Monday, August 18, 2014
The Perfect NYC Cookie - Black and Whites
The other day I was on my way out of a local diner and saw a row of black and white cookies. They are a staple in any New York bakery window. My daughters enjoy them. In case you haven't had one, they are a spongy shortbread cookie covered in equal parts vanilla fondant and chocolate fondant. It struck me that this cookie is very symbolic of the duality that is New York City.
The peace of anonymity, yet the loneliness of never being noticed.
The sale of knock off designer goods on the same block where the originals are designed
The tranquility of our parks surrounded by the clamor of traffic down our avenues.
The intense pursuit of fitness and health, all the while being the home to the finest and busiest eating establishments that owe part of their reputation to butter and cream.
The Broadway stages that feature both refined and bawdy shows that are both equally entertaining.
The towering buildings that symbolize prosperity by day and yet provide a place for a homeless man and his dog to sleep at night.
The existence of a pharma company that creates a drug to curb nicotine addiction in the same neighborhood as the company that creates the addiction.
The enviable fish market next to waters you may not instinctively want to fish in.
The existence of a community that wants to "buck the system" and those who have created the system.
We even have two baseball, two basketball, and two football teams.
Every city has it contrasts. But, I argue that the contrasts within my city are some of the starkest. And I find sweet irony that it can all be summed up in a cookie. Even Jerry Seinfeld referenced the cookie on "Seinfeld: "...the black and white cookie. I love the black and white cookie. Two races of flavor living side by side in harmony. It's a wonderful thing isn't it?" It is no wonder that you can find Black and White cookies in nearly every diner, bake shop and Starbucks in this city. The city that enjoys a little vanilla with its chocolate. Or should I say a little chocolate with its vanilla?