Monday, January 19, 2009

The Joy of Muggings

I could be wrong, but I'd thought the market on essays about how New York Isn't What It Once Was, on how the city is now one big Chase Bank, Duane Reade, and Starbucks-filled mall, had long since been saturated. But no. Kevin Baker's vaguely Obama-themed piece in the Times yesterday was a fine example of an article that's been written so, so many times since the Clinton years, if not earlier, that it reads as parody. Particularly lines like, "I fell in love with an artist who lived at the Salvation Army’s Evangeline residence for women, and we walked the slate-blue paving stones around Gramercy Park for hours, talking about art." Is this for real?

1 comment:

JMR said...

This market is immune to saturation. When I was reading the New York Press regularly a few years back, columnist Jim Knipfel would write a tribute to the good old dirty crime-riddled days almost every week.

But it's an old phenomenon - according to the book Republic of Dreams the first "Greenwich Village isn't what it used to be" piece appeared in 1916.