Monthly Archives: January 2011

Gearing up

I have been assimilated: wellies

I bought a pair of wellies yesterday. I was on my way to the Writers Room in a pair of Keen boots, a pair of boots that have served me well for over 3 snowy and rainy winter seasons in various climes. But no more. They were no longer waterproof, the leather cracked and faded. My socks felt damp in the shoe. Being mid-calf height, they didn’t protect me from backsplash, either (I have this way of walking that apparently splashes water up onto the backs of my calves).

I walk to and from the Writers Room each day; normally, the slush and “slush lakes” are navigable. But not yesterday–the slush lakes were enormous, the streets unplowed after a substantial snowstorm. I leapt over several lakes. And did not make the leap most times. I imagined future snowstorms. And then after that, spring rains. And summer rains. More puddles to come.

Around me, I observed the ways in which people managed the slush and ice puddles. Gingerly. With leaps. With trepidation. Taking the long way around them.

And then I noticed those in rubber boots: they trudged straight on through.

That was it.

I gave in. I made a detour. I went to a store. I asked for wellies. I wasn’t the only one; they only had 2 colors left in very few sizes, freeing me up from the agony of deciding between black vs green vs red vs navy vs yellow. (Apparently, I’m not the only one in dire need of wellington boots. Tretorn was sold out as well). Hunter green wellies, it was!

I’d heard that Hunters are narrow in the calves–but they slid on with ease. I bought a pair that were slightly large, just in case I needed a little extra wriggle room for jeans, later. I walked out in wellies. I came up to the first puddle and…I just walked on through.

So I’m geared up. To walk. To write.

I’ll be writing while everyone is at AWP. I’ll miss being at AWP, but I’ve made revising my novel a priority. It’s what I got to do. It’s what I’m geared up to do.

UPS balancing act


Filed under Life

Why don’t New Yorkers laugh?

Sign outside of Aveda: I have a dirty mind

I’m not sure why New Yorkers don’t laugh more often. When I crack a broad grin on the subway, New Yorkers duck, thinking the next thing I’ll do is break out in song and ask for spare change. Maybe not, because even the buskers don’t smile.

Check this sign out (located in front of the Aveda Institute in Manhattan, where students cut mannequin hair in the evenings–a dozen plastic heads sitting on their tables, getting groomed). I was laughing almost hysterically next to a couple of 18 wheelers vying for space in an adjacent loading dock.

Sign: Purchase $75.00 worth of product receive a Free Trial Hand Relief!

Me: (snicker) Hahaha.

Sign: *Ask us about our Facials!!

Me: Dying of laughter.

Also, I ate a knish today.

eating a knish

And walked through snow laden Central Park…

Central Park


Filed under Funny Things, Life, New York City

2011 To Do List

beautiful snowy road landscape

I don’t like New Year’s Resolutions. Too much pressure to have lofty and/or abstract goals. Like saying you’ll run a marathon–there are so many interim steps to being able to run a marathon. Saying I’ll run a marathon makes me instantly overwhelmed.

That said, I love making to-do lists of actionable items. So I’ll make a list of things to do for the first 6 months of 2011:

Miscellaneous Pleasures:

  • Get a kickass haircut. Done.
  • Celebrate our 12th wedding anniversary! Yay!
  • Kiss my husband every day (when possible, unless he’s traveling).
  • Cook a dinner for friends. done! it was a beautiful balmy NYC evening in July with a few good friends on the terrace.
  • Make an effort to meet new people. Make at least one new friend. You know who you are. This has been a year of amazing new friendships.
  • Maintain good friendships. Send at least one encouraging message to at least one friend each day.
  • Eat the early girl sun dried tomatoes that are in my freezer.
  • Laugh at least once each day.
  • Hug someone each day.
  • Parttake in some fantastic Dominican food. Margot’s in Washington Heights. It’s the only restaurant in NYC who recognizes me as a regular. Great dive.
  • Eat an arepa. Done! Thank you to Saeed for showing me your favorite arepa resto. 🙂 (don’t worry, I won’t tell).
  • Eat a knish. Amendment: Eat a *delicious* knish done right. Seriously, I have learned that knishes aren’t as good as I wanted them to be.
  • Learn to bake a new pastry/cookie.
  • Say yes more often (at least once a week if not more).
  • Find (and buy) a sundress I love. I found so many! And for the first time in many years, I actually NEED and wear them–everyday.
  • Wear skirts more often (i.e., more than once every 6 months). Pants are impossible in this summer heat. The skirts are happenin’.
  • When I’m sad, admit I’m sad.


  • Take a ferry around the San Francisco Bay (how is it that I’ve lived in SF for 20 years and never done this)?
  • Wave hello to the wild turkeys in Berkeley when they come out. Hello!
  • Listen to Pacific Tree Frogs in Berkeley. *ribbit*
  • Jog/run around the Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis Reservoir in Central Park
  • Walk Central Park on a fantastic Narnia-snowy Winter day Tremendous. Treacherous beauty.
  • Walk Central Park on a beautiful sunny Spring day. Was beautiful. All the trees in bloom!
  • Spend a day writing while riding the 7 to/from Queens.
  • Visit the MoMA
  • Eat at a Momofuku restaurant. Ssam Bar you are brilliant.
  • Eat at a Batali/Bastianich resto. Lupa, you are amazing.
  • Discover an abandoned, secret subway station. Wow, this was anti-climactic. The old City Hall stop at the end of the 6 line exists–but it’s barely visible from the train. But kind of cool. But still a let-down.
  • Learn a new neighborhood in NYC. Tribeca. Then SoHo. Then the East Village.
  • Go to Montauk. I don’t know, I just want to. Especially since I watched “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind.” Done. It was beautiful. The lighthouse! All the sea creatures on the beach!
  • Visit the Hamptons. Done. Kind of meh. But very pretty.
  • Drive up to Vermont for a visit.
  • Eat a Philly cheesesteak. In Philly. Done. Overrated!
  • Visit friends in Boston.
  • Visit friends in D.C.
  • Go to Korea again. Visit Cheonggyecheon and NamDaeMun market.
  • Visit Europe. London. Paris. (done, July 2011). Maybe Greece. Or Italy again. Or Spain

Writing & Fitness:

  • Get a seat at a Writing Space.
  • Keep up a writing routine.
  • Revise novel. Be super proud of at least 75 pages.
  • Channel all my creative reserves into the novel.
  • Apply to more writing opportunities with great hope.
  • For 2 weeks: run/jog/walk every single day.
  • For 6 months: run/jog at least once a week every week.
  • Eat more vegetables. Eat at least one protein each day (i.e., break the 100% carb diet).
  • Hydrate. Drink more water. Drink fewer sodas/sugary drinks.
  • Moisturize.

That’s it for now. And yes, I just realized, this is a lot inside of 6 months. So let’s just take it a day at a time. 😉


Filed under Life, The Personal


2011 is The Year I Revise My Novel.

That is all.
Okay, maybe lose a few pounds, too.

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