Archive for the Interviews Category

It Doesn’t Match

Sunday, November 16th, 2008

“I like being able to, in the spring or the summer, one of the things I like doing the most is walking from Fort Greene or Clinton Hill all the way to the other side to Crown Heights, Prospect Heights, Park Slope. To see the beautiful architecture and the design and to see the way in which each neighborhood sort of blends into the next into the next….And I just see the development that is happening all over Brooklyn, that it doesn’t match the beauty that already exists. And I just wonder in fifty years if America is going to be able to see the wonder and the beauty of what we created, instead of this cardboard cut-out bullshit that is passed off for living. So am I a fan of the arena? No.” – Former Fort Greene Resident

Mom is Worried about her Kids

Saturday, November 15th, 2008

“Now I look around and my son doesn’t necessarily know the people next door cause we don’t talk to them. People are moving in and out so much that you don’t really wanna get to know them because you don’t know what they’re about. I don’t want my son to talk to any little kid because one, I’m afraid he’s gonna get attached to them and they’re gonna move away and two, I don’t know what their parents are like.” – Worried Mother

The Organizers Most Important Tool

Saturday, November 15th, 2008

Protest Signs in Lucy Koteen's Basement

“Clipboards are one of the most important tools for community organizing. Because you’re always asking people to sign things.”  – Community Organizer

Architecture is Ethical

Saturday, November 15th, 2008

“I mean buildings are ethical finally. The amassing of power, the amassing of money, the kind of deals that you make, the exclusion of other people to make those deals, the blocking of light – that’s ethical. That’s architecture. Architecture is ethical.”

“Brooklyn keeps wanting to be legitimized somehow. And I understand that…But you know a lot of us are [here] – to be the ‘not manhattan’ – a lot of us are happy to be the ‘not manhattan’”

- Architecture enthusiast


Saturday, November 15th, 2008

“You want my stories? You gots to come up off that cash. . .  I’m not giving up my life for free. . . I gots lots of stories too. Lots. I’ve been living here all my life…. That’s over  fifty years. Over fifty years of stories. Nah. Like I said, you gotta pay me. You telling me you ain’t got no monay? You got money. . .Not-for-profit? What that mean? You still got a producer. Producers got money. , , How I’m gonna give you my life for free? …I got fifty-six years a stories. But, I ain’t no chump. Nah, I don’t need no dollar. I don’t need two dollars. Like I said, I need lots of dollars. Like I said, COME UP OFF THAT CASH! I don’t want coffee or lunch. See here?  Look, look, I got my own food. Swanson Frozen TV dinner, that’s right. I get my own coffee and my own food. I need money. How I’m gonna give you my life for free, then you up there and people see you telling MY stories and they like it, and they tell somebody else, and they like it, next thing you know, you up there at the Oscars sitting with Will Smith and Jada Pinkett and I’m still sitting here eating Swanson TV dinner, watching you winning a Oscar on TV for my story?? You got a grant. It say you sponsored by a grant. So you got that grant money. I want some-a that grant money. I’m not saying I want a million dollars. I’m not saying that. Like I said, I want something. Few hundred dollars.  Coupla hunnerd dollars. I got sixty years a stories. Sixty years. I seen this neighborhood go from white, to black, to everything, and now back to white again. Sixty something years of stories I got. But I ain’t giving them away for free. Like I said, come up off that cash.” – Someone Who Needs Some Cash

Our presentation at the Brooklyn Lyceum may not win us an Oscar or even get us a seat between Will and Mrs. Pinkett Smith at the Oscars but it will stir up the hood.

(NOTE: The gentleman pictured did not offer the quote.  He is a “street performer” who has been spotted around Brooklyn)