Wednesday, May 13, 2009

On My Mind: Stuff I Did This Month

It's funny how one's blog becomes a document of one's life, and when one doesn't blog, not only do one's readers get the impression one has been sitting at home watching TV (poor shut-in!) but a length of time later, one looks back and realizes she doesn't remember what she did the first two weeks of May 2009 because she didn't write about it.

So here I am, sitting at my desk on a beautiful--blue skies and 70 degrees--spring day in Manhattan, catching you up on highlights from the last month or so. Let's see how well memory serves me..

Saturday, April 18
My first trip to the legendary den of literature and Soviet-era styling. Having heard about the KGB Bar since before my move to NYC, I expect a commanding venue, worthy of the Kremlin or a Constructivist factory. Instead, I find a space the size of my apartment. 50 or so people crowd into the room to hear two very fine readers, both debut novelists. I beg a stranger to share butt space with me on a bench near the wall. On second thought, think maybe small is better when it comes to literary readings, as they can't always count on being well attended.
Friday, April 24
City Guy and I take a walk along Hudson River and stumble into a crowd of hundreds assembled in front of the World Financial Center for the Tribeca Film Festival's Drive-in (i.e., hundreds of folding chairs facing a projector screen). The film being shown: Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. Snapple is the sponsor. People are dressed as characters I don't recognize (is that supposed to be George Bush?).

Previous night's film was Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Neither film screams "sit and watch!" to me. But it may just be I'm over the very NY "movie in the park" dealio--there's always someone talking through the movie, so if you're there to socialize or make out, cool; if you're there to actually watch the movie, you might want to Netflix it. Beautiful sunset though...Tuesday, April 28
Miss Fashion and I play hooky and meet up in the afternoon for coffee at Joe The Art of Coffee on Waverly in the West Village. Filled with cute gay boys scoping each other out. Happy that Miss Fashion has introduced me to another good place to meet friends for coffee in the city. Later, I drag her to a real estate appointment and afterwards we get tea and dessert at Cha-an, my favorite Japanese tea house.

Thursday, April 30
On my way to meet Book Babe and to my delight, I see Panda coming towards me! I fumble to get out my camera and catch him as he shuffles dejectedly away. See the downward slope of his shoulders and his plastic shopping bag. Love him! He's so damn cute I can't stop smiling.Arrive at subway and find this poem stuck to a post. Apparently it's Poem In Your Pocket Day. It reads:
Circa 1995 by D. Vollaro
It slipped in with them,
Candy-coated azure gem.
The blue M&M.
What a lovely occasion and what a lovely poem...I do love M&M's!

The evening already off to a great start, I meet Book Babe at an NYU Creative Writing Program Reading Series event: a conversation about writing between Zadie Smith and Jonathan Safran Foer. Zadie Smith? Beautiful, articulate, funny, insightful, bold--in short, I want to be Zadie Smith. JSF? Smart, great interviewer, quotes liberally from email correspondence with friend Zadie. Note to self: write wittier, more thoughtful emails.
After reading, head to Gwyneth Paltrow's newest GOOP recommendation, Sweetiepie for a late dinner/dessert. Delighted by the balloons, mirrored ceiling, gilded cage, and oversized fuschia banquettes, but then again, I am unabashedly girly. Chopped salad and berry cream dessert not bad either. The next day, Book Babe alerts me to fact that Yelpers have been trashing the place. I write my very first Yelp review to share my more positive experience. Then again, maybe we just got lucky.
Friday, May 8
Book Babe and I go to a fashion fundraiser her friend has organized. The organization, Fashion For All, takes clothing donations so low-income women can "shop" for clothes for free. The event is held in the showroom of MINT Jodi Arnold and the women attending are all beautifully dressed in this season's fashions--colorful, feminine, flirty, flowy. There's a bar, cupcakes, snacks and an opportunity to buy MINT Jodi Arnold at sample sale prices. We show up with bags of old clothing and get a lovely goodie bag (recycled newspaper tote from Raw Bags) filled with cosmetics, reading material, accessories as a thank you . What a score!

Afterwards, a short walk to dinner in K-town and dessert at Koryodong--drinks are overpriced, but it's THE after dinner spot on 32nd St.

Saturday, May 9
City Guy and I go on a double date! Fun times. Meet up with friends at Freeman's only be told there's a 2-hour wait for 4 6:30! Craziness. The food can't be that good. I suggest Kampuchea, which is just blocks away. At 6:45, no wait, but the place fills up in the next couple hours. The Num Pang sandwiches are still to die for, but they're still stingy on the oxtail stew (can you call it a stew when it's just two pieces of oxtail and a few carrots?). After dinner, City Guy and I catch a late screening of Star Trek. My inner trekkie is unleashed! Monday, May 11
Almost forgot about this. I have been called for jury duty for the first time since moving to NYC. I show up at 100 Court St at 8:45 am. The guy says anyone who can't serve at this juncture needs to go to 60 Court St to plead their case. I get up and go because City Guy and I have a vacation planned and I won't be able to serve if I am placed on a jury. The people at the postponement place are very nice. I'm free and clear by 9:30! Jury duty postponed until August.

Tuesday, May 12
Running low on groceries. My list is getting very long. Decide that instead of schlepping to Whole Foods, I'll try Fresh Direct this week. It's been a while. I feel disloyal to my beloved WF, but my grocery cart broke....that's a story for another post.

Wednesday, May 13
So those were the between were sprinkled other commitments, work, miserably cold and wet weather...but this is not a diary, it's a blog, right? Until next time...hopefully that's sooner than later.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Word On The Street: Bendel's Without Clothes?

Came across this bit on the NYT today:
A venerable name in New York retailing, Henri Bendel, is planning to stop selling clothes this summer and focus on accessories and beauty products as it struggles to lure shoppers during a prolonged recession.
The article goes on to say the store will be laying off 8% of its employees and get this, Limited, it's parent company, plans to turn Bendel's into a "mall-like chain." Yikes. Is this the end of my love affair with Bendel's?