Monday, September 03, 2007

Amateur Weekend

For the past two nights we have been subjected to a proliferation of trashy, misbehaved people shrieking drunken incoherences and flaunting their uncouth vulgarity in the streets of Manhattan. Truly, you can't go out on a Saturday night anymore. It's not for amateurs, it's for retards. If, on a weekend such as this one, there happen to be 2 Saturday nights instead of one, you might as well barricade yourself at home.
First outing: dinner at Panna II, Indian restaurant off 6th St. I've eaten there many times, alas never on a Saturday night. Well, never again. Apparently Panna is famous for celebrating people's birthdays with a decibel level that is beyond human endurance. Their motto (and they are an inexplicably joyful bunch, considering the kind of customers they have to contend with) is, and I quote from their business card: "Where chili-pepper lights meets Christmas-tree lights".
On the night in question there seemed to be a birthday party on every table. Because it's byob, and the alcohol is thus cheaper, celebrating bands of miscreants get sloshed out of their wits and toast and scream as if they were living in a cave all by themselves. Panna is the width of a subway car, if not narrower, so if you are not in the mood for the kind of sensory torture reserved for Abu Ghraib inmates, you should find your aloo motor gobi somewhere else.
After such an edifying repast we wandered around the streets of the East Village, where you can still find absurd white kids having the enormous gall of asking you for money. A friend wanted to go to a hookah bar and, having never done so, we set out to find one. We settled on the one on the corner of 6th St and Ave. B. We puffed on a hookah that had a "fresh apple" taste and it was mildly mellowing and diverting. We were sitting outside on a lovely night, chilling out, while the waitresses seemed to be stressed out of their wits. We soon found out why. The shrew who runs the place unceremoniously came to our table, after screaming at our harried waitress in front of us, and bellowed at us that we had to go because she was going to lose her business. They apparently are not aware, being from an unspecified hellhole in the Middle East (could be Israel, could be Egypt -- this here is an egalitarian prejudice), that there is such a thing as LAST CALL, where you gently inform the customers that they need to start getting mentally prepared to decamp.
In general, the population out on a Holiday weekend in NYC gives one pause. Now I know why everybody leaves town.
Still, yesterday morning, after a well deserved lunch of soup dumplings at Joe's Shanghai, where the crowd organization skills of the staff could be put to good use in Iraq, we took a long walk east on Grand St, all the way to the FDR and then to Alphabet City and Loisaida. And lo and behold, NY was calm and quiet and lovely and gorgeous. Our amigos at the barrio were busy barbecuing in their lovely community gardens, and everybody was enjoying the fine weather. This leads me to believe that the culprits of the barbarian invasions are not in our midst, but probably come from the netherworld that is across our sundry bridges out of the city. By Sunday night we were back to barbarism, witnessing on West Broadway an old, fat, bald, squat man abusing a young woman. To the credit of the revelers many set out to defend her and somebody actually called the police, who arrived tout suite. This, plus the requisite gangs of drunk, retarded, potty mouthed screamers. In nights such as this weekend's I have a deep fantasy that I own a long range semi automatic rifle, or some such accoutrement, and like a Sheriff, I establish law and order in my beautiful town.

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