Tuesday, October 26, 2004

A couple of weeks ago while shopping at the market in Union Square, the strangest thing happened to me. There I was, minding my own business, talking to my mom on the phone (while buying a gingersnap homemade cookie), when a man walked up to me and handed me a business card from LUCKY Magazine. I was about to blow him off. I mean, come on dude! I’m on the phone with my mom! But as I held the phone to my ear, semi-listening to my mom talk about something she finds interesting, I realized that this man thought I was cute.

Next thing I know, I’m on the subway to Times Square going to the Conde Nast Building to get polaroid’s taken at LUCKY FUCKING MAGAZINE from the bookings editor!

They told me I’d probably get a call within the next few days so that I can come back into their snobby-ass building (yes, SNOBBY!) and take more pictures! Those girls from the office that I saw in the elevator must have known I had on an Old Navy corduroy blazer and not a Prada one while they looked me up and down. Yeah, bitch… the shoes are from MARSHALL’S!! But I didn’t give a shit! I was going to be in LUCKY Magazine!

Of course, for the next three days, I paraded around my apartment thinking I was a goddess. I thought I was so hot that I kept telling my cat that I was cuter than her! It isn’t every day that I get some guy coming up to me telling me they might be interested in having me be some kind of model in their magazine. I always knew I was cute, but not THAT cute!

But I wasn’t so LUCKY afterall.

I never got the call. And all I could say to make myself feel better was “I’m just not photogenic! The bookings editor probably didn’t think I took good pictures!” But as I started at myself in the mirror this morning wearing my Old Navy Blazer, I thought to myself….

“I paid $29 for it! Who cares if it isn’t Prada?”

Wednesday, October 13, 2004

There is something about wearing heels that makes me feel so powerful.

I’m the kind of person who is happiest in a pair of FLAT flip-flops. I get sad around October because I know my flip-flop days are coming to a close because it’s starting to get cold. I hang on to those last days, praying it will get warmer – when I know it’s not going to.

A few days ago, I went out to meet some friends in midtown. I bought some new black heels that day and I was more-than-excited to wear them. This past summer, Charlie and I came up with this method of me wearing heels. He wears a messenger bag with my flip-flops in it, while I wear my heels. If my feet start to hurt, the heels get taken off and Charlie just opens his bag and gives me my comfortable shoes. It’s the greatest thing EVER.

Except when Charlie decides he doesn’t want to carry my flats one night.

This happened this past weekend, but I was stuck on wearing my new black heels. And they only got me to – three blocks. THREE BLOCKS before I was limping and making faces. I wasn’t even halfway to the subway station IN OUR NEIGHBORHOOD! I thought Charlie would run back three blocks to our apartment and come back wearing his bag just so I had piece-of-mind. But he didn’t. He told me I had to change my shoes. And I was pissed!

Today, I decided to wear a pair of heeled boots to work. I looked in the mirror this morning and told Charlie that I knew I looked good. And I knew for sure I did. Without even having to look at Charlie’s face, I knew what he was thinking.

So there I was at 8:55am coming out of the station on 48th Street and 6th Ave, running late, as usual. Something about the way I walk in heels gets people’s attention. And I swear I could feel people staring at me while I walked. In my mind I was thinking, “Yeah, people think I’m hot.” But I knew that at home, there was one guy thinking… “I know she’s in pain.”

And it wasn’t even 9am.

Monday, September 13, 2004

I get this panicked feeling when I drive into New York City after being gone from the chaos all weekend. It’s nice to drive down the Jersey Turnpike to the Holland Tunnel and see the skyline. And even though I have to drive down Canal Street to get to the Manhattan Bridge, to cross-over to Brooklyn, the panic doesn’t begin until I park the car on the street and I’m walking up to our apartment.

And I know the reason for the panic.

The sounds in New York never stop. All a person can hear in my neighborhood is the sound of honking, alarms and music blaring from a person’s car window. Not to mention, the loud buses driving on Myrtle Avenue. And we can’t forget that I live next door to a fire station – so I hear the sound of fire trucks screaming through my window at all hours of the day. During the summer, there are people shouting and ice cream trucks singing. There are dogs barking. Always dogs barking. The barking never stops. At night, I sometimes here a bug making a noise and I swear it’s a cockroach. (Charlie says I’m paranoid.)

And I have to admit: Sometimes I like it. Sometimes I don’t.

There is no other place in the world I’d rather be right now than in New York City. But sometimes I just want it to be quiet and I know that I can’t have that here. There are always people on the streets. Always the same sounds heard over and over again.

The only quiet I get during the day is in the morning when I’m in the shower. I listen to the water coming down and it’s so nice not to hear everything that’s going on outside our windows.

After I finish getting ready to start my day and I walk down my stoop to the sidewalk – It’s quiet outside for the only time during the day. I look to the left, down the street, and I see the Empire State Building and I think to myself: I live in New York City. I live in the best place in the world.

But sometimes the sounds are enough to drive you mad.

Saturday, August 21, 2004

“Ok, so this is when I cross the line!”

This is what Charlie said to me while we were at the grocery store tonight. And you will never believe it when I tell you the reason for his saying this.

We walk into Associated Supermarket to pick up a few of our staples- just some things to get us through the next 5 days since we’re going home for a long weekend. You know, the essentials…. yogurt, milk, juice…. Um, pineapple juice for my vodka.

Let me first say that we never go to Associated anymore. Not since we’ve found out about the high-all-mighty thing called “Fresh Direct.” No more lugging groceries when we can order that shit from the internet and they DELIVER DIRECTLY TO YOUR APARTMENT FOR AN ADDITIONAL $4.99!!! Who can beat that? Seriously.

So the first thing Charlie does when we walk in to Associated is go to the ATM. I stand there looking at him, “Why do you need to go to the ATM? I’ll buy what we need!” Charlie shrugs me off, “No. No. I just need a little cash.”

So I proceed to make my way to the produce (never know when you might spot a good apple somewhere in that place!). And that’s when it all went down.

Charlie informs me that the ATM in our neighborhood grocery store is now in Spanish. No English. No choice of Spanish OR English. It’s just in SPANISH! Um… hello! Is it me, or do we live IN AMERICA?? Doesn’t anyone find this a little offensive that the ATM in a supermarket with the zip code of 11205 (which means THE UNITED STATES!) has Spanish as its primary language?

I asked Charlie if he needed help (because you know me – I’m soooooo fluent in the language of Spanish) and he said to me… “NO, I will not get money from an ATM with Spanish as its language! We live in AMERICA! This is fucking ridiculous!”

So this what I have to say: “Ningún uso de la ATM para mí!”

And if you English speakers don’t know what that means…. You better learn Spanish because soon enough…. We won’t know what anyone in this whole fucking country is saying.

Friday, August 13, 2004

I will not buy a $4.51 coffee at Starbucks.

People in New York City are obsessed with Starbucks. They are on every freaking corner. Everywhere you turn, someone is holding a Starbucks cup of coffee. I think people who really think that Starbucks is good, is a complete idiot. There’s a conspiracy that I need to make people aware of.

I went on an errand today while at work, and as I was walking out the door, one of the partners in my firm asked me to go pick him up a Grande Mocha Double Chip Frapaccino from Starbucks. (Whatever the fuck that is- and I still don’t know because I ended up getting the wrong drink- but that’s beside the point.) I actually had to write the shit down because the name was so long that I couldn’t remember it.

And then I came up with this idea. No wonder why these drinks cost $4.51! They cost so much because they have to pay those workers at Starbucks to sit there behind the cash register and listen to annoying, stupid customers say THAT LONG-ASS COFFEE NAME!

And that puts me on another tangent. That’s why the lines at Starbucks are so long! It’s not because the coffee is even good! It’s not because a million people want to drink it. It’s because the names of the coffees are SO FREAKING LONG that each person has to spend at least 3 minutes talking to the person taking your order!

It’s all a conspiracy.

They make the names of the coffees so long because they want the lines to be long. THAT’S IT!

If they make the names of the coffee long, it means people are ordering longer – which means long lines form and then people walking by are thinking: “MAN! This shit must be good! Look at the line!”

It’s bullshit. Don’t buy into it. It really ISN’T good!

As I had a hold of that cold drink in my hand, I thought to myself… “Bring me back to Virginia Beach.…..

…..Give me a medium regular coffee from 7-11.”

And you don’t even have to say anything. You can serve yourself! And it’s only…..


Wednesday, August 11, 2004

For a person to belong in Brooklyn, they must have a pit-bull. And I belong in Brooklyn.

I have a pit-cat. As in, pit bull… but a cat. And her name is Bidge.

We found Bidge almost four months ago in the trash can of our former ghetto neighborhood. We were coming back from a delightful Thai food dinner in the rain when we heard the most blood-curdling screeching from across the street. Charlie pulled me over across the street, and there we find a kitty in the garbage…. Hence the name, Bidge. GAR-BIDGE. And she’s our baby. But she does the craziest things. Things a cat really shouldn’t do.

She attacks people’s feet. Sometimes I have to run from her. She barely weighs 5 pounds and I scream as she runs after me.

She waits for us by the door and meows when she sees us.

Bidge LIKES water! She dips her feet in the bathtub when there is water in it.

Get this! Bidge plays fetch. YES. She catches after things and brings them back to you

And I think to myself, “Is this what NYC stray cats do? Do they learn this from the pit-bulls walking around on the street?”

All I know is that I have a really cute cat. It might have nothing to do with Brooklyn. And it might have nothing to do with pit-bulls. But I like to think I own a tough cat.

Beats having a pit-bull.

Monday, August 02, 2004

Does anyone understand how fucking hot it is in the subway stations in New York City?

If you don’t live in New York City and you don’t understand… let me try to explain. It’s so fucking hot that I have to keep saying “fucking hot” to get my point across.

When I make my first step out on to the sidewalk at 8:10 am every morning, it’s nice. It’s brisk. It’s almost a little chilly. But I know that all I have to do is walk those eight blocks to the station and I will be a little warm and toasty. And I can do it everyday, but nothing prepares me for the heat I will feel once I walk down to the hole in the ground.

I don’t even know why I attempt to put on makeup in the morning because by the time I get down those stairs, my makeup has already melted off. And all I wear is mascara! The hair is a whole ‘nother story. Curly = Frizzy, and it can’t be tamed.

And I’m fully convinced that people do not go to the gym in New York City during the summer. I know this because all you have to do is walk down the stairs into the sauna to burn off those extra calories you took in at lunch. Take it from me, EAT that candy bar. Go ahead eat those few extra chips.

It’s amazing. I sit there waiting for the train at 5pm completely exhausted and I pray for a train to come through. ANY train. I don’t even care if it’s mine! If the wrong train comes, it’s fine. It brings in a breeze as it passes by, and sometimes if I’m close enough to the train when the door opens, I can feel a gust of the cold air.

I’m almost ashamed to say this, but today I almost stole one of those fold-up fans from an old lady. I was just sitting there watching her fanning herself while everyone else was sweltering. It was almost like she had this smile on her face like she knew something we all didn’t. I wanted to look at her and say, “You’re going to hell.” But then I remember… we’re already there!

Each day I watch the subway conductor drive the train into the station. Sometimes I swear I can see horns and a pointy red whip of a tail. I want to blame him. I want to tell him it’s his fault for causing the heat in the station. But I know all he’ll say to me is….

“Don’t worry, soon you’ll be complaining it’s too fucking cold.”

Tuesday, July 27, 2004

There are some HOT Jewish guys in New York City.

I knew even before I moved here, that I was moving into a large Jewish population. But growing up, I always looked at Jewish men as being boring and, sorry to say, not too attractive. Coming from Virginia Beach, the only attractive Jewish men I saw were my brother and my dad. But I’m telling you… these past couple of weeks, I have seen some fine looking Jewish men walking down the 5th Avenue sporting a yarmulke on their kepies.

I can just hear my dad now…. “I knew she’d come around!”

But seriously, I’m thinking to myself… where are they coming from?!? They are everywhere. Is it because it’s summer? They come out when it’s warm outside? They hibernate when it’s cold?

I think my eyes are more open to spotting these men because I work in a law office surrounded by Jewish men who cover their little heads everyday.

Last week, I was told by an attorney in my office that one of the paralegals from our office in Israel was going to come by this week to help me learn some things. I walk in to my office this morning and this paralegal was not a woman… it was, you guessed it, a fine looking Jewish man! And the word “fine” isn’t cutting it here. I couldn’t freaking believe how gorgeous this guy was!

So I sit at my desk and write an email to my office manager saying: “WHY COULDN’T YOU ALL WARN ME THAT HE WAS HOT! I’ve told you of my run-in with these good looking Jewish guys” To which her reply was: “He’s taken and SO ARE YOU, MISSY!”

I sit there at my computer with him next to me. And he’s dressed all nice and his hair is done well. And his cell phone rings. Of course he answers it. I hear him whispering in the phone: “awww… baby. Blahblahblah.” I sit there thinking… “Can’t he get off the phone with is girlfriend? I mean, shit! We’re trying to do work here!” And just as I’m about to get a little too aggravated, he hangs up the phone, looks at me and says: “My boyfriend drives me crazy!”

Oy Vey!

But the truth of the matter is, I am in love with a man who’s a goy and although my family has accepted the fact, I know there will always be this thing in the back of their minds that I will find a nice Jewish man.

And today I’ve finally come to the conclusion of why I’m not with a Jewish man:

All hot Jewish men are gay.

(Charlie: please understand that when I write this, you are my world. And even though these Jewish men are hot… they will never be as hot as you.)

(Dad: get Charlie a yarmulke!)

Sunday, May 16, 2004

It’s amazing how hot it can get in New York in just one week. I swear that I was wearing a light jacket outside here last week before heading home to the ever-so-humid Virginia Beach. This morning on my way to work, I found myself wearing capris, a tank top and – you guessed it… flip-flops!

And here it goes:

If you listen to only one thing I tell you, this is it!

A person can not wear flip-flops in New York City. Trust me on this one. Don’t think: “Oh, I can do it. These flip-flops are just so cute. My feet are just so cute. I’ll be just fine.” Because the truth of the matter is: You won’t be fine. Your feet WON’T be FINE! I learned this today when squeezing on to the 6 train on 51st Street and Lexington heading uptown. This morning while getting ready for work, I thought, “It’s Saturday. It’s 9:15am. My feet will be fine because the trains won’t be crowded!”

My toes have been painted now for a month. I thought it would only be right to show them off to the crazy people on the subway. Why not? But people didn’t care about my polished pink toes. And THEY SURE AS HELL DIDN’T CARE ABOUT MY FEET. All that happened was chipped toenail polish, stubbed toes and a lot of “Oh, I’m sorry” this morning while standing shoulder to shoulder on my 6 train. Each time the train jilted, people went moving, and my poor feet were abused.

The trains usually aren’t crowded on a Saturday morning because most people in New York aren’t going to work. But I failed to realize that it’s May and there are those early-morning tourists that annoy the shit out of me with their stupid subway maps and their “tour books.” Blah blah blah. It’s all calm on the train when all of a sudden I hear: “THAT WAS OUR STOP!!! WE MISSED OUR STOP!!” Then out of nowhere, my feet…. my nice comfortable feet… my feet that were enjoying being in the open air… my feet that were free from the constraints of closed-toe sneakers… SMASHED. Isn’t anyone here FROM here? Fucking tourists!

Since I’ve moved here, my feet have been through absolute hell. I seriously don’t know why they are still getting me from point A to point B. First the cockroach killers, now the flip-flops!?!

What does a girl have to do to get a decent pair of shoes in New York?

Monday, May 03, 2004

There is nothing that touches me more than seeing a blind person making his way in New York City.

Last week, I heard a man singing on my subway car while I was reading my magazine and I thought it was just one-of-those bums who are always singing on the train for change. When I looked over, I saw that it was a blind man standing in the middle of the subway car - singing. How did he even know he was standing directly in the middle of the subway car so that everyone could hear him?

About once a week, a see a blind person on a train alone with their walking sticks and I can’t help but think to myself, “How do they do it?” I couldn’t imagine being blind at all living in any city in the United States – let alone being a blind person in New York City.

But some people aren’t as fortunate as others.

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve missed my stop on the train because I was too busy reading my magazine to realize where I was. When I walk in areas I’ve never walked in before, there are times I have to make U-turns because I’ve walked down the wrong street. And I see these people with walking sticks and wonder “Do they ever get lost? Do they ever miss their stop?”

People are always in a rush here in New York. There is always someone running to catch a train. There is always someone running across the street before that red hand starts blinking telling pedestrians they need to stop walking or a car is going to run them over. How does a blind person know when that light is going to change?

They might run out of time to catch their train. Or run out of time to cross the street. How do they know where the door is to the subway car or where to cross at a cross-walk?

What amazes me most is that these people never ask to sit down on the train. They never ask for help getting up stairs. They never ask what street they are walking on or what subway stop they are at. They never ask for help from anyone.

And why is that? Do they have too much pride to ask for help? Do they REALLY know where they are going? Or do they just take their time, slow down, take deep breaths and just make the best of their days?

I just thank God everyday that I have eyes to see with.

Thursday, April 15, 2004

I’m scared to death of cockroaches.

Whenever I tell people in New York City this fact about myself, they laugh hysterically and say “You moved to the wrong city, sweetie!” And I know that the information these people tell me is completely true. Cockroaches are everywhere in New York City, but it’s not something I want or will chose to deal with on a daily basis.

I am telling the truth when I say I’ve been having panic attacks about them lately. Thank the New York City roach-gods that I have NEVER seen one of the filthy things in my apartment. NEVER! I have been blessed with a pretty decent renovated apartment building. One that isn’t infested with mice or cockroaches, although I wouldn’t mind seeing a little furry animal scurrying around every once in a while. (I know, I’m sick.)

But cockroaches are a completely different story.

I have to say, I do see one every once in a while in my place of employment. Usually down in the basement. There are a few times where I’ve had to beg one of my fellow employees to go down to the basement to get me a shipping box. Sometimes, I actually feel strong about them – that if I encounter one that day, I will be completely fine… but when I see one, all the strength is gone. I jump up on chairs, I scream, I have actually gotten tears in my eyes because of these nasty long antenna, little eyed monsters – with their long legs and crunchy blackish-brown bodies.

So help me God, I will not live in an apartment where I will see a cockroach everyday. I will not see one every week, for that matter! After Charlie and I move out of this cockroach-free apartment next month into an apartment that might not be so “cockroach-free,” I will place traps in every corner, under every chair, table, couch, in every cabinet, drawer, nook-and-cranny… I will put a fucking cockroach trap in the bathtub if I have to! I will do anything not to come face-to-face with one of those things that are sometimes the size of a small squirrel.

Then I thought… we’re getting a cat! She’ll take care of it! But then I remembered that cats like to bring their owners “presents.” There were times when I was a little girl when I woke up with a spider or a cricket on me – with my sweet kitty standing there on my bed with a look on her face that said, “Here, I got it for you.” If my new cat does that with a cockroach, I don’t know what I’d do. Just thinking about it makes me feel like I don’t want a cat!

SEE! Now I’m talking crazy!!

I was on the phone with a broker yesterday who is trying to find us an apartment. When she was asking me our price-range and where we wanted to live - I had to hold back saying: “You can find us anything you want! I will live in the ghetto… but that apartment better be free of cockroaches!”

Monday, April 05, 2004

I am obsessed with celebrity sightings.

I didn’t see ONE celebrity during my first 2 months here in New York. I was looking for them everywhere. Charlie even pulled some tricks on me. One time, while walking down Spring Street in Soho, he had this bright idea to scream out….”BECKY! THERE’S FABIO!” And of course, the gullible person I am, I had my head bobbing everywhere trying to catch a glimpse of the long-haired blonde found on the cover of cheesy romance novels. I felt like such an idiot when he started busting out laughing. I was so pissed because I actually thought I was going to see my first celebrity.

But then I got hired to work in a handbag store on Madison Avenue, and the celebrity sightings haven’t stopped since that first day of employment.

My first celebrity sighting was actually on the way to my interview at the handbag store. I was walking between 82nd and 83rd on Madison Avenue when I saw an absolutely gorgeous woman walking with a guy. She looked familiar, but then I just thought that she might JUST be a pretty face. But when I looked up to see who she was walking with, I knew right then… it was my first celebrity sighting. Rob Thomas (the lead singer of Matchbox Twenty) and his wife were walking down Madison Avenue, shopping in antique stores.

Most of my other celebrity sightings have actually been IN the store I work for. During the Christmas/Hanukkah holiday, I was working five days a week and it seemed that the other two days of the week were when the celebrities were shopping in our store. Every time I came back to work after a day off, my co-workers would tell me the celebrity that was shopping the day before. I was starting to get rather aggravated, thinking… maybe I should start working seven days a week! Hey! Better yet - I should start sleeping in the store!

The Saturday before Christmas, people couldn’t get enough of our wonderful handbags! It was so busy, I ran downstairs to eat, and just as I sat down, my store manager beeps me from the phone upstairs and says: “GET UP HERE RIGHT NOW!”

I was hurdling boxes down in the basement - I ran up those stairs so fast, someone would have thought I was in the Olympics! I open the trap door in our store and there, I saw my first HUGE celebrity.

Sigourney Weaver.

A few days later, I met Pheobe Cates (who looks like she is seriously in her mid-twenties). I had no idea it was her until I was helping her for about 10 minutes and I realized… “HEY! This is fucking Pheobe Cates!!! The Gremlins Girl!” She was super cool. I’ve seen her a few other times since then. My New York City best friend, Stephanie didn’t recognize Pheobe either as she was helping her one day. I looked over and mouthed “THAT’S PHEOBE CATES!!!!” She had to contain herself, because even though she is FROM New York City, she still gets just as excited as I do.

In January, I had the pleasure of meeting Kathleen Turner AND Julia Ormond. Kathleen Turner was fun. I asked her if she wanted to be on our customer list and she looked at me with the look I’ve seen many times before in her movies and said “NO!” I laughed with her. Such a completely down to earth woman.

But nothing and I mean NOTHING was to prepare me for the ultimate ALMOST sighting. I was working (of course) when a customer came in and told me that Nicole Kidman was eating in the restaurant across the street. Me and Stephanie went hauling our asses over to the (expensive) restaurant. I have to admit that our sorry-selves were actually seated at a table in the restaurant (when we were supposed to be selling handbags!) just hoping to sneak a peak of the gorgeous actress. We were stalking Nicole Kidman!! We ran out of the restaurant, holding hands, laughing so hard we felt we were going to puke.

Unfortunately, we did not get to see her. But I swear I would do it again in a heartbeat!

Just recently, Charlie and I were walking around and we saw an actor from the Sopranos in a deli on the Upper East Side. Charlie actually saw him when he haphazardly looked into the small deli. He practically started jumping up and down, screaming… “That’s the guy from the Sopranos!”

I looked at him and said… “This is New York City! It’s not THAT big of a deal!”

Saturday, April 03, 2004

I caught every train on my way home from work today. I think it might have been God’s way of apologizing for making me walk an extra 9 blocks after I found out there was no 6 train running at the 77th street/Lexington stop. Or it might have to do with…. taxi-temptation!

Each day I get to choose my route to work. When the weather is nice, I take the 4/5 express train up to 86th and I walk nine blocks. If the weather is shitty, which means wind, rain, and/or snow (like it has been very often lately), or if I’m feeling extremely lazy, I walk just five blocks to work from the 77th street station on the 6 train. Tonight, I felt lazy – so I walked to 77th street and as I approached the entrance way to the subway, I saw the dreaded orange tape prohibiting me from walking down the stairs to the whole in the ground.

WHY? Oh WHY does this happen to me!?!

For a split-second I thought about hailing a taxi to take me directly to the A/C stop downtown instead of walking the 9 blocks to catch the 4/5. But I’m telling you, it was just a “split-second” thought. I’ve only taken a taxi two times in the seven months I’ve lived here and I plan on holding that track record for as long as I can in fear that I might become one of those Manhattan-girl snobs who are too good to take the fucking subway like a normal New Yorker. And besides, I don’t pay $70 a month to ride the subway “unlimited” to take taxis. If I’m paying $70 a month to ride the trains, I’m riding that shit as much as I possibly can!

So I walked my nine blocks to 86th street.

I took three trains home tonight and I got every single one within a minute of waiting. The son-of-a-bitch-bastard train (aka – the G train) was even waiting for me as I rode up to the platform! You can just imagine the smile on my face when I saw the G train waiting for the A to arrive before it took off into the ghetto. And believe me when I tell you, THAT NEVER HAPPENS!

But not tonight. I made record time, getting home in less than 45 minutes! I walked in the door and Charlie looked at me stunned…. “You’re home ALREADY!?!?” And it’s all because I didn’t give into taxi-temptation.

Like I said…. “I’m getting that $70 worth” and God knows! Just look - I’m getting rewarded for it.

Sunday, March 21, 2004

Last month, I found myself at Nine West trying on “comfortable” shoes for work and I walked out with nothing but some 3-inch spiky/pointy black patent leather knee-high cockroach killers. Absolutely the most impractical thing I’ve ever bought, but I loved them and I had to have them. And besides, they were on the clearance rack…. What more could a girl ask for?

A couple of weeks later, Charlie and I decided to go on a date, so I got all cute in my cockroach killers and realized as I walked down 14th Street to the movie theater that something had definitely gone wrong. I woke up the next morning and realized that my ball of my foot was in a little bit of pain. I didn’t think anything of it, until I woke up Monday with places to go and realized that I REALLY injured my left foot.

I proceed to make my way to work on Tuesday – filled with loads of complaining and crying about my foot and how I can’t stand on it and how I can’t walk on it and how it JUST HURTS REALLY BAD! My store manager became quite concerned because well, even though I’m dramatic about EVERYTHING - as the day wore on, I didn’t want to talk or help customers because that meant having to walk around the store. She then knew something was definitely wrong.

A few days later after I couldn’t take the pain anymore, I decided to make an appointment to see a Podiatrist. But not just any Podiatrist…. I made an appointment with a Podiatrist who is the most obsessed dog lover on the upper east side of Manhattan. And any animal lover - is a (best) friend of mine!

Even before she examined my foot, she asked me my symptoms. And she concluded that I probably cracked one of the sesamoid bones in the ball of my foot. I ask her if this happens a lot, to which she informed me that it’s very common for women in New York City to crack this exact bone because of the shoes we wear. She explained to me that the pavement in Manhattan is so uneven that we don’t realize that the shoes we wear while walking are very important instruments to making our feet healthy and “comfortable.”

I put my shoes and socks back on and said goodbye as she smiled and said my $20 fee was waived because I was Munchkin’s (her Lhasa Apso) friend. I knew loving animals would get me somewhere in New York City!

It’s a couple of weeks later and thankfully my foot is getting better, but I’m not supposed to wear heels for another month. Of course by then, it will probably be too warm to wear my knee-high boots. And even if it isn’t, do I really want to wear them? Do I want to chance the fact that I might crack the bone again if I do?

You bet your sweet cockroach killers I do!

Tuesday, March 16, 2004

Just when I think it’s finally getting warm, Mother Nature comes to kick me in the ass.

I grew up my whole life in a town where the threat of snow turns every person into a complete raving lunatic. When the weatherman says three inches of snow in Virginia Beach, he means a dust of snow that melts by the time the day is over. But that doesn’t stop the idiots who are at the grocery store stocking up on fifty gallons of water and cans of food. As soon as that weather man on the 5 o’clock news hints of snow, emergency flashing lights pop up on the television screen. All the public schools in Hampton Roads are cancelled. Everything is shut down. The people of the Hampton Roads community are prisoners in their own home because well….. It MIGHT snow tomorrow!

Now, I just live in a city where there are lunatics no matter what the weather is. But that is beyond my point.

When it snows in New York City, it really really snows. And it just doesn’t snow….. it SNOWS! No one (other than Charlie) can fully understand how miserable I was back in December for my first New York City snowstorm. I learned back in December that when the weather man says it’s going to snow nine to twelve inches in New York City, it doesn’t mean it’s going to snow three inches (like it would in Virginia Beach). What he really means is it’s going to snow 15 to 18. I learned this the hard way when I didn’t prepare for a snowstorm in New York City.

It’s now three months later and do you think the snow has gotten any easier? NOPE! There is snow on the ground and it still pisses me off. It pisses me off so much that when I saw a rat in on the tracks today, I muttered to myself “dirty rat!”

Last night, the weatherman said, “Accumulations up to one inch!”…. What he really meant to say was “Expect three to five.”

And unless you’ve lived here, you can’t understand how the snow just swirls up into your face. You can be wrapped up with NO PART OF YOUR BODY showing, holding an umbrella…. but when you take off that coat, somehow, someway, you’re clothing is wet! How does this happen? Can someone please explain to me how the hell this happens?

Even worse are the lakes of water/slush/ice at every street corner that just “happen” to blend in with the color of the street. You are walking along, minding your own business, getting ready to cross the street, when all of a sudden, you step in the biggest puddle of your life and not only are your shoes and socks soaking wet – you’re wet all the way up to your knees!

The snow from the entire winter just melted here last week. There was no evidence any snow had fallen here. I was ready for spring. But this morning, I found myself putting on (yet again) a scarf, gloves, hat and my heavy coat with a long sweater underneath for extra warmth - ready to battle another fucking snow storm.

And the weatherman says to prepare for snow again on Friday.

God help me.

Tuesday, March 09, 2004

I’ve seen cats. I’ve seen dogs. Unfortunately, I’ve even seen a cockroach on a subway train. But nothing prepared me for what I was about to see on the subway car a few weeks ago as Charlie and I got on the C train to head home from dinner after eating on the upper west side.

A pigeon.

That’s right! A New York City pigeon was riding on the C train. I swear – only in New York do you see this kind of thing. I have no idea how the pigeon got there. I have no idea how long he was a passenger. But he was there. And he was cute.

The cats I’ve seen on the train have mostly been kept in pet carriers. Although, I have had a reoccurring meeting with a cute little orange tabby who is always with the same crazy homeless man. The dogs I’ve seen have been with owners who hold them in their arms or even in backpacks. I saw a cute little dog with a gay couple a few months back and they couldn’t stop talking about how great the dog was. The cockroach on the other hand, was not such a pleasant experience. I was reading a magazine when I saw something out of the corner of my eye (on the seat) moving towards me. I looked down, and I swear I practically shit in my pants. It was my FIRST sighting of a cockroach in NYC. Since then, I’ve seen many more – but that’s another post all together.

Being the animal lover I am, of course I had to save the poor bird. I told Charlie that we were going to get off at the next stop so we could put it outside where it belonged. Charlie looks over at me and says – “Are you crazy? It’s a dirty New York City pigeon! I’m not touching that thing!” I look at him and said – “This is New York! If we don’t save it, it’s going to be someone’s dinner!”

I decided that we would wait until our next stop, scoop up the dirty bird, and bring it outside. I thought this was a good idea, until – somehow – the bird found its way to the door of the train and just hopped out of the subway car. Everyone on the train cheered as if the bird had done something miraculous. Of course, I couldn’t just let the bird stay on the subway platform! I was determined. This bird would be saved!

I get up and hear Charlie say – “Leave it alone. It will be fine!” I scream, “No it won’t be fine! It’s going to get hit by a train!” We jump out of the subway car and there I am chasing the fucking bird on the platform. You can just imagine the looks on people’s faces as I’m chasing a bird in the subway station.

But I caught it. And as I’m holding the bird with two hands - I walk through the train station. Charlie stayed on the train’s platform (I think he was embarrassed.) At one point, a man looked at me and started busting out laughing – he must have been thinking I was some crazy girl trying to make a pet of a New York City pigeon. I looked back at him and tried to explain – “I found him on the subway car! Can’t you believe that?!” He didn’t look amused.

And as I made my way out on to Spring Street to free the pigeon from my hands, all I kept thinking was…

(This line is for normal people): “You won’t be anyone’s dinner tonight unless a cat gets a hold of you!”

(This line is for my mom): “Read my beak…. No more birds.”

Monday, March 08, 2004

Laundry. Quarters. Elevators. Three things that have coincided with each other that have pissed me off today.

Washing clothes is a chore no one likes to do, but unless you want to walk around smelling like you haven’t taken a shower in months, then dirty clothes must be washed. Charlie and I realized yesterday, as we look over at our heaping laundry basket (clothing piled so high that it was just falling over on the sides), that it was time to put some clothes in the washing machine.

To wash clothes, you need quarters. Of course, no one just has $10 worth of quarters just lying around at any given time JUST to wash laundry. So you go around, trying to find a store that will give you quarters. I swear that the people in these stores make you feel like you’re a bum asking for drug money. I don’t get this. It’s not like you’re stealing quarters from them! You’re giving them money!

Next, you find yourself at the grocery store to get a roll of quarters in which they charge you an extra $.50! I have always found this quite amazing. Why does the grocery store get to make a profit when you have to wash your stinky clothes? So not only are you pissed that you have to do laundry that you haven’t done in over two weeks. You’re also pissed at the fact that you have to pay the assholes at the grocery store extra money for a roll of quarters!

After begging the corner store to give me 8 quarters (not even enough for 2 loads of laundry), Charlie and I go put our clothing in the washing machine. Woohoo! FINALLY!

And this is where it gets good.

Lately, my apartment building has been having problems with the elevators. We have two elevators in our building and they NEVER work at the same time. One of them is ALWAYS out of commission. If it’s not one, then it’s the other. I’m not lying when I tell you that I yell at the maintenance men at least once a week about this problem. They run when they see me. They must know I’m going to bitch about SOMETHING. And the truth is: Do you think they even understand a word I’m saying? NO! (Please see previous post about non-English speakers.)

We put our clothing in the washing machine and were waiting for the elevator to come bring us up 8 flights (we were in the basement). And we were waiting a VERY LONG TIME. Come to find out - BOTH elevators are broken! Of course, this is AFTER we already put our clothes in the washing machine! One of the maintenance men then informs us that both elevators aren’t working and it probably won’t be fixed today.

I look at the guy and I say to him… “Didn’t I yell you once already today?”

Wednesday, March 03, 2004

Everything you do in New York City is harder. Little things you would do in another city, something you would think is so simple, is a huge freakin’ production.

Among these little things is going to K-Mart. Going to K-Mart in New York City is an absolute pain in my ass. I have just gotten on this kick to start working out my arms and as I know I probably don’t need it, why not get in PERFECT shape before summer comes? So I decided the way to start working the small bit of flab I have is to go buy some five pound dumbbells. No big deal, right? WRONG!

I have to take two different trains to get to K-Mart. It takes 40 minutes to get to K-Mart on the subway, which I must admit is a big improvement to my four trains I take to work. I have to inform you before I get into this huge conversation about the pain in the ass it is to go to K-Mart…. that the people that work at the K-Mart at Herald Square is even more of pain in my ass. SPEAK FUCKING ENGLISH, people! THIS IS AMERICA! Ok… enough of my anger with the non-english speakers.

K-Mart is 3 floors in New York City. Yes, 3 floors! The place is absolute chaos. Shit is everywhere. You can’t find anything unless you go up and down the escalator 5 times, and even then, you can’t find what you’re looking for! And as I’ve said above, “me hablo no ingles” or even better, is…. “yo, datts upstayas.” WHICH UPSTAIRS?? The top floor or the middle floor, asshole?

So I go to K-Mart, not only to buy dumbbells, but to purchase some girlie odds-and-ends that I need. (You can probably see where I’m heading with this.) When I’m finally done picking up everything, I realize…. I don’t have a car! I have to take the subway home! WITH ALL THIS SHIT! You must remember…. I was getting 5 pounder dumbbells. I already had 10 pounds of weight on me even before all the girlie stuff! And it doesn’t end there……

Herald Square = Penn Station. And it’s 5pm.

I must have been an absolute ignoramus to think that I could go shopping during the week at K-Mart and go home 40 minutes on two different trains. Just know… people here don’t give a shit whether you are carrying a handful of groceries, let alone two 5 pound dumbbells and some shampoo. People here aren’t giving up their seat on the train for NOTHIN! And if you know New York City at 5pm, it wasn’t like I was just standing up… I was shoulder to shoulder with other people who were standing. You can’t tell if someone is grabbing your ass on the train at 5pm. It’s that crowded.

Needless to say, going to K-Mart is, again, a royal pain in my ass. But you know, sometimes you just need a little work-out.

Sunday, February 29, 2004

I was here 2 months when I saw my first rat down on the subway tracks. When I first moved here, I didn't pay enough attention to the train tracks because I was too busy looking at subway maps. Getting to where I needed to go, without getting lost was my absolute first priority. I had heard about the rats on down in the hole in the ground (subway station) from my next door neighbor. She was talking about them one day and all I could say was....."THERE ARE RATS ON THE SUBWAY TRACKS?!?"

There I was the next day at Hoyt/Schermerhorn waiting for the G train and on the look-out for my first sighting of a subway rat. I can't explain the joy I felt when I saw it run across the tracks. I felt like a real New Yorker.

This is when my rat addiction began.

As I know I don’t want to play with them. And I’m sure that I wouldn’t want to bring one home as a pet. It is safe to say that I kinda like the dirty things. Nothing excites me more than seeing a rat on the subway tracks. I truly don't know what it is about them that fascinates me so much. I’ve seen tiny rats. I’ve seen medium sized rats. I’ve seen rats the size of squirrels! My day is incomplete if I go home without seeing one. And while other people accidentally get a glimpse of one scurrying along, I’m actually sitting there looking for them.

One time when I was waiting for a train, the woman next to me shuttered. I looked down on the tracks and saw a pretty nice sized one walking along. He had an open sore on him and I actually felt bad for the thing! And another time, I saw a rat come out of a rat-hole just as a train was coming and it looked panicked like it didn’t know where to run. I swear I had to hold back screaming “Hurry, get back in the hole!”

For a while, I was seeing one or two or three EVERY day at Hoyt waiting for the G train. Then all of a sudden, the rat sightings stopped. For about a week back in November, I realized… I hadn’t seen my rats in days!! WHAT WAS GOING ON? I then realized (because I saw a sign) that they (the evil rat killing people) had put down RODENTCIDE. I thought to myself… “Those fucking assholes poisoning poor innocent rats!” Of course, I had to call my mom immediately and tell her of the situation. My mom laughing hysterically (because she thinks everything I say is amusing) says: “Beck! rats carry diseases!”

They do?

It is now almost March and the rat sightings at Hoyt have now increased. The rat poison obviously didn’t last too long. They are back to scurrying along on the train tracks. And I’m back to seeing one each night at my last stop to get home from work.

I feel complete again.

Wednesday, February 25, 2004

I am fully convinced that my nose is going to fall off. When the cold weather started here about, um..... 3 months ago, I knew that my nose was going to go through some changes. I never knew that these changes would be as bad as they are at this moment.

Let me first start by telling you what's been going on. As most of you might know already, I have a hard time keeping my fingers out of my nostrils. I don't know why I am 24 years old and still haven't learned to keep my fingers out of the two little holes in the middle of my face. As a little girl my mom always asked me what I was digging for and if there was anything left "up there." I just laughed it off. Now I see the reason why.

It is now years later, and I have met another person (Charlie) who keeps telling me that I need to keep my fingers out of my nose. I always thought "who is it hurting? at least I don't do it out in public!"

During the last few months, my nose has gone from dry to dryer. The freezing cold temperatures and dry heat in my apartment (that damn space heater!) has taken a toll on one of the parts of my body that is suppossed to keep moist at all times. I woke up last week to my dry nostrils, moved my face around a bit and realized I had some stuff up there.

And this is where it all begins.

I began to stick that right hand pointer finger up my right nostril that I've done many times before and felt I got something. I was pulling at something when I realized it was not the usual up-the-nose feeling. What I was feeling was not a booger, it was actually skin that had dryed so hard in my nose that it hurt.

This was when I realized I had gone too far. Since I thought it was a booger (as I have said.... I have no problems picking my nose) I started to pull at it. But to my horror, it wasn't a booger at all. It was the skin IN MY NOSE!!!

It was too late. My nose had already begun to bleed and there was no turning back.

It is a week later and my nose still hasn't healed. I was telling Charlie today that I don't know if it's ever going to heal. My roommates keep telling me that I need to put neosporin up my nose! (HELLO! That stuff is for external extremeties!)

So all of you think I have learned my lesson? NOPE! I'm still sticking my fingers up there. I guess I'm thinking that maybe, just maybe, the familiar finger that my nostrils know so well will help to soothe the area I picked so badly.

I guess the answer is the only way I'm hitting gold is if I go buy it. But for now.....

My nose really hurts.

Tuesday, February 24, 2004

Why is it that some people in this country make so much money and don't even have a college education? Does that mean I didn't receive a decent education in college? I wonder this everyday. Did I waste my time in college? I'm trying to understand the reason I busted my ass during my 5 years in undergraduate and I've yet to come up with any answer.

And then I think... "oh yeah. Law school."

Is being a lawyer something I really want(ed) or some kind of status symbol for me to achieve? Two days ago, I was almost relieved to find my tenth rejection letter in the mail. Nine from last year and one came this year for a total of, you guessed it, TEN rejection letters and a whole lotta wasted money on application fees. And this is alright with me. Maybe in 5 years. Maybe in 10 years. Who knows. All I know is right now, the money isn't worth the aggrivation of being an attorney. And anyways, is that what having a career is really all about?

I should be old enough and educated enough to realize that life shouldn't be all about money. But truthfully, it is. I have this strong belief that money is the root of all evil. Everything that happens in life is about money. And why is that?

Charlie told me a few days ago that "this is suppossed to be the best times of our lives." What I'd like to tell him is that the best time of our lives is going to be when I'm not worried about making enough money to build back up my savings account or when we live in a better neighborhood where I feel safe enough walking back from the subway at night by myself. The best time of our lives will be when we are secure with money........

The store I work for was robbed today. A man simulated a gun and stole about $500 in cash out of our register. And it isn't about money?

I need to go to law school.