George Hahn loves New York. But in 2016, the writer, actor and sartorial pragmatist composed an essay about how the town — his home for 22 years — had become unsustainable for his creative lifestyle. He decided to move home, to Cleveland, Ohio, where he marveled at his 1,000-square-foot apartment (with in-suite washer/dryer). But he climbed to overlook New York terribly . So when a Manhattan dermatologist offered him a full-time occupation, he returned — in January 2020.
By that March, he was furloughed.
Mr. Hahn spent his newfound spare time on Instagram and Twitter (he was the social media manager for Joan Rivers), where he mostly expressed his reignited passion for New York.
It may be going down as one of the best loves of my life, Mr. Hahn said of town. “To spend my money somewhere else when business is required here would feel disloyal. To be one of the counted when so many left, among those who stuck it out, is a privilege. ”
Last summer Mr. Hahn listed a satirical video of New York as hellscape — “The roads are lined with people doing things like … getting ice cream … gay ice cream” — which went viral. “Then I started feeling the pressure : Is this my ‘Citizen Kane’? Or can there be more of this? ”
He began recording his walks and his shaving sessions where heto talk anything from his sober, vegetarian lifestyle to politics and posting daily Good Morning images, frequently with a film noir bent and involving java.
Mr. Hahn currently has over 128,000 followers on Twitter, such as entertainers such as Jane Lynch and Wanda Sykes. This is all a complete surprise to me, ” he said.
But he still has his day job — as a patient opts to get a cosmetic dermatologist — he returned to full-time last June. Mr. Hahn, 50, lives with his two dogs, Smokey and Lenore, in a 360-square-foot converted hotel room on the Upper West Side of Manhattan. Its an extremely edited life, he said.
GOOD MORNING My day begins with coffee. My coffee method is gloriously analog. I use a Chemex. There’s something great about making your coffee with something that is part of the permanent collection at MoMA. I take my coffee black, right, like I took my vodka.
On Sundays I don’t put an alarm, nor do I shave. I’m very lucky to have two dogs that aren’t crack-of-dawn dogs. They are like teenagers. I have two cups of coffee. I read the Times on my iPad. The dogs wake up. We rally and head over to Central Park.
SHOE BOX CHIC My dogs eat this raw uncooked food. I put the food in their bowls before the walk so it’s thawed out when we return. On Sundays, I try to do as much task-free and mark-free action as possible. I wear a mask weekly. So I spend time in this chic little shoe box. It’s the only place where I’m comfortable. I’ll pour another cup of coffee. Ito read more. I try to put a dent in that growing pile of New Yorkers.
STROLL I might go to the Strand, previously Book Culture. Most of the books I acquire are in electronic form; the final physical book I purchased was Jerry Seinfeld’s “Is This Anything? ” I love the smell of bookstores, and it makes me feel smarter just to stand in one. I’ll go to Zabar’s to pick up items like rugelach, bagels, their lifesaving cream cheese, French/Italian roast coffee and maybe one of the prepared foods for supper that night.
RIDE I may go on a bicycle ride in Central Park or down the river, if it’s not too cold or raining; when it comes to temperature and precipitation that I ’m a baby. I intentionally chose a bicycle that is neutral concerning its attire requirements. It’s like a Schwinn that someone would have had in the ’70s. Leather seat, vertical. I went to a formal event in a tuxedo on it.
REST The dogs may be due for another walk. After that, I feel so free to take a nap, because I’m so old. I love them. I don’t understand what I was fighting in my youth. My flat is a hotel room, so I’ve set it up just like a hotel room lifestyle. I’ll get on the bed and rest as if I were napping in the hotel room. There’s the TV, a desk, a lounge chair.
LISTEN Since I’m a podcast fanatic, this could be the time slot for it. I enjoy Pivot, with Scott Galloway and Kara Swisher. I enjoy On the Media. The New Yorker Radio Hour. The New Abnormal. Here’s the Thing With Alec Baldwin. The War on Automobiles . Sway. I also listen to a lot of NPR.
APPOINTMENT WITH MOM After my nap, I call my mother. She’s in Cleveland. We usually speak about what she had to eat, the weather, what shes seeing on Netflix when its got a British accent and a costume or when theres a murder, shes a kid in a candy shop. If she could live in the Agatha Christie universe she’d be really happy.
DINNER It disturbs me that ordering apps take a massive cut from restaurants. I’ll visit Viand or Motorino and get it and bring it home, so that they ’ll get all the money. It’s such a trick bag. Because the delivery workers need to work, too. But it’s my taste to pick it up and make it home.
ON COOKING I have two burners and a convection microwave. It’s so limited. It’s like asking a flight attendant to make you lunch. Amy’s frozen burritos are actually really good. I never understood how much I liked peanut butter and jelly.
ON CLOTHING My wardrobe is extremely edited. I have a typical closet with two rungs. My suits, my tops that come in the cleaners, what’s on these two rungs. I have lighter-weather stuff on the other rung. I’ll swap out when the season comes. In the summertime, my winter wear will go to a storage box under my bed. I have exactly five pairs of dress shoes. I use a cream called Saphir, it’s from France, to shine my shoes. I use an older T-shirt or an old pair of underwear if that’s not too gross. Then I use another T-shirt to buff them dry along with a shoe brush. I’m quite particular.
AT NIGHT I’ll often watch TV while I eat. The only surface in my apartment is my desk. I’ll move the notebook and eat there. Or I’ll eat in bed watching TV, like one would do in a hotel. There will be a previous dog walk. A couple of laps around the area. They wish to party after that last walk, so there’s an effort to dial down the mood. Smokey, who is little, sleeps with me, and Lenore sleeps on her bed or under my bed. We manage.
THE BEST MEDICINE As I’m doing my comedown ritual — I’ll get into my boxer shorts and T-shirt, wash my face, put on some night lotion, brush my teeth — I really like listening to stand-up: Jim Gaffigan, Chris Rock, Jerry Seinfeld, and one of my all-time favorites, Maria Bamford. And Tig Notaro. I’ll set the sleep timer on my Sonos. I’ll drift off, listening to humor. It’s bizarre, I know.
Joan Rivers said that laughter is like giving someone a vacation. This pandemic has been hell. It’s been incredibly lonely. Listening to humor before going to bed has been very comforting.
Sunday Routine readers can follow George Hahn on Twitter or Instagram @georgehahn, and on TikTok @georgehahnnyc.