November 6, 2017 (Monday)

by Yule Heibel on November 5, 2018

Monday Morning in Manhattan. M-M-M. Mmm… It feels great to be back in the city, even if our hotel room leaves much to be desired. Like last time, we’re on the eighth floor with a “view” of the concrete wall of a new building across the alley. The wall is painted the color of Midday Fog on a Winter Day When the Sun is Struggling to Get Through. That is, each time you glimpse it, you think it must be really foggy outside, and you wonder if the sun will manage to dissipate the fog. Then you do a second take – or maybe some workers in a lift cage are ascending its side to work on top – and realize, “Nope, not fog; concrete.” For $350+ per night (a special discount rate, allegedly) it would be nice to have something a little better, but I guess not.

Well. Last night as we were trying to get to sleep, a man started yelling abusively at a woman. This went on for some time. W. was already sleeping when it started. The man kept yelling at the woman that she was a this-and-that (whore, slut, who knows); she in turn is whimpering while he’s threatening her – every other word he’s yelling is fuck or fucking. And finally he threatens her, “Give me a blow job now, or else,” and I call the front desk. A woman and (I think) a man were up here in sixty seconds. As soon as they knocked on his door (he must have been in the room right next to ours) he unlocked it and apologized to the woman hotel staffer who had knocked. Then he immediately closed the door again, though. The hotel staffers waited for a bit, then knocked again, and when he opened this time, the woman hotel staffer told him, “Sir, we have received complaints, and if it happens again, we will have to remove you from the building.” Apologies galore now from the guest next door. “I’ll be quiet now,” he repeats, just as he did when they first knocked.

And sure enough, then it’s quiet for the rest of the night.

I’m kind of wondering now, in the dank foggy “light” of morning, if this was a John-Prostitute arrangement of some kind, with the woman sex worker paid to take his verbal abuse before obliging him. Either that, or it was real, in which case he just proved that blustery abusive men can be – are – total cowards underneath.

Anyway, as I’m complaining, let me just say I’d rather stay in B. than move to Hudson or Catskill or any of those towns there. Catskill is depressed, Hudson is fake.

And we had one of the worst “meals” ever in Hudson, a breakfast of bacon and eggs at some Warren Street BBQ place. We should have left. We should have sent the “food” back. Something. Anything. I don’t know how it’s possible to ruin bacon and eggs, but this place did.

We were also treated to an incident (precursor to the late night hotel fracas?): After we entered the restaurant and sat down, a single guy, middle-aged or older, nondescript-looking, sat at the table next to ours. He tried placing an order that was ridiculous in its requests for alterations. Could he have the Strawberry Salad (yuck; in November?) but with a side or half-order of this other thing, and then without the bun or the sides, just the meat, but pay only for the price of the salad, etc. etc. etc. When the waitress said that this would go against the restaurant’s policy about changing up menu items, he completely combusted. Just exploded. Stood up very dramatically (make himself taller), told the waitress he would look for a business that wanted to do business, and began to stalk off. But after a safe distance of ten feet or so, he turned around to hurl abuse at the waitress, telling her she didn’t know anything about serving, about being a server. And off he went.

We had already ordered, although our “food” hadn’t yet arrived. I was kind of shocked by this drama queen outburst, but after attempting to eat what was on our plates, I wished we had left, too.

The drive into Manhattan, which we began shortly after the ill-fated breakfast, was relatively long and boring on I-87, albeit through beautiful scenery (shrouded in fog and/or clouds for much of the time). Most of the leaf show was still full on, contrary to what I wrote the other day, and the further south we got, the more leaves were still clinging on. Till we got to New Jersey. Fugly. Mahwah. Ho-Ho-Kus. Allendale. As seen from the highways, all these places are dumps, strip-mall dumps.

To get into Manhattan, we took the Lincoln Tunnel ($15 toll…), which I’d never driven through before. If I can help it, I won’t ever drive through it again, either. As we haltingly crawled along in bumper to bumper traffic, I imagined the Hudson breaking through and flooding it. Really creeped me out; it’s so dilapidated. Anyway, we shouldn’t have tunnels under major bodies of water – I’ll never take the Chunnel, either.

Once we were in Manhattan, though, relief. We took the Lincoln Tunnel to avoid the East side and remnants of the marathon; it was probably a good idea. As we drove down the West side, we passed at least two huge flower memorials on West Street for the people killed by the terrorist on Halloween.

Last night we got in some walking around. I showed W. where P.R.’s name is carved on the North Pool 9/11 Memorial. We visited the Calatrava-designed station; I took photos. It’s not just a transit station; it’s like a church for shopping, too. Architecture goes where the patronage is, duh.

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: