In the year that all the banks went down, one stood still, or moved just enough to allude to its steady decline in the memory of this city.
This lone haunted sentinel called the Williamsburgh Savings Bank, once filled with dentists, as if written into a Lethem novel, is being transformed as we wake and dream into luxury lofts, so as to defy and deny history, not to claim it or pretend it isn't past.
Once a fancy hall of money exchange, a dependable time piece, a choice venue for taking in a city panorama. Still the tallest building in the Broken Land, but not for long (when it becomes dwarfed by Ratner's Gehryization of this roiling borough's central corridor).
For many years this building was my lanky friend rising up from Flatbush, out of the fog, a needed compass for wandering eyes and thoughts.
As it fills up with luxurious consumers of the urban luxury lifestyle, this lonely muse will offer up its nostalgia in tamer, watered-down bursts, like a shaved ice held in my hand a few moments too long, on a hot city day.
See inside the building on Nathan Kensinger's amazing blog, which inspired me to say a few things on this subject.