Monday, June 19, 2006

My Big, Fat, Fat, Fat... Fat, Fat Fathers' Day

Another unnecessary holiday: you either appreciate Dear Old Dad and you don't need a special day reminding you of his existence, or you don't, and the holiday is just pretense. I believe I fall into that latter camp: I bought Dad a kitchen timer for Fathers' Day because he's always hogging the one built into our microwave, and I told him that my real gift to him would be a day without me and my typical surly attitude. But no, he wanted to spend Fathers' Day with me. I can't understand why — I don't want to spend Fathers' Day with me.

My whole family, by which I mean "the subset of the Harris clan that still speaks to my immediate family on a regular basis," otherwise known as "my immediate family," went to this dive at the Holiday Inn in Edison. The first thing that drove me a little bit nuts is that not only is there a Holiday Inn in Edison, but there's a Sheraton, too, a block away. Who the hell is staying at these hotels? It's not like Edison, New Jersey is exactly the tourist capital of the East Coast. This bothered me, so naturally I had to bother Dad about it, which he didn't really appreciate... I did offer to let him spend the whole day away from me and my irritability.

We had dinner at this place Harold's New York Deli, which claims to have the world's best pastrami, corned beef, and cheesecake. Total bullshit. I mean, have they even tried every cheesecake in the world? I doubt it.

They also claim to have the world's largest pickle bar, and again, how do they know? I don't think the Guinness world record people keep track of those sorts of things.

No, they don't. I checked.

Harold's more or less combined everything I hate about diners and everything I hate about delis into a single irritating dining experience, and then, just for good measure, super-sized it. They super-size every freaking thing there — not only is the restaurant itself the size of a factory and the pickle bar supposedly the largest in the world, but their dessert cart has German chocolate cakes that are basically foot-high cylinders of sugar and frosting (their dessert cart also had Fear Factor push-pops, which... ewwwww. It's one thing to be on the show where you can win money for putting this shit in your mouth, but you've got to be just plain maladjusted to want to do it for free), and if you ask them for a corned beef sandwich, they'll charge you forty bucks and bring out pretty much the whole cow, cured and salted. And one of those tiny Solo cups of mustard. Granted, we were the only family there with fewer than twenty people — and this isn't some organic place, so these are some pretty damn corpulent families there — but you could seriously end world hunger by dropping just one of these platters in a Rwandan refugee camp.

I'm a little surprised I felt so much animosity towards Harold's, since normally I love it when my food spends its final days drowning in a pool of vinegar and brine. Hell, sometimes I freaking bathe in sauerkraut cause I love reeking like it's Oktoberfest all year round. But you know, that cabbage odor is even sweeter when you're crammed at a tiny table between a family with ten kids running around and some dipweed fatso wearing a t-shirt that says "My Sons" with a picture of his two boys, like he just found out his grade on the paternity test and he's hoping the shirt will be good for some extra credit and maybe bump it up to a C-minus. I bet you don't have to deal with that sort of inanity when you eat at the restaurant inside the Sheraton.


R U S S said...


I recently posted about world hunger. You might be interested.

b blessed