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    Born to Run by Christopher McDougall - (K) Humorous and thorough history and science behind ultrarunners and long-distance running
    *****
    Long Walk to Freedom by Nelson Mandela - (K) An autobiography covering his childhood, years as a freedom fighter and incarceration. Inspiring and informative
    *****
    The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafón - (K&T) A mystery set in Barcelona involving an old book, a failed writer and murder
    *****
    Lush Life by Richard Price - A Lower East Side tale of cops, drugs and drinking
    ***
    The Chinese by Jesper Becker - (K&T) Modern history of my peeps, from the cultural revolution to the many failed economic and social attempts to move the country forward
    ***
    Setting the Table by Danny Meyer - A "how-to" on hospitality and business acumen by the restaurateur behind such NY institutions as the Shake Shack and Union Square Grill
    ***
    The Audacity of Hope by Barack Obama - Obama lays out what is wrong with the current government and how, vaguely, to change it.
    **

A Shake Shack Kinda Day, or Diesel Is Not Always Innocent

With the in-laws in town (highlights to come), we decided to show Mom and Dad Sale some of our favorite spots.

Enter David. The man that will turn a visit to Shake Shack into an event. He texted me in advance (2 days in advance to be exact) to inform me that he and Molly would be going to Shake Shack on Sunday, and that Diesel and I should come with the in-laws. I was fine with that, though a bit apprehensive, given my recent lack of self-control (per previous post). But Shake Shack DOES have some of the best burgers in the city, so I had to sacrifice myself for the sake of my in-laws.

As we all got in line, the anticipation started building. up Dad and I decided to share the chocolate shake. And then I started screaming in Diesel’s ear that I actually needed ONE and a HALF burgers because they are rather small. Well, not really, but if you’re going to pig out, why not go all out and feel guilty only ONCE instead of twice, as it was the case during my doublenasty McWeek?

We sat in the chairs, right in the middle of Union Square, a little piece of green in the middle of the skyscrapers, contemplating the view of the city. It was, as David calls it, a Shake Shack kinda day. With our burgers in hand (Molly only got cheese fries due to her own Shake Shack (Heart)Attack episode), we started getting ready to fill our rolls (as Lauren calls it). I finished my first burger and started on my half burger. It was then that David asked: “Are you REALLY gonna eat one and a HALF burgers?” It wasn’t so much of an accusation as a display of true incredulous curiosity. I said, “yes of course.” And finish it I did.

I did feel like a pig because after all, I was eating more than both women and one man. I was kinda tied with Diesel and Dad, which I guess makes us the pig-couple and Dad a tourist. But then I realized I was eating more than Diesel even, considering that on top of the food, I was sharing the milkshake with Dad. So Dad and I were eating more than ANYBODY at the table. Not a title I felt proud to share, much less to hold at all. Dad finished his second half at around the same time I did, and offered the other half to Mom, who declined (at least SOMEBODY in this family has some self-control, so there is hope for our kids).

Molly was in her corner watching how many fries I was eating, also out of genuine beffudlement after reading about my immense capability to inject junk food into my system. As always, I finished the whole meal, and as guilty as I was, I didn’t feel sorry I did it.

As we got ready to go home, Diesel got up very slowly, and with his hand on his tummy said: “I feel soooo sick!” As he was taking the trash out, I realized that even though Mom had not eaten her half, there was no leftover half to be found. So WHO, WHO had eaten the second half?

DIESEL!!!!!! That’s who!

While all eyes were on me, Diesel quietly and sneakily stuffed his face and did something that even in the deepest abyss of greedy nastiness I would have NEVER done myself.

Good job! Diesel wins.

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