BY Jodi

11/01 Direct Link

To the adorable dark-haired, possibly Latino fella seated across from me on the northbound 1, who occasionally glanced up from his actual hardback book, whose covers were obscured by the burgundy hoodie in which the book rested, who smiled to himself at certain passages and at one point flipped back to consult an earlier passage and nodded to himself, whose glances landed on me and were accompanied by a shy smile that at one point expanded into a grin full of beautiful teeth, and who, when I stood in anticipation of my stop, said, "Have a beautiful day," thank you!

11/02 Direct Link

If you're posting to Instagram about your life "off the grid", you are not off the grid.  If you are updating your travel plans on Facebook about your life off the grid, you are not off the grid.  If you are tweeting about how awesome it is that you're off the grid, you are not off the grid.  If you have a smart phone to do any of these things, even though you're not doing these things, you are not off the grid.  If anything you're doing is preceded by a "hashtag", you are not off the grid.  Shut up.


11/03 Direct Link

When I met him a little over a year ago, I described him to friends s what would happen if Johnny Depp and James Dean had a baby.  He moved to Florida with his girlfriend and I didn't see him again, so I didn't get the opportunity to see if my first impression was on point.  Well, he's back in town now, girlfriend-free, and he suggests we get together.  When I see him, I realize that my impression wasn't quite right.  He's what would happen if Johnny Depp, James Dean, Luke Perry, and Jason Priestley had a baby.  Well, hello.


11/04 Direct Link

Dear Social Gathering or Event of Any Variety:

If you are ever in a position where the person organizing or hosting you feels obligated -- whether by pressure from a spouse, by dint of my association with another invitee, or because it is feared I may have gotten wind that you were happening -- to include me on the invitation list, but for whatever reason would secretly like to secure the guarantee my absence, please include any of the following words/phrases in the invitation:

Audience participation
Hot tub
Costumes required
VIP Lounge
Karaoke contest

Thank you for your consideration.


11/05 Direct Link

"Mark and I used 'pinwheel'," the girl says.

"Sasha and I used 'balsamic vinaigrette' as ours," the guy says.

"That's a mouthful, though, isn't it?" the girl says.  "I mean, by the time she shouted out the first three syllables, you could've been painfully deep inside her ass already.  Am I right?"

They each break off a part of their shared scone and nod their heads.

"Mmm, this is really good," the girl says.

"If we ever hooked up, ours would be 'I love you,'" the guy says.

"I'm not even going to pretend to be insulted," the girl says.


11/06 Direct Link

If you're going to wear plush reindeer antlers to a holiday party, you can't just stand off to the side, slouched against a table looking dour.  You kind of owe it to the stupidity of the antlers and the supposed festivity of the party to be if not the life of the party then at least somewhat lifelike.  I don't know what's worse:  That initially I thought the guy accompanying you to the party, sporting a floppy Santa hat, was your husband or that you turned out to be his daughter.  Either way, I see inertia runs in the family.


11/07 Direct Link

So very, very sorry, but if you STAND ME UP for a date in February (you didn't even make the reservations you'd you would, you lying vessel of kaka), I will not think it's cute when you send me a message saying, "Hello" and "It's da season" ten months later.  Instead, I will hate you for using "da" instead of "the".  But in the spirit of, you know, da season, I will overlook your lack of punctuation because I understand that it takes a considerable amount of effort to use it after exhausting yourself on composing such a thoughtful message.


11/08 Direct Link

It's almost 3:00 a.m. and I'm wasted on pretzels and Fritos and a contact high from a variety of sources, including but not limited to laughter so hard it jarred my pancreas loose and almost made me pee in my paisley jumpsuit in two restaurants and in the groovy comfort of my brother's apartment on the other side of Central Park.  I could fall asleep with my head on a pile of Cards of Humanity discards, to awaken with Chex Mix imprints on my cheek.  Fortunately my nephew's adorable/gorgeous/filthy/hilarious/generous girlfriend hooks me up with Uber.

I am grateful for Kara.


11/09 Direct Link

It's the '80s.  I'm in a Center City Philadelphia bank.  A man strolls in, resplendent in an ensemble that places him square in another century, where he'd hobnob with Oscar Wilde and outdandy the most brilliant fops of the time.  Knickers not pants; a flouncy, enormous-collared jacket; pointy shoes, and a tall hat, he put Willy Wonka to fizzling shame.  I recognize him as John Delay, my friend from Something Blue, a local vintage store, with whom I'd concoct fanciful names for new garment arrivals.  We greet each other with flourishes.

I am grateful to John for his unflagging panache.

11/10 Direct Link

On Saturday night, while lounging around my brother's apartment engaged in general tomfoolery, my nephew told me I remind him of Linda (the mom) from "Bob's Burger's". He said it wasn't looks-wise, thus avoiding being  smacked in a fashion known in polite circles as "upside the head".  I have no idea what he means, though.  It's not like I go around turning everything into a horrible song, perhaps accompanied by an even worse dance.  Nope.

When he was in fifth grade, he said I was built just like a girl in his class.

I am grateful for my nephew's compliments.

11/11 Direct Link

The adjective "luxury" makes me cringe from somewhere deep within my viscera, especially when it refers to vacations.  I don't need my hotel bathroom to replicate a spa.  Hell, I don't even like spas while at home.  I can "turn down" my own bed, lug my own bags, iron my own shirt (if at all), and the dining I do is called eating.  I don't want to see 14 countries in five days.  I barely want anyone speaking English to me if I'm in a country where it's not the first language.  I can figure stuff out on my own.


11/12 Direct Link

Thanks for chewing through the cord on my Bose headset that I need for work, Lola. Your foster mom is coming over tonight to show me how to "trim your claws" so you don't destroy my skin.  I was going to joke around with you that that was a euphemism for taking you back, but right now I don't even want to look at you and your eye and your stupid cotton ball paws.  Just be glad I'm not the kind of asshole who dumps a cat for this kind of thing.


I am grateful to Amazon Prime Same-Day Delivery.



11/13 Direct Link

I spotted this curious object in Central Park on my walk home.  I have seen others of its kind before and then, as now, was quite enchanted by it.  This time, unlike others, I picked it up, with utter disregard for the possibility that it might transform into a magical orb that emits pulsing psychedelic rays of dubious consequence.  After telling it it was very cute, I gently placed it back on the ground by the bench where I found it and bit it adieu.  Still, I wonder:  What is it?  Tumor tennis ball?  Lump o' lime leprosy?  Jack fruit???

11/14 Direct Link

I have no work today (a rarity), so I "craft" an ensemble I've never worn before, flounce out the door, and sashay my way to Central Park en route to a few errands on the other side of town.  Although tourists are plentiful like cockroaches, I only let them irritate me 15%.  I focus instead on the apple-crisp air, resplendent blaze of leaves, and the joy of self-transport.  A young-ish (30s?) woman with hair that's a mixture of turquoise and cobalt gifts me a huge smile as she passe and says, "You look FABULOUS!"

I am grateful for her exuberance.

11/15 Direct Link

Dear Future Jodi:

Today a fellow named Don McLean debuted a song named "American Pie" at Temple University when opening for Laura Nyro.  A little more than a decade after your graduation from that school, you will have a boyfriend who "sings" it in its endless karaoke entirety at a shindig at the home of your friends on Manhattan's Upper West Side.  You will want to stab yourself in the ears with a Dixon-Ticonderoga No. 2 pencil and gouge his eyes out with a rusty grapefruit spoon.  Please do not.  Break up with him immediately instead.


Li'l Jodi


11/16 Direct Link

I'm walking up Fifth Avenue on my way home from the gym, wiping away tears as I remember that today marks the second month since Shana left this world.  I count the months and days and realize for the first time that she was in my life for 15 years, 5 months, and 15 days, and wonder if she planned it that way knowing that as much as I don't like symmetry, I would appreciate the tidiness.  Sitting here, I imagine her saying, "That's my gift to mew!" and wipe away more tears.

I am grateful for Shana's beautiful life.

11/17 Direct Link

Yesterday my landlord and several other gents clanked around the basement, trying to repair a dramatic leak.  My landlord cheerfully requested I not use the kitchen sink for the day.  Last night when I returned from being Out and About, my doorjamb offered a note in what appears to be red crayon, saying the repair would be completed tomorrow (today).  It's still not.  Several unwashed items lurk in the sink now like hooligans.  I am the sort of person who must wash dishes immediately (almost while still eating off them).  Thus, I am anxious.

I am grateful for running water.



11/18 Direct Link

He chats, gravel-voiced, about the Knicks with the bus driver and takes a seat, eyes obscured behind cataract-style sunglasses, one hand on a walking stick, the other on a rubberband-secured notebook/planner.

"Hello, young man!" he says to every boy who boards with his mom.  He asks how old the young man is, and whatever he's told, he subtracts 1 and says, "I can't ride with you!  I only ride with kids [one year younger]!"  I laugh.

He says, "They need to be recognized!  Just like we all do."  I tell him I agree wholeheartedly.

I am grateful for his recognition.

11/19 Direct Link

TMOMWHFTG (pronounced "Tuh-MOM-wiff-tig" and short for "This morning on my walk home from the gym"), while regarding a few benches on the periphery of Dante Park, I marveled at how crisp and clean they looked and wondered, "Of what is this bench composed?"  I sidled up to one, imagined examining it through stylish pince-nez with my patented eyebrow raise, and tapped it with a fingertip.  I then said, aloud, "Hmmm!  That's not wood!  It's a space-age polymer!" and chortled to myself because I don't even know what a space-age polymer is.

I am grateful for my enormous capacity for self-amusement.



11/20 Direct Link

I almost posted something that's not about dogs, Lola, boots, Mary Tyler Moore, my walk home from the gym, French fries, Indian food, the subway, Eric Moore, or Central Park, but then thought, "Oy.  Do I really want to invite bullshit onto my page and risk seething at my desk and wishing bodily harm on people?  Today's Friday and also it's close to Thanksgiving and I'm having a really good morning."

I don't like confrontation.  Disputes make me want to flee from the room (even the virtual kind) and jam bagels in my face.

I am grateful for my restraint.



11/21 Direct Link

I have no idea why it's taking Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Paul Rudd, Mark Ruffalo, and Michael C. Hall so long to realize they're madly, ridiculously, rom-commingly in love with me, all four fellas hanging out on "the stoop" in front of my building, clamoring for my attention and affection like the guys in the 1951 movie "The Three Mikes", until finally I'm forced to choose which one of them is the ONE-EST of all of The Ones, and I flail and weep prettily and finally realize this is 2015 and I can have them all.

I am grateful for imaginary polyamory.


11/22 Direct Link

I can barely rev myself up to be interested in my own presence on Facebook, so there's no way in hell I give a bleep, a bloop, or a blurp about the thing you posted about that issue you care about that at least 14 billion of your closest friends have been commenting on and "liking" and debating and fighting about for the past week.  I don't want the joy of this marvelous coffee concoction and slice of homemade chocolate cake (a crumb-safe distance from my keyboard) to be destroyed by so much silent incessant babble glaring from the monitor.

11/23 Direct Link

The "newsie" handing the free little newspaper "am New York" just outside the subway station at 73rd and Broadway embellishes his duty this morning by shouting out a "Read all about it!" kind of message.  "Television suspected in California shootings!" he says.  "Television suspected in California shootings!"  I don't take a paper from him but check out the headline on a stack of them several yards away.

"Is he trying to be funny?  Like, how Elvis shot his television?  What is he, a comedian?  Is it inappropriate?" I thought.

Then I saw the headline and realized:  "Oh.  He said TERRORISM."


11/24 Direct Link

I live in, if not constant fear, then frequent fear that my teeth are going to take a tip from my recurring dreams and decide to release themselves from the confines of my gums by a variety of terrifying methods.  I sit on the sofa and think, "It will happen right now and I will know this is not a dream.  They may not leave in a tidy row, like seeds removed from crisp spears of a peeled cucumber, but they will leave and I will not have the supreme relief of awakening and counting them quickly with my tongue.

11/25 Direct Link

(This replaces 11/26 - oy, perfectionism)

I am the girl who, in third grade, counts how many licks it takes to get to the center of a Tootsie Roll pop.  The girl who sits off to the side during recess, dutifully licking and counting and chanting silently inside her head.  (Okay, so I sit off to the side during recess anyway, with a book and a dictionary, but whatever.)  I am the girl who cuts her eyelid on a lollipop.  I am the girl who loses many a filing on a thanks to the tenacity of jujubes.

I am grateful for all of life's odd sweetness.


11/26 Direct Link

I am the girl who, in third grade, counts how many licks it takes to get to the center of a Tootsie Roll pop.  The girl who sits off to the side during recess, dutifully licking and counting and chanting silently inside her head.  (Okay, so I sat off to the side during recess anyway, with a book and a dictionary, but whatever.)  I am the girl who once cut her eyelid on a lollipop.  I am the girl who lost many a filing on a thanks to the tenacity of jujubes.

I am grateful for all of life's sweetness.


11/27 Direct Link

I screwed this up twice - (third time's the charm, I hope)

I am the girl who, in third grade, counts how many licks it takes to get to the center of a Tootsie Roll Pop.  The girl who sits off to the side during recess, dutifully licking and counting and chanting silently inside her head.  (Okay, so I sit off to the side during recess anyway, with a book and an enormous hardback dictionary, but whatever.)  I am the girl who cuts her eyelid on a lollipop.  I am the girl who loses many a filling thanks to the tenacity of jujubes.

I am grateful for all of life's odd sweetness.


11/28 Direct Link

Lola dashes around the apartment, wrestles with shoelaces, scuttles on her belly like an Army private in boot camp, chirps, meows polysyllabically, and ultimately says, "Hello!" with perfect diction.  She settles on the bed like a loaf of bread (artisanal rye with caraway) and stares at me.

Me:  Jesus Christ.  What am I going to do with you?

Her:  What are the options?

Me:  (A) Kiss you.

Her:  No.

Me:  (B) Kiss you.

Her:  Um.  No.

Me:  (C) Kiss you.

Her:  That's -- no.

Me:  (D) Kiss --

Her:  No.

Me:  (E) All of the above.

Her: ...

The End.






11/29 Direct Link

Sometimes when I decide to give a movie I didn't like the first time a second chance, I wonder, when it's over and I'm applauding inside my head, "What the hell was my problem the first time?" This was definitely the case with "The Royal Tenenbaums" and "Lost in Translation".  Two hours or so ago I thought I might think the same thing about "Ghostbusters", which I saw when it was released 31 years ago. Alas, I was wrong.  (Although I must say:  Great gams, Ms. Sigourney Weaver.)

Next up:  "Love Actually", Maybe the third time will be the charm?


11/30 Direct Link

Around the same time in my so-called youth, I went horseback riding and ice skating.  I remember neither with fondness.  I felt sorry for the horse for having to endure the weight of any person, let alone the 65 pounds or so of a preteen crybaby who would have rather curled up in a stall with him instead and read to him select passages from an encyclopedia.  I felt sad for the skates that didn't have a chance of slicing any ice thanks to the fumbling feet contained within them who would have preferred to dance stupidly by a fireplace.