So Adam and I…okay, I would like to insert a note here to say I actually have friends who are NOT my Significant Other, but I value their privacy. Adam, on the other hand, is all over the internet*, so clearly, he gets to be the topic of all of my posts. Anyway, just wanted to get that off my chest, so my two readers don’t think I’m some Boring Smug Married who spends all of her time with her S.O.
*We met in real life, or IRL as the kids say, but he is the most useless person to google because there is Way Too Much information about him on the internet.
Anyway, so we’ve been taking these long walks, or as Adam dubbed them “Urban Hikes” (and as he’s dubbed himself, “Guide Adam,” pronounced obnoxiously French-y, as in “Geeede Ahhhdahm”) around the city, and we’ve seen some cool rarely seen sights in the city. Like graffiti:
Here’s the traveling sock with some graffiti at 5 Pointz, which is this huge factory space covered with graffiti. (My city councilperson*, by the way, hates graffiti with a crazy vengeance, and is always sending me updates–via snail mailed newsletters–about his latest attempts to convince marketers and branding companies that “graffiti is not art.” Sometimes I understand his issues, especially on storefronts and private residences, but sometimes, I am like, “Okay, just let The Man use graffiti on some stupid energy drink to pretend to be cool. OMG.” Personally, I think some graffiti can be really neat, though, like I said, there is the bourgeois part of me that understands how graffiti is my city councilperson’s pet peeve. Like ugly tags. Why do people have to use those? Blech. Also, I am probably the only person in my district who reads my city councilperson’s newslwetters.)
*New York has a representative for each district called a councilperson or councilman, who serves, duh, as part of the City Council. They’re pretty much small-time politicians, though they do have a certain amount of power as individuals and as a governing body. They’re generally pretty accessible, though.
A close-up of the sock with some graffiti outside 5 Pointz.
We were trying to walk from Queens to the Brooklyn Botanic Garden, but it took longer than we thought, so stopped in Williamsburg. New Yorkers know Williamsburg is The Hipster Neighborhood, but there’s also the Hasidic Jewish part, which is less commonly visited by non-Hasidic Jews, and which is where we ended up. I knew, however, from past experience, that the Hasidic Jews serve delicious stuffed cabbage, but we could not, for the life of us, find a single restaurant. It might have been because it was Sunday, or that there aren’t a lot of restaurants in general in the Hasidic part of the neighborhood. (Interestingly, I was just reading this week’s New York magazine, which just came in the mail, and it has an article summing up the problems between the hipsters and the Hasids, amusingly entitled “Clash of the Bearded Ones.”) I was starving, though I did manage to satisfy my hunger a little bit with some chocolate babka (I went to Jewish pre-school at a JCC, so even though I am not Jewish, nor a hipster, but Chinese-American, I have a store of Jewish knowledge that pops up at random times. Like what babka is. Or how to recite Jewish prayers. Or how to make challah. *I* should be the subject of a New York magazine article! Chinese girl raised Jewish! Though I went to a Reform Jewish pre-school in San Francisco, which is quite different from the very observant Hasidic Jewish community in New York.)
Anyway, we crossed over from the Hasidic side of Williamsburg to the Hipster side to eat at Diner. Where there were ramps on the menu. RAMPS! Adam and I make fun of ramps all the time, because foodies are always like “Ramps! Ramps! Ramps!” We are like, “Okay, calm down, freak shows.” Anyway, we had the ramps. Unsurprisingly, they were like any member of the allium family (leeks, onions, chives, etc.). You know, CHIVE-y. And tasty. But not, mind-blowingly tasty. Just good. I also had the nettle fettuccine (NETTLES!) and it was good. Adam was like, “Do those noodles have some sting? Is that the nettles?” I was drinking (a rare thing for me, because I am sort of allergic to alcohol), and I was like, “I don’t know…everything is making me feel sting-y.”
Diner is set in an old railroad car. Can you get any more hipster?