End of an Era
Even though I no longer live there, I will always have a place in my heart for the West Village. In fact, I continue to patronize certain businesses like my barber shop and drug store just to have excuses to visit my old neighborhood on a regular basis. My drugstore is catty corner across from Condomania, a sex shop of sorts that sells every kind of condom under the sun. Mostly it attracts tourists and giggly teenagers these days, but I was surprised to see that they were still open for business last week when I walked by. These kinds of business, ones that mark the history of the gay community and were born out of a particular need from the AIDS epidemic are quickly becoming relics of the neighborhood which was once the home of Stonewall and the modern gay rights movement. The particular stretch of Bleecker Street where Condomania is located has recently become one of the most exclusive shopping districts in Manhattan with stores like Ralph Lauren and Marc Jacobs taking up residence where old book and antique shops or neighborhood eateries used to be.
I figured it was only a matter of time before Condomania was next on the chopping block, and I was right. The store has closed citing "sky rocketing rents" as the reason. They hope to find a new location soon, but in the meantime their online store condomania.com is still open for business.
Labels: New Yorkana