I’m coming back to the Kennett Flash 102 Sycamore Alley in Kennett Square, PA on January 11, 2019... A very cool venue. For tix, click here! For the Facebook event, click here!
TWO FUNNY PHILLY GUYSpresented by Zallie’s Shop Rite and starring Big Daddy & the amazing Joe Conklin make their triumphant, annual return to the legendary Broadway Theatre in Pitman NJ. Valentine’s weekendSaturday night February 16th at 8PM. Special guest MC 94WIP’s Jon Marks. This show always sells out, so get your tickets fast! You can call 856-384-8361. Or Click here or the poster
Hey if you'd like to help my man Marvin, who runs a camp for blind athletes (Marvin's blind himself), click on this link!
BIG DADDY'S CLASSIC ROCK THROWDOWN
Listen to BDG'S CLASSIC ROCK THROWDOWN with Spins Nitely anytime you want. There's over a hundred different shows to choose from. They're perfect for a long drive or flight. Just click here and pick the show you want. If you enjoy Big Daddy's "Ditty of the Night" you will love these
TRIVIA AND QUIZZO...
New! Every TUESDAY ~ 8PM... Krick Wuder in Bridesburg!
I’m at EVERY single Eagles game at PJ Whelihans in Blue Bell
My daughter Ava is running a Quizzo nite at CHICKIE & PETE'S in Drexel Hill every Tuesday at 7 PM! Plus every Wednesday night at 8PM at PJ WHELIHANS in Haddonfield. Don't forget Thursday night at 7pm at CHICKIE & PETE'S in South Philly!That's a busy schedule!
Big Daddy Graham-Marc Farzetta & Joe Conklin taking a stab at Sinatra's "Summer Wind!" Click Here
THE BEST OF YOU
We searched for the ten best pro athletes who wore a Philly uniform, but who did the best work for other teams. And here they are! The Final 10!
Hey! If you need any mortgage work done whatsoever get hold of my main man Ken Miller at 856-830-1131 or 609-238-3293 firstname.lastname@example.org NMLS #152270
RAVINGS FROM A MAN WHO NEVER SLEEPS... 11/24
Here's my latest article for the South Jersey Mag
HAPPY THANKSGIVING, RT 55!
I love when people say something like “there’s nothing worse in the world than a stale bagel.” My response to that goes along the lines of “Nothing worse, eh? How about Pearl Harbor? You think that might rank a tad above a stale bagel on the atrocity scale?”
The majority of annoyances that we let ruin our day usually aren’t worth it. Losing the remote. Breaking a shoelace. Not being able to find your keys right away. A Dallas Cowboy fan.
But if there is one thing in this world that does merit you losing your freakin’ mind over, it’s . . . . . . .traffic.
Whenever we come upon bumper to bumper traffic that makes your blood boil, someone in the car. who’s not driving, will inevitably say something inane like, “Oh, calm down. There’s nothing you can do about it.” Yet if that same person would happen to be the one driving at that moment you would be googling where the closest mental asylum is. (And for heaven’s sake, why does someone always have to mention “could there be a worse time for this traffic than now?” Like there’s ever a good time for traffic)
So check out this recent five-day stint I had driving in Pennsylvania. It might ease your pain.
Tuesday Oct. 9th. I was making an appearance at this really cool bar/restaurant called “Krick Wuder” in Bridesburg. (By the way, they cook up the most amazing scrabble sandwich I’ve ever eaten) I had to be there at 8pm. It’s a minute off the 95North Bridge St exit. With no traffic it should take me about 40 minutes. (Let’s get this out of the way. Is there a more useless, ridiculous comment in the world than “with no traffic?”)
So because it’s my first time there, I don’t want to be late and knowing what a mess 95North is between center city and Woodhaven Road, I decide to leave my Mullica Hill home at 630. A full 90 minutes I’m giving myself. I’m an “early” guy to begin with. I’d rather sit in a parking lot and read a magazine or do work on my I-phone, then be freaking out because of some gaper delay.
Well, guess what? 95North is a complete under construction nightmare and it takes me the full 90 minutes to get there. I tell myself that I caught a remnant of rush hour and the journey home will be much better.
WRONG! 95South between Bridge and Alleghany is a one-lane parking lot and it takes me an hour and ten minutes.
Wednesday Oct. 10th I’m performing an 8pm comedy show with Joe Conklin at Parx Casino. But I know for a fact I won’t hit the stage before 9pm, so after the debacle the evening before, I decide to try to avoid even a smidge of rush hour and I leave at 730pm and again, it takes me an hour and half EACH WAY. How do people travel this road every day?!
What’s the solution? Take the NJ Turnpike to the PA Turnpike? It just might be.
Thursday Oct. 11th I’m hosting the TNF Eagles game at PJ Whelihans in Blue Bell PA. Now I have been up there for every Birds game for 13 years and I have this 55 minute drive down to a science. I could do it blindfolded. Hop on Rt 322 to the Commodore Barry and then on to the Blue Route. But the far majority of Eagles games are played on Sunday and I don’t care if it’s a 1, 415, or 820pm start, it’s still a Sunday and the ride is usually uneventful.
But this is a Thursday evening and it’s murder to even get on the Blue Route from I-95 any time during the week. It’s a two lane exit that very quickly turns to one lane and when you actually enter the Blue, it goes from four lanes to two immediately and then it’s every man for himself.
But I’m aware of all this, so again, I give myself an hour and a half and it took every minute. This is shaping up into my worst three day traffic nightmare ever and I consider myself a lucky man because I work the traffic-free overnight shift at 94WIP.
Friday Oct 12th I spend the entire day in bed. I kid you not. I’m shocked I don’t bump into traffic to and fro the bathroom. I’ve been fortunate to have done some amazing things in my time, but this Friday, Oct. 12th could turn out to be the greatest day of my life. And it is.
Sunday Oct 14th The Eagles are off today so I am going to see the great singer Eddie Bruce’s big band salute to the Latin Casino, which is being held on Drexel campus. It’s a Sunday, the show’s at 3pm. What could go wrong? Well, first of all there is a big logjam on 76W between the Vare and South St. exit. Then when we get off, 33rd St (which is where we have to make a right) is closed for construction forcing everyone to go up to 38th. It literally takes up an half an hour to go 5 blocks and we end up late for the show. That’s five days, 6 horrendous trips, that involve I95, the Blue Route, and the Schuylkill Expressway. The three most important roads in the Philly area.
Which is precisely why I want to say Happy Thanksgiving to three Jersey roads. Rt. 55, the NJ Turnpike, and the Atlantic City Expressway.
RT. 55 I realize it gets backed up at the very end where it connects with Rt. 42, especially at the morning rush hour. But I’ve been living in Mullica Hill now for over 25 years and you know how many traffic jams I’ve encountered whether I’m going south to the shore or north to the Deptford 8 movie theatres? Try none. Zero. It’s an amazing road. And I’ve never been pulled over either. I’ll admit I saw a woman in a wedding dress walking along the shoulder at 130am one night that I originally thought was a ghost, but let’s just forget that.
NJ TURNPIKE. When I am shooting up Manhattan, I take 322 to Exit 2 of the Turnpike and then North to the Lincoln Tunnel. I have made this trip a couple hundred times over the years and I have never encountered any traffic whatsoever heading north. It’s always smooth sailing. There might be problems once I get to 7A, but that’s not South Jersey.
AC EXPRESSWAY. I don’t use the expressway to get to the shore, and I know it can back up at the toll on select summer weekends, but when I have to use the expressway to go to AC to perform, I never encounter any problem whatsoever because it’s the off-season and if it is the summer season I’m shooting over from Sea Isle. (However, I have been pulled over on this road numerous times)
So let’s give thanks to these three major South Jersey roads for generally being the polite, clean, and safe roads that they are. Happy Thanksgiving!
RAVINGS FROM A MAN WHO NEVER SLEEPS... 10/5
Here's my latest article for the South Jersey Mag
A REAL LIFE TRUE GHOST STORY
The following story is 100% true. No names have been changed to protect the innocent. Everything I write actually occurred and while you may be thinking “Sure, just in time for the October Halloween issue, “ it all started happening to me in July. So the tale is extremely fresh to me.
I did not grow up with a dog in my house. The only pets I ever had were Moe, Larry and Curly, three turtles my Mom bought in a knock off version of a Woolworths in my neighborhood called “Jupiters.” I believe they lived about two weeks and my old man then put a halt to any kind of animals in the house.
Years go by and I move to Mullica Hill and my daughters want a puppy in the worst way and I (of course) relinquish and we get a rescue beagle by the name of Dutch, a hacking, wheezing mutt who sounds like he smokes two packs of Marlboro Reds a day.
To say at that point in my life I wasn’t too fond of dogs would be an understatement. I had gotten bit twice in my life, by two different dogs, and I frankly was nervous around them. So I was completely caught off guard when I fell madly in love with Dutch. Boy, did I ever. My girls were two and six at the time, and I swear Dutch helped raise them as much as my wife and I. From the first night we brought him home he would sleep with Keely one night and then Ava the next. He was their best friend and protector against all evils of the world.
Because of this, he became like a second Dad to them and I didn’t mind having a partner. It made me adore my Dutch even more. Because of the nature of my 94WIP shift, I usually don’t get up till roughly two in the afternoon and when I would open my bedroom door Dutch would be quietly awaiting for me to go downstairs. We would then lie on the living room floor where I would rub his belly and await the school buses to arrive. My daughter’s bus would drop her off at the opposite end of the development that I live in. Roughly the equivalent of a couple block walk.
Since I was new to the dog game, this next phenomenon freaked me out. My daughter Ava’s bus would drop her off at approximately 315. At around 310 Dutch would jump up from his belly rub and start barking and scratching at the front door. This was a full five minutes before the bus would even pull up to the stop a couple blocks away. And it wasn’t like that bus would arrive at its destination the same exact time every single day. But somehow Dutch knew when it was five minutes away.
Those minutes that Dutch and I would lay in the quiet afternoon waiting for the bus? I couldn’t begin to tell you how much I miss those moments. The kids have grown, there’s no more waiting for the bus, and Dutchie passed away fourteen years ago.
Or did he? One thing that Dutch was legendary for was that he must have been the heaviest thirty pound Beagle in history. When he would lay in bed with you he would park himself right next to your leg and use it as a pillow. Good luck to you if you attempted to even slightly move him because it would be easier to move the Eagles Jason Peters. You just couldn’t budge him.
But in the end, I loved him cuddling up next to me, so I never made a fuss out of this, and our next two beagles were allowed to sleep in bed with us, including our current four legged friend, Beau.
Well, it started the beginning of this July. I was in my house alone. It was about six in the evening and I was lying in bed watching television when Beau moved ever so slightly. I won’t claim that it startled me, but I was caught a little off guard because I thought that I was in bed by myself. One little problem. I was in bed alone. Beau was somewhere else in my house.
But it definitely had the feel that you experience when your dog moves a little in his sleep when they are laying next to you. But there was no Beau in bed with me. I didn’t make a big deal out of it figuring that I was simply just imagining things, which is easy enough to do. I didn’t bring it up to anybody afraid that they would look at me like I was a whack-job. Remember, this is all true.
Well, it happened about seven more times throughout July and August. Now I am not one of these people who are fascinated by the paranormal. Sorry, Bill Murray and the rest of the “Ghostbusters” crew, but I am afraid of a ghost. I do not want to see one. However, this doggie movement in bed never scared me at all. In fact, I had convinced myself that it was the ghost of my first beagle, Dutch, and I found it all very comforting.
Then it got even stranger. I was lying in bed at my house in Sea Isle. It’s mid-August. Again it was the afternoon, not in the middle of a dark night. And “Ghost Dog” moved in my shore house bed. It really did. So I’m thinking this ghost dog is following me and me not haunting one particular Mullica Hill bed. This part of the story did freak me out.
So I went public with this phenomenon on August 20th via twitter and Facebook and I also talked about it on the air. And guess what happened? Ghost Dog stopped moving in the bed. He completely went away. I can’t say that he disappeared because I never saw anything to begin with, just felt him.
And I miss him horribly and wish he would come back. And what’s to make of his disappearing after I start talking about it? How would Ghost Dog know any of this? I swear on a stack of Playboys that I am not making any of this up.
Meanwhile, dozens of listeners and readers have written me telling me that also have experienced similar doggie movements in bed. But almost every one of these pet lovers had recently lost their dog and Dutch has been gone since 2004. And while I have taken some comfort in the folks who have reached out to me, I would take much more comfort if this Ghost Dog would cuddle up to me again.
I guess I’ll never truly know what happened, but I’ll tell you this much. It’s one hell of a Halloween story.
And every word of it is true.
RAVINGS FROM A MAN WHO NEVER SLEEPS... 9/6
Here's my latest article for the South Jersey Mag
MY FAVORITE EAGLE MEMORIES FROM 1960 ON
Yes, from the moment they won their last championship on December 26th, 1960. Now I was barely born, so I have no memory of that championship. But over the years I ended up meeting quite a few players on that team, so there will be some connecting points.
November 3, 1963. I had to look up all the info on the game, including the exact date, but I vividly remember being on the trolley with my Dad and heading to the game at Franklin Field. (Still the best venue in town for a football game) It was the only time I went to an Eagles game with my Father and it turned out he wasn’t taking me to cheer on the Birds, but to be able to one day say that I saw the legendary Cleveland Brown Jim Brown. Brown rushed for 223 yards and Cleveland won the battle. And guess what? Whenever Brown’s name comes up, I exclaim “You know, I saw Brown play once . . . . . . “
EAGLES 20 DALLAS 7 ~~ JANUARY 11, 1981 Besides the bitter cold and the fact that this win propels the Birds to their first Super Bowl, what I remember the most was the bond it created between my girlfriend Debbie and I. We drove to the game together and parked in the supermarket lot where the South Philly Chickie & Pete’s sits today. We walked to the Vet together, but we were not sitting with each other. When we got to the gate, we wished each luck, and off she went to sit with her stepfather and family and I to my 700-level buddies. Needless to say, Wilbert Montgomery scored that 41 yard touchdown propelling the Eagles to their first Super Bowl appearance. After the game, Debbie and I met back at the parking lot and hugged and danced the best that two human ice cubes could. It was one of the many special bonding moments we would share and fifteen months later we were married and still are today.
SEEING WILLIAM “THE REFRIDGERATOR” PERRY NAKED
October 24, 1994. I just got hired to do a 1210AM radio show titled “The Sports Attack” with Scott Graham and Neil Hartman. It was my first foray into “Sports Talk Radio.” I was now a fully credentialed member of the sports media, and I couldn’t believe it when I discovered this. I was now able to go to any sports game in town FOR FREE. Plus they fed you. Are you bleepin’ kidding me?! And if all that was not enough I had full access to the locker rooms after the games to interview players. I loved sports, but just like anyone other schmuck, I only ever got into a game the old fashioned way. Paying. This was incredible. It was a Monday Night Football game, and as I learned that night after the game, the first thing you did was go to the head coach’s press conference. When that was done, you would wait with about a hundred other media members, for the locker room doors to open. It was so exciting. I really had no intention of interviewing anyone. I was a standup comic who somehow ended up on this sports radio show. So I wasn’t about to interfere with reporters who had been doing this kind of thing for a living their entire adult lives. But I was excited to take in the atmosphere of a big league locker room and was thrilled as hell when the doors to the locker room opened and I was allowed to go in. And the first thing I see? A completely naked 340 pound William “The Refrigerator” Perry. And after close to twenty five years, I’m still struggling to get that visual out of my head.
RICH KOTITE SHOW The Eagles started off the season ands started off strong going 7-1, then lost their next eight games. As I stated above, I had just started in the sports business the October of 1994. Well, now it’s Monday, December 26th, 1994 and Birds head coach, Rich Kotite has just gotten fired. One little problem. There was still one Rich Kotite Show, co-hosted by the late, great Al Meltzer to go. And 1210AM, the station I had just started at roughly two months ago, was contractually obliged to carry it. Kotite, who was let go earlier in the afternoon, doesn’t bother to show up. No surprise there. But Meltzer doesn’t want t do the show either. To make a long story short, guess who ends up hosting the show with no guests whatsoever. You guessed it. Yours truly. Here’s an example of every call I got that evening in an hour-long show. Twenty calls. All exactly like this.
ME Let’s go to Freddie from Collingswood.
FREDDIE Rich Kotite sucks.
If anyone has a copy of that show, please destroy it. Thank you.
4TH AND 1
December 10th, 1995. The Eagles stop the Cowboys, not once, but twice on fourth and one to win one of the more memorable battles between these two rivals ever. What makes it truly memorable was that I was literally standing on the sidelines with my size 13’s touching the out-of-bounds line. Back then, at the Vet, the media was allowed on the field with three minutes left to go in the game. I thought I knew what pro football was like, but to actually stand right there, that close, and see how hard they hit and how fast they fly, and the terrific, filthy, trash talking that goes on, I had no idea. One of my great experiences ever. Of any type, not just sports. Alas, this media luxury ceased when the Birds moved to the Linc.
CHUCK BEDNARIK IN 1996, I was hired to MC a sports banquet at a hotel somewhere near the airport. The Greatest Eagle Of All Time Chuck Bednarik is one of the speakers. My hand has already been broken from shaking his and the hotel is really slow on getting the dinners out. The program is due to start after dinner and everything is an hour and a half late. Remarkably though, everyone seems to be having a good time despite this and there are some other heavy hitters at the dais besides Chuck such as Robin Roberts and Gene Hart. The woman who is actually running the night pulls me away from the table and in a quiet whisper says, “What should we do? Give it another ten minutes or start it now?” Before I can give an answer, all of a sudden Mr. Bednarik bellows out “start it now!” I glance at the woman as if to say “how in the hell did he hear us” and needless to say we did exactly as the now 70 year old still scary tough-as-nails Chuck told us to do, we started it NOW.
4th AND 26 January 11, 2004. Eagles-Packers. I am in the press box perched high atop the Linc, a mile away from the action. The windows of the box are closed and since the media is never allowed to cheer, it’s like a funeral viewing in there. This will not do for me and I make my way down to the stands where I know John, Joe Conklin’s brother-in-law, is seated in the endzone. And that’s where I watched this legendary Donovan McNabb to Freddie Mitchell miracle that enables the Birds to continue their playoff march. John’s Sea Isle City house is practically in my backyard, and we often bring that moment up. And just smile.
SUPER BOWL 52 When the game and all the post-game madness had ended, guess who was the first host at 94WIP taking phone calls? Again, that would be yours truly. I’m kind of proud of that. I really am.
RAVINGS FROM A MAN WHO NEVER SLEEPS... 9/6
Here's my latest article for the Sea Isle Times
HIGHLIGHTS OF SUMMER 2018
I wind up every end of the summer season with this piece, so let’s get to it!
FIVE TIMES FAMOUS Each summer I salute a band or a solo musician with an acoustic guitar that I was unfamiliar with before. In this case, I want to make you aware of an excellent duo that go by the really cool name of “Five Times Fighting.” (Sounds like a Kung Fu flick that Quentin Tarantino would be screening.) Justin Cruz, handles most of their lead singing with a multi-octave voice that can hit those deep Eddie Vedder notes as well as a song like Radiohead’s “Creep” and Andrew Foster plays a mean guitar. My wife and I saw them virtually every Friday night at the Sand Bar this summer and they’re fun, engaging, and I don’t think I heard “Sweet Caroline” all summer. (I know, it’s a great song, but enough is enough!) Check them out.
BIRD WATCHERS OF AMERICA Now while this is not exactly solving the JFK conspiracy, I had no idea that for years I was sitting on the beach amongst a secret society known as the “Bird Watchers of America.” The BWA is comprised of a group of Moms who tired of their husbands ogling every woman who strutted along the beach and decided to fawn over some good looking men themselves. They had been doing this quietly but then the “#metoo” movement came along and they’re not being quiet anymore. One of the Moms (Let’s call her “Meg”) particularly had it in for this hunky six-pack abs Fudgy Wudgy dude and got tired of keeping it to herself and asked him to pose for a photo with her. The nerve! I could see if any of us husbands took a photo with some hot looking dish, we would never hear the end of it. Worse yet, Meg’s husband (Let’s call him “Dave”) snapped the photo. It turned out Dave knew exactly what he was doing and now looks at this photo as evidence when his wife gives him any gruff about whatever woman he might be checking out. The war between the sexes rages on!
AUGUST 4TH It’s been such a great summer to be an Eagles fan. Needing no excuse whatsoever to celebrate whenever the mood hits them, E-A-G-L-E-S chants would arise from bars, decks, cars, even boats. But August 4th was a special day because it was exactly six months since, well, you know the Greatest Day in Philadelphia Sports History and I got invited to three different Eagle parties. My neighbors down the street, Frank and Maryann, who own the Love Shack had a big screen set up in their backyard which backed up right to the swampy part of the bay. If it were Florida a couple alligators would have strolled in singing the Eagles fight song. They served up some awesome sausage and had one of those DVD’s of the game with Merrill and Mike calling the game. Then it was on to Meg and Brian Gallagher’s and you would have thought you were at a drive-in their screen was so big. Everything was set up right on their dock. It was a blast. The third party? Well, I was told it was kind of a stag party and I immediately thought what debauchery did this motley crew have planned? All of a sudden I saw visions of me making the 5 o’clock news. So I skipped that one and heard later it got pretty wild and that the DVD that was supposed to show the game never even worked. Oh, and I heard no one left.
THE MIRACLE OF TOWNSENDS INLET
Gail Cataldi threw a terrific baby shower for her daughter Caitlyn and son-in-law Nick D’Amico. It was a real food fest with a great turnout and, I hope you’re sitting down, there’s a rumor circulating that Angelo actually paid for the whole thing. A miracle! Though I must confess I look for a bill from him for this party every time I go out to get the mail.
MARK THE BEACH TAG COLLECTOR Years ago, when Pat Croce first started running the Sixers, he went around and asked what would be the first thing you would do if you got the job running the team. I told him I would hire the friendliest people I could find to work the parking lot booths. That everyone hated to pay to park to begin with and if they, on top of that, were treated rudely by the very first employees that they came in contact with, well, that puts people in a bad mood before they even step foot in the arena. It’s kind of the same thing with a beach tag collector. No one really wants to pay for a beach tag, but we’ve accepted it, and we do. But, dag, if that collector is rude?! That’s why I felt like saluting the 35th Street guardian, Mark. Not once the entire summer did he fail to greet you with a warm smile and a “Hello, it’s a beautiful day today!” Seriously, he remembered names and went about his job in a polite and courteous manner. My man!
BDG LIVE! Joe Conklin and I performed one of our “Two Funny Philly Guys shows in the parking lot of LaCosta that faces JFK Blvd. The night had every right to go completely wrong. I even joked when I got on stage, thanking everyone for making “my dream of performing in the parking lot of the LaCosta come true.” But somehow Jimmy Bennett and his entire staff pulled it off and it ended up being a jam packed memorable night. By the way, Conklin’s Trump impression is killer live. Plus I wrapped up another successful season of Monday Quizzo nights at O’Donnell’s Pourhouse. Comically, because of my daughter Ava becoming a regular presence on 94WIP’s Morning Show, there were team names all summer such as “Ava Graham Rocks, Big Daddy Graham Stinks.” Oh well, as long as they spelled my name right.
THE TWINS A year ago, my twin Grandkids, Jameson and Lucy, were born right at the deadline of this paper’s final issue. I was concerned that my small rancher of a Sea Isle home would not be able to accommodate them all, but my wife Debbie, did an amazing job rearranging the house and everyone slept comfortably and it was the greatest summer of my life, And believe me, I’ve had some outstanding summers. My daughter Keely and her husband Matt wanted them to be beach babies and those cuties lovingly took to the ocean immediately. It had been a long time since I had been around infants and they are just amazing. Babies are proof that we are basically good, not bad people. Total strangers would see them on the promenade and just melt. As did I.
See you next summer
HEY! I'M LOOKING FOR ALBUM COVERS. I DON'T CARE ABOUT THE CONDITION OF THE VINYL...
Click on Ray to hear the amazing ovation he got at the Pitman's Broadway Theatre on Saturday, February 10th, which was the first Saturday of our Super Bowl!
There is this amazing talent in the New York area by the name of Rachelle Garniez. She's an versatile singer who accompanies herself on piano, guitar, and, yes, accordion. She's a gifted songwriter with a tremendous sense of humor. She often performs at a really cool Village venue Pangea that seats maybe fifty that itself is worth checking out. Go to these sites for more info: www.rachellegarniezcom.virb.com & www.pangeanyc.com
You can take an inexpensive tour of RADIO CITY MUSIC HALL that's well worth it.
Check out MASH ARMY & NAVY on 8th Ave between 45 & 46th streets. A blast from the past!
Folks are always asking me about piano bars in Manhattan. There's two I would recommend and they couldn't be any bit different. DON'T TELL MAMA is on 46th St between 8 & 9th Avenues. It's a comfortable narrow long bar where you either sit at thee bar or at a table. They have a singing piano player and every fourth song or so a member of the bar or serving staff will get up and sing a three song set. And sometimes a member of the audience will get up at the mic and sing. And they have awesome food also. It's a really fun joint, but completely different from MARIE'S CRISIS CAFE which is at 59 Grove St in the Village. (Make sure you have the address handy before you get in the cab.) MARIE'S is a tiny hole in the wall basement club where there is a piano player but no professional singer. YOU are the singer. It's insane. People (like my nutty wife) go there TO sing. There's no microphone and literally 150 people or so will be singing at the top of their lungs to some Broadway tune Which, by the way, IS ALL Marie's does. They don't mix in pop tunes like MAMA does. The two couldn't be any different from each other and any more fun if a piano bar is your bag.
A HOTEL TO STAY AT? We always use some hotel site and often stay at one of these two hotels which I would both recommend. THE BELVEDERE on West 48th St is clean with a nice lobby and it's very convenient to Broadway and many clubs and bars. THE WARWICK is pricier, but still affordable when you go through Expedia. It's at 54th & 6th and many famous folks (like the Beatles and Liz Taylor have stayed there.
As obvious as this sounds, you can spend a couple hours exploring Central Park and never get bored.
LEXINGTON CANDY SHOP on Lexington between 82 & 83rd St. has been opened since 1925 and is a don't miss trip.
BIG ONION WALKING TOURS are a lot of fun and reasonably priced. I have taken many of them and they never disappoint.
54 BELOW on 54th St. is literally the basement of the famous Studio 54 disco. It's a terrific place to see anybody. Top notch club.
Finally made it to BIRDLAND for one of those CAST PARTY shows. What a great time and the sight lines are excellent. Legendary jazz artists perform there and if you ever thought about seeing one of them at BIRDLAND, do it.
A BRONX TALE the musical is really good. I wasn't expecting much and I was very entertained.
You can get a really good cheese steak at 99 MILES TO PHILLY at 94 3rd Avenue. The owner is from Philly.
LETS CALL IN SICK!
Philly wins 56 to 45! (There was no "X")
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