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College Life New York City Opinion

Opinion: NYC should change the private park in Gramercy into a building run by CUNY where New Yorkers can learn computer skills.

There is a huge private park located in Gramercy, Manhattan, New York City. In my opinion, the park is a great opportunity to create a huge brand new building run by CUNY. 

I’m a student at Baruch College CUNY. That’s how I created the idea. I don’t care about credit. I want to help people.

This is the Wikipedia page for Gramercy Park: Gramercy Park – Wikipedia

The building can be a place where New Yorkers can learn computer skills. 

  1. There might be large technology companies that might donate money towards the development of the building. 
  2. The building, if run by CUNY, can be a great place for people not only to learn computer skills but also become acclimated with the outstanding offerings of CUNY. 
  3. Large technology companies might allow some of their employees to teach computer skills at the building. 
  4. Large technology companies might help with the lessons offered so they can eventually hire some of the individuals who work hard to learn new computer skills. 

This could potentially be an opportunity for thousands of individuals to lift themselves out of poverty. Everything is going digital. 

The building I envision will be close to public transportation. It’s also conveniently near many huge technology companies. 

I can envision students going to the building after school and on weekends. I can envision people who might have lost their jobs or want a higher-paying job going to the building to learn new computer skills. 

The space is so big, they might be able to build two buildings. One for adults and one for children. 

Think about how much parents would love for their children to be able to go somewhere run by CUNY and learn valuable computer skills. 

Speaking of CUNY I have to get back to my homework. 

What would have a better impact on New York City? A huge empty private park or buildings where thousands of people can learn computer skills.

We need to step up the opportunities for New Yorkers. 

Thank you for reading. 

Have a great day. 

Ever upward,

Mark Pine 

Categories
Life

Opinion: Email to the Commissioner of NYC Social Services office about my storage room.

Greetings Commissioner Department of Social Services,

First and foremost, thank you and your stellar staff for the help you provide for me and so many others. HRA saved my life. I will never forget that. 

I will always act accordingly whenever I interact with any and all staff from HRA. Regardless of what’s going on and how anyone treats me, good or bad, I always treat everyone at HRA with the absolute utmost respect at all times. 

I’m not sure why but for some reason the check for my storage company never arrived this month. I have a little storage room that costs $50 per month. 

I live in the street homeless so that storage room is a lifesaver. The best thing about my storage room is that I have 24 hours per day access to my belongings. 

I uploaded the bill from my storage company into the HRA app on October 21, 2021, and again on October 30, 2021 just in case there was a technical error. 

I used to provide the storage bill once per year. Then HRA changed the process. Now HRA requires that I upload the bill once per month. 

I believe the cut-off for my storage company to receive the bill is November 10, 2021. If the bill isn’t paid by then I’m going to have to take my food money to pay the bill. 

I could easily survive with the amount of food money you give me per month if I was in an apartment. What makes it challenging is being street homeless. Specifically, not having anywhere to cook or store food drives up the cost for me and I’m sure others. 

Thanks to HRA and Baruch College / CUNY I’m getting an education. Hopefully, new doors and opportunities will open up if I stay focused. 

I don’t drink. I don’t smoke. I don’t have a criminal record. All I do is focus on being productive. 

Please let me know if you require any additional information from me. My access HRA account says I don’t have another certification until June 2022. 

Thank you and have a great day. 

Ever upward, 

Mark Pine

Categories
Life Opinion

Opinion: Electrical outlets and homeless people.

Electrical outlets are precious to some homeless people. I know because I’ve been living in the Manhattan streets homeless for about five years. 

Currently, I’m a student at Baruch College in Manhattan. Luckily for me, I bought laptops with my student loans, and I have plenty of electrical outlets I use every day at school. 

Before I was a 45-year-old college student, I used to charge my laptop and phone at libraries, coffee shops, and other public places with outlets. 

If you have a place to live and work, electrical outlets probably aren’t a big deal.

I don’t drink. I don’t smoke. I don’t party. I don’t have a criminal record. I’m a full-time student at Baruch College. 

In my spare time, I’m trying to figure out how to earn money legally. 

Thanks to my student loans, I have laptops and a smartphone.

The last time I received my student loans, I paid my mobile phone bill a year in advance. Being homeless with a smartphone is a lot more enjoyable than being homeless without one, in my opinion. 

Imagine you were homeless living in the street. Where would you charge your devices? 

Categories
Life New York City Opinion

Opinion: Message to the Commissioner of HRA in New York City. October 7, 2021.

Greetings Steven Banks, Commissioner, Department of Social Services, 

First and foremost thank you for the help. HRA saved my life after people I grew up with paid NYC law enforcement to sabotage my web marketing clients. I have no criminal record. I don’t do anything illegal. I don’t drink. I don’t smoke. I’m a full-time student at Baruch College (12 credits this semester). I wish the public heard about homeless people like me more often.

I always treat everyone at HRA with the utmost respect at all times. Your staff is as good as it gets. I hold you all in the highest regard. 

As I stated, I’m a full-time student at Baruch College. The CUNY Edge office and I sent all the paperwork to prove that I’m a full-time student. For some reason, my Access HRA account is showing that they want information about job searches. 

“You need to give us these documents. If you don’t give us these documents, you may not receive benefits. You can view SNAP examples or view Cash Assistance examples. Proof of Job search activities (FIA-1021b Declaration of Job Search Activities) Proof of Eligibility for SNAP again because ABAWD rules are met (or no longer need to be met).”

My access HRA account also says Next Recertification Due: June 2022

Previously, I worked for RF CUNY. I was notified that RF CUNY is canceled this semester for full-time students.

Please let me know what I need to do to meet my requirements. The best way to reach me is via email or if you email me a phone number I’ll call. 

Thank you again for the amazing support you provide for everyone who receives benefits from HRA including myself. 

Please advise. 

Thank you and have a great day. 

Ever upward,

Mark Pine

Categories
Life Opinion

Opinion: We should dedicate one day per week towards improving the world.

In my opinion we should take one day per week and use it to improve the world and help people.

Ideally, I would like for the day to be either Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, or Friday. Realistically, it would probably have to start on Saturday or Sunday. When it picks up enough steam, we can move it to be an official day of the week.

We have seven days per week. If everyone spent one day per week helping others and improving the planet, I believe it would lift everyone’s spirits.

What are we really doing that is so important? The majority of us, including me, are spending time watching entertainment videos and sports. I’m not saying that’s a bad thing. All I’m pointing out is there is time to help others.

Helping others and elevating the planet doesn’t have to mean spending money. There are plenty of things we can do that doesn’t include paying. We can get involved with politics, local nonprofits, and spread awareness about beneficial programs. We could spend the one day per week trying to figure out what is the most important way to spend the day.

Ideally, companies would allow their staff to spend one day per week during the work week helping people and the planet. It would be nice if everyone connected on the same day. If we spent every Tuesday for the last thirty years helping each other, where would we be right now?

How many people in the United States or globally can use a little lift to get back on track? What can we do to help them? What is currently being done to help them? How can we create new ideas and improve the current programs?

The current schedule is work five days and relax for two.

I would like to see work for four days, dedicate one day to the planet and relax for two days.

I would be happy with work for five days, relax for one, and dedicate one day to helping others.

Could you visualize where that might lead?

In my opinion, we are all connected. If one person is down, it brings the whole chain down. We are all on the same team.

Categories
Life New York City Law Enforcement Opinion

Message to my wonderful storage place.

Greetings X Storage,

X storage is the number one storage on the planet. 

Quick note. Today when I showed up at the location, I pressed the elevator. There was someone inside the elevator already. I think the capacity is two but I let the person go up alone anyway because I treat your location the same way you do. 

Next. Today, when I was at my storage someone, walked up directly next to me. I did not say a word to anyone except when I called X storage corporate customer service afterward to tell them how much I appreciate the service. In the future, if I see the person using the storage before me I will go downstairs and wait.

I would never walk up to someone’s storage directly next to mine while they are there. I already had my door open and was organizing some things so there was nothing I could do. 

No one tried to start a conversation with me today, although I have had a few people try and start conversations with me over the years that I’ve been a customer, and I never say a word to anyone besides your staff. Of course, I treat your staff with the utmost respect as they deserve because they are amazing. 

I’m not going to get into the details but people I grew up with pay the NYPD (police) to harass me very badly. I have called various law enforcement numbers thousands of times throughout the years including today. That doesn’t mean I’m ever disrespectful to police or security guards in person.  

One last thing. Another reason I keep one hundred percent to myself at X Storage is that I create thousands of videos in the streets and subways of New York City. I’m a full-time journalism student at Baruch College. Heaven forbid I’m walking around the Upper East Side or anywhere creating videos in the street with my phone or camcorder and someone from X Storage things I’m filming them. That would be ridiculous. 

The person next to me today was walking out at the same time s me. Again, I let the person have the elevator alone. When I was walking out of the exit I saw the person standing to the left of the exit so I went to the right and walked through that driveway around and back to the avenue. 

Thank you and have a great day.

Ever upward,

Mark Pine

Categories
Life

Message to my gym.

Greetings,

X gym is the number one gym on the planet.

I was just in the locker room. It was a little crowded so I left to let it clear out. Also, people left garbage in the locker room.

I would never touch anyone’s belongings, so I politely and respectfully notified one of your stellar staff members that some people left garbage around.

Thank you again for the marvelous service.

Have a great day.

Ever upward,

Mark Pine

Categories
Life Opinion

Be polite when you’re contacting people and companies.

I’m at Whole Foods in Garden City, Long Island. I was using my debit card and it took a few tries for it to work. The reason is that the debit card is slightly scratched. 

I was sending a secure message to my bank and I thought I’d create a blog post about it. The following is the message I sent to my bank:

Greetings, 

Can you please send me a new debit card with the same number? I still have my current debit card and it’s working. Don’t cancel my current card. 

Please just send me a new fresh one before the current one stops working because it’s a little scratched. If you require any additional information please let me know. 

Thank you and have a great day. 

Ever upward, 

Mark Pine

I contact companies all the time via Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and the corporate support pages on their websites. Sometimes I’m in a rush. There are instances when I’m unhappy with the product or service. 

Regardless of what is going on I always slow down a little bit while I’m sending the request or information to the company. I make sure my message is clear. More importantly, I always go out of my way to construct the note to be ultra respectful. 

The same thing goes for when I’m contacting the staff and professors at The City University of New York. Anytime I send a message to a staff member at my college I go above and beyond to be respectful. I also take my time to make sure the message is clear so they know what I’m requesting. 

In my humble opinion, if you go through life sending half-written emails and messages to people that give the impression that you’re stressed out, people are not going to respect you. Moreover, you can potentially miss out on important details. 

Be friendly. Be polite. Be respectful. Be clear. You never know who is going to be reading your messages and emails. Furthermore, you might miss out on crucial information if you are sending out the wrong impression while reaching out to people. 

Regardless of what is going on, it’s safe to say the person fielding your messages didn’t create the problem you are inquiring about. If someone gives you an attitude, ignore it. Continue to treat the individual with the utmost respect, keep it brief and professional, then move on.

Someone giving you an attitude is not an excuse to act disrespectfully. Bring them up to your level and move on.