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Midtown is a great place for chanting; your voice echoes off the tall buildings and you can hear it blocks away. Even better for marching bands, bells and whistles.  There may not actually be 99 pickets, but midtown Manhattan is clogged with them in the morning, and they’re inside the heads of the people on the street–I walk past a couple discussing our “cruel,” unequal society as I hurry from picket to picket.

I made it to Bryant Park a few minutes after eight in a haze of rain, and found a crowd of around 100 huddled under their umbrellas or the ones at tables in the park. The Rude Mechanical Orchestra were clustered around their instruments but not playing, and Occupiers chatted with one another.

My first picket stop was at the New York Times building, where the United Auto Workers (UAW) were picketing under a lovely awning in support of the National Organization of Legal Services Workers (UAW Local 2320). The lawyers and legal support staff of Legal Services NYC provide free legal aid to New York’s low-income folks who need support–they help fight evictions, support the unemployed, work on benefits for the disabled, and more. They’re facing cutbacks from their board, who want them to give back part of their healthcare benefits–not to mention cuts to the services they provide.