My Favorite NYC Landmarks On Cardboard

I was in a card store that isn’t local to me and I wasn’t thrilled with most of their inventory. However, this card caught my attention… it was a bit overpriced, but the lady who worked there seemed nice, and I wanted to strike while the iron was hot, so I bought it.
2012 Topps A&G Chrysler Building
I’m normally not one for architecture, and I’m also normally not one for art deco, but for whatever reason the Chrysler Building in Manhattan has long  has long been a favorite of mine.

…I dunno, maybe it has something to do with the fact that, years ago on SNL, the Coneheads used the Chrysler Building as their escape vehicle.

I grew up on Long Island, about 40 miles from “The City”.  Despite what a lot of people think about Long Island, I didn’t spend every weekend hanging out in Manhattan… but I did get in to New York City a couple of times a year, and I had my own personal favorite landmarks.

So, after getting the Chrysler Building on a card, I started thinking about what other New York Landmarks I had on cards…

Even more unnatural than my fondness for the Chrysler Building is my borderline obsession with the Unisphere from the 1964/65 World’s Fair:

2013 Topps Heritage News Flashback Worlds Fair

I have family who have lived in Queens since before I was born, so I always think of family trips that took us down the Grand Central Parkway past some of the World’s Fair Landmarks.  The Unisphere is one World’s Fair landmark which has the added benefit of being borderline “science-y”, so it seemed that much more futuristic to me… and “Futuristic” was good.

Other parts of the World’s Fair would be cool to have in my collection, but I have no idea if they exist on cardboard.

…but they do exist in the “Don’t Let’s Start” video by They Might Be Giants:

Naturally, another favorite landmark – unfortunately gone – is Shea Stadium.

1994 Score New York Mets - Shea

Al Leiter likes Shea Stadium, so it must have been great!

2003 Donruss Studio Al Leiter

Yes, Shea was a dump towards the end, but as the T-shirts say, it was OUR dump.  I’m sure CitiField is nice, but I’ve never been there and it doesn’t have the memories that Shea had.

While I’m at it, here are some other favorite New York landmarks:

The Bottom Line, Greenwich Village –  This ranks up there with Shea in terms of “Sadly no longer with us”.  The Bottom Line was a small concert venue in the Village, but it was an awesome place to see a show… especially if you sat in the non-smoking section, which had been the tables closest to the stage.

You know how some people will say “Oh, I saw that band before they were big”? Well, I saw Barenaked Ladies at the Bottom Line when few people in the U.S. had any clue who they were (or knew that “Barenaked Ladies” were 5 Canadian guys)
1993 Barenaked Ladies Bottom Line ticket
It’s been years since I’ve seen them live, because I haven’t liked the last few albums – and sorry guys, it’s not BNL without Steve – but in the Nineties they put on a really fun show.

Forbidden Planet – Admittedly, I haven’t been there in something like 30 years, but at the height of my con-attending fandom days it was one of my favorite places to go… An absolute Nerdvana full of books and toys and posters and tchotchkes you couldn’t get anywhere else… Star Trek, Doctor Who, Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy… it was like going to the “Huckster room” at a con, except it was there all the time!

What are your favorite landmarks and/or inanimate objects immortalized on cardboard?

Who did you see in concert before they were – relatively speaking – big?


8 thoughts on “My Favorite NYC Landmarks On Cardboard

  1. I love the Chrysler Building as well. My daughter was in design and photography and got me interested in it and it’s history. I have some A&G cards but I need to check to see if I have that one. Somewhere stuck away I have a nice pile of postcards of the Chrysler.

    I hadn’t seen the World’s Fair site in decades until last spring when we went back to see a play a friend produced at the Queens Theater which is right there and also a leftover landmark of the Fair. I had forgotten all about the Unishere still being there and it was cool to be able to just drive right up to it and take pictures.

    I saw both Bruce Springsteen and Billy Joel at a small club in Houston called Liberty Hall. Springsteen was in 1974 and Joel was about the same time but I am not sure of the exact date.

    It was a great little venue, maybe 400 seats, and I was right in front of the stage with my girlfriend at the time for both shows. Springsteen played there for three or four consecutive nights. I remember because we tried to go back and see him again and the place was sold out. Word had gotten out.

    • Hokey Smokes! Bruce would’ve been awesome to see in 1974, but I’m not a fan of his… but Billy Joel? Billy Joel in a small club? If I could get a hold of Mr. Peabody’s WABAC machine, I’d be heading for that club in Houston….

      • Funny thing, Springsteen may be the best live musical act I’ve ever seen. But when it comes to listening to his cd’s and such….meh. Once upon a time I had a poster advertising his gigs that weekend but it’s probably long gone.

        At the Billy Joel show it felt like we were under the piano, we there just that close.

        Houston still has some great small music venues but Liberty Hall was one of a kind.

  2. Revolving door!!!!

    I didn’t actually attend a concert of theirs, but the Goo Goo Dolls were a Buffalo band before they hit it big and I was at a bar in the mid-80s and they were just there playing. There were probably 11 people in the bar.

    And Barenaked Ladies? Living close to Canada I knew all about them. Had their LP “Gordon” the year it came out in ’92.

  3. Although I didn’t see them live as early as you did, I was a BNL fan by the summer of ’93 as well. I didn’t get to see them live until they appeared at The Roseland in NYC in April 1995, around the same time Born on a Pirate Ship came out. I agree with you that they haven’t been the same since Steve left, but they’re still better than most of the other bands who are around the same age.

    The only other band I was ahead of the curve on was 4 Non Blondes. Yeah, everyone hates “What’s Up” now, but I actually could say I knew the band before everyone got sick of that song.

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