Tag Archives: Life

Shove It.

Just a quick heads up – I found out last Tuesday that I needed to find a new apt. by Sept. 1. My roommate’s allergic to my cat and she’s the one who’s on the lease, so I’m out. I’ve been thinking and talking about moving for a while. I hate commuting, and I wanted to be closer to work. But I also love my neighborhood and being a Brooklynite.

God provides: I emailed someone about an apt. Thursday night, heard back from her Friday, saw the apartment Sat. morning before I headed to the beach and by the time I got home from the beach I had a new apartment and an appointment to sign the lease Sunday morning. And it’s in my neighborhood in Brooklyn, but only a half hour from my office in the city. Continue reading

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What I Did, and What I Didn’t Do Yet.

What I Did:
1. Go to four out of the five NYC boroughs.
2. Go to the ballet.
3. Take several cooking classes.
– One in putting together beautiful salads, to celebrate the summertime opening of an enormous new Whole Foods
– One in Food Photography with Food Blog Award nominee with Matt Armendariz
– One with blogger and cookbook author Shauna James Ahern and her husband, The Chef, in gluten-free cooking.
4. Go to a show at The Knitting Factory
5. Saw Tiki Barber playing in a park in midtown with his sons and his wife
6. Lived with the same roommates in the same apartment and loved working for the same company for an entire New York City year. Unheard of.
7. Went to musuems (International Center for Photography, MOMA, The Brooklyn Museum and the Museum of Natural History. Oh, and the Lower East Side Museum, for just a few minutes with Neil.)
8. Went to lots of farmer’s markets and cool places like the new Urban Rustic.
9. Have tons (let’s see, nine or 10) friends come visit me here, and who let me drag them all over creation to see my new home.
10. Learned the art of reading on the train.
11. Went to a house party in the Bronx.
12. Went to a Yankees game (By the way, the Red Sox won 11-4, b*tches! We all know how THAT season worked out. GO SOX!)
13. Met a few “top bloggers.” (I don’t kiss and tell. They know who they are, and they are all “top” in my book.)
14. Went to Peter Luger‘s.
15. Helped run a conference to help men, um, pick up women. Yes, seriously. Oh, Neil’s new book(s) comes out today, I think. It’s an awesome set.
16. Met a few top MySpace executives. (Josh, give me a call.)
17. Saw Margaret Cho naked! (In her “Sensuous Woman” show at The Zipper Factory.)

What I Didn’t Do (Yet. Or Maybe Ever.)
1. Go to Staten Island. This is only important because I’m Italian, and they gots Eye-talians there.
2. Go to art house cinema. This is only worth noting because I want to and because I live within walking distance of BAM. I need to go. Immediately.
3. Go to the Statue of Liberty (though Bunny and I did go look at it from Manhattan while she was in town)
4. Go to a concert of an artist I’ve always wanted to see
5. Meet Ruth Reichl, Jay-Z or Lil’ Kim
6. Move to Manhattan to be closer to my office, or get my own place in Bklyn
7. Go to enough museums (there’s still The Met, the Whitney and The Museum of Sex).
8. Join the Park Slope food coop. :-( This is something I want to do, but just can’t justify due to the distance and time commitment.
9. Take a dance class.
10. Write more.
11. Go to some famous New York places, like Biggie’s apartment, “233rd and White Plains” or Queensbridge.
12. Joined the New York City Public Library (my only resolution for 2008).
13. Go to Coney Island
14. Go visit the Latino food vendors (famous for their food’s authenticity) at the Brooklyn ballparks.
15 . . . I give up. I did more of what I wanted to do, and less of what I didn’t want to do. That was the point of moving to New York City. The “things I want to do” list will always be full, even as I cross off dozens of items on a weekly basis.

Goals For 2008
– Join the NYC Public Library (see above).
– Launch that damn food blog I’ve been “researching” for a year now. I’m not leaving this city until I get all those ideas out on the World Wide Web.
– Leave work at a reasonable hour or move closer to my office, so I can have more of a life.
– Love more. And be loved more (if and when possible).
– Seek out new authors, musicians and visual artists and start to explore theater.
– Buy some new furniture and invest more in my home, regardless of whether or not the street address itself is permanent. I am worth the investment and the feeling of security that stability brings.

And, while I’m here, I have to say congratulations to Nina and Donny on the new life they’re creating. Can’t wait to see you this weekend, Neens!

I Feel Weird, Knowing You’re Reading Me

This is bits and pieces written over the course of about a week.
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(Thoughts) Something that made me sad today: A man was walking ahead of me on Madison Avenue as I was on my way back to my office. I saw him saying “Excuse me. Excuse me,” to a lady in front of him. She had earmuffs on. Whether or not she heard him or not, I don’t know. He shook his head and she kept walking.

I couldn’t help but make eye contact with him when I passed. He said, “Excuse me,” so I paused. It was a busy street, I wasn’t worried about myself. He said, “Are you from New York? I’m from Yonkers – I’ve been in the city since last night and I’ve been walking a very long time. All I’ve been asking people, what I want to ask you is, I’m very hungry. Can you help me get something to eat?” Continue reading

In Search of Bedrock (Free Write No. Five)

Who am I?

Don’t we all ask ourselves that from time to time?

Some of us are luckier than others. We know our purpose; we know why we were put here and what our cells are made of. At our hearts, even when shaken and broken down, we know we can return to ourselves and find some strength within. In those times, we’re in search of bedrock. A foundation for something pure, secure and steady. Continue reading

The First 72 Hours in New York (With Photos)

In case you missed it amid all the holiday partying, I moved to NYC last weekend.

Here are some highlights of my first 72 hours as a New Yorker:

Dec. 16, the first night:
I successfully drove a 10-foot moving truck on the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway. My friends and I moved all my stuff into my apartment without incident, despite the fact that it looked like an obstacle course because it had just finished being repainted earlier in the day. Before the sweat had dried on our brows, we head up to the roof with one of my roommates to toast with champagne in rocks glasses. We take in the view of the Manhattan Bridge from my amazing rooftop. Continue reading

Diary of a Decision, Part II

May 17, 2006
Just wanted to put down on paper that I have decided to move to NYC. Time to make it happen. MAKE IT HAPPEN. What was it? Looking @ Craigslist last night and seeing that I’ll be able to get an apt. Looking through Gourmet magazine and remembering that all the great restaurants and cooking classes that I want to check out are in NYC. Make it happen. I need new friends. I haven’t let anyone here know all of me .. just a piece for this one and a slice for that one. All this self-protection, all these secrets. I want to let in strangers, let them know me completely. I guess we all want to be loved like that.

If I can empty myself again, like my Japanese well, I can fill myself up with something new. Something light, hot and shimmering. I’m finding my incandescence.

What makes me think I can? Well, who’s to say that I can’t? I always have and I always will.

May 25, 2006
I want to go. Today, I envisioned myself with shorter hair and places to go. I want not to redefine but to seek out a place where I can begin to give everyone all of me. I’m tired of giving this person this one side and this one another. But I’m not willing to lose the friendships based on those sides. So, I disconnect and go to another place that will forgive me for my realness.

September 5, 2006
How many people get the opportunity to change their life completely? How many can say they actually changed the course of their own existence? I am one of the lucky ones that realizes the value of letting go. Because I refuse to cling to the familiar, the comfortable and the loved, I will be rewarded with the chance to create my own world. The reality of that is just beginning to sink in.

To think that all of my hopes, and the hopes my family has had for me, will be realized is breathtaking. I will have those streets filled with people speaking other languages [note: this is a huge deal for me . . . in my journal when I was in high school and applying for college, I wrote that I wanted to live somewhere where I would never be bored and could walk down the street and hear all different languages]. I will have strange conversations on the train. I will have art house cinemas, more restaurants than I’ll ever eat at and museums to occupy me through endless weeks of rainy days. I will have my city.

New friends will have seen more places that me, will share w/me things I couldn’t have imagined on my own. I will be powerfully loved. Energy will find me. I’m about to enter the most challenging year of my life .. personally and professionally. In 2007, I’ll write a book. I’m anticipating more blood on the paper.

September 19, 2006
With only twelve weeks left, I guess I better decide who I want to be and and who I’d like to become when I get there. What do I want?

-smart, honest, creative friends who do stuff.
-culture (indie movies, museums, more concerts, cooking classes)
-time to travel
-healthy .. more walking, do Pilates @ a studio
-learn more about food and the cultures it comes from
-learn more about “blackness,” and what it means to be black

It just occurred to me that 10 years ago, right now I would have been starting at NYU. I was making a similar list of what I wanted from college back in the spring of 1996. Things really do come full circle. It’s funny that I still want some of the same things.

November 7, 2006
M came over last weekend and left with my Pier 1 tables and my awesome huge candleholder, coffeemaker and silicone bakeware. Yesterday, __ and ___ came by to pay for the furniture. It was so weird to see them leaving the house with my cooling racks and casserole dishes and dessert plates. My past is walking out of my life. Literally. Love is love. Love is love.

Caption: To Do list for my last week in NH.

Caption: To Do list for my last week in NH.

December 16, 2006 1:44 a.m.
What to write? Who needs luck when you have love and determination? I know I am pretty much in a state of shock and won’t process the fact that I have just up and left everything and everyone I know until after I’m gone. There are people I didn’t even get a chance to say goodbye to. I’m so excited the day is finally here.

“And whether or not it is clear to you, the universe is unfolding as it should.” .. Desiderata, Max Ehrmann

And, really, this is just the beginning of the story. There is so much more to come. Do me a favor and tell your NYC friends on MySpace to check out my writing and to subscribe or send along a friend request if they like what they read. My goal all along has been to move in December and be settled by New Year’s Eve. NYE is my favorite holiday (along with July 4th, because of the fireworks). What better place to celebrate it than where the ball drops in real life and not just on TV? No more fantasy. Sh*t is real. This is my life.

This post is a continuation of Diary of a Decision, Part I.

Diary of a Decision, Part I

The following are excerpts from my handwritten journal, along with explanatory notes.

April 4, 2006
I was born to do this. I was born to do this. There will be blood on the paper because this is the only thing I know beyond myself. It is myself.

That’s it. Do you feel the tingling? Someone sitting in another place, doing another thing, is having an impact on your life. The moment before the pendulum repeats its arc. No stopping now. Do it. Continue reading