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.
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.
I have a bunch of stuff building up on some scratch pads. That and Geranium is going to be away all next week so get ready for more production out of me. In so many words/phrases here is what I have cooking;
“The Big Chill” at Dale Hollow Lake (Relax, I got this)
“Memphis Basketball Fans have ‘A Guy’ when they visit Brooklyn”
Boat Ride on the Hudson
“Would Someone Fix My Cigar Bar? Fucking Please!”
“Way to Piss Me off” – Airport Decorum
“A return to the old haunts” – Going back to the USE roots
“So I came out of the closet with the blog at work”
First off, I want to give a shout out to RMT from PA. She has been a ‘stalker’ of this worthless dribble of a blog ever since we moved up here. Her son did some time down by Union Square for the past 4 years as we have lived here. Albeit, I may have never met him, but I feel like I know him. You see RMT got her Christmas, Birthday, Tooth Fairy, and Mothers Day present all rolled into one a couple of weeks back. This makes me happy and puts a serious smile on my face. Oh and by the way RMT – I want a MOG pic texted to me on the blessed day. #UgotThis
I know that I have been kind of scatter brained but I promise when I say this….we have been (really fucking) busy. I mean Geranium has been away more days in a month than she has been in Brooklyn. We aren’t bitching, she works her ass off and she actually loves what she does. She also is getting some great exposure on selling those Bed Pans. On my side…Yeah, I don’t feel so guilty working longer hours on my double decker tour bus sales gig or having a cigar with the boys. This is what people in their mid to early 50’s do in NYC right? More to come, more to come.
Anyway here are some pictures from this past week. It has been a powerful week to say the least.
Have a good weekend. Be nice to a Stranger.
Call your Mother and Father because they probably worry about you.
Never miss a chance to tell someone you love them.
And hug your babies a little closer.
As one of my cigar buddies always says “These are interesting times we are living in.”
Back in February The Professor mentioned possibly field trip to The Tamaqua when it got warm. A few weeks ago when we were enjoying the roof deck in Park Slope Mr. Three First Names reminded us that we should make a trip to The Tamaqua. Since I had no idea what I was in for, I was all in. So we planed the trip this past Sunday.
Folks, I have visited some unbelievable Dive Bars here in New York. Milano’s Bar, Hanks Bar (when it was still open), The Ice House in Red Hook, Franks Lounge in Fort Greene, Farrells, Rudy’s with that Red Pig, and The Trailer Park Bar. All of these places hold a special place in my heart because they offer something that you can’t just buy or install. They are national treasures. Hold of to your hat folks. Here is where you are going to probably swallow your gum….
The Tamaqua could win the Title of the Best Dive Bar in New York.
I know, I know can you believe that I made that ballsy statement on a Tuesday? First off for me to properly describe The Tamaqua is going to be hard/damn near impossible. This place is stuck in a Time Machine. According to the Group it took a serious hit during Hurricane Sandy but yet she still sits there. Seriously as we were sitting there having some afternoon drinks one would not think that you are not in Brooklyn. You would think you are at Harbor Docks in Destin Florida or Tacky Jacks in Orange Beach, AL. For my Memphis folks who are coming up here in November we may have to make a trip there. You won’t believe it either!
And no Maria, I am not losing my mind and no I don’t need a tetnus shot. Your Fancy NY @ss might not come here but it is good for a laugh. Thanks to Bobcat, Professor, Lady Barrister, Mr. 3 First Names for a fun afternoon.
I just like it. It makes me happy and I also know that Memphis is probably going to be in a heat advisory since it is Dead Elvis Week. Did you know that I can also forecast the Memphis weather?
Coldest Day of the Year in Memphis – Whatever day they play the Liberty Bowl Game
Hottest Day of the Year in Memphis – Around Dead Elvis Week
Rainiest Day/Week of the Year in Memphis – Beale Street Musicfest or World Championship BBQ Cooking Contest.
I mean if you know the past, you can predict the future.
I am going to share with you some pictures I snapped this past Sunday from the Murphranks Rooftop. Bobcat & Professor were there along with Rocky and Monkey Head Maya. Sorry folks but No pictures of the Humans – I mean have you ever seen Meg or Bobcat in the same place? Same goes for Matt or the Professor? Come to think of it, I haven’t seen Geranium for the past 24 hours. I bet she is in Seattle again.
Tomorrow I take the gloves off and blast expedia for their shitty customer service.
One would think that when Geranium is out of town I would be able to turn out a bunch of this worthless dribble. I mean, I consider it a dick move while we are together on the weekend for me to blog and not spend time with her. You may be wondering why at this particular moment I am not doing that but she is still in the rack asleep with the dog. And one of them is snoring like a freight train.
Here are some pictures of the past week that I have had in my iFoam.
I hope you have a good weekend. We are chilling here today and then finding a rooftop in Park Slope tomorrow.
Shout out to BK who is a faithful follower of this “Worthless Dribble” of a blog! (putting this here so it will appear in the header of my Social Media posts)
Regarding the Title…that was the body of the text message that I got from (Name Withheld To Protect our Northern Values) about 6 weeks back. So it would appear that Hank Williams Jr was doing a show with Lynyrd Skynyrd in a farewell tour for Skynyrd at Forrest Hills Stadium. Now before I sell out the person who sent the text message I doubled down on them. I informed (said) person that I will have to check. I told them I know “a guy” who works on the Hank tour and I would message him to see if 1- he still was still on tour and 2 – he could get us some better seats.
BK responded back to me saying that he could take care of us and get us some tickets (he knows I am not a ticket mooch) because I wanted to see him and hang out. For those of you wondering who this BK guy is…..well… we served time together. I am not talking about Federal “Pound You In The Ass” Prison, I am talking something much worse…. A month long festival that included a 3 day Music Festival, Rednecks with Smokers and then KC & The ‘Mother Fucking’ Sunshine Band! Oh did I mention that we also had an almost Tornado hit the park so on night 2 of the Music event we evacuated >30K people? Yep, BK and I may have been different ships at sea at the time (I was fun-employed, he was about to get married the following January) we respected each other and played well with others which made it easier to deal with that crap……Well…..Except for the WCBCC Volunteers. We both would choose Communism over them! (that may take a hit on the blog but nobody reads this shit anyway)
Say what you will about Social Media and Facebook. I don’t post much on FB except to plug this worthless dribble but BK and I kept up with each other via this platform. When his (Saint of a wife,I might add) posted that she needed some birthday cards for BK’s monumental celebration how did she get the word out? Facebook. Anyway this was the mode of keeping up with our lives for the past 9 years.
Flash forwarding to the show. Let me tell you (sorry Maria) but Forrest Hills Stadium FUCKING ROCKS as a venue! Holy Shit and it is fun as crap too with the Food Trucks and the booze! The fact that its nestled in the middle of Forrest Hills Queens (MEMPHIS FOLKS – Think Cross between Mud Island Theater Seating but in the midtown are like the Levitt Shell Location) it blows my mind. Oh and the line up this summer isn’t that too fucking bad either.
So before I go into the pictures; Thank You BK. Thank you for tickets and thank you for following this worthless dribble of a blog. But most importantly thank you the fact that one of these days I won’t have to come to your office so we can hang out have some laughs. “Play it Loud” runs at the Met till the fall so come on up! If not I welcome a trip down south and we can giggle at some of the stuff we have seen over the past 10 years. Thank you.
What a great Sunday in Queens. Anyone want to come up for September 11th. I want to go see Willie……
7 people went to dinner at Lilies in Union Square. What would happen later that evening in Koreatown is forever ingrained in my memory. For not only did some livers take a beating but so did a set of Bongos!
No disrespect to the Bongo Lady but the Asian Fireman that evening put your best performance to shame.
Good Times with Good People! Who would know that a week later we would find out that we were going to move to NYC.
I recall it like it was yesterday. The first text came from GrainbinGirl at like 7:AM (6:AM Memphis Time) then the next came from Pepe. “Anthony Bourdain was gone and by his own hand.” *Disclaimer – I have lost many a good friend and family member by their own hand. This post is not in any way shape or form trying to speak of this horrible disease. Sadly it takes too many good people*
So the loss of Antony Bourdain has bothered me for a while. Now that I have just finished up on a whirlwind tour with Shawna (yeah, I am serious when I use real names) I miss him even more.
For this post I plan on speaking about some of Tony’s quotes that I hold dear to my heart. His friend Jose Andres said it best in his latest book in the tribute;
“To our friend Anthony Bourdain, who
spent his life planting seeds”
That man put a bunch of seeds in my head and I owe it to him to make them grow and experience some of what he got to see. Let’s be honest….the Cock Sucker had the best life in the world and I am so grateful that I can try to do as much as I can!!! Enough with the chatter. Here are my favorite Bourdain Quotes in no sequential order and some notes;
changes you. As you move through this life and this world you change things
slightly, you leave marks behind, however small. And in return, life — and
travel — leaves marks on you.” –
Loved my trip to a small town in Switzerland. You don’t get the same experience
in the larger towns. Here I was just an American who couldn’t speak French and
didn’t know I needed to bring a bag.
you’re twenty-two, physically fit, hungry to learn and be better, I urge you to
travel – as far and as widely as possible. Sleep on floors if you have to. Find
out how other people live and eat and cook. Learn from them — wherever you go.” – Or if you are 49 years old do this
and load up on the ADVIL! I am not going to lie, the travel I did to see Shawna
was tough but I look back and loved every minute of it!
“The journey is part of the experience — an expression of the seriousness of one’s intent. One doesn’t take the A train to Mecca.” – I landed at Heathrow exhausted but figured out the Tube Schedule, walked my ass through the rain and got to the hotel. I could have wimped out and paid a King’s Ransom for a Black Car but what is the point if you aren’t going to see and experience Rush Hour into London on a Friday?
“I’m a big believer in winging it. I’m also a big believer that you are never going to find perfect city travel experience or the perfect meal without a constant willingness to experience a bad one. Letting the happy accident happen is what a lot of vacation itineraries miss, I think, and I’m always trying to push people to allow those things to happen rather than stick to some rigid itinerary.” – This was 100% Barcelona! I only had a list from The Notorious NFG but it was going to be a total wing it. I love that town. I want to go back and I want to go back now.
heavily with locals whenever possible.” – No Comment
learn a lot about someone when you share a meal together.” – Loved our visit
with English Mike & Ellie as well as our visit with The Tour Agent and Curly
Sue in Switzerland. I know that our paths will cross again and when it does. I
plan on picking up from where we left off.
body is not a temple, it’s an amusement park. Enjoy the ride.” – It is very well documented that I
smoke cigars, drink alcohol on occasion, and need a cholesterol pill. Sure, I try
to keep myself leaning towards the cleaner side of life but what’s the point of
living if you can’t slide down butt naked on a sheet of ice. Yes, I ordered the
damn goose liver and I loved it!
“I learned a long time ago that trying to micromanage the perfect vacation is always a disaster. That leads to terrible times.” – I am hoping she never reads this but I so disagree with Z-Squared and her guerrilla vacation tactics. I love her to death and will be that “3AM phone call guy to come bury a body” guy but I can’t vacation with her. Let that shit roll off the back.
And will I finish with this one. I will always have the deepest respect and love for Ernie and Lynn Mellor for giving an out of work carnie a job.
“Barbecue may not be the road to world peace, but it’s a start.” – Nothing is better than standing over a hot smoker busting balls and or discussing life. I am always appreciate of the visits with the Asian Fireman in Woodlawn.
So, if you have not figured out by my already 900 words this is telling you to go out and explore. It doesn’t have to be in a different country. It can be in a different part of your home town.
All you have to do is be friendly, be respectful and always be humble.
Rest in peace Tony. I am still pissed I didn’t get to drink with you at Billy Mark but that is more for a selfish reason.
To honor you I will try to see as much of this world as you did.
22 years of marriage on Saturday, Momma got home on Thursday, and we had a 3 day weekend – Maya and I were happy! This is going to be more of a Friday Picture post. That being said;
Hope you have a good week folks. Be thankful that it is only 4 days. Oh and Geranium is leaving my ass to head to Seattle today as well. She gets back on Friday and she is going to meet me at Andi’s bar at Baker Street in the UES.
I am sure that some of you are wondering What In The Cornbread Feck I am doing posting on a Sunday? I can barely type on some Sundays and now I am posting on this worthless dribble today? I am blaming Geranium (the woman not the plant) *Shout out to Jean-Jean the Dancing Belizean Queen for making me snort the other day with her comment* on making me get up at the crack of ass of dawn now 2 days in a row. I am thinking that she has given me her Switzerland Jet Lag!
So yesterday the aforementioned in the title gathered at Greenwood Park for some Libations and Laughs. I have not visited some of the Memphis haunts that I see people talk about but I equate it to Loflin Yards or Railgarden (thank you GurleyGurl) as it has been re-purposed and turned into a pretty cool venue. Oh did you think I am going to show any pictures of us wearing our Superhero capes from yesterday? Nope!