Wednesday, June 16, 2004

Hot Times: The carping about summer in New York City has already begun so it's about time to begin the contrarian’s response—I love summer in the city.

Opera in the park, with bits of cheese and chilled Sancerre in plastic cups. Lingering lunches in shaded sidewalk bistros. Rooftop parties overserving beer out of garbage cans filled with ice and sand. Sunrise whiskeys with bartenders in the Rockaways. Girls in short skirts with beads of sweat on the small of their backs. Falling asleep on the lawn alongside the Hudson River. Aperitifs at A60. Midday movies to escape the humidity. Seared tuna salad and buffalo mozzarella and three pinot grigio lunches. The song of the summer. Pretending the subway doesn’t exist. Dancing at the Bulgarian bar until your clothes stick to your everything. Bloomsday breakfast Guinness. Poolside rooftop mojitos. Kids playing whiffle ball in the park. Rounds of lights and darks at McSorely’s. Backyard barbeques. Churchyard sangrias. Pints of lager outside the Ear. Steamy shagging. Belmont Stakes. Publishing girls drinking at noon on Fridays. Emerging from a perspiration and beer soaked dive bar into the crisp pre-dawn air. Summerstage beertent. Making out in taxis, aroused from the sudden application of air-conditioning. Shakespeare in the Park. Champagne breaknight breakfasts in Inwood Park. Salted Tecantes in a Chinatown Mexican restaurant. Smoking cigarettes in the Goodworld alley garden. Flirting with the daughters of firemen in Breezy point. Long days spent in dark bars. Chilled gazpacho. Watermelons soaked with vodka. Interns with improbably fashionable clothes and the spending habits of people who are spending other people’s money. Old flames. New infernos. Tar beach sunbathing. Avoiding parades with all day bruches that turn into all night bacchanals. Chasing the ghost of Dylan Thomas at the Whitehorse tavern. Fireworks from an Avenue B rooftop. Wilting while watching the Yankees. Midnight oysters at Milk & Honey.

Gear up, lads and lasses. We’re going in.