Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Let's hope this isn't a trend

From the NY Times:

Spotting a squeegee man used to elicit a grumble and a lot of useless waving-off gesticulation by the driver. Now a sighting of this rare species sparks a little charge, the way any New York City rarity — a faux Checker cab or a seltzer man — might.

Squeegee men, once seen as a scourge of New York City, can still be found at intersections uptown.

There is the reflex to pull out cellphones and snap a picture of this emblem of a more unruly city in the 1980s, one that, save for sporadic sightings, all but disappeared after police crackdowns.

One such sighting could be had, one recent afternoon, on West 111th Street and Frederick Douglass Boulevard. A man wearing a green shirt and baggy, rolled-up jeans, was working away on the windshields of cars stopped at the red light on West 111th Street. He said his name was David Morales, 39, of East Harlem, and he immediately qualified his prowess as a glass-cleaner — “I’m the best there is” — while continuing to approach cars wielding only the head of a squeegee — no stick attached.

One can find work any place where drivers have to wait at a light and where police coverage is scant, he said, adding that the best spots are the arteries around Yankee Stadium on game day. When the Yankees are not playing, one can do well plying the service roads and on- and off-ramps along the Major Deegan Expressway.

“You got 145th, 155th Streets, the 138th Street Bridge,” he said. “They’re all good spots.”

They tend to be working people, streetwise people not afraid to roll down their windows, Mr. Morales explained.

As he spoke, a police car pulled up, and an officer hopped out. “You know you’re not supposed to be here,” he told Mr. Morales. Mr. Morales adopted an apologetic tone and said he would be on his way. The officer inspected his identification and, after a few minutes, let him off with a warning.

Mr. Morales flashed a smile and pulled out a wad of pink paper from his pocket — summonses from previous offenses, he said. He gets cited every few weeks and usually wipes them clean with a day of community service.

“Cost of doing business,” he said. He dropped his squeegee into his water bucket and headed uptown.

11 comments:

Anonymous said...

I hate to say it again...not enough cops and politicians who only care about what end$ up in their pockets.....

Anonymous said...

True. I have seen them in the W. Village. NY politicians so corrupt with very few exceptions.

Anonymous said...

The man is more than likely a crack head/drug addict. I wouldn't mind giving him a quarter to wash my windshield if it was dirty (he had better wash the back one also if he wants that quarter).

It beats him being all fiended out looking for his next hit and having to rob the nearest deli or old person.

Deke DaSilva said...

Wow!

"Squeegee Men" have returned, and we also have the second coming of Jimmy Carter in the White House (but this time he has a tan).

What's next?

The return of British Knights sneakers?

A parachute pants revival?

He said his name was David Morales, 39, of East Harlem

Is this THE David Morales, the club DJ and former Hot 97 "All Nite House Party" mix show?

Times sure are tough!!

Anonymous said...

The NY of the 80's is making a comeback. Rise in murders, bank robberies, homelessness, ruined roads, overpriced condos, return of squeegee men, MTA hikes, useless Bike lanes, 2nd Ave subway delay leaving the road practically undriveable, way to leave a legacy Bloomberg.

Tor Hershman said...

Crappy is a great mascot.

Anonymous said...

NYC IS BLOOMBERG'S ATM!!! WHY NOT NEGLECT THE RESIDENTS AS LONG AS HE FEEDS HIS DEVELOPERS, THAT WHORE OF A MAYOR!!!!

Joe said...

The writing is on the wall.
I was in Ridgewood today, walked 4 blocks on Myrtle ave and could not hear 1 person speaking English. A guy wearing a artwork frame around his neck was screaming "I been framed" begging for money, people handing out flyers for "live girls" pawn shops it was depressing.

Queens is headed beck to the same mess Manhattans lower east side was in the 70's.

Anonymous said...

I LOVE IT! BRING IT ON! LET'S WAKE THESE DUMB ASSED YUPPIES UP AND TEACH THEM WHAT THE REAL NEW YORK IS ALL ABOUT!

CAN'T WAIT UNTIL THEY ALL ARE MUGGED AT 4AM ON THE SUBWAYS. CAN'T WAIT UNTIL THE CRACKHEADS CLIMB UP THEIR FIRE ESCAPES AND STEAL EVERY LAST CREDIT CARD RIGHT FROM UNDER THEIR COMATOSE NOSES.

BRING IT ON!

Joe said...

It already started happening. Here a hipster with one of them $$$ bicycles was beaten with his own umbrella.
Story and photos:
http://bushwickbk.com/2009/08/28/the-beating-at-my-front-door/

Anonymous said...

OMG, why complain? you never know when you 'll see another person doing backbreaking labor for less than minimum wage! A little advice might enable him to start a franchise. Seems like a New Yorker down on luck, who's been around the block a few times. Open and polite, hell of a lot better than smug non english persons demanding their food stamps and translations for all benefits WE Americans pay tax dollars for! Really?! David Morales, Get a regulation cleaner and keep on squeeging!