Carmine from the block! The Screecher joins the party!

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I’m madder than an alligator at a crocodile convention over the fact that everywhere I turn these days I see another block party — and I’m not invited to every one!

Look, you all know the ol’Screecher can crash a party with the best of them, having learned the craft back in the day when single bottles of scotch, rye, and gin were put on every table at the wedding — then miraculously disappeared into my Aunt Lucy’s giant purse by the end of the night, but that doesn’t mean I’m still doing it. These days, it’s harder for me to get in unnoticed thanks mostly to my oversized frame and the fact that somebody has to hold the door for me when I zoom in atop Tornado.

In case you’ve been living under a rock for the last 40 years or are one of those bearded hipster dipsters who just moved here from Texarkansas, a block party does a few things: first, it costs a bundle to the people on the block that participate in it. Second, it rightfully ostracizes those on the block that choose to not participate. And third, it’s a blast for freeloaders like me who just show up and eat.

That’s why I’m happy to give you this week’s Screecher pro tip: it’s far better to be invited to a block party than to throw one.

I, of course, was fortunate enough to receive an invitation from the Dimino family’s block party in Dyker Heights, so my lovely wife Sharon and I were really looking forward to the coming abbondanza, because we knew that Steve and Rosabella wouldn’t disappoint out in front of their new house.

Really unfortunately, Sharon couldn’t come because of a joint attack of eczema and gout, but I was there talking to old neighbors from Bay 50th Street, Steve’s mom Lorraine and sister Aunt Maryann.

And I gotta give a hats off to Rosa’s sister Maria and hubby Pasquale and their young teen sons that just landed from Spain — beating my Access-A-Ride trip from Bay 50th Street by a couple of hours. What? that doesn’t surprise you?

Rosa and Maria’s mom Maria sat next to me, feeding me from every dish on the table. Steve was filling my cup with sangria, soda, and beer (no, not all at once! What do you think, I’m some kind of gavonne?) and I couldn’t be happier.

That reminds me: remember when, before there were walk-in health clinics and doctors on call or having a family doctor that actually visited sick patients, or fire department emergency service, or even before 911, there was your neighborhood drugstore doctor whom you went to for all your ills, ailments, an immediate first aid? For me, the best way to stop the bleeding was with a banana split with homemade whipped cream, nuts, cherries, and sprinkles that he would make at the soda counter (that any self respecting drug store had to have).

In my teens I worked at such a drugstore on the corner of Mott and Canal streets for Dr. Tony.

Nowadays, Rosabella at Walgreenbaums is my family’s Marcus Welby — available to us anytime day or night!

Oh, before I forget, let me tell you of a most unique kid that Steve and I were watching shooting hoops into Steve’s portable basketball apparatus that’s a hernia-in-the-making to move. The kid was two basketballs high and throwing underhanded. As long as he could reach the hoop, he would sink it every unbelievable time. I will now use a word that is so overused and so abused today, but is the only word that would do justice for what we continuously witnessed — amazingable!

I’m happy to salute those mentioned in this column: Rosabella and my good friend Steve — always outstanding hosts and forever great friend and loyal patients. Incidentally, Steve is also my computer doctor on call 24-7, too.

If you want to have some fun in your life get invited to someone else’s block party, where you can meet your hard-working elected officials like state Sen. Marty Golden, the only one that showed up at Rosabella and Steve’s block party. In next week’s column, will be on to the celebration of my milestone 79th birthday. Same time, same place.

Screech at you next week!

Read Carmine's screech every Saturday on E-mail him at
Updated 11:48 am, January 16, 2019
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