So here we are snowed in yet again.   This winter is torture, it seems like we get hit with a snowstorm at least once a week and when it doesn’t snow its 15 degrees out.  It’s cold, its stressful, and just very depressing.  I know I have been cranky because of it.  Most of you that know me know that traditionally I love the winter.  I love when it gets dark at 5pm.  This year is different and I am with the rest of you – I AM SICK OF IT.  Ben Franklin once said: “There are only two things that you can be certain about and that is Death & Taxes.”  Well he for got three things:

  • The Sun will rise in the East
  • The Sun will set in the West
  • The Seasons will change

So I am here to tell in 24 Sunrises and Sunsets the clocks Spring Ahead and it will it will no longer be dark at 5pm and 12 Sunrises and Sunsets after that, it will be spring.   So we have some things to look forward to.  So as the ultimate pessimist that I am I am very excited because in a very short time from now it there will be no snow, warmer weather, longer day light and most importantly THE ROOF AT ARETSKY’S PATROON WILL BE OPEN.  You really cannot understand the joy I get when I look out my office window down onto the Roof and I see Miguel, Scott, Jessica and the rest of the crew getting ready for a busy night.  I look at my watch and smile because I know its ‘TINI TIME”.  I reach into my humidor and take out some Avo #2s, put my jacket on fix my tie and put my hat on.  I get an extra jump in my step as I walk out on 46th Street to cross to open that Red Door.  When the door opens I am welcomed home by the wonderful restaurant staff.  They greet me as if I was away for months, but I was just here yesterday.  Then I head up the steps saying to anyone who would listen “THEY NEED AN ESCALATOR IN THIS PLACE’ I make it to the top and open the door to the Roof.  I have arrived on The Roof, a little bit of Heaven in the middle of Midtown Manhattan.  I go to my spot at the Bar my Jack Daniels on the Rocks is waiting for me along with my ashtray.  I cut my cigar and light it.  Take a sip of my Jack and begin my 45-minute vacation.  In a short time Pally’s show up, then the Pigs in the Blanket, Onion Rings, French Fries, and Radishes.  It truly is a magical place.  There is a reason it is number 1 on my top 10 list, but in truth is the #2 place should really be #11, because nothing comes close to The Roof at Patroon.

So when I look at my window at all the snow coming down and know I have to go out soon and shovel it, I close my eyes and know  in 36 days until I break out my straw hats along with my spring and summer suits come and all the bright colors.  Before we know it Memorial Day will be here with the beach and BBQ and let’s not forget Seer Sucker Suits and two-toned shoes.

I know most of us hate winter, but it’s the winter that makes spring and summer so special. So keep your spirits up for THE ROOF AT PATROON will be open real soon.


Today marks the first day of Holy Week for us Sinatra Fundamentalists;  it also marks the 80th Anniversary of the ratification of the 21st amendment to the United States Constitution, which repealed the 18th amendment and the Volstead Act. So I make sure to celebrate this day every year. Whenever I bring this up,  people laugh and think it is funny because they know my love for alcohol, but in reality it is very serious. The fact that the 18th amendment was passed was an assault on Freedom. There have been 27 amendments to the US Constitution and 26 of them have promoted individual freedom. The 18th did not. How did the 18th amendment pass and the country born of individual freedom pass such a horrific law? Back in the late 19th century people (mostly Protestants) decided that alcohol was bad and should be outlawed. The Anti – Saloon League was established to rid the country of alcohol. They launched a campaign using the circuit of Protestant churches to preach the gospel according to them. They claimed that the Roman Catholic,  Irish,  & German immigrants were destroying the country with alcohol.  The Anti-Saloon League is also responsible for Income Tax (Alcohol tax basically funded the Civil War and the Government needed the alcohol revenue). The League pushed for Income Tax laws so they could attack alcohol. The first laws passed were declared unconstitutional by the Supreme Court. So the League pushed for the passing of the 16th amendment which gave the Federal Government the ability to collect Income Tax. Check your history:  the US did not have a Federal Income Tax until 1913!!! We all know of the unintended consequences of Prohibition so I won’t discuss that today.

That brings us up to today. Over the years we have seen a lot of laws passed to limit the individual freedoms of US Citizens. First we had the motorcycle helmet laws, then the seat belt laws. Later they moved to smoking restrictions (which still go on today;  some counties in California passed laws restricting people from smoking in their own home). New York City has Mayor Bloomberg with his Soda laws, they want to tax you for the amount of distance you drive. It is really getting crazy and it’s going to get worse. Politicians are using the same arguments that the Anti – Saloon League used to make the 18th amendment. Remember the words of Ronald Wilson Reagan “the most dangerous words you can hear is ‘I am from the Government and I am here to help’.” So this day is no joke it is very serious.

So today is a day to celebrate freedom, I encourage you to exercise your right as an American and have a COCKTAIL AND SAY GOD BLESS THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA!!