By Alex Distefano
By Scott Snowden
By Anna Merlan
By Steve Almond
By Jena Ardell
By Jon Campbell
By Alan Scherstuhl
By Tessa Stuart
Letter of the week
Re "Put a Cork in It" [Tricia Romano, December 2026]: Are you kidding me? Ban bottle service? Who fucking cares? How about going to the other 90 percent of joints that don't require bottle service? If you're trying to get back to the "good ol' days" of not paying for your pathetic status, go somewhere else!
Look, people enjoy paying for their fictional "status" in the plethora of douchebag-friendly establishments in the city. Why ask those places to change their policy? I, for one, can do without. If you're not into paying for bottle service yet still want to be involved with a venue that supports it, sorry, but you deserve it. Quit your bitchin'.
Re "Put a Cork in It" [December 2026]: Kudos to Tricia Romano for telling it like it is. What a wonderful, elegant summing up of the state of partying in New York these days, and where we should be going. Let's do take back the night.
In the name of New York's rapidly waning reputation for intelligent journalism, I beg you, implore you, beseech you: Please fire Tricia Romano. Or at the very least, promise you'll never grant this no-talent she-troll a cover story ever again. Her consistently grating and myopic coverage of non-stories like the state of bottle service in her pathetic hipster microcosm is the pseudo-journalistic equivalent of a fly buzzing in New York's collective ear.
We are all fully aware of her friendship with the members of Interpol, the proprietors of Motherfucker, Paul Sevigny, et al. And we also don't care. Perhaps the dying nightlife she constantly laments has something to do with the shallow preening of uncreative sycophants like her? Maybe you could, like, give Tricia a blog or something? I'm sure it would be, like, totally awesome.
I found [Romano's article] to be entertaining, and it left me feeling optimistic about the future of NYC nightlife. It transcended the normal "this is why everything is fucked" gripes that I so often find in NYC lifestyle writing and presented the emerging next wave. Reading this piece will definitely get my grumpy ass out of my Havemeyer Street flat into the spots mentioned.
Re Chris Ott's article on so-called hipster parents ["Beat on the Brat," December 2026] : If your choice is between playing your kids easy-listening Cure or the new Lady Sovereign and you choose the easy listening because, God help me, "40-year-old men should not have complex opinions on Lady Sovereign," then you really haven't grown up enough. It's 2007, dude, not 1990. Nobody's checking your IDnot the kids, not the boomers, and not me.
And besides, 40-year-old men really ought to have complex opinions on everything. No excuses.
Brian's song and dance
Regarding Tom Robbins's superb exposé of union boss Brian McLaughlin's malfeasances ["The Sinner Within," December 2026]: I've been a blue-collar working stiff since I was age 12. I'm now in my fifties, and I'm proud to say that not once in all those decades have I joined a union, carried a union card, or had union dues deducted from my paycheck.
What McLaughlin did is business as usual. When are you dues-paying idiots going to learn that union rank and file are always, always robbed and betrayed by their own union officers?
As a longtime union organizer, I was saddened to read about what has become of New York City's Central Labor Council.
I have had the opportunity to talk and work with Ed Ott, the new president. He knows what to do to revive the labor movement in New York, and believe me, there is no labor movement without New York. Most importantly, Ed Ott is honest. Please let him lead. Our lives depend on it.
Feeling the beat
Just read "Lips Inc." [Derek L. John, December 13-19]. What talented writing. I'd like to hear more from Derek John and hope you plan to run his pieces on a regular basis. I'm sure your other readers will agree.
Re John Haskell's review of Thomas Pynchon's Against the Day ["Pynchon Me, I'm Dreaming," December 1319]: Another example of a multitasking slacker-gen reviewer inadequate to the task he's been given. Can't anyone pay attention anymore? Maybe he's right, in his mayfly way: The reader Pynchon writes for no longer exists. If that is so, so much the worse for usnot for Pynchon, who is our Joyce and our Dickens.
This Jackson Pollis article [Fly Life, Tricia Romano, November 29December 5] is the dumbest thing I've ever read. Leigh Lezark has nothing on Edie Sedgwick, and why the desperate comparisons? They're a bunch of losers: "Ultragrrrl," Jackson, the whole bunch. Let's glorify a bunch of stupid kids who play music off their iPods. Woo-hoo!
Great review of Gibson's Apocalypto["Mel Gibson Is Responsible for All the Wars in the World," J. Hoberman, December 612]. Isn't it odd that Gibson's primitive people know the difference between a heart and a liver, as part of the opening dialogue suggests? And one of the most laughable lines is spoken as one warrior attends a comrade in arms fatally bitten by a snake. "He's f***ed," the warrior says.