I crossed #15 off my to do list recently: I dined at Peter Luger.
Sometimes iconic experiences don’t live up to the hype but Peter Luger absolutely did. I loved it.
The restaurant is from another time. It was established in 1887 but is aging quite well.
There are gleaming brass light fixtures throughout, wood paneling and in a little booth, a purple haired cashier (I’m pretty sure her hair isn’t purple out of trendiness). The servers, all men from what I can tell, are no-nonsense. Not brusque, but efficient.
It’s the third time the neurologist has said the list aloud, asking me to repeat the words back to him. I get three words right the first two times and on the third, I remember four of the five.
‘Wagon’ eludes me. It isn’t on the tip of my tongue. I am not close to spitting out the word. I feel as if I am blindfolded in the woods, grasping in all directions for some sense of where I am. I couldn’t even guess what letter that fifth word starts with.
I can feel my brain contracting, pulsing and squeezing like a muscle as I try to jump through the cognitive hoops the medical and psychological professionals present to me.
On the forth round, I hit “sandwich” and then pause. It’s a long pause. I somehow find ‘wagon.’ None of the visualization techniques or mnemonics I would normally use to remember things are working. Instead, I find wagon because I suddenly heard in my head the somewhat awkward way the doctor said the clunky word.
Facebook is where I found my childhood best friend. Her last name is Jones so google had only produced “success” in the form of her father’s obituary.
But then a year or two later, suddenly there she was showing up on the walls of other elementary school friends.
After a moment’s hesitation when I wondered “why hasn’t she friended me?” I clicked “Add Friend” and cried when I got the notification minutes later that she had accepted. We met up in person soon afterward. It has been wonderful to reconnect and to realize that we would choose to be friends as adults too.
I found Bill right around the corner from where I was living.
Bill was on 20th Street near my first-ever grown-up apartment, a tiny studio on Park Avenue South in Gramercy Park. I was in a bad way and Bill took care of me. It was scary for me to trust again, but with time, I grew to give Bill carte blanche.
At least with my hair.
My hair adventure started just prior to graduating from Cornell.
A photo posted by Humans of New York (@humansofny) on
I love HONY, as it’s known, for its ability to remind me of the breadth of the human experience. And I’m not alone: HONY has 12.5 million Facebook fans, 2.7 million Instagram followers and two successfulbooks (with another one on its way this fall).
But I do wish Katie had been able to meet Brandon on this day instead!
This adorable pic is the property of Humans of New York