Sunday, July 29, 2007

Go Fetch

Day Five in Captivity

We are winding down our dog sitting bender for my in-laws in Annapolis.

Seven months ago, they were encouraged by my step mother-in- law's grandchildren to take on a puppy born at a farm in rural MO - near the farms of my in-laws and relatives through marriage.

Long story short. This dog is huge, stupid and totally out of control. It appears to be part pit bull, part lab, part crystal meth addict.

It chews everything in sight and is constantly threatening our dog Saki, trying to snap at us and bite our feet.

This dog is not east coast material. It needs to be shipped to Branson, Missouri.

I've also come to believe that in a past life the state of Maryland was the color beige.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Dusk in the City

I love this time of day.

I just took my very stubborn dog Saki for a walk. We went down to Two Boots to return and rent a video. I must have chatted with six people on my trip- didn't know any of them - just friendly chatter. Saki is white, fluffy and plump - a real ice breaker in this neighborhood.

The weather is perfect with a light drizzle that comes and goes. Perfect weather to walk in at dusk. Tompkins Square Park is filled with beautiful blooming flowers of all kinds. Come and check it out if you're nearby. It was so peaceful and green in park.

God gave me a perfect evening and this time around I had my eyes open to see it.

Sunday, July 22, 2007


I don't usually notice when yet another small eatery opens up on Avenue A but I have to confess to really liking one that opened up very close by.

The place is called Mamani and it's located between 9th and 10th on Avenue A.

The menu is authentic Persian homestyle cooking and your usual take out American fare. They have an extensive menu with something for just about everyone, including kids, vegetarians, people looking for ethnic cuisine or just a quick sandwich, burger, falafel, etc. They also make their own pita bread.

It's a family owned and family run. Check it out if you have a chance.

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Take a Tip From Eleanor

Last night my son slept at my parent's house. It was nice to goof off with my husband all night and to sleep as long as we could the next day.

In the morning, we decided to go up to the Whitney to see the show on the Summer of Love/Art of the Psychedelic Era. It was great. Great show. Works challenging traditional perceptions and cultural mores of the time abounded. The messages came wrapped in naked bodies amidst wild flowers, psychedelic music, and installations involving electronic light shows of all kinds. Beautiful colors everywhere.

I liked it. But I wonder how I would have fared during that time, especially the invitation to unearth yourself, to remove the obstacles that prevented you from enlightenment, a weightless voyage into your mind and your soul via hallucinogenic drugs.

It's all I can do to keep my two feet on the ground.

The way my mind works, dropping acid would be redundant - and extremely dangerous. My many drug using friends would become absolutely Mormon when someone tried to insist that I smoke or swallow something. Before I could politely decline - they intervened faster than an AA sponsor - even when they were stoned - which always impressed and amazed me.

There weren't many female artists represented at the exhibit...if any...another sign of those times.

Come to think of it - I would have definitely burned my bra. I would do it now if I had a match.

But this is not the point of my post. I've been thinking about Eleanor Roosevelt lately - and her encouraging words to do those things we think we cannot do - those things that scare us and challenge us to the core.

That said. I took a ride on my husband's Yamaha all the way uptown. I normally avoid riding on the back of Brian's bike. I'm afraid of what might happen. My son has been riding on it for years - daily - to school and back.

So I hopped on and tried to act very nonchalant about it. Brian was really happy because he loves riding. I kept my eyes closed for the first ten blocks up First Avenue then I started looking around and thought "Fuck it - just enjoy yourself. Who cares? If I go, I go."

We went up to 76th and Madison (to the Whitney) then returned on Park Avenue where we rode through the winding Grand Central passage. It was awesome to experience New York this way - especially the architecture. The towering buildings blow your mind along with the rows of beautiful brownstones and boutiques and grungy places too.

It was cool. And it made me feel good. A little more fearless. A little more alive.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Thank God!!!

My niece came out of her bone biopsy this morning. They removed a significant section of her tibia for analysis. The surgeon said that although the bone has a lesion, all tests this morning were coming up benign. The previous diagnosis was something called a false positive (hopefully I'm stating that correctly).

Folks, my family doesn't have this kind of luck.

I'm not sure what all of this means exactly but it sounds like she will be okay. Whatever this tumor is about (and its damage to the bone) seems to be a serious issue that will have to involve further surgery and monitoring - but it's benign.

My Irish Catholic side makes me far too cautious about good luck to shout for joy.

But I'm shouting on the inside.

Thank you for keeping her in your thoughts and prayers.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Don't thank me. Thank the Colonel.

I spent five minutes in utter confusion talking to my son the other night. He kept on asking his dad to make Kentucky Fried Chicken.

Fried Chicken is treated as a religious ritual in our house. The recipe Brian uses is from his beloved late Grandma Mae of Southern Illinois. Its sacred value comes in just below breastfeeding a newborn.

There are no buckets o'chicken in this house.

I finally realized that Ben thinks the proper term for homemade fried chicken IS Kentucky Fried Chicken. I haven't corrected him yet...I could use the laugh these days.

Jesus. Maybe he thinks I'm Betty Crocker?

Saturday, July 07, 2007

Thoughts on the Hamptons...

I hate the Hamptons and do everything in my power to avoid going there. Unfortunately, a trip out at least twice a summer is unavoidable due to lovable, well meaning friends who beckon us with open ended offers and puppy dog eyes.

We visit but never sleep there.

I love the ocean. Brian's love of the ocean probably rivals his love for me (truth be told, I probably come in a close fourth behind Ben, the ocean and music...but before the Red Sox - I hope).

So instead of going bike riding on some remote bike trail upstate this morning, I will be joining my comrades on the Long Island Expressway followed by the Montauk Highway to spend what is left of the day sitting by chlorine water.

Did you know that people in the Hamptons don't usually swim in the ocean? I find it extraordinary. It feels like I'm going to a souped up New York suburb but everyone has a bathing suit on.

I'm much more the Edna St. Vincent Millay type. Stick me in a shack high above Longnook Beach on the Cape with some books and my bike. Then go away and let me melt into the landscape for three weeks.

Sunday, July 01, 2007

The Miracle of Womanhood, Part II

I wound down the first day of my period by telling my family in no uncertain terms that "EVERYTHING HAS TO CHANGE!" and that I'm a bit sick "OF BEING TAKEN FOR GRANTED" and then put my beloved husband on "RED ALERT".

No one seemed too surprised when I stormed out the house at 9 p.m. to go "DO SOMETHING FOR MYSELF FOR A CHANGE!"

God then took me by the hand and sat me down at the Sunshine Theater on Houston Street where I saw the film Paris Je T'aime.

It was beautifully done. Please go see it. You'll feel much better.