07 December 2010

I've been given an island, a Blog Off post

The following is a Blog Off post. A Blog off is an event where bloggers of all stripes write about the same topic. You can learn more on the Let's Blog Off site. As the day progresses, a table will appear at the end of this post and it will list all of the participants as well as link to their posts. This week's Blog Off topic isn't just a topic, it's a situation.

No, not that Situation. I mean it's a hypothetical situation:
You’re given an island. The only thing to consider is once you move there, you can’t leave. Who and what would you bring? What are the rules?
There's nothing in here that says I won't have contact with anybody once I'm there, so I'm not bringing anybody with me. Now that that's decided, I'm going to pack up a U-Haul and go to my island. So the answer to what will I bring is everything but my car.

Since this is my island situation, I get to pick the island and here's the island I'm picking.

It's not just any Manhattan though, it's my Manhattan. It still operates under the usual rules except for a couple of important changes. First, on my Manhattan I have an income in the mid-six-figures for being a bon vivant. I'm going to be one of those Manhattanites who lives really well but has no visible means of support.

I will have a townhouse on Perry Street in the West Village and I get the whole house, not just a floor.

The following businesses will remain in business in perpetuity so that I can hunt and gather to my heart's content.

Murray's Cheese on Bleeker Street.

Until you've been to Murray's, you can't really understand cheese.

McNulty's Tea and Coffee on Christopher Street.

Somebody's got to keep me stocked with Russian tea.

The Westside Market on 7th Avenue at 15th Street.

For everything else.

And for times when I want an injection of hip without spending too much money, I want a table standing by at the Coffee Shop in Union Square.

I know, I know, but I like how the hip factor rubs off of all those NYU kids and onto me when I'm in there.

I will need to get around, so I will have a magic MTA card.

My MTA card will always have a $25 balance no matter what I do or how many times I jump on a bus or train.

While I'm casting spells, I'll need to do something with the weather. I love New York but the weather's dreadful for almost half of the year so I'm posing the following weather schedule. On Mondays and Fridays it will be spring and tulips will bloom up and down Park Avenue on both days.

On Tuesdays and Thursdays it will be autumn, but a warm and sunny kind of autumn.

On Wednesdays it will snow but it will be gone by the time autumn arrives on Thursdays.

Every weekend it will be July, 1983 when Miss Diana Ross captivated the world with a free concert in Central Park.

And every night, Sak's Fifth Avenue will light up its facade with The Story of the Bubble and the Snowflake.

So the rule is, I make the rules.

Oh and there's one more thing. In my Manhattan, I'll be able to wander into Grand Central Terminal any time I want to and stand in the middle of the concourse. Then I'll look up at the ceiling and just spin slowly with my arms extended. I do that now but in my personal Manhattan no one will mock me when I do it.


  1. I agree with all your choices of establishments except you left out the Clinton Street Baking Company. 4 Clinton Street (btw. East Houston & Stanton) I would make them open at 5:00am though. Life without breakfast is just....

  2. I will have to check that one out on Saturday. Good suggestion!

  3. Awesome post today, Paul! I love that you thought through it so fully as to stores and even the Metro Card. I aspire to get there one day....I know, I know...should've been there already.

  4. What?! You live three hours away! Take the train from Lancaster, it's about a $40 fare. I've done that more times than I can count.

  5. Get there early (before 8:00) they usually have a line, but their pancakes with butter maple syrup are just.... need a moment... sooooooo delicious....

  6. There's a deli/ bakery where I usually go for breakfast. It's on 8th at 23rd and the name's escaping me. Maybe we're due for a change of venue and neighborhood on Saturday morning.

  7. When I graduated from college with an International Finance degree, NYC was my dream. 4 Years later (3 years in Atlanta & in my 1st in Charleston), I'm still thinking about it but in much different terms. This post certainly reinvigorates that dormant dream. Thanks Paul.

  8. Thanks Jamie. I'm fortunate to be there a couple of times a year. Every time I land at La Guardia I feel like I've just come home.

  9. Paul - the best island city in the world. I love yr beautiful vision of it, an ode to NYC. you played with time and seasons in your fantasy, excellent. I am in love w/ the Underbelly project - the essence of a new york experience. cindy @urbanverse

  10. Well, they aren't adhering to your requested weather schedule at the moment, but the banners are going up today all over 5th Avenue to herald your arrival this weekend. Enjoy your time--wish I could stay and take more pictures of you twirling in Grand Central...

  11. I'm going to break into that station one of these days... Thanks for the compliments!

  12. Actually Kevin, you DO have a picture of me twirling in Grand Central. Remember? That was five years ago when we were in The City for my 40th. Ahhh, such times...

  13. Make that my Manhattan as well, Paul! Can't wait to be walking those streets with you in a few days! Safe home (to Manhattan)!

  14. I hope you don't mind me popping in when Ms. Ross is in town, then I could sing along to "Muscles" really really loudly and then back to MY island when the concert is over

  15. Hahahahah! I love your take on life on your island :-) And The Story of the Bubble and the Snowflake is awesome! Love it!

    Nick asked me to participate in #Let's BlogOff yesterday, so I didn't have a whole lot of time to give my island a lot of thought! Check it out if you have a minute and let me know if I did it right, please!

  16. Oh how perfectly, beautifully, wonderfully self indulgent :) Love it Paul, you'll make a wonderful Manhattanite......but please, fgs, take me with you. Really! Please! Now !

  17. I don't know... it might just be an East Coast/West Coast thing, but I would not care for life in New York. I think it's one of those places that one either loves or hates. For those who love New York, there is an awful lot to recommend it. For those who don't... well, San Diego suits me just fine!

  18. Thanks for all the comments gang.

    Saxon: I will see you bright and early on Friday. Woo-hoo!

    Raylee: How's this. You sing "Muscles," I'll sing "Ain't no Mountain High Enough" and we'll sing "Reach out and Touch Somebody's Hand" together.

    Kelly: I'm really happy you joined in on this one.

    V: Visitors are always welcome.

    Joe: It transcends East Coast/ West Coast. Really, it does.

  19. I think I'm going to like visiting your NYC. All two times that I have been there, it has rained and made it not so grand. Will it be allowed to rain on your island? I petition that umbrellas and stylish galoshes will be available on every corner when the clouds gather. :)

  20. Emily: Thanks!

    Cham: Well then you need to keep going back until you get it right. In My New York it does rain, but only as quick thunderstorms and only when it won't inconvenience me.

  21. Love this, Paul. Where do I apply for a visa?

  22. No visa required Nancie, my New York has open borders.


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