You have seven weeks to get done what Stephanie and I hadn't gotten around to until yesterday. You have seven weeks to make your way uptown to the Museum of the City of New York and take in the glories of Glory Days: New York Baseball 1947-1957. You will not be disappointed.
While I can't say I learned a whole lot new Saturday on a broad subject whose many facets I've been studying for 35 years, it was fantastic to see so much of it on display. Lots of mementoes, lots of memories, lots of context, lots of Giants, lots of Dodgers, not too suffocating an amount of Yankees and, for completion's sake, a legitimate dollop of Metsies at the end. This exhibition held old men who lived it and little kids who hadn't the vaguest in its thrall. Us too. MCNY always puts on a great show. This one runs to the end of the year. If you like baseball enough to read this blog, you'll will want to make it to this museum.
And goodness knows you will want to drop 20 bucks in the gift shop or online for a book called Shea Stadium: Images of Baseball by Jason D. Antos. This is not a coffee table book and it's not a factually flawless history, but it's awesome to look at and Amazin' fun to read. It's loaded with black & white pictures from across the decades, particularly the building of Shea and what was there before there was a Shea.
Shea, too, is a subject I've been studying for an awfully long time yet I learned things that I never knew before. I didn't know from Ned's Diner or the coal plant or what the concession stands looked like under construction and I hadn't seen a WAPP-FM backstage pass for the Who or Louis Armstrong in a Mets cap or what everybody was wearing to the Flushing Boys Club Luncheon in 1975. Antos, a chronicler of Queens history, pulls in the underdiscovered wonders of the Corona-Flushing neighborhood and Shea's multiple purposes and arranges his own enthralling exhibition…probably the best exhibition involving the Mets since the first Mayor's Trophy Game.