Cash Only

Moving to The Big Apple…. another perspective

Seems like I have been speaking to a bunch of our Double Decker Tour Bus Sales reps from other markets. Naturally these folks are a “tad” younger than I am but because I am here in the middle of Times Square I guess they think I have found the answers. I am also a ‘big brother’ to one of our up and comer Tour Bus selling reps and she just moved to Manhattan. Seriously, she has been her almost a month and thankfully hasn’t gotten squashed by that cross town bus either.

Honestly, how do you explain the New York Experience until you are in the middle of it? How does one properly describe the wonderful aroma from the 2/3 train tracks in Times Square station and not tell the tourists they are smelling pee/poop? I still to this day don’t know how to explain The Coney Island Mermaid Festival and I have been 3 fucking years in a row!!!

To put this in a Memphis perspective – how do you explain the Wine Race to someone from New York. What about Festival Season? Better yet try to explain Prince Mongo or Memphis politics.

To put this in a Belizean Perspective – how do you explain Halloween or Lobsterfest to someone who has never visited? Care to tell someone how bad Middle Street was during rainy season when it wasn’t paved. How about the road north when there was the hand drawn barge? Let’s not forget when Reaper would fill the skies with parachutes each spring.

You get my drift? You feel me? This shit ain’t easy!

So here are my David Letterman Top 10 “Things to Consider when choosing to move to New York” *disclaimer – please seek other council as well. I have been known to be full of shit.

  1. Location from your residence to a Subway Platform is Paramount. What does that mean to you? When we lived at 71St and First Avenue the closest subway before they opened the 2nd Avenue Subway was at 68th & Lex which was .5 Miles away. To put that in a Memphis scale. Walk from the South Bluffs Apartments to Max’s Sports Bar which is also .5 Miles away. Oh and that is just one way. Do that twice a day in rain, snow, cold as wind and Hot ass weather. You feel me. And get ready for delays and weekend service interruptions. We live in Downtown Brooklyn so I can pick from 16 different lines and walk 75 feet to get to the first one. Geranium wants to move in May 2020. Of course she doesn’t use public transportation. I do. We will move from 333 but I have serious argument to move from this area.
  2. How much to you want to Pay to Play? Apartment on First Avenue ran us $2750.00 and that was with a “discount” but it was a full service building (take out packages, mail, laundry, let the dog walker in) and provided a security that all guests had to be announced. (Well except for Maria) Oh and that was for 535 Square Feet too. We pay comparable to that and are 2 subway stops from Manhattan. You want to have a nice house with a yard, you will spend at least an hour+ on a train or bus on your commute into the city. I know folks who travel 2+ hours one way into the city. They do it 5 days a week. Think about this…..
  3. Do you really need all that shit? We moved up here in a UHaul with clothes, kitchen stuff, art and a blow up bed. Oh and the poodles too. We bought at Ikea and made it work. Do you really need 3 couches? Oh by the way when we moved from UES to Brooklyn we threw away a lot of shit. I look around this place now and before we move again there will be a yard sale.
  4. Think you can eat/drink out on the town every night like they did in Seinfeld and Sex and the City? Trust me, when I return to Memphis I always accuse the bartender of not charging me enough. It costs a lot to eat out and have cocktails here. If you don’t know how to cook………Fucking Learn! Do you recall my Bourdain Post? Learn how make an omelet. This way you can cook a hot meal for your ‘last nights conquest’ the next morning. You may even get bonus points because you both slept on a futon that you don’t have the heart to tell them you found on the street last week.
  5. You will eventually either curse or be cursed out so get ready for it. I look back and yes I deserved to get a “GFY” for when I tried to quick walk around a lady in a walker on a crowded street. No I didn’t knock her down but I made her hesitate. And a 75 Year Old Grandmother told me to Go Fuck Myself. Still can’t get over that.
  6. You are going to see/experience/smell/hear something that you may not agree with. How are you going to react? This isn’t up for discussion.
  7. Want to learn a different a culture or religion? Just ask. I live down the block from The Sri Sri Radha Govinda Mandir Hare Krishna Center. You read that right this is a place for Hare Krishnas to assemble. Yes, the same ones from the move “Airplane” who sold the flowers in the airport. They wear the robes, have the bald heads and are as friendly as ever and I am so glad they are near by. Same thing goes for different cultures. I love getting into a cab/uber and ask my driver where they are from and then ask; “Tell me about your country?” This is the equivalent as asking someone at BBQ Fest what makes your ribs/shoulder better than everyone else? Or ask them about their college football team. Seriously, lots of Pride and I love it. Now, If you think that everyone should be American, look the same and don’t accept that then maybe you want to stay home.
  8. Don’t get Freaked Out When You see a Celebrity – All I had to do was text GrainbinGirl and my text read “I saw her, I saw him, they were tiny and didn’t cry like a little girl”. She knew that I saw Ina Garten and Jeffrey. I still laugh that my former Momma damn near knocked down Pierce Brosnan on Madison Avenue when we were walking down the street. I ‘casually’ said to him “Sorry Mr. Crown” and she didn’t believe it. So we had to hoof it down Madison Avenue for her to see for herself.
  9. What do you think about the Weather and the Homeless/Bums? It gets bad here. Winters Suck, Nor’easters suck, and the rain blows to no end. Regarding the Homeless – I will say that Geranium has ridden the subways many a night solo and never felt threatened. The people looking for money can be annoying here but you have to know how to respond to them. I still love the guy who was in front of Grey’s Papaya on 86th and was begging for food because he was hungry. A guy asked him what he wanted from the menu and he declared that he didn’t like Hot Dogs & just wanted money (Failed to mention that Grey’s Papas was the hot dog nirvana) so the man fired back. “Then don’t fucking ask for money in front of a hot dog place, maybe go to a burger place or GFY” The bums do make a lot of money up here. Just be cautious.
  10. Last Rule – Find “A Guy”. We have lived here for four years, we love it here. We have a great support system here, we are so thankful for this. And that system also knows that they can call on us. When you get home on a Friday night and are exhausted from the work week there is nothing better meeting up with friends and having a beer. We all work hard, might as well enjoy the fruits of our labor.
Our First Apartment in the UES. We look back and that was a lot of room and it was laid out perfectly for us.
Ah the Snow Storm that dumped 37 inches in the city.
What I am standing in isn’t snow that has been plowed. That is just normal snow. Hence why I am not planning on vacationing to go skiing.
Learn the Subway or You will run out of money.
Oh and you better have lots of Cash too. Lot of the places are cash only.

Have a good Day.

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A trip to a Dive Bar – Franks Lounge in Fort Greene

I have been remiss as of late for not posting any of the great dive bars that we have been visiting. Granted The Royal Palms is a Classic but we have been finding some great bars in our vicinity.  Even the Murphranks remarked “You guys are doing some great re-con work” because we found a great one a couple of weeks back.

Across Flatbush Avenue is the Fort Greene neighborhood. It is home to one our favorite bagel shops and has a couple great Mexican joints that we have frequented. On my weekend walks to the bagel joint is an establishment that always catches my eye by the name of Franks Lounge. On Sunday we decided to swing by and have some beers. The bar is old school and naturally “Cash Only” but the decoration is defiantly stuck in the 80’s.

IMG_3709Yep Little Sister and Axl – This joint is older than you are!

IMG_3706Mary Louise was somewhat disappointed that she couldn’t order her fancy wine so she settled for a Bud Light.

IMG_3704Not sure about the ceiling but this joint had a certain flair to it. Kinda reminds us of Jimmy’s Corner meets Raifords

IMG_3703The bar was open that Sunday afternoon. God love the old school bars

IMG_3708Got to love the memorial

I need to swing by Hank’s and bring my camera. That is another one!