Davis Square: Came and Went
Gone are the days of diving in the Goodwill bins on Elm Street (they're never outside the store anymore), searching for long lost musical loves at Disc Diggers (out of business; CD Spins lives on), and parking (this one's for the large-car-driving suburban visitors). Yes, many of the anchors of the Square are still going strong--Anna's (now they they've added the taco al pastor, the first new menu item in over a decade), Mike's (the only pizza and pasta joint on Earth where they charge extra for sauce), and Johnny D's (the revered music hall founded by an ex-Somerville cop). Don't forget about Redbones and Someday and Diesel!
But at all the new restaurants, the dinner entrees cost $25. There was that one where you were supposed to construct a meal from 2-3 "tapas" plates at $12 each (out of business!). And if you're one of the big spenders who drive in from the neighboring suburbs to experience "the city" without braving the T, it now costs a quarter for every 15 minutes at a meter--that rate is in line with Downtown Boston and, yes, Manhattan.
With yuppification comes homogenization. If I had a dollar for every asshole I saw wearing an Ithaca is Gorges shirt....can you believe that those shirts come in more than one color now? I mean, in 2006, who is stupid enough to spend the money....
And what's with all the beautiful, brand new, oversized yuppie dogs? They're huge and shiny and gorgeous--the SUVs of canine companionship--but you never see a yuppie with a dog over two years old, do you?
Not to mention that everyone who passed on the puppy and had an actual kid is wheeling said kid around in the same three-bicycle-wheeled stroller as everybody else. Oh, to grow up in a Somerville condo eating Whole Foods imported from Medford!
I admit that it might have been my own college student bias that led me to think that Davis was and would remain a vibrant, urban backwater peopled by artists, students, and weirdos. It seems today that there are less students than ever before, anywhere. Grad students remain confined to Diesel and Someday; Tufts kids make a mad dash from their shuttle bus stop to the underground platform of the Red Line. Meanwhile, Starbucks, where I have never spent a dime, is packed to the gills every evening with young professionals slaving over their laptops.
Don't get me totally wrong; I can't wait to try the $30 grouper at the new and improved Out of the Blue, nor can I wait any longer to cook up the asparagus and lemon ravioli I just got at Dave's Fresh Pasta. It's just that the the next generation of young'uns in Davis, i.e. Tufts kids, are going to need a lot more money to have any fun. A lot more than I ever had as a student.
Oh, wait. Everyone else at Tufts and in Davis is rich!