are, and become the thing you always wanted to be! Good luck!” (George Kuchar)
The passion of sex has become intertwined within our modern notions of love. Sharing loving moments with another person is the most primal human desire. And SEX is the most intrinsic physical expression of that love.
BUT if you’re home alone on Saturday night, without the tender touch of another, how could you possibly fulfill your desire? Read a book of course!
Each turning page contains a poem of loving tenderness. Skim the pages one at a time OR watch as passion explodes!
As infamous New Yorker Woody Allen says,
“Don’t knock masturbation, it’s sex with someone I love.”
All the hoping and praying
all this city
ever did was
like a tot to a tit
trying to squeeze milk, milk
and more milk
from her blemished breast.
The harbors’ mother
tarnished to reptilian green
slowly bows to the burden
shows her chameleon skin
and crawls slow
into deeper waters
leaving her pedestal, cloak
and pointed coronet.
On his land use and transportation blog, Starts and Fits, Aaron Donovan, examines Charlotte Street, and the effort to bring suburbia to the Bronx in “New Hope in the Bronx.” The post is from 2006, but thoroughly examines the history of development in the area using detailed maps and diagrams. If you’re interested in urban planning and Bronx history, it’s a fascinating read. While on the site check out his other posts on locations from St. John the Divine to DUMBO, and browse the Planning and Urbanism link collection.
For anyone interested in above, or below ground NYC history, Forgotten NY is an absolute treasure. Curious what your neighborhood looked like 100 years ago? Find detailed street necrology and photo galleries for neighborhoods from Greenwich Village to Astoria. Whether you live in Bushwick or Jamaica, St.George or the Lower East Side, this trove of original source documents will keep you occupied for hours. Want to get even closer to NYC history? Take a Forgotten NY walking tour anywhere from Prospect Park to Hell’s Kitchen.
A great tool to find and contribute NYC cultural destinations. Add your own local favorite or explore other ‘hoods with WNYC Soundcheck’s Noteworthy New York.