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Hedwig, Anna, St. John’s and Credit Card Fraud

May 16, 2014

“Jesus, this place is fucking enormous,” Simpson said.

“Nicely put,” she said. “Most of the websites I looked at called it vast, and they left out the flowery adjectives.”

“Flowery adjectives?”

“You know what I mean.”

“Hey don’t go all prude on me now, Quintana.”

“We are inside a church,” Carina said.

“Not one of yours, though,” Simpson said.

“A church is a church.”

“Tell that to the Pope.”

“Funny,” Carina said.

“Okay, fine, it’s freakin’ vast,” he said. “Now, where the hell…where the heck is Saint Saviour’s Chapel?”

“Follow me,” Carina replied.

She began striding up the six-hundred-foot-long nave crossing toward the main altar, and Simpson had to hustle to keep up with her. It was a two city block walk, like walking up Seventh Avenue from Prime’s office at Times Square and 42nd Street to 44th, and they passed what seemed like nearly as many tourists here as congregated at that famous intersection as they made their way up the nave.

This little bit of repartee is from the latest Carina Quintana Mystery, Loose Canon, in which the Cathedral of St. John the Divine in Morningside Heights plays a significant role. Laura and I walked into it this past Monday in the midst of a quick jaunt to NYC that began last Saturday, and she pretty much had the same reaction as Pete Simpson did! It’s bigger than Notre Dame in Paris, among many others (actually, St. John’s is the biggest church in the world) and you feel as though you’re in Europe when you’re inside it. Incredible stained glass, too, in both quantity and beauty.

So, what about this Hedwig, you ask? It refers to the new show on Broadway, Hedwig and the Angry Inch, starring Neil Patrick Harris (and you wondered what he was going to do after How I Met Your Mother ended its long TV run!). Seeing the show was our excuse for the NY trip and, had we done nothing else, it would have been worth the plane ride. Amazing! Maybe TWO mazings! And NPH is phenomenal. Get tix if you can.

Oh, yeah, then there’s Anna.  It seems the Costume Institute at the Met recently got a major–and very expensive and well publicized–redo, and Laura wanted to see it and the show that premiered there about designer Charles James. I tagged along, of course. The dresses were interesting and more than a little weird; James was quite unique, it seems. But all the hubbub about the Institute redo was difficult to fathom. Not a very large space, downstairs, all black. And the Anna part? It’s for Anna Wintour, whose name’s also on the place–no ego there….

Even though it’s not in the title line, we did, of course, eat while we were in NY. We’d been wanting to try Iron Chef Geoffrey Zakarian’s Lamb’s Club resto for a while, and since we were staying in the theater district and the restaurant is on 44th Street, we grabbed the opportunity. Don’t bother. Kinda cool decor, decent service, very good quality ingrediants BUT, uninteresting preparations (that sounded interesting on the menu) with little flavor. We also went back to a couple of faves, Hearth and Blue Ribbon, downtown, and both were, as usual, excellent.

And now for the credit card fraud. When we were in NYC last June, I used my Visa card in several taxis–very convenient. The day after we got back to SoBe, I got a call from my good friends at Citibank notifying me of fraud on the card. Someone had used it to buy stuff in Sweden. Okay, they cancelled the card, issued a new one and all I had to do was deal with the dozens of auto-pays, etc to which the card was tied. Fast forward to this trip. No use in taxis, I decreed! And I didn’t. But the evening we got home, another call from Citi; this time it was used in Ohio. I’m beginning to think it’s a NY thing….

So there you go. Head for NY (if you’re not already there!), get tix for Hedwig, skip the Lamb’s Club, drop into St. John”s and take in the show at the Met if you’re so inclined–after all, there are always other things to see there!





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  1. Robert permalink

    Very interesting and informative ‘post.’ Have always wanted to try Lambs Club… Will pass now.

    Robert Gittess


  2. you guys always amaze me

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