829 Southdrive

829 Southdrive

A New Jersey state of mind

Tuesday, April 24, 2012


Do me a favor.  If you see me, just say hello.  Or hi.  Or hey.  Or yo.  
Or don't even say anything at all.  You can nod, or smile, or just 
widen your eyes in my direction.  Wave.  Tip your hat.  Salute me.  
Ignore me.  Flip me the bird.  They're all good.

But don't ask me how I am.  Don't ask me how I've been.  Don't ask 
me what's goin' on.  Or how it's goin'.  Because unless you really
 know me, you don't give a shit.  And everybody does it.

Good morning.  Good afternoon.  Good evening.  All fine too.  
Simple salutations that really don't require you to think of a response 
other than to return the salutation, or to say hello, hi, or hey.  
Or not even say anything at all.

Don't mention the weather.  That's the biggest cop-out for a lack of 
something original to say.  Forget saying 'how-about-them_______s?'
Chances are, your team is them_______'s archrivals.  And nobody 
really wants to know how life is treating you, unless it's worse than 
life's treating them.

I went to buy a half a sub today for lunch before my bike ride.  After
ordering, there was the awkward couple of minutes standing in front
of the counter while they constructed the sandwich.  Finally, the girl
said, 'will that be all?'  Yes, thanks.  'How've you been?' she asked.
Defense mechanisms automatically kicked in, knowing that I hadn't
been there in a while.  'Good.  I haven't been in in a while, and I got
the hankerin'.'  She got me.  She meant well, but immediately I felt
guilty in a way for not having been in more recently.  It was weird.

I went and ate my sandwich and then rode my bike for a couple 
hours.  I burped oil and vinegar the whole time. I should have had 
something at home instead.  My dog doesn't give a shit about how
I'm doing.  And that's fine with me.


  1. I wonder if you'd feel this way had she asked, "How's it hangin?"

  2. Irritatingly Starbucks staff over here have been told to ask each customers name - when one customer was asked a voice from the back of the queue said "don't tell him Pike" - you have to be English and of a certain age for that one!

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  5. I don't know about my two readers, but I also don't immediately need to know my server's name.
    Just leave the crayons on the table and get my drink order please.

  6. But what if they mysteriously go missing for 20 minutes when I desperately need another beer? (Or, in your case, if you've broken your orange crayon?) I need to know my server's name then, so I can report them missing to the management.

    And why does that happen, by the way? Where do they go when they disappear in the middle of my meal? Is there some mafia conspiracy to kidnap wait staff from restaurants to harvest their kidneys or something?

  7. They're no doubt facebooking and smoking out by the dumpster.

  8. That was my original theory too. I think next time when I go out for a meal and the server introduces herself as, "Hi, I'm Carrie and I'll be your server tonight," I'll ask her to friend me on Facebook right away so that if I don't see her for five minutes I can send her a FB message when she's out at the dumpster to tell her I need another Newport Storm.

  9. Brilliant. While we're at it, get on her Twitter feed, and get the cell # for a quick text. LOL

  10. I have to say that you're sounding pretty self righteous (up top) for a guy who had the poor judgment to scarf down a half hoagie (Italian?) just before getting on his bike for a 2 hour ride.

    Burping the whole way? I'm shocked, shocked to hear that. You food professionals have all the ...

    Hazel may not give a crap how you feel, but she would have had the good sense to lie down for a nap instead.

  11. Whooo!, you boys need to lighten up! You ever waited tables Tillerman? I have and it is a matter of dealing with cranky old sods like you! It was not waiters idea to walk up to your table and say "My name is Tillerman and I like orange crayons and I will be your server tonight". That was a management idea. So hate the game not the player! You want a good waiter or waitress go to a place that stresses customer service and quality. If you do not like the service that is no different that not liking the food, its restaurants fault, so take it out on them.

    1. "You want a good waiter or waitress go to a place that stresses customer service and quality."

      Totally agree Doug. I do go back to places that have great food AND good customer service... and don't go back to the places that don't.

      My bitching about disappearing servers was mainly triggered by one bad experience in Florida in March. Our server had a bad attitude right from the start and she really did go missing for ages in the middle of our meal. We eventually did have to tell one of the other servers and they had to go looking for her. Maybe she was feeling unwell, I don't know.

    2. Tillerman,

      Just so you know, my post had a point bet it was meant in jest. I re-read it today a I thought it was (unintentionally) a little harsh. But I do agree with your response.

  12. No soup for you Doug! Next!

    Hoagie, Mojo? We're in Jersey. You grinder/wedge-lovin, nutmeg-stater. We don't have no steenkin' hoagies. I get enough flack from the damn Philadelphia ex-pats around here with all their iggles and phiwwies crap. Sub is the drug I'm thinkin' of.

  13. Yeah, I guess this place on Nassau Street must be at least 5 miles from you.

    The sub (submarine sandwich) has always seemed to me to be nerdy descriptor... like the weiner. Next time you are at a Giants game, try ordering one of those at the concession.

  14. or when people say, "what's up?" in person. HATE that

  15. Woof!

    Woof woof woof. Woof woof woof woof woof.

    Woof, woof!

    1. Hazel - Google's translator has an obvious hole in the canine category.

      Would you mind reverting to your native German?

    2. Wie machst du großer Mann? Einige verrückte Wetter, dass wir bereits mit haben, nicht wahr. Guten Tag für eine Radtour, Herr U-Boot? Wie wäre es mit diesen Riesen!

      Ich weiß wirklich nicht ein Mist. Nur mein Bauch kratzen bitte. Und Fleisch zum Abendessen! Habe ich erwähnt, auch Bier?

    3. Google Translate TutorApril 27, 2012 at 9:40 PM

      She being a NJ daschund, Hazel's German is a bit rusty. She probably meant to say...

      How're you doing, big man? Some crazy weather that we are having, right? Good day for a bike ride, Mr. Submarine? How 'bout those Giants!

      I really don't give a crap. Just scratch my belly please. And meat for dinner! Did I mention beer too?

  16. Baydog,

    David Wilson? your boys drafted Wilson? Could he be the next Tiki Barber? or his he a Volley Ball found by a guy stranded on an remote island. WILSON! TIKI, oops, I mean WILSON!!

  17. Who is this Doug person? Does he even have a blog?

    1. Who is this Carrie person? Has she known Baydog for as long as Doug has?

    2. What happens at the dumpster, stays at the dumpster.

    3. Carrie,

      I don't have a blog, I don't even have a dumpster, Jesus, I got start getting my shit together!

    4. Get the dumpster first. Sounds like that's where all the action is.

    5. Of course I do have a couple of trash cans and a recycle bin. Carrie are you into "GREEN"?

    6. Muy caliente! This could lead to textual intercourse.

    7. Guys, this is a family blog I think.

  18. The dumpster enclosure is certainly a sacred place, and I agree that the Vegas rule should apply. Just ask Tony Bourdain about that.

    "Early on in Kitchen Confidential, Bourdain describes the incident that made him determined to be a chef. Chopping vegetables in a Provincetown restaurant for a wedding party celebration, Bourdain watched as the bride of the party came back into the kitchen and had a few words with the chef. The chef disappeared with the bride to the back of the restaurant and proceeded to "do" her against some garbage bins while the entire kitchen crew looked on from the window."

    Ah yes, the seventies.