The White Horse Tavern (Either Way)

What difference does it make either way?

Despite myself, I am smiling (pay no heed to the photo). Perhaps because of my two pint visit to the White Horse Tavern. Perhaps the sushi and Saporo afterwards. Perhaps, perhaps, perhaps…

I moved to New York ten years ago. I was 22-years-old. I had $400 tucked into an oatmeal can, and a fistful of feature clips from The Saratogian. And — God bless him — my older brother. I was to be a rock star first, a freelance writer second.

Six months and two paltry paychecks later, I called the Syracuse University Career Center for help. Ever since I was ten I’d wanted to either be in, or write for, Rolling Stone Magazine. “Do you have any contacts at Rolling Stone?”

A few days later, I was sharing beers with Rolling Stone contributing writer — and Syracuse University alumni — Peter Wilkinson on the terrace of the White Horse Tavern. A few minutes into our beers (“I’ll be the guy in the leather jacket,” he said. “Me too,” I said.), a buddy of his sauntered in fresh from covering the Oklahoma City bombings for the BBC.

A few weeks of demonstrating my capabilities for free as an intern, then for five bucks an hour as editorial assistant, then fifteen as a fact checker, I was writing for Rolling Stone Online.

I had arrived.

Tonight I unceremoniously returned to the White Horse. I had two pints while skimming National Geographic Traveler — oh the places you’ll go! — while eavesdropping on a couple getting increasingly inebriated. “Do you realize that your suit costs more than a month of my rent?” she said.

So, either way — go, or go ahead…

Either way, I have arrived. And say what you will, or don’t say anything at all. I’m not leaving.

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