not the bowery i remember, that’s for sure


back in the 70s [link]


5 Responses to “not the bowery i remember, that’s for sure”

  1. 1 Nancy
    November 15, 2008 at 8:30 pm

    I guess you figured I’d probably comment on this. The New Museum fits right in there now, doesn’t it? While all of this gentrification may provide a more aesthetically pleasing backdrop to NYC and the residents of the new luxury condos, I’m not so sure that I’m pleased by it. Like that matters. The Bowery, as we knew it, was legendary and inviting despite it’s rough exterior (and interior). But I loved it and will never forget the nights at CBGB’s…with Warhol, Reed, Cale, the Ramones, etc. And the bums sleeping in the doorways…”got any spare change?”…”got a cigarette?”, or the long, cold waits in line outside the bar. Cutting edge. History. It’s kind of sad that this is yet another example of extinction, despite John Vavartos keeping a wall from the club in his new store. I go into the City whenever I am able these days, but am afraid that, down on the Bowery, I’ll probably be reduced to being just a window shopper…if that. I almost can’t afford to even think about it.

  2. 2 underpass
    November 15, 2008 at 10:35 pm

    nothing stays the same, and it’s not a bad design.

    but new york’s a theme park for the rich now, and always has been. there just used to be space for art to happen, and books and blogs and whatever will attest to that.

    i remember those days fondly, and i’m glad i was there, and glad i know someone to reminisce with about it.

  3. 3 Nancy
    December 1, 2008 at 10:52 pm

    Back again…

    Went to the New Museum yesterday and was pleased with at least one of the exhibitions (Elizabeth Peyton). Also loved the panoramic view from the 7th floor, even though it was pouring and dismal outside. The other exhibition (Mary Heilmann) was ho-hum at best, despite the fact that she had one multi-media piece with Eno’s music playing. I don’t know that he would have been amused or flattered. Overall she left me thinking that my son’s stuff belongs in MoMA (maybe not such a bad thing). :] The Bowery has been cleaned up minimally, but that may have been just my impression due to the cold rain and blowing winds turning my umbrella inside out every other 5 minutes. Ugh! Stopped at the store that now exists where CB’s once stood and gazed at the original wall that the owner retained, but I doubt that it would mean much to anyone seriously shopping in there. It was one of “those” shops…that looks more like a gallery than a retail establishment. And although it wasn’t the type of place that I’d casually stop into to browse, it was nice to see a slight reminder of the club scrawled into the concrete outside the door. Ate lunch at Phoebe’s, just for the hell of it…you must remember Phoebe’s?!? We went there a few times. I was mildly amused that, while the article makes it sound as though the Bowery is a thing of the past, much of the area’s original appeal remains…even down to the few remaining flop houses. It’s the newer stuff there that sticks out like a sore thumb. Not the old.

    Trash n’ Vaudeville, Search & Destroy, and Manic Panic were also on the agenda yesterday…but not so much for my nostalgic enjoyment of St. Mark’s Place. My son, on the other hand, was in alternative clothing heaven. Sigh….

    Just thought I’d share my City day with you.

  4. 4 underpass
    December 2, 2008 at 7:56 am

    thanks for the update nancy.

    wonder what the rents are like, and what it will look like in a year, what with the economy etc.

  5. 5 Nancy
    December 2, 2008 at 9:59 pm

    Rents are very high there Gordon. A simple walk-up studio apt. in lower Manhattan rents for close to 2K/mo.. Can you imagine??? I have no idea what storefront rents are like but I’m sure they’re astronomical. I find this sort of thing mind-boggling since there are months when my mortgage (not including property taxes), which is much lower than even the lowest rents in Manhattan, is a challenge. But then I’m a member of the “working poor” and the state of the economy is hitting us much harder than it is the wealthy.

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