I met my first ex-wife in The Yankee Club, but I don’t hold it against the place. For my dough, it’s the best speakeasy in Queens. To my surprise it’s not too crowded for a Friday night in the spring of 1933.
I know the knock. A panel in the door slides open, and I’m greeted by a familiar face the size of a hubcap. Fights are kept to a minimum by this broad-shouldered brute who gives me the once over and let’s me inside.
It’s a smoke-filled joint, but the three-piece band’s the greatest and singer’s not half bad. The food’s good. The drinks are too, none of that watered down stuff you sometimes get in a cheap dive. The club’s a good mix of regulars like me, and high-society types. Last time I dropped in, Babe Ruth was buying drinks for Cole Porter and his Broadway friends.
The owner, Gino is sitting at the bar in a fancy tux. He’s smoking a cigar and giving the eye to a brunette in a backless red satin dress. I spot an empty table near the dance floor and pass bombshell actress Laura Wilson, dressed to the nines, on the arm of gumshoe turned writer Jake Donovan.
I take a seat and buy a pack of smokes from Stella, a blonde cigarette girl I used to date. I tip her a fin, and she gives me a wink, so I know there’s no hard feelings.
The waiter, with an Adams apple the size of a baseball, is making his way to my table with my usual, without me asking, another reason I love this place. He sets the plate of finger food and a highball on the table flashing a smile. “Welcome to The Yankee Club.”
Thanks for stopping by to share your food for thought, Michael!