Restaurant facts

Sanford Levine, owner of the Carnegie Deli in New York City, calls himself an M.B.D.—”Married the boss’s daughter.”

The Carnegie, the quintessential Jewish delicatessen, smokes its own meat at a 22,000-square-foot facility in Carlstadt, New Jersey. The work was once done in the restaurant’s basement.

Joe’s Stone Crab in Miami, Florida, is the third-highest-grossing restaurant in the United States. And it’s not even open in the summertime. The first? Tavern on the Green in Manhattan’s Central Park.

Perhaps the best deal in Manhattan, Gray’s Papaya on Sixth Avenue has a “Recession Special” of two hot dogs and a glass of papaya juice for $1.95. The cost of a single prix fixe meal at Alain Ducasse on Central Park South (the city’s most expensive restaurant) would buy 164 Recession Special hot dogs at Gray’s.

Dog story

Florida holiday trip two weekends ago. My two-and-a-half-year-old nephew-to-be, Noah, is on the patio wanting to go inside. My dog, Charley, is standing next to him, waiting for the door to open.

Noah is too small to open a sliding glass door by himself, so he appeals for help.

“Charley! Open!”

Charley looks up at Noah expectantly: open the door, human. Noah looks expectantly back at the dog, then repeats: “Open! Charley, open!”

Grandma let them both in the house after she stopped laughing.

In the elevator

I step into the elevator this morning. A boy, around 8 and playing with a ball on a stretchy string, is complaining to his father, in his business suit and carrying dry cleaning plus spare clothes for his son.

SON: Mom—ma—muh—m—mommy is mad at me.

FATHER: She’s not mad. We just get exasperated sometimes.

On the eleventh hole

Scene: Father and son, age 10, playing golf. The father is increasingly frustrated with his game; the son is running around and having fun.

Father hits another bad shot, rolling his ball 45 degrees to the left.

FATHER: Nice. Real nice.

SON: Dad, why do you keep complimenting yourself when you hit?

Later that same hole, after the father has given into the golf gods and picked up his ball, the son decides to try a Happy Gilmore-style running swing.

FATHER: Come on, play the hole like you know how.

SON (muttering): At least I finish the hole.

Me, I parred the hole.

Diplacusis update

I received this question in an email today:

Did you ever get your ears ‘fixed’ (as mentioned 11/01)? I am frustrated with a similar condition 3+ years and wonder if you found help or enlightenment. My ears don’t seem to fit any standard condition.

After replying in email, I thought I’d share the news.

Greetings David –

Did you ever get your ears ‘fixed’ (as mentioned 11/01)? I am frustrated with a similar condition 3+ years and wonder if you found help or enlightenment. My ears don’t seem to fit any standard condition.

Nancy

Hi, Nancy-

I was fortunate enough to rid myself last year of my aural problems. I don’t get the how or the why, but I found a chiropractor—specifically, a kinesiologist—who specializes in emotional balancing within the body. He “adjusted my chi” and the hum dissipated.

The gist of it, according to the doctor, was that I needed an outlet for all the stress in my life, as I am not one to notice or even admit to stress until after it’s over. For a while, he said, I was letting it get to my hearing.

I’d think it was a bunch of hoo-hah if he didn’t fix my ears.

He did, though. The process took a few weeks, and since then I’ve had some relapses of the hum and the diplacusis but nothing permanent. Months have passed since I last avoided a stereo. The daily tinnitus remains, but comparatively speaking, I’m doing well.

I keep the “cure” to my condition fairly quiet, thanks to its somewhat dubious nature. I’m not sure what you are experiencing, or how much this applies, but my ears have run the gamut, so I know whatever you face cannot be pleasant.

If you’re the kind of person who deals with emotions or stress in an internal manner, though, you should find a chiropractor with a kinesiological focus. Who knows? It may help.

Good luck, and keep your spirits up. With mystery ailments like these, we are our own allies or enemies.

-David