Sunday, February 10th
This was the day we were to meet up with Daryl and Ray Edelstein.
Daryl, in case you've never traversed my sidebar and visited the many wonderful people I have listed over there, is the author of the blog Out & About In New York City. Her specialty is the taking of photographs of New York City, mostly Manhattan, to which she adds a few choice words. Her choice of subject matter is often whimsical (for instance, every Wednesday she finds a new water tower to show us) and when she writes, the words are usually just right, in both temperament and amount (something of which I cannot often be accused. Take this blog today, for example, because Daryl wrote about our meeting in about a hundred words and I passed that a sentence or two ago and still have another 1,100 to blab at you before I let you off the hook.)
We entered the subway in Brooklyn and rode into Manhattan to meet at Daryl & Ray's place. Daryl gave us wonderful directions, right on the money as it turned out, but she forgot to take into consideration that MY WIFE and I come from Boston. Daryl had included such things as "Turn north and go three blocks." Nobody in Boston ever gives directions that include such straightforward compass-inclined steps. This is because, while New York is laid out in a North-South-East-West grid, Boston is... well, take a look at the following graphic and you'll see what I mean.
We eventually figured out which way to go because, unlike Boston, every New York street actually has a sign on the corner telling you what street it is and most of them are labeled WEST Whatever Street or EAST Whatever Street, so that left us with a 50-50 proposition for North or South and we guessed correctly. Daryl and Ray and Harry and Jack welcomed us into their home.
Oh, yeah, here's where I blow off part of the title. Harry and Jack are their cats. Harry was glad to see us and accepted various pettings of his fur and skritches of his noggin. Jack was a bit more reticent. As a matter of fact, he bolted for another room upon sight of us and didn't get within ten feet of us at any time thereafter. But, although Harry was a nice fellow and enjoyable company, Jack was probably the more entertaining of the two. He is a cat with OCD and he goes through the most amazing ritual when it's feeding time, going into the kitchen, climbing up on the kitchen drawers, towards the counter, hanging there for a second or two, then jumping down, going back out of the kitchen, and repeating, over and over again, until such time as the food is ready. Back some 25 years ago, while I was still doing cocaine, I used to do much the same thing while the lines were being chopped, so I understood.
It was a trip to meet Ray. He contributes to Daryl's blog once a week, with his Toonsday feature, and it's always a fun bit. That wasn't why I was excited to meet him, though. You see, he and another fellow, by the name of Andrew Johns, make some of the funniest videos I have ever had the pleasure of watching. I've touted them here before, once or twice, but it never hurts to let the world at large (if you can be called that) know, once again, where to find them. There are way more videos than I'll list here, but these are probably my favorites. Do yourself a favor and click onto the links. These are two very funny men. The humor is unique, the dialogue superb, and all is done with a fine sense of subdued absurdity.
Rainy Day Old Maid
The Titwillow Affair
West Of Limbo (which is one of a continuing series with the characters in it, so you will want to see them all, especially one entitled Slappin' Leather, for which I have a personal love and you'll understand why if you watch it and listen carefully.)
OK, if you have any sense you're ready for me to wrap this up so you can scour You Tube for more of their stuff. Here's a photo of Daryl and me. I have absolutely nothing weird or off-color to say about this shot. She is a lovely woman and I almost look human.
We all went out to eat at a nice restaurant. Here are the four of us after the meal.
What more can I tell you? It was a lovely and enjoyable visit with two swell folks. I hope we get to do it again someday in the near future.
Soon, with more better stuff (which is to say, Part Three, which will be the finale, and in which you'll find out about the dogs part of the title.)
P.S. To finish off the "Katz" part of the title, that refers to Katz's Delicatessen, which we did NOT visit during our trip despite the fact that I had three pastrami sandwiches overall. I would have preferred that one (or all) of them came from Katz's because their pastrami sandwiches are legendary (and deservedly so) but we never found ourselves on the Lower East Side and so the only cats we encountered were Harry and Jack, who were wonderful but not filling.
P.P.S. The blow off of the "Dogs (But No Dogs)" will likely be more clever, but you never know with me.