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Is it true what they say, March? You come in like a lion and go out like a lamb? Sorry, but I'm not buying it. You're coming in like a ferret and will no doubt go out like a ferret, and no one will be the wiser. You're going to have to step up your so-called game, March, if you're going to be able to hold onto that adage much longer. Come in like a lamb and go out like a lion, at the very least. Not that I have anything against the aforementioned ferrets, of course. But still. C'mon.
Brian's sneaking peeks of himself in everything from a knife blade to a stainless steel skillet bottom to the polarized lenses of another shopper's sunglasses. If it's got even the slightest reflective property, he's availed himself of it in the hour he's been lollygagging in Macy's basement housewares department. He's got it all: the lank dark hair, the facial scruff, the bookish dark frames glasses, the hat, the scuffed boots. And he's puffed his lips too, in the way that comes naturally to his "man crush". So, why are none of the ladies gasping and mistaking him for Johnny Depp?
"He's just a filthy street person," Laura thinks as she crosses Sixth Avenue, looking over her shoulder at the man who's returned to warming his hands on a cup of coffee she suspects wasn't even hot. She's disappointed that he's not watching her retreat. If he really thought she looked just like Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman, surely he wouldn't be able to take his eyes off her until she was completely out of sight. "Maybe he doesn't think Julia Roberts is pretty," she thinks. Which is fine, just fine, because she always wanted to look more like Meg Ryan.
Someone you know may have just been sitting on her neatly-made bed, cross-legged, hair pulled back in an unbrushed ponytail, a vintage avocado-and-green Pyrex bowl containing red seedless grapes in her lap, pulling them off the vine two by two (an even number! success!) and after swallowed the last one, broken out into the following Award-winning ditty, much to the chagrin of her cat: "Oh yeah, I love grapes, oh I love grapes, I really do, yeah, they are so tasty, they are so fine. Sometimes they turn into raisins, yeah, and sometimes they turn into wine." Or maybe not.
If there is a Dog, then dark-haired, dark-eyed, dark-wash-jeaned, cute-sneakered Alfredo with the gorgeous flash of smile, easy laugh, and deep voice, who on a whim popped into Beyond Sushi on East 14th this afternoon as my gayboyfriend and I were deep in nonsensical discussion, to order takeout vegan delights, as Bentley, his gorgeous, high-spirited, dark brown and black brindle rescue dog, a two-year-old Pit Bull/German Shepherd mix, waited outside, peering in through the glass door, will somehow be the friend of a friend here on Facebook and we can proceed beyond the firm handshake we shared on the sidewalk.
Someone who used to play the role of my friend and occasional sidekick, who has since denounced me as a "disgusting narcissist", used to lament that I have fabulous gayboys clamoring for (and winning!) my attention and she didn't have any and couldn't gain the admiration of salesboys in department stores even when she had some money to wave around. She blamed it on her wretched fashion sense. I didn't have the heart to tell her that my guess was that she is an enormous twat, and we all know those kind o' boys don't go for none o' that.
This morning at 21st and Broadway I smooshed Stella, a 13-month-old Irish Setter, and told the woman with her, "I used to have an Irish Setter about 40 years ago." Half an hour later, 51 blocks north, I smooshed Lucy, a black French Bulldog in a red down-type coat (with a tiny skull logo), who will be 8 years old tomorrow. After Lucy jumped up and gave me kisses as soft as the snow that had just started to fall, I said to the man and woman with her, "Eight!? She looks like a SPRING CHICKEN!" I am officially old.
When did we become such a nation of namby-pamby oversensitive drama queen infants that every time it snows it's a "storm", that every time someone gets mad it's considered "rage", that every time someone cries it's considered "hysteria"? Does every event somehow seem more significant and imbued with rainbows and glitter if we pump up the volume so loud that we can't even hear the nuances anymore, that everything has to be expressed as being over the top and extreme? Is this just another symptom of a "bigger is better" mentality? Isn't any of that "yoga" and "meditation" working yet?
What I thought was only going to be lunch with a guy I'll call "Robert Redford" this afternoon morphed into a 7-hour marathon of what-the-fuck, including, most notably, him sneaking way too many photos and video clips of me. Once I realized what he was doing and told him to stop, he continued to do it anyway, so after a while I just started saying, "Stop stalking me, stop stalking me," and at one point I looked directly into the camera and said, "This is what they will use on the news when one day I mysteriously disappear.
What I thought would be a pleasant lunch date felt more like I was on the verge of being held hostage or kidnapped for ransom. Today I wrote to him to ask what he's doing with the stuff he shot, and he joked that he'd be posting it all over JDate (NOT where I met him). I said, gee whiz, that's a hoot, but no, really, what are you doing with it? He said, "what would you like me to do with them, [my first name]? Color me kooky, but I instantly shuddered and thought, "Fuck. Hannibal Lecter."
Happiness is being in severe intestinal distress thanks to eating something you know causes you major problems but blithely disregarding that knowledge because you're an idiot, unable to sit or stand or lie down for longer than a minute before having to change position, crying to your nonplussed cat that you're going to die alone, but having one friend who hires a car to surprise you with tea and Pepto Bismol and sympathy, and two others driving in from Queens with two remedies, a bottle of 7Up, and hanging out with you and making you laugh despite the excruciating pain.
You don't have to be an "Up With People" Pollyanna, kumbaya, yoga-devoted, mantra-chanting fan of patchouli, you don't even have to be in love with people in general, and hey, you don't even have to want to invite anyone into your life if it's not your wont. But since we have to live on this planet together, and most of us would like not only to survive but to thrive, to lounge rather than lunge, and to guffaw more than we bawl, can't we please just be at least somewhat lovely to each other? Is that asking for too much?
When visiting my parents' house on a weekend, my Poppop would often say in his husky Polish/Yiddish accent, "I haven't eaten since Tuesday," and expect us to believe it. We didn't. Now, from the comfort of my own home on a weekday, I'm telling you, in my sleek not-quite-New-York-but-kinda-like-Bea-Arthur accent, that I have not left the house since Saturday. And you'd better believe it.
In my defense, I was hideously ill on Sunday and couldn't leave the casa. But now I'll well, in need of chocolate soy milk, and must stop being a shut-in.
The Sassy Spinster
It's my own sopping, gloppy, soap-scummy hair I pull from the shower drain between thumb and forefinger. So why am I simultaneously repellent and fascinated? Because I think maybe, just maybe, at some point during the, uh, extraction process, what I'll find between my fingers isn't from my own head and perhaps once had a pulse? When I realize, no, it's just my hair, I'm quite relieved, much like I am when I come across something on the sidewalk that at first glance I think is a desiccated rat corpse but turns out to be an ancient, weathered, muddy baggy.
Sometimes when I'm in my apartment and my landlord is outside my door, and I don't know if he's doing something legitimate in the area or if he's just loitering or lurking, on the verge of knocking on my door for whatever reason, I pretend I'm on a phone call, and speak loudly enough so that if he's close enough to the door he can hear that I'm "busy". I'm getting so good at it that I often find myself carrying on the one-sided conversation long after I need to do so. My imaginary friends are quite the amusing conversationalists.
Oh, Brad's Kale Raw Leafy Kale Chips. Your "Nasty Hot" variety is tasty, I'll give you that. However, I'm afraid our views of what constitutes "Nasty Hot" differ wildly. Brad, my friend, you're like these basement-dwelling mirror-photo shmoes on OKCupid who answer the question, "Do you want your partner to be kinkier than you?" with a bold "Not possible", who, I'm willing to bet, think "kinky" is fake-fur-lined handcuffs from Spencer Gifts that can be removed without the necessity of a real key, a container of Cool Whip, and a pint of strawberries. You're not fit to lick my boot.
The other morning, just outside my front door, I met a very large, playful, and floppy American Bulldog/Boxer mix and was so completely enchanted by/enamored with him that it wasn't until about five minutes later, when I was inside my apartment, putting away the groceries, that I realized, "Now, wait a minute, the guy with that dog was awfully Paul Rudd-esque." So, does anyone know if Paul Rudd has a home in Manhattan, lives on the Upper West Side, and has a dog named either Buster or Butch? If so, I may have to indulge in some delayed swooning here.
I rush to make sure I get to the corner before the light turns green so I can greet Oakley, a yellow Lab, and his dad-person (whose name I don't know), the way I always do when I see them.
"Is this Oakley?" I say, as is my custom just in case the pair has dual doppelgangers.
"No, this is Blanche," the man says, and I know it's Oakley's dad because of the Irish lilt. "Oakley passed away suddenly in September and Blanche came to us ten days later."
Tears sting my eyes and I offer effusive condolences.
Oakley, who was about 12 years old, had developed a tumor and left the world suddenly. I know I'd seen the man out and about in the past six months. Could it be I hadn't greeted the dog as "Oakley" in the interim, and had been unwittingly smooshing Blanche instead?
Blanche, resplendent in her red collar with gold metal embellishments, looks at me, smiling prettily. She bounces like a puppy.
"She's 10," the man says, "and we rescued her. She's our first girl ever, and now she has her forever home."
Oh yes, Blanche, the kindness of strangers!
Two years, really? Really, two years? That's how long it was that the boy I loved and I wedged ourselves into a corner of the kitchen at one of my best friend's apartments during a party at her house, and I swooned so mightily I thought I'd pass out from utter joy. Two years? Several hundred days? I know I sound like a geezer, but Jesusfuckingchrist, where the hell has the time gone? Am I going to die alone, wedged into a corner of my own kitchen with no one snuggled against me except for cockroaches and errant coffee beans?
Dear young female trainer at the gym with the tiny shiny short embedded up your ass:
Girl, I'm impressed. When I saw you this morning, I thought you were just showing off your pretty pins. I had no idea your power extended to your brain as well. Here I thought you only knew how to count backwards from 8, when you clearly can do so from 15 as well! Thank you for trumpeting your skill and know-how and acting as an alarm clock for other gym denizens who were apparently using the benches as beds.
P.S. Cute tush.
My bathtub drain is doing sterling impersonation of a lazy motherfucker who not only doesn't want to do what he's supposed to do but is lolling around on a futon being defiant about it. After Drano failed to come to the rescue despite its valiant promises, my landlord has taken to the task. Every solution he's had has come in the form of some sort of apparatus that looks like something better suited to a windowless basement of a Chelsea "bookstore". Of course I had to make a few salacious remarks, and he responded in kind. We need a sitcom.
I rewatched every episode of Sex and the City in the past two months, thanks to Netflix. Even though I'd seen every episode at least twice before, years ago, I treated them as if it were the first time I'd seen them, which only made me love them more. I wanted to rush out and raid Charlotte's wardrobe, punch Carrie in the face for mistreating Aiden, ogle Samantha's tits, and hang out with Miranda at her apartment watching "Jules and Jim". And then find Aiden and live happily ever after. (This is the grossest, girliest entry I will ever submit.)
Whenever someone describes something they have as "not your grandfather's _____", I roll my eyes at the self-aggrandizement masquerading as cheekiness, the assumption that what that person has is hipper and so much more WOW and NOW than a similar item a grandfather may have had. My petite Poppop paraded with aplomb in a smashing burgundy velvet blazer, "bling" that would make a rap-star weep, and shirts splashier than a Pollack painting until he exited stage left 20 years ago. He was the definition of "dandy". So, really, they're right: What they have is NOTHING like what my grandfather had.
My mom says they've "getting rid of a lot of shit", and I can't bear to think what that entails. The first frenzy resulted in my father's custom-made leather patchwork boots from the 1960s being given to a thrift shop, a kick in my heart so fierce I could barely speak when told. I'm terrified of what they've done to the upstairs office. No doubt they've discarded the cryptic Post-It notes in his all-caps printing, his decades-old ephemera. At least she asked if I wanted his clay coffee mug. If I rub it like a genie bottle, will he materialize?
Yesterday morning I smooshed Lionel, a 5-year-old Rottweiler I recently met at the bank, and his 12-year-old brother, Mack, also a Rottweiler. Mack had the elegant, patient, benevolent bearing of a grandfather, and was more than happy, après-smoosh, to melt into the sidewalk and give the floor back to Lionel. Their dad and I talked about how gentle and sweet Rottweilers are yet how maligned. I felt myself getting angry at faceless anonymous people who'd dare think anything negative about them. Rather than "preach to the choir", I chose to smoosh and love the two beautiful boys that much more.
A while ago, through a series of nomadic Internet clickings (I refuse to say "surf the 'net"), I stumbled upon an "inspirational" Oprah-esque website that featured an article written by a woman who was so "empowered" by a recent epiphany that she needed to trumpet it to her Chubby-Hubby-pint-clutching audience.
"Sister-goddesses, we don't have to wait around for a MAN to buy us flowers! Go out and buy yourself a beautiful bouquet!!!" The comments may as well have been smeared by jubilant mascara-tears, the response was so overwhelming. All I could think was, "What? You crybabies didn't already know this?"
If anyone needs to know who won The Food Network's "Last Cake Standing", and doesn't want to take the time to Google it or ask their mom or hairdresser, I can reveal the answer since, despite never watching the show before, I did so at the gym today for 75 minutes (mostly just with closed-captioning so I could listen to my "Mo Tunes" playlist while I ran). Was it worth watching just to find out? Absolutely not. But it did make me run about twice as long as I had planned, almost making me the Last Dork Running? Oh, yes.
This morning, outside the 23rd Street Home Depot, I saw a dog perched on the shoulder of an attractive man. Of course I had to stop to say something.
"And what's THIS all about?" I said.
"It's a cockapoo! It's the latest thing he likes to do!"
The dog, Cooper, nodded assent.
"I've been waiting for my husband for about an hour now!" the man said.
It used to be that a guy would immediately let you know he's "taken" by referring to his "girlfriend", which always amused me. In this case, I was more thrilled than amused. Yay, equality!
A gray mini-dress/long T-shirt with small black skull print; Betsey Johnson-ish quasi-goth dress; pink and black cloth J. Crew belt; yellow, green, orange, and white picnic blanket/bedspread; and an "Atomic Age" serving-type bowl, clear glass with a gold and aqua design; all from a thrift store in The Bronx, where people shop because they have to not because they think it's hip. My "haul" comes to $42, and oddly, I balk, even though I would have spent twice that price on the dress alone in a nicer store. There has to be a marketing/psychological term for that other than "asshole".
Plans for my Maine man to visit have been thwarted thanks to his pesky appendix, which decided to express its enthusiasm by enlarging to twice its regular size, thus necessitating immediate eviction from the viscera. This means that our long-awaited face-to-face meeting will have to be shelved until he has healed and is fit to travel on the Greyhound bus that will deliver him to me, at least as far as the Port Authority. This is the second time our plans have fallen through. I'm hoping this means that, true to the adage, the third time will be the charm.
The Tip Jar