New York, 40 years after the premiere of ‘Ghostbusters’

New York, 40 years after the premiere of ‘Ghostbusters’
New York, 40 years after the premiere of ‘Ghostbusters’

Traveling to New York is like being in a movie. The phrase is a commonplace. But now, rereading the messages that came to me after talking about the Big Apple in the newsletter Recommended AMI’m sure that sentence falls short. Being in New York is more than that. Being in New York is transforming data into sensations.

Among the facts that will not be in a tourist guide, I can list: the iconic settings of Manhattan, from Central Park to the Empire State Building, were recorded in more than 350 films and television series. The atmosphere of the city makes us constantly look at the sky: there are more than 400 skyscrapers and tall buildings.

The sirens are a classic, if the fire department’s sirens don’t sound there is an ambulance going around. How often is there a fire in Manhattan? The bustle is permanent. There are more than 13,000 yellow taxis, 1,600 pizzerias, 423 subway stations, 8.4 million inhabitants, 2,000 cultural and arts centers, including the acclaimed Broadway theaters, where more than 40 plays are performed simultaneously.

A view of New York. REUTERS/Eduardo Munoz

Not all theaters are on Broadway Street, the street is a 53-kilometer diagonal that crosses entire Manhattan, from the Financial District through Harlem and the Bronx until reaching Westchester County. The area of ​​theaters around Times Square is called Broadway. In Argentina we would say that that is the microcenter.

The first night, at the end of the day, I felt throughout my body the overstimulation of the marquees, the lights, the frenetic pace of the street, the oily and crunchy flavor of the pizzas, the chewiness of Doctor Pepper, the diversity and the Latin accent that is increasingly penetrating. But there is something else. Being in New York is a sensory experience that made me feel like a local thousands of miles away. The comfortable feeling of being at home.

A fan dressed in a Phantom costume before the final performance of The Phantom of the Opera on Broadway. REUTERS/Caitlin Ochs

Walking through Times Square was like being in the pedestrianized Lavalle in Buenos Aires in the 1980s. There I see myself and feel my dad’s robust hand. I walk slowly enough so as not to collide with pedestrians in front, I walk fast enough so that those coming from behind do not step on my heels. It is a feeling of security among the crowd. I look up and my vision is lost in the horizon illuminated with reds, greens, lights that turn on, lights that go off. I look at my mother who is looking at the stained glass windows.

The roasting smell of the grills mixes with the sweet aroma of popcorn and caramelized sugar, unmatched burnt sugar with street style. But now I’m far away in space, far away in time in another city that never sleeps, or so they say. Now I am holding hands with my brand new wife Clara, but time and space return: a giant poster announces the premiere of the film The Ghostbusters. Forty years later, the fourth part of the saga is released.

In the heart of Manhattan, at the intersection of 26th and 6th avenues, the memory appeared to me. Forty years ago, when I was nine years old, hand in hand with my old man, I entered a cinema in Lavalle to see Ghostbusters for the first time and to catch that contagious music that accompanied me during the first years of my adolescence. The cassette FM USA 1984 It started ringing in my head.

And I was perplexed there, trying to film, take photos, and try to retain a little bit of that memory in the present tense. So I experienced a sensation that I thought I would never feel again. At almost fifty years old, New York shook me and made me dream with my eyes open. My own childhood, my best dreams and those fictitious lights that sometimes make us dream. Remembering and living so intensely in the present are a combination of pure life. That, when night comes and our eyes fade, we cannot sleep.

Upon reading the newsletter, he wrote to me José, a reader: “When I went 6 months ago the same thing happened to me. Exactly the same… In fact, I did the same thing my dad did: learn about the cuisine of the neighborhoods near Manhattan. Because he said that in food we find a pinch of culture. A pinch of passion. “He knew people by their meals.”

I think we are owners of those sensations because we are contemporaries, not only us, but also our parents. That look at the world that is the most beautiful thing they gave us. Being in New York, paradoxically, is also to feel a bit of that legacy again.

Jorgewrote: “All the time is a movie.” Dorothysaid: “NY is always an incredible experience every time you visit.”

In the Tribeca neighborhood is the Hook & Ladder Company 8 station, a space that is more than a fire station. Since its construction in 1903 as part of the ambitious fire station project in the classical academic Beaux-Arts style, the building transcended its original function to become an icon of popular culture. The façade was immortalized as the Ghostbusters headquarters.

But, beyond the cinema, the firefighters of the station were among the first to arrive after the attacks of September 11, 2001. New York City is the combination of engineering and narrative. What is done is told. And what is narrated, endures.

The first weekend in Argentina, back from the trip, it premiered Ghostbusters 4. With Bauti, my son, and Clara, my wife, we went to see her. See New York from the cinemas of Rosario, Santa Fe. And other hands that shake hands. And again the lights and the dreams. And, again, the ritual of life that took on a new meaning.

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