So the streets of Greenpoint are filled with the smell of fish. I don't know much about Polish Christmas customs, but apparently it involves some kind of feast-of-seven-fishes deal, because all these vacant lots have turned into impromptu fish markets, and every deli's doorway holds a paint bucket containing a sad-looking live carp looking up balefully.
I came home yesterday to find the building festively decked out - garlands, bows, a lone trumpet, even a pair of bells stuck above the door. To say nothing of the wreath, which is magnificent.
My friend Tammy is in town. We met for brunch at a spot she described as "hip, but not oppressively so." She told me about her new crush. "He's like a cross between George Harrison, Big Bird, and Maude," she said dreamily. (Maude is of course Ruth Gordon. Tammy often describes people in terms of Maude - as do I. Useful shorthand for many awesome and not-awesome things.)
She produced a lurid-looking paperback copy of The Golden Notebook which I hadn't read.
"Have you read Long Day's Journey Into Night? she asked. "Well, you know how they're always kind of declaiming and talking abruptly? It's kind of like that, but they're Communists, and they really like strawberries."