Monday, February 27, 2012
At least I serve to connect some of you to the New York Times. Yesterday’s paper had a feature article on black students at Stuyvesant High School, a subject I explored not too long ago. Read it at http://www.nytimes.com/2012/02/26/education/black-at-stuyvesant-high-one-girls-experience.html?pagewanted=1&_r=1&sq=stuyvesant&st=cse&scp=1. Black enrollment peaked in 1975 when black students made up 12 percent of the school’s population, or 303 of the school’s then 2,536 students. In 1980, there were 212 black students; in 1990, 147; in 2000, 109; in 2005, 66; and today 40 out of 3,295 students. In 1970, Asian (Chinese) students were 6% of the student body surging to 72.5% today. Which of these situations is more remarkable?
Tanxi Wang Fu Zhou Cuisine Inc., 13B Eldridge Street, is a busy joint. Long and narrow, about 40 chairs face two ledges running opposite each other down the length of the restaurant, and almost every one was taken with rapid turnover. The one English version of the menu is posted on the wall and the choices are limited. I had fish ball soup ($2 small) and noodles with peanut sauce ($2). There were seven 1" fish balls in a mild broth. The ground fish, with a texture akin to a quenelle, was wrapped around a meat or darker fish center. The flat egg noodles might have been cold sesame noodles if they were cold, not hot, but they were hot so not. It amounted to a lot of good food for a little money.
Tuesday, February 28, 2012
A story I missed when it first appeared is at http://www.gelderlander.nl/nieuws/algemeen/economie/10007041/KLM-kies-je-stoelgenoot-op-basis-van-Twitterprofiel.ece. Of course, my Dutch is rusty and it took awhile for me to understand KLM’s new policy which will allow airplane seat selection to incorporate profile information about possible co-passengers from social networks. I’m already crafting some profiles for myself to use on different flight segments to maximize my chances to be left in splendid isolation:
New York to Chicago - Flatulent senior citizen.
New York to Los Angeles - Newly-crowned teenage baton-twirling champion.
New York to London - Life insurance salesman under quota.
New York to Tokyo - Newt Gingrich.
Wednesday, February 29, 2012
How old do you have to be to know who is Sadie Hawkins?
Thursday, March 1, 2012
Canal Best Restaurant, 266 Canal Street, is a joint I would have sworn I had gone to before. Located just west of Broadway, it’s in a heavily-trafficked area, but I had missed it in the last two years. It’s medium-small sized, 8 rectangular tables for 4 and 8 round tables for 8-10 people. Just about every table was partially occupied, mostly by Chinese, although many tourists were in constant movement outside along Canal Street. It has a big menu, with few surprises. Eighty dishes are offered for lunch, ranging from $5 to $6.95, with soup. Another 60 items included noodles and rice dishes. After all that, I ordered shredded duck chow fun ($6.95), which was not actually on the menu, but presented no problem in light of the listing of shredded duck with other noodles, and chow fun with other meats. The portion was not as heaping as I might have wished, but it was good, not great. The noodles did not manage to double up on themselves as happens in the greatest of chow funs. I wonder how they do that?
Friday, March 2, 2012
Solidifying our role as the upper West Side’s Power Couple, America’s Favorite Epidemiologist and I purchased smartyphones this past weekend. While their possible uses seem endless with all the apps available from technophiles dwelling in ill-ventilated spaces, we are making some progress in joining the Wired Generation. I note this for your benefit since my smartyphone combines telephone numbers, e-mail addresses and web sites into one contact list, all selected by a gentle touch of the screen. However, age, drink, weariness, distraction, sleep deprivation, sensory overload or boredom might occasionally distort the accuracy of my selection causing me to ring you up in the middle of the night when I was merely trying to look up the population of Bolivia. I ask your temporary tolerance of my learning curve.