It Might As Well Be Spring

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A family of bipeds and quadruped picnicking in the Park. Photo: JH.

Monday, March 9, 2020. Yesterday was a beautiful day in New York with lots of sunshine, the temps touching 60 and lots of neighbors out with their children, their dogs, the friends, family, strolling and to the park, by the river. The weatherman has predicted close to 70 degrees for today. It might as well be Spring — to borrow the title of a song Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II wrote for a movie musical “State Fair” in 1945. The song won the Oscar for Best Song that year.

The Corner of Gracie Square and East End Avenue at the entrance to Carl Schurz Park.
Sunday in the Sun on the promenade.
Tennis anyone?
The Gugg behind the witchhazel.
Lenten Roses, a sign that spring is near.
Another sign.

The message the national media is getting out is scary. Period. The news about the virus is having its effect on all of us, and in the daily life and energy of the city. The excessive fear and worry rambling around in our brains (and in the national media), is having a huge negative effect on a New Yorker’s daily life which is out and about in the city.

A friend who is inclined to optimism when the going gets rough sent me this link to a piece in yesterday’s New York Post about the matter.

“Really?” I thought to myself after being barraged otherwise. So I read it. It made a lot of sense and put a more realistic perspective on the whole matter. I quote the following from it to give you an idea of the topic. We don’t see numbers like those included herein. These provide common sense:

“China is the origin of the virus and still accounts for over 80 percent of cases and deaths. But its cases peaked and began declining more than a month ago, according to data presented by the Canadian epidemiologist who spearheaded the World Health Organization’s coronavirus mission to China. Fewer than 200 new cases are reported daily, down from a peak of 4,000.

“Subsequent countries will follow this same pattern, in what’s called Farr’s Law. First formulated in 1840 and ignored in every epidemic hysteria since, the law states that epidemics tend to rise and fall in a roughly symmetrical pattern or bell-shaped curve. AIDS, SARS, Ebola — they all followed that pattern. So does seasonal flu each year.”

Read the article. It applies to all of us.

Another dose of good news from the day.  Last night I went down to Restaurant Daniel for CityMealsOnWheels 23 Annual “Sunday Supper,” that the restaurant’s chef Daniel Boulud hosts every year. It’s a fundraiser, but it’s also a celebration: CityMeals prepares and delivers 2 million weekend, holiday and emergency meals to more than 18,000 homebound elderly New Yorkers. Since 1981, they’ve delivered more than 60 million meals across the five boroughs.

100% of public donations are used entirely for the preparation and delivery of meals. The deliveries are also an opportunity to check in, maybe ask a frail neighbor how she’s doing and reminding her that she’ll never have to worry where her next meal is coming from.

I’d been to this annual dinner before. The big treat obviously is the menu Daniel invited six “distinguished” (his word for them) chefs from New York, France and Singapore. These chefs prepared the menu. The “portions” are small, and the portions are delicious to magnificent. As is the wine.  They don’t leave you wanting more; they leave you satisfied with everything: the evening, the food, the wine and the hosts. I’ll give it to you in detail when I have a chance to copy it.

Outside Restaurant Daniel where Citymeals on Wheels was celebrating its 23rd Annual Sunday Supper!  Last night’s dinner raised enough money to provide over 128,000 meals for homebound elderly New Yorkers.

Last night’s dinner also honored Joe Cohen who is a Vice Chair of CityMeals board. Mr. Cohen is a much beloved and admired investment banker who made his first meal delivery in 1993. He said he was motivated by compassion for the older New Yorkers who rely on CityMeals. “It’s a very emotional connection,” he said. “Combatting isolation is just as important as delivering a nutritious meal that people want to eat.”

Last night also celebrated the birthday (#89) of Donald Tober who was one of the founders of Citymeals. NYSD readers are familiar with Mr. Tober and his wife Barbara who are one of the most dynamic couples on the social scene, and have been for a long time, and actively right up to last night. The cake and the song came out with the dessert. And a good time was had by all on the first full day of Daylight Savings Time 2020.

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