Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Three Beautiful Things 09/18/17: Cargo Van, Yakkin' with Ashley, Relaxing in Near Emptiness

1. The Deke and I bounded out of our apartment home and piled into the Sube and blasted down to the Enterprise store in Lanham where we confirmed our reservation for a cargo van and Ashley helped me get everything squared away and I lumbered back up the Capital Beltway in the van back up to our apartment home where Molly and Hiram had arrived, eager to load the van up with tables, shelves, dressers, a desk, a couch, and the other big items we owned that in a matter of a couple of hours would no longer be ours, but belong to the Diazes.

2. I wasn't much help loading the van -- in fact, maybe it worked out better that I was out of the way. Molly and Hiram packed it up like real pros. I drove the cargo to the Diaz house and now I could be of assistance. I leaped into the van and brought items to Molly and Hiram at the mouth of the van and we emptied the van efficiently and without incident.

Back at Enterprise, Ashley was surprised to see me back so soon and when I requested a ride home, she grabbed a huge pickup truck, I hopped in, and we had a great talk about Maryland, Washington, D.C., her ROTC days at Howard University, and the soul food at Carolina Kitchen. I told Ashley how much I was going to miss living in the D. C. area, and she was especially happy to hear me say how much I'd come to love Maryland.

If Enterprise were to ask me to nominate an employee of the year, Ashley would receive my vote. Once again, I had a great experience with a member of the much maligned Millennial Generation!

3.  I returned to our apartment home and relaxed. I propped some folded blankets up against the plastic crate that holds our personal papers and lay down on the floor and chilled on the Internet and completed a level of Candy Crush Saga that had baffled me for a couple of days. Our apartment home is not quite empty, but it was very quiet and I enjoyed the solitude.

Then I made my first pass at vacuuming the carpet where our furniture and bed had been with the hope that as the Deke and I spend the next couple of days getting the rest of our stuff sorted out and shipped, the place will feel a little bit fresher than it did when this day began.

Monday, September 18, 2017

Three Beautiful Things 09/17/17: A Fun Church Visit, Boxes, Panera Dinner

1. The Deke and I went down to Hyattsville this morning and worshiped at University Christian Church, a Disciples of Christ congregation, and stayed for the church's fall kickoff potluck.   Two girls who were in the Deke's 3rd grade class last school year go to this church -- in fact, the father of one of the girls is the pastor. The girls are close friends and were ecstatic to see the Deke, as were their parents. I thought with how difficult teaching at Dora Kennedy was, it must have been satisfying for the Deke to have these parents, along with another parent who goes to this church, tell her what a great teacher she was and how much their children miss her.

2. Back at our apartment home, I taped up the seven boxes of belongings I'm shipping to Kellogg. Over the next few days, I could imagine needing to fill one more box, but I am very pleased that I've reduced my belongings that won't go in my suitcase or fit in the car to these boxes. We'll ship stuff in the next day or two and Monday is when Molly and Hiram will move our larger things to their house. They'll keep some of it and other things will go to the rummage sale at the children's school. We'll start sleeping at the Diaz house on Monday night and are still shooting for the end of the week as the time we'll hit the road.

3. We are running out of food in the house, so I went up to Panera and bought the Deke a chicken bowl and bought myself a ham and cheese sandwich. It simplified things at home a lot to eat some simple carry out dinner.

Sunday, September 17, 2017

Three Beautiful Things:09/16/17: Panera and Flights, Family Pictures, Curry and Duckpin and YouTube

1. While the Deke had coffee at Starbucks with a friend she taught with at Dora Kennedy French Immersion School, I hopped over to Panera and enjoyed a cinnamon crunch bagel, toasted with cream cheese. Mostly I looked at the cost of flights from Spokane to Eugene, Chicago, Seattle, and Portland and familiarized myself with what airlines fly where and when out of Spokane.  I have no immediate plans to fly any of these places, but it was fun to poke around on Southwest and Alaska's websites.

2. I have narrowed down what of mine I'm shipping to Kellogg to about six boxes with one, maybe two, more to go. I'm sending a lot of pictures out west and it was fun to look at ones taken on two different family trips the Deke, Adrienne, Molly, Patrick, and I made to Kellogg in, I think, 1999 and definitely in 2003. Adrienne, Molly, and the Deke sang at Carol's 40 birthday celebration in Mom's backyard. That made a great picture. I also have a little collection of family portraits taken in 1999(?) on the old white bench swing in Mom's backyard featuring a variety of configurations of different members of the four families present that day.

3. The Deke and I had a very good Ethiopian chicken curry dinner, prepared by Hiram, at the Diaz house. The Deke complimented the main dish with a refreshing cucumber, chickpea, and feta salad. After dinner, the Deke and I went to Old Line to talk more about the upcoming week. We squeezed the last two half pints of Union's Double Duckpin out of the bottom of Old Line's keg so we now are certain that chances are very slim that we'll be able to enjoy another one of those fine beers while we're still in Maryland.  We were both pleased with our good fortune that we got to enjoy this beer one last time.

Back at our apartment home, I played a Levon Helm interview with David Letterman and listened to him sing a roots tune with the Paul Shaffer band. This led me to play a bunch of tunes from The Last Waltz and to a few songs by The Highwaymen and then I found a Letterman clip where Waylon Jennings and Johnny Cash appear together on the show and I found a video featuring Waylon Jennings appearing on Johnny Cash's television show.  Oh, I also listened to Jerry Douglas with Paul Simon and another video of Jerry Douglas and Bill Frisell with Jimmie Dale Gilmore and a couple versions of Guy Clark's "Desperados Waiting for a Train".  Last of all, I played Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers perform "Runnin' Down a Dream" so for the 10,000th time I could bliss out to Michael Campbell's epic guitar solo.

Then it got to be past 1:00 a.m. and I flopped into bed.

Saturday, September 16, 2017

Three Beautiful Things 09/15/17: Good Phone Talks, Farewell Sunoco, A Double IPA Miracle

1. Getting ready to move -- there's the business to take care of: cancel this, address changes for that, hoping to remember everything, on and on. I called Phyllis at Rossi Insurance in Kellogg to make sure things are in order with the home insurance at Mom's house and about the timing of putting the insurance in my name and Phyllis was a delight. She expressed condolences for Mom's passing -- this, in addition to having sent us a card back in June after she learned Mom was in the nursing home and a card upon learning Mom had died. She answered all of my questions cheerfully, expertly. I don't enjoy talking on the phone, but this phone call almost convinced me that getting on the phone to take care of business really isn't that bad. And you know what? I had a good experience with Sandra, the Nationwide agent in Greenbelt, and with the woman in Annapolis who helped me understand that I could cancel my last estimated tax payment online.

2. Today I made my last visit to the Sunoco station in Greenbelt to have the Sube worked on. For the last three years and 39,000 miles the guys at this shop have kept the oil changed, the air conditioning working, the engine tuned up, and the fluid levels up to date.  When they couldn't replace the clutch, they sent me to the shop next door. I thought about going over to the picnic table where the mechanics smoke cigarettes, drink coffee, and shoot the breeze before and after work to thank them for taking good care of the Sube. Instead, I'll write them some kind of thank you and, in the same way I am looking forward to getting started in Idaho with a new primary care doctor and a new nephrologist and getting listed at another transplant center, I also look forward to entrusting the Sube to another good shop.

3.  The other day as I was sorting through notebooks, DVDs, cds, books, and camera lenses and packing up stuff to send to Kellogg, I suddenly felt nostalgic for Union Brewery beers. Patrick, the Deke, and I had a great visit to Union Brewery in Baltimore this past Christmas Eve and for no good reason I was suddenly visited by the memory of the taste of the hoppy perfection of Double Duckpin Double IPA. I sighed. Moving away, I figured I wouldn't taste Double Duckpin on tap again until returning to Maryland for a visit sometime down the road.

But, then, this evening, the Deke and I took a couple of seats at the Old Line bar and Shannon brought us a tap list and I gasped: "Deke! They've got Double Duckpin on tap today!"

We each ordered a glass and it actually tasted better than my romanticizing mind remembered. I drank my glass slowly, gratefully, mindfully, reverently.  I ordered a second.

I will be forever grateful for our time living in Maryland for many reasons, but chief among them will be getting to enjoy, among other beers, my favorite of all 2IPAs: Flying Dog's The Truth, Victory's Dirt Wolf, DC Brau's On the Wings of Armageddon, SingleCut's Softly Spoken Magic Spells, and Union's Double Duckpin Double IPA, representing, in order, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Washington, D.C., the Queens, and Baltimore.

I also want to mention Bell's Two Hearted Ale of Kalamazoo, MI. It's not officially a 2IPA, but it performs like one and is one of our country's very best beers -- I've experienced the heavens opening up and had visions of the divine and heard Levon Helm and a host of angels singing "Up on Cripple Creek" when drinking a pint of Two Hearted Ale. Scott Shirk was with me in April when this happened at the Parkside Lounge on the Lower East Side of Manhattan.

I think the Deke and I might drive a box of various beers from out here to Idaho, but I would also be just fine with telling these faithful friends farewell, not hang on to them, and turn my attention to the great beers awaiting us in Kellogg, Wallace, CdA, Post Falls, Spokane, Moscow, Pullman, Missoula, Eugene, and beyond.

Right now, I'm already tasting one of those 3 buck Happy Hour pints of X-Minus One IPA at Radio Brewing in Kellogg.

*By the way, the Double Duckpin Double IPA inspired the Deke and me to make a very important decision: we are going to drive Maggie and Charly to Kellogg, not fly them to Spokane. It turns out both of us were having a lot of doubts, despite the assurances from the vet that the dogs would be okay, about flying our aged dogs out west and we decided that we want to have the dogs with us for the entire trip.

Friday, September 15, 2017

Three Beautiful Things 09/14/17: Notebooks, Quench Talk, A Racing Mind

1. Why did I move this box of graduate school and teaching notes written in journals and all these grade books and grade sheets to Greenbelt? Most of it is not going to Kellogg, I decided, as I launched into a significant purge of notebooks and other paper things that I no longer want. I am keeping some personal journals I've kept over the years, if for no other reason than to do what Joan Didion advises i her essay, "On Keeping a Notebook". She writes that ". . . we are well advised to keep on nodding terms with the people we used to be whether we find them attractive company or not. Otherwise they turn up unannounced and surprise us, come hammering on the mind's door at 4 a.m. of a bad night and demand to know who deserted them, who betrayed them, who is going to make amends. We forget all too soon the things we thought we could never forget."

Indeed. I hadn't exactly forgotten how riddled with self-doubt, guilt, and anxiety I was in my twenties and thirties and on into my early forties, but the notebooks I'm not throwing away chronicle how much I obsessed on my fears and how much I recriminated myself. Other things popped up. This past April, at the Inland Lounge, Bob Casady told me he'd heard the Indigo Girls open for the Grateful Dead on either August 21 or 22, 1993.  I told him I didn't go to either show, but today I read in a journal that I'd had a ticket to the August 21 show, but elected not to use it (did I give it away? sell it?). Instead, I drove to Portland and hung out at the Hawthorne Street Fair and, later in the day, went to the (now defunct) Movie House on SW Taylor to see Much Ado About Nothing for the sixth time that summer.

That guy who, in 1993, used to drive to Portland to see movies and wander around is attractive company. He didn't come knocking on my mind's door. He didn't feel betrayed by me. I found him today and I read and remembered that on that day at the Hawthorne Street Fair I was wearing a long sleeve T-shirt from Pelau (Belau) and ran into a guy named Stewart and we talked about why I was wearing this shirt because he'd been to Pelau and I was reminded today that in 1993 I wrote that Stewart was a jerk and a vague memory of this guy being a know-it-all pontificator began to rise up from the fog of my memory.  I'm ready to be done with Stewart, but he will live wherever I am as long as I keep that notebook he appeared in.

2.  After a day of sorting and packing and making arrangement to rent a van to move stuff over to the Diaz house, the Deke and I went to Quench. We talked about what lies ahead of us in Kellogg and how we might approach the refashioning of the back yard at Mom's house and shared ideas about Mom's house that will soon be ours. It was a great party, enhanced for me by the sweet, smokey, malty bliss of a couple glasses of Founder's Dirty Bastard Scotch Ale.

3.  Molly and Hiram went to Wolf Trap to see Steve Martin and Martin Short. The Deke looked after Ana, David, and Olivia. I joined the Deke for individualized pizzas that Molly helped us assemble and bake and some salad and then I drove back to our apartment home and went to sleep, woke up and couldn't get back to sleep until around 1:30 and then went back to sleep again. My mind is racing with the details of this major change taking place in our lives.

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Three Beautiful Things 09/13/17: Sally in New Jersey, I'll Miss Living in the East, Ana is Joyously Alive

1. The Deke and I were up and at 'em this morning and hit the road around 10:30 to begin our trip back to Greenbelt. We stopped at Metuchen, NJ to have lunch with the Deke's cousin Sally. We went to Anthony's Coal Fired Pizza and enjoyed a green salad and chicken wings. We had a good time catching up on all the different changes in our lives and ruminated upon what the future might bring and when one or both of us might be traveling to the eastern U.S.A. again.

2. We left Sally's around 2:00 and rocketed down the New Jersey Turnpike and on through Delaware and into Maryland. This must have been about the fifteenth time I made this drive between Greenbelt and Nyack over the last three years and I'll miss it -- I'll miss crossing the Susquehanna River and, later, going over the Delaware Memorial Bridge, the feeling of being a part of America on the move with all the other vehicles on the NJ Turnpike; I'll miss those New Jersey Service Plazas named after famous New Jersey people like Joyce Kilmer, Walt Whitman, Clara Barton, James Fenimore Cooper and others, the Peet's Coffee at Maryland's Chesapeake House Travel Plaza, the Baltimore Harbor Tunnel, the Baltimore skyline looming to the west of I-895, and driving from Nyack to Tarrytown across the Hudson River on the Tappan Zee Bridge. I'll miss the anticipation of seeing Adrienne and Jack and enjoying their handsome neighborhood and the beer in Nanuet and Pearl River.  I'll miss hopping on the train in Tarrytown and arriving in the pulsing grandeur of Grand Central Terminal, walking to Washington Square, and ducking into bars in the West Village, East Village, and the Lower East Side to talk about Shakespeare, Levon Helm, and Apocalypse Now, among many other things with Scott Shirk. 

Living in the DC area, exploring it, and taking these trips from Greenbelt to Nyack, NY along with other trips I made beyond Nyack to Cooperstown and Middleboro, MA and Cape Cod gave me a deeper sense of patriotism, of being a citizen of a vast, vibrant, and varied nation than anything I had ever done in my life.

I'll miss it.

But, there's much I've left unexplored in Kellogg and North Idaho, Western Montana, and Eastern Washington over the years. It's time to get goin' out there!

3.  We pulled in front of the Diaz house just in the nick of time. Molly and Hiram and David had an early evening planned attending parents' night at David and Olivia's school and so the Deke and I kept Ana and Olivia company. Ana is a two year old proficient in the verbal art of DaDa. She talks almost without stopping in a never ending disconnected stream of stories, songs she's learned, nonsense songs she creates on the spot, nonsense sentences, short plays with dolls or stuffed animals or figurines as characters, observations of family life, self-narration, and other joyous expressions of AnnaWorld with unbridled vigor and pure happiness. She walks, runs, hops, dances, skips, jumps, and sometimes falls, all the while talking, laughing, demonstrating this, pointing out that, always fully and wondrously Ana alive.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Three Beautiful Things 09/12/17: Quiet, Angels Dance at Defiant, A Radio Afternoon Nightmare

1.  The Deke and I spent our last full morning in Nyack with the windows open and the cool morning air filling the living room, lounging around, drinking coffee, and enjoying the silence, interrupted only occasionally by birds singing and cars slowly whooshing by.  Once in a while we uttered a few words to each other ("want more coffee?" "need anything while I'm up?"), but mostly we enjoyed being quiet.

2.  Early in the afternoon, we decided that maybe we should do something. Growler and Gill is one of my favorite taprooms anywhere, so we drove there, but they don't open until four. The same was true for places we might like to visit in downtown Nyack. I muttered that these places just don't cater to retired people who like a little day drinking. We shrugged. The Deke confirmed on her pocket computer that Defiant Brewing Company opened at 2:00. Defiant is a cash only establishment, so I went into a pub across the street to an ATM, got us a little cash, and we returned to Defiant. I like the 10 oz. pours at Defiant -- it's just the right amount of higher alcohol beer for me, no more -- and I ordered a Medusa IPA and drank it very slowly while the Deke and I worked our way through the best charcuterie plate we've ever eaten.

Defiant smokes their own meats and they use the smoker to make heavenly crunchy corn bread crustinis, which, along with the mild Asiago, Cheddar, and Gouda cheeses, add sweetness and balance to the smoked meats. But the real coup de grace of this board? The balsamic pickles.

Defiant does all their own pickling, too, and when I bit into one of those balsamic pickles, the heavens opened up and angels, their wings dripping with brine, sang hymns of praise and danced joyously to the sounds of Bob Seger playing over the house sound system and I had a brief glimpse of the Oneness of all things.

3.  We needed a few groceries and I seized the opportunity to drive south on Rt. 303, through Blauvelt and on into Orangeburg, to pick up a few things at the Stop and Shop. On the way back to Adrienne's, I listened to a story on the radio about nursing homes that have lost power in Florida or had to evacuate residents and how the facilities work to continue to serve their residents under such conditions. It reminded me of a picture I saw when Harvey hit Texas, of nursing home residents waiting in their facility in waist high water in Dickinson to be taken elsewhere. I thought of the days I spent this summer in the nursing home being with Mom and could barely stand imagining the challenges that would confront the staff and the residents in Kellogg if there were a power outage, or, God forbid, water began to fill the place. I thought about how confusing it would have been for Mom and other residents if the facility had to be evacuated. Listening to the story of the difficulties that confront Florida nursing homes in the aftermath of Harvey was an afternoon nightmare and made me ache for difficulties Mom never had to face.

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Three Beautiful Things 09/11/17: Short Rockland County Beer Tour, Grilled Pizzas, Writing about Shakespeare AND A Wedding Photo

1. After a morning of lounging around, the Deke and I headed out to the Ambulance Brew House, a handsome, cozy taproom in Nanuet. I enjoyed a 12 oz pour of an IPA from Hill Farmstead Brewery in Vermont and I can't remember the name of it. It was an earthy, hazy, complex beer, sort of epitomizing just what I'll miss when we leave the East Coast. The Deke and I also ordered a delicious cheese and meat plate that offered us a variety of tastes: heat in the cheeses, salty goodness in the cured meats, and sweetness in the orange marmalade and raisins, along with the more neutral flavors of the crackers and nuts.

After one beer, we ventured over to Defiant Brewing in Pearl River. We each ordered a Fake News IPA and it was an odd and satisfying beer. It was, to me, a hybrid beer, combining the strength of an IPA with the taste of pilsner or Helles lager. I sat at the bar and texted back and forth with Stu about 1970s basketball in Kellogg, CdA, and Spokane -- he is also diving into the archives -- while the Deke visited one of her favorite yarn stores, The Stitchery.  The Deke returned, finished her beer, and we returned to Adrienne's after a relaxing afternoon in Rockland County, NY.

2.  Soon after we returned to Adrienne's apartment, I head back to Nanuet to shop at Fairway for some pizza ingredients: meats, a goat cheese log, tomatoes, and pesto along with picking up some bagels, lox, and a four pack of Dirt Wolf Double IPA.  I brought it home and Adrienne, Jack, the Deke, and I each built a pizza on an individual size round of naan bread and Adrienne grilled each pizza. Adrienne also made a killer chickpea, cucumber, and feta cheese salad, a perfect compliment to the pizza.

3. I paid tribute to the time Scott Shirk and I spent drinking Dirt Wolf in the Blind Tiger in the West Village by cracking one open this evening a writing Scott an email that continued our discussion of Shakespeare. I tried to explain what I see going on in the very dissonant tones and the deeply troubling subject matter of two of Shakespeare's comedies, The Merchant of Venice and Measure for Measure -- and wondered if, in these plays, Shakespeare was working out critiques of the genre of comedy, work that might have led him to write the kinds of comedies (or tragicomedies or romances) that concluded his career, namely The Winter's Tale and The Tempest.

I really don't know, but it sure is fun to think and write about these things outside of academic life, not as a teacher or a student.  I've really retired.

Julie and Curtis Rockwell are beginning to make some of their wedding pictures public, and here is one of my favorites, taken after the ceremony, of Curtis, Julie, and me.

Monday, September 11, 2017

Three Beautiful Things 09/10/17: Quality Sleep, Jack and Legos, Adrienne's Superb Salmon Dinner

1.  After walking several miles in NYCity on Saturday, I slept in until 9:30 on Sunday. Over the last couple of months, I haven't walked very much and I haven't flopped around in a pool since June. Most of my physical exercise has resulted from hauling boxes and other items in Kellogg. All this walking in NYCity was a boon and I slept with a length and depth I haven't experienced in months.

2. I'm unsure exactly what the event was, but today the main street of Nyack was closed to traffic and a street fair took place. I wasn't really interested in buying jewelry or eating Thai food or signing up for another Visa card, so when I went downtown, I didn't walk through the street fair, but made my way to Starbucks where I met Jack and the Deke. Jack had purchased a Batman Lego kit and finished it and, upon my arrival, the Deke went back to the store and bought Jack a Joker Lego kit and Jack and I sat in Starbucks while the Deke visited a yarn store. Jack didn't quite complete the Joker, but I enjoyed watching him follow the instruction step by step and start to put it together. For encouraging a child to sit still, focus, and work methodically on a project, these Lego sets are perfect.

3. Adrienne prepared a heavenly dinner tonight. She baked salmon, fixed fresh asparagus spears, and made buttery, creamy mashed potatoes using a variety of tiny spuds. The Deke had told Adrienne that she'd been craving salmon and Adrienne satisfied the Deke's craving -- and then more. It's been a deep pleasure for me over the last several years to see Molly, Patrick, and Adrienne all become increasingly interested in cooking and an even greater pleasure to enjoy the great food they prepare.

Sunday, September 10, 2017

Three Beautiful Things 09/09/17: Tire Torque Rechecked, Zucker's Bagels and a City Stroll, Beer in the W. and E. Village

1. The torque of the tire that I had replaced on Thursday needed to be rechecked, so I buzzed the Sube over to the Nanuet Costco Tire Center where there was no line and Quincy got the job going right away and the job was completed in no time.  I celebrated the quick work by going into the Costco Wholesale store and buying two cases of Polar seltzer water.

2. I piled the Polar and myself back into the Sube and hurtled across the Hudson River and the Tappan Zee Bridge to the Tarrytown train station and leaped on a train headed to Grand Central Terminal. Upon arrival, I took a second to soak in all the activity at Grand Central and to admire the grandeur of the place. I strode out the door and headed south on Lexington and dropped into Zucker's Bagels and Smoked Fish, here, for a Zucker's Traditional: a toasted bagel sandwich featuring Nova Scotia salmon, plain cream cheese, beefsteak tomatoes, red onion, and capers.

Properly nourished, I walked south on Lexington to 34th St., headed west to 5th Ave., admired the Empire State Building, and strolled south on 5th for about twenty-five blocks to Washington Square Park and sat for a while on a bench and surveyed the throngs of relaxed people enjoying the mild weather, being guided on walking tours, laughing at the entertainment of a couple of magicians, and soaking up the music of buskers, among other things.

I would have camped in Washington Park Square for a long time, but more urgent business lay ahead. It was almost beer o'clock.

3. If it's beer o'clock in Manhattan, especially in the West Village, East Village, or the Lower East Side, chances are good that I'm meeting up somewhere with Scott Shirk.

That was, indeed, the case today.

Scott took the train from Brooklyn and we met at the Blind Tiger Ale House on Bleeker Street, a rustic pub famous for its devotion to craft beers. Scott and I found a table against a wall and we had a couple of rounds of Victory's superb Dirt Wolf Double IPA. I don't think I'd quaffed a Dirt Wolf since March when Ed, Mike, and I bellied up to the bar at O'Hara's Irish Pub in the shadow of the One World Trade Center.

Scott and my conversation was wide-ranging: The Band, Richard Manuel, the gig Scott played last night, Apocalypse Now, other movies from forty years ago, Julie and Curtis' wedding, King Lear, and on and on.

Soon, though, it was time to head from the West Village to the East Village. We stopped for a listen to a jazz quartet made up of Japanese men in their twenties -- a great sound -- and made a quick stop at a street fair to look at some record albums and to eat a quick chicken empanada at a Puerto Rican booth.

Our plan was to descend underground into the grotto known as Jimmy's No. 43, but, alas, Jimmy'd gone fishing and so we opted for a dive bar, also beneath street level, the unpretentious Grassroots. We sat down at the bar on chairs whose stuffing was falling out and ordered up Black and Tans blending Bass Ale and Guinness and continued to talk about Shakespeare, Kellogg's Inland Lounge and the Broken Wheel (maybe that was at Blind Tiger -- but who's keeping score?!), more movies, death, and more of everything until it was time to stagger out and direct me to the right train to get back to Grand Central. I arrived at Grand Central, immediately found the track for the train back to Tarrytown, and returned to Nyack.