Monday, July 31, 2006

The Times' are a changin'

It’s Sunday, and I have some time on my hands, as I’m not working and packing is pretty much done. So, knowing that TV sucks on Sunday and being on this new kick to embrace the intellectualism that I’ve been hiding for the last three years, I picked up the NY Times on my way back from brunch at Silver Spur on Houston St. By the way, Waffles with ice cream and strawberries, so fucking good!

Now, I could sound all intellectual and write about how I bought the NY Times because I love the week in review section that is a hit list of the news that you shouldn’t have missed. Or I could write about the Book Review, how the Times and its writers really have a pulse on today’s great literature. But, come on. You’ve probably been reading for sometime and realize that I am way too preoccupied with my own life than to give a shit what is happening outside of my apartment. And anyway, my summer reading list is long enough and, I think a lot of their book reviews are pompous and try too hard to sound intelligent instead of just telling you whether a book is a worth while read. I also think I hold that opinion of the Book Review because the last time I read it was in ninth grade, preparing for the Verbal Section of the SATs. I only managed to get a 610. But I also drew penises all over the test booklet and (not so) politely asked them to “suck it”. Thank you ADD and to my mother who smoked cigarettes while I was in the womb.

I’m embarrassed to admit the real reason I buy the NY Times. It’s like coming clean and admitting that you aren’t the person that you pretend to be, a let down in a sense. My family has an idea of my secret, they think I buy it because of the travel section. And they are partially right, it's the second section I read. However, when I tell you the real reason why I buy a newspaper for $3.50 and throw 75% of it out, you will understand every single one of my character flaws and see the soon to be not-so-secret secret.

I am addicted to the Sunday Styles wedding announcements.

I’m embarrassed to make this admission because it showcases every single stereotype that I embody: a social climbing desperate NYC single woman.

There is a certain glamour in getting your announcement in the Times. It implies that you are special: that your wedding is newsworthy, possibly an allusion to current or a future connection to high society. In layman’s terms, that you are worth knowing.

I read it for solely aspirational purposes, on the other hand. And to look for exes of mine who may have accidentally “made it,” with Daddy’s help. Seriously, it’s one thing to glance over at the names, see if anyone who you may have lost touch with since high school, college, or the encounter off of myspace. But, why do countless women, myself included and perhaps the most guilty offender, read the announcement in its entirety when we have no idea who the hell the people are? Like, if I have never met Amanda Moore and her future husband Peter, why do I continue to read, engrossed that she went to Yale while he went to MIT?

Instead of a train wreck, I’m caught staring in jealous fascination at the superficial beauty that the announcement provides. For that split second, as you read just the highlights of a relationship, their best-of’s you become engrossed with a bizarre sense of fleeting intimacy that disappears by the write-up’s end. It’s just enough for you to give a damn as you read, until there is no more information to fuel your curiosity. There is a certain sense of hope that can be ascertained from the couples who have “made it”. Each announcement reinforcing the promise of the American dream fulfilled: play by the rules, find a good man, and see the future you can have!

However, it's similar to when you see a Lamborghini on the streets of NYC, you don’t notice the bald impotent man in the driver’s street. Or in this case, that poor Amanda is marrying an I-banker who she will never see and that sixty percent of the marriages that I read that Sunday aren’t going to last.

But for that split second, as you read about each couple, you don’t care that the announcement is as deep as the newsprint it is printed on. There is a big smiley picture and fabulous resume distracting from the fact that you can almost feel your thumb and forefinger touching each other as you hold the paper. It’s easy to get lost in the aspirational glamour of the Times’ announcements: Harvard boy meets MIT girl. Dad is Sr. VP at Goldman while mom is a homemaker. She is keeping her last name and will work for Tishman construction as a lead engineer. I wish for that, to have that glossy resume and for people to assume that I have a bright future ahead of me.

I will do anything to get my wedding announcement in the Times. Including going $40K into debt in order to ensure my fitness among the competition. And the truth of the matter is that my pedigree is not that impressive. I have to compensate using educational and professional achievement in order to make up for my families’ blue collar past.

Or so I thought.

With that degree from Oxford in hand, it looks like I am a shoe-in. Even if I marry an electrician.

I’ve begun to notice a disturbing trend. I remember the days where my mother and I used to read about the couples, excited to see the closest semblance to our family: a couple whose pedigree included a tiny New England college as opposed to the traditional Ivy. Back in the day, anything less was (almost) unheard of. Everyone was white, everyone went to Harvard or Yale, and all of the couples came from wealthy and impressive backgrounds. Unless I married a Rockefeller, I would not have made it into the Times--degreed from Oxford University or not.

Like all embarrassing addictions, sometimes you need to take a break. And with my life so crazy, I haven’t read the Sunday Times in about a few months. Now, I don’t know if it has to do with that new website redesign and they are desperate to sell more papers, or if this is a result at a growing trend towards democratization but, what the fuck? First of all, it was three full pages. When did the Times ever deem three full pages of people’s wedding announcements worthy to know about?!

Teachers, parents as insurance sales people, Queens College graduates. The announcements have been infiltrated by normal people! What has happened to my Times? Where is the aspirational inspiration that I am to derive? The bullshit promise that if I have the right educational, professional, familial, and neighborhood pedigree that I will be newsworthy and the assurance of upward mobility! That I will end up with someone successful, marry up! But it is not anymore. The NY Times has destroyed dating, revoked that promise. Because according to the Times now, everyone is special and worthy of their fifteen minutes. Meaning, I have no right to set my standards as high--if they are good enough for the Times, shouldn't they be good enough for me?

So, once again, I am back to square one. Learning that there are no guarantees for anything. Everything is in a constant state of change, including bastions of the old guard such as the wedding announcement page. But not to sound like a bitch, where am I supposed to place my wedding announcement? Like you really expect me to share the page with a Queens College graduate?

Friday, July 28, 2006

The end of shit

I have to brag right now. And I am going to indulge myself because as of late there really hasn’t been that much for me to brag about. I’ve been on anti-biotics for a week—so a week without a drop of booze touching my lips. A week of me being lame, and a week without the restorative powers of getting sloshed and see what kind of shit flies out of your mouth when you stop caring about social conventions. How do you think I come up with half of this shit anyway?

And, as you readers have so eloquently pointed out, as a result of all this shit going on my writing this week has sucked. Now you understand why I will sometimes go weeks without posting anything. I have an artists soul, I am very temperamental. Or so what I’ve convinced myself so I have an excuse for being an asshole who can’t survive in real life.

So, I swear this is the last time I mention it, but, holy fucking shit. Birth Control pills (that don’t mesh well with your body) should be used as a torture device against prisoners of war. I am surprised that my government hasn’t incorporated it into their repertoire of wiping out the enemy. The last time I felt like this emotional rollercoaster was back in college when I sat on a big leather chair telling my therapist how I was afraid of [insert childhood trauma]. Seriously, if we want to end the war on terror, let’s drop some estrogen/progesterone pills into their water supply and see the drama that will ensue. Al-Queda/militants/North Korea/whoever will be so emotionally distraught that instead of building suitcase bombs they will be asking each other, “Why don’t you love me anymore?” Because, in my fit of emotional unrest, I’ve gotten nothing done. Including the inability to pack up my apartment.

Do you know how many people’s love I’ve questioned this month? I’ve called or hung out with them and asked, “why do you like me?” And just two minutes ago I almost burst into tears because Harald wouldn’t give me the passcode to get into the office. This shit motherfuckingly sucks.

In light of all this shit, and today just highlighting what I already knew, I stood over my toilet on the phone with Lauren:

“Lauren, so what would happen if I stop taking the birth control pills?”

Soliciting medical advice from my friend who is taking pre-veterinarian classes, of course as I am popping the pills out of their blisters.

“I don’t know Shannon. Maybe you should speak to your gyno about that. I don’t think that is the best thing to do, to stop the pill mid-pack.”

“Fuck it,” the pills are at the bottom of the toilet, “I am flushing these fuckers down the toilet.”

Shannon, just call your gyno…”

The toilet flushes.

“Shannon, you just did it didn’t you?”

I laugh, that guilty admission.

“It’s like dealing with a small child. Telling them don’t don’t, and you they do it anyway.”


“You know, you could have just thrown them into the trash, you did not have to flush them down the toilet.”

“But it is so much more dramatic. There is something very final about watching shit sucked down the toilet, the flush adding dramatic emphasis that you just can’t find in closing the lid of a trash can.”

“You have a point.”

Much like most of the repercussions from my impulsiveness throughout my life, I have no idea what is going to happen. I do, then deal with the consequences later.

Much like this post, I know you readers are tired of hearing about my uterus. So I promise, this is my last mention of birth control. Unless I have a funny drunk story about a glow in the dark condom and an abnormally shaped penis.

However, I would like to draw the reader’s attention to the fact that today I did not take my birth control pill. And this post is much much better than the normal shit I have posted this week. Coincidence? I think not!

Monday I move into my new apartment six blocks away from my surrogate big brother Harald. I am so fucking excited. Emotional crutch that is within walking distance!

Thursday, July 27, 2006

A Writer's Process

So re-reading some of my latest stuff and I am realizing that it isn't that great. It appears that I lost the voice that has taken me the last year to cultivate.

At first I was alarmed, I mean, what the fuck do I have left without my writer's voice? Some dumb drunk stories, me hyperbolizing a yuppie's life, and throwing out an "elephant in the room" question? But then I thought about what a professor of mine told me in college, she said, "It's just as you feel like you are in over your head, that you make your greatest leap of growth." And she is right.

Going back over the last week's posts my writing style has changed a bit. I am making my foray into longer form. I've tried to expand upon the story, write about other people besides myself, try to make the scenes more robust and less pontifications--all part of my growth and desire to become a writer. Some parts work, while others don't. And it's part of the process of me pushing myself. Some of my stuff is going to sink, especially as I see this blog, not as a means for talent agents to notice me, because that's like moving to NYC and hoping to get discovered on the streets of Fifth Ave, but as a forum to refine my voice and receive reader feedback. The market researcher in me rearing it's ugly head. When our powers combine...But, this is by no means a solicitation for suggestions of what to write. I am funnier on my own. Unless you are my wife, and then we are like an American female Albert & Costello. Except with booze and old men buying us shit.

So, please bear with me. Feel free to throw in some feedback, i.e. what parts do you wish I expanded upon, which parts was I too wordy-- how my posts not written with four hours of sleep are the best. You know, don't just tell me that I suck, but rather why. Hoyt, feel free to jump in on this one.

I'm excited. I'm right now doing something that I have always dreamed of doing--how many people can say that they have done that? Well, once I move out of my shit hole apartment. I haven't done a lick of writing the treatment yet. But doesn't it sound great, "I'm a writer!"

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

I'm a pill on "The Pill"

I am a walking contradiction. I have no problem poisoning my body, with massive quantities of booze—I’ve even thrown weekend get togethers called ‘Liver Damage [Insert Year]’--or smoking so many cigarettes in a given night that I am blowing black soot out of my nose, and I would like to remind the reader my fixation with diet coke. In the name of experimentation I’ve thrown powder up my nose, pills into the back of my throat and smoked something laced with an ‘I’m not sure’. I am no stranger to putting crap into my body.

So when I sat down and spoke to my gyno a few weeks ago and told him about some girly issues (I know a majority of my readers are guys so, I’ll spare you the details) he suggested I go on birth control pills. When he said that, I balked. There was no way that I was going to put a chemical into my body that doesn't make me feel less anxious, happier, feels sexy, some how ease my stress, or make me lose weight. Secondly, I know far too many women who’ve been transformed by “The Pill”—and not in the way my feminist sisters promised of sexual revolutionaries. I’ve watched perfectly brilliant, capable, STABLE women become absolute psychos crying at the drop of a hat, engage in hypo-manic fits and heard horror stories of the weight gain. Craving an extra large Hershey’s cannot be good for you, even if it is 85% dark chocolate.

When I voiced my concerns about the weight gain issue, because let’s be real, that is the only one that actually matters, he told me that not all pills cause weight gain. And he jarred my memory. Evidently, according to the tv commercials, Yasmin is known to actually help you lose a few pounds.

All of my neo-hypocritical hippy shit went out the window. Honestly, treating my [insert girly issue] didn’t fucking matter. It’s a pain but not that bothersome. However, there is the pesky freshman fifteen that I have not managed to lose yet—and I am three years out of college. Theoretically, could I sit on my fat ass as the weight magically disappeared? Plus, wishful thinking, if I found a guy, I could actually *gasp* possibly have sex with him without a condom and not think about baby names the next day.

And, the most important reason—I would lose weight!

Fucking sign my ass up! I am going to take advantage of all that my feminist predecessors fought so hard for.

Even if I still haven’t read the Feminist Mystique.

So I went on “The Pill”.

On the first day, I was at my parent’s house and took “The Pill”. Within an hour I felt a leg cramp. Evidently, this is a common side effect from what I have been researching on the internet. I did not know this at the time.

My mother, who has no idea that I started birth control, starts to talk about a friend of the family who developed a blood clot and passed away that weekend. I immediately think to myself, “Oh my God, a good CATHOLIC woman who was probably not on birth control developed a blood clot and me, a potential whore of Babylon is taking “The Pill” which is known to increase the risks of blood clots.”

“So, she was in their home, and started to complain of a sharp pains in her leg,” my mom said.

The cramp in my leg gets even stronger.

“And she lost feeling in her leg,” she continued.

My calf begins to feel a bit numb.

“So her son told her to hop into the car, and as they were driving to the hospital, she died. Isn’t that awful, Shannon?”

My face goes white, but I can’t tell my mom why I am so freaked out.

“Mom, I have a sharp shooting pain in my leg, do you think that could be a blood clot?” I abruptly change the subject to me.

Shannon, of course not! Stop the crap! But isn’t that such an awful way to die? Just as her son was driving her to the hospital. It’s such a pity. You will never find a nicer woman than her.”

Now readers, I would like to interject and disrupt the flow of the story to really impart the fear and anxiety that I was experiencing at that moment. Not only do I suffer from hypochondria (ask me about the sunflower seed incident and my “allergy” to nuts), and severe anxiety issues and am prone to bouts of depression when I am not in my normal manic state but, I also I have this incredible fear of sudden death. Like, when I am extra stressed, I will actually lay awake some nights, not allowing myself to go to sleep because I am afraid that I won’t wake up.

I flip out and start to pace back and forth in my living room, thinking I was going to die.

Here it is, this kind Jesus loving, altruistic, compassionate, prime example of Christian living suddenly died from a blood clot, for an undetermined reason. I, on the other hand, a harlot who renounced Jesus in college, who supposedly went on the pill for [insert girly problem] but really went on it because of a secret desire to experience condom-less sex at the Ox, had severe leg cramps. Plus I kept touching the back of my calf and pacing back and forth and thinking I had the beginning of a blood clot.

And just as I was about to launch into a panic attack, I had one of the most severe urges to take a nap that I had ever felt, overcome by pure lethargy.

I fell asleep on the couch and awoke to intense nausea.

This continues into the next day. I stay at my parent’s house overnight because being close to my mommy is the only thing that will bring relief—even though she doesn’t know the true reason why I am so clingy and want to hang out with her.

In my sick anxious world, only her presence can ward off any bad that I have coming to me.

The next day, I start to feel a bit better, and with my nerves subsiding I plan to head back into the city that night. Anyway, the real reason why I need to head back that night is that she’s starting to get on my nerves by hour number thirty-six. However, as good as I was feeling at home, thinking that the worst of it had passed, the nausea comes back (now I know why everyone loses weight—they can’t eat!). And on the train, I still feel tired, but on the bright side I am no longer afraid of the blood clots anymore. I think the Grim Reaper only had it out for non-sinners that week.

So eleven days later, I still feel like shit. Doing research to see if I am “normal” via internet chat rooms and other ill-moderated sources of (mis) information, I see a lot of my symptoms are side effects of “The Pill”. That makes me feel better. I know it isn’t just in my head or my hypochondria kicking in. However, I see a fucking disturbing trend as I am conducting my highly unscientific anecdotal research—almost all of the women comment about the side effect of lack of sex drive.

Wait a fucking minute. It has to be an anomaly, right? I mean, why the fuck would a woman go on a birth control pill that is only going to end up killing her libido?! I mean, if I am going to throw shit into my body, I want a positive affect. ORGASMS! Who the hell could live without an orgasm!? Isn’t that why women go on the pill anyway (well outside medical purposes) so they can fuck with abandon?! But oh no, it appears to be a common side effect. What kind of sick anti-woman pharmaceutical industry are we held captive by where it is a perfectly ok side effect that my libido is shot!?

But, despite the lack of wanting to fuck, the nausea, the lethargy, and overall yuckiness that I am feeling right now from this fucking revolutionary spoil, is because of the listed manufacturer’s side effect that it exacerbates depression and anxiety. After reading this, I think you understand that I have enough anxiety manufactured in my own fucked up psyche that I do not need some chemical to help induce what I already over-produce.

Especially going off to the Ox in the next two month, and the stress of all of my illusions of grandeur, there is no way that I am not going to miss that side effect. Considering how I am getting all of the other ones. Remembering the shit I went through in college how I almost had to go on meds and needing to take a semester off, I’m afraid of going through it again. Especially since my family, the only thing that grounds me, would be a seven hour flight away.

It’s just not fucking worth it. Even if the positive side effect is weight loss.

So, I am flushing my pills down the toilet.

After I talk to the doctor tomorrow about switching to a different brand.

The Iffy post is back up

It’s becoming a nightly ritual for me. I listen to my body and give into the pangs of exhaustion, only to sit in my bed for three hours watching mindless TV, imprisoned once again by insomnia. I don’t know if any of you have ever suffered from it long term. To go a few nights without a good night’s sleep leaves you tired, kinda out of it, but more or less functional. You probably couldn’t go drinking with your office mates (or to the free ad world parties) after a night with literally a few hours of sleep, but the lack of sleep proves only to be an inconvenience instead of an actual health detriment. Now, the kind that I am currently afflicted with, however, isn’t your run of the mill ‘I can’t sleep so I’ll read or write out a list of what is bothering me’ bullshit. It’s more in line with fucked-upness of Fight Club, with the nights without sleep becoming consecutive jabs landing perfect shots on my already frail psyche.

I am on day number six without sleep. The most I have been able to sleep through the night has been about four hours, when I finally fell asleep at 6am on Sunday morning and awoke by 10am--that same day. I want to go to sleep in the worst possible way but I can’t.

What keeps me up at night is anxiety. Worry. The hypothetical what-ifs scenarios that could never come true, but in the world where I am currently living, somewhere between being awake and that lucid dream state, they are able to find some sort of traction. My current anxiety stems around Oxford, how I got into a shitty college and how my crap placement is going to affect my life over there. How my fabulous sexy reinvention into my version of a grown-up is being momentarily derailed because of this insomnia and addiction to Zen Soy pudding—I devoured an entire carton of four today. What can I say, it goes fucking great with Montell figuring out who’s the baby’s daddy.

All I want is to feel the same sense of comfort that my mother’s reassurance provided me when I was younger. How she was always right about everything, always knew the correct answer, and there was nothing that she couldn’t protect me from.

As I lay in bed, flipping through the channels, I ran across a rerun of Pee Wee’s playhouse. I adored that show when I was younger, so with a morbid curiosity, I watched it. I was somewhat a bit scared that by watching it as an adult I would question why I ever liked such a lamely written show, but I couldn’t resist the trip down memory lane, especially since I was in the mood for comfort.

And the show did suck. Within thirty seconds of watching it, I was ready to flip the channel to the E! but then I realized which episode it was. The French toast episode! Now, I know for a lot of you this is making no sense, but this episode taught me at an early age how I was not meant for the kitchen and also how my mother is always right, in the blind adoration that only a six year old could muster.

In the episode, with his normal gay fan fare, Pee Wee teaches the kids at home how to make French toast. When I saw that episode when I was like six or so, I remember being transfixed on the idea that soaking bread in egg and milk produces this magical soft sweet pancake like substance. I wanted French toast. Since I wanted French toast, my siblings also wanted French toast. And since Pee Wee was at the tail end of Saturday morning cartoons, aka we already ate breakfast, there was no chance for the French toast.

I never did well with structure. Even if it en parentas sanctioned.

I led my siblings into the kitchen where we went to create our own French toast. In went many slices of bread into the toaster. The ones who could walk, rummaged through the fridge on a quest for syrup and within the two minutes of the toast coming out of the toaster, all four of us had our plates piled high with toast, soaked in syrup, our version of French toast. However, biting into our creation, it didn’t taste like French toast. My siblings all looked towards me for the answer. I went to mommy.

Shannon, you need to cook the bread not toast it. Toast doesn’t mean French toast,” explained my mom.

It was there that I discovered she had all the answers to my world.

Sitting in bed right now, anxious about the next few months, knowing that I need to clean out an apartment, debating whether I should COBRA my health insurance, sick with worry, fear, guilt and other anxieties that exist only in my head as products of my interface with the outside world. But she doesn’t have answers to these problems. And not because my maturity has taught me that she is fallible or any other pseudo Freud stuff. She doesn’t have all of the answers because I don’t tell her everything.

Like, how do you explain to your mother that you think your birth control pills are making you sick?

So I leave that part out of the story. And she gives me an answer that makes no sense, i.e. my tiredness is from stress and that I need to stop running myself ragged. Then I get snippy and tell her that she has the same response for everything, how she is always out to prove the same point, that she needs to start to treat me like a grown-up. And as my voice gets more curt from my frustration, I just wish I could tell her what is really eating away at me. What I am really worried about. How I am afraid of this little pill that I take at 12:15 every day. How dating in NYC has left me a bit nuts and with high expectations for Oxford. That my “dates” consist of make-outs in bars, no commitments, and the ignore button on my cell phone. How my life is far more complicated than I let on.

I wish I could tell her that I would love to hear her life experience because I think I could relate and find wisdom in her past, but if only she wasn’t my mother.

All I want is her comfort and yet I stand in the way because, despite my desire for her to recognize me as her adult daughter, I have to acknowledge that I am still her child.

The contradiction of being an adult.

An Observation

This insomnia has to fucking go. It's affecting my writing and making me sound sad and too obvious. Below is a post from that releam. But hey, now you get an idea what I actually think.

Was going to write a funny post about the crackhead I live with, but, insomnia and moving is making it difficult for me to channel my happy, funny, yea! side.

I am so exhausted right now as I type, that I feel drunk.

Sorry for the shit posting. You know I'm trying.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Why does blogger hate me?

For the last few days seems like nobody can log into my blog.

Is this still the apartment's curse??

Why does blogger hate me?

For the last few days seems like nobody can log into my blog.

Is this still the apartment's curse??

An ode to the apartment I hated

I have never felt more at peace in this apartment than I do right now. The bathroom is almost cleaned out, it just needs a scrub down. My hippie friends are picking up all the kitchen shit tomorrow so they can cook their happy vegan food. John is picking up the remaining furniture in a few days and my dad or brother, whoever I can guilt the easiest, is picking up the stuff that is off into storage at my parent’s house. The rest of my shit is being sold or thrown out in the next few days as well. If I play all of my cards right, I’ll be sleeping on the floor of an empty apartment by Thursday afternoon.

And it isn’t because I am strapped for cash and need to raise funds to pay for food, skim lattes and pubic hair waxing. I actually enjoy living as sparse as possible. Being a naturally messy person, the only fool proof way of me being able to keep anything clean is to have as little shit as possible. Some would say that it prevents me from being sentimental, and yes, I probably don’t have that beautifully written card that you sent me three years ago, but I could also pack up my belongings within three hours if need be. And knowing my history with moving, three-four addresses a year for the last seven years, it means a lot to me than the Hallmark card. Sorry.

To be perfectly honest, I love moving. There is nothing more soul satisfying than taking mess and clutter and throwing out 90% of crap so all that remains are two suitcases and a box, and the echo of an empty room. I love the idea that all of this crap that ties me to this place disappears and I have my freedom. Because, quoting Fight Club, after a while your stuff begins to own you.

Getting rid of 75% of my wardrobe, selling off all of my furniture, and cleaning the apartment out of anything that said I lived here is therapeutic. It means that I get a clean break from the mess of a year I’ve had and instead have a clean slate to begin anew. The fact that I am getting rid of a lot of my shit from college has a lot of significance—by holding onto that stuff of the ratty sweatshirts, the dumb t-shirts, the old CDs, I was trying to hold onto a naiveté and delay this idea of “growing up”. And much like Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz, I woke up somewhere between a funeral and finding out my acceptance to grad school that I’ve already been there all along this crazy journey of heartache, shitty job, friendships changing, crappy roommate and of course the over priced cursed apartment.

So, out with the ill-fitting clothes, the books that I’ve read but not really liked, a computer that I’ve had sitting around for three years because within the next few months I’m rebuilding. I want to take full advantage of the fact that I will be able to reinvent myself into the person that has been underneath all of this self-doubt, worried over the “supposed to-s”, trying to be like this ideal of “should”.

And all of this starts with me sleeping on the floor of the bedroom that is no longer mine on July 31. How fucking cool is that?

Monday, July 24, 2006

Poverty--The LI Way

As much as I talked shit about my job at the agency, and complained how bored I was there, the fact is I was spoiled. Lunches at least once a week at a place I could never afford on my own (by the way Country is totally over-hyped), getting free spa treatments in the name of building relationships with vendors, and of course we can’t forget summers in the ad world—cocktail parties almost every night of the week, (yes free booze) and invites to the MSN/Yahoo/Google Hamptons summer house. The only people who live as well as media planners are the wives of I-bankers and the mistresses who will actually suck their dick without jewelry acting as an incentive.

When I quit my job to work on this “book treatment”, I knew I was giving up my salary and health insurance. But, living off of ramen and praying that I don’t get sick for a few months is worth it for me to give it a go on my quest for fame and fortune. Those of you that know me, would totally agree that I am too eccentric to live in this world without the behavioral carte blanch that celebrity brings. So, with my stereotypically Jewish overbearing mother acting as my financial guru, we came up with a plan. I would take my exotic vacation money, and spend the summer in the city writing full-time. It would mean a tight budget that I’d have to adhere to, especially since I need to buy a brand new wardrobe for the Ox, but it had to be done. I finally got to the point of growing tired of my bullshit whining, “I work too many hours to write anything!”, “I just want to be famous!!”. Like seriously, if I want this bad enough, I need to take a risk and just fucking do it already.

So, let’s see how great that experiment worked, shall we? In the saga of Shannon last week, where my true abilities were supposed to be showcased as I didn’t have a job that zapped all of my creative energy, we have my Keynesian worthy bitch about the British exchange rate. Followed by a wonderfully poignant post about the pain of my mole removal; the post was so brilliantly succinct that three sentences truly communicated the frustration of limited mobility in this modern rush rush rush world. And let’s not forget the greatest post of all time, where I ramble about how depressed I am and you get a glimpse into the crazy that I keep tucked away.

I’m fucking channeling Hemingway.

Let’s be straight up with each other about what this blog really is. I’m an exhibitionist who gets intellectually off sharing my observations about the absurdities of modern life. You are voyeurs, watching a train wreck of over indulgence that makes you the slightest bit envious of my crazy life when I am doing the cool shit (aka making fun of B list celebs to their faces) but totally relieved that you grew out of this behavior when I chronicle my fuck-ups. It’s a symbiotic relationship of emotional co-dependence—like we both know this isn’t the healthiest but nobody is really getting hurt. Well, maybe just my professional prospects, as half of my old company know about the blog by now.

But take away that excessive living, and what am I left with? If the tax codes were a bit more liberal in this country, I could probably justify the bottles of champagne, the packs of Marlboro lights, and the expensive dinners as business expenses. Because, rereading last week’s posts, I am realizing the role of those experiential distractions that filled my former life.

Without access to those experiences via money and industry perks, what the fuck do I have left to write about? Money provides access and freedom to do, to make, to create, to take time off and try to write something. Genteel poverty is only so humorous until your sister who makes just above that line takes you out for dinner. It’s by throwing back the seventh martini, dancing on the table at a strip club, watching white powder go up someone’s nose that makes me realize just how fucked up life must be if we need something to help us escape both the drudgery of our lives and of ourselves.

But I have no escape hatch in this grand plan. And once again I over estimated the strength of my character. According to the Shannon method of self-induced poverty it’s perfectly acceptable to go without health insurance while taking a twelve dollar round trip train ride to Great Neck because, “the city is stifling me”, proceed cheer myself up with manis and pedis, as my dinner from Wild Ginger digests from the night before. And of course working within three blocks of two great espresso places, I developed a four dollar a day skim latte habit that I have just not been able to shake.

It’s weird to think of myself on this tight budget, even with money in the bank and one week left of my health insurance. But my life is beginning to let me know just how the other half lives:

Medical Care: My dentist went to Harvard. My gyno teaches at NYU medical center. I have comprehensive health insurance that allows me to visit any specialist I think I may need without the referral from a MD. Basically, I’m covered pretty well with access to some pretty good doctors. The kind that would not be found at a free clinic.

I think I have touched upon the mole saga enough and you are all caught up to speed. What I didn’t mention, is how the dermatologist is not charging me for my follow up appointment to cut out the stitches and see how the wound is healing for both removals as my health insurance runs out August first, and the stitches come out on both the third and the thirteenth.

I’ve become a charity case for a dermatologist on Park Avenue.

Food: I was a burgeoning foodie before I got this job. Hanging out with older rich married/unmarried men exposed me to the high end life. Bottles of champagne, excellent restaurants, the beauty of desert wine at the end of a meal. Shit that the average asshole, such as myself, couldn’t afford on her own salary. One week into it being unemployed and living modestly, and I miss great food. I would miss excellent wine too if I didn’t have these fucking anti-biotics that I need to pop to prevent an infection. However, being a creative type with a strong sense of imagination, I found a way for me to deal. A website that lists menus online for most of the restaurants in NYC.

With my dinner of canned soup, I hop onto my bed. Shut off the tv. Pick a cuisine for the evening. Last night, it was Babbo. And I read the menu as I spoon healthy choice chicken noodle soup into my mouth. If you slowly read the menu and imagine every taste that the dish describes, it’s a pretty decent dining experience. Without leaving my bed I’ve “eaten” at Ivo and Lulu’s, Le Bernadin, Café Boulud, and Babbo among many others.

It’s getting to the point, however, where I can tell this isn’t going to cut it. So, my back up plan is to buy a fifteen dollar cubic zirconia ring at Icing or one of those teeny bopper jewelry stores and visit various caterers as I plan my “wedding” *nudge*wink*.

Maintenance: Nothing screams class act than walking into Mani/Pedi places in Great Neck asking them, “How much?” and walking out if they price quoted more than twenty dollars. Price comparing manis and pedis. What’s next, I begin to wax my own pubic hair?

But much like those mastercard commercials, it’s priceless that I can make up my own hours, do something that I truly love, and spend beautiful days outside. So, once I am done with my errands to clear up the Oxford fiasco (for some reason they don’t believe me when I said I had money in the bank), I’m off to Central Park to read, walk around, and let my mind wonder. Packing the apartment is on hold, because when days like today role around, you have to spend it outside.

After being held hostage by grey skies and rain for an entire weekend, ability to spend a beautiful sunny day outside in Central Park—priceless.

Saturday, July 22, 2006

How I spend my day

In my bordom and fit of restlessness, I walked across the Brooklyn Bridge. It's one of my favorite places in the city and at night, when it's clear, you have a spectacular view of the skyline.

The Manhattan Bridge from the Brooklyn Bridge.

The entrance to the Brooklyn Bridge.

The picture that everyone gets.

Wow, I am so fucking bored and am suffering from some of the worst writer's block I have ever encountered.

It's not going too well

It seems that the summers have it out for me. Last summer I had meningitis and had a stint in hotel LIJ for a week. As if losing my life to a week of wheel chair races and rediscoveries why I can’t take any form of pain killers wasn’t enough, I wasn’t able to drink for a few weeks afterwards. Evidently the antibiotics that they give you to kill off a possible deadly bacteria fucks with your liver pretty badly. And considering that I told the doctor the truth about my drinking habits, they really didn’t believe that I understood the concept of moderation.

This summer, the curse continues.

My parent’s ancestry is on the opposite sides of Europe. While my mother’s family hid in potato baskets during the pogroms in Russia, my father’s family wished for some potatoes to eat. Dad is a fair-skinned red head and mom is a dark haired Jew. In the gene pool lottery, I got my mother’s dark hair/light eyes combo, big boobs, and cheek bones. My dad’s side gave me my drinking problem, a non-Jew nose, and, strong jaw line and my pale skin. Being that I run out of health insurance on July 31 for an indefinite period of time, I played doomsday scenario—got checked out for every little thing that may pose a health problem to me later. This landed me in the dermatologist’s chair. And of course it comes back that two of my moles are pre-cancerous.

It sounds a lot more serious than what it really is. Basically, two of my moles could become a problem for me later on. Now, how much later? Nobody really knows, it’s kind of a guessing game. As I told the dermatologist that I run out of my health insurance in about two weeks, without any plans to COBRA it nor any idea when I will be insured again, he recommended that we cut out both of the moles. Being a hypochondriac without health insurance in two weeks, I agreed with his suggestion.

One of the moles was a tiny speck underneath my armpit. Literally right on the joint. I could deal with the six shots to numb the area, being awake as he cut it out, and then smelling my skin burn as he cauterized the wound. I almost fainted, but, in the end I was a brave little soldier. In the care instructions, it comes out that I cannot move the area or else I run the risk of rupturing one of the stitches. This is difficult as I have to move out of my apartment within ten days and have become quite the exercise junkie because, heading my father’s advice, “If you drop a bit more weight, you’d definitely find a rich man at Oxford”.

So, at the moment, I am helpless and have not raised my arm since Thursday when he cut it out. My hair styles have been interesting. I’m packing up my apartment using only my right hand as I need to be out by July 31. And as I sleep completely stretched out in my bed, I’ve had to modify my sleep position. As a result I haven’t slept in about three days. Considering that my bouts of depression are triggered by lack of scheduled sleep and being away from people, I’m teetering on a very fine line. I spent Friday night calling my mother crying and telling her how I am convinced nobody loves me and how alone I feel.

I’m re-reading this blog post and realizing how shitty it is. I blame this on lack of sleep. Hence why I have not begun to work on my book treatment yet. I think it would be forty pages of reasons why I am convinced nobody loves me and other paranoid dillusional thoughts.

I am so exhausted and emotionally drained from not sleeping through the night, that I feel kinda drunk right now. Not the happy Shannon drunk where I dance, strip, and drunk dial people and tell them that I love them, but that nutty sad drunk where I walk that fine of needing anti-depressants and needing to call my friends so I could listen to them breathe so I don’t think that I am alone.

I am so tired. Anyway, so the punchline: I can’t drink for twenty days as I have to take prophylactic antibiotics to prevent an infection. And once this one heals, I have the next mole ten days later. So, no drinking for twenty days. I would be able to deal with all this if I could at least exercise. But I cant even do that. So I go on long slow meandering walks and am starving myself in the mean time.

Damn do I sound shitty right now. Ugh, no wonder why nobody is returning my phone calls.

In all seriousness, this post is better than me writing about my first period. And to my work buddies who are reading this, yea. Duh, I miss the office. I never thought I would ever say that.

I am tempted to flee. Too bad I need to pack up my apartment.

Oh my God, I am done writing for the day, I sound like a complete nut job. I mean, not even dancing around in my stripper shoes can make me feel better right now. You know it's bad.

Thursday, July 20, 2006


Dr cut out a mole from my underarm today. Can't move my arm nor type.

I am in pain.

Don't expect a post until the weekend, although all i want to do is write.

Monday, July 17, 2006

Getting my God smack


Did any of you Google the exchange rate from US dollars to British pounds?


In layman's terms: my one dollar is equal to .55 over there. So imagine NYC prices, but attach a pound sign.

I am mortgaging my future. I am mortgaging myself. After this whole thing, I will be an additional $40K in debt, in addition to my undergrad loans. And all I will have to show for it is another degree, pushed to the back of my closet and another notch added to my educational pedigree. Down girl, heel, stay, and try not to scare people off with your leftist opinions.

Off to Long Island today to go over student loan information with mommy and try to understand all the different ways that the federal government and private lenders will allow me to go into debt. YEA!!

If I don't meet my Oxford husband, I am going to be one poor angry girl, emphasis on poor people. And congratulations to my dearest friend Pete who got into Cambridge. Now I can tear up two prestigious schools and develop a reputation with all of the Eton boys! I mean, someone of the landed gentry must find a busty red head with the slightest long island accent only when she drinks sexy?

Maybe I was to quick to dismiss the boy from Wisconsin, I mean, didn't someone say that he owned his own home?

Friday, July 14, 2006

My newest obsession

I have listened to this song like, literally, eight times.

I am so motherfuckingly excited about this movie.

Also, if anyone knows where I can pick up the leather jacket that she wears in the video...tell me!

A letter to my liver

Dear Liver,

Fuck you.

I hope last night taught you a lesson.

Your unappreciative host,

Summer of Eurotrash 2006

Thursday, July 13, 2006

It's never too late...

I'm not just writing this because I found out over drinks with my co-workers that they all know about my blog, account director included. I guess it's great that I got into the Ox, because I don't know if I ever had that promotion coming. Having co-workers know about your blog also destroys any stories that I wanted to share at the table, because they've already read about your antics the morning before.

Well, except the one about our family not getting invited to my brother's engagement party, and how the bride to be tried to kick me out of the wedding party. That was fun, sitting in a nice restaurant, drunk from the after work drinks had on an empty stomach, working on cocktail number three, as a glass of wine (great choice by the way) sits to the right of my plate, next to the twenty-nine dollar entree as I am sprinkling the "c-word" a bit too liberally and loudly. I just fucking call it like I see it. And that is a pretty cunt thing to do--not invite my family, but whatever, I digress.

I'm a bit hungover as I type this, not to the point where I will spend the morning running to the bathroom standing over the toilet, and praying that someone will not walk into the bathroom and find my feet facing the other way. But, hungover in that it was a small price to pay for such an awesome evening.

As I am getting ready to leave a job that I both loved because of the perks and prestige of working for the company yet hated because I had to be the worst assistant media planner on the planet, I learned a valuable lesson: my co-workers are pretty fucking cool. That and someone will leak the link to the account director. But I am sure that it was inevitable and think about it, don't you want someone in management knowing how you've vomited on a guy's penis? There is the guaranteed humility that is necessary when working in any industry. But, seriously, I'm sad that it took me a year of working and drinks on the night before I leave to find out that I was sitting under a goldmine of awesome people. I don't think I've laughed that much without my MoHos. Ever.

So, I like my co-workers. I am actually sad to leave my job. I probably said too much at dinner, just like everyone else. If only I had a blue shirt and khaki pants, I might pass as buying into the whole corporate thing right now.

And tonight is the good-bye extravaganza, senior management included in the good-bye festivities as well as drinks provided by a vendor until midnight. Isn't it ironic that they were trying to fire me six months ago, and now I am getting a good bye fete? It's pretty good representation of my life and relationships with people.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Prince charming's been scared off

There was an interesting book review in the Atlantic about how young women aren’t saving for their retirement in the same way that men are. The book proposes, that as women take control of their finances, it’s an admission that the knight in shining armor is not coming and we have only ourselves to ensure our rescue. Hence, many women are reluctant to give up that fantasy in the form of investing in their 401K. I mean, never mind you want to create a nest egg that both you and your knight could share—but I guess that would be an admission that there is a flaw in your hero, and the fairy tale ending becomes more DreamWorks (Shrek) than Disney (Sleeping Beauty).

So in my quest for my knight, a dinner companion, hell, even someone who I don’t have to drink five martinis with in order to be their company, has left me kissing more frogs than I could imagine. Just when I get to the brink of my frustration, and I am relieved to see the semblance of a form of royalty emerge where I lay upon my kiss, I wake up and next to a warty toad. I thought he was a prince because of last night’s combination of alcohol and endorphins, as well as desperation to believe in something. I think I am getting close to that admission of defeat, but the healthy one. On par with those women who begin to deposit money into their 401K for the first time at age thirty. I mean, I have to be prepared when my prince and his horse both show up infected with hoof and mouth disease.

In my drunken social experiment that I pulled with my friend James last night, both of us so emotionally shot from the week’s events, that we needed to be reminded of the depths of depravity of the human condition. We posted an ad on craigslist, “Fuck me on Daddy’s Dime”, the tale of a rich hot ivy educated ex-Div I lacrosse player who wanted to be treated like a slut. Asking for pics, of course because she, doesn’t “fuck uglies.” Within, literally, three minutes we received about twenty responses. And as we pounded more beer, the emails kept coming. We got the requisite dick pics, and of course the ugly fat guys who wank in their basements. But that is standard. I expected the freaks to come out of hiding and proudly send me a head shot along with a dick pic. But what really got me, were the responses from guys who my mom wished I dated. The clean cut guys, smiling broadly while fishing with friends, or at the beach with their family. The “normal” guys sent over snap shots of themselves on vacation and at celebrations as they don’t need the cover of grainy web cam pics.

But, let’s think about that one for a moment, shall we? Men, with their tanned faces, smiling broadly into the camera, resembling family photos that you yourself own, proclaiming Ivy degrees and the coinciding jobs in finance, are trolling Casual Encounters and responding to an ad titled, “Fuck me on Daddy’s Dime.” These “catches” write emails telling me how they want to use their dicks in my (plural) orifices, and one randy over zealous chap offered to use my chest as a commode.

Fucking freaks.

But that’s what throws me for a loop. Honestly, if I met any of these clean cut guys who responded to the ad in a bar or at a friend’s dinner party, I would definitely accept an invitation for dinner from them. With casual encounters offering a glimpse into their seemingly normal minds, it appears that it’s more difficult to spot the guys who will secretly think about giving you a chocolate milk enema, as you trail off on a tangent about why American welfare reform policy doesn’t address the root cause of poverty—lack of access to social networks. Not only do I have to think about how I am going to woo members of the opposite sex, but now I have to be on guard and be on the look out for signs that they are worthy of being wooed. As if dating isn’t anxiety producing enough.

And our neurosis doesn’t stop at wondering if the guy who just picked up the dinner tab is secretly into sex clubs like Le Trapeze or trolls craigslist casual encounters after he drops you on your door step and kisses you goodnight. Even my friends in non-craigslist affected cities still find dating harrowing.

Take my friend, Jessica. A perpetual single girl, she resigned her desire to find mr right. “It’s either the freaks or weirdos who like me!” she would exclaim after creepy guy number forty-seven hit on her at a club. She gave up. Predictably, not long after giving up, a friendship took a turn for the romantic and she finds herself in a relationship. “This is one of the healthiest things I’ve ever been in!” She is quite proud of herself to snag such a great guy and to also have sex on a regular basis with a penis connected to a body as opposed to a remote control. This isn’t the only first that Jessica has experienced because of this relationship—she’s also recently filled a prescription for valium.

“I can’t explain it. When we are together, things are amazing, I know he likes me. It’s only where we are apart or haven’t spoken for a few days, that it somehow starts to go to shit,” Jessica confided to me. “I feel crazy when I’m not around him, what happens if he finds someone else? If in that time period we are apart, he stops being interested in me?”

It’s a common phenomena that I have been seeing with a lot of my friends, and myself included. Perhaps as products of the cell phone generation, we haven’t been able to develop our emotional self-sufficiency. And any that we learned prior to the mass-marketing of cell phones, we’ve forgotten. Modern technology has not only stunted our athletic prowess but our emotional growth as well. When I am in a crisis, I reach for my cell phone and scroll down the list of my phone book, looking for someone to call upon in my hour of emotional support need. When confronted with a relationship, the kind that consumes your thoughts and mood for the day, not only do we need immediate emotional gratification but we need it from the object of our intimacy, the counterpart to the relationship. When we are forced to go without that, anxiety occurs, meds are consumed, and the switchboard lights up—looking for anyone to act as a pacifier until the real deal becomes available.

“That fucking jerk was supposed to call me three hours ago…wait a sec.” The incoming phone number is checked, “Hey, that’s [insert guy’s name] on the other line. Thanks so much for listening to me!” As the tear is wiped from the cheek. Sniffle. Smile. Do everything, to prevent him from knowing that you just went through a touch of the crazy.

Press call waiting button to go back to the guy.

“Hi [insert guy’s name]! Oh, I was supposed to call you back? No worries, it was just a mis-communication. But hey, I am actually at a gallery opening with a friend,” walking into the Korean deli to buy a diet Snapple, “can I give you a call back later tonight?”

By kissing all of those frogs, it’s hard to disconnect their lingering slime upon our lips with what we see before our eyes. . So even if the prince does emerge, we stand in disbelief, unsure if the person there is really him or a warty toad, yet another result of the combination of endorphin high that lust brings and our own pathetic desire to believe in something. Until we know for sure, we continue to run back through the forest, consulting other stories, and trying to figure out which ending this tale will bring.

The real reason why I am single

Ok, so the responses to my faux Craigslist Casual Encounter....

Some of them are hot.

Some of them I would actually date.

But they are responding to an ad called [haven't you figured it out yet?!]

Men in this city suck, well actually lick.

But seriously, this is why I am single. The hot boys are responding to CL looking for a girl on casual encounters.

I've had it. I am a lesbian.

Fun with Casual Encounters!

Ever read craigslist casual encounters?! Well, a six pack and a slumber party with James of the LES, we're having fun posting!

Evidently I am a 24 yr old looking to get fucked. HA HA. If only they read on this blog how I am a cocktease :)

Reminds me when I was 13 and how my friend and I fucked around on the Night Exchange, this party line of old men looking for dates, visit the Dunkin Donuts looking for a hot 19 yr old. One night we decided to see who showed up, and Danielle and I ended up running through a parking lot at night because we were being chased by some disgruntled men. How I learned to run in heels 101--when my life and virginity depended upon it.

I fucking love prank phone calls.

Readers, try to figure which craigslist casual encounters ad I posted.

Six pack and getting drunk. It was a fucking awful day.

Monday, July 10, 2006

Summer Luvin'

Rollerbladed for three hours and kyacked in the Hudson river today. Boxing class yesterday and rollerbladed up the West side of NYC. I'm tired and can barely keep my eyes open as I type.

I love feeling physcially exhausted from playing in the sun for a weekend.

Friday, July 07, 2006


I feel that restlessness that is a result of loneliness right now. Instead of going out and slamming back alcohol and fixing my boobs in a too tight shirt all night, I threw myself a pity party, with me acting as the guest of honor and my Indian take out place catering the vegetable samosas and naan bread that went with my out-of-a-box saag paneer. By the way, cheese coming out of a box, even if it is in creamed spinach is as appealing as it sounds and does not taste the way it looked in the picture. It was one of those days that no matter how many people I made laugh, or went rollerblading with after work for a few hours, it just wasn’t enough, and it failed to provide me with a feeling of security and distraction from my emotional roller coaster week. Sitting in front of the computer for eight hours taking screen shots, didn’t help my depressed and lonely mood either.

As Friday afternoon rolled around, and although my body craved the effects from a bottle of ice cold champagne, and my mind needed a friend seated across me in an outdoor café, I realized that there wasn’t anyone who fit the mood available. Either my closest friends don’t live in the city (wifey, today totally had your name written all over it), my friends who live here are in relationships where the ass is plentiful and the Friday evening plans are assumed on the calendar, or my laziness won out and I didn’t feel like putting forth an effort to have a conversation with someone.

That’s what makes afternoons in cafes so special. You tend to want to be seated across the person or persons at the table, and the wine in front of you is there as a prop to loosen tongues instead of acting as a vehicle of social lubrication. Very few people are absolute pleasures to be around, where the friendship is so comfortable that neither one takes offense to the inevitable silence, instead the break is seen as kismet, both parties taking a break at the same time, instead of simultaneously having run out of things to say.

When I returned home, I made a few of the obligatory Friday night phone calls, feeling out the waters, testing to see if I would short change myself on what I actually wanted. Tonight, unlike many nights, I just couldn’t do it. Maybe it was because of the intense rollerblading session for over an hour and having faced death several times within that period (I almost went straight into oncoming traffic on the West Side Highway) or maybe it is because I am not just physically tired, but emotionally as well. But tonight I refused to have the see-saw conversation where each person talks at each other, listening for the sole purpose of accruing time to vent, instead of caring what the other person is saying.

With tv failing to comfort me via hollow distraction, I put on my pj pants and roamed the streets of SoHo. I had to leave my apartment. Part of me hoped that I could run away from the loneliness I felt, showing me that it was really my apartment’s fault and not my own while the more pragmatic side wished that the weekend warriors’ gregarious mood would rub off and lighten mine. After fifteen minutes of the charade, I walked back to my apartment. A lesson I would like to share: walking through the streets of SoHo in your pj pants and an old t-shirt will not make you feel better. Actually, it made me feel worse because I realized not only did I feel pathetic, but I looked the part. Especially rocking the messy side pony tail.

So instead of keeping the boast I promised my friend, telling him how tonight was going to be a night of champagne decadence—both the night and beverage being delicate, not too heavy, and leaving the slightest taste on the tongue, I am left in my bed, writing in my blog while digesting two deep fried veggie samosas. And we can’t forget the naan and the saag paneer that came out of a box.

It’s nights like tonight that remind me why I am ready to leave the city. I just hope that my homesickness won't leave me romanticizing an already strained relationship with my life in NYC. Because, a relationship that sucks, is a relationship that sucks, no matter how unsure the prospect of a new one is on the horizon.

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

And I'm still getting screwed

Despite keeping this blog, and the outward illusion that I am open and free with details of my personal life, what I project couldn’t be further from the truth. People who are intimately acquainted with me understand that I am very private about my thoughts, feelings, personal space, and anything else that could offer a glimpse into the cracks of the carefully crafted persona that I present to the world. Which is why, I have been a complete anxious mess since giving the realtors keys to my apartment for viewing.

Part of the reason why NYC has such exhorbant rents is because of our vacancy rate. I think it hovers somewhere around .8%. For you econ geeks out there, the fact that the real estate economy operates at a ridiculous “efficiency” throws off the whole supply and demand chain for us lay people. So, you have people like me who live off of an advertising industry salary paying $2400 for an apartment within earshot of several bars, a bedroom that is about 6x6, and with a window facing a brick wall. This is all a product of “market efficiency,” courteous of Adam Smith. I thought only the third world was supposed to get shafted.

Although I make fun of my apartment, and my roommate, and my landlord, and my neighbors, and hell, even the location, the truth is, it is my home. When I climb the two flights up, step into my hovel, I relax a bit because I am home, even if I haven’t gotten a good nights sleep since I’ve moved in because of the bar two doors down. When I notified my landlord that I was going to give it all up at the end of July (I wonder the fuck why—see above paragraph) she told me that I should make arrangements with the scumbag (my word, not hers) realtor who conned (again, my word choice) me into taking the place, as he is the realtor who she is in cahoots (I mean, work) with.

As a current tenant I have two options when showing my apartment. Either I can rearrange my schedule and be ready at the drop of a dime to let prospective renters into my home or I could trust all of my worldly possessions to the con artist who duped me into taking the shit hole that I call my home.

Once again, my laziness even astonishes me. And I don’t have renters insurance. Luckily, my most valuable items are a two year old laptop and various six inch stiletto shoes.

I make arrangements to give mike the realtor my keys so he can show the apartment unencumbered by my schedule. I knew I should have questioned my choice when he started to bother me before I dropped them off. We agreed that I would give him the keys during the last week of June, so I would have time to clean up a bit and also to procrastinate the fact that my life will be on display until the landlord finds a new tenant.

I drop off the keys later in the week, surrendering my privacy with it.

Coming home one day after work, a day after I give him the keys, I notice something is amiss when I insert my key into the door where I find it unlocked. I assume that my roommate must be home, but when I walk in, her door is closed and her shoes are gone. Which means that my door is unlocked without anyone being home. I’m pissed, but I just want to get out of my sweaty clothes. I go into my room, turn on the air conditioner and change into my running shorts. Mid change, I notice how much cuter my waist line looks, and I decide to go out into the living room and check myself out in the mirror.
Damn, I am looking good! This calls for my booty shorts, and pretty bra, reserved for strip class. I begin to writhe in the air, and shake my booty, trying to impersonate Shakira.

Mid-shake, I hear the door open and turn around and see a two strange women.

“Who are you?” I ask, grabbing my boobs, but already knowing that it is the realtor.

Before she can answer, “You know you should knock.”

“I didn’t realize anyone was home.”

“Excuse me? It’s fucking six pm. People who work usually come home around now. You had no right walking into my apartment without knocking!!!!”

“You should not leave the door open. This is Manhattan.”

“Don’t tell me how to live!! I don’t like keeping my door locked. You should have knocked! I am so embarrassed, Look at what I am wearing!! Why didn’t you call before you came here?”

She then goes on the offensive, “You made your point. You don’t need to make such a big deal out of it. Drop it.”

Oh no, the bitch told me to “drop it” in my own fucking home? My hovel?!

“Don’t yell at me in front of your client! First you walk in when I am semi-nude and now you are yelling at me. Give me your bosses phone number, I am calling him.”

She ignores me, and proceeds to show the apt.

As she is discussing the merits of the location of Greenwich Village, I interrupt her.

“Give me mike’s number now. You don’t knock and now you’re being rude to me in my own home!”

She turns around and tells me to “chill” and that she will give it to me when she is ready.

This goes on for like ten minutes. I interrupt her for her bosses number, and she answers my request by telling me that I am making a big deal and she will give it to me when she is ready.

Not only is she rude to me in my own home, but she is also lying to the girl, telling her how great the landlord is, and how responsive they are to requests.

This is too much for me to handle, so as she is telling the prospective tenant about they are such wonderful people, and how they care so much about their tenants, I stand behind the realtor and shake my head mouthing the words “horrible” “Psycho”.

Fucking bitch, if you were nice to me, I would have played along with the charade. I mean, you want to earn your commission ASAP and I want to stop having my life on display.

When she leaves, I call Mike, her boss, and tell him that I expect phone calls if someone is visiting my apartment after regular business hours, and my experience with the bitch.

Like he gave a shit.

But that is the problem with letting realtors show your apartment. They don’t understand that it is almost soul baring having strangers come in and see you in your natural habitat, the one place where you aren’t governed by the shoulds, the woulds, or any other conditional phrase that forces us to act the way we do from the moment we lock the door behind us every morning at 8:55am. Strangers see you on display. The books with the perfect spines indicating that you still haven’t read them, the pile of underwear on the floor from coming in drunk the night before, even the woman who still sleeps in my bed after I left that morning. And let’s not talk about the closet and how each time I see it ajar, I rush to it and double check that my secret corner of “stuff” hasn’t been disturbed.

I can’t wait to fucking leave my shit hole.


Tuesday, July 04, 2006

LI how I love/loathe thee

There is something incredibly satisfying coming back to LI. With my bright orange overnight bag in tow, ostintaseious prada emblum on my bag, I'm ready to descend upon the place that I loathed growing up but now, as a semi-adult, find some peace and tranquility once I see my tree lined street. Once again, I slept for fourteen hours. It seems I can sleep anywhere except in NYC unless someone is next to me in the bed. I wonder how grad school will work out.

Last night went to the Croxley in Franklin Square with a few old friends and realized just how much I love beer and wings. Wings and beer are great, don't get me wrong, but its the communnal nature of the wings that makes it one of my favorite meals. There are no elbows off of the table or other rules of dining room table decorum that we grew up with, we all look like six month old children learning to eat for the first time with the sauce over our hands and faces.

And of course, we were all yawning by midnight.

What the fuck is it with my friends who are passing their 25th birthdays??

Monday, July 03, 2006

My summer plans

Because although unemployment will be fun, I know myself and too much free time, I will end up in rehab!

So, taking advantage that I am moving uptown in Aug to fancier digs with three homosexual men, I decided to take a cooking class!

I am going to learn how not to be afraid of the kitchen. Plus yoga. Lots, and lots of yoga to make up for the cooking class.

So, cooking class, yoga, and strip class should (hopefully) keep me out of trouble and keep me focused. Because, let's be real, I cant stay in my apt all summer writing. I would pull a Hemingway.

Oh, and the rifle range. Evidently I have a natural talent for shooting shit.

This summer will rock! Now, where is a cuddle buddy to be found??

I am really freaking out about the unemployment, especially because I am blowing my vacation money and making it stretch for six weeks. Well, there is always putting my strip class to good use. I mean, I already do it for shots...

Maybe Karl had a point

"Workers of the world unite"

It's July 3 and I am at work, along with the other ten people who showed up today. Responsibility made me cut my time in DC short.

I was thinking of walking up and down the mass cubicles in my office, spouting off Karl Marx and trying to incite a riot based upon class consciousness but, I've decided to rock out to Weezer in my empty area instead.

Goal for the day: Trying to find a vendor to take me and the team out to lunch so we could kill a few hours of this boredom. However, with most of the working world chilling by their pools and drinking cold beer, that is proving to be quite the difficult endeavor.

Oh fucking well. At least I get out at 3pm. Just in time to blade and make it home to LI by dinner.

Weekend was totally dork-ville, with hanging out in DC and watching Annie Hall and drinking Sangria to the point of near sobriety. This leaves me in desperate need to rage, as we both know I can't handle routine and too much tranquility in my life.

T-11 days until I am unemployed. What the fuck was I thinking??? Me and free time do not mix well together...