Monday, November 14, 2011
Yesterday’s New York Times Magazine had an essay by Adam Davidson, a business and economics journalist from NPR. In spite of these very pinko associations, Davidson argued that we should spare the bank accounts of rich people and corporations and aim to get more tax revenue from the middle class. He boils it down to simple math; the very rich earn about $700 billion annually, while the middle class, those earning between $30,000 and $200,000 a year, makes a total of around $5 trillion. So, Davidson wishes to follow in the footsteps of Willie Sutton and go where the money is. I take issue with this approach. It is another version of trickle-down economics, again to the benefit of the rich. Just as we are asked to await the trickling down of wealth from our financial elite, we are expected to keep their tax payments at a trickle. Maybe that’s another reason to become very rich so that we may avoid the gush of paying our fair share of taxes. My thought is to first tap the overflowing keg before moving on to the keg showing signs of evaporation.
Tuesday, November 15, 2011
Through no fault of its own, Wo Hop downstairs, 17 Mott Street, has been replaced by ABC Chinese Restaurant, 34 Pell Street, as my go-to, classic Chinatown, Chinese food restaurant. The food is very good and reliably so at each. Service is efficient and attentive, with more tea and water never far away. Wo Hop also offers fried, crispy, wide noodles with mustard and duck sauce to nibble on ($.80) or to load into your won ton, egg drop or chicken rice soup when the weather turns cool. However, three Wo Hops would fit into ABC, which inexplicably is never more than 1/4 full. That yields space; space to sit comfortably and do the crossword puzzle or read your magazine long after the remains of lunch (not usually much remains of my lunch) have been cleared. That valuable feature has changed my habits lately, although allow me to note that Wo Hop retains the edge on authenticity by its underground location approached by a steep set of stairs. Long may they both prosper.
Wednesday, November 16, 2011
3 x #1 = 1
During this 22-month (ad)venture, I have been to several locations that changed name, decor, ownership, menu, thereby earning multiple listings in this journal. Today was a first, however, when I entered Accord Asian Cuisine, 1 East Broadway, the third different operation at that address. On January 27, 2010, I ate at the Fuzhouese Restaurant, renamed the Funhouse Restaurant by me, because of the joyless character of the enterprise. It closed soon thereafter, replaced by Yi Hao Chinese Restaurant (January 4, 2011), which proved to be a respectable ordinary Chinese restaurant (maybe that’s what Yi Hao means). It closed up a few weeks ago, and Accord just opened this Monday. By the way, the signs outside still say Yi Hao and the cash register receipt said 1 East Broadway Restaurant. The name Accord appears only on the take-out menu.
The interior has been modified with a mirror running the full length of the long wall on the right- hand side, opposite a newly-installed sushi bar. Accord advertises Chinese, Japanese and Thai food, with about equal attention to the first two cuisines, while only 5 versions of pad Thai remind you of Yul Brynner. I had sesame chicken as a lunch special, usually $6.45, but 25% discount during these opening days. It came with a good hot and sour soup and vegetable fried rice. I enjoyed the deep-fried chunks of chicken in a slightly sticky, slightly sweet sauce.
A word of warning though. No dragon has appeared at Accord and none is scheduled according to the manager. That means that the resident evil spirits, which must be in abundance considering the sad history of the location, remain undisturbed. I do not counsel entirely avoiding Accord for that reason, but I suggest bringing a kazoo or small percussion instrument with you to establish a no-fly zone for evil spirits around your table. Better safe than sorry.
Thursday, November 17, 2011
A demonstration by the Occupy Wall Streeters is expected at Foley Square here at 5 PM. The wide expanse of the courthouse steps has been narrowed to about 5 feet by placing aluminum fence-like barriers all around. Similarly, the open park/plaza space across the street is now ringed by the same barriers. It should prove unpleasant for all sides as the weather has turned cold and rainy. The demonstrators may have little patience under the circumstances and the cops may swing their clubs as a simple exercise to fight the chill. Using the double-barreled excuse that I was in more than 30 minutes early this morning and I have a head cold, I’ll be gone before the fun begins.
Friday, November 18, 2011
Oh what a wimp am I. My cold kept me home today and lunch was only a cup of tea and a biscotti. Actually, Trader Joe’s double chocolate biscotti have remarkable restorative powers and I am getting better already.