I have just returned from what can be reasonably and honestly called a whirlwind vacation in New York, flying out the day after Christmas, and returning New Year’s day.
I did not go alone.
I took my four kids. And The Runner. And two of her kids (hereafter known as The Swimmer and The IT Guy). And we met two of my sisters — Lori and Jodi, both of whom live in Brooklyn — and their families there. Bringing the crew to 15.
As I may have mentioned, I was not alone.
In just under a week, we saw Wicked on Broadway, ate NY-style pizza in NY (a few times), had bagels for breakfast, eating them in a Brooklyn city park, rode the carousel in Central Park, went for a run in the bitter cold around Prospect Park in Brooklyn, went on another run over the Manhattan Bridge, through China Town, and back over the Brooklyn Bridge, saw the Tim Burton exhibit at the Museum of Modern Art, rode the Staten Island Ferry at night to see the skyline and the Statue of Liberty, bought new wardrobes for the twins, saw the Cirque du Soleil, ate brunch at Bubby’s in the DUMBO (Down Under Manhattan Bridge Overpass, I think) neighborhood, saw Mary Poppins on Broadway, fought through an incredible sea of humanity in Times Square the night before New Years’ eve (hence convincing us not to come back on the actual New Years’ Eve), ate at Smiler’s, checked out Lori’s art studio, went to the Sony Wonderlab, and saw New Years’ fireworks from the roof of a Brooklyn apartment building.
That, by the way, is not an exhaustive list. Though by the time we flew home we were definitely exhausted.
We also, for example, rode the subway — a lot. To entertain ourselves on the ride, we sometimes had face-making contests.
Uh, yeah. I won.
Some of us — The Runner and her kids, my boys and me — also saw the Phantom of the Opera on Broadway.
It is a matter of some dispute between The Runner and me as to how much time I spent sleeping during The Phantom. I maintain that during the scene where the heroine sings in the graveyard I got the main point of the song — that she was sad — pretty quickly, and just nodded off for a moment.
The Runner asserts there is no way I can know for sure how long I was asleep and that it certainly seemed like more than “a moment” to her.
Let’s just say that I fell asleep for a short period of time during what was The Runner’s very favorite part of the entire trip, and leave it at that, shall we?
The Most Important Part of the Trip
While I often — okay, very often — like to point out my status as a very important and beloved cycling comedy megablogger, I have to admit that there is another cycling comedy blogger who has, somehow, reached what was previously thought unattainable: mega-superstar status.
What you may not know is that he and I are actually the same person.
No, wait. That rumor’s not true, although I hereby grant you permission to spread it around as if it were.
Actually, BSNYC (as his close friends call him) and I met at a bar in Brooklyn, where we talked for a good long time.
Unfortunately, I cannot for the life of me remember what it was we talked about. Between his extremely heavy Armenian accent and the fact that he speaks in nothing but heroic couplets, I was seriously distracted.
Doing my best to break through the language and linguistic barrier, I took notes. General topics of conversation included:
- How awesome we each are (very).
- Racing the Leadville 100 (he’s interested in giving it a try someday).
- Travel time to get to really excellent singletrack (me: four minutes; him: 90+ minutes).
- Whether we should trade blogs for a month and see if anyone notices (we’re both pretty sure they would).
- His Bicycling magazine column (he sends them a thirty page draft each month, they publish the first three paragraphs).
- His forthcoming book (to be printed on vellum in a cursive script).
- Whether the letters “K” and “Q” have any unique purpose in the English language (he became quite agitated on this point and demanded I reduce my usage of Q by 30%).
- Which is more delicious: chocolate or cheese (I went with chocolate, he went with cheese).
- A comparison of our editorial processes (we both pretty much write whatever is in our respective heads and then publish the first draft).
Fortunately, I did get a couple of pictures. Here’s the first:
That (smallish) falling piano missed us by inches. Boy, I can tell you the bar owner was embarrassed!
So we took another picture. This time we were luckier with the photo:
So now you know why — until now — Bike Snob has protected his anonymity: he’s the Phantom of the Opera!
Yeah, it surprised me, too. Took me several minutes before I got so I could look away from his mask, and people kept coming up to him, asking him to sign stuff. Whereas during our entire time together, no more than six or eight people asked me for my autograph. It was incredibly disappointing, especially considering I had brought along 25 glossy eight-by-tens for that purpose.
And you know what? Not even he could satisfactorily explain why that girl in the graveyard was so sad.
Though to be fair, I maybe kinda dozed off when he tried. Just for a moment.