When I wrote my entry for Pershing Square Plaza, about places with outside tables in bad locations, in addition to Pershing Square Plaza I wrote about two other places: one at the northern end of Times Square, at 49th Street and Seventh Avenue; and a restaurant on Second Avenue between 5th and 6th Streets. Tonight I am giving both of these locations their own post.
I am also starting a series called Eating Outside, which will focus on people eating at tables in ridiculous locations — either places like the three I’ve already written about (this one included), or at tables that are too close to people passing by on the sidewalk, where if the person gave any thought at all to it, they would not consent to be seated there, but because it’s outside, they give no thought to it: the equivalent of requesting to sit at a table beside the door leading into the kitchen, or beside the busing station.
This is the restaurant on Second Avenue between 5th and 6th Streets. As with the one on 49th Street, this one has changed since the owner first put out a table. A few years ago, when the sidewalk tables first made their appearance here, this cellar door was a regular cellar door: painted black, and rusty. Back then, the owner put a table on the left side and left the door open on the right for employees to retrieve things from the cellar, as necessary. The table sat beside the open door with nothing to stop the patron from moving a leg of his chair over and falling into the hole.
Back then there was a small table for two on top of the left-side door, and no barrier. Today, as you can see, there is a fence-like contraption welded (soldered?) to the door to prevent (inhibit?) that from happening. I don’t know if it was put in place to prevent such an accident, or to prevent another such accident. They also changed the type of table, no doubt because people refused to eat at the previous one. Or maybe someone fell in.