Posts from June, 2009
I’ve been listening to the Michael Jackson-provided soundtrack of my young life all morning. Stuff like Beat It (attached to so many good memories) and The Way You Make Me Feel (which is actually a really creepy video, story-wise), Smooth Criminal (Annie, are you okay?) and Thriller (naturally).
As the beat pops up and down, I’m feeling sad that the guy who made the music I danced to as a funky seven year old is gone, that another era is ended. And I’m overwhelmed at the power of a single man to have played this big a part in so many lives. Like him or not, you know who Michael Jackson is.
There weren’t many people I wanted to imitate as a kid, but Michael was evidently one of them. I think my husband said it best. And as soon as I can find the photo of me and my inseparable one glove, it’ll be here.
1. Yesterday, Eric and I decided to venture out to the High Line, which I thought wouldn’t be too crazy an idea because of the planned bad weather. But apparently people read weather.com, or, I guess, look out their windows, so everybody beat us there. With their children. So instead we walked through Chelsea Market, hoping to find my favorite blood orange deliciousness juice at Buon’ Italia, but came out empty-handed and frustrated again by the sheer number of heads and arms and legs in that place. So, we walked up to 17th Street and looked up like sad puppies at the High Line people above, and walked away thinking that a park that took ten years to build should not also take ten years to visit. We might get to walk up there without a crowd by December. Maybe. And frankly, no park is worth any kind of wait to get in, let alone a supposed hour long one (according to Ms. Employee of the Park). She said it was roughly the same at all the entrances. So yes, my frustration with my beloved city is growing. The world of New York is simply too crowded to do anything. “Nobody goes there no more; it’s too crowded.”
2. I just watched a dad squeeze a game of frisbee with his son onto a tiny plot of Union Square pavers at the edge of the farmer’s market with a million frowning commuters wandering into their throwing space. It makes me sad that city kids don’t get to run and play with room to breathe. I must be getting old.
3. I fantasize about moving all the time now. To a place with grass (the kind of thing that used to terrify me – that we would have a thing to mow) and an extra room for an office/ studio. Then again, how would I exist without NYC shopping? Yesterday, I was lucky enough to have found my perfect long summer dress. One that doesn’t make my hips look like hippos. It’s cute and colorful and comfortable. Just one C away from being just like a diamond.
4. It’s been a busy week, only ten hours in. And a busy last week. And I really like to be busy, but I’ve found these past few weeks to be slightly more annoying than buzz-inducing as usual. Working on getting it together today so this busy week is less of a [literal] headache and more fun.
5. I want the Iran thing to work out. Is that a broad enough statement for you? (Don’t want to get political here.)
6. One time, I was going to be a baker. With a cute little online storefront to start me off. My little home-based baking business. It was all so pristine. I took immaculate, sparkling photos of my confections and had my poor husband create for me another beautiful website, complete with credit card processing. I would finally be an entrepreneur. Until I realized I didn’t like to bake. And certainly not enough to do it twelve hours a day to turn barely more than minimum wage. Thus was the end of that one time.
7. I am in awe of all the food bloggers out there who make beautiful food and beautiful photos that accurately show how beautiful the food is. On Wednesday I attempted to document the preparation of my grandmother’s famous potato croquettes, and since I couldn’t choose between priorities – making good food or cleaning my hands sufficiently enough to take good photos – I defaulted to the delicious and the photos look like crap. Anyway, bravo to all who make it look easy; in this department, I need to be a one trick pony.
8. I just saw an incredibly beautiful family being sweet to each other and it made me smile like the Cheshire cat (except I hate cats). The dad stopped to kiss the mom out of nowhere (and they weren’t Brangelina-type hot, so that kiss spelled l-o-v-e) and then boys both wanted out of the stroller for a hug from dad, which was happily obliged and turned into a hug from mom, too. Also, I like them because they pulled over to do all this sweetness, instead of blocking the sidewalk like assholes.
9. I’ve come to accept the fact that I just can’t wear skirts. Sure, I can wear them. They look fine, I like them, and they’re pretty. But for me, a skirt has an expiration date. And that is roughly three hours after I put it on.
10. I hate the kind of weather where you’re cold if you’re sitting still, but really could use those short sleeves if you’re walking at a decent clip. Brrr.
11. Heavy rain is so transfixing. I like to imagine that it was the maryjane of the caveman era. And now I have to put on a suitably-warm-something to head out in it.
Traveling to Africa for ten days with a group of six is a good way to get sick of people get to know people really well.
It’s also a good opportunity to spend some time alone in your brain and maybe learn some things. For example, I now think I’m just not that into “jokes”. I love the well-told story with some funny mixed in, but please, no weirdness for the sake of weirdness that becomes funny because it’s so weird. (I’m looking at you, Family Guy.)
I just don’t laugh at jokes that are really only funny as meta-jokes. Something I laughed at once doesn’t have to be repeated ad infinitum just because we’re tired. IF WE’RE TIRED, LET’S SHUT UP. (Oops, my introversion is showing.)
Before we boarded our minibus to JFK, I was carrying a heavy tube packed full with antennae and other long wifi equipment, and I said something about it being heavy and weirdly shaped. And that’s when it started: “That’s what she said.”
Okay, Ha! Ha ha ha ha ha.
The end. Right?
Not right. It was going to be a long night.
“That’s what she said.”
By the time we were in Rwanda, “That’s what he said” was in the mix. And it was funny. I laughed… for the first few days. But then it stopped being fun to be in on this joke.
The genders were divided evenly on this trip, three men, three women. And while the other two ladies joined my eye rolling, the boys couldn’t get enough of this. It wasn’t until the Brussels airport on the way back when they started trying, although not in earnest, to cease fire.
And just to make things clear, it’s not the nature of the joke that bothers me — I used to adore the She Said from Michael Scott, but now I’ve heard it so many times it may as well be She Sells Seashells.
My aversion to these jokes is the repetition. And especially when I’m tired, I don’t want one more thing to be tired of.
But maybe the experience in Africa was less about boys enjoying the same exhausted joke, and maybe more about the entire group trying to create something familiar for our very strange week. Much like the aunt who grasps your elbow so she can bend your ear at Thanksgiving – even though we didn’t really like it, it was something to hold onto.