New York Attitude

Food for Thought @ Boran

Tracey and I were originally planning on going to Lucali, the much-hyped pizzeria in Carroll Gardens, Brooklyn. We figured getting there half an hour before the opening was sufficient. We were wrong. There was already a long line, and it was for making reservations. Yes, they require you to wait in line to reserve a table. We were informed that ours would be for 11pm. The woman who was taking the reservations had police-like composure; she methodically handled all the frustrated customers.

The problem with these hyped restaurants is that, unlike movies, we can’t even dismiss them as we can’t taste their food. There is no closure.

We weren’t curious enough about their pizza to invest that many hours. So, we went to another place that I had bookmarked—a Thai restaurant in the same neighborhood.

Tracey is beyond a foodie. She has published a book on how to cook “global” food at home by taking advantage of the ethnic supermarkets in New York City, entitled “The NYC Kitchen Cookbook.” See @traceyceurvels She became an adventurous eater after spending a summer in Japan as an exchange student. But, the problem with two adventurous eaters dining out is that both want the other to order because the element of surprise is part of the fun of being adventurous.

She asked the waitress which ones are good. “They are all good,” was her response. “Which ones are your favorite?” Tracey asked. “I like them all.” I asked, “Which ones are popular?” “They are all popular.” “Really? All evenly popular?” Her response was a clinical “Yes.” In desperation, Tracey asked which ones look good, but she told her to forget it as it was getting absurd. In the end, we managed to figure it out on our own. The food was great.

At both restaurants, we experienced what could be used as examples in the Wikipedia page about “New York attitude.” I suspect many New Yorkers, including myself, unintentionally play hard-to-get, because we are too afraid of exposing our vulnerability, which makes initiation of friendship difficult. Somehow, Instagram became a tool to circumvent this problem, which is how Tracey and I set up this little adventure.