Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Halloween!










I troll the internet so you can be productive. I'm also really immature, so you don't have to be. You're welcome.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Quote of the Day

"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover." -- Mark Twain



I have been lead twice to this quote today and it's not even 11 AM. This can't be just another gray, blustery Wednesday after that, now can it?

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Uh oh, I think I just grew up

I had one of those magically sad nights, Brooklyn and Broken Social Scene, the parking lot afterwards, the sounds haunting, billowing out of the spires of the Masonic Temple. It was cold, I was underdressed and shivering and we were sitting close, our knees were touching.

It was the most fun I had had with a singular person in some time, no distractions, no pretense, just us, our thoughts and our tenuous connection. One that we wanted to bridge maybe. Maybe in different ways. I can never tell what someone else is thinking, and rarely does it line up with my own.

Later in the night, after narrowly escaping the first chance to jump into something new, something old, it was that way again, familiar jokes and small noises, gentle hands and light possibilities. The moment when it could have been something beautiful and something horrible all at once. And the thoughts that would not stop.

What if all those things had never happened, what if they had but they had meant nothing instead of everything? What if I had never been so vulnerable and so blind? Could we care for each other like we once did? How about as friends? But friends don't think of each other as this, nervous to send emails, shaking when the phone rings. Friends don't kiss or try to. Friends don't pop in once in a while, between sadness, between elation, friends don't miss each other or what they once used to have.

And I floated above us, I saw us, two people who were torn apart and shouldn't have been, or were liberated and never should have been brought back together, though we keep perpetuating it for some reason I will never know. We were going through the motions as if history meant nothing, as if broken love was something that could simply vanish without its acknowledgment of casualties, of which there were many. Pride, dignity, dreams, these things were lost and they were hard fought before they fell broken into pieces, then pounded into dust.

It is hard to forget. It is harder to remember. It is easy to sigh into the arms of someone you miss, you loved, even though they said at one point they hated you, even if it wasn't true, they said it still.

You may have never loved like that before. You may never be able to get it back. That's the point. The point with no point.

And even for one night, it means nothing, because it is too loaded. It is too sad, it is too slow. We're older and we are running out of time. If one or the other cannot take the step to actually remedy, then there is no reason to revisit the past. It is the difference between what feels good in the short term and what will truly be good for you in the long term. You need a change. Not to be reminded of what was lost. You deserve more than that.

Sea change they call it. Realizing you deserve more than someone is willing to give. You thought it would be as sad as the rest. But really, it wasn't sad, not one little bit, at all.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Recessionista

I was at the gym last night, faking my way through twenty-five minutes on a stationary bike in full view of my trainer in an attempt to prove I do cardio after our sessions (yeah right! Virgil--I lied to you! Then I went and ate a grilled cheese! Even though you said no carbs after 7 PM. Ha!) when I picked up the latest issue of Glamour. You know, cause there was no New Yorker or Financial Times avaiable(again an aside, I saw a guy I went out on a date with at the gym once in Birkenstocks, working out while reading a sweat-stained and pink copy of the Financial Times, and wearing a hemp necklace. Gee, I must have lost his number).

Yeah yeah, that's it. I picked up the US Weekly and the Glamour, well snatched them really, just as some trollop was about to grab them for the elliptical--and I was all, hey trollop, you don't need that, you'll actually be working out and won't be able to peruse the pages like me, who will just be sitting and pretending the machine is on 14 when it's really on 4 the whole time.

So I saw this word: recessionista. And I was all like, you go girl!

Just kidding, instead I was more...must we have a cute catch phrase for everything? Ugh, sound bites cloaked in grrl power and too clever puns need to go the way of Sex and the City mania. We all loved it, okay. We did. It was good. But it's not that pertinent anymore. It's not shocking.

It's so mass-marketed and de-individualized and in my mind so circa 1995 to say such a thing. The recession isn't cute. Not to me. But hey, I'm a freelancer with zero job security. So, you know, cutting back on my "usual iced latte" isn't really going to fix my stability here. Throw a dinner party instead of eating out with friends? Really Glamour? Cause Whole Foods is pretty expensive and the Key Foods on 4th Street? Well a guy killed two people there last year and there's a broken container of eggs that's needed a cleanup in aisle 5 for about 2 months running.

I'm not saying I don't need to save some money right now. I totally do (what's that brain? Hmmm? Get rid of the trainer? Quiet you! I'll stab you with a Q-tip if you keep talking like that). I just would like some sound advice that didn't make it sound fun. Cause saving isn't fun. It blows! And it's not cute! And really, I want the word fashionista, let alone recessionista, to die a swift and painless death.

Then again, were I fifteen, I'd probably think it was cute.*


Now instead, I direct you to some very good and well-written advice, unlike what you're currently reading on this site. Now that my birthday is over, I am a huge proponent of this. Also, I would assert that if any one of you is going to/forced into a group dinner at a restaurant soon, order the lobster. Like this writer, too many times have I gotten the salad in an effort to be frugal and ended up paying like everyone else because they wanted to "split the check"...


*It's kind of that one girl in Gossip Girl who they try to remind you is the "ethnic" one by dressing her in really bright clothes and confusing accessories (Indian beaded necklace, African bracelet and huge, gold earrings). Nevermind that she's got green eyes. No no, children, look over here, not over there!

Monday, October 20, 2008

For What It's Worth

I used to walk around with a little notebook in my bag, and jot down fleeting thoughts on subway cars. My fingertips, half stained with ink, were moving. I waged wars in my mind about self and sense of self, person and persona, light and dark and my own eternal question—was it more important to have talent or to want talent? The answer—or more importantly, my own classification in that thought, continues to elude me. I put it on here and offered it up. She commented and I had to take it down, because she called me by name. Back when I used to mean something. She thought what I said once was brilliant. She did not know I am not capable of brilliant. Only of pretending.

I will always have a racing mind, on a circular track. He joked it was a hamster wheel, I told him no, it wasn’t, it was a drinking bird, and the bird had drowned. A hard thought, we’d call that one a three-dip, the bird would throw back and forth at least twice, we laughed. What’s worse than ripples, tearing through the still? Having only just the still. Still.

Yet all those clich├ęs come from something, don’t they? We nod. Burn brightly and leave in an engulfing flame, fade out and have those who know you now forget who you were then. Let’s all join in, this is high school and we’ve got some angst to sell.

Wait no, this.

Is after that.

Silly how we forgot. This is not that any more. We don’t hide on the mountain, sneaking cigarettes while the prep school police in the form of Mrs. P—old maid, adviser, science teacher, who makes the same lame joke about a flux capacitor every freaking year (it’s famous in its clunky delivery) when instructing a class on electricity—looks for a flame in the dark, to nail us to the headmaster’s wall. That was a detention offense, and that was a long, long time ago now.

Longer even than the pool of that house, the trading of magazines, the look in everyone's eyes when we talked about reading lists. Dogs and summer wine, lame jokes and Christmas. The walk around the lake. Trying to win her and him over. The last few emails that ever transpired. That was a long time ago, by now.

So long I can’t remember what I looked like, so long that I look at pictures from that time and can’t remember the last name of the person whose arm mine is slung around, I can't remember feeling so small, but I was, I had dreams and habits that made me who I was and I can't recall them. It was so long that I say to myself, I was a kid. And I knew nothing. Now I am not. And yet. Where am I? What have I done with this time? When we come together for the reunion, what will I say? Who will I have become?

No, this is not that time.

This is the marrying time, this is the making a family time, this is the passing it on to the next generation because we forgot to do something with our own time, we should have done it before we were in our twenties and now that we’ve crossed that threshold it’s less a matter of time than it is a matter of mind, until you find out what it all really means. Love is fickle and destructive before it’s everlasting, smalltalk is the only talk I know, and flowers are sent as contrition, memories are null and void.

The last few and many years were spent in a basement party, I have been tricked. It's not fair that I have been tricked, I hiss. What is this—Vegas? No clocks on the walls, no windows? I didn’t even see it pass. I know. I know. I could have stepped outside, I could have checked, but my eyes were fixed, flickering on the monitor, my fingertips couldn’t find a notebook, I was feeling sorry for myself because you were sorry, and I had nothing to make it go away.

This is not that time, we said. We’ll say it again. Years from now. When more of us are gone. But today, it’s just you. You are gone and we remember, the time we had and now, more than ever, the time we had not enough of. The faded paper on which you exist. How I folded it up and put it away, because I didn’t think this time would come. Not really. Because we never really do, even though we say we do. We are not prepared for death. We are not prepared for life.


Rest in peace, Alexis. I’m sorry today that I took your comment down. I am sorry today for many, many things.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Politics are Fun

Who needs debate recaps when these speeches provide such great lines as:

"If I had to name my greatest weakness, perhaps it's that I'm a little too awesome."

I like it when candidates bring the funny...

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Tee Hee




Fashionable man in Paris. I'm going to need to update my wardrobe if I'm ever going to end up there...

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

My dreams are almost exactly as they were when I was six

The advice I heard today: "I'm afraid if you're ever going to succeed as a writer, you have to stop being so writerly."


The advice I wish I heard today: "I'm afraid if you're ever going to sneak out of the office early, you're going to have to take this pony off my hands, cartwheel out the door while eating an ice cream cone, ride the pony home, watch the yet-to-be released season of Flight of the Conchords and then go swimming."


Sigh.

Monday, October 13, 2008

File this under WTF

As reported from the field from a friend who is walking uptown.

I got a call about three minutes ago from him, who, on the way to the subway found perhaps the craziest tattoo in the world.

It was on a bald guy, who had a tattoo on his head. Of a helmet.

To repeat, bald guy gets helmet tattooed on his head.

Of course I shouted, what the hell are you calling me for! Get off the phone and take a picture!

But the helmeted man had disappeared into a bank. Ostensibly to rob it.


Oh boy, here come the "Oooooonly in New York!!" jokes.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Wishes

The weekend is shaping up to be one of those transitory sun-drenched squares. As the rays stream in, I'm struck lucky.

Just to be able to see it, be warmed by it and touched by a sliver of blue and white and yellow, even if it's through a smeary glass window on the 15th floor of a midtown office building.

It's Friday, and we get the best chances today, right before we're free. To take back the time that we gave away all week, and dream about all the possibilities that await.

I celebrate my own freedom by tying myself down with plans upon plans under the guise of relaxation, but who needs to relax when you get to live in Manhattan, you don't have a mortgage and your bank account is empty but there's so much more living to do?

Tonight I'm going to the Beck and MGMT show way uptown in that gold encrusted mosque they call the United Palace Theater, and then maybe to Brooklyn, tomorrow we're driving through the Berkshires for the colors of the leaves, and to see what's changed: to my prep school and the perspectives I had when it was all I could do to sneak out of my dorm and run across a green carpet lawn to an awaiting car in the dead of night to go to a party.

Then it's off to a upcountry greenmarket dinner that deserves dressing up and my best behavior back in the city, and then that sparkling dress traded in for Converse and stovepipes to meet up with the old friends at the old dive bar for a stomach-turning tournament of flip cup.

Sunday, it's brunch with my best friend, renting bikes to ride along the Hudson and getting back in time for sushi with someone else.

This is my birthday weekend, and I will spend it planning on how by my next birthday, I will have managed to move to Paris...you know me and my crazy thoughts...more on that later...and wishing that you have a great weekend too, because it's beautiful outside and we deserve it to be, because winter is coming but it's all we can do to forget when the sky is clear and so are our minds.

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Quote of the Day

Girl #1: Is it wrong to use IM as my preferred medium for argument with a boyfriend because I am a writer and, between you and me, I am much quicker than him there and I rather enjoy it?

Girl #2: Not at all, in fact, I think it's downright responsible of you.

Girl #!: It's comments like that which make me look forward to our lonely 40th birthdays where, surrounded by cats, we finally get married in a sexless civil union because no one else in this world will have us.

Girl #2: I call the wedding dress.

Girl #1: Damnit.

Monday, October 06, 2008

Dinner Party

For years I have envisioned a dinner party like true adults have: flowers, swirling around in heels, couples' keys being swapped at the door...no wait, that's something else...

But candles, and piles of coats and bags on the bed, the perfect playlist, and lots and lots of wine and people nibbling in the kitchen and laughing in the living room. It's something about this time of year, it's something about this age I'm at. I want to be entertained, but mostly I want to be entertaining.

Enter SB who swooped in and threw me the world's greatest pre-birthday all-girl dinner party bash where every guest dressed up, drank copiously and ate grape, spinach and bacon salad, honey-butter glazed pork tenderloin with pomegranate salsa, carrot and parsnip mash with chives and an apple spice cake smeared with gooey, goat cheese frosting.

Did I mention she also made leek and mushroom mini-quiches? Yeah, it was pretty spectacular. But there was something even more amazing about the solidarity of the night--no cattiness, no bitchiness, no obsessing about boys. There was no whining that we weren't good enough, happy enough, thin enough. The girls were all those things, but that wasn't the point. We had new dresses and lots of plans and it was too cold for the roof so we kept it inside, smearing the oriental rug with cake when we doubled over remembering something we'll never be able to now, chasing two dogs around the living room who jumped in trying to hump eachother (only one was invited--and we've come to the conclusion that they are now, perhaps, and only in the right circumstances with eachother, ahem...gay puppies). There were hilarious pictures and a roundtable discussion on how we all have to hang out more. There were headache inducing gulps and how have you beens and wow you finished that and you work there now? There was a moment where the perfect playlist devolved into hardcore techno. Apparently when I made the mix last summer, I had used all the good songs first (we all do this right? I always jump the gun on a playlist!)

Okay, so it wasn't really adult. But the food was divine, the company fantastic, the night gorgeous and my friend E. even brought a bright vase full of blooming flowers...

Now to keep planning more celebrations just because it's cold and gray out...usually I don't really go for the usual party route but try to keep it small and simple and multiple and drawn out over two weeks--I think I will be going to the Berkshires, I think there will be a day where I carve pumpkins with a friend (don't ask, I've already said yes for some reason) and other than that, really want to know what you do, annually for your birthday or your friends'....?