Last week I saw flights from LA to NYC were hovering around $200 round trip so I grabbed one on a moments notice and took off for a whirlwind tour. The following is a mostly true account of what went down. Mostly.

Within minutes of touchdown I was already making plans with Bre for evening feasts and scheming at Red Bamboo and less than 2 hours later we were there enjoying some of the best fake meat dishes available anywhere. I usually stay with my friends Kathleen and Atom when in town, and Atom joined us for dinner as well. In addition talk about secret societies and robots, we also discussed Lula’s and how it was a moral imperative for us to head over there for dessert. Unfortunately this was Monday night, and Lula’s is closed on Mondays – a fact we learned upon arrival. Never one to accept defeat, especially not in the way of dessert, we doubled back to Atlas for a stack of Vegan Treats. You can see why:

Atlas cafe

Curly'sIt was a school night and everyone had places to go first thing in the morning so we called it a night. I was originally planning to catch up with some folks for breakfast on Tuesday but citing laziness and lack of will to roll out of bed those meetings were postponed. I took that as a sign I should sleep in and finally pulled myself out of bed just in time to meet Peter at Curly’s Lunch. Curly’s in kind of legendary and with good reason, the BBQ tempeh I had was disgustingly awesome.

Sleeping in meant missing coffee but what I was really missing was Intelligentsia. I posed the question to twitter asking where I should go, knowing that at least some of my contacts would point me in the right direction. Luckily enough Kyle Glanville himself responded to my call for help and directed me to Ninth Street Espresso. I trust Kyle‘s suggestions in the world of coffee pretty much without question so I mapped it out and set out to find the joint. I was not disappointed:

3 shots all the time

Once again, chalk up a win for twitter. From there I booked it uptown. Through a crazy turn of events I reconnected to my old boss John Cerilli who I used to work with at Playboy, he’s over at Marvel now and I thought I’d drop in and see what they were up to. I found him though another guy there, Agent_M who I started talking to because of our mutual obsession with zombies. I love how one thing leads to another. Marvel has a killer set up, in a weird DIY kind of way. There are not many people, but they are trusted to own what they are working on and they trust their fans and readers. I can think of plenty of companies that should take a hint from them.

After plenty of catching up, I jumped a train south and met up with my cousin Annie. Even stranger turn of events there, I’d lost touch with her (and my father’s entire side of the family) when I was a kid but reconnected in the past few years so it was fun to catch up in person since we had the chance. I raced back to Kat and Atom’s after that to catch up on a little bit of email before escorting them a few blocks south. They were heading to Brooklyn to see Throbbing Gristle, and I was heading to meet up with Glen and finally get to Lula’s. I did, and this is what was waiting for me once I got there:

Lula's vegan banana split.

I forget the exact flavors I ordered, I know there was some peanut butter something and some mint chocolate chip awesomeness and even some marshmallow cream and hot fudge. All vegan of course. It was pretty unstoppable. We ran into Luke there which was pretty great since I hadn’t talked to him since my last trip to NYC. Lula’s was closing so we stuffed our faces and got the hell out. We walked around for a few blocks and then went our separate ways. For me, I had to keep packing the trip full so I meet up with Michael and proceeded to pour a beverage all over myself. I really shouldn’t be allowed near liquids.

Tuesday was actually satanically hot but Tuesday night shaped up to be amazing. Really, it was probably one of the most beautiful nights I’ve seen there. I kept planning to walk home but found myself constantly taking the long cut and just wandering around. On a night like that, at 1am, NYC is more alive than many cities at 5PM. People were outside, restaurants were open, and the weather was absolutely perfect. I think I finally made it to sleep around 4am, but I justified that by reminding myself it was only 1am in California.

Wednesday was equally packed though I managed not to blow off my morning plans with Tim. We got crepes at Atlas Cafe and I swear I resisted ordering cake. But I might have had a brownie. I don’t remember. I double booked lunch, but manged to space them out enough with enough walking that it actually worked out. Lunch #1 was in Hell’s Kitchen at a quaint little Thai place. Peter and I traded stories of recent adventures and plans and talked technology. This has become a staple of my NYC trips, and one I always look forward to. After that was lunch #2 which you’ll be shocked to learn was back at Red Bamboo. Glen was telling me about some new coconut breaded chicken thing they had and I pretty much had no choice but to join him there to try them out. Off the fucking hook. Seriously. I’m drooling just thinking about them now. We ate until we were in pain. It was amazing.

After that, the only reasonable thing to do was walk it off. So we did. All the way back over to Lula’s. Or at least I did, Glen bailed at the last second due to parent-park-plans or something. That was fine though, more ice cream for me! Atom joined up and between the two of us I’m sure we tried the majority of the things on their menu. Since they weren’t closing I was able to take my time and really dive in. I’m making you sick just reading this, I can tell.

We finally left but only because it was time for a NYC Metblogs meetup. Drinks were had, schwag was handed out. It was awesome, especially since my old sorta-roommate Wendy came out who I hadn’t seen in about 10 years. Once that broke up half the folks went for food, and Wendy, Luke and I headed over to Brooklyn to meet up with Bre and the NYC Resister posse to task Maker Bot with some reproductive tasks.

NYC Resister scheeming

That was exciting even if not entirely successful, though excellent steps were taken in the right direction. More scheming and plotting, and then back to the city with a stop off at Atlas again to pick up a stack of brownies bring back to LA for Tara. And also some cake for dinner. What?? It was Oreo chocolate chip, you just try turning that down. A few hours of sleep, an early flight, and one more lightning NYC trip under my belt. Like usual the list of people I hoped to see but wasn’t able to was just slightly smaller than those I did, but that just means I need to go back again soon.