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The Best Things to Do in New York, Second Edition: 1001 Ideas

The Best Things to Do in New York, Second Edition: 1001 Ideas - 'Caitlin Leffel',  'Jacob Lehman' I’m not going to act like I read this thing cover-to-cover. Actually, I’m not going to act like I even opened it. My wife and I were in New York City recently, and she planed all our sightseeing. I find we have less fights if we just do what she wants all the time. Haha, seriously, I’ve been to the City a few times before, and was pretty laid back about our itinerary. She used this book to make our plans, and things worked out well. Here are some examples:1) DiFara Pizza (1424 Avenue J, Brooklyn NY 11230 ) Never heard of them before, but the book recommended them highly. It’s just a little hole in the wall pizza place, but Holy Smokes! That was good pizza! I’m not exaggerating… thin and crispy style crust, not that thick bready Pizza Hut junk. We got pepperoni and green olives as toppings, and DiFara used those fat green olives (Cerignolas, I think) with a robust flavor. *flavorgasm* ...True, we did have to wait in line for almost an hour, but the book warned us about that. I had something to read, so no worries. 2) The Hungarian Pastry Shop (1030 Amsterdam Avenue, between 110th & 111th Streets, Manhattan )This is a little out-of-the-way little neighborhood café (to the extent that anything can be out-of-the-way in Manhattan) that happens to make Hungarian-style pastries. The décor was not fancy, but the pastries were delicious. My wife loaded up on exotic-sounding things, and wrote all their names down somewhere. The menu includes familiar things as well… I had a slice of cheesecake, for example. It isn’t in this book, but if we hadn’t gone to that pastry shop, we never would have discovered this bizarre statue one block away: If you can’t quite make it out, it’s a giant crab (are you reading this, Michael?) with a moon-faced lion on his back. On the moon-faced lion’s back is a tiny giraffe which is being attacked by a really angry-looking naked angel who is ripped like Schwarzenegger in his steroid days. Natch. That’s what I would have put in that park too, if they’d have asked me.3) 2nd Avenue Deli (162 East 33rd Street between Lexington and Third Avenue)Plenty of room to sit down in here. That was an issue at anther deli we went to. Oh, and the food was delicious. I actually saw one patron have part of his meal stolen by another diner. I guess what he was eating looked so good, they just couldn’t help themselves: It’s sort of like a mugging… a food mugging. New York can be a violent place. Check out this street smack-down if you don’t believe me. (Naw, that was just staged. Karen's really a sweet person.)Oh, before I forget: the portions at Second Ave Deli are VERY GENEROUS!!! 4) Rockefeller Center Do you want to take your family to show them where the evil Rockefeller family spins their webs of lies and connives to enslave the rest of humanity, after they start World War III? In the winter they have a beautiful skating rink here, and a giant Christmas tree. We were there in May, and they had the place decorated with flags. When my wife stands between the flag poles like that, doesn’t it look like we’re behind bars, looking out? That’s no accident.5) The Metropolitan Museum of Art This hardly needs any introduction, but I’m just making the point that the book does have some more mainstream and non-food-related things in it. This is me in front of one of (Tiffany’s founder) Charles Lewis Tiffany’s original masterworks: 6) Bookstores- lots of ‘em (no pictures, sorry)We only went to a few, but as I recall the book had a decent selection to choose from.One other thing I liked about the book was it gave good directions, and told what the nearest subway stations were. I like when guides encourage tourists to get on the subway and mix with the locals. Contrary to popular belief, you can get on the subway with a bag from the Metropolitan Museum of Art and an Ellis Island t-shirt, and start taking pictures of the inside of the subway, and you won’t look like a tourist at all. We did it, and nobody suspected a thing.So overall, I’d say this was a pretty handy book for anybody visiting New York City. Of course the best thing you can do in New York is visit friends, and all the better if they are cool GoodReads celebrity friends, but if that isn’t an option, the book is good too.