Too Cool To Fail

fonz
Don’t Let LI Do This

Too big to fail. Too small to fail. Too important to fail. Apparently there are several parameters in judging who should and shouldn’t fail. Who knew? Therefore, on behalf of Long Island, the Press would like to throw our hat into the bailout ring with the reason that we’re too cool to fail. Whoever is in charge of the bailout money let it be known that our nation’s cool factor is at stake if Long Island is allowed to sink into recessionary turmoil. 

If Congress needs any proof of this we suggest a whistle stop tour through Cleveland, Wisconsin, Sarasota, Flagstaff—wherever. Then we invite anyone involved in doling out bailout funds to come on a guided tour of Strong Island.

(Disclaimer –If it helps we would be more than happy to partner with sister destinations such as Memphis, La Jolla, and Denver.)

Claiming that Long Island is cool may seem odd considering for years our youth has portrayed Long Island as a cultural wasteland, which has contributed to our growing problem of brain drain. But the issue we have in selling ourselves as ‘cool’ is a geographic one. Because we lack a concentrated downtown area in which to gather our killer resources we have a more egalitarian approach to spreading our wealth of coolness. At the Press we have strategically aligned our staff and partners so that we may personally guide members of Congress through the island as seen through our eyes.

I’ll take Glen Cove. We’ll have breakfast at Henry’s, a vintage breakfast and luncheonette joint where Glen Covers gather and talk politics. I’ll even convince Joe to give you a tour of the basement where he makes the most incredible chocolate that brings all of Long Island together for Valentine’s Day and Easter. Hopefully you can make it on a Sunday so I can take you to First Baptist to experience the brilliance and inspiration of Pastor Roger Williams. After that we’ll meander through the city and check out the old mansions from the turn of the last century where billionaires played. Their mansions have been preserved and maintained by businesses like the Webb Institute of Naval Architecture, Glen Cove Mansion and Conference Center and Glengariff Nursing Home.  There are several stops to make along the way (including a quick game of bocce in the Orchard) but undoubtedly we’ll finish the night with Gus and Enzo at La Ginestra laughing and drinking their signature drink, the Errol Flynn.

The Press staffers come from all over the island so you’ll be in good hands once you leave Glen Cove. Along the way you’ll hit businesses like All American Burger in Massapequa, Whirling Disk, the Rockabilly Barbershop and Willis Hobbies. You’ll spin around on the carousel in Greenport, take flight with our friend “Fresh” at Sky Dive Long Island, catch some rays at Jones Beach and witness Broadway caliber performances at the John W. Engeman Theater in Northport. You can watch a horror flick with Dylan at the Cinema Arts Centre, tour Borghese Vineyards with an actual Princess, and our columnist Mike Martino will take you deep sea fishing off Montauk. At some point I’ll talk my fellow publisher Jerry of the East Hampton Independent into treating you to a world class meal at his East Hampton restaurant. 

The bottom line is that we all have these stories. In every village within every town, in either county.  Long Islanders may lament our economic situation and be slightly wary of outsiders but when pressed we’ll reveal the magic that is this island of ours. Long Island is the Fonz of this Happy Days nation. Let’s bang on the jukebox and get this island restarted before we jump the shark.

If you would like to sign up to become a virtual tour guide in our kioli effort “Too Cool To Fail” log onto kioli.org, enter the “Shout Outs” section in the café and post something, someone or somewhere you think is cool about LI.

Author: Jed Morey

Jed Morey is the publisher of the Long Island Press, LI's Cultural Arts and Investigative News Journal. The Press has a monthly circulation of 100,000, and www.longislandpress.com, welcomes more than 500,000 unique visitors every month. He serves on the board of the Holocaust Memorial and Tolerance Center in Nassau County, as well as the President's Council of Big Brothers and Big Sisters of Long Island. In addition to the contributions on this blog, Morey authors a column for the Long Island Press titled "Off The Reservation" and is a staunch advocate for Indian rights. The column was voted Best Column in New York by the NY Press Association in 2010 and third overall in the nation among alternative publications by the Association of Alternative Weeklies in 2012. Morey lives in Glen Cove with his wife, Eden White, and their two daughters.

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