You are currently viewing the stories for February, 2002

Beside Themselves

by 02/25/2002
Neighborhood: Brooklyn, Williamsburg

Another morning at the Bedford L stop, reluctant professionals line the platform waiting, not saying much. Several dozen yards into the crowd, you hear screaming — a high-pitched, angry sound — against the tinny sound of recorded music. People closer to the commotion direct their attention towards the center of the platform, next to the […]

Mickey Cooks The Tenderloin

by 02/24/2002
Neighborhood: Times Square

Imagine a 20th-century history of the United States that omitted the 1900s, 1930s, 1950s, and 1960s. Something of the kind has attended the chronicling of Times Square’s latest identity as Disneytown, Goofyville, or Mickeymart. Most accounts of West 42nd Street’s conversion have been content to say that for decades the district was a magnet for […]


by 02/22/2002
Neighborhood: Brooklyn, Clinton Hill

This recent snow made me think of my friend Glen Seator, who is dead. In January or February of 1996, there was a bad snowfall — Glen and I were very good friends then. I was living in Clinton Hill, Brooklyn, next to the BQE, and Glen was about two miles south of me, right […]

The Big Spender

by 02/18/2002
Neighborhood: Manhattan

I met Marty between Fourteenth and Forty-second Streets after having waited most of my ride for a seat to free up. One finally did, next to him. “Is this Fourteenth Street?” he asked as soon as I sat down, ignoring the fact that I was deeply engrossed in the Metro section. I replied that it […]

K-Hole at Columbia

by 02/17/2002
Neighborhood: Morningside Heights

My girlfriend, Amanda, and me, and her friend Heather were at Nacho Mama’s, drinking. It had just gotten cold. My friend Sal came in. He had been drinking, too. Heather brought up liquor, how old it had become, how tired she was of it, and asked him if he had any drugs. He said he […]

Lypsinka Speaks!

by 02/17/2002
Neighborhood: All Over, Manhattan

John Epperson is Lypsinka, but Lypsinka – the performace artist drag super star whose show, The Boxed Set, has been a smash hit at the Westbeth Theater since this past September, – is not John Epperson, or rather John is a lot of things in addition to being Lypsinka. John has agreed to keep a […]

High Noon at the B-29

by 02/17/2002
Neighborhood: Upper West Side

“All my dishes are masterpieces ‘cause my customers deserve the best! They should lick their fingers to the bone,” my Dad would say. “Nobody eats here just once unless he dies before the next time he plans to come in,” my Dad said. He was always busy cooking and talking at the B-29, the restaurant […]

The Neighbor Downstairs

by 02/17/2002
Neighborhood: East Village

We got the phone call on a Tuesday night. It was Nick’s boss telling us he hadn’t been to work since Thursday and hadn’t called in sick either. That wasn’t like Nick, and his boss was worried. Nick was an older man who lived downstairs from us. Since he didn’t have a phone and we […]

Hot Summer Day

by 02/17/2002
Neighborhood: Clinton

Staying at a disheveled hotel in Midtown across from Madison Square Garden, I call and ask her to meet me at the restaurant downstairs for breakfast. We haven’t seen each other since she moved away three years ago and have only spoken on the phone once (when she called to flirt with me after leaving […]

Bronx Swans

by 02/17/2002
Neighborhood: All Over, Bronx

The John Kieran Trail in Van Cortlandt Park in the Bronx is cut through sturdy black locust and black cherry trees, their crowns bending the day’s sunlight. As it veers towards the water, the trail mixes with wet mossy woods with willow branches hanging over the path like Rapunzel’s hair, patches of skunk cabbage and […]

The Plight of the Organized

by 02/17/2002
Neighborhood: All Over, Manhattan

Passing by St. Mark’s Bookstore, I hesitate and peer in, sizing up the window displays. I’m anxious about a fifteen minute gap in my color-coded schedule. Brown for my day-job, red for visual art, aquamarine for friends & family are the colors I assigned to the categories in my laptop’s organizer program. A few moments […]

Saturday Morning at Puffy’s

by 02/17/2002
Neighborhood: Tribeca

A few drunk men standing around the television in Puffy’s Tavern on a Saturday morning is not that unusual for the historic watering hole–back before when Tribeca became DeNiro-ified, a man “Puffy” opened his bar at the corner of Hudson and Harrison at 6 a.m. and closed it at 4 in the afternoon so the […]