Category Archives: Life stories

My roommate met Brandon from Humans of New York

My roommate Katie recently spotted Brandon Stanton, creator of Humans of New York in Chelsea. I was excited for her, impressed that she spotted him and a little jealous to boot.

“Did you ever see the pics from the time you spotted the Humans of New York guy?” I asked my roommate Katie.

“Uh, yeah. It was the one with the young girl coming to New York to meet the 55 year old guy she met on a BDSM site,” Katie said.

“Noooooo!”

Alas, yes.

“I interrupted an awkward conversation,” she added. “Brandon was awesome and we hugged.”

I love HONY, as it’s known, for its ability to remind me of the breadth of the human experience. And I’m not alone: HONY has 12.5 million Facebook fans, 2.7 million Instagram followers and two successful books (with another one on its way this fall).

But I do wish Katie had been able to meet Brandon on this day instead!

This adorable pic is the property of Humans of New York

This adorable pic is the property of Humans of New York

 

 

Young Chicklette loved to sleep too

I asked my mother if she could dig up any of my childhood journals. Recently she delivered.

My eighth grade journal was apparently started as a part of a school assignment. I can tell because each entry includes a vocabulary word which I would helpfully underline. As a result, though, the entries in this journal are 1. brief and 2. not juicy. Fortunately there are more journals coming.

You’ll be glad to know that one of my key personality traits emerged early: I have been a lady of leisure since the beginning.

JournalIn my defense, by eighth grade, I was in dance classes and rehearsals at least ten hours per week. On top of that, I was relatively serious about school and involved in activities like cheerleading and piano lessons.

sleeping

Give a girl the weekend to nestle in bed, OK?

Sadly, my handwriting has only deteriorated. Hooray for email!

Suddenly we were on the bridge to Brooklyn

First read this related post.

Suddenly we were on the bridge to Brooklyn. The Manhattan Bridge this time, not the Williamsburg. I laughed.

“Don’t laugh. This isn’t funny!” Mom said.

I kept laughing. What else are you supposed to do when a Chinese New Year parade and dozens of NYC traffic cops thwart your Little Italy lunch plans and Canal Street spits you onto the bridge to downtown Brooklyn without any choice?

Just thirty minutes earlier, everything was fine. Great really. Mom came in from Scranton for a post-birthday (hers, not mine) visit. I had a present waiting for her at my apartment in Williamsburg. We planned to drive there after shopping and lunch at Pellegrino’s.

We shopped at Lord & Taylor. I found a dress that might be fun for my friend Candace‘s wedding in Jamaica. We got Mom’s car out of the lot ($26 for two hours, and that’s the Weekend Special) and headed downtown.

And sat in spectacular traffic once we passed Bleecker Street.

“I’m never doing this again,” Mom said about driving downtown, and agreeing to drive to Brooklyn for her birthday gift. But she has said that many times during my life about things she has absolutely done again so I laughed some more.


Each summer, my parents and I would drive eight-ish hours south to Nags Head, NC. Once, when I was a seven or eight years old, we arrived the Cabana East Motel only to find that our reservation was actually for the next day. No rooms were available.

Click link for photo credit

Dad, not the adaptable sort, was furious at Mom who, although she might have gotten a date wrong, also did all of the heavy lifting for planning our vacations with no offers of help from Dad. Even though we were able to get a room for the night at the Beacon next door, I don’t think my parents exchanged a civil word for 24-48 hours.

I wished we could all just be happy about the extra day at the beach.


When we found ourselves on the Manhattan Bridge, I turned to Mom (who was getting progressively more hangry thanks to my laughter) and said “why don’t we eat in Williamsburg? You can eat food you don’t eat around Dad.”*

I felt tense during the drive up the BQE but tried to hide it with chatter. We parked near the restaurant and then walked down the middle of the street to avoid the ice-covered sidewalks. The ice was another strike against Brooklyn in my mother’s eyes.

Miraculously, she stepped across the restaurant threshold and expressed her approval.

Mom and Jen

We went to Mesa Coyoacan for Mexican food. Tamarind margarita for her, michelada for me. We gorged on tortilla soup and esquites and guacamole and tacos. When we were done with that, I surprised her with churros con chocolate y caramel with a birthday candle. She no longer seemed mad at me for laughing.


Guess what? Mom loved my black nail polish. She proclaimed my hair too “gold.” I’m keeping it though.

 

*Between his health concerns and narrow idea of what constitutes Good Food. (In my dad’s opinion, every cuisine that isn’t American or Italian might serve him cat for an entrée. Don’t ask. I have given up.)

Pop quiz: Which did Mom find more objectionable?

Mom visited me. More on that soon.

As I anticipated her visit, I asked myself “which will she hate more – my hair which I had colored a bit darker or my nails which are painted black?”

Mom and Jen

Naturally she had an opinion.

How do you think it played out? Vote now and I’ll tell you the answer tomorrow. Click here to find out.

Gratitude for the ones who got away

Incredibly embarrassing update below

Dan* and I met through my work-study job in college. My commitment to ten hours of weekly clerical work in the Registrar’s Office was the subject of much mirth among the full-timers and more reliable student works.

It was a 50/50 proposition if I would actually show up for my designated hours, they joked. “But I always call!” I would counter. Whether it was due to classwork, hangovers, my need for a nap or simply something more interesting arising, I called in with a lot of excuses.

For whatever reason, they tolerated me.

Dan appeared on one of the days late in my freshman year when I happened to show up. His mother was one of the bosses and when visiting from his own university, he would come to the office to help out. Dan was a volleyball-playing, ROTC-committed stud of a man. When he smiled, his eyes reminded me of Patrick Swayze (!). Tall and fit, solid, sturdy and friendly, I was immediately drawn to him.

Suck it Dan Continue reading

The latest

Clearly “blog more” was not my New Year‘s resolution. If it had been, I’d be considered a failure. So…good for me, not making resolutions!

#kanyeshrug

But I have been thinking of the blog and you wonderful people who read and comment. Does that help?

2015 is off to a rip-roaring start. Wanna know what I’ve been up to? Keep reading.

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