Thursday, December 30, 2010

2010 Review

It's the time of year for end-of-year lists and roundups. In 2010, the losses seemed fewer in number, but there were some big ones in there. We lost more of our old newsstands and watched too much of Coney Island collapse or get pushed out (Ruby's and Paul's Daughter and the Shore Hotel...). I'm still in denial about Coney.

Otherwise, at the top of my list of grievances, there's Skyline Books, a great bookshop gone and still mourned. The closure of Gino remains a major heartbreak, as is the demolition and reappropriation of Fedora. I'm not getting over those two. Carmine's at the Seaport was a third Italian joint to go.

While the little bakery Les Desirs was not a place close to my own heart, it was of major importance to many senior citizens in Chelsea. The closure of St. Vincent's Hospital, of course, was a tremendous blow for many Villagers.

The shuttering of Atomic Passion marked another death to vintage and thrift in the East Village, while the fall of the Treasures & Trifles antique shop made more space available to the Jacobsian on Bleecker. At the other end of Bleecker, the Aphrodisia Herb Shop closed this year. And little Alphaville shut down, taking its vintage toys with it.

In bars, we lost Hickey's, and plenty of boozers will miss The Rum House, but Freddy's was the big one, finally crushed by eminent domain. It may yet reopen. Village Paper fell to fire, but reopened on 8th Street. Novac Noury's crazy building was demolished by the city, pushed by the Standard Hotel and the changing Meatpacking District.

There were more, of course. I only listed the ones covered in this blog. With the impending loss of Mars Bar, the Pink Pony, and Max Fish, 2011 is already looking bleak.

For more year-end roundup, check out Lost City's Bring Out Your Dead.


EV Grieve said...

A big UGH to the closures. (And such great signage, among other things...)

I'm hopeful that Carmine's can reopen, though it will be near impossible, of course, to recreate that old ambiance.

Lisanne said...

Freddy's IS re-opening in a few weeks. It's a bit bigger than the old Freddy's and will have the old bar WITH "the chains of justice" still intact, the booths, tables, glassware salvaged from the old Freddy's and of course the bartenders from the old Fred's is getting closer to blast off time..the liquor license has been granted now it's about the plumbing, the electrical, finishing the sound proofing for Freddy's backroom which will continue to have free music/performance nightly. They are hoping to open in about 3 weeks.

5th Avenue near 18th Street in Brooklyn. They've got lots of artists contributing to the decor(When you go make sure and check out the collages in the bathroom done by yours truely.)

Jeremiah Moss said...

thanks Lisanne. that's great news. and will definitely check out your artworks au toilette.

esquared™ said...

yet, superdive and le souk somehow manage to stay (somewhat)open

c.o. moed said...

As always, thank you for your wonderful site that preserves New York - I feel erased each time I see things close in the name of some bullshit idea of what NY needs. But reading your posts affirms the heart and soul of my hometown and challenges the idiots who don't have a clue. Happy New Year, Jeremiah and may New York continue to emerge one way or another through the rumble of progress.

Marty Wombacher said...

Sad to see all those places shuttered. Tomorrow's the last night of the Stoned Crow too. I'm glad I got to see and experience most of them before they vanished. Thanks for the recap.

Claribel said...

I'm with c.o. moed. Thank you, Jeremiah. More than any other city (yup, I'm biased), I think NYC is filled with homes-away-from-home where people gather and build memories--from the married couple who met at Gino, and all the other Gino patrons with whom you shared your "last meal," to the individuals who’ve shared posts on Schrafft’s and Scribner’s bookstore, and those who’ve lamented the possible loss of the Ruby’s and Mars Bar that they know and love. Your blog resonates with personal stories told or to be forever left untold. It’s impossible to cultivate those same memories at a chain restaurant or store or upscale bar catering to specific clientele, but it seems more and more that NYC is rapidly transforming into a city of either luxury or suburban attractions sanitized for the masses instead of a city made for city dwellers.

I do agree with people who’ve noted that this kind of change is happening everywhere, but that doesn’t ease the heartache. When something important dies, it deserves an eloquent epitaph. And when we lose something we love, it’s natural to want to try to understand that loss. Much of the NYC I remember from my childhood and younger days is scrapbooked on your blog. While your blog triggers a variety of emotions, I also find it can be a comfort, more so because of the community you’ve gathered here. I learn a lot from others who’ve posted here. So thank you for being a virtual gathering place for New Yorkers who love New York.

Jeremiah Moss said...

thanks guys. i could not, and would not for long, do this if nobody was reading, if so many people weren't sending in tips and sharing stories. so thanks to everyone for influencing and expanding this blog, for your own blogs that inform us, and for writing comments that help us all know we're not alone in a world otherwise filling up fast with pod people.

have a happy new year--or, even better, a really interesting one.

Grand St. said...

'Pod people,' ey? Well, as Dr. Bennell says: "Listen to me! Please listen! If you don't, if you won't, if you fail to understand, then the same incredible terror that's menacing me WILL STRIKE AT YOU!"

Happy New Year to you, too, Jeremiah, and keep walking the beat. (We'll be here listening.)

onemorefoldedsunset said...

Happy New Year & many many thanks for your blog.
Freddy's will be a great addition to that part of Fifth. Anyone going there should also try a slice at Luigi's (near 20th) & talk to Gio. Everything about Luigi's is good - the fine pizza, the classic decor, & of course Gio and co. Some great conversation to be had & an overall heartening city experience!