Valentine No. 5

The story behind these valentines is here.

#5. The New York Table Tennis Federation is at 384 Broadway, on the lower floor, and I’m sure you can get there through the building’s main entrance. But I prefer the cracked door on Cortlandt Alley, because the place really feels like a secret. It’s the barest of bones: wooden floor painted red, fluorescent lights, not much else. And they’re serious—the kind of table-tennis players who stand several feet from the table. When I stopped by to take the second photo, a guy asked hopefully whether I played. “Not well enough to play you,” I said. (Anyone can play there: It’s $10 per hour, paddles included, but through 2011 the NYTTF is offering a special $10-per-day rate.)

••• Valentine No. 1: Bouquets of joy
••• Valentine No. 2: Tower power
••• Valentine No. 3: Sidewalking
••• Valentine No. 4: Fun in the basement