NYC: Of Cupcakes and Kebabs

Ali and I just met.

Technically, I stalked his exquisite photographic skills while still on the Face, when he tagged my girl Yasminah. Flipping through his photos gives the impression of watching candy come to life and I was riveted.

I was also crazy enough to send him a Face message detailing my creepy stalking behaviour and asking if he would like to be my friend so that I could be creepy, only slightly more out in the open about it all.

Photography is his “hobby”. This “hobby” has landed him gigs with the likes of Valentino (the designer, not the Italian gent down the street from your grandparent’s old place), and so really…his eye behind a lens is quite sophisticated.

Tonight we met face to face over one hell of an amazing combo plate of grilled chicken tikka kebab, beef tikka kebab, and beef kebab (one ground, the other pieces) courtesy of Afghan Kebab House (@ 764 9th Ave).

Have you ever had Afghan cuisine? I had not until this evening, and suffice it to say that if I could, I would make a hat of their meats, picking at it over the course of a day, never going hungry. I would also dump all of their rice in a handbag, scooping out handfuls to chase the hat meat. (Pray this solidifies my sexy in your eyes, Reader.)

Please add this resto to your list of places to eat when you are here next. And while you’re at it, strike completely from this list Magnolia Bakery.

Night before last, I had a cupcake from Crumbs Bake Shop on Lexington, so the taste still fresh. Magnolia, compared to Crumbs, can be boiled down to the following reality: whereas the former uses nothing more than sugar and food dye as base for their icing, the later uses real and true and live ingredients such as cream cheese for theirs. More importantly, there is a hint of spice to the cupcakes at Crumbs, as opposed to the straight taste of cake mix at Magnolia.

There is no comparison what-so-ever. It’s Crumbs who takes the cake all the way to the finish line in this instance; their baked goods will make you a better person. I promise.

So, uhm…essentially, I have consumed an approximate 12,000 calories today. Lucky that NYC is built for walking.

(Again: a thank you to Ali for the wonderful dinner and hilarious conversation, and a ‘looking forward to meeting you next time’ to Arlette.)

Additional notes:
* I purchased a Panthers Football t-shirt and nearly capsized in the store.
* This is the only American city where men decked out in thousands of dollars worth of suits, choose to then top them off with baseball hats. We have agreed that they probably remove said hats upon entry into the workplace. But still, it’s really all kinds of NYC-specific awesomeness.
* We are near 80 blocks from ‘Ground Zero’, and so 2 blocks from the ‘Ground Zero Mosque’. Ha ha.
* Unlike the British male (notwithstanding Jason Statham and all pro footballers), the American male has thighs uh-plenty. These thighs are not shy, greeting you at every corner and sneaking up on you in the most unexpected and welcome ways. Well done, USA. Well done, indeed.
* I went in search of (any, though preferably The Guardian) international newspaper this a.m., as I am constantly tripping over the horrific USA Today. Here’s what went down at several locations:
“Hi. Do you carry any international newspapers?”
“Do you carry any newspapers?”
Please recall that we are – as Laurie puts it – in The City That Nearly Financially Crippled The World.
No newspapers.
Is it any surprise…?

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