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Why we come here Jim Donnelly ArtfulCodger donnelly@mail.his.com I come here to learn. I was born in SI Hospital in 1934, and then uprooted and whisked kicking and screaming off to S. Calif. (which I hated and still hate) when I was 14. I was just beginning to explore outside my neighborhood on my own. I mostly stayed north of Forest Avenue, except when I was throwing the Advance at people's porches, and my east-west boundaries were Tompkinsville and Port Richmond.
I was starting to get my sea legs, too, but off the island I could find only Times Square, Penn Station, and Yankee Stadium. Bowling Green, if you want to count that. Lots of place names on Staten Island still do fantastic things to my imagination, though I never knew anything about them: Old Place, for instance. To me, Staten Island always presents itself on an autumn afternoon, and Benny Goodman is forever playing Autumn Nocturne on the sound track.

Jim Donnelly
Hyattsville, Maryland



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