PATERSON, N.J. — Local punk and high school junior Terry Probost, who often claims to miss the grimy, dangerous, pre-Guiliani New York City, is actually only 17 years old and has lived in New Jersey since he was in sixth grade.
“I’m telling you, New York just is a shell of its former self,” said Probost en route to his AP History from sixth-period biology. “Back then people like Dee Dee [Ramone] and Chris [Stein of Blondie] still hung around. I just really miss when things used to be authentic, instead of this fucking Mickey Mouse Disney Store that Times Square has been turned into. Tim Verlaine would have fucking wept if he could see CBGB now. I should know, I walked by the CBGB Lounge and Bar at Newark International Airport last year. Wish I could have gone in, but my parents don’t know I have a fake ID.”
Marie Probost, a certified public accountant, was unsure exactly where her son developed his obsession with a cartoonish vision of New York City that mostly existed in self-serving memoirs.
“We moved out of Staten Island when he was just a baby,” said Probost. “I don’t think he’s ever actually been to Manhattan, and he’s definitely never been to 53rd Street and 3rd. I don’t know why he keeps shouting that with his earbuds in. If I could change one thing, it would be not letting him check ‘Please Kill Me’ out of the library last year. Please, nobody tell him that ‘Sid and Nancy’ is streaming on Plex right now. I can’t deal with him finding out about London in the ‘70s.”
New York City historian Barry Di Martino is familiar with cases like Probost’s and the obsession with how disgusting the toilet at the Mudd Club was.
“Terry is searching for an identity,” said Di Martino. “At his age, it’s very normal to romanticize a place like New York City, which has always been disgusting and a shit place to live since it was founded by the Dutch in 1624. Right now, he’s experiencing something called ‘cultural FOMO,’ which is what we historians call pretentious little shits who think there’s something cool about having to worry about being stabbed any time you leave your 11th floor walk-up apartment. With any luck, he’ll grow out of it before he becomes a music critic.”
As of press time, Probost had discovered the movie “24 Hour Party People” and was talking about how the economically depressed Manchester of the early 1980s was the coolest.