"A New York Treasure" --Village Voice

New York Minute

Ever feel lonely in the big city? I constantly talk to strangers, or communicate with them through eye contact or a head nod. My family is here. I’m out there in the world. But sometimes the loneliness is impossible to escape and it will creep up on you, even briefly, when you least expect it.


1 cullid112233   ~  Apr 6, 2011 1:32 pm

You ever listened to "New York City's Killin Me" by Ray La Montagne? Pretty good tune that captures that feeling from the perspecitve of an outsider

2 Alex Belth   ~  Apr 6, 2011 1:33 pm

Cool. Always thought that isolation was the real theme of "Taxi Driver." The paranoia and fear too but loneliness in New York, displaced--Travis was a vet--was really poignant.

3 Chyll Will   ~  Apr 6, 2011 2:00 pm

Yes, very much so.

4 Jon DeRosa   ~  Apr 6, 2011 2:06 pm

My wife and I used to have an Oscar party every year. At the height of attendance, we used to have maybe 20-25 people there. Then we moved uptown, people moved to the burbs, people started having kids (us included) and then one year, a few weeks after our second was born, our attendance was my wife's mom and one other couple who also had a kid and left before the first award was handed out. The next year nobody came and that was that.

That felt lonely. Like everbody had formed these new closed units and all the old familiar connections were severed.

5 Alex Belth   ~  Apr 6, 2011 2:27 pm

It is not the same thing but that is why the Banter is open 34-7, 365. The place where everyone knows your name--or handle.

6 thelarmis   ~  Apr 6, 2011 2:45 pm

[5] ooh, i could use those extra 10 hours a day!!!

soon, my handle here will link to my name. coupla last minute tweaks at the website, before i feel comfy linking to it. even then, the website will be pretty barren for awhile.

then again, i haven't a clue as to how to make your handle here red and linkable!

7 Matt Blankman   ~  Apr 6, 2011 2:50 pm

[2] Funny, I was thinking of Taxi Driver (The blu-ray just came out yesterday). Yeah, ever read any of that book by Robert Kolker "A Cinema of Lonliness?"

Also, and maybe Diane will appreciate this, but I also flashed on Yes' "Heart of the Sunrise."

8 thelarmis   ~  Apr 6, 2011 2:54 pm

[7] dude. that's my *favorite* Yes tune of all time!!!

Bill Bruford is brilliant.

9 Matt Blankman   ~  Apr 6, 2011 6:19 pm

[8] "I feel lost in the city"

10 Mr OK Jazz Tokyo   ~  Apr 6, 2011 6:19 pm

Really love the NY Minute posts, AB.

One of the nice things of living in Tokyo is the ability to really BE alone if you want to. Odd thing in the world's most populous city, but if I turn off the Japanese speaking I can wander the city for a whole day with no one speaking or making eye-contact with me. Some foreigners hate this but at times it's very nice. If I get lonely then just need to make some polite small talk with any local and they will instantly respond, relieved that I can communicate in their language.

11 Raf   ~  Apr 6, 2011 6:43 pm

[10] If I ever get a handle on the Japanese language... It's kind of a weird feeling to not be able to say anything while out in public for an entire day. For me, it's more not being able to talk to a cute girl. It's nice to be able to make eye contact and smile. Sometimes it looks like they want to say something, or ask a question, but they can't (or maybe won't). I have really enjoyed my all too brief trips out there, and I look forward to my next trip there.

12 Matt Blankman   ~  Apr 6, 2011 7:57 pm

[8] Bruford is amazing. Love Bruford in King Crimson, too, especially the mid-70s stuff.

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