Chick-fil-A is a fast food restaurant that is famous for their ads featuring cows urging humans to “eat mor chikin.” Chick-fil-A has been around for years now, but until today they did not have any legitimate public locations within New York City. Not many New Yorkers were aware that there is a Chick-fil-A within the NYU food court, so most people had to wait until they ventured out of New York State before they could get their hands on one of those famous chicken sandwiches. I was never a huge fan of traveling a long distance just to get some fast food, but Chick-fil-A has managed to gain a noteriety that few other fast food chains could ever attain. New York City’s first fully loaded public Chick-fil-A restaurant is now opened in Manhattan, and I expect the lines to be very long for a very long time. The interesting thing about opening a new restaurant in New York City is how popular it can become, and how long the popularity can last. The location of the new Chick-fil-A is also extremely conducive to the chain’s inevitable success as it is right in midtown Manhattan, close to all of the tourists traps and business. I know the lines will be long, and the trip down to midtown is not exactly ideal, but I will certainly find my way to the new restaurant at least twice before the end of the year. I know some New Yorkers may find the idea of going to midtown for some fast food to be absurd, but I’m sure they will gladly make the trip once they have tasted one of the best fast food chicken sandwiches around.
Today marks the 14th anniversary of the terrible events that took place at the World Trade Center. Many people would say the world has changed since 9/11 and unless you were actually old enough to remember the events, that idea will sound odd, but the world is actually a much different place today. I honestly can’t say 9/11 changed everything, since we have had immense advancements in science and technology, but I will say it absolutely changed this country’s perception on safety. Thinking back to the summer prior to the terrible events of that day, I was just a kid going on my first international trip, it was my first time on a plane, and there was nothing to worry about. I remember being able to board the plane with very little hassle, almost no restrictions, and being able to look right into the cockpit from my seat. Everything I remember from that first international flight experience is now completely archaic. Ever since that day, our country has been on a seemingly endless war to bring those responsible for these acts to justice, and we as a country have been kept in relative darkness in terms of what is going on. In a sense the world is a different place because we no longer have our artificial certainty of tomorrow. Before 9/11, nobody thought as hard about their travels as they do today, I wouldn’t say life was simpler because I was just a kid at the time, but from my standpoint, I know my parents kept a “longer leash” on me and my siblings before those events. In the 14 years since 9/11 the city has begun to rebuild and the scenery of Lower Manhattan has changed, but those who have been lost are definitely not forgotten. Many things have changed over the last 14 years, but the bravery of the first responders, and the impact of the lives of those lost that day will always be remembered as they once were. Today as America remembers the worst event on our soil, and how it changed everything, I hope the memory of those lost stays the same in the minds and hearts of their friends and loved ones.
The world needs more genuinely nice people. Yesterday, as I was riding the subway home I witnessed an act that is quite uncommon in The City. I know that many people think New Yorkers are all callous, inconsiderate people who are only concerned with getting from point a to point b, but that is not always the case. I have to admit, I too have had reservations about how tactless New Yorkers could be, but after seeing what I saw on the train, it reminded me that we are all just humans, briefly meeting as we head to our destinations. The uncommon sight that I witnessed last night was of a man helping a complete stranger keep his balance as he stood on the train with his hands full. The train wasn’t crowded, so it wasn’t out of sheer closeness that this gentleman held this individual up, this guy actually stuck his arm out to hold the other up as the train sped, and rocked back and forth. I know a sight like this isn’t especially noteworthy, but considering the standard train interactions that I have witnessed over my many years riding the subway, this was a very welcomed change of pace. It is not hard to be helpful, but many people make it seem like a chore. When I think about this planet and about all of its inhabitants, I realize that we are best served by working together, rather than squabbling or keeping to ourselves. It all comes down to understanding the significance of a single life. I am glad that I witness this act of kindness, and I hope to see many more like it in New York. When we, as a species, can start to look at everybody as a single significant person, and not as another annoyance, I’m sure this city, this country, and even this planet will be a much more enjoyable place to live for all.
Over the past couple of weeks, there has been an extreme outbreak of Legionnaires’ disease in the Bronx. So far this is the most devastating Legionnaires outbreak in New York’s history as 92 people have been hospitalized, and sadly, 10 individuals have died. The disease is caused by a bacteria that is usually found in the water of cooling systems, and it has already been found in several south Bronx cooling towers. Legionnaires is a very alarming disease, especially in the South Bronx, since it tends to attack the very old or those who are already sick. This disease is basically a more aggressive form of pneumonia, so those with asthma have to be especially cautious in areas of the outbreak. So far, due to this outbreak we have seen public health officials working franticly to try and contain the disease, but unfortunately, this disease can not be stopped by quarantine. The only way to stop the outbreak is to kill the bacteria at its source as it is not contagious from person to person. Health officials have started implementing free cooling tower checks and cleanings in the Bronx, and while I feel these measures are both warranted and reasonable, I feel more needs to be done to prevent another outbreak of this measure. Legionnaires is devastating, but with proper prevention I am certain that we could completely rid ourselves of this terrible disease. I hope to see health officials implement mandatory cooling tower cleanings every spring in order to reduce the risk of further cases of this disease, the best way to stop an outbreak is prevention. I’m sure that if proper preventative measures are put in place, we could stop the spread of this awful bacteria for years to come.
There is an event going on today in New York City that mixes sports with bacon in an amazing display. Today is the Beer and Bacon classic, it is an event that travels to different baseball stadiums throughout the country boasting some of the finest bacon delicacies the mind can imagine, as well as an impressive variety of craft beers from small local breweries. I attended the event last year and immediately decided to return after tasting the bacon wrapped elk burger. The Beer and Bacon classic is a perfect time to get a chance to roam around a baseball stadium and grab some delicious eats, while playing games and chatting with friends. This year’s event has expanded to the upper decks so there will be much more to see, and more interesting bacon based snacks to try. This event is amazing for anyone who enjoys bacon and doesn’t mind sampling a few exotic beers and treats, but needless to say, this is not much of an event for a vegan, almost every meal available involves some sort of meat product with a bacon twist added. This year I am most excited to try out the bacon accented snacks, last year there was a bacon and ice cream shake that was quite tasty and interesting. There are millions of delicious treats that can be created with the addition of bacon, I am going to make sure I pace myself correctly and try out all of the event’s fantastic meals.