Tuesday, June 10, 2014


To blog or not to blog.

That, in one helluva stereotypical cliche sentence, has been the question.

It’s not that I haven’t wanted to No Dankes-it up. I’ve missed it. Truly I have. Every time someone mentions it. Every time I think of something that would make a good No Dankes entry. Every time I think of the lonely little web address that hasn’t been updated in nearly 9 months--I cringe. I feel sad. I feel sick!

I’m a bit hard on myself. Always have been, hope to not always be. But it’s been struggy town, I tell you.
Writing is an exercise--the longer you go without, the harder it is to get back in the swing of things. My, how apropos this metaphor is considering I’ve recently taken up running! But there sits my laptop, mocking me, knowing what a lazy ass I’ve been about blogging. Whenever I open it, I almost hear it tsk-tsk-tsking away.


...so. I’ve decided to retry blogging. But things are going to be different this time. Because life is all about changing and evolving!

I still complain. A lot. About a lot of things! But I've been awfully more chipper lately and so it's been trying to rustle up some complaints. 

Annoying, I know.

I promise to try and put forth a *negative* effort, though, because I do miss belonging in that coolest of cool clubs that is the band of bloggers. 

And besides, it was a little fun giving the site a little makeover. (Like the books?)

So, friends. Holler! Hi! Hola! I'm back.

Saturday, December 28, 2013

December: A Birthday Month to Not Remember

What, you may ask, is the only thing worse than the day after Christmas? 

Having your birthday the day after Christmas. Or any day in December for that matter.

People. Husbands and wives. Would-be parents:

STOP copulating in the month of March! It should be outlawed. Illegal. Felonious. Think of those poor, unfortunate unborn children who have to share their birth month with Jesus. Seriously.
It’s not fun. It’s unjust. No matter how “fair” parents try to make it, the poor kid always, always, always gets gypped.

I have quite a few relatives whose unfortunate lot it was to be born right
around Christmas. Cousin Ethan turned 15 on Christmas Eve. Cousin John turned 28 ON CHRISTMAS DAY. And baby cousin-once-removed Ty (in the Santa hat below) turned one the day after Christmas.

For me, that
’s misery exemplified.
Perhaps Ethan had it the worst this year. His bday was made even more unlucky by the fact that his father, my uncle Chris, showed old videos of him and his brother Christopher prancing and dancing around their living room in nada but their birthday suits.

It was a riot - albeit an embarrassing one for my adorable little cous.

But while he might have been a teense peeved at his dad for showing the majority of his extended family his nude toddler dance moves (mostly on fast-forward - Chris isn’t that mean - but can you just picture that cutie’s little booty?? omg), I reckoned the super miserable sitch the singing of Happy Birthday on Christmas day.
Wham bam, thank you ma’am - no separation of Christmas and Birthday. Sadness!

I cannot fathom having to celebrate my birthday in December.

People get presents but twice a year - their bday and Jesus
’ bday (well, that’s a lie - me and my bro get presents on Valentine’s Day and Easter, too). I can’t imagine having only one month of presents to look forward to.
No matter how hard parents try to maintain a status quo with birthday gifts and holiday gifts, the receiver nevertheless gets the short end of the stick.

“Oh, this is for your birthday and Christmas.”

“I just thought, since they’re so close together, that we’d just get you one big present!”

“Well since they’re on top of each other, you only get one.”

It’s so unbelievably unfair!

Facebook tells me that quite a few pitiful peeps are celebrating their bdays this week. Quite a few.
In fact, I have two birthday parties tomorrow alone! (And Im missing one tonight - sorry Jamie!!!!!)

So, dear adults of a child-rearing age: Think before you do the deed in the month of March. Consider the endless misery you
’re inflicting on your poor, unsuspecting future child.

I know March is
the most horrific, most boring month of the 12 - but come on, think of the children.

No one wants to share a birthday with Jesus.

Friday, December 27, 2013

No Do Dankes: The Golden Age

Now perhaps it’s because it’s Christmastime - the most wonderful time of the year – but I haven’t been super duper motivated to talk shit. Shocking! So I am thinking of instituting a once weekly “Do Dankes” into the ole blog regime. Thoughts?

(A disclaimer: I’m not sure how long this is going to last. After all, it is much easier to frown and not bother turning it upside down.)

I can think of no better topic to Do Dankes! than old movies. Maybe this has something to do with the fact that I’ve been watching nada but classics for the past month.

This isn’t necessarily a newsflash. I’ve always loved old movies. When I was little it was The Wizard of Oz and Pollyanna.

Then there was my Marilyn Monroe phase.

Proceeded by my Audrey Hepburn stage.

Of course let’s not forget those leading men! Cary Grant. James Stewart. Gary Cooper. sigh.sigh.sigh.

Alas, never in a million would I have foreseen this Netflix n’ TCM-old-movie-full-on-obsession. It’s out of control.

The aura surrounding old movies is just so....so...glamorous. Otherworldly, even.

I wouldn’t call it escapism - at least not in a surreal-universe kind of way.

But getting lost in a classic film slows your roll. It forces you to realize what a crazy (albeit sometimes vastly more convenient) world we live in - a world without iPhones and Facebook. Old movies simply bring you back to a simpler, more idealistic time.

Is it just me or does anyone else long for the straightforwardness of bygone times? For the glamorous hair, the clothes, the men of yesteryear?

Down with the texting bullshit, I say! Let us ladies be courted properly!

I think I was a little lost post-Mad Men. I was craving more historical fiction. And what better way to get it than to go straight to the source - actual (yet historical) fiction!
As mad as I am at Betty Draper, she did remind me of another favorite leading lady. The original one, in fact. (Do I really have to spell it out? G-r-a-c-e K-e-l-l-y.)

In the past five or so weeks, I’ve watched almost every single movie Grace Kelly made (Mogambo...yikes. Couldn’t finish! I think Ava was cramping Grace’s style).
I can safely say she is my new favorite old actress. The way she carried herself, her voice (which she practiced endlessly and perfected by talking into a recorder and ceaselessly playing it back), her hair, her wardrobe.
I can hardly believe that she had the career she did - all before the age I am now. What!

Shit yo, I better get a move on.

Here are some of my fave movies I’ve recently viewed (some for my second, fourth, tenth time) on aforementioned TCM/Netflix binge:

Arsenic and Old Lace, Platinum Blonde, Rear Window, The Lady from Shanghai, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, Barefoot in the Park, The Philadelphia Story, The Grapes of Wrath, Intermezzo, North By Northwest, Gone With The Wind, Christmas in Connecticut,
Casablanca, Meet Me in St. Louis...so many more.
SO MANY good ones. Thank GOD for TCM.

Old movies are like old friends. They’re comforting. Filled with layers and endless shades of grey. They can be profoundly moving - yet they’re extremely cozy. There’s always something to be learned by spending time with them.

And, like an old friend, you never get sick of them. (
OK, fine. Almost never.)

The films that Hollywood churns out these days are subpar compared to those from The Golden Age. There’s too many special effects, too many elaborate sets, too much makeup, just too much everything.

And not enough acting.

Orson Welles said that he preferred black and white films to color. Color distracted. It took away from the actors and actresses doing their thing. Rich costumes and vibrant sets diverted the viewer’s attention. Yadda yadda yadda.

Well I’m certainly no Technicolor naysayer, but I do somewhat concur with Mr. Welles. It’s so easy for Hollywood to cover up the shortfalls of an acting job gone wrong with special effects. The Matrix - need I say more?

So this Christmas week, do yourself a favor. Cozy up with an old Hollywood movie - consider it a gift to yourself.

Thursday, December 26, 2013

‘Twas the Day After Christmas

‘Twas the day after Christmas
And all through the house
Not a creature was smiling
Not even a mouse.

What is it about the day after Christmas that’s just so...so...so depressing.

Maybe it has something to do with the anticipation. Granted, I wasn’t in so very merry a Christmasy mood this year. Actually I don’t think anyone had much holiday spirit.

That tricky warm weather! Those four short weeks between Thanksgiving and Christmas! The lingering recession!

Ah well.

Sure, when I was young I’d be even more melancholy post-holiday. My family likes to joke that I had tunnel-vision: must.open.presents...ripriprip - like a manic.

Then I’d pout and whine while my older brother opened the remaining 3/4 of his pile.

Maybe the holid-pression has to do with all the opened presents. They look so stark and naked and bare under the tree - what, without their fancy bows and colorful ribbons and shiny, shimmery paper.

I do realize that the purpose of a present is what’s inside. But they’re so much more fun and fascinating all wrapped up and piled up.

Ahh. The packaging. Such a such a such a WASTE. The paper, the curlicue accessories - all bound for da dump.

Garbage bags chock full of waste headed for incineration at the transfer station. Such a colossal extravagance.

The day after Christmas is pretty boring, too. All the toys have been played with. The DVD’s watched. The clothes tried on. The (good) candy eaten. The roast beast carved.

What oh what is there to look forward to now?

Nada but a shit ton of bad TV. And I do mean bad TV. What the eff?

I do not understand premium channels. Not in the least. They play Christmas movies in the summertime when no one in their right mind is thinking about the holidays. Then when ‘tis the season, there’s nothing on but The Mummy Returns, Backdraft, Air Bud, You Don’t Mess With the Zohan, or Solaris.

Who really wants to battle crowds and go shopping? Who wants to think about going on a diet? Who’s looking forward to putting away decorations? Who is excited to return to work?

Not I.

Boy oh boy.

The day after Christmas sucks. The only thing worse than the day after Christmas is having it as your birthday.

Monday, December 23, 2013

Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Make It Stop!

Not to sound über cheese or anything - but what a magical weekend! Definitely one of my top three New York City Saturdays.

Snow just makes everything better!

I didn’t think it was really going to happen. I mean, come on. When is the weatherman ever right?

He’s not! So you can only imagine my giddy schoolgirl elation when - hold the phone -
snow it did. And a lot.

It was like the time Allentown got hit with a state-of-emergency blizzard and we college kids hit the
bars instead of the books. Woody’s ran of out pizza. It was a-mazing. (Do any of you Muhlenbergers remember that?? So fun.)

Now I must say - I do hate it when people use umbrellas in the snow. It just seems so silly. It’s not raining, people!

But thank the lord Miss Cobb and I had the foresight to add umbrellas to our outfits before heading to the bar to meet our lovely lady friends.

(We poo-poohed all the peeps along the way who were complaining that it wasn’t worth the hassle...all from the semi-shelter of our ’brellas. How could you not go out??)

It really was a blizzard though - albeit an adventurous one.
The wind! The freezing temps! The piercing little flakes!

It’s so funny how snow makes you want to stay up late. Maybe this is a lingering characteristic from school days of yesteryear, when snow meant no school (if you were lucky), and you could stay up late, late, LATE!

Well. We stayed up a tad later on Saturday than our 5th grade counterparts probably ever dared dream of.

Sleepiness aside, it was totes worth it. Such a
n marvelous experience - walking home in a New York City snowstorm at 5am.

The streets were so peaceful. Eerily quiet. Why does snow make everything so still? Very interesting.

There were but a few reminders that I was not, actually, alone in the city - namely, the scratchy shoveling and shovelers. Think Old Man Marley in Home Alone.

But all good things must come to an end. Sob.

What a difference some sun can make! We went to sleep Saturday night (fine, Sunday morning) - with visions of sugarplums and fluffy white flakes dancing in our heads. And when we awoke...oh boy.

Our saccharin-sweet dreams of snow, glorious snow!, were replaced with a very harsh reality. Viz.: a melting, dripping, dirty, slushy, sloppy, salty mess.
It had only been a few hours. Come ON!

Saturday night we were dancing and prancing around, so alive - like the toys in The Nutcracker (and yes, we were acting like nuts). Then Sunday morning, POOF!, it seemed like nada but a dream. Dreamy snowy dream.
And now we’re stuck with the sucky reality.
The reality, my friends, is that Manhattan is not so very well equipped to displace a colossal amount of frozen white flakes. 

350 days of the year, New York City is the greatest place in the world to live. Per my calculations, that’s -7 for temperatures below zero with a wind chill (holy wind tunnels), -3 for those intolerably hot, hot, HOT days, and -5 for days when you can’t escape the slushy, mucky, snowed-in sidewalks.
So as much as we all loved our little stormy city Saturday night, we awoke to something quite different. 

It’s not so very convenient to live on an island and rely almost solely on being pedestrian when the streets are covered in snow. In fact, it can be quite abominable - yep, just like that big, bad Snowman. 

Our NYC sidewalks went from fluffy, beautiful strips of angelic white...to super slippery, sopping wet runways of doom

Unfortunately we’re the passengers and our most unreliable footsies are our own worst enemies. 

Well, that and the bazillion other peeps trying to push and shove their way onto a (somewhat) drier path. That is to say, the path that’s sans 5-inch slush puddles.
When I was walking home from a lovely brunch at Kelly’s yesterday, an obnoxious ne’er-do-well actually had the gall to box me out of my own trajectory. 

Oh yes. 

There I was, picking and placing my properly Ugg-ed feet, mule-like, along the path of least-slushy-resistance, and she had the audacity to point and say, “Go that way.”
How about “Go to hell, bitch!” 

I joke, I joke. Tis the season of giving! Not name calling!
And so I gave up my somewhat less-flooded course in (dis)favor of a more contemptible one. And I reminded myself how much I loved the snow the night before.
It’s not fair. Really it isn’t. Why can’t we just have snow sans the messy aftermath. Why isn’t there some sort of invention that sucks all the dirty white shit back up into the sky once the browning begins? (Which, let’s face it, in this city isn’t very long.)
There’s no method to the madness. No reason whatsoever for the swamps of icky brown ice water that are concurrent with blissfully white blizzards. 

The singular satisfaction that I canst have tonight is the silly sound of slippery tires getting stuck in the slush.

HA, that’s whatcha get! Well that and this here adorable snowman in my courtyard.

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Nightmare on 34th Street

It’s the most wonderful time of the year.

Well - at least for those of us who don’t work in Midtown Manhattan it is.

My first job in this fabulous city was on 38th and Broadway. A trifecta tourist trap: Macy’s, Fashion District, Times Square.

Needless to say, I’m a much, much happier and more tolerable person now that I work in the West Village.

As cliché as it sounds, I truly am one of those people who barely ever goes above 14th Street. When I do, it’s like I’m traveling to a different country. A different world. I can never quite fathom that it’s only a couple of miles away.

But seriously, why would anyone in their right mind get caught in the 28th - 72nd Street snare? What sane New Yorker enjoys the hustle bustle that is Midtown?
I suppose I can only speak for myself, but not I. No, not me. Not one iota.

So you can only imagine my dismay when, last Friday, I was called upon to play tour guide for Trissi and Auntie Meg. Those lovely lassies brought me tons-o-treats for my Christmas Island partay (such a brat!), so I deemed it my daughterly duty to show them around the terrifying trifecta.

It could have been worse. Much, much worse. (+5 nice points for me at least acknowledging that much.)

We saw the Saks windows from a far, talked trash on the fugly-lit (!) tree at Rockefeller, poked around the kiosks at Bryant Park, then headed on down to hell. Aka Macy’s.

Our single saving grace, our one redeeming factor, was the fact that it was but mid-afternoon. The swarms of tourists hadn’t yet descended upon the city for the weekend.

(And I do mean swarms. Like biblical locusts. It’s sick.)
Well both that and the fact that it was FREEZING COLD worked to our advantage. (I said last week that I was quite enjoying the brisk temps - it is December after all. But temps in the teens with windchill? Hell to the no thanks.)
Anyway, I count my lucky stars that the lovely company that is Penguin had the wherewithal to say absolutely not to Midtown offices. Those twice-daily battles were pure, unadulterated misery.
Perhaps it wouldn’t have been so bad if no non-NYCers were let through our city gates. Wishful thinking. Sigh. (Methinks that’s an impossibility when you live in the country’s most popular tourist destination.)

You see, people who don’t live or work in New York don’t understand. This is not a laid back city, friends. There is no lollygagging. No leisurely strolls during pre-and-post work hours. No, no,
There ain’t nothing worse than Macy’s at Christmastime. Well - maybe Macy’s at Thanksgiving is worse. And maybe Rockefeller Plaza wins for Christmas.

Fine, fine, fine - a compromise: Macy’s at the holidays is just plain nightmarish. And since that is where I experienced my acutest New-York-City-dwelling misery, that is what I am talking smack about today.

Oh yes, Macy’s: I deem you #1 on my naughty NO DANKES list.

Why must you torture us so, Macy’s? I do enjoy your white lights and your nostalgic take on the Miracle on 34th Street movie - but those windows? That’s what all the fuss is about? They’re always hideous!
I don’t understand. The pushing and pulling. The smashing into people, à la mosh pit. The stepping on toes. The endless stream of not-on-purpose-I-swear! picture crashing. The never-ending people asking you to take their picture.
It’s not worth it, I say! Who wants to see stupid futuristic puppets doing nothing but spin in circles? Well, apparently my dearest darlingest family does...

But seriously! What a crap trap, people! Why are you so duped! You stup’s!!

I suppose Macy’s is really to blame in this particular sitch. The silly peop
le who stare and ooh and aah at those stupid roboticized aliens don’t know any better. They come in with high hopes, demanding to see fancy Christmastime windows and...
...well, OK...nevermind, they do deserve their ill-fated lot.
Who comes to New York City to look at WINDOWS? Then proceeds to wait in line in order to do so??? Nonsensical, I say.

Stop it, stores.

Stop putting silly little moving junk
(that precocious little puppet with his hand to his head right there I must exclude - he has the right idea - ay dos mio!) in your windows and creating a trap de la trap for the peeps who live here.

Sidewalkblocks are not OK, ya hear?

When I was working in Midtown, the inescapable necessity to pass Macy’s tacked on countless precious minutos to my commute. Wasted moments of my life spent trying to push through a cattle car of tourists. All so they could get a glimpse and a pic of some horrendously ugly motorized puppets and some glizty, gaudy decorations.

Stick to the movie if you want to see a Miracle on 34th Street. Black and white makes everything vastly more appealing. And palatable.

The reality of 34th Street is nada but a nightmare.

Monday, December 16, 2013

Losing My Marbles.

One would think that the prospect of a four day weekend would incite an aura of rest and relaxation in the ole noggin.
However, I spent a very great deal of time these last four days Stressed. (Please notice the capital S.)
Methinks I really am losing my marbles. Like, really. Just call me Tootles. I know that I wrote a blog about being forgetful. But this is beyond forgetful. We’s talking huge chunks of my temporal lobe breaking off from the rest of my brain. No joke.
It all started Friday night. I was having a little Christmas Island party at my apartment (best holiday song ever!) and of course I was running late. In my mad dash to get dressed, makeup-ed, food set up, drinks set up - I overlooked my pearl earrings sitting on the bathroom sink counter.

Buzzers were ringing, guests arriving, champagne buzz was setting in, and I’d finally finished my hair. I set my straightener down to cool & exited the b-room in one fell swoop - hearing as I did so a little clink, clank, clunk.

Pearl earri
ng down! The drain, that is.

Whaaaaaaaaaaaaaat. Whaaaaaaaaaaaat??? Did that really just happen?

Yes, Katie. Yes it did.

From there on out, my weekend - my mind - spiraled out of control. I was on a freight train speeding to a town called Forgetful and there was no turning back.

I barricaded my sink - luckily the drunken Islanders abided by the rules! My pearl was safe and sound in the dodgy, dirty, undoubtedly hair-ridden U hook of those ancient pipes.

At least I hoped it was!

I called Rocky the Super the next day - lucky for me he was around - and after scolding me for not taking all my junk out from the cabinet underneath, he set to it.

Sinks are disgusting. Well, let me rephrase. The shit that g
oes down a sink’s drain is disgusting. Horrendous. Or, rather, hair-rendous. IIIIICK. Rocky yelled at me some more, but it’s not like I do it on purpose! Hair falls out. Especially when you blow dry it. And it’s not like I can keep the daily lossage allotment from escaping down the sink!
Nevertheless, amidst the hair and the brown water spilling all over my cabinets and onto my super clean (no longer!) bathroom floor, THERE WAS MY PEARL!!!!! Omgees, Lady Luck indeedy!

That is, until I realized I’d lost the other pearl. The non-down-the-drain earring. The one that was left on the counter.

I remember picking it up when Rocky came in. But everything that
transpired henceforth went poof!, right from my mind.

I proceeded to spend the next three hours scouring and searching and tearing apart and digging. All to no avail.
Was this real life? I couldn’t believe it. To rescue one pearl earring from the impossibly vile depths of a bathroom sink pipe (which ended up cracking so I haven’t been able to use it all weekend), only to LOSE its comrade in my apartment. What.
I had no.idea.whatsoever. where the hell it had gone. So I called my mom - aka Santa - to see if it was too late to ask for a new pair for Christmas.
“Yes, Mom, I looked there. Yep. Yeah. Of course I looked there. Yup. Mmm hmm. YES, I did looked through the trash already. Twice!

Alas, she knows me better than I know myself and sugges
ted I look through the trash once more - wearing gloves. (My ladylike hands do not like to touch garbage - even if it is all mine.)

There was coffee grinds and barbeque chicken/sweet and sour meatball sauce and dirty, hair ridden paper towels and it was just...nasty.
But latex gloved and therefore safe, I set out feeling my way through the trash.

Lo and behold!, I found the earring. What? WHAT! One pearl retrieved from a filthy, hairy abyss, only to find its mate amidst soggy coffee and stinky, sticky BBQ sauce.

So to recap, I’ve survived a weekend sans bathroom sink. I’ve ended up with a stubbed, swollen toe (a board that was under the sink fell on my foot), a messy, messy bathroom floor (I have so many products), and a spittle filled kitchen sink.
Ever try brushing your teeth and washing your face in your kitchen sink? Amongst dirty plates and dish brushes? So unbearably uncivilized. (It’s kind of nuts how barbaric it is. You just feel like such a dirty little slime ball, YUCK!)
But my weekend of lost-marbles hell didn’t end with the earring dramarama. Oh no. The memory gods had it out for me. As if my feeble, forgetful mind hadn’t failed me quite enough already, it had to go and disremember where I put my brand spanking new iPod earbuds.

I searched and researched every square inch - all 2,016 of them - for the second day in a row. Drawers upon drawers, hidden surfaces upon hidden subsurfaces, all without a stitch of the same luck that befell me during Saturday’s (mis)adventures.

My mind is going, going, oh wait - no - actually it’s gone. No dankes.
(An addendum: Shortly after I’d finished writing this blog last night, my lovely friend Dana, a sharpshooting pool hustler, sent me a message - she had the headphones all along! Silly lass dropped her bag at my apartment Friday night and must have scooped them up by accident! So really my marbles are only half gone.)

Monday, November 25, 2013

Giving Dankes

I know, I know. I’m the world’s most gigantic hypocrite. Just last week I was hemming and hawing about establishments rolling out the trees n’ tinsel before Halloween is even over.
And this week - get ready for it - I’m a Christmastime Convert.

Maybe it’s cause I just had to oust those in-your-face bags-o-decorations piled up, eyesore-style, on my floor. Or perhaps it was Monday’s fa-fa-fa-reeeeezing temps. But whatever the reason - GASP - I’ve stopped to smell the mistletoe (or started to, I should say).

You heard it here first! I shall be no Grinch. No Scrooge. No Bumble. No Professor Hinkle. Not me, not this year!

Ooookaaaaaay fine. Ya’lls know that Scrooge-free does NOT begin with me. And my Grinch-
o-Meter definitely hasn’t plummeted to zero.

But let’s just say (sure, relish in judging the shit out of me), as I was putting ornaments on my mini-tree Monday night (isn’t it cute?), listening to Frank and Bing croon (and maybe a little Celine), my brand new XXXL heart melted and warmth oozed throughout my frigid body.

Thanksgiving is upon us, peeps. It’s here. And four weekends till Christmas, me oh me oh my!

And so for the (?) time in No Dankes! history, I’s gonna write something nice.
It’s Turkey Day so let’s all play pilgrims and GIVE THANKS!

(Here I pause. And pause. And pause some more. It’s interesting that I - and I fear I am not alone - can speak so freely about things that bother me, annoy me, piss me off, things that I detest...but when it comes to ponies and flowers and rainbows...well...I pause.)

Some time later...

I put on my thinking cap and came up with some thanks. Herewith, ladies and gentlemen, are things I am dankesful for.

There’s the majorly maaaaayjaaaaahly fantabulous things in my life - not to be trivialized one bit - but since they’re fairly obvi, I shall skipperoo through them: Tim, Tris, Timmy, my Morrell side & my Parry side (3 grandparents, 10 uncles, 12 aunts, 1 great-aunt, 24 cousins, 3 baby cousins-once-removed, 2 cousins-in-law...I don’t know the names for the rest), my best friends, my friends, my job, my health, our servicemen & women, the health of all of the aforementioned, the long life of my most beloved pet pooch, Cooper.


Yesterday I spent 4 1/2 hours in the emergency room at St. Vincent’s Hospital. I’ll NO Dankes! that experience next week, but it was jarringly (sur)real and not just a little shocking to be surrounding by such sickness. Old people, dying people, lonely people. Talk about de-press-ing.
I really think we all sometimes forget how fleeting all of this is.

Not to be macabre, but we need to remind ourselves that we’re mere mortals. That our entire lifetime is but a blink, a blip, in this ever-expanding, billions-of-years-old universe
I devour classic literature (all Penguin, of course!) - and it’s quite astonishing to a 21st century reader to see how at ease our ancestors were with death.

This gravestone inscription (morbid, I know), really resonated with me: “As you are now so once was I, As I am now so shall you be.” Whoa.

I’m not trying to sound all preachy, but ’tis true. It’s so easy to forget how wonderful life is. To get so caught up in cattiness and bitterness and anger and disappointment and side-choosing and shit-talking and what-ifs. Just think about it.

And that’s all I’m gonna say about that.

Onward we go to the bright, light side of life’s more leisurely amenities that I am utmost thankful for. These include (but are not limited to) the following:
Indoor plumbing! We are so lucky. Bubble baths. Razors. High-pressure massaging shower heads. Hell, massages. Gooseneck sink spouts. Brita’s.

Flat-screen TVs. DVR (can you believe we used to watch VCR
recorded VHS’s?) Almost all cable shows (and some network shows). Mad Men. Black and white movies - OMG, TCM! Hollywood glamour. Hollywood drama. Audrey, Ingrid, Grace, Marilyn, Kate & Gwyneth. Cary Grant, Paul Newman, James Stewart, Brad/Leo/Robert Pattinson/John Hamm. NETFLIX!

Computers. MacBooks!!!!!!!!!!! (Life changing.) iPods. (How did we live WITHOUT them?????) iPhones for that matter. Le Internet.
Whole Foods cold/hot food & dessert bar. Funfetti cupcakes. The fact that apples with peanut butter are considered “healthy”. Skor Bars. Peanut Butter Twix Bars. Joe’s Pizza. A really, really good sandwich comprised of no less than 15 ingredients. The World’s Best Latte (according to moi) from Third Rail Coffee - which happens to be right next to my apartamento. Rootbeer. Pumpkin beer. Wheat beer. Blueberry beer. Any beer. Vin rouge.

Books, books, omfg books! Tolstoy, Austen, Hardy, Steinbeck, the Brontë sisters, Gaskell, Dickens. Hosseini, Diaz, Chevalier, Shreve, McEwan, McCarthy, MEYER. amazon.com (though it’s nearly singlehandedly undermining the publishing industry).
Coconut everything: lip balm, cake, lotion, mmm macaroons, milk, rum, haystacks, rice, piña coladas, body spray, oil, shampoo.

Trains, planes, automobiles! Or, modes more apt to this city: subways, cabs, and my own two feet!

The City. My hometown in the NWC deserves some love, too: Sharon, CT. I’m so thankful I grew up there. The historic beauty - the clock tower, the town green, the gorgeous mansions. The trees and rolling hills and lakes and quietness and serenity and lushness.
I’m extra thankful for Sharon, actually. And so happy that I get to go home in just a few hours to my quaint country town - dankes Penguin for a 1:00pm closing! I cannot wait to spend time with my fam (wish you could be there, Timmy & Cass!), and friends.

And Cooper, my darling pup. I’m thankful for the 15 1/2 years we got to spend with you. I’ll miss bestowing your Thanksgiving Feast at those ridiculously well-behaved paws. We
’ll all be thinking of you on this, your most favorite day of the year. Love and miss you so much, buddy.
Now I challenge you to give dankes. And I implore you: Take some time tomorrow to be in the moment, living. Don’t get all anxious about traffic, or being late, or eating so much you’ve gotta do the unbutton, or missing the kickoff, or burning the biscuits. Big deal. So what.

Appreciate what you have, remember how lucky we all are, and just be happy.
Don’t sweat the small stuff, yo! Cause everybody’s clocks are ticking and that’s some pretty scary shit but we’re all in this together.
(Oh, and one last thing. I’m thankful for all of you who read this blog and for your support and enthusiasm and encouragement. It honestly does mean more than you know! Happy a safe, hearty, HAPPY Dankesgiving!!!)