Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Missing the Marquees

Today, one of my favorite blogs, Jeremiah's Vanishing New York , joins a discussion originating from a New York Times slideshow about how franchises are taking over old theaters in the city. One woman summarized the shift in venues very succinctly: she's scared she'll get bedbugs in a moviehouse, and plus, "I like pumpkin lattes."

Two years ago, we took Jamie to see his first Bollywood movie at the old Eagle Theater in Jackson Heights. I'd checked to make sure it wasn't a violent choice (I can't remember the exact title, but I believe it was a remake of Babu), and it wasn't. However, it sure was sexy, and at one point my then-five-year-old leaned over to me and said "If I had to dance with all of those ladies, I'd be embarrassed." That said, he couldn't peel his eyes off of the swirling saris and ensemble numbers, and I wonder if that seeded his love of music in a far more powerful way than the "Singing Songs With Susie" class he took when he was three or so. The peeling Art Deco theater was freezing in the winter months and I remember that we had to wear our heavy coats throughout the whole feature. It's my understanding that it's been shut tight since May 2009, but I hope I'm wrong about that.

Sometimes I can't take how quickly my own neighborhood is changing, and I'm grateful to another great blog, EV Grieve, that chronicles the changes of the East Village in a thorough, well-researched, and poignant way. These bloggers are the town criers, the seers, and the historians, and I hope you'll drop in on their pages from time to time.

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