Friday, February 25, 2011

Dear _____

South Korea is floating word of resistance across the Middle East to North Koreans via helium balloon.

That is the kind of thing you hear and wonder when you’re going to get an answer, addressed to your parents' house, to the letter you stuck in a bottle and threw in the Atlantic seventeen years ago.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Walk-on Sentence

Yesterday I intended to go to the gym after work but instead found myself walking past the subway station to check out the bunch of tweens and paparazzi in front of the Trump SoHo waiting for Christina Aguilera to surface (can we call this groundhogging? When a celebrity shows face?), and then past a further subway station too, and then up and over this weird overpass near Laight street and then down Canal for a while, and then I gave up and gave in and decided to walk back to Brooklyn over the Williamsburg bridge instead of fucking with an elliptical for an hour, so I walked over past Ferrara’s because I love the sign, and then I thought about how I have this goal to eat at all of Little Italy’s cheeseball restaurants but I’ve yet to try any, and then I walked past this empty storefront that used to be this avant garde clothing store that made me wonder how it stayed in business literally every time I passed by and now I know the answer was “it can’t,” and then had this great ex-fat moment where I saw a sign that started C-R-E-A and assumed it was "creampuff," believed so hard it was "creampuff," realized it was "creative" and believed it was interesting creampuffs, and felt intensely let down when it was Creative Signs, which was disappointing all the way past those little cheapo clothing stores on Delancey by the bridge, the Manhattan cousins to every store on Knickerbocker, where I felt anxious at the specter of a summer with cropped shirts all the raging, and then up and over the bridge which was treacherously icy in parts but also really pretty when the lights came on, but I couldn't dwell because I was in this sort of weird unspoken race with a girl walking at nearly the same pace as me but I totally passed her on the down slope and she was out of sight by the time I hit that spot where you’re eye-level with the gym on the second floor of a building in South Williamsburg, just north of Broadway, near where I exited the bridge and walked to buy frozen green beans for lunch and green apples for snacks, and had my customary battle in the grocery store bakery aisle about whether or not to purchase an eat an entire loaf of Italian bread on the way to Sam’s house as I occasionally secretly do, but didn’t, and because I won this battle and also managed not to freeze, I ate a celebratory bowl of Trix and watched some game shows and called it a decent journey for a Tuesday.

Today, though, I think I saw Eric Clapton.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Put This in the Smithsonian Museum of Frenemies

Every once in a while someone says something in the media that is just so pitch perfect it's like a tuning fork of total honesty. Or, in this case, bitchery. Gawker linked to this article about the secret world of Michelle Obama's stylist minions and poses the theory that her 29-year-old assistant Meredith Koop is actually doing most of her clothing-picking-out these days. Koop wouldn't comment, Obama wouldn't comment, the White House wouldn't really comment, Michelle's old stylist wouldn't comment, and thus the reporter had to talk to people like Koop's hair stylist and an old sorority sister. And get a load of this shining, beautiful diamond of Kappa Deltassholery!

She was "a ton of fun" at parties and "never had the need to conform to the Vandy Southern girl persona," said Abby Doll, a footwear buyer and designer in Salt Lake City who was a Kappa Delta sorority sister of Koop at Vanderbilt. According to Doll, Koop was noticeable for her tall, thin build and her model-like good looks. "Pretty, but not conventionally pretty," Doll said. "Maybe not mainstream stylish - she had her own style."

Friday, February 18, 2011

Trade Ya

Real things in the bartering section of NYC Craigslist right now:

TRADE- Handyman for GFE or FWB

a running car 4 My Mac pro

Clown, Magician, Face Painter Services in exhange for your....
[among other things] laser hair removal

1,152 test tubes - swap for anything amusing

Items to barter for cb radio - $80 (Queens)
I have 60 adult videos, some copies and some original.
I have to sell for $80 or to barter in exchange for a Cobra 29 LTD CB Radio.


Skilled handyman for Sensual Massage

Norman Rockwell Porcelain Mugs - $50
…Will trade for drum equipment/ snare hardware ect.

Gumball Machine 4 sm aircompressor

Trade 1 pizza for web/PHP/database work

will swap beautiful set of islamic prayer beads (queens)

to a student who knows how to give a 2 hour full body massage.

trade freshwaterfish for comic books

i have a suitcase filled with old comics from the 1990's, a lot of punisher. i would like to trade for central and south american cichlids for my acquarium. I am looking specifically for Severums. Size doesnt matter.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Here's What Rape Culture Looks Like

From the reader comments of the New York Post article Battle-tough beauty no ‘wimpy girly girl’

02/16/2011 3:55 PM
shes stupid not brave, next ime they could kill her instead of raping her. what if they go after her entire crew. shes selfish.

Kenyon Schraeder
02/16/2011 1:06 PM
There is something that just doesn't ring right with these alleged events in Egypt. I have no doubt that the woman was accosted or even assaulted while on the job but the intrigue and mystery surrounding whatever transpired seems to be growing, as if it's been partially manufactured. I hate to think that any of this might be self-serving in some way either to her or to her employer.

From the reader comments of the New York Post article CBS reporters’ Cairo nightmare

02/16/2011 10:04 AM

Is 60 Minutes nuts! Why send one of their female reporters into a situation that that. Come on now - nothing prejudicial about sending only male correspondents - just common sense!

02/16/2011 9:54 AM

a sexual assault is a terrible, violent crime. but a "60 Minutes" reporter requesting privacy???? in regard to privacy ( or lack thereof) ONLY, you reap what you sow

From the reader comments of the New York Daily News article Lara Logan, ’60 Minutes’ correspondent, suffers ‘sustained’ sex assault by Egypt mob: CBS News

6:04:16 PM
Feb 16, 2011

She better have 4 male witnesses

4:34 PM
Feb 15, 2011

don't mean to be insensitive, but does she not know this is how a mob operates??? bringing a pretty female into a lawless mob is like showing up at Charlie Sheen's carrying a ton of coke, thinking he won't snort it all!

4:41 PM
Feb 15, 2011

February sweeps... Anderson Cooper, ABC reporters and now a CBS reporter. If this is true, why did the CBS spokesman have to make this public?

5:08 PM
Feb 15, 2011

She should cover the Puerto Rican parade this year!!!

5:13 PM
Feb 15, 2011

You know that women are considered second class citizens in this part of the world, why send a blond hair blue eyed woman to this protest??????? Shame on her employers.

5:23 PM
Feb 15, 2011

kpett, I know and that's why fshanks is all upset. White men (and women) will be screaming from their roofs all week over this. And for what? She was not the only woman sexually assaulted in Cairo over the past two weeks. I feel sorry for Ms. Logan. But I guarantee when the back story of how she got her second husband and her sexual hijinks in Baghdad come out, a lot of people are going to change their minds about her.

5:50 PM
Feb 15, 2011

Is she a soldier? Is she a fire fighter? A police officer perhaps? No, she's a journalist, whom was stupid enough to go into an area where women are viewed more as objects than people. And I'm supposed to feel sympathy for this? she put her safety of her life in name of a job. Sorry, but I dont think there is anything brave about that. She definitely gets the award for Moron of the Year.

5:56 PM
Feb 15, 2011

Sexual Assault PLEASE! Today's reporters just want the spotlight! Don't believe what you read!!

6:03 PM
Feb 15, 2011

I'm sorry, but this is what happens when they try to send one of those blonde "news bunnies" into a dangerous environment... Serious news correspondents went out with Walter Cronkite... Now, any college cheerleader with nice legs is suddenly considered a "journalist".... We all agree, they're nice to look at in the studio, especially the hot legs contest going on with those brainless chicks at Fox News.... But as fr the serious reporting? Leave that to the real journalists...

6:21 PM
Feb 15, 2011

Assault on anyone is unacceptable let alone sexual assault. Having said all that, I don't like when reporters put themselves in the middle of the story in order to advance their career. When there is a popular revolt you don't move ahead of the crowd. There are ways to cover the story without being part of the story. By the way, didn't Lara Logan had an affair with the CNN Reporter Michael Ware?

6:43 PM
Feb 15, 2011

definition of sexual assault means fondling and grabbing/groping...this happens all the time in NYC on buses, trains, parades etc...THIS IS NOT RAPE....NEWS SENSATIONALISM AT ITS BEST...

6:49 PM
Feb 15, 2011

This is what happens when a Liberal Network hires yet another cute blond who thinks she's "all bad", rather than a deserving guy who supports a family or himself - "Yea" Affirmative Action!

6:51 PM
Feb 15, 2011

Aw, the Poor Media Babe, she fall down, go boom!

7:50 PM
Feb 15, 2011

Isn't this the same Lara Logan who last year was accussed of sleeping around with two fellow male CBS News employees while overseas, in Beriut or Israel? Didn't she cause one of those men to lose his wife and children over this affair? Is this Karma or what?

glad to be here
8:51 PM
Feb 15, 2011

It's sad that this woman was assaulted. That being said, this woman made a decision to be a mother. She belongs in the relative safety of her home, caring for her child. Roaming around in a third world country where savages run free, one leaves themselves vulnerable to such horrible attacks.

12:01 AM
Feb 16, 2011

Isn't this lady the adulterer who got pregnant by her camerman?

5:15 AM
Feb 16, 2011

She just needed to learn her place. I'm sure if she ever goes back there she'll be much more humble, dress conservatively, and not get all mouthy when she addresses a man.

5:30 AM
Feb 16, 2011

She wanted a mans job and she got it. So now it's time for her to shake it off and start acting like a big girl.

5:52 AM
Feb 16, 2011

She covered up the lies of Bush and his gang to go to war and she finally was made to pay for that. She is also a lousy reporter and probably got what was coming to her.

Black 'n Proud
7:20 AM
Feb 16, 2011

If you put a hot chick like this in a rough place, she's gonna get banged. It's unfortunate, but it's going to happen. Such is life.

8:37 AM
Feb 16, 2011

She wanted more. She must have fallen in love with her captors.. ."Just a week before, the Emmy-winning war reporter survived a harrowing night of being held - blindfolded and forced into a "stress position" - by Egyptian security forces." smh.

andwho are u?
9:19 AM
Feb 16, 2011

there is a old saying.."u stick your finger in a light socket..u going to get shocked!!" meaning..u travel to a foreign land that had a custom of putting down women and u know that u SHOULD dress a certain way but u dont and then something happens, now WHO fault is that...its YOURS!! iam so sick of these fem-bots screaming that its war on women and it wasnt her fault..when ever is it? Women have to take resposabilty and STOP THINKING that u are untouchable JUST CAUSE u are a woman.

11:17 AM
Feb 16, 2011

Please don't hype this thing up to be more than what it was, a case of @ss pinching and unwanted touching.

2:28 PM
Feb 16, 2011

Hmmmmm...she suffers a "sustained" sexual assult BUT gets on a plane back to Washington DC THE SAME DAY - Checks in and OUT of Hospital - THE SAME DAY and reportedly is scheduled to be back to work this week-end (for 60 minutes TV ratings you think?)

Ken Do

Who is Bram Stoker?
(I, for one, welcome our new computer overlords.)

That’s how Ken Jennings answered final Jeopardy last night – correctly, and with panache. Let’s see you have panache, Watson. Naturally process the language of my finger.

Ken was on his winning streak during 2004, the year I lived at home after college and commuted two hours and fifteen minutes each way to and from work. I left at 5:45 in the morning in order to get home at 6:30, leaving enough time to eat dinner before my mother and I sat down to watch Ken. We were Team Ken. We were members of the Kenadian House of Commons.

It was hard not to root for him. He was unassuming and self-deprecating. He was funny. He wrote his name a different way every night. He was a dorkatron, for sure, but he also knew about music and pop culture. Picture Ken at a wedding reception. He’s definitely the dude who could talk to the old guys intelligently about World War II, but I wager a thousand that he would also know all the words to “Baby Got Back.” Perhaps most importantly, he was clever in a way that delighted, not annoyed. There are those people you know whose intelligence is a challenge—I need to have read what they’ve read, I need to know more about the politics of the Middle East than they do, I need to add more Godard to my Netflix queue because they can fucking quote Breathless in French, I can’t believe they heard the new Robyn eight months before it came out. The Ken Jenningses of the world, though, are the kind of people who can make a cigarette disappear or predict the weather or know a funny story about a thing that happened in 1815 on this corner or can fix your watch at the dinner table with a paperclip and it’s no big deal.

Watching Ken, a software engineer, win each day was a balm for personal bruises. I was just out of college, temping, then working my first assistant job, and interviewing the whole time for something better. Rejection letters, endless commutes, few friends, and a growing realization that I needed to have at least four years of internships AND prolific author parents in order to get the kind of job I was hoping for were all pressure systems combining into a hurricane of glumness. Ken, though, was a daily reminder that my job wasn’t a closed caption under my name broadcasting the entirety of my meaning. Sometimes a software engineer is secretly magnificent. An assistant could secretly be, at the very least, TK.

I, for one, thank our old human overachievers.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Only Usher Can Judge Me

"I really don't believe in abortion," Bieber says. "It's like killing a baby?" How about in cases of rape? "Um. Well, I think that's really sad, but everything happens for a reason. I guess I haven't been in that position, so I wouldn't be able to judge that."

Thanks, The Hairpin, for letting me know that Rolling Stone is in the habit of giving teenage boys with a confounding amount of influence over young girls a platform about which to spout his informed opinions on both abortion and rape.

You know what, Justin? I don’t really believe in not starting an internet rumor that Justin Bieber has an uncontrollable flatulence problem. It’s like Justin Bieber was hoarding a thousand rotten hard boiled eggs in his colon every time he farts uncontrollably, which is all the time? Like every three minutes or so? I think that’s really sad, that Justin Bieber has an uncontrollable flatulence problem, but everything happens for a reason. I guess I haven’t been in that position, so I wouldn’t really be able to judge that.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

A Dozen Nachos

Much like everything in a red box in the Duane Reade seasonal aisle, interest in Valentine’s day is reduced up to 80% by the fifteenth. It’s a good day to take advantage of a convenient reverse commute of interest if you want to quietly tell a love story.

Three-quarters of the reason I’ve avoided writing anything for months is that the language I developed for myself in this here spot poorly describes my current life. I have given it shot, bridging the gap between what I used to write about and the things that have happened in the interim, but all I’ve got to show for it are a few saved drafts that use terrible and long-winded metaphors (pie crust, for example, and how its perceived difficulty kept me from trying to make it for a long time but actually I perfected it over the summer and I learned all these lessons and now we are treading dangerously close to the borders of Elizabeth Gilbertonia and also I am yawning right now and confused). There are plenty of ways I can talk about stupid dudes, funny dudes, dudes I talked to one time, dudes I remember having crushes on in high school, dudes who are friends, even dudes I used to commute with, but I haven’t yet got gotten the hang of writing about (spoiler alert) having a boyfriend.

I’ve done nothing in my love life traditionally or well thus far. Wait until you’re 25 to even speak to a straight guy; have a long and scandalous affair with Jack Daniels and a series of his flesh and blood buddies; turn to the internet; have your first relationship at 27: I know, stop rehashing the plot of EVERY Nora Roberts novel, right? Regardless of the Family Circus-patented wacky Jeffy path I took from point A to point B, I celebrated Valentine’s Day last night with my boyfriend. Again, because it would be almost disingenuous to do Valentine’s the Valentine’s way (criminally expensive dinner, tights with no runs, pretending I like wine, gifts) and I have done nothing normally thus far, we ordered a pornographic amount of Mexican takeout, watched Ken Jennings play Watson on Jeopardy, and ate an entire Whole Foods chocolate ganache cake out of the container. I made Sam a Valentine using a photocopier and an anatomy textbook. I got the serious stinkeye from an old broad reading a Jesus book on the train who, I think, incorrectly took my short hair and nose ring as proof that the “Sam” on the front of the card was short for “Samantha.”

I got to work really early this morning to do some prep work for a meeting and got into a conversation with a visiting colleague about an impressive flower arrangement on a co-worker’s desk. She got them delivered yesterday and they are seriously beautiful. It wasn’t until then that I remembered I’d grabbed a couple of the flowers from the bouquet Sam got me and stuffed them in my bag before I left for work. In theory, my Dixie cup of purse-mangled droopers can’t hold a candle to her dozen roses, but why hold a candle at all when I’ve finally gotten a lamp?
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