Sunday, April 29, 2007

Meandering Words

Woke up early today...bit hard to sleep when you've a pit bull who rests his head on your shoulder and has nightmares, snorting and snuffling... yelping then licking your face when he wakes up and realises he's not being prodded and poked and made to fight anymore. He's a sweetheart of a dog, who will lie at your feet for hours, yet, it is those times in his deep sleep that whatever he was put through in that garage comes out, showing humans aren't the only ones who dwell with demons.

With my eyes opened, the younger dogs decided this meant 'walk'. I took them all to the park, let the poodle pretend she was young and vibrant.. she prances if you call her 'sexy thing'... then dropped her back off to sleep. Showered myself, put on the boots, and we were off before 9A, headed in a different direction than our usual stroll into SoHo. Uptown we went, grabbing coffee from my lunchtime deli, moving along Broadway, sitting in a park near Staples where they chased new pigeons who didn't know their tactics.. and they came close to catching one. It looked a bit like a homeless pigeon of the pigeon clan, feathers tattered... I looked around for his musical instrument of choice to see how he made his money. Thankfully, they missed catching him, because I really didn't want to have to pull it out of their mouths.

The sky was overcast, teasing about a shower that never happened... heavy, thick air. I've forgotten about humidity. The upside is, you have great hair and skin... the downside feel heavy and sweaty. Summer should be great fun.

Up Broadway, down sidestreets, over, around... I was going to walk towards the water, to see how close Christopher Street is... I have tickets to a show there later in the season, and I may walk...although I will be wearing heels. No, really. I will. The subway may be a better idea in the long run.

We eventually walked back down towards our 'hood.. that always makes me laugh to say that word.. Tribeca, a hood. Who in the world was stupid enough to put the local Social Services office in the middle of Tribeca? Next to Bread, a high end eatery, you have people getting foodstamps that would pay for a meal or two.... I direct those who have that lost look in their eyes every week to the address... they watch the well dressed skim over the sidewalks who watch them back with a "please, don't touch me" gaze. Crossroads of life....

All of us were dragging by then... three hours of walking is a goodly time...but, we still had our sausage run to make. Over Canal, to the deli, where they have the sausage wrapped before I get back to the counter. Outside, the dogs howl in sorrow.... nothing is as joyful as their faces when I walk back out. No memory, so, to them, I've been gone forever.... they do the dog dance, I break up the sausage and they grab it out of mid-air.

Such a mundane existence.... the day before was spent in auditions, and meeting with my new director/screenwriter. Excitement enough on that level...I've hopes this will be a good collaboration, giving me another connection to film, letting me polish my craft... he's a director who is willing to let me add a few points, is hungry as I am for good film, and has handed over the artistic side of casting. It's a decent script... I'm timing it, working out days, and will audition next week when I'm done with the play that goes up.

N is working, the terrier is resting after her long weekend sleepover, I've lost my cancer meds and will have to have a rush re-fill... all in all.... a lazy day in a busy weekend.

Yes, online journals are stupid sometimes... mine especially. Still, it exists to remind me later in life when I think each day gives me a new dress and I only have one in my closet that once upon a time, I had lots of words to say....and sometimes, people read them.


Headed home from the hustle and bustle of the concern of again worrying about flats and moving.

I missed out on viewing one place because I was called to come here to dogsit. The super won't answer on the 'tip the super and get a place' tip, and although I know N will give me a week or so, I'm not going to ruin a friendship over this.

Work here done, my stuff packed, I head home on the loooooooooooooooooocal in a bit. My head is stuffy from pollen it's not used to, however, the walks have been amazing this weekend, my ass is higher off the back of my knees...woot... and I'm good with the universe.

The loves in my life are in that place of light and love... keep your fingers crossed as I dash across the hallway in a long grey tshirt and naught more to grab my jeans from the dryer.

I may keep some young person from ever wanting to have children if they see me.

Saturday, April 28, 2007


Before we are born, I believe, the Master of the Universe puts out our lifepath. People are put on that path for us to meet and make part of our lives, for good or bad.

It is our free will to take these people in, to keep them or reject them as the case may be...sometimes, we reject those we should have kept, and keep those we should run from screaming in fear.

Some are born into our families, we are stuck with them until we can run screaming in fear. I used to have two brothers, now I have one. I was smart enough to finally grasp I was only to have one, along with his amazing, dear wife. It took me some time to understand it was okay to only have one... my only sorrow is it took me so long to shut a door.

Some family members are born in our hearts. My two eldest children took root there... as dear to me as those three who had their beginning beneath my own heart...sometimes, I forget I didn't give birth, and when I start to use the guilt of childbirth, they remind me I wasn't there... I've also been fortunate in having sisters born in my heart. Women who have understood me, my neediness, my struggle with my disease, who nudge me when I speak from my ego in fear back to talking from my place of light, who remember my time when I was told to give them up or lose my children and family...and I believed the threat..and gave them up, cut myself off from those friends who were there for me during pregnancies and childbirth as I was for them.

They stood by, and waited. They understood the phrase, "right now". It gives me strength to understand it from others, even when I grow impatient and want to pound on doors and yell, "Time is precious!" not knowing if it matters, only knowing I want to listen with my heart to all that is said by the person on the other side.

These women, these beautiful, smart, witty, brilliant, talented in so many ways, these women are my stalwart companions in my life, who keep me on the as normal as it is possible for me to be on path. They remind me when I go into drama, who tell me I'm okay, who let me know I am lovable. That I am fine the way I am. I don't mention names here, privacy is especially important in this age of internet snooping. I don't do the "I know someone famous and you don't." because a) I don't know that for sure, and b)I don't get my strokes in life by bragging about who I know. The person is more important than the name. Besides, everyone still goes to the toilet the same way. Poo, it's the great equaliser.

Each of my friends has had something go on in their lives, and they bear that burden with grace and a sense of humour. One has woken up in ICU, with a major defect in her ability to process a vitamin in her body. Sounds simple, however, it's changed her life. She continues to teach and direct and laugh at her loss of short term memory. One struggles with a close betrayal, not wanting to give up on her soul deep love... she is there for every person who asks, but, will not ask for help herself. She is one of my best audience members, and we've been asked more than once if we've had too much to drink..when all we've had is water...because we laugh from the bottom of our feet. Another is my 'sisterwife', who jokes about my cancer, and announces in front of a crowd of people she needs to place an ad to get another second wife before I die with a straight face. Her family surrounds me with hugs and light and gossip. There is my friend in Oregon, that I've known for almost forever... her laughter is evident in her voice, she supports her daughter and her family, is the matriarch in the true fashion of the word since the death of her mother... offering advice, a shoulder, a centering point for her siblings, her children, her husband and his family. My friend who came out from Idaho, with whom I had a falling out, a vacation as we call it... we've mended fences, with delicate webs of words and tears. She has dreams and talent and love deep and abiding kindness. There is the friend I have on the end of a phoneline, who has met me only a few times, who struggles to raise her boys, yet never loses her sense of right and wrong. And, L, who lives far away, always on the end of an email or a phone call, her home has a room with my name on it, the Grand Canyon will never be the same after our visit.

There is my dear DSH, who stood by and waited for "right now" to end. Long years of waiting, still holding to our friendship, always solid and true. Her daughters, the Captain and Eddie giving me some of the best stories ever about children. Her husband trying to show my old one how to be a friend. Her photographic eye guides me when I look about, "How would DS see that?" "How would she frame this?". I beg for a piece from every installation she does, because her work, like another I know, tweaks the imagination, makes you think, is more than is what is there in front of you.

She has struggled to go beyond a slight from the one person who is supposed to love you no matter what... and has succeeded. She inspires me. She gets the photos I find in flea markets, marked, "To D, love, Uncle Ferd" and displays them as real family. She has a laugh that makes me laugh.

And, she has thighs I'd kill for.

Yes, the Master put many on my path.. some I let in for too long, some I put aside in error, some I wait for, perhaps in vain.

The ones here, I treasure beyond words.

Thank you all for being on my path.... I really don't deserve your time at times. Each person I listed has been my saviour in one way or another. Thank you.

Friday, April 27, 2007

Nighttime, Day Left Hours Ago

How I missed the 6'5"ness of CB on Canal, I'll never know.

He's right, though... them Frenchies are everywhere. I could here moi's and vous' all over the place as my friend, J, and I walked up from Chinatown to West Broadway to have a drink....

We pooh pooh'd the West Village... deciding it was far better to spend out money on an extra drink than on cab fare, and settled into the SoHo Grand. Aside from her stepping on my new grape coloured sometimes glasses, it was a swell time. I walk past the Grand daily, exchanging nods with the doormen... they laughed as they held a door open for me tonight to walk in instead of just walk by..

Very nice inside, very cozy, very clever. I could see enjoying a drink with someone aside from my friend..a champagne cork popped at the next group of chairs with a young girl and an older it was, we chatted about men, the lines they use, if you should ever stop hope... and my advice was; no. Even if you feel you were led on before, if you think you will be hurt in the end, if you disclose your soul, and you get little in return... never stop believing that this time, your trust will be rewarded.

She picked up her stuff, we came home, and she's asking the guy to come visit.

Sometimes, I guess I make sense.

One day, I'll listen to myself. I just don't know when.


I adore my walks...I meet the amazing, interesting, and the absurd.

No bums today, thank goodness. Instead, it was French tourists who asked where Canal Street was. "?Où est Canal?" "Il est là-bas." I said and pointed. That and asking where is the library are the extent of my French phrases.

They went the other way. *insert a Gallic shrug here*

I wove my way though a standing crowd of folk who were actually waiting for the little white guy to say "come on, it's safe to walk!". Like a real New Yorker, I crossed in spite of the red hand of death. You could hear the gasps of envy and whispered words of "Oh, my! Look at her bravery!". Actually, I think they said, "Hey, I think we can cross, too." I prefer my version, though... my ego is a bit low today.

After dragging the dogs away from the main drag, we went to the park, peering about for our friend, Mr. I.P Inpublic. With the coast clear, I sat down to enjoy the quiet, the dogs went about doing dog things, and a nice young man wandered in, muttering words to himself.

At least he was clean.

It turned out, he was on his way to an audition with Kevin Bacon for a new that dealt with the men who escort those who have died in this war home. His role was of a Sargent who had the hard task of seeing these young heroes on their final journey, and the harder task of escorting his own brother homeward. We spoke of the film, of his scene, of the war itself.. of those who actually do this kind of work. He said all of his roles until now had been of gang bangers or rappers...and he wanted to do something deep, emotional. He was worried before he went in, and had stopped in the park to think. I told him when he won his Oscar, he had to invite me to attend.... we laughed and he said he would, he felt relaxed, and ready. He had a good look about him, I could see him doing this kind of role, this sense of honour was in his face.... I hope he wins the part.

While this was going on, the dogs were sitting watching someone eat his noodle soup.... he taunted them by holding up the noodles and dropping them into his mouth. When the actor left, he moved over and sat next to me to chat.

I'm not sure what was more amusing, his exaggerated movements, or the line of drool from both canine mouths.

He was there for the Festival, but, had grown tired of the various, he stopped in Chinatown for soup, and found a quiet place to eat. His film was up for consideration, he didn't care to talk work, he said... he preferred to talk dogs and the weather and bums.

Thus, those were our topics of conversation, sparkling witty conversation on his side, lots of laughter on mine. I am an excellent audience.

We started the meander homeward... a long walk today, as I'm housesitting for the weekend. Everyone seemed to notice the two ratty leashed monsters I had with me.

In front of the SoHo Grand, another couple stopped us... to discuss the pitbull, and tell me in Canada, they are not allowed to be bred anymore. We went on to talk about various places to eat, the cost of American prescription drugs, what films I was going to see at the film festival (none), did I like New York (yes), and a good ten minutes of other bits and bobs of conversational items.

Again, I got the dogs be stopped on Canal and Church by two film producers. Yes, thank you, yes... they are great dogs... no, I'm not going to the films...oh? Your's was a sell out? Congrats! "I Am An American Soldier.". No, no, thanks.... I don't want to see it. I have one of those. Why I didn't want to go see a film about what my son will be involved in was beyond their understanding. One did pat my shoulder and tell me 'thanks for my sacrifice.'. I think he meant well.

Four more stops by people from California...and we made it home.

I'm going to start charging petting rights... I may make enough to pay for my dinner to be delivered tonight.... or...or.... I may get out my silk dress and go to the Waverly Inn.

Ohhhhhhhhh, won't I be posh.


I'm ending up this time being flirted with by The Weather Guy... I've not had someone flirt with me and mean it in a long time, and I feel... good. Yes, it's by text, he's in Canada just now... but, he's taking the time to tell me he's interested in seeing me again, and... well...

it's lovely.

Next comes going out with a friend and then off to the West Village... woot. A real New York evening.

Only one thing could make it perfect.... I'll settle for less than. Right now is still in effect, I suppose.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Sundays...Yes, I Know It's Thursday...Still

I used to go to church on Sundays. I'm a SICS (Sicilian/Irish/Catholic/Southerner)...I had no choice. Born and bred in the Catholic Church, Sicilian/Irish families, second generation American, New Orleans was home... you got up, went to Mass, stopped and bought pastry on the way home and had a big dinner (supper was the evening meal) of red gravy and meatballs with all the family.

Now, I tend to worship at the Cinema 8. Popcorn and butter (is there any other film food with the exception of hard Jujyfruits?) and a diet Pepsi that you sneak in.

Don't get me wrong. God and I have a close relationship. I believe very strongly in the Master of the Universe. In my soul, I believe that all things are pre-destined. It's how we get there that is left up to us. You can buy that red car or the blue one, take I-25 or I-70...but, if you are meant to crash and burn that day, you're going to do it. Our will is ours to choose the paths we wish to take, the end result is already in place.

It's why I believe you can actually follow Will S's words in Romeo and Juliet.. "I saw you and fell in love, and you smiled because you knew." You can see someone and love or hate them on sight. Something in you knows, just knows. It's how we bond quickly on friendships or on dislikes at work or at a party. It's that nudge.

Anyway, my Sundays now are a day. I do my prayers all the time, when I think of someone, when I am thankful, when it seems a good time to say 'thanks'. I'm content. Mostly, I'm pleased the BVM never shows up in my bedroom at night.

Who wants to die a saint?

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Bums and Bums

Tribeca Film Festival has arrived, as we citizens of New York are well aware.

I'm a bit surprised the foot traffic isn't more intense... and pleased as well... my daily walk hasn't been stopped yet by congestion in SoHo, at least not by much, making me a happy camper.

Today, with a soft air around us, the dogs and I did the usual round into Tribeca park, down West Broadway, sausage for them and coffee for me, and across Spring, up the block, back down Thompson and over to the little triangle park to let them wander and me have my coffee, or what is usually left of it by the time I've struggled to keep them from watering every bit of flora or fauna they can find.

It was a good day.. a full cup was left for me to savour as the cars honked and hooted to move the internal combustion engines in front of them. Always amusing to listen to... yes, those other cars are just sitting there, blissfully unaware they can move forward a good six inches. Those six inches... real six inches, not some man's measurement....will make a huge difference in your commute homeward. They honk and hoot and voices rise over the rap music blaring out of 47 black Denali's.

I sat on my bench, enjoying my full cup of still hot coffee, letting the dogs wander...stalking sparrows in the hope one day they will actually catch one, not realising the birds hear not only the clink of the dragging leash but their anxious panting.

A bum... I'm sorry, let me be PC here... a homeless person wandered into our area and sat on a bench. Not just any bench, but, the one I was occupying. Of course, he had no choice....the others were all empty.

He sat and eyed my half full cup of coffee, licking his lips. It took me a few sips, with him watching me with the same concentration shown by the westie when she stalks a bird before it struck me he may want that cup of coffee.

"Um, would you like the rest of this?"

"Oh, well, if you don't want it, sure." He was nothing if not polite.

I handed it over, careful to not touch skin. I wasn't sure the last time his had touched anything that resembled soap. Or water. Or anything else I cared to think about.

Yes, I am a snob.

He sipped the coffee and discussed the weather. I may be a snob, but, I too, am polite and found myself making small talk. Of course, when he started talking about Nixon's policy in Vietnam, and why Agnew should be president, I realised he didn't have a full deck...not even 23 cards were contained in his Bike box.

He finished his coffee, and got up to throw away the cup, dragging his cardbooard box with him. Walking back my way, he said, "Please excuse me, I have to go to the restroom."

"Oh, yes, well, fine."

With that, he walked away from me. I thought this would be my chance to escape while he searched out a place to let him in and wee.

No such luck.

He stepped away ten feet or so, unzipped, and....yes... started to pee in front of me.

I jumped up and actually started to yell, "AAAHHHH! AHHHH!! AAAHHH!!! WHAT ARE YOU DOING???? AAAAHHHH!!!"

Needless to say, he turned his head and told me, "I said I had to go to the bathroom."

Still in my voice three octaves higher than usual, I answered, "NOT HERE!!! ARE YOU CRAZY???". Sometimes, I ask the obvious.

He turned around and dropped trou...bearing his bum..and at that point, still making inarticulate sounds, I grabbed the leashes of the dogs who finally realised I was upset and were barking, and made a dash for the park entrance. The last I saw out of the corner of my eye was him reaching for leaves... I blocked out the rest, and need to blind my minds eye with a needle to sleep tonight.

I dashed through traffic, hitting one car on the hood when it tried to run me down, moving at a fast walk up West Broadway, not slowing until I was near the Grand... still muttering "Aaaahhh!!!"

Lesson learned?

I'm not sure. I just know I'll never sit in the park again when anyone who has a cardboard box enters it again...

And I wonder if he curbed himself... somehow, I doubt it.

More Places To Live

and another apartment appears on my horizon... not counting the ones they are building in brooklyn.

be still my heart.


The country is against the war.

About time.

Congress talks of starting withdrawal on 1 October, with full withdrawal by 1 April of next year.

Not soon enough.

Bush is fighting against the country that voted him in...*cough*....who have one word that is causing him problems... I*R*A*Q.

It's not soon enough to keep my boy home..not soon enough to stop thousands from being shipped over, not soon enough to stop hundreds more from dying and thousands from being injured...

....but, it's a start.

I'll take it over the current idea of staying and fighting an occupational war, which is fighting a losing war.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

A Plethora Of Places

From no place to live to two.

One is a sub-lease from my place of serendipity, Jesse's. The bartender was complaining that she's never home, and should rent out her place... BINGO! It's $800 a month, one bedroom... fully furnished, with an air-conditioner.... utilities are another $130, including the cable and internet.

The downside is.. it's in the Bronx, near Fordham...and a six floor walkup. The upside is, after I'm done there, I have another sub-let available in Wash Heights in an elevator building from August til January, with furniture and everything for $900.

I was ecstatic, I was dancing, I was....relieved.

Today, I'm offered a one bedroom, of my own.... for $1000... up here in the Heights.

Now, I have to decide which one to take.

Oh, decisions like this are a peach.

Yes, a peach.

Monday, April 23, 2007

Nothing of Note

Was it not a simply beautiful day?

Saturday, April 21, 2007

The Great Apartment Hunt

Three apartments today.

Three flops.

One was actually frightening... a Russian who called himself 'Bart' met me and showed me a four bedroom flat just down the street.... he and a group of friends have rented a number prime places, and put ads on craigslist announcing themselves to be hip professionals looking for another roommate. They remind me of the old Steve Martin/Dan Ackroyd 'Wild and Crazy Guys'... no, really. He sounded like one, and had the movements... he eyed me up and down as he escorted me into an elevator that jolted and jerked up to the fourth floor from the once posh marble lobby that had fallen into crack junkie haven. It was one of those places were you felt you should wear a body condom to stay safe.

The apartment door had three locks on it, and opened onto a long hallway... there was one bathroom, a small kitchen with cabinets assigned to rooms, and the three bedrooms. The living room had also been converted to a bedroom... it was more expensive, however, it had wood floors vs linoleum, didn't look onto the air shaft, and was large. There wasn't a closet...I can live without a closet.

I can't live there, though. It was creepy, he was creepy. He knocked on the door of the largest room, then, walked in. The current occupant was still in bed, and started screaming at him. She whispered to me later he has a habit of doing a fast knock and walking in.

I can't imagine living my life in a room. One room. With a creepy landlord who retains the right to walk in at any time... then stood close to me in the elevator and said he could maybe waive my deposit.


He must be in a hard way. And, no, I'm not being clever.

The second one was a share with two students in a place where the courtyard reverberated with screaming children.


Last of all was in Chelsea, in the Chelsea projects. Small, dusty, the roommate is a hipnoid. I know I shouldn't be picky... I am.

The saddest part is, a great apartment is available.. two bedrooms, with a lease...and I can't afford it on my own. If only C was ready to move now.

Tomorrow, I go to Bank, a block from the Hudson....small room, who knows? All hope is pinned on the doctor in Canada moving here in July or C moving in August.

Or, I could go live in the Russian's and hope I'm not sold as a white slave.

Ha. No, really....ha. I can see me now, in Siberia.... I'd last 3 hours before they shot me for one of the things I do that drives my kids mad; sending food back.

"You call this fish soup? I thought it had three eyes per bowl, I only have two. If it calls for three, I want three, please. Who do I talk to? What? Walk out where and kneel? Why am I kneeling?" Yes, I'd be shot.

But, I'd have my three eyes in my soup, first.


Friday, April 20, 2007


The last two days have been a delight.

Winter may have had a final spit of 'PAH!'... spring...spring however, is here. Suddenly, all of the restaurants have their al fresco dining areas open... something I need be mindful of when the pitbull sees a tree that catches his fancy. I'm spending more and more time pulling and saying in a wheedling tone, "Park? Wait for the park?"

I believe this is greatly appreciated not only by the diners, but, the owners themselves. I can't imagine anyone's appetite would be improved by his prodigious watering abilities.

It looks as if people have come out of the woodwork... you get the feeling of Dorothy in Munchkinland... one second the street is empty, the next... people materialise and I've no idea where from.

Tribeca is gearing up for the film festival... sidewalks will again be filled by plastic, both in cards and in people... our walks will be stunted because I'm back to mid-afternoon strolls, and the early morning visits have ended. That quiet will be sorely missed.

The route changes daily..through Chinatown or walk to Broome and see where it leads... go down Broadway for a mile or so...maybe head down towards the river. It begins and ends the same, however... Tribeca Park, to the deli.. coffee for me, a sausage for the dogs... and we're off, wandering where we can, ending in the park just off West Broadway, and a final leg home past the Grand. An hour and a mile or so coffee is usually spilled on me, the dogs have watered every place they can, and the brisk walk they started with, pulling me along, has slowed to a sedate walk at my heels.

We pass a number of folk, and once past Canal, you can see the visitors of SoHo venturing out...hats, scarves, heels or flats....they are thin, chic, older men, younger girls...the beautiful people. Some have dogs, too. They walk them with leashes that co-ordinate with their shoes or dress...small, yippy dogs... Large, noble dogs...all looking very well cared for and very expensive. Then we walk by... jeans, a tshirt, cowboy boots or old flats.. with two white dogs sporting shabby, chewed up leashes. We are looked at, and looked down on.

I'm not sure why... they have to pick up poo the same way I do. Poo is the great equaliser in the dog world.

The air is balmy, the dogs are now curried and clipped, the crazy people are here... it's officially spring.

iPod, YourPod

iPods do find your mood.

On the way to work, it was all sad songs...unrequited love, Wartime Prayers, things that fit where my heart is right now.

When I went for the walk, suddenly, every song was a fast beat, and contained something to do with walking...

Sitting here now, Billie Holliday sings God Bless the Child as I search for apartments.

The urban legend of the iPod shuffle lives on.

Fashion in New York


I was never one to wear hats, but, here, I do. I love hats. Plop! Bad hair day fixed...and you can go get things done, and still look good. Now, I'm used to baseball cap hats...but, here... oh, here, the hats are great, and I take advantage of what is about.

Of course, I may not have a place to live as of May 1st, but, I'll be homeless with good hats and shoes.

I love the hats that the people who have the elaborate rasta braids wear...they are knitted, and with all the braids stuffed inside, they look like they have an inverted beehive attached to their skull. I watch as the sit on the train, and wait for buzzing to start.

It never does.

You've got the boyfriend/girlfriend matching chapeau.... you know, the flat cap that she wears frontwards, and he puts on with the bill in the back. He usually has a shaved head. She's very thin, and they both wear white cotton shirts and short black leather jackets.

There are the berets, favoured by old ladies and me. The heavy knitted beret, the wool beret, the billed beret, the billed wool beret. The cute Russian army look hat in all kinds of materials. Hats in every colour and material for sale on every corner. Who needs a milliner when you've got Ming Lu and her traveling hat table?

Weather means nothing to those who live here... yesterday, I went to work in a cotton shirt and a vest...and I saw everything from heavy coats and woolen scarves to shorts. Granted, the shorts were on the UPS guy, still, it counts.

Heels and skirts run, run, across streets. I applaud their dexterity. I wear heels, with silk and going out to see tall men. I don't run in them...although, if I saw Gary Sinese across a crowded room, I may be tempted.

With the weather bouncing 'round, we are in a bad place, fashionwise. One day, you are comfy in cotton, the next day, you need wool. I'm almost ready to give up and live in a coat with removable sleeves. I have added a between season coat to my coat wardrobe, which will join me and my hats in my homelessness.

I give kudo's though, to the best, best, bestest most confident dressed man I've ever seen. Walking up Church, he had on a white suit, white hat, white tie and white shoes.... they were accented by the orange..not peach, not amber, not apricot, but orange hatband, shirt, spats on the shoes, and.....the top of it all... a full length polar bear faux fur coat in his beloved orange, walking with sureness and power, assisted by his white walking cane..

Yeah,, I know what he does for a living, even so...
that is fashion in New York.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Tequilla Ramblings

The joys of my roommate:

  • he took me in when I was so very close to really being homeless
  • he's a joy, sweet tempered, wry, talented, kind, funny beyond belief
  • we laugh at the same things
  • he is up for second auditions for Cats...and deserves the role
  • he takes me to his piano bar somewhere off the 'C' line route...I've no idea where in the world we were... it was a gay bar, tons of show tunes, lots of heavy drinks, at the end, I sang the straight female part in all of the songs.
  • he fails to stop me from sending text messages to people in my address books....sorry folks.
  • he doesn't have a fit when we come home and find a present from the was in the bathroom.
  • he is who he is.... I adore him.

I'm feeling no pain, and will regret those text messages in the AM... right now, I'm glad to have him about, will miss him like mad...and am happy to have the five emails from people who are interested in me as a roommate.


Variety Is No More


Not funny haha, but, funny strange... I used to read the trade papers daily when I didn't live in New York. Variety, Playbill..anything related to theater or film, I took the time to go though online. Who was directing what, the shows going up, how boxoffice was... my family members who are in the film industry would drop a few bits here and there, too.

I was pretty on top of things.

My feeling was, I'll hit New York, see the shows I'm itching to see, catch films... be in the thick of it!

Well, I am in the thick of it... I'm stage managing again, and working as a script supervisor for a short film...but, see a show? Read a trade paper? I've kept up on a few, here and there... I try to graze though them on the weekends... get the highlights and such...for the most part, I knew more about Broadway and Hollywood before I moved.

Go figure.

I'm captivated by my surroundings, find daily theater in the people on the street, take in the drama of life here... but, I miss my reading to see what was on. I miss writing down what play I wanted to see, what films were coming out.

I've not seen a film since I visited the land of Utes in February.

Granted, my hours don't lend themselves to doing much...with the ride home, it's 9P some nights... still...

I didn't move here to not see everything. It's time to wander outside of my comfort zone I've set up... maybe midtown is the place to move.


Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Gym? I Don't Need No Stinking...

Andrea St.Clair has a fixation with working out. No, really, she does...I tell her there is no need.

This woman looks fine...she's in shape, trim, no fat...yet, she goes to boot camp.

Boot camp.

I told her I'd worked out once... and in her honour, I resurrect my feelings about my time at the gym.

Have you ever noticed there are certain groups that frequent gyms, no matter where they are located, be it in the land of Utes or in New York City itself?

There is the hard core group of men who lift weights, carefully checking the progress of their program in full surround view mirrors by watching the growth of muscle mass..and possible reduction of other areas because of steroid use. They walk in a certain strained way, unable to put their arms fully down by their sides because of the sheer bulk of back muscle and arm muscle that touch and hold the two body parts away from each other. Their knees are so far apart due to the size of their thighs, one has no idea what the other one looks like. Adjoining this group are the female body builders... they are completely intent on bulking up, to the point they don't even look like women any more.. instead of breasts, they've pretty much developed moobs. Both groups favour the fake tan and lots and lots of oil. My biggest fear is they will breed, and babies with little six packs will be born, putting the rest of us to shame.

Next on the pecking order are the wives of men in power... perky breasts (that proclaim, "Yes, I've had a child and nursed, however, I can afford a plastic surgeon.. don't they look real?"), uplifted asses, thighs as hard as the huge diamonds on their left ring fingers. They work on all the machines in addition to pilate's, yoga and the ever popular weight sculpting class. Their attire is pretty uniform... designer togs, tight and never sweat stained. These women also wear thong underwear. I understand that many women do.... I've never understood thong underwear to begin with.. and thong exercise clothing that used to be popular.. totally beyond my comprehension. They carry nice towels and real water bottles. The hair is either coiffed into a solid shell or in the ever popular ponytail, which swishes in time as they walk, almost singing out "!!" The sub-genre of this group are the twentysomethings who aspire to take these women's place.

You've got the people who have been told by their doctor, "Go or die." They slink in, wearing huge clothing, stay 10 minutes and leave.

There are the mid-level exercise group, who tend to stick to the classes and a few machines, running.. actually running on the treadmill. They have on running shorts and check their heartrates on little machines attached to their arms. They do not talk nor look at anyone in the place.

Finally, you've got people like me and my friends...M and A.... well, actually M and I. His wife, A, falls into the mid-level group... working hard at what she does. Matt and I do the exercises, the machines and the weights in our sweat pants and tshirts and a baseball cap..but, for us, it's a social time. We chit chat and complain and I refuse to do any stair machines because my knee hates them. So, I walk on the treadmill and wish I'd brought an iPod. She just shakes her head and moves on... never jiggling. The first group walk past us, joining with the firm by nature 20somethings...they glance over and giggle. I think they are jealous of my Eventual Chaos cap, to be honest.

To join this fair group, you have to have an intake interview with someone like Lassa. That really was his name, Lassa SomethingsweedishIcan'tpronounce. These men are usually in Jack LaLanne shape, and do things like long distance bike riding at the age of 64.

I mentioned my discovery that because of my inability to spit, I'd never ride into Paris in a yellow jersey and laughed. He just stared at me with colourless eyes and asked if I'd ever ridden a bike before. "Well, yes, I used to ride tandem.. I was on the back. My ex was a biking fool.. and I rode a tandem road bike with him. It's easier, you can fake the pedaling." My smile grew weaker. He stared some more. "You faked it?" in a tone that suggested I'd faked things far more important than pedaling a bike...come to think of it.. faking the pedaling may be more important to him. "Only on the downhill, I swear it.. it was the fear of going 60 MPH down curvy roads with traffic and not having any control.. and the spitting.. I couldn't spit. I had bugs in my mouth and couldn't spit." At this point, I was wishing I didn't speak English. The stare never wavered. I broke and babbled I had always worked hard on the uphill climbs, and I even owned padded bike shorts and a jersey and real bike shoes and a professional helmet and real bike water bottles when I used to ride! His stare cut though me. He moved on in his discussion of the facilities, almost hyperventilating in his excitement over the pretend rowing across the lake marathons they hold on the pretend rowboats.

Be still my heart.

We moved on to diet... Lassa spent the next 16 minutes discussing enzymes and intake of proper nutrients and I stopped listening around 45 seconds into the lecture. I nodded when his eyes showed I was to respond... and agreed that I should give up my New Orleans style coffee.. the stuff I've had every morning of my remembered life.

Yeah, right after I cut off my left arm. I grew up in the South, Lassa..with a Sicilian grandmother.. and well... I should just mainline lipitor, I imagine, to undo all that past damage. I eat right now, but, I'm not giving up my coffee or my seafood or my Sicilian cooking. Besides, all of our women grow to be 80+.. they may shrink to be 4'8" with good posture and a mustache, but, they have long lives and great facial structure. I'll chance it. You can always wax and wear heels.

Mostly, I noticed he needed to trim the hair in his ears.

Therefore, as I wait every day for my coffee to finish in the percolator (some people still use them), I realise that even though we know I feel sweat is only acceptable in two places in life....

....this isn't one of them.


Wednesday recovery.

Last night was another TwoFerTuesday. I simply cannot go on like this, I'm going to be a mess... I feel lethargic, heavy, my eyes are puffy... N and I both sit here like lumps, as I cough in a pitiful fashion *cough* fashion from the creeping crud I cought in addition to this horrific feeling I'm carrying around.

I told my beloved roomie...stop doing this to me! I'm not young and spry like you! I cannot continue in this manner, beating up my body.. this Tuesday stuff must stop!!

He laughs...knowing I'll be lulled again next TwoFerTuesday.

I've not eaten this much pizza in years.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

When Sean Henry Was A Little Baby....

....let's be honest, he was never little.

He's long and lean and funny. Something he's always been. From the time he was able to talk... a feat he refused to do until he was almost three, then he started in full sentences... he's had a droll way about him. This is a child who has caused me more laughter than almost anyone I know, even when he doesn't mean to.

Sadly, he usually means to, and causes me pain from extended periods of loud, uncontrolled peals of snort filled laughs.

This child of mine, who has a kind soul, a keen wit, a brilliant mind... I can't say enough about him, and I can't continue to write about him, because I'll cry.

I miss him.

A classic Sean story:

When I was in recovery from my bout of nuclear meds... I thought I'd be clever and sit on a thick blanket to keep the radiation from going into the sofa. Sean looked at me from his black eyes so far above me.

"A blanket?"

"Yes, and then I threw it away!"

"A blanket. To protect us from radiation."


His gaze never wavered. His tone stayed dry. "Wow, Mom. A blanket. Great idea. Shame the people of Hiroshima didn't think of blankets."

Happy 21st, sweet potato.

I'll love you forever.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Virginia Tech

Nothing you can say, except to offer prayers for those who died, their families, the injured...those left behind who will question why? Who will wonder as we did after Columbine. After each school shooting...the same questions, the same grief, the same tears and guilt of the survivors.

God grant them all peace....peace of mind, peace of soul... peace from the hoards of news people who will jump on every word, every link... who will not let them grieve in solitude.

Yes, God grant them peace... and perhaps, eventually, the ability to move on.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

The N and Q Show, Part II

We recovered from our first meal and went back to our notebooks. It's sad to think that we really could find nothing else to do... N wrote a horrific group of words that were pure lies about me in his journal. We made a note to watch schlock on VH1 at 10P. We sat and discussed our later meal.

The rain stopped and I dashed out with the dog who thankfully curbed in the moist air. There was so much water in the large gutters next to the buildings, it was coming out onto the sidewalks.

Back to television, gossip, notebooks, mySpace for N, phonecalls to the kids for me, and more discussions of food.

Chinese for N, leftover food for me.

It's late, last of the schlock tv, eyes blurry, rain is pouring back down.... N keeps burping.

Work again tomorrow, off in the rain... I'm stealing the good umbrella, leaving him the cheap dollar store one.

It was a good day....and I'm dead tired from doing nothing.

The N And Q Show

Today, there is nothing of any deep interest or is about N and I being bored, locked up in our apartment, waiting for the Bronx to float by, and deciding how much we should tip the delivery boy to slog though the streets to feed us.

We are thinking $4.

Realise, I stocked the 'fridge last night, and even hacked in space through the frost filled freezer to squeeze in some ice cream. I am a good roommate.

However, cold Chinese, yogurt, and a new quart of milk and some blueberries aren't enough. Not even the tasty hot wings will tempt us. Perhaps it's the fact we'd have to turn the oven on, and it hasn't been on in two years that is stopping us in this endeavour.

N learned to load photos onto his new notebook, and has registered on YouTube. We grow so out of things to do, that I go into my room, and we IM each other. Buying his notebook was great fun.. it was the blind leading the stupid. I knew enough to make sure it had a 1G processor and an AMD Turion. I have no idea what those things are, but, mine has, his had to, too.

We called Z from the store, he started to tell me things to look for, and I zoned out somewhere around megs and stuff.

It has a pretty case, that sold us.

The terrier has to be watched... if you take her out, she dashes back to the door, refusing to curb. She will however, gladly go indoors. Somehow, this isn't acceptable. Go figure.

N has nothing to say.

He is contemplating food.

So am I.

I mean, it is 3.35, and we've been discussing it off and on since 1.30. Do we order one meal or two? Eat one now, then order again at 8? What do we order? This is a lengthy process that cuts into our valuable nap time.

We are also watching the Bourne Idenitity, which only occasionally offers respite from our twin notebooks with it's car chases and visions of Matt Damon in a real mini Cooper actually acting. Above us, the neighbors stomp to show their displeasure over something or the other.

We've made the decision to order.

Now, we have to decide what.

The worst part of this is....which menu to order from.

Decision made, call placed. Bet on how long the delivery will take... how wet the delivery person will be. Realise, this cafe is only a block away.. we could walk there and back in five minutes. That's not the point... we'd have to shower, get dressed.... and well, it's worth the $4.

Marie Antoinette to watch on PPV.... then, dare I say it... gin to play.

He's going down.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

It's Going To Rain

Loins girded for the big storm.

Two umbrellas purchased at $1.99....milk, coffee, buffalo wings, ice cream, yogurt, dog food...the basics.

We are ready....

And, with that, I realised how much I've changed my thinking.... before, I'd have had food cooked and stored, and blankets in case the heat goes, and all of those things. Now, well, now.... we'll see if we have to resort to catching rats or if the delivery guy refuses to come out. Then, you know it's a storm.

Friday, April 13, 2007


The journey downtown today gave me pause to think about something I spend a great deal of time on, and a great deal of time looking at... the subway.
I've realised that many of the same things are both loved and hated by me on this particular institution:

  • The 181st Street Station~a startling visual going down~miserable to walk back up
  • An empty A train platform~you are lulled to think you'll get a seat/you know you missed the train by seconds
  • Escalators~Heaven to ride out of the depths of a deep station/miserable to walk up when dead
  • The crystal tones of the announcers for the 6 train, giving times of arrival and departure/the garbled notes of so many others, when you think they've said the Z train will be leaving for West Tickfaw in 187 minutes.
  • Snakes on a Plane/Drunks on a Train... pretty much the same in the annoyance level
  • The Front Car~Standing there on purpose, to watch the tunnel rush towards you, having a sense of danger as you fly along/Being smashed against the same door, back to it, swearing you feel it budging open from the pressure of all those bodies behind you.
  • Books~People who have a better book than you do and share a discussion of said book/People who have a better book, and pretend you don't exist if you ask about it.
  • Tagging~Classic tags in sharp relief on interior tunnel walls where you are forced to admire the bravery (stupidity?) of the artist/Tagging on train windows in substances that look vaguely like human fluids.
  • Manners~People who stand and are gracious in giving up their seats to the elderly/infirm/pregnant women. This is said for both men and women/People who jump into your seat when you stand to give it up to one of those mentioned.
  • Journeys~The joy of an express/The misery of a local
  • Metrocards~Ease of the never-ending monthly card swipe/Doing the swipe, and not having the turnstile move, causing a huge bruise on your hip area from swift, hard contact.

I won't take a bus, I love the deep darkness of the train, dashing in and out of the lights of the stations, racing each other.. one dropping down or going higher... the odd feeling you get when two trains pull out at the same time, and the local starts to wonder if your

Dates and Friends

I went on a date.

Yes, me. A real life date. With a living male type person. Straight, male, living, attractive person.

And, I had a good time.

I'm as shocked as anyone....especially over the having a good time. In fact, I didn't even notice people or things on the train there or back... how's THAT?

Dash home, change, curb the dog, and out.

Drinks at a pleasant bar called Brendan's on 35th, with a note to myself to make sure I have more than coffee all day next time I go out for drinks. Plans are made for a later time to get together... although I eschew food...that whole eating in public phobia I share with my son. I'm thinking film...I can do popcorn, no one sees you eating it....simple, easy and enjoyable.

A simple hug and that was that.

Not my dreams, however.... comfortable. Someone who is content in my company. Nice.

I'll learn.

Home...and the roommate calls to say come over to the local pub...there is something to be found in walking in some place, and have people know your name. It's like being Norm without the suit or the never seen wife.

Just home....with the realisation I have to be up in a few hours. I had a great time tonight. I have laughed and laughed and talked with good people and flirted and played Jenga and talked some more.

A good day. A lovely day.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

This Week's Top Ten

My current favourite things:

1. The new trains on the L and 6 line. They have the clever little electronic map that shows you where you’ve been, where you are, where you are going and what lines you can connect to. Perfect if you are drunk, feeble or me. With that said… I still went the wrong way on the L, and was half-way to Brooklyn before I realised it. The upside is, I was able to enjoy the sleek, only partially tagged train on a journey back to Astor Place, following my travel back to where I should have gone to begin with.

2. The Astor Place station. Most ironic around…and not because it's the only one where you tell someone, “It’s between the two Starbucks.”. Add to that distinction is the wonderful copper exterior, now in a patina green, pushing out of the ground in the middle of the park. Inside, it’s lush, with the name of the station spelled out in well fired tiles. The old, heavily carved ‘Men” and ‘WOMEN’ bathroom doors now bracket a snack stand…The irony comes in the huge tiled beaver made to honour the wealth started in the pelts of this animal...I'd hang out in this station if I were a advertising...but, it's across the tracks that makes you take your breath in perfection of perfection of perfect ironic places...a K-Mart located in the station named for a man who was once America's wealthiest man. Bliss.

3. The 8th Street Station, land of little brass art. No matter my mood when I dash from 14th street over to the 8th street side… I become happy. How can you not feel that way when you see these clever bits of glee peering at you from the most unexpected places? My favourite are the two who hide behind a concrete post, with a saw. I see people scurrying past, without a second look, and I want to shout at them to stop and examine these bits of work… it’s like the 5280 propellers in the outbound tunnels at Denver International Airport, work created by William Maxwell. How many times do I hear people talking of them, and thinking they are some kind of ventilation system, when they are a painstakingly installed work of art, put in over a few days by Billy Maxwell and with help from Deb Sophia Henson, who battled rats, standing water and other dark things to provide this interactive project. I have a work of Billy's, who died a few years ago…a bird’s head made of autumn leaves. It’s one of my favourite pieces of art, his concept was to create extinct species of birds from the Amazon…mine is a peach headed parrot who ceased to exist in 1760. He was genius.

4. Hot and sour soup. Good hot and sour soup. You can't get it delivered.."Ten dollar minimum on delivery.", but, you can pick it up in a matter of minutes, and both the local place and the plethora of locations near my workspace make amazing hot and sour soup. I’m living on it because it’s cheap, and I spent too much money on new jeans that I needed because I lost weight and my old ones don’t fit. With this diet, the new ones will be too big, and the process will repeat. Clever, I’m not. Addicted, I am.

5. Back streets of SoHo. You meet the oddest people... the woman who came up to me, and told me far too many things about me... that I'd just moved here, that it was the best thing I could have done... that I was growing too comfortable in my P.A. job, that I worried about my youngest son, that I had been ill, but, I would be better if I made sure I dealt with my current niggly let go of the issue that was hurting my heart. It would break me. I had given enough. To mend fences, to remember God loved me. To work on my spirit... and she smiled at me and walked off.

6. The lights of the City at night in the Spring. The air is so clear, they grab you and take you home.

7. Chinatown. I told a friend that I love how the smells of it cling to you, so that when you come home, and are sitting there, reading or watching TV, a wiff rises up from your hair, and you are transported feel as if you are in some ancient Chinese apothecary shop. Rich, tasty, deep, colourful scents. Delightful.

8. My roommate. I will miss him so much. Last night, we sat and watched TV and ate pizza... turning out the lights, figuring out that if we didn't see the food, the calories didn't count. He makes me laugh so hard, I have tears. This man, this man is a delight to the world.... how dear he is in my life. If he were straight and anywhere near my age, I'd marry him. If he were straight, I'd marry him. If he were near my age, I'd... well, you get the picture.

9. Stuyvesant Town. I'd love to move there, if it wasn't such a rent gouge. I am particularly bemused by those who are in rent controlled apartments, and rent out both bedrooms for $1000 each, and sleep on the couch. Greed rules. Still, I love the area... and have to think, it would be miserable to be drunk and try to find your way home.

10. The lure of real spring in the city. Can you taste it in the air? It really is pastel here... pale blue sky, spring green grass, flowers popping though.... I'm ready.

Sunday, April 8, 2007

Sunday Evening, 10 PM

Usually, I tend to do the late night walk around the block...or two.

Tonight, with the crowds so thick in our area, I put our long walk at the end of the day. The same route was done at the usual times, but, tonight was a long, long one...down through SoHo, silent streets, lights shimmering from storefronts, a man taking photos of a shuttered store.

He stopped us to take shots of the dogs, stark black and white with a creates a 4x4 negative... and makes amazing pieces of art.

The cars were backed up trying to get though the Tunnel. It always makes me laugh to think of how people honk their horns at the halted cars in front of them, as if they are stopped only to cause annoyance to those behind them, and that the honking will make things magically change. It's the big, expensive cars that sit silently... the small, tin cars honk... exhaust blowing versions of the dogs. One solid and silent, one small and bouncing at everyone bigger than she is.

There were streets where we were the only people on the block. On a few, you could look into the various restaurants and see people laughing, enjoying themselves. Most of those had at least two smokers outside, bundled up against the snap in the air. New York has two classes of citizens.. smokers and non. With cigarettes at almost $7 a pack, it's an expensive habit. I'm surprised at the number of 20somethings that smoke, and of those, the number of women. Some excuse it by saying they smoke cherry cigarettes or some other such flavour. Interesting, to say the still smells.

I am no saint...during production week, I smoke. I'd drink if I had it.... back then, I didn't. This new show, well, we'll see. ha!

The biggest issue is the pit bull's insistence on watering every tree. Every bag. Every post. It lengthens our trip. Still, the air was clear... it had snowed that morning, spitting a last defiant portion of winter. The last blocks home saw families leaving various doorways to apartments and lofts. Children held Easter baskets, running about from sugar excess... although here, it may be tofu excess.

I miss my children. Every year, I make them a basket, the ones they've had since they were born. I didn't think to take those with me when I left.... I don't know why. I would have packed them up and sent them winging back there, filled with candy and that horrible grass and love. I forgot.

I'm sorry my sweets. I love you, I miss you... the Easter bunny was overcome by New York and finding an excuse, but, the best I can do.

I love you forever.

Saturday, April 7, 2007

Sometimes, Roommates Are A Peach

I've been lucky this past few days.

The best thing has been my new roommate, N. He was my knight in shinning armour, who stepped up, took his co-op off the market, and gave me a room to live in for a month when I was in 24 hours of being homeless.

N and I have many things in, friends in the land of Utes, a tendency to say the same thing at the same time, a love of watching horror films with the lights on and blankets to hide behind, delivered New York Chinese food, gossip, shopping, theater,the terrier and I have a pair of shoes almost as old as he is.

There are things we don't have in common; he's male, I'm not. He's gay; at the most, I'm mid-range chipper. He's blonde; I'm brunette .ish. He has an amazing voice... I hum.

I'll hate to move out. However, with today as a guide as to what time out away from the flat with him can be, I'm looking forward to those dates, too.

Thanks, N. You're the best.

Two Graveyards; One Grief

I ran errands today, returned a radio, met a friend for coffee... then I headed down to Century 21, a gigundo department store I'd only heard of, but never been to since my arrival here in New York.

As I walked towards it on Church, I noticed huge buses parked along the street, and the BIG purse vendors, the ones with heavily cloaked boxes, slyly offering up goods... I had no idea what the attraction was... there was a ancient church and adjoining graveyard there that I could see ahead to my be honest, I couldn't imagine why a centuries old graveyard would attract so much attention, so many cameras. Still, for all the buses, there were only a few wandering among the tombstones that marked century old graves.

I looked to my right at that point, and saw the graveyard that was worthy of their picture taking, their silence, the pointing and the buses and the souvenir vendors; the WTC, Ground Zero, the Big Hole in the Ground.

The last time I was in New York and there had been actual buildings here, the ex had wanted to have lunch on the top.. I nixed the idea, watching them sway ever so slightly in the huge wind at the top. I had no desire to eat, then lose my expensive lunch on the way down in those elevators. I don't regret not going up there.

When I worked in travel, one of the companies we dealt with was there... and moved a few months before 9/11. I was eternally grateful I didn't have to say I knew someone who was there.

I never felt tall of those who were in the towers were heroes. Yes, there were some who stayed behind with friends, who struggled to get others to safety... exceptions, not the rule. They were, for the most part, in the wrong place at the wrong time. The fire fighters and police... doing their duty... going up when they were around 99.9% sure they were not going to come down... heroes there, yes.

I didn't look over. I didn't want to. Let them lie in peace, was my thought. This is from a woman who spent much of her childhood gazing over battlefields and graveyards of long dead soldiers who fought in the Civil War. This was not ready to be examined, in my mind.

This is too new, still. I remember it all too clearly, the day, the feelings. We all do. It's said a well known playwright thought, "Isn't this an inconvenience." and used that as a catalyst to write a play about people not being nice at that time. I can understand his feelings... I would have thought the same thing, wanting to get home, not caring about what was going on.. focused on me.

When I left, the area was even more filled up with people and vendors, and I faced into the old graveyard, of those long dead... the two in juxtaposition from each other. One filled with people who died from scurvy and childbirth and cancer and infections and measles... one filled with those who died from anger and hate we do not really understand.

I believe you are alive until the last person who knew you dies....with that as a truth, it will be decades before these people finally perish.

I don't want to be a gawker at that place, to think of those people we all watched jump rather than burn. Of watching the towers fall with beautiful grace, much as a ballerina does when she sinks into her curtsy at the end of a performance.

Their dust is still in the area, snuggled into brick and mortar crevices...we've hoovered it up, and dumped it out, and it circulates in the area. The street and rooftops still hold minuscule parts of the towers and all they held. There was an assistant to the mayor, who knew her husband was in one of the towers when it fell.. she was pregnant at the time.. and she ran out and scooped up ash, knowing that was all of it's father her child would ever have.

Ashes to ashes, dust to dust. In the end, no matter if it's from 1700 or 2001, our graves end up being tourist attractions.

One is no sadder than the other, ... people stood and wept over the lowering of the casket of their loved ones.... on the other side of the street, the wound is just fresher. When the building is finished, when there is a place to walk, to stand and remember... then, I will return.

For now, though, it pains me to think about it, to view this place, anymore than I could drive by Columbine after the shootings. Perhaps I need more time than I thought to sort it out in my head, perhaps I need to suck it up and look... perhaps I need monuments to help me understand.

All I know is, I don't want to be on a bus or leaning against the fence to remember. The rain washed that dust into the graves facing the big hole in the ground... mingling the two sites together.

It seems fitting.

Friday, April 6, 2007

Walks, Hair, and Spring Break

I'm a resident of Tribeca again.

Well, for a week at least.

One more room to re-arrange (I can hear your gasp from here, my dear employer), a haircut triple what I paid in the land of Utes, although I didn't flinch... and long walks during the day, to the park to de-lint the pit, over to SoHo for my Crunchie, into the depths of that vast area that you can find by the sound of cash flowing into registers.

We walked Canal to get to our usual strolling area today.... bad move. I felt like salmon swimming upstream against a wall of grizzlies. "You buy DVD's?" "I got a Rolex, a real Rolex, here" Right, and I'm a short redhead from Iowa. "Look, Coach bags!" I almost stopped on that one... lured by the idea of leather... but, the terrier was pouncing on food that didn't look like anything I'd ever seen before, so, I yanked her and the pit into the street, and we scurried along, avoiding the wealth of high school students chaperoned by teachers who appeared to have aged ten years since they got off the 1 train on Canal and Broadway.

Standing next to a group of girls who had on sweatshirts with UCLA on the front, I asked how did they like New York compared to L.A.. As one, they looked at me in astonishment, and queried how I knew they were from the West Coast. Seeing a greek pin...I won't mention the letters... I asked if they liked Blah Blah Blah. Sweet Jesus, you'd have thought I was David Blaine. Voices went into a register heard only by dogs and people who did far too much acid in 1973.

I pointed them in the direction of Chinatown and watched as the gaggle of blonde heads bobbled along, still going on about how I knew all that stuff.

And these people will be handling my social security one day.... I'd be more depressed if not for the realisation social security will end long before they get their hands on that money.

Up West Broadway, the dogs playing tug of war with their leashes, back down to Canal, grab of the keys, off to the haircut...which is very nice, I have to say. Not as great as M in the land of Utes, but, you have to take second place when the only other option is to fly out, get your hair cut, and fly back. Even her amazing cut isn't worth $600.

Sorry, M.

Now, settled in, dogs at rest.... shuffling though the drawer full of menus.... yes, I'm going to call and say, "I will have that delivered."

Ahhhh...... it's a good life.

Thursday, April 5, 2007

In The Middle Of The Night

Things I think about a 2A:
  • why do the drive up menus have the announcement "we have picture and braille menus" when the people who would use those very menus have no way of knowing these are available?
  • why do some men name their penis? this always places women in an awkward position. do we buy more than one gift on holidays? do we address the peni as a separate individual? when introducing our beloved to friends and/or family, how do we go about this delicate situation? "Deb, this is Charles and his peni, Bubba.". At this point, does she shake both of their, well, hands?
  • do zombies really exist?
  • why is it when someone eats or smells something so horrid that their face twists into a whirlpool of disgust, they immediately turn to you and say, "Here, taste/smell this"? Do they actually think you are going to gleefully say, "Sure, I can't wait to have that same look on my face!"
  • why do dogs look so embarrassed when they poo?
  • have you ever noticed that the more you swipe at lint, the more it moves to other places on your black pants?
  • how is it that at my age, I still fear the BVM...that's Blessed Virgin Mary to those non-Catholics...still appearing in my bedroom? A friend once said I shouldn't worry unless she has her hands in claws and is going "Grrrrr". However, there is a reason behind my fear. She shows up, I tell a friend.. we'll say, oh, Betty. "Betty, did you see 'Lost' last night? I was really enthralled. Later, while I was sleeping, the BVM appeared in my room. No, really, she did. Anyway, I tried the new coffee Dunkin' Donuts has on the's pretty good. French Roast." So, Betty calls a friend.. we'll say her name is Wilma. Wilma calls the Post. Next thing I know, the Post has called the Arch-Diocese of New York, they've got me on a non-stop plane to Rome, I'm talking to the Pope about the Great Secret the BVM always tells...and trust me, not telling the Great Secret to Betty just about killed me.. I had to hint... "You might not want to live near any big bodies of water in July of 2012.".... the Pope has me whisked away by the Swiss Army, who refuse to even give me a decent knife... I'm dressed in a really ugly wool habit, put into a convent with dour, cloistered nuns... CLOISTERED... non speaking... and for the rest of my short life, I have to kneel and pray and beat myself with a rope. I say short because the rule is I'll get something like consumption or scabies and die. Nothing fun like Tourettes, but consumption. Of course, there is the fast track to the Saint stuff.. but, the cloistered shit stinks.
  • when I call customer service, and am sent to an outsourced system, and the guy from India tells me his name is Ralph... why won't he believe my name is Indira?
  • if a screaming baby gets to fly for free on somone's lap, why does my quiet dog have to pay $40 to be squeezed under a seat?

Most of all, why can't I sleep at 2A on a Thursday?


It was during my daily walk with the dogs that I had my run in with the aforementioned dogwalker... the walk we take after we've dropped off the poodle to snooze and dream of days when she wasn't guided by my voice or the smells in the air.

We head down West Broadway, into SoHo, past the swanky shops... what a great word, swanky... and cruise past Spring, into the deep areas where the rich play and the tourists come to gaze about, in hopes of seeing someone famous, I suppose.

In a few weeks, the Tribeca Film Festival will be up and running... the area will be swamped with the LA crowd, the directors and producers and backers and the...*gasp*...actors. Our little shop where I buy my Crunchie bar will become crowded at 3, when I go in, people picking over the salad bar. Good news for the proprietors, bad news for me.

It should be about me. heh.

Our walk down beyond the Coach store, the turn around and back past the SoHo Grand will no longer be as leisurely. The pit bull will have to struggle to reach every tree...I'm starting to think he has diabetes, to tell the truth. By the time we reach the Grand, no stopping and chatting with the doormen, who usually scratch both dogs and have a few words for me. They will be busy opening and shutting the doors of private cars and limos and the big front doors of the hotel itself.... good tips for them, and we are part of the peon crowd.

It's only a week, then things are back to normal, the deli is calm, the sidewalks are thinned out, the doormen are again easy going and smiling when we saunter past.

Only a week.

Then, it's tourist season.... you've gotta love New York.

Bad Dogwalker! Bad! Bad!

Hey, you, dogwalker!

You know who I mean... the one who walks my turf... here in SoHo/Tribeca/Downtown...well, I do have to protect myself somewhat, she's scary looking.

Here's a hint...short-leash your dogs. You know, pull up on the leash of the five dogs you are paid good money to walk so that they are under control when you walk them on a busy sidewalk.

Just a hint.

Here's a few more:

  1. Stop talking on your cellphone, you might notice the lady with the baby stroller next time before you walk into her.
  2. Can you say the word 'muzzle'?
  3. When you see me and my dogs coming your way, why not pull over to one side of the walking area, instead of filling it the way your ass fills those too tight jeans?
  4. If someone who has her dogs under control, short leashed and is saying to you with clenched teeth as she hauls back on a pit bull who is defending his territory, "GET YOUR FUCKING DOGS OUT OF THE WAY OR I'LL MOVE THEM MYSELF." because your out of control, unmuzzled dogs are this close to her terrier, snapping and lunging, you might want to listen. I hear cowboy boots are uncomfortable when inserted into certain orifices.
Granted, these are just suggestions, given in the spirit of one dog lover to another. If it was just once, I could understand...but, twice a week?

Dear me.

If you don't want to listen, fine.... I'll just start buttering the ends of my's the least I can do.

Wednesday, April 4, 2007

Deliver Us....

I've learned to adore yet another thing about New York..... the phrase, "Do you want that delivered?"

Do you think I say "Yes."?

Is water wet? Is the Pope Catholic? When an apartment says 'pet friendly', does that just mean they've named the roaches?

It first occurred when I went down to the Container Store, where I tend to bring a lunch I stay there so long, and purchased a towering shopping basketful of goodies to organise the loft. My glee at the items it contained was offset only by my wondering how I'd fit everything into a cab...even I knew I'd never make it on the train. As I stood in line, a friendly person came over and said, "Will you want that delivered?"

I was speechless....a rare occasion for me. It was if I'd never heard English before. Delivered? DELIVERED??

I attempted to appear as if I heard that word on a regular basis. "Why, yes... that would be fine."

I was promptly whisked out of the everyone-is-the-same line into the deliver-me-from-schlepping-this-myself line.

It was heaven. A special line, for little ole' me? They wrapped and rang up and chatted with me, taking my cash and getting the address, assuring me my goods would be there when I wanted them there. Sure, there was a minuscule charge, however, compared to dragging bags and parcels up and down stairs.. even the tip would be worth it.

I turned down the offer of a cab... I could shop for me now... my hands were free.

I wandered into another store, gave the phrase, "Deliver that, please." in a languid voice, then raced for my peon train to beat my la dee da delivery men. Tip them, unpack, and I was set.

Now, I have almost everything more worrying about dragging 40lbs dry food down Broadway, even if now I do have the arms to do it easily....hungry? pick up one of the 4,762 menus cluttering the junk drawer, and have it delivered! I've not cooked since I arrived. I'm almost ashamed.


I tip with a smile, I love the fact some other person used to drag themselves up those five flights of stairs...they got a bigger tip than the new place with it's beloved elevator... in fact, there were nights I almost called from the third floor landing to have them carry me up with the food, willing to tip them a huge amount to drag my tired ass up to the flat.

Oh, yes, delivery is wonderful, delightful, marvelous.... what a way to live. If nothing else keeps me from going back to the land of Utes, it will be the loss of delivery....and the fact the one place that does deliver has my son as an employee, and I'll have to tip him extra.

Tuesday, April 3, 2007

Today, It's About Me

Some days, we withdraw.

Today was one of those for me, a rare event, it must be said.

From my first step onto the elevator...oh! how I love that word!... in my temporary new flat, granted by the lovely N, who knows so many of the same people I do back in the land of Utes, I plugged in the iPod, that amazing device that allows you to block out the world. Better than sunglasses, it keeps anyone from approaching, they see you are occupied, it's obivious you can't hear, your eyes are somewhat glazed over, so, therefore, you dwell in the land of your own making.


I've a feeling this kid drives a Caddy.

I avoided eye contact. I didn't look and take count of the number of young men with their braids under cheap ski hats. I didn't pay attention to the people who tried to woo the terrier. I looked out the window at the stations as they went past, for once not playing the racing game with other trains... looking at the other people as their train keeps pace, then we pull ahead because we are the express!!

Dogs walked, chores done, plants placed, the old sad ones in the rubbish... everywhere, headset on.

I avoid seeking out something, someone to write about, to talk to... I do give directions to a few tourists... it's good manners.

Finally, coming back for the last walk of the day, looking towards Canal, I know I won't stay this way... there is too much here. Someone asked me if I had come here for someone, if I had finally stepped out of my cave and came to New York for a person.

No... the answer is no.

Yes, I was lured out and became bold at the request of a person... yes, I sucked it up and decided the world was interesting again because of words said. I'm glad they were. Perhaps, one day, that person will remember their end of all of this... perhaps not.

Either way, that event, the events of October, the clarity received then... changes made... and I came here for me.

I love it here, I don't always like it. The hunt for a permanent place is exhausting. I should bite the bullet and rent my own minuscule home... perhaps it's the niggling fear in the back of my mind that something will happen, and I'll grow ill and have to go back if I do that. Renting with another keeps me healthy in my way of thinking.

Tomorrow, I'll have the earplugs out, my frame of mind will be better, my heart will be sore, but, still in a place of hope. Billie Holiday sings of lamented, unrequited love... nice song, but, not my way of thinking.

Scarlet has my point of view.

There's always tomorrow.