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Last summer, Tim was house-sitting for his friends over in Greenpoint. I can't remember the exact day, but I went over to see him and we worked on this one. I should've brought the old Wacom pad, but instead we did most of the coloring with a roller mouse. After working for so long with the pad, going back to the mouse was tricky. We had a lot of fun though.
The best part of this one is the giant orange "C" in the upper left-hand corner. Last summer, New York City decided that they were going to start issuing letter grades to all of the restaurants in the city. You could get an A, B, C or you got closed down by the Health Department. As you have probably guessed by now, the Cafe Loup was issued a "C". The craziest part about it was that we got that grade for having two cats in the basement. I'm not sure if I have mentioned them before, but their names are Coco and Felix (also known as Blacky) and they lived at the Loup for years. Coco was a big hit with late night bar customers because she would come upstairs and lay on the bar, lick ice from a plate and everyone would be so happy to see her. I personally didn't really like her because she never caught any mice. She would just lay on the bar and lick ice. Felix, on the other hand, kept the restaurant rodent free and was an all-around cooler cat. The Health Department could care less that these two cats were not only beloved by most of our regulars, but also kept the place free of mice. They cited us on that and some other small things that they had always overlooked and posted the "C" in our window. This horrified people. I'm surprised we survived the summer. Tourists stopped coming in, even some of our regulars stopped coming in; which was stupid because it was the same place they had been coming all along. But, the grade certainly scared a lot of people away. We ended up getting rid of the cats and having to pay massive fines to the Health Department of New York. Don't worry, we gave the cats to a couple people who work at the restaurant, so they found good homes. Well, one of them did; the other one lives in a questionable environment, but that's just me being snarky.
To me, the whole grading system felt like a scam to raise money for the city. I would see "A's" on the windows of the dingiest, nastiest, little restaurants in Brooklyn, and here we had a "C." The Health Department had always given us a hard time, but now we were harassed monthly by them; always threatening to shut us down. It was a stressful summer for everyone at the Loup, but we all survived. The "C" turned into a "B" and eventually an "A" after thousands of dollars in fines, new refrigerators and considerable worrying from our owners. The grades on windows mean nothing to me now after that whole thing. The funny thing is, I have never seen another "C" on any restaurant since we had ours. I think they actually made it up so they didn't have to shut us down. That would be pretty sweet of them, but I know that isn't true; it would, however, make the whole story slightly funnier? Maybe not.