About three weeks ago, I finally walked by the Staten Island Museum when it was open and stopped to ask what day they had a “pay what you want day” which many of the museums have in the city. The lady at the desk who I assume was also selling the tickets or taking the entrance fee, said they had no such thing. Obviously that is wrong because both their brochures and website say that on Tuesday there is a sneak peek free entry for a couple hours.
Then, when I said I was hoping to bring my grandchildren to see the Staten Island Museum, the lady at the desk asked me how old they are. When I told her that they are three and six years old, she said that there wasn’t anything in the museum for them and that it wouldn’t interest them. Well, from where I was standing, I could see a huge ship’s steering wheel with its spoke handles hanging on the wall and had read about the cicada collection housed there. I told the woman not to tell my granddaughters that because we had already been talking about the cicada collection and looking at things like they have in the museum on Pinterest. It was hard to imagine what that lady was trying to tell me other than that she didn’t want me and my grandchildren coming to see that museum at all.
The fact is, she did tell me to walk another mile around the end of the island and find the children’s museum as something that might be better for us. Maybe she is right – we should walk the 45 minutes to the Staten Island Museum and then walk through the much scarier areas around the end of the island to find the other museum after walking another 25 minutes to do it. But, most of all – I was appalled at the attitude of this lady representing the museum, whether she was a volunteer or paid employee. How could she not know when there is a day to bring people without the fee so that many people who could not otherwise see the collection can have access to it? Why would I ever volunteer to help at a place who would treat anyone the way I was treated that day?
From their website and brochures as of 04-04-13:
Sneak Peek Tuesdays Free admission 12-2pm
(found as the last line under Hours and Admissions in the middle column near the bottom third of the entire page – however, children under 12 are free admission anytime.)
P>S> will come back and add some photos in a little bit after I re-size some for the post. (And, add the link for the SI Museum with the times on Tuesdays to go see it for free – because I think everybody in America should just go every Tuesday during those hours and see it with their children of whatever ages just to spite that lady who told me there was no such day for that museum and that it isn’t appropriate for children.)
Oh by the way – this is the year of the Cicada awakening in New York City including Staten Island – it is a once every seventeen year thing and this is that year. I’ll find the article about it and post it here for anyone who is interested.
Read some about it here – (and believe it or not, even three year old and six year old girls think cicadas are very, very nifty.)
They’re Baaack! Return of the 17-year Cicadas
February 15, 2013 – Spring 2014
See numerous cicada specimens from the Museum’s extensive collection, sculpture inspired by the Cicada, new work by syndicated cartoonist Tayor Jones, a timeline of past emergences linked to historic events, a time-lapse video of emerging cicadas, a hands on video microscope, a Google map showing where cicadas are emerging, big-bug sci-fi fun, unusual Cicada ephemera and facts from around the globe, activities for kids and more.
Supported in part by:
Capital One Bank, Deutsche Bank, Time Warner Cable and NYC Department of Cultural Affairs.
Location: Staten Island Museum, 75 Stuyvesant Place
New York International Auto Show – Javits Center – on Tuesday, April 3, 2013
Show runs from March 29 – April 7 (although the press days were March 27 and 28)
So, instead of spending any effort, time or money to go see the Staten Island Museum, as much as I still want to see their collection and share it with my granddaughters (where else will they get to see a ship’s wheel in its real size or get to see all the varieties of cicadas in one place?) – we spent a good little bit to go to the New York International Auto Show. As much of a disappointment that the show may have been in many ways, it was fun for a three-year old little girl who got to sit in many of the cars and climb on the Can-Am vehicles. She loved seeing the engines in cases, the bright wonderful race cars on display and the cars of many kinds there.
For me, if they had been a bit more representative of the auto industry today – it would have been far more interesting. I would have loved to have seen the many prototype and concept cars in one place like those that I can see online and it would have been great to see all the EV and Hybrid cars on display in a hall together. As it was, the EV Pavilion turned out to be riding in a very, very small oval with a driver explaining the car’s features – which was great with the Mitsubishi driver but not so much with the Nissan Leaf driver. We gave up after two rides in them, although there wasn’t a line to ride in them, the small, small oval was extremely nauseating especially in the hands of the second driver in the Leaf. There is plenty of space that could have been used to make a nicer experience as well as having a full array of the electric and hybrid vehicles displayed together somewhere which they didn’t bother to do.
The other thing I missed that I wish had been there was something Tokyo Drift focused. There was nothing – not the performance enhancing equipment manufacturers, not the nifty detailing and customizing stuff – nothing. There were no performance based displays – no performance based skilled driver performances either for that matter. I thought all auto shows of any significance would have things like that including something about autocross and its representatives. But, no.
It is as if the love of driving and the love of the massive wonders of engineering were given a much smaller place in this show although one car was shown in a cut-away which was absolutely fascinating and wonderful. My daughter was able to go on the Jeep ride along but any child younger than about twelve couldn’t ride along, including my three-year old granddaughter – much to her horror. She didn’t like being told she was “too short” to ride and that happened on one of the simulator race exhibits too. If a little more thought had been given to these exhibits – something to attract the children that they could enjoy while their Mama was riding in a Jeep or racing on the Pirelli simulator would have gone a long way to impress me.
Most of the information available about the cars and vehicles had to be sought out to find it – at many of the displays, they may as well have not had anybody there at all. The people hired to stand around had no real answers about the vehicles and were most of the time in the way of taking good photos especially where the cars were not made available to touch or get close. It seemed like it was more of a time for gossiping or phone or texting to most of the people standing at the display areas – particularly strange that only once in the entire show did I get to see the engine compartment open because someone had asked to see it. None of the displays hosted any of their brands with the engine compartment open or any other way to see it on at least one somewhere in the display, although a few had some of the engine choices on display in cases with an extremely brief explanation or none at all.
Even the one interesting accessory display which the representative was showing my daughter, the person did not know that the mirror drop down component she was showing actually makes hands-free phone calls until I came around from the other side of the display after playing with it and showed her and my daughter that it does that. So, it does show that by playing with it a few minutes – well, it took me about two minutes – how many people who ever saw that at the show ever found that out about it? That one feature could save more lives than just about anything on it.
The other missing thing at the show was any real emphasis on safety and driving which I always expect to be there. It was set up with a focus more like any auto showroom displaying a dealership’s cars for sale. Most of the more exotic brands (to America) didn’t have any access to their cars at all and the smallest displays of all – despite the interest for their products and most people’s desire to know more about them. It doesn’t matter that they won’t let people touch the expensive European cars – it matters that they were so poorly represented, not positioned where good views of them were available and no other real information about them – not even a picture of the engines under the hood. It was obscene. Maybe I’ll never own one, but that one day someone is deciding – it also won’t be any information coming from me to them about the safety features, nifty performance enhancements, special motor and transmission performance elements or in fact, anything else. I could probably tell them they might get leather seats if they want that – but I would likely have been more useful, if the exhibits had been better.
There was no Tesla – there were no hubless motorcycles with the new frame designs, no prototypes of the phenomenal kinds I’ve seen online, no vendors in the accessories section which seemed to represent any of the vast number of automotive related enhancements – performance or otherwise – not autocross things – no electric vehicle display worthy of anyone’s intelligence although the ride along was available – which was mind-numbingly too short and sickeningly too oval to be so short. Nothing indicated which Can-Am vehicles could be used on any road or were strictly off-road which would have been nice to have while looking right at them.
And, there was no Ducati, no Alfa Romeo, didn’t see Ferrari there but I’ve heard they make cars. And, it is beyond me why anyone would believe that hoisting a piece of track with a car on it sideways at an angle represents a knowledge based explanation visually or otherwise about the performance of that damn car they have mounted that way. It was crammed in so close to other cars that people were literally backed into the other models to even go around it. I don’t get it – it doesn’t make sense.
Do other people attending the show not want to know anything about these cars or even to get a chance to see under the hood? Do they want to see only a few dealerships models from predominantly the same old same old same looking models and brands – just to sit down in the drivers’ seat to get their picture taken in it?
Is there no other responsibility on the part of our automakers and automotive industry players to offer any excitement about what these new innovations are offering us, both now and in the near future? Can they really not display auto design and engineering with a little more honor and celebration of it rather than leaving our children to guess what happens to make these cars move and to never understand what has gone into creating them as they see it riding down the street?
There was also not one thing about not texting while driving – which seems like a good time to show that the automotive industry is actually concerned for our safety as drivers and participants with their vehicles. It should be important – if driving the damn thing safely isn’t important, then what would be the point.
More nifty car information – models, makes, makers, industry info, auto show details Frankfurt
And definitely check out this entry –
ICONA VULCANO: THE BEAUTY AND THE BEAST COME TOGETHER
A one-off supersports car, coachbuilt in Italy and designed by Icona, the Italian design house based in Shanghai
Italy, 21 March 2013: Icona reveals the first teaser of the Icona Vulcano (iconavulcano.com). This new supercar will be revealed at the Shanghai Auto Show next April.
by French designer Samuel Chaffart
The Shanghai Auto Show will be April 20, 2013
The New York International Auto Show runs for a few more days including the weekend with an additional special exhibit of exotic and custom autos shown only during this second half of the show. It doesn’t cost extra and promises to be very nifty, but don’t hold me to that – apparently a number of special autos were brought in just for the press on Wed and Thurs of last week and then removed before the public was allowed to see anything. That seems so wrong and inexcusable really – maybe I’ll get to a real auto show in Japan or Germany next time where they still innovate and dream and honor those engineering and design accomplishments of automobiles. Oh well.
65th International Motor Show
September 12 – 22, 2013
A couple more photos from the NYC Auto Show –
And then I found this page on the NYC Intl Auto Show Website –
It has two choices – a Trivia Contest that is closed now (3 days before the end of the show) and this one for women who the Greater NYC Auto Dealers whose members served as the committee to give the show its focus and offerings as I found them this year – (maybe they are right and American women simply go to car shows to find out which ones will match their handbags – or use that as a decision basis when choosing an automobile to own someday – bizarre but they would know better about that than I would) –
In this contest, you are supposed to sit at home and re-post, tweet and re-pin the photos of the contest sponsor’s purses wherever they have sat them in the front seat of a car at the show to see how it looks – I’m all for creativity, but this is so far from it that there are few words appropriate to describe it without expressing how many assumptions it makes about women in general. But, maybe that is much like the comments people added to this contest – things about the gear-head guy and his tag-along wife or girlfriend – or this one – “I hope the bag matches the car, comes in handy for my wife.” (also found there.)
The New York Auto Show Handbag Challenge – gets $200 and four tickets to the show (maybe to next year’s show, it doesn’t say – but maybe to this one after it is already over, who knows) –
Join us as we check out all the best car interiors and how they compliment our totes, hobos and satchels, and which cars have the best nooks, hooks and consoles to hold our handbags safely while we drive.
By the way, we didn’t see everything in this show – but I was shocked to see the limited range of colors included across the entire show for the exhibited cars – and NO pink ones. At least a hot pink Mini Cooper or something would’ve been nice to see – or better yet, a hot pink Lamborghini . . .
Maybe next time.