Medha Imam: In a city
that never sleeps, bodegas, carts, and diners are routine hot spots
for late-night eats. But one 24-hour
joint in New York City stands out as a sacred site
for all things junk food. And it’s been
there for decades. Its name? Ray’s Candy Store. Customer: This is a staple
of the Lower East Side. Like, this is an
awesome place to, like, just come after work, just grab a ice cream, you know. On a cute date or something. Customer: It’s, like,
it never really changes, so it’s kind of
like this timepiece. Employee: It’s almost like
an oasis for people here. It holds the community
together a bit. Medha: We’re here at the
heart of the East Village, at Ray’s Candy Store. Ask anyone in the neighborhood. If you haven’t had Ray’s for
some late-night munchies, then you’re really missing out. Ray’s serves deep-fried Oreos, fries, soft serve, and ice cream. So, we’re gonna take a look inside, see how it’s made, and meet the legendary Ray himself. Step into Ray’s Candy Store and you instantly
travel back to the ’80s. The narrow shop is splattered with a collage of Ray’s snacks, pictures with celebrities and friends, news clips of high praise, and, of course, lots
and lots of junk food. Ray Alvarez: We sell everything. Cigarette, beer, fried Oreo,
french fries, chicken, green cards, anything
you want (laughs). Medha: That’s Asghar Ghahraman, widely known in the
neighborhood as Ray Alvarez. Ray came to the
United States in 1963 after abandoning the Iranian navy, jumping off a ship that
was docked off of Virginia. Without any papers, Asghar
adopted a Puerto Rican identity and worked odd jobs at restaurants until he scrambled enough
money to buy a store. Ray: So, since then,
I am Ramon Alvarez. Medha: Ray’s Candy Store
has now been serving late-night munchies
in the East Village for over 45 years. And Ray, who is now 86 years old, works the overnight shift, waking up at 4 in the afternoon to run his shop until
the next morning. Ray: I work seven days a week. I work from 4 o’clock
afternoon till next morning. No day off, no vacation. Medha: At first, the
candy store sold only egg creams, coffee,
and french fries. But with the rise of
rent prices each year, Ray added new items to the
menu to make ends meet. Ray: I like to make
things that people like. I enjoy it when they are happy. That’s my reward. Medha: But diversifying
his menu wasn’t enough. In 2010, Ray faced
increasing pressure to close down his
shop, as rent tripled. Members of the local
community stepped in and started a crowdfunding
campaign to keep Ray’s open. With an elevated
social-media presence and local financial support, Ray’s Candy Store was saved. Ray: People came and
they donate money. They help me “save the Ray,” you know, every block
they had the music, “save the Ray.” Employee: People just
want to come and support, and they care about Ray, and they see that
he cares about them and he puts, like, real
love into his food. Ray: Hershey, this is my
favorite thing in the world. Hershey bar. Yummy. Customer: So, the reason I
actually came to Ray’s is because Anthony Bourdain came to
Ray’s in one of his episode, and that’s why I’m here
to try the egg cream. I’ve never had egg cream,
I didn’t know what it was, so it’s my first time
trying that, but yeah. Medha: I just walked across
into Tompkins Square Park, and I’m about to try
Ray’s deep-fried Oreos for the very first time. I’m really excited because
I’m a big fan of Oreos, and I’ve never had it deep-fried, so let’s just see how it is. OK, which one do I pick? I like this one. The one with the powdered sugar. Ready? (crunching) Oh, my God. This is heaven! Customer: My favorite thing
is the fried Oreos, yeah. They’re magical. Customer: Cheers. (crunching) Customer: Mm. Mm, good. Customer: Pretty good. Customer: It’s really good. Customer: You finished
the whole thing? (laughing) Medha: With a newly
painted storefront and his East Village family in tow, Ray and his candy
store are here to stay. Ray: No day off, I had,
1955 I had one day off. I got drunk. Yeah. I had my day off.

How Ray’s Candy Store Became The Most Legendary Shop In NYC For Late-Night Munchies | Legendary Eats
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100 thoughts on “How Ray’s Candy Store Became The Most Legendary Shop In NYC For Late-Night Munchies | Legendary Eats

  • September 16, 2019 at 1:09 am
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    Ray is the cutest old man I have ever seen

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  • September 16, 2019 at 1:12 am
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    Okay but I love how he is still using the old school cashiers 😍❤️❤️

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  • September 16, 2019 at 1:13 am
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    Aww he’s so cute!

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  • September 16, 2019 at 1:13 am
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    Looks dirty

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  • September 16, 2019 at 1:13 am
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    Why did this make me cry?

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  • September 16, 2019 at 1:28 am
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    "I like this one the one with the powdered sugar"

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  • September 16, 2019 at 1:32 am
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    Wish I had known about this place when I was last in New York

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  • September 16, 2019 at 1:36 am
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    If Ray dies……

    It’s time for a crusade

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  • September 16, 2019 at 1:40 am
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    4:37 the red head is kinda cute 😳

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  • September 16, 2019 at 1:54 am
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    Me: oh have you heard of Rays deep fried ore-

    Josh dun running from 3,000 miles away

    josh: WHERE

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  • September 16, 2019 at 2:00 am
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    ❤️🇮🇷

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  • September 16, 2019 at 2:01 am
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    No offense, but fried oreo sounds … Blergh ….

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  • September 16, 2019 at 2:10 am
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    What a Legend! That's how you leave your mark on the world🔥

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  • September 16, 2019 at 2:14 am
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    Immigrants really do make America better. 💖💖💖

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  • September 16, 2019 at 2:22 am
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    ❤️❤️❤️

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  • September 16, 2019 at 2:29 am
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    This guy would be the old man from Up’s brother

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  • September 16, 2019 at 2:39 am
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    Im doing the 2000 subscriber challenge help ME PLease

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  • September 16, 2019 at 2:44 am
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    What a legend

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  • September 16, 2019 at 2:47 am
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    I met ray one night. Such a kind and genuine person.

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  • September 16, 2019 at 2:47 am
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    Bless you, Ray (*´꒳`*)
    You make the world a warm and welcoming place, it is an honour to have known you even in this video

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  • September 16, 2019 at 2:51 am
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    I loved how he eats the Hershey bar

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  • September 16, 2019 at 2:52 am
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    He took one day off back in the 1950s and got drunk. God damn it must have been one hell of day to never take another day off in his life. I want to party with Ray!

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  • September 16, 2019 at 2:53 am
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    I went to new York to go there and I got to say I love the fried Oreos!! It feels good making people like Ray happy!!💜💜💜

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  • September 16, 2019 at 2:54 am
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    ;~;

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  • September 16, 2019 at 2:56 am
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    Anything you want?

    How about 100Million$ cash?

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  • September 16, 2019 at 3:05 am
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    Now this is what i call jUnK fOoD

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  • September 16, 2019 at 3:14 am
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    He should get a wife and work together in the shop as a cute couple.

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  • September 16, 2019 at 3:14 am
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    Suck a hard working man who doesn’t let age stop him from doing what he loves. I love in nyc, I will definitely be stopping by sometime soon

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  • September 16, 2019 at 3:15 am
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    This is so sweet!!!! ❤️❤️ He's so cute. He only deserves happiness!! 😊😊❤️❤️

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  • September 16, 2019 at 3:18 am
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    This is one of the most wholesome videos ever. I wish you the best, Ray!!

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  • September 16, 2019 at 3:20 am
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    Well here comes a deportation 🤡

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  • September 16, 2019 at 3:23 am
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    4:01 that one piece of dandruff pisses me off so much

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  • September 16, 2019 at 3:23 am
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    That's so awesome awesome old man Ray

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  • September 16, 2019 at 3:23 am
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    Can I adopt Ray

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  • September 16, 2019 at 3:27 am
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    🙁

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  • September 16, 2019 at 3:29 am
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    3:18 ok how can anybody not love this dude! The whole story is so wholesome and heartwarming

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  • September 16, 2019 at 3:30 am
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    this guy is so sweet, and he finds the happiest things in the most simple things. the joy that he gets from serving the community is just amazing, and the joy that such a simple thing like a hershey bar brought him just brings so much happiness into my heart.

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  • September 16, 2019 at 3:31 am
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    I must visit it in my lifetime

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  • September 16, 2019 at 3:43 am
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    An example for what illegals should do work hard and become legal

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  • September 16, 2019 at 3:45 am
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    God bless Ray. I wish I could just sit down with him and just eat Hershey bars and talk about life.

    Reply
  • September 16, 2019 at 3:48 am
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    He’s so whole some and adorable🥺❤️

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  • September 16, 2019 at 3:49 am
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    This is the kind of people Trump wants to deport? No thanks, keep him please

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  • September 16, 2019 at 3:49 am
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    He deserves everything🥺🥺

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  • September 16, 2019 at 3:51 am
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    I can’t WAIT to go to New York 😍😍😍😍

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  • September 16, 2019 at 3:58 am
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    Anybody else notice that she said "Deep fried oreos, french fries, soft serve, and ice cream". Does she not realize that soft serve is ice cream?

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  • September 16, 2019 at 4:03 am
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    that narrators voice pissed me off

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  • September 16, 2019 at 4:05 am
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    He reminds me of my grandma they have the same personality

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  • September 16, 2019 at 4:08 am
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    THIS MAN IS SO PRECIOUS may he continue to prosper for many years to come

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  • September 16, 2019 at 4:08 am
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    0:30 is it just me or is that
    Scarlet Johanson

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  • September 16, 2019 at 4:14 am
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    I would go there but it's too far from where I am.

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  • September 16, 2019 at 4:17 am
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    The prices are higher than kids at a club at night

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  • September 16, 2019 at 4:26 am
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    Watching his tiny face squish while eating a Hershey's bar 🥰🥰🥰

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  • September 16, 2019 at 4:29 am
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    WHY HAVE I NEVER HEARD OF THIS SHOP? I RECENTLY GONE TO NYC

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  • September 16, 2019 at 4:30 am
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    this is so wholesome

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  • September 16, 2019 at 4:33 am
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    Lmfao at 1:23 he says he has green cards?🤔😂

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  • September 16, 2019 at 4:42 am
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    That sweet man made me want to cry

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  • September 16, 2019 at 4:44 am
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    Ray's candy store

    The place where you go to rot ur teeth with sugary treats!

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  • September 16, 2019 at 4:44 am
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    Does no one notice the white thing in the girls hair

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  • September 16, 2019 at 4:50 am
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    Secret to longevity is having passion for what you do. God bless him. 🙏💗

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  • September 16, 2019 at 4:50 am
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    What the hell is an egg cream

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  • September 16, 2019 at 4:54 am
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    "Save the Ray" This was so heart warming

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  • September 16, 2019 at 4:55 am
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    This has nothing on the Game Sphere. It's spherical…SPHERICAL!!

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  • September 16, 2019 at 4:58 am
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    Why am i crying?

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  • September 16, 2019 at 5:00 am
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    My aunt made me fried Oreos a year or two ago but there better with ice cream

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  • September 16, 2019 at 5:01 am
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    When he said his favourite thing in the world is the Hershey’s bar I swear my heart just melted ❤️ bless him

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  • September 16, 2019 at 5:01 am
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    God bless this cute, old yet young man!!! I wish I could go there but u don't live in NYC so EVERYONE WHO CAN GO AND BUY SO THAT THIS MAN AN GO FOR A DAY OFF!!!

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  • September 16, 2019 at 5:12 am
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    Can we talk about the amazing HAIR this man has at his age?!

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  • September 16, 2019 at 5:13 am
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    He makes me so happy omg

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  • September 16, 2019 at 5:21 am
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    All you cookie cutter 9to5pm Off on the weekend people need to learn a little lesson from unlce Ray here,. He had a day off too, it was in 1955.

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  • September 16, 2019 at 5:30 am
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    Ray is a legend

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  • September 16, 2019 at 5:30 am
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    Now i need to go and bless his sweet soul

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  • September 16, 2019 at 5:35 am
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    I’d love to share a fart with ray on a winter night

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  • September 16, 2019 at 5:45 am
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    He is sso puree

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  • September 16, 2019 at 5:53 am
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    This reminds me of my grandpa who passed.

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  • September 16, 2019 at 5:55 am
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    He is so precious. Everyone go make this little old man rich 😭😭💖

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  • September 16, 2019 at 6:03 am
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    What a sweetheart. ♥️♥️🥺 if I ever go to NY I’m definitely stopping in!

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  • September 16, 2019 at 6:03 am
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    No one cares.

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  • September 16, 2019 at 6:12 am
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    I’ll take you to rays candy shop

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  • September 16, 2019 at 6:14 am
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    I love Ray. I want to hangout with him everyday and see him smile omg such a beautiful and happy soul 🥰

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  • September 16, 2019 at 6:16 am
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    Deep fried oreo’s! That’s really gross

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  • September 16, 2019 at 6:21 am
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    My heart 🥺

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  • September 16, 2019 at 6:26 am
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    The way he ate hershey bar tho, so cute! Really remind me of my grandpa💓

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  • September 16, 2019 at 6:31 am
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    he’s so cute and wholesome

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  • September 16, 2019 at 6:32 am
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    This is so darn adorable 😍AWWWW

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  • September 16, 2019 at 6:37 am
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    looks unsanitary

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  • September 16, 2019 at 6:38 am
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    He’s adorable may God bless him

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  • September 16, 2019 at 6:40 am
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    Bouta go get myself some late night munchies 🙂

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  • September 16, 2019 at 6:41 am
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    Old sweet guy or not, looks to me like a gazillion health code violations.

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  • September 16, 2019 at 6:41 am
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    can i slob on the dik of the dude wit back wards hat

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  • September 16, 2019 at 6:44 am
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    “In 1955 I got one day off… I got drunk!” – Ray

    Ray! My man!

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  • September 16, 2019 at 7:12 am
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    I hate people that change their accent to pronounce something like Iranian. Say it in your mother tongue. It’s not an insult to them to speak your language.

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  • September 16, 2019 at 7:17 am
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    RIP my man Ray. I visited him last week so sad to see him pass

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  • September 16, 2019 at 7:24 am
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    When she started eating the deep fried Oreos like when she broke it in half I legit smelt that fresh deep fried dough smell and Oreos no joke! My hand is on my mouth like WHAT!!!

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  • September 16, 2019 at 7:36 am
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    he is the purest, please protect him

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  • September 16, 2019 at 7:56 am
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    Ok I'm suddenly booking a trip to NY for this

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  • September 16, 2019 at 8:26 am
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    God and jesus give him strength to continue his shop to be famous and cook some delicious food

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  • September 16, 2019 at 8:31 am
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    Please lord don’t let this man die

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  • September 16, 2019 at 8:34 am
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    Not trying to be mean but doesn’t he get like diabetes because he eats a lot of candy?

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  • September 16, 2019 at 8:37 am
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    People have done so much in their life and m sitting on couch for 10 hours watching YouTube

    Reply
  • September 16, 2019 at 9:07 am
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    Idk why this channel chooses reporters that are too close to the mic with spit in their mouth

    Reply

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