Guest writer; Michael Kimmel.

After Hours (film by Martin Scorsese)

When I was asked to contribute to this blog, I had no idea what I could possibly write about. I still live in NYC. I have for the last 14 years. Katie does an amazing job of discussing the changes she’s seen in a city she has loved and lost, but it’s a abusive relationship I’m still in….so what could I possibly bring to the table? But then it dawned on me- As a new parent, there are things in this city closed off to me now. Permanently. So, for this post, I would like to take a moment and list things about NYC that I will never see again….

1. After hours joints– It’s not like I’ve been to one in years, but illegal, after hour bars are a true staple of NYC if you know where to find them, and they usually contain some of the most surreal shit you’ve ever seen. So, goodbye Trannie-dressed-as-a-golden-girl-doing-coke-on-a-bar-while-eating-a-hot-dog. I have to be up for the early feeding.

2. Eating dinner in a nice restaurant with my wife and not adding a $100 dollars to the bill at the end of the night. Yes, babysitters in Manhattan cost anywhere from $15 an hour to upwards of the cost of a call girl, depending on the educational background of said caregiver. It was actually cheaper for Spitzer to go to DC, hire a hooker, book a hotel and get freaky than to take his wife out and leave the kids with the au pair. Don’t hate on him….

3. Not being hated on the subway. We don’t have a car. No need. What we do have is a big ass stroller that can carry more things than Viggo’s shopping cart in THE ROAD. But try fitting that thing on a subway car packed with people. And there is no way to easily maneuver it for people to get out of the way. So they glare, spit, throw feces and generally do what they can to show their disdain.

4. Smoking in bars. I am a reformed smoker. It is a horrible habit, and I am glad it’s not in bars anymore. It is smelly and gross. But goddammit, people looked cooler and hotter in bars when they were smoky. I don’t care who you are, you always looked better at 2 am sipping a cocktail in a haze of smoke. Have you seen Mad Men? Is Don Draper that good looking, or is it the Marlboros talking? Why do you think they use to put vasoline on camera lenses? Because obscuring things made them sexier. I guarantee that if you polled people regarding one night stands before and after the smoking ban, even after copious amounts of alcohol, the numbers skyrocketed when you were conducting business in the amidst of a thick fog.

5. Not being a curmudgeon. In general, sleep deprivation causes you to age at least 20 years. So in years past, the Mardi Gras-like atmosphere of NYC’s Lower East Side, would cause you to go crazy and join in on the festivities. Now, I walk through the streets talking to myself, cursing all the drunk co-eds throwing up in the streets, while secretly wishing I had been with them an hour earlier while they were pounding Pabst blue ribbon cans and shots all the while talking about the new soulja boy album. WHO IS SOULJA BOY???? I just don’t know. See? Curmudgeon. Well, there is a list of just a few things that I mourn while still living here.

RIP, single craziness….Hello Gymboree.

Michael Kimmel is a theater director in NYC, where he lives with his wife and daughter. He is currently developing  The Last Goodbye, his adaptation of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet with the music of Jeff Buckley for a commercial production early next year.