March 08, 2007


How fun is this t-shirt...I found it at none other than the store I am definitely too old to go into now, and yet it tempts me from the corner of 14th Street and 6th Avenue every single Thursday, Urban Outfitters. (Stay tuned for a photo of the St. Patrick's Day t-shirt I bought there last week!) Hey, in defense of me, this shirt is totally soft and comfortable and perfect for an Urban girl who recently went to London and lives in New York. Right? Anyway, my work day was alright today for a change. I'm learning a lot of new things, and allow me to preface what I'm about to say by saying I refuse to talk about my job here, not in this day and age. It's what lands people in the unemployment line, or whatever. Or whatever, it just isn't for me - chronicles of work can stay at work, where they best belong. Nevertheless, today I received a most interesting compliment from a new boss of mine. In my new position, I'm assisting with...let's call it interviewing. During the interviewing process we are obligated to read aloud a very massive document detailing job descriptions. Today was my first opportunity to read aloud to several people in a conference room, and my boss told me immediately following that I am a great narrator, that my reading voice reminded him of a history channel narrator...hum, whatever that means! I thanked him profusely because secretly, I was fairly proud for the fact that I haven't read the document in its entirety in my head (though I've sat in while others read from it) and yet I never stumbled over any of the words! I was also secretly appreciative that my effort was noticed. Cheers to you, new boss, for making one of your juniors feel good during the regular work week!*So I left work a little early, then, to head to class. My first mission, on the train, was to read a piece written by a classmate and comment. After that, I popped in the ear buds and listened to some tunes other than Regina Spektor, thank you very much! (nevermind the fact that I am presently listening to one of her CDs that a classmate graciously burned for me and gave me tonight...) I'm here to say, and mean this: there is nothing in the world like listening to music and riding the subway. The entire world is turned on its head. All of the intricate and intimate details of the manic pace of New York come together to make sense. Daily routine boils down to a subway ride; precious moments can be summed up in a subway ride. I am possibly the biggest fan of subway riding you will ever meet. It settles me right down when I'm anxious. Especially, it does so, while I'm listening to music that I love. And so anyway, I guess it's appropriate to note what a small world it is: around Rockefeller Center this guy got on my F train car - he was somewhat artsy in appearance, maybe European, but had a peculiar scarf I didn't understand tied around his neck and extremely long dress shoes, ski-like in nature. What I noticed most of all were his weird glasses frames. So what, right? I notice all kinds of people and their details all the time - it's part of wanting to be a writer so badly - consuming human details. The faux-Euro guy got off at 14th Street in front of me, and disappeared into the crowd. Needless to say, following my class two hours later, I brushed past the same faux-Euro guy on my way out of my school building! I'm not kidding - it's a small world, so be careful what you say and around whom.*Class was alright tonight. We discussed some stories I'm not all too on board with, but it was okay. I love the instructor's passion, still. I left class, took the L from 14th Street to 14th Street (so much less confusing than the Tube in London, I swear!) and made my transfer to the Uptown Express platform, where I experienced absolute and utter chaos in my head while I attempted to listen to Modest Mouse from the iPod and tune out the mad live percussionist who pounded his beat using an empty bucket and the neighboring steel trash bin. He was thrashing his sticks so furiously into his makeshift drum set, it was making my head swim. Finally my train showed up, I got on it, got back to the neighborhood quickly and discovered, by calling my Craig to instruct him what Chinese to order, that he was shaking and shivering with flu-like symptoms! For those with loved ones, hopefully everyone has loved ones, relate to this fact that when the person you love is sick, it's excruciatingly painful. You want to help so badly, but there's barely a thing you can do but tuck them into warmth and feed them water. I showed him my new t-shirt and through a thin smile, poor guy, he said he thinks it's so cute. Now he's asleep and it's getting to be that time again. I don't have any more live performances at work this week, so tomorrow will be quiet, thankfully. I'm just genuinely looking forward to crawling into a weekend. Hopefully Craig will feel better soon.*

March 07, 2007


Last weekend, on Sunday and rather on a whim, we decided to wander the streets of Chelsea, a Manhattan neighborhood where Craig dreams someday we'll live. I'm not quite sure, other than word of mouth that Chelsea is happening, what the attraction is for him, and frankly, I'm not sure he was sure, either, before our adventure...we've hung out at a stray bar here or there in the Chelsea bounds, but not frequently. So, bundled, we walked the cold streets to 86th Street and took the 6 train to 14th Street, then transferred to the L and traveled to 8th Avenue. We proceeded to browse around and see what was so happening. In all honesty, there are some unique corners of Manhattan to be found in the neighborhood of Chelsea, but I wasn't overly impressed. I think Chelsea is still a pet gentrification project but of course, that is me speaking haphazardly, speculatively and uneducatedly especially given the fact that condos are listed on the market for over one mill there and that hardly seems to lend itself to still in the process of being gentrified. Anyway, possibly the most fascinating thing we encountered was the Chelsea Market. I fell in love with the interior of this place. I have limited words for it but the floors sloped curiously and there was exposed ductwork and brick and beams and there was even this really peculiar water feature consisting of a pipe gushing water into a hole in the floor.
Notice, the food network hangs its hat here...Anyway, we were both fairly flabbergasted by this place. Food selection was limited but I think partially because it was Sunday and several concessions were either closed altogether or were only partially operating. We found sandwiches and hung out at this market for a while. Overall, I'm not sure what rating I'd give Chelsea but I look forward to exploring it more in the spring. Twenty degrees on a winter Sunday wasn't probably the best time to find out what's the buzz.*Our weeks are increasingly busy. I find it impossible to designate time to call my friends, even my parents. I feel like New York has a funny grip on me but it isn't a bad thing; I'm learning a lot about myself and about everything. I just can't forget the people I love.*Monday night we had another curious New York experience. Lauren's theater company, the one for which she composes loving scores of music, was hosting a benefit at Joe's Pub in the East Village. We've been past Joe's Pub numerous times and heard rave reviews about shows that take place there, but we had never been inside. As an added bonus to attending a show to support Lauren's theater work, a silent auction was being held. One of the items silently pleading me to take it home was an autographed script of Grey's Anatomy, which might be like the equivalent of that show 30-somethings, which I never ever watched because I thought that anyone over 30 was ancient when that show was popular. I likely equate the two because the cast of Grey's, its characters, at least, are likely late 20's to early 30's, and there you have my comparison, easy as that. Anyway, Craig and I arrived at Astor Place and Lafayette Street rather early, so we ducked into St. Mark's (loved it) for dinner and a beer. Then we made our way to Joe's. The auction was a lot of fun. We saw a handful of people who we've met through Lauren who are just amazing in their own ways, one in particular who announced to us that he will be playing Chief of Staff to the Mayor of New York in a new series to possibly air this fall. Oddly enough, the Mayor is to be played by Bobby Cannavale who incidentally showed up in an episode of Knights of Prosperity not long ago and while I sat scrutinizing him on the tv screen and saying to Craig, "I swear I know that guy from somewhere," it wasn't long before I looked into it and realized Bobby Cannavale played the cop boyfriend of Will on Will & Grace at one point. That was an exaggerated tangent reflecting the indulgent amount of tv that I watch, yuck! So, Craig and I were excited to learn the news, even if the series doesn't soar, at least we can tell the story of how we know that guy who plays Chief of Staff to Bobby Cannavale. Right? So, the auction was cool - there was a wide assortment of items being auctioned. Craig pulled on his Extremely Amazing Boyfriend Coat and offered to make a bid on the script for me. Confession: I really wanted him to do that, to offer to bid on a signed copy of the script for what is most definitely my favorite tv show ever to air and then continue on into its third successful season! but not just because I love the show...also because the money would go to such a great cause (Waterwell). We drank a little bit of wine, mingled, and then were ushered into a fantastic room of Joe's Pub where the benefit cabaret show would be held. The place was packed! - huge success for Lauren and company, and eventually the show began and it was absolute joy and they were cruising along when suddenly, from one corner of the room, smoke began to billow. In fact, it swelled so quickly that the audience seated there began to rise and file out of the room. There were murmurs throughout and the cabaret cast tried to crack jokes but to no avail because Joe's Pub was on fire!! Or so it seemed. To make a long story short, the entire night came to a grinding halt and it was never determined, to our knowledge at least, what exactly happened...there were guests grabbing Christie's gift bags (a good friend of Lauren's works at Christie's) and waiting in line at the coat check for their coats and filing right out of Joe's...firemen swarmed, et cetera. It was a bit of an abrupt end to our evening, honestly! But we enjoyed what we got to witness, despite the odd possible fire in what may have been the basement of the building...??
*Alright, it's definitely nearing bedtime. My friend Aubree came over Saturday and we munched on vegetarian appetizers that I made (including cucumber sandwiches on wheat bread which were really pretty good!) and caught up on a lot of things. The reason I titled this post "Islands" is because Aubree and her husband Brian are moving out to Long Island, into a house, and are trying to convince us - nay, insist - that it is in our best interest to move into their soon-to-be-vacant apartment in Forest Hills, Queens. Granted, the apartment is nearly double the size of ours and rents for much, much less per month, but I have an extremely sore heartache at the thought of being ripped out of Manhattan after only one single microscopic year of this life. I won't go into all of the ads and disads, but in summary, I will say this: I don't think Craig and I are really going to give it much thought; I think we're staying put.

March 01, 2007


The past couple of days have left me feeling thoroughly emotional. I'm not sure what precisely to blame, so I won't begin to do so. I've discovered a gorgeous new favorite song by Regina Spektor, sort of in a haphazard aimless-in-Banana-Republic-oh, wait-that-song-was-on-Grey's-Anatomy-at-one-time-justifying-how-much-I-love-it kind of way, and I've since managed to convince my iPod that it is the only song I have downloaded, despite the fact that that isn't true. The other day, walking down the stairs from the 7 train to the ugly street where we walk to work, and listening to Regina Spektor, I felt a renewed, revitalized and strengthened sense (no, surge) of creativity in my head. Unfortunately, the more steps I took toward the dismal office, the more my creativity surge faltered, faded and slipped away. But the point is, I felt it.*Then there was tonight. I've been in my new class for a few sessions already and haven't really discussed the impact it has been having on me. The course is experimental fiction, which lends much in the way of my disastrous and completely vain attempts at writing anything remotely resembling a narrative, and so far I love it. My instructor is a genius. She opens her mouth and nothing but human truth spills forth, and in the most brilliant of words. She's in her forties?, is glamorous without trying, and spends the first 4 minutes of class pawing around for her Duane Reade reading glasses (Duane Reade being New York's primo pharmacy chain) (if I've never said so before, I am positively envious and love people who require drugstore glasses to read. Oh, if I could only have been so lucky with my piss poor eyesight!) Anyway, our class has thus far focused on vignettes and showing the passage of time via vignettes, followed by prose-odes, which proved to be the most difficult assignment I've ever been given. Hmm, since college. Anyway, I was workshopped tonight (avoiding a lengthy description of what constitutes a prose-ode). To make a long story extremely short, or mildly verbose but verging on the shorter side of things, my classmates referenced my story as "if this were a published piece" on several occasions. I'm not making myself very easy to understand but the gist of it is, my classmates were stripping it down to its bare bones because I'm in their class but they kept referencing published pieces, Raymond Carver and William could I not come away feeling humbled, shy, ecstatic and having potential?? My classmates gave me what I'd term extreme confidence. By no means am I published, or do I even resemble anything nearing a possible published writer. But when I walked out of class tonight, popped Regina into my head to listen to her on repeat from 14th Street all the way Uptown to home, I felt, glancing at the speckled subway floor to someone's shoes to someone's face and back to the palm of my hand, like a writer. For once, like a bonafied, unpaid, unpublished and unread, yet real, true and wanting to be amazing...writer. And I owe it all to my classmates. Hmm, and all of those (you know who you are) who read me in between. Including Craig.*