Wednesday, October 12, 2005

My Life as a Dog

It is raining cats and dogs out!

I had such a great wonderful time at the small dog run the other night.

Brian and Ben were en route from my parent’s house outside the city, so I took Saki (our magazine cover dog) to Tompkins Square Park for an extended walk. It was about 8 p.m., and I was surprised to see a few people still hanging out in the small dog run. As our white dogs frolicked in the muddy wood chips together, we four humans started talking about food, the green market at nearby Union Square and the best places to eat nearby.

Although most downtown New Yorkers don’t cook, they love to talk about food and we did so for one hour.

I could kick myself for not having a pencil and paper handy! The recommendations were non-stop. A great taco shack on Avenue B, an even better empanadas shack on 1st Ave and 4th street, the 4th street food coop between 2nd and the Bowery, Madras- a vegetarian Indian restaurant, then a ten minute jag on barbecue that led to a tangential discussion of barbecue in St. Louis and Kansas City (two Midwesterners contributed their insights). The list just went on and on until someone said, “Clinton Bakery is great”. There was dead silence, and then someone said “no, we’re talking about the East Village, we hardly ever go below Houston.”

For non New Yorkers reading this post, you should know hat Houston Street is eight very short blocks away from the park. All the dozens and dozens of places we listed were in a five block radius of the park – much to even my surprise. What made me laugh is that I am one of those uber lazy, provincial East Villagers who rarely go below Houston Street. Note: Houston is a street I can see when I look down my block!

These exchanges remind me how great Tompkins Square can be . Not only because of the multitude of places to eat but the fact that I could hang out on a week night with three or four strangers in the middle of a downtown city park and not be dealing drugs or performing oral sex.


Milliner's Dream, a woman of many "hats"... said... you mean not be around people who are dealing drugs and performing oral sex? (Or do you aren't? Hehe...had to chuckle the way it read, even though I knew what you meant!)

I've said it over and over: I love reading your slices of East Village Life.


Julie Marsh said...


On one of our trips to the small dog run at Carl Schurz Park (we didn't have a dog, but loved watching all of them play), I noticed a cute miniature American Eskimo. I peeked over the owner's shoulder and asked, "Ma'am, is that your dog?" The owner - apparently in the middle of transgender procedures - turned around and growled at me: "Yes."


JT said...

What a minute--Saki is a cover dog? Not that I'm surprised, but what cover was he on? Italian Vogue? You know, the East Village is just a term real estate people made up in the late '50s to make it seem as palatable as teh West Village (at least that's what I've read), and that the whole area from Grand Street to 14th was called the Lower East Side. So don't go drawing boundaries around yourself that separate us!

east village idiot said...

Hannah - Forgive me for such a poorly structured sentence. I must revise it!!

MoGo - Trust me, I've made that mistake more than a few times....

Writermama - I'm so sorry. The only boundary I'm talking about is one of pure laziness. Houston is a mental border for legions of lazy people up here. It is certainly no comment on the neighborhood. No one laughs more than my family over the name "East Village" - that name never existed in our lives until the mid 80's thanks to real estate moguls. It was always the lower east side - or living off of St. Marks Place.

east village idiot said...

Also - my dog Saki was on the cover of
House and Garden in the October 2003 issue. He is laying on a blue couch with my son's legs perched over him.
I promise to scan it onto my blog at some point.

Kranki said...

I got hungry just reading this. Yum!

Dr. Deb said...

It is totally amazing how much rain we've had here, isn't it? The leaders separated from the gutters from the water pressure. It makes the house look funny. Going into the city tomorrow. We are gonna try to "see" the Oak Room. Please post the picture of your dog asap!!!!

Empanadas rule,