Monday, October 12, 2009

In Which We Dine in the Style of "Diamond" Jim Brady and Brave New England...

Saturday marked Julie's birthday celebration. Being she happens to be a citizen of the rival principality to the Kingdom of Brooklyn's north - the Queendom of Queens - she adhered to the Treaty of Orchard Beach §485.99 which declared that any celebrations requiring the attendance of Subjects of BOTH rival territories shall be had on a neutral THIRD BOROUGH. She chose the famous Delmonico's restaurant in the Financial District of Manhattan.
Those unfamiliar with this establishment's fabled past need LOOK NO FURTHER, for I herein provide and COMPLETE and ACCURATE history of Delmonico's in the fashion of a timeline.

18 A.D. - Jesus and 312 of his closest friends celebrate his 18th birthday and inadvertently invent the Jägerbomb - a drink recipe still on the menu, still at the low, introductory rate of 30 pieces of silver (FORESHADOWING)!
1890s - Renowned psychic Edgar Cayce visits Delmonico's and slips into a deep, dreamlike state wherein he mumbled "Sewards icebox... Alaska... 49th state... vice president?" amongst fevered ramblings about the lost continent of Atlantis. Chef Bjørn Strangelove immediately invented a meringue encrusted ice cream dessert to prematurely celebrate our penultimate state - Baked Alaska.
1910 - "Diamond" Jim Brady becomes the first customer to ask for a snow shovel with which to heap food into his obese girlfriend's gaping maw. Geologists of the time believed that Jim used the massive heat and supergravitational force that was his lady friend in order to make MORE DIAMONDS! Customers may still request a snow shovel to enjoy their suppers.
October 1929 to ca. 1980's - After thoroughly enjoying a brunch of Eggs Benedict, President Herbert Hoover enlisted the Army Corps of Engineers to design a TIME SHIELD to protect the restaurant. Simultaneously, he had the secret service subtly influence the market, causing a massive panic resulting in the Great Depression to ensure that NO ONE BUT HE could afford such a luxurious dish! It was not until stage magician David Copperfield decided to cause the Statue of Liberty to disappear, accidentally focusing his TIME MAGIC on the financial district, that the restaurant was once again open to the public. When authorities searched the grounds, they found Hoover hunched over a plate by a fireplace shoving entire eggs and English muffins down his throat, quenching his thirst with an oriental vase full of Hollandaise sauce.
Yesterday - Dressed in a double breasted seersucker suit, a foolish young man asked for truffles atop his steak, garnishing a $40 surcharge - thus ensuring he would have a funny story to tell for the rest of his life.

Well, we seriously enjoyed it. It was an historical experience, and atrociously delicious as well. Thanks be to Julie!
Maria and I required respite from the State of New York, and so plotted an escape to that neighbor to the United States' north - Red Sox Nation. Formerly a geographic area known as "New England," so named because of the area's propensity to drink tea and worship a monarchy, the states of Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Rhode Island and Connecticut incorporated into one obnoxious political unit in 2004 in celebration of the third rate baseball team - the Boston Red Sox - winning a championship for the first time in 89 years. In a stunning blow to Red Sox Nation, their much beloved army (whose actions are mostly confined to football playing) the Patriots were crushed by the New York Football Giants (literally persons who suffer from gigantism) in the 2006 Battle of the Superbowl. But I have digressed.
Red Sox Nation is very beautiful this time of year. October, being my favorite month, is marked by the caramelizing tree leaves and brisk, bright weather. It was really breathtaking driving past gilded birches and scarlet sugar maples. For all of its obnoxious sports fans, Red Sox Nation is far and away the most beautiful part of America in the autumn.
We drove our adorable silver Volkswagen Jetta (courtesy of Zip Car) to the Northampton area of Massachusetts. There we went to Atkin's Farm, a produce market so popular that the parking lot suffers from traffic congestion. There we feasted on a mug of warm apple cider and cider donuts, a product that was pretty much the main reason we made the whole trip. Indeed, if it weren't for Maria salivating at the very thought of these confections, no way would we have driven up there. A little ways away, we went to an apple orchard, where I went apple picking for the first time. It felt a little like we were on a movie set - picking apples amongst autumnal trees, bright blue sky, green, gold, red spotted hills... and I practiced my cricket bowl with the fallen, spoiled apples.
I declare this the finest usage of a three day weekend. I am currently re-reading Harper Lee's To Kill a Mockingbird and scouring it for evidence of Truman Capote's handiwork. Do NOT be surprised if any of my forthcoming entries contain Atticus Finch worship - though that might be an interesting topic: challenging Malcolm Gladwell's essay denouncing Atticus.
Until I decide what to write again...


  1. You love the cider donuts now. And apparently, so does the rest of Western Massachusetts, as you neglected to mention, since while we were at the market I nearly got my arm lobbed off just to be able to grab just one of the LAST THREE BAGS LEFT. You also forgot the Eric Carle museum of picture book art and the $2 pumpkins.

  2. One day I shall invite you to dine with me in the Glorious Empire of Cape Cod, where the the scenery is bolstered by the added presence of the ocean and conscripts to the Red Sox army are kept at tolerable levels thanks to enforced breeding programs.


  4. When I was writing about Atticus Finch worship, I actually commented to Maria that I thought you might bring up the Maddux article referring to Gregory Peck's "face full of scowl." Well played old friend.