Tea and Pie, Don’t Pass Me By
by Gary Belsky


Evil alley or enclosed court in ancient city—Union or Milligan St.

It was at this restaurant that a friend from the kibbutz—Mark, who we called The Pimp for reasons I cannot remember—told a story that has never left my memory. It was about a fight he’d had a few years prior, he and a few guys, with local Arab men (or boys or toughs or thugs or who knows what; The Pimp was known exaggerate). It was a nasty fight, as The Pimp described it, made nastier by the fact that it occurred in the alley outside of “Tea and Pie, Don’t Pass Me By,” before the dessert place existed.

I’ll never forget that fight—or The Pimp’s retelling of it, anyway—because during the course of the altercation The Pimp is alleged (by himself) to have removed the eye of one of the Arab men/boys/toughs/thugs with his thumb. An eye. Removed by The Pimp. With his thumb. The Pimp gouged out the eye of another human being, who was alive and presumably 100% aware of what was happening. It’s a frightening image to begin with, but the story resonated doubly with me because I had removed human eyes before myself.

About the Author

Gary Belsky is editor in chief of ESPN The Magazine, where he has worked since 1998. An adjunct professor of journalism at New York University, Belsky is the author of several books. He also lectures frequently on the psychology of decision-making to business and consumer groups around the world. From 1994 through 1998, Belsky was a regular commentator on CNN’s Your Money and a frequent contributor to Good Morning America, CBS This Morning, Crossfire, and Oprah; he continues to appear on local and national radio and TV, commenting on sports, economics, business, and personal finance. In 1990, he won the Gerald Loeb Award for Distinguished Business and Financial Journalism.