Monday, August 02, 2010

Franklin Avenue T-Shirts

About Time Boutique created a beautiful screen print for posters (pictured above) and t-shirts at the Franklin Avenue Kids Day, and now, for a limited time only, you can pick up your very own shirt at their boutique on Franklin and Sterling in a variety of colors (and from the looks of their site, v-necks and crewnecks, too). Come and get 'em!

One block north, the Pana Store (which is primarily a shipping outlet for Franklin's Panamanian community, as documented in the third photo, above) now has its classic "Franklin Av" street sign t-shirt available in NYC street-sign green as well as the original Pana-pride red and white. I've been wearing the latter for about a year, and it never fails to elicit a response. I've met several neighbors on account of wearing it, and one guy even showed me his driver's license because his name was, in fact, Franklin, and he had just been walking on the Avenue. Most people are positive (far and away the most common comment is "I like that shirt" or some variant thereof"), though it occasionally brings unpleasant undertones to the surface. More than a few people have sniffed or snorted "Whatchyou know about Franklin Ave?" (with one guy adding "motherfucker" for good measure), and a few weekends back, an older man saw me in it and damn near exploded. "Franklin Ave? FRANKLIN AVE?!" he said, his eyes widening. "This ain't Howard Beach! This ain't Bensonhurst!" I couldn't think of much to say, so I just stammered "uh, right, it's Crown Heights," which led him to storm off muttering "Crown Heights, Crown Heights." All of which is to say, in a roundabout sort of way, that if you buy it, it can sometimes become more than a t-shirt, which is often but not always a good thing.


  1. It's interesting and perhaps sad that the concepts of ownership, investment and pride in one's neighborhood can be so foreign.

  2. I ordered two of the shirts this weekend. They will custom order whatever shirt/color you want if they don't have it in stock.

  3. I bought the About Time Franklin Ave shirt the day I moved in. The owner seemed pretty excited that "a newcomer" was rocking his shirt. I can understand the discomfort some feel about the cash influx and consequent organic-bodega malaria, but shit; as an Asian guy, I'd find it pretty humorous if I saw someone wearing an "East Brodway" shirt.