The Pseudonymous Crusade of a ‘Brilliantly Dismal Blog’

New York Times catches up with the owner of Jeremiah's Vanishing New York.

There’s an extra layer of meaning to be found in Jeremiah’s Vanishing New York, the title of a passionate and well-known urban blog showcased in this weekend’s Sunday New York Times. The blog’s owner and operator vanished, from the get-go, disappearing into a pseudonymous identity.

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The blogger who goes by Jeremiah Moss tells Alan Feuer that the main reason he conceals his identity is to keep his urban preservation efforts distinct from his day jobs as a therapist and writer. As Jeremiah, he has recently upped his civic efforts, adding website savenyc.nyc to his campaign following the closure of a beloved old Times Square coffee shop. From Feuer’s piece:

“What’s happening in the city now isn’t gentrification – it’s hyper-gentrification,” Moss said one day last month, brooding over coffee in a gentrified diner in the gentrified East Village, where he has resided, begrudgingly of late, for more than 20 years. “New York has traditionally changed organically: Italians move out, Chinese move in. But this is not organic. This is planned, it’s strategic. It’s the city government and major corporations colluding together to recreate the landscape.”

To the many fellow NYC residents who are equally frustrated by the effects of hyper-gentrification, Moss has started pointing them to a bill first introduced to City Council in 1986 and re-sponsored last year that is designed to support commercial tenants battling landlords. And in a small, hopeful sign, a minor correction to Feuer’s article reminds that a Dunkin’ Donuts and Forest Hills pastry shop can, sometimes, miraculously co-exist.