This has been first Fourth of July in more than 20 years that I stayed put in the city, and for good reason.
I made a promise to my daughter that I would take care of her precious lovable rescue cat named Harry Potter while she was in camp. Aboutfive years ago, my daughter and I went to find her a pet frog. Well, that pet frog turned into an adorable little kitten that had been abused and we rescued her from PAWS adoption center in Philadelphia. My daughter quickly named her Harry Potter.
Harry and I were hanging all weekend long because there are not too many things you can do with a cat. You can't walk them; they won't chase a ball; and it's definitely a one way conversation. So, it's basically din, din time or watch "Animal Planet."
On Saturday, after a workout I decided to go to one of my favorite spots in the city, Victor's Cafe. It's a place kind of like the bar in "Cheers." You can walk in grab a brew, catch a game, eat some really great food, hang in your shorts, chat with Victor, who is always running around making sure everyone is happy, and simply be yourself.
However, on this particular evening, my cell phone lights up and up pops the name Lenny Dykstra. Dykstra was a once an All-Star baseball player for the New York Mets and Philadelphia Philles who rose to the very top and then crashed and burned, and basically was left in ashes. He served time in prison for numerous crimes, although Lenny likes to call it a "hotel" with a different type of concierge service.
Lenny and I became friends back in 1993. Like him or despise him, he was and still is a friend of mine and, to this day, I can never turn my back on a friend, even with finding some of the stuff he has admitted to doing beyond comprehension. But being a drug and alcohol abuser will eventually take you down into the dark downward spiral with no parachute to pull as you exhausted the rip cord just one too many times.
I always felt some sorrow for Lenny. I saw him when he was clean and sober and actually found out that he had a heart of gold. I admired his passion to succeed, and simply loved watching him play baseball, as he would go through walls to win a game and, yes, the nickname "Nails" definitely defined him.
He always said to me, "I wish I had that discipline chip that you have. You see we are all built with certain chips, and I'm null and void of that one."
Anyway, here is how the phone call basically went:
LD: Dude it's Lenny, bro, I'm in town for my book tour, just released book titled " NAILS: The Improbable Rise and Spectacular Fall of Lenny Dykstra." ... M y book tour starts Sept 1, 52 cities in six months, dude, want you on board bro,
JB: Lenny it sounds like it could be quite the tour, not exactly your Septa local, but I have my daughter, need to take care of her and now heavily into real estate.
LD: OK bro....what you doing tonight?
JB: Hanging at this place called Victor's, why don't you come by?
LD: Is there place nearby where I can do my laundry. ... You know kill two birds with one stone. I have some company as well ?
JB: Dude, you're serious? Of course you are.. Ok, dude, bring your freaking laundry and we will do dinner and laundry and catch up.
So as Lenny was airing his "dirty laundry," we did catch up, and, no surprise, Lenny brought along his computer and actually came up with a brilliant real estate model, on a very complicated project I've been working on in New York.
Lenny Dyksta, love him or hate him, he is the ultimate entertainer. No w back to the local forecast:
Today: Morning showers. High 79
Wednesday: Hot sunshine 92
Thursday: Hot 90
Friday: Cooler, with sun 79
Saturday: Scattered storms 80
Sunday Sunshine 83
New York City
Today: Scattered showers and storms 87
Wednesday: Hot City 92
Thursday: Hot, hot, hot 93
Friday: Hot 91
Saturday: Scattered storms 88
Sunday: Sun, not as hot 86
Today: Scattered showers and storms. Very warm, humid 89
Wednesday: Hot sunshine 94
Thursday: Hot sunshine 96
Friday: Heat wave, storms possible 95
Saturday: Scattered storms 93
Sunday: Sunny .. 89