As of yesterday, this blog is 5 years old. It's a small milestone, I suppose. Half a decade. Old enough to go to kindergarten. But it feels like 50 when I think of all the places that have vanished in just 5 years.
In 2007, when I started the blog, we lost Gertel's bakery, the Moondance diner, Chumley's, the Playpen, and many more. The year 2008 saw Florent fall, along with the Minetta tavern, Yankee Stadium and Shea Stadium, Eddie Boros' Tower of Toys, and more. In 2009, Joe Jr's diner went, Love Saves the Day vanished, and we said goodbye to the Amato Opera House (and more). 2010 took away Fedora, Gino, and Carmine's at the Seaport--and, again, more. In 2011, we lost Mars Bar and saw the Chelsea Hotel shutter to guests, bookshops vanished, and so did Coney Island (and more).
In 2012, the vanishings keep vanishing. And they show no sign of stopping. It's depressing and disempowering. Every year when this anniversary rolls around, I think about ending the blog. I can't do it forever and don't want to. Sometimes it feels important, and other times utterly futile. Blogging hasn't stopped any wrecking balls.
Some changes in my life are making it harder to keep up the blog, but I'm not quite ready to stop just yet. I like being connected to a community of passionate people who give a shit about the city. So thank you for that connection, for your comments and tips, for all your support over the past 5 years. You are the city. And, maybe, if we can outlast the bastards, someday we can build something vital out of the rubble.