Monday’s Suggestion (09-27-10)

In Monday's Suggestion, New York City, Rich on September 27, 2010 by Two Barbers Tagged: , , , ,

It’s neither incorrect nor surprising when people refer to New York City as the tourism capital of the world.  Iconic attractions like the Empire State Building, Central Park and Time Square attract more people from all over the world than any other city.  However, if one were to dig a little deeper they would find an even more interesting New York City.  One full of unknown attractions that remain hidden in plain view, even from your most astute native New Yorker.

How would one go about finding these hidden gems?

Scoutingny is a blog started by a New York City based film location scout, Nick Carr, with the purpose of bringing to light some of the lesser known sites that NYC has to offer.   In it’s four years of esixtence, “Scout” as Mr. Carr is known has not only garnered a huge following, but also attention from  such mainstream publications as the NY Times,, The New York Post and The Huffington Post.  I myself have checked out two spots based on this site, and my to-do list of “Scout” suggested places is growing infinitely faster than I am able to check them off.

Aside from his regular updates, Mr. Carr also keeps a few themed series such as “New York, You’ve Changed” in which he compares the New York City locations shot for iconic movies such as Taxi Driver or Ghostbusters to the locations as they exist today; or “Will this be there the next time I pass by?” in which he examines sites around the five boroughs that appear on the verge of oblivion. “The Forgotten Building Under the Bridge” or “The Cup & Saucer Diner” are two of my favorite entries from this category.  Both of these series have multiple representatives on Mr. Carr’s list of favorite entries, a great starting point for those interested in exploring the site.

Anyone who has ever walked down a New York City street can attest to a certain spectral presence.  What I mean by this is that the boroughs are so packed with history that it is permeable.  It’s this aura that makes NYC electric, like despite it’s modernity there is still some element of the Five Points scenes you see in Gangs of New York.  Nick Carr does a great job of capturing this feeling and pointing out the little pieces of history that subconsciously cause us to feel the way we do whilst walking through the city.

This site is definitely worth visiting for any New Yorker looking to gain a more unique sense of belonging.  I would also recommend this site for any visitors looking for an experience that will send them home with a better sense of New York than is provided by an “I ❤ NY” T-shirt.  In fact, even if you don’t live in NYC or see yourself visiting anytime soon, this site is full of enough historical factoids that you’re sure to find it entertaining.  I go to Nick Carr’s site often for this purpose and he hasn’t let me down yet.



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