Cue the snow globe for New Yorker writer's visit to Northampton
NORTHAMPTON — A New Yorker magazine profile of Kim Gordon, the former Sonic Youth rocker, keeps her at center stage but offers Northampton a supporting role.
It is a curious cameo.
The piece by Alex Halberstadt in the June 3 issue captures the way the 60-year-old Gordon’s creativity has spilled over into fashion design, acting and business. It tells of her breakup from her husband and musical partner Thurston Moore.
Readers in Northampton, though, might find the story a little bruising to the civic ego.
One of Gordon’s neighbors, Peter Smith, is quoted as saying this of the couple’s life in the Paradise City: “They brought a sexiness to one of the most profoundly unsexy towns in the world.”
Well, sure, it’s not South Beach, but we have to wear clothes in the winter.
The writer follows Gordon on her Northampton routines, including a trip into town for lunch. He writes: “Gordon wore a fur-trimmed parka from United Bamboo and a wide-brimmed hat — she doesn’t consider it peculiar to show up in a college-town burrito restaurant in couture. She was surrounded by couples in snowflake cardigans and sweats and seemed to be on a first-name basis with at least a few of them.”
“Surrounded,” to me, conveys four compass points. That means in the neighborhood of eight snowflake cardigans.
Hello, famous New Yorker fact-checkers? Can’t resist a cliche, can you?
As for the city’s sexiness problem, I call on Mayor David Narkewicz to convene a committee.
Ah, well. When celebrities like Gordon and Moore moved to Northampton in 1999, no one expected them to leave downtown Manhattan behind.
And when a writer for the New Yorker strays up past the Bronx, better grab your grandmother’s sweater. They’ll be looking for it.
The magazine teases the piece on its website.