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Times Square Visitors Destroy 2011 Memories to Ring in the New Year

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

The 5th Annual Good Riddance Day, where people are invited to get rid of their bad memories to make way for the new year. (Annmarie Fertoli/WNYC)

New year, new start. That's the idea behind the 5th annual "Good Riddance Day" in Times Square. Dozens of people in attendance on Wednesday brought items to destroy, or wrote memories they'd rather forget on papers to shred.

The event, organized by the Times Square New Year's Eve, included a Cintas shredder truck, a dumpster and a sledgehammer.

Carla and Vanessa, from Los Angeles, were among the first few people to sign up. The two arrived in New York City on Tuesday.

"We're shredding Los Angeles actually, we're not going back," Carla said. "We're staying here in New York forever."

Karen Roman wanted to get rid of a brace she had to wear after breaking her wrist.

"It's....really big and ugly and made of really horrible Styrofoam that will probably never decompose," she said.

Her friend, Rachel Van Thyne, joined her with an item of her own -- an empty gift box from an ex. She said she kept the gift inside. "Let's say it's more, will be cathartic to get rid of some of the emotions that you carry around after a breakup with somebody," she said.

Several people said they were shredding memories of their exes, including Veronica Robinson, who recently found out that her husband had been unfaithful during their 18 years of marriage. But she said she's left him, and already "good things are happening."

Rick Santoriella, too, had some bad memories to get rid of. He bought a plastic sick bucket his ten-year-old son used during his battle with leukemia. Jake was diagnosed last year, but is now in remission.

"So I'm going to smash this thing," Santoriella said, referring to the bucket, "and we're going to say good riddance to childrens blood cancer and leukemia." Santoriella said his son's back home for the new year, and even played some ice hockey this past weekend.

To see what others shredded at the 5th Annual Good Riddance Day, look at the slideshow below:

Annmarie Fertoli/WNYC
Carla and Vanessa arrived in New York from Los Angeles on Tuesday. A day later, they say they're ready to "shred" L.A. and stay in the Big Apple.
Annmarie Fertoli/WNYC
Vanessa Robinson, from Manhattan, says she left her husband of 18 years after she found out he'd been unfaithful. She's saying good riddance to him for the new year.
Annmarie Fertoli/WNYC
Jackie Cocharan, center, with family and friends from Pennsylvania. She says she's shredding a year of sadness and depression, and is ready for 2012.
Annmarie Fertoli/WNYC
Waynnie Njoo, from Brooklyn, shredded some bad test grades.
Annmarie Fertoli/WNYC
Karen Roman, left, brought a large styrofoam brace she had to wear after breaking her wrist. Rebecca Van Thyn, right, brought a gift box from her ex (she kept the gift).
Robert Santoriella, from Westchester, brought his 10-year-old son Jake's sick bucket to destroy. Jake, diagnosed with leukemia in 2010, is at home and in remission for the new year.
Annmarie Fertoli/WNYC
Katie Selman, from Tampa, Florida, won Good Riddance Day's online contest. She shredded her husband's military deployment papers, and is looking forward spending more time with their family in 2012.
Annmarie Fertoli/WNYC
Papers are loaded into a bin, for shredding by the Cintas shredder truck.

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Comments [1]

Roxann from La

Get rid of the bad things that happen.

Dec. 28 2011 05:34 PM

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