A Corner Confluence
Written by Bwog Staff
Barack Obama’s Columbia years are again the subject of a lengthy profile in today’s New York Times. Bwog correspondent CML had a revelation about a particular paragraph.
“Mr. Obama arrived in New York in August 1981, at age 20, from Occidental College in Los Angeles. According to his memoir, he passed his first night in an alley near 109th Street and Amsterdam Avenue, unable to get into his apartment. The next morning, he bathed at a hydrant alongside a homeless man.”
We like to bitch and moan about Barack Obama’s weird reticence toward his time here at Columbia, but the more important point here is that very same intersection where the young Barack slumbered is currently the site of the 109 Gourmet “Crack” Deli, home of the storied Spicy Special. For what it’s worth, the otherwise completely inconsequential crossroads of 109th and Amsterdam is also mentioned in the J.D. Salinger story “The Laughing Man,” as the place where the narrator is picked up by the bus to be taken down to cavort on thesporting fields of Central Park with his youthful companions. Now, whenever I indulge in the disgustingly delicious Special, I’ll imagine the spirit of the fledgling Obama, bright-eyed and bedraggled, ruing the day he left California and sublimating his sorrows in processed turkey and arcane cheese.
Oh, and I hear there’s another Crack Deli up around 123rd and Broadway, but you can only get one type of crack there as opposed to two at the original location. Obama, though, always seemed like more of an Adderall guy to me.
Tags: barack obama