Monday, October 30, 2006

Red Light Discount (Or Why I Can't Be A Councilwoman)

I have no political desires...that I know of. If I did, I would be remiss to tell you that I shop at a porn store near my house. Yup. For Movies. But not THOSE kind of movies. I think the store must be one of the few survivors from the Giuliani era that focused on the clean up of 42nd Street and Times Square in order to make the neighborhood more "tourist-friendly".

I have my reasons for shopping there and it has nothing to do with my desire to see "Hot Flesh In Action" or "Ali Baba and the Forty Sluts". (I made those titles up, so if those titles do in fact exist, I wholeheartedly apologize to the artists that painstakingly contributed to the making of what I can only assume to be quality films.) Unfortunately, I can't resist the new releases of mainstream movies that they get way before the release date. I have no idea why porn stores get these films in advance but its awesome and a horrible facade all at the same time. See, they keep the mainstream titles in the front section of the store so there's no mixing of genre's if you will. So to the general public walking by, everything looks sweet and charming. In turn, little Johnny who is standing on the street with his parents looking into the store window at the movie poster of "The Wedding Crashers", has no idea that he is 10 feet away from the very films he will be desperately trying to download off limewire 5 years from now.

I can rarely go in a porn shop alone. Usually I bribe one of my girlfriends into going in there with me after a few drinks and casually mentioning, "Oh before we go home I need to stop by the store to pick something that cool?" Who's going to argue with that, right? The only problem is that even though the alcohol provides me with enough liquid courage to walk in, it also fogs my brain as to what I do and do not own as far as my movie collection is concerned. Embarrassingly, I have to admit that I have had to give away surplus copies of "My Big Fat Greek Wedding", the morning after one of my "said" shopping sprees. Classy, I know.

After my friends initial shock once we walk into the shop, and they get over the fear of "What if someone I know sees me in here?" They really are amazed by the selection...and the customer service is hard to beat. I mean, how many places do you shop at nowadays have employees that really take notice when you walk in? I have never seen staff so helpful. Of course, it is a bit odd when I take my selections to the register to pay (always in cash) and the guy behind the counter can't stop blowing kisses or telling my friends and I how beautiful we are. It really is a great, albeit slightly creepy self-esteem boost. You take what you can get, right? Okay, maybe not. But what's the alternative? Have you been to Blockbuster lately?

Friday, October 27, 2006


There was a time in my life when I was a slave to what was on Television. As a kid, nothing was going to come between me and the family TV on Thursday nights when it was time for The Cosby Show and Family Ties. I would have to make sure my homework was done, I had eaten dinner, and I was ready for school the next day or else it wasn't going to happen. 8:00 PM waited for no one. If I wasn't ready, the show went on without me. If I had to go to the bathroom, I held it till commercial. But now, all that has changed. In the world of Tivo, DVR, old-fashioned video recording, and buying a season's worth of episodes at a time, the ability to watch the television shows you want when you want has become more convenient then stopping your life and sitting in front of the TV.

As wonderful as technology is, it also has its drawbacks. You can quote me on that. I don't commit to much, but I can commit to that sentence. See, technology has made it difficult to talk about your favorite shows with friends because there is always someone in the group who's in earshot, that thanks to technology, hasn't seen the episode and puts out an APB barring anyone from further discussion regarding "said" show. While I can understand the desire to not hear "spoilers" and to enjoy one's viewing experience, at a certain point it just gets selfish.

Witness "said" conversation:

Person #1: "Oh my God, I just saw the best episode of Lost last night!"

Me: What happened? Did they all get found?

Person #1: No, dummy.

Person #2: Don't say anything, I haven't seen the episode and I want to be surprised!

Me: Relax, If they're found they have to change the name of the show. You'll hear about it.

Person #3: (new to the conversation) What are you talking about?

Person #1: Lost.

Person #3: Don't say anything. I haven't seen any episodes yet this season. I'm going to watch it after they run the first eight episodes and catch up while they play the re-runs. I need to find out what happened to the guys in the hatch.

Person #4: (really new to the conversation) What hatch?

Everybody: (angrily) On LOST!!!!!!

Person#4: There's a hatch on Lost?

Me: long have you been watching?

Person #4: I'm only through the first couple of episodes. I have it on DVD.

Me: You might want to leave the room.

Technology has destroyed the art of gabbing about shows. Thank -you fancy pants Technology!!! It use to be that instead of gossiping about people we knew, we could gossip about total strangers on our television with wild abandon!!! Everybody was we have nothing better to do except turn on each other. Look at what happened in the conversation cited. Total Anarchy. There are now 5 more people on the planet that have another "thing" they can't all share with each other. So now, thanks to Technology we can't discuss sex, religion, politics, and "Lost". Technology, when will you stop?

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Inconsequential Events Involving People On The Idiot Box

I was sent a mass email today that included Jeremy Piven as one of the recipients. I said out loud, "Hey, I just got this mass email and it's got Jeremy Piven's email in it."
One of my co-workers asked, "Is it "The" Jeremy Piven?"
I said, "I don't know, It didn't have the word "The" before the name Jeremy Piven."
Some booed. Some hissed. The guy who sits next to me muttered, "You're such an asshole."
Really? That's all it takes? Jeez, Touchy Crowd.

On my lunch break I was stuck walking behind Oliver Platt who was freeballing it in a pair of sweatpants (Don't ask. I just know) and Vans without socks in 40 degree weather. Why does he have to walk in the middle of the sidewalk while my cheeseburger rapidly loses heat? It's cold out. Why is he waddling around like Frankenstein (Yes. That's what he looks and walks like when you get that close) when its so damn cold out. Put on some socks and get a move on it, Oliver.

Monday, October 23, 2006

Where Does Olive Oil Come From Anyway?

I went grocery shopping last night and it wasn't until I got home that I realized I didn't get any olive oil (that's EEVO for all you Rachel Ray zombies) for a recipe I wanted to make...basically the whole reason for me going to get groceries in the first place! I never get the basics for groceries. I am an impulse grocery girl. I buy by recipe. Not smart, but I'm on the go for the most part and the food will go to waste if it sits there. Hate that. I needed olive oil, so I went down to the bodega on the corner. And there he knight in a dirty apron!

This guy at the deli is the cutest one-armed Arab guy on the planet. serious. I would go so far as to say insanely fine. He could tell I was looking for something on the shelf out of my reach and he came from around the counter to help me get the olive oil. Okay, so he dropped it, but he was so damn charming. He asked me what I was making and then told me he had to pick up some stuff himself because he was meeting some friends for dinner because they meet every Sunday to cook together and hang out. How cute is that? Maybe it's cuter because he has one arm, because usually if an Arab guy tells me he's going to meet up with some buddies, I'm gonna secretly wonder, "Ummmm,Why?" Yeah, what an awful thing to say. I know. I'm kidding. Sort Of.

Then I started to imagine my life with my one-armed Arab boyfriend.

It's got to be hard enough being "generically middle eastern" these days. People must get suspicious. Look at him up and down, try to "read" him, then they see he has one arm and it must confuse them. Make them wonder, "Is this guy harmless or a total bad ass?"

What about us? What if we have to move one day or something falls behind the couch? I have a bad back. Can he help me lift heavy stuff or am I going to have to call my platonic guy friends. But then the platonic guy friends might not show up because they know I'm with the one armed Arab guy now. Hmmmm...

Will he be affectionate in public? What about hand-holding? Is that out because I would want to hold his one hand and then he's left defenseless? He has to be able to protect himself from the crazy tourist in an American flag trucker hat who just flew in to the city to see where the towers fell and thinks he's spotted a terrorist...

How much can he make from a disability check anyway? 700 a month? Is he a citizen? Will he pressure me for a Green Card? Will his friends call me insulting names in Farsi or whatever they speak? Will we have to have the Burka talk? UUUUUGGGGGHHHHH!!!!!

Then my head started to hurt. It's was all too confusing and intense... this whole world climate thing and then deciding to cook my own meal instead of getting delivery. I can't handle both. Besides, I had to get home before Desperate Housewives.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Leopard. Spots. Bird. Feather.

I don't think people change. We can change the color of our hair, the color of our eyes, how much we weigh, how big or small we want our boobs to be, etc. but we can't change who we really are. Maybe that's a good thing. Well it's a good thing if you're asked to compromise your values and you remain strong...good for you. But it can also be a very bad thing. It can be a bad thing if you are an ass. Because once an ass, always an ass.

I surf MySpace online and it's a virtual yearbook of high school jerks who got swollen and decided to have kids. Why? Why do the worst people in the world breed? I'm not saying everybody who breeds sucks, because I know of a lot of fine, upstanding, kind, sensible, people who have kids. But they are outnumbered by the dummies. bigtime. As I surf these pages of people who list "Proud Parent" in their profile it scares me to death. The guy who would whack people in the back of their head with a cafeteria tray during lunchtime? Yup. A little boy. That girl who would sleep with whoever you were dating, just to see if she could? Check. Three angry girls. Those guys that were super cool and made anyone who wasn't in their "crew" feel inadequate? They all found women stupid enough to think they were still cool, ignore the jock physique that had given way to beer gut, marry them, and poop out a whole other generation of uninspired clones. Scary stuff.

I'd like kids one day...I think. It seems like a lot of work. I have a pretty strong work ethic, but even when I visit with decent people that have children, I get exhausted and can't wait for the kid to lie down so I can get a quick nap in too. If I can't handle it, how do the worthless lot I went to school with manage it? Most of the breeders I have mentioned were some of the laziest, spoiled, and pampered kids I knew. What are they teaching their spawn? How to be even more excellent at being useless, mean, and non-contributing members of society? I want to teach my kids to be better than me, to make the world a better place, to be kinder, to show compassion and love (not exactly what I'm doing right now, but I never claimed to be perfect), and never loose the ability to find the joy and laughter in most everything. Instead, I fear I will be spending most of my time teaching my kids how to avoid getting beat-up in cafeterias, protecting themselves against VD, and how not to take it personally when kids far less creative and talented make them feel inadequete for having dreams. I guess I could save my kids the pain and just homeschool them, but I'm not very smart. I'm smart enough to know that much, and that's more than I can say for most people.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Diamonds Are Not Always A Girl's Best Friend

I went to meet him at a Greek restaurant. We're both Greek. Why must we eat Greek food too? Are we trying to prove our ethnicity? Perhaps do a dialect quiz? Yuck. Everything about this seemed like a bad idea, including the fact that it was a blind date, but I agreed to go. My bad. oops.

I am always a big proponent of "what if' so I never try to to say no when someone asks me out or tries to set me up unless I know that there is no way in hell I can even have a conversation with the person. It's not because I'm hoping for a free meal, because I have so many food hang-ups it's if you start talking about a hospital I feel sick- I have to plug my ears and chew. The same thing goes if people are laughing around me when I eat- I'm afraid I will start laughing too, and as a result choke, so I plug my ears and chew quickly so I don't start cracking up...Yes, I am odd...but cute odd, not odd-odd. Just nod and pretend to agree...

I walk in the restaurant and I figure it's my date when he says to the host, "Oh this must be her." A little subtlety would have been nice. I feel like the wait staff is staring at me. Is that busboy smirking? Super. Now the whole world has been informed this is either a blind date or this guy's hired escort has shown up for the evening. Ok...he is too old for me. period. end of discussion. There is a laundry list I could tell you of why this is a no-go, but let's leave it there for now. You know in two minutes whether or not these things have potential...why sit through dinner? Drinks are the way to go.

As we are walk to the table, he says that he bought me a gift and he wants me to open it when I get to the table. uh...wha? Once we are seated he pulls out a jewelry box. I open it and it is a bracelet with the "evil eye" that is designed to ward off bad wishes, jealousy, etc. Old world superstitious get the picture. Maybe he knows something I don't know. I give him the "thanks but you shouldn't have". I'm not an ingrate, it's just awkward. Then he tells me he was sorry he missed my birthday and can he make it up to me? "Oh no worries", I say. (It was more than a month ago-I'm over it...)

At the end of dinner, the waiter suggests bringing out dessert. "Oh, no thanks," I say. Apparently, the waiter wasn't suggesting dessert- I misunderstood. He was informing me it was being brought out. My Greek Romeo ordered a "birthday" dessert. Around the corner come the waitstaff singing "Happy Birthday" with a candle shoved into a piece of baklava. I didn't know that was even possible according to the laws of physics. They also brought out another present. I have never met this old dude until this candid camera? Somebody has to be watching this! He bought me a t-shirt that had the word "Koukla" (the Greek word for babydoll) bedazzled across my chest. That's right, BEDAZZLED! I'm so embarrassed. I thanked him again and got the hell out of dodge.

I'm wearing the shirt and the bracelet today. Part of it may be guilt, but the other part is that I knew if I didn't bring proof to work that nobody would believe a word of this...I've never gone out on a date and come out of it with props...or worn such a God-awful shirt in public.

Monday, October 16, 2006

Tis' The Season...

I love the fall. There's something so cozy about the whole thing. Fall makes me want to be in a couple. So, I've got a date tonight. Not excited. At all. I date seasonally, apparently. (Yeah, Yeah, I'm an ingrate. I'm not sure if ingrate is an official word but oftentimes my parents may or may not have called me that repeatedly as a child.) I want to be looking forward to this date, trust me. But I have never met the guy (blind date) and he wants to pick me up from work in his car and get something to eat. Nice idea in theory, but also the MO of a murderer. What if he's s a crazy person? Who in the city who drives a car anyway? I told him to pick a restaurant, and we can meet there. He got all bent out of shape because I wanted to meet him somewhere, "like I didn't trust him". (Yes Alex, I'll take obvious assumptions for 500 dollars! Ding,Ding,Ding, Survey says "Yes, Dummy") Well I don't know him. What does he expect? I was taught "stranger danger" as kid. No matter what, I was told never to get in a car with a stranger...even if they did promise candy- even if they had "Alexander the Grape's" or "Fun Dip"!! As a child of a dentist, either one of those candies were liquid crack to me...

So maybe tonight won't be awful, but odds aren't great that this is going to be awe-inspiring. But I'm trying people. They say scratch a cynic and you get a romantic - and no, I don't know who "they" are. Oh, who knows what will happen, but if you get invited to the wedding...don't mention this post. There really is something about the fall that is romantic - and by romantic, I mean "I need a damn boyfriend." And by, "I need a damn boyfriend", I don't mean dealing with a moody guy that I've never met. God, I love the fall...

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Same Old Song

Last night I was given tickets to a James Blunt concert at Radio City Music Hall. Who was I to say no? I love free stuff and I wanted to see this guy. What I know about James Blunt : 1) His song is overplayed 2) His other song is dangerously close to becoming overplayed 3) He was a soldier in the British Army 4) His girlfriend is a supermodel named Petra Nemka-Something who I never heard of until the Tsunami, and 5) Oprah loves this guy.

He was good, in an "acoustic guitar guy you could have gone out with in college, but would never admit to" kind of way. Regardless, he was trying to work it big-time. One guy and a guitar aren't enough to fill that huge space. He kept asking the crowd to stand up, but it's really hard to rock out to "You're Beautiful". And the jokes about getting the crowd to take off their clothes so he could "have something to look at" came off as creepy rather than cheeky. (I mean, really. You're already dating a supermodel. How much do you need at this point?) When he played his one song everyone knew, there was a huge screen that played a video of him swimming shirtless with supermodel mermaids. It looked like a Vogue inspired homage to the movie Splash. Odd. Pasty white Brits shouldn't make those kind of creative decisions. I don't know if you can be a British solo act anymore. It seems like those people do better in groups.

See, I love seeing concerts at Radio City because for reasons unknown to me, people aren't going ass-crazy, jumping up and down, and yelling woo-hoo after every sentence the artist mutters. The only part that has gotten funny to me is the obligatory speech every musician makes 2 or 3 songs into the set that goes something along the lines of, "Wow! This is a dream come true. I'm playing Radio City Music Hall. Hello New York! Woo-Hoo....." Okay dude, I get it. You are excited. We are all excited. Let's keep it going. I have work in 10 hours.

When I lived in some of the worst places this country has to offer I could tell nobody was ever excited to play my high school sports lovin', K Mart shopping, Hardee's eating town. In my mind, I imagined the artists playing had gotten stoned out of their mind at some Hollywood fancy pants music producer's home and lost a bet or were dealt a bad hand of poker and the only way they could get out of it was playing this shit gig. It always felt forced on the part of the musicians and I would feel sorry for them. I feel bad for people in Mud Lick, Kentucky that have to hear a defeated Billy Ray Cyrus slur his way through an Achey-Breaky Heart remix and say, "This is a dream come true! I'm in my home state playing Mud Lick!", because they all know he would much rather be at a place like Radio City...Woo-Hoo!

Monday, October 09, 2006

She Talks To Angels...

AND DEMONS! Oh holy hell. When will it ever end?

On Saturday I took the new roomie out for drinks to celebrate the new move in! I even invited some friends of mine out to say, "Hey guys! See, she's cool, right? Right?" Maybe it was the liquor. Maybe it was the fact that she swore she was a master at Skeetball and proceeded to demonstrate her mad skills, as well as clue us in to "tricks of the trade" that vastly improved our own skeetball scores...instantly. Regardless, we were hanging on her every word. Until...

She casually mentioned that Ghosts often appear to her. (Ummmm,what? C'mon! This can't be happening!) According to the girl that I have commited to sharing a living space with for the next 12 months, she grew up with a ghost in her house. She gave a detailed description of how this ghost was a "menacing" spirit that would move her Mother's keys when she set them on the counter, and that the ghost was so upset when they decided to move, that he flooded their house the day they sold it.

Pardon the expression, but Jesus Christ! We lived together before, why is this just now coming up? Nobody at the bar was even fazed by anything she was saying. Just listening and nodding with baited breath. Don't get me wrong, learning the secret to a mean game of Skeetball is pretty cool, but is it enough to totally ignore the fact that this story is a little freaky? Of course it is! Because they don't have to live with her... I DO!!!!!!

It gets worse.

Apparently, she has also had a ghost caress her face when she was crying. Then there was the time she was completely awake and a swarm of bees filled her bedroom. They went away when she hid under the covers and started praying...

Oh ok.

Now I've prayed for some crazy stuff before, but it usually involved getting my period or winning the lottery. I hope to God I never start a prayer off with, "Dear Lord, Thank you for this food and please make the bees in my room go away." Because the truth is, I've never been bitten by a bee. I don't even know if I'm allergic, but I'm not in the mood to find out anytime soon.

I think I heard once that ghosts only appear to certain people. Fine. I better not become one of those "people". As long as any ghost that visits stays in her room and doesn't invade our common areas like the living room, bathroom, and kitchen, I can't really complain. So that's it. I'm living with the Ghost Whisperer. Wish me luck.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

PAINting Sucks

So I have learned many things this time around with my apartment, and the whole "moving in/moving out" situation. Even though I myself am not going anywhere, I can't help but feel as if I'm moving as well. I'm moving in to a new situation with a new person with new quirks, peeves, and traits...all things that I will have to adjust to, but at the same time all these things are challenges that I welcome.

One of the new lessons that I'm learning, in addition to the fact that spackle, cleaning supplies, and tools cost a lot when you buy them all at once, is something that I have always known but never seem to accept...that reality will never live up to the fantasy!

My new roomate and I decided to overhaul our apartment. To fix everything that needed to be fixed. To paint the entire place as a way of starting over. To bond. MISTAKE!

Holy Crap! Painting is hard work. What the heck? There are flyers posted throughout my neighborhood that say "Any size room painted - 89 dollars" but nooooo, not me! I had to bond. Had to force myself to make a memory. Curses! There is no room for sentimental B.S. when you are trying to get things done with a new apartment. Any commercial that you have ever seen on television that depicts painting your home as a "fun" time is a damn lie!! Nobody paints, "Will you marry me?" on the wall, eating pizza is hard when your hands are covered in semi-gloss latex paint, and painting across someone's back while they are working is not the laugh-fest they make it look like on TV. The reality is, I can't feel my legs, my neck feels as if its permanantly arched backwards from all the time I spent trying to paint my ceiling, and my fingers feel like they are on fire from trying to hold a steady paintbrush.

My new roomate's furniture hasn't arrived and the aerobed has a hole, so we're sleeping double until her furniture gets here. I swear I have more sleepovers as an adult than I ever did as a kid. It's a good thing we're both ethnic and can understand cramped sleeping styles. It's also a good thing we're both the same religion because when I woke up to the sound of her praying to Jesus to take the pain from her arms away, I just got up and got her some Advil...instead of calling the loony bin. If anyone reading this ever decides to paint, don't do it. Hire someone. If you must do it yourself, screw the ceilings! Oh yeah, and bonding is overrated.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006


The old roomates are out, moving boxes are gone, and my new roommate is in!!! Finally, I can experience what it is like for two people to live in a two bedroom apartment! Don't get me wrong, living with an engaged couple had it's perks.

Some things I'm really going to miss are:

1) The random sublettors they overcharged to stay in their room while they worked at some sub-par summer stock theater that paid peanuts, for the "art" of it.
2) The public displays of affection and drunkeness.
3) The Party Poker programs that were mysteriously downloaded onto my computer.
4) Having to bear witness to consistent use of unoriginal pet names.
5) Loud "actor" sex that my family and friends had to uncomfortably overhear while visiting.
6) Paying half of the rent when I was only using one-third of the apartment.
7) The amount of television I had to watch in order to avoid having a conversation.

Here's to new beginnings!!!!