New York City

I just came back from lunch with Steve.

L.A. is a giant suburb, that’s why I’m comfortable there, I grew up in the suburbs! You can own a house, have a yard and drive your car. Although I must admit as the years have gone by the traffic has gotten even worse. I’m now one of those people who will say no to things based on the traffic. But most modern business is done via computer/phone, you only leave the office to go to lunch or the occasional meeting. Hell, I can work anywhere, I could be anywhere, oftentimes I am and you don’t know it!

But there’s nothing like New York City.

I grew up in the dark ages, when New York was still dangerous. Even my mother had a chain ripped right off her neck. There were certain places you didn’t go. It was dirty, and Times Square was filled with arcades. That’s right, when you turned fourteen you took the train into the city and went to guitar shops and pinball palaces, that’s what freedom looked like in the old days.

But now, New York City is a theme park.

To the tourist.

But if you live here…

There’s a vibrancy, as soon as you walk outside your building. Just like there are cars on L.A.’s freeways all night there are people walking the streets at all hours, and 24 hour shops, everything just a block or two away. I wonder what it would be like to live here. Oh, I know it would get oppressive, I’d need to get out, but to be able to walk to the store, to have everything at your fingertips, to be able to take the train across town, that would be a revelation.

That’s city living.

And the rain! Although it poured for five minutes three weeks ago in Los Angeles, it normally doesn’t rain from April until October, which is great, you can make plans, nothing’s ever canceled for weather, but the rain quiets the city down, makes you realize you’re not in control, Mother Nature is, it washes our sins away. Oh, not really, I don’t believe in sin, but the truth is it washes away the oil from the highway, in L.A. when it finally rains the water mixes with the oil and it’s like driving in the snow, truly, the first time it happened I was stunned. And since it rains so rarely the city comes to a crawl, people are overwhelmed, they stay home, drive 20 MPH on the highway, whereas it’s weird for it to be coming down and be zipping along at 60 on the Merritt as we were the other day.

When I went to see “Dear Evan Hansen.”

Now in this era of experiences, live theatre is the ultimate. There’s something so personal, something so human, something so exquisitely TOUCHING that it’s palpable. But too many musical are oldies, but “Evan Hansen” is an original.

It’s about a nerd with no friends who accidentally becomes popular.

And funny how all the cast albums are now on Atlantic, while everybody else is chasing hip-hop, Atlantic has the “Greatest Showman” and this, along, of course, with “Hamilton.” “Evan Hansen” is not yet a phenomenon, but maybe when it tours the country it will become one. People, especially young ones, need something that speaks to them.

And I was supposed to meet Steve for lunch before “Evan Hansen” but we were running late and I had to make do with a Sabrett before the show. But now since my departure was delayed we decided to go to lunch today, at Nusr-Et.


I didn’t know either. You see restaurants are localized, but if you live in New York!

“You still eating meat?”

That’s what Steve iMessaged me last night, and I still am, I need the protein, my hemoglobin is low as a result of the Gleevec.

And he said we had to go to Nusr-Et, that the sides were nothing to speak of but the meat was and the whole thing was theatre, THEATRE OF MEAT!

So I did a little research.

It’s run by Salt Bae, who’ll even come slice your steak at your table.

It’s a Turkish steakhouse, who even knew there was such a thing!

And it’s uber-expensive and famous for upselling you.

And the servers wear rubber gloves and…

Of course I said yes!

It’s all meat, all the time, if you order a cheeseburger, YOU wear the gloves!

We ordered too much, they pushed us into a steak we ultimately canceled.

But after our salad, after eating something green and healthy, the server prepared our steak tartare tableside.

WHAT A PRODUCTION! Took about ten minutes. He sliced the steak, over and over again. And mixed in ingredients, and then bammed some salt on the whole concoction like Emeril and then gassed, i.e. dry-iced, some herbs which added mood and nose candy but had nothing to do with the meat.

Which was great. My little sister always loved steak tartare, especially when she was in her single digits, she thought it made her look sophisticated. She’d eat raw hamburger from the butcher, before everything was prepackaged, and I learned to too.

And the tomahawk was a ten too.

And the sides were nothing to write home about.

But the tomahawk was juicy and the whole experience was such a crackup…

But that’s life in New York City.

So at four, MOMA is free, and it’s across the street from Ginny’s apartment, so I’ll probably amble over before my flight.

Yes, I am leaving tonight, God willing.


Salt Bae


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