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The Punk

For a certain breed of New York Kid, it's always eighties night.


CB, See Me: Kevin, 17, of Bay Ridge, at CBGB.  

What do you define as punk?

For me, it’s always been about the music. Punk shares some of my beliefs -- that what everyone else does doesn’t influence you, because you’re doing your own thing.

How did you get into the music and the lifestyle?

Through mainstream bands like Rancid and Agnostic Front. You start with the Clash -- they’re pretty old but pretty well known -- also the Dead Kennedys and the Germs. My friends and I started cutting mohawks in eighth grade. We were looked at extra weird. The school administration were jerks, especially after that whole Columbine thing. But back in the eighties, people were shocked by the punk-rockers, and now they laugh because they’re used to it, like “Ha ha, look at this dick’s hair.” It sort of defeats the whole idea.

Do you have any ideals that are traditionally punk? Are you an activist?

People sometimes think they’re better than someone else, because they’re, for example, vegan. I like eating meat. And I’m against corporate takeover, but I also don’t see what the protests are doing. These people are trying to save the world, and I don’t believe it can be saved. People who try to force their ideals on others can kiss my ass. Who made them Admiral Punk?

Would you rather have been a punk during its heyday in the eighties?

Maybe if they did an It’s a Wonderful Life thing, and I saw what it would be like if I were eighties Kevin, but I can’t miss it unless I taste it. Though I do wish I could see the Clash or Reagan Youth. I believe I’m carrying a torch. We’re the new generation. I didn’t learn everything I know from eighties punks, but if it wasn’t for them, I wouldn’t be where I am.

Do you think you’ll always be into punk?

Yeah. I have these plaid pants, and when I’m an old man, they’ll be handy when I go golfing.


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