Kind New Yorkers

NYC-Judy & Pedicab driverThursday, October 30, 2014

Today I am grateful for kind New Yorkers. When we were in NYC the other day we did a lot of walking.  Tons.  Bloody stump walking.  But we only had the one day, so time forced us to take a cab to our lunch reservation at Loeb’s Boathouse in Central Park.

The cab dumped us off at 72nd and 5th Avenue.  We were assured by a kind hotel worker where we wandered into for information, that our restaurant was “right there”.  Standing at one of the hundreds of park entrances, with no restaurant in sight, we strolled towards the map, looking clueless and foreign.  We sat on a bench to discuss which path to take, but knew that if we took the wrong one we might get lost in the maze of the park and miss our reservation.

A young man in a pedicab zipped up to the curb in front of our bench. In an island accent he said, “I will take you.  Where you want to go?”  Yeah right.  Heard that one before.  This isn’t my first time at the rodeo.  We were strapped and looked vulnerable AND in a hurry, but I didn’t want him to know that.

“Five dollar,” he said. I mentioned that he didn’t even know where in the park we were going.  “No matter.  Five dollar.”  He was very nice, with a wonderful, genuine smile. After a quick exchange of glances between my sister and me, we decided it was worth it.  When we started to haul our clumsy butts into the contraption, I said, “It’s my sisters birthday!”

“You birthday? Today!”  He said to Judy, very excited.  “No charge!  No charge!  I take you!”

It wasn’t very far, but to have this kind, young New Yorker transplant take us there for nothing was a great testimony to human kindness and quick decision making. If I had a business I’d hire him in a New York minute!

When we got there I pulled out a few bucks for a tip at least. “No, no! No tip!  Is free!  I take you!” He insisted.  I insisted more, but I had to practically force him to take it.  That is why today I am grateful for kind New Yorkers. . .no matter where they originally come from.

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Great Day in NYC

Judy & Me on the way to NYC-October, 2014Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Today I am grateful for the little trip I had to New York City with my sister yesterday. The picture is of us on the way to NYC.  We should have taken a picture of us on the train coming back, looking like two cats who had done battle. . .in a tub of water. . .and Ibuprophen!  We got home at 2:45 a.m. today!  My newspaper was already here.  Now that’s living life to the fullest!  And we’re old!

After the evil shopping trip on Monday; and walking my feet to bloody sumps; and making my hardware knees grind like a bad starter on a car yesterday; and going to Longwood Garden to finish off the rest of the body today; I’m convinced she’s trying to kill me. Maybe mom has a little cash I don’t know about someplace!

I will wax poetic and elaborate when I come up for breath! You know I will.  Bet you can hardly wait!

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Going to New York City

Sisters @ Margarita'sTuesday, October 28, 2014

Today I am grateful that my sister and I are going to see “The Last Ship”, by Sting, in New York City for her birthday! So excited to visit my favorite city in the whole wide world.  That’s it.  We’re off!  Go read a good book!

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Shopping With My Sister

Me in one shoulder sack. Me punching out of jungle print dressMonday, October 27, 2014

Today I am grateful for shopping with my sister. HaHaHaHaHaHaHaHa!  Lol just wouldn’t cut it.  Neither would LMAO.  Here’s the glitch.  My sister LOVES shopping!  I HATE shopping!  Now you’re getting the picture, right?

The other day I casually mentioned that I had angst over needing to get a new dress for my son’s wedding in March. Other friends had said, “You better not wait too long.”  Judy said, “Let’s go tomorrow!”  Swell.

So I put on makeup so I’d look pretty good and sneakers so I didn’t kill someone when my feet fell off and out the door we went at around 9:30 this morning. First stop, an hour drive to Catherine’s, a plus-sized, very nice women’s store.  The saleslady asked if she could help the minute I walked in the door, so I told her I needed a dress for my son’s wedding.  “Oh, we don’t carry dresses anymore.  A lot of the Catherine’s don’t. I know, not too many places carry plus-sized dresses, but you can go on line.  I’m sorry.”  Not as sorry as me!  We poked around and I found a few things on sale, but certainly not what I was looking for.  The saleslady said to check out Nordstrom’s at the Kink-o-Prussia Mall.  (King of Prussia)  I’m having an attitude.

Judy’s eyes started rolling back in her head like a slot machine ready to puke out a mother lode. She LOVES Nordstrom’s and malls.  I HATE malls and shun them like a toddler shuns liver, yet off we went, another hour drive, back the same way we had just come.

She started pulling crap off the racks with like an octopus trying to get out of a net. Beads and glitterieiii whizzed past my head.  “Take this!  And this!  Oooooo this is pretty.” She squealed with glee.  “They won’t fit. . .I hate that color. . .that one has NO color. . .I’ll look like a cadaver in that!” You do not want to go shopping with me.  Ever.  Only a blood relative should have that joy.  “Just try them!” she said.  “You might be surprised!”  Oh boy was I surprised.

So I tried on the blue. . .half. . .because only half went on. Then I tried on the purple beaded thing and started to scratch like a beagle with fleas.  She brought a funky, one shoulder number into the fitting room just for fun.  Hah!  Her fun, not mine!  When I got it on, laughing hysterically, I pulled out a pouch on the side of the thing looking bewildered. “I wonder what this is for,” my patient sister said, tugging at the thing!  “My LEFT HIP!” I shouted, “I need a special pouch for my left hip.”  We were laughing so hard I couldn’t see.  She snapped a picture with her phone and promised to not put it on Facebook.  But vanity is losing out to humor and I posted it myself!  Enjoy your yuk.

Jungle print was not what I was looking for but it was somewhere close to my size. Except I think someone must have had a hot hair dryer nearby and the thing was made of shrink-wrap.  As soon as I got it on it started to suck itself to me like the skin of the animal it emulated.  Fwooop!  As I started to roll up out of it, I looked like a snake shedding its’ skin. . .the hard way. “Get me OUTTA this thing,” I shouted.  The more I laughed the harder I sweated and the more it stuck to me. But my sister couldn’t hear me because she was laughing too hard. . .and being a supportive sister.  .  . taking pictures!  No one can document your life like a sibling! That’s the other picture.

Then there was the gray. Gray.  Yes, gray.  Sea-creature-gray.  I grudgingly tried it on.   At least it WENT on, which is more than most of them.  I took one look in the mirror and started making EEE-EEE-EEE noises just like the dolphin I resembled.  My sister melted to the floor, tears running down her face in an exhausted spasm of fresh hysterics.  I could hear people in adjoining dressing rooms laughing.  I know they were poking their heads out when we left to get a peek at the new dressing room act that appears on Monday’s at three.  I can never go back there.  I swear.  I won’t anyway.  I’d rather stick a fork in my eye. . . or my sisters.

We walked the 400-mile maze of a mall from one large department store to another. Trying on, peeling off, laughing, crying, sweating, swearing. . .oh, that was just me, I guess.  I’d have better success finding the Holy Grail than a new dress.

The upshot is that we laughed more than it seems humanly possible. We’re both dehydrated. . .me from the flop-sweats in the dressing room, her from laughing so hard she cried.  I am grateful I had my sister to go shopping with.  I did not find a dress, but we had a blast.  I’m not going to try again for a while.  No one can make me. Not even my sister!

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Family Brunch

breakfast casseroleSunday, October 26, 2014

Today I am grateful that my sister is here and our local kids and grandkids are coming for brunch. I love cooking brunch because this troop loves to eat.

Bacon/Swiss cups, Veggie/cheddar casserole, 7-Up biscuits, apple cake, bacon, ham and John’s boring bacon and over easy eggs because he won’t eat any of that stuff, are my job. Patrick says he got carpal tunnel cutting fruit and Matt made an old fashioned apple pie topped with cheddar cheese.  Glad I weighed in on Friday!

I am very grateful to have a bunch of family together today so now I gotta go do it.

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Laundromat Chronicles – Three

Black man doing laundrySaturday, October 25, 2014

Today I am grateful for the third of the Laundromat Chronicles. I saw the most amazing man at the Laundromat.  No he wasn’t almost naked like the guy in this picture. . .I wish. . .but he was gorgeous.  This was the best picture I could find and it is lacking on a lot of levels.  All you single women out there stop hanging out at the bars and get to the Laundromat. . .on the weekend!  I’m serious!

He was tall, very tall, with the bone structure of a Native American and skin the color of a fresh, new chestnut right after you pop it out of its ugly green shell. And just as smooth.  I watched him for ten minutes, until some old woman, probably my age, starting gabbing at me.  Bitch!  Couldn’t she see I was busy staring?  Some people!

Not only was this guy drop-dead gorgeous, but he could fold laundry. Seriously.  His clothes were stacked up in perfect piles, with not one odd piece sticking out anywhere, not even on the fitted sheets!  And good looking.  Did I say that already? He should be a folding trainer for department stores.  And a model.

The nice thing about being crazy. . .er, creative. . .is that you’re never bored. My pea-brain twisted a nice little fantasy about him.  Probably a marine.  Only a marine would fold clothes with that much precision. Do I see a small stain on his shirt? An officer for sure.  Or a surgeon.  Yeah, that’s it, those long tapered fingers and huge hands (J) save lives. He should really wash that shirt. And maybe he has a wife and children.  No, I don’t want him married. He’s not married because he’s dedicated to his work. Maybe he’ll take his shirt off. Is he gay?  No.  He could be, but I reject that possibility. I bet he looks like Michael Strayhan without his shirt. Nice haircut, too.   Doesn’t he see that little spot on his shirt? C’mon, buddy!  No, he’s definitely straight and he’s at the Laundromat because his washer died, too and he wants to commiserate (that’s what they call it when you’re old) with a very nice, somewhat funny, more-than-pudgy, very white woman who. . .”

“What!?” I’m jerked out of my reverie by a poke on my arm.

“I said. . .” she was jabbing me with her long, bony, arthritic finger. “Do you know how to start this thing?” It was the older woman who was my age, who had apparently been talking to me.  Who knew? “I can’t start this thing.  I used to know how to do this when you put quarters in but now they have these stupid cards and I don’t know how to do it and I don’t know if this jacket can be washed because I left my glasses at my sister’s house and I see you have yours hanging on your shirt, so can you read this label for me, please and help me start this washer?”  Her bridge work clicked when she talked.

Poof! My fantasy collapses like Lot’s wife.  Oh well, at least I had it for a while.  What can possibly be next in the Laundromat Chronicles?

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Film Festivals

Friday, October 24, 2014

Today I am grateful for film festivals. The other day after a very successful meeting, a friend and I decided out of nowhere to take a run down to Philly and see if we could catch a few films during their festival.  What a blast.

We got there in time to see only two films. Both of us have made films so we were hoping to catch the “shorts”, but they weren’t running.  No matter.  The first film we saw was okay and actually had some pretty good looking scenes, but the whole thing didn’t tie together very well.  A good film is all about a good story.  Without it they’ll tank.  We had a lot to talk about.  You talk more when a film or play or book is bad than you do if it’s great.

That’s why there isn’t much to say about the second film because it was great. I think it was called The Last Five Years. Excellent!  It was about a young couple, told completely in song, with her beginning her side of the story at the end of their five-year relationship and him telling his side from the beginning.  Did you get that it was all in song?  Brilliant!  A few flaws with her pitch, but the story was tight and good and funny and emotional!  I could see it again and again.

So today I’m grateful for film festivals and I’m putting the one in Cannes on my bucket list!  See movies!Philly Film Festival-2014

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