Let me preface this small criticism by saying first, I have a major thing for Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg. You're hot for Hizzoner too? Well, take a number sister. He's mine. It's a doodle-our-initials-in-my-notebook kind of, read-both-of-our-horoscopes-every-day sort of crush. He's perfect for me- a Jewish bazillionaire in favor of posting calorie counts and public art? I'll take two.
And believe me, our imagined relationship wasn't always easy. First, he fined restaurants for even the most minor of infractions at a time when I was running a restaurant with the most major infractions. He banned smoking. I was smoking, often in the restaurant. I knew he was doing these things because he cared and so I forgave. But this latest Metrocard thing is testing my love and I'm having trouble seeing how it's for my own good. Let me explain.
If you live here in our fine city and take public transport, you are aware of the latest Metrocard debacle. I realize this isn't directly Bloomberg's fault and more the doing of the infinitely corrupt MTA, but since I see M.B. as omnipotent, it falls to him. In the good old days of two months ago, it was simple for the non-committal straphanger like myself; those too agoraphobic to require a monthly unlimited pass and yet too poor not to get some kind of frequent flyer card which rewards you with free rides for buying in bulk. My standard was the $10 card which bought 5 rides @ $2 and extra ride just for investing. Clear as mud?
The incentive card rates have changed. Now, just as brown is the new black or Queens is the new Brooklyn, $7 is the new $10 card. It buys you 4 rides, 1 freebie fare and a puzzling and measly 5 cents left on the card. The city is robbing me one Bloomberg nickel at a time.
As a result, I have no less than six of these orphan 5 cents in my wallet. I'm on my way to a deck.
This means- and keep in mind I never passed math after the ninth grade- that if I continue to refill one of the orphan cards, it will take 40 refills to equal one fare. A more adaptable friend of mine deals with the nickel dilemma by using spare change to buy the ride. But come on- who has the time to coin feed 95 cents when the train is quickly approaching? And who even carries around 95 cents period?
I am reticent to post this because I fear I'm now that person i.e. the homebound crazy woman who blogs about the MTA and imagined affairs she's having with the Mayor, but in the name of strengthening my bond with M.B. will press PUBLISH now.
i quit cigarettes six months ago. pretty unbelievable.
i smoked a pack plus of marlboros reds a day. for half my life. it scares me even to write that. but like so many of my fate tempting feats, fear emerges only in hindsight.
it was a huge part of my identity. i held the flammable banner of tough talking sex drugs and rock n roll suicide liz high.
oh, and i fucking adored it.
25 years old was originally the smoking cut off (since that's around the time the body starts the slow biological descent cell-wise) but a fairly profound existential crisis and return trips to camp wackajobba kept me puffing away. in a way, after surviving my 20's, quitting smoking is kind of a cinch.
but i refuse to be the fanatical non smoker, for two reasons. first, it seems like an extension of my now, hopefully extinguished, smokers identity. second and most importantly, lifewise, instead of bouncing between familiar extremes, i'm trying to find a midpoint, dare i say, balance.
in short, i'm trying to grow up. taking care of my health is the most adult (and most difficult) first step towards being a big girl.
smoke 'em if you got 'em, by all means, but here are a few things that helped me:
restorative yoga(assisted napping )
falling in love
that horrible allen carr book
really really really wanting it
the sage advice: get off more on not smoking
channeling OCD i.e. using the powers of compulsion for good instead of evil
remembering there was a me who existed before smoking and hopefully will live much longer now as a result of getting back to her.
I love New York City Delis. The deli or the bodega or the market- whatever you call it. What it offers, how it displays it, tells you so much about any given neighborhood. Does it carry just The Post, only the The Times, or the NYC trifecta The Post, The Times, and the retarded step cousin, The Daily News?
I have fine tuned my own rating system based on a number of indicators. Here's a few:
SODA: Bottles only? Or the rarer and slightly nostalgic tin can as well? The diet selection is of utmost importance to my ranking. Just the standards- Diet Coke, Pepsi, Sprite won't do. I have been spoiled. I expect Diet Orange Creme, Celray, Black Cherry, and the oh so retro TAB of my childhood.
GUM/CANDY: This figures highly into my final score. Again, major points for the sugar free gum choices, preferably with new, exotic, and limited edition flavors. Candy is less important, though a Charleston Chew, Skor Bar, or Hostess Snowballs is impressive.
It's gotten to the point where I just may visit a deli to see the selection. It's like a free museum with the option to eat the art.
You learn everything about the block your on, the character of the community, from what's stocked on the shelves and even how it's stocked. The East Village is so vastly different from the Upper West Side. Williamsburg, which has seen a major overhaul, from sticky bags of plantain chips and foreign cakes under cloudy plastic pastry covers to organic veggie chips and power bars, is another world deli-wise from the Upper East Side.
as a general blog rule, 3 things i want to avoid are:
1. too earnestly reflecting on city life
2. weather metaphors
3. a combination of the two, otherwise known as "the reverse chekhov"
With that said, a bit of earnest urban self reflection as it relates to the weather.
I just got caught in one of those tropical nyc summer downpours. you know the kind- drops down out of no where, stranding otherwise ballsy nyers under drooling awnings, clinging together as if they'll die of rainy-ness. The occasional kamakazee garbage bag clad delivery boy running madly down the abandoned sidewalk - he has the Bandaid approach to rain. Do it quickly.
I take the slow cinematic approach. Rain is sexy. Walking slowly in it, borderline erotic. A clingy dress is just that much more Faye Wray when wet. Hair slicked back feels so Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue somehow. Besides, mascara smudges just perfectly with raindrops. But I perpetually sexually digress...
But more than playing the role of enigmatic vixen in a downpour, what I truly love is watching the city grind to an almost halt. Like a mini adult snow day. When the weather forces me to see a city that I'm usually too busy trying to conquer.
Thank you for indulging me. I promise to return to my native tongue of Sardonia.
Summer has descended like a wet electric blanket here in Gotham. And with the humidity comes the equally tacky fashions- only to be explained by heat induced cataracts or advanced heatstroke.
The unofficial kick-off is Puerto Rican Day Parade, which salsa-ed it's way down 5th Avenue this past Sunday. The signature one starred flag is magically transformed into a halter top! Poof! Jean shorts worn so short, it gives me a yeast infection just looking at them. Itch!
To borrow a line from the Noel Coward's play, Hayfever (made long before the advent of the hyperextended tube top, though certainly still applicable), a lot of NYC summer looks "strain freedom to it's limits."
But worse than all these, the summer trend that seems here to stay, is STRAIGHT MEN IN FLIP FLOPS. I have no good explanation for my aversion, except to say they are to be filed in the same category as Co-Ed Naked Lacrosse t-shirts and the fragrance, Drakkar Noir. It just smacks of keg stands, date rape, and other time honored American college campus past times.
Flip flops are okay, gay men in flip flops- no problem, women in flip flops- fine with a pedicure, but heterosexual males should just not be allowed..... This ain't Greece.