Local Luxuries EBook March 2018 Edition

Living ‘Off Peak’ Really Isn’t Food for Thought — By Barbara “K.” Always a “good eater”, it’s not surprising that many of my happiest memories involve food. My younger sister, a “picky eater”, and a “skinny malink”, was plied with goodies, yet food was far less meaningful to her. One of my favorite reflections is that of when visiting a friend in Brooklyn, I was introduced to Ebingers Blackout Cake,a chocolate cake with chocolate icing.Unless it was a birthday, my family preferred serving babka or a crumb cake; the dark, rich, chocolatey sweetness of the blackout cake always held my secret cravings. My dad worked in the Brill Building aka“Tin Pan Alley”,on Broadway. A visit to him meant a trip to Lindy’s or the Automat. From the sidewalk, you could smell Lindy’s pungent corned beef, pastrami and pickling spices. My sister and I would peek around to see if any celebrities were dining, and if they were, we did all we could to see what they had on their plates. We mostly recognized the stars of radio fame but dad knew the songwriters and publishers. Amazing to us, they knew him and greeted him too. Reading the menu was a treat. It was studied with care even though we always ended up with tongue or corned beef sandwiches. Some people flinch when you mention tongue, but to me it was the tastiest meat any deli could serve. (A note to readers unfamiliar with tongue: Don’t try to make it yourself at home. In its uncooked, unsliced state fresh from the butcher, it’s truly a bumpy red organ taken from the mouth of a large friendly animal.) The Automat was a white palace and great fun to dine in because we were allowed to select whatever we wanted. It shone, glass, chrome and brass everywhere. It had its own sound as well; its music was the clatter of dishes, water glasses clinking, and the metallic ping of silverware being loaded into bins. This was accompanied by the clicking of the small glass windows that with just a few nickels, opened to let you reach the inviting little plates inside. Punctuating this symphony was the occasional crashing of a loaded tray. Someone’s shame would be coupled with distress at losing a carefully chosen meal. We all loved the Automat and children didn’t have to be coaxed to eat their vegetables there. The creamed spinach, shiny red beets, baked beans or macaroni and cheese didn’t resemble the same foods served at home. I don’t think anyone ever left without enjoying the Lemon Meringue or Boston Cream Pie, and though I was tempted by the ruby colored Jell-O loaded with whipped cream, the aforementioned pies won every time. As I grew older my visits to Broadway were more casual. Often, snacks were a toss-up between Chock Full O’Nuts and Nedick’s. One offered good coffee and cream cheese and date nut bread sandwiches, the other, an orange drink and a relish-covered hot dog. They were both tempting and the prices were right, but with neither one having had comfortable seating, a patron really couldn’t linger. In the olden days – that is, when we were young – pizza was as new to New Yorkers as sushi became years later. I remember that first slice of pizza; it drew instant devotion in spite of the burn on my tongue from its tremendously hot cheese. Until then the only pizza I’d eaten had been one made thick and crusty, a rectangular slice of a pie made by my friend’s father. It’d been good, but didn’t hold a candle to that glistening, bendable triangle I first bought and tried from an open store window in the Bronx. “Lady food” was in another category. I don’t remember anything special about the food but I do remember how special it felt to be taken to Shrafft’s or Best and Company for lunch. I’d also made a whole collection of menus saved frombirthday dinners at the Brass Rail. The menu covers commemorated events in American history, but I commemorated the roast beef. Really, if to this day I’d held onto the menu from every restaurant where I’d ever enjoyed a meal, I’d be in my fourth or fifth storage locker.Why? Because I like food – and I’m a “good eater”. Warmly, Barbara K. Barbarak@localluxuries.net Note:This essay was written on a cruise with friends in betw een the many meals we enjoyed each day. What’s Inside This Edition... All artwork, design and layout provided by Local Luxuries remains the sole property of the publisher and may not be reproduced in whole or part. The publisher will not be responsible for errors in advertising beyond the cost of the space occupied by the error, and is limited only to the first month of advertising in the case of repeated use. The publisher reserves the right to edit or reject any advertising at his sole discretion. Position requests Local Luxuries, Inc. PO Box 8003, Hicksville, NY 11802 4 EDITIONS PUBLISHED MONTHLY HEWLETT/NORTH WOODMERE AND VICINITY Includes Hewlett, Hewlett Bay Park, Hewlett Harbor, North Woodmere and South Valley Stream ROCKVILLE CENTRE LYNBROOK/EAST ROCKAWAY OCEANSIDE • Bringing It Home — By LL Publisher, Jacqueline Bergrin • Living “Off-Peak” Really Isn’t: Food for Thought — By Barbara “K.” • Nadine’s ‘Open Door’: How to Help Ourselves and Our Kids in Times of Trauma — By Nadine Frankel, LCSW • Champion for the Golden Years: Medicaid Eligibility for 2018 — By Laura Burns, Esq. cannot be guaranteed. The advertiser represents that all artwork and copy provided by him is owned by him, and he has the right to utilize such in this publication. For further rights and obligations of publisher & advertiser refer to the Terms and Conditions of the Insertion Order, which terms and conditions are incorporated herein and made part hereof as through set forth at length herein. 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