May is a month of great importance to me, it’s my birthday month. I was born on May 30th the actual day that Memorial Day actually used to be celebrated on. I lived in Brooklyn New York and every year my parents would take me to the Memorial Day Parade on Eastern Parkway and tell me the parade was for me. I thought it was great to have my very own parade with tanks, jeeps and trucks all slowly moving past me. Soldiers from all branches of the military holding flags and marching in step while the bands played the theme songs of the Army, Navy, Marines, Air Force and Coast Guard.
When I was forty my party was a “Roast” and all of my friends and family had their turn to have a little fun at my expense. One by one they stood up and told stories about me or my family. Some funny some touching. One of my friends stood up at his table to relay a story about a conversation he had with my mother several years prior to the party and he thought it was the perfect time to repeat it to the assembled group. He began, “Howie’s mother once told me that if you have nothing nice to say about someone, don’t say anything” He then sat down! The laughter still rings in my ears.
For my 60th Birthday, Terri hired a yacht large enough to host sixty-five people at a sit down dinner complete with DJ, videographer, open bar and birthday cake. We rode up the Intracoastal from Pompano Beach to Boca Raton and back on the last cool night of the year before the summer heat in Florida. The whole party was a surprise to me and one that I will always remember because a couple from Boca got so drunk they ended up sleeping in their car after trying to find their way home unsuccessfully. The video is priceless.
Why am I telling all of these stories about my birthday? Well I thought it may be a small distraction from the COVID-19 crisis we all are facing in some way or another. I think the month of May in this year will represent the re-birth of our industry in some small way as Governors begin to roll out their plans to open their states safely and quickly. There is no one size fits all plan for all fifty states and no universal plan for every city within a state but relying on the scientific numbers from the experts we can hope and pray they get it right.
In the May issue of Today’s Restaurant News www.trnusa.com
we have several stories that outline the steps for a restaurant to open and succeed in this “New World” Those owners who are willing to see the changes needed and adapt technologies to help them will flourish while others will disappear. It’s the way of the world.
Let’s all celebrate the month of May with a parade of businesses opening again and the beginning of the formation of our new normal while remembering those who lost their lives to this plague making May the true memorial month.