I haven’t been able to karaoke lately.
I feel like this has been the subject, or at least the way, I’ve started several blog posts, but it really does take a toll on you.
I could find excuses, either in prior commitments, rehearsals for the play or my friend’s misdirections.
“BBQ in Long Island” J-Sam claimed, no doubt to hit up the prissy Long Island Jewish girls he hung out with who I so loathed for their unique mix of arrogance, ignorance and faux romanticism, uggh.
“Sick. Contagious. No one would want me.” Dan Pleck told me, which echoed his girlfriend Najia’s answer as well, though I knew hers was partly motivated by her lack of affection for Karaoke and his, probably in turn with hers.
“I’m at the beach.” Ro-Beardo claimed cryptically. I say cryptically because Rob had been absent from both his beard and New York for some time now, hiding out in PA, dog-sitting and threatening to erect barns.
“That’s kind of a douche thing to do,” I told him. “Choose the beach over your regular-status Karaoke requirements.”
“Bad timing.” He claimed and returned to his beard-line tan.
So, in absence of my regular friends to Karaoke with, I ended up at a barbeque held by members of the “Last Pictures” crew.
It was something of a housewarming, something of a get-together or shindig and something of an offshoot of that need for community unemployed art students feel in the days once the semester has started, leaving them behind.
It was also a Sundance submission party for the crew, who had sent in not only their film One Night Only, my friend Chadd’s big outing featuring Kristen Wiig and Garret Dillahunt, but also Bryan Gaynor’s Life Lessens, a comedy we had read in my writing group.
They celebrated in a group in a Bushwick backyard, with the head-card party game from Inglorious Basterds and burgers-slash-hot-dogs that no one was willing to cook.
In other circumstances, I might have been dismayed at the lack of “poultritarian” options to suit my pallet, but in this case I had, on one hand, a tall boy of Modelo Especial and in the other, my girlfriend, Eva.
I remember Eva telling me at one point that she was pleased to find, when she discovered my blog, that she was not too present on it, that there was not an ecstatic outpouring of emotions here, a denuding of our feelings for each other.
Having a girlfriend is a strange thing. I found a Battlestar Galactica DVD today, while looking around, and said to myself out loud:
“Now that I have a girlfriend, I could probably bring this home, since she’s already aware of how nerdy I actually am.”
Except that I haven’t seem to be too nerdy lately. On the contrary, I seem to attached to Eva at the mouth, the reason why I couldn’t pay much attention or play the party-head-game at the BBQ.
On subway cars, on the dock near my play-boat, in Brooklyn/Manahttan, in my home or hers, I can’t even look at her without kissing her, with privacy or no.
This is a real issue, because being with Eva has effectively eliminated some of the core principle of my identity: Jewish shame.
I should feel ashamed of myself making out with my girlfriend in public. I should feel embarrassed when we put on show for the home-going F train. I should feel warm-ears when I hold her downstairs from my apartment on the SoHo sidewalk, because the idea of kissing her upstairs makes me when I’m downstairs, deserves anticipatory action.
All of this swirls around in my head and I have many questions and many answers.
I have to go back to my shrink sometime soon and tell her about all this, since she’s been on hiatus, a point of irony, since I’m usually in her office complaining about girls.
On my blog, I’m used to discussing my feelings about the world and my tactile experience of it.
But maybe I’m attached to Eva at the mouth as we kiss each other, because what we feel then is unspoken.
There’s a privacy to a kiss, even done in public. There’s a transmission to it, a feeling passed or shared from one person to the next.
Maybe what I’ve learned or what I’m learning from all this, my first “girlfriend” experience, is that somethings can be left unspoken.
Well, except for what I’ve already said.
Speaking of things, un-blogged about, I work somewhere I cannot blog about, so I won’t.
For the first time in my life, I have signed a confidentiality agreement. I will mention no one by name from my work nor the name of it on this page, since I enjoy my job and do not want to kill it in its infancy.
However, since I spent all day today at my job selling myself as a foodie, I will share a place I discovered through it.
I was warned about Azuri Cafe that the owner “might be grumpy”.
If anything, this only excited me more.
Considering the restaurant I have a love-hate relationship with, Shopsin’s (I love them, they hate me), I have found that often it is the “grumpiest” of restaurant owners who have the best food.
After all, if their food wasn’t excellent then how could they stay in business with that sort of ‘tude?
However, it turned out beyond my imagination, that the place’s grumpiness was not just a signifier of its quality, but also it’s prime virtue.
Azuri is a traditional-ish run-down falafel joint, like a Mamoun’s or (a better comparison) like Alfanoose downtown.
However, unlike those places, they don’t ask you any questions when you order your falafel.
They know that they know that they know what’s best.
No questions or requests needed.
When I observed them preparing my falafel, they put hummus, babaganough, hot sauce, peppers, pickles, regular salad, Israeli salad, onions and more things that I couldn’t even tell including a cilantro-y looking sauce they used a profusion of, which seemed to resemble pesto.
The result was unqualifi-ed-ly delicious. The falafel was crisp and broad and numerous within the pita. The sauces and textures blended so that, while individual influences could be noted, you could enjoy your sammy in ignorance as well.
“You know,” I told a co-worker on the walk to the subway. “If I had to choose what was on my falafel, I probably wouldn’t have made something this good.”
“Knowledge isn’t everything.” He told me, as we headed the long walk to the train.
Falafel Sandwich (w/the works)- $6.50
51st bet 9th and 10th Ave, closer to 10th.
CE to 50th St.