Thursday, February 26, 2009

The Real Widows of the UES

"I need address labels. Do you print address labels? I need new ones; my husband died on Tuesday. Just my name. How many? Oh, I don't know. It doesn't matter. No, that's not enough. What font? Just regular. No, not that one. It's so blocky. No, not that one either. Just normal. Normal font. I don't like any of these. Are you going to take down my address? 111 87th street. Apartment 4N. N as in nothing. Mind you I don't know how long I'll be living there, with the rent what it is now. My landlord says it's legal to increase it so much every year. I don't know how I'm going to pay that all by myself. When can I get these? It takes that long? Alright, I'll come back next week. I have to come all the way down here? No, don't deliver them. I'll come in."

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Your Tuesdays are my Friday

Guess who shared the wood with us at Café Loup last night? Parker Posey. Celebrities are skinny and attractive in real life. And apparently "Sooo high. Oh my god I am sooo hiiigh."

Café Loup after Heidegger is the touchstone of sanity in my week. The only foothold I've been able to get in 09 so far. Scholarship applications are due again. So are taxes. Don't forget to pick up your prescription at the pharmacy. And to find some sensible skirts for lecturing, now that you've worn everything three times. Try not to quit your job.

Friday, February 20, 2009


New York has a 24-hour news channel called New York 1. It is lovely and homey and cozy. Station IDs done by buskers. In the morning they read the newspaper to you. And there's a New Yorker of the week segment, bringing you people like this guy.

Remember A-Channel in Calgary and Edmonton before it got bought out and became whatever it is now? Their Edmonton news desk was set before a window onto 102nd and Jasper Ave in Edmonton, right around the corner from where I used to live. I would always avoid walking past it. The Calgary evening news was hosted by Vivian Lee, haha, Gone With the Wind much?, except that that she's Asian and Vivian is a pretty common Anglicization and Lee is a very common surname.

Well guess where Ms. Vivian Lee is now?

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Girl on girl on girl action

Hi Marianne,

You were in my dreams last night. Possibly twice. I won't bore you with the tangential description of what we were doing and where ("we were in Houston Tx, but it wasn't really! It just felt like it!" etc) but somehow you were around as the events transpired. At one point I was chatting with a female friend and she commented on how tall and flexible you were because she had slept with you the previous week. And then actual you appears (which was confusing because I thought the first person was you) to confirm it (with a little too much bravado hidden as nonchalance if you ask me, but whatever). I was irritated because I felt like you guys got together behind my back - as if I should have at least known about it perhaps?

Anyway, I just thought you might be interested to know that you were getting it on with yourself in some dark corner of my mind.

Have a great day!


Saturday, February 14, 2009

Sunday, February 08, 2009

Atlantic City

You know - Atlantic City! New Jersey's (much, much classier) version of Las Vegas. And the setting for Monopoly. And full of beefy guidos in untucked button-down shirts, and hoochie mamas in lycra minidresses and strappy gold sandals (friend and I, in our Chucks and jeans, we were on NOBODY's radar - we couldn't even get a waitress). By the way, I have a new favourite cover band. They were playing in Jezebel's in the Trump Casino, and one day they will play my wedding.

We lost twenty dollars on the nickle sluts, but saved money on our El Greco Motel room (I hid my laptop behind the nightstand). In the morning we walked the boardwalk in the 50-degree weather and bought saltwater taffy and had breakfast in a greasy spoon whose walls are entirely lined with one-dollar bills.

Thursday, February 05, 2009

Am I paying too much rent?

Well, yes, obviously.

Especially now that, per Craigslist, my landlord is offering the suite directly below mine for three hundred dollars less.

So here is one option: call the Division of Housing at 718-739-6400. Ask them for the registration information on your apartment. This gives you the entire rental history for the last twenty years, showing how much previous tenants paid and how many times the apartment changed hands. With that info you can read this factsheet and figure out whether each of the increases that brought the rent up to what it is now, were legal.

I am having some difficulty figuring that out since my negligent landlord suspiciously hasn't registered the rent on my apartment since 1998, at which time the rent-controlled tenant paid.........$95.86. A month.

I'll let you know how it goes.

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

What's the neighbourhood like? vol. 2

In Yonkers, where I teach.

It's suburbia. I ride the bus.

I teach in that mall.

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

Bad news, ma

Remember when you asked me to buy you that potato peeler that you had read about in all the papers and magazines, and so I went to where the guy sold them in Union Square, and it seemed like he was just selling ordinary potato peelers but with a really good schtick, and so I didn't buy one, but then later I found out that no, they really are good potato peelers, so I went back to buy you one, except then I couldn't find the guy anymore, for months and months, except for occasionally hearing from someone that he had popped up in Brooklyn Heights, or some other neighbourhood, until one sunny day I was walking through Union Square, and suddenly there he was again, and so I bought you your potato peeler and mailed it to you and you promptly put it in your metal utensil drawer and forgot about it, and when I was home for the holidays and peeling potatoes for Todd's Chanukkah dinner of latkes and ham, it got used for the first time?

Well hold on to that because sadly, that guy died.

Sunday, February 01, 2009

"That's the female and this is the male"

Anthamatten thinks margaritas can be made with vodka and frozen orange juice concentrate.

It gets better around the three minute mark.