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October 28, 2020:

THE LAST OF JERRY’S DELI

Bruce Kimmel Photograph bk's notes

Well, dear readers, Jerry’s Deli is no more as of Friday.  Yes, you heard it here, dear readers, my regular haunt, the place I’d go to for a meal at least three or four times a week, a place where I was close with all the wait staff and up front people and the manager, a place where I had countless meetings and made countless deals, is no more.  Yes, Covid, or the mishandling of it, did them in, just as it’s done in a ton of smaller businesses, including several restaurants on Ventura Blvd. from Studio City to Sherman Oaks.  And I think there will be many more.  But I take the loss of Jerry’s very hard, just because it was my comfort place, as it was for so many other folks.  I’m going to try to get there today or tomorrow, because I think Friday will be impossible.  It was never about the food at Jerry’s – although what they did well, they did really well.  They had the best matzoh ball soup anywhere.  Their chicken tenders were always great as were there other soups.  Their cobb salad was also the best and all their dressings were my favorites – best ranch, best 1000-Island, a good Caesar – they did Mexican food surprisingly well, their Philly cheesesteak was a favorite of mine to order, as was the grilled cheese with bacon sandwich and their great patty melt.  Their skinny fries were the best.  Their chili was the best, and I loved my chili, cheese, and onion hot dog and the chili, cheese, and onion omelet, or just the cup of chili.  I loved the matzoh brei and their turkey sandwich.  The only fails for me were the pastrami and corned beef – they weren’t bad but weren’t the equal of any of the great delis.  Their onion rings were also tops and their bagels and cream cheese were great, too. Yes, everything was too expensive, but I always felt it was worth it because I felt valued.  I’ll miss my Saturday breakfasts there when she of the Evil Eye comes – that was a ritual of mine, as you know.  Mostly I’ll miss the smiles when I came in, miss Ritchie and Monica and Monica’s sister and the rest of them.  I’ll miss seeing all the regulars.  I’ll miss meeting and making new friends, like D.C. Fontana and her husband.  So, let me just close in saying that it takes a lot for me to hate something or someone, but I HATE the people who mishandled this pandemic and sorry that includes the governor of California and the mayor of Los Angeles who, if they had any conscience, would have this on their heads – but they don’t, they don’t care.  Farewell, dear Jerry’s Deli – you will be missed by the likes of me and many others.

Yesterday was pretty much a yuckilicious day from start to finish and all points in between.  I got nine hours of sleep, so that was the high point. Once up, I immediately had to deal with stuff, one thing after another, mostly having to do with the Kritzerland show.  One person learned something wrong and so we had to get that taken care of, one of the group number people still hasn’t gotten us his video – it was due on Sunday.  He got a cold and has been in bed since.  I’m told I’ll have it this morning, but it’s put us behind because the group numbers are very complicated to assemble.  And the constantly changing weather has wreaked havoc with my allergies and trying to keep my voice strong.  And I found out that the actor I wanted for project one who has not been doing anything for eight months, is suddenly filming a TV series because everyone and everything gets to do THAT, but Jerry’s has to close.  So, that actor is out of commission until next March, shooting out of town.  So, that was not a happy thing and I’ll now have to figure out who else would be good for it.  And the whole damn day was like that, one annoyance after another.

I did enjoy my three hot dogs – two chili, cheese, and onion, and one mustard and onion – all in, a bit less than 800 calories.  I got some work done on project one and I’m probably only an hour away from finishing, which I’d probably do after finishing these here notes, but I have to listen to the master of one of our upcoming releases, a two-CD set.  So, finishing will be a today thing and I will finish it. Then I can set about with the major futzing and finessing of it.  I also finished the first set of liner notes.  After a while, I’d pretty much had it, so I sat on my couch like so much fish.

Last night, I watched a motion picture on Blu and Ray entitled Alfred Hitchcock’s Rope.  It’s probably the Hitchcock film I’ve seen least.  Of course, one wishes the transfer were better, but it’s not.  The film is interesting on certain levels, but it just never quite works, mostly because Hitchcock removed one of the primary tools that he knew better than anyone – editing.  The film is basically nine edits – each ten-minute reel edited together, so that the film appears to take place in one long take.  It just doesn’t work because every ten minutes the camera has to close in on someone’s back to hide the edit.  The actors are very good – Farley Granger, John Dall, and James Stewart, but in the end it’s a hat trick and I think the film wasn’t successful because of it.  But without any technology and with the behemoth Technicolor cameras and sets that had to split apart on a moment’s notice, it’s amazing they could actually pull it off.

After that, I did a quick run to Ralph’s for some apples and grapes and I got two Healthy Choice frozen dinners, just because they looked good and were super low in calories. So, because I’d had less than 800 calories, I tried one – 280 calories.  Some chicken pasta broccoli in marina sauce that was not bad at all.  Then I had an apple and got some pleasure from Mr. Szell – a superb Grieg and Schumann piano concerto with Leon Fleisher at the piano, a wonderful Dvorak New World Symphony, and a potent Prokofiev symphony five.  Just incredible and sound is very good.  Then it was time to write these here notes.

Today, I have to be up by eleven at the latest, I’ll do whatever needs doing, which will be a lot.  I have to approve some track stuff for the Kritzerland show, I have a couple of notes on the master, then depending on how I feel, I may go to Jerry’s for food for the last time – if not today, then tomorrow for sure – or I’ll eat here, then I’ll hopefully pick up some packages and mail, then I’ll come home and if I’m feeling up to it I’ll take care of some important stuff.  After that, I’ll move on to hopefully finish project one. Then I’ll watch, listen, and relax.

Tomorrow I’ll do whatever I haven’t done today, and Friday and the weekend will be Kritzerland show stuff and gearing up for the show, and of course there’s Halloween, although I’m not giving out candy this year, unless I leave a bag of it outside.  I’ll keep the light on if I leave a bag and off if I don’t.  And we’ll have a new month, too.

Well, dear readers, I must take the day, I must do the things I do, I must, for example, be up by eleven, do whatever needs doing, approve track stuff, give notes on the master, I’ll eat, I’ll hopefully pick up packages and mail, maybe take care of some important stuff, hopefully finish project one, and then watch, listen, and relax.  Today’s topic of discussion: It’s Ask BK Day, the day in which you get to ask me or any dear reader any old question you like and we get to give any old answer we like.  So, let’s have loads of lovely question and loads of lovely answers and loads of lovely postings, shall we, whilst I hit the road to dreamland, sad that we’ve had the last of Jerry’s Deli.

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