Brooklyn’s always been the overlooked sibling among the boroughs. Founded several years before New York, it was swiftly relegated to a role as Manhattan’s unglamorous adjunct. First farms and then factories provided its economic basis. Now back-office space does the same. Until recently, Brooklyn was strictly second choice for residence. Beatniks who couldn’t afford Greenwich Village crossed the river in the ’60s, and yuppies who couldn’t afford Soho moved to Park Slope in the ’80s. Now hipsters who can’t afford the East Village have filled every cranny between soon-to-be evicted bodegas and auto-repair shops with cafés sporting lava lamps on the tables and old record albums tacked to the walls. Inside, a horde of latte-swilling sensitives sit in mismatched chairs and tap at laptops and can’t imagine why they’d ever want to cross the river again. They interpret their migration born of economic necessity as a hegira of moral virtue. Self-righteous sour grapes define their attitude to Gotham.I'm not young, but I was one of those yuppies who couldn’t afford Soho and moved to Park Slope in the ’80s. I'm back in Brooklyn, now, unyoung yet in need of coffee and WiFi. This Bukiet character has apparently never been to Madison. I'm starved here in Brooklyn for the indie cafés I live at back home. I'm forced to patronize Starbucks and I had to shell out for the T-Mobile connection. It's irksome.
In short, they’re young.
These days, I mark my time at Starbucks by the inevitable reappearance in the music rotation of the Bob Dylan song "Jokerman." Why "Jokerman"? I've never much thought about "Jokerman," but really, look at the lyrics: "Jokerman dance to the nightingale tune. Oh, oh, oh, Jokerman." Is it possible to sing that line a few more times? Oh, oh, oh, oh, oh, oh, oh, oh, oh, oh, oh, oh, oh, oh, oh, oh, oh, oh, it's getting painful.