Friday, November 13, 2009

So long, Cheyenne

So I had no idea that the Cheyenne Diner was shipped off to Alabama. To be more accurate -- I had no idea that it had been bought with plans to move it down south. Somehow that all managed to happen without me catching word of it or someone mentioning it in conversation. I'd never been there, and I'm not a diner aficionado by any means, but I always appreciated the classic look of it. I just wish I'd gotten a shot of that neon at night.

And now the Empire Diner on 10th Ave. in Chelsea is changing hands and, inevitably, names. I see that one every time I head home that way, which is three or four nights out of five a week. (Incidentally, I am now addicted to Google Reader. Casey was right about how invaluable it is. I never would've seen these things if I didn't have these New York blogs among my growing list of things to read -- or at least scan -- each day.)

So in a weird coincidence, part of the reason I'd taken this picture of the Cheyenne Diner a couple of years ago was because I had seen a photo challenge that sought contemporary images of the places in the opening scene of Woody Allen's Manhattan. There's a diner in that montage, and my first thought was that it was the Cheyenne, because I didn't recall seeing the name on it. As you watch the intro to the movie, you'll see why that little recall would've helped me -- it's the Empire Diner that's among the images of Woody's Manhattan. Those scenes are a scrapbook of late-70s New York, from the old yellow cabs to the seedy Times Square to another now-lost sliver, Washington Square Park with the old fountain at its off-center alignment with the arch.

Upon rewatching that clip, it also occurred to me that he goes off the island to show Yankee Stadium for nearly 10 seconds, beginning at the 2:51 mark. The ballpark, of course, is not in Manhattan. They're the Bronx Bombers, not the Manhattan Maulers. And that now, too, is disappearing.

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