I thought I’d share my second favorite MTA announcement. This one proceeds to tell all the riders that should they see an elderly, disabled or pregnant person they should offer their seat to them as “courtesy is contagious and it begins with you.”
Obviously the people who create these snappy announcements do not take the subway often. I have seen men happily sitting there reading their newspapers or playing on their phones while an woman who looked as if she were pregnant with twins stood directly in front of them. I mean really – they didn’t notice her?
Women on the other hand give up their seats readily. I’ve actually gone so far as to tap someone and ask that they get that person’s attention so I can offer them my seat. The way I see it, aside from it being the “right thing to do,” I’m also earning brownie points with the “man upstairs” for following one of his rules – the one that starts off with “do unto others…..”
Listening to one of the many announcements the Metropolitan Transit Authority likes to play on their system, I thought to myself – “Who are they kidding?” The “If you see a suspicious package on the train or on the platform, don’t keep it to yourself. Tell a police officer or an MTA employee. Safety begins with you.”
Firstly, it’s extremely difficult to get one of the platform workers to pay attention to you. They usually have some sort of ear coverings on so they don’t loose their hearing from hours of incoming train traffic. Secondly, police officers on the platforms are few and far between – if they’re in the station they are at the entranceways randomly checking bags. Thirdly, many of us can’t get a signal on our cell phones underground. Who are we supposed to tell?
I remember one time around the holidays I noticed a bag was left behind in the subway car I was sitting in. It appeared to contain one or two wrapped christmas presents. Upon exiting the train I told one of the conducters about the bag. He just looked at me blankly. “Safety begins with you” – right.
I think I have mentioned in other posts that I volunteer at PetSmart every other Saturday for a rescue group in Valley Stream. PetSmart donates this space to our group so we can get our cats seen and possibly adopted.
On one of my trips to the back I saw three big bags of cat food sitting in garbage cans waiting to be thrown out. As my best friend feeds more feral cat colonies then she can really afford and supplies other people with food to feed their colonies, I decided to ask the manager if I could have them. As Grandma used to say “nothing ventured, nothing gained.”
I was told that unfortunately the food could not be donated as company policy stated that the food had to be destroyed. PetSmart cannot take the chance that someone will come back and say that their animal got sick from the food they donated (i.e., it may have come in contact with a pesticide, etc.). As I work for lawyers, I really can’t blame them. Perhaps if our society was not so litigious, things like this would not be necessary.
Gene has been working a lot of overtime lately so he’s been a little behind in posting new pictures of the World Trade Center to our website. Due to this fact, I thought I’d share a link with you so you can catch up on its progress – http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/04/29/one-world-trade-center-americas-tallest-building_n_1462667.html?icid=maing-grid10%7Chtmlws-main-bb%7Cdl4%7Csec3_lnk2%26pLid%3D156561
Gene and I came into the City last Saturday night to see a play by the name of “Leap of Faith.” Great show. Anyway, we took the Long Island Railroad into the City. When we arrived at Penn Station Gene suggested we walk to the theater as it was only 10 blocks away and we had time to kill. I shot him one of those “are you nuts” looks and said “no, we’ll take the train.” He then gave me one of “those looks.” I calmly explained that while he was King in my eyes when it came to driving and navigating the streets of New York City, when it came to “walking them” I was Queen.
Well, it took us about five minutes to get there by subway. When he saw 44th Street jammed with people – and believe me it continued along Broadway and Eighth Avenue too – he grudgingly admitted I was right. Sometimes it’s just great to be Queen.
Those of us who had sent e-mails to the Church were asked by the Mayor’s Alliance to follow up with a second e-mail. Set forth below is my second communication:
“I was hoping that I’d see something new on the Alliance website today about the feral cat situation. But unfortunately it appears as if things are still at a standstill.
Why is that? Why don’t any of you care? You have received over 700 e-mails and countless telephone calls but yet the cats continue to starve.
You wonder why so many of us don’t attend church – it’s not that we no longer believe in God, but we no longer believe in you. You preach one thing and then don’t practice it. We are told to love one another, treat everyone the way we want to be treated, live the way Jesus did, etc. Are you doing that? Do you think Jesus would condone these actions, that he would treat these poor creatures so harshly? Why is no one coming to their aid?
We who advocate for ferals do so because they do not have a voice in this word without us. They are shunned, hurt, poisoned and worse by people who have nothing but hate in their hearts. By what you are allowing to be done condones what others do. If priests have no compassion for feral cats why should anyone else. Lead by example, follow in the footsteps of St. Francis of Assisi, live the lessons you supposedly learned from our lord Jesus Christ.
Do not allow this injustice to continue, I implore you. I pray for these animals every day. Help God answer these prayers.
Find your hearts.”
Thankfully they finally did.
I had lunch recently with my best friend and a friend we had’t seen in awhile. As the three of us are crazy cat people, we were discussing what had happened with the St. James/Joseph’s feral cats. I read them MomWitDragonTat2s e-mail as well as one that I wrote. I told them I had gotten permission from MomWitDragonTat2s to post hers on our website and they then asked if I had posted mine. I realized that I never did as I was more taken with my friend’s rant. But just in case anyone is curious as to what I wrote, here it is:
“I’m sure you have received more than a few e-mails and telephone calls concerning the feral cat situation at St. Joseph’s. What I would like to know is how men of God such as yourselves can allow these poor creatures to be treated so heartlessly? Have you ever gone 10 days without food or water? Why don’t you try it and let me know how it feels. Maybe then you would have some empathy for their situation – but maybe not as so many people consider feral cats vermin. But God created them too. What gives any of you the right to judge them so harshly. St. Joseph’s must relent and let the caretakers feed these animals and allow the cats to stay on the property.
What no one seems to understand other than those of us who are involved in TNR is that these cats did not ask to be feral cats. They are the by product of what our society does when they choose to throw these innocents out on to the street because they don’t want to care for them anymore. They do not spay or neuter them which causes over population problems. But then when you get people who do care, and will do the right thing to help rectify a situation, you have people like the priests at St. Joseph who ban these caretakers from feeding the cats. St. Joseph’s is the only home these cats know. To remove them and put them in another area is not the answer. Ferals help reduce the rodent population even if they have a constant food source. I know first hand because my friends and I do TNR and feed ferals in Nassau County. We also pay for this out of our own pockets.
I’d like to point out that God gave man dominion over the animals. Do you think He would approve of what is being done here? I am a Catholic and I am ashamed of what St. Joseph’s priests are doing. I hope God judges them as harshly as they are judging His creatures. The word “human” has been taken out of the word “humane” in this situation. I hope all who are involved can live with the choices being made here.
I have a question though. You’re telling the public that the cats are being fed off the church grounds which the Mayor’s Alliance says is not true as the Church owns all of the property there. Has anyone from your office physically gone down to the Church to observe the situation or are you only taking the word of the priests of St. Joseph? Maybe if you could see these poor animals you could report back to the Cardinal and he then might make that one phone call which would save them. Please do so.”
I am no fashionista – I’m most comfortable in jeans and sneakers. I do, however, feel compelled to comment on how many women in New York City wear high heels and cannot walk in them. More than half of the young ladies I see can’t seem to straighten their knees when they walk.
Last night I saw one young lady who actually did manage to straighten her knees while walking in her 4 inch heels but her stride did not look confident at all. I really wanted to tell her she would have looked better in a lower pair of heels or a cute pair of flats. I somehow didn’t think she would appreciate my advice though so I chose to listen to my inner voice (in this case Thumper from Walt Disney’s Bambi) who said “If you can’t say anything nice, do not say anything at all.”
I overheard someone on the train last night say that if it really went up to the 80 degree mark on Tuesday (today) she was going to call in sick and go to the beach – even if all she could do was sit on the boardwalk and watch the waves.
We have great beaches in New York but Jones Beach out on Long Island has always been my favorite. When I was a kid we used to arrive at about 10:00 a.m. and stay until 5:00 or 6:00 p.m. I know it sounds like a long day, but Mom didn’t drive at the time so it was a three bus road trip complete with folding chairs and coolers. Zachs Bay thankfully had an umbrella stand so you could rent one for the day – one less thing to be carried on the bus. The usual cast of characters on these road trips were my Grandma, Grandpa, my Great Aunt Regina, Mom, my sister/friend Terry and of course, yours truly. We always went to Zach’s Bay so we girls could swim and my Mom didn’t have to worry about us getting knocked over by waves and swept out to sea. I can still see Terry doing hand stands in the water and the two of us giggling while we shared secrets over salami sandwiches and ginger ale.
Terry and I have been friends for 53 years (we actually shared a playpen). She relocated to California years ago, but we still go to Jones Beach when she comes home to visit. But now we grown up girls go to the ocean side to share secrets and yes, we still do so over salami sandwiches.
Since I am now on a low fat diet for the rest of my life (due to having my gallbladder removed), I can now share a well kept secret about a favorite eatery of mine – Au Bon Pain.
All of their food is good but their muffins..ah bliss! My particular favorite is their blueberry. I have never tasted better. The tip/secret I want to share is that after 4:00 p.m. all of their muffins are half price! Yes, it’s true!
I know it may seem selfish that I did not share this little tidbit before, but when I could still eat them, I didn’t want the additional competition in purchasing these delicious half price muffins. Sorry.