Sunday, November 29, 2015

Graffiti No More

Thanks, Graffiti Abatement Team

Graffiti No More


The graffiti is gone!

That's the great news for fans of Penn Treaty Park, which was hit with horrible graffiti last week. I posted on this blog an e-mail from Fishtown's A.J. Thompson, who excoriated the vandals who defaced the park. He wanted to alert the public that a $500 reward had been posted for info about whomever had done the deed. Meantime, within hours, the graffiti was gone, thanks to Kevin Kenney and Anthony McKeown, who work for the City of Philadelphia's Graffiti Abatement Team, which falls under the Office of Neighborhood Services. Kenney and McKeown are assigned to monitor the area around Penn Treaty Park, "which is a hotspot for the nitwit vandals" who attack the park, says Tom Conway, city deputy managing director. Thanks to Kenny and McKeown's quick action, the grafitti was gone almost before it had time to dry on the park's walkways and central statue.

Says Conway, "Please remind your readers that [the team] will remove graffiti from private property free of charge!  All they have to do is contact us either through 311 if they wish to speak to a live operator, or leave us a message on our hotline at 215-686-0000 or through our website at  It only takes a few days for us to respond and again it is free for public and private property.  I believe our anti-graffiti crews are the crown jewel of city government!!"

Job well done, gentlemen. 

Daily News Columnist
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When my phone rings here at the Daily News, nine times out of ten the caller begins the conversation with, “Yeah, so what happened was…”.

Because this is Philly, the caller doesn’t say, “My name is Bob” – or Mary – “and I wonder if I could have a moment of your time?” Philadelphians are too direct for that. They just say, “Yeah, so what happened was…”, and then tumble into a tale they think oughta be shared with a wider audience. I love getting these calls (even the ones where it becomes clear, after 30 seconds, where the caller sowed the seeds of his own misery), because they give me chance to connect with fellow citizens in a way that no other job allows. Well, okay, no other job for which I’m remotely qualified.

That’s why my blog is titled “So What Happened Was…”. To me, it’s the quintessentially Philly way of saying, “Once upon a time.” When I hear it, I know a good story is coming. And I can’t wait to see how it turns out.

Ronnie Polaneczky has been an award-winning columnist for The Philadelphia Daily News since 1999, offering a front-steps perspective on every aspect of city life, from the sublime to the stupid. In her past life, she was the editor-in-chief of Atlantic City Magazine, associate editor at Philadelphia Magazine and a fulltime freelancer published in Ladies Home Journal, Good Housekeeping, Redbook, Reader's Digest, Men's Health, MarieClaire and others. She lives with her husband, daughter and various pets in the city's Fairmount section, where she dreams of one day singing The National Anthem at an Eagles game. In addition to her column and blog, you can enjoy Ronnie's musings in podcast form here.

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