Saturday, July 10, 2010
This Is Why I'm Back In New York!
That was one of countless young chicks I saw at the train station last night at 1 am: drunk, spent, tired of her high-heel torture, and medicating with quasi-food. Mrs. C-Nut thought I was way out of line for snapping that pic; but I just couldn't understand her anger. What was the big deal?
My wife and I had our first NYC *date* yesterday - well the first one in the six years anyway since we moved out of Brooklyn. Living with the MIL we should have a built-in babysitter, right?
Well, she's been at the summer house for a while so we hired our 14 year old nephew to watch the Prince and the Princess.
And only in New York can you do what we did. We took a 6:24 pm Long Island RR train into town with the primary destination being Broadway Comedy Club. Another one of our nephews was actually going to perform.
The show wasn't until 10 pm but we went in early and strategically starved ourselves all day in preparation for dining in the best *food* town anywhere. But one has to be careful not to waste an empty stomach with mediocre NYC fare. Do pity those tourists at Sbarro, Papaya King, and Ray's Pizza!
My SIL encouraged us to go to Empanada Mama on 9th Avenue near Times Square. But they only have 11 tables and I was nervous about how long a wait might be on a Friday night at 7:30 pm so we decided to scout that neighborhood a bit.
A cross-street nearby was called Restaurant Row and certainly no misnomer as it featured tons of eateries. Interestingly, there was a Tramonti on that street. I do wonder if it was related to that zoo in Delray Beach I mentioned four years ago? Regardless we didn't see any place that looked particularly appealing.
We ended up walking by Empanada Mama's and, luckily, landing a table.
That place is goooood AND very cheap. Their headlined empanadas are less than $3 apiece. Our total bill came to an un-NYC-like $35 - a windfall savings that would be needed later on. The place is actually open 24 hours a day so I'd recommend going at an off-peak time. AND make sure you order the plantain chips and hot guacamole (and maybe the arepa cubana in addition to your empanadas).
Next, after an ice cream detour, it was off to the comedy club. Y'all know the drill. They scream at you incessantly "TWO-DRINK MINIMUM". Fine. I've certainly been out to live entertainment before and, don't you worry, I'll have plenty more than two drinks!
My oft-Moronic SIL told us to get there at 9 pm. That was waaaaay too early. The place was closed except for a little lounge bar. I go up and order two Michelob Ultras and a Diet Coke. Right away the bartender starts her spiel,..."but these won't count towards your two drink minimum."
No $hit. Get me a beer already. See above.
And she does. I thought I misheard her when she told me how much and begged her pardon.
Bartender - Twenty-five dollars....I mean twenty-four dollars.
WTBleep! Okay, the diet coke can't be more than $4....so that means the Ultras are $10 apiece. Are you freakin' kidding me?
There's no bleepin' way they can do this. They can't have a $20 cover charge; a two drink minimum; AND $10 domestic bottles. This was insane. They can do two out of three jam-jobs but that's it.
As the place filled up I noticed that NOBODY went up to the bar to buy a pre-show drink. I guess I was the rookie. Fine. Lesson learned, and shared.
There were some rumblings in the 6-person group I was with about not-wanting to sit close to the stage. Why? Because the comics might incorporate you into their routines.
Screw that fear. I wasn't afraid of any amateur comedian trying to mock me. No, I went right up front. Heck, my right butt cheek was essentially on the stage.
The show begins with some 46 year old blonde chick in a tight little dress. She looked pretty good actually, but for her potty mouth. Unfortunately her jokes were bombing right off the bat. The place was dead silent; particularly unmoved was the handsome guy sitting prominently in front of her. It was a little bit awkward and foreboding given that it was the start of the show. "Might they all be this bad?", I and the entire audience was wondering. Because there's no way I was going to, out of courtesy, fake-laugh all night long - not while I'm paying $10 per Ultra.
Amid the deafening silence this old broad got desperate and started untastefully talking about her v@gina and how she was a wannabe sapphist; but that didn't arouse the crowd either. Then she really messed up. Yep, she tried to incorporate ME into her foundering act. It'd be like throwing a drowning person....an anchor!
Of course, I didn't even blink. I proved utterly intractable; I gave her oblique responses that she couldn't begin to work with - no doubt not even after subsequently pondering them all weekend long! And when she tried to *make light* of me I artfully ripped her back. I think, if this is the expression, I think I PWNED her or something. It was bordering on cruel to some extent. After her inauspicious start and my icy rebuttals one might even start to feel bad for this chick. But what the heck, she's the one that went on stage jokeless. And she's the one that came at me! How exactly is someone supposed to act in such a situation? Have your face turn beet red, rollover and get publicly mocked like everyone else? No way. Not C-Nut. Y'all know me - I'm dead-set against *bailouts* in all their forms.
As my charitable onslaught continued Mrs. C-Nut started furiously kicking me under the table. An eyewitness to countless of my altercations, she could tell when I was out for organic blood. My wife was insisting that I show mercy.
Well, mercy was granted in the form of the performance ending. It turns out, she was the host for the evening, which I only discovered when she introduced the next performer as *our first comic*.
But even if she wasn't the host....rightfully she still should have used that same intro for the next guy - the FIRST comic!
Well he stunk too, but not quite as badly. And as the evening went on, the comedians got funnier and funnier. Out of the maybe 15 comics, probably 11 of them were surprisingly decent. Although they all recycle the same material. All the jokes are racial, sexual, and homosexual - with a continual sprinkling of masturbatory and scatological humor. Though all told, I would definitely go to the Broadway Comedy Club again - provided I liquored up beforehand.
In fact, and it wasn't just from my performance with the dippy blonde skank, I'm thinking that I should try my hand at this craft - stand-up comedy. Heck, if my nephew can do it, I don't see why I can't.
Oh yeah, my nephew...
I was curious to see the 22 year old little bugger perform. I mean, I've known him since he was 10 and I never did think he was particularly funny. But a year or two ago I heard that he's down south, at his college and other places, dabbling in stand-up comedy.
So I didn't quite know what to expect of him on stage. And I was delighted to be completely surprised. He was actually really, really good. I did sneak a bootleg video of his routine and will post part of it, eventually. It's too long for YouTube uploading so I have to figure out how to slice and dice it.
The show ran a bit longer than expected. It's 12:40 am now and we have to make the 1:18 am train out of Penn Station. You certainly don't want to miss that one because the next is at 3:18 am. The trains usually depart every hour but that gap at 2:18 am has been there for some time. Thousands upon thousands of *fun people* who live in Great Neck, Manhasset, and Port Washington have been in the brutal position of sprint-stumbling to make this particular train. Chiseled veterans, we did arrive with sufficient time and sobriety last night to make our train AND so we got to enjoy the spectacle of all the drunk *kids* - like the chick above.
What's truly amazing, though, is just how many people are on these *late* trains. The station was jam-packed with *bridge and tunnel* Long Islanders:
You know, it wasn't that long ago that it was us, out there gallivanting on the town - getting *overserved* and having public *gay* boyfriend/girlfriend spats.
At about 2:15am, as we were walking off the Port Washington station platform I noticed some goings-on ahead.
There was a fashionable young lady in a teensy little dress all bent over. What was she doing?
Well, as we walked past, we got an up-close of her mid-stream chunk-blowing. What a great 8 mega-pixel shot this would be. The contrast between her scantily clad lower half and her bilious output...
Ever alert for golden blog material, I went for my camera...
But this one time, tonight, I was successfully stymied by the woman who (partially) civilized me way back when.
It turned out to be a near-perfect evening as the forecast rain never materialized. And it was also the first cool night after a week-long heat wave. We had great food, great fun, and a cheap babysitter whom we made sleep over and compensated with scrambled eggs.
Our next *date* might even be next Friday. Friends have invited us to go on some *concert cruise* around Manhattan with them. I believe there'll be a Billy Joel tribute band on-board or something. Tickets are $40.
There's certainly no missing Boston in the restaurant, entertainment, or nightlife department!