Recently, we water-taxied to Brooklyn to follow up on reports of The Real World in Red Hook.
Cast members are staying in a newly renovated house on Pier 41. Their entrance is the long driveway that leads to Liberty Sunset Nursery and Steve’s Key Lime Pie (famous for his key lime Pie on a stick).
Before The Real World (or Ikea), fallen concrete slabs behind Liberty Sunset were open to the public as a sort of make-shift garden. As it was, the nursery seemed to spill out into the East River, and shoppers could sit with key lime pie, on a stick or otherwise, and fraternize.
Post-Real World renovations, a fence has been built along one wall of the nursery (between the flower shop and The Real World‘s landscaping) and a partition now blocks patrons from the permanently landscaped, half-submerged concrete blocks.
I spoke with one of the former workers on The Real World project. He noted all of the helicopters in the area: "They’re MTV’s probably. They’re doing aerials."
We discussed the state of the house and whether or not it might return to a garden. "It wasn’t exactly safe back there," he said, doubtful about it ever returning to a public space.
I complimented him on the iron fence design of their new back gate (very viewable from Ikea’s water taxi); the boat motif (with an actual boat beached on several rocks for effect on their patio); their sizable Jacuzzi with views of the East River and Statue of Liberty; and the several (very New York) street lamps, carefully positioned around the deck.
The worker laughed about never actually seeing the show before, "until that John Mayer song had a lyric about it, I kept asking everybody what The Real World was," he said. "Write that in you’re article: most of us that worked on the set had never actually seen the show."