Archive for the ‘Decay’ Category

In which The Gay Recluse exalts in the ruins of a scalloped pediment and self-referentially quotes an earlier post. This is where John McCain will be staying when he comes to Washington Heights next week. Lol. In Washington Heights we live among extremes of material decadence and breathtaking neglect, apparent in the crumbling cornices of […]


In which The Gay Recluse reports to the Board of Directors on monthly traffic-whoring metrix. I. Summary June marked our third best month on record, and — in light of limited time investment into the site — represents a promising long-term trend. If we’re ever in a position to start posting with renewed frequency, we […]


In which The Gay Recluse is Manhattan Born. Location: Edgecomb Avenue and we forget exactly. When we first looked at this, we thought it said “Manhattan Born,” which we kind of prefer, even though we’re not exactly from here. Or are we, now that we’ve lived here almost ten years? Whenever anyone asks me for […]


In which The Gay Recluse becomes increasingly obsessed with manhole covers. Location: Edgecomb Avenue and 159th Street Is this the best manhole cover ever? Perhaps it is. We could stare at this for a thousand years, on or off drugs. Whenever anyone asks me for something to put into a time capsule, I tell them […]


In which The Gay Recluse goes to the museum. Consider the old panels on the subway platform wall, and observe the finely wrought precision with which each strip of peeling paint has by the hands of time been distressed in the subtlest shades of gold and silver, all displayed in a collage with the glue […]


In which The Gay Recluse hears a song from another life. Yesterday we turned on the stereo in our basement. We hadn’t played it in years. Miraculously, it worked! The receiver and speakers are from ninth grade. Hey computers! Sometimes bigger analog speakers still sound better! More miraculous was that a CD was already in […]


In which The Gay Recluse reports on monthly traffic whoring metrix to the Board of Directors. I. Summary After two record months in March and April, May witnessed an overall drop in traffic whoring, but was still our third best month ever. Some of this can be attributed to the same macroeconomic trends that have […]


In which The Gay Recluse becomes increasingly obsessed with trees. We were waiting a long time for the copper beech (Fagus sylvatica “Dawyck Purple”) to open this spring. We had only planted it last year so didn’t know what to expect. We were worried when everything else was in bloom and the beech showed no […]


In which The Gay Recluse suggests a link. The most beautiful ads are always for dead companies. Like this one we recently took on 35th Street between 5th and 6th Avenue. Does this company still exist? We hope not, because we don’t want to have to think about buying anything. New York City is filled […]


In which The Gay Recluse reports on monthly traffic whoring metrix to the Board of Directors. I. Summary After a record month of whoring in March, we experienced a slight dip in April. But! It was still our second best month on record. II. Traffic Whoring Metrix WordPress Total Views March: 13,957 Grand Total Number […]


In which The Gay Recluse leaves New York. Last month we went to Pittsburgh for a few days. Even though we “grew up” there, it was almost like visiting a new (as in unfamiliar) city. We always lived in the suburbs, and almost never went into the city except to see the Penguins! This time […]


In which The Gay Recluse documents the ruins of Washington Heights and self-referentially quotes an earlier post. Date: April 6, 2008 Location: 161st Street between Broadway and Amsterdam Hello, friendly lion! 100 years ago, you were not such a big deal, but now you would cost $50,000 at Olde Good Things. We’re glad you’re attached […]


In which The Gay Recluse photographs shipwrecks lining the Hudson north of the George Washington Bridge. Time and date of photographs: March 30, 2008 (afternoon) As usual, there were those who did not survive the winter. We tend to look at the wreckage with some disdain: “That could never happen to us!” Yet! There is […]


In which The Gay Recluse contemplates an uncommissioned masterpiece from the walls of an uptown subway station. Consider the old panels on the subway platform wall, and observe the finely wrought precision with which each strip of peeling paint has by the hands of time been distressed in the subtlest shades of gold and silver, […]


In which The Gay Recluse turns forty. Today we received the following note from Harry, a reader in Washington Heights: Subj: YOU Mess: It is none my business to know, but! My curiosity is tweaked. Who are you? Have you posted something somewhere to give a more detailed bio? or do I have to continue […]


In which The Gay Recluse contemplates an uncommissioned masterpiece from the walls of an uptown subway station. Consider, if you will, one of the old panels on the subway platform wall, and observe the finely wrought precision with which each strip of peeling paint has by the hands of time been distressed in the subtlest […]


In which The Gay Recluse reads a book five years later and says wtf. Last fall, after we posted our thoughts on the suffocation of the gay voice in American literature, a reader suggested that for the sake of comparison we check out The Yacoubian Building, by Alaa al Aswany, which said reader described to […]


In which The Gay Recluse becomes increasingly obsessed with The George Washington Bridge. Time and Date of morning photograph: March 21, 2008, 5:15pm-ish. Notes: This is the view of the George Washington Bridge from the north, in the remotest and most abandoned part of Manhattan. We see the pilings of an old pier and — […]


In which The Gay Recluse rather quickly gets lung cancer. Time and Date of morning photograph: March 20, 2008, 6:54am. Notes: One benefit of living in Washington Heights is that it’s truly like the 19th century, not only in the architectural grandeur that splays across the rooftops, but the daily emissions of 100-year-old boilers in […]


In which The Gay Recluse becomes increasingly obsessed with The George Washington Bridge. Time and Date of morning photograph: March 20, 2008, 6:54am. Notes: Seriously, don’t these clouds look a little “Poltergeisty”? Time and Date of evening photograph: March 20, 2008, 6:54pm. Notes: We appreciate the black smoke, which is so good for our asthma. […]