“One way to tell the story of a great American city is to track the deaths and lives of its many neighborhoods,” writes Andrew Marantz on the New Yorker’s Culture Desk.
Marantz is seizing on the closure of Southpaw, which will become a kid’s play place, as a metaphor for the direction of the neighborhood: from Cutting Edge to Stroller District.
Marantz attended The Rub, Southpaw’s signature hip-hop dance party, which will move to The Bell House in Gowanus.
125 Fifth Avenue was a 99-cent store when Matt Roff and Mikey Palms bought it in 2002 and turned it into Southpaw. Roff now says the reason Southpaw is closing is “other businesses that demanded our attention,” including the Public Assembly music venue in Williamsburg, and bars in Crown Heights, which is “looking like the new Park Slope.”
How can Marantz say Park Slope has no pulse? He had a conversation with a “young white man” in a flat-billed Raiders cap, skinny jeans, and snow boots, who told him “Park Slope is dead … And it’s shitty timing, because I just turned twenty-one.”