In the past week, hundreds of thousands of Americans have signed petitions urging Washington to let their states secede from the union and liberate themselves from the tyrannical federal guv'ment. And right here in Brooklyn, one East Williamsburg resident is seizing the growing secession momentum to shake free from the shackles of lame, bourgeois Williamsburg "proper."
"I live in Williamsburg," Ian MacAllen tells us. "Or East Williamsburg. It all depends on the year, the real estate broker, the cab driver, the girl you are trying to impress. For people who know the difference, I tell them Graham Avenue." His petition, which calls on the federal government to "peacefully grant the neighborhood of East Williamsburg to secede from Williamsburg and create a new, hipper neighborhood," currently has one signature. But once the hardcore punk DIY crowd at East Williamsburg's Huckleberry Bar hears about this, it's going to catch fire. Here is MacAllen's demand:
The founding hipsters first arrived on Bedford Avenue two decades earlier convinced that the East Village was "overpriced" and that more generally, Manhattan was "so over."
In recent years, the trustifarians have turned the Bedford Avenue area into a disneyland of fashionable shops and expensive cocktail bars. The baby-bankers living in the glass, waterfront towers have pushed out the smack junkies and complain to the police about "noise" from rock musicians.
As such, the grittier East Williamsburg would prefer to disassociate from Williamsburg as a fully separate and independent neighborhood. The people of East Williamsburg actually have real jobs. Their shops are not particularly fashionable. Some of the bars are genuinely dangerous dives. Please allow the neighborhood to secede.
But what will the new district be called once it's finally crawled out from beneath the frigid, oppressive shadow of Williamsburg's deluxe condos? MacAllen's got it all worked out. "I have always been partial to the name English Kills, the name of the western trickle of toxic water pouring into the Newtown Creek," the visionary founding father revels. "At one point I believe the area was actually called English Kills before Williamsburg was founded. I think my fondness for the moniker English Kills comes from the fact that I have an advanced degree in English literature; academic English can kill you." For the Williamsburg philistines reading this, that's English major humor. You wouldn't understand.
President MacAllen, we salute you! We just need to figure out where East Williamsburg actually is and we'll be all set.