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There's a storm in my teacup!

Well, in my dollar store mug.

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The New York Nuisance is Mr. Rivers.
Standard Deviation
First of all, I must explain I also upset poor Schnitzel today. I picked up bowls to put cat food in, as so Schnitzel charges up behind me, excited for his meal. Then, I lose my grip on one of the bowls and it falls down, dropping just in front of him, and he's been freaked out since. He's been running away from me since.

I met up with goodcow today in New York. We talked about where we'd go before I travelled into the city. As the weather was awful, it allowed us to keep indoors as much as possible.

Our initial plan involved four or five destinations:
1. Nintendo Store at Rockerfeller Center, for a Duck Hunt t-shirt. We meet at Port Authority and walk there.
2. Yellow Rat Bastard clothing. We would take the subway to the first store Google Maps showed.
3. Gamestop/EB. We'd travel to find a game for Phil, which'd recently gone down in price.
4. Upright Citizens Brigade for evening comedy. We'd take the Long Island railroad to go to Penn Station, and walk from there.

So we meet up at Port Authority at about 2 and walk to Rockerfeller Center, and cannot find the Nintendo store at all. We're walking in circles and getting soaked, and can't leech any internet connection to find the exact address out (Phil had his Mac-laptop-thing with him).

Already, the day was becoming spontaneous, and I enjoy chaos. I don't know how Phil felt, but I don't think he was as happy.

So we walk towards a store affixed to the subway station, and kind of give up on the Nintendo store for a while. We both look at interesting organic drinks and go to pay for them. Phil's drink costed $3.25 and his face was one of disgust at the fee. I put my drink back on the shelf. Continuing down a path in the subway station, we found a map of the area, and charged to the Nintendo store. I got my shirt, Phil tried New Super Mario Brothers and we both were tempted by pretty things, but managed to stop ourselves from acquiring them. 

So, next step - Yellow Rat Bastard. I've been there before, but wasn't sure of its location. So, I took the logical step of using Google Maps, which shows where the store is. However, I didn't notice the part that said there were another 50+ places with YRB clothing. So, when you see where the other stores are, you realise just how far out of the way we travelled, for a store I've never been to, and we couldn't find in the rain. Instead, we walked around Queens - a borough I've never been to - and I got to see how stupid White Castle hamburgers are. I bought one, and it was tiny. The size of a postage stamp tiny. And I paid nearly a dollar for that? And they put ketchup on it, so I couldn't eat it. I wasn't considering heading back to them any time soon. We also went into a local mall and I went into my first Target.

So, the plan was jeans. Instead, we're in Target taking photos of how many toilet rolls they have, and Phil finds the peach tea he paid $3.25 for earlier, in a 4-pack for $4. He was fuming again at how badly he got ripped off initially. He bought the pack, partially to knock the price per drink down to a more respectable level. I bought a drink too, and we head to the next destination, to Gamestop and EB for Phil's game.

We go into Gamestop first. They have the game. It's at the reduced price he wanted. But it was a display box - meaning, it wasn't sealed. There was a sticker on there. It wasn't new new, as it'd been touched. Phil didn't want this one first, so we went to EB. And the game wasn't to be seen there. We walk back to Gamestop where Phil hmms about the box and asks for one without a sticker on, because the sticker will be a nightmare to take off. The clerk removes it without a flaw left on the box. And Phil is on the verge of buying the game now, until he checks the disc. Thumbprints and light scratches, from an insensitive clerk throwing the game into a cardboard cover. It was the slightest damage, but it was enough for Phil to not buy it. I never knew Phil was such a perfectionist. He'd be shocked at the quality of the discs I live with, when I buy my used games.

So, next was the Long Island Railroad. A $4.25 ticket, and the train's coming real soon. To rush things through, I decide to use cash, but only find a $20 in my wallet. Ah well, that'll give me change, at least. I forgot the machine gives dollar coins for change, and it rattles away like crazy, popping dollar coins at me for a good minute. Picking up and hoarding all the coins reminded me of being in England. I did curse when I threw the money into my pocket, to find a $5 bill was actually in my pocket all along.

And we get to the Upright Citizens Brigade for two new shows. The first was awfully bland, and the people in the crowd were only laughing when they sensed they were meant to, rather than because it was funny. It was a rather infantile performance, though - jokes about cum and shaved pussies and stereotypes about foreigners being dim. The second act was a lot better, and was called The Iron Sheikh & Friends: a group of non-WASP superheroes, fighting against bad guys including The Marginaliser and the Texas Pimp. This one had stereotypes about groups of people too, but at least everyone was getting picked on this time. Also, it was a show that was so ridiculous and farcical it was funny. I'd definitely watch that show again. Also, for those who don't know, you can get a wireless internet connection in the UCB building - the connection's name is SkyLab. I like that.

We parted company after walking up to Port Authority, and I can say I thoroughly enjoyed the day, despite failing so miserably on so many aspects of the day. Despite Phil liking to plan things, the day always gets more entertaining when we do something we had no intention of doing. The last time something like this happened, we took an abandoned children's lime green toy truck hostage, took it with us on the subway and on a bus, and demolished it in Central Park by trying to drive it down steep hills.

As for what I'm doing when I wake up later, I don't know. Maybe Garden State Plaza. Depends on if I can find someone who wants to go somewhere. I'm certainly not sitting around after a day like this. More adventure is needed, and I hope I can find someone to share it with.

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If you happen to take another stab at the Nintendo Store, here's what you need to do --

1. Find the skating rink. That should be easy enough, and you can certainly ask for directions to it.

2. Back and to the left of the skating rink is the NBC building. The giant red news ticker is a giveaway. Walk over to that, then turn left. The NBC building should now be on your right, with the skating rink back and to the left of you.

3. Walk forward. The Nintendo Store is on your right at the corner.

Not sure how long you're in town for, but if you and goodcow want to meet up with me, I'm here all summer. I have jury duty starting on Monday, but that still leaves evenings and potentially afternoons free.

The Chain Chomp soccer ball is still in the Nintendo store, and I am sure I will be tempted to go get it again.

The problem with directions is that I enjoy a bit of a walk-around to find things. I like the ambiguity of knowing something is vaguely 'over there' and discovering something ridiculous in the process of finding the destination, be it a few pennies on the floor, an amusing hobo, or another store that excites me.

I can pop into the city, and I'm lazy enough that when I do go into New York, the earliest I normally get in at is around 2. Having a day that doesn't conflict with Goodcow is tough, but I'm sure it's possible. I can take a day off of work, if necessary. So, yeah. Definitely something I want to do.

Ah. Next time I will give you more vague directions. If you haven't absorbed the previous ones yet --

1. It's really near where the Christmas tree is usually.
2. If you see the old Associated Press building (a piece of statuework commissioned for them but built into the building and thus unremovable should still be there), you're going the wrong way.
3. Kinokuniya's around there too.

Not sure what my schedule is just now, due to Jury Duty -- I could be done by Wednesday or have my time chewed up until two weeks from now. After that, I'll probably be starting work, which will hurt my weekdays but still give me time on the weekends. I'll keep you up to date on that. But yeah, let's work something out.

Hmmm the novelty with White Castle hamburgers is that you're not really supposed to eat just one -- they come in bags (or briefcase-sized boxes) for you to scarf down. And they taste better at 3 in the morning. Still, not everyone can be a fan and I'm sorry your White Castle experience didn't live up to the hype.

There's a Yellow Rat Bastard on Broadway a few blocks up from Canal St. (Chinatown), which is the store I go to every so now and then. Didn't I take you and Jamie there once...? Maybe I'm imagining things.

I know you're meant to eat lots, but I didn't have the money for lots, so I wanted to try just one, as a trial. I will probably try again at some point and ensure that no ketchup ends up in there next time.

There's Yellow Rat Bastard stuff everywhere, but I never remember the address of where exactly. This is why we ended up in Queens half-heartedly looking for it. You probably did take us in there, but I get places mixed up all the time.

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