Already Over: New York

It's a hell of a town. The Bronx is up, The Battery's - ah, who gives a shit where The Battery is. Who gives a shit about New York, really? It's as if some group of evil masterminds got together and said, Let's create a place that we can fill full of douchebags who aren't pretty enough to make it in Hollywood or charismatic enough to wind up in D.C. Furthermore, let's tell them how "creative" and "bohemian" they are, and let's make them think that they're the final arbiters of what the rest of the country sees, hears, and reads. But let's make sure that these are the most insecure people in the world, so that telling them that they make those decisions serves to fuel the rampant egomania and self-importance so commonly masked by insecurity.

And that's just the media industry.

New York City is over. It's a city with nowhere to go but up, and each up it goes it only gets uglier. (When we speak of New York City here, we are speaking of Manhattan, which is the only real New York. When you mail a letter to another borough you're mailing it to Brookyln, New York, or Forest Hills, New York, aren't you? Bitch and moan all you want about the vibrant culture of Williamsburg or the ethnic mosaic of Astoria, but let's face it: Unless you're on the big island, you don't count for shit. This kind of charming snobbery is another reason New York is finished, but we digress.) We've got a billionaire mayor but too many people squeaking by on the meager wages they earn folding your laundry or scraping the remains of your hundred dollar foie gras burger from its gilt-edged plate. Our infrastructure is a joke. Five years after terrorist attacks, the hole in the ground downtown is still so gaping that even this country's living embodiment of municipal incompetence feels free to make fun of us. Thirty years after the debut of The Ramones, those ridiculous haircuts are still the height of fashion. And don't get us started on the Meatpacking District.

Right now, as you read this, millions of kids around the world are thinking, I'm going to grow up and move to New York, where people will understand me. Those kids are douchebags, but, more importantly, they're right: They will be understood by the douchebags already here. They will also be resented, backstabbed, and made fun of for their unfamiliarity with the ways of the city by people who have conveniently forgotten their own, slightly less recent, unfamiliarity. New York is, at this point, a giant recycling factory, unable to contribute anything new to the culture while proclaiming that the latest remix is actually a bold step in a new direction. Our music is a joke. Our museums cost too much and challenge too little. Our theater, the great white way that supposedly marks another notch in the superiority bracelet we all wear around our wrists, offers either appalling fringe material that wouldn't pass muster in Muskogee, or melodies so nondescript they make one long for the coma-inducing saccharinity of mid-period Lloyd Webber. Broadway as currently composed is primarily an occasional employment plan for B-list celebrities who are between failed sitcom pilots. Our great opera house is a mess; our most famous concert hall is built on top of the subway. Which is not terrible in and of itself, in that when you're at Carnegie Hall, at least you're not in the subway, that overheated mass of teeming humanity which seems to exist primarily to educate us in the ways of hating of all races, not just the ones our parents carefully taught us to despise.

We could go on, but what's the point? You know it as well as we do; New York is broken, and it's not going to get better. Sure, you may deny it. Your ire may be up. "The greatest city in the world," you may be yelling. (Also, the last city to get any sort of public restroom system; apparently the stench of hobo excrement is just too appealing for us to do anything about.) "If you hate it so much," you say, "why not move somewhere else?"

Read our screed over again. Then remember: We write Gawker. Where else in the world would we live but somewhere so utterly already over?