Category Archives: East Village

HUNG by Peter Nolan Smith

The Village in New York had always attracted a kaleidoscope of radical, deviant, and perverse characters considered abhorrent by mainstream America. The Reds of the 40s gave way to the beatniks of the 50s, who in turn evolved into the hippies of the 60s before surrendering the shattered counterculture ghetto to the junkies, artists, punks […]

WHY I MISS JUNKIES by Peter Nolan Smith

(published in OPEN CITY MAGAZINE 2002) Most New Yorkers depend on air-conditioning to survive the summer heat waves , however AC always felt to me, as if a dirty old man from the Arctic was breathing down my neck and that dirty old man wasn’t Santa Claus. Truthfully I liked the heat and any temperature […]

St. Mark’s Place East Village 1968

Even the best of times have their bests But 1968 wasn’t all fun and games for the hippies of the East Village. There were no luxury condos then.

The Balance of Excess

Back in the late 80s Gold Gyms opened a place on Lafayette Street in the East Village. I hadn’t thought anyone would go in such a counter-culture neighborhood, but within three days the place was packed by punks, artists, dancers, bankers et al. “I played basketball. Street. Gyms were my thing. Each to his own, […]

Bowling For Prosperity

Back in the 1980s no one other than Rockets Red Glare was fat and these days he might pass for husky. We loved he nightlife. New York was the capitol of the world. Every place else on Earth was second-rate, except for Paris and Pattaya. Both those cities knew sin. However New York could mix […]