NYC 2013 (part 1)

The second weekend in April found Keith and I travelling to NYC for Keith and the Girl week. Keith and the Girl week is an annual event which centers around Keith Malley’s birthday stand-up show. There are a variety comedic events/parties and this would be our third year going.

Keith (my Keith) handles our travel plans (hotels and whatnot) and then I usually try to plan things to do/places to eat.

We left Friday morning and drove straight to Manhattan. Our hotel this time was in Chinatown, which was a first for both of us. As we are about a block away from the hotel, we are sitting at a light under the Manhattan Bridge and some sort of train rolls over us and the noise is DEAFENING. I suddenly am very very unsure of this hotel’s location.

For reference:

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The bridge…our hotel was the 3rd building from the bridge. I should have taken some sort of audio, it was insane. Luckily, even though we were on the 6th floor (out of 7), the noise from the bridge was hardly noticeable. You could tell something was happening, but it was less like a train was rolling over you and more like just something mechanical kicking on.

Our hotel was pretty interesting too, it must have been some sort of mall at one point, this was the view walking in:

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I was sort of surprised they hadn’t rented out the little glass cubbies as rooms.

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View back to the main doors, elevator was to the right and you had to take it up to the 2nd floor to check-in.

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This larger than life fella kept an eye on the first floor. (No matter how hard I try, I can’t get the white balance right.)

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The elevator was also mirrored which was…weird.

Okay, so enough about the hotel. We checked in, sat around for a little and headed to grab some dinner. Pulled up Yelp and ended up at Cheeky Sandwiches. It was a good thing someone on Yelp had a photo because I would have walked right past. I was tempted by the shrimp poboy, but Keith and I both ended up with the chicken sandwich.

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buttermilk biscuit, fried chicken, gravy, coleslaw

The shop was just adorable and considering it was only 5pm, we were the only two in there.
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From there, we headed over to Brooklyn for the first show. The reason we stayed in Chinatown was because it was literally one train stop away and it was wonderful. The Keith and the Girl podcast has expanded to include several spin-off podcasts and the first night was spin-off night. The shows were hilarious, of course. Afterwards there was an after-party across the street, which we attended for approximately 30 minutes before being old people and going back to the hotel.

The next day we headed uptown so Keith could check out a comic book store. And get lunch. One of the reasons I was most excited to head back to NYC after 2 years away (Sorry, KATG) was the Halal Guys. It is a food cart…but not just any food cart. This cart is legendary. (Over 3000 reviews can’t be wrong!)

The first time I went to NYC, way back in 2009 with Keith, he raved about this food cart. We were in the city for a basketball game and the game ended around midnight. We took the train but then had to walk at least 10 blocks to 53rd and 6th (where the cart lives). It was sleeting. I was in canvas shoes. I was miserable. We arrived and there were literally 30 people in line.

It’s finally our turn…Keith orders and then we walk a half a block away to take shelter while we eat (still sleeting!) and after all that, IT WAS SO WORTH IT. (And way too much food, after that we only ever get one meal and share it.)

So. Anyways. The cart is open 7pm-4am, and we typically make a late night trek, but we had heard that there was a daytime cart on a different corner. Now it gets tricky because the Halal Guys are seriously legendary…and they have many imposters. I almost stopped at two different carts before we found the correct daytime cart. One of the imposters even had sweatshirts that said “The Halal Guys.” The REAL guys are on the corner across from the Hilton at night, but they are in front of CBS during the day. The fool-proof way to tell is the yellow bags.

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So we got our food and found a random spot to eat…and it felt like cheating! To get it during the day…by taking a subway that went almost right to it (holla, F train) to not have to wait in a ridiculous line in the rain/cold/snow/wind…was weird. Dare I say it dulled the experience a bit. It was STILL the most delicious food of my life…but I didn’t feel like I earned it.

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combo platter with chicken, lamb, pita, lettuce, orange stuff is rice, white sauce is the star of the show. ALWAYS get extra white sauce. (this was what was leftover. SO MUCH FOOD.)

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some cute guy who bought me lunch.

After lunch, we headed to Midtown Comics so Keith could nerd out. (And buy nothing.) From there we zoomed across (under) the river, back to Brooklyn to hit up Barcade. Keith has been dying to go the past few times he has been in the vicinity but never made it, so he was really excited.

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It was a really cool place! We were there mid-afternoon, I’m not sure I’d want to be there at night…I would imagine it can get pretty packed. I had a delicious pear cider and mostly watched Keith play games. (All games are a quarter!) But then I discovered Timber, which I could actually play! (I am not good at video games.) We hung out there until we exhausted Keith’s quarters and then went back to the hotel.

And now I’m sick of writing so…to be continued…

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  1. 2013 / age 27 | jellyjars

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