Wednesday, September 28, 2011

I'm a magnet for Crazy people - Babygate edition

Its happening. The first wave of divorces are underway and many of the 30 something friends are starting their new lives becoming accustomed to being single again. Ofcourse, being single now is different from being single 10 years ago and not just because you are different, but because the rules of dating have now changed. People text. People Facebook. People make it easier to have a more removed experience from the possible rejection or heartbreak that could accompany what starts as a drink at a bar.

The people who are still married and survived the first wave of divorce among their friends, see the wounded and mamed newly single vets as cautionary tales of where they don't want to end up. More likely than not, this is where the first round of baby gate opens up.

Yes, baby gate. I personally have several friends and a sibling currently experiencing this wave of babies everywhere. Now, I know what you're thinking, sure, most people you know aren't having a baby due to some reactionary whim! How cynical of me. Mind you, I don't think there is anything wrong with realizing that you do not want to be divorced and are entering your third decade and more stable; realizing that you do indeed want to have a baby. Nothing! Its probably, actually, a great time to start! I certainly don't mean to imply its only because the newly single bobble heads are left out in the cold wondering what a text with no smiley face means vs a text with one.  Ofcourse not. But for a moment, lets talk about those people who are.

You know who I'm talking about. Not the person genuinely happy to be having a healthy, happy baby, but the person who sits in judgment of you because you are no where near that place. I met a person like this today actually. I was at Starbucks, minding my own business, sipping on my iced double tall latte when I befriended a woman in line. She was a chatty kathy like myself so ended up sitting together talking about the neighborhood. Now, Im new to Culver City, so I figured, what the hey.

Within 10 minutes of the conversation, I was onto her. I heard her entire life story about meeting her husband, how wonderful he was and lucky she was to have him. She continued, telling me about how she learned her lesson with her first divorce and had a baby right away upon marriage number two. This strategic alliance was not only proof of her love, but also, an insurance policy, she confessed.

I was dumfounded! Who admits to this outside the privacy of their own diary, confessional in church or reality show application? Certainly, this girl must have friends who she can confess this to and not the total stranger who could potentially write about this on her blog! But then I realized. She was practical. She was a business woman. She, was a New Yorker.

I identified myself as a New Yorker as well having lived there for seven years. She shattered my little bubble of pride and informed me that i was in fact, NOT, a New Yorker as my attitude towards my own failed marriage and my trepidation about entering the dating arena without a plan of action, clearly disqualified me from such claims. I wanted to take out the pepper spray on my yankees key chain and prove her wrong, but I figured when in California...be peaceful as the Californians.  I thought she was finished, but she went on. She informed me that there were resources available to me, to help me reach the baby gaters in a quicker way. There were several websites she recommended and a phone number for the casting of Millionaire Matchmaker.  This went on for several agonizing minutes where she proceeded to tell me that she didn't believe my claims that I needed to be on my own for a little while. She said it was a coping mechanism. She said, I clearly needed to play the numbers game and date as many people as necessary before my uterus rebelled against me and gave me cancer. Cancer. This was a fact she said. When she was done scolding me, we said goodbye and I gave her a fake number.

You know, I may be a long way indeed from baby gate. I don't feel any clocks in my body or have any desire to find the person that will change my feelings on the matter anytime soon. I think that's okay. I'm excited to buy fun onesies for my friends with fun sayings on them or ornate baby baskets with toy handbags and duck pacifiers. I have nephews, a niece on the way and lovely friends, survivors of the divorce wars who are going to make amazing parents this year and next. I can't wait to play with their babies and return them promptly upon boredom or fatigue.

 In continuing with the L.O.L lifestyle, you really need friends and family who will support you on that baby journey and right now, I'm happy to help and support them. Perhaps I'll join the next wave of baby makers in ten years. Who knows, but I'm hoping I won't be handing out any advice on landing a baby of your own to an unsuspecting single in the coffee shop.




Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Curd Milk to Divine Design

The philosophy behind being a Lady of Leisure is to make the time to do the things that make you happy. If you've been through a major life change or divorce, sometimes its hard to remember what these things that one made you happen are. Sure, you remember that once upon a time dancing or dining made you happy, but you don't exactly remember why or how it is that you enjoy the things you enjoy when you haven't been enjoying them in a long time.

I've extended this idea of trying things I once use to enjoy to try new things I have never enjoyed. At least, that I thought I had never enjoyed. The results have been astounding! My entire life, I have never enjoyed Yogurt. When I mention this to people, they say that I've obviously never tried it this way or that way that they enjoy it. They are dumbfounded that I would not like yogurt. With its extended health benefits and its variety of flavors and textures, I decided to give it a try. After all, it had been at least 10 years since I'd last tried and I figured, I'd changed a lot over the past 10 years. I thought I knew exactly what I wanted back then and a divorce and several career changes later, I know I had no idea. Why couldn't it be the same with Yogurt. 

I prepared like a marathon trainer to ready my taste buds for the invasion of the lactose acidic enemy I was about to consume. I bought about 10 different varieties. I bought Greek, I bought soy, I bought goats milk. I had no idea there were so many varieties of yogurt. Some came with a granola topping, others came with a  fruit or honey topping. Some, maddeningly came with both or none at all. I was overwhelmed, so I went back to the basics I been trying to apply to my life in general. I started with the things I know I've enjoyed before. I know I like frozen, non tart yogurt. So I froze some Greek yogurt and added something I love and enjoy, granola. Those first spoonfuls had me sweating like a hooker in church. What was I so afraid of? Was this yogurt going to forever put me in the category of yogurt eaters? Would that be so bad? Why had I identified my whole life as a non yogurt eater; comfortable, complacent, unbending. To my surprise, it was consumable. I kept eating to try and savor the flavors, to really understand what I liked about it and what I didn't like about it. After a lot of trial and error and lots of different combinations. I have arrived at a conclusion.

I like some yogurt. Not all yogurt is for me. Not all combinations of yogurt/fruit/granola satisfy my taste buds or make me feel full. I now enjoy a good yogurt parfait at least once a week and consider it a treat. My poison of choice as I write this? A Starbucks dark cherry yogurt parfait. Its a whopping 8 points for those of you counting weight watchers points, but I feel like Kanye West (better, faster, stronger). I'm satisfied for hours and I enjoyed my treat. I can't believe I've been missing out on this for so long! What else have I been ho-hum about that is delicious and exciting? Hmm...

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Kirstie Alley - You go Lady- you go!

Kirstie Alley looks amazing. If you haven't seen the latest pictures, mosey over to US WEEKLY http://www.usmagazine.com/healthylifestyle/news/kirstie-alley-ive-lost-100-pounds-2011149 .

The Dancing With the Stars and Cheers alum not only flaunted her new amazing curves at Fashion Week in New York, but appears to have made a complete body overhaul. Having watched Fat Actress and seen her weight yo-yo over the years, you cannot help but cheer her on. Like most women, she has struggled with several weight loss programs and has finally with time, exercise and a food plan managed to take off most of the weight. It may seem like overnight to most of us, but she has been working her butt off thanks to last seasons DWTS.

So normal women don't have the opportunity to work out with a dance partner 10 hours a day and as a Lady of Leisure, I think it would severely limit my time to pursue other interests like writing, photography, cooking, etc. However, there has got to be a way to adopt a L.O.L lifestyle approach to weight loss and enjoy the benefits that Kirstie is enjoying. Lets face it, being a size 4 does not suck.

I think the take away from this is that Kirstie was able to stick with something (in addition to being contractually obliged) because she enjoyed it. Dancing was fun for her and doing something that you enjoy at least sometimes can only help. The trust test of course is doing things that are good for us even when we don't feel like doing it. A true L.O.L takes her leisure time seriously though and that means planning all of those things that we don't necessarily want to do. Having a plan of attack makes this all much easier.

I've started sticking to an outlook calendar color blocked schedule. I know, how on trend of me. This way, I can have a visual of the chunks of time I'm spending on my writing, my work out regiments, my artist dates (damn you Julia Cameron and your wise words of wisdom), and my social life. All of your extra curriculars affect your weight loss both positively and negatively. I don't schedule my life so that I can't eat, I schedule my life so I can do all of the fun things that keep me happy and keep me on target to embrace weightloss. Its easier to say no to that second piece of cake when I've been saying yes to that blouse, that hike, that photog session, that writing class. I suspect that Kirstie has followed some what of the same attitude because she looks fabulous! She's also been spotted with several hotties. You go Kirstie. You make 60 look like the new 40.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

The Dognap- A true story

Okay, So while I was out trying to make movies while still maintaining a Lady of Leisure outlook on life, my dog, was kidnapped. Yes, kidnapped! Taken from my grandparents home at gun point and held for ransom.

Okay, that may be a slightly exaggerated dramatization as I'm not sure about the gun with no real first hand knowledge of it, but I will recount the story from Sabrina's point of view below. I can't help myself. A medium once told me I was an actress in another life and writer in this life which would account for my sense of grandiose feelings and recollections. It makes sense to me. But I digress.

THE PRINCESS DOG
This is so typical of my mom! She just left to go who knows where and I'm stuck here, alone in this crazy country! Sure, there is my friend Lucas, some strange breed of dog I've never seen in Manhattan. He's nice enough I guess. Thank goodness my mother speaks spanish to me on occasion or I wouldn't understand a word he said. Everyone is just really different here. I don't have most of my toys, I have one bed, and my vitamins and greenies are all gone. How is a girl from the city suppose to live like this? I haven't been groomed in a month and I'm expected to cool myself off on the floor. Where is my air conditioner? Where is my large bed? Where are my pajamas? 

Dogs here just have very different lives. I had a really great situation in Manhattan. I live in an upper east side apartment with my mom who has gone off the deep end on some Eat, Pray, Love kind of mid life crisis I think. Yoga every morning? 6AM? Gross. I mean, don't get me wrong, she's successful I guess, but lately, we've been doing less shopping and play dates with other society dogs and more running and hiking and early morning dog group dates. I don't get it. She doesn't buy as much clothes as before and I've had the same pink spiky collar on for the past four months. Before she would have bought me new things every week! Probably her way of buying my affection since she is rarely home, but I'm not complaining. 

Now I'm here in this really hot country and the maids barely pay me attention. No one plays for me except for Lucas and everyone treats me like an animal! I don't understand it. They had been expecting me to sleep on that dog bed, but I've been crawling into bed with Yesenia, our housekeeper, every night. It freaked her out at first but now she lets me stay. 

Tonight, however, my plans were thwarted because its Yesenia's day off. I mean, who knew she had a day off and why didn't anyone bother to tell me. No one tells me anything. My great grandparents aren't really canine savvy so they've left me out here, like some sort of outdoor dog with a bowl and a pillow. So degrading. I'm sure Tinkerbell never had to put up with this at the Hilton place.  I'm way too exhausted to fight it, I've been chasing some weird looking lizard animals all day. I know, very unbecoming of a lady, but when in Rome...or a third world country I guess. 


Am I dreaming? The images are still a little fuzzy but I can hear some men speaking in Spanish. I'm still so exhausted. I've never seen them before. What are they saying.

DOGNAPPER 1: Mira que bonita esa perra.

SABRINA: Aw well, thank you muchachos, clearly you have good taste.

DOGNAPPER 2: Ni siquiera nos ladra ni nada.

SABRINA: Umm, yeah no comprende what you're saying eh, but what are you guys doing here.

DOGNAPPER 1: Ay que venderla.

LUCAS: Sabrina! Cuidado

Lucas what are you talking about?  Doesn't' that mean be carefu-

Hey why am I being snatched up by you? I don't know you! You smell like, I don't know, they must not sell that brand in New York, but I demand you put me down buddy. Hey, whats that bag. Wait, why am I  in a bag!! I can't' breathe in a bag!! Lucas do something!!!

Lucas starts barking, the lights turn on, the men have fled. 

Okay get me out of this plastic bag!! I can't breathe, I'm gonna die, get me out of here!!

DOGNAPPER 1: Que ladra esta perrita

SABRINA: Yeah I know what that means jackass, I not only bark, but I bite too! Jackass. Hey wait, why are you putting a muzzle on me. i was kidding, No biting, no don't! dammit.


Its been hours. Maybe days. Who knows how long I've been in here. Dognaped. Humiliated wearing this ugly muzzle. My nails are chipped and honestly, who eats this food. Its disgusting. I miss my mom. I even miss that ugly Lucas, who by the way, didn't get kidnapped. Something about his teeth being undesirable to the sellers? I pick up a little spanish but not mucho. The kidnappers are okay I guess. Other than the room service being terrible in this place. I mean, I don't even mind the dirt floors so much as I mind the accommodations and the food. I mean, no linens, no toys, the food is awful. The only thing I don't mind is that they let me eat chicken bones which my mom never let she do in New York. Something about them lodging in my throat, but they are my crack. I get very unladylike with them. They give me chicken bones here. Don't judge me, I may as well enjoy the savage lifestyle a little bit. 

And even though I guess its not awful here. I miss my family. I just want to go home. Back home to my great grandmas house until my mom comes back to pick me up. It feels like she forgot about me already. 


DOGNAPPER 1: Hola Sabrina, vamos pa tu casa.

SABRINA: Hi Pancho, how do you know my name? Oh, right my collar. You can read English! That's wonderful. Its a very useful skill you know. I dabble in reading a little myself. If you had a collar it would say Asshole Kidnapper who separated me from my family. If that fit, that's what it would say. Now where are we going Pancho. Don't tease me with this Casa business. 

DOGNAPPER 2: Metela en el carro. Que se vea limpita para que nos den mas plata.

SABRINA: Why didn't I pay more attention when my mom was teaching me spanish. And by the way guys, this car is filthy. Don't' you clean it? And your perfume i think has gone bad. You should return it to Saks immediately. 

This car is making me carsick. I'm going to throw up on you. The car is stopping. Wait why do you have a gun. Please don't kill me. I'm too adorable to die!!

The guys are getting out of the car. Strange. Wait, where are you guys going? I wonder who they are talking to. Wait, I know those people! That guy is a friend of my moms!! Maybe she kissed him, maybe it was some other guy!! and that is my great grandpa!!!  Yes, of that I am certain! get me out of here!!! Its bark town USA and I'm not stopping!! Yeah I see you coming back to get me, you're letting me out Pancho, whether you know it or not! 

DOGNAPPER 1: Tome, Don Angel, esta es la peor perra que he conocido! solo pasa ladrando!"

GREATGRANDPA: Gracias. Tome la plata.

They are handing me over to Papi? My great grandpa?!! No way! Shut up! This is amazing! Wait, he's giving him money? How much? It better be a lot because I'm no cheap or easy dog here. Whats that bill..seriously $100? That's it? IS this a joke? My babysitter charges more than that. This is a joke right?

$100 bucks? I'm kind of insulted. I am not happy about this. O look you brought me treats!! And you're being nice to me? Oh, Papi, I knew you'd like me someday! I am gonna be so good you don't even know. Keep me under house arrest. Someone prepare a bubble bath for me, perfume me and give me some vitamins I think  my blood sugar levels are really low. 


----

That's more or less what happened. With a few minor liberties on Sabrina's POV as I haven't really gotten to download with her fully. She is currently still in Nicaragua, awaiting my pick up. Hopefully soon!! I miss that little Sabrinhole. 





Returning to L.O.L Lifestyle

I am taking deep exhales as I write this post to you. I've had a very productive morning of writing, running and making fresh juice from fruit I got at the farmers market. no sugar added. It's delicious. My goodness, its been so long since we last spoke, I hardly remember where we were. Oh, yes, I was complaining about not having the opportunity to be a lady of leisure anymore since I had to go back to work.

Complaining was silly because the past few months have been some of the best months of my life. Hands down. Not only did I get to make two movies I'm really proud of and work with some amazing people, but I got to apply my L.O.L lifestyle principals to my work life for the first time. In the past, I would have worked myself to the ground, been the first person to arrive and the last person to leave. You know where that "no one works harder than me" attitude got me? Divorce Court and Layoff town. Don't get me wrong, I think its really important to always do your best, to work your hardest, to give it all 100%. The problem is that these days, no one gives 100%. We either give %150 or we give %50-%75, but very rarely do we stick to a straight %100.

My Lady of Leisure self did not suffer on these work trips. I thought for sure I'd return to being an unmanageable, cranky stress case who didn't know how to enjoy herself. This was gladly, not the case. While making a film in Nicaragua I took time to see my family, to reconnect with old friends, to wake up early and take in a sunrise. I didn't have too many days off, but its finding those moments of bliss in the chaos of our crazy lives that make you a L.O.L.

Zen was certainly not the word I'd use to describe my movie making trip to Nicaragua, however. I would probably describe it as controlled chaos with plenty of room to learn about myself and to grow as a film maker.

Nicaragua also allowed me to get some sun. I think we underestimate the importance of proper photosynthesis, but honestly, you just feel better when you've had a little bit of sunlight. Just getting to feel the sun on my skin and smell the ocean already made the stresses of making a film there more manageable. Sure, there were power outages, language barriers between the crew and hotel to contest with, not to mention some interesting personalities to battle, but all in all, just appreciating sunlight and water, made everything seem not only tolerable, but enjoyable.

When I left Nicaragua to make my next film in Seattle, I thought then I'd loose my L.O.L attitude for sure. How could I take time to smell the ocean and enjoy the sun in a place that is known for its dreary weather and topless coffee shops? How was it possible that I'd be able to cope with the stresses of making a movie in a place that is known for being cold and sterile?

I will tell you that Seattle is anything but cold. Figuratively of course. Literally, it is cold and dreary, but the spirit of Seattle is warm, inviting, and sunlit. Not only are the people interesting because they spend plenty of time indoors creating, talking, making movies, making music, learning from each other, but they also have developed a great capacity to listen. Seattle is a city of collaborators. A city surrounded by beautiful water that can take your mind off of any stressful day. In the sea of flannel you find artists, architects, moms, painters, writers, shopkeepers - all whom go about their day appreciating the rare moments of sunlight and warmth.

I learned something really important in Seattle. Whenever someone asks you a question in seattle, they follow it up with, 'Yeah?' instead of 'right' or 'no'. So for example, they say, "you're gonna take care of that yeah?" instead of, "You're gonna take care of that no?" or "You're gonna take care of that, right?". Yeah, for some reason, lightens the entire tone. It makes everything seem a little more positive. Its such  small thing, but its stuck with me. An affirmative. Not a negative, not a sarcastic, not a condescending comment, just a positive, "yeah".

So yeah, I loved my past few months making films, working my butt off, meeting incredibly interesting people. Most importantly, I'm really glad that I took the time to have interesting experiences and appreciate the little things. One of my favorite places in Seattle was a little vacuum cleaner store. It looked like something out of the 1950s. The sign was bright red neon and inside were all just different crazy looking vacuum cleaners. Something about it really struck me and on days when things got really stressful  i'd try to think about that store. I wonder who owned it, who were the people that went into that store. That whole block looked like a 1950s movie. There was a washing machine store just down the street and an ice cream parlor. These stores didn't sell anything else but what they advertised and there is something really refreshing about that.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Creative Writing Excercises

So, I've been betraying my L.O.L status lately by having not one, but two jobs at the same time. Was a necessary buzz kill, but I must admit, I loved the challenge and welcomed the cash, but I miss my days of lounging around the city doing some fun new activity or people watching in the park. There must be some way to balance that insane rush of pressure to achieve with the incredibly relaxing and serotonin inducing life of the Lady of Leisure.

One such pleasure I had been neglecting which I am now revisiting is the purely selfish creative writing process. One of my favorite exercises is as follows:

Take a sheet of paper of draw a line through the center horizontally and a line through the center vertically. When you're done you should have four boxes. In each of the four boxes write the following: a sound, a color, a taste, a country, male or female, a memory, an animal, a weight, a flower, an occupation and a secret. Try to write all the sounds first, all the colors second and so on an so fourth. Once you have your 4 lists, read them out loud and select 2 of the boxes. With two boxes create a story that involves as many of the items in both lists as possible.

I just did this with you because I'm a giant dork and here is what I came up with. Clearly, I have been watching too many soaps this week.

BOX 1: kissing, purple, chocolate, Paris, Male, Sleeping in the rain, horse, 25 pounds, Iris, artist, cheating.
BOX 2: Siren, blue, apple, Norway, female, bringing Walter home, dog, 10 lbs, rose, doctor, test results.
BOX 3: gunshot, black, licorice, Russia, Male, hiking, bear, 2 tons, lily, assassin, a lie.
BOX4: piano, red, pasta, Spain, female, booking my first concert, cat, 8oz, hydrangeas, pop star, stolen music.

I mixed boxes 1 and 3. Free writing for 4 minutes, with a timer,  without stopping to think about it, just writing.

I was in my own childish romantic comedy that took place in someoneelse's horror film. As we kissed in that tiny apartment, the rain muted the outdoor gunshots, screaming prostitutes and drug dealers. We may as well have been in Paris in the summertime with the amount of warmth between us. In between breathes I looked in his eyes and could see remnants of half eaten chocolate strawberries and empty wine bottles on the table. This man was going to be the death of me. Literally. He was a strange mix of clumsy and vulnerable on the inside and cold and calculating on the surface. Within the licorice colored walls of the apt everything was perfectly neat the way you would expect the home of a Russian assassin to be. I kept waiting for him to tell me that it was all a lie and I was the kill target of some spy film. The heir of some drug lord harboring 2 tons of heroin who would have to be done away with. All they would find next to my body would be a lily and a teddy bear with a note that read "I used to love her." Looking into his eyes I knew I would never be so lucky. No. I would fall deeper in love with this artist in his cliche Brooklyn loft and he would rip my heart out of my chest, still beating, eventually. We would never make it to Paris in the summer or horseback riding on the beach because even though our lips were purple from the lack of circulation in every breathe, married men never leave their wives.


I have obviously been watching way too many unrequited love stories lately - but that's what spit out. Try it it! The things that end up coming out are strangely enticing and if anything will keep the creative juices flowing. Its on of my favorite excercises. Sometimes you have incredibly insightful things to say and others just random stories in various closest of your brain mush together. I love that layering exercise!

Yesterday's commute

I almost missed the subway. My back foot just barely missed the snap of the subway door. My hair is wet and cold and my umbrella broken and soggy. Every seat is taken with butts, babies and shopping bags. After I take a moment to collect myself and plot out my route I realize that I am in the underground transit version of single hell. A couple's train. Everyone in my train car is a couple or a family. I don't even understand how this is statistically possible, but even the homeless guy is paired up. I keep waiting for the candid camera to pop up but nothing is happening. Luckily after a stop some rowdy annoying, obnoxious, single new yorkers join us. The sound of rude sigh's and "move" commands are now sweetly filling the air enough to make some observations about the couples' creatures that inhabit this 6 train experience.




There is the 'clingy girlfriend' couple. She is talking and staring into his eyes. He is doing the obligatory few second stares back and then checking out the lesbians making out in the back of the train. They are beautiful. the pretty lesbians are obviously in art or fashion because they are wearing a short and tapered pants paired with what looks like this season's dolce and gabbana blazer and the other with a long flowing sweater and chic trench coats. They are effortless and on some planet where only they inhabit the subway car. Next to them is the obvious power couple. They are furiously typing away on their blackberries while talking to each other about dinner. They are both wearing suit jackets, scarfs, tailored jeans and boots. The rock on her finger could come in handy if we get stuck and need to cut our way out of the car. The high school couple to my left is ridiculously adorable. They are pimply and awkward looking. He obviously hasn't grown into his body and she has grown way too quickly into hers. The annoyed couple on the train is growing ever more annoyed by the lovey dovey ladies and the way the 'too-in-love-will-probably-get-pregnant-tomorrow' teens. They obviously hate each other. Their body language is annoyed. Their tone of voice to each other is annoyed and they are arguing over the color of wall paint.



By far though, my favorite couple on the train is the cute, short, little hispanic couple who just asked me for directions to get to brooklyn. Our train is headed uptown to the bronx and they are looking at a good hour headed back in the opposite direction. When I informed them of their folly, they laughed and lovingly blamed the other for getting turned around. They barely spoke english but playfully insulted the other in broken versions of both languages. Maria and Anibal have a shot I think.



They waved at me as I got off the train on 96 street. They didn't get off the train for some reason. The last thing I saw was her punching him in the shoulder as he presumably said something inappropriate. I'm rooting for those guys. Wonder if they every made it to brooklyn.



.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Cheating on my Laundry Guy

When I moved to the upper east side two years ago, like every new yorker, I found my "spots". I found my local deli where Amir knows exactly how I like my coffee and and breakfast and actually knows that I usually don't drink coffee in the morning so he'll give me a diet coke in the AM and if its an afternoon run, he'll give me coffee. I found my gym, my yoga studio, my movie theatre, my corner bar and my laundry place.

My laundry guy is an adorable little man named Chin who not only delivers my laundry, but calls me when its been a while to remind me to drop it off. He's wonderful and has been my laundry guy for years. Unfortunately for Chin, Jenny just opened a laundry place that not only does my laundry and dry cleaning but also specializes in alterations and shoe repair. Having just lost 8 lbs (being a lady of leisure) and being that I live in NYC and get more than sufficient wear and tear on my shoes, this is extremely convenient.

She is also about $2.00 cheaper than Chin. I know that its only $2.00 but that's the tip and as a lady of leisure, my income is not as grandiose as it once was, therefore, I cannot shy away from the $2.00 savings just to avoid hurting Chin's feelings.

But I'm a coward and I cannot break up with Chin, so I'm having a laundry affair with Jenny and its getting serious. I lied to Chin when he called me this week and told him I had been out of town, then I told him I had been sick last week. To complicate matters, chin and jenny are on the same block, literally six doors from each other. I try to go at strategic times in the day or just call to have it picked up so I can avoid Chin at all costs.

Jenny is on to me too because she seduces me with specials on my shoes and even altered my dogs bikini for free (I know, i have serious issues...yes, my dog has a bikini). I don't know what to do here. I can't break up with Chin. Sometimes I even send my laundry out half and half. That is what I did three weeks ago. It is stressing me out.

I shared my plight with Amir, my deli guy, who responded with with questions of my fidelity to him. He wanted to know if I regularly go somewhere else for my weekly regular purchases. We both agreed that going to the subway on the corner doesn't count, but now I think he is keeping an eye on me and my commitment issues.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Cat Media

I have never been a cat person. Until recently I thought they were gross, snobby, smelly creatures who with their actions were making social commentary on independent isolationist politics. Admit it, you see it too don't you.

However, as a Lady of Leisure, I am exploring things that make me uncomfortable and cats were on the top of that list. Yes, I said WERE because ladies and gentlemen, I am over my cataphobia and have made a complete 180. No i'm not running out to adopt a kitten, my dog would murder me in my sleep, but I have discovered, cat videos.

CAT VIDEOS may be the cutest, coolest thing ever. Not just because Cats do the darnest things (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Bmhjf0rKe8).  But because there are entire TV shows (http://animal.discovery.com/tv/cats-101/)  and docs (http://www.snagfilms.com/films/title/secret_life_of_cats/) about ...cats. I'm not talking about lions and tigers in the cat family, but regular, run of the mill cats. Its amazing.

Not only that, but there are cat videos set to music! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wf_IIbT8HGk  ... I mean, there is a whole world of cat media  I was unaware with. No wonder these little buggers keep breeding. We secretly love them.

I have converted. I no longer hate cats.

Friday, March 25, 2011

life interrupted

Today I went in for a routine out patient surgery; a minor procedure to remove a cyst. Part of my new LOL mindset includes being healthier on every level and getting all of those routine exams that I never get because I'm always too busy to care of it. So, I went, found it and took care of it.

Although it was easy, quick and routine the pain is pretty substantial but with modern medicine you have all sorts of things to help you manage the pain. Its incredible how hundreds of years ago, people just died from routine appendicitis or cysts or root canals. Now, we have all these incredible things happening and people are getting face transplants. Face transplants! Mice grow ears on their back so that it can be given to someone who will actually be able to hear and dead people's eyes can be given to the living who can actually see. Its really incredible.

I was thinking of this very thing when I looked outside and saw a swarm of ambulances outside my bedroom window. There was a hit and run. The whole played out like an poignant scene in a film. They lifted the white sheet to have someone identify the body. She collapsed into the police car, but no tears from what i could see. Just shock.

I thought a lot about this woman today. Who was she? Was she a co-worker, was she a friend, just the lady at the deli? Did she know him a long time or had she just met him? Did they ever go on a date, did she know his favorite movie? I dont know why I didnt think so much about him. Maybe because he as gone, but I thought about the people getting the news throughout the day and about the driver who sped off in the middle of the day after he hit a boy on a bike in a busy, crowded intersection. You never know what people are going through. Maybe he was distracted or trying to get to a hospital for a family emergency, maybe he was otherwise impaired and didn't know, or maybe he was just cold. Who knows. All I know is that the woman who identified the body just had one of those life changing moments.

So how is this translating to my daily activities? Its even more clear to me now, that life can be short. Shorter than you expected. That poor kid probably had no idea when he brushed his teeth this morning that would be the last time he engaged in such a routine activity. So I ordered Mexican food tonight and watched my favorite soap opera and took comfort in the fact that the pain i'm feeling today will go away in the next couple days when I'll make it a point to enjoy a yoga class and a fresh mango. I'll make the effort to go sip a tequila and catch up with that friend I haven't seen in years. Baby steps.

Okay- my pain killers are making their way through my system and I'm exhausted. Good night everyone. Kiss your dog, kiss a stranger, hug your parents. We are incredibly lucky. I know I am.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Becoming a lady of leisure

After two years, I just left my talent booking job in television. I have been in talent booking for about ten years, but this is the first time in my work history that I am truly a Lady of Leisure. What makes a Lady of Leisure you might ask? Well, in the past when I have been unemployed, I have not had the chance to enjoy what it means to be a Lady of Leisure. I panicked, I searched mercilessly for job leads, I worried, I ate, I made myself sick over the prospect of where my next pay check would come from. Actually, in my last and only other unemployment period I also managed to end my marriage while I labored away on the unemployment line.

Two years later, here I am again, same situation with a completely different attitude. Instead of being unemployed, I am now, a Lady of Leisure. My calendar is actually filled with interviews, lunches, concerts, plays, doggy play dates, grocery shopping at the farmers market and all sorts of random things. My latest endeavor has been exploring my neighborhood. There are actually five dry cleaners within a two block radius. Five. There are about fifteen different food options for me in the same two block radius and I'm not even sure I counted the McDonald's on the corner since, now that I'm a Lady of Leisure, I don't do anything fast.

The kicker is that this month may be my only remaining lady of leisure month. To catch you up to speed, I've been traveling to Nicaragua and Los Angeles where my next job prospects seem to have popped up (though I am still evaluating my options - as a LOL should). So what will I do with my remaining month of freedom? EVERYTHING. Everything I have been putting off and too busy to do. I'm going to do Yoga every day. I'm going to go for a run, every day. I'm going to spend time with my dog and make time for my friends and family. I'm going to read books and finally finish writing the one I haven't been able to finish for the past two years. I'm going to play music and clean out all of the clutter in my life. I'm going to sing in the shower and make sure that I take those hour long showers. I'm going to pick up every one's phone call and take the time to listen, really listen and not just wait for the appropriate times to say "yes, no, sure, no way".

So that's the long and short of it! I'll keep you posted on all of my lady of leisure activities. For now, I'm starting with writing this blog and making a list of all the things I'd like to do in the next thirty days. On the calendar today? Signing up for trapeze class.  I also made a feast of a meal, went to confession and annoyed the priest with my version of sins vs non sins, cancelled my gym membership, counseled a friend and went for a run with Sabrina. Also going to dinner with an old friend and signing up for some free writing classes. Hell, I may even make a movie and not the night vision kind.  So much to do so little time! Ofcourse, there is always time to find time, when you are a lady of leisure.