Friday, November 20, 2015

What Did That Used To Be Called?

Monday, November 16, 2015
The New York Giants played a football game yesterday that went back and forth. In the end, the Giants defeated two teams – the New England Patriots and the New York Giants.

If you read this headline, you have to read the story that follows.
"Jack Yufe, a Jew Whose Twin Was a Nazi, Dies at 82"

We are faced with many politicians, and ordinary citizens, calling for us to get tough with ISIS. Rarely do they offer any specifics to go with their aggressive posturing. I offer a three-pronged approach to this very difficult challenge:
1) Anyone proposing taking the battle to ISIS will be conscripted to be among the first boots on the ground. If unable to serve, their adult children or grandchildren will serve in their stead.
2) Increase taxes on the wealthy, those who have the most to lose, in order to raise military preparedness – supplies and pay – to its highest levels. Let’s not send unarmored Humvees into harm’s way again.
3) Attack inequality at home to prevent the growth of a radical underclass.

Tuesday, November 17, 2015
I did something today that I haven’t done for years -- I had Chinese food for lunch . . . not in Chinatown. But, let is begin this story last night. I was enjoying a new cookie from Trader Joe's, their version of Pepperidge Farm’s Milano, probably the best mass produced cookie in the Western Hemisphere. As I customarily did with almost every chocolate dessert, I had put it in the freezer. As I bit into the frozen cookie, I was surprised to find a nut, until I realized that the cookie had a smooth Belgian chocolate filling, no nuts. Tooth. Not the baker’s, mine. 

After several hours in the office this morning, I went to one member of my dental army, situated in midtown Manhattan. He looked at the small tooth fragment and found where it used to be. Since his eyes and my tongue could not detect a sharp edge where the tooth broke, we decided to leave well enough alone. So, I left the dentist’s office at 2:15 without having been charged a cent and I went looking for a place to have lunch. I skipped in order to spare the dentist having to wade through and around the flotsam and jetsam of one of my usual meals. In midtown Manhattan, there was a vast array of choices for lunch.

Lan Sheng, Szechuan Restaurant, 60 West 39th Street, is on a block with about as many restaurants as there are unsuitable Republican candidates for President. The restaurant is long and narrow, well furnished, peach-colored walls, boasting of once having had (and lost) a Michelin star. I asked for Singapore chow fun ($9.95), not on the menu, but undoubtedly available where Singapore mei fun (angel hair noodles) is listed. The waiter repeated "wide" several times and held his fingers apart to demonstrate what I was getting in case I had missed my latest Mandarin homework assignment. The large portion was excellent, loaded with chicken, shrimp, egg, bean sprouts and scallions mixed in with the spicy wide noodles. Considering the much more expensive midtown real estate, the price was quite reasonable, almost the same as Chinatown.
Wednesday, November 18, 2015
Now we’re talking. Jeb! spoke yesterday about the threat posed by ISIS and went boldly where his competitors have not gone. "The United States should not delay in leading a global coalition to take out ISIS with overwhelming force. Militarily, we need to intensify our efforts in the air — and on the ground." That’s right – Boots On The Ground. I await word that his three adult children have put themselves forward to lead the effort that ! advocates. So far, the only reaction from his Republican opponents is Donald Trump’s promise to send several copies of his New York Military Academy yearbook overseas to inspire those doing battle for Western Civilization.

Thursday, November 19, 2015
Was Shakespeare right? "The evil that men do lives after them; the good is oft interred with their bones." Princeton students started a sit-in at the university’s president’s office yesterday. Their demands include the removal of Woodrow Wilson’s name from anything named after him at the university, because of his patent racism. Should we be equally vigorous regarding the commemoration of other imperfect human beings, such as, Malcolm X (criminality), Franklin D. Roosevelt (philandering) and Peter Stuyvesant (anti–Semitism)? If we are too quick to wield a paint brush, a chisel or a screwdriver to remove the signs of offensive characters from our halls and walls, we may wind up with vast spaces designated as "To Whom It May Concern."

Friday, November 20, 2015
Stony Brook Steve came by for lunch and we went to Oriental Garden, 14 Elizabeth Street (April 27, 2010), which is near the top of many people's list of favorite Chinese restaurants, including Zagat's. It gets a mention, but not a star from Michelin. and my last visit did not compel me to hurry back.  While the food is good, the room simply doesn't feel comfortable; there seems to be too much empty space.  The surprise that one woman server showed when I asked for a glass of water in addition to the pot of tea on the table added to my unease.

We ordered dim sum from a printed menu, almost all priced at $4 a dish.  A few items were coming around on a cart, but most were fetched from the kitchen.  We had scallop dumplings, chicken dumplings, chive dumplings, baked pork buns and sweet/sour spareribs.  I guess that Oriental Garden would be best at night, a large group very hungry for very good, expensive Chinese food.

Donald Trump is taking heat from Republicans and Democrats for his impulsive suggestion to institute a database for Muslims.  It smacks of Nazi Germany, of course.  Here is a much friendlier idea.  Let's put a bell around the neck of Texas Republicans to signal the approach of George W. Bush, Rick Perry or Ted Cruz.

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