May 7, 2010 |
WHEN THOMAS AND BETTY MAPP came home to a house rebuilt by an incompetent, or just plain crooked, contractor in the Osage Avenue neighborhood destroyed in the MOVE debacle, they found cedar siding sliding off the walls and fire spitting out of electrical outlets. But theirs was only one of the many horror stories told by the residents of the once-thriving and close-knit neighborhood near Cobbs Creek Park in West Philadelphia, destroyed in the MOVE confrontation. Insult was added to injury when the city hired a company headed by Ernest A. Edwards Jr. and his partner, Oscar Harris, to rebuild the 61 homes in the 6200 blocks of Osage Avenue and Pine Street.
April 18, 2010 |
When Scott and Janet Turner pull over at a rest stop and climb off their 2000 Honda Goldwing motorcycle, they're surprised by the looks and remarks they get. "We meet new people all the time," Scott says, "from fellow travelers to local couples, to restaurant owners and more. And the typical response? " 'You're doing that? More power to you!' " Their ages may have something to do with it, though that hasn't stopped Scott, 69, and Janet, 80, from crossing the country on their Honda four times in the last decade.
August 13, 2009 |
No one's waiting at the Cold Spring Railroad Station just now, and there are no guests at the Cold Spring Hotel. In fact, there hasn't been a train through in more than 100 years. Only the hotel's walls and foundation remain, and the station was leveled 20 years ago by vandals. This is a real, live ghost town - one of several in Stony Creek Valley, a remarkable 19-mile-long strip of wilderness without a single inhabitant or public road that lies just 90 bird-miles from Philadelphia City Hall and within two hours' drive of half of Pennsylvania's 12 million inhabitants.
October 3, 2008
This distinctive documentary follows Hurricane Katrina survivors Scott Roberts and Kimberly Rivers Roberts, residents of New Orleans' Ninth Ward. Mixing camcorder and hand-held footage with news clips, the film lays bare the unthinkable human toll the 2005 storm took on those too poor or otherwise unable to evacuate the city. The film follows the couple through the storm, huddling in an attic without electricity, and in the months afterward as they become FEMA refugees.
September 19, 2008 |
Ghost movies, it seems, are nearly as old as ghosts themselves. But Ghost Town , despite being set in modern-day New York, feels downright ancient. Ostensibly a comedy, but one in which the (normally) brilliantly funny Ricky Gervais is more dull than he is droll, Ghost Town takes a familiar formula and goes nowhere with it. Gervais, affectless and aloof, is Bertram Pincus, a socially challenged Fifth Avenue dentist with a selfish, cynical view of the world. But when he awakens in a hospital room - having been anesthetized for a colonoscopy - Pincus suddenly finds that he can see, and communicate with, the dead.
September 18, 2008 |
I would have bet that Hollywood would botch the job of finding the right project for offbeat Brit comic Ricky Gervais, but "Ghost Town" proved me wrong. It's a consistently funny comedy that exactly captures Gervais' gift for playing self-centered jerks with a barely visible softer side (if you get a chance to see him in the BBC import "Extras," take it). Gervais plays Bertram Pincus, a misanthropic Manhattan dentist. He gives most people - patients and colleagues included - a look that says "drop dead," which he comes to regret, because it turns out that dead people are even more irksome than the living.
August 21, 2006
Below are readers' responses to a "Community Voices" invitation to discuss the impact of illegal immigration on them, and their reactions to articles on a Riverside ordinance that holds businesses and landlords liable for dealing with illegal immigrants. A second installment of letters on this topic will be published tomorrow. As a resident of Riverside I applaud Mayor Charles Hilton's stand on illegal immigration. The town is becoming overcrowded. Ronaldo Empke (Commentary, Aug. 2)
August 2, 2006 |
What happened to the people of Riverside? Did they lose their minds? Did they mentally move to another country? Because as far as I know, this little township is still part of the Greatest Nation in the World, among whose proud citizens are immigrants from around the world. Did Riverside's entire population forget about the immigrant blood running through its veins? Or did that blood go through their cold hearts and freeze their brains? Instead of trying to solve the problem of illegal immigration with existing codes and laws, Riverside's people decided to come up with a new ordinance - a new order - that just proves their minds are surrounded by a wall of ignorance and lack of humanism.
July 23, 2006 |
The Hezbollah rocket fire was severe, with more than 100 fired in one day last week into northern Israel, including this Mediterranean seaside town about six miles south of the Lebanese border. A day earlier, a Katyusha strike had killed a man. Now plumes of smoke were rising from two fresh bombardments here. "There - a-a-and - there," said Almog Cohen, 25, an Israeli military spotter on the roof of Nahariya's seven-story city hall. He used binoculars to pick out the hits and radioed their position to his commander.
August 31, 2005 |
From the lawn of her Beverly home, Gail Cook makes a dramatic sweep of her arm in the direction of Neshaminy State Park across the Delaware River, toward the boats gliding on the water, and finally to mansions lining the riverbank. "It's so peaceful, isn't it?" the Beverly councilwoman asked. "This town stood still and was becoming a ghost town. All these little towns were forgotten about. " But now, she said, "something is going on along the waterfront. If you come back in three to five years, there are going to be remarkable changes.