If 2012 is anything like 2011, we’re heading in the right direction. I know, I know, this is the year that every-thing is supposed to blow up right in our smug, fossil-fuel-guzzling faces. Mayan gods are going to rain down on us from the Great Beyond and piss into our collective gas tanks, squirrels will turn vicious overnight and start mating with our house pets, and copies of Who’s Nailin’ Paylin will be screened in AP history classes all over the country. But I’ve got news for those of you who’ve been stuck in line stocking up on flashlights, tropical Skittles, and bottled water: Unless Bloomberg changes the legal drinking age to never, we’ve got nothing to trip out about. A brave new day is dawning—and if you don’t believe me, just pick up a newspaper.
Barack Obama killed Osama bin Laden with his bare hands. The Arab Spring is knocking on Assad’s door with a pair of brass knuckles. The Rapture was total bullshit. Gaddafi finally took one in the ass for Lockerbie. Hurricane Irene hit with all the fury of a wet fart in an AA meeting. The Occupy movement has opened up a Bank of Ideas in the heart of London. The royal family has a shot at attractive heirs. The Greeks are so ruined by debt that they’re going to have to start coming up with ideas again. The New Kids on the Block are canceling gigs due to lack of interest, and schoolchildren have fucking roller skates in their sneakers. If that list doesn’t blow your hair back, then stay the hell home. The rest of us are going out for some hardcore libations.
Welcome to the main event: New York City. The major leagues. People who walk our streets know they’ve reached the top of the nightlife mountain. Vice, decadence, lust, and industry beckon from every direction. If you’ve lived here for a while, you’ve probably got a story for every block of your neighborhood. New Year’s Eve is a time for reflection, danger, and reckless intoxication—a night when we gather with friends and family to run wild in the streets and, if you’ve done your duty properly, hold one another’s hair between sips of water. If there is a deeper meaning to this holiday, it has been completely lost on me. So here are a few of the gems that the Greatest City on Earth will be unpacking for you.
If you’re headed here from Brooklyn, form up at the Second Chance Saloon first for your new favorite brew and a couple rounds of cutthroat before sliding over to Williamsburg to catch Charles Bradley for some serious soul. If you want to stick close to home, head toward the East River to the Glasslands and party down with L.A. phenomenon Nosaj Thing. Or, for those of you who need more stimulation, drop in and say hello to Matt & Kim over at the Hammerstein.
Catching the ball drop in Times Square is cool if you’re into long waits, freezing temperatures, and disappointing sex. Instead, push past the crowds and throw down with the other half of the human race at Gogol Bordello‘s notoriously crazy show. If you’re a DIY kind of person, make your way over to Little Korea and wail away the night in one of Big Apple Karaoke’s super-cheap private rooms.
If dance is more your thing, there are plenty of other ideas within these pages. Laidback Luke will be doing his thing over at Pacha. The action at Splash never disappoints, and if you’re still up after last call, Nero will be hosting Webster Hall‘s after-hours way past sunup.
Well? Get busy livin’, or get busy dyin’. Happy New Year.