Demo and his friends called the abandoned warehouses along Greenpoints West Street waterfront The Alamo and Castle Gray Skull.
Wearing jeans, a black jacket and dark glasses, Victor Andrews comes barreling into the entrance hall of the Ryerson Towers apartment building in Clinton Hill, Brooklyn, delivered to the door by his school-bus attendant. He is a teenager well on his way to becoming a large man, his youth betrayed by the still-emerging beard sprouting on his full cheeks.
“We don’t oppose change in Coney Island, we just want to be a part of it,” says Coney’s de facto mayor and Coney Island USA (CIUSA) founder Dick Zigun.
“I wouldn’t hang out in a yuppie environment because in those places they jack up the prices. If people are dumb enough to pay so much money for a cup of coffee, then that’s how they are—”
Ask his friends, and they’ll tell you that Daniel McGowan is funny, generous, loyal, and kind, the type of guy people are immediately drawn to.
“I lived in communism until I was 17,” says Hungarian-born Tamas Veszi. “But I never had to experience anything like this. It has really questioned my being in this country.”