The Red Caboose Flickr Pool Picks Governor's Race Poll
If New York to you can be summed up as a clean and friendly place, with artisanal foods and bike lanes and Apple stores, you are under 35.
New York before you got here was messy. New York unscrubbed was far from ideal, but it did have an authenticity to recommend it. There was trash and graffiti, mystery and menace, and your 'customer experience' was the last thing on anyone's mind.
That's The Red Caboose, 23 W. 45th [5th/6th] 212.575.0155. It's been a hobby shop since 1946 and it wears its rumples proudly. Walking down the steps to the basement of this office building is a time tunnel to 1974. Allan Spitz, the proprietor, will be behind the counter, possibly in perpetuity. A cat will be perched on the counter.
For train enthusiasts, everything you need: the trains themselves, model paint, buildings, figures. Parts of all kinds. There are Model Car magazines and a wall full of books. Looking for A Train Watcher's Diary, Volume 12? They just might have it. Excavating it is a different thing altogether.