Mary Sargent © 2009 ………………….…………… ………………….. click to enlarge
As I was saying, Nick talked about working here in the meatpacking business. This is where he works, at London Meats, just down the street from the corner where we were standing. What he likes about his job is, he gets out, he visits the restaurants; sometimes he saves the day for some fancy place like Le Bernadin, gets them something they need, and they're grateful. I agreed, that sounded better than hacking up carcasses. Although I understand that dedicated foodies are all learning how to cut up dead animals. I'm not talking chickens here; they're cutting up cows and pigs. This is supposed to somehow assuage their guilt for eating them. I don't really get how that works.
But I digress. Nick, of course, had plenty to say about how the neighborhood has changed. He worked here before it was discovered, when it was a gay and tranny hangout and hookers walked the streets. Now he says, it's models and people getting $200 haircuts, and if he were 20 years younger, he'd probably be divorced by now. He talked about all the old businesses being pushed out. He's safe, he says, because the owner of London Meats has a long, long lease. He talked about how the workers see plenty of pornography these days at the windows of the Standard. Apparently, it's the perfect setting for exhibitionists.
While I was looking for some nightlife stories of the old Meatpacking District, I found this article about Florent Morellet, the former owner of Restaurant Florent, recently closed, a sad event.
Or go to New York Magazine's article about the closing. The restaurant was on Gansevoort Street, so it's not properly on this walk, but there's lots of information about the area and some good history and, of course, it makes you want to cry because it's gone even though Morellet "loathes nostalgia."