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Recently Gothamist posted this article, declaring the top of the top BBQ places in the city. I have to admit that this category of food is not something I would normally be attracted to. Since leaving the Hudson Valley and reunited with the ‘burbs and “the” city the only BBQ I have craved is Max’s wing night.

So with my carnivorous friends came the idea of trying everything on the list. I promise, it’s only week one and I know I will be pushing for a top 10 of veg places next.

Week 1: Fette Sau
Address: 354 Metropolitan Avenue, Williamsburg, Brooklyn
Location: Coming from midtown, this was an easy two train commute and then a brief walk to the restaurant.
First impression: Smelled delish, calm before the storm and beer is mason jars
Consumed: short ribs, spare ribs, brisket, rolls, potato salad, baked beans, corn bread, root beer and ale
Highlights: cornbread with brisket baked beans declared favorite bite, rub on the spare ribs, brisket sandwich with extra bbq sauce

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Our friends at Fette Sau are very smart and have a rustic / fun decor. And a cool bar, that counts, too. The beer taps have meat hacking charm. One of those is the Sixpoint called Vienna Ale that was brewed just for Fette Sau, that also makes them very smart.

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This was the tray I ordered for Maureen and I. Don’t judge. I did it for you.

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I think she was happy. It was hard to tell.

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This is a close up of the rub, some goodness was up in there.

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More cool decor and educational! We were able to see and learn what cuts of meat we were eating.

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This was my favorite bite of the entire meal. The baked beans were off the hook. Spicy, slow cooked and chunks of brisket thrown in for good measure. Pictured here on a piece of cornbread.

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Picnic tables inside and out gave for good community and noise.

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This is when we should have stopped, instead we ordered one more beef rib to push us over the edge. It was by the pound.

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This is the bone after we were done with it. In case you can’t tell, as big as my head.

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If you are a condiment girl like myself, you would like the bbq sauce, vinegar sauce and hot sauce. I love sauce.

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Good bye Fette Sau, see you next time!

Why is it that only when you are already on the train platform do you remember the things that were left behind? Today, the phone charger. Last week, the coffee cup. Tomorrow, the scarf that matches just so. Commuter problems.

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“Time goes faster the more hollow it is. Lives with no meaning go straight past you, like trains that don’t stop at your station.” ~ Carlos Ruiz Zafron

If nothing else, the last few weeks have taught me that the “stuff” I had to put into storage is not the only thing being kept away. There is an incredible defense system already built into our “how and I going to deal?” thought process. And just as my “stuff” was put away, so were my emotions. I am no where near the opening of that floodgate, but do know that it has to be sorted into the same piles as all of the other “stuff” – keep, throw out, giveaway and store.

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“The more you have, the more you are occupied, the less you give. The less you have, the more free you are.” ~ Mother Teresa

One of the scariest differences between city life and country life (besides animal life, the dark and losing cell service) is drinking and driving.

After the recent death of Jackass’s Ryan Dunn, I have been even more sensitive that usual about drinking and getting behind the wheel. On any given night my friends and I are out in Kingston, or the surrounding area, you can watch someone drinking a number of drinks, leave the bar or restaurant, go into the parking lot, get into their car or truck, start the car and drive away. It puts a pit in my stomach every time.

My group of friends is fairly responsible, usually designating a driver. The DD usually stays sober or has a drink or two over a number of hours. This brings up an entirely different issue of how many drinks can you have and still be “fine” to drive, but at least someone is conscious of having to get everyone home safe.

One of my friends has been known to get behind the wheel and drive home. Often sighting, “I’m fine” or “It’s just a short way” or “Nothing is going to happen.” All the traditional ignorant responses to “Why did you drive home?” I am not sure if it’s belligerence, stupidity, fearlessness, a deceptive case of invincibility or a little of all of these factors, but I do know is it makes me incredibly sad. I wish this friend and anyone else in my immediate circle would just call me or get a cab or go to sleep in their car or walk or think clearly for one second – the very second that it takes to realize getting behind the wheel IS NOT A GOOD IDEA.

DWIs seems to be rampant in our area. I hear about them through my friends  in law enforcement, a friend of a friend of someone who got arrested or even first hand from a few of my acquaintances. I guess this means law enforcement is doing a good job. I think it could be better. I don’t blame the law enforcement all together though. I think it is all of our jobs to encourage others to not drink and drive. It is your job, just as much as mine, to take keys away from a friend, make up excuses to stall them in their tracks or not drink ourselves so we can safely drive when going out. I plan on having this very conversation with each one of my friends in the country. This is when the city wins. Public transportation.

Watching Jackass star Bam Margera grieve over his dear friend brought tears to my eyes. I never ever want to be in his shoes. Ever.

Recklessness is a species of crime and should be so regarded on our streets and highways.  ~ Marlen E. Pew

Dear Baby Sister,

As you graduate from one of the most amazing places in the entire world, the level of pride and excitement I have for you is exploding from my every being. It is such an incredible moment in time that we are celebrating tomorrow. You are graduating from New York University with a bachelor of arts in communication and a minor in production. You kicked some major internship butt at a number of amazing places and flawlessly aced tests, papers and presentations with what could be interpreted with your eyes closed. I envy every test you barely studied for, your memory surpassed mine years ago. I envy the opportunities at your doorstep. I envy the summer you will stay in the city. I envy the deep breath you will take when walking in a student and leaving a graduate.

I remember projects completed on our dining room table. There would be papers, notes, markers, glue and pencils scattered about. I remember notes and books left at the computer after a writing session. I remember deadlines and television watching being a constant battle. I remember the piano singing beautiful music as it was a more desired friend than a textbook or paper.

I wish nothing but the absolute best for you as your graduate from college and start your career. My best advice is not necessarily how to get through your first job, but things that I have learned from the city and the country, who knew I would have some of both:

  • keep an extra pair of tights in your bag
  • laugh at yourself
  • write letters and thank you notes
  • call your sister
  • drink lots of water
  • fold a twenty and store it in your wallet
  • tip well
  • call your sister
  • always say please and thank you
  • remember who  your biggest fan is
  • don’t forget that Mommy and Daddy will always be there, no matter what you do or don’t do
  • call your sister
  • have an alternate mode of transportation
  • never say never
  • trust the people who love you
  • call your sister

And here are a few other pieces of advice when / if needed:

Peter Shankman’s “An open letter to the two kinds on the M-11 bus this morning
The Washington Post’s “Advice for the Class of 2011
Some cool famous people, “Inspirational Advice for College Graduates

The fact is that advice isn’t necessarily going to have all the answers. You will make things happen. You will make good decisions. You will continue to be the rockstar that I know you are. You will rule the world, as we all know you will. Congratulations on your graduation, my baby sister.

I love you, I love you, I love,
Thea

“You’re off to Great Places!
Today is your day!
Your mountain is waiting,
So… get on your way!”
~ Dr. Seuss in Oh, the Places You’ll Go!

Spring in NYC = flip flops to the subway to the office and then the heels, street meat lines are longer than usual, Central Park suddenly is the place to be despite that fact that it’s always been there, the Mon – Wed mani/pedi special is the where you go for lunch, tastiD loyalists are annoyed by the line suddenly formed at their favorite  peanut butter flavored dispenser, college students finally bail from clutch studio apartments on the LES and you may actually sit on a bench. And breathe. Just for a minute.

Daffodils blooming on 54th Street and 8th.

Spring in the country = gorgeous morning rides, breathing in between rain showers, outdoor activity planning, planting grass seed, walking in the evening, RAMPS, sitting outside  for as many meals as possible, cleaning out the garden, renewing the lease for another year in the house, trying to not make plans due to the booked ’till July 11th calendar, breathing in the lilacs and deciding which farm stand to go to first.

The lilacs at Sojourner Truth Park, Ulster Landing.

“Spring has returned. The Earth is like a child that knows poems.” ~ Rainer Maria Rilke

Snow day in NYC = slush, possible delayed opening, white blanket on your patio, no bus or subway schedule that works in your favor, if at all possible pjs until the streets are clear enough and then sushi and wine with whoever is in a three block radius of your apartment.

Snow day in the country = lots and lots of white fluffy stuff everywhere, road closures, work closures, snow tires, shovelling, skiing, snow boarding, sledding, plows, aranged snow removal, pjs in bed all day, planned crockpot cooking, some life catch up.

“As soon go kindle fire with snow, as seek to quench the fire of love with words.” ~ William Shakespeare

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