April 20, 2007 | BITE: My Journal

Cold Stone Euphoria

Plane Jane ice cream gets a makeover at Cold Stone Creamery.             Photo: Steven Richter

    After last night’s riotous excess at Daisy May’s BBQ, today seemed like a perfect moment to begin a modest campaign of restraint for spring.  I started early with half the usual amount of Uncle Bob's Five Grain oatmeal.  That’s how I diet from time to time: smaller portions, just one taste of everything white, a forkful or two – sometimes it takes two to be sure it’s as awful as it seems - and then pass the plate on to my companions. 

    Then a young woman from Warner Books, now officially Grand Central Publishing, picked me up in a town car.  As I circled Manhattan signing copies of the just-out paperback of Insatiable, I thought how nice to just skip lunch.   

    Suddenly, there are ice cream boutiques everywhere. When did all those Baskin-Robbins land? I wonder as we whiz by.

     “There’s a Cold Stone Creamery around the corner,” my escort notes, as we move in on Barnes & Noble, Astor Place. It is fate.  How have I managed to avoid Cold Stone Creamery, with its cookie and candy fold-ins, 'til now?  I guess I have never walked by one before. We wait in line as a pair of clerks custom design for the duo ahead of us – clearly savants.  The options are dizzying.  I order the "Coffee Lovers Only" with roasted almonds, Heath bar smashings, and caramel.  “Can you make it chocolate ice cream instead of coffee?” I ask. Yes, of course, yes, it’s about hooking you, however.  Even the smallest size seemed to involve a huge mound to start with. I watch as the bored counterman smashes in nuts and chunks of candy bar and stuffs it all into a cup. Not one to let guilt color a moment of sensuous joy,  I determine to feel supremely entitled as I take a few bites… “I’ve had enough,” I lie half way through, digging around in case I’ve left some Heath bar behind.  And then, just like that, a superior human being. I toss half in the garbage can.

    The moral of the story is, you can’t start a diet on Friday.

2 Astor Place 212 228 4600, and various locations throughout Manhattan.