Thursday, May 13, 2010

bubbles and eating establishments of lower Manhattan

Ed suggests we apply suds to the air mattress. Standard way to find a leak – he tells me. I’ve seen him do this with bicycle inner tubes. But we’re looking at a big mattress with a very small leak. Though perhaps not so small. The air loss is considerably faster now. We can’t even make it halfway through the night without feeling the floor.

He sponges over the surfaces and we watch for bubbles. Nothing. I feel for the trickle of air with my hand. Nothing.

Where’s the closest Walmart? Target? Sears? Kohl’s? The thing about Manhattan is that it has none of the above.

It’s been a long day...

On the up side, on this miserably cold and wet Wednesday, I met the last of the missing Ed brothers. They haven’t been missing really, but what’s been missing is the opportunity to see them all in the same room at the same time. The last such occasion was before my time and I doubt that another will happen in my lifetime.

And here’s another upside: I found Bruno’s for breakfast: a place of great Italian pastry just three blocks from the Bleecker Street apartment, of great espresso, and of great New York attitude. (They wont crack a smile if you paid them for it.)


The trial continues...

We pause for lunch as always, and as always that pause is long enough to accommodate a sit-down meal at any number of the restaurants within walking distance of the courthouse. The attorneys like the old Italian establishment -- Forlini’s. I’ve sat with them there (Tuesday, for example) and watched them put away plate-loads of comforting food among the comforting presence of other similarly situated attorneys and judges whose adrenaline needs to settle down and take break.

Today, however, we are eating with a brother and without attorneys so we head in the opposite direction – to the Odeon, which is a pleasant cross between French bistro and New American food. I have a very good warm goat cheese salad and think how after this week, the white table cloth is again going to disappear from my dining experiences.

It continues to be an unpleasantly drizzly day. My camera stays mostly in my bag. I concentrate in getting from point A to point B in a timely fashion.


The wheels turn, the day moves gracefully along. The answers are solid. The vulnerabilities diminish.

By evening, I make a miscalculation. Last week, I had read in the NYTimes a fairly good review of a new, hip pizza/Italian place in the Village – Pulino’s. Everything about it sounded right for a meal with my occasional traveling companion: fresh, reasonably priced food in a casual space. I glossed over the restaurant critic’s one line that should have given me pause: Pulino’s can be punishingly loud.

Ed hates loud. Especially restaurant loud. The wince never leaves his face until the check is paid and we are out the door.

Or maybe it was a good thing that we ate there. I let him drift in his own thoughts.


...and allowed him to run out with my cell phone to take scheduling calls from the attorneys. And only at the end does the unrelenting speed of the day manifest itself as I pounce on Ed for waving a credit card sky high to get the waiters attention.  

Rude! I scream at him (screaming is a way to be heard).
Ed shakes his head. No. Not here it isn’t, right? This to the waiter who is trying to figure out whom he needs to appease in this one.  
No, not here. The waiter takes Ed’s card.  
You lose! Ha! Loser! Ed roars.  
Bullshit! I shout back.

The two tables to our sides stare at us. Ed and I, the quiet duo with cell phone attachment disorder, have come alive, the adversarial blood ripping through the veins, pushing us to a level of explosive excitement over... something stupid.

We’ve been enmeshed in this courtroom saga too long.

We return to the sagging mattress to quietly mull over what we can expect from the cross exam on the next day.