I used to drink in a bar in the village called Lion’s Head. It was full of newspaper people. The Village Voice was around the corner, and a lot of guys from the papers would come and drink. It was a great bar full of great bullshitters. I knew a fireman that drank there occasionally and he had done a book. I thought, “Wow. That could be a really good story, about firemen.” I was so against that frigging war and I thought, what’s the opposite of a soldier going and killing people they don’t know? A fireman saving people they don’t know. I got permission, and finally ended up with a rescue team that covered all of the Bronx and Harlem.
Harlem is far from being the worst ghetto in New York. In the South Bronx, where European movie companies now shoot their footage on the destruction of Germany after WW II, there are districts where nine out of ten people die an unnatural death — from murder, hunger, overdose, rat bites, etc. Sometimes it seems new york was finished. We loosing war with drugs, we loosing people!
People on Wall Street had no idea what was going on in Bronx.