Graham Home for Old Ladies

I passed by this building on my way to visiting my friend in Brooklyn the other day. Imagine being one of the old ladies who had to go home to that sign every day! “Yeah, yeah. I’m old. I live here in a home for old people. What of it?”

Built in 1851, to live there you had to be over 60, have your own bed and furniture, and be respectable. By the 1980’s it was a brothel. In 2001 it was converted to condos. Oh, the current sign is new. Originally, it was the Brooklyn Society for the Relief of Respectable Aged Indigent Females. That’s a little friendlier to come home to, although humbling (and a little condescending). Graham comes from John B. Graham, the 19th century lawyer who financed the project.

Graham Home for Old Ladies

Left By The Ship or: Why does it seem like we rarely do the right thing?

I watched this enormously sad documentary called Left By The Ship, about the children of US soldiers who were abandoned by their fathers when the father’s service in the Philippines was concluded. Actually, I only caught the second half while channel-surfing, but I started watching for a minute and then couldn’t stop.

These children are not covered by the Amerasian Homecoming Act. For some unknown reason they are excluded and most are in a bad way, living in poverty, and experiencing abuse both within their families and in their communities. You hear politicians and others go on and on about the importance of families, but so often it ends up being so much bullshit. Families go out the window when they become inconvenient. At one point one of the kids successfully reaches his American father, and if you could have seen the kid’s joy when he thought his hell had finally ended, and that he was going to rise. Oh God. I’m remembering it now. He never heard from his father again.

A friend of mine lives in Heaven (Brooklyn). This is the entrance to her enchanting apartment. Look at those roses. And the working gas lamp.

Brooklyn is Heaven

Thank you people in the Military!

It’s no surprise I’m a pacifist (mostly, there are exceptions, sometimes one must fight) so I never know quite what to say to people in the military. It’s like any other group, some of you are great at what you do, most of you are decent people doing the best you can, and some of you should find another job. Wherever we have military we’re doing some things right, and we’re doing some things we shouldn’t.

Right now I’m thinking about the ones who lost their lives, and the ones who are struggling either while still on duty or back home. Thank you for your service. Thank you all for your service. You have really hard jobs (understatement of the year).

Buddy is hanging in there, seems to be mostly okay today. He’s eating, doesn’t seem uncomfortable.

Sad Sign for Lori Stevens

A block away from where I buy my catfood, someone put up a sign in memory of someone named Lori Stevens who was struck by a car and killed while walking her dog Moose. Someone considerately added later that Moose was okay, and that he’d been adopted by someone in her building. Every time I walk by there are fresh flowers and a new sign.

Buddy update: He is much better today. He’s eating more, and hanging out front with me and Finney. He was isolating yesterday, never a good sign, but today he is more himself, so my mood is greatly improved.

Life Going on Around Me

Live from a tiny corner of New York City: Right now I’m hanging out in the bedroom with my cat Buddy, the place he prefers to be. It’s been touch and go health-wise with him and I’m keeping him company. It’s not looking good, so I’m not thinking about it for now. Living for the moment as they say. He’s alive now. While Buddy rests I’m watching the BBC series Sherlock.

Oh good god, my next door neighbor is preparing for a party on the roof it seems. Well, he’s a good kid and it’s a holiday weekend. It’s just bad timing for me, alas. There’s a lot of booming and banging around over my head (I’m on the top floor).

This is Finney from earlier today. I sang “Kitty in the Sunlight” to him. It goes:

Kitty in the sunlight,
Do, ta-do, ta-do.
Kitty in the sunlight,
I’m so in love with you.

Brilliant, right? I wrote it myself.