Storm Food, or Why Beefaroni Matters

Beefaroni and sunflowers

Well, on the Friday before Irene was to devastate Wrong Island (friends, that's Long Island to you), I realized that we hadn't prepared for disaster.  So I exhumed our limp flashlight and menorah emergency candles, tested the 1985 Sony shortwave ("skies are clear in Pacific Samoa") and drove to the drugstore for a life-saving flat of water-filled plastic. But what if we lose power for days on end? Bulbs flicker when even the shadow of a smile clouds WIPA, the Wrong Island Power Authority; our Costco meat-bounty would be fly-encrusted in no … [Read more...]

Facebook Writes a Piece for Me

How Obit Mag piece writes itself, step one

Facebook has been taking so much of my time, funneling the long, elegant, profound writing I am sure I would be doing into a digital kiddie pool surrounded by a classic backyard fence. It's as if, by adding my occasional two cents, I can claim the whole Facebook fortune. No jokes, please. But I really like my loquacious Friends, and so, I thought one recent lazy morning, why don't I ask them to tell me about stuff, things, objects in their past like girdles and 8-tracks that they are glad are gone. (I was really thinking about Facebook … [Read more...]

Will Bert and Ernie Ever Eat Zabar’s ‘Lobster’ Salad?

Bert (left) and Ernie

Oh, the sadness in Friday's New York Times. Hundreds if not thousands of Upper West Siders have been scooped, scooped! by one Doug MacCash, art critic at the Times-Picayune in balmy New Orleans. Doug, who's a charming and sensible guy, usually gets embroiled in what-price-graffiti tussles or wins team Pulitzers for rowing the newsroom skiff with his managing editor on the night Katrina visited. But this time, he was visiting New York with his family and must have hopped on the wrong subway, because he found himself on the Upper West Side -- … [Read more...]