I was born in Manhattan on 27th Street, between 8th and 9th Avenues. Not on the street, literally, but in St. Claire's Hospital. Family rumor has it, I was the first redhead born in St. Claire's in over 20 years and the nurses took me around the hospital to show me off. I guess that is my claim to Manhattan fame.
I went to P.S. 33, and I played in Chelsea Park. I use to play in the park with the homeless (or the bummy men and bummy ladies as I called them) who made the park their home. They all knew my dad, GG. He owned a bar; The Corner Bar, on 27th and 9th. He often fed the homeless and gave them a free drink, a few bucks, and they in turn played with me. But, in some regard, I guess you could say I was kinda-sorta a loner. I had quite a vivid imagination and my odd way of thinking kept me well occupied.
Growing up in Chelsea is where I spent the best and happiest moments of my life. The community watch was more than that, it was an extended family who embraced you and watched over you, and no one ever locked their doors. Living in Chelsea, if you dared to misbehave out on the streets, even blocks from your home, by the time you got home your mother was waiting for you, most likely, on the stoop or leaning out of the window because she heard of your misdeed through the grapevine and no excuse was ever good enough for misbehaving in public and embarrassing her like that in front of the neighbors.
I am SADIE's granddaughter, and fifth generation New Yorker. When I was a little kid, I told my mother I was going to one day write a book about her, her siblings, and their mother, SADIE. They, who I have written about, are all gone now, and I consider myself their ghost writer. Their story is, well, their story, in their own words. I just filled in some of the blanks. Where my writing may not inspire you, their story will. Especially, if you are of Irish descent, a true New Yorker, or one whose roots are through The Gateway to the New World or Ellis Island.
What? Ya' were spectin' proper English here? Well, this is my leisure time, my time to chill with you and be myself. Whadda' ya' 'spect from a girl whose roots are firmly planted in Chelsea, Hell's Kitchen, and its environs?
Where to find g.l. parker online
by g.l. parker
Approx. 60,720 words.
Published on November 8, 2011.
SADIE was a strikingly beautiful young woman whose sheer Irish beauty earned her the title of Belle of the West Side of Manhattan.
As a young girl, growing up on the mean streets of the city, she possessed a poise just as polished and genteel as those of the fine young ladies attending the Gibson Girl School on Fifth Avenue.
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