A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006.

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Entry from April 06, 2008
“The days of wine and roses are over” (Gov. Hugh Carey)

"Days of wine and roses” was the title of a 1962 film starring Jack Lemmon and Lee Remick, and directed by Blake Edwards. The line comes from an 1896 poem by English writer Ernest Dowson (1867-1900).

Hugh Carey was elected New York governor in 1974, during a fiscal crisis. In his January 9, 1975 state of the state address, Governor Carey declared: “Now the times of plenty, the days of wine and roses, are over.”

“The Days of Wine and Roses Are Over: Governor Hugh Carey and New York State” was the title of a 1997 book by Daniel C. Kramer. An April 6, 2008 New York Daily News editorial about New York State’s budget (cautioning restraint in recessionary times) mentioned Carey’s famous phrase.


Wikipedia: Hugh Carey
Hugh Leo Carey (born April 11, 1919) was the Governor of New York between 1975 and 1982.
(...)
Governorship
Carey was elected by a landslide in 1974, becoming the state’s first Democratic Governor in 16 years. Carey is best remembered for his successful handling of New York City’s economic crisis in the late 1970s. As Governor he was responsible for building the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center; Battery Park City; the South Street Seaport and the economic development of the outer boroughs of NYC. He also helped provide state funding for the construction of the Carrier Dome at Syracuse University. He is also remembered for preventing conservative legislators from reinstating the death penalty and preventing such legislators from taking away state abortion laws.

Upon taking office, Carey cut taxes drastically, reduced corporate taxes from 14 percent to 10 percent, capped personal income tax at nine percent and reduced capital gains taxes. His administration also offered tax credits to encourage new investment.

Carey came into office with New York City close to bankruptcy. He brought business and labor together to help save New York City from the fiscal crisis that befell it in the 1970s.

Wikipedia: Days of Wine and Roses (film)
Days of Wine and Roses (1962) is an Academy Award-winning film directed by Blake Edwards with a screenplay by JP Miller adapted from his own critically acclaimed 1958 teleplay for Playhouse 90 of the same name (see: Days of Wine and Roses, 1958 TV drama). The movie was produced by Martin Manulis with Henry Mancini music, and features Jack Lemmon, Lee Remick, Charles Bickford and Jack Klugman.

The film depicts the insidious nature of addiction in modern life, following the downward spiral of two average Americans who succumb to alcoholism and attempt to deal with their problem.
(...)
Background
JP Miller found his title in the 1896 poem “Vitae Summa Brevis Spem Nos Vetet Incohare Longam” by the English writer Ernest Dowson (1867-1900):

They are not long, the weeping and the laughter,
Love and desire and hate;
I think they have no portion in us after
We pass the gate.
They are not long, the days of wine and roses:
Out of a misty dream
Our path emerges for a while, then closes
Within a dream.

10 July 1927, New York (NY) Times, Queries and Answers, pg. BR23:
“Days of Wine and Roses”
MR. STEPHAN SCHLITZER, Paterson, N.J.—The lines referred to by E. C. S. in your issue of June 26 may be found in the “Poems and Prose of Ernest Dowson,” published by Bont & Liveright, Volume 74, in their Modern Library Series. The poem is entitled “Vitae summa brevis spem nos vetat incohare longam.” It follows:

They are not long, the weeping and the laughter,
Love and desire and hate:
I think they have no portion in us after
We pass the gate.

They are not long, the days of wine and roses:
Out of a misty dream
Our path emerges for a while, then closes
With a dream.

9 April 1950, New York (NY) Times, pg. BR7:
HANNS VODER, Germany, United States Zone: The lines wanted by D.E.C. (Feb. 26) are from Ernest Dowson’s poem, “Vitae Summa Brevis, Spem Nos Vetat Incohare Longham,” as follows: “They are not long, the weeping and the laughter, love and desire and hate; I think they have no portion in us after we pass the gate. They are not long, the days of wine and roses: Out of a misty dream our path emerges for a while, then closes within a dream.”

This request was identified by many readers, a few of whom sent the verses. Several wrote that the title is a quotation from Horace’s First Book of Odes: “The shortness of life prevents us from entertaining far-off hopes.”

9 January 1975, New York (NY) Times, pg. 1:
CAREY URGES LESS LOCALITIES’ AID,
BUDGET CUT, 10c GASOLINE TAX RISE;
BEAME JOINS STATEWIDE PROTESTS

MESSAGE IS GRIM

Governor Says “Days
of Wine and Roses”
Are Over in State


By FRANCIS X. CLINES
In a grim overture to his administration, Governor Carey today proposed cutting state aid to localities, raising taxes and reducing the state budget and payroll as his initial assault on what he termed the “lavish” style of government he said he had inherited.
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“Now the times of plenty, the days of wine and roses, are over.”

9 January 1975, New York (NY) Times, “Text of Carey’s State of the State Message as He Delivered It to the Legislature,” pg. 30:
In the very simplest of terms, this government and we as a people have been living far beyond our means. What we did was limited only by our imagination and our desire.

Our buildings were the tallest and most sumptuous. Our civil service the most highly trained and paid. Out public assistance programs the most expensive. Thus our taxes also became the highest in the nation.

And every interest and group and advocate came to think of the state budget and of the state subsidy of local budgets as a never-ending horn of plenty that could pay for more and more each year.

Now the times of plenty, the days of wine and roses, are over. So we must first recognize the immediate burdens we inherit. We do this not in a spirit of recrimination, nor in the criticism of any man or party. There is responsibility enough to go around for all of us.

(OCLC WorldCat record)
Title: The days of wine and roses are over :
Governor Hugh Carey and New York State /
Author(s): Kramer, Daniel C., 1934-
Publication: Lanham, Md. :; University Press of America,
Year: 1997
Description: x, 340 p. ; 23 cm.

New York (NY) Daily News
Facing tough times ...
Sunday, April 6th 2008, 4:00 AM
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Above all, Paterson was right to demand a state budget that faces up to the grim realities. That is going to mean chopping out waste, jettisoning wish lists and scaling back everything except the highest-priority programs.

He also called on legislators to buckle down in Albany, including weekends, as long as it takes to get their work done. No matter; this weekend, they took off.

Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver and Senate Majority Leader Joe Bruno must rise to Paterson’s challenge. They must craft a budget that grapples with the fact that the days of wine and roses are over, as former Gov. Hugh Carey said when confronted by similarly dire straits.

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CityGovernment/Law/Politics/Military • (0) Comments • Sunday, April 06, 2008 • Permalink