Tag Archives: running

New Orleans Diary: Week Two

9 Dec

Goal: To write a blog post every week that I spend here in New Orleans, talking about the things that happen and the things that I hope happen but sometimes don’t. But sometimes do! But also sometimes don’t. I will try to keep my discussion of plastic bags to a minimum. Read my week one post here.

Driving: So I’m still on about the drivers mostly because I grew up in New Jersey and we always got such a bad rap for our driving (and signage) but the driving (and signage) here are way worse. For example, the other night I was driving around with my friend Carie and I drove near two people in like a 5 block span who were not using their headlights. And it wasn’t like it was 6pm and the sun had recently gone down and these people had just not turned their lights on. It was 11 at night. It was full on darkness. And all of a sudden I look in my rearview and see this thing speeding up behind me that looks like a UFO or something but then I realize that, no, it isn’t a UFO at all (imagine my surprise), it is a matte black car without headlights. I nearly had a heart attack and died right there. Thankfully I didn’t. But seriously, driving here is not for the weak. Shit is lawless as fuck.

The Loudest Lady Ever: As previously stated I have been staying with my friend Carie on the West Bank while I look for a spot. The area that we’re staying at is really historic and also quiet. Except for this one lady who is quite possibly the loudest person to walk the face of the earth. The other day I was doing some writing on the balcony and I heard her talking, no yelling, to her poor little dachshund. She goes “OH MY FEET HURT SOMETHING FIERCE” and then she goes “WELL IF EVERYONE WASN’T AWAKE BEFORE THEY’RE AWAKE NOW.” (You were meant to yell those things I wrote in all caps, btw.) So it’s like, she knows she is the loudest person ever. The good thing is that because she is so loud you can hear her approaching from 5 blocks away and quickly retreat to your home which, I suspect, everyone in the neighborhood does because there is magically no one out on the block when she goes for her walk. Maybe this is all part of her plan. Maybe she likes to imagine that the world belongs to her and her alone and by scream-talking all the time she can make this dream a reality, at least in the block-by-block sense. She is the Queen of Ghost Town!

Foster Campbell: There’s a pretty big deal run-off for a Senate seat here in Louisiana between Foster Campbell (D) and John Neely Kennedy (R). It’s sort of the last chance for the Dems to flip a senate seat in advance of our upcoming fall into tyranny, I mean…wait…no, that’s what I meant. Campbell is over here campaigning all by himself, meanwhile Trump is taking some time off from his “National Thank You for Ruining the Future of this Country and Maybe Even the World by Electing Me” tour to give some speeches on behalf of Kennedy. So, yeah, we all know how 2016 goes. Anyway, the reason I am writing about this is that I am from up North. I am from a place where most democrats campaign on a platform of some degree of gun control and are not often photographed or videotaped holding any sort of weapon. It’s like, our thing. Not so down here in Louisiana. Foster Campbell, known, by the way, to be socially conservative, ends his campaign ads by shooting a rifle. Could you imagine a democratic senate nominee in the North shooting off a rifle as like a pivotal part of his or her campaign ad? I sure can’t. So, I don’t know, no judgement or anything. You do you, Foster. That was just a thing that I noticed and thought to myself “you know what self? I think maybe your readers would find that interesting. Or if not interesting, at least notable.” I hope I was right. If not, then kindly disregard the previous paragraph.

Running group: This week we did hill repeats. This is actually kind of funny. If you didn’t already know this, New Orleans is incredibly flat. So, via our Facebook group, I was sent the address for the meet-up point. Carie and I were hanging around in the Quarter so when it got time for me to head over, I left her at a spot where our friend Brian was working and I drove to the starting point for the running group which turned out to be the side of the road of some busy avenue. I sat there in my car for a few minutes, looking around. I called my mom. There was no foot traffic. I didn’t see anyone else from the group. To be honest, I was a little bit nervous. New Orleans is not exactly the safest city in the country. Did I get the address wrong? Did I somehow end up in a neighborhood that I shouldn’t be in? What was a girl to do?! But then, as if sent from above, I saw another person in running clothes! I kept my mom on the phone (for safety!) and walked over to him. It was his first time meeting the group but, having lived in New Orleans for longer than me – which admittedly is not hard – he said that this meet-up spot made sense. You see, there was an overpass that crossed above route 10. And that was to be our “hill.” I chuckled to myself, thinking back on the hill in Prospect Park that I have run up countless times. This one was more like a little hump. Until you sprint up it a dozen times and your legs turn into noodles.

Bags: I know I said I was going to keep the discussion of bags to a minimum and I fully intend to keep my word. I just wanted to say that the other day I went to the store with a giant canvas tote like an elitist fuck and the dude at the store packed it totally full of things. But then I had some left over items that wouldn’t fit and so he put each one of those things in its very own plastic bag home. So I think that my previous theory about a deeply intrenched distrust for bags is actually the correct conclusion. More research pending.

In Conclusion: That is it for week two. I have some visitors coming. Also a few friends and I are going to see the AcroKitties perform on Sunday (HOORAY!) so I bet next week’s entry will be exciting. Hold on to your seats, kids. This is gonna get wild.

New Orleans Diary: Week One

2 Dec

The goal: to write a weekly reaction to my time here in New Orleans. To be honest, reaching arbitrary goals that I set for myself isn’t exactly my strong suit but, who knows, maybe the fact that I can sit outside with a vest rather than a winter coat on the 2nd of December will breath some new life into me. So, here goes.

The Story: I have been in New Orleans, without my road trip companion Jessy, for a week now. It’s been pretty good. Just to catch some people up, I made the decision to move down here just after the presidential election on November 8th back when I visited in May of last year. I just decided that it was time to take a more active role in my own life. Shake things up a little bit. Change my environment. So on November 10th, after crying on and off for two days following the elections, Jessy and I hopped in my car and started on a two-week long trip down South during which we cried on and off about the election. We zig zagged a bit, to put it lightly. And then last Friday, after a really fun Franksgiving Outpost involving the race tracks, an amazing dinner cooked by friends and a few too many drinks at one of my favorite New Orleans bars, I dropped Jessy off at the airport and started my time here for real.

Some feels: As someone who is massively social, sort of to a fault at times, being somewhere that I know a very small handful of people has been…challenging. I have grown pretty accustomed to being surrounded by people that I know and love and while, in ways, getting away from my over-active social life was one of the reasons to move down here, I miss it. I miss walking down the street and seeing people I know. I miss going out with pals to drinks and dinner. I miss popping in to visit my friends at work. I miss sweating it out on a bike next to a buddy exchanging winces of pain when the class gets extra hard. I miss my customers. (Well, most of them.) I miss my kitties. I miss my apartment with its brightly colored walls, shelves full of books, awesome art on the walls and surfaces littered with plants and kitsch. I miss Brooklyn, I really do. (Although I have to say that watching the weather drop day after day up north while I am still able to run in shorts and a t-shirt is pretty killer. Not to brag, or anything.)

Running Group!: But, I am adjusting. I joined a running group that meets on Tuesday nights and is full of really nice people. One of the things that I had a hard time with in Brooklyn, especially after my long-time running buddy and good friend Monica moved her family to the Hudson Valley, was finding a running community. There are a lot of people who run in New York, it’s true. But I have found many of them to be a little too competitive for my taste. New York, at least in the way that I see it, is a Type-A city, with a lot of people taking everything that they do pretty seriously. And I think that’s great! But when it comes to my running, and let’s be honest, pretty much everything that I do, I’m a little more…relaxed about it. And wouldn’t you know it, this group seems to have the exact same mentality. Everyone comes to work hard but there is just, I don’t know, a really positive vibe about it all that I really enjoyed. The workout this week was to run 3-5 by 1 mile repeats at a 10k pace. (Don’t worry if that made absolutely no sense to you, the specifics aren’t important.) Initially it was supposed to be like 65 degrees but instead it was almost 80 and humid as fuck. Everyone was struggling. Some people cut their workouts short because it was hard to breath but everyone stayed around until all the other runners finished, offering high fives, words of encouragement and big congratulations to everyone who managed to get through the entire planned workout. The vibe of the group was like a giant hug, only a figurative one because everyone was too sweaty and stinky and hot to really deal with any human contact.

Bags: This is sort of a weird thing but people here love bags. I mean, LOVE bags. So in New York people tend to be careful to bring their own bags to stores. I think some people do this because they care about the environment. A lot of people, however, do it because in NYC there is a little bit of shame associated with walking out of a grocery store with like 15 plastic bags in tow. People look. They have thoughts; judgy ones. They proudly hoist their own tote bags higher on their shoulders, proud that they were helping to alleviate the pressures of climate change and litter one little white bag at a time. They and their canvas Trader Joe’s bag will save the world! Here in New Orleans people love bags. They give bags out like candy! You practically have to argue with the checkout people to get them to put more than one item in each bag and then, when you succeed, they double bag it. I swear I feel like I end up with more bags in one visit to the store here than I do in like 3 months in New York. It’s very bizarre. I don’t know, maybe I’m wrong. Maybe they don’t love bags. Maybe they just don’t trust bags. Maybe there is a higher percentage of faulty bags here in Louisiana than up in Brooklyn. Maybe there was a spate of defective bag handles, handles that snapped without warning and sent the contents spewing willy nilly through the aisles and the parking lots, leaving the residents of the city doubtful of the quality of their disposable totes. I’ll keep you posted.

Driving and Parking: I drive quite a bit down here. Public transportation is, shall we say, slightly lacking and so the best way to get around town is by car. So I go here and I go there. Most of the places I go seem to be about 20 minutes away from most of the other places that I go. And so, like the good New Yorker I am, I leave myself extra time to get places to account for traffic and parking. Only there is barely any traffic and I can almost always find parking right in front of where I need to be. I have spent quite a bit of time wandering back and forth down a street, looking for signs about street cleaning or parking restrictions but there are none. And the days of like 6 fire hydrants per block are long gone, too. Obviously this indicative of some bigger things that I don’t really feel like getting into right now so let me just say this: I have been early to basically every single thing I have had to go to since being here even when I have gotten lost which happens a lot because the signs here are confusing and also sometimes simply not there. So to those people who think that New Jersey signage is confusing, I invite you to shut the fuck up and drive around here for a minute. Also, people in the South drive like maniacs. And don’t believe in blinkers.

I’m actually not done talking about bags: I had intended for this to be a little bit more serious of a post than this but I lost my way a little. Mostly because this whole week has been peppered with me being really taken by the situation with the bags. I don’t know why I find this so interesting but like every time I go somewhere I either mention to my friend Carie — who has been kind enough to allow me to stay with her while I look for a spot — about the number of bags we end up with or I just say something aloud to myself as I walk back to my car like a total weirdo. I’ve done other fun things, too. I’ve run quite a bit along the levee, wandered around the city and gone to see some live music with a new friend but I just can’t get over the bags. Hopefully I will have more interesting things to discuss next week. Stay tuned.

 

Are You Married?

17 May

No.

But sometimes I say yes.

Right now my entire neighborhood is under construction. There are actually two construction projects currently under way on my block. One of them is particularly annoying to me. So much so that I wrote an open letter to the developer of the site and posted it on this blog. I also call 311 on them at least once a week. You know me: always putting too much energy into things that yield absolutely no results. So here is the thing about this construction site. They start work at 7 on the dot every morning except Sunday. It is like clockwork. And I know that city regulation allows them to do that (because I did my research) but it doesn’t mean that I can’t be mad about it. Especially because them starting work actually means that one asshole climbs up onto the second floor of whatever personality-less piece of crap building they are erecting and bangs a mallet against a metal stud for like 1/2 hour. No joke. He gets up there and he bangs metal on metal. And then once I have been awake for long enough that the overall quality of my sleep diminishes ten-fold he says

Yeah, that’s enough mallet banging for today.

And he stops. I hate him. He might be a perfectly nice guy in real life, but by design his job makes him an asshole.

The reason I am going into this is that every time I walk by the construction site – which is like 10 times a day because it is two doors up from my house – I get mad. I glare at the site. I shake my head disapprovingly. I have ill-fantasies about drawing pictures of penises all over the shoddily-built scaffolding. Sometimes I snarl. I try to give nasty looks to the man I know to be the guy in charge of it for single-handedly ruining my quality of life. He knows I’m coming for him. I have even called him on the phone on more than one occasion although I am not sure he has put two-and-two together. I have become that person on the block. (Although to be fair I have spoken with a lot of other people on the block who have also reported the site to 311, snarled and reached out to the developer guy  who by the way calls himself Ryan although I don’t think that is his real name. None of us do.) So just this afternoon I was walking by the construction site, glaring, when I noticed there was a meeting of construction workers right there in my path. Uh oh. This is never an ideal situation. I have been yelled at by so many construction workers in this city over the years it’s absurd. Construction workers whistle at women so much that there was a site on 4th Avenue above a laundromat and the laundromat had parrots and the parrots learned how to catcall. Not kidding. I would be running down 4th and get catcalled at the construction site and begin to descend into a blind rage when I would realize I was being harassed by a pair of mother fucking birds.

BIRDS!

As I was saying, there was a construction-worker meeting happening directly in my path. I knew something was going to be said. I concentrated very hard on drinking my iced coffee and staring at my feet. I hate that I do this but I did it. I thought maybe if I pretended not to see them they wouldn’t see me. That approach failed, obviously.

Construction worker: Hey.
Me: Grunt.
Construction worker: How are you today?
Me: I’d be better if you guys didn’t wake me up at 7 in the morning every day. (ZAMBO!)
Construction worker: Are you married?

Okay, what?! I am so confused as to how this happened. So let’s recap and see if maybe I missed something. I clearly did not want to speak to him, hence the grunt. Then I basically told him that he was ruining my life. And then he asked me if I was married? And what if I said no? Was he going to ask me out on a date? Was he going to see if I wanted to meet him at the site at 6:57am, climb onto the second floor and, at exactly 7 on the dot, take a mallet and bang it as hard as I could against a piece of metal? You know, just to fuck with the neighbors?

I told him I was in fact married by calling out a sing-songy

Sure am

and continued on my way. I pretend to be married at least once a week.

So what I have noticed is that as I have gotten older, the line of questioning from random strangers on the street or assholes in bars and at parties has changed. They used to ask me if I had a boyfriend and when I said yes they would respond, like clockwork (I totally accidentally typed cockwork and it made me laugh…had to share),

Don’t worry, he doesn’t have to know.

And that always made me mad because it was like, what the fuck? I don’t want anything to do with you and your statement completely takes me out of the equation. There is that assumption that I absolutely want to suck your dick in the bathroom but the only thing that is stopping me is that fact that my boyfriend might find out and then who will I be? I will go from being a somebody with a boyfriend to a single nobody, sad and alone who probably picked up some nasty disease from putting your cock in my mouth. Now that I am in my 30s and clearly cannot just have a boyfriend, I must either be married or single (AKA sad and alone and diseased from aforementioned interaction). So the line of questioning has changed. Now people always ask me if I am married. If I say no, all hell breaks lose. If I lie and say yes, just to get them to leave me the fuck alone, they then follow it up with

No you’re not. You’re not wearing a ring.

And it’s like

I wasn’t wearing a ring when you asked me in the first place, dipshit, so if you’re so goddamn observant why didn’t you notice that before?!

But then do you know what happens next, when I don’t actually audibly call the person a dipshit?

Don’t worry, he doesn’t have to know.

AAAAAH!

But I mean, really, what is the expected response to this? Or, I suppose more accurately, the hoped-for response? I came up with a few possibilities:

  1. You’re right! I know a motel you can pay for by the hour down on 3rd. You down?
  2. You’re right! I’m not wearing a ring but I’d like to be and I know a guy who can perform weddings!
  3. You’re right! I live two doors down and my imaginary husband won’t be home for hours!
  4. You’re right! (Swift kick to the genitals.)

My money is on number 4 for sure.

Anyway, I never claimed to have all the answers. But I’m gonna go for a run and think on this. I’ll let you know if any moments of clarity follow.

A Little (Slightly Depressing) Self Reflection for Your Sunday

1 Feb

Alright I know I have been super duper quiet on this blog as of late. That is partially because I have been writing (almost) daily over on my other blog, ChafingIsReal.com. Any of you who haven’t checked it out yet, or don’t know what the deal is, here is some info! So this year I decided to sign up for this challenge to run 2,015 miles in the year 2015. For those who are wondering, and yes people have asked me why I chose the number 2,015, it is one mile for each year since Jesus was born. I mean, not really. Jesus has nothing to do with it. That was really just a nod to the religious history of our calendar. I’ll stop now. So, you can watch over there to see how I am doing if you want, and read all the nonsense that I spout. It isn’t all about running, either. There are all sorts of fun things that happen so you should check it out, if you feel so inclined. Moving on from self-promotion….

This past Friday I got back from a 9 day trip to New Orleans. I’ve been going down there for a visit every year since I moved one of my closest friends down there back in 2012. My annual pilgrimage has almost become a marker of time, so I figured I would use my return as a sort of self-reflection on all that has happened in the last year. And you guys, a lot has happened.

About halfway through my trip I realized that it has been almost a year since I quit my job at the bar I worked at for almost 6. It is weird to think that the end of a bar job could be such a big milestone in a person’s life but it really was. I realized, after leaving and taking a step back from all that happened, that I had been in almost an abusive relationship with my job. I don’t really know how else to put it than that. In a lot of ways, too, being there year after year almost stagnated my growth as a person. Well, maybe that isn’t entirely fair. I don’t really know how to explain it. Working the same place, the same shifts, for so long is both a blessing and a curse. On the good side, I built myself up a bit of a business, a lot of people came in on my shifts to hear my stories, read my bar signs and shoot the shit. On the bad side, the longer and longer I stayed, the more and more I felt like I would never leave. It became almost a security blanket. The flexible schedule allowed me time to do other things (like get my Master’s) but I ultimately just felt trapped. And angry. And, more than anything else, sad. I know I have said this before but it almost felt as though I could have woken up and been 25 all over again. That’s how stagnant I felt. Quitting that job, although it caused a landslide of disasters that seemed to effect every other facet of my life, was one of the best decisions I ever made. And I think that finally, a year later, I can really reflect on that and appreciate it.

Now that’s not to say that everything is unicorns and rainbows. A few weeks ago, sitting on the floor of my Aunt Catherine and Uncle Mikel’s living room during the middle of our annual Chanukah party, my dad looked over at me and said,

You’re not having a very good time, are you?

Thinking he was talking about the party (which was, by the way, fucking hilarious for myriad reasons) I turned to him and said that I was having a good time. He looked back at me and said

No, I mean in life.

And it’s true, I wasn’t. I’m not. I keep waiting for it to get just a little bit easier but it doesn’t and probably it won’t. That’s life, right? When one thing comes together, another thing falls apart and it is a matter of juggling highs and lows, expectations and realities, excitement and disappointment. I guess part of the thing is that as we get older, the expectations we have of where will we be, who we will be, become a little bit higher and when we don’t measure up in whatever ways we think we should, we fall a little bit father than we did, say 5 years ago. Time seems a little more pressed now. I feel a little bit more behind. But it’s silly, all these things. There is no proper pace, no right place to be in life. We all take our own road and each one of those roads has its own struggles. I guess it is all a matter of understanding when it is time to make a change and what that change has to be. Last year, it was quitting my job. Right now, I am working on this running project as a way to get to the end of the year and look back and say,

Wow, look at what I did. Look at what I accomplished.

It’s not about anything other than taking control of my life, setting myself a positive goal, and then doing whatever I can to (safely) achieve it, documenting the entire journey more for myself than anyone else. It’s a measure of where I was at the beginning and where I will be 2,015 miles later. And all those hours spent running will give me a lot of time to think about where I want to be after that. They will let me spend time thinking about something I have been wondering a lot lately, whether I have overstayed my time in New York. But on the other hand, is it the city or is it me? It makes me think of some Ben Folds lyrics (cheesey, I know, but he plays the piano with his elbows!):

Lucretia walks into a room.
Because she does it’s not the same room
The one she wanted to be in
She says, “Everywhere I go, damn! There I am”

Because, and this is a thing I have said countless times to countless people, changing location doesn’t mean everything will get better. You will still be there. And if you are the problem, then you are going to be exactly the same only this time thousands of miles away from family, support, and whatever the hell else you left behind. So it’s a crap shoot, really. You can never really know what the root cause of the problem is until you change something and see what happens. So I am thinking about writing the names of a bunch of cities, throwing them in a hat and then picking one out and moving there. That seems completely reasonable and adult, right? Right.

Anyway, I’m fine, really. I just think it’s good to air some things out sometimes. We see so many representations online of how perfect people’s lives are, that sometimes it’s good to remember that everyone’s life is a little complicated, a little shitty. So here’s me throwing a little self-pity into the ring, you know, just to keep things interesting. Now I am going to go do what I always do when I am in a crappy mood: go for a run. And then I will write about it (in hopefully a much more up-beat way than this Debbie Downer of a post) over on my other site. And then I will go to work so I can continue to financially tread water. To life!

A Tail of Two Kitties

18 Jan

In my post from yesterday on ChafingIsReal.com I alluded to the fact that I would explain to my readers why it was that I missed writing a blog post this past Friday. Over on that blog, for those of you who don’t know, I am documenting my progress in a challenge to run 2,015 miles in the year 2015. In case you are wondering, it is going pretty well. So far this year I have run 64.64 miles which means that I have another 1,950.36 miles to go before I can call this journey a success. It is a little bit daunting, to say the least. This all means that, if I were to run every single day for the rest of the year (which I will not do because I don’t want to hurt myself and also that sounds miserable) I would have to get in roughly 5.6 miles daily. So, yea, that’s some work. If any of you readers (a) live in New York City and (b) are runners please let me know. I wouldn’t mind a touch of company every now and again.

Moving on. The other part of the challenge, which is an aspect that I designed for myself in order to improve my writing, is to post a blog post on that other site every single day. Obviously, I have failed. But that’s okay! I am not throwing in the towel! Sometimes life gets in the way and keeps us from doing the things we set out to do and we can either be mad at ourselves about it or just shrug our shoulders and realize that we are not in control of everything and sometimes cats, and a movie and a night that both turn out to be a lot longer than you anticipated, just happen. So, without further ado,* the story.

This coming Wednesday at 6:50am (uuuggghhh) I will be departing for New Orleans for my annual visit. I have friends down there so I like to get down there and hang with them for a week, give or take. In anticipation of this, I decided that it would be smart to bring my two kitties, Clark and Grete, over to my parents house so I didn’t have to cobble together people to feed them and give them scratches for the 9 days I will be out of town. My parents were not incredibly pleased about this turn of events but they love me so they agreed. (Thanks Mom and Dad! You’re the best!!) I happened to be watching my friend Katie’s car while she was in Costa Rica this past week (so jealous) and so I figured it would be easy to put the kitties in their little houses and drive them out to my parent’s place in New Jersey. So, while my friend Ben looked on, I packed my kitties into their little houses which caused some not so serious injuries to my shoulders. I should have cut Clark’s nails shorter. Live and learn. We then loaded the kitties, kitty accoutrement, and laundry into the car and I made the relatively short, but incredibly stressful, trek to my parents’ place. It’s actually not usually that stressful but have you ever driven for 40 minutes, including some time on the BQE (the lanes are so tiny!) with two yowling cats in the back seat? I do not recommend it. They make the craziest noises. Ben said they sounded like dolphins. I don’t know about all that but what I do know is that I spent the entire car ride cooing at them and oscillating between incredible guilt for having taken them from the only home they have ever known and crammed them into little carriers and fear that I was going to get rear-ended and my kitties were going to fly through the front windshield. Poor, poor kitties. Anyway, we got there safe and sound. Physically speaking, anyway.

So I called my mom and she came out and helped me carry the two little beans (that’s what I call them) into the house and down to the basement so we could show them where the litter box was. Clark quickly emerged from his box and hid underneath a shelving unit and Grete remained in her box, where she apparently felt safe, for the next 4 hours. Just in there. Sitting, staring, occasionally crying. It was heart breaking. Eventually she came out and hid herself, face against the exposed brick wall, behind some paintings that were leaning there. I am still unclear as to why that seemed like a good place to hide but there you have it. After dinner I decided that maybe the proper course of action would be to carry each of them upstairs into the less scary part of the house where my parents and I were hanging out so they could begin the adjustment period. Big mistake. Huge. They were shaking. Grete spent the first hour of upstairs time wedged between my left arm and the arm of the sofa, with her head behind a cushion. Clark spent his time hiding behind Grete. You guys, they are the wussiest kitties ever to have kittied. It’s really something. After some time Clark got spooked and went into the living room and hid between the back of the sofa and the wall. He remained there for something like 12 hours. I brought Grete up to my bedroom, thinking, again erroneously, that maybe being with me would make her feel more comfortable. She slept on the bed for a little bit but eventually ended up jumping down and hiding underneath it. Where she remained for the next 48 hours until my mother, bless her, went upstairs and pulled her out and brought her down to the basement were the litter box was. Oh, yea, I forgot to mention that in an act of both bravery and seething anger Grete took a shit on the bed.

Cats are such assholes.

As a person who considers herself a better-than-average cat mom, and who was really trying to do what was best for her little kitties, I spent almost the entire 24 hours I was at my parents house worrying about the kitties, talking about the kitties, trying to find the kitties and laughing at the kitties. I feel sort of bad about that last part but I can’t help it. Poor, pathetic little fuzzballs.

So as of the update my mom gave me last night at approximately 10:30pm, things had not changed much. My mom did manage to get Grete to come out from under the bed by sitting on the floor and reading. Eventually Grete, who is very much in need of attention pretty much whenever she is awake and not eating, came out purring and let my mom scratch her head. My mom then brought her downstairs where Grete is currently hiding. Clark, although he has still been taking refuge under the sofa in the living room, has used the litter box. I think both of them have eaten some snacks. Grete loves snacks.

Anyway so that is the Tail of Two Kitties (teehee) and also a long, drawn-out explanation as to why I did not run on Friday and also did not write on my blog. I simply couldn’t run. I had to meander around the house trying to figure out where the kitties were hiding and also at one point I had to drag Clark out from underneath the oven where he decided to wedge himself. That is not a good place to be a kitty. Also when I got back into the city I saw Boyhood with my friend Revaz at IFC. It was good. You should all see it. But maybe wait till it comes out on DVD (or streaming or whatever the kids are doing these days) because it’s almost 3 hours long. And that’s a long time.

If anything of note happens with the kitties I will be sure to let you all know. Feel free to send messages of love and concern. Also, read my other blog. It’s not that great but the posts are short and sometimes have something to do with running but usually have more to do with my imagination. Okay thanks.

* “Without further ado” is a phrase that I have said and never written and so I went on the internet and learned some things! Apparently people oftentimes write “without further adieu” instead of without further “ado,” even though if you were to translate the former it would mean without further goodbye? And that doesn’t make sense although it does look awful pretty. There is something to be said about the aesthetics of a bunch of vowels in a row. The word “ado” actually means hubbub or fuss, which I am sure all of you well-vocabularied people already knew but I thought I would throw it in here anyway. And also this one last thing because I didn’t know this and I think it is really cool. When people confuse words like “adieu” and “ado” it is known as an eggcorn! That’s what it means to confuse two words that sound the same but have different spellings and meanings. Eggcorn! Who knew! I will now try and work the word “eggcorn” into casual conversation on the regular so be on the lookout.

I’m Sorry!

7 Jan

You guys, I have been the absolute worst at this blog recently. The fucking worst. And for that I apologize. I actually don’t think that I have gone this long without posting on this site since I caught my stride like 2 years ago. But fear not for I have returned. And also I am full of excuses for my recent absence which I will now fill you in on.

I have started a new writing project! Yay! So here is the deal. As many of you avid readers know, I had a shit year in 2014. Oh it was the pits. But now it is 2015 and everything is different. And by everything I actually mean my mindset. Now if something bad happens I won’t just attach it to all the other bad things that happened to happen within the same 365 days. The bad things will just exist on their own, as independent events that sort of blow but don’t have any huge meaning or impact on my happiness or sanity. Or so I hope, anyway. And, to be entirely honest, it is going rather well. I feel upbeat! And part of this, I think, is due to my project!

So since I am an adult, I have many years of experience in being me. And one of the things that these years of experience have taught me is that I need a project. I need something to focus on, something that has an end goal, something that is forward moving. Because if I don’t have something like that, then I focus on what is right in front of me and what is right in front of me is bartending. Well, not literally at this moment. At this moment my cat, Grete, is right in front of me and making typing this blog extremely difficult but you know what I mean. So here’s the thing about bartending. I actually kind of like it. But the only way I can like it is if I don’t care too much about it. I want to do my job well, make money for myself and the bar, but I also want to leave work at work. I want to lock the gates, go home and go to sleep and not really worry too much about it until I am back at it again. But in order for me to be able to do that, I have to have something else going on, something that I am in control of. I mean, I am in control, to some extent, of the bar when I am working (or so one would hope) but I am not in control. I don’t make the rules, I just enforce them. I make money on the front-end when I am working, not on the back-end because I invested. I am replaceable. All of these things are key. And so to make the way that I earn my money sustainable and palatable, and to make me a better, more zen-like bartender, I have to have something in my life that is using up my need to be spearheading something that, in some ways, matters to me personally in my journey of being a Rebekah. And so, without further adieu, I bring you my new blog,

ChafingIsReal.com

So here is the deal. Over the course of 2015, I, along with some 10,000 other people worldwide, will be running 2,015 miles. That is the equivalent of something like 77 marathons. It’s a lot of miles. And I will be writing about it every single day whether I run or not. I am hoping to keep it Rebekah-style, meaning full of funny things, snark and maybe a little anger at the inevitable street harassment I experience along the way. I am also hoping to see bunnies. There will be a little bit of cheese, of course, but I really don’t want this to be one of those silly fitness blogs that is all full of “fitspiration” and lame quotes and me saying things like “working out is so great and everyone should do it all the time!” Because honestly, sometimes working out sucks. Sometimes I hate running. I ALWAYS hate lifting weights. But I am going to do it anyway and gripe about it on the internet. So check me out over there. It might take up a lot of my time, but this blog is not going anywhere. It will be reserved for stories of me getting shit on, feminist rants and letters to random people who wrong me. Also maybe some new bartending tales, if I work up the courage.

Alright, guys, happy new year and welcome to 2015! I think it’s going to be a hell of a year.

FYI: I am an Adult

24 Jun

So this is a thing I realized today:  I find port-o-potties hilariously funny.  Like, all the time.  I don’t know what it is about them.  They just make me giggle.  And this is not a new thing.  I think I have always found them funny.  So I remember this one time when I was little I was in the car with my mom and I all of a sudden wondered to myself,

Self, how do they get port-o-potties from one place to another?

And wouldn’t you know it, about 5 minutes later a pick-up truck with not one, not two, but three port-o-potties on the back drove right on by!  It made total sense!  Up to that point I was trying to think of all the different possibilities: dropped by helicopter? Towed in? Placed on some sort of motorized platform with wheels and directed there via a remote computing device?  (I didn’t say I was a logical child.)  This turn of events had three distinct effects: (1) I was very excited; (2) I laughed really hard; (3) I was impressed by the speed with which the universe answered my extremely burning silent inquiry.  Maybe there was a god?

Anyway, fast-forward a few years.  I developed this nasty, unintentional habit of timing my summer runs for exactly when some sort of service came to clean the port-o-potty right by the Ocean Parkway entrance to Prospect Park.  I don’t know if any of you have ever walked by when a port-o-potty is being cleaned but it is one of the worst smells ever.  And it travels.  I would be like 1/2 mile away and I would all of a sudden get a waft of this disgusting aroma and realized that, damnit, I had done it again!  And then I would spend the next 1/2 mile trying to breath only through my mouth while simultaneously feeling a great deal of sadness for whatever poor bastard was tasked with that particular job.  I mean, can you imagine?  Being like, right there while all the nasty stuff from the port-o-potty hole comes up through a tube into the back of the truck?  And then having to walk around with that odor stuck to your clothes?! (I have a theory that stinky particles are stickier than nice-smelling ones and that is why garbage mens’ clothes smell like garbage whereas florists clothes do not smell like flowers.)  Between the feelings of pity and the slight odor-induced nausea I would also be sort of giggly because of course I went running at exactly the time when the port-o-potty was being cleaned again.  I mean, what are the odds?!

And then today, I was walking around and there was this port-o-potty and on it was painted the name of the company and do you know what it was?  Rent-A-Unit.  Okay, so if you were to come up to me one day and be all,

Rebekah, if you were to guess what the company Rent-A-Unit has on offer what would it be?

I really don’t think I would guess a port-o-potty.  No, sir. Off the top of my head I can think of one or two things I would be likely to guess and they both are closely related to the possible usages of the male anatomy outside of urination.  There are just so many possible funny names for port-o-potty companies that I felt really let down by this one.  It saddened me.

Okay, and now for the last thing which is the funniest thing that has ever happened to me in relation to port-o-potties. So the other day I was walking down my street past this construction site and I saw what looked like a port-o-potty with the door ajar.  On the side was painted “Call-A-Head,” which I think is a superb name for a port-o-potty company.  As I approached the structure I kept repeating in my head,

Do not look in the potty….do not look in the potty…do not look in the potty…

I mean, really, you never know what could be hiding within the confines of a random moveable toilet.  There could be someone in there with his or her pants down.  Or a possum.  Or, I don’t know, some birds that would come flying out right when you walk by, scaring the shit out of you.  But of course I ignored my own logic and peaked into the potty.  What I saw was hilarious.  There, inside the potty, was a man in some sort of outfit — security guard? — sitting at a tiny little desk doing paper work.  His office was a potty.  And I thought to myself,

Man, if I find myself sometime down the line waking up, getting myself Dressed and then heading to the office except that my office is not really an office but is instead a head, I would be very sad.

How does one put on an outfit that looks Serious and Professional and then commute to work and then go into a potty and sit at a teeny tiny desk and take themselves, or their jobs, seriously?  I would just laugh all day long.

The end.