Sunday, March 01, 2009

March 1

On the first day of March it is, of course, snowing. Honestly, I'm delighted. The elevated train through the falling snow lends a romance unavailable in Southern cities. And then... the snow melts, and it's brown, and awful, and the end of March can't come soon enough. 

A foot is supposed to fall by tomorrow morning. Have I said recently that I'm glad I don't drive. 

Went dancing in Williamsburg last night, the better part of an interesting evening. After stopping by a friend's house party, I couldn't reach Abbey on the phone. So I just went to were she mentioned they might be, in the Village. Nope. Not there. Thankfully it was only a short ride from there to the L stop in Brooklyn where I needed to be. 

One thing I've learned is that I don't like to explain to people why I'm impetuous. I went into the city because I didn't want to go back to the apartment and just wait. But when Abbey called when I was already in the Village and asked where I was, I stopped for a minute and then very consciously lied about it, saying I was at my house. Why? I didn't want to explain that the party had broken up and I, in a typical bout of restlessness and frustration with not being able to reach somebody, decided to just chance it and go where my friends might be and figure out I was wrong later. I'm weird.

I sat across from the most perfect hipster boy ever on the train. Teal and pink backpack and coat, curled Snidely mustache. 

The train home was another story. If you don't live here you might not know this, but the G is the most horrible subway line in transit history. But it runs right from Williamsburg to the elevated tracks outside my window. So I got on it at 4-something a.m. last night, willing to stand around for a while if it meant not paying a cab to get home. One comes without a horrible wait, and off we go. Then, about halfway to the house, the train stops at the Clinton/Washington station in Fort Greene. This happens now and then, but there's no way another train was in front of us. Trust me. I waited for this one long enough to know. So after 10 minutes of waiting and barely staying awake, I walk out of the car and see the conductors looking at something in the front. Line of sight clears the train and I see a mentally disturbed man down on the tracks, running back and forth and shouting at everyone to leave him alone. The cops come eventually, but they're trying to talk him down (or up, in this case) because they don't want to go down there. I leave, finally, walk through the snow in what I believe is the right direction and finally catch a cab home. It's just before 6 when I finally get here.

I hope I'm ready for a new week. Sounds kind of soothing after that adventure.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009


I got nothing done today. Pretty much nothing. Buying some new white undershirts was pretty much the highlight of accomplishment. And I'm someone who thrives on accomplishment—I hate sitting still, and feeling like I'd didn't do anything.

But today was my first total emotional breakdown in the working-for-myself era. It all pretty much came together at once. I think I had a lot of leftover stress from the way last year ended, and not really having a break. Then today the Internet we borrow at home wasn't up, so I had to venture out. I'm not good at working at coffeehouses because I have to move around, and when I'm confined to an uncomfortable wooden chair while I slurp my caffeine, things go poorly. Plus, the first place had a wireless problem, which I didn't discern until already purchasing something, so that was $2 down the drain.

What else? Well, I'm waiting for three different freelance checks to show up in the mail. I'm always nervous about the mail since the building's new. I needed to do one interview for a PM story, but the pr woman put it off—again—until tomorrow. So I had nothing to do except find new ideas for future projects, which gets exhausting. So after lunch today I just fell apart and couldn't do anything. 

Not bad, really. Feeling a little better, and still will probably publish more than $1,000 gross this week. But you got to give yourself a break or it forces itself upon you. I decided today I need a vacation, and will take one soon. Or a massage. 

Monday, February 09, 2009

A Little History of the World

One of my new favorite books; bought it on a whim this weekend. If you've never heard of it, it's the entire history of the world up to WWII, written for children. The German author didn't translate into English until the very end of his life, but the way he words things are simply marvelous.

To wit, his description of the conversion of the pagans: "In the end they paid a terrible price for their resistance: Charlemagne had more than four thousand of them put to death. The remaining Saxons allowed themselves to be baptized without protest, but it must have been a long time before they were able to feel any affection for the religion of loving kindness."

And, a personal favorite, talking about Neanderthal skeleton finds in Germany: "On another occasion, but still in Germany—in the Neander valley—a human skull was found. And this was also immensely interesting because nobody alive today has a skull like this one, either. Instead of a forehead like ours it just had two thick ridges above the eyebrows. Now, if all our thinking goes on behind our foreheads, and these people didn't have any foreheads, then perhaps they didn't think as much as we do. Or, at any rate, thinking may have been harder for them. So the people who examined the skull concluded that once upon a time there were people who weren't very good at thinking, but who were better at biting than we are today."


Wednesday, February 04, 2009

New Occasional Blog

If you're never been to, you should go—they have all kinds of short video clips of important and semi-people ruminating on important and semi-important things. Plus, now there's me, blogging for them on the now-and-then.

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Seen this week

On an ad in the subway for "The Pink Panther 2," as a word bubble coming out of Steve Martin's mouth: "Steve Martin says 'Free Palestine.'" I wonder if he does.

On the way home, a Zipcar on Court Street lost the W and the H on their slogan, so it simply read, "eels when you need them."

I can't tell you how many times I have.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Rooftop Photos

Good to be back in industrial Brooklyn. And there she is, from my rooftop.

I could see Manhattan from my roof, if not for that damned ugly structure.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Encouraging Sign

I went to my neighborhood's cheap Chinese restaurant—every neighborhood has several identical ones—and lo and behold, there was not protective glass separating me from the employees. I could practically reach out and touch them. How refreshing.