Wednesday, October 31, 2007

It Felt Real To Me...

Since it's Halloween and all, I thought I'd share a particularly scary story, a true story, from when I was but a wee lass. I don't remember all the details, but I'll try my best.

As you all know, I was pretty much raised by my grandmother and Papi; they watched me and my cousin Minnie while our mothers worked their asses off in the big city. They also did not allow us to play outside because, you know, there were black people out there *shock shock, horror horror*, so we had what I suppose is called over-active imaginations. We had to; it was our only real form of entertainment (remember, back then there weren't as many channels on the TV as there are today).

My grandparents lived next door to an abandoned building- it was commonplace in the Bed-Stuy of the 70s and 80s- and our windows faced this building's windows and our living room shared a wall with this building. And of course in our little girl minds, this building was haunted.

Of course it was, why else would it be abandoned?

We swore that we could see ghosts in the windows, and that the mirror over the mantle in the living room was one of those two-way mirrors they have at police stations, and that evil-doers and monsters would watch us and plot evil ways to kill us. I really hated that mirror.

Papi and Grandmami lived in a railroad apartment; one of the bedrooms was a really tiny box tucked into the long hallway and, you guessed it, had a window that faced a window belonging to the abandoned building. Over the years that room belonged to a bunch of different people, but at the time this story takes place, it had bunk beds in it where Minnie and I would sleep.

Minnie usually had the bottom bunk and I had the top. One particular night, I don't think she was around, I slept on the bottom bunk. And the strangest thing happened.

I heard a female voice giggle. I looked around in the semi-darkness and saw no one, but I heard the giggle again. Then, if memory serves me correctly, I noticed the voice was coming from this life-sized clown we had, which was tucked away in the closet of the small-box-room. Then the female voice said, "Here, bite it," and from beneath the bed appeared a shiny/greasy hand with long red fingernails. I just laid there looking at this hand when she said again, "bite it!" with more force. So I did; I bit her stupid greasy hand.

Talk about shitting oneself... I don't know how, but the "flight" impulse took over my body and I high-tailed it out of that possessed room. My memory is fuzzy as to what I did next; I just remember running out of there scared to death.

Til this day Minnie hates when I tell that story, mainly because I can't confirm if it was a dream, hallucination or real. All I know is I remember hearing what I heard, seeing what I saw, and doing what I did.

Make of it what you will.
Happy Halloween!!!

*smooches...reaffirming my reasons for taking santeros seriously*
do you have
any scary tales to share?

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

The Universe Is Fucking With Me.

And not in a good way.

Can ya'll please explain to me why, in a city of three trillion, did I have to run into ex-boyfriend number 9, the very one I lost my virginity to, the one who left school under a sexaliciously scandalous cloud of controversy, on my way home from work?

And why did I have to look like I'd been run over by five Mack trucks two weeks ago and haven't slept since?

Doesn't Karma have other places to be? Other people to mess with? This jerky asshole went around spreading falsehoods about Lani to her ex- where's his punishment? Don-freakin'-Mattingly was NOT offered Torre's job...why is Steinbrenner still on top of the world? But lil ole me- I make fun of a few people, break a few hearts here and there, play practical jokes on my kids that scare them half to death just for kicks- me! I get punished?

First one ex tracks me down via a Google search, now another works like FOUR BLOCKS from where I work...who's next?? Leonardo? Johnny?

Not fair, Karma! Not fair at all!!!

*smooches...learning that it's NOT OK to leave the house without make-up*
but quietly, between you
and me
he's doing well for
and didn't look
half bad...

I'm Gonna Be A Girl For, Like, A Minute

So you all know that every year I go to LA for L's birthday, and every year we try to do it up. This year she is really working it, arranging for the party to take place in a swanky Beverly Hills hotel. And I just know that what I have in my closet will NOT suffice.

Sure, my bargain finds are okay for New York, where your clothes don't really matter so much as how you wear them, but in LA it's all about the labels. It's not what you wear but who you wear.

On that note, I did a quick search of my favorite designer, Ms. Nicole Miller, and came up with these two beauties as a possibility for the LA trip...

This strapless number for $420.00 (will the twins behave in this outfit? Do they ever?):

Or this flow-y number with the great print for $475.00:

And of course, no outfit on the LA party scene will be complete without a pair of Manolos; these will run me about $555.00:

God...I can't even fathom how many music reviews I will need to write to be able to afford this trip! I might just have to see what I can get on eBay or at Century21!!

*smooches...really mad at my bank account*

Saturday, October 27, 2007

It's Safe To Drink Again

No thesis packet is on its way to me; I misunderstood. I still have to edit it on my own and hope it turns out okay. Hope and pray and cry and drink.

How many shots of Tequila can I buy with $100??

* upset, but pushing forward nonetheless...with a drink in hand*
lately I've been thinking:
I'm tired of using other
people's words to say what
I want to say.

At least for this week...

Thursday, October 25, 2007

How Mad Will PETA Be?

I saw Heather wear this T-Shirt* on Dooce a while back and just had to have it:

Isn't it the coolest?

*smooches...pissing off the animal-huggers one vegetarian at a time*

*t-shirt courtesy of the fine people at

Isn't That Against City Zoning Laws?


Why did I see a townhouse on East 29th and Third Ave...with SIDING?!?! Are you kidding me? This ain't Queens, fool! You'd better get yourself to a home supply store and pick up some NOW!!

*smooches...shocked at the ugliness of siding in Manhattan*
(no poem- aluminum siding doesn't deserve it!)

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

If I Was A Character On Heroes...

I'm in the middle of getting some stuff in order at home and at work, planning a huge birthday bash in LA, and coming out of my self-imposed retirement (I haven't written an article in lord knows how long!) so I really don't have anything funny or juicy to report.

But last night my babies and I were watching Heroes online and found ourselves seriously coveting the characters' powers. There's one kid who can control machines with his mind (he helped himself to some loot from an ATM machine and hooked up the Pay-Per-View at his grandma's house), a guy who can fly, a girl who can heal and regenerate herself...I mean, I can go on and on with how freakin' AWESOME the characters' powers are.

My babies and I decided that, by far, the coolest powers belong to three characters:

1. Peter, because he can absorb other people's powers by just coming in contact with them, so in essence he potentially has ALL the powers

2. Monica, because she can "copy" anything she sees: karate moves, piano playing, etc. Can you imagine how many degrees I'd have by now with that power?

3. Sylar, because, dammit, he's bad-ass! He "collects" and "acquires" people's powers, but not like Peter because he has to kill someone in order to collect.

And that whole conversation with my babies got me thinking about my childhood, and how we weren't allowed to play outside as kids so we made our own fun inside. And when there wasn't anyone to play with I played by myself. And what I played at was witchcraft. Not the creepy "eye of newt" type of witchcraft where I sought revenge on those who had wronged me (that came later), but the "I can move things with my mind" or "I can astrally project myself to another place" witchcraft.

I've never really admitted this before, but as a kid I always had this sense that if I tried, I could tap into some super-human power that would make me different and special somehow. I'm sure everyone has had that dream...I suppose that's why I love the show so much- ordinary people with extraordinary powers.

As a pre-teen I immersed myself in books about the supernatural; the only time I actually wanted to read non-fiction. I specifically chose fiction books in the mystery or horror genre: Stephen King, Christopher Pike, Lois Duncan. I watched Bewitched and I Dream of Jeanie and the movie Carrie like a hundred times. I'd sneak into botanicas after school when I was supposed to be working. I was obsessed.

The icing on the cake was my trip to Salem, that creepy and mysterious witchy town that has always fascinated me. By the time I went I was pretty much over the fact that I didn't have any special powers, but still, I enjoyed communing with my poor, murdered Wiccan sisters.

So after years and years of falling in love with shows like Sabrina, the Teenage Witch, Buffy, the Vampire Slayer and Charmed, I have a new supernatural obsession: Heroes. And this one taps something inside me that's a little closer to home.

If I had my way, I think of all the powers on the show, I'd love to have Peter's. I'd hunt down all the other "heroes" and just touch them for a second and then have their same powers. It would be so cool. I would be so cool.

And my Girl Army would be so freakin' UNSTOPPABLE!

*smooches...wondering what powers my readers would want*
And the silken, sad, uncertain rustling of each purple curtain
Thrilled me—filled me with fantastic terrors never felt before;
So that now, to still the beating of my heart, I stood repeating
"'Tis some visiter entreating entrance at my chamber door—
Some late visiter entreating entrance at my chamber door;—
This it is and nothing more."

Monday, October 22, 2007

Please Please PLEASE!!!!

I just received a very promising email from the secretary at my school that implied that my thesis packet- all the missing line edits I've been waiting for for over a month- might have been sent to my mom's place in Jamaica instead of to me in Brooklyn.

She asked me for my current address and said I needed to make an official address change with enrollment services.

Could this mean the packet was returned to the school? Does this mean she's sending it to me now? And that it should be here by week's end? That I will not be forced to turn in work that isn't 100% for my final product??

I swear- and I've never been more serious about anything in my life since I signed my divorce papers- if this is the case, if that packet is in fact on its way to me, I'll give up alcohol until L's birthday in January. For REAL! I won't drink if I go out on Halloween. I won't drink when I go to DC to visit Mari NOR will I drink when I go visit Nina in Boston. It will be club soda with lemon from now until January 18th.

All I want is to turn in quality thesis work and have clean, polished stories I can shop around to the literary magazines I've been eyeing, and a nice piece of paper I can place in a frame to add to the others. That's all I want. And I want it more than any shot of Tequila or glass of whiskey.

I swear.

*smooches...willing to go cold turkey for my art*
(I'm too excited/anxious/nervous to look for a poem...)

Sunday, October 21, 2007

...And Then We Went To My Place To Read The Bible.

Ay ay ay...what a weekend. I feel like I type that phrase a lot, and I truly do aspire to the moment when I won't anymore. Because life in the fast lane is HARD for this recovering couch potato!

Friday night I had a second date with someone new; we'll call him Navy Guy. We went to a club/lounge in the City (yes- I actually left the comforts of Brooklyn and ventured back to the Manhattan nightlife!) that was actually really nice and kinda fun, with all the swank of what you'd imagine a City lounge would have and only 30% of the pretension. Actually maybe more like 40%...2 drinks came to a whopping $30; don't even get me started...

So Navy Guy is a taaaallllll drink of dark chocolate with beautifully brown bedroom eyes and- Jesus help me!- sexy tattooed arms. And when I say tattooed I mean TATTOOED, like lots of them, like enough to make my head spin. And when I say sexy I mean S-E-X-Y, like he could be in one of those calendars where the dudes are topless, in a waterfall, looking really hard at something in the distance.

But let me not give you the impression that he was just eye candy, because I know I have a bit of a rep for only wanting eye candy. We've had a few nice conversations before this and our first date, and actually had a nice chance to talk at the lounge in the roof section (which had a really nice view of the Empire State Building...such a perfect NY moment!). So it was like a real date.

I learned some more about his past (yes, Jack, I will give you the details as soon as you get back online!) and he of mine, and I found out that he's not much of a drinker because a couple of Ice Teas nearly knocked his ass out. But that's okay; contrary to popular belief I don't always have to drink. I can adjust to the speed of whomever I'm with at the moment.

We danced, drank, danced, joked on some people of the drunk variety (especially some dude who decided he was a Chippendale's dancer and took off his shirt!) and danced some more. And in the midst of all that I made note of the fact that 1) he smelled really, really nice, 2) I'm a little shyer than I let on and 3) he's a really good kisser. Like feel it in your everywhere good kisser.

Saturday, I blew off a brunch date to just sleep off my date and bask a bit in the really good night (and morning) I'd just had, eat some Indian food and enjoy a bit of a smoke in the comfort and privacy of my nice, clean and empty apartment. And because I had another date later on that evening.

That date was with someone I met about a month ago at the Sean Paul concert (along with a female I had assumed was his girlfriend) whom we'll call SVA Guy. I can't say that I was particularly attracted to him on first meeting- he's not hideous or anything, just didn't see him that way, but we'd had a couple of conversations and he seemed like an interesting person. So I agreed to meet him for a couple of drinks in The Village.

I know what you're thinking, but no, just because I spent the entire weekend partying in Manhattan it DOES NOT mean that I've abandoned Brooklyn, no way, Jose! Just, you know, a little change of pace every now and then does a body good.

We had a couple of drinks at a place on Sullivan Street (damn that place reminds me of the 90's!!) among the oh-so-annoying NYU crowd, and then moved on to a bar on the East Side that made really good french fries in the wee hours of the night/morning. The conversation was of the getting-to-know-you variety, nothing out of the ordinary, and he revealed that in a previous life (read: just a few years ago) he worked in the Hollywood scene, and I immediately asked if he'd ever met my sweet love, JC. But alas, no, he said he was never fortunate enough to have made John's acquaintance. And no, he didn't put it like that, but he should have.

I have to give him points, though, because I laid all my crazy out on the table, as I like to do as a test to see who's strong/cool/worthy enough to earn my friendship, and he was not plussed. Kudos to him.

Come Sunday, though, I have to admit, the drinking, etc, from this weekend just took its toll on me and I had to cancel my meditation date with Lani (who was not too heartbroken about it, either...what were YOU up to, Missy!?!?). Instead I just crashed HARD on my couch some time in the afternoon in the middle of last week's episode of Brothers and Sisters.

Did either of these dates end in junglistic, sweaty, orgasmic good times? A lady never tells. And neither do I.

But I will tell you this much, and I know I say this a lot, but for real this time: I'm getting too old for this shyt! My next free weekend, man, I'm just going to stay home, watch a JC movie marathon and knit myself a nice winter scarf!!!

*smooches...for the 200th time!!!*
...That flash, where white
Lets black get close, that dagger of not-quite contact,
Catspaw panic, quiver on the wheat
Field before thunder -
There. That's it. That's her own self, in paint, Splitting what she was from what she is. As if everything that separates, unites.

Friday, October 19, 2007

If I Ever Go Missing, Blame The Bush Administration

I swear, one of these days I will be hunted down and dragged from my bed in the middle of the night by "men in black" types for my wanton disregard for the government!

I have this habit of signing petitions to halt the current administration from drilling in the arctic, displacing animals like wolves and the such, pushing for global warming legislation, and most recently, allowing free travel to and from Cuba. I've even aligned myself with those locos at PETA during the whole Michael Vick situation. I'm ALWAYS fighting on the side of anti-Big Oil and Tobacco companies- I'm just asking for a beat down huh?

Not to mention I suspect my landlord is a member of Al-Qaeda...why is he always in the garage at 2AM?? Hmmmm...

I just know my name is on a list somewhere, and they're just waiting, biding their time until they bring me in and...god, I don't know, what do they do to folks like me? I've never bombed anything, or joked about bombing anything. I mean there was that time in college that me and a friend plotted to rob a cash checking place and then run away to Chile to avoid prison and our student loan repayments, but that's it!

Okay, maybe once in a while I talk shit about the government when I'm inebriated...who doesn't? This ain't DR circa 1955! It's not like the SIM is gonna come for me and take me to the cane fields and teach me to respect the Bushillato. Or are they?? Part of me kind of suspects that this is exactly the kind of administration we're dealing with- DON'T SLEEP! We just don't hear about it 'cuz they are that good.

I mean who do you think trains those bad asses killing folks all over the world, overthrowing governments left and right?

C'mon, we all know Bush and his peeps are MAD GANGSTA, and one day I'm going to be on the phone calling him and his dad country-ass pricks and then *BOOM* my door will be busted in by some S.W.A.T. folks and...that's it- no more Jaded NYer. Then they'll dump me somewhere in Da Heightz and, just like Dave Chappelle said, sprinkle some crack all over my dead body and call it a drug-related incident.

Country-ass bastard pricks!

*smooches...wondering if all that acid is fucking with my brain*
The tree is happy because it is scarcely sentient;
the hard rock is happier still, it feels nothing:
there is no pain as great as being alive,
no burden heavier than that of conscious life.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Building The Perfect Man

Remember that movie with John Malkovich, Making Mr. Right, where Malkovich's character builds an android in his likeness and hires a PR woman to make him more "human"? I was thinking about that movie on my way in to work, and how cool it would be to just make my own Mr. Right.

From 4th Street all the way to East Broadway, I thought about what elements I would add to my perfect guy, and actually smiled to myself at the possibilities. And I know you're DYING to know what I had on the list, so I'm gonna share it with you (I need to get my mind off that thesis debacle's either this or spend money I don't have on stuff I don't need).

If I decide to make a brotha (and most likely I would), or even spring for a Latino (eh...I can take 'em or leave 'em), they would either have very short to no hair (a shaved head is SEXY!) or really long hair ala Jr. Gong or Slash. Complexion is not a major issue, but I tend to gravitate to those in my own general coloring. But I've been known to go either way.

He would get really great lips. Like Morris Chestnut or this ex I had way back in the day, Johnny (boy... he had AMAZING lips!!). They'd be full but not over-power his face, and his kisses would be powerful but soft (like Johnny...). He'd have a nice chiseled jaw, but not cartoon-Batman-chiseled, 'cause that looks retarded. And he'd have ALL his teeth.

His eyes would be brown, but a soft brown, with flecks of amber in them. Light brown is nice, too. And he'd get an accent in a deep tone...a sexy West Indian or Spanish accent. Southern is OK, too, British maybe, French, eh, Italian, hell yeah! You get the picture...

He'd be reeeeaaaaaallllll tall. On this I can't and won't make any exceptions. 6'3" at least. And his physique would be similar to that of a football QB- muscular but on the smaller side. I don't care for the body-builder types that have no neck and can't bring their arms down to their sides- that's not cute. But you all know I'm a sucker for really sexy arms (especially if they're tattooed...hmmm, I'd definitely get my android tattooed...).

He would need to have really nice hands- big but soft (and clean!!). The kind that will fit nicely in mine and on the small of my back (for dancing).

The characteristics I'd give him...hmmm...well, ya'll know I'm kinda ghetto, so definitely I'd add some essence d'Tupac in him, to give him that slight thuggish attitude and swagger that is trez sexy, but not too much 'cause I ain't tryin' to get shot for no dude. Of course he'd be super intelligent and well-read, but not the type who holds it over you or uses words like "heretofore" or "vernacular" in casual conversations. Although I expect that he would know what those words mean and when it IS appropriate to use them in a sentence.

He'd have a great sense of humor, the kind that can appreciate a movie like Sideways and still laugh till it hurts at movies like Friday and Super Troopers. And he'd be artistically and musically inclined. Yes, both, dammit. It's my android and I can make him any way I want!

What else...oh not to get all TMI on ya'll but dude would be packin' something fierce- I'd have to shell out EXTRA DOUGH on that feature alone!! Packing enough that it will knock my insomnia on its ass every night- in both size AND girth. And most importantly? I'd make him sterile.

This guy, my perfect guy, Mr. (or SeƱor) Right is such a pipe dream that it's almost depressing, but the fun I'm having trying to find him is nothing to shake a stick at. At the very least, it generates GREAT blog posts!

Oh, and what if I wanted to make a white guy, you ask? Simple. I wouldn't make a white guy. No android can ever replace John Cusack, and he's pretty much the only Caucasian I want.

You totally saw that one coming, didn't you? LOL

*smooches...waiting and waiting and waiting*
How many loved your moments of glad grace,
And loved your beauty with love false or true,
But one man loved the pilgrim soul in you,
And loved the sorrows of your changing face;

Karma Found That Bullseye On My Forehead...

It's never a dull moment around here.

First, I lose a friend. That's something I'll probably mourn this weekend when I realize I can't just call him and say "Hey, what's up?"

But then, the USPS black hole hath swallowed up my thesis. That's right- the packet that my professors sent to me with line edits that were supposed to guide me in cleaning up my submissions for my MFA never reached me, even though it was mailed out on September 12th.

At first I wanted to blame my landlord, because I don't have a private mailbox- all the mail goes into one box and when it comes he sorts it and places it on a small table downstairs. It sucks, yes, and it's illegal I'm told, yes, but I'm not one to rock the boat when it comes to this apartment. I'm too aware of the fact that if I get evicted I have nowhere to go and no money with which to get there.

Then I had to realize that in the time I've been living here I've never NOT gotten my mail. Sure it sucks that he can see everything I get in the mail and I had to cancel my subscription to Hot Oiled Beefcake Magazine, but I always get my mail. So that leaves the USPS as the culprit. And the school for its negligence- I mean seriously, how hard would it have been to make copies OR mail out the packet with a freakin' confirmation of receipt postcard, just in case? I'm just sayin'...

But the final nail in my funky mood coffin- I didn't get this job I was really hoping I'd get. They went with someone who had a bit more experience, so they say, and I'm just wondering how much longer before I can finally enjoy what I do for a living?? How much longer before I wake up and am actually looking forward to my job? Because right now just hearing the train conductor announce my stop makes my stomach turn.

For the past few days I've actually made it to bed at a decent hour (read: before midnight) and have been able to sleep through the night, foolishly thinking that my insomnia was licked. "But no, not so fast there, Missy," Karma said to me earlier today. "You still owe me..."

*smooches...praying for a reprieve*
I avoided sleep for years,
up at night replaying evening news stories about
nearby jailbreaks, fat people
who ate fried chicken and woke up
dead. In sleep I am looking
for poems in the shape of open
V's of birds flying in formation,
or open arms saying, I forgive you, all.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

R.I.P., Mr. Baseball

Despite my hardcore Jadedness, it's always hard for me to cut someone completely out of my life. I'm a very empathetic person (I am, dammit!) and would hate to be kicked to the curb, so I try really hard not to have to go there with people, giving them chance after chance after chance. But some people just can't (or won't) be rehabilitated, and that's when I have to give them the boot.

Such is the case with Mr. Baseball.

I met him in January 2006, and in the beginning (as it always goes) he was cool people. We started hanging out and then became intimate, but then I met someone new who I liked better and asked me to stop seeing other people, so in April 2006 I told Mr. Baseball I just wanted to be friends. And that was fine with him.

We spoke once in a blue moon, and many times I hijacked his big screen TV to watch Degrassi or for my John Cusack movie marathons when he worked the late shift, using his Park Slope studio as a hideout when I wanted to escape my own crazy world for a bit.

But lately, more often than not, I've been noticing what a negative person he is, and how he likes to talk down to me and sometimes catches a pretty nasty little attitude with me. Unprovoked!

Today we met for lunch after not hanging out or seeing one another for almost a month, and it was the same thing- within a millisecond of meeting up he starts in with his flippant attitude, and it seriously took all my strength and composure to not turn around and just go back up to my office. However, I don't like to cause a scene in public so I didn't. But if ever there was a drink-in-your-face moment, that was it.

So just now, before I started typing this, I sent him his Dear Mr. Baseball email. Callous and cowardly, I know, but whatever. I'm too through with that fool, so an email is all I had time for.

And I tell you what- if The Haitian (previously known as Mr. DJ) don't start acting right, he's next!!

*smooches...deleting a name from my little black book*
(no poem for this post...
not in the mood)

When Single Moms Attack

Last month I joined a Yahoo Group for single parents in the Park Slope area, figuring I should really try and meet other parents in the nabe, get my kids involved in shyt, be a grown-up...that kind of stuff.

What the hell was I thinking?

Obviously I forgot that although I am a very good mom, I come from the Anti-parenting school of child rearing, and am not one of these super-sensitive, over-protective, hovering, organic-within-an-inch-of-their-lives Park Slope parents. You know the type: "Blake has karate on Tuesdays and on Wednesday we go to the Farmer's Market for that organic rhubarb pie he loves so much, then we go home and talk about our day...he's like my best friend."

I hate that shit. My kids are fed, groomed, housed, clothed, taught life lessons and occasionally, when they deserve it, we'll have take-out Fridays or a movie night or a crazy dance party and make-over nights. But we're NOT best friends. We are parent and child, period, and TRUST me- they understand the difference!

Recently, one of parents on the forum recently posted that she was going through some isht and then someone else suggested a small gathering to hang and relax and hash things out, but offered up a Monday night time. Well that got everybody's panties all in a bunch because it was a non-kid-friendly event.

Now I can't go either- Monday at 8PM the last thing I want to do is talk about ex husbands and wives and the whole "woe is me" aspect of it. But some parents got all in a huff because their precious Blakey-poos weren't invited. Um, hello? If I'm gonna sit around and talk sensitive adult matters I really do not want kids around. It's not appropriate. So I kindly declined and said I couldn't make it- no explanation, just can't make it. Other parents felt the need to go into why they feel personally attacked at having to choose between their kids and an event.

If you can't/won't go, then just don't! Why the drama? Did I really need to be all distressed by your retarded message board post so early in the morning? I'll be damned if I let some kids dictate what I do...

*smooches...wondering if Park Slope is really the place for me*
And now: it is easy to forget
what I came for
among so many who have always
lived here
swaying their crenellated fans
between the reefs

and besides
you breathe differently down here.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

I Can't Stay Mad At You...

Even though I lamented all the know-how I've lost out on by hanging out in Brooklyn, there's no way I can stay mad at my beloved borough.

I chaperoned a school trip for N.'s class to Brooklyn Bridge Park this morning, and the view just reminded me why I put up with my landlord and that damn F-train!

Winter, too cold to write
on the bolts of the beams
in the bridge steel
overlooking whole auroras
of Sangsara sun dusk
down by the Statue of Liberals holding
soon to be lighted
torch to the dim dank
Atlantic famous sky
where Greek ships plow
thru sullen waves of iron
bringing tons of rusty junk
to be pressed into bales
and left on waterfronts
of splinter
I would I were a wave
and had vanished now
than bawl and blot
with pencils in screaming
rooms here on earth
so fool stupid blind

Monday, October 15, 2007

I've Lost My Internal City Map...and Other Musings

My weekend in a nutshell...

The Cold, Hard, Blubbery Truth
I have fallen off the wagon hardcore, man! I've gained back almost 10lbs of the weight I so proudly shed not too long ago, and it shows! Clothes that fit me beautifully just a couple of months ago now struggle to fasten. It's completely embarrassing. But that's it, I cannot go around looking like this; I've got my annual Cali trip in January and PR in May coming up. And the jelly belly is NOT invited.

I've Lost My Internal City Map
Used to be I knew the UWS and The Village like the back of my hand. Those were my stomping grounds and I knew every shop on every corner and where to get the best hot chocolate on any street. But I suppose moving to Brooklyn and hanging out with other Brooklyn-ites and basically only leaving this borough to go to work has had a nasty little side effect- I don't know where anything is anymore.

Saturday I took the babies to the Children's Museum on W83rd, and K decided that she wanted stuffed shells for dinner. So I suggested we go to Carmine's, one of the best family-style Italian restaurants I know. But god damn if I couldn't find it! I walked all the way down to 57th before I gave up and just took them to the Brooklyn Diner (at least I still know where THAT is!) for burgers.

I've got to cross the bridge more often...

Are You Happy Now, Irene?
My mami and tia and I were not able to get any tickets to see Joel Osteen at MSG this weekend...all they had were seats behind the stage. Can MSG PLEASE explain to me WHY they sell seats BEHIND the stage? It's so freakin' ri-DUN-culous! I suppose Sunday's meditation will have to suffice for my soul cleansing.

Technites Do It With Precision
Sunday morning Irene and I went to a Brooklyn Tech HS alumni breakfast, just for kicks, and guess what?? The final piece to my "missing friends" puzzle just showed up and sat at our table! It felt like a Festivus miracle! Gus- or rather Satan, as we called him- was my lab-partner-in-crime...we terrorized classmates and teachers alike, and when I moved to Buffalo after graduation, he was one of the few people I actually missed.

But there he was, all grown-up and married with a job and stuff!

And on a side note, can I please talk about how crazy BIG my HS was? We had like thousands in our graduating class. So I wasn't surprised that the other Class of '93 attendee, Michael Tom, was someone I'd NEVER heard of...

Silly as it sounds, I feel so complete now, like things are coming back to me that were mine but I carelessly lost. I loved my friends dearly, and HS for me was a BLAST. And well, seeing Gus made up for the fact that all they had as breakfast meat at this shindig was swine!

Church Just Got Even Creepier...
...if that's even possible! After the alumni breakfast I went to meet my mami at her church (she had my babies) but got there too early. So I had to sit in on the sermon. I took a quick nap, but woke up just in time for the closing prayer where some guy said- and I kid you NOT:

"Lord, help us to die every day. Help us to lose our identity in this kingdom, and to die and live again in the next."

WTF? Has he been sippin' some of Michael Jackson's Jesus Juice? That's the CRAZIEST shit I've EVER heard!

*smooches...kinda glad that Joely-bear was sold out...*
If I were to live my life
in catfish forms
in scaffolds of skin and whiskers
at the bottom of a pond
and you were to come by
one evening
when the moon was shining
down into my dark home
and stand there at the edge
of my affection
and think, "It's beautiful
here by this pond. I wish
somebody loved me,"
I'd love you and be your catfish
friend and drive such lonely
thoughts from your mind
and suddenly you would be
at peace,
and ask yourself, "I wonder
if there are any catfish
in this pond? It seems like
a perfect place for them."

Friday, October 12, 2007

I Will Become The Best Me Or Die Trying

Joel Osteen is coming to Madison Square Garden next weekend. And guess who's going with their mami and tia? That's right bitches, I'm going to hear my boo dish out the inspirational and motivational speeches he's known for. And what of it?

Listen, don't get all nervous- I'm not saying I'm gonna turn into a Jesus freak and start protesting at abortion clinics and give up alcohol (although my liver would probably really thank me!), but this slovenly life of debauchery I've been living can't have a good ending to it, so I'm trying to make positive changes. This does not change my feelings on organized religion or my belief that it fucks people's heads up; I'm merely going for the pep talk.

Not to mention that the day after Joely-bear and I hang out, Lani and I are attending a meditation event in the City.

God (no pun intended), I need this shyt so bad, readers. My spirit is broken, ripped to shreds and left in the gutter somewhere in Riverdale, and I need to learn how to mend it ASAP. Being the Jaded NYer is fun and all, and I do get a kick out of it, and it helps my writing, but dammit it's exhausting! Just once I'd like to accept a compliment without rolling my eyes. Or face an obstacle without locking myself in the bathroom to throw a crying hissy-fit because "things NEVER go my way!" Just once.

And seeing Joely-bear and shutting the god damn voices in my head once and for all seem like a good way to start.

*smooches...on my way...where? I'll know when I get there...*
All wholsom food is caught without a net or a trap.
Bring out number weight & measure in a year of dearth.
No bird soars too high, if he soars with his own wings.
A dead body, revenges not injuries.
The most sublime act is to set another before you.
If the fool would persist in his folly he would become wise.
Folly is the cloke of knavery.
Shame is Prides cloke.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

I Left YOU, Remember?

When it comes to my divorce, I have absolutely no doubt in my mind that it was the right thing to do. Maybe I should have done it sooner- that's the only minor regret I have there- but otherwise I'm 100% happy and satisfied with my decision.

So when my ex-husband announced that he met someone and it has bloomed into a serious relationship, sure it made me feel like a loser for not having someone myself, but I never begrudged him his girlfriend. I'm glad he found someone. Now my guilt over dumping his ass can just melt away. And now when he has other family emergencies or "down days," or when his diabetes gets a hold of him, it can be HER problem and not mine. When he emailed me a meek little email to tell me about his woman, I remember thinking: THANK YOU JESUS- I'm FREE!!!

This weekend Bryant Park is hosting Culture Fest, an event we used to attend as a family, and he asked what day I was going because he was going to go on Saturday with his girlfriend and didn't want things to get awkward.

For whom, sweetie? Maybe for you. Or her. And yeah, probably for the girls. But PU-LEESE do not worry your pretty little head over bumping into me when your lady is around. I am soooooo not hatin' on her my dear, because I still have very vivid memories of what I left behind.

And while I'm still swimming in the murky waters of casual hook-ups, pining over the dude I dated after you and strutting around in faux-relationships with dudes I've met in bars and on the internet, I would not go back to that for all the tequila and tostitos on the planet.

So please. Don't worry. It's okay to bring her to Bryant Park. Yes, I did get New York City (and Montauk!) in the divorce settlement, but you still have visitation rights!

* my life 99.9998% regret-free*
forgive me if i laugh
you are so sure of love
you are so young
and i too old to learn of love.

the rain exploding
in the air is love
the grass excreting her
green wax is love
and stones remembering
past steps is love,
but you. you are too young
for love
and i too old.

once. what does it matter
when or who, i knew
of love.
i fixed my body
under his and went
to sleep in love
all trace of me
was wiped away

forgive me if i smile
young heiress of a naked dream
you are so young
and i too old to learn of love.

Why Did I Just Let Out A Sigh Of Relief?

I'm reading about the shooting at that high school in Ohio, and I'm noticing that all the kids huddled together were black. So my first thought was Dammit! The Man has infiltrated our kids and now we're starting to shoot up schools, too!

But then I read the full report in today's news article...and come to find that Asa Coon, the shooter, was white.

I don't mean to get racial on ya'll but let's face it- when a black kid comes to school with a gun, he's not gonna take down random people just because. He knows the exact muthafucka that's gonna get a cap in his ass, for real, and that muthafucka knows exactly why he's getting shot. But for some reason, it seems to be all the rage with angry white boys to just open fire and take as many people down as possible. WTF white boys? Why ya'll so mad?

Now in this particular case, Asa had serious mental issues (according to the news), but then again, anybody who thinks it's okay to open fire on a crowd because their having a bad day has to more than a little "touched." And I like how the article stressed that Asa wore a Marilyn Manson t-shirt on the day of the shooting, and that he "worshipped" Manson and not god. Here we go again. I personally don't care for Manson as an artist- he fell off a long time ago in my book- but damn! Must every crazy shooter invoke his name?

Thankfully, those shot were only injured, and the only casualty was Asa himself. But can I make a request to the Asa's of the world?

Boo, if you feel like this world is shit, and you don't want to be in it anymore, then don't. Do yourself in. But can you leave the rest of us be? I mean damn! Get a grip, people!!

*smooches...wondering how hard it would be to home school my girls*
And there are corpses,
feet made of cold and sticky clay,
death is inside the bones,
like a barking where there are no dogs,
coming out from bells somewhere, from graves somewhere,
growing in the damp air like tears of rain.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

"...But You've Never Been With THIS Man..."

This past weekend was the weekend to end all weekends so far this year. Every other weekend I've had- the crazy Red Hook incident, Sean Paul, D.C. with Mari; all were no match for this past weekend...when NINA came to visit...

It all started off innocently enough; I stayed in Friday night and cleaned up my place a bit, watched some Gilmore Girls and caught up on Entourage, Weeds, 30 Rock, Degrassi TNG and Ugly Betty. A lot of TV for someone who has no TV...I know...

Saturday afternoon, Nina shows up and it's like she never left, as if it hadn't been 2+ years since I'd laid eyes on MY OWN COUSIN and we sit and shoot the shit for a while before I take her to my Mexican place to feast on the enchiladas that have captured my soul. We touched base with Lani and Irene in preparation for the night's festivities and headed home to get ready.

Our first stop was the Brooklyn Museum, which was hosting Target's First Saturdays (a program of great FREE activities offered on the first Saturday of every month) and had a Caribbean theme. Although someone forgot to tell the DJ at the dance party, because he kept spinning hip-hop the whole time!

While I gulped my red red wine (OH NO!!) and bopped my head to the funky fresh beat, I spotted this Asian guy, sooooooo into the groove that I just HAD to shove Nina into him so that they could dance. And Nina being Nina, she danced with him. And talked to him. Highlights from their conversation include his absolute fascination with her dress, his telling her that his name was Cheyenne, with a C, and an outright marriage proposal. No lie. PLUS, he introduced us to the BEST pick-up line we've EVER heard...

Cheyenne with a C: Have you ever been with a man?
Nina: Yes
Cheyenne with a C: But you've never been with this man!

How do you even respond to that? We decided to leave before Cheyenne with a C started picking out their China pattern, and went back to Lani's place so she could change shoes. Because it was Saturday night and my kids were gone. So of course that means we were going to Bembe.

At Bembe, I was happy to see Medina on the ones and twos, and the place was crazy packed. We met up with Irene, got some drinks and headed downstairs where the temperature is always a deadly 125 degrees and started shaking our groove thangs. And me especially because for some reason it occurred to me that the twins needed to make an appearance that night. And what an appearance it was. After about 30 minutes we lost Lani to a hot n tall dread-lock rasta. Nina looked at Irene and I and stated, "And then there were three." We continued to dance and sweat; I ordered another round of mojitos; we danced and sweated out our 'dos some more. Then, in the blink of an eye, Nina got snatched up by a short Ecuadorian, Santiago, who was really really interested in spending more time with her and "getting to know her better." But Nina never leaves the house without her escape clause: I'm leaving for Boston on Monday and then DR on Wednesday. She's like my hero.

And then there were two.

But the heat was really getting unbearable. Bembe, you see, is a small venue. And it only works if there is a healthy flow- both in AND out- of people. On this night, however, people were coming in in droves, but weren't leaving! Irene had had enough. She decided to go home and Nina and I walked her out. We hung out there for a bit, plotted evilness, and then walked Irene to her car. On the way back in Neil, a bouncer I've never seen there before, caught my eye. But dammit if I didn't chicken out of asking him out!

Once back inside Santiago was trying to convince Nina that they should really spend the night together when all of a sudden Medina played some Juan Luis Guerra, and if you're Dominican you naturally get up out yo' seat and dance. Me and the twins danced with another fellow Dominican, A.J. from New Jersey, and I turned around to find Nina dancing with someone new: Danilo, from Rhode Island, A.J.'s cousin.

So we're rocking out to Juan Luis and then Medina transitions into some old school dancehall reggae, and c'mon, you know what THAT music does to people. I did a quick assessment of my girls, to make sure they were OK: Lani was still with her rasta-mon and Nina had ditched Santiago for good and continued to dance with Danilo. With everyone present and accounted for I continued dancing with A.J., who was convinced that it was OK to 1) put his tongue down my throat, 2) move his hands slowly down to my crotch, and 3) rub his hard-on on me. But no, it wasn't okay. I just wanted to dance, not get molested. I made a mental note to NEVER bring the twins to Bembe ever again!
Nina and I went back outside for more air, with the full intention of going back in. But when we saw that crowd thicken we just knew it was time to go. We went to check on Lani who said she was staying with rasta-mon (more power to her...that crowd was giving me claustrophobia!) and then headed to the Kellogg for breakfast:

We had oh so much fun. Good good fun. And I'd only drank ONE red red wine and TWO mojitos. The rest of the night I was working with bottled water.

Then came Sunday.

Nina and I walked 7th Avenue looking for something yummy for brunch, and found a cool little Italian spot a block away from the Haagen Dazs, next to that school where they always hold the flea market. Mimosas were had (Drink no. 1). Then we walked through the Slope and into Crown Heights before heading over to Irene's to play with Miss Olivia:

Then Nina and I decided that, since I still had to work on Monday and she had to drive back to Mass., we weren't going to do it up that night. So I figured we'd call Lani, meet up at Reis, throw back a few cold ones and be home by 3AM. Yeah...right...because that's how my nights out always end up...

Nina and I started with a beer each (Drink no. 2); Lani was already downstairs with her rasta-mon (who I then learned was named Sean) and owning the pool table as usual. We sat around, joked, talked, just had a nice Sunday night going. Then after Sean left (he had a previous engagement to attend) Lani's pool partner (Calen?) brought up the fact that the last time he was at Reis Lani was mean to him and almost got into a fight with his friend. I reminded Lani that it was the night Canarsie Boy was with us, and we had a good laugh at how Calen's friend almost had this teeth knocked the fuck out that night.

People were coming and going and still we sat, talking and drinking. I went up for a round of tequila and more beer (Drink no. 3 & 4). Still we sat and chatted, got the jukebox going and turned Reis into a right proper night club. Then we saw some other patrons come in with pizza, and you didn't need to tell us twice that a pizza shop was open- we made a B-line for Joe's (on 5th and 11th) and ordered a pie for us and our new friends. And when we got back ordered more beer for ourselves. (Drink no. 5).

At some point in the evening, I remember Calen buying us two more rounds of tequila (Drink no. 6 & 7), and we invited him to my birthday celebration in Puerto Rico's Culebra Island (ya'll can come, too) in May. By this time we got the last call announcement from the bartender, who by now I knew as Jeff. That happens when you stay at a bar so get to learn the bartender's name. And it just so happened that Calen the pool shark was friends with Jeff the bartender, and another gentleman by the name of Allen (see ladies, I finally remembered!), some artist dude. We played a few more tunes on the jukebox when the guys were asking, "What are ya'll doing now?" OK, so maybe they didn't say ya'll, but go with it, ok?

And we're all like, "well, we're going home." They were trying to find another open bar so we could all hang some more, and that's when tequila shot number three spoke through me and said, "we can all go chill at my place, but you just have to keep the noise down." So Lani hopped her bike, we grabbed a cab, made a pit stop at a deli for more libations (Drink no. 8, 9 & 10) and TOSTITOS (thanks, did you know?) and headed to my tiny tiny apartment. All six of us. In my tiny tiny apartment.

We whipped out the cards ASAP and I was instantly transported to Alfred because we started to play asshole...I forgot how much I love that game. I was vice-pres and distinctly remember telling someone to drink "for sassing me." It was AWESOME. Then Lani was vice-pres and ordered Nina to drink "heavily." We were all drunk with power. It's the beauty of asshole.

The rest of the night, unfortunately readers, is forever locked in the vault. We all agreed and I'm a gal of my word. What I can offer you are these crazy highlights, which are more like inside jokes for me, Lani and Nina, but still, I think they are funny. And if you don't...oh well:

"Does that sombrero say 'Corona' on it?"

"Mental note: bleach couch cushions..."

"I have to cleanse this place of the sin you brought..."

"Um, ladies, what was my dude's name again?"

Needless to say, but I'm gonna say it even though I don't have to, I was two hours late for work Monday morning, Nina barely made it to Mass. in one piece but had to stop a few times to throw cold water on her face, and Lani crashed on my couch until I got home from work.
Like I said, most awesomest weekend EVER to date.

Until, that is, Lani and I go up to Mass. to visit Nina...

*smooches...seriously amazed that I remembered ANY of that*
I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I--
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

Friday, October 05, 2007

My Antibodies WILL Kick Your Ass!!

Dear Cold/Flu/Allergy Germs/Bugs:

I am not a human to be fucked with. You cannot just come up in MY body and expect to set up shop unnoticed. Nuh-uh, no way, NOT GONNA HAPPEN.

All year I worked hard to build up my immune system. Somebody should've warned you: I'm not going down without a fight! I've got my ammunition at the ready, and you WILL fail.

So consider this your one and only warning. Leave now, and nobody gets hurt. Keep insisting on hindering my ability to breathe freely and there will be consequences and repercussions the likes of which will make your great-great grandchildren cry.

That is all.

Sincerely Yours,
The Jaded NYer

*smooches...not letting ANYTHING ruin my weekend*
spring is like a perhaps
Hand in a window
(carefully to
and fro moving New and
Old things,while
people stare carefully
moving a perhaps
fraction of flower here placing
an inch of air there)and

without breaking anything.

Thursday, October 04, 2007

The Best... things in the City.

Ya'll know I'm broke as a joke (why do people say that? Are jokes really that broke?), but I love to eat and drink and party. Put those three things together and you got one very thrifty Jaded NYer.

But why should I have all the free fun? Here's the free stuff I know about. I'm sure this is just 1/1000000000th of the free things out there!

There are a ton of "no cover" type dance clubs in the boroughs, but Lower Manhattan also has a host of them. Try Bembe in Williamsburg; Gonzalez y Gonzalez in NoHo (only on the weekends); and Plan B (LES).

Movie Junkies:
OK, so this might be slightly immoral and 100% illegal, but I've "heard" that if you go to the 84th Street (and Broadway) movie theater, you can see two films for the price of one. How? Security is pretty lax at the Upper West Side flick house, so you just it.

Some of the museums around the city also sponsor free film screenings, as does the City Parks Department (mostly in the summer).

Other alternatives include getting on Time Out New York's or the NY Film Academy's mailing list (they offer free pre-screenings from time to time), and logging on to or Yeah, this is also shady and probably illegal, but hey, it's how I saw The Black Dahlia and realized what a piece of crap it was. Imagine if I'd paid money for it? I'd be pissed!!!

Here's where myspace comes in handy. "Friend" MySpace Secret Shows and you'll be alerted of surprise secret shows by today's newest, hottest acts. This does not include the Kanye's and Madonna's of the world, but still, a free concert is a free concert!

So maybe you can't get an entire meal for free in the city, but Whole Foods usually has samples all day. Eat enough of these tiny bite-sized yummies and you'll be good until you get home...and heat up the Ramen.

Also, find arty friends. And then go with them to art openings. There's always alcohol, and if you're lucky: food!! You can even attend the BFA shows at the trillion art schools around the City. If it's one thing I learned at Alfred is that student art shows always have the best food!

If you can't find anything that tickles your fancy in my suggestions, then log onto: If you can't find something fun and free to do on that site, then you're a picky little brat. I'm just sayin'...

*smooches...saving every penny for my brownstone*
a solace of ripe plums
seeming to fill the air
They taste good to her

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

That's Just My New York Face

Dear Black Men of NYC:

Please stop asking me to smile.

I am not an angry person; I love to laugh and have a good time. Ask anyone. I'm all about the jokes. Hell, if it wasn't for a severe case of stage fright, I'd be cooning it up at open mic nights all over the comedy clubs of Manhattan. But that's neither here nor there.

If I'm walking around the city by myself, and I appear to have a scowl on my face, it's not because I wish to cause anyone bodily harm or because I'm unhappy in any way, shape or form. Usually I'm either deep in thought about what I've done, will do or need to do on any given day. I live in my head and in order to function I put up some facial armor in order to be left alone with my thoughts and get around unnoticed. Especially in this crazy city of killers, rapists and muggers.

This does not mean that you need to call me out in front of all the Anglos, who now think I'm that typical "angry black chick" because I rolled my eyes at you for calling me out. And it ABSOLUTELY does NOT mean you can grab my elbow with your "hey mami" and "why you so mad" commentary.

It just means I want to be left alone. And no amount of "c'mon, let me see your beautiful smile" will change my face. If anything, it will make me mad and force me to give you the stink eye.

And trust me: you don't want to get the stink eye. It comes with a shank to the neck.

*smooches...just trying to make it through the day in one piece*
Does my sassiness upset you?
Why are you beset with gloom?
'Cause I walk like I've got oil wells

Pumping in my living room.


Mami: Was N happy with her Mentos?

Me: Are you kidding? She had that AND a cookie as soon as I pulled it out of the bag!

Mami: Ay… tienen hambre mis muchachitas.

*smooches...learning that Dominican moms are on a mission to over-feed...*
Ellos comen cuando pueden
pero por ellos comemos cuando queremos

Reminders That I Am Alive...

...and that I need to slow the fuck down. After so so much activity and late nights and partying and stressing at work and writing til the wee hours of the morning, my body is crying, "No MAS!"

These are the big neon signs I'm getting:

~My head feels all floaty, as if I'm high off that stickiest of the icky...

~My throat is scratchy and is making my voice do weird things.

~I'm tired. I went to bed before midnight the last four nights. In a row. And slept through the night.

~My body aches. Like when I used to have that personal trainer and he'd make me carry that bitch ass 12lb bar all over Riverdale.

~I'm craving soup. Really hot soup. And tea. And Vick's vapor rub.

Boy, I tell ya, this flu is trying its darnedest to grab a hold of me and knock me out, but thanks to a summer of semi-good living, and roughly three years of a pharmaceutical-free existence (pot doesn't count!) my body is fighting back on its own.

Only trouble is, we're not used to fighting, and the effort is wiping us out. I barely have the strength to finish typing this post.

*smooches...on my way to the deli to buy hot water for my Theraflu...*
Because I could not stop for Death,
He kindly stopped for me;
The carriage held but just ourselves
And Immortality.

Monday, October 01, 2007

Fucking Mets!

How hard is it to freaking hold on to a goddamn lead? I mean seriously! How much more do they expect me to put up with? Are the Mets the new Red Sox? Will I be in my 80's before I see another World Series win for my team?

Fuckin' choke-masters!

But as usual, there's always next year...every Mets fan can relate...

* sick of that refrain*