from My Ears Are Bent by Joseph Mitchell

Leonard Durso

While I never drink anything stronger than Moxie, I often go to Dick’s to observe life, a subject in which I have been deeply interested since childhood. This place is down a narrow street near the Brooklyn Bridge; it is one of those places with a twitchy neon sign, a bar which sags here and there, possibly because it was moved in and out of several speakeasies during prohibition, and a grimy window on which are stuck greasy cardboard signs advertising specials, such as “Special Today. Chicken Pot Pie. Bread & Butter. 35C.” There are a large bowl of fresh roasted peanuts and a bottle of mulligan on the bar, and the tile floor is littered with peanut hulls and cigarette ends and bologna rinds from the free lunch. The cook uses olive oil for frying, and he burns a lot of it during the day. On damp days the…

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