Artwork by Charlotte Voelkel/Head Spectrum Illustrator, Columbia Daily Spectator, March 30, 2016
Penn Station and the Circles of Hell
“On March 8, 2016, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo compared America’s least-loved train station, Penn Station, to ‘the seven levels of hell.’ Here’s the full quote:
‘It is a disgrace. More people go through Penn Station every day than Newark, Kennedy, and La Guardia airports combined. It’s the most heavily traveled transportation hub in the hemisphere, and imagine what they say when they get off: “This is New York? Looks like the seven levels of hell. I’m in New York?”‘ [. . .]
“Penn Station is so viscerally awful that you can’t help but look for sin in relation to this place as causes for, results of, or simply in association with, its awfulness. So let’s humor the Governor and his imperfect analogy and try to map these different sins to activity occurring in (or near) Penn Station. I’ll be the Virgil to your Dante. Come with me across the River Acheron, or in this case, the stream of vomit and human misery running along West 34th Street.” [. . .] –Mark Lee, Overthinking It, March 18, 2016.
You can read the full article at Overthinking It.
Dante, Cocktail Bar (NYC)
Under new ownership since 2015, this NYC institution was named #16 of the world’s 50 best bars. Rechristened “Dante” (formerly Caffe Dante), the cocktail bar boasts registered landmark status and 100+ years of serving New York’s cultural elite.
From the Dante-NYC website: “Dante has been a beacon for the community of Greenwich Village since it opened its doors in 1915. Now a registered New York City landmark, this modest meeting house has always attracted people from all walks of life: famous actors, writers and musicians to the down at heel of the beatnik generation, all of whom have found solace in its relaxed & unpretentious environs. A place where a cup of espresso, a warm smile or a friendly embrace epitomized life’s simple pleasures.
“Now in its latest incarnation as Dante, its new owners, all lifelong industry professionals and old friends, have breathed new life into this iconic space. Its historical integrity and sense of community remain firmly in tact but now complemented by an elevated selection of modern Italian cuisine, world class cocktails and an award winning bar program. Welcome to Dante 2017, where everything old is new again.” Read the rest of the story here.
Caffe Dante had previously appeared on the Dante Today website. The original post is here.
Their “Dante”-branded ice-cube appeared on the site in 2016.
Bret Easton Ellis, American Psycho (1991)
The novel opens with “Abandon all hope ye who enter here.”
(Contributed by Antonio Barrenechea)
Weegee : King of the Nighttime Streets
Weegee (Ascher Fellig, 1899-1968), a New York City photographer, “was the Dante of New York’s nighttime demimonde. His photos, of swells and speakeasies, crime and crowds, or perps and play, are a singular record of New York City in the 1930s and ’40s.” -David Gonzalez, The New York Times, September 28, 2017
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