Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Alina Gertsenshteyn -Activity 1

For this assignment, I went to Kings Plaza Mall in Brooklyn, NY to take notes on any interesting observations. I was there on a Wednesday afternoon from 4:00 pm to 5:30 pm; during a time when the mall was not overly crowded. The space was populated mostly by minorities; specifically African Americans.

I saw a group of about five girls who looked like they were of high school age. They seemed immature yet they were on their way to Victoria Secret to pick out sexy lingerie to wear for their boyfriends on Valentine’s Day. They were talking about this rather loudly and with excitement and laugher. Their speech was very ghetto and urban-like in general.

I started seeing a trend in fathers with baby carriages. On count, I saw four daddies without mommies. It made me wonder if the mother was working/unavailable or if the dads have custody of the children. I saw something that bothered me: a baby dropped its pacifier on the dirty floor and the father picked it up and stuck it back to the little boy’s mouth! Such unsanitary measures can be harmful to small children. I also found it interesting on how I was able to determine the child’s gender just by the fact that he was wearing navy blue and red colors.

Here are some other things I noticed: an odd looking old lady with plastic bags on her feet sitting on a bench, a heavy accented Asian lady working side-by-side her Islamic coworker at an eyebrow threading station, a considerable amount of individuals wearing work attire, a nun with a teethy smile, a pregnant lady arguing with her mother on the phone, and a little girl sucking on a ring pop like I used to do in my childhood.

All in all, being a flaneur was a cool experience. I find myself being too preoccupied in my own business to notice things around me. This is especially the cause of being a New Yorker and being always surrounded by different people. I think that I have gotten immune to the weird stuff. Even though I have not observed anything overly “weird” during this assignment, I did see different outlining factors of urbanization.

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