This past summer ,my wife,daughter,and myself schlepped from our Long Island home to my wife's cousins home in Flatbush, Brooklyn for their annual block party. The weather was unseasonably hot and oppressive with high humidity for this late summer gala event. Our group at the house situated in the middle of the block consisted of another cousin ,their teenage kids and some invited friends with toddler age brats.
Every house on the block had tables and chairs all over the sidewalks and driveways.The block was closed off to traffic and kids were catching baseballs and footballs, hula hooping , skating on boards and skates ,and basically having a fun filled afternoon. Beer and wine were flowing freely at every table.......except ours. My wife's cousins who insisted they would supply all the food and drinks had some warm sodas sitting in the sun,not even in an igloo of some type to stay cold. Pitchers of diluted lemonade and some home made drink that looked like pond scum adorned our table. I was upset that my wife did not allow me to bring along a case of beer as she felt it would be unnecessary.
There were grills at most homes with succulent looking barbecued chicken and ribs and shrimp, even steamed lobsters,and humongous overstuffed heros everywhere I looked. Platters of cold cuts and cheeses were plentiful and some delicious looking roast beef caught my attention at the neighbor next door.... as well as the neighbor..in a hottie little outfit. Potato and macaroni salads which I love appeared wherever I looked except of course at our "sanctuary".
I stared at rotten deviled eggs,egg salad,and tuna salad, and a nauseating tray of vegetables with some balsamic vinegar dressing. Where's the beef? There were carrots and radishes and turnips and string beans and cauliflower and celery sticks. What am I? A rabbit? C'mon guys. What's going on? We're not vegetarians...certainly not me. If not for some chocolate chip cookies and potato chips my wife brought, I would have surely starved.
Dessert? Is that what these grapes and watermelon and cantaloupe is? Where's the cake? The star attraction was the prune danish. A prune danish? For moi??
With the 95 or so degree plus heat I was sweating with not even an umbrella at the table to sit under, and the cousin's house is like an oven with no air-conditioning. Even the cat would be cooler on a hot tin roof. . No...I was not a happy camper. Dodging batted whiffle balls, poorly thrown frisbees,and getting soaked by bursting water balloons and water guns is not my idea of fun.
There were people dancing in the street as some dee-jay was playing the macarena and other music for a much younger generation than mine. How about some Beatles or Stones? A ride of some sort entered the block so kids could line up and swing upside down in a truck. Oh what joy I was missing? " Could I have another piece of prune danish please,and a paper cup?",(preferably not one with the invading yellow jacket wasps in it for my luke warm coffee.
The best part of my day as the evening wore on had arrived. I was leaving. I only had to carry two chairs about a half mile to where I had parked the car. Now I can drive home in bumper to bumper traffic for the next two hours. Hey, let's do this again real soon.