Sunday, December 30, 2007

Happy New Year New York, From Connecticut...

This year will mark the 100th anniversary of the large ball dropping in Times Square, a revered and joyous New York tradition. However, like many other New York traditions, the Times Square festivities are a shadow of what they once were. Visiting midtown has become an over-regulated morass of police power and inconvenience. Preparations have been going on for months.

While there will still be large crowds in midtown Manhattan to ring in the New Year, the very circumstances of being in Times Square this New Year’s Eve undercut the whole point of celebrating New Year’s Eve. Revelers will face a fascistic litany of regulations that will hamper any good times. People who turn up in Times Square for New Year’s Eve will not be allowed to bring bags or backpacks with them, nor will they be allowed to bring alcohol. Also, they will stand in the cold for hours without access to a public restroom.

It was once my goal to be in Times Square when the year 2000 came into being. I wisely abandoned that enterprise and instead celebrated nearby at Connolly’s at a Black 47 show. It was a good time. It was crowded and overpriced to the point that I refuse to see a show at Connolly’s again, but it was still a good time and a good show.

This year, like last year, I will be with friends in Connecticut. The beer will be cheaper, there will be a place to sit and go to the bathroom, and I’ll get to see some good friends; that’s the best way to ring in 2008, or any year.

Happy New Year!!

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