Gray’s Papaya “Recession Special” [my behind.]

Mah dogs and the moldy background.

I usually don’t wake up very early on a Monday morning. I used to. Keyword being used to. When you spend your weekends with your SO, you tend to waste time doing what they usually do, and that entails watching them murder zombies on some insipid little game (it’s Counterstrike for the curious). Blah. Sometimes it’s fun, but then after a while watching a bunch of grown folk talk like little boys (and little boys talking like they’re big bad hoodlums), it gets a bit tiresome. The good news is that I managed to knit half a square (or so I think, measuring is a bit wonky with yarn, you straighten it out a little bit and it adds a half an inch. Then when it shrinks, then it’s half an inch shorter. Confusing much?) so yay to that. I can keep it up and I’ll make two come this month. Gold star! So in feeling quite adventurous, I ventured out into the city. And by the city I mean Manhattan. Really should’ve said New York though, because Manhattan is what comes to “everyone’s” (read: tourists and the rich) mind when you say the city. Feeling quite peckish, I went to Gray’s Papaya.

Never really tried their dogs, but apparently everyone says it’s the “bee’s knees”. Gave it a shot, and I was actually quite disappointed. Not that I put it up on a pedestal or anything, but to be honest it just didn’t feel like anything close to being “bee’s knees”. Call me a bad New Yorker.

Their “Recession Special” is $4.95 (with no tax, hurray) for two hotdogs (with any choice of toppings) and a medium drink (of your choice from their signature papaya juice to pina colada) is a bit pricey. What recession are they basing this off of, the non-existent one in Bahrain? According to my SO, back when they were advertising their special a few years back (when President Obama was still a wee Senator from a state called Illinois) it was only “2 and a quarter” which I guess meant $2.25. Now that was 2008. Considering that the economy is still in a cesspool, the price seems to have jumped up rather nicely for them.

I can understand that the prices of rent is horrible in Manhattan, but don’t call it the recession special if the prices keep going up. That tactic works well for Big Oil and the MTA, but not for a popular food place. I do have to give them credit though, the one on 6th Avenue has taken to selling dollar slices of pizza to edge in the competition of the $.99 Pizza place down the block.

Asides from the price of the food, the food itself wasn’t exactly spectacular. Although the franks were quite snappy, it tasted like any regular hot dog you’d get in New York City. It did bring back some nice memories of me getting a dollar frank from this nice Russian gentleman that used to situate his cart outside of the PC Richards on Rockaway Blvd. You never really wanted to know what was in that water, but it was a nifty little snack to get when you come out of the library and venture home.

I ended up getting mine with onions only and had a pina colada drink. The drink was pretty good, but felt a bit watery. Maybe if it had some liquor in it it’d taste more substantial? Who knows. Pretty much it’s just chalking it up to having the “Gray’s Papaya” experience every New Yorker, granted, should have. Whether or not it’s memorable or enjoyable is well YMMV.


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