Rodney hates getting the question of where we met.  Because in his mind, the office is the least cool place to meet your future wife.

I, on the other hand, disagree.

It was 1999 when I first laid eyes on his tall and lanky frame.  I was fresh out of school, eyes wide open and exhilarated about moving to New York City.

If you really want to hear about uncool stories, you could rewind the tape 9 months to my Senior year in college, when I could be found holed away in our campus library, applying to a slew of fine institutions like Lehman Brothers and Bear Stearns. In my free time, when there was any, I’d relax in my room watching my two favorite movies on repeat: Wall Street and Working Girl.

Recognizing that I may have just lost half of my readers with this story, let me try another tactic:


How awesome are these two?  Tess McGill knew how to mix style and comfort in her own unique way.  And Gordon Gekko was ahead of his time, introducing cell phones to the Hamptons, and creating innovative insider trading practices that are still in use today.  

PS, do not Google images of “Working Girl” when your children are around.  I learned this the hard way.

But things didn’t exactly work out the way they did in the movies.  I did get the job, but my living arrangements were, hm, how do I say this without triggering my parent’s PTSD– not quite as safe as I’d hoped?

Wanting my independence and desperate to have a place of my own, I found a West Midtown one-bedroom apartment where I was mugged outside my building, and someone was held up in my elevator several weeks later.

But, there is a happy ending!  Amidst the long workweeks and duck-and-cover living arrangements, I found my husband. (My fictional movie audience cheers!)

And it was romantic, dammit.  Like my hero Tess, I spied him one day at the office, and strode up with all the confidence I could muster, whispering into his ear “I have a head for business and a bod for sin. Is there anything wrong with that?”

Sadly, what actually transpired was something more along these lines:

ME: “Hi, I’m Jessica Fiorillo (firm handshake).  Can you tell me what you’re working on as I’d like to get up to speed.”

RODNEY: “Hi, I’m Rodney.  Nice to meet you.  I’m modeling earnings projections in advance of the Blockbuster IPO next week.”

ME: “Cool.  Want to get lunch?”

And so it began.  A relationship built on a shared love of lunch, conference room cookies, and 11PM barbeque delivery from Virgil’s in Times Square.

Hard to believe we’ve come this far together. A happy life with three kids and a dog.

And the best news is that I finally get to whisper sweet nothings into his ear.  For example, just this morning, I softly suggested to him: “your breath smells like salami and alcohol, go brush your teeth.”

So to you, my husband, my love, my unpaid therapist and occasional bank collection agent: Happy Father’s Day.

And to make this weekend even more special, I bestow upon you a blast from the past: Virgil’s wings.


Virgil's hot wings
Yields 20
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Prep Time
24 hr
Cook Time
40 min
Total Time
24 hr 40 min
Prep Time
24 hr
Cook Time
40 min
Total Time
24 hr 40 min
  1. 20 chicken wings
  2. 1.5 ounces Virgil's dry rub
  3. 3 ounces butter
  4. 3 ounces hot sauce
Dry rub ingredients
  1. 11 tablespoons sweet paprika
  2. 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
  3. 3 tablespoons chili powder
  4. 3 tablespoons dried onion flakes
  5. 3 tablespoons dried garlic flakes
  6. 3 tablespoons dried parsley flakes
  7. 2 tablespoons Kosher salt
To prep the wings
  1. Mix the dry rub ingredients together and sprinkle enough over the wings to cover them. You may not end up needing all of the dry rub- I used about 2/3rds of mine. Save the remaining and use for another day- for chicken, beef, etc.
  2. Set them in the fridge to marinate for 24 hours.
To make the wings
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper.
  3. Remove wings from marinade and place on the sheet pan.
  4. Bake in the oven for 40 minutes.
  5. While the chicken is baking, melt the butter in a microwave safe bowl and whisk in the hot sauce, stirring until combined.
  6. Pour the hot sauce into a large bowl.
  7. Remove from the oven and toss the wings with hot sauce and butter; serve hot.
  1. These were pretty close to the Virgil's wings, but if you want the real deal, you'll have to head to Times Square yourself.
  2. I served my wings with a blue cheese sauce. Just mixed some sour cream and plain yogurt in a bowl, added some garlic powder, salt & pepper, and dried oregano and mixed in crumbled blue cheese. Added a hint of acid with some squeezed lemon juice. If you want a runnier blue cheese sauce, just thin the whole thing with some milk.
Feed me dearly
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