Together,forever, locked in time, a man and his woman at Planting Fields Arboretum Upper Brookville,N.Y.
First in a series of photographs for our readers enjoyment and peace of mind by Neil Miller
Today’s photo installment is at Shu Swamp Preserve in Mill Neck. A short ride up Route #107 to Chicken Valley Road leads to this private North Shore Park. Peaceful, with many nice walking trails, this pretty park gives you a nice dose of Zen. Good for families, couples or solo, FYI no bikes or pets.
Monday, March 30, 2020: We begin the third week of this Coronavirus Pandemic and isolation period. From this perspective, it has been difficult with adjusting to a new lifestyle of staying home and following procedures to stay safe.
With no sports, a lifestyle here that is a daily ritual, that called for adjustments. Social distancing, washing the hands more often, taking a quick walk to buy essentials, return home, and discover those other things to pass time are a new routine.
Today, this means another day without baseball and Game 4 off the schedule at Citi Field. The Mets were scheduled to open a three game series with the Phillies Monday night.
Instead of preparing the bag for work with necessities of pens, laptop, notepad, information about the teams, a new routine is viewing news and updates regarding the Pandemic on CNN, Fox, local channels. Editors are revising their game plan and we are told to write about a virus and different routines that has put us in unchartered territory.
Tell you the truth, and as much as this sounds off the chart, I would rather be at the ballpark in a few hours after crossing the Whitestone Bridge from the Bronx to Queens. Seeing Citi Field and entering through the Gil Hodges Press Gate would be the routine.
Taking the press elevator, saying hello to security and stadium personnel, watching batting practice on the field by the dugouts, talking to the players, eating a press dining room meal with colleagues, and back to the press box should be the routine.
All ending with a visit to the clubhouses for postgame quotes. And the final culmination is writing, filing that deadline content, returning home, with a similar routine the next day if there was not a postponed game that was caused by inclement weather this time of year.
Baseball is a long season. The routine for the players is the same for us in the press box. We are known as those creatures of habit.
Instead, we are home. Isolation, if adjusted right, becomes a routine and time passes by with some writing, cleaning the closets, watching classic sports highlights. Calling and texting more with family, friends, and neighbors, and we should do that more often with no excuses for a crisis to do so.
Yes, we are a changing society and it came faster than a speeding bullet and strike of lightning. So, up here in the Bronx, in proximity of Pelham Bay Park, it is quiet.
The streets are quiet. Usually this is a boisterous neighborhood with traffic, honk of car horns, sirens of first responders and residents going about their business. Instead, there is silence and dark of one business after another with locks and chains on the door.
Essential stores and pharmacies are open. Restaurants, open during limited hours, have a reduced staff and there for takeout orders, Chairs and tables are uplifted to show they are following regulations of a city in a state of emergency.
You don’t know many, but now we all know each other. We are, as they say, in this together and sharing thoughts about this Pandemic is a form of therapy with different opinions and how we are adjusting to this new norm.
And with exception of the elevated and noisy 6 train, running on a limited schedule, that is the only sound of a neighborhood. Tell you the truth, a quiet neighborhood, without that constant rumble of a train, is good for the hearing.
Buses also are empty as one passes on a normal route. Boarding from the back and not the front, is no longer fare evasion but this is a Pandemic and people are staying home.
So why venture out?
“Need to take that walk and stretch the legs,” said a quiet couple. “We keep our distance from others. We are making the adjustments.”
They wear the protective gloves for the hands and faces are covered with the masks which is also the new norm. But, they, like many, don’t want to compare this to being a prison in our homes. Unfortunate, though, this crisis has left no other options but to stay home and be safe.
The new norm is also cooking the meals at home. Forgot to mention, writers are creative and that also applies to those skills in the kitchen. The baked ziti was good, so was a home cooked and good steak the night before.
However, we would rather have baseball now. We would prefer watching all sports this time of year instead of catching up with a favorite TV series on the networks.
Oh, the season finale of “The Walking Dead” will have to wait. Next Sunday night the series goes to pause with a penultimate episode as post production was stopped due to the Pandemic.
And in many ways some have compared this adjustment to living in the walking dead, with many theories, though we should not make that comparison.
But this is the new norm. The adjustments are necessary as the goal is to get that number down of coronavirus cases. Follow the procedures and in a matter of time we can slowly get back to normal.
Share your routine with others. Social media can be a good thing and we are hearing about the new routines. Important as always, STAY SAFE. We are in this together!
Comment: Ring786@aol.com Twitter@Ring786 Facebook.com/Rich Mancuso
By Lenn Robbins
The most disliked man in metropolitan area sports has tested positive for the most insidious virus in most of our lifetimes. James Dolan, owner of the Knicks, Rangers and The Garden, became one of about 60,000 New Yorkers to have contracted this disease. That number grows as I type.
It is not some karmic justice that Dolan has COVID-19. It’s a sad, unfortunate coincidence.
Some feeble-minded fans have taken to social media, which at times serves as the cesspool of society, to express their glee. Which means this is an ideal opportunity for a COVID-19 realty checkpoint.
This consists of my knowledge of this coronavirus: It has no agenda but to thrive, which means finding as much sweat, saliva spit and snot as possible and hitch a ride from person to person. It does not ask for, or even has any interest in, a person’s ID – rich, poor, tall, short, white, black, blue collar, white collar, no collar.
It has no conscience. Neither do some Dolan haters.
If you’ve visited this space you know we have no love lost for Dolan. We’ve asked Knicks fans to boycott. When that didn’t have the desired effect, we suggested fans appeal to Dolan’s love of the Knicks and try to convince him to sell for the good of the team. That, too, has not succeeded.
We will continue to try to be an agent for change.
In fact, we think the sooner he sells the Knicks, the quicker the team’s fans and, possible Dolan himself, will find happiness. He can enjoy their future success just like any other fan.
But only someone lacking in soul, like the virus itself, wants to see real harm come to Dolan. He is, after all, a husband, father of five, son, musician and absolutely incompetent owner when it comes to the Knicks.
Yet on the same day that the Knicks announced on Twitter that Dolan had tested positive it was reported by The New York Post that the owner had established The MSG Relief Fund to keep paying venue employees at least through May 3. Initially funded with a $1 million donation from the Madison Square Garden company and matched by the Dolan Family Foundation and a $300,000 from the MSG team.
I couldn’t care less if this is all one big tax deduction. It’s a right thing to do and Dolan did it.
Look, it’s fine to find some humor in this coronavirus plague. Humor is good medicine. Trevor Noah’s joke, that even COVID-19 doesn’t want anything to do with the Knicks, is true comedy. So is his mission to make Social Distancing an Olympic sport.
When it comes to feeling happy that Dolan has the virus takes away our essence as humans, which just might be COVID-19’S end game. Here’s our message to Mr. Dolan:
Get well soon. Then sell the team.
HIS BEST ASSIST: Former Knicks point guard and Coney Island native Stephan Marbury is trying to secure the purchase of 10 million N95 masks for hospital workers and first responder. After a 14-year career in the NBA, Marbury’s professional and financial careers got huge boosts in the Chinese Basketball Association.
Marbury teamed with Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams to help with delivery arrangements. Marbury reportedly will purchase the masks at cost ($2.75) as opposed to $7.50 retailers have been trying to rip off the city.
“At the end of the day, I am from Brooklyn,” Marbury told The Post in a telephone interview from his home in Beijing. “This is something that is close and dear to my heart as far as being able to help New York.”
How the power of music saves our souls, by Neil Miller /The New York Extra/The NYExtra.com
It’s March 24. And usually ,in a spring frame of mind, all of us involved in the Long Island Music Scene , are pulling out our calendars, looking at Sherri’s Scene, and Ira’s List , and planning our opening day at the Salt Shack, our memorial day weekend at Jones beach ,Woodstock at Old Bethpage and our 4th of July on the East End. Evenings at Freeport , Lido Beach, and Patchogue also fill our minds with anticipation.
But stuck in the blue and harsh reality of the pandemic now on us, what gives us strength is what lies ahead. We hope that the virus goes away soon, and that it doesn’t hurt our famlies , our friends, the community that we live in. All we want is to have a big party as soon as it’s clear. We crave to hear The Murphy’s,Wonderous, 45 RPM, Streetfighter, The 70’s Band, The Mystic , The Almost Brothers , and Desert Highway.
Our strength lies in the love and passion for the music on the Island( and other places too), and the the joy that we draw from being with our friends “.The coming summer will take away the pain of right now for all involved the club owners, the bartenders, the musicians, and all the people that make it work. Stuck in the present vacuum of no live shows, lets all hang tight and hope things return to normal soon!
By Lenn Robbins
Let’s be honest. This 2020 MLB season, if it’s ever played, is going to come with an asterisk.
If a player gets off to a horrid start, (asterisk!) it’s because spring training was halted, throwing off his rhythm. If a player hits 25 home runs in, say, an 80-game season (asterisk!), fans will wonder if he could have kept up that pace.
Every accomplishment or failure will come with an asterisk: Yankees win the World Series – * season shortened.
It’s a can’t win season. Same with the NBA and NHL and all the other seasons that have been interrupted by this plague known as COVID-19. The season of the asterisk is the tertiary damage of the novel coronavirus.
Years from now, any athlete that misses this season won’t be differentiated from athletes that play.
So, although Mets pitcher Noah Syndegaard will not pitch in 2020 because he needs Tommy John to repair an acutely torn UCL with acute compression of the ulnar nerve, it’s the perfect season to miss. The season with the asterisk.
Don’t be mistaken. This is a sad turn for the Mets pitcher who has teased us with his Viking god-like physical stature and power pitching. It’s a sad turn for the Mets who still might be considered a playoff team but that road just got more daunting.
It’s not as if Syndegaard had a choice. The injury needs surgery and it needs it now. If all goes well, Syndegaard could be back on the mound by June of 2021.
Boston’s Chris Sale also will have Tommy John surgery. According to ESPN’s Jeff Passan, Sale decided to have his surgery now to avoid missing significant time in 2021.
It doesn’t matter. Five, 10 years from now, the empty stat line for Syndegaard and Sale won’t warrant a second glance. This is the season of the asterisk.
The things that have to be done to protect Long Islanders by Neil Miller/The New York Extra/TheNYExtra.com
As the 2nd week of the pandemic effects Long Island, it’s time to demand from our representatives that these following items become law to protect the welfare of ourselves and family.
#1 An immediate halt of real estate taxes until the crisis is over.
#2 The guarantee of utilities, gas, electric, cell service and cable service for all, until the end of the crisis.
#3 A plan by the state and federal government to fund an emergency food plan so that families food needs are met.
#4 Planned shopping days for communities so that everyone gets a fair share of goods, with limits on items per visit.
#5 An immediate halt on all payments of car loans, credit card bills and insurance payments for 90 days without penalty.
These items are of the utmost importance to the wellbeing of the Island and Nation until the crisis of covid -19 ends.
Paying the price.A Deal with the Devil. How corporate greed, profits, and Chinese manipulative practices, endangers the security of our country and the world.An Editorial by Neil Miller/Publisher,The New York Extra/ TheNYExtra.com.With additional reporting and editing by Toni Hoyos.
As our country grapples with the Chinese virus pandemic, it’s time to stop avoiding blame of the Communist Chinese government, and time to examine some of the events that have led us to this point.
Specifically, it is the worlds acceptance in succumbing to the lure of cheap and inferior products of drugs, steel and other essential goods. This has amounted to a “Deal with the Devil”. They say money is the root of all evil, well then we have pimped ourselves to China all in the name of big business and money , to a country that manufactures our medicines, antibiotics and the raw materials needed to make medicines. 81% of the API (active pharmaceutical ingredients) are said to come from China. A Dept of Commerce study found 97% of all antibiotics in the US came from China. China’s poor quality control, substandard doses and low budget for research and development lead to major concerns over the safety and efficacy of these medications. Unfortunately fraud and manipulation of quality data is still widespread. Corporate profits and stock indexes came before national security and health.This is only one example of how Communist China works.
By outsourcing these important goods, not only have we put our American workforce in dire jeopardy, we have also allowed our country to be open for possible blackmail by the Communist Chinese if we act against their purposes.
With the ” one world ” scenarios, and the influence of the Chinese in our economic, educational and cultural world, it leaves us open to spies in our midst. Just last week a Harvard professor was arrested for lying to the government and Harvard about his involvement in a Chinese program for which he was paid for . There were also ties to a Bio lab, in of all places Wuhan,China. Also arrested were 2 Chinese nationals, one an officer in the Chinese army, the other charged with attempting to smuggle 21 vials of biological research out of the US to China. What the Chinese can’t buy with money they try to steal in regards to sensitive research and development.
This brings up the point of the source of the current pandemic, the 2nd major killer virus exported from China . Sars, and now Chinese coronavirus. They started with ties to bats that crossed over to other animals, then to humans. The current virus is the same. As noted in the 1st part of this series, the current food practices of some Chinese, caused the explosion of the current plague.
I have been accused of being a racist and a xenophobe. I am neither, and admire the work ethic, intelligence and contributions of Chinese Americans. Their dedication to family values that they bring to our way of life as Americans is admirable. We all reject racism of ethnic backround, color, religion and country of origin. However the facts are inescapable. There are many ideas how the virus came to be in the Wuhan wet market. Some say it was a natural transmission between infected animals, some say there’s a more sinister reason.
Several rumors have it, that the Wuhan super lab had an accident and it leaked out. Another rumor has it that lab animals infected with disease were sold by lab staff for money to local food vendors. Neither of these have been proven one way or the other by the Communist Chinese. In fact,the words of doctors and researchers were stifled in order to prevent another horrible Chinese embarrassment.
Whatever the truth is, and hopefully after this catastrophe there will be a world wide police inquiry, the one thing we can be certain of is this, the customs of the local Chinese population, along with the fact that the Chinese government never closed these markets nor helped to change their cultural food habits, has led directly to this 3rd , and most deadly outbreak.
How long will it take to confront the Communist Chinese government, with total world outrage, to end these pandemics? The answer is” Our Deal with the Devil” stops us. It is time to exorcise the demon, and make him repay the world for the deceit, disease and death it has brought to the world, and to retake our economic independence back.
I am okay here in the Bronx and taking precaution.
Yes, we are changing routines and isolating and in due time this Coronavirus crisis will pass. So, before I head to a scheduled doctor appointment that was on the docket, here we go.
Sports are dark. My livelihood, as with others in all walks of life, has been disrupted. Sports have always been a diversion from a crisis but not now. We need to adjust, adapt, come together as a community.
You see, as the medical professionals handling this crisis say, we could be in this for the long haul. Adapting to no sports is an adjustment and you learn to do other things in the safety and comfort of your home.
Catch up on some reading. I have finished reading two books that were half way in. Watch classic movies and relive the sports classics that are the alternative programming on various sports networks.
Of course, I will admit, “The Walking Dead” episode Sunday night had some shocking developments and outcomes. Though. admit. not the proper program to watch with our society in a crisis and keeping up with a television series did not change the routine.
And reacquaint with your loved ones. We do tend to get lost with our love and passion for sports.
The only sports programming, and limited, bowling tournaments and NASCAR. The NFL, the only sport in the offseason with their new labor agreement , trades, and free agency.
Well, that is the only bit of news to talk and write about as Major League Baseball facilities are closed and the 2020 season is pushed back further into late May or June.
As Mets GM Brodie Van Wagenen said, “This is bigger than baseball.” Indeed, baseball and all sports is not the priority now, The specifics of schedules, not just with baseball, will be determined. The economic impact, of course, will be huge.
The sport of boxing has come to a halt, and at a time when major fights have been put off the schedule. Top Rank, Premier Boxing Champions, and Matchroom Boxing, among the big three promotions, stand to lose a significant amount of revenue and at a standstill with new subscribers to their networks.
Talent, the fighters, many who depend on a purse, are basically at a standstill and out of work as boxing gyms have closed their doors. The streaming networks ESPN, DAZN, have to readjust when the sport resumes.
According to a source, FOX Sports and Showtime, a major part of the boxing schedule, will be forced to double up shows on weekends which is good for the boxing fan. But, too much saturation of the sport, at the same time, could work to a disadvantage when the sport resumes with the chaotic rescheduling of fight cards.
According to the promoters, all ticket orders will be refunded from the original point of purchase. And for fans, many with a economic loss due to the Coronavirus pandemic, paying for the network streams could become a financial burden.
“The health and safety of the boxers, fans, and those working the events are of utmost importance to us,” said Tom Brown, President of TGB promotions and lead promoter of the cancelled PBC shows.
He added, “We are all disappointed and as we get more information we will address future events.”
And this goes beyond the major sports leagues and promoters.. The little guy and personnel. They secure safety of venues, ticket sales personnel, concession workers, vendors, and more feeling the impact of a sports shutdown.
They, too, are taking a hit and realizing safety is first. Many are paid seasonal, and a six month baseball season does pay the bills. Some security personnel, on a full time basis, have been asked to stay home.
“It will be a hardship,” said a seasonal worker that is employed as one of many security personnel at Citi Field and Madison Square Garden. It is expected with federal funding they will recoup some of their losses.
Some also will be able to qualify for unemployment insurance as seasonal employees at the ballpark qualify.
Regardless, sports in the dark is having that type of impact.
Impact of sports programming also is being felt with broadcast talent and production personnel. They are employed as freelancers and sitting on the sidelines.
They, the freelance talent, will sustain a financial loss. So, basically the impact is all around the sports industry. We as a society are all feeling the impact and need to adjust.
In the days and weeks to come, we will try on these pages to provide readers as to how this impact of the Coronavirus is having an impact. The impact on all walks of life no matter what you do.
You see, it’s not just about sports going dark. It’s a nation, a city, and some points of the world all in that readjustment period of time.
We are in this together. BE SAFE!
Comment: Ring786@aol.com Twitter@Ring786 Facebook.com/Rich Mancuso
The Killer among us, lack of Moral ,common sense and responsible actions endanger us all on Long Island
An editorial by Neil Miller,publisher,The New York Extra/TheNYExtra.com
Ok guys, I like my drink and a dance as well as the next person, but it’s time to cut the crap and start acting like the adults we are. The lack of common sense actions of those on Long Island threatens the old and at risk in our population.
We have all read on line, and in conversations, “I’m going to live my life and to Hell with Corona Virus!” , it is a recipe for disaster for us all. We need to give up our entertainment pleasures for 2-3 weeks to, “flatten the curve”, so we all don’t become geometric carriers that infect our people.
By failing to do so, we jeopardize our mothers, fathers, the old and compromised in our community. And here’s the punch line, CAN YOU LIVE WITH YOURSELF, KNOWING YOUR A PARTNER IN MURDER? Long Island it’s YOUR turn to save a life. Stay out of the bars, the movies, theatres, clubs, restaurants or any large gathering place. Keep your children at home. Be safe and healthy, Neil Miller ,publisher, The New York Extra/TheNYExtra.com.