Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Drugs, Man

I didn't think people still did heroin (mistakenly thought that all stopped in the 90's, which was just a reincarnation of the 70's) but apparently they do if they're in New York and fancy themselves artistes but actually just do a lot of drugs and film themselves having sex and spray newspapers with semen and glitter. Trust. This is what Dash Snow did (if you don't know the name, he was big in certain circles here for the last five years who was buddies with Ryan McGinley and Gavin McInnes of Vice) and he ended up offing himself a few weeks ago in my neighborhood with 13 glassine envelopes of heroin.

He was 27.

Before we start thinking this is in any way romantic, he committed this knowingly (called his girlfriend to tell her he loved her) and did so despite his two year old daughter. As cinematic as this all is, it's actually very sad, sure, but more so, very gross. We know better. Come on. It's not Woodstock and it's not Punk and it's not even Grunge, all the forward "I'm young and it's a revolution, damnit!" movements in music and art and writing and politics have kind of been made, or at least, because of those who have come before us, have been made way easier and therefore has made this time of shock-value rabble-rousing pretty damn extinct (in my assertion, all we have left is technology wars, which is actually very cool). So what's up with this ridiculous shit! Even hipsters are over, are people really still selfishly dying from heroin for God's sake? This is just another landmark for people who get older but refuse the next and better stages of their lives to still skulk around in Ramones T-Shirts and bemoan when New York MEANT SOMETHING and was all thriving and filthy and dirty and therefore better. But you know what? That's bunk, because people only say that about New York, or any place for that matter, because it was the world they lived in when they were 20-27 years old. When they were full of promise and hadn't done everything already and they had a zest for life and everything seemed new and exciting: love, money, substances.

New York wasn't cooler in the 70's. There were shooting galleries and garbage fires and general malaise and gang violence and all that. Just because CBGB's was home to a burgeoning scene doesn't mean that scene was worth all the rest of the crap that came along with it or even that the scene was that good. But, you know, people who say that it was were young then. And the thing about being young is....everything is good! It's like that phenomenon when a guy gets laid in, say Ottowa, and then later relates to his friends, "Dudes, Ottowa is awesome!" No, it's not. Anecdotal good times aren't evidence, and are colored by factors that have nothing at all to do with Ottowa. And that's what people are saying right now about New York in 2005.

I know, this is what's being said. I can't believe it either. Now that Dash Snow is dead, he's become an icon for the hipster movement and everywhere you go people are going on about how NY was SO MUCH COOLER in 2005. No it wasn't! You're just four years older and you're pissed, because you're immature. People who choose life beyond one-night stands and pukefests that seemed so awesome a few years back are not losers who've lost their edge. It's like this, you thought you kicked ass when you were 13 didn't you? Was life so much more awesome then? No it wasn't. But somehow when this very same notion is applied to the time when you were 21, it holds water. Maybe because you can have sex and drive and do drugs and buy things finally. So you don't romanticize 13, you romanticize 21 because it represents the years when you finally had access to everything in the world and still had the naivete to think it was brand new and you ruled.

The thing is, if you don't think you can kick ass at 30 or 40 or 50, you never kicked ass to begin with. Sorry Kurt Cobain, Sid Vicious, Dash Snow. I had nascent crushes on all of you but I hope I never, ever be so naive as to think that's cool of you.

Also, this is the best thing that I've read on the subject of us as aging kids in New York City. It's just very good if you're not easily offended.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Remembering: Girls' Night Out

Girls’ night is becoming more and more the standard and these days it feels like summer camp without the shorts. Loose hair instead of barrettes, juice boxes tossed for aperitifs, ants on a log have vanished and frisee salads appear as replacements.

I race out of the office instead of my parents’ kitchen, still with my bag whapping my side and my flip flops sliding around, to meet them downtown in a flickering West Village bistro, arriving late and excited and relieved as though Tuesday was Friday.

We drink too many glasses of wine and divide too few crab cakes at Paris Commune, contemplating New York and LA, reviewing weekend plans and downloading each other on the latest gossip, work and play. Shore houses, summer romances, tennis lessons, promotions; we all have something to share and envy here. And it prompts a Robert Altman conversation pace, everything overlapping, nothing resolved, as our glasses grow dry, the louder we exclaim, “Wait, what are you guys talking about?”

An adult in charge needs to shush us, but our waitress only encourages (probably so that she can reap the benefits of our overtipping to match our over-ordering). For us, the best of the summer week is at night, past our bedtimes, snapping phone photos and comparing sunglasses, making plans and taking initiatives, being aspirational because it’s who we are.

Everything has to be explained more than once, especially since she’s in for a visit, an ex-pat now part of that other city, so we can’t stop our questions. How’s the pool in the apartment? Is just it like Melrose Place? How much is there really the prevalence of smog/collagen/silicone/a thong-clad Lindsay Lohan? Is June gloom anywhere close to the humidity of here? Are all the men blond “directors” with mustaches and vans? We know it’s all a cliché, but don’t clichés start from some point of truth?

I’ve wanted to start a life on the west coast ever since 90210 aired, and we talk about what it might be like next year, if I end up making the move. But now I’ve become such a fan of the pulsating vibrancy of here, I’m not so sure. It’s camp in the city all of the time, and it’s getting pretty hard to leave, particularly since there is no bus to pick me up and tear me away from my friends and paltry paycheck that I spend simply to be with them while we’re still sort of young, and sort of glamorous…at least to us.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Eating. Badly.

I love the idea of cooking. How many times have I told myself if only I had the time I would be oh-so-European and shop for food on a semi-regular basis, walking the perimeter around local grocery stores or any isle of the nearby-Whole Foods, plucking fresh fruit and vegetables, a myriad of colors in my little bag (which I would have brought from home and would be very environmentally sound) as I sashayed through the isles: fresh-squeezed orange juice, house-made soups, pre-arranged cucumbers, carrots and celery, perfect for dipping in my newly bought tub of garlicky hummus (the one kind with the pine nuts is so good!).

Yeah right.

Now I'm figure the milk in my coffee is sufficient calcium supplement for the day. I'll eat a quesadilla and call the salsa "vegetables." I'll think because I have flavored throat lozenge, than it's really lemon. How did this happen? I spent my formative years reading the glossy pages of food magazines, eating my mother's apple cake and lamb chops, going out to spectacular restaurants and vacationing at lodges in organic lemon groves?

Oh right, I've got no money. Now that I've got the time to shop the way I'd like, I just don't have the funds. I read somewhere that in the recession, people are turning to canning. Canning? Really? I'm turning to takeout. It's not cheaper, but it's variety and those things take lots of ingredients while I can't buy a spicerack. I tell myself that it will all be different when I'm a grown up. But I'm 27! I fear that if eating and cooking well on a regular basis, on a natural basis no less, it would have happened by now. I mean, writing has. Going to the gym has. Relationships have, hanging out with my family has, stopping shopping unless I really need that coat (realized I don't), catching up on sleep on the weekends (nothing is as wonderful), and even doing laundry (not as much as I hoped, but it's a start) have all become routine. But feeding myself? Not yet.

I wonder why.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

World's Ugliest Animals

Have you read this article on the world's ugliest animals? Some of them are cheating (three dogs and one hairless cat? Just stop the list at ten and be legit!) but some of them are downright nast-ay, like the fish with four hearts and two brains or the walrus that has a big fat inflatable bladder on its nose. I love animals, wanted to be a zoologists as short as five years ago, but wow, barf.

Though really I don't think this monkey's that bad. Yes his nose looks like a "bing bong" but other than that I find that a baboon's big red ass is the worse of the two and the editors didn't see it fit to make the cut. Anywho.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Follow the leader...

Dear Friends,

I have been neglecting you. Badly. It's because I'm writing for pay elsewhere. That's right, pimpin for cash. You knew I was a sellout when we met, don't act surprised!

The thing that stinks is, I'm hard-pressed to share it with you because this blog's been anon for years. I've been able to take refuge in you guys because it won't get back to the powers that be. Been able to artfully complain about people, give you anecdotes about friends, share my crushing heartbreak or falling in love, my crazy and loving family, or my d-bag ex-coworkers has been only because you've been there for me, and you've been there for me quietly.

Thank you. You rock.

But while it's not time for an all-around unveiling (I said it would be when the book got repped and I will stand by that!), I should send you to another place where I'm pretty much writing every day, albeit for music. Sssh, don't tell them that I live here, and more importantly, live here for you. Or they'll come after me and I'll never be able to tell you the skinny of what's going on in my life as well as I have.

Can you keep a secret? This is just between us. Cool?

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Did Anyone Else See Public Enemies and feel a little conflicted?

No Spoiler Alert, Don't Worry!

Hey, I'm the first one to say that I wanted to love, love, love this movie. But I left the theater feeling...perplexed. I thought everything looked fantastic, was well-shot, the pacing was consistent, Johnny Depp was cool as hell, and well, what else did I need?

I don't know. Some of this was ruined because I read some of the reviews beforehand. (Side note-hours, and I mean hours, could be spent reading movies on Rotten Tomatoes, oh how I adore that site). But I think I wanted more backstory on why Dillinger was who he was (I know that cutsie little "I like good clothes, baseball, fast cars and you" was supposed to sum it all up, but how did these guys meet each other? How did they plan their next move? Who was really best friends and who merely tolerated whom? How close were they with Pretty Boy Flyod?).

Also, I have to admit, I fell asleep during some of the love story. I sort of felt the chemistry was lackluster. And how it ended with the closing credits was kind of nebulous. It would have been cool to follow up with a few lines that "Dillnger stole X amount of money and will forever be known as the coolest guy in the world". Or monster. Whichever. But this movie left me feeling unsure who I was rooting for. No one was all good, and no one was all bad. That's cool, I understand that's the way it is in life. But shouldn't I really understand one person in the film's motivations?

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

I'm Afraid...

Of our kitchen drain. It bubbles up with soap at odd hours like the goo in Ghostbusters II.

That I don't know how to have a real job any more since I've gone out on my own as a permalancer.

I might never floss properly.

Because I have more nightmares than sweet dreams, and I wake up not remembering them, just that they were terrifying.

Of the pull-up bar at the gym.

That I have chosen wrong, and there will be no course-correcting.

I might be out of touch with the kids today, but am not old enough to be a yuppie.

That I am devolving in the spelling department and that I say "dude" too much.

Of the far reaches of my closet: scarves, one scuffed slingback and...a diary might be in there!

That I might die in the street one day and my family will have to go through my room and through said closet and all my achievements will have been for naught because I don't fold my socks, my bras are hanging from my ettiger, and my potbelly marble-top antique dresser is missing some of its brass work on the side from where I tore a laundry bag on it.

My immune system stinks because I've never been without roommates and we're all touching the remote and coughing in the air.

Of not being able to stand on my two feet forever.

That I push people away when I think I might lose them.

I won't pay off my credit card bill. Not this month. Not this year. Not ever.

Of moving away from New York. And of staying here for missing opportunities I've painted in my mind.

I let bosses walk all over me because I want them to like me, but they never respect me.

That I'll never get a kitten.

My brain might be turning to mush because in an attempt to "detox" from all that I read and write, I only watch Snapped on Oxygen (it rules) and reality T.V. shows (Real Housewives of New Jersey should have been first!) and cartoons (Simpsons and Family Guy--will I be able to watch these when I'm forty?)

Of forgetting all that I have to be grateful for.

Of ever reaching my perceived perfection in my goals, because then I will have no more room to learn, and that is the greatest possible travesty of all.