Tuesday, July 28, 2009

A Concussion and Dislocated Shoulder, a Typical Day in Coney Island

     Coney Island is by far my favorite place in the entire world. A lot of people think weirdos and degenerates when they think of Coney Island, but take a minute to talk to some of these characters and you might change your mind. Amazing lighting and some of the most New York faces in New York is a feast for my camera. Some of the best photographs I have ever taken were taken here. And then there are the hot dogs and of course the scariest roller coaster hands down, the infamous Cyclone. Fun for the whole family! Riding the cyclone and enduring the week long agony afterward has become an annual birthday tradition. 
     When we arrived, it was as if every New Yorker decided to join us. Parking was dire. We almost gave up, but I spotted a middle aged sun bather with keys in her hand and I jumped out of the car and asked whether she'd be leaving a spot. What came out of her mouth was the most cherished Brooklyn accent I have heard in years. (I spend too much time in Williamsburg!) So I escorted this lovely tanned woman to her car, thinking after she pulled out I would stand in the spot and fend off other parkers. This was a parking war, afterall. 
    "No, I'll wait with ya," she told me, "I'm not goin' anywhere." Even better, more time to enjoy that accent. But when we got to her car a giant tour bus driven by a hasidic driver was turning the corner and nearly hit her car. We ran over screaming. I would protect this lady's car if it was the last thing I did! 
    "Your gonna hit my car!" she said.  He really had no spatial reasoning and yelled at us that he fit, continuing to move closer to denting her pristinely white automobile. So we looked at each other and started banging on the side of the bus. I think maybe a little Queens accent popped out of me, "Ya gonna hit it!" A few other locals got involved, he finally gave up, then I helped guide the giant bus in reverse, giving my lady room to pull out of her spot. "Go," I told her.
    She looked back concerned and not wanting to leave, "You sure?" I think she would have gladly blocked traffic until Mike came, but just in the nick of time he arrived and we got the sweetest parking spot in Coney Island. Such a New York moment.
    So it was Cyclone time and we brought a few Cyclone virgins, who I enticed to come with, "$6 for the ride of your life!" And its always fun to scare newbies and warn of the inevitable whiplash. But Phil took it to a whole other level by searching for how many people died on the Cyclone. I didn't want to find out! 
   When we got there it was $8, but still so worth it. If you haven't gone for a ride on the Cyclone, go at least once before you die, and if it kills you what a great way to go out. The reason why its the scariest roller coaster ever is because you feel like you might go flying out of it. These new roller coasters have you all strapped in. Not the cyclone, one measly lap bar then over that first drop and its questionable whether you won't go flying into the ocean. And its so fast and throws you around like a pin ball. If you can survive the initial drop, which is the craziest feeling ever because, you just have to let go because you feel so out of control. 
    Mike and I did a second ride, in the first row, and the first drop left him with a chipped bone in his elbow and I swear I felt my brain hitting my skull. When we stopped I heard some serious crying and turned around to find the little boy behind us, who was not really tall enough to be on there, with a clearly dislocated shoulder! Mike's elbow got zero sympathy after we saw that teary eyed boy. This roller coaster is NO JOKE!
    After coming to our senses (?) we thought the freak show would be fun but got scammed by the wrong $3 freak show which promised two headed everythings and when we went inside they were in formaldehyde jars! So we drowned our sorrows with a bucket of coronas then headed over to L&B for a really good slice of New York pizza.
    L&B has been there forever, and there are simples rules. You get either a round slice or a square slice, regular or "Sicilian," respectively. The sauce, the cheese, the crust, its all so delicious. If you are ever in Coney Island and you have a car you must pit stop to L&B. Take Stillwell Ave, which is the street under the train, to 86th then make a right. The seating is all outdoor with Brooklyn locals, and after your slice you can enjoy some a cool Italian Ice. 


Rocco Galatioto said...

Those authentic Italians working in the Gardens were captured well. The secret of it,s success is it's authenticity. Gee, It's just like the pizza my grandmother used to make.
A paid endorsement.

adozeneggs said...

Yes, Dave and I didn't really like Coney Island the day we went. I think the Cyclone was closed.
Plus, we had taken the train from the Upper West Side. (with a lot of weirdos and degenerates).
Coney must be a popular place for all you photographers. My friend Rosie seems to like it as much as you.
Happy Birthday!
(I'm assuming it's your bday since you said riding the Cyclone is a bday tradition)

icandy... said...

Man, that pizza looks soooooo good right now!