Tag Archives: doorman

On the street where I live

Since I moved to New York City seven years ago, I’ve had a lot of celebrity sightings.

Actual meetings, though, are an event.

Yesterday, while out walking Rory Dog, I stopped to say hi to one of the doormen on my block who has become a good friend.  He was standing with a gentleman who I did not know.

castle season 3Once we started talking, I realized he was Ruben Santiago-Hudson, the actor who played Captain Montgomery in the first three seasons of Castle [pictured far left].

Turns out he has lived on my block for over 30 years.

Ruben has an impressive acting resume beyond Castle, especially on the Broadway stage, where he won a Best Actor Tony Award for August Wilson’s Seven Guitars.  And he has a new TV series premiering his fall on AMC called Low Winter Sun.

But the coolest thing?  He’s a really nice guy.

Save the salt for our chips, please

When I arrived home last night, light snow was falling on New York City. The street was quiet. My footprints (and luggage tracks) were the first to disturb the sidewalk snow. It was a welcome scene.

This morning’s cityscape was very different.

sidewalk saltBuilding superintendents and doormen had arisen early to litter the sidewalks with salt, which burns the paws of  dogs and can make them sick if they lick it. Plus, the chemicals in the melting ice can contaminate the soil and ground water.

And yet building owners continue to spread it quite liberally, every snowy morning.

Safe T Pet Ice MeltI’m not saying leave sidewalks untreated — simply use a safer melting alternative.

Our good friends at Morton Salt make an ice melt that is salt free, chloride free, and organic.  It doesn’t irritate dog paws or tummies and melts below 15 degrees Fahrenheit.

Does it cost a bit more?  Like most green-friendly products, it is a bit more expensive.  But stacked against the high price our pets and the environment pay, I’d say it’s well worth it.

I’m going to talk to my building super today.

“You say traction; I say corrosive chemicals.  Let’s call the whole thing off!”

Fly away home

Here’s one for the birds.

A couple of weeks ago, I noticed MISSING posters on 81st Street between Columbus Avenue and Central Park.  When I got a closer look, I learned the ‘missing’ in question were a pair of cockatiels.

My first thought was — how did they get out?  Did they escape through an open window that didn’t have a screen?  Or through a door when a delivery was being made?

My second thought was that lost birds would be really hard to find.  It’s not like they have to stay at street level where they can be easily seen.

I felt bad for the owners, too…but I admired their determination to get their birds back.  Then the signs came down, and it kinda slipped my mind.

Yesterday Rory and I stopped to chat with one of the doormen on 81st Street.  A gentlemen I had never met before stopped to pet Rory.  Guess who he was?

The owner of the two cockatiels

Amazingly, both birds were found — 15 blocks from home — by a worker in Central Park who had seen the flyer. They had survived outside for a week, on their own, during Tropical Storm Irene.

I asked the owner how the birds got out.  My theories weren’t even close.  His partner was walking down the street with the birds in a carrier.  They weren’t happy about it, forced the door open and bolted.

I’ll bet home looks a lot better now.

Walk walk

I was walking home from an early appointment this morning and waved to one of the doormen on my block.

“Sorry, I didn’t recognize you for a moment,” he said.

I’ve heard this one before.  “Because I don’t have the dog with me, right?”

“No,” he said.  “Because you’re walking so fast.  You and Rory normally just stroll along.”

This observation kind of took me aback.

I’ve always thought of myself as a fast walker — am in fact always being reprimanded by friends to “slow down” when we are walking together around the city.

I attribute my pace to my days at the University of Kentucky in Lexington.  The campus is sprawled out from North to South, and with only 10 minutes between some classes, you have to book — and I mean seriously motor — to get from one end to the other on time.

I thought my personal walk speed had been permanently reset.  Apparently Rory Dog has taught me how to slow down and enjoy the sights, sounds and people along the way.

Chalk up another life lesson to the “hairy human” in my life.