Um …

sign in Chelsea hardware store window

Ordinarily I’d be pointing out yet another case of the possessive being used where the plural should be (unless the creator of this sign only had one umbrella for sale and used a contraction for “umbrella is”, which I really doubt). But although I just drew your attention to the error, that isn’t really the focus of this post.
This, however, is: There was something supremely endearing about the pencil scrawl to the right (“Arm Brella”) that makes me forgive the other error. I saw it this morning in a Chelsea hardware store window, and it literally stopped me in my tracks. It instantly reminded me of a deck of cards that my adorable Poppop — a hilarious, brilliant, multilingual man with very little “formal” education … a man who sacrificed his education to support his family as a baker in Europe — boldly inscribed with the word PINOKL (pinochle).
He’s been “gone” for almost nine years now, but all it took was a little thing like this to make me feel like was walking beside me on Seventh Avenue this afternoon.