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“‘Sobaka’ means ‘old dog,’” he says. “Because that’s what I am now.”

“And why is it also the ‘Restoran Pomegranate’?”

“That refers to a Georgian toast. ‘I wish you as many friends and lovers as the seeds of a pomegranate.’”

Gotta go. Ulp. Can’t believe it. I’ve spent $35.62.

“Carla’s gonna kill me,” I mutter.

“Just remember another of our toasts,” Mark says. “‘If a woman is wrong, ask her for forgiveness.’”

“And if you’re wrong?”

“Run like hell.”

The Place: Kafe Sobaka/Restoran Pomegranate, 2469 Broadway, Golden Hill, 619-297-4007

Prices: Fried cauliflower in spicy breadcrumbs, $2.87 (small), $5 (half-plate), $7 (full plate); khinkali (dumplings with beef and lamb), $2.87, $6.75, $9; egg pâté, $2.87, $7, $9; potatoes, onions, mushrooms fried in duck fat, $2.87, $7, $10; kuchmachi (chicken livers), $2.87, $7, $10

Hours: 5:00–10:00 p.m., daily (till 11:00 p.m. Friday–Saturday)

Bus: 2

Nearest Bus Stop: Broadway at 25th

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EdwardH June 17, 2013 @ 10:15 a.m.

Should have known this was not normal SD place when our bill came inside a copy of Five Plays by Chekhov.

The owner pointed out a painting near the front window by Russian illustrator Mikhail Zlatkovsky. See The Art of Incredible Mikhail Zlathovsky and his cartoon gallery.

Mikhail (Misha) worked as art director of the Reader 20 years ago.

Reader senior editor Judith Moore had gotten a call from Art Spiegelman, creator of Maus, who found Misha driving a cab in New York City. Moore hired Misha for the Reader.

He did most of his art direction from a place in Coronado near the golf course.

When he heard I gave away my Navy officer's sword to drifter, he told me his father was Soviet general in WWII and Misha would never give away the father's mementos of Stalingrad. Before he left San Diego, Misha came to my door with a present - a Navy officer sword.

The owner of Sobaka asked me if I have heard from Misha. I said no. The internet has him back in Russia.


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