The Narrative Month in Brooklyn: Baby Daddies, Wacky Tobacky and Dollar Vans


Spring weather means picnics, concerts in the park and all manner of socializing after a long winter indoors with your Netflix. Which means you’ll need something to talk about (other than the weather). Before you head to the party, check out our 10 favorite in-depth Brooklyn tales from the past thirty days.

1. The Mama of “Marry Your Baby Daddy Day” Gets Cold Feet

(Illustration by Corrine Mucha / Narratively)

Illustration by Corrine Mucha for Narratively

Longtime Brooklynites may remember Marry Your Baby Daddy Day, a 10-couple wedding extravaganza at Borough Hall held a few years back. You might be surprised to learn what the woman behind MYBDD is up to now.

2. Brooklyn’s Weird Wacky-Tobacky Harvest of 1951


Photo courtesy Brooklyn Public Library

In the summer of 1951, New York City was consumed by two things: the Subway Series and the city’s mysterious cache of 41,000 pounds of weed.

3. The Accidental Marathoner

(Illustration by Rachel Dukes / Narratively)

Illustration by Rachel Dukes for Narratively

Have you heard the one about the illegal immigrant who moved to Brooklyn, and on his first day here accidentally ran the New York Marathon?

4. Imagining a New Atlantic Avenue

Streetsblog wonders what Brooklyn’s most dangerous boulevard could be like if Mayor de Blasio’s Vision Zero plan actually encourages drivers to slow the eff down!

5. A Floating Link to Brooklyn’s Past

How The Lehigh Valley No. 79, a 100-year-old railroad barge, has been repurposed to house a nautical museum here in Brooklyn.

6. The Empire Lights Back Up

Photo: Empire State Realty Trust

Photo: Empire State Realty Trust

If you’ve seen the Empire State Building’s most recent nighttime light shows from across the East River, you may be wondering just who the heck is in charge over there.

7. Brooklyn’s Dollar Vans Will Not Yield

(Photo: Stefano Giovannini / BKLYNR)

Photo: Stefano Giovannini / BKLYNR

Inside the high-speed, anything-goes, sort-of-legal world of the borough’s dollar van.

8. Canners vs. the City

Francois collects redeemables. Photo:

Yolette Francois collects redeemables. Photo: Aleks Mencel

New York has never before been home to more canners–people who collect bottles and cans and redeem them for a nickel apiece at redemption centers or supermarkets.

9. Please Punch Me

Along the DUMBO waterfront, one fear-ridden father corners his midlife crisis by enticing an ex-con boxing champ into the ring for the bout of a lifetime.

10. On the Brink in Brownsville

Brownsville is just eight miles east of Manhattan’s southern tip—but it can feel like a whole different city.

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