BY JESSIE MORGAN-OWENS
This is my third post in a row to start out by reading the Sunday paper, but today I’ve got a little story we shot for the New York Times Magazine: “Hipster Replacement” (ha!), a map of the newest old scene in Brooklyn. (You can find it on page 110 of the Men’s Fashion special issue of today’s magazine.)
Allow me to introduce “B.E.L.T.” to the readers of AHNY. The acronym stands for “below the elevated train” (the J/M/Z) in South Williamsburg. The neighborhood was “nameless” until the New York Times, the writer Cator Sparks, and Andy from Yoko Devereaux came along. We weren’t told what they were going to call the story or the neighborhood when they assigned us the piece for fear we might accidentally leak it or have it beaten out of us with vintage Air Jordans.
Frenchie of Frenchie’s Gym on 303 Broadway, a 67-year old Puerto Rican body builder, deserves a story in the Times all his own. You can see the old school, no nonsense, no a/c gym from the B.Q.E. He’s been in there coaching and cajoling giant young men from the neighborhood to “Do it with Love!” since 1976.
Maybe you need to spend an afternoon with the “community organizers” down at Frenchie’s, Mr. Rudy Giuliani.
Follow this link to an online version of the Magazine piece, featuring an interactive map of B.E.L.T.
That is a great article about the neighborhood. Frenchie is a one of a kind in the B.E.L.T. And his gym is our version of Cheers. Thanks for recognizing.