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Ran across the following item in an article titled, “25 Things You didn’t Know About Le Cirque,” in Jetset Magazine, March, 2013.

“#20. The Donald Loves… – Donald Trump has always been a regular at Le Cirque, and a good friend of Sirio. His favorite dish? The flipper.”

It was the fall of 1999, and I was dining at Le Cirque, one of New York’s legendary restaurants, celebrating my coming retirement with two associates from the Golden Arches, on the occasion of my last round of visits there with the news media on McDonald’s behalf. We happened to be seated at a table next to Mr. Donald Trump and his two male guests that evening. As I recall we had a many laughs and a marvelous meal at that magical restaurant, in it’s old Palace Hotel location.

During a stop in the men’s room to powder my nose that night, I remember hearing Trump’s two young guests, apparently financial types, standing together at the urinals, discovering that they each owned identical red Ferrari’s. How Trumpish.

I also noted that it was in 1999 that Trump, then considered a possible Presidential candidate under a Reform Party banner, was widely quoted as saying things like: “I’m very pro-choice,” and “I believe in universal health care.” He also said: “Democrats are too far left. Republicans are too far right.”

That leaves only one question about his preferences: what is the “flipper” dish he favored at LeCirque? Perhaps that is what defines him still, in 2016, as the newly presumptive Republican candidate for President of the United States.

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As I entered the 9/11 Memorial for the first time last Thursday morning, my first impression was of all the hard-hat re-construction activity still surrounding the site, all these years later. Within the memorial, security is everywhere. Then, as I approached the falls outlining where one of the buildings stood, two strikingly different impressions arose amidst the quiet and the rush of water. First, a volunteer led a group of four to a name on the rail, and he wiped away the mist covering the sought after name. The lady burst into tears, leaning over the stainless steel rail, as a young boy threw his arms around her in comfort. They had made a connection with their past. Around the corner of the pool, I then spied a couple planning to take a picture over the pool: the young women stepped back with the camera, and the man happily smiled toward her in posing, as if he were at the edge of the Grand Canyon. To these likely tourists, I imagined this was another fun and interesting outing in a lively visit to the Big Apple.  Just 12 years on, I think I witnessed the slow transition of the 9/11 site from a somber memorial to death and destruction, into a touristic park-like place. How time changes perspective.

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