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August 28, 2011

(Note: I'm posting this tonight, because there's a good chance that the power could be off tomorrow. If I don't comment back, it means that Marty After Dark is really living up to the name.)

Live, from New York, it’s Saturday Night Cheeseburger! Starring Old Town Bar and featuring the Ready for Prime Beef Player, Marty Wombacher. And now, right before a hurricane knocks the shit out of the city, please welcome your host, Old Town Bar!

It's raining out and the streets are pretty empty because the subways aren't running. Even though the bad shit isn't supposed to hit till morning, I think I'll stick close to home and go to the Chat 'N' Chew right down the block.

Can you say, "irony?" Sure, I knew that you could!

Motherfucker, it's closed! Oh well, Steak Frites is right across the street and they have a great cheeseburger.

Shit, they're closed too. Pussies!

There's Union Square Cafe down the road. I don't know if they've got cheeseburgers, but they do have a bar, let's go.

Closed! Shit, Irene's not supposed to get bad till after midnight, this is becoming a trying Cheeseburger Saturday Night!

Fuck, I hate to resort to McDonald's for a Cheeseburger Saturday Night, but I need to get his over with and go home and start drinking get ready for the storm.

Well, looks like I'm not going to resort to McDonald's, these fuckers are closed too.

I wonder if the Andy Warhol statue will ride the storm out. He is pretty frail after all!

A lot of people are taping their windows.

I don't understand how it's going to help, but whatever floats your boat.

Hold on, I think I see a beacon of hope there!

The sign is lit, but is the bar open?

Shit, there's a sign on the door, I hope it doesn't say they're closed.

Ha! I love Old Town Bar!

Not only is it open, it's packed! Let's see if we can find a seat at the bar.

No sooner do I sit down, than friendly bartender Peter serves up a beer.

The view from my perch at the bar.

A shot from the end of the bar.

People at a table in the back room.

The booth's opposite the bar are filled up.

Meanwhile back at the bar the condiments and sliverware have been placed. The cheeseburger can't be far behind.

And speak of the devil and it appears. I got a cheddar turkey burger with bacon and cole slaw.


And here's our pretty friend Lucille, who waited on us last time behind the bar with Peter.

Irene may be knocking some shit down later, but I think the Old Town Bar and it's might and massive urinals will still be standing. See you tomorrow after dark if I still have power!

For the cheeseburger rating, review and more photos of Old Town Bar on MAD click here and here.

Old Town Bar
45 East 18th St. (Between Broadway and Park Ave. South)

Further reading: Jeremiah’s Vanishing New York, Forgotten New York, Peter Sylvester Photography and Wikipedia.

You Might Also Like: My Three Sons, Three Little Pigs and Three’s Company.

Four Other Canes (I know it’s a stretch, but I’m running out of hurricane related shit to put up here!)
Arthur “Killer” Kane
Cain and Abel

Suggested by Al and rr.


(Surprise link...click on it...I dare you!)


Bonus Photo By Crazy Eddie!

Crazy Eddie sent me a photo of his Hurricane Irene survival kit. Looks like he has all bases covered! Thanks for the photo Crazy Eddie!


Bonus Art From Jaws and Half Empty Glass Linkage!

Jaws sent in this Hurricane Irene Art, thanks Jaws! And check out the fine post over at the Half Empty Glass.

References (1)

References allow you to track sources for this article, as well as articles that were written in response to this article.

Reader Comments (31)

Great that Old Town was open. Massive urinals are almost a required visit just to see,,,,they are beautiful. Neil video was very entertaining and the spanish translations were really funny. Hope all is well, it will soon be over and everyone can get back out, and block the sidewalks and the escalators while they text, back to normal if all of that is normal.

August 28, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAl

Fantastic. It's so sick how soft this city has become. Turning off the damn subways? Fucking ridiculous.

Good for you and Old Town Bar. We were cooling our heels at Lincoln Park on 9th Ave. in the 50's.

August 28, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterFat Al

There's got to be a morning after
If we can hold on through the night
We have a chance to find the sunshine
Let's keep on looking for the light

Oh, can't you see the morning after?
It's waiting right outside the storm
Why don't we cross the bridge together
And find a place that's safe and warm?

It's not too late, we should be giving
Only with love can we climb
It's not too late, not while we're living
Let's put our hands out in time

There's got to be a morning after
We're moving closer to the shore
I know we'll be there by tomorrow
And we'll escape the darkness
We won't be searching anymore

There's got to be a morning after
(There's got to be a morning after)
There's got to be a morning after
(There's got to be a morning after)
There's got to be a morning after
(There's got to be a morning after)
There's got to be a morning after
(There's got to be a morning after)
(repeat and fade out)

August 28, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJaws the Cabbie

There's got to be a morning after.....
Long as I got my quart of booze...

August 28, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJaws the Cabbie

"No Hysteria since 1892" ... that is awesome ! ..... I went out last night - and was out past midnight --- and not a damn thing happened.

A whole lot to do about nothing .........

August 28, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterGENE

Check your e-mail Marty...I've got something for ya....

August 28, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJaws the Cabbie

Hey I've been there! I love that they were still open, makes them an even more awesome place in my book. Hope it all ends up being a bit over blown. Better that then living up to the hype.

August 28, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterkari

It's not hysteria that closed any of the restaurants. It was consideration for the working class staff that normally take mass transit and would be stranded if they came to work in the morning. Some restaurants and bars were open solely because their staff live locally or drive.

NYC prepared for the worst and got off easy. It may turn out differently next time. I wonder about these rearview mirror whiners who say we're soft. They would probably be the first to complain if there was damage, injury or death if preparations were less extensive.

A note about window taping - useless. Two things will break glass during a hurricane. Air pressure strong enough to blow out a window or flying debris. In either case tape might hold a few small shards together but would do nothing to prevent the window from breaking. Taping is not a suggestion in the Office of Emergency Management Ready New York hurricane brochure or any other official publications that I've seen. It's just monkey see, monkey do.

August 28, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterYeahRight

Respectfully, I disagree. It wasn't Bloomberg's "consideration for the working class," it was Bloomberg not wanting to get blamed again for being unprepared, so instead of treating 8 million people like adults, he treated us like three year olds.

August 28, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterFat Al

I agree with Al. This is a reaction to the bungle up of the snow removal. Step 1, needlessly scare the public, Step 2, talk to them like they are all children, step 3, praise thyself for being prepared and thank "God" that this wasn't worse then it was. The best part, you don't have to plow or shovel rain.
What I find more alarming is the "Boy Who Cried Wolf" factor. Say the next storm does justify mandatory evacuations, how many will harken back to this fiasco and not budge an inch? (Not to mention the waste of tax-payer money for this political stunt.)
That's are just opinions of mine, but whatever, it's all water (hopefully) under the bridge now. All in all, the situation is rapidly returning to normal, so let's all get back to the important issues; like which celebrity is buggering which other celebrity, how often, and in what manner.

August 28, 2011 | Unregistered Commentercsp

Why do I have Grammar farts? On the third hand, maybe the truth lies somewhere between what I tried to say above and what Yeah Right said.

August 28, 2011 | Unregistered Commentercsp

@Al: Cheers to Old Town for staying open and letting us enjoy a pre-Irene Cheeseburger Saturday Night!

@Fat Al: I'm just waking up and have slept through the whole thing!

@Jaws: I'm just waking up and it's the afternoon after and from what I can see, it wasn't the doom and gloom they projected.

@GENE: I thought the sign was great too!

@kari: It appears to have been overblown, although I'm just waking up.

@YeahRight: I agree somewhat with your point, but I think the media and Bloomberg put too much fear into everyone about the storm. Even worst-case scenario it was going to be a one day thing. Witness my Food Emporium post. Those were local people who bought all the food from that place like we were going to be foodless for weeks. And I agree about the window taping, it's crazy and sheeplike.

@Fat Al: I agree with you.

@csp: Agreed, now back to what Lindsay Lohan is up to not to mention Snooki.

August 28, 2011 | Registered CommenterMarty After Dark

I was hoping Irene would have 'relocated' the cast of 'The Jersey Shore'.
(maybe next time)
Be safe Daddio.

August 28, 2011 | Unregistered Commenter"Boris"

@"Boris": Thanks, Daddio. Thankfully it wasn't the apocalyptic day the media said it was going to be. I'll even be able to go out for Sunday dinner!

August 28, 2011 | Registered CommenterMarty After Dark

I'm wearing my weatherproof beret. I like how you've arranged your Hurricane supplies. Because they descend from left to right from tallest to shortest, the eye tends to zero in on the vodka and track to the right. Meanwhile the brain processes, vodka, whiskey, gin, beer (ahh I see what's going on here), toilet paper (WHAT!). Two artsy-fartsy thumbs up. Au revoir Irene.

August 28, 2011 | Unregistered Commentercsp

@csp: That's Crazy Eddie's survival kit, not mine. I'll post my booze supply tomorrow. I really stocked up!

August 28, 2011 | Registered CommenterMarty After Dark

better safe than sorry...undoubtedly the finest advice anyone should heed w/ a possible nightmare heading in one's direction...yes better safe than sorry should also advise to use some "common sense" (which seems to be in limited supply these days) and take all forecasts w/ a grain of salt...my 2ยข YMMV...

always great to revisit a previous stop...even when not forced to...as i was viewing today's post w/ this and that shuttered and a McDonald's appeared on the monitor i cried out "no no no don't let MAD falter"...guess we will never know!...was glad he got to do an Old Town Bar redux...hoistin' one to OTB and MAD...

For an adult, eating alone at McDonald's is admitting a kind of defeat.
Jonathan Carroll


August 28, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterraginrr

al mentioned the "massive urinals" at OTB...just a note they don't even get a nod over at urinals dot net...


August 28, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterraginrr

Glad you are gooood. What a week for the east coast...be safe Martin

August 28, 2011 | Unregistered Commentertehennessey

@Fat al - How did pointing out that EMPLOYERS would show consideration for their employees become a defense of Bloomberg? But since you bring it up, the city response was proper. If the hurricane was equal to or worse than the predictions there would be no question about the precautions taken. For a little historical insight look at how far water flooded the L.E.S. during the hurricane of 1938 which caused many hundreds of deaths along the east coast.
@csp - Should the preparations for an approaching disaster of unpredictable strength never exceed the outcome? You won't know until it's over and then if you're not prepared it's too late. Please witness the Bloomberg screw-up for the blizzrd. He was an ass then, is he now an ass for doing the right thing?
@MAD - media panic with wall-to-wall 24/3 coverage frenzy - true, sheeplike survivalist hoarding of food - true, Bloomberg asking people to take precautions for a possible bad scenario - not a problem.

August 28, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterYeahRight

My problem isn't with employers closing their businesses. Of course employers (and employees) should have everyone's safety foremost in their minds in situations like this. My problem is with forcing the entire city to shut down by an entirely un-nuanced approach to the mass-transit system. Was it really necessary to announce On Friday afternoon that the whole system would be shut at noon the next day? Could there not have been various contingency plans? Could there not have been an uptown-downtown shuttle train, a Queens-Manhattan shuttle, etc.?

This was all about how they didn't know what to do, and didn't want to try anything that would let anyone do anything, so they couldn't be accused of failing. That isn't leadership, it's panic. And it's a silly way to run a city the size of this one.

August 28, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterFat Al

@Crazy Edie- Ooops. Marty is an artistic plebeian, you sir an artistic genius who modified the classical pyramidal subject structure masterfully.

@Fat Al: There should have been a partial shut down plan IMHO, they know which tunnels and lines are prone to flooding. The MTA is so unlikely to plan for anything, I'm actually surprised they even had a shut-down plan. (That's assuming they are doing it right and not just stopping the trains willy-nilly. It's actually pretty tricky.)

@Yeah Right. I believe my beef is summed up in the word predictability. Is it likely that there will be a major snow storm in New York City every few winters? Yes. Should there be reasonable plans to remove the snow? (There usually are) Yes, Should those plans be implemented? Yes. Is it likely every there will be a hurricane striking New York City once in a while? Yes. Should there be plans to ride out the Hurricane? (There usually are) Yes. As the storm got closer and closer, was it not predicted with an increasing degree of certainty that the storm's threat had greatly diminished? (The hurricane of 1938 was a class 5 in the Atlantic, not class 3) Is evacuating the city unprecedented? Yes. Did we evacuate the city when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor? Hell No! My beef is not being prepared, but either using the situation as an opportunity for political gain by being, for lack of a better term, over prepared. I claim Bloomberg's actions are in response to the recent complete bungling of the much more common occurrence of snow. Even if one claims that it is human nature to have a knee-jerk reaction of over preparation following a failure of preparation, well I'm not a big fan of knee-jerk reactions. (It has the word jerk right in it.) But that is just my "some asshole's" opinion. I am glad that no one got hurt, I hope when another class 5 hurricane comes along, as in 1938, people do not take it's landfall less seriously then they should stemming from Irene's handling in comparison to Irene's actual threat. On the other hand, maybe some people are just a bit soft nowadays. Blackouts were a lot more common back in the day, and it has been quite a while since a hurricane has said hello in these parts. One thing I think both you and I can agree on Yeah Right, is that I've been typing for far too long.

August 28, 2011 | Unregistered Commentercsp

@rr: Raising one to you and your fine quote of the day!

@tehennessey: All is well! I'll talk to you soon.

@YeahRight: They knew that the storm wouldn't hit till the morning, was the subway shutdown really necessary?

@Fat Al: I agree.

@csp: Agreed!

August 28, 2011 | Registered CommenterMarty After Dark

@MAD: For a complete subway shutdown, they did have to close that early. All the trains had to be shuffled off all the main routes to allow for pumping cars access to the tunnels. To compound the problem, all the train storage yards were in designated flood zones. I was surprised they had a plan in place. The MTA doesn't impress me often.

August 28, 2011 | Unregistered Commentercsp

csp - Jeez, sorry I pushed a button or two. Why do you write that the 1938 hurricane was a "class 5 in the Atlantic, not class 3" as if I had made a mention of it? I didn't. By the way, it's hurricane category, not class.

The '38 hurricane made landfall out on the eastern end of Suffolk County (not NYC). It had defied the predictions of some forecasters with deadly results. New York City was on the less powerful west side and far from the eye but sustained severe damage from the category 3 (not 5) hurricane.

For Irene it was possible to forecast with much greater but not absolute certainty. It appeared that New York City would get a direct hit from a category 1 hurricane. No, we did not evacuate 8 million NYers after the "Germans bombed Pearl Harbor". To say that evacuating thousands of people living in the first and most vulnerable of three well plotted flood zones to ensure their safety is roughly equivalent would be absurd.

To provide for the safe storage of its subway cars away from the salt water flooded Coney Island and #3 Harlem River rail yards was prudent. The orderly shutdown of the transit system shows respect for the safety of the women and men of the MTA.

Are we all inconvenienced? Of course, but can't we wait a couple of days or walk a few extra blocks for a cheeseburger? Or are we soft?

August 28, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterYeahRight

@YR: I agreed w/ the MTA shutdown. Good call on the category thing. I still don't think a pretend evacuation of 320,000 people to shelters for 70,000 people is much of a plan. The Pearl Harbor thing was meant to be a humorous reference. To be honest, I'm making a mountain out of a mole hill. It just irks me when someone does something which appears to be for an ulterior motive, but frames their actions in such a way, that to question them, can be warped to support their argument. (It's seem to be all the rage these days.) This isn't the forum for such discussions, I just caught caught up in the hype. End of the day, I'm glad the Hurricane wasn't much of anything, I was just taping some ethical windows and as you pointed out, that's silly. Have a good night YeahRight. Crap, now I want a cheeseburger. Also, I'm nutty. Also, I promise not to say any more. Also, you might believe that if I don't have the last word.

August 29, 2011 | Unregistered Commentercsp

I like you @csp

August 29, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterkari

Who cares about the subway - it costs $40 just to have your hair blown-dry by someone else?! Damn!

August 29, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterBritta

@csp: The last words are taken from a comment from "Boris" a couple days ago, "Goodnight, Irene!"

@Britta: Ha! How true!

August 29, 2011 | Registered CommenterMarty After Dark

HEY! I thought you promised to get the hot dogs next time you went there!?!? Oh well, I'm glad you found someplace to eat.

August 29, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterBiff

@Biff: Sorry, my mind was muddled from worrying about a hurricane that turned out to be a tropical storm.

August 29, 2011 | Registered CommenterMarty After Dark

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