Boerum Hill

Second Installment for Tiger Nation Fans visiting New York/Brooklyn 2/2

So are you Tiger Nation fans getting excited yet? I have to say that the city does get a little bit of a special charge during the holidays. The Rockefeller tree will be covered in Scaffolding because they have to get it ready for the official lighting ceremony in early December. Not to worry there are tons of other stuff already up to get pictures taken for those Christmas Cards. G(Squared), I saw that they were putting lights on those chicken feet down in Chinatown. I did see a Miller Light Truck on Canal Street so you should be good to go.

Previously we spoke about some of the tips for you visitors, here are the second half of them. But this list will be fun stuff. So without further adeau;

  • Underground is the best way to get around the city – They deliver 1.5 million packages in the city of Manhattan a day. Add to that Yellow Taxis, Ubers, Tour Buses and the city gets a tad…..gridlocked. They once timed a car going from 1st Ave Crosstown to 12 Ave and it took almost 52 minutes. That being said using the subway is your best friend. Again use Google Maps. Those maps they have in the subway stations are good but do you know which lines are not running on the weekend? If you use Google Maps and The Pigeon App and you will have a ease free commute. I say get Metro Card and put 20.00 on it and then refill it when necessary.
  • Subway 101 Hints – Take off your backpack and go to the center of the cab if it is packed. Let the elderly and pregnant women sit down. If you see a subway car that is empty when others are packed it is empty for a reason. Trust me you can’t hold your breath between subway stops so don’t go there. Oh when you are leaving the subway area and see someone standing there sliding his hand like he has a credit card through his other hand do them a solid. Swipe them in the Subway on your card. Pay it forward.
  • Staying in an Air BnB? – Download the Fresh Direct App and have your beer, wine, bottled water, snacks and drunk munchies food delivered to your door. I say order your stuff the day before you arrive and you can schedule your delivery day and time. You will have to be there when the stuff is delivered but trust me schleping (that is Yiddish for carrying) groceries to your apartment sucks.
  • Speaking of Apps download the Seamless app. This is 24 hour room service for the area restaurants. It is New York’s version of Uber Eats and it kicks ass. Bagel delivery guys are the best. Make sure you tip them cash. Another App you need is the Pigeon app. It is Waze but for New York Subways and gives you real-time delays and issues.
  • Cost of Beers and Food – Now brace yourself you Max’s Sports Bar regulars the cost of beer isn’t going to be the same as in 38103. I don’t want to hear it, I have been here for 4 years and have accepted paying north of $5.00 for Bud Light and $8.50 for Titos and soda. Are there cheaper places? Sure there are but here is my suggestion. Sit at the bar, be nice, be respectful and maybe the bartender may give you a “Buy Back” where they give you a drink on the house. Also it wouldn’t be a bad idea to stash a couple C-notes in your wallet. A lot of Brooklyn bars are Cash Only. Those are pretty easy as you just leave your money on the counter and the bartender will take the funds needed for drinks out of your pot. Trust me, they aren’t going to screw you.
  • Bars and places to eat around The Barclays’ Center – plenty of great places on 5th Avenue to grab some food and drink before and after the game. In the interest of some of those establishments that I frequent on 5th Avenue I am not going to name them here. You are also just steps away from the Subway station and can get into Manhattan fairly quickly.
  • Sightseeing in the City – Want to see the Bitch in the Harbor? Jump on the Staten Island Ferry (it is free) and you will boat right by it to take a picture. The also sell beer on board (ANG MT just saw that and it peaked his interest) and you get to see that 5th borough that Mr. 3 First Names despises. When you are down in Fidi swing by the Stock Exchange, Bull, Fearless Girl, Hamilton’s grave. Then walk over to the footprints at the 9/11 memorial.
  • Food Places you have to have – First off there is no good Memphis BBQ here in New York. Don’t try it, you are wasting your time and money. I equate it to trying to find a NYC bagel in Memphis. It ain’t happening. Do your homework and try to eat a couple slices at the Best that NYC has to offer. Want to eat at Katz’s or one of the big named places – be first on line when they open. Swing by the south east corner of Avenue of Americas and W53th for some World Famous Halal Guys. Go easy on the White Sauce and get extra napkins. Again – Get Reservations NOW!
  • Food Suggestions – People always ask me this and believe it or not I am just as unfamiliar with places as you are. I have heard you can eat Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner at a different place for each meal for a year and not have a repeat. My normal saying is that if it is still in business then they must be doing something right. The margin of error for restaurants is so very tight and if you have a bad showing you are done. I also use Zagats, Yelp and Google Searches for the best places. If you want a Dive Bar list let me know. I have a killer one!
  • Clothing and Shoes – I get it, you ladies want to look good in your wedges and or heels but who are you kidding. It is going to be cold and possibly will rain. Comfort is your key and make sure that you have good shoes because you will be walking a ton! Regarding the George Costanza Puffy Coat, you can bring it but with going in and out of places, the subway you may want to layer and wear a scarf. If you plan on going to the Parade bring everything but your kitchen sink. Also the winds up here can be a bitch. My wool top coat is great about half of the time but if we are to have snow or a light rain I am breaking out my North Face coat. Bring a hat too!
  • Shopping – I use Amazon and order eCommerce so you are on your own. I do recommend that you check out Century 21 downtown. They have some good stuff.
Pro Tip – Use the Name or Number don’t call it “Taking the Red Line” #RoboCares
The Pigeon App – As sure as I-240 gets backed up so do the Subways. Get this app and check it before you journey out for the day.
Think of this as Room Service for your hotel/Air BnB. Be Careful though, you can run up a pretty large tab with those drunk munchies!
Fresh Direct App – Trust Me lugging those cases of beer or bottled water sucks. And they can deliver wine and drunk food too! Make sure you order and reserve your day/time because it will get busy before Thanksgiving.
So Good but make sure you get extra napkins because your elbow may get juicy!
They don’t call it the Bible for nothing!
Is that Gore Tex?

Enjoy your time in New York and Brooklyn, be nice to people, support local, tip your bartenders and stay safe. We leave out on Turkey Day for the weekend but give me a shout if you are in town early.

A Trip To Charleston With The ChoHo’s

A while back the Fab 5 (Baby Fine Hair, OTB, Dance With Me, Geranium and Not B) were talking about doing a trip to Charleston. They invited Weed (even though she was in a much younger class) and at some point and time the Fab 5 + Weed decided that spouses would be welcome also. Since Geranium was on a work trip once again I flew solo to Charleston. We rented an Air BnB downtown and flew in on Friday night.

I won’t bore you with details (Pretty much all we did was drink and eat) but I have to be honest. I really enjoyed Charleston. If you have a chance get there. They have tons of bars and neat food joints.

Always take a picture of your room number in a hotel or in this case your address. You need to take care of Drunk Person
I like the Crap/Better Beer Descriptions
God Bless Bloody Mary and the appetizers you get.
That is some great hair there Not B
Private Chef Made Dinner. We ran close to running out of butter
I posted this picture so that you know that Geranium attended because this is the only picture I have of her this weekend.
Baby Fine Hair fiddling with the Music
The Chef Made some good food! *Disclaimer – I actually remember eating it and it was good. Some of the group….not so much.
We Didn’t drink any beer this weekend
Hush Puppies (God I love the South)
Oysters on the half shell
Fried Chicken That was as good as Gus’ Fried in Memphis
As Compared to Shitty Chicken
Last Pic before I took my ass to the airport

Like I said, it was a good trip and we had some fun down there. I later found out that Charleston was the town that Bourdain ate at the Waffle House.

Can We Have This Brownstone?

My Russian Brother from another mother decided that he wanted to sell his current house and move to the non Italian side of Staten Island. While I can’t wait to break in his new backyard with a proper Memphis BBQ I am going to have to wait a couple weeks till he closes on the new home. That being said, this weekend we decided to go forth and find some plants for our windowsill.

While we were walking back from the flower shop we stumbled upon this beautiful brownstone on State Street not too far from our place. Anybody want to go in halvesies?

Steps away from the 4/5 and 2/3 Train Stop.
First Floor we could have the communal sharing with kitchen and living room and dining room.
Second Floor someone can have the entire floor
Third Floor someone can have the entire floor
We could Air BnB the apartment in the basement to pay for the beer
Yeah there is traffic but think about it!
How cool is that outdoor upper Terrace?
I wanted to get this for Geranium but we went for variety
We need a water feature for our apartment

Taco girl I bet it costs a little more to heat and cool than the Taco Hut. Oh and by the way, I give the plants 3 weeks before we are getting new ones.

A Trip to Clawdaddy in Brooklyn

When we were out an about we happened upon a restaurant that was nearby our apartment. The menu was cajun and offered some different boils of Shrimp, Crawfish, Lobster and even some clams and shellfish. On Sunday after Geranium got her hair did we decided to swing by and give them a try. The bar is nice and they offer Beer and Wine and have a good happy hour.

The bar has the “Adult Capri Sun” that is now the rage up here. The problem is to fill them is a pain in the ass. They also offer a drink called Soju which is a Korean drink that smells of battery acid. We were offered a taste and it is smooth like vodka but has a Sake finish. We enjoyed some oysters and fried pickles before heading home.

Errrboddy loves them Adult Capri Suns
Why can’t I come up with something like this?
Soju Flight – They have the jars on the back bar with the fruit being infused
Yes they burned the Clams on purpose. The person who ordered them is from Trinidad and they come out smoking hot. He then pours hot sauce on them and I have to say. That is some serious heat and your eyes will water. I declined an offer of one of them.
And for those who are keeping score they don’t have Bud Light so I drank a lovely Montauk Summer Ale.

Got to love having drinks in our hood.

Pictures of the Week

Since Mary Louise has left my ass for the neutral zone country I will have more time to get on this worthless dribble. My pictures that I will be posting will be a couple weeks off but that is fine. You guy’s don’t pay for this entertainment anyway.

I asked them if they knew Laurie and they said they never heard of her.
Did some remodeling before Geranium left my ass with the dog.
Still a work in process.
Congrats to UWS Holly on being at the close of the NY Stock Exchange Bell. Bucket List item for a lot of people.
Does this mean that Zim-Bob could be a New Yorker? Hell Yes!

Have a good weekend. I am heading to Philly for a quick trip to hang with Pepe.

Year in Review – The Other Shit

Editors Note – I am not sure when I am going to publish this post. But in order to give a you proper understanding of my next statement today is the day that the President walked out of the Boarder wall/Government Shutdown meeting with Democrats.

Damn I miss that Anthony Bourdain isn’t here anymore. I could really use his commentary on current administration and his thoughts on immigrants coming into this country.

We lost a bunch of good people this past year. We lost Maddy our beloved Monkey Head, who would have told me that 4 months gone we still miss that fluff ball. I will get to that later but we also learned a bunch of new things about ourselves and we saw a bunch of cool stuff living here in the North East. Let’s dive in shall we?

Music and Shows are always big on our radar. We went to more Losers Lounge Shows than I care to think about. Tribute to Barbara Streisand was a good one. The Last Waltz was so-so, but we enjoyed the shit out of the Disco Cruise around the Hudson with the band. We also saw some concert shows this past year. Thanks to a certain someone who po-po’d on a ticket Mary Louise got to see “The Piano Man” from a suite. We caught Phil Collins at the Barclays and listened to some Elvis Impersonators on Long Island Off the beaten path we got to see the Airshow on the middle of Jones Beach for Memorial Day. Mary Louise also got to see some Broadway shows; Frozen, Waitress, One on this Island with different friends. I would be remiss to say that I saw David Byrne this year. Still one of the better shows I ever saw. Yes I said that again.

We had a bunch of different friends come up and see us too. We got to hang out with LoveBug one weekend and had a blast with her. But we can’t forget when EGP and Cali rolled into town and attended Slavic Easter Sunday Mass with us. Northwest Arkansas came over one weekend and we even had our favorite Venezuelan make an appearance while we were in the city on a Sunday. Our former dog & house sitters came to town and we got to see some Memphis BBQ guys roll into town one weekend. The invitation is always open to come see us. We have 2 hotels very close to us if you have to stay close to our joint in Brooklyn.

We explored our new neighborhood of Downtown Brooklyn and found a whole bunch of new Dive Bars to frequent. By the way, and I have said it before; Moving in New York really sucks. The good news is that we are in our new home and we really enjoy living here. Of course the Muphranks have accused us separately of being bad influences. I will just say that it isn’t our fault that the mixologists at a couple of Park Slope bars over-serve patrons. We also went to the Rose Mansion this summer with Z(squared) and I even enjoyed it (just don’t tell anyone) but didn’t take a selfie there.

Sadly we said goodbye to some really good people this past year. Yes the loss of Anthony Bourdain is still a shock to me. But what it really does is cry out to people that on the exterior people may have their shit together but inside they need help. You can never know so here is my advice. Be good to people. Don’t be a dick. You have absolutely every right to disagree about politics but you don’t have to make it personal and attack people’s character. Stop and think about what you say or about to tweet. If you are a bully then you should automatically get to have your nuts kicked in. End of story.

Maddy hated it when ML’s got the outfits out. We sure do still miss her.
Donahue’s Doppelganger singing at Losers Lounge
Had a lot of fun with this knucklehead.
Jones Beach for the Airshow with the Muphranks
Elvis on Long Island
David Byrne at Kings Theater
The Gang at Phil Collins
Rocking the Hudson
Graduate with your Masters from NYU, Start a new job, Move to Brooklyn, Keep your shit together during it all – She is a fucking Rock Star!
We miss you Poppy!
On the 2/3 train you will travel by Franklin Street. God Bless the MTA as they put “Respect” signs as you travel by the stop.
A Fort Greene Gem I tell you!
Forgot about seeing Alan Cummings too! Also not a fan of our current Commander in Chief
The Royal Palms Shuffleboard is in the hood too!
A Brooklyn Dive Bar – Dimly lit bar, cash only, Tabs are considered a diet drink from the late 80’s
She swam over to see us!
Since Mary Louise occasionally travels on Sunday I find myself hanging with these two on Sunday Funday.
Our new place is kinda cool. We have an outdoor theater
Pay no attention to those glasses on the table.

Have a good day and remember what I said earlier; Don’t be a Dick!

Pictures of the Week – Mid Day Friday Post

Apologies to my 15 readers. I now realize that I gave you 5 posts in a row last week and nothing till today. We were kind of busy last week but here are some pictures from last weekend and now.

IMG_4535Our “Tony Award Winning Cousin” lives here now a days. Got to spend some time with her last week. She is a good bean.

IMG_4530Went down to Sutton Square Park on 58th Street. Nice view from the park if you ask me

IMG_4529Sutton Place/Square has their own private entrance. I don’t even want to inquire about the cost of living here. *We lived at 71st/1st and this joint is 58th/Sutton (name change from York)* This is truly bougie UES living

IMG_4527Vivian, Landlord, Mr. 3 First Names, Mary Louise and I may have eaten these last Sunday. The Radish on a BBQ Nacho kind of bugs me

IMG_4524What can I say folks…Being around Robo make one Shine!

Have a good weekend folks. Please don’t get butt-hurt if we don’t post a lot next week either. We are supposed to have a Nor’Easter this weekend.

I have a love/hate relationship with the Northeast.

The Carl Lipbalm Memorial Scholarship Winner Comes to The Big Apple

Remember back 2 years ago when we had one of our niece’s come up to celebrate her graduating from High School. So we had a cousin aka “Love Bug” come up this past weekend. The agenda for the past weekend was dinner Thursday Night. Bum around town on Friday and have dinner with the other cousin in downtown Brooklyn. Saturday a play was in order and then we would figure out dinner.

We really had a great time spending the weekend with “Love Bug” and naturally watching her experience a lot of things that we now take for granted up here. “Love Bug” had a blast and she found out a couple of things; Raw Oysters on the half shell are a hard no. Breaded and Baked Clams ala Patrizias of Brooklyn are also frowned upon. But I am happy to report that escargot from Blue Ribbon gets a pass and she loved street meat from The Hallal Guys.

The weekend was fun and we had a blast with her. Thanks to her momma and daddy for letting us hang out with her.

IMG_4154Love Bug Takes on The Big Apple and Times Square!

IMG_4155The closest that I made it to a Broadway musical! That is Mary Louise’s job!

IMG_4156All kidding aside Times Square is still pretty cool and has an undeniable energy about it!

IMG_4163Getting a slice at Joe’s Pizza! Can’t get anymore Authentic NYC than this!

IMG_4166Here Love Bug is about to take down here first Raw Oyster!

IMG_4167Unfortunately I don’t have the picture of her reaction when she put the ‘snot like’ oyster in her mouth. She was a good sport by trying it! I mean they don’t have an abundance of saltwater oysters in Northwest Arkansas!

IMG_4174“Wait we are going to an intersection in Midtown Manhattan to have lunch?”

IMG_4176We made our way downtown by Trinity Church/The 911 Church and she found some old dead guy’s grave. For those of you wondering – the white grave is Alexander Hamilton’s grave. I hear he had a play written about him.

IMG_4184Wait it isn’t my birthday……

IMG_4183Let us Celebrate “Love Bug’s” fake birthday!

IMG_4187The Traffic here really bites you know Uncle CBT? Why didn’t you get me an Uber for Helicopters?

IMG_4190I can see my house from here! Sadly the day we went to the roof it was overcast but I am sure that some good snaps were taken.

Come back anytime Love Bug but make sure that you don’t tell your little brother about what goes on in New York. Next year is his turn.

Pictures of the Week – Labor Day Shenanigans

Sorry I haven’t been doing my job lately, the abbreviated week and the start of school has kept us busy. Hope everyone is happy that College Football is back in the swing of things and that now the NFL is about to start back up too. Here are some pics from this past Labor Day weekend.

IMG_4113I think that if I didn’t wear my traditional Seersucker Suit on the last Friday of the summer my team would revolt.

IMG_4119I wonder what Asshole lives in this eyesore. View from the Murphrank’s roofdeck.

IMG_4122Believe it or not we didn’t stage this picture. Maya could have been trying to cuddle up with Rocky because she was afraid of the humans. I think this was when Bobcat decided to ‘take a nap’!

IMG_4129She is as happy as a cat in a canary store.

IMG_4130“Oh sure you can sit on the throne and wear those funny crowns and let you believe that you are the boss of us.” #saidnooneever

IMG_4110BEFORE YOU START JUDGING ME – Not one bottle of this is mine (I only buy half gallons & Mary Louise’s maintenance wine comes in standard bottles) but I wondered if the old drunk South Bluff Neighbor moved into our building.

IMG_0505First Day of School for The Little Bastid! He is growing so tall!

IMG_4149We are those people who now take our dog to bars. In New York if a bar doesn’t serve food then dogs are welcome. Maya likes the bars in Boerum Hill.

This weekend we have The Carl Lipbalm Memorial Caddy Scholarship winner in town so I am sure we will have some fun pics to share with you next week. Keep it light.

Strike up the Band We have lived on these Rocks for 3 years!

Wow! Another Year has come to pass and yet here I am still banging away on this laptop. I celebrate this milestone because I haven’t gotten hit by that crosstown bus or fallen ass over teacup down a bilco door. Sadly, I celebrate this 3rd birthday solo while right now Mary Louise is heading on a Ferry to another island down in Mexico with the MoHo’s. No I am not bitter about this one bit. I promise.

In her absence I have been writing this post in my head for a couple of days and I  have to say how humble I am that we are still plugging along in a city that could possibly eat us alive. I have always said that there are two things here in The Empire State that I always run out of; time and money. This year has been a whirlwind and I can’t believe it has been 3 years from when we rolled up to 1300 First Avenue and emptied our contents into the UES. This year there have been some major changes to our lives this year and l have always said that sometimes change is good.

In the past year some of our friends have also followed suit and made moves from familiar Memphis surroundings and dipped their toe into new cities and regions. I always tell them from our experiences that right now there may be tears of uncertainty but each day and week things will normalize and level out. I still look back and say to myself that if you told me 3 years and change that I would be living in New York and love each day of it I would have told you that you are crazy as hell. I am serious when I say that this was the best thing that we have done in our adult lives. The experiences and things that we have and continue to learn about have been amazing. Much like Anthony Bourdain told us on each show was that we need to explore and try out new things. Do the uncomfortable and you will be amazed at to what you learn and it will make you a richer person internally. I still miss that fucker. His story wasn’t finished.

People still ask me how I like living here I always tell them the same response. We love it and should have done this sooner. I am in no way dogging Memphis or our friends back there but Mary Louise and I always had an ‘explorer’ gene in us that was dying to get out. New York is a strange city and has a lot of people from many different walks of life. Much like a child we are always asking questions and seeking information. You know what we found out. They may be from a different country, have a different person that believe in or vote for but we are all children playing in the same sandbox and we better find a way to get along. Call me crazy but the first thing that I ask the yellow cab driver, after I tell them *in my best New York Accent*, is where they are from and “Tell me about yourself.” People love telling their story to strangers. There is a lot of pride in those words and I cherish each and every one.

While I sit here smoking a Perdomo stinking up my work laptop I recall all the things we did. They are in no particular order include;

  • Mary Louise completes and graduates with a MBA from NYU and this better complete her higher education quest. We don’t have any fucking room in closet for a Doctoral Robe and all that crap. (I am very proud of her for this)
  • Mary Louise takes a new job and a whole bunch of new responsibilities that I don’t doubt she will do great in.
  • Made a trip to Philly and got me an authentic Cheesesteak.
  • We moved from the Upper East Side to the Gritty Hipster streets of Downtown Brooklyn. That wasn’t easy folks, oh and moving sucks here in New York City.
  • One would think that downsizing from 1300 square feet to 535 square feet would be easy but try to move to another studio that is configured differently. Thankfully Ba made a trip to Brooklyn and helped us with the move.
  • I made Senior at my work so I am now a Senior Sales Rep for selling tourists tickets on those double decker buses.
  • We made a trip to Maine for Lobster.
  • We made a trip to the Riviera Maya of Mexico for a work counterparts wedding and made a one night trip over to Isla Mujeres in December.
  • Made a trip back home for Christmas and got to see our friends and family.
  • Had to check in on Kitty down in Belize in February and to get warmed up from the 4 Nor’easters we had this past winter.
  • Were honored to become Godparents for Willimena in April and now have another one who will possibly wipe our asses when we get older.
  • Reconnected with Vivian Longstreet and Stone and enjoyed a great weekend with them Upstate.
  • Had to make yet another trip to Mexico and insure that RJ and Mallory didn’t have tres children. (still unknown but we will see in 9 months if that was a success)
  • Mary Louise made a trip to The Hamptons while I smoked meat on Katonah Avenue in the Bronx.
  • Mary Louise currently is down in Mexico right now with the MoHo’s and will return on Monday.

Yep we had a blast on this island and on a couple other islands. Rather than collect stuff we have decided to collect memories and passport stamps. I am nearing 1000 words and will end with a quote that I always love. “Travel is the only thing that you buy that makes you richer”

IMG_2489Much like Black Eyed Peas and Greens on New Years day if you celebrate New Years eve wearing a Bowler hat you will have good luck. *taken 2 blocks from Times Square on NYE

IMG_1883New York Food and Wine Festival Event

IMG_1641Pipes and Drums Prom. Who knew that Mary Louise and Lady Barrister wore the same color dress.

IMG_0059Madison Square Garden Event – here Mary Louise is saying “W.T.C.B.F. Carbunkle Trumpet, LZ goes to all the good shows and you take my ass to a Collegiate Hockey match? You better step up your game and start bogarting the good tickets too!”

IMG_2151Funny I don’t hear her bitching about this one. Aboard the USS Intrepid for the Marine Corp’s Birthday Celebration

IMG_3427Willimena is going to be a handful I can already tell.

IMG_4024 (1)Who has 2 thumbs and completes her MBA from NYU in 2 years while working full time and interviews for a new job. This one! Seriously though. This is it for higher level education.

IMG_2821Right before we move out of the UES they open a bonafide Queso Mexican Restaurant Joint and we find a great Cajun place too! Thank God we have the Q Train!

IMG_3128Boerum Hill is pretty cool. If you walk across the street from our joint you are in Boerum Hill neighborhood. If you make a left and walk across Flatbush you are in Fort Greene. You walk 3 more blocks and you are in Park Slope. Confused yet?

IMG_1262So glad to see Kitty when she made a trip up to the Big Apple.

IMG_0501This is the face of a woman who is about to walk out into a friggin Northeast Nor’easter. 50 MPH Winds with below windchill temps and Snow. I ‘worked from home’ that day!

IMG_8491And here was the first pic when we moved in. 3 years later and we are still here and I may or may not be a liberal democrat.

Thanks for reading and for following this worthless dribble. Now pull that band-aid off and go out and make yourself richer and happy 3rd Anniversary to us!