Thursday, October 15, 2009

The Other Brooklyn

     I am from Queens, (let this be clear) but when my grandparents came here from Sicily, they first settled in Brooklyn, in Bushwick to be exact. And Rocco went to Bushwick High School when it wasn't cool to live in Bushwick. Very not cool. I remember this awesome orange Bushwick HS Reunion T Shirt he used to have. Beacon's Closet would pay big bucks for that one these days.
    Back in the day there was a funny phrase that distinguished two different areas of Brooklyn. If you lived in the northern area, where Knickerbocker Avenue is, where a lot of Italian immigrants lived, you lived in "Brooklyn." Then there was, "The Other Brooklyn," way over in the South part of the borough, which referred to Italian neighborhoods like Bensonhurst and Bay Ridge. Nonna still says, "He lives in l'altro Brukulino." On the other hand, if you lived in Bensonhurst, you considered that to be "Brooklyn" and you called Bushwick, "The Other Brooklyn." Its all a matter of one's perspective.
    Like when I was a kid on the block in Queens I had a friend named Jen. I called her "Jennifer Down the Block," to distinguish her from myself who was "Jennifer Up the Block." When I called her "Jennifer Down the Block" one day she said, "No, you are Jennifer Down the Block!"
We  still have not resolved that one.

3 comments:

Paulie Gee said...

You should check out this book, Morta di Fame. I believe that you will enjoy it thoroughly and refer to it for years to come:

http://www.nytimes.com/books/98/05/24/daily/bruculinu-book-review.html?_r=1

Morta Di Fame said...

Thanks Paulie. I definitely will!

pizzacommander said...

That's too funny, I love it!