I'm the kind of guy who starts to miss New York after ten minutes in Central Park.
For seven years, I worked as a New York City tour guide, on double-decker buses, on boats, and on foot. The buses were my favorite of these venues, and I'm glad I had a chance to be part of the New York double-decker scene back in its glory days, when it was dirty and dangerous. My first job as a tour guide was for the now-defunct, much-reviled New York Apple Tours. Everything you've heard is true, but I relish the memories.
Later, I worked for Gray Line, New York Waterway, and various other sightseeing operations in the city; I've narrated many private chartered tours, on all kinds of conveyances. I still return to it occasionally, sometimes independently, and sometimes for one of the big sightseeing companies.
There are many kinds of tour guides in the city, and just as many approaches to the work. I'm most interested in the city's history, and in pointing out the hidden whispers of Manhattan's past which are still visible through the cracks in its shiny new armor.
I distilled my early experiences as a tour guide, combined with a potted history of the city, into 400 Years in Manhattan, my valentine to the big town, which began as a stage show and later became my first book. A lot of my other work is about New York, too, directly or indirectly: see Love Marches On, I'll Say She Is, Gimme a Thrill, and almost everything else.
The first seven years I spent working as a New York City tour guide culminated in 400 Years in Manhattan. The work began as a solo stage show, accompanied by a spectacular multimedia presentation, designed and performed by me and directed by Amanda Sisk. The show was presented at HERE Arts Center in 2007. (In addition to the video below, you can see another clip of the show here.) Later, I adapted 400 Years for the page, and it became my first published book. The book includes the complete stage monologue, along with illustrations and notes, and you really should buy several copies. Here's a video of me reading from the book.