Sunday, November 9, 2014

What Makes St. Mark's Place So Cool?

There is no doubt about it — ask anyone and you will receive the same answer: St. Mark's Place between Second and Third Avenues is the coolest street in the East Village! So cool, that just the thought of any proposed alteration to it drives residents to apoplexy!

But what makes it so cool? Today you're going to find out!

You have to remember that East Villagers love to take drugs. They either take drugs themselves, or they enable others in doing it. So naturally, it makes sense that the coolest block in the East Village would be the place to go to buy drug paraphernalia!

These pictures are from yesterday afternoon.

The view down St. Mark's Place from Third Avenue toward Second Avenue.

E-Smoke Shop, open 24 hours!

Close-up of E-Smoke Shop.

Next door to E-Smoke Shop.

Sunglasses are also very cool, as are different forms of body mutilation:

Sunglasses, scarves, and hats.

Drug paraphernalia, sunglasses, and body piercing all in one!

Jum Mum offered "Happiness Inside", but they didn't succeed:

St. Mark's Comics is one of the few stores that doesn't sell drug paraphernalia. The people working here are very nice. Stop in and say Hi!

Things from Tibet are very popular with certain drug users. During the 1960s, "The Tibetan Book of the Dead" was a must-read for hippies. The mystique continues to this day:

More body mutilation:

Another combination of drug paraphernalia and body mutilation — no sunglasses though:

One of the last-remaining hold-overs from the brief "punk" period is Search & Destroy, that advertises itself with a picture from a single by the Sex Pistols, an English punk-rock band. "God Save the Queen" resonates strongly in the East Village!

How did this place get here?

Addiction — that says it all!

Drug paraphernalia in every direction — 50% off!

Tee-shirts, hats, and sunglasses outside, drug paraphernalia inside.

Body mutilation above, fresh ground beef below! Fresh tea and juice hidden behind.

Above Coco.

After the fresh ground beef restaurant, it's vacant all the way to Second Avenue. Plenty of space available to open a drug paraphernalia store! A lot of crusties hung out here during the Summer, but they've moved on to warmer climes.

Now we move across the street. Gem Spa is a newsstand that sells mostly porn magazines. Beside them is the place for hats, scarves, and sunglasses — the largest selection on St. Mark's Place!

Away from the corner, the drug paraphernalia starts again:

Close-up of i-vape — skulls for sale!

Gifts? "Happy Birthday, my drug-addict friend! Now you can go take some more drugs."

Close-up of Topoo.

Jewels! And mutilation.

As with The Sock Man and Coco across the street, Waga and Mamoun's Falafel seem out of place on this block:

Professional piercing here? It makes you wonder about the other piercing places!

For those who want to remove an old tattoo, to make room for a new one, that service is offered next to Smoking Tattoos, emporium of drug paraphernalia and tattoos:

Strange iconography: pentagram, iron cross, and a tee-shirt:

I wrote about Trash & Vaudeville here:

Eight signs advertising "body piercing," in case you're so high on drugs that you can't read. Also the standard array of drug paraphernalia, sunglasses, and scarves:

We end our tour with another bombardment of "tattoo & body piercing" signs, and the usual array of sunglasses, hats, scarves, and drug paraphernalia.

I hope you enjoyed this excursion down the East Village's most popular street, and I hope you can see why any change to any building, such as the St. Mark's Hotel, would damage this area irreparably!

#eastvillage #drugs #paraphernalia #secondavenue #signs #stmarkscomics #stmarkshotel #stmarksplace #thirdavenue

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