When I was growing up, New York City bagels were a "thing." You just couldn't get anything even approximating one once you left the boundaries of the city. People continue to act like they're still a thing, but by now Noah's and Einstein's and similar chains have made their way across the country, and while they're not anywhere near as good as an H&H Bagel straight out of the oven (I used to live a couple of blocks from the factory and walk over for a fresh bagel with cream cheese and lox on cold mornings, and oh my godddd), they're certainly acceptable. Even delicious.
But still: not the same. And since I don't have a solid bagel place anywhere within a twenty-minute driving range, I just don't really eat them very much anymore. This is obviously a shame.
Then my friend Alisa told me that she makes her own bagels. I mean...who does that? That is an insane thing to do. (I actually consider any bread-making an insane thing to do, since - as you may recall - I am oh, so very bad at it.) So she said she'd show me how she does it, and now...well, ok, I'm not going to make these myself, because I am wayyyyy too lazy and impatient for a recipe that involves yeast and waiting. But anytime someone wants to make them for me, I'll be right there, cream cheese in hand.