[Photo © Langdon Clay]

Many years ago, at McNulty's, a bar in Chelsea where I hung out from time to time, back when New York was New York, and people were allowed to smoke in places like this.  Bars where you're not allowed to smoke are not really bars — they're theme park attractions where duppies (depressed urban professionals) can pretend that they're hanging out in bars, the sort of establishments they've read about in books or seen in old movies.  They're such pathetic creatures, these duppies — God bless them!

Photograph by Langdon Clay.


If you find yourself depressed during the Christmas season you shouldn't be surprised or too worried about it — Christmas is not by its nature a time of unmitigated happiness.  The first Christmas began with “no room at the inn” and climaxed with the birth of a child who would grow up to be brutally murdered.  Christmas is a time to celebrate peace on earth and goodwill to men in the conspicuous absence of those things.  It's a kind of spiritual defiance.