from the other 63rd Drive, unseen to my right. Flanking the subway
entrance across the way is the notorious strip club Wiggles.
Rite Aid hogs the 63rd Drive corner in a spot that was Phelps
shoe store for all the years I was growing up. Rego Park used
to be King of the Shoe Stores, chains and mom-pop shops alike.
Today it seems dominated by electronics, eateries and drugstores,
the latter perhaps signifying an aging demographic, while the
former would tend to betray a large number of youth. I guess
all us middle aged shoe buyers just don't have the numbers anymore.
Far from being shut down, Wiggles actually expanded and now controls
storefronts on both sides of the subway entrance. The owner of
the newstand (yellow/green awning) doesn't mind, I'm sure. Anything
that brings traffic by him is good for newspaper, cigarette,
soda and lotto sales. The first 1950s era apartment house in
the background appears to have had major reconstructive surgery
on its roofline brickwork sometime in the recent past.
The view west from the other
63rd Drive, the one unseen to the right heading northeast. Westbound
boulevard traffic have significantly less time to pass the Drive/Road
crossing up ahead, because their green light time is shaved to
allow for eastbound left turners. Helped along in no small way
by the off ramp from the express lanes for folks wanting 63rd
Road or Junction Blvd., this block of local lanes are always
a bottle neck.
The south side from the north
side looking southeast. How apropo that the mattress superstore,
1-800-Mattress, sits next to flesh peddler Wiggles, a strip club
that has proved Teflon to numerous attempts at closing it down.
What is up with the penchant that some, like the couple in the
navy blue Chevy, have for hanging CD discs from their rear view
mirrors? Cops can actually ticket you for such view obstructions.
A bank of typical Queens apartment houses of late 1940s-early
1950s vintage line the background, all fronting on Saunders Street.
©2001, Jeff Saltzman. All