Thursday, April 5, 2012

Freedom Faces

I just finished lunch at one of my favorite places in Queen Village, (New Wave Cafe). Driving back to my office, at ReMax Access in N Libs, I went east on Chestnut st coming up to Independance Hall. Out of the corner of my eye , I couldn't help but notice 2 couples taking pictures of the most recognizable building in America. As they moved the camera from their faces, I saw that there were tears streaming down their cheeks. I stopped and thought of how this was such an emotional time for them. These people were not born in this country ( dont ask me how I know this), but they were caught up in the moment and it was special. I was born in Philadelphia,  live and work in Philadelphia, raised a family here and will probably die here but, I can count on 1 finger how many times I have visited Independance Hall, The Liberty Bell , Betsy Ross House etc. Just imagine what people in other countries not as fortunate as us, go through. Liberty and freedom should not be taken for granted. I was actually moved by these 2 couples and even thought these places are just symbols, they mean Liberty and Freedom! Think about it. God Bless America.

Friday, June 26, 2009

The "OLD BARN" (Spectrum)

Way back in the 60's , when I was growing up . We used to go on a road trip to the stables and the "valley".It wasnt that far from my house at Franklin and Ritner. A 10 minute walk , Past Stella Maris , under the expressway and out the other side. It was like being in the country, horses, goats,ponies and stables.A little past the stables was the "valley". It was, what looked like, a pond and a stream even some wild dogs, we thought. Right on the other side of that was a bowling alley and a drive-in .One day we go to the "country" and the bowling alley is gone, the drive-in is gone and there was some contruction starting. Little did we know they were building one of the most important and revered arena's in the country.This was the beginnng of some of the area's greatest memories.The Spectrum was born.I have had some of my best times in that place.I was there for the first Flyer playoffs in 67' against the Blues. Eventually buying season tickets Sec40 Row 2 Seats 7&8. I had the thrill of the 73 & 74 Stanley Cup seasons, also the Great "Young Turks" teams of the 80's. The great sixer teams led by the great "Dr. J ". Concerts , Stones, Springsteen, Billy Joel,Van Halen,Sinatra,Kate Smith..... we could go on for hours.Luckily I landed a job with my favorite organ..I..zation, The Flyers. Well as time passed and sports grew ever bigger, there wasn't enought room in the old house to accomodate the larger crowds. We have out grown the place, we need to go BIGGER. Now we have THE best place in the country for any kind of event in the Wachovia Center.But I cant help but feel sad about the place we all grew up with . The place where we have seen some great performances , has some of our most unforgetable memories, met some of our greatest friends, and for some of us , spouses or partners. I am going to miss the "Old Barn". So if you get a chance do what I did .....go down there take some pictures and say your goodbyes.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Newbold....hidden secret?

Being from South Philly I know a lot about the area, in fact I think I know everything there is to know about South Philly.But there is a section of the neighborhood that you wouldn't even think was there.I am talking about Newbold.Its been a while since I have been through there and in the past 3 or 4 months I have spent some time marketing and meeting the people .The main reason for change in the area ,in my opinion , is the South Philly Tap Room on Mifflin St.The food is great ,the atmosphere is great, and the place has a lot of character. The decor has been tastefully done and the menu is perfect. With outdoor seating it is ideal for summer nights dining and drinks. The prices are very reasonable and service is good. Another place , that I really like, is the new coffee house,Ultimo, on the corner of 15th and Mifflin. The coffee is freshly made to order , it is a wifi hot spot, they also have pastry and sandwiches. The coffee is an international flavor.I spent an hour there last week just sipping coffee and relaxing. I asked the owner how the Cappuccino was. He told me he makes the best , so I brought an expert back , my wife Linda, she agreed. I guess we found a new hang out.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Fathers Day

Fathers day comes along once a year. I remember growing up Fathers Day was the day that my brothers and sister would go out and try to find the perfect gift for Dad. I always had to find the cheesiest fathers day card. One time I found a card that fit him just right . It had a drawing of a pair of yellow wing tipped shoes and a straw hat on the front and the card read:" Happy Fathers Day to the Best Dad in the whole world". I bought the card because he had a pair of winged tipped shoes. You had to know my Dad to enjoy what he said to me. " Hey,do me a favor ? " I said," sure Dad what do you want? "He says, " Go around the shoemaker on 7th st ,"What for?" I asked He says "to get my size 10 wing tip out of your ass" . I still laugh when I think about it. Its the way we got along he was a funny guy. I miss him and his great humor. You really dont know how much you miss someone until they're gone.Happy Fathers Day Dad, I miss you.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Streets of Philadelphia ( some are a little cleaner)

Well it seems like the citizens will have to take some things , that the city should be doing, and do for themselves. I had the privilege to help my friends, in South Philly on Saturday morning who were volunteering, to sweep the streets and pick up litter. There were people of all ages mostly in the 20 to 30 year bracket.It shows that there are people who have some pride in their neighborhood. While going north on 9th st between Shunk and Porter ,we ran into a group setting up for a serenade that day. Luckly we were coming through . The neighbors were more than happy to give us a hand. Everywhere we went people were out asking" Is this from the city"? No we are just neighbors trying to make a difference. Maybe its not much but it gave them a sense of pride knowing there are people who care. So if you see us next weekend in your neighborhood come out and join in. "Yo Joey, brooms for everybody"