Just a century ago, all the streets of Midtown Manhattan were filled with expensive townhouses like these. The growing subways and land values made most of the private properties (many not even 20 years old) too tempting to keep and the historic residential destruction continues today.
New York may be one of the first modern cities whose main urban core moved from its downtown to essentially a residential suburb 3 miles north primarily because of Grand Central & Penn Station access coupled with the ease of new subways connecting both areas.
Midtown is still the largest downtown in the world but that likely won’t last long.
For skyscraper foundations, it was a lucky coincidence bedrock lies just below Downtown and Midtown but it’s mostly muck in between the two urban cores.
Built in Washington Heights for Roger & Mary Morris as a second home in 1765 when there were spectacular country views across the East River and down the length of Manhattan.
George Washington slept here in 1776 before the British caused his retreat. He returned to the house victorious in 1790 (all made possible with funds from Louis XVI just before his beheading) and he sat down to dinner with Thomas Jefferson, Alexander Hamilton, and John Adams.
Mr. Washington became one of America’s wealthiest citizens only after he married the Wida’ Martha and got thousands of prime tobacco-growing Virginia acres along with hundreds of African-American employees who worked REALLY hard for whitey. After good ol’ GW kicked the bucket, Martha prudently realized “freeing” her slaves before she died would probably lengthen her own lifetime too.
Almost all presidents have married up, ‘ceptin’ Yale-edgy-cated Dubya.
In 1810, French wine merchant (Oh those French again… ) Stephen Jumel and his American wife, Eliza, bought the house and later filled the place with Parisian furniture claimed to be second-hand from Napoleon’s former homes.
The widowed Eliza later married 77 year old Aaron Burr but ended the marriage after just 4 months because Burr’s debts were very quickly depleting her savings. He also had fathered two children with his servant while previously married. And let’s not forget how Burr and former dinner guest Hamilton turned out nearly 30 years before.
America was very small back then so everyone of any position likely knew one another. The Idol Ritch were just as bored as today so gossip and sexual dalliances were their only real forms of entertainment. And today there are thousands of ‘illegitimate’ American descendants to prove it.
It’s safe to say the very privileged and famous historic American names of Washington, Morris, Jumel, Jefferson, and Burr came with a definite Red State mentality. Some things just never change.
Bloomer’s circular driveway entrance is quite beautiful and only needs a little softening with a few potted plants, wood furniture, and throw pillows. Just don’t linger.
That Infiniti Armada (what a name… ) sits idling because of remote ignition. This SUV weighs over 5600lbs and can go nearly 14 miles on a whole gallon of premium gasoline.
The Toyota Prius (Oh, are you kidding me?!) weighs almost half that of the Armada. It takes a lot of gas to move around an extra 2600lbs of steel and plastic. And one regular gallon in a Prius will take you almost 4 times as far as the Armada or its new replacement, the QX56 (what a name… ).
Or put this way, for every person who needs to drive an Armada, there are 4 people driving around their own Prius each covering the same distance as one Armada.
The Iranians, Saudis, Putin, and Hugo Chaves are really smiling right now.
So are the Billionaires at Exxon, Conoco, and Chevron. They’ve worked real hard for it.
Street lighting brought to you by Fossil Fuel and your lungs. “Clean Coal” and “Cleaner Natural Gas” exists only on your flat screen. Cleaner is like saying there is less pee in the punchbowl.
And one barrel of oil is burned to create every barrel of strip-mined tar sands in northern Canada. It’s estimated this sand contains 8 times the crude oil that Saudi Arabia used to have - well, 4 times after having to heat it up by burning, um, crude oil.
The province’s stunning Canadian sub-Arctic forests have, mostly, disappeared. Big All expects to pump this true crude through a flimsy pipe over the only aquifer supplying America’s only Bread Basket.
Droughts and over-pumping by taxpayer supported Corporate Farms already means the aquifer will run dry. Many ordinary Americans are understandably concerned despite corporate promises that the Environment and public safety are their “first” concern. Just ask BP.
And repeatedly saying “Clean” on those slick corporate Big Coal & Gas Fracking commercials makes it all seem so, well, pleasant, doesn’t it?
Huge proven oil reserves exist off Cuba meaning Castro will soon open for business but not with the US. An oil disaster there will cover the East Coast from Key West to Cape Hatteras. We will choke to death on smog and rising seawater before we run out of oil. So you were right about wasting money on a risky and potentially deadly electric car.
Streetlights are like leaving the lights on when no one is around.
Why not add motion-sensors between light poles so that pedestrians and vehicles will only trigger the lights to be on when someone is around? Only moths will miss the light.