Guns in the Family

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Apr 212009

Colt Automatic 32 Caliber Rimless, Smokeless PistolThere’s been a lot of talk about guns, gun laws and the future of those both in New York and this country, especially with the NRA heavily promoting this gun outlaw Armageddon with Obama as president. I’m not really going to get into my side of this yet, but I will comment on that my family has always had guns. Typically hunting rifles, shot guns etc.

My Great Grandfather lived in San Jose, CA. I know this well because I have a pocket book from him with most of his personal information, thoughts and life. He’s marked down all the items he’s owned (vacuums, cars, guns and other electronics), prescriptions (drugs and there chemical nature, glasses), bills that need to be paid, news stories, bank account records, stock portfolio and just comments, quotes or passages from the bible.

I thought I would continue to add comments from his book to the blog for record and my own history. The first page I turned to was a record of the gun he owned: The Colt Automatic 32 Caliber Rimless, Smokeless Pistol. This hand gun has an original patented date of April 20th, 1897 and was last patented on Dec. 22, 1903. The number seems to be low, but I won’t post it here.

Pictured above, he sold the gun on November 21st, 1960 to a Jack R in San Jose, CA for $17.50. Today that same gun in mint condition is worth $550. Although no other remarks are made in his black book, I wonder of the history. I know these guns were issued to men in World War I, of which my GGF fought in. I think about where that gun has been, who might have held it, shot it and what it may be doing now (sitting in someone’s collection presumably). The gun had lived its course for him, and he kept a record of it’s release for any unfortunate event there was a need.

My Great Grandfather wrote in the beginning of this black book:

“God grant me the serenity to accept things I cannot change,
the courage to change things I can,
and wisdom to know the difference.”

It’s spring break/quarter end and I’m sick as death

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Mar 302009

This weekend was a wash. We walked down to Greenhouse for the Made in Italy party as a completely spontaneous move, which proved to be futile. We should have known the result of rolling with 4 suits and one female without getting on Francesco’s guestlist.

The crew ended up checking out City Winery across the street which, had it not been for the company, also would have shown to be a wash. City Winery is a huge venue with a large music stage, cheese bar and fermenting barrels of vino in the basement for amateurs to sign up and bottle their own wine. Unfortunately, they had one of the worst wine lists of any wine bar I’ve been to in the city and was quite disappointed in the selections we sampled. I haven’t tried the food or the music so I’ll reserve my review until then, however, it’s not looking good after my first impression.

After a few jack n cokes at Spring Lounge, I think I called the sickness upon myself and assured myself of 72 hours of phlegm and soar throat. Contrary to the ICD Flu trends, my Apt in NYC is HIGH with the flu virus, so bring on the Nyquil, Vicks, kleenex, and chicken soup.

While I’m laid up, California students were reliving Animal House last week for Spring Break. However, they were deterred by Mexican gangs and travel costs in avoiding Cabo and we’re sold on the pitch: “Palm Springs practically invented spring break … and it’s back!”. Palm Springs revived as a Spring Break destination? I’ve never been, so I can’t imagine the draw for students choosing this retirement and business convention destination over the hot scene at Lake Havasu.

What’s wrong with this picture?

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Mar 072009

I took a break with my former roommate in NOHO (that’s North Hollywood for the real estate marketer impaired), to help him shop for groceries at the local Ralph’s. I usually try to find some random items in new stores I venture into, like an antique Buddha, made in Japan I found at the Salvation Army in San Diego for $2. This Ralph’s I found in the Mexican food section only a few Dulce de tamarindo candies but I picked up a box of Pulparindo for $2 to share. Good Stuff!

The picture above I found reviewing travel items as I was missing the long over due of eargasam pleasure the deep twisting of cotton and ear canal creates in my head… One of the items above is definitely not designed for travel.

Exhausted from Travel

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Feb 202009

I’m just getting back to normal here. I’ve been in Columbus, OH and Toronto, ON Canada with lots of work follow up in between, I’ll throw down a few updates through the weekend and get back to my daily commitment. Lot’s to talk about.

Ain’t that the truth!

Bloody Hot Dog wars in NYC

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Feb 052009

I’ve been asked many times by tourists and friends from California about the Hot Dogs in NY and which is the best. I’ll tell them first, the worst dogs to try are the dirty water dogs from any street vendor cart in the city. These are the ones that made the NY hot dog famous but they could be soaking in rat urine for weeks for all I know. If a vendor is not grilling the scum off them, they aren’t for me.

My favorite late night dogs in New York, because the only time I actually eat hot dogs are at someone’s bbq or when I’ve had a few pints in me, are the Crif Dogs on St. Marks between 1st and A. These guys are a late night establishment, more so since the LES Dash Dogs went down. They’re famous in my mind for wrapping their dogs in bacon and adding some great tasting toppings (eggs, salsa, avacado, sour cream, cole slaw, chili, Fritos etc.) Recently they’ve lost their liquor license so you can’t get PBRs with your “meal, but they will allow BYOB (liquor store is around the corner on A!). All I have to say is Good Morning and the Chihuahua with salsa baby!

So the NY classic street food wars are usually reserved for halal carts, taco stands, juice joints, and even Belgian waffles. NY’s hot dog history started with Nathan’s famous (Guidespot has a good review of many of the spots) but for my generation the dog wars started with the Papaya theme dog joints, and which spot is the best has been an on going debate for years.

There’s Papaya King (the original), Gray’s Papaya, Papaya Dog, and Chelsea Papaya (which apparently just shuttered with one of the King’s spots). I’ve later found out that all the joints (including Katz which has good dogs too) receive the same Sabrett dogs so it’s really comes down to how they cook it, the bun and toppings. I’ll say the King has the better papaya drink but Gray’s still takes the dog (and corn dogs!) of the four. Other than the Crif, I’ll take a Gray’s Papaya but I’m not one to go out of my way for hot dogs so I’m usually settling for a Papaya Dog, my 4th choice because of the stumbling convenience to my apt. Also Gray’s on 6th and W4th is stumbling blocks from my apt so it’s an apt spot to get off the A/C/C for a quick bite before turning in.

The filler above is lead-in for a story I wrote close to one year ago today but never posted it. Rather then back date this one, I thought it’d make for a good read:

It’s around 3:30 am. I know this because I got a missed text from a friend just 10 minutes earlier when checking to see if I was still in the bar. I’m a habitual Irish Goodbye type of person, so these are common late night.

I’m standing restless in a ridiculous line of hamburger fiends at my local hot dog stand, Papaya Dog. It’s inevitable some the line fills with drunks, and tonight’s no exception as two drunk goofs sashay in behind me.

I’m fiendishly waiting to yell out my order of recession special with onions as these two scoff at the bars they went to and excuse their own failures with women they can’t hook up with as “too many skanks” or “dumb bitches”. They wonder aloud, as I do in my head, when this line is going to move forward, faster…

Half way to the counter a black woman walks past us in a bright red leather Michael Jackson jacket from bad gear. She’s got a shaved head except for a black dyed mohawk, and it fans the grill chef as she spins her head around to make sure her order of more mustard for the dogs she bought earlier is all her friends need.

These two duchebags start making comments about monkeys and how a woman like that scored some kind of upgrade from the jungle attire she’s accustom too.

At first, I’m complacent with my silence. I just want to get my meat in tubes and bounce home.

In between their own complaints of not having a good bagels and cream cheese spot local, I start to notice the nuances of these two Jewish fuck’s comments about the locals around me. Their obviously not from the city limits but somewhere out on the Island.

One is obviously hammered by the sight of him, but his words seal that visual as each bitter jab come slurring out with spit, tongue and accent. The normally private conversation between the two, is obviously loud enough to be heard by the punk mustard chick, but I’m surprised she’s not reacting to the continued slurs of negra, monkey and hefty (like the trash bag).

I’m sick, not from the alcohol I’ve ingested all evening but now from these two fucks that think no one is obvious to them, yet they may be, it’s not like we are all sober and coherent here.

As we inch closer to the counter, my annoyance grows with my dog anticipation to the point I can’t take it any more and SNAP!!

“Oh fuck!”

“What the fuck!”


And they both run out with the yelling of “Fuck you!”…

I’m not sure if it was intentional or involuntary, but I had spun around quickly to tell these fucks to STFU when my elbow met one of them face high. Apparently at the same time I decided to spin, the drunker one was bending over to tie a shoe or eat some crumbs of the floor when the kinked point of my elbow smacked him full on in the face. Hard enough to to knock him back on his ass.

Now, it’s been over 10 years since I’ve been in a fight but and I’ve been much closer to fists than this, but my guard is up now. I did say anything except my exclamation but both somehow knew why I was reacting. It was like they were blabbing on, waiting for such a response but didn’t know what to do now that they got more than expected.

Apparently I popped this one’s nose and blood started gushing everywhere. On his shirt, shoes, the tile, his friends pants and hands… every where but on me. The more sober of the two started yelling and picked his friend up and kept walking out the door.

What a fucker… He deserved more but pussed out. I was prepared with shots of whiskey and pints of Stella to deal with his friend. As these two painted the floor red on the way out, I wanted to yell back, but just didn’t feel the need to rub it into their retreat.

I fucking hate racist assholes, especially those that feel they are entitled to their stature because of money, birth right or name…

Now. Where’s my Recession Special with onions!

Four Dives to Evil Nines

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Jan 312009

I struggle on evenings like last night getting out during this cold. Single men have no excuse, but I’m locked in and warm; so why would I need to drink copious amounts of inflated beer and deal with chit chat with random dive dwellers? Apparently it’s the wingman factor.

After the thermal liners, the jeans, the beater, the long sleeved undershirt, the over priced small batch artist T, a hoodie, wool socks, a wool coat, gloves, beanie and the Kiehl’s lip balm… I’m dressed for an evening out for the last night in January. I just read somewhere that January was the first time the temperature in New York City didn’t hit 50 degrees in over twenty-five years!!!

First stop was the Blue & Gold. A long standing biker bar on the weekdays and NYU student dive on the weekends. I hadn’t been here in years and the first thing I notice is the well shaved and washed crowd habitating this 70’s rec room garage bar. Who told these people to show up here? Second I noticed their prices have been jacked (where have they not!). I’m ordered a “Dirty Hipster”: Jäger shot and PBR which now costs $5 (that $3 price must be on the weekdays).

Not being a fan of lickerish and throw up, I switched to Jim Bean and PBR for the rest of my time here at B&G. The bar has a cliquey vibe with young boys clustering around the first skinny legged fawn to wonder in. I swear I met a G-eye-Na here (like 40 yr virgin speed date chick).

Next we wondered down to the National to check some random band and grow the entourage. We’re currently rolling 6 deep at this point and pick up a few more girls and loose a few penis. Clean bathrooms, a good Guinness pour and some wacky chicks hang at this spot. I’ve been before for other shows so I won’t associate last nights crowd as typical.

Still headed south we’re now swaying deeper into LES to another 70s garage bar: Welcome to the Johnsons. Somehow they now have 5 second bouncer that can’t remember anyone that was just through the door 5 seconds earlier, whom checks my ID at least 6 times in an hour as I go outside to get some air, catch up on the phone or shat on the stairs.

At this point, I’m done with dive bars, it’s 2 am and I need a break or I’m getting sick. I wonder back towards SOHO, stop in a random new bar, and then somehow make my way to Sullivan room without stopping for food on McDougal. Tonight at Sulli Room is the dj set of Evil Nine.

The guys were cool, looked like they were having it, but the crowd was just flat. They were playing some harder prog funk tracks before breaking out their playlist of choons. It thinned out early which I was disappointed about. I drunk leaned on the bar and check the breakers flail. Too bad this town doesn’t love breaks! I read here that they went off on Sat in Montreal.

Well worth the sickness I have this morning. Check em out:

Evil Nine – Restless (feat. Toastie Taylor)

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Comix in the City

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Jan 142009

Went to Tim’s comedy show on the 13th… Not bad for an amateur. Definitely saw some terrible start up gigs and he did well…Comix Comedy Club

So long to our Mexican firecracker!

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Jan 112009

Had a small dinner with friends as our local Mexican friend Nic will be heading off to DC. We had a send off over the weekend, along with helping the move. Salute girl and keep Obama in check!