Au Bar, two A.M., dancers and drinkers on the floor, stragglers smoking cigarettes beyond the velvet rope on East 58th Street. It’s stopped raining. The avenues are shrouded in steam, as if sentient, as if breathing. Or Nell’s, at dusk, M.K. or Mars, the capitals of the 1980s and 1990s party scene, kids and models and trust-funders crowded beneath the lights strung through the linden trees in the garden behind the Cloisters on Ninth Street between Second and Third Avenues, a drink in each hand—1995 was margaritas; 1996 was stingers. Most of those places are gone now, having made way for condos, banks, and other smoke-free zones. Each generation tears down the city, then rebuilds it, ending up with the New York it deserves.