Saturday, October 29, 2005


I did not think that I could leave. Strong. I did not think that I could abstain. Very strong. I did not think that I could call back. To hear. To talk. To try it over.


I say: Yea, I'm anxious for the Caribbean. A swimsuit in November, can't beat that. I just wish I was getting a stamp on my passport. The blank stock paper is begging for a little ink. He says: Stick with me kid.

A guy who can pull off 'kid'. Niice. Very niiice.
And things are. Nice, huh?

Monday, October 24, 2005

red, orange, yellow

Fall is here. It was hard to tell exactly when the season changed though. It's an indistinctive transition. The heat slowly subsides only to be contradicted by a relapse. The indecisive climate persisted for a few weeks but now that humidity has dissapated, subways are breathable again, weekends in the city are back to life and Indian Summer is over, I believe autumn in New York is here.

It's a favorite amongst New Yorkers. Fall fashions, crispness in the air, leaves going from green to red soon to be followed by red and green trees, squash soups and decor, iced teas back to hot, school buses, plaid wool, red, orange, yellow everywhere, scarves and fingerless gloves playing chess in the park, patch quilts, #2 pencils, costumes, foliage piles along Central Park, Central Park fountain, meadows, boulders and trails, smell of burnt nuts in the street, lighting candles with the AC off, Havana cigars, lunch pails, elbow patches, Farmers Market harvest tables, pumpkin spiced lattes.

Before moving out here, when I used to only live in a picture of New York in my head, this is what I had imagined. Very few things come to life the way it's pictured in my head. This city is one of the few for me.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

the one

I go to her for words of lovedom. She comes to me for rationale. Our calls are habitual, a natural part of our day, built into our bi-coastal schedules. Her: as she leaves the office, me: right after four episodes of Everybody Loves Raymond. We ping each other all day at work. We hurry back from lunch if we've had to interrupt one of our dreams. And by dreams I mean, "It felt so real, he was there with his ex and I accidentally took a bow and arrow and shot her right in between her eyes. BAM. I never knew I possesed a skill in archery. Then, I woke up." She has gotten me to actually laugh loudly at my screen and caused me to lay my head down on my keyboard. I know I've done the same for her from her indecipherable replies. Hints towards a secret like,interest, fetish are welcomed with the discovery that the other enjoys the same sick qualities in men, humor, movies. La Onda para la vida. I could tell you that 'Sweetest Thing' is on her favorite movies list. She won't say it. She could tell you what 'running errands' is code for. I won't say it. We chronicle the events of reality shows but can't quite recall all the moments in any of our trips. A tale-tell sign of good times. I know which celebrities she got secret cheap thrills from and she still gets repulsed by my intense attraction towards David Letterman. Her speed of celebrity recognition is the same swiftness it took me to call the airlines to extend the visit on the day of departure. She lives in Los Angeles and plays in Hollywood and Sunset. I live in New York and play in the Meatpacking and Lower East Side. We want to trade it all in for aprons. The dream, cupcakes. Cozy cafe with sayings on the tables like: "Broken-hearted? Shoe-shopped out? Have another cupcake, it's on us. There are tissues at the counter as well."

We understand each other but we are not each other. She's long and lean, I'm short and petite. She says guys like smaller packages. I say it's the ones with small packages that can't handle a womanly woman like her. In high-school, I called her monster. I gleaned the nickname from my brother and his friends, her shadow over-towered theirs, hence the name. I have pictures of this. They now ask me if the monster is single. She is an equal opportunity drinker: beer, vodka, wine, even shows a little love to Patron. I consume other things in other ways. I reach into her medicine cabinet and shake around an Rx stickered bottle, she yells, "it's Claritin Winona!." I disappointingly put it back. We both EAT.

Applebees for special occassions. Jerk sauced fingers, beer mugs raised, "To bruins and bears." Clink, clink. Then, we ponder, what's the difference? She got into the southern UC, I got into the Northern. We both don't know how we did that. Both filled with useless pop culture. We can make six degrees of Kevin Bacon into four. Perogis and samoas from the corner bodega on our first trip to New York. Our other friends had reservations at Nobu. We surfed for porn in the hotel and ate on the bed. She falls asleep, fingers tucked gently under her waistline, upper lip hovering over the lower, then drool. Two words, Al Bundy. I have pictures. We think Aunt Jackie was one of the best television characters to have been created. She watches CSI while I watch Nip/Tuck. We both watch Laguna Beach. We reference Sex and the City to cut conversations shorter, "how's the new guy?" "He's got 'Big' issues. And you? How was last night?" "He was dick-a-licious."

We bonded over a long drive, boys, and Gia. The long drive lead to talking about boys then, breaking up with those boys then, renting an Angelina Jolie flick so that we could feel empowered. We both wanted a knife afterwards. Neither can peel a piece a fruit in one coil. I got my braces off, a car and we started to hang out. She still had bands criss-crossing her front teeth, I have pictures, and her used Thunderbird didn't come for a couple more years. That car was Reality Bites, Winona and Janene singing 'Tempted.' And tempted we were, at an early age. We met at the time when we were scouting fake ID's, taking SAT classes and losing our virginities. I lied about mine. She knew. She lied about hers. I knew. Whores.

We knew that we were a little more to each other than other friends. We'd sit at a restaurant and I'd be able to order for her if she was in the bathroom before she even glanced the menu. At house parties, I trusted only her to make my drinks. One part vodka, eight parts tonic, five limes. She's speed dial 3, 1-voicemail, 2-mom. I'm the one she would have check in on her mom or sister. She's the one who knows all the men and boys (mostly the latter) that I have toyed, tossed and teared over. I'm the one who gets to meet her new 'one.' She's in that elusive one-on-one.

I wondered if they met too early in the timeframe of our friendship. I wondered if this would take away from future perogies, lime-infused drinks, dream-sharing, cake batter mixing, Nick at Nite marathons of Roseanne, porn giggles, roadtrips in the Thunderbird. But I've met her 'one' and I like this one. It looks like he might be around for when I pick her up for Applebees' early bird special. I'm going to have to show him the pictures. A lot of Apples lay ahead.

La Onda para la vida.
dry hands

I'm getting older.

I like foods less sweet. I'm taking an interest in world news. I can't seem to sleep in past 10am on the weekends (during college, I never saw 'am' on my clock. 2pm was usual). My hands get dry quickly. I have a tub of lotion on my desk and I am pumping that thing by the hour. Then, I rub it in the way school librarians did. The list of what I won't eat shrank, in fact, I don't think there's anything on it. I now eat peas, eggplant and will never order California Rolls over Sashimi. Still no raisins, should have been left as a grape. I use eye cream. The volume bar on my laptop never exceeds beyond the halfway point. I listen to Billie Holiday, Annie Lennox, Carly Simon and Nina Simone this time of year. Classic movies aren't an assignment anymore, it's leisure. Political satires are understood...somewhat. I tune into Daily News with John Stewart even when an All Access VH1 special is on (fine, they're always on). Chest hair on men, now nice, not nasty. I don't throw out the LL Bean catalog anymore. I have not renewed my subscription to Cosmo and Glamour in years. I now receive Paper, Nylon and New York Magazine. When kids run by, I bite my lip from telling them to slow down. I wonder about things like how much a place in NYC will be in about 5-7 years. How my parents will retire when the corporation of drycleaning doesn't exactly provide a 401K. I think about 401K's and when I will actually start it. Realizing that even if I wanted to try out for the Real World, I can't, I'm past the age cut off (24). Radio stations play B.I.G., Tupac and Snoop Dawg as part of their 'back in the day mix' and I'm baffled. I'm showing less in clubs. I'm going less to clubs. I floss. I use oil on my body. Oil was the enemy for so long, oil-free products isn't a must anymore. Now, I crawl into bed, with my eye mask as a hair band, tuned into John, and rub Vitamin E into my cuticles.

This is either the healthiest or saddest list.

1. Love candles. Hate incense.
2. Love trees. Hate bonsai trees.
3. Love flowers. Hate sunflowers.
4. Love shopping. Hate online shopping.
5. Love text-messaging. Hate phone-talking.
6. Loved all my trips to New York before moving out here. Hate tourists.
7. Love ball point pens. Hate roller ball pens.
8. Love gold. Hate silver.
9. Love jewelry. Hate Tiffany's.
10. Love grandpa sweaters, cigars and wooden chess boards. Hate sweater shrugs, menthols, and online chess.
11. Love summer nights. Hate summer weekends in New York City.
12. Love Valentine's Day at a singles bar. Hate Valentine's Day.
13. Love Wollman's Rink, Rockerfeller Tree, and Barney's Holiday Window Displays. Hate the Bloomingdale's Santa Clause. He's very aggressive.
14. Love nicknames. Hate pet names.
15. Love whispers. Hate baby voices.
16. Love the beach. Hate beach towels. The colors anyway.
17. Love Emack & Bolio's. Hate Coldstone.
18. Love Tasti-D-Lite. Hate soy ice cream.
19. Love soy milk. Hate whole milk.
20. Love Ansel Adams. Hate Ann Geddes.
21. Love surrealism. Hate impressionism.
22. Love Frida Kahlo. Hate self-portraits.
23. Love dresses and skirts. Hate ruffles and bows.
24. Love skiing. Hate ski lifts.
25. Love old name-calling: moron, idiot, shmuck, putz. Hate old endearments: dear, honey, darling.
26. Love Cheddar, brie, and goat cheese. Hate American, gorgonzola, and blue cheese.
27. Love grapes. Hate raisins.
28. Love uniforms, thick athlete socks, and ball park hot dogs. Hate spectating sports.
29. Love manicures. Hate french manicures.
30. Love smile-less winks. Hate the phrase "just kidding."
31. Love unruly, wavey hair. Hate straight hair.
32. Love shopping rewards coupons. Hate Val-U-Pak.
32. Love college in the U.S. Hated studying abroad in Korea.
33. Love Central Park reservoir. Hate treadmills.
34. Love joints. Hate bongs.
35. Love shiatsu and yoga. Hate meditation and incense...

Yep, I really don't like incense.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

NY "heart" Me

E.B White once said, "It can destroy an individual, or it can fulfill him, depending a good deal on luck. No one should come to New York to live unless he is willing to be lucky."

New York is a place to try your luck, to test yourself, to be pushed and pulled when you just want a siren-less night's sleep. I've always maintained that the trial of life is how a person reacts during toughest times. By that measure, you are constantly reacting in New York. How one maintains their relationships in their bustling New York schedule, how one parties all night in Chelsea after flying in on a red-eye, how one cooks dinner for 8 in their studio, how one scurries around town to pull together an outfit for an evening out on a tight budget, how one walks 20 blocks in a flooding rain storm in their open toed Choos. How one maintains their love for New York even if it doesn't always feel mutual.

There are three types of New Yorkers that establish this city as changeless and ever-changing.

One, those who were born here. They lay the foundation of the city. They keep the city grounded through bequests of old subway lines, what occupied Govenor's Island, great grandfathers that contributed to the Brooklyn Bridge, and outer-borough accents.

Two, those that commute into the city. They sustain the restlessness of the city. They stir up Grand Central and Penn Station. They move crowds forward in the mornings and back in the evenings. They make iconic NYC landmarks like the Brooklyn Bridge functional and historic railroads like the LIRR stay in transit.

Three, those that came here to try their luck. Aspiring artists to young Donalds to green grocers. Monologue memorized Broadway auditioners, Fashion Week runway ready legs, textile graduated cloth cutters and mannequin drapers, spray paint shakers in Williamsburg, skateboard tricksters to contemporary vintage hipsters in the Village. Fresh econ graduates eager to tote their Tumis on Wall Street, partners from Goldberg, Cohen and Levy LLP hailing cabs off Park Ave, ER doctors shooting hoops, having a smoke in between rounds. Manicurists who speak to each other in a language that sounds as if they're yelling but then look up with a smile to ask, "what color you like?" Deli grocers stocked with vegetables, flowers, and perogis. Men on street corners standing guard New York's seven papers, five weeklies, three monthlies. These are the New Yokers that disseminate the passion and frustration of the city. They are liberated and devastated. They feel as high as the Chrysler, then as low as the F line. They are doormen, they are co-op members, they are bike messengers, they are Tri-athletes, they are broken hearts leaning on other broken hearts, they are singles shoe shopping. They come to seek different things but in the end, as E.B. White says, those who come to New York do not seek comfort and convinience. You would live elsewhere if you sought that.

It's a love/hate thing. The best kind.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

cut and color

I want a new look for my site. This is a generic template provided by a generic blog site. Other bloggers have cooler ones, theirs are personalized. I still have difficulty posting photos so I'm a long way from designing one. I actually attempted to learn. People keep telling me it's not hard. This manual is heavy. Puke green isn't so bad right?

I've been blogging for over two years now. I started right before I left California to move to New York. So for a couple years now I've been meaning to paint my walls and update my site. I'm going to do it. I'm going to splash some color in my life before this year is over. I'm in need of a make-over. Time for a change.

Maybe I should just cut my hair like most women.

Friday, October 07, 2005


Guggenheim. I walked by it and recalled a debate we had of whether it was on the Upper East Side or Upper West Side. We placed a bet then took a walk. He was right. I hated it when he was right.

Whitney. I leaned against a pillar and stared at an exhibit that once displayed a string of luminescent red balls. We were loftily suggesting significances. I don't recall the title nor the meaning of those red balls except that it was the start of 'balls.'

The Bread Bakery. It was about 15 degrees that day. First time seeing each other in daylight. Still hadn't revealed what was under the beenie.

Barnes and Nobles cafe. We read his and hers books on sex tips. We had only kissed at that point. It was so awkward. It was so good.

Brooklyn Bridge. "Are we there yet?" I ask. "No, we're not," he answers. Hmmm. I'd like to go back and sit on a bench at Brooklyn Heights Promenade to view the Manhattan Skyline. Sometimes it's hard to appreciate the beauty of Manhattan while you're in it, you have to step out of it to see it.

Central Park. Bench. He guesses, "It's because I didn't let you in parts of my life, right?" He was right. I hate it when he's right.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

live before you sleep

Blogs are supposed to be about your life not analogous to your life. I feel things, I go to write, then I reconsider. I edit, delete, and sometimes end up saving a post as a draft until I'm ready to post with certainty. More often than not, those posts get deleted out of chagrin. Carpedium ideas like 'in the moment' and 'live today as your last' are foreign to me. Rather, I practice 'think before you speak' and 'sleep on it and see how you feel in the morning.' I've had a lot of sleepless nights and wound up saying nothing. They say an unexamined life is not worth living but what if examiniation is all your life is?

Monday, October 03, 2005

Tree Guards

They are all over the city. There are so many tree guards, their omnipresence goes unnoticed. But once you take note of them, you'll observe how they all differ. Sometimes they can vary even within the same block. This is because they are privately owned, they don't belong to the city. Typically, the owners of adjacent property are the ones responsible for making sure that something is constructed so that the trees are protected. Wood. Iron. Cylinder. Square. In some shape or form, a construct needs to uphold the trees from all the passersby.

I know this information from speaking to the forestry group of NYC. I sought this information because someone saw these tree guards as potential art. The wrought-iron could be bent beautifully, the wood could be carved intricately or the shapes could be formed uniquely, he thought. I thought it would have made a special birthday gift to give someone a piece of New York City sidewalk. But I knew that if I gifted that, I would be walking by that tree up and down Elizabeth Street where the tea cafe once was.

Putting my guard down to put another up. Hard to do. Unspeakably hard. There have been many passersby and when you finally meet someone you want to stand still with the guard is up. But what does it protect?
Bad Morning

I woke up this morning feeling like I came off a bad dream, a nightmare. As it turns out, it wasn't a dream.

And as of right now, I can't even foresee when I would wake up from it.

How is it possible to feel so liberated and devastated simultaneously?

This post to be continued...