Sunday, June 29, 2008

Triple A sAAAturday- Alife, Ali's Roti House & Alabama

And by mere coincidence AAA would have been a tremendous help.

I didn't plan the A theme, it must have been G-d's way. Shit, if it was up to me you know we'd be on some Quadruple H shit. Allen, I dedicate this to you. And all the other Alphas out there.

Saturday morning, summer time, the sun's out, and the day is full of hope. The to-do list was overflowing, but it was around noon so I figured I could make it downtown to scoop those Alife Sauconys as mentioned the other day and make it uptown with enough time to tend to priorities and responsibilities. Apparently I woke up focused on the cop and trying to dissuade me would have proved fruitless. The level of addiction didn't become evident until I was behind the wheel and the fiend was in full effect.

Boom- hit the Deegan to the FDR and exited at Houston St. Located on Rivington between Clinton and Suffolk, I found a lovely spot on Rivington 30 feet from the Clinton St. intersection. Paralleled in the spot, moved forward to straighten it out and SMASH. Some fucking jerk left their Bud bottle on the street and that shit jigged up my tire like they had beef for years and it finally came to a head. Immediately I heard the SSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS of the air escaping to join their molecular buddies in the LES. Several pieces were lodged in the tire, so I removed them thinking it might decrease the mass exodus. Wrong. I knew there was a gas station on Houston and C so I made the move asap, but within a block I was riding straight rim. Turned out there was a tire shop right there on Houston between Attorney and Clinton St. aptly named Houston Tire Shop of NYC. For $35 got a used tire and was good to go.

Now I'm fully aware that this tire episode wasn't some random act of misfortune. It was the sneaker gods trying to get my attention in order to tell me to fall back. They never got my new number but the text would have read- "Howfresh- they're cool, but not worth the loot. There's some dope shit coming out this summer so play skip and we got you." The bottle was some last ditch effort to prevent the purchase. Stubborn as I am, I parked in the same spot that got me earlier and won the second time. Then I spit on the remains of the bottle and uttered some shit under my breath.

Alife is a rather sophisticated boutique, you need to be buzzed in for entry. After all the clubs that have fessed me over the years it feels good to finally get behind the velvet rope. Walked in, saw the young dude that helped me with the Adidas a while back and asked for the blue and greens in a 12. Out they came and the war within began. They're cool, but not great. Royal blue's my shit but I need a green pair of kicks. The $110 is doable but for a pair of vintage Sauconys? At least have an air bubble or light up or some shit. Damn son, what should I do? Plus the greens run a little bigger. Will the toebox crease and be more prone to the dirt line? Do I need these? But they kind of fresh. Should I just get one? Which one? I need green but royal is that piff. Walked out with both pairs hating myself. As of Tuesday night, the more I look at them the less I like them. They just look really dated and plain. The photos made them look really good- the way they laced them and had the tongue out. Maybe it's me. I don't think it's the guilt or the disgust. I genuinely believe that the aesthetics aren't that pleasing. By the way, they're limited to 200 pairs. Now I love them. False.

So between the flat and the internal deliberations, the clock jumped a couple of digits and all that brand new day hope and butterfly shit was quickly turning sour. I would like to take this time to applaud myself for exerting some self control and not getting a milk shake at Gem Spa on St. Mark's and 2nd Ave. It wasn't the healthy option being that I hadn't eaten lunch yet. I can be mature at times. Skated north and still had one non-necessary item on the not so important to-do list, hit 4U on Allerton Ave. to see what new fitteds they got. Now that they're closed on Sunday, Sat. is the only option. Always stocked with the treats, the new NCAA joints are fresh. Peeped this Alabama joint that had an elephant and "Bama" below it in burgundy and we formed an instant connection. Plus it's fun to say Bama. Full disclosure, I had no clue the elephant was Bama's mascot- just knew about Crimson Tide. I'm CUNY fam, Hunter Hawks. Fuck all that big school D-1 shit. NYC has professional sports. Who needs NCAA.. You know I had to take her home. This elephant puts Fat Joe's to shame. Keep your eyes out for these NCAAs. NHL New Eras splashed and these will do the same.

Knocked out part of the list and it was food time. Since I was on White Plains Road figured I'd do the Yardy route. Wanted more than a patty so I kept driving, looking for that perfect spot. And then it hit. Ali's Roti Shop on the corner of 234th and WP. It is very uncommon for me to explore north of 233rd, but that is going to have to change. I never had roti before, but was somewhat familiar with it. A West Indian burrito if you will. Walked in and ordered the chicken roti. Asked if I wanted it wrapped, I nodded of course, like I knew what I was doing. The menu had some crazy sounding shit- pholourie, dhal, channa, bussup shot, and other Trinidadian delicacies- but I kept it simple. Next time, and there will be a next time.

For $5.50 you get a dumbell's worth of grub. Shit was heavy- weighed it when I got home- that make me a weirdo?- and the roti topped out at 1 pound 7 ounces. Roti is similar to a wrap or tortilla and made of wheat flour. It can be filled with a variety of choices. The chicken roti consisted of curried chicken over a spread of soft potatoes. The only problem I had was that the chicken was attached to bone. You're eating this thing and all of a sudden you crack your tooth off a chicken bone. These West Indians must have some strong teeth. The bottom photo shows the bones top left. It was too big to eat by hand so I got out the fork and knife and went to work. The chicken was delicious- a mild West Indian curry, not too spicy at all, with tender fall-off-the-bone meat. The roti is pretty bland, a minor sweetness that complements the curry perfectly. It is soft and easy to pick apart in order to sop up the curry sauce. Later I noticed that there is an option for boneless chicken for an additional 75 cents. A nice option but I think I'd still have to use utensils based on the size of it. Eating it like a burrito is a great shoulder work out though. Getting jacked eating roti. Oooooh.

The A Itinerary:

Alife Rivington Club
158 Rivington St. betw. Clinton and Suffolk
Mon-Sun noon-7 pm

2557 White Plains Road at Allerton Ave.
Mon-Sat 11am - 8pm

Ali's Roti Shop
4220 White Plains Road at 234th St.
Mon-Thurs 10am - 8:30pm
Fri-Sat 10am - 9pm
Sun 11am - 7pm


evan said...

Go with the G.O.A.T. roti which is always the curry goat. Bones are easier to work around and a strong taste to stand up to the roti, itself.

buckemdown said...

I just want to thank you for letting us take a peek into that demented mind of yours. The war that wages in your head over a pair of sneakers is more entertaining than the battle scene in Braveheart.

And as of today I'm making sure to never fuck with a West Indian - having to pay extra in order to get bones removed from your "burrito" so you don't crack your teeth, or worse choke to death, might be the most gangsta shit I've ever heard.

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