Where's Jacob Marley when you need him?
WHAT IS - Eric at Edge of the West pontificates a bit about the 1916 zoning law that resulted in the dimensions of most Manhattan skyscrapers. The regulations were intended to preserve sunlight in the streets below, and allow for a variety of flourishes on the part of the architecht.
WHAT WAS - The new Rock Annex on Mercer features an exhibit on NYC rock history, which includes several items from CBGB's. For a more in-depth (and mobile) look at New York's rock history, Rock Junket offers the East Village Rock n Punk walking tour. This is a 2 hour walk through the city's rock history.
WHAT MAY BE - Sewell Chan at City Room checks in with a look at 42nd St might look like in the future. The Institude for Rational Urban Mobility proposes shutting down all vehicle traffic on 42nd and implementing a light rail system that would run river to river (seen above outside Grand Central). The concept is intriguing, but sadly unlikely. Particularly if the city won't spring for a 10th Avenue stop on the extended 7 Train.