Friday, November 30, 2007

St. Andrew's Day

9754 Steps

St. Andrew's Day came and went without much fanfare. And just how much fanfare is it supposed to get? My brother did send me a nice electronic Happy St. Andrew's card which I appreciated more than I would have thought.
In 1976 I took Andrew as my confirmation name in honour of this saint. I remember when I was 6 (dear reader notice where some frightful patterns started to develop) and in first grade at Our Lady of Mercy Grammar School in Mrs. Jebe's class, I heard that when I was going to be 13 I would be confirmed, slapped across the face by a priest and forced to choose a confirmation name. I can't remember if this was before or after I found out my classmate Marco Flores was born in a another country and I was just born in stinky San Francisco and no place remarkable like Mexico City. I was so angry at my mum because she could have gone back to Scotland to have us on the National Health and chose to just scar us for life instead by having us locally and unexotically.

Both events would set a tone for the rest of my life:

1. I always wanted to be from somewhere else.
2. Fear of choosing

The way I saw it at 6 was that I had only 7 years to figure out the exact right name to have for the rest of my life. Though I had not even been on the planet for 7 years, I knew it was going to go by in a flash. We were supposed to chose the name of a saint we wanted to model our lives after. OH. MY. GOD. My "Lives of the Saints" book had so many eligible candidates. How in the Down Below was I going to pick? My mum who was probably doing something self-involved at the time like folding sheets told me when I confronted her with this to not worry as I had a long time to go before I had to think about it. I remember she said the same thing about shaving.

It got worse. When 13 rolled around and I was the valedictorian of the school, had two plays that I wrote and mounted in the church hall, published and ran a newspaper and was hot off winning the bunny drawing contest beating out Chris K, the self-proclaimed artist of our class, and now I had to chose that name. The time so long off had arrived. It was almost like that witch who tells Sleeping Beauty's parents that in so many year's time she would prick her finger on a spindle and fall asleep for eternity and now it was pay up time. So now it was time to pick that damned name. My mother lied - 7 years went by faster than I could know and the velocity of time was just revving up. Damn and then you are going to hit me with puberty? I have homework and basketball and band practice, I don't have time for all this. I am going to have to shave soon. I don't want to shave.

The priest told us that being confirmed meant we were adults in the church and were choosing Catholicism as our one true religion. He told us it was a big step and suggested it was irreversible. Adults at 13? Choosing a name be damned, I am not ready to be an adult in anything. Being the smartest kid in the school I knew the choice was to refuse to be confirmed. I would pull a Norma Rae in the pew and not go up. I was going to tell my parents that I was going to wait until I was sure about being a Catholic for life. Then I remembered SHAME. My poor parents would have to face the McCarthy's and the Sullivan' s and the Arata's knowing their kids were all fine upstanding Catholic adults and my parents had a son who was going to be in his 20s and still reading Bible stories with pictures. I couldn't handle the pressure. So I thought my protest would be to chose a really weird Saint's name like Meirad or Anskar. But instead I buckled as was my developing pattern and chose St. Andrew in honour of Scotland and because he was crucified sideways in honour of Jesus. IN my mind that combated SHAME with a double word score choice. My dad still managed to be ashamed of me because I didn't chose his name. Oh well.

So now I am an adult in the church with a name that I spent years on and no one ever asks for on any form. While other Catholic adults are bringing their own Gifts from God into the fold and washing their little brains with Catholic love, I have essentially never left high school spiritually. I am passed out in the crèche with beer cans strewn at the feet of the Three Wise Men. And I am unshaven.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Central Park South

8322 Steps

I went to the dentist today. I wanted to get my cleaning in before year end. I looked for a dentist close by my work and on my insurance. I found a Dr. Berman on Central Park South in a manner that was just one step up from throwing a dart at a board of dentist's names. Not the best way to go, but I had a timing issue. When I went into the lobby of the building facing the park, it felt so posh in a retro way like going into 450 Sutter when I was a kid in San Francisco. It wasn't so posh inside the office. It was kind of depressing in that way that nothing had changed in 30 years. Like the tape on stuff was probably yellowing and decor was updated during Nixon. Just another dentist office with a real disinterested front desk girl and a too much personality lifer running the front office, but at least she made me feel welcome unlike the vacant girl.

I got cleaned by Igor. No joke. That was the dental hygienist's name. Igor. Dr. Von Berman came in after and I was shocked because he was old as dirt. I only say that because I Googled him and read his New York Times wedding announcement. I felt odd knowing all about his wife and parents. He is from Woodland Hills, CA. We didn't get to talk about that because he never asked me anything though he went on about how he thought he knew me. I told him that he didn't and that I have that face. Which is true. I have that face.

I was not surprised at all when he noticed the recession in my gums. I was waiting for it. But he wanted the periodontist to look at it and something told me that I should stop this. But I didn't. The periodontist provided that other shock. Well, not really. It is no longer a shock. He was my age. All doctors eventually are my age. He looked and said I needed some grafting in 3 areas and that they would take photos, etc. I decided to put the breaks on and said that I needed to know what costs I was looking at first. And something else told me that just by Dr. My Age entering the room and opening up my mouth like he was inspecting his horse- that the costs had already begun. WHY did I not say that I didn't want him to look at my mouth because I have shitty insurance and I would not pay out of pocket what they would propose so why don't we just give me a nice toothbrush in the color of my choosing and I will deal with recession when I am out of my personal financial one. But I didn't. They cut me a deal. It would be $1610 for 3 areas which is the cost of two. It would be a graft from the roof of my mouth and then he would shore up my gums. I told them I would pass for now and I had to pay $76 dollars just for that. Not a lot, but it was a waist of money because I knew I would not do what they proposed right now. What part of me let them do something that cost me money that I knew was not going to happen? One for the shrink, but she costs more that $76.

This morning I was walking by Lincoln Center and the sun was just coming up. The lighting at that time of the morning is really something. It almost seems private as so many people never see it. The trees by the Julliard School had their Christmas lights still on and it looked so beautiful. I stopped and took a photo. While construction workers were watching me. And businessmen. If I am willing to that, why am I not will to say NO PERIODONTIST TODAY PLEASE.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Folks Vegan

I just had the most wonderful evening tonight. Totally unexpected. A few days ago I was asked if I wanted to complete a foursome for dinner since someone cancelled. It was 3 people from work and I thought it would be nice to say yes and go. I am so glad I did.

Here is what it was, where it was and this is what I ate: ( I'll meet up with you after you have read it.)

A Year of Multi-Cultural, Vegetarian-Friendly Feasts
with author & guest chef MYRA KORNFELD &
ROMAN ROTH, sustainable Long Island winemaker


ancho-mole sauce, pumpkin seed pesto, cippolline en agrodulce & beer-braised brussel sprouts.



COUNTER. earthfriendly WINE. bistro. BAR.
105 first avenue
November 28, 2007

Seems the ladies I was with have all taken a cooking class from her. Well, the food was amazing. Really good. We even got her latest cookbook to take home with us: The Healthy Hedonist Holidays.

When we walked in, the 6:30pm seating was pretty full and this guy yelled at me from a table "Finally. Another man!" I had no idea what he meant until I looked around the room and noticed it was 98% women. No meat, no men? That is the way it seemed. I was expecting Joan Baez and Bella Abzug to say something. (Except one of them is dead, I know.)

I had a great time getting to know my colleagues in a more informal setting over dinner. That was a treat. And we talked about all sorts of things including Marica's connections with most of the famous Gloria's: Steinam, Swanson, Estefan, Gaynor. It was an amazing run of Gloria zero-degrees she had. We also discussed that if someone says to you about someone else "S/he's smart." it usually means they are covering up something that they are not.

I really enjoyed the soup, salad and the dessert. The entree was good, but just not mind-blowing to me. I do think polenta is the new carb replacement. It is so (oh God I am going to say it. NOOOOOO!!!) "Versatile."

Our dinner was in the way hip and cool East Village. 3 of us walked through NOLITA and the Village to catch the subway up town. We passed buildings with historical plaques, the Ukrainian Museum, cool coffee houses and small boutiques. And it was all cool and not "precious." I like that about New York.

One the subway home Katie inched away thinking the guy sitting across the train on the opposing bench had a "bucket of vomit" next to him. I looked at this guy (and I am the new guy in town) and he looked pretty together. And where she saw a "bucket of vomit" I saw a Tupperware with olive oil and some feta. He had clearly just had a salad. I asked her if she usually sees the young woman or the old crone.

I have to say I am getting to an age where sharing good food with people has to be one of the rewards for living.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Turkey Ramblings. With Eggs.

Today I felt far from home. I think since I got the call for my job I have done nothing but focus on getting here and then being here. Seriously I have not really stopped for a breath since sometime in early September. It has been a wonderful, crazy, interesting odyssey that continues. I cannot say I have been happier in a long while.

But today I miss my family. I was busy enjoying a wonderful Thanksgiving, but now there is a lull and I know that nieces and nephews are growing and siblings have stuff. Eileen told me that they got the house at the River. That is fantastic news. I hope it is filled with happy memories. I had many happy times at the river growing up. It is part of our history so it is cool to see her continue it.

I am not really melancholy, I am just full of turkey and its chemicals are working on me! My uncle is ill and that worries me. I want to be there to help. I started thinking about our "Granny" Grace all the way in Australia. I need to write and find out how she is keeping. Maybe it is this time of year punctuated for me with the falling leaves that makes me think of people and places. I heard my grandmother's voice today and pictured her on the sidewalks of New York City where she used to live. I am part of my past here in this giant city. My dad grew up here, my mum came through here when she came to this country. And I am here for a new life now.

How to keep in touch with so many friends and family. It trips my head to think of how many people have touched my life. SO many. I have to be one of the luckiest devils I know. But the need to connect with everyone gets overwhelming. Each person has an individual story with everyone they know. Isn't is amazing. There is this mini-moment that happens simultaneously while others are having there mini-moments with even others. And it all happens at the same time in the street, on the phone, at home, on the internet. And then we all switch chairs and start it again with someone else. So much energy expended in connecting. It is pretty cool.

But it is also important to have down time. To have time to think and be at peace. I have a hard time with that one. Sitting still and being quiet! When I master that I will really be on to something.

I will start with going to be at a reasonable hour. I want to get to work early to finish my project.

But first an e-mail to Granny Grace.

Rainy Days and Mondays

7248 Steps

Normally rainy days and Mondays get one down. Especially coming right off a holiday weekend. But I love the rain and I got some rest and the whole darn thing was just okay. What I liked about work was everyone was into leaving each other alone and easing back into it all. I got a lot done.

Met my friend Sean after work at a theatre on 42nd Street for a screening of Savages, a domestic family drama that was quite good. Laura Linney, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Phillip Bosco and the director, Tamara Jenkins were there for the Q & A. My fave line was "Christ, we aren't in some sort of Sam Shepard play." When in fact, they kinda were. Sam was one of my idols in college.

But more like a Woody Allen movie, we went to a diner after the flick to talk about it over diner food. How New York! I loved it. (Sean had a small salad and egg whites. I opted for roast half chicken which I felt was still in keeping with my Weight Watchers program. It was sitting on a bed of stuffing. But I ignored the sour cream cozying up to the potato and did not eat the dinner roles. Not perfect, but I was okay.) We ate at the Westway Diner on 9th Ave. which had excellent service.
I wish we argued over the film more and maybe came to fisticuffs with a passing street intellectual who said "'Kinsey' sucked," but that only happens in New York movies, not in New York reality.
This film was about family relationships and the death of a father. Sean and I both had dads who were doctors and both died at 62. The coincidence, though not earth shattering, is worth noting only in that has some character development, BG info should I need it for later expansion.

The photos with the menus were to authenticate this genuine New York moment.

Sunday, November 25, 2007


Sunday. The party is over. Work tomorrow.

Brian and I had a quick walk across the park to the Met to see the Christmas Tree and then back by the Jackie O Reservoir which we both agreed, God forgive us, would be much more interesting if she were floating in it. But still a beautiful site on another knock out Autumn day.

Brian looks towards Seattle with the Jackie Eau to his right. (If
ONLY I had Photoshop!!)

I saw Brian into a cab and then brought my laundry in to be done. Scraped home with provisions from Zabars. Passed out on the couch. Scraped myself up to blow my pipes in the park. We didn't get along too well today. I am really struggling to not sound like a lousy piper, but I am just out of wind and practice I guess. My fingers are crap and my pipes are shrill. One part of me says "Screw it!!!" and the other part says "Just keep going and you will get back in shape." "Screw it" is much succinct, but I chose the latter. I feel it is like the gym or weight loss. It is hard to attain, but easy to lose (in the case of weight loss, not lose as in pounds. You know what I mean. Oh, screw it! What a lousy example. I used an example that would confuse the meaning and render my very positive outlook a loser - in attitude not pounds. Oh, screw it!)

Enjoying a quiet Sunday home and watching an excellent Chinese movie for work. Then to bed and the week ahead.

I still LOVE New York.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Worlds Collude

I am not the tallest when George is around!

8087 Steps

Greg and George came to town today after Thanksgiving in the Hamptons. It was amazing to me that some very close people in my life had never met and here were Brian and G & G meeting and then Ron and G & G meeting. All very fascinating, I know, but it was a special day for me. We walked around the park for a bit and then went for lunch at Isabellas right by the Natural History Museum. Ron met us there.

A great time. G & G had to leave for New Jersey and another Thanksgiving Dinner. Ron, Brian and I carried on and went to art galleries and a new Frank Gehry building that is the HQ of a company Brian's company is associated with. Again, all very fascinating for the general readership.

That night Brian and I went to OG in the EV (East Village, but as I like to call it.) and had a great meal thanks to Ron who works there. Then it was out on the town until around 3am. Enough!!!

Friday, November 23, 2007

Clear Blue Friday

The busiest shopping day of the year and we managed to avoid it all thanks to lack of interest and a subway that can run underneath all the mayhem. Brian and I took the subway to Brooklyn and got coffees in DUMBO which is something like "Down Under Brooklyn" -sort of a werehousey artist/loft conversion area with a Starbucks OF COURSE. Whatever happened to "Brooklyn Coffee Company" of "DUMBO Java" or some cool one off place? No longer. Corporate America is here. As beautiful as it all can be, it is still Potterville in SO many ways.

But I digress.

We walked across the Brooklyn Bridge and had our photo taken by a very nice Dutch couple over here doing what elese...Christmas shopping. Up through to the church where George Washington walked to after his inauguration. This is right by Ground Zero and many of the inured were taken to this church to be tended to. It was in George Washington's private pew where podiatrists administered to the firemen and workers whose feet were injured while working at Ground Zero. My dad would have LOVED that. I did for him. All these years later the photos in the church of the dead is still so heartbreaking.
We then went to Ground Zero which still packs an emotional wallop, but handily missuses the word "Hero" like every other place in this land of FREEDOM, PATRIOT, CHRISTIAN. OYYYYYYY, I say. (Lovely words, all, but they have been so abused of late as to have lost so much value/meaning.) There were certainly heroes on that day, but poor unfortunate people that were sitting in their cubes in their offices mostly had no chance to be anything else but victims of a terrorist attack, not heroes. And I guess I hate freedom by even saying this. Corporate Branded America is here.

But I digress.

Down through Wall Street and onto the Staten Island Ferry for a FREE boat ride to see the sights in the harbor.

An amazing Autumn day in New York under clear blue skies was had and I certainly appreciate the freedom to do what we did. Excellent.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Thanksgiving in New York City. Pinch Me Now!

15357 Steps

There are certain days one has to pinch oneself because they were just plain perfect.
Today was one of them. And it so happened to be Thanksgiving Day. Perfect. I didn't even have to feign gratitude, it was pure and honest. Besides being Thanksgiving Day, it was also the 44th anniversary of Pres. Kennedy's death, the 13th anniversary of my dad's death and my good pal's Marian's birthday. I was able to light a candle for them all at St. Pat's which was pretty cool.

Brian and I got up and watched the police trot down my street to get into parade mode. We walked down to Broadway and 50th and met Sue at my workplace where we joined others with coffee and bagels and watched the Macy's Thanksgiving Parade. Wunderbar. Loved it.
The three of us then left and went to Sue's workplace, Rockfeller Center, and went to the observation deck on the top. Remarkable views with an AMAZING view of the fall colors in Central Park.
Brian and I then went to Radio City Music Hall to the 75th Annual Christmas Spectacular with the Rockettes. Sidebar please everyone:....over here... I don't want to come across like a total freak, but this was the BEST spectacular I have EVER seen in my LIFE! Leggy Rockettes, precision toy soldiers, probably 50 to 100 dancing Santas, the Nativity recreated complete with camels, and MORE Rockettes. It gave me more than I paid. As Steve Martin would say "I made money off that show." Wow, wow, wow. AND a full orchestra. I think me and every girl of My Little Pony age had a fantastic time.

I picked myself up and we walked up 5th Avenue and through the park, past the Dakota and back to my place where Brian, Susan and my friend Tony and I had a great Thanksgiving celebration. Thanks to Sue's heating skills I was able to pull off the meal with ease. My first Thanksgiving in my New York apartment. It could not have been a better day, better company or better anything. I am just the luckiest guy I know this evening and I know it. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Thanksgiving Eve. Before the Parade Passes By

Whatta day. Another great day in the Big Apple Pie with ice cream and all the fixins'. We had a short day at work which was nice and I was able to get a lot done so Monday will not feel like HELLLL!!! Let's not even talk about Monday because there is a lot of livin' to do until then.

My friend Kevin and his girlfriend Kuni and his son Ian were in town for the hols and we got to meet for coffee right by my work as they were just at Radio City doing what Brian and I are going to do tomorrow: watch a bunch of leggy girls and the Nativity recreated before our eyes. Kevin and I used to work together when I was at Fox Kids. He was probably my favorite writer to work with. I felt we collaborated well and here we are friends all these years later. It was great to see them. Kuni is a producer on Dora the Explorer at Nick and she will actually be holding one of the ropes keeping massive Dorah from massive destruction tomorrow. I don't know a Rockette (yet!), but I do know a balloon guy rope holder in Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade. That is worth a triple word score in my book.

After work I walked up to Columbus Circle and went into the depths of the Time Warner Building to face the most crowded Whole Foods you will ever see. I got provisions and went through this winding labyrinth of a check out only to wait for 30 minutes to pick up my Two Thanksgiving Dinners for Two. This was two huge bags, plus my work bag and a giant roasting pan that accompanied me onto the subway. Thankfully it was only a few stops.

Brian came from JFK via taxi and met me outside Zabars on the corner of 80th and Broadway. It was so fantastic to see him. After dinner at Artie's Deli we went to see the balloons being blown up for the parade in the morning. It was an amazing parade in itself. This pre-event takes place at the end of my block and through to Central Park West. Loads of people took to the streets. This was a big deal. I had no idea. Brian and I walked with the masses and then home for tea, basketball and now slumber.
(top: Brian and Shrek, bottowm Pat and Shrek)
The boys with an ashamed Mr. Potato Head

Molyvos, Cymbeline and Me

One of my bestest pals Jon has a friend Paula who he has had a parallel relationship with for many, many years. It was one of those things where you always hear about the other one and for some reason never meet. We never met each other until last year in LA and had a great time. Jon felt we were ready. We hugged, we laughed, we air kissed. And Jon is a bringer-togetherer sort who doesn't have one of those "Oh my God what if they become better friends with each other" insecure issues. Very stable, that boy. Paula is in New York right now and we met for lunch today at Molyvos -a Greek restaurant on 7th AVe. between 55th and 56th. I stole out from work and had a quasi 1.5 hour lunch. It was so nice to see her and my lunch was AMAZING. I had this white bean with fennel and wild mushrooms starter and then fish that was out of this world for entree and some sublime vanilla cake with orange marmalade Greek style on top and excellent coffee. I think I will think about that place for a while. And not because it is repeating on me, but because it was so good. In fact I am thinking about it now. And to commemorate I give you a short film as the coat check lady pressed the wrong button and I had enough as I was running late to a meeting. Not a stirring piece of footage, but it commemorates our time together. And confirms that I need to go to elocution classes.

After work I met Ron at Lincoln Center to see Shakespeare's not often seen and for good reason play - Cymbeline. I am now criticizing Shakespeare?! It was an old chestnut of mistaken identity, deux ex machina and a beheading in comedy format. Martha Plimpton was really good I thought and Mrs. Huxtable was nicely understated. On the way in I heard "Patrick." It was a friend Josh who I know from LA who is a theatrical agent and had some clients in the play. Quite a small world. Ron now thinks New York is not big enough for me because I crash into people on streets, in subways and at the theatre after only 6 weeks. It is pretty funny I must say.

Tomorrow we get out at 3pm and the race is on to get it all picked up, bought and done before Brian gets here for the Thanksgiving holidays.

Today's thought from the guy who can pick apart Wm . Shakespeare: People in New York like pound cake.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Gift Bags Under My Eyes.

10465 Steps

Tonight I was at the Courage Awards at Gotham Hall which is a GORGEOUS old bank with a rotunda converted into an event venue. I was there for work because my company and Rosie O'Donnell's brother both got, well, Courage Awards for, well, courage. I discovered the event was for the Anti-Violence Project here in New York. All so self-explanatory it was confusing as to the purpose. BD Wong was hosting and Alan Cumming was a guest of Sundance Channel, but not at my table - I was at the kids table. BD Wong directed a play in New York that a friend of mine was in and when I saw it last month, I sat two down from BD who is also from San Francisco and I happened to crash into that friend this afternoon in Manhattan. The odd thing was I crashed into him at lunch and I thought he was in LA and here I see his director tonight. Okay, it isn't that odd like "he grew up in my mother's old house in Glasgow and then married my best friend's sister in San Francisco and now I am working with him in New York" odd. But Kevin Bacon 6 degree odd. And the woman I was sitting next to used to work for Rosie and knows my friends Cooper and PL in LA. And Daniel O'Donnell is a Scorpio and so is my mother and they are both married to guys from New York. Okay, this is crap. I must stop. But I did meet two guys who live on my same block. In all of New York they live on my same block. That is odd. STOPPPPP!

I took the subway home toting my second gift bag in less than a week. Not to sound as SHALLOW as possible, but tonight's was a case of "Good Cause/Bad Bag." I looked into it while waiting for the 1. (The train number, not the guy.) In it was a Beyonce CD single, some magazines, anti-bacterial hand cleanser and THREE different sets of Post-its. That was about all. Oh, sorry, a thing of Altoids. Last week at least I got some anti-wrinkle stuff, a cork screw set, and a jar of Dove "Energy Glow" which I hoped was chocolate, but it was skin cream. What McGiver could do with that bag, I wonder?

I want to talk about tonight's "Fall Tasting Trio" which was our starter at the meal. And I will translate for those of you who were not served this growing up:

1. Sauteed wild mushrooms with shaved pecorino and truffle oil, Porcini toast

Canned mushrooms on Melba

2. Kobocha squash salad with honey sage drizzle. Black pepper grissini.

Finely cubed sweet potato wedged in a holy water font.

3. Smoked salmon tartar with chives and citrus zest. Gauftette potato.

Diced salmon sidled up to one confused and lonely potato chip.

Do I sound jaded already or what!?!! This cannot be. Tone is so important in writing. It is hard to mock a charity event and not sound like an ass. And I don't think I have pulled it off here. I think I am tired. I think my head is thinking about other things and I am taking it out on the Fall Trio. I must sleep. I am still the happiest guy to be here, but I think I need a night off. Not gonna be...Shakespeare tomorrow at Lincoln Center. Smell me!

It was a nice time and good to get to know many of my co-workers better.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

I Will Go to the Opening of an Envelope

9383 Steps

At least right now. I say yes to it all. "Ribbon cutting for the new TJ Maxx?" "Sure." Fundraiser for "Children with a Mommy and a Daddy"? "Bien Sur." "The I'm Someone and So Are You" Awards? "I have a shirt and tie that is perfect for that."

Tonight I was at the International Emmys cocktail party. It was full of people who come from countries with stronger currency than ours. I met a guy who produces a show for RTE in Ireland and a woman from Brazil and a guy from Wales and two guys from S. Africa who are nominated in the comedy category. A woman I am on the BAFTA TV committee with invited me as her guest and we had a good time. Tomorrow I go to the "Courage Awards" which sounds like the most ambiguous name for an awards, but, hey, I have no idea what you got courage for, but I will be there to cheer you on. My work has a table and since all the really important people are gone for the holiday week, I think they invited me to attend. I cannot figure it otherwise, but who am I to say no? "The People Who Get Invited to Awards But Can Say No to Attending the Awards Awards. "

On the way home from the event, I tried to give two ladies my seat and the one next to me. They said they were getting off at the next stop. I asked if they were from Scotland and they were! And just south of where my mum grew up. We had a good chat. And, like all other Europeans, they were here to do their Christmas shopping.

Today I met my Sunday breakfast guys in the Village. Always a good time. I love that I have a Sunday routine and it is great. It was a cold and rainy day today. And the cold here is wet so it goes through you. Perhaps inspired by my days in Scotland I went back home and got my pipes and played in the freezing cold in the park. It was fun, I have to say.

Looking so forward to Thanksgiving. My friend Brian is coming in from Seattle and we will have a call being dorky tourists in NYC together. I also have a friend Kevin who will be here with his girlfriend so I hope to see them too. And Greg and George, of course! It will be a whirlwind of holiday fun. But first...3 days of work.

Autumn Leaves? I Hadn't Known It Arrived.

18856 Steps
210.2 lbs.
(Okay, let's get this out of the way first. I lost 6.8 pounds this week! Woo Hoooo. Went to the WW meeting this morning and was pleasantly surprised. Of course Thanksgiving is looming and me and all the tracksuit ladies got to gaggle on about the points cost of pecan pie. Pumpkin pie is 9 points sans whipped cream. We made our plans and we'll see next week. So that was a great start to the day. )

When I got to New York at the end of September it was still summer. I even got a taste of the humidity that is going to be my undoing this coming summer. In October Central Park was a beach and I saw people in tank tops at 11 at night. Then it got cold. I was waiting for that incredible in-between moment we call Autumn. Little did I know it was just down at the end of my street in the park.

I went there today to play pipes. The trees that shielded me previously from the crowds and open air tour buses on Central Park West weren't there. I mean they were there, but their leaves had changed color and were falling. It was kinda fun today because cars honked and the folk on the top deck of the buses clapped. I was part of peoples' experience. I don't always like that, but today it was good.

Later I went back to Central Park later dressed all "Fally" with my coat, i-pod, and this amazing hand-knitted scarf that Marjorie sent to me from San Francisco. I got it via mail on Friday. She made a hat as well , but I deemed it was not cold enough to wear yet, but I am going to get use out of them both. They are amazing in the perfect colors and she made it herself. For me. I am thrilled. Armed with my plumage, I walked into an Autumn WONDERLAND of YELLOW and RED and BROWN and GREEN leaves everywhere. I couldn't believe this was all here, like I was living in Anaheim all these years with my back to the Matterhorn. (huh?). Here I was walking through Central Park wrapped in wool and listening to great music and loving every second. I had such a grin of JOY. ( grin of joy?) that a woman smiled back at me in knowing solidarity. It was amazing to shuffle through the leaves in this fantastic park. There is no city like this. I cannot stand how great it keeps being.

I walked all the way to Central Park South and down 5th Avenue into the loving throngs of European Christmas shoppers who come here to spend the American Peso as they call it. We have provided them with such riches thanks to our war torn dollar. English is not the first language you hear on 5th Avenure right now. A coffee for us is $10, 000 dollars in Paris and they are here flossing their teeth with our sweaters. But we are defending the world's right to live as we please.

It was a beautiful stroll down the Avenue having a look at all the Christmas windows. I went all the way down to 45th and then went to a new friends house for ANOTHER dinner party! I swear I don't deserve it, but I am having the time of my flippin' life. There were about 15 people there and we had the best home cooked food and a great time. One of the guys likes this Irish group that I love called Black 47 and I know they always play at Connolly's (!!!) in Times Square so we are going to go. How great is that? I dig the music.

I begged off and walked 35 blocks home and here we are. And though I ate potatoes au gratin, ham, chicken, baked beans and a biscuit. Oh and a cupcake. I politely turned down the care package as they taught me to do this morning. But I didn't use the line I heard this morning: "No thank you, it won't fit in my bikini this summer."

Friday, November 16, 2007

February 9, 1987 "One Block, A Tale of 2 Cities on W. 80th "

My landlord is so great, I can't believe I cut his head off. My pad, my neighbors.

4797 Steps

I was at work late, but it was so nice to be able to jump on the subway and go home after such an exhausting day. I was so tired I took my subway in the wrong direction! But home for a nice, dinner that all the neighbors of the Brownstone put on. Got home and my landlord John was setting up for our floor's contribution, the hors d'œuvres. We hosted in my flat as it is so LOVELY! WHAT a lovely, lovely, fun wonderful, I am so blessed to be alive and living evening. All 7 adults and 3 kids gathered at mine and we toasted the evening. Then off to Lilly and her daughter Sarah's place on the 2nd floor. She owns the whole floor and it was a nice place to have the fruit and cheese course. Then down to Ed and Karen's wonderful place on the entire ground floor and entire garden floor and garden below to enjoy an amazing salad and lasagna. That woman can cook! I swear the evening was almost a designer showcase event.

The brownstone was built in the 1890s and all the wood is original. I was blown away by all the carved wood. They told me how much work they put into restoring the place. Dessert was up in Ryan and Jessica's two floor architectural showcase pad that was a mind blower. They had the roof rights and added a master suite and two decks up there. Massive place. Their sub zero appliances had to be craned in. In their entryway was a framed New York magazine article from 1987 that has "our" brownstone on the cover with a light dusting of snow. It was a Dickensian shot of Upper West Side life except the article was about how dangerous this one block was. Then. There were 3 or 4 murders on this one block and loads of crack addicts and doss houses. SO hard for me to believe with the Park and the museum and the strolling, pregnant yuppies and brunch places about. I was amazed.

Now I am in my cozy crack-free pad with quiet music and a bed that beckons and a weekend that has patches of quiet moments.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

"Off" Is the New "On"

7254 Steps

I read this on the subway on the way home. It was a ConEd advert for saving energy. I thought it was apt for me to read. I feel like I have been ON for so many days straight and I really need to switch OFF for a bit. But I love ON. I have a hard time with OFF. And OFF is so key to peace of mind. But ON is so key to feeling engaged in life. But then so is OFF when I think about it. I am living in one of the most ON cities in the world. But even here, there are places to be OFF.
I went to the Commercial Closet Association Corporate AdRespect Honors at the new Times
Center at the hot new New York Times building. It was a fundraiser for this media watchdog group. I had wanted to get Commercial Closet and its founder, Mike Wilke, to do a panel at Outfest this year, but I had no budget to fly him out. I met him in LA and saw him here tonight. There was a cocktail party and a presentation. Absolut Vodka was one of the recipients of their "Award of Courage" or something. They have helped gay people do really stupid things for 26 years now. I was a guest of my friend Tom at the New York Times. Met some nice people. It was a lot of print media and on-line media types. In fact I met the Publisher of Passport Magazine who is interested in sponsoring our Pride Month in June. I am going to connect him with the marketing people. I also spoke to this on-line guy about writing freelance. He knows my boss. I got his card.

I Excel'd at work today. I have a presentation with my boss and the GM tomorrow on a schedule roll out thing. I have been getting headaches lately because I do not look away from the computer screen. My friend, and adviser to the incapable, suggested I program a reminder in Outlook. How daft is that? I did it and it was great. I have a recurring, M-F @2:30pm that says "Get up. Look away. Stretch." Thanks, Lisa.

Left the event tonight and got a subway at 42nd Street. Oooooh. Lights! People! ON. In all the flurry I felt so content. So peaceful, yet so stimulated. I have to say New York has the most fascinating people visually. I know other cities have visually fascinating people too, but this is like taking Toyko, Sao Paolo, Berlin, Springfield and Cote d'Azur and forcing them all to take a Christmas photo together in an underground moving box. There was this older woman with long, grey hair that got on the subway. She was wearing an orange knit cap with some sequins. Her skin was weathered so beautifully like she had it "done" by the top dermatologist in an Irish fishing village. Her husband was wearing a proper hat. They looked so beautiful. But their beauty was enhanced in that knobbly, woolly Benetton way by the black guy with the cool goatee and the corduroy coat and the the Asian dude with the i-pod wires hanging down from his ears wedged next to them on either side. This tableau was disrupted by the insane poet guy who rode between cars and yelled at the top of his lungs one word blasts like "DESPAIR" and "FINAL" and "TERMINAL." He was interesting looking too in that skinhead, angry, mass murderer kind of way. ON.

As I alighted from the station I checked my phone messages. 8. ON. I got home and opened mail. ON. Made dinner. OFF. Cleaned my apartment for the progressive dinner we are having in the brownstone tomorrow night. ON. Ate dinner while watching a doc for work about child molestation in the Catholic Church. ON.ON.ON. I cried it was so sad. ON/OFF.

Next stop Slumberland. OFF.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

The TIMES, They Are a Changin'

9689 Steps

Got to work at 8am. Started in on the task at hand. I really cooked today. And I am no longer afraid of Excel, except I have no idea how to add. I mean, IN Excel. My sister Eileen is an Excel whiz. I am an Excel neophyte. But I did use lots of pretty colors and made boxes. Look Mommy!
I got all my materials ready for my 5pm meeting with my boss which he cancelled. But it is no problem as we are meeting in the morning and I had plenty to keep me busy. Like retyping a whole month's schedule by hand for the GM who likes to see it in this format. I MUST figure out how to automate this.

Today was the first day I went out for lunch. I met my friend Tom who is the Creative Development Director at the New York bloody Times! He invited me to lunch and a tour of their new digs on 41st and 8th. This marvel has its own website! Click on "their new digs." This new, green building was designed by Pritzker prize-winning architect Renzo Piano who did the Centre Pompidou in Paris. It was amazing and Tom showed me all around. I so want to work there just to be part of the wonderful natural light. I would want my cube to have a river view.

We had lunch in the deluxe cafeteria on the 14th floor, I believe. There are "smart elevators' where you press your floor button on a panel on the wall and it tells you which car you are booked on to take to your desired floor. The elevators are choreographed to run mega-efficiently so people can move and not stop on every floor. I expected to see George Jetson being yelled at by his editor-in-chief, Mr. Spacely. It officially opens on Monday. I am going to an event there tomorrow night as Tom's guest. How great is that?

Tom and I in the lobby at the NYT. Those are all video monitor
screens scrawling blurbs from today's paper. The place is unbelievable.

On my way back from lunch I went by the Majestic Theatre. This is where my pal John who is in LA now used to perform nightly as Raul in Phantom. That is huge! A Broadway star AND from Wisconsin. What a combo.

I left work and went to a networking event for Out in Television and Film hosted by HBO Out and Newfest. It was at a cool place called HK on 9th at 39th. Another social networking situation where I go solo, sans gin and tonic and I have to talk to people. Dear God let me pull snakes wrapped in feces out of the East River instead!!! I saw my friend Basil who runs Newfest film festival here. He told me they were just talking about me today at his office. This is a good start. I was on a mission to meet this guy from Logo Network whom my old boss in LA told me to meet. Let's say his name is Mike Jones. Well I track down a guy named Mike Jane and he is a development guy at Logo. I drop my contact name and still think I am meeting the right guy, but there is a Mike Jones and a Mike Jane at Logo. I realize I don't have the right guy, but I don't let on because he works in development where I want to work and now we are going to have lunch. Here is my stumbled upon networking tip that I inadvertently used tonight: Have a "looking for someone" tactic It is fullproof, I found. "Excuse me guys, do you work at Logo? No? Oh, I was told the Logo guys were up here sitting on a couch. You are sitting on a couch. What is your name? ..." I met a lot of people this way including a guy who works in my office building and claims he makes a better cheesecake than Juniors. How DO you get into these conversations with complete strangers? I met guys from MTV, a film festival guy, a "media consultant" - HEY that was my line! - and a woman who is a lounge singer. Finally after meeting the wrong (but right guy) I left. I was two blocks away and I recognized this guy on the street as being at the event because he had a design shaved into the side of his head. We started talking and I met his friends and they invited me to go for drinks with them! He is a DJ in Boston who was visiting his friend Lisa who plays the piano. They were with a guy from HBO. I graciously declined in order to finally be home in time to pick up my shirts from the laundry and so I could watch TV for work...

I was waiting for the subway and there was a guy playing the sax on the platform. It was as if in a movie.

What a great day.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

2 Daze in One

I think I just skipped my first day on the blog since I started. That would have been yesterday. I got home and I could not get on line. And then I had NO time to type it at work today. Not even lunch hour since I worked through.

The good thing is these were two pretty similar days so I am going to package them as I would a block of programming on the channel. Mere bookends, if you will.

Here is the catchy theme:

Two Solid Days of Solid, Headache-inducing Work Followed by Screenings with Friends in the Neighborhood Where My Dad Grew Up & I Used to Live 23 Years Ago.

Yesterday I stared at my computer for HOURS feverishly scheduled into the system and answered phone calls and made excel documents and just KNEW I was sinking fast. There was so much to do, but I am now stable enough to know to just keep going and not freak. This is a major breakthrough. I also knew that I was coming in early the next morning in order to have a schedule to present to the GM at a 1:30pm meeting. I left and met my friend Hilary at Loews Cinema on E31st and 2nd. We saw "The Kite Runner." Both of us had read the book and felt it was an excellent adaptation. The casting was almost perfect and it really was a nice transfer to the screen. But was that REALLY Fremont, CA?! Afterwards we walked down 33rd Street between 1st and 2nd. This is where my dad grew up. When I was 19 he took me on this block and knocked on the door of his old apartment. An old lady answered and remembered him. We got to see where he and grandpa lived. My dad slept in the bedroom and my grandpa on the fold down couch in the living room. For years.

Today I got to work at 6:55am. It was in front of the building that I realized I had forgotten my ID badge! Now here was today's growth. Normally I would have festered in disbelief, if one can indeed fester in that. And I would have just gone off in my head how unfair the whole thing was since I am so far behind, etc. BUT. INSTEAD. I went back on the subway to my flat and got my badge and came back and went to work. 30 minutes. I have so much work right now I am just overwhelmed. But I know I will get through it. I will pull long hours and it will happen. I am working my ass off and I don't think anyone really knows, but that is the point right now. I cannot seem weak! I CAN get this job down AND do more. After I left I met Nicole at the same cinema and we saw "In the Wild." Sean Penn was supposed to be there for Q & A, but they said he was stuck in CA. The star of the movie was there, Emile Hirsch, and he was quite interesting to listen to. I would recommend both films. Nicole and I left and walked back to the west down 31st Street between Park and Madison. This is where I used to live. We were talking so much I completely forgot to look around. And notice the bloody windowsill where I first smoked clove cigarettes that lead to a 20 year addiction to smokes. If that kid in the window could just have done some sit ups and bought Krugerrands instead!

Home now and about to hit the hay. Another early rise and another long day, but I will get it done and have the best Thanksgiving to celebrate!

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Once on This Island

5273 Steps

Another relaxing, frantic Sunday in Gotham. I was able to sleep in and then awoke feeling I had no time to for anything. Got out of bed and started working on my bagpipes. I had a hose to add in the synthetic bowels of the thing and it worked like a charm once I was able to find a screwdriver. Managed to make coffee at the same time so it all came together. Met my new breakfast club in the Village for, well, breakfast.

There was no time to get back to uptown and to the park to play pipes as was my master plan. I had to leave breakfast (okay, "brunch") and start heading for dinner. This was quite a trek. My first time off the island of Manhattan since I arrived. What would I feel?

I was going to this Greater New York non-smokers dinner in West Islip, Long Island. A long story, but let's just understand there were no ashtrays anywhere. I had to meet at Nate's house, the rendezvous point in Brooklyn. His mother was up from Maryland and she was going to drive us all. My friend Sam and his girlfriend Katori and I met there and we all jumped into the auto and headed for W. Islip and the Villa Monaco Restaurant.

It was a fun evening of hearty Italian food ala The Sopranos and stories of butts and fags. An odd stew for those not "of that ilk." It was my first time meeting Sam's girlfriend and she was a delight. She has her first play running off-Broadway at the Cherry Lane Theatre no less. This theatre is steeped in history from Beckett to Shepard. The play is called "Hoodoo Love" and I am going to try and catch it when I have a free night.

Sam, Katori and I made our way back to Manhattan from Brooklyn and I got home in time to get to bed. Another weekend passed/past and a whole week of LIFE ahead.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

This is your waist on Caramel Swirl

217 lbs.

14157 Steps

I slept in a bit which was great, but then I lay there and thought "You should go to Weight Watchers." The thought haunted me. I knew I could not bring my ice cream and cookies to Weight Watchers. At least not in the volume I was eating them. This peaceful morning has turned into a self-imposed intervention. With thoughts of H & H bagels and cream cheese dancing in my head, I got up and went to 73rd and Broadway. There were loads of middle-aged and retired woman and a reluctant husband - I knew I was home.

Tipped the scales at 217. My target is 200. It was a relief just to know and to bring to a halt the fallacy that I knew was a lie, but embraced like a lover leaving for war - walking to and from the subway does not burn off anything you can possibly ingest. So there you have it. No. So there I have - 17 pounds to lose. I am game.

Went to Fairway for low point food, picked up my laundry that had been waiting for a week for me and headed home. I made myself a delish low point breakfast eggs with smoked sturgeon and that bread from Germany that you could use to exfoliate your entire body and then have birds feed from your face. What, you have never done that?!

Since this is one of only two days off I had to multitask quickly. I blew my pipes (ONLY the drones) in the flat while watching a doc on Yves St. Laurent for work. It was subtitled so it all worked. I then went to the park in 47 degree weather and played pipes. It had been two weeks and it was tough going, but I am determined. After dropping off my pipes I went out and walked along the Hudson while listening to bagpipes on my i-pod. Beautiful wintry day with the sun going down and the lights of the city starting to glow.

Had dinner with my friend Sue at a little neighborhood Italian place. Great to see her as it has been a long while. She started a fantastic new job and gave me some good Californian ex-pat advice on living in New York. One of which was deal with the prices, this is how much it costs here. Good advice.

Friday, November 9, 2007

Friday. Rain. Two of my favorite words.

6551 Steps

I made it solo through another week on the desk. I am getting the hang of this . I am making nice and I am doing a pretty good job. I think they are pleased and I feel I will be able to pull it out after all. Wait a second, of course I will! I am a middle-aged college grad who used to run a division at a major network. I have played in the Pipe Band World Championships in Scotland 4 times. I have survived a burst gangrenous appendix, a mugging, cigarettes, alcohol, an ulcer, a few broken hearts. I was on the All-City (San Francisco) basketball team, started my own newspaper, wrote 3 plays and was valedictorian - all by the time I was 13. I am a published poet fer crissakes! I am going to MARCH in there on Monday and demand a raise and then quit, that is how confident I am!!!

Okay. Whew. Maybe I will just be grateful for work and do the best I can and see what happens.

Met up with Duane on this rainy Friday night. He is friends with my pals Mike and Joe in Los Angeles. We had a good time and it was fun to listen to Duane's stories of living here 27 years. He really does a lot with his life and I found it inspiring. Another nice New Yorker I have met.

Home in the cold and the rain and so happy to be able to sleep in and make coffee in the morning.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Just an ordinary day

Went to work. Met my friend Nicole at a cinema on 42nd Street for a screening of "Lions for Lambs." It was fine. Good to see Nicole as always. Went home. Made something to eat. Watched TV. Went to bed.

Anything magic from an ordinary day?

1. I am getting excited about using Excel as I am getting better at it.
2. It is getting colder out and I feel the change and love it.
3. I took a different subway home and got out on 72nd and CPW and walked by The Dakota while leaving a message for my friend Brian. The grand torches were lit in front of the Gothic building.
4. I bought fennel in an effort to feel like I am eating healthily.
5. I got to bed at midnight instead of 1am.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Dead Tissue Brought Back to Life!

7888 Steps

Okay. I am never home. I can't seem to return phone calls. I have not written nor read the great American novel and I am having the time of my life. I just need a little more of it so I can pick up my shirts from the laundry and eat food in the fridge before it spoils again. This pace is just impossible, but I continue. I need SLEEP or the bags under my eyes will have me in the $25 raffle at Trader Joes.
Went to see "Young Frankenstein" - the new Mel Brooks musical at the Hilton Theatre on 42nd Street tonight. I went with my friend Nancy and we had a great time. This was all thanks to my pal John who was not able to come from LA to see the show because of a family illness and FED EX'd the tickets to me to use when he, being an ex-Broadway star himself, knows a million people here, but he wanted me to have them as he knew I would enjoy it. And he was right. Thanks, John! You are quite a man, my friend. Thank you.

(I do have to say one thing about this photo. The sign reads "Thank you, John" and "my vision" was to have this within the theatre with the scrim with the Transylvanian mountain on it in the BG and the majesty of the theatre and all the people so John could feel "there." I had no idea, but we were halted from taking any pictures before the show. In my typical "What would Lucy do" approach to realizing my vision, I had a gorilla photo shoot plan at intermission. As you can see the whole back is black and we were still busted. Am I selfish or should I work for the Last Wish Foundation? You decide. But I got the shot. Now, John, just imagine the seats, the people, the backdrop with the mountain and me 10 lbs. lighter. Love ya. )

A great night out. YF opens tomorrow night so we got to see the last preview. It was a sold out house with a lot of spirit. I don't want to spoil it for anyone going, but I have to say that they are going to get nailed for sticking too closely to the movie. This is a hard one because so many people expect the famous lines and gags "My what knockers!" "He was my boyfriend, " hot soup etc., yet if that is what you give 'em they are no longer funny lines/gags because they are expected and simply subconsciously ticked off the list that soothes the pleasant nostalgia part of the brain. Susan, ya gotta give 'em something new. When they veered away a bit or expanded with some fun musical numbers, or the horses, that is when the show got some volts of electricity. Megan Mullally I thought was great as was Andrea Martin. Christopher Fitzgerald all but walks away with the 1st act as Igor. Excellent. Sutton Foster can yodel like an Austrian trooper.
Home now to start it all over again tomorrow. Calls, shirts, dishes, mail can wait, but not my blog!

These Widgets Can't Sunset

8956 Steps

The title of my post is a sentence I heard the head of marketing use in a meeting today. I thought it said it all. About what I do not know, but maybe about how far from reality it is possible to go yet find yourself in a new reality that is increasingly acceptable. It has nothing to do with trees or family or love or any of that, but of money and keeping on and the emperor's new personal communication device, and... I think I was shocked, but in love it at the same time.

Let's just do celebrity tidbits today. You know celebrities always come in threes. Not gonna touch that one, huh?

1. Robert Redford said hello to me today in the hallway at work. How MANY times does this keep happening to all of us??!! It is epidemic.

2. Went to see "August: Osage County" at the Imperial Theatre in NY tonight. Saw 80's icon Andrew McCarthy heading to his seat. Play had TWO great acts and then just went all soap opera and "your cousin is your BRUTHAAHHH" in the third act. I was so sad about that.

3. Saw Aaron Sorkin, genius writer of "The West Wing," alone outside the Music Box Theatre where his new play "The Farnsworth Invention" is in previews. Broadway does not get any greater to me than seeing the playwright alone outside the theatre during previews of HIS play - smoking a cigarette and pacing. V. cool siting.

These widgets may not be able to sunset, but I must. A long day of work and more Broadway glamour tomorrow.

Monday, November 5, 2007

MY Travels to the Far East

9645 Steps

I went to 68th and Lex tonight to Hunter College for a BAFTA East Coast event. It was an evening with Andrew Davies who wrote loads of the BBC Jane Austen, Dickens, etc./PBS dramas. (Including "Bleak House" which I just LOVED! If you have not seen it, rent it.) There was a drinks reception beforehand. I recognized it from the west coast events: cheese cubes, some fruit. But I was just off a call with BAFTA Los Angeles that day that went really well and I was enthused to go there and meet new people.

I know how to get up and down Manhattan no problem, but this event was "across the park." Funnily enough I had no real idea how to do that. In fact I asked someone at work. I left my office in Times Square and walked from Broadway to 7th to 6th to 5th and so on until I got to Lexington. Then the #6 up to 68th. Not really that hard. It was a whole new world. I passed Radio City, and Rockefeller Center where people were ice skating. I went by St. Pat's and Bloomingdale's and on past swanky Park Avenue and the Waldorf Astoria. It was an AMAZING walk. I could feel the city just bursting to break out for the holidays and the energy enthused me. If life were a movie musical, so many numbers would have taken place on my walk to catch the #6 uptown. I even spoke to a guy with dog. If I were Gene Kelly I would have tipped the boy in crutches selling the paper. I was at that level of enthrallitude.

The event was good and I met two woman, Sarah Ball and Lorelei King, at the cocktail party which made it even better. Sarah is in BAFTA with me and Lorelei was visiting from London. Sarah is a writer/producer in animation which was my life for many years and we knew some people in common. My nephew would go nuts because she wrote/directed and produced "Bob the Builder." That is HUGE points with any kid. And Lorelei was the voice of Wendy in the show! MORE huge points. How amazing is it to have randomly spoken to them?! So nice to meet them both and I hope I see Sarah at events and Lorelei in London!!!

Two ex-pats and a Pat (Sarah, Patrick, Lorelei)

I left there and walked up to 79th Street to take the cross town bus to a world that made sense to me - the West. The walk was great as the eastside seems so different and I loved all the shop windows. I have to say I liked it over there. (But when I was on the #6 I thought people looked different. This, of course, was entirely in my head, but they just did! ) My love of life for this evening continued when I got to Pastrami Queen. I ordered some pea soup and a 1/4 pound of turkey pastrami to go. I was saved from swinging on lamposts by the arrival the the cross town bus. On the ride home some women were talking about Weight Watchers and I felt like blurting out "It's TURKEY pastrami!! Leave me alone. And I am Lifetime!!!" But I didn't and continued to read my so so mystery novel that takes place in Venice. (3/4 of the way and he is still sipping espresso and interviewing people. Arggggh. I want another death at least! Get a clue already, Guido!) They should have called it the "A Domani Murder Mystery Series. "

Home to a Fed Ex packet from my most excellent friend John of TWO TICKETS TO SEE "YOUNG FRANKENSTEIN" ON BROADWAY FOR WEDNESDAY!

Life IS a musical after all.

Buona Sera.

Sunday, November 4, 2007

November 4th.

10739 Steps

Today was the New York City Marathon, the largest marathon race in the world. I was there with my friend Sean and we burned major calories cheering on the runners from all over the world.

Today is also November 4th. This was Sean's birthday. And my brother Sean's birthday. And my mum's birthday. And my friend Larry's birthday. Wow. A bonanza of birthdays of some really great people. Happy Birthday to all of you.

I got to speak with my brother and Larry on the phone. That was a gift to me to talk to them.
My brother Sean and me.
Remember when long distance phone calls were this thing where you got a quick second on the phone to say hello and how is the weather there and I miss you and then you had to hand the receiver back to one of your parents because this call is costing a fortune and nothing of any substance got said due to the pressure to be brief? What a gift cell phones are in that way that we can blether on about whatever to whomever for forever. And though this can allow for some on and on calls, it can also afford us the opportunity to check in with those far away and really have a talk. I had some good ones today. That was cool.

In not related news I have had a headache all day (even though I seemed to have masked it pretty well!) and I think I may have a bit of a cold. Going to hit the hay early tonight and try and get some sleep before starting the week.