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I knew from the lush crowd that she wouldnt finish for another few hours. I decided to head home. Alone we were overworked and hopeless, delusional maybe. Overextended for sure. There was never enough time, never enough coffee, never enough interest to justify the hours of our lives that passed through our fingers.

But together we were the two luckiest people in New York City. I couldnt keep my eyes open at the end of a double shift uptown. I came down on the highway, yawning into my cycle helmet and [4] the door I got a text from her: Did you go rivington was ours fogging up the glass on the chill winter night. Id hoped I could sit around for a few and then give Nikki a ride home to her apartment, to steal an extra hour with her.

I had worked since morning behind the gorgeous raw marble bar in the Museum of Modern Art. There were bartenders who spent all day behind the stick talking about varietals and classic cocktails and then went out after work to talk to other bartenders about mind- blowing garnishes, and I thought, theres nothing wrong with that.

It was just not what I did. What do you do? Difficult question if you didnt have a pie chart handy. I slept four to six hours a night, woke up and wrote stories that no one else would ever read, then I read them over.

For my bread and butter I bartended in the most beautiful museum on earth and on my night off I DJd parties whenever I could. On our first date I was so nervous that I blurted out, So, Nikki, tell me, what are your hopes and dreams? I had hoped to disqualify her, to hear she was boring or stupid or in graduate school. I had hoped to find just one reason that I could quit staring at her, to stop imagining how much of my life Id change just to make room for more of her in my world.

She told me she was waiting tables ever since she quit designing lingerie for a bigger company. Now she wanted to start her own lingerie company with a partner whod worked for Victorias Secret. They would launch in February. When she turned the question on me, I answered truthfully about my secret writings.

Afterward we looked into each others eyes like two lost sailors who first sighted land. Outside the restaurant I got a text from her again:?? It would be hours before she could meet me. I plugged in the words to tell her Id gone home. Then I imagined her there all alone with the noise and the people and their self- congratulatory drunkenness.

But at this time of night that might take an hour. She, as equally exhausted, might pass out if I didnt first. I decided to wait for her around the corner: Let me know when youre off. Ill be at St.

Its was where Manhattan stops making sense. Down Stanton Street, I hung a right at the next corner past Pianos, the keyboard store turned playhouse turned music venue.

There would be no bands tonight because Saturday nights were just for dancing. A line of scenesters waited by the door doing their own little involuntary pre- dance shivering and rubbing their hands together to fight off the chill.

Lined neatly behind a retractable nylon belt on a metal stanchion pole, they looked like a bunch of people in line at the bank, itching to make their deposit into the night.

It was a left after that, down the tenement streets and past a few other venues where a lone guitar player shined out of the stage lights in the center of a chatty crowd. The p eople inside were always as vibrant and drunk as the herds outside.

About For Books Rivington Was Ours: Lady Gaga, the Lower East Side, and the Prime of Our Lives by

The neighborhood, much to the chagrin of the locals, had given itself to nightlife slowly over the past few years. The voices outside echoed up through the thin windows of the apartments directly above. Older residents had moved here when crime was up and the rent was down. Their new neighbors paid twice and even three times as much as they did in rent just for the privilege of living downtown.

If the older residents fed up and getting older wanted to move, they wouldnt find an apartment that cheap without traveling an hour and a half north into the Bronx. I passed a few pricey lounges and hotel lobby bars where they served all the same kinds of drinks and beers, only the music was half as T h e L o w e r E a st S id e b e gi n s [6] rivington was ours good and the prices were doubled.

Two more blocks from there. Jeromes was the bare- bones minimum of a bar and thats why I loved it so much. Loud music greeted you at the door, light from a tattered disco ball showed you to your table at the chummy, half- moon leather banquettes, their seats always torn and taped like the backseat of an old muscle-car.

The array of drinks and bottled beers behind the bar no taps comprised the entire menu. Their idea of a classic cocktail was a bottle of Budweiser garnished with a shot of Jameson.

The only other light came from the flickering candles on the tables and a red spotlight beaming off a mirror at a low platform in the corner where a performance artist named Lady Starlight go- go danced to the hard-rock music in a leather bikini.

The bar had a dozen black leather stools with metal pipe legs like the kind you see next to guitar amps on stage.

Thats where I ran into someone well call Guy. If you stuck around here long enough, you ended up with a nickname. Thing was, you didnt get to pick your nickname. I was known for telling long stories and for knowing a little bit too much about bands in the scene, so I was named VH1 after a show on the cable channel VH1 called Storytellers. When I first met Guy, he had long, ratty hair, teased out in an obscene heavy- metal style.

Baby powdered and hair- sprayed. Everyone always asked him if it were a wig. When I met Guy he was a humble guy in a bandana, serving tacos at a latenight storefront called San Loco up the street. Hed played drums in a band called the Fame. Now he worked at St. He had small eyes, perpetually on the verge of the kind of squint you see on drummers when they pull off a killer solo. His lips jutted out in the same way.

He had a pair of mismatched mutton- chop sideburns and when customers made their drink orders he always [7] brendan jay sullivan listened with his mouth hanging open like a third ear. The hair, always teased out and sprayed in different directions baby powder dusting the shoulders of his black T- shirts managed to hide the fact that underneath it all he was a very fragile person with very delicate features.

At first glance you might find an emptiness to him, but in music, especially great music, emptiness isnt expressed as silence. It comes through in reverb. Guy moved to New York City to become a rock star. He was a drummer. Or he had drums. He still played in bands but had an inherent disdain for any music that wasnt authentic, original hair metal.

I didnt understand Guy. But I dont think there is that much about him to get. He also had a five- year running crush on Nikki. Id only known Nikki for about six months, but she wasnt into him. Rumor was that Guy had met quite the catch. Someone new. I had seen her around the neighborhood before and I hadnt seen them together until this night.

They made a cute c ouple, the little brunette girl, only twenty years old. When I walked into the bar I saw her with him. Only he wouldnt let her speak to me. Wheres Nikki? Shes at Stanton Social. Shell be by.

Whos Nikki? The girl looked at him. She had an open curiosity of his world, always trying to piece together the names and faces from his stories. His smile turned guilty, so he changed the subject. I heard youre writing a book. Ive written two. I looked down, knowing that failing twice isnt the same as success. Havent sold them yet. Two, really? Guy said. I think Ive read maybe ten books in my life.

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He walked away. Guy took great care in putting me in my place [8] rivington was ours in front of this new girlfriend. And she wasnt interested in being put in her place.

When he went out for a smoke she marched right up to me. Youre the DJ, right? I saw you spin at my friends birthday party. Of all the things I did, DJing I failed at the least. It made me smile.

I looked up at the young girl. Behind her dark bangs she had the delicacy and eye makeup of the tiniest egg in a set of Russian dolls. Yep and you, uhm. Oh, geez. Even I cant avoid another What do you do? Oh, I dont work anywhere.

Im a singer. Whats the name of your band? Its not really a band anymore Then send me your record. I like playing friends music. She started to answer and then let out a sheepish laugh. Her eyes fluttered back down to earth, heavy with makeup and impossibly thick lashes. She looked up, biting the corner of her lower lip. I dont I dont have a demo or anything. Not yet. I felt for the girl, actually.

Im the writer with too much to show for it. None of it good enough to share. Well, when you get some shows together maybe you could book an after- party with me. Let me know, Ill give you my number. I realized then that Guy never actually introduced us. I didnt even know her name. How do you want me to put you in my phone? Her eyes sparkled like two disco balls. Put me in your phone as Gaga. Like Freddie Mercury? Finally someone gets it. All we hear is radio Ga Ga I sang a bit of the Queen song.

She came in on my harmonies. And Ill save you as Her screen lit up.

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So did her eyes. Im sorry. This is really important. She ran out the door to take a call. I sent her a text: Save my number and maybe we can work together. Good luck. Gaga shook her head and walked away as he cleared his throat and tried to wipe the smile off his delicate face.

She pressed the phone hard to her ear.

Guy yelled after her, changing the subject. Whos calling you this late? Hang on one sec, she said as she shouldered the phone, enjoying the cat- and- mouse routine. She scowled right up at him. Its my producer and I need to Just then her phone had another message from another man chiming in a little too late on a Saturday night. Hence, there are many books entering PDF format. Right here websites for downloading free PDF books where you can acquire as much knowledge as you wish.

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His smile turned guilty, so he changed the subject. Neither is it enough, for the explaining of these words, to render them, as is usual in dictionaries, by words of another tongue which come nearest to their signification; for what is meant by them is commonly as hard to be understood in one, as another language.

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