Sunday, November 27, 2005

guns and gobblers

There's something synonomous about Thanksgiving and Connecticut and, as it appears, for evidential reason.

This year, Thanksgiving fish, white rice, seaweed salad, tofu cubes and kimchee was replaced with a sixteen pound gobbler, russet mashers, cranberry pineapple marmalade, squashed squash and greens. And rather than a table for five with muted sounds of a football game in the background, it was a rounding of eight with sounds coming from the table. I was invited by the suitor to a traditional Thanksgiving feast with his 'rents and bros in Connecticut...and I live to tell about it.

Meeting the family is like going to see the movie of the book you've been reading. The pictures in your head are realized true or "the book was better." Reactions range from, "the mom DOES bake one hell of a pie" to "he's not THAT much taller than his twin." But unlike a book-based-movie, it's not about comparisons, it's about witness.

To bear witness to the relationships between the one you've been getting to know and the ones who know him best exposes you to a part of someone's world that cannot be learned through words, mostly because they've been forgotten or censored. But someone in the family always remembers your actual most embarrassing tale and censorship isn't exercised when it comes to love, fights and spit bombs. Intimates and idiosyncrasies naturally display in the private viewing of a home. Childhood nicknames, slip-ups of the former gf, dad's muscle flex gun-show jokes and yelps from a pillow fight with his eight year old niece are shared. Sculpted pieces from his nine year old hands, where the bunk beds once stacked and the lawn where the tent pitched during summer nights are shown. Photos of old girlfriends, big hair and rented formal attire are opportunely seen. Driving past the baseball field where practice was held, the church that named him an altar boy, and the movie theater that gave him his first job and first beer are toured. These are the inners of someone's life that have to be seen, they cannot be read. Thanks for a ticket to the show, the gun show that is.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

sorry for apologizing

I apologize for too much. Often, I preface sentences with an "I'm sorry." "I'm sorry but is this seat taken?" "I'm sorry but could I get by?" "Sorry to bother you but your shoelaces aren't tied." The other day someone walked in on me in the bathroom and I apologized to them. The door swings open and I say, "Oh, I'm sorry, I'm almost done." Why do I think I need to be apologetic for peeing? If I'm on the phone and the person on the other end is talking and a call comes in, I could never interrupt and ask them to hold a moment. I can never turn down brunch 'catch-ups', "Candy, it's been forever, let's catch up over eggs. I'll tell you all about my new job, boyfriend and apartment." Just right now someone stepped on my bag that fell by my chair and I was contrite, "Oops, sorry about that."

Sorry for this post.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005


1. The visibility of seasonal change in New York via trees. Green in the summer, reds and yellows in the fall, bare in the winter, and barely there buds in the spring.

2. A seat in a theater with no one on either side of you. One chair for your bag, the other for butter-soaked napkins.

3. Two cups of coffee on weekend brunches. First cup with milk and raw sugar and second cup black.

4. A front and center crease on slacks. Sharp.

5. A cluttered shower with products: bath gels, beads, body scrubs, loofas, exfoliators, masks, leave in treatments, neck pillow.

6. Musky candles in the winter.

7. Havana cigars.

8. Sandalwood.

9. Girl skateboarders. Rare but there are a few girls gliding the handrails in Union Square. What badasses.

10. Fog outside and steam in the bathroom.

11. Six Feet Under marathon. I would love to sit for dinner with Peter Krause, Michael C. Hall, Frances Conroy then get high with Laura Ambrose and Rachel Griffiths.

12. Wooden chessboards. (I don't know how to play chess)

13. Braids and buns. Pretty and proper. It's a shame that girls don't 'do' their hair after a certain age.

14. Bagged drycleaning hanging from your closet door.

15. Watch fobs.

16. Wrist gloves.

17. Classic Wranglers... but I'd never wear them.

18. All-American breakfast: eggs, bacon and toast. Rye.

19. Buds and suds. That's smoking a joint while soaking in the tub. Finishing touch, an amber candle.

20. Purple. Childhood favorite.

21. Amore lotion. A Korean brand lotion, it's the smell of my mom right before going to bed.

22. Hat racks. Vintage fedoras.

23. La Perla camis worn as a top.

24. Grilled Colby Jack Cheese and tomato. On Rye.

25. Emack and Bolio's off of Houston then taking it to Washington Square Park.

26. West Village afternoon, $2 slice from Joe's and a $7 scoop from Cones.

27. Goose down anything. Comforters, pillows, jackets, vests, sleeping bags.

28. Loose tea in a glass Bodum pot.

29. Halloween. Every year I go as the same character just different covers. Roller Girl got a lollipop. Roller Girl turns 12. Roller Girl kicks ass. This year, Roller Girl goes takes it back to the Derby.

30. Audio slide show of Fashion Week covered by New York Times Style reporter, Cathy Horyn. Her voice is both soothing and commanding. She attends all four fashion weeks: New York, Milan and two in Paris. She has my life.

31. Gold heart locket necklace. Classic.

32. Craigslist's: rants and raves, misssed connections, apartment listings (during August).

33. Netflix. An entire season of Entourage in one night.

34. Upper Manhattan to see the leaves, lower Manhattan to see the water.

35. Butternut squash soup, apple cider, macaroni with four cheeses, crumb pies.

36. Crispy fries, half-popped kernels, folds in my chips.

37. Smell of my hair when I take it down from a bun. If I washed it that day.

38. Faceburn from his stubbles from a night of kissing.

39. Bed picnics. A tray topped with stone crackers, cured proscuitto, brie, olives, melon, ginger ale. Remote nearby.

40. The 'Matrix Approval' in New York magazine, high brow/dispicable and low brow/brilliant quadrants are the best.

41. The point from the reservoir in Central Park where you can see all of Fifth Ave, Central Park West and the A&E Biography Building.

42. Airmail envelopes, officially called envelope #10, white envelopes trimmed with red and blue.

43. Cucumber water, clay mask, tweezer, Tracy Chapman, lavendar eye mask, toe separators.

44. High heels, red lipstick, prescribed kickers, Prince.

45. Holiday baskets: fruits, chocolates, breadsticks, cheese log.

46. Oils: rose, egyptian, ylang ylang, tea tree.

47. Proenza Schouler, Guy Laroche, Carolina Herrera, Lanvin, Yamamoto, Rochas.

48. Thanksgiving: family, friends, food, football, fight, funny, feet up, fall

49. Summer night, sitting on a stoop in Brooklyn, ice cream from a truck. Rooftop parties, Manhattan skyline.

50. Forehead kisses.

51. His hand on my thigh in the theater, while driving, as we're looking at a menu.

52. Big hands.

53. Astor subway station, reading the covers of papers, IPod, peanut M&M's.

53. So I Married an Axe Murderer, Sweetest Thing, Suicide Kings, Office Space.

54. Sitting next to him, plane rides, train rides, cab rides (on him).

55. My pajama drawer. Flannels, soft tees, boy shorts, college sweatshirts.

56. Berkeley Marina. LOTS of memories there. This could easily go on the 'least favorite list' too.

57. San Francisco Union Square: art expos, expresso wagon, cool air, sun. Gay Pride Parade, alley cafes, Vesuvios.

58. Sitting Indian-style under a tree in Washington Square Park, watching the crowd watch Tic and Tac.

58. Hollywood, Sunset, Pink's, Nacional, Star Shoes, Farmers Market at the Grove.

59. The flight to San Francisco. The flight to New York.

60. Sleeping at the desk. Blogging at work.

61. Holiday windows, limited time holiday lattes at Fourbucks, gift receipts. Waking up to a good song on the clock radio, a Whitney morning is a good morning. Crowd exits from the Met, Lincoln Center and West 27th St. Mom's perfectly peeled apple coil. Good eyebrow day. Barber shops. Soul food. Trying on cocktail dresses (never been to a cocktail party), slipping into display shoes (they always display a size 6), sitting on the stoop in a dressing room, adding things up. Making lists. Adding onto this list.

Tuesday, November 15, 2005


Unbelievable. I just got a song sent to me. I knew the music. I had heard it before, younger, riding in the back seat after school, my mom humming along to it. It would be played over and over and back then, it meant rewinding, playing, rewinding, and playing the casette. Then one day we sold the car with the casette accidentally left in the deck. My mom didn't know the name of the tune or artist. I recall her being sad when she learned that she no longer had that song. Later on, I learned that it was a mix tape that was made for her by her first boyfriend when she came to the states.

So, I just got this song, played it and it all came back, rides home from school with my mom singing along, swaying to it in her seat with oversized sunglasses on and one arm out the window, elbow on door, hand on roof tapping to the beat. I sent the song to her and she played it and teared. My mother is nostalgic about nothing. Doesn't hold memories to cherish, no gathering of keepsakes, no stories of love and war so it's a rare instance to see her touched, moved the way she was when I played the song. She softly asks, "How did you remember? How did you find it?" I reply, "I didn't. It just came to me." It's a Wild World.

Thank you Stevens.

Monday, November 14, 2005

el caribe

Ever dance for someone in the middle of a Spanish fortress in the pale moonlight? Light a Puerto Rican rum cigar for a non-smoker? Feel an island breeze whipped by a ceiling fan only to gaze up at cockroach? Eat rice and beans for four days straight? Oh, and plantains. Get bit all over your legs only to lay next to someone with spotless legs? Get drenched in the rainforest? Go to second base in the rainforest? Oh, and touch third. Walk on 16th century blue cobblestone to walk into a Benetton store? Share snapper, halibut and tuna with someone over votive candles and Bomba music? Been the only ones at a beach under a pale moonlight and go past third?

Puerto Rico, our version of the Corona commercial.

Let the holidays come, I'm relaxed.

Saturday, November 12, 2005

night in

Robe, slippers, toe separators, tweezers, candle, cherry cordials, pot, blog, Paper, Nylon, Whitney Houston, Barry White, Madonna, Ray LaMontagne, chinese delivery, comforter, Pretty Woman, pillow, eye mask, remote, Saturday night.

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

beautiful back

I have a beautiful back. It's smooth to the touch, usullied to the eye, olive all over and the curves around the waistline are ready for grip. From the nape to the thighs, it glides with flow and symmetry. I lay with my knees dotting the mattress and ears pressed into the pillow as if the bag of down is a conch speaking to me, now my profile is a still wave. One arm above my head, a fist molded around the bed rail, head on its side, chin careening upwards, and my hair flowing over my shoulders past the blades. Wave. The other arm into the mattress, elbow trapped beneath my stomach and hand caressed between my thighs. Wave now set in motion. I lay on top of my comforter, it pleasures me to think of my back exposed, open to the air.

My fingers start a wave down there, the way a player rolls a coin down his knuckles. Ripples. The tips of the fingers start gentle then ascend to a rub. I allow my entire weight to collapse into the palm of my hands, my back, a plateau shifting around like a trowel smoothing out the sheets. My other hand, gripping the post, tightens into a white fist. I'm moist in my folds and cracks. I can smell me. My sprays and lathers from the morning have worn thin. Only residuals of the scents remain and those whiffs are fused with MY smell. A smell that cannot be bottled. I am attracted to me. My breath, my quiver, my hair falling into my gape. But it's not enough so I evoke pictures. Behind my tight shut eyes are flashes of him. His touch, his smell, his wave planing against mine. His weight is yielded onto me and I feel secure. Even in my sexiest thoughts I yearn for security. Security is needed to feel free, and I do. I feel free on my bed, I feel free in my mind and my back, my beautiful back, feels free.

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

classy lady

One of the most admirable traits of my mother is her inability to speak negative of my father. Even after all that he's done, or more accurately, hasn't done, even after all these years, even after re-marriages, she still speaks of him with tact and respect. Not necessarily because of what he was in her life but because of who he is in our lives. Even when I mention the mistakes he has made, she doesn't falter for a moment, she resists the temptation to speak ill, she holds firm and speaks like a lady. Pure class.

Her unwillingness could be viewed as supression in emotion or strength in resistance, it is debatable. I have encouraged, no, begged, her to release, to express, to finally exhale. She pauses, gives me a half smile, or if we're on the phone, she sighs, but then resumes with "he loves you and your brother, he shows it differently than I do, but he does." If possible, this makes me love her more.
for better or worse

During an interivew today the roles reverse for a moment and the interviewer shares a bit of her personal job history. She says that her 20's were spent job hopping much in the same way that 20's are spent bar hopping, apartment hopping, and people hopping. She tells me that it took a while before getting into the seat that she is in now and is grateful for that exploration. It was the single most encouraging thing I had heard in an interview. It appeased me with where I am at. However...

...I do hold an admiration for those who got into something right out of school and stuck with it for better or worse. Friends who landed their accounting jobs from recruit week in college and are still at those companies gripe and assert that they'll soon switch professions. They've been there for over 4 years now.

While the continual search for 'the better' for me is what I thought life should be about there's something enviable about those who stick with it even for 'the worse'. They are honest about their ill-will towards their jobs nonetheless, they continue to clock-in. This is more often seen with the previous generation. But when classmates of mine demonstrate this kind of discipline and responsibility with candor on how much it sucks yet plop down in that cube, it is impressive. However...

...I do not want to be an accountant.