The New York Times has re-re-re-discovered Brooklyn! Their latest foray into our mysterious hermit kingdom was led by Henry Alford, former writer for Spy and alleged humor writer. Alford managed to keep it in the Times family by combining the wide-eyed cluelessness of David Brooks with the Thomas Friedman-esque naive discovery of a thing everybody already knows. Did he have anything new to say? No, of course not.
10. Alford shops for clothes just like we do!
“When a scruffy, ponytailed salesman in his 20s approached, I told him: ‘I’m going for a Mumford & Sons look. I want to look like I play the banjo.’
9. Oh sure, and a car didn’t hit him. Real fair, universe
“To get the true Brooklyn experience, it became clear I needed to do some of my visits while riding young Brooklynites’ vehicle of choice, a fixed-gear bicycle. A grizzled older gentleman rented one to me at Zukkies bike shop in Bushwick, but not before asking me four times if I’d ever ridden one, and telling me ‘I couldn’t do it.'”
8. This is what everyone says when they got to Roberta’s
“I said, ‘I was sort of hoping you’d be naked,’ referencing a Roberta’s waitress who had recently worked her last shift without clothes on (so boho and Lena Dunham-accustomed is the Roberta’s clientele that no patron batted an eyelash).”
7. The East River being notoriously difficult to ford
“It’s been a month since my Brooklyn sojourn.”
“I wanted to see what the demographic behind nanobatched chervil and the continually cited show “Girls” could teach me about life and craft cocktails.”
5. Not found in Manhattan: nose piercings
“Williamsburg, a beehive of instrument-bearing musicians, nose-pierced locals and twentysomethings who use the word ‘ridiculous’ in nonpejorative contexts.”
4. The judges also would have accepted “ratchet”
“It was, as the kids say, totally ridic.”
3. Single dudes in Brooklyn are just up to their eyeballs in sacks
“I bet those sacks are very popular with single men.”
2. You kids and your crazy slang
Upon exiting, I told the employee: “Thank God you took at least one of my books. That would’ve been awk.”
1. Finally. All we’ve wanted was some validation from an old person
I like this generation of young folk. Their food is terrific, and they find even the most insignificant things “awesome.” I admire their adventuresome quality vis-à-vis fixed-gear bike-riding and their non-prudishness in the face of nudity. Yes, their attention to detail on the fronts of locavorism and beard care can verge on the precious, but I’d much rather have a young Abe Lincoln serve me his roof-grown mâche than I would have an F. Scott Fitzgerald vomit all over my straw boater. Today’s twentysomethings are self-respecting, obvi.
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