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Sometimes I get an itch. I can choose to ignore it, or I can do something about it. I used to have someone I could call. She was a one stop mobile pharmers market, at it so long I had thoughts of cutting her open and counting the rings. And the East Village was where I had to meet her.

It was hardly any skin off my back, seeing how her and Farhad both lived at first and first. Along with Little Frankies, Lucien, the punjab spot, and the crown jewel Katz deli.

I remember first meeting Carla, Dougie introduced us in the evening, and earlier that day he introduced me to JG Thirwell. It was when both Dougie and Farhad lived on 1st street and that day was their block party so everyone was out. Thirwell had two bands Feotus and Steroid Maximus that I listened to as a kid. Carla had a handful of Percocets that I intended taking with me to Katz. Figured they would nicely compliment a pastrami on rye with an order of fries. The pastrami at that place is like crack, I don’t know how they do it, but it’s worth every bite.

Aziz bitched about the cost of a good Pastrami sandwich at Katz, but when you look at the going rate for quality “old Jew York” deli meats, it’s par for the course. A pastrami sandwich at Katz is sixteen dollars, so is Pastrami Queen up at 78th and Lex. Fine and Shapiro and Mister Broadway are both fifteen, Eisenbergs is on the low-end at twelve dollars, and to be honest, their pastrami is just ok.

Katz also has good hot dogs, steak fries, egg creams, brisket, and matzo ball soup. I usually don’t experiment beyond those items though my mom loves the liver. Sometimes I would bring Carla in with me when I didn’t mind listening to her rattle on. White crust on the edge of her mouth, and talking endlessly and aimlessly, you could go out of your mind having a conversation with her. If I had to work on her computer I would just focus on that and everything she said became white noise. We got into an argument on the phone once and she just wouldn’t stop talking. Even after we made up her inability to shut the fuck up prompted me to hang up on her. It wasn’t anything personal, I just couldn’t deal with it anymore.

Me Farhad, Dylan and Kin all scored from Carla one night then when to Katz. Me and Farhad split a pastrami and fries, Dylan is vegan so he just ordered beer, and Kin ordered a hamburger. The waiter hesitated and said “you come to Katz and order a hamburger?”

I once came here with my mom and Niquae, and just as we sat down a tour bus unloaded a fuck ton of Germans into the place, so many that we had to share I’ll table with two of them. Niquae was a world class bitch to them, and I have no idea why I dated that girl. I think I was in denial about just how crazy she was.

I need to go there this week, but I need someone to go with, it’s not the type of place I want to eat at alone. I learned to enjoy eating pickles at Katz. Fucking thirty year old man, and for years I was disgusted by the things. However they bring you a bowl of pickles when you sit down, so at one point I coaxed myself into taking a bite.. and low and behold and liked em.

For a while neither Dougie nor I knew where Carla was. She had gone MIA, until one day Dougie told me he found her and that she was really sick. Dougie and Carla went way back, she was a big fan of David Bowie, and Dougie played drums for Iggy Pop making them natural allies.

Carla saw a dr who was going senile, and would write her a prescription for whatever she asked for. She had xanies, vics, percs, valium, etc… it was a long extensive resume, and it was clear she got some for herself too. This explained the perpetual run-on sentences, the crust on the side of her mouth, and the stories of her being so constipated she would wake up in pain from not having gone to the bathroom in several weeks. She mentioned doing so much dope that she hadn’t shat in almost a month.

I remember eating with her at the deli to score and catch up, though I don’t remember what she had, maybe she just had a coffee? I had her over to my apartment once to fix her computer. While there I got a picture of her with her hands covering her face, and for some reason I always felt it was an appropriate pose. I should call her, maybe she’ll wanna go to Katz.