Speakeasy - Starstruck
Speakeasy - Starstruck, NYC, NY: When the 2K ball-drop was approaching, my friend Marf 'n I got it into our skulls that we should see the ball drop in New York City. We couldn't afford the trip, but we went anyway. That left us homeless on the streets of NYC for two weeks. One of the places that gave us shelter was a little Eurodeli just a block or so away from Time Square, directly towards Hell's Kitchen.

This little 24-hour diner served everything from a cheap burger to a pricey plate 'o lobster. Everyone but the cooks were Italian, and, coincidentally enough, were all called "Nick". Hmmm. And the Mexican cooks were all called "Cookie". Nn'huh. When my friend Marf and I discovered this little jewel, we immediately had suspicions of mafioso activity. After seeing money changing pockets following a dog race, we were pretty much sure. Then there was the random guy who walked in, said nothin' to no one, walked downstairs with a duffel bag, then came up empty handed... leaving as quietly as he'd entered. Just a normal day at work?

After spending time with the deli's host on a second venture, he gave us his real name and told us to make the place our home. Every night, they would rope off the upstairs part of the diner. On a few nights, that's where the two of us would smoke and catch some Zzzs. This wouldn't be the last time that we were taken in by "the families", but it certainly was the first.

The night before the big ball-drop, the owner told us that we should stay with them. "You'll be safe here. No worries. An if police run in, don't you worry you any. We keep their riot gear down in the basement."

I haven't verified for myself that the building's gone, but that's what I've been told. Other than Marf, Richard the Dutchman, Omar from Morocco and myself, I don't know how many other people even remember the place. It was one of Chelly Wilson's three porn theaters on the block that'd been turned into a diner. The closest entry I could find for it on Yelp was [here]. Until I see for myself, I'll actually keep my hopes up on this one. It wasn't the kind of place that you'd expect to see go under without a fight.

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San Jaya Prime - May Angels Take You [Dying Vicariously]
"May Angels Take You [Dying Vicariously]" by San Jaya Prime