Though I favor fall, I have slowly become a supporter of summer and have noticed that this year’s version has made me particularly observant. I have reached a stage in my life where I feel compelled to address and analyze so many matters and while some of them are highly cerebral observations, others are just whimsical observations about what meets my eyes. Here are 10 of the latter category whose inspiration I owe to living in South Philly.
10) This must be a gorgeous time of year to own a restaurant with outdoor seating: I know restaurant owners go through a ton of ideas when contemplating their visions for space. To those fortunate enough to be able to offer outdoor seating, may you continue to reap the rewards of temperate days coupled with fine menu options.
9) I had never really taken much stock in flowers before this summer: I have always understood the sentimental value of flowers but have also felt sorry for recipients because of their very limited lifespan. Lately, thanks to some treks around different parts of South Philly, I have come to appreciate their beauty, no matter how fleeting, and commend those who keep wonderful domestic displays.
8) Weather often makes a great topic for discussions: We often hear that weather is what people talk about when they cannot find anything interesting to address. I have never rained on weather’s parade, even devoting my master’s degree culminating project to a set of poems concerning climate, and have concluded that we should never think that what comes from above is below us.
7) I love watching children as they enjoy carefree moments: Having taught children and being the father of a very active five-year-old boy, I have a soft spot for occasions when I can forget about the complexities of adulthood and watch youngsters touting toys, games, and other helpers as evidence of their fortune.
6) Strolls through South Philly can be quite therapeutic: Before I joined the South Philly Review in 2010, my walks through South Philly mainly involved visits to friends’ homes, restaurants, and the Sports Complex. Being on staff has granted me hundreds of chances to make stops to profile amazingly talented, dedicated, and compassionate residents. Coupling my initial journeys with my professional jaunts, I feel quite happy when the time comes to purchase new shoes.
5) Some people lack a verbal filter: I am definitely not a choirboy, but I can keep my mouth shut most of the time when not doing so could cause trouble. Some folks, though, many of whom I encounter on my aforementioned walks, strike me as truck drivers in training. I have heard that summer makes us all a little bit crazy (crazier, in some cases), and loose language seems to dovetail with loose clothing to make for an interesting three months.
4) Some people just do not care about what they wear: This entry is in no way a swipe at those who struggle to clothe themselves. It is simply commentary on people who don sweatpants when we are dealing with 95-degree days and those who think their execution of free will should override their concern for leaving anything to the imagination.
3) We are the kings and queens of festivals: OK, OK, a couple of our celebrations start in the late spring and the early fall, but summer reigns supreme as the time when South Philadelphians love to prove their cultural pride and community affiliations. I hereby petition the powers that be to think of more ways to unite us. Recent national events have proven, among many lessons offered, that there is indeed strength in numbers.
2) Pizza is truly the world’s best food: I definitely hope to try more foods as I become more aware of global delights, but NOTHING is ever going to top pizza. The more I try the finest South Philly pies, the more I thank God for giving someone the insight to say “I have this idea.”
1) Stoop sitters are an interesting lot: I grew up in Southwest Philly, not the best turf, as many could also say, so stoop sitting passed me by until I moved to South Philly in 2004. Acquiring a house two years later, I have enjoyed a decade of the activity and have conducted and observed many thought-provoking conversations through the exterior gathering places. For an engrossing scoop, visit a stoop. ■
Contact Editor Joseph Myers at email@example.com or ext. 124.