Saturday, November 3, 2012

Prayers for the Rockaways

They call the Rockaways the sixth borough. Technically they are in Queens. However to get to the Rockaways you have to take the A train to Lefferts transferring, and then take another A to Broad Channel. From there you take an S to wherever you need to go. It's their local subway shuttle that is sort of phantom operating when it wants. From there you hit the streets and are greeted with the locals, mostly family type people.

There are Orthodox Jews who mainly don't make contact with outsiders. Cloistered, they are like the Amish. While not unkind they keep to themselves because we live in a world full of prejudice and hate. There are the old time Italian American families, trapped in a lost time where they use the Soprano hair grease and treat strangers with kindness and food. Lest we forget the surfers, surfing in wet suits all year long. The streets are quiet and the people are kind. Not to mention it is so beautiful by the water sometimes you forget you are in NYC.

What is happening with Sandy makes me sad. Whenever I have gone to the Rockaways the people have been nothing but gracious. Once I delivered a singing telegram to a chocolate factory out there. They gave me a hair net and everything. The trekk had been a long one, but the journey worth it. As a thank you they gave me two hundred dollars worth of chocolate. All thanks to the Madelaine Chocolate Factory. Willy Wonka and Charlie would have been jealous. Not to mention they made sure I got back to the train safely.

Another time I was delivering a singing telegram too. It was around the New Year. It was for an old school Italian American Family. They were a tough audience but got into me. They made me work for it which I like. Anyway, afterwards, the woman who ordered me gave me some food and said, "I think I have seen you on TV." And then she told me she knew me from TLC. She mentioned she was a fan of mine and asked if she could take a photo with me and Sunny, one of my puppets. I said sure and we snapped the pic.

Another time I had a detour that way and it was late. A homeless man was making a roucus in the station and trying to talk to me because I was the only one there. The MTA worker in the booth had the option to leave, it was late and he wanted to go home to his family. While the homeless dude wasn't violent, simply going on a rant about how Sarah Palin was probing his brain-a serious problem-he wanted to stay there so I was safe. He also called the proper authorities so that the man could go somewhere like Bellvue where they could undo all of this evil genius on behalf of the woman who can see Alaska from her backyard.

In the wake of Sandy I read about their devistation. It makes me sad to know they only now is FEMA geting there. I have power, I have running water, I have food. These are things these people can only dream of at the moment.

Apparently things have gotten so bad that there is looting. People have made bows and arrows. Thugs dressed up as Con Ed workers are knocking door to door to rob people. There is no fresh milk and no ability to get food for drinking water. There are people stranded without homes and proper clothing and it is freezing.

All week I have been whining about my cabin fever. Like a brat I have been shaking my fist at God saying, "Make this go away. I want to go out and play and work and make money." The truth is, my life is alright. As of today I am working again. My power, heat, and water were never lost. My internet was wonky which made me indignant. But overall, I have nothing to complain about.

As I selfishly ask the Spirit in the Sky for what I want, I have to remember right now some people would kill to have what's in my posession. I have to include the people in the Rockaways when I do my prayers. What is happening to them is truly unfair. Everytime I have dealt with them they have been gracious, generous, and hardworking. They have the toughness of New York City without the machismo. We neglect to think of them because they are so far away from everything, except when we need a beach to go to.

At times like this we have to remember Con Ed truly has the power.

Mark Twain used to say, "The devil is God when he is drunk."

I think in this case Jesus is smoking some angel dust.

Either way please keep the people in the Rockaways in your prayers. The Lower East Side and the East in West Village now have power,light and heat. The subways are running almost normally again. Jersey is getting their power, heat, and light back as well. Now it is there turn.

I guess what infuriates me most is that Furor Bloomberg was using a generator in Central Park for the marathon but yet so many people went without power. The marathon is cancelled and so many runners are whining when they can just enter another road race. There are people reduced to living like the children in Lord of the Flies. They are in a place like Rockaway. Maybe these selfish fitness buffs should look at a map. The Rockaways are part of New York. They are not lost. They pay taxes like everyone else. Just because they are farther out doesn't mean they deserve to be treated like they don't matter.

In this crisis, as New Yorkers, and as a country, we must not fall apart. We must not let our pithy worries cloud are minds. We must not argue about politics giving ourselves headaches over mainstream candidates who will eventually sell out. Instead we must help our fellow man.

In the immortal words of Winston Churchill, "It is no use to say that we are doing our best. We must do what is necessary."

Love April

I Came, I Saw, I Sang: Memoirs of a Singing Telegram Delivery Girl