Meet Sean Manning. Sean is the executive editor of Rhapsody, the first- and business-class magazine Ink publishes on behalf of United out of our Brooklyn office. I’ve yet to meet Sean but I’ve a feeling we’re going to get on because we’re going to have a lot to talk about.
Sean’s the editor of the just-published Come Here Often? in which, as the subtitle makes clear, ’53 Writers Raise A Glass to their Favorite Bar’. Under headings including ‘Dives’, ‘Upscale Joints’ and ‘The Music’ a bunch of contributors, some of whom you might have heard of (war correspondent and Vanity Fair contributor Janine Di Giovanni, The Hold Steady frontman Craig Finn, author of the highly controversial novel Tampa Alissa Nutting, crime writer James Sallis of Drive fame, and bloody-nosed king of partying Andrew W.K.) and many of whom you won’t hold forth on the ideal drinking haunt.
The book is heavily slanted toward Sean’s current burg of residence, NYC, and the US in general, and while there are no London entries (like this city doesn’t have drinkers and writers!) there are some terrific far-flung contributions from the likes of Beijing, Kiribati, Tel Aviv, Positano, Zagreb, Jerusalem and Tehran. Yes, Tehran. Where the punishment for intoxication is not just a disgusted look from your partner but 80 lashes. The bar in this case isn’t a bar at all but a Peugeot belonging to the author’s friend Leila in which they cruise around town swigging homemade vodka with orange on streets “where many young people, like us, drink in their cars, because Iran is a country with no bars, and there is no suppressing the human urge to drink publicly, in the unscripted company of both friends and strangers’.
While I don’t imagine ever finding myself in Leila’s car, other inclusions in Sean’s book have definitely been bookmarked, so that if I ever find myself in Oxford, Mississippi, then there’s this little bar I read of… (Posted by AndrewH)