I❤️NYC


Traveled across the world including Europe and Asia.

Lived in London, Tokyo, Miami, LA.

I had never been to New York City until this year and I went twice. Incomparable. Well….maybe a little comparable. Tokyo is also a vertical city. The food was also amazing there. Lots of people everywhere, which is important to my soul.

NYC though…. The food. That park. Those boroughs. My first trip I had 3 days. When asked what sightseeing and tourist things I wanted to do, I was having none of it. The only thing I wanted to do was get to all five boroughs and eat the local food from that area. Goal accomplished! It was legendary!

#heartexplosion #foodieinparadise #queens #manhatten #bronx #brooklyn #statenisland







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Boxing, Cooking & a Father I Could Never Connect With


My dad was a scary dude to me growing up. I spent most of my childhood in my room because it was a haven away from the devastating words he used as effectively as wielding a sword to my burgeoning child psyche. I tried to spend as little time around him as possible. 

But at a time in my life when we couldn’t talk to each other, no…., we couldn’t communicate with each other, I managed to absorb two passions of his, nearly by osmosis. The first was boxing. This was back when boxing meant something. Mohammed Ali. Leon Spinks. Angelo Dundee. Mills Lane. And yes, in later years, Tyson. Boxing had heart then. Two men. Two sets of determination. Two different skill sets. Get in a ring and let the best man win. 

For this, I would actually emerge from my safe place and sit in front of the telly, and we’d share some time cheering on our champion. These were glorious moments.

My dad’s only other discernible passion was food. Preparing it. Finding exotic recipes and replicating them. Going out to eat to places my peers never went to. Hell, I never ate at a McDonald’s until I was 18 years old because he considered it garbage. Kids I went to school with didn’t eat pate or escargot or caviar. They ate macaroni and cheese or chicken fried steak and such. My dad would fix borscht. He’d make his own sausages. He didn’t discriminate, and cooked dishes from all over the world.

Me, eh, I loved eating it but preparing it, having that passion just didn’t exist. Somehow though, his cooking commentary, and his willful education of my palate made a huge impact on me without my even knowing it at the time. 

Later in life, much later, I just started cooking one day, and I’ve never stopped. All that rabble he would summarily explain when he cooked stuck in my head somewhere. Now, I cook the most amazing kick ass food, and it has all come so naturally to me. I dream of food and wake up with the taste of it in my mouth. I visit other countries and my goal is basically to eat my way across it.

We’ve all got our shit when it comes to our parents, and I’m no different. I never did really connect with him. But still…. there is a part of him in me, in my DNA, that he delivered up to me because he had a passion for it, and my life is better because of it.

Thanks Dad. This was a good thing you did and you never even understood that it was a gift you gave me.

My Love Affair with Food Continues


  • Soft fresh dark pumpernickel topped with savory trout smoked fish dip.
  • Mini Baybel cheeses in their delightful red suitcases.
  • Slices of honey ham or roasted turkey.
  • Straight from the Jewish deli, a nice white chicken salad spread with optional red currant jelly topping. 
  • Banana slices with almond butter dollops.
  • Lychees in heavy sweet syrup.
  • Green, black and kalamata olives with roasted red peppers and Pearl onions cold salad mix.
  • Über buttery hard pretzel sticks.
  • A pale Sleepytime tea with individual honey pot.
  • A small glass of chilled white wine as a digestive.
  • Icy cold glass of Coca-Cola. 

Coca Cola and China


I learned pretty quickly not to drink anything in China that didn’t come in a can. Here are some of my cans. BTW – the pink stuff was supposed to be a yummy treat but was colored tofu in a custard consistency. Very unfun.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Piggry Wiggry-san


My best friend was stationed in Misawa, Japan at Naval Air Station for 4 years. Every so often I would send him a tee shirt from the States, and passing through the uber southern state of South Carolina, I stopped at a Piggly Wiggly store to grab some things when I saw their “I’m big on the pig” tee shirt so bought one and sent it to him.

piggly wiggly tee shirtIt amused me to think of him wearing this shirt in a place where Asian folks LOVE to have clothing items with English on them, and I’m sure he was the singular person in the Asia Pacific region that would be sporting this baby out.

One night he wore the shirt out to Izakaya. Going out to Izakaya means going to the bar with friends to drink and socialize.

Most Japanese can speak a couple of words at English, and some are fairly decent at it, but virtually all of them struggle with the sound of the letter “R” which ends of being pronounced with the sound of the letter “L.”

By the end of the night, my buddy’s new Japanese friends couldn’t remember his name so they just called him, “Piggly Wiggly-san,” but they would pronounce it, “Piggry Wiggry-san.”

That amuses me to no end for no particular reason.

It’s the little things in life.

Piggy Wiggry-san…. Funny.

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Japanese Bulk Buy Machines


In America you can take a 5 gallon jug to the market and fill it with spring water from a machine. Those wily Japanese take things a step further, and you can do the same thing with your 5 gallon bottle only instead of spring water, you can choose to fill it with miso broth or even green tea!

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Candy Aisle in Japanese Grocery Store


Colorful. Crazy. Delicious candy from Japan.

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And then there is this depressed fucker…..

Although, in retrospect, I think this picture could be from the feet section and might be for inserts you put in your shoes to keep them from smelling bad.
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