I “Become” Mayor of NYC
I was visiting my daughter in Connecticut this October. My son and his family had joined us for a few days, flying up from Florida. We all decided to go into Manhattan that Sunday of Columbus Day Weekend.
Our son had decided to visit his wife’s Uncles and was going to check into a hotel with his family and stay on until Monday. The plan was for him to go into the city about an hour before us, check into his hotel and then meet us at the Museum of Natural History. He and his family left for the city by train, we followed about an hour later.
My wife, I, our daughter and her family arrived at Grand Central Station, took the shuttle over to Times Square, and then the train to the Westside near the Museum. We walked to the Museum from the subway and just as we arrived at our destination we got a call from our son. He was delayed checking in and thought it would be too late for the Museum by the time he was finished at the hotel which was on the Upper Eastside. We agreed to meet at the Plaza Hotel, across from Central Park.
We got a two taxis and told the drivers where we wanted to go. The drivers told us they couldn’t take us to the Plaza because there was a parade that day on Fifth Avenue. We elected to be dropped off at Columbus Circle (59th and Broadway) and walk to the Plaza (59th and 5th).
We arrived at the Plaza and contacted our son. He was on the East side of Fifth Avenue, we were on the West. The parade, a Latin American Parade, not the Columbus Day Parade scheduled for Monday was in full force. It seemed endless, we couldn’t cross to each other.
We told our son to cross when he could and we would be in Central Park.
Meanwhile a friend of ours was trying to reach us in the city. He had driven in but was also on the East Side and could not cross no matter how far down he drove. Also he could not get parking. Eventually he gave up and went home.
After about 45 minutes, our son and his family finally joined us in the park. We walked around and played ball with the kids, and eventually decided to go to have dessert at Ellen’s Stardust Diner on 51st and Broadway. We were walking along the south side of Central Park and stopped for a light.
I was just standing there, minding my own business, when this man approached me.
“Mr Mayor, Mr Mayor, how nice to see you,” he exclaimed.
Now truthfully, I have been mistaken for Mayor Bloomberg before. Once in North Carolina at a Bar Mitzvah, and a couple of times in Florida.
Both Mayor Bloomberg and I have gray hair, approximately the same shape face and build, and are mildly alike in appearance.
I turned toward the man and took his outstretched hand in what I hoped was a “Mayoral Handshake”.
“Hi, how are you,” I replied.
“I’m great,” he said. “We all are visiting from Toronto”.
“Well, welcome to New York. It’s a beautiful day, I hope you are having a good time. Make sure you take in some of our great Museums and things to do. Especially go to the Museum of Natural History and the Metropolitan Museum of Art. There is so much to enjoy here,” I told him.
“Thanks Mr. Mayor, can I introduce you to my friends?”, he asked.
“Of Course,” I replied and went over to shake everyone’s hand.
They all seemed happy to meet “the Mayor”, and would probably retell this story to their friends when they returned home, how they had met the NYC Mayor (former) and he was so friendly to them.
As they were leaving, I gave them one last piece of advice: “Don’t drink any 24 oz sodas (a pet peeve of former Mayor Bloomberg), and if you have a problem you can call on Police Commissioner Frank Reagan (Tom Selleck from NYPD Blue) and tell him “I” sent you.”
With that they all walked off and we continued on our journey.
At this point my daughter-in-law, who thinks I am a little crazy to begin with, was looking at me as if I were a lot crazy.
“Why didn’t you tell them you weren’t the Mayor?” she said.
“What would be the fun of that? Besides, this is a great memory for them,” I replied.
She proceeded to tell her husband and children what I had done. She believes in keeping a low profile. She, like my wife, think I talk to everyone. Something they avoid.
We arrived at Ellen’s Stardust Diner and got a table. The waiters and waitresses are all aspiring actors and actresses in the musical comedy milieu. As a result, they all perform musically in the diner with solo songs.
The waitress came over and introduced herself and told us what roles she had played. Not wanting to be outdone, I introduced myself as the Mayor.
She had a sense of humor and proceeded to kid around with me, asking me about my policies (gun control and smaller sodas).
As we were talking one of the waiters had passed by and eavesdropped on our conversation. After our waitress left he approached me.
“Mr Mayor, how nice to see you, we were in a play together,” he stated.
“Really, which one?” I asked.
“Mary Poppins,” he said. “You did a cameo in it while I was in the cast.”
“Great to see you again,” I replied. “Hope you get a lot more parts”.
“Thank you Mr. Mayor, it’s so nice to see you here with your family”, he answered.
As he walked away, my daughter-in-law looked at me and just shook her head.