Friday, August 27, 2010

the wrong button

mind the gap

An indication that you need more sleep and/or you are horribly distracted: you repeatedly get on an elevator and push the button of the floor you're standing on instead of the floor you need to get to.

I did that 4 times the other day.

Thursday, August 26, 2010


official party mascot

I am 30 years old today. As of 10:03 am (or possibly 10:33am; my mom can't remember which time is mine and which time is my brother's, but she claims I'm the early one). I could regale you with the ways in which I feel less than prepared for this age, but instead, I'm going to provide you with a list. There is no point to this list except that it has 30 items and they are mostly about me. It is not random (oh how I hate the overuse of the word random), but it might be amusing.

1. I hate warm cookies.
2. I have tipped over while standing at a curb with my bicycle. There were children nearby, but they didn't laugh at me.
3. if you baked me an apple pie, I wouldn't eat it, but I would appreciate the gesture.
4. last night I had a bad dream about throwing up, and when I woke up I was afraid that I'd actually vomited.
5. I cry when I laugh really hard.
6. my brother, my dad, and I all have the birthdays that are different dates but end up being the same day of the week (i.e. all of our birthdays are on thursday this year)
7. I once made my brother wear a dress. there are pictures.
8. he once made me sit on a red ant hill. there are no pictures, but now I really hate ants.
9. I made a kite in summer school one year and now whenever I see wooden dowels at the hardware store all I can think about are kites.
10. when I was in 4th grade I used to stay after school and help out in the library because I thought it was fun.
11. I used to own a Bart Simpson skate board.
12. I'm beginning to get bored with my list. Are you?
13. My mom's favorite numbers are 7 and 13. When my brother and I were younger, she would ask us to pick a number between 1 & 20 when we wanted something. her number was always 7 or 13.
14. I could probably eat 14 oatmeal chocolate chip cookies in one sitting, but not if they're warm.
15. Maybe I shouldn't have picked 30 items. I'm only halfway there.
16. I used to eat butter. One time when I was around 4 years old my entire family was out washing the car, and I was in the kitchen stealing bites from a stick of butter.
17. I went to band camp.
18. And I played the flute.
19. But senior year of high school, I switched to a brass instrument.
20. Sometimes I like to play a game where you spell a word backwards and I tell you what word it is.
21. I'm terrible at crossword puzzles.
22. If I had to sound out the letters of my nickname in german it would be "yotta yotta"
23. I like to make to do lists with little checkboxes.
24. I drink out of the same coffee mug every day. I rinse it out when I'm done, but I only wash it about once a week. I just found out that my dad does the same thing.
25. I've thrown up on one of my friends before. Sorry about that.
26. I almost failed chemistry in college.
27. I used to request the following as my birthday dinner: barbecued chicken legs, mashed potatoes, and green peas. Then I would mix the peas and the mashed potatoes together. For dessert: yellow cake with chocolate frosting and ice cream on the side. always on the side. never ON the cake.
28. Have you ever tried to write a list of 30 things? I don't recommend it.
29. I hate the word "stinky"
30. The faint smell of dog treats is wafting up from my shorts pocket, and it's making me kind of nauseated.

Rest assured, I won't do that again. Nor will I turn 30 again. Ah, symmetry.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

tinkle tinkle little star

medusa fountain

Awkward food co-op moment of the week:

As I picked my way through the bananas in search of the right green to yellow ratio, I saw an older woman struggling with the bathroom door. She had two large shopping bags that were sitting in the doorway, and she was muttering to herself about the door not closing. I thought she was fussing with the bags in an attempt to drag them into the bathroom with her, and I was about to help her when I heard the distinct sound of water hitting water. That's when I realized the woman was bent over in a pee hunch with the door open.

I was so startled that I just stood there looking around to see if anyone else was aware of the public urination. A woman working her shift walked past me, glanced back at the bathroom and stopped dead in her tracks. She made eye contact with me, and all I could say was, "yeah, i don't know." Before either of us could figure out what to do, the woman finished her business, collected her things and ambled toward the exit.

Who does that?

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

ears of steel

cover your ears

New York is a loud place. Between the shouting people, the horn honking, the thundering trucks, and the construction work, there is virtually no peace unless you're out and about before 7:30am (and even then, there's no guarantee). The other day I walked past a jackhammer chipping away at a stretch of sidewalk on my way to the Q train. I plugged my ears as I approached the workers, but I watched other people pass by with their hands at their sides as if the clanging was as loud as a baby cooing.

Do these people have ears of steel? Is there some unwritten code that makes you more of a New Yorker if you can withstand ear shattering noises at close range? I find myself plugging my ears a lot (the union square 4/5/6 platform has especially horrendous brake squealing that feels like an irate crow squawking in your ear), and I am often the only person doing it. Am I announcing my status as a transplant? Probably, but I'm going to keep tucking a finger in my ear because I care more about my hearing than I do about looking like a hard-boiled native.

*today's picture is of a kid covering her ears during a very enthusiastic rendition of the star spangled banner at a cyclone's game.

Monday, August 16, 2010

frozen dagger


Do you know that scene from A Christmas Story where the kid gets his tongue stuck to the flagpole? (to my small Jewish readership that may not have seen the iconic goyish film: check out this clip) Well I just had one of those moments with a frozen spoon.

You see, the other day I made frozen yogurt, and it was a colossal fail. I added bourbon, vanilla, and honey to plain homemade yogurt. The end result according to charrow: that tastes just like medicine! Not exactly what you're looking for when you want a frozen treat. So today I bought a few ingredients to attempt a redesign of the frozen medicine. As I marveled at the consistency (bourbon really does make it freeze like commercial grade frozen yogurt), I absentmindedly took a bite. When I tried to pull the spoon away from my mouth there was a sharp ripping sensation. It wasn't as dramatic as making out with a subzero flagpole, but I still don't recommend it.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

wisdom from the bleating bandits

just needs a newspaper or a good book

Okay, here's what the goats had to say:

1. they said Write. something. anything. it doesn't matter. they said you like to read pointless shit, so the chances are, someone else will want to read your pointless shit. they said if you keep waiting for a band of people to emerge from the internet clouds and say Please, write more pointless shit! before you put together 6 words and add a period, then you will never write. And forget about writing past the pointless shit into anything worthwhile because you'll never get there if you don't start stomping around in the muck of shitty first drafts. this blog isn't about precision; it's about habit. considering this space the home of a polished polemic is handicapping, and in practice has turned it into an abandoned playground. i don't have platforms. i have pictures and observations and bad metaphors and run on sentences and questionable tense continuity.

2. they said stop making excuses and start training dogs and for god's sake, earn some money. they said there will always be someone who knows more about dogs than you so there's no point in waiting until you feel like you know enough to play with the big boys. you will always feel like you need to know more, and there will always be more to know, so stop waiting for the bear hug of proficiency because you can't get there without screwing up first.

3. they also said clean your damn apartment. to put it bluntly, they said hey idiot, stop reading books about being productive and simplifying your life and think about maybe putting some of that jargon into action.

4. they said if you're going to write a list of goals to accomplish before your next birthday, maybe consider looking at that list every month and picking one thing to focus on. they said there's no way you can accomplish things like learning basic german if you buy a workbook and then let it collect cat hair on the bookshelf for 8 months before you pick it up and say "wow that book is dusty" and then reshelve it for another 8 months.

5. they also said not to share any of their wisdom with the outside world. excuse me while I run from the bleating bandits that are ramming into the front door. good thing I locked it.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

i've taken a trip

hey. hey. hey. hey.

Fear not. I went into the woods and was taken in by a trip of goats. They are teaching me the ways of eating everything, fainting at will, and bleating to my hearts content. Soon, I will return to the interwebs and pass on my goatly knowledge.