Home > Queens culture > Queens Culture – Part 1

Queens Culture – Part 1

Since I moved to Forest Hills years ago after living in Manhattan, it’s always been interesting to me how much of a distinct culture this neighborhood – and Queens overall – seem to have. I mean we are talking about just a river and a couple of miles, but in some respects you would think Forest Hills was an ocean away from Manhattan.
Growing up on Long Island I noticed this as well, but in a much more extreme way. Nassau County might actually have been an ocean away from the city, it was so very different.
Being a child of the Digital Age, one of the first things that struck me when I moved here, for instance, was how the local television channels you received from Time Warner were different. Strippers were replaced by religious programming, in some cases spewing rather vile intolerance. (That seems to have died down. Or at least I haven’t seen it in a while!) Of course there were many other differences, which I will touch on in future posts.
I still can’t quite understand why life here in Forest Hills is so different from that island just a 20 minute express train away. I do think that a big reason is that it is expected to be different by the powers that be, but it really doesn’t have to be.
To be continued….

  1. joanna
    July 2, 2010 at 5:25 PM

    “I still can’t quite understand why life here in Forest Hills is so different from that island just a 20 minute express train away.”–AND THAT IS A BAD THING BECAUSE?

    “I do think that a big reason is that it is expected to be different by the powers that be, but it really doesn’t have to be.”–DIFFERENT CAN BE A GOOD THING. THERE SHOULD BE CHOICES NOT HOMOGENY. HOMOGENY LEADS TO MONOTONY.

    BEFORE YOU READ MY FURTHER COMMENTS, SINCE YOU DON’T KNOW ME, LET ME MAKE IT PERFECTLY CLEAR THAT THEY ARE NOT MEANT TO BE MEAN SPIRITED OR CONFRONTATIONAL. AND, SINCE WE DON’T KNOW EACHOTHER, DON’T TAKE ANY OF IT PERSONALLY — JUST TAKE IT AND GO (YOU’LL SEE WHAT I MEAN, LOL).

    I’M A BORN AND BRED MANHATTANITE NOW LIVING IN FH FOR 38 YEARS. THERE IS URBAN AND THERE IS SUBURBAN, AND THERE IS THAT IN BETWEEN. THE QUAINT (OLD-WORLD, PICTURESQUE, CHARMING, APPEALING) QUALITY OF FH, HAS GIVEN WAY TO THE MODERN, CRUDE, EYESORE OF THE SEEDIER PARTS OF “THE CITY”, EVEN SEEDIER PARTS OF QUEENS ITSELF. IF THAT IS WHERE I’D PREFER TO LIVE, I WOULD HAVE STAYED PUT. I ALSO MISS THE TRANQUILITY AND CLEANLINESS OF THE NEIGHBORHOOD AMONG OTHER THINGS. FH USED TO HAVE CLASS NOW IT’S JUST CRASS.

    AND YOU MOVED HERE WHY? GO AWAY AND TAKE THE PUSHCARTS, GRAFFITI, LITTER AND ALL THE REST OF WHAT’S INFILTRATED AND INUNDATED THIS NEIGHBORHOOD WITH YOU WHERE IT WON’T BE NOTICED.

    I LOVE MANHATTAN AND VISITING THERE TO SHOP, TAKE IN A PLAY, GO TO A CLUB, MEET FRIENDS FOR DINNER, BUT I ALSO LOOK FORWARD TO RETURNING TO MY “DIFFERENT” CORNER OF THE CITY WHEN MY VISIT IS OVER. AND AFTER A LONG DAY AT WORK IN MANHATTAN I FEEL THE SAME WAY. DON’T TRY TO TAKE THAT AWAY FROM ME, SO MUCH OF IT HAS ALREADY BEEN LOST.

  2. July 2, 2010 at 5:35 PM

    Hi Joanna,
    Thanks for posting your opinion. It would have been interesting to see the neighborhood three decades ago! I value what you say and will take it to heart. You are right in that the City should not be one big urban sprawl. I am learning to appreciate the mix of Urban and Suburban here in Forest Hills. I think that distinguishes us from other places in the city.
    The one thing I differ with you on is that Forest Hills can benefit a lot more from some of the excellence that the rest of New York City has to offer especcially more, high quality restaurants – PLEASE GIVE US ONE GREAT DINER, FOR GOD’S SAKES!!! IS THAT TOO MUCH TO ASK??? I JUST WANT A DAMN SANDWICH!!

  3. July 2, 2010 at 5:57 PM

    Oh, and I forgot to add that according to my latest poll, myself and 43% of the voters would also like to see a new supermarket worthy of New York City. Not all of us have cars and can just drive off to the Stop & Shop. Why do we car-less have to put up with Key Food? Life is too damn short!

  4. joanna
    July 4, 2010 at 2:21 PM

    Hi drakenyc, Totally agree with your last 2 points.

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