Tuesday, December 30, 2008

2008 Reflection

2008 has been long and challenging. I can’t remember a year in my past that has been so full of change, emotional struggles, and soaring accomplishments. Things haven’t gone at all to plan and when I think back to twelve months ago I would have never thought I’d end up writing a blog from a desk job in mid-town. True what I DO as a profession does not define me but the things that I DID during the first half of this year destroyed my self induced limitations and shattered my internal perceptions that I was never to be a scholar. Like with any self help life challenge the first step is knowing yourself and I think 2008 introduced myself to a ‘ME’ I have never encountered before. Prior to 2008 I never thought I possessed the aptitude to produce a thesis, a 3.98 GPA or be awarded with a Masters. And sure it took me a few months of tears to overcome the shock that the path I had meticulously set out to follow was slowly dissipating into a cloud of gray fog but in retrospect I truly believe that the work I did internally will be much more valuable than any job.

2008 was not only a year of complex struggles, disappointments, and “pull yourself up by the bootstraps and move on”-ness I also found time to take total advantage of my adopted life as a grad student living off of a school loan. I laughed a lot, drank a lot, and got to spend a huge amount of time with all my super supportive, creative, loving, and genuinely kick ass friends. I went on road trips, attended weddings, visited old buddies, sat lazily on the beach, and during brief lapses of better judgment was easily coerced into acting like an irresponsible yahoo (but even that was kinda fun).

Here’s to 2009 – I have no clue what the new year holds but as long as I can keep paying my rent (and my loan) I am sure I will roll with whatever the fates toss at me.

Monday, December 29, 2008

Rub –a-dub-dumb

Sometimes while I am engaging in the banal tasks of everyday life I mentally check out of the system and take a few moments to let my mind wander through the disconnected clutter of my gray matter. Most of the time these breaks from reality are harmless for I am not a crane operator nor am I on duty at a nuclear silo. However there are times, infrequent as they may be, while unplugged from the grid that I find myself in a situation that may have been avoided if I had just realized that I was operating in a world that was constantly changing and evolving around me even though I had chosen to retract into my inner cerebral realm. Christmas Eve last week afforded me the opportunity to utilize my local Laundromat in complete and utter privacy for I knew my mostly catholic neighbors would be celebrating the anniversary of their savior’s birth which even though I am not expertly versed in all of the holiday’s customs and practices most probably did not include a wash and fluff. I arrived at my parlor of suds to discover that I was correct in my assumptions; the place was relatively empty and ensconced in a blanket of tranquility aided by the soft hummm of the few dryers finishing their last goyish loads. I languished over my washer options…so many to choose from.

After loading up two standard machines and one Big Bertha with my soiled belongings I fed the stainless steel monsters of cleanliness with quarters. Clink, clink, clink, my coins were swallowed up and the sound of rushing water filled the air. That is until I reached Big Bertha. The behemoth beckoned to be fed but with my pockets empty of their booty I was off to the change machine to restock my funds. Along my 20 foot round trip journey I ruminated on such things as the relative humidity of my apartment, the pros and cons of replacing my kitchen mat, and if the Chinese couple screaming at each other were really pissed off or if my western based social constructs deprived me of the tools required to connect authentically with their standard of culturally acceptable communication.

Minutes later I found myself staring into the belly of a big bertha with dampened wash making large circles as it tumbled round in the presoak cycle. Time had lapsed yet I could hardly remember returning from the change machine and feeding the washer… but I had obviously since my pocket was devoid of the twelve quarters I had received in trade for my 3 paper dollars. As I watched the clothing dance in the water I slowly realized that I was neither the owner of a fuzzy pink blanket with kittens emblazoned on it nor anything plaid. My eyes then shifted to the right shocking me back into reality for my wash was still sitting motionless and dry in the machine adjacent to Ms. Kitty’s. Yikes! As I fed another three bucks into MY machine I quickly scanned the area searching for Ms. Kitty, but I could not locate her. I briefly thought about informing the proprietor of my careless yet honest mistake but I then took the cowardly route and settled into the plastic molded seat by the window and perused my Vanity Fair.

A few moments later a middle aged woman entered and made a beeline for the row of washers that contained the mystical machine. I slyly peered over my magazine and watched as Ms. Kitty inquisitively considered her still churning big bertha then moved on to empty her other machines. She returned 2 more times to big bertha, paused, stared, and even shoved it a few times before lastly returning with the owner to complain about the length of the machine’s cycle. I attempted to remain visibly uninterested in the commotion even though my heart was pounding with the fear that Ms. Kitty’s rage would suddenly turn from its current target (the owner) to me….gulp. The confrontation continued as the owner with towel and pliers in hand climbed on top of the machine, reached into its gullet, and forcibly tweaked it into a spin cycle. I remained on the sidelines buried in my Vanity Fair waiting for Ms. Kitty to leave so I could retrieve my clean laundry without calling attention to my proximity to her calamity.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

A reminder for what?

Here at Hydra we are participating in a mandatory holiday potluck lunch combined with the all annoying Secret Santa. I being the eyes and ears of Hydra have been appointed assistant to the company appointed party planner and by such association have become a target for the drones’ anti pot luck whining. Great.
Anyways yesterday the planner sent out an office email reminding the staff about the event and their gifting responsibilities then today I sent out another email informing the entire staff to clear out their fuzzy funky food from the fridge so we have room for the pot luck food tomorrow. Following me so far? Well about fifteen minutes ago this is what went down:

Ebay : GEE!!! Don’t you think you should send out an email reminding people about the Pot Luck?

Me: You mean besides the one Planner sent out yesterday?

Ebay: No like nobody is gonna remember there is a party tomorrow. I didn’t remember so I don’t think anybody else remembered.

Me: I would rather not send out another full company email after we reminded everybody yesterday.

Ebay: Who ? When? I didn’t get any email!

Me: What about the email I sent this morning about cleaning out the fridge because of the pot luck part y tomorrow.

Ebay: No I didn’t get that either. You see you need to send out a reminder because nobody got the other ones.

Me: That’s odd because all the emails are still in my inbox and they are addressed to the entire staff. Maybe your email address is not on the distribution list. I will call IT support and have them check the address lists.

Ebay: Oh no don’t do that I mean I don’t read any of those emails that come into my inbox that are addressed to the whole staff. I just delete them.

Me: Well Ok… I guess I will only need to send an email reminder to those people who don’t read their emails, because I am assuming anybody who read the first two email reminders kinda knows about the party.

Yuletide is a bit different across the river

My holiday senses are a bit heightened since I work smack dab in the middle of the global urban Christmas bull’s-eye. Not only are the streets teeming with wide eyed tourists but every building, both retail and corporate, are trimmed to the gills with garlands, twinkle lights, and anything else that transforms me from Jewish to Yule-ish.

Now the down side to this over exposure to extreme holiday decorations is that my critical eye has been working overtime in my poor hamlet just over the East River.

I’ve lived in my outer borough for twelve years and I have never taken notice of the pathetic attempt to decorate the city center with holiday cheer but now every time I leave my apartment I am bombarded by the sights of a chamber of commerce gone awry. Earlier this week I took notice of our town’s “tree”, not to be confused by “THE TREE” that sores over mid-town just yards from my office front door. No this is just "a" tree, specifically a tree that could be cast in the live stage version of A Charlie Brown Christmas. This poor little tree was recently planted to replace our old tree that finally kacked out after years inhaling exhaust from the nearby bus stop, however it is not quite ready for prime time (see photo – I have outlined the tree for easier viewing). This sapling is barely pushing 4 feet tall so to add spectacle the “Woodside on the Move” team duct taped a stick to the pinnacle so as to extend the height by about 2 extra feet. Atop this stick a star was affixed however due to either the wet weather or the weight of the star the poor tree began to gently sag to the right bending the trunk into the shape of an upside-down U (yes JUST like the Charlie Brown tree) leaving the star to point Due West instead of North. Maybe the 3 Kings are on their way to Jackson Heights? To counter act the pull of the earth’s gravitational forces the decorating team returned and strung lines of Christmas lights from the star to the opposite side of the tree then fastened them into the soft earth at the base. This “tenting” technique has helped and today I noticed that the star is pointing North West ward – more towards LaGuardia Airport than Flushing.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Jingle Bells and a Little Left Over Turkey

The night was cold but we walked quickly through the cobbled streets teeming with collage kids who were all actively participating on of one of two teams. Team one consisted of shivering Abercrombie wanna bees (more JC Penny than GQ) sans cold weather outerwear while team two was a bit more, how would one say, seasonal. The seasonal street cast was cavorting in what can only be described as Santa Wear. Yes hoards of Santa and Elfin clad twenty somethings stormed the historic streets of Georgetown stumbling in and out of the local establishments on a search for nog and holiday cheer. As we passed these yule- rifiic revelers some of our clan would yell out appropriate responses to the Santas as, “ Can I sit on your lap Santa?”, “Make my Christmas wish COME true Santa!” “Are those your sleigh bells or are you just happy to see me?” ahhh the sweetness of the holiday season.

We arrived at our final destination and to my surprise it was festooned with 8 foot tall nutcrackers at the door, how apropos. All we were missing was a bowl of 3 foot round walnuts…..nuts! While waiting at the bar for our table I took advantage of the lull in the conversation to present my amazing rendition of a wild turkey call. Jeeves was truly impressed with my turkey prowess and the turkey call quickly spread to become a crowd favorite (side note – suck it Mom – people think the turkey call is funny and NO it does not loose it’s humor after the 15th or 20th time). Now for those of you who have not heard my wild turkey call it is very similar to the sound a Shiite Militia makes when calling to arms their jihad members while firing semi automatic weapons into the air. It took some practice but by the end of the night even Mac Daddy was participating in our rounds of wild turkey laughter.

Gotta Dance!

On Friday I popped on down to DC to visit my Chicagoans, MAC Daddy and Twinkle Toes, who were workin’ it down at the Kennedy Center. Scooter turned me onto a new bus service, BOLT BUS, that really kicks Greyhound’s tail (except for the fact they are owned by Greyhound…odd) with free wi-fi and the added bonus of NOT utilizing the Port Authority Bus Terminal….yahoo! Anyways after a very pleasant 4.5 hour ride in my comfy coach I arrived late Friday night and quickly moved into the boys’ sweet, suite. After engulfing an organic peanut butter sandwich that was expertly constructed by MAC and inhaling a half pint of ice cream I was tucked into my sofa bed for a good night’s sleep.

Saturday was a gloriously sunny day in our nation’s capitol. The weather was brisk but as Momma always says, “There is no such thing as bad weather, only inappropriate clothing” and true to form I stayed toasty in my new overcoat and second season knit hat (that garners mixed reviews). I walked around a deserted metropolis which was rather a nice change to what I am dealing with here at the center of the holiday universe. The streets were devoid of any life forms and shopping was a breeze. I chose not to do the tourist thing in DC since I have visited so many times before so I just headed on down to the Metro Center to buy my Secret Santa gift and take advantage of the Gap’s sweater sale. Why I needed to go The Gap 4.5 hours away from my hometown instead of visiting the one that is NEXT DOOR to my office….um I don’t know maybe cause it is more exotic after crossing like 4 state’s borders?

By 1pm I had to cut my shopping spree short so I hopped into a taxi and headed over to the Kennedy Center for the matinée of Nut Cracker. Oh my Twinkle Toes, what a talent and what a ham. I love watching him cut a rug and what a special bonus – I knew many of the other major male dancers thanks to my prior visits to Chicago. The curtain came down and we met for a nosh at the theater’s restaurant which we ate along with a side dish of my totally unknowledgeable review of the dancers’ performance.

Back to the hotel for me, while the boys commenced the second show of the day. Some TV and a nap, then up and dressed for a late après ballet supper...oh so posh. We met up with my favorite gay harem members, Manos, Jeeves, and Smitty (these are very poor names, sorry to those involved and now confused and hopefully not offended) and headed off to Georgetown for some grub and suds.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Keep Your Pants On!

Over the summer I was witness to a new fashion trend, woman sporting hip length tunic tops with no pants. What was once thought to have been simply a poolside cover-up was spotted parading down the streets of Manhattan and the Hamptons over bare legs and strappy heals. At the time I was puzzled by this look. Sure the 20 something’s kinda pulled it off while standing and sipping cocktails harbor side at B Smith’s. Standing of course for bending at the waist does invite some unseemly consequences. But when I saw grown woman on the Upper East Side trying to rock this look with their anorexic pin straight legs that unforgivingly revealed their age around the knees – I knew we were treading in deep water. But then the seasons changed. The once bare legs turned pale and were sheathed in opaque tights, the strappy sandals were replaced by knee length boots and all was right again in the big city….or so I thought.

Yesterday one of the Loopy Loos at Hydra arrived at work sporting what can only be described as a paper thin navy blue tee shirt that just gently grazed her mid thigh. It was a lovely shirt with large pin tucks and a graceful flow however she forgot to put her PANTS on before departing for the day. The shirt was worn over black tights which ended in a pair of patent leather pumps, a lovely silhouette but hardly appropriate for the office; unless of course your office is at the North East corner of the Port Authority Bus Terminal. I greeted her the only way I could with a quick eye scan and a, “Hi Naked”. She responded with, “Do you think it’s too short?” in a way that did not sound like she was asking for fashion advise but rather accusing me of prudish tendencies. As in “do YOU think it is too short?” I just shrugged and walked away. I know Hydra has an anti flip flop policy that I must monitor however after a meticulous inspection of the company’s dress code I could not find any rules regarding the negation of pants. So I let her be, and hoped that the trend would not spread through the office to the Loopies who are a bit less suited for the style. My decision to do nothing proved successful when to my delight I arrived this morning to find the entire staff with tops and bottoms intact. However as I was patting myself on the back for a passive job well done I crossed through our lobby and spied a spunky young lady who arrived for an interview wearing a black t-shirt, ankle boots and what I thought was no PANTS. This black shirt was even shorter than the previous day’s attire so the thought that this sweet young thing was prancing around midtown in just her skivvies was a bit off putting. Thank goodness on closer inspection she did have her bottom half covered…..in bronze spandex leggings. Whew what a relief and here I thought she was dressed inappropriately for a job interview.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

I’m Behind

I know… I know…. but there hasn’t really been anything to blog about. Well except that Hydra is going bonkers. They have buried me in a pile of minutia; I kinda liked being bored out of my gourd better…ughhhh. But things are looking up for my blogging future. I’m going down to DC for the weekend to visit MAC Daddy so hopefully I will return with a chock a block of fun stories.

Last weekend I turned back the clock and spent a day half frozen in the ol’ prop warehouse with Scooter. It’s odd how your mind filters out all the crap you used to hate and only focuses on the fun good stuff that leaves you nostalgic for the past.

Over ten years ago Scooter and I spent months on end bundled up in our arctic tin roofed oasis of theatrical splendor creating some very bizarre stage properties while riding around on a tandem bicycle and a fork lift. It was in this arena that Scooter first witnessed my amazing skill of removing a latex glove from my hand by simply wiggling my fingers around (try this feat at home….while it is difficult to master it comes in very handy when both gloves are covered with epoxy and you don’t want to get your ungloved hand stuck to the sticky gloved hand). Another highlight of the G & S show (props edition) was the long days journey into night that we spent spraying a dozen fake custom made luscious green bushes (Podar Karpas) a death mask gray. I still to this day cannot say for sure that this task was desperately funny because of the sheer premise of spraying fake trees with gray floral spray or because we were marginalized due to the influx of toxic fumes.

Unlike the active participant roll I played in our distant past, this Saturday I occupied the position of dutiful “hander of things” while Scooter built. And although we did refrain from passively huffing harmful chemicals I did find myself falling into hysterics whenever Scooter, in response to the rock classics of 92.3 K-Rock, felt the spirit within and broke into his signature hip and buttocks swiveling. There is something very entertaining about the incongruity of a grown man covered in sawdust wielding a pneumatic stapler while singing and dancing.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Hey Crazy - I’m back!

On the way to the bus this morning I was reflecting on the past few days spent in the bucolic bosom of the Hamptons searching for some clever situation that may be appropriate for today’s blog. I unfortunately came up empty handed, except for the sad fact that my holiday weekend was devoid of any baked apple dessert items, however this fact would not suffice as a full blog entry. Happily this moment of un- inspiration was quickly shattered when I was greeted at my local bus stop by a squat Mexican woman who appeared to be in control of all her faculties – file this under “Don’t judge a book by its cover”. The following is the conversation that took place between Consuela (real name withheld for security reasons) and me.

*Please note when reading this dialog please employ the use of a very thick Mexican accent for Consuela. *

Consuela: Have you been waiting long?
Gail: No, only about five minutes.
Consuela: Who do you call about machines recording you at your house?
Gail: What? At your house?

Consuela: Who do you call if people are recording you in your house? All weekend I heard a noise in my house but it stopped today.
Gail: What kind of noise?
Consuela: The kind of noise recording machines make when they are recording you. Who do you call about that?

I was rather impressed that I looked like the kind of person that not only Consuela could trust with this information but also could solve her dilemma. It must have been my finely coifed ponytail that I am sporting today – it looks like I mean business.

Gail: Maybe you should call 311? (for those who are not in NYC - this is the city help line that gives you information about trash pickup, parking regulations, transportation, etc…)
Consuela: NO! (Looking at me with distain I could see she was rethinking her decision to have shared this confidential information with me. I was obviously not as well versed in covert operations as once thought.)
Gail: Ummmm you could call the police?
Consuela: What are they going to do?
Gail: They could find the bug?
Consuela: No, no police. They have people, high up. Very high up in government. Big men in charge. They know! (or maybe it was They, NO!)

Consuela had totally called my bluff. I obviously was just pulling lame solutions out of my ass. I was no help to her. Disgusted with my stupidity she turned her back and waited in silence as the Q32 approached. I on the other hand felt relieved, for within 10 minutes of leaving my apartment building I had found my bog-spiration in Consuela the international spy.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Gobble Gobble

I’m here at Hydra on the Wednesday before Thanksgiving watching the clock click down to our early dismissal; eating a cupcake and listening to Effie belt out her heart… oh Effie that man done did you wrong. My first call of the day today was from a drone asking me if tonight was Thanksgiving? He was on his way to work and realized that he may have forgotten to pick up food. I talked him down off the ledge and informed him that since today was ONLY Wednesday it certainly was NOT Thanksgiving. He was relieved. However being a Jew I also reminded him that unlike Jewish holidays there is no Erev Thanksgiving so I understood how he could have made the mistake.

In a few hours I will be making my 3 hour bus journey out East to Mom’s house to celebrate the feast. I do not have high hopes for the next 4 days for if the past is any predictor for the future my Thanksgiving will be filled with disappointment, uncomfortable silences, and hours of “alone time”. Scooter has assured me that an open invitation exists at his abode so if I need to make a speedy escape he will welcome me into his hearth and home… thanks Scooter.
Whether or not this Thanksgiving tanks I am certain however that my family will once again participate in their favorite tradition entitled – “No G, YOUR favorite pie is LEMON!” This tradition began many years ago while I was away at college and has really never lost its charm….for others. Every Thanksgiving, prior to my arrival back at the homestead, my Mother would ask my brother what pies she should buy. My brother being the golden child would request his favorite pie – lemon- but not for himself (of course) but because as he would tell my mother it was MY favorite pie. My mother never one to question my brother or remember my likes (or dislikes) would consistently purchase one Lemon Pie and one Mince (her pie of choice) then report at dinner “Ohh Gee save room for dessert I bought something VERY special JUST for you!” Ohhhh wow fantastic… because not only was it Thanksgiving it was also my Birthday so it must be something really terrific….like APPLE PIE!!!! But every year, like the year before the woman spurned me when a huge Lemon Pie would be presented on the table with the words, “Look G, your favorite…. Lemon Pie”. The tradition would then continue with me answering, “No that is your SON’S favorite pie. Mine, as always, is apple.” My brother would then chime in with “Why do you have to make everything so difficult? Why do you have to ruin every nice thing Mom does for you? Just eat the Lemon Pie, ughhhhhhh!!!”

So the tradition was born and we reenact it to this day with additions like, “There weren’t any apple pies at the store”, “If it is so important why not bring your own pie”, “You know I have to remember so many other things. Can’t you just give me a break on the apple pie”….etc…. Other years have brought major surprises like the homemade pie that was delivered special just for me by a well meaning family friend. Too bad it wasn’t really pie (it was missing a crust) and it was filled with many fruits none of which even resembled an apple. However to my surprise it was chock a block with strawberries which sent me to the ER room on Thanksgiving night as my brain swelled and pressed against my scull (side note I am deathly allergic to strawberries).

So kids have a great Thanksgiving and if you get served Apple Pie consider yourself lucky.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

I Love Being Manhandled

The city is a buzz with excitement over Thanksgiving and it’s kinda fun to be smack dab in the middle of all the hub bub. Well I am sure this holly jolly feeling will ebb with the onslaught of tourists gawking at the glistening Yule erected just yards from my office, but for now I am alight with the spirit.

Yesterday on my walk to Dr. Pico…ahhhh Dr. Pico…. I was overwhelmed by the several hundred “All American Cheerleaders “who were moving en mass down the avenue. These perky HS’ers decked out in their Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade red and yellow jackets looked like pig tailed mini Ronald Macdonalds swarming through the crowded streets. They were all a twitter with squeals as they passed such iconic sites as Radio City Music Hall, Rockefeller Center, and every SINGLE hot dog vender along my 10 block trek. I tried to escape them but they were everywhere, both sides of street, all walking towards me. They, like so many out of towners, could not fathom moving to the RIGHT so about every 10 feet I was toe to toe with a doe eyed 16 year old frozen in place as I tried to syche her out with my amazing zig zagging NYC sidewalk skills.

Once at Dr. Pico’s oasis of joy I happily handed over my $27 for 5 minutes of complete and utter jello inducing adjustments. My favorite juxtaposition is when I lay on my side and the Dr. instructs me to, “Go to your happy place and let me do the rest”…..yes ….yes I will. Then as I reach complete relaxation ccCCCRRRUUNCCCCHHHHhhhhh – YIKES! It’s like frightening and relaxing all at the same time.

The day continued as a G love fest (well that’s what I like to think) when I shelled out more cash for relative strangers to service me at my hair salon. Yes a REAL hair salon with professionals. My washer chick really worked for her $3 tip (hey it’s Queens) as she massaged my head with minty fresh shampoo. She manipulated my noggin so well that I became almost comatose as I felt my jaw drop open and I experienced what I thought was the sensation of my grey matter drooling out over my lower lip. Unfortunately I was abruptly jolted from my moment of bliss by the vision of a local thug donned in a black hoodie and saggy pants being slammed up against the salon window and swiftly cuffed behind the back. What once was moments ago a bad ass purse stealing juvenile delinquent was now a squishy faced perp who was being silently admonished by a salon full of coiffed ladies and gays slowing shaking their heads in disapproval. He looked rather relieved when the undercover officers finally peeled his face off the glass leaving only a greasy stain and some slobber behind.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Monkeys and Cookies

My actual Birthday was last Saturday however I always feel that a birthday should be celebrated over several weeks, like a seasonal occasion. Especially since the Birthday falls so close (or sometimes on) Thanksgiving. That being said the festivities began Friday night with drinks and dinner at Nolita House. Unfortunately many of the celebrants were not in attendance because of illness or very fancy work commitments that could not be rescheduled. The peeps who did attend the celebration however really bumped it up and were fantastic revelers and bearers of very thoughtful, personal gifts. Some of the highlights of the evening included (but were not limited to) elbow length patent leather gloves, a HUGE chocolate chip cookie, a card festooned with monkeys, and mac & cheese spring rolls. I repeat MAC & CHEESE spring rolls…whomever the chef is at the Nolita house is a freekin’ culinary master.

After dinner Galleta, Scooter, Jesus, and I braved the bitter cold and settled into a local bar for some drinks and light after dinner conversation. And by light after dinner conversation I mean juicy war stories detailing our intimate exploits. Unfortunately some of us know how to tell a story while others do not…too many details were missing from one of our attendee’s report and it was like pulling teeth to get him to “give it up”…..ughhhh how tedious.

The evening ended early when at 10:30pm Scooter, Jesus and I were yawning and fantasizing about our cozy apartments….I guess that is what happens when you are of a certain age. We bailed out leaving Galleta in SoHo to meet up with his posse…ahhh youth.

You asked for it, You got it

I’ve been receiving so much positive feedback about my blog that it makes me absolutely BEAM with delight. However one reader has voiced his concern that I do not post enough… well isn’t that sweet. So I will be bumpin’ it up a notch and instead of posting once a week I will now post THREE times a week. I will try to stay focused and humorous and hopefully by posting more often I will not lower the level of excellence that you all have become accustomed to.

Monday, November 17, 2008

37 is not 38, and 38 sounds so old

I’m in the final stretch of my 38th year, just a few more days to go until I turn the corner officially and I don the yoke of “eight-dom”. Spoke to Mom today and after I bemoaned my ever encroaching fate of numerical age I told her, “Well at least I’m cute?” There was an unexpected pregnant pause on the other end of the line as if she was searching for the correct words to respond to my statement wrapped in the form of a question, then the response came, “Yeah maybe you should focus more on clever and smart… cute not so much.” I tried to combat her insolence with the facts that my guy friends think I am adorable and even sexy (sometimes when my hair looks unnaturally great and after the veil of a few cocktails has lowered) but Mom retorted explaining that they are just friends and their opinion was hardly accountable next to that of one’s mother. Thanks Mom…. Thanks. At the end of the call Mom did reconsider her earlier judgment conceding to the fact that she has not seen me since Labor Day (photos do not count – so she says) so she rescinded her non-cute label temporarily until I arrive for a full inspection on Thanksgiving.

Ahh the inter-web is a vast and mysterious place and Facebook is a wonderful conduit to my past. I have recently been connecting to the ghosts of my youth and it’s kinda wonky and fun all at the same time. Peeps from my Elementary School days have discovered me and it is so strangely foreign that they have kids in JR. HS, own homes and businesses, and are basically living very adult lives. I on the other hand hang out in a 4th floor walk up with no real roots or responsibilities (oh except for the ever daunting Grad School loan). I can’t even imagine the life that these old classmates’ of mine have – I mean I know it is very normal… obviously more normal than my lifestyle but yet it is so mysterious to me. It’s like I’m wired in a totally opposite way. Oh well don’t wanna dwell too much on that. Another sect of people that have been climbing out of the woodwork are those from my EARLY days in the theater. It’s such a mind fuck because I am like 10 years OLDER than they were when I met them – does that make any sense? I mean I was a kid in the eighties and these people were adults prancing around my backyard in togas and lingerie, binge drinking and “hooking up” – ahhhh what a way to grow up.
In a final note I would like to proclaim in print that tequila is NOT my friend. I tend to forget this every few years so hopefully by announcing it here for all to see I will remember this fact and avoid any reconciliation that may be suggested by well meaning partiers.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Open the pod bay doors HAL – DAMN IT!!!

I consider myself a sort of technology chick. Professionals in the field have gone as far as to award me the honorary title of “Tier One Support” yet this week technology has reversed my fortune (literally) and severed my communications. I HATE TECHNOLOGY (currently).

My first bone to pick is with my amazing new Bold (gracia Galleta, ma gusta). It wrapped me around its little finger with its full color display, fancy pants WiFi, and all kinda of bells and whistles I could have never imagined. Not only that, it’s kinda hot to have the NEW Blackberry, guys are dripping all over this thing. But after Bold had me firmly in his grips for a mere week he crashed… freaking crashed!!! Galleta of course forever my savior with all things electronic (and other things of course) swooped in to save my poor Bold. Side note – thank you St. Cajetan, Patron Saint of Job Seekers, for placing me in an office located across the street from Galleta. He promptly stripped it and returned it to me so fresh and so clean… for like 23 hours. Yep last night after an engaging round of Saduko on the 7 train Bold bit it. Once home in the “mouse den” Bold was gleaming up at me with his blank white face and the dreadful ‘app 523 Error”. After a feverish email exchange with my personal tech support manager, 3 hours scouring the BB support groups and postings, innumerable battery pulls, and an unfruitful IM session with AT&T I decided that I was breaking up with Bold. It was a tough decision but with a sigh and a heavy head I unpacked Bold’s box from my closet, filled it with all his belongings (charger, manuals, software, etc…). Like Beyonce said, “To the Left, to the left. Everything you own in the box to the left” – then I closed the lid and said goodnight to a past love for tomorrow held a trip to the AT&T store. But the play is not over, oh no not quite, for life never ends in the moonlit night. And despite what pretty poets say, the night is only half the day…..

This morning I arrived at Hydra to find an email from Galleta offering to give Bold one last opportunity to redeem himself. Oh that Galleta always the optimist, such is youth. By 9:15 am Galleta was in possession of the source of my heart ache and I was in possession of an egg and cheese sandwich…. now I wait.

At this point all appeared well, Bold was on his way to get bitch slapped for poor behavior and I was on my way to the ATM to grab some cash for the weekend. But the story is not ended and the play is never done until we’ve all of us been burned a bit and burnished by….. Insufficient Funds!!!! WTF!? How could this be? Just days ago I deposited a husky paycheck, and now I am at a deficit of a few hundred dollars?! Back at my computer I reviewed my account and discovered to my dismay that my check had been REJECTED. How does a paycheck get rejected? Well after a quick phone call to Chase I found out…. end of story I’m an idiot. You know those fancy new ATMs that no longer use envelops or deposit slips? You just pop your check in, the robot monkey inside reads all the info then all you do is press “Correct” and your money is deposited… you know that thing? Yeah well once again I was fucked by technology because it lulled me into its warm womb of submission and since I no longer needed to fill out any paper work I FORGOT to sign the back of my check. Yep I’ve been banking since the age of twelve, I’ve been a box office manager, I know how these things work….. and now because of new technology that was invented because idiots were bamboozled by the complexities of a 3 part deposit slip (do I keep the yellow or the pink?) I have to wait 5 – 7 business days for my paycheck to be returned to me. For the next few days I am, as they say, cash poor. I did schedule a transfer of funds from my savings but that takes 2 business days so with the weekend that gives me a full 4 days to rely on the kindness of strangers.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

The Poop About the 7 Train

I was stuck on the 7 train yesterday because of “signal problems” and as we plodded our way under the East River at a snail’s pace I was awarded the opportunity to share my uber packed rush hour train with Clark. Clark is three and 5 months and had an undying love for poop… or at least the word poop. For about 25 min. an entire train car was Clark’s captive audience as he proceeded to conjugate the verb “poop”, pooping, pooped, poopie, etc…. the charm of his little squeaky voiced waned suddenly as our train came to an unexpected halt mid tunnel and Clark’s vocal volume increased severely. Poor Momma Clark tried to entertain the Pooper but she quickly realized that if her son didn’t cut the shit he was gonna be the target of mass mob hysteria. She tried to ‘connect’ to the crowd, flashing us small smiles, raising her eyebrows, shrugging her shoulders.… but really nobody had much love for her. In the end Momma Clark did the right thing – astonishing. As we eased our way into the first stop in Queens – a stop that after 11 years riding the train I have NEVER once seen anybody utilize – Momma clamped down on Clark’s hand and dragged him off the train explaining to him, “When you can calm down we will get back on a train!”. Wholly CRAP, she did it… she actually took the kid off the train… Momma Clark I applaud you wherever you are.

I’m not telling anybody anything new, but getting and keeping a job in NYC is insane! So many peeps are being laid off and my office lobby looks like an over packed ER waiting room but with really pretty people in business suits…. oh and no blood. My mood regarding my present employment has really changed… it’s not that bad all of a sudden. I love shredding documents and wiping down counters. I look forward to Xerox paper jams and on Monday I was overjoyed to walk the used toner cartridges 10 blocks to the recycling center! I guess there’s nothing like other people’s misfortune to refocus one’s outlook.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

A free dinner is a good trade for a crappy show or I am still the social whore

I’ve made one friend at work, a guy who appears rather normal and a bit of a smart ass. Just how I like ‘em. He visits my taupe island of solitude daily to exchange idle chit chat, discus our love of pies and to escape the estrogen induced pajama party over on his side of the office. Yesterday after bantering for a few minutes he crossed the line into “after work” socialization when he invited me to his friend’s show on the UWS. I of course said yes since my evening plans of mouse hunting had been delayed because of Scooter’s day worker schedule thereby leaving me unengaged. Oh and because I am “the social whore” – you paying… I’m going.

I got a free dinner and a pre show impromptu acoustic guitar serenade… this guy’s got mad skills on the 6 string (once I think up a catchy nick name I will use it but for now… he is “ guy”) then we were off to the UWS to the
Triad Theatre. I had a vague twinge of “maybe this guy is not taking me to a show but rather he is kidnapping me” when we had to enter through a Turkish restaurant to reach the performance space. But hey I’ve been to ‘Shakespeare in the Hallway’ and ‘Making Porn’ so I didn’t listen too closely to my inner urban single woman voice gently nudging me about the wonky physicality of my surroundings.

Once inside, the theater was adorable, festooned like a little music box all in red and gold. Guy was rather impressed that I had agreed so freely and without question to accompany him to the show since I never once even asked him “What are we seeing?”… hmm he did bring up a good point and now looking back I’ll be sure to have him fill out a complete social dossier with two references the next time I receive any invitation. Program in hand I discovered we were seeing “Lilitus Girls Cabaret” and let’s just cut to the chase the thing SUCKED! Ok it was not the worst I have ever seen mostly because it was short, I was not physically assaulted, and Guy thought it sucked too. It was a musical with non singer/ actors standing on the stage spitting out atonal words that were neither witty, coherent, or rhyming. I think the show was about man bashing feminist transsexual prostitute runaways but I could be totally wrong. It was written by a Swede and there was an overwhelming Swedish presence in the house. The most entertaining was a table of 6 blonds up against the house left wall who were knocking back shots and talking to the performers. They also liked to sing along which really only improved the piece and my enjoyment of the performance.

So I think I got a new friend in Guy. If only I can get him onto the 4pm cookie delivery schedule I think our work relationship will really blossom.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

November is a Lovely Month

Only 5 days into the month and November is really holding its own. I have always been a big fan of November. There’s the cooler weather, Thanksgiving, my birthday, and of course it is the official opening of PIE season. Sure some people pop the pie during the summer. They’re all up in their cherry pie, blueberry pie, peach pie… but really those are but meager cousins to the king of pies….. APPLE!!! Ahh apple pie, oh and pumpkin (or as they say upstate “pun-kin”) yawl can’t forget the lovely creamy spiciness of a warm pumpkin pie.

The Election. Thank goodness the Bomma won. Cause dear lord I couldn’t stand another blow. I have just begun to pull my emotions off the doormat and have ceased crying daily over my current life’s position. If things had gone differently last evening I would have been typing this posting from under my covers weeping into my pillow while my ‘pet’ mouse mocked me from the foot of my bed.

Work - It is getting better or maybe I’m just drinking more… not too sure. I think I have numbed myself out to the Hydra even though they are like stupid crazy. I am still picking up the pieces from a year of NON-office manger – management. I won’t bore you with all the details however I still don’t understand WHY somebody would pack up used toner cartridges and place them in the server room? So what I thought was a fully stocked supply room is merely a closet full of recyclables. Well the flip side is that I made a project for myself. Oh I hope the shredding can wait… yikes time management skills!

Mouse - Scooter has promised to don his camo attire, affix his night vision goggles and once and for all eradicate my abode of all things furry. He’s been promising all week to come over…fingers crossed tomorrow night we will be a’huntin’. Mom says that maybe Scooter should tag Squeakers with his paint ball marker and that way we can monitor his movements like a Wild Kingdom episode. We could sedate him, take some samples, and then re-release the stinker into my kitchen with a radio/ video collar so I can watch his movements while at work via web cam. Sometimes Mom really has her lucid moments… this is a winner – or it could be the Demerol that she’s poppin’ cause of her ingrown toenail surgery. Either way I think the woman is a genius!

Other- Galleta left for a business trip without me and even worse he went to Chicago. He and MacDaddy will be heading out for Makers without me …. sigh. If I didn’t need to pay back a loan in a few weeks I swear I would have quit my job just to spend a few days with both my boys. Ohhh BUT Galleta already got me my B’day gift and it is rather spectacular. It’s not a ring….. yet BUT it is way more useful. I don’t wanna spill the beans here cause he gets so testy about these things – but suffice to say he is really grooming me for future trophy wife status (at least when it comes to gadgets anyways).

Thursday, October 30, 2008


The two main custodians of my sanity (Galleta & Scooter) narrowly escaped a call from me last night when I was awoken by the sounds of a MOUSE in my BEDROOM!!!! At about 3 am last night the little bugger was under my dresser playing around with a scrap of paper that had fallen to the floor. Once my eyes acclimated to my surroundings and zeroed in on the location of the noise I immediately spiraled into mini panic mode. I then did what any self respecting woman would do in the same situation – I curled up in a ball on my bed until at last Squeakers got bored of his folly and scooted into the Living Room. I of course could not fall back to sleep and ALL I wanted to do was call either of my boys so they could recue me from my vermin infested boudoir. After mulling over the list of perspective consequences that my late night call may induce, I decided to buck it up and lay motionless in my bed until my alarm went off at 5 am. During my two hours of pre dawn terror I devised many plans of action to rid myself of this tawny grey menace. I will now list some of my possible ideas generated during this time of creative problem solving:

  • I could leave for work at my scheduled 6am departure time and never return.
  • I could temporarily move in with Galleta or Scooter until a person with a much stronger resolve “takes care” of the problem.
  • I could call in sick to work, take the 3 hour LIRR trip out to Sag Harbor and return with my Mom’s newly adopted kitten.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Chiropractic? It should be called Chiro-CRACK-tic!

I’ve started a new relationship and like most that I jump into, I am totally and utterly addicted… like crack. I have been baptized in the waters of Chiropractic care and I am a worthy and obedient convert. My relationship (or “Marriage”… Dr. ‘s words) with Dr. Pico is a direct consequence of my lower back injury which occurred on that fateful morning at the NC Marriott after regrettably engaging in an ill fated pillow fight. DR. P is warm, charming, and oh so powerful…. oh and married. Oh well I can still totally crush on my Dr…. right? Lord knows I get no testosterone time at Hydra. Also having such a swell time with Dr. P sort of deadens the pain that is felt in my wallet… yep my new habit is costing me $55 per week! I’ve already cut off my cable to save some bucks but like all things there is no action without a reaction… in this case the reaction is that I no longer have a TV remote! I fatefully discovered rather quickly (after returning my cable system) that after years of cable and satellite service I have somehow misplaced my TV zapper. I have been spending many hours now being bombarded by commercial TV … commercials and I’ve come to the conclusion that the lack of jingles really makes for blahhhhh merchandising. OH totally off track (but strangely in my mind these two topics are totally connected) but seriously people…. who has NEVER heard of Colorforms??? I was shocked and amazed that the youngsters who surround me have never even HEARD of the vinyl phenomenons!

In a past post I sang the praises of my free-ish haircut however now after several weeks out I’m realizing that it wasn’t as good as previously reviewed. Now that I spend hours on end sitting at my desk reflecting on all things banal I have also taken up the hobby of inspecting the ends of my hair. After a full three days of inspection I have discovered a multitude of split ends ….. yes I am very thorough.. kinda like a monkey. So looks like I’m gonna have to treat myself to a real cut from my Sephardic scissor wielding stylist.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Don't Stop Believing

The excitement of my autumnal travel has waned and now I am stuck focusing on the daily drudgery of my life. I thought getting a full time job would solve all my anxiety issues, but I have merely placed a band aid on my gushing aorta. Don’t get me wrong I am ecstatic that I won’t loose my apartment and be forced into living in my Mom’s basement while waiting tables during the off season in Sag Harbor just to pay back my 40K loan – however on the other hand I hardly feel like I am “living” my life. I go through the paces, being the “monkey” at work, but standing in the copy room shredding documents for hours on end can really damage ones spirit.

My physical work environment is devoid of creativity, heart, personality, and especially color! Swason and Scooter have already visited “Hydra’s lair” and can attest to the depressing nature of the space. To combat the environmental tedium I have begun to decorate my stark white corner with pictures of my friends’ shiny faces. Throughout the day while forwarding hundreds of emails destined for others I glance over at my palls and remember that I am better than this and that there are people in this world that are rooting for me and will laugh with me about this “speed bump”.
So I’m here for the time being, it’s not the end of my journey just a baby step to pause the insanity. I keep telling myself (and others) that change will come, everything is for a reason, I’ll find my passion, and be truly settled one day…. It’s just not the time for that right now. Right now I am in survival mode which is so much better than disaster mode.

From [title of show] - "September Song"

“I like doing the show. It balances out my day job which is killing me softly.I wrote this song sitting at my desk today...I'd like to sing it...for you now...

Can't you see that I'm dying inside? Can't you see that I'm dying inside?If you shined a flashlight in my butt you'd see I'm dying inside!”

Monday, October 13, 2008

Me Gusta

Weddingfest 2008 has come to a conclusion. After two weekends in a row full of nuptials I am finally home surrounded by dirty laundry, a half unpacked suitcase, and numerous pairs of dressy shoes and evening bags strewn throughout my one bedroom apartment.

Galleta and I attended a wedding in Charlotte, NC and returned without our record or our reputation in jeopardy….

however my “cool” status was gently marred by a comment made by the bride regarding my past love of the folk trio Peter , Paul and Mary….. is nothing sacred? Galleta once again proved to be the BEST wedding date ever. He has totally spoiled me – I don’t think I will ever go to a formal event without him on my arm.

There’s not much to tell so here is a short snapshot of some of the weekend’s highlights:

o Talking and laughing on a plane that is stuck on the tarmac for over an hour REALLY pisses off old men passengers.

o At the car rental counter don’t tell 2 New Yorkers that you gave THEIR convertible Mustang away because it is “race weekend”.

o Germans love talking about (and showing) their boobs.

o Galleta and I really ARE kinda a big deal.

o It’s dumfounding, but in NC cheeseburgers look like hot dogs.

o The phrase “Oh hot damn…. This is my jam” can be used to describe almost anything.

o Pretty girls in Charlotte have NO problem throwing shoulders and elbows on the dance floor just to get closer to a cute boy who knows how to shake his bon bon (ouch!)

o Our commode at the Marriot just might have been a porthole to an alternative universe.

o Talk of Jesus gets Galleta HOT… while it does just the opposite for me……hmmmmm

o Not all German music is danceable.

o When engaged in a pillow fight always adjust your balance to take into consideration velocity of mass. Otherwise prepare to be uncontrollably catapulted off your bed while slamming your face into the edge of your competitor’s mattress then finally collapsing into a ball between the two beds with your feet bent up to the nape of your head.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Cheese It – It’s the Fuzz!!!!

I was done with the club by 1am so we made a quick escape back to the luxury leather interior of Galleta’s chariot. I pulled out of the lot and with directions in hand Galleta began navigating our route back to the Marriot. In hindsight I do see the errors of my ways – who hands the directions to the DRUNK guy? It’s just that Galleta holds his liquor so well I kinda forget…. But after circumnavigating downtown Syracuse, and directions from a friendly cop, we were back on track by 2AM – almost.

We were SO close to the hotel…Galleta was falling asleep, and I was just antsy, when this little black civic zoomed around in my blind spot and cut me off on the passenger side. Galleta jolted awake and yelled energetically – “GET HIM!!! F’in FLOOR IT!!!!!” and all kinds of testosterone induced knee-jerk verbal reactions. I am not a road rager – I couldn’t care less what people do – BUT it was Galleta’s truck and his instructions did sound sincerely important …..and yes again in hindsight maybe I should have not put so much equity in the words of the drunk 26 year old. So I floored it (It was fun) and not only did I catch up to Civic but I cut him off (at about 78mph). My glory was cut short though by the flashing colorful lights that filled the truck and the screeching siren that silenced the radio.

The next words came from the trooper outside my window inquiring about my knowledge of local speed limits – obviously knowing something and doing something are two different things. I then quickly downward spiraled into pool of honesty as I fessed up to having one shot at the bar.

Outside the truck staring into the lights of two police cruisers I was asked to perform the sobriety field exercises as my body quickly shut down. Extreme anxiety replaced any “Bad Ass-ness” I had felt only moments before as I lapped the civic and celebrated my driving prowess.

I failed the “heal toe” as my legs shook and my bare feet froze on the pavement (the officer allowed me to remove my heals). I also failed the “balance on one foot” because counting to 30 is really hard when one is hyperventilating and sobbing uncontrollably. I did however pass the “follow the pen with you eyes test” FYI - I guess panic attacks do not effect the optic nerve. My officer’s eyes narrowed and a thin tight lipped grin spread across his face as he commanded me to “STOP CRYING” and blow into the breath – a –lizer. I wrapped my lips around the clear plastic straw and gave it a blow – the officer looked at the red numbers on the machine then looked at me with a sneer. Pulling it from my mouth he tore the straw out of the machine, throwing it to the curb. He placed a new straw into the machine and we repeated the process. This time he looked at me and gruffly asked, “Explain to me how the hell can you fail almost EVERY field test and not have ONE drop of alcohol in your system!!!” I explained that I was in complete panic mode and I also told him WHY I had been speeding. Pointing towards my drunken passenger I exclaimed, “HE TOLD ME TO DO IT” (throwing Galleta under the bus). My officer turned sweet and gentle as he tipped his head to the side and asked, “Gail, how old are you?” And I answered the only way I could, “Old enough to know better Sir.”

Back in the truck (no ticket in hand) I drove the next 2 miles in a state of shock and extreme anxiety as the adrenalin still pounded through my body. Galleta, in a soft gentle voice, guided me back to the hotel while interjecting comments such as ,You’re doing great… It’s all OK….etc… Once inside the commercial park where the hotel was located Galleta announced “STOP THE TRUCK AND GET OUT!!!!” I was frozen at the wheel, but after a few short moments I was outside wrapped around Galleta in a bawling mess. He took control of the vehicle and drove it the last 100 yards as I slowly resumed a normal breathing pattern through my chattering jaw.

A Post Party to Remember

After the wedding Galleta stayed in his suit (Big Baller) and I changed into something a little less dressy. We picked up directions from the front desk then headed out to downtown Syracuse for some local flava. I decided to drive so Galleta could continue his Vegas lifestyle (you can’t just stop NON – stop drinking – you could hurt yourself) and within 15 min we were in the thick of it. We parked the truck in a lot then walked over to Ambrosia. It’s embarrassing recording the name of the ‘club’ in print here because the place was a steaming hot pot of MESS!!!! The place was teaming with guys and the girls looked like they just got off their closing shift at the local Strawberry and Mandee shops. I didn’t know girls still dressed like they did in 1992 – it’s like time stood still in Western NY. Galleta and I made the best of it though and he made the best of the $5 drinks. We danced when I was not distracted by the state of humanity and the encroaching realization that these college kids were the future of our country – and I even got a free shot from a poorly groomed guy at the end of the bar. Hmmmm that shot will come back to haunt me….

Road Trip!

I was very lucky to be a guest at one of the most charming weddings I have ever attended. Masters and her Fiancé hosted a lovely event filled with humor, heart, and mashed potatoes. Galleta was my arm candy and he was the best wedding date EVER!!

Our Sat. began early with Galleta picking me up in his fancy new red truck (he had to leave the pearly white Escalade at Home- I understood) and after a quick pit stop at Starbucks we were off on our road trip- zooming towards Syracuse, NY. The drive was beautiful and reminded me of my years at New Paltz. The trees were at their peak as we cruised through the Poconos. The hills always look to me like soft undulating muti-colored quilts and I found myself zoning out as I gazed out the car window trying to remember every hue. My bucolic daydreaming was short lived though because of Galleta’s most entertaining story telling abilities. Obviously some things that happen in Vegas…. get reiterated during a 4 hour drive to Western NY.

We rolled up to the Marriott at about 2pm and once in the room we quickly realized this was NO Sofitel – I’m such a princess. The room was clean though and we both stretched out on our beds while I distributed the yummy snacks that were in our welcome gift bag. A few hours later Galleta was all spiffy in his gray suite (and sporting my Thank You gift – see blogs below) and after a small wardrobe malfunction on my part I was dolled up and ready to blow this Mo Fo UP! We walked over to the event site, took a seat at the bar and began our celbration.

Once inside we met up with LJ and her date, taking our seats behind them. The ceremony was oh so sweet and of course I cried. Galleta sensing my vulnerability during once specific part of the ceremony quietly moved closer and gave me the shoulder I needed. A quick cocktail party filled with tons of cheese and poorly made drinks made way for the reception. Our table partners were enjoyable, the buffet was tasty, and after Galleta had a few strong words with the bartender and tossed him $20 my G&T’s took a turn for the better.

We danced to everything (mostly), Galleta even got the DJ to drop MY track (Rob Base – Holla!). The wedding reception ended rather quickly and abruptly at 11pm as the music came to a screeching halt and the lights flashed on. “You don’t gotta go home but you can’t stay here”. While we walked back to the Marriott with LJ, Galleta and I were already planning our post- party.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Best Deal in NYC

Besides getting my teeth cleaned for free (well I mean I pay for dental insurance but there is no co-pay) I think I found the best NYC bargain…. Free (ish) haircuts!!! The hair modeling thing was fantastic, I couldn’t have been any happier with my sweet timid Japanese hair apprentice. I’m not sure if she understood what I was saying – there was a lot of head bowing and ‘yess-ing’ – but we had the same hair so I was pretty sure she wasn’t gonna hack me down to a crew cut. It did take a LONG time (over 2 hours) cause she and two other apprentices were being evaluated by the MASTER . It was very entertaining, sitting there between the other two models, one was a young teacher (ughhhh) with a hideous head of mousy frizzy hair, the other was the most beautiful being I have seen in years. She was so beautiful I was transfixed by her face – it was like I was trying to decided what about her was MOST beautiful – her perfect nose, her skin, her doe eyes – I was stupefied. Unfortunately she caught my scrutinizing gaze in the mirror and shot me a look of total disgust combined with a tad bit of terror. In short the girl looked like a 20 year old Bridget Bardot mixed with a bit of Barbarella Jane Fonda.

The frizzy mouse transformed into a curly bob that looked terrific – total makeover. I never did see the completion of Briget Fonda’s doo because the Master fell in love with her 10 minutes into the ‘lesson’ and never took his hands out of her glorious main of honey colored locks- they were still there when I left at 10pm.

Only about a day left in my temping career – fingers crossed. There is a very entertaining meeting currently happening next to me regarding guns in the work place at their other corporate location – FYI people in the south apparently LOVE guns. I would love to expand more on this thread because the conversation is HYSTERICAL – but I do kinda work here. The best part though was at the beginning of the ‘report’ when one of the NY executives was all, “Wow you guys talk about guns like how WE talk about pizza”.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

I’m a Model!!!

Ok so I’m totally broke and my hair is SCREAMING at me cause I spent the whole summer in the surf and the sun. There is no way I can splurge on a haircut (and dare I even think about color) so I decided to throw caution to the wind and become a hair model . I am going in for my first cut tomorrow – how bad can it be right? I mean this is Manhattan, and I’m going to a real salon, ARTE so I’m hoping I won’t come out looking like my neighbor’s Salon Style Barbie after we took our 6 year old left handed round nosed scissors to it’s head.

If any of you reading this are thinking – hey I wanna be a hair model (bald guinea pig) too – how do I do that? Well friends here are the links to get you on your way to becoming a member of the experimental tonsorial arts:

Salon Apprentice - http://www.salonapprentice.com/

and of course the ol’ craigs list http://newyork.craigslist.org/bts/

If all goes well tomorrow I may even try donating my head to color apprentice – cause like - come on how bad can you screw up black hair right….. right?

What are the odds?

Still temping at the place where I basically do nothing – yet on the rare occasion that I am asked to perform whatever slight menial task - I quickly realize that I am terribly ill equipped to fulfill anybody’s request.

This receptionist has really set herself up for job security. I was given 1 page of “instructions” however she left out all the important information… ah tricky! I have login information but no passwords, I have names of executive assistants who no longer work for the company, I have a large ring of keys yet none of them fit the lock on the desk drawer….. she is sooooo crafty! My favorite trick of hers was to email like 20 staff members on Friday notifying them that she was holding a package/ envelope/ check/ for them at reception and that they should pick it up this week. It’s kinda nice because I am getting lots of face time with the full time employees however I DON”T KNOW WHERE THEIR STUFF IS!!! Yep I got plenty of nothing. However on the upside because all these people are coming to reception I have been able to unload lots of mail that was never distributed yesterday (see blog below).

I’m onto my second cup of their chocolate nut coffee but I am trying to steer clear of the bathroom (see blog below – again). However this combo of extreme coffee ingestion and bathroom avoidance is not a really great plan– I may need to rethink my afternoon goal.

Mail mystery continues…. A dude just came by looking for a “big check” that should have been delivered 10 days ago. I tried to explain the mail process – but he was a bit confused – obviously he is not an office administrator professional. He wandered back to the unmarked mailboxes and found his long lost check – thank goodness. I took the opportunity to hand him the other 3 checks that were delivered yesterday – but he said, “Oh no these go to our accounts payable department”. I was all “I know but nobody has been able to tell me who/ where they are.” He looked at me and said, “Yeah…. Umm…. I’ll find out who they are and give you a call.”

In closing I would like to know – In an office of 150 employees what are the odds that 44 people all have a Birthday in September? While I was pouring my second cup of joe in their kitchen I happened upon their “Happy September Birthday” list taped to the upper cabinet. There are FORTY FOUR people on the list FORTY FOUR!!!! Maybe there will be cake?

Monday, September 22, 2008

I swear I am not a mess!

It’s like the less I do while temping the more idiotic I am:

I began the day by aggressively tearing the privacy screen off the computer monitor thereby rendering it – useless. I was attempting to rid the screen of years of DNA samples that had been applied to both sides. It is currently propped up behind an acrylic ruler and a wooden “Hebra” ( half zebra - half hippo).

By midday I was harassing employees in the woman’s room. I mistakenly choose the stall with the broken lock and while pushing open the door – accidentally pinned a rather small (half naked) Asian lady between the stall door and the wall – whoops – sorry.

I attempted to distribute the mail but was stymied by the lack of names on the mailboxes. After inquiring about the mail distribution to several employees nobody could give me a clue about how they received mail. Oh well it is currently still sitting behind me in the mail bin.

After leaving the office for my 15 min. lunch break I was locked out. I forgot to bring the magnetic key thingy, and it is MY job to buzz people in. After I rang the bell twice (and was ignored by the entire staff of 150 people) I decided to chill out in the elevator bank and eat my subway sandwich until somebody either came out – or went it.

When the phone finally rang for the first time at 4pm – I had totally forgotten the name of the company and sat there dead on the line until the caller shouted “HELLO!!!!???” I giggled and was all – “Oh right… hello”. Now I have the company's name written on a Post-it - stuck to the phone receiver. Just in case the phone rings again over the next 4 days.

Highlight of the day – I discovered the Sinkers flavored coffee in their lounge!! I haven’t yet dared to try it, but I did partake in the Chocolate Nut coffee syrup.