Back to Square One

It’s awfully nice to be reminded that we New Yorkers come from much more than Sweetgreen and Blue Bottle.

At some point in the last few months, the kiosk at the exit from the NQRW at Union Square became filled with bone broth. I happen to not eat meat, so the idea of paying six dollars to drink meat juice out of a coffee cup repulses me, but even if I did, I would still find myself wondering how exactly we’ve ended up packaging the scrap-built base of soup as a luxury product.

A special exhibition about Union Square on view at the Center for Jewish History, just down the street from the broth, does not really answer that question. The museum has managed to cram an awful lot of history into the three-panel exhibit, including that Emma Lazarus lived just off the square and was likely influenced by the constant ruckus caused by suffragettes, labor unions, and socialists of all kinds when she wrote “The New Colossus.” There’s also hefty information on Emma Goldman, her partner Alexander Berkman, Fania Mindell, and Eugene Debs. The series of infographics inspires the sort of involvement in social change difficult to see in today’s New York City, the broth capital of the world…

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