Wednesday, May 11, 2005

The flowers amongst the thorns

This morning's news isn't so great with the Appeals Court ruling on Cheney's energy (cabal) taskforce, Rumsfeld feeling more secure to finish 8 years as Secretary of War, and of course, things aren't quieting down in Iraq.

But there were two little gems... The first is the possibility of the UN moving temporarily to downtown Brooklyn as they renovate. The second was a posting on BoingBoing for free PDF's of graph paper.

About the first, for those who have tried, the UN isn't real easy to get to. And after a gaming party with some of Nancy's friends, it seems that many live in similarly difficult to access parts of 212... which doesn't seem like should be true, but certainly is. However, being in downtown Brooklyn (blocks from my abode) plots them down in the crossroads of Brooklyn, convenient to Fort Green, Carroll Gardens, Flatbush, Park Slope, Windsor Terrace....well you get the picture... a lot of the borough.

I think this is good for UN staff as well as Brooklyn residents, and perhaps all of New York. For the UN Staff, it makes interacting with locals more engrained into their lives, in particular Brooklynites. Unlike the UN Plaza, Downtown Brooklyn is teaming with up and coming as well as down and out, as well as a fair amount of ghetto retail. Staffers may delight in easier access to good local food for the masses--- Borough Hall Greenmarket, Cake Man Raven, Jacque Torres, Grimaldi's to name some of my favorites.

On the other side of the coin, Brooklynites and NYC as a whole benenfits from closer access to the UN, hopefully making a visit there much easier. I haven't gone a tour yet in my 6.5 years here, I'm certainly due. There are grumblings about increased congestion to accomodate the conferences, but I think the positive externalities would easily outweigh that nuisance.... besides, I take public transportation. By the way, it was interesting to read how archaic much of the UN HQ is, I'm sure Nancy will confirm much of the report.

Finally, about graph paper, many of us at Wagner enjoy taking notes on graph paper, especially for any stats or econ work where you might need a graph or chart as part of your notes. This is a must have.


Blogger Nancy Drew said...

Yes, I can confirm that the building is shockingly in need of repair. Imagine moving a million + documents, though! Sam, I would be happy to give you a behind-the-scenes tour... And, I'm game to work in Brooklyn as well.

Wednesday, 11 May, 2005  

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