Seemingly tailor-made to folks like me who wax rhapsodic and wistfully pine for the gritty New York City of yesteryear, Marshall Berman and Brian Berger recently unveiled "New York Calling: From Blackout to Bloomberg." A collection of essays from a host of local writers, "New York Calling" traces the city's many facets from its lawless badlands days in the 70's through to today's post-9/11, squeaky clean and largley character-free incarnation. Given my predilections, I particularly enjoyed Brandon Stusoy's ruminations on the No Wave scene ("Death And Transfiguration In New York Rock"), Philip Dray's account of his many cheap-o apartments ("I Am a Renter") and Edmund Berrigan's memories of growing up on St. Mark's Place ("Growing Up Unrented on the Lower East Side"). Incidentally, that's Berrigan's little brother, Anselm, you see in the opening scenes of the video for "Waiting On A Friend" by the Rolling Stones. Again, if you're as fascinated by this sort've stuff as I am, do check it out. You can also find Berger's weblog right here.