Clash City Rockers

The money is gone! Yeah yeah. Listening to the Clash right now. What a great band. Never got around to seeing them. I was totally afraid of the city then. My parents fled from there in the 1950’s and if it weren’t for my father working there, they’d rather not have anything to do with it.

It was pretty bad then, no doubt. Muggings, murders and assorted really bad stuff, to put it mildly. In 1976 my father worked in the World Trade Center and had an office that overlooked the Hudson River. There was a plan to go to the office and have a party there and watch the tall ships and the fireworks.

Sounded good to pubescent me. There were rumors that gangs would be roaming the streets mugging everyone and doing various nasty things to everyone that wasn’t them. Which meant they would be after us. Sounded good to pubescent me.

In hindsight I think it was because, who the hell wants to go to the office on their fucking day off? Not me, that’s for sure. So I’m sure my father felt the same way, though he probably didn’t say fucking. He was more of a goddamned guy.

The city always loomed large, I could see it from a distance sometimes when going with my mother to pick up my father at the train station. The Empire State Building, and the World Trade Center.

I was always more impressed with the Empire State Building it always looked so great at night when lit up, and King Kong climbed it. I grew up wondering if he could’ve been seen climbing from Lodi.

Johnny Serpone, a neighbor of mine back then, told me the story of ‘Son of Kong’ where Junior gets to Manhattan and climbs up the Empire State Building, where on a landing he sees his father’s blood, freaks out, and falls to his death. Spoiler alert: This didn’t happen.

I know King Kong climbed the World Trade Center, but that was pure hokum. Balderdash, if you pardon my French.

I could’ve seen the Clash at Bonds in 1980 but I was way too much of a pussy. Though in 1977 I did take a bus into Manhattan and wandered around Times Square on my own, for an Easter Saturday afternoon and saw some very interesting things. It was very sleazy then. I didn’t mind one bit.

Why did I have balls in 1977 and none at all in 1980? I suppose the balls were so new there was nothing to be afraid of. In 1980 I had a car, that should’ve made everything easy, but something held me back.

It was a lot safer in the suburbs that’s for sure. But I was beginning to think there was a whole lot more than the same old thing I saw everyday. I did find a compromise, Hoboken. NJ for sure, but with NYC only a 10 minute train ride away. And now that I work in the city, it takes a hell of a lot to get me there when I’m not working. I’m trying to change that. Started last weekend. I do owe Harpy a visit.

PS- On my way to work this morning I saw a woman and a boy in a bubble.

I think it’s for families with Immune deficiencies at Christmas or something like that. Or maybe an experiment.

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