Posts Tagged ‘NYC

I was interviewed a few weeks ago by Fitsmi.com a website devoted to helping Teen girls overcome issues with Obesity. I am an advocate for healthy eating in areas that are on the low-end of the socioeconomic totem pole. Unfortunately the South Bronx is on the top of that list check out the interview here http://www.fitsmi.com/moms/our-blogs/mastermind-monday/2010/04/30/the-south-bronx-diet-stacked-against-you/ there is a lot of work to be done.  The culture of this area needs to change and one of the major ways we can do that is by educating people. The article was also selected as an Editor’s Pick on Open.Salon.com http://open.salon.com/blog/divamomnyc/2010/05/03/the_south_bronx_diet_stacked_against_you

Happy Living,



Today I have been captivated by the Goldman Sachs hearings. As I type this the echo of the hearings are streaming via CNN and  echo in the background. As a parent of a child in Public School, an employee in Education and a Taxpayer I must admit I am mortified and disgusted. Not for the reasons you may think. The fact that some of these stockbrokers and CEO’s can admit they have no regret about their actions, the fact they collected $9 million dollar bonuses as people lost their homes and jobs are a given. These are not the things that trouble me, what troubles me are the similarities between the structure, bureaucracy, and downfall of the financial system and the Education System. Replace CEO’s with Principals, Replace Brokers with Teachers/Parents, Replace Profits and Losses with Students. See why I’m worried? The thing that worries me the most is the lack of accountability. I have always likened raising a child to having stock depending on how much you invest in it and nurture it the better the return will be. Who is to blame when our kids don’t learn? How is it acceptable that Principals profit and earn big bonuses when their schools are failing? You have schools that are boasting about sending kids to community college.. Really? Is that all we can offer our kids? What does that say about why they are not competitive, why they have no interest in school.? Why their SAT scores are in the toilet? How can we expect our kids to succeed when we put people in charge of their education to ensure they fail? Where is the moral and ethical responsibility? Where and how do we begin to bring reform to our children’s schools and take responsibility for their Education? Do you really know your child’s teacher or principal? As the chairman repeatedly accused the Goldman Sachs CEO’s of doing was selling “junk”. To a certain degree that’s how I feel about the quality of education in some schools. You have teachers that are just working to earn Tenure and they know they are doing a crappy job. You have principals that allow this, they need to protect themselves so they can also get tenure and bonuses. It’s not fair.  If you are a taxpayer in NYC you have a right to know what teachers, principals and administrators earn at your child’s expense. Here is a site where you can check http://www.seethroughny.net/Payrolls/EmployeeSearch/tabid/69/Default.aspx

Here is another site to get an inside look in NYC schools http://gothamschools.org/ and speak with other parents a great source of information is http://www.edwize.org/

Also remember you have a right to know who is teaching your child, stop by their schools unannounced, check on them in classes, observe what goes on in the halls, talk to your children. Don’t always take the teachers word. We are all accountable and we all have a responsibility to the future of America. There will be more to come on this topic. I encourage people to comment especially from other states, I can only attest to some of the goings on in NYC.


bitching about Door Man strikes in their building http://www.nytimes.com/2010/04/19/nyregion/19strike.html The title of the article says “New Yorkers Brace for Doorman Strike”. I am a New Yorker and to be frank I am not bracing for shit. This part of the New York Lifestyle affects me in no way whatsoever. I have lived in New York my entire life and like most I think it’s a great city, I think it’s a great place to vacation. To live here is another story. You have average rents for studio apartments starting at $1,000 a month in a semi decent neighborhood,crime is ridiculous, jobs are scarce and there are just too many people here. As a single mom its hard enough trying to pay rent my last apartment in the ass of the Bronx was $1,200 a month not including utilities, food etc. I now live in Brooklyn in a not so normal living situation which may be changing in the next few weeks. I work for the Dept of Education and my salary is about $37,000 a year. After deductions I take home about $1,500 a month. That is barely enough to support myself as a single person yet to also have a teenager. But I do it. Thats the one thing NY has taught me and that is how to survive and always have a backup plan. I am on the fence now about leaving the state because I can’t afford to live here. Depending on some information that should come in the next few weeks I will have to decide where to move to next in NY or leave the state completely. Here was my response to the NY article “As a Native New Yorker who works in Education and makes only $37,000 a year and sending a kid to Private School. I have been more than creative in trying to find a decent place to live in NY. $40,000 is nothing in NYC to live on. The opening paragraph states how much these people are needed. If you have the money to pay for convenience than Pay IT! Some of us don’t have the luxury, means or to be frank the desire. Only in NY could you make $40,000 a year and be poor!. I long for the days when I see my son through HS/College and I can take myself around the world and open up doors for those less fortunate!” I mean every word of this statement I would love nothing more to drop everything fit what I could in a backpack and travel the world helping children, and people who will never know such privileges of having a doorman, a place to sleep that is their own, or even a book or pair of shoes. So call me bitter, jealous, envious I could care less what I am is a human being who has spent my life sacrificing for others because that’s what makes me feel good and instilling those same values in my son. With all of the natural disasters going on in this world, and people having no respect for life, nature, the planet we need to pick our battles and choose wisely. So these doormen deserve a living wage and if that means they have to strike to get it I hope they do it! In New York it’s an everyday occurence of people struggling for basic necessities. The fact that people are actually shrieking at the thought of opening their own doors, maybe having to go to the post office to pick up their packages, or greeting their own children after school doesn’t stir up one bit of empathy from me. I pick up my own packages, I take my kid to school, I raise my own child and have done it for the last 15 years, I do my laundry, I grocery shop, I bathe myself, I open my own doors, I swipe my own Metrocard, I feed myself, I cook for myself, I dress myself, I think you get the point. I think the part that bothers me the most is people who have never been to NY will get the impression this is all our story and it’s not. NY is a hard place to live, love and earn a living. Don’t believe the hype!


Yesterday I had to go to the cardiologist because I have been having some breathing issues and pains. I went through a routine exam and also an EKG, Stress Test and Sonogram. The results of the Sonogram showed that my heart is pumping normally and is strong it was kind of cool to see my heart on the screen. The stress test was a little more intense and after a few minutes on the treadmill I needed to stop because I was out of breath. My results were normal with this as well! During the EKG there were some irregularities so they took some blood to screen for other issues and I have to wear a heart monitor for a week. That should be interesting. I joke with my son all the time that NY will kill you slowly. We are always in a rush, everything is urgent, too many people, things are so expensive you are constantly in a situation where those things you need may have to wait sometimes food is included. It is a very beautiful city we have parks, trees, access to everything but it comes with a heavy price tag. Not only will NY drain your wallet it will also drain your body. I will keep you guys posted on my condition and also my progress of possibly leaving the Big Apple for good.

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