It was something old, something new, something “Borrowed” — and something green!
That’s right, folks, this week’s new Brooklyn Paper Radio episode featured all of the above, as co-hosts Anthony Rotunno and Johnny Kunen talked their way through another news-packed show with guests who discussed the latest calls to split service on the beleaguered R train between Brooklyn and Manhattan, the first formal appearance of LGBTQ marchers in the Brooklyn St. Patrick’s Day Parade, and the Brooklyn Public Library’s forthcoming podcast, “Borrowed,” which the book lenders will debut this month.
Reporter Julianne McShane joined the hosts to fill listeners in on locals’ concerns about a quartet of local politicians’ demand that officials with the state-run Metropolitan Transportation Authority again bifurcate interborough R-train service.
The scheme — which would stop Manhattan-bound R trains at Court Street, allowing weekday riders to freely transfer to 4 or 5 trains to continue their journeys, and weekend straphangers to ride to the distant isle along the N line over the Manhattan Bridge — drew heat from some residents, one of whom called in to question just how many local opinions the electeds sought before putting the request in writing to authority bigwigs.
“I would want to know about this feedback some of them claim they are acting on, where it came from. It seems like many of us didn’t know this was being considered,” said Bay Ridgite Nancy Ford, who said the last time transit chiefs bifurcated R-train service, in the wake of superstorm Sandy, it added at least 15 minutes to her regular commutes to Manhattan.
The show then turned from the subways to the streets, welcoming Irishman and LGBTQ advocate Brendan Fay to discuss Brooklyn St. Patrick’s Day Parade organizers’ historic decision to formally open the march to participants from those communities for the first time in its 44-year history.
Fay, whom police arrested with seven others for “parading without a permit” after they tried to join the 1999 march through Park Slope, said it is about time that people who identify as Irish, and as LGBTQ, can celebrate those identities without fear of retribution.
“Parades are so important. I didn’t appreciate their meaning back in Ireland, because we were Irish in our own country, but when you come to New York, every cultural community has its moment on the streets,” he said. “I am very moved to hear the news. It’s going to be a great celebration.”
Finally, the hosts celebrated another borough first — the March 12 debut of the local library system’s inaugural audio-streaming series — with one of the brains behind the “Borrowed” podcast, Krissa Corbett Cavouras, and beloved Arts Editor Bill Roundy.
But to hear more about what to expect from the library’s podcast — and Roundy’s expert picks on how to fill your free time this week — you’ll have to tune in to ours. And don’t forget to listen to the latest installment of Power Women, featuring a conversation between Victoria Schneps-Yunis and the president of the Queens-based Long Island City Partnership, Elizabeth Lusskin, when you’re done!
Brooklyn Paper Radio is recorded at our studio in America’s Downtown, debuts new episodes every Tuesday, and can be found, as always, right here on Brook