People shred bad memories in NYC

Published 1:30 am Monday, December 29, 2008

NEW YORK (AP) — Should auld acquaintance be forgot? Or maybe shredded?

In an event that organizers hope will become a New Year’s tradition, New Yorkers and tourists were invited to bring bad memories from 2008 to Times Square on Sunday and feed them to an industrial-strength shredder.

‘‘This is the perfect way to move on from a bad year, from a bad experience,’’ said Kathryn Bonn, of New York City, who shredded a printout of her boyfriend’s e-mail breaking up with her.

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The event, the second annual ‘‘Good Riddance Day,’’ was sponsored by the Times Square Alliance, organizers of the New Year’s Eve ball-dropping celebration.

Some participants wrote ‘‘the stock market’’ or ‘‘cancer’’ on a piece of paper and shredded it, while others shredded bags of bank statements and check stubs.

Kate Anello, a Yankees fan from New York City, destroyed a poster of the city’s longtime rival, the Boston Red Sox.

‘‘I hate them,’’ she said. ‘‘It felt good.’’

City resident Jay Ballesteros won a $250 prize for the most creative object to be shredded: a sock representing all the socks that emerge from the laundry without their mates.

‘‘I’m hoping to use the prize to buy some brand new socks,’’ he said.