The Coffee Shops of Red Bank

I received a couple of responses to “Coffee Test” (I Hate Me,Pt, 300,002 11/2/09) from two New Jersey expatriates. Miss Klutch asked if No Joe’s was still in business and the answer is a resounding “I think so”. John McBain asked if Mein Cup was still in business and went on to complain about their burnt beans (not to be confused with Burts Beans, coffee flavored lip balm). I’m sorry to report that Mein Cup is out of business but a couple of people who worked there just opened up Chairman Meow’s Little Red Cup, a kitten and communism themed coffee shop. Other recent coffee shops in the greater Red Bank area include; Jitter Gulch, The Caf-Fiend, The Gab and Spill, and The Topless Cup, which is more of a strip club that serves coffee. Also Turn Your Head and Coffee just opened up in the hospital and scheduled to open soon in the mini mall is the science fiction themed Bean me up, Scotty. There are also 27 Dunkin’ Donuts in a 3 mile radius of Red Bank

My Presidential Hair



Millard Filmore

my president hair

My presidential hair


martin van buren

Martin Van Buren

There’s an old saying that goes something along the lines of “Any little boy can grow up to be president of the United States”. Well my parents bought into that and I was going to be presidential material. Unfortunately at an early age my parents discovered they were wrong. My political speeches as a six year old were laughable, one memorable speech at the VFW hall comparing the escalation of the war in Viet-Nam to bad halloween candy (especially Bit-O-Honey) almost got us thrown out of our neighborhood. There was also the milk money scandal in third grade so my political future looked bleak. Then one day my mom noticed that my hair looked like Kennedy hair and there was still hope for their presidential aspirations for me. When I lost the election for class president in fifth grade to a portrait of Thomas Jefferson we all knew that politics were over for me. However, my parents continued to compare my hair to the presidents. “You’re looking a little James Polk-ish there, time for a haircut young man” my father told me once, and another time “Who do you think you are, Chester A. Arthur! Trim those side burns”. One time while taking acid I experimented with a stove pipe hat and a neck beard, I was thrown out of the house for a month. So today my wife suggested that maybe it was time to get a hair cut and when I looked in the mirror I realized that my presidential hair forefathers were Millard Filmore and Martin Van Buren



I Hate Me, Part 300,002

Coffee Test
I was at work and went to Starbucks for a coffee. While there I was asked if i wanted to take a taste test for their new instant coffee called Via, it was intimated that a prize might be involved for taking the test. My thinking was more time there, less time at work and if there was a prize involved all the better. The woman poured two cups of black coffee and as I was about to drink the first one she said, “I just brewed it so it’s fresh and hot” and hot it was, molten hot to be precise. I just took a tiny sip and Aaaaaggghh! “Well how how did it taste?” Stealing a phrase from Ralph Wiggum, I said “It tastes like burning”. “OK, try this cup it’s not as hot.”  Liar! If by not as hot she meant the difference between eating 5 lit matches and eating 10, then yes technically it wasn’t as hot. “Ok how was that one? Which one tastes better?” I couldn’t tell, all I could taste was scorched tongue, but I lied and pointed to the first cup. “Here’s your prize” It was a dollar off card and a free Via instant coffee packet. I mumbled an unintelligiable “thanks” and went back to work with what felt like a sock on my tongue.

Origin of Halloween Candy

bum teeth

aka "Bum Teeth"

Candy Corn
Candy Corn was invented in NYC during the Great Depression. Candy scholars have pinpointed it’s exact birthplace to the Christian Stout Hearted Men’s Shelter in Hell’s Kitchen in 1931. The shelter run by swedish firebrand Father Stern Oak was being vandalized regularly by local children. Having no luck with the police in stemming the vandalism, Father Oak decided to take matters into his own hands. Most of the homeless men who drifted into the shelter were in bad physical shape and a good many were losing their teeth. Father Oak methodically collected all the lost teeth and stored them in an empty pickle jar. By the time Halloween rolled around he had a full jar and he would have his revenge on the local pint sized vandals. He bagged the discolored rotten teeth in little wax bags and gave them out to trick or treaters. The rotten teeth had grown soft and the natural sugars in them made them sweet. The children loved this new treat that they called “Bum Teeth”. When it was revealed by a disappointed Father Oak that they were actually the teeth of homeless men, many enterprising young hooligans went after the destitute with a sugar jones and a pair of pliers. The rash of tooth violence against the impoverished reached alarming proportions until the Addams Candy company started selling artificial “Bum Teeth” that they called “Candy Corn” which were made from ground up horse teeth and sugar paste. The recipe was later changed to dandruff and sugar.

Because You Asked

In my last blog (I Hate Me, Pt. 119,014 10/26/09) I let slip about me being an author of mystery novels. Well, from the amount of mail I’ve received (Ex: “Please tell us more! I for one am excited about your secret noveling career!!” from Stim Cronine , and this one “Wow!!! You’re a novelizer!?! I’m intrigued, more info please!! From Tin Kronen) I’ve decided to let the cat out of the talking bag (as it were) and tell you about some of the books I’ve written. The Red Apple Mystery series feature a detective for the ages, Hiram “Red” Apple who is equal parts; Sherlock Holmes, Don Rickles, Socrates, Ladybird Johnson, Johnny Appleseed, Pope Pious IX, and Fran Tarkenton. I introduced “Red” in the leading mystery/farming magazine, Dirtnap! with a short story entitled “For Whom the Windmill Blows”. It was a hit and started America’s love affair with “Red” Apple. So much so that Remainder & Sons publishing company  wanted to get in on the “Red” Apple gravy train and signed me to a publishing deal. To date I’ve written roughly 890 Red Apple Mystery’s. Most of these books don’t make it to fancy “Book” stores with their roofs and shelves. Instead they are directly distributed to dollar stores, prisons, and flea markets. Some of the better selling titles have been Blood Harvest for the Green Grocer: A Red Apple Mystery, which was about the cutthroat world of illegal rhubarb harvesting, and Death Rode a John Deere: A Red Apple Mystery which was about the high stakes dangerous world of chickpea price fixing. Anyhow, They’re all frightfully exciting and if you like farming and intrigue and mystery and violence, I suggest you seek them out.

I Hate Me, Part 119,014

After two days of not going to Foodtown, we needed apples so back I went. Foodtown had some shitty apples, it was like mush with an apple skin around it. Now as many of you know from my many apple based novels (including my most recent The Quantonium Gambit: A Red Apple Mystery featuring farming detective Hiram “Red” Apple) that I’m a red apple man. Not so much green apples, they look unripe and I’ve heard they’re full of poison. Anyhow to make a long story even more boring, I went to Whole Foods for apples. They have a good selection of apples (red apples) and although they’re a little pricey, where else can you get apples the size of pumpkins. It was also dinnertime so I went to the hot food carved meats section. They seemed understaffed and the guy in front of me was amazingly indecisive. Here’s the set up, it was about 7:30pm and they didn’t have a lot left; roast turkey, macaroni & cheese, carrots, mashed potatoes, and for some reason chicken wings. The guy was asking for things that weren’t there, like he would shame them into magically producing what he wanted. “mmmmm roast turkey…. Yeah, you don’t have any of that pork loin do you…. Yeah, that’s good stuff” “No sir, we ran out. I’m sorry” “Yeah… that’s too bad ‘cause that pork loin was real good…You don’t have any pot roast there do ya.” I left before I caved in his head with a soup ladle. So I went to the hot food buffet, Whole Foods usually has a good Chicken Tikki Masala. Unfortunately by this time of the night the serving dish for the Tikki Masala was just sauce. Restock the Tikki Masala pond with chicken or shut it down! I also had to pick up some decaf tea for my wife. I know that tea is a now a super specialized item but all I needed was basic Lipton’s decaf. Carrie had bought a decaf tea that was apple cinnamon flavored that tasted like flavors of food that astronauts would eat (“Try this space goo, it’s should taste like apple cinnamon” “rrrrRRRRaaaaaLLLLffffkoffkoffkoff…uuuuhhhh” “well, we have to tweak the flavor nodules a little”). Whole Foods doesn’t carry anything as pedestrian as Lipton’s. Maybe they bleach their tea bags, or filter their tea with orphan tears, I don’t know why. So it was kind of a workout finding regular decaf tea. Yeah, this rutabaga vermilion tea doesn’t have caffeine, but does it taste like tea? How about pine needle and offal tea? I finally found some normal decaf and the long national nightmare was over.

Around Red Bank

crab1crab2This misspelled rowboat has been advertising boats for “Crabing” for as long as I can remember. Recently I noticed that someone added a second “B” that’s a stick on letter and barely readable from the road. I wonder was it a spelling obsessed prank or the owners were too lazy to repaint the boat and just said “here’s your goddamn B”. I think it makes a great thing even better.


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