“If you’re going to try, go all the way. Otherwise, don’t even start. This could mean losing girlfriends, wives, relatives and maybe even your mind. It could mean not eating for three or four days. It could mean freezing on a park bench. It could mean jail. It could mean derision. It could mean mockery–isolation. Isolation is the gift. All the others are a test of your endurance, of how much you really want to do it. And, you’ll do it, despite rejection and the worst odds. And it will be better than anything else you can imagine. If you’re going to try, go all the way. There is no other feeling like that. You will be alone with the gods, and the nights will flame with fire. You will ride life straight to perfect laughter. It’s the only good fight there is.”
― Charles Bukowski, Factotum
“Sometimes life is merely a matter of coffee and whatever intimacy a cup of coffee affords.”
― Richard Brautigan
Everyone I talk to about New Orleans says they went to Cafe du Monde for chicory coffee and beignets. That’s fine if you want to do the touristy thing, I suppose – but there is better coffee and there are much better beignets.
My favorite is the New Orleans Coffee and Beignet Company, in Uptown, off St. Charles, about halfway to Tulane. You’ll never eat beignets on Decatur again.
Take the streetcar.
I see so many cars parked around a big corporate fast food place – so many queued up at the window, waiting for their flavorless extruded hunk of scientifically engineered food-like substance. So much substance with so little sustenance. Offset printed plastic focus-group tested graphics, tied in with billion-dollar commercial campaigns carefully crafted to make you jump at the sight of their logo like baby birds at a squirming worm.
Meanwhile so many family owned greasy spoons go wanting with their hand-painted cracked stucco signs. The food might not be better, it might even be greasier, but at least it is real.
ABD AL-RAHMAN III was an emir and caliph of Córdoba in 10th-century Spain. He was an absolute ruler who lived in complete luxury. Here’s how he assessed his life:
“I have now reigned above 50 years in victory or peace; beloved by my subjects, dreaded by my enemies, and respected by my allies. Riches and honors, power and pleasure, have waited on my call, nor does any earthly blessing appear to have been wanting to my felicity.”
Fame, riches and pleasure beyond imagination. Sound great? He went on to write:
“I have diligently numbered the days of pure and genuine happiness which have fallen to my lot: They amount to 14.”
Here’s an interesting article about a little movie that I always thought was great. I didn’t realize it had reached cult status and was so hard to find – I’ve seen it on cable several times.
I’ver written about elotes before. I don’t eat them very often – they must be about the most unhealthy thing in the world. They start with corn… which isn’t all that great – but then they add every thing that tastes good but is bad for you.
Then I get to add a bunch of hot sauce.
I have always been interested in places that are aligned with the rising and setting sun at certain times of the years – such as Dallashenge. Here’s one I didn’t know about.
I remember when Photon opened (1984) in a little industrial park on Northwest Highway at Shiloh – it was an amazing thing, given the technology of the day. The playing field was cool – darkened structures, fog machines, custom music. We used to get groups to go play – it was a blast. We would go play a few games then come back to my place and sit in the hot tub. I gave up on it when some obsessed kids became so skilled from playing every day it ruined the experience for everybody else.
The hidden beauty of flowers: Microscopic images reveal the alien landscapes to be found on petals, pollen grains and leaves
Try driving across a city when you are hungry – you will notice that there is a pizza joint on every corner. There is pizza everywhere.
Plus, the simple word pizza means something different to different people – there are so many varieties. Most people have a favorite and will defend their choice of crust – from crackerlike to deep dish – to the death. Then there are toppings – from traditional Margherita to fried eggs or squid ink. The place can vary from a corner take-out dive all the way up to a sit-down formal experience with wines to match the toppings and everything in between. A family owned local hangout to a massive international corporate chain.
Whatever you like.
I’m not a very good judge. My opinion is that pizza is like sex – when it is good, it’s great and when it is bad – it’s still pretty good.
Everyone has to have their go-to pizza joint. Ours is Cane Rosso in Deep Ellum (Pizza Napoletana with its famous “tip sag”) – I like to sit at the bar and watch the pies go into the giant wood burning dome of an oven, where they cook for only a few seconds (a close second is Urban Crust in old downtown Plano).
I stumbled across a list of 16 Iconic Pizzerias Across the Metroplex. I’ve been to about half of these (Eno’s and Mama’s are two more favorites) – and probably won’t make too much of an attempt to add more. The city is simply too spread out and there are too many good ones too close. Cane Rosso did make the grade, which is not a surprise. Campisi’s Egyption Lounge is on the list more for its history than its food, IMHO.
We were in Bishop Arts this weekend, looking for something to eat in a place that wasn’t too smoky and I remembered that Cane Rosso had opened a branch up there in the old Bee Enchilada location (shame it closed) called Zoli’s. They promised “New York Style Pizza” and that sounded good.
Here’s a useful graphic that outlines the difference in the various styles of pizza sold at the two spots. Zoli’s uses metal ovens instead of the giant domed wood-burner at Cane Rosso, plus it offers three styles – New York, Grandma, and Sicilian.
(click to enlarge)
So, was Zoli’s great or was it merely good. I liked it a lot, but I was very hungry. You’ll have to go try it for yourself.