Nail salon? Duane Reade? Bank?

My favorite observation lately is Richard Price’s on how “real estate is violence.” And nothing makes the point sharper than seeing Oppenheimer closed. That time-warp shop on upper Broadway was one of the greatest things about my not-always-great neighborhood, and I can only surmise that it was forced out by the greed ignited by the invasion of a couple of butt-ugly, environmentally unsustainable high-rises just to the north. We’ve been up here 22 years now and have seen everything change while one real carriage-trade butcher survived, even after the wacky owner sold to a younger entrepreneur who had no fear of fins in the house of shanks. I remember going back one Black Friday to say the “fresh” turkey we had bought was actually frozen, slowing down our rush to the Calvados greatly, and Harry in his bolo tie being both mortified and conciliatory, offering anything in the shop as recompense. His successor was quirkier, but he ran a smart operation. When I was on crutches for all those months, I could not underestimate the value of having a source I could call for meat for recipes to test and be guaranteed that what arrived an hour or so later would be exactly what I would have picked out myself. Beyond all that, there was such a great feeling to being in a shop “established in 1964” and knowing it looked in 2008 pretty much as it did when I was in seventh grade on a whole other planet. Word on the smart blogs is that they’re looking for a new location, and I wish them well. But I hope all those buyers of $2 million-plus apartments in the hideously misplaced glass boxes know Holy Foods will be nothing like the real deal if indeed it ever opens.