My first trip to Barclays Center is glorious (except for the result). A delightful look at 1st-graders. And “The Voice” does Newtown’s memory proud

Barclays Center Ribbon Cutting Ceremony

I’ve literally been waiting to see a Nets basketball game in Brooklyn for about eight years, ever since they first announced they were moving to the greatest city in the world.
Tuesday night, I finally got to experience one at the beautiful new Barclays Center.
As everyone has already said, the building looks much, much nicer on the inside than on the outside.
I can’t rave enough about the experience. It started with the seats; I knew we had bought good seats but had forgotten how good they were; it’s always nice to walk into the main entrance of an arena and then walk down to find your seats; that hardly ever happens.
The Barclays Center has beautiful sightlines, pretty roomy seating area, lots of wide aisles and lots of bathrooms, and a scoreboard that is the clearest I’ve ever seen. Seriously, watching the scoreboard is almost like watching the action live.
Then of course, there was the food. I’d heard and read how varied and terrific it was, and all the reviews were spot-on. From the Brooklyn burgers, to the Nathan’s hot dogs, to the barbecue and sushi and soft-serve ice cream (with real chocolate egg creams, invented in Brooklyn!), it was an orgiastic feast. I’m going back for another game in a couple of weeks, and already have four foods I must have (my stomach may disagree).

So Tuesday night was wonderful in all ways except one… the outcome. The Nets and Jazz played a very entertaining game, but my Nets continue to illustrate the wonderful trend of building big leads and then blowing them. They let Utah come back from 13 down, and Brooklyn’s finest missed two shots to tie in the last 10 seconds and lost, 92-90.

After a fantastic start to the season, the Nets are suddenly looking very average, and so is Deron Williams, who has to be more injured than he’s letting on.

Still, even though the Nets lost, Barclays proved itself to be a gem. So happy to have my favorite NBA team in a world-class arena, just a short subway ride from my home.


**And now, a very funny story that was sparked out of the misery of the Newtown massacre. A very gifted New York Times writer named Michael Winerip talked to a first-grade teacher named Joanne Strongin, in Great Neck, N.Y. And they put together a list of 25 things they’ve learned about first-graders.
Some of the gems in this article (I highly recommend clicking through to read it all, you will crack up laughing:)

–First graders love to tell visitors to their classroom that they do not take naps after lunch like little baby kindergartners.
— First graders go to the bathroom three or four times a day.
— By the end of the year, several first graders have lost their two front teeth and a few can tie their shoes.
— First graders claim to hate tattle tales but tattle at every opportunity (that’s my favorite).
— First graders are old enough to know the rules, and young enough to turn themselves in for breaking them.
First graders are taught if they don’t have a tissue, to sneeze into their elbows.

Truly, it will warm your heart.

**Finally today, I don’t usually watch “The Voice” but my mother-in-law passed along this beautiful tribute to the Sandy Hook victims that opened the show Monday night.

So haunting to hear “Hallelujah” done like this. Well done, “The Voice.”


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