Magic Jewball

all signs point to no


Water main heartbreak

Filed under : New York City
On February 15, 2007
At 4:10 pm
Comments : 11

What’s a day in NYC without a little disruption due to 100 year old infrastructure? Not my day yesterday, that’s for sure. People say “oh, it’s just a little ice and freezing rain” but when nothing really works correctly in the first place there can be so much more fun than that!

All I was looking for was Thai food and a bottle of wine on V-Day with my also recently unattached friend… oh wait, maybe she wants to be private, who knows? I’ll call her C. Anyhoo, C., one of my bestest friends, lives a short walk away from me on the corner of 96th and Broadway and it was going to be easy-peasy. She ordered the food, I got the wine, I put on my little snow-proof shoes and off I went. Except when I got there, the entire intersection seemed to be a pool of water with chunks of snow in it. I couldn’t really figure out how the snow was melting so quickly in 18 degree weather. Cars from all directions were doing broken U’s to get the hell out of there.

That’s when I looked up 96th Street to see that a river of water was pouring down one side of the street and sidewalk. If you haven’t been to the Upper West Side recently (or ever), it’s quite hilly. Broadway is much lower than Amsterdam and this water was coming down in a torrent. I call C. “I’m right across the street.” She seems baffled, like, so, uh, come on over! Yeah, see, your building has a moat in front of it and I forgot my horse in my apartment. She comes to the window and looks. Holy fuck! She’s trapped in her building. I’m trapped outside her building. Meanwhile, despite it being frigid, a crowd has gathered.

I mean, why not? There’s a lot to see. There are firetrucks by now, firemen wandering around, cops consulting with each other, and should you have anything to do on the north side of 96th St. you are shit out of luck. One guy puts two post office mail cartons on his feet and sloshes across. A car actually goes through the intersection and people start screaming (that usually makes cars go faster, actually, in my experience) and in the very center the car is almost totally submerged with only the window level and up showing. But it makes it through and speeds off.

That’s it, I tell C., I am out of there. C. says there’s no way the delivery guy is going to come anyway. Hey, at least I have my bottle of wine! Later she calls me to tell me that despite the fact that her roommate had to be carried in by a fireman (why didn’t I think of that?) the delivery guy naturally made it just fine. These guys live with 25 other people in a tiny apartment, they need every dime! Sadly, he did not know enough English to explain to C. how he made it across the river in his little sneakers. Another New York mystery.

I went home and fell asleep watching Lost. I have it on DVR; don’t tell me what happens.

NY Post article

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