Williamsburg is a funny place. This little hood is a dartboard for critics who live outside the 11211. Even the people who actually live here talk shit about the changes in the neighbourhood, the condo lifestyles, the sudden and rampant appearance of strollers fucking up our drug-addled stumble to The Levee Bar.
Williamsburg, Brooklyn is a self-hater. And like the pretty girl in high school, she secretly thinks she’s fat. Like the neurotic man gesturing with his hands like a puppet on an anxiety string, complaining about art, his lack of money, and the series of slightly abusive women that habitually desire his attention, this place is as deluded as believing we won’t be at war with Iran in 6 months.
Goddamn First World problems. And this neighbourhood is full of it. Literally and figuratively.
After finishing a Doppio espresso from Atlas café, I’m juggling several phone calls, pacing up and down Havemeyer Street. On one hand, I’m calling my Musician Friend to find out when his rock show is this evening, and on the other line, negotiating the time and place I’m supposed to meet this Best Selling Novelist Friend for dinner, and worrying how I can fit the two in for the evening while orchestrating another small gathering for everybody afterwards at the Subway Bar around the corner.
First World problems.
Back at home, I’m worried about my new cat Lysander’s bowel functions. Never in my life have I worried about another creatures pissing and shitting habits more than Lysander’s. I bought her ‘organic’ kitty litter and ‘organic’ cat nip at the advice of a ‘pet conscious’ friend, both of which Lysander rejected with a sort of hating scowl only cats reserve for annoying humans. Lysander stares down at the ‘organic’ treats, smelling them slightly, then stares back at me, completely uninterested, her little gold cat eyes begging the question: “What are you, some kind of Bougie Fuck?” (I know discreetly that Lysander is thoroughly working class. A street chick. Might as well get her a black motorcycle jacket with some pink lipstick writing on the back, snapping her fingers and chewing bubble gum with her hair in a bun.)
It had to be asked. And, after doing a little research this week, I discovered a couple of signs that might signal a case of the Bougie Fuck. It can be caught quite easily like the common cold, and if you’re not careful, you too might wake up in Yoga class realizing that the Bougie Fuck syndrome has invaded your otherwise authentic street credibility. So if you qualify in any of these categories, please, take a moment to unplug your iPad, shut down the Mac, turn off Spotify, resist the urge to Tweet ANYTHING, and calmly listen close.
We can help. Bougie Fuck-ness is not terminal. Here are some symptoms of the illness. And like how they roll in Narcotics Anonymous, you must first admit to being an addict before the healing begins.
YOU DRINK AT A MILK BAR.
Seriously, I don’t even know what a fucking ‘Milk Bar’ is.
I even made my Roommate look it up on the Internet just to tell me what the fuck is going on and we couldn’t even find anything that said anything. No joke. But I’m pretty sure you might suffer from Bougie Fuck-ness if you even step foot in this place. I mean, I get the ‘The Clockwork Orange” reference, but that place had naked porcelain women you could drink drug-filled milk from one of their pointed nipples. That makes sense to me. That place on Metropolitan does not. I’m just confused, people, seriously. You know something is wrong when they sell alternative versions of milk WITHOUT drugs and NOT serve it from naked porcelain nipples. So, just stop, please. Bars, as we all know, are for one thing and one thing only: Booze. Getting fucked up. This ‘Milk Bar’ trend is an eerie cousin to those “Oxygen Bars” that tried to creep up in the late 90’s. Yeah. Right?
YOU BUY ALREADY TATTERED CLOTHING.
This is terrible. Remember “Derelique” from Zoolander. It’s sort of like that. A funny thing I noticed when I was in Paris. The people all dress pretty well, being one of the fashion centres of the world. But there are no ‘beat’ looking individuals. If your clothes are tattered and dirty, it simply means you can’t afford new clothes or you might just be homeless. There is something generally illogical and frighteningly bourgeois about buying already tattered clothing. Would you buy a car with its front window broken? This seems like an insult to everyone who has to wear tattered clothes on the regular. They’re not cool. They po’. And that’s never cool.
YOU WRITE A BLOG.
That’s right. What sort hyper-egotistical, literary addicted, attention-obsessed person would devote a large chunk of their lives to write a blog, actually believing there is a great, unseen mass of readers out there who gives a shit about what the blogger is thinking about on any particular day or topic?
Famed literary giant George Orwell had this positive thing to say about writers: “All writers are vain, selfish, and lazy, and at the very bottom of their motives there lies the mystery. Writing…is a horrible, exhausting struggle, like a long bout of some painful illness. One would never undertake such a thing if one were not driven on by some demon whom one can neither resist or understand. For all one knows that demon is simply the same instinct that makes a baby squall for attention”.
Thanks, George. What an asshole.
YOUR PET LIVES BETTER THAN YOU DO.
This is a big one. I can’t tell you how many people treat their animals like a Baby Buddha, fresh from Heaven’s Gate and right to pissing on your hard wood floors. I know people who actually sacrifice human time for their animal’s time. I also know people who feed their animal overpriced food and they, the human themselves, eat horrible food. The cat gets Filet Mignon bites and you’re eating off the dollar menu at McDonald’s. I’m not advocating pet mistreatment here, but we got to get our priorities in check.
Pets need love, some decent medical attention, and a happy owner. While we stress about treating these creatures as if they were mini-Gods we’re causing unnecessary sacrifices to our lives. The dog needs a walk? Take yourself out for one. First thnigs first, you need love too, and I know that pets are wonderful conversationalists and all, but we need human affection as well. Whose going to pet us? You know me, I’m always an advocate for human touching. And second, your pet has a functioning brain the size of a walnut. Now I know there’s some folks sitting next to you on a barstool that probably share that same brain capacity, but there are actually smart, uplifting, inspirational people out their that can make you’re big brain happy. And a happy person is a happy pet owner. Animals pick up on that shit. Then they dutifully shit on your mattress.
Well, folks, if you have any of these symptoms, please consult the reality doctor for a quick cure. Nothing irritates Al –Queda more than these first world problems. Trust me, they don’t drink at milk bars, they wear shitty clothes because they actually have no money, they only write blogs about killing Americans, and certainly don’t give a shit about their pets.
Somewhere between us and them is the happy place. And we shall find it together.
Now, go and drink like a normal person and I'll see y'all at the bars.
NOW DO WE REALLY NEED THINGS LIKE THIS?
THIS IS A FUCKING MILK BAR!
THE LYSANDER KNOWS!