Tuesday, October 26, 2010

To write or not to write

The thing about blogging is that there is no filter. Which is great in a lot of ways. You can't blame anyone else for what gets put up.  It's your own genius or stupidity.  But if you (and by you I mean me) are blogging in part to brush up on your writing skills, if your goal is to become a better writer, it's a longer, slower, windier road than if you had, say, a teacher or an editor telling you enough with the commas already.  Or that sentence is really boring, but that one is ok. And also, that is not a real word.  You get a B.   This is exactly how in my train of thought an editor would interact with me, except somehow there would be red ink all over everything (I don't care that it's all digital).

I think that once a blog or an author starts getting more feedback from readers themselves it can serve some of the purpose of an editor.  Readers can certainly be harsh enough - I read enough blogs to see some pretty direct criticism.  And the internet is pretty amazing in that it is one of the only forums where we can interact with total strangers without any sort of filter.  Back before it was around there were newspapers, magazines, radio, tv, even personal ads - but they were all to some degree filtered through at least one other layer.  This is great for freedom of speech, not so nice for accuracy sometimes.  Wonderful for individualism, not so amazing for grammar.  So basically, I guess, I'm kind of reaching a conclusion that everyone else got to ten years ago.  I love that I can write online, but sometimes for my own growth I wish there was a built in editor or critic.  I guess that's what writing classes are for.

Oh, by the way, if anyone wants to read some actual articles I've been writing about Brooklyn, check it out here:

Still no editor feedback, for the most part, but I try to stay more on track when writing these.

Sunday, October 17, 2010


I'm a Miami girl. I may not have been born there, and I may have moved away a few times in the past, but when in comes to the climate I'm most comfortable in bring me 90 degree weather all the way.  This has been a hard adjustment for me to make in New York. As much as I love the city and all its many activities in winter I just want to hibernate with some warm soup and good books.  There aren't many good reasons to venture out, in my opinion.  However, in the interests of being an optimist, here are a few things that are not completely horrible about winter in New York City.

1. The Christmas Fairs (or holiday fairs, if I'm being politically correct).  I love them.  There is no similar semi-permanent market during the winter months in Miami that I'm aware of.  And even though it's an outdoor market and therefore completely freezing, it is just what I pictured Christmas and winter to be like when I was still basking in the warm sun of Florida.  I do a lot of my Christmas shopping here because I am a total sucker for these kitchy homemade craft things, and it is one of the few things that will get me to voluntarily spend an hour or two outdoors in winter.

2.  Ice rinks are pretty cool too. I actually even wrote an article about them on Associated Content.  I only end up going a couple times each winter and I'm very very bad at it but it is, again, one of the pictures I had of winter in my head back when outdoor ice rinks were more of a theoretical issue.  I feel very New Yorky when skating around the rink and the cheesy Christmas music they blare only adds to that.

3.  Winter clothing is cute for the first couple months. But then again, so is summer clothing. I'm maybe calling this one a draw.

4. Snow. I'm enough of a southerner to still get a little excited by it, though the first flush of new love has  passed.

Aaannndddd...that's all I can think of for now. I'll try to come up with a few more, if only to chant them to myself in February when ALL I WANT TO DO IS DIE and the cold feels like it will never, never end.  So.  Yay winter?

Friday, October 8, 2010

Um. No.

They are out of their damn minds. New York subway fares are being raised again. They are now going to be $104 for a monthly card. When I moved here, just over two years ago, I believe it was around $70.  They keep going like this and they're going to be priced at about the cost of the average mortgage in a few years.

Monday, October 4, 2010


I'm totally supposed to be writing a real article about NYC politics. But instead I'm watching two different tv shows (Hulu and my big old box tv), eating pasta and licorice and basically just letting my brain melt into a big puddle. Not actually productive.  Unless zombies are around who need a little brain soup (yum!).

However, this whole brain puddle thing makes me think of that scene in Eat Pray Love where the Italian dude lectures Julia Roberts about how Americans basically don't know how to relax or live the good life. We all just work work work until we collapse mindlessly in front of a tv, too exhausted to enjoy the fruits of our labors. I was all hahaha stupid Americans when I saw that (I tend to choose which nationality I relate to most depending on fluctuating but scientific factors at any given moment) but you know what? I'm totally falling prey. I've been writing the associated content articles, working my regular job and also catering most weekends and my brain is just a little bit fried.  I clocked at 75 hours one week, which I'm sure some fieldworker in Guatemala will scoff at (while doing their daily required read of my blog) but dude, that's a lot for me.

This means that I'm kind of blowing off an article assignment because I don't want to deal with it. My Catholic guilt (it must be a genetic thing - I don't even go to church) will certainly kick in and I'll at least start on it tonight, but ...not...just...yet.  There's tv to watch.


I may actually be a cat myself. I base this supposition on the fact that my cat has been a little coughy lately (I'm keeping an eye on it) and I've been stuffed up to. Which means we must be the same species to have the same virus. Which means I'm a cat. Or that she's human. I'll keep you posted when I figure out which.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010


So cute when they're not breaking things.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Nope, still no grandkids

Is it weird that my mother is starting to hint that she wants me to have kids? And by lately I mean the last year or so. And by hint I mean tell me straight out I shouldn't wait too long and don't I want some before I'm thirty (I'm 26).

Let me add that while I'm in a committed relationship I am not married. And I'm still relatively poor - I live in a studio apartment and couldn't really afford anything bigger.

So I'm wondering what exactly the though process behind these hints is....because I'm pretty sure if I turned up pregnant, no one else would be cheering about it.

(In all fairness I do want kids before I'm thirty. But not being a magical fairy creature I can't pull money out of the sky, nor can I fast forward my relationship to a point that we're ready to have them.)  She's going to need to adopt another cat.

Monday, August 9, 2010


I think people underestimate the power of stubbornness. Seriously.  Since graduating getting my career going has been one tiny heavy step forward at a time.  With lead chains around my ankles. And hot coals to walk across while wearing them.  Plenty of people have branched off into easier careers. Not easier to do, but easier to break into. TV and film is HARD to get work in, at least until you have a network.  I think it's seriously about deciding that you're not giving up. And then you don't.

To some people this will seem so obvious as to be ridiculous. But to some, to the people who are wondering why they're not getting jobs when everyone around them is, it's really something worth remembering. If you don't get this job send out another resume. If you can't get paid work get an internship. Work for free but on projects you enjoy that enhance your resume.  Meet people in your field when you get the chance.  Keep taking steps even if the ground seems to be crumbling.

Just recently things are getting a tiny bit, just a hair, easier in terms of finding work.  The last couple jobs I've gotten have come to me through people who know me or have worked with me, rather than coming from one of the millions of resumes I sent out last year. Opportunities are tentatively poking their heads around corners and flirting at me a little.  They may pan out or they may turn to smoke. But for a long while they didn't exist at all so I can't but view them fondly even if they turn out to be teases.

And none of this is because I'm the best or have amazing connections or any of that.  It's because even when I had to take waitressing work, even when I was working 12 hour days for probably $3 an hour (don't even get me started on the legality, but I did it) just for the experience, I kept going.  Pure stubbornness.  I didn't want to give up. I didn't want to have to tell people I gave up.  Even when I was working for the alumni donation drive at my old university and I would see film majors who were now doctors or lawyers or making tons of money somehow, if they weren't working in film a little voice in my head would say They gave up. It got too hard.  Silly, because law school is not exactly giving up. But it's not exactly following the dream either.

So I'm putting one foot in front of the other. Not because I'm the best but because I refuse to give up. I'm getting better and more confident with each job.  I work like hell whenever given the chance.  I'd rather work 12 hours and feel good about it than sit at my desk for 8 with nothing to do - I've had those jobs too and they make me jumpy and nervous.

So if you're feeling down or want to give up remember it's not the people who are dumb or talentless that don't make it. It's the ones who give up.  It's the stubborn ones that make it.

Sunday, August 1, 2010


As I was obsessively listening to the Leonard Cohen song Hallelujah, sung by various artists, I stumbled upon the Paramore song by the same name. I like it. Totally different song, but really good.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Explaining my absence

I haven't been writing much here lately. Operative word here, since I've been posting on associated content, on travel maharishi and on a couple other sites, all of which pay for writing. They don't pay much, but it's still frankly exciting to be able to make money from my computer at home based on my writing. Though I have gotten the comment from the editors of one site (which dropped my rating a bit) that I use too many commas. This has made me comma shy. Like, I know take out commas that I think actually do work just because I'm worried that I'll get corrected for it. This particular website bases what assignments they give you on your rating, so I want to raise it up again.

I've also been gardening  a bit.  My tomatoes shot up like weeds and then... stopped.  One of them has blossomed (just one! out of like 20!) and hopefully I'll get some tomatoes out of that one. The two plants I bought already big provided some tomatoes however.  Next summer I'll already have pots and dirt ready to go so I'll spend less and hopefully reap more.

And I'm working again, back at a job I've held in the past. I'm really liking it so far, more even than the first time around since there's so much less nervousness. I get really anxious about new jobs (something I'm working on - after all, it's just tv!) so going back to something I've held in the past and know what I'm doing in is downright relaxing.

Aside from that...well my family is crazy as ever. One family member had surgery, one refused stitches she needed due to a doctor related trauma she suffered in the past, and my dad had a baby (I almost typed midlife crisis, but that wouldn't be nice).  I generally don't mention them on my blog, but there being so actively quirky at the moment that it's filling my head. I'm in turns worried, exasperated, guilty, angry and stressed out over all of them.

I'll try to update more frequently, for myself really. It's the closest thing I have to therapy and comes easier than poorly paid articles about wedding dresses or baby showers.

Though poorly paid is still paid. Making me a paid writer. Wee!

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Cinque Terre, Italy – A Breathtaking Seaside Village

Cinque Terre, Italy – A Breathtaking Seaside Village

Check out my new article on Travel Maharashi and vote! I get $100 if I get the most votes....thanks :-).

Monday, June 14, 2010

Writing for Money

I haven't been updating here as much because I've been writing elsewhere, namely on Associated Content. I love them because they pay me. Not a lot (oh no, not a lot).  But it's still kind of exciting to make anything for writing.  It kind of brings back my childhood dream to be an author one day.  So, anyway, check me out there and sign up yourself if you want!  It's a great way to make a little extra spending money.

How Far We've Come

I've been dancing around like an idiot to this song for the past half hour (I loop songs I like. The people around me really appreciate this trait).

Thursday, June 10, 2010

PTSD, feline variety

Ok, my cat is insane. And I'm trying to be understanding and supportive but for real, I think she has PTSD or something.  Let me give you a bit of backstory:

She's super sweet. Very tolerant. I can hold her up on two legs (not that I do...much), play with her paws, poke at her and just basically make a pain of myself at her expense and she is fine with it. Maybe an occasional pitiful meow, but that's it.  Laziness totally wins out against aggression in her, any day.


Whenever she sees a cage she totally freaks out. Hissing, spitting, clawing, the whole thing.  You can't even get near her (I laugh at the people who suggest wrapping her in a towel first - if you get within 10 feet of her she's got her paw on the nuclear device panel and any closer and she detonates. She does not make empty threats).  It has taken me and my boyfriend together, wearing thick winter coats for protection and with multiple towels to get her into a cage. And it took hours. I do not joke. Hours. She has come close to reducing the two of us to frustrated tears.  It's like waterboarding, but worst.

And she stays like that for hours, if not days.  She especially can't stand even seeing the face of her sweet sister cat who she normally curls up and gossips with.  It's like Lindsay Lohan just saw her father waiting with a camera crew - it's that bad.

I believe this dates back to when we got her fixed.  That was the first time she ever really got carted off in a cage and I don't think she ever got over it.  Why she associates her sister with that, I don't know - maybe Shiale sold her out for a few extra minutes intact.  Who knows. I wasn't there. That day is behind a dark curtain for me, and I prefer to leave it there.

Now, that brings us to today.  For no reason that I can make out, as there was not a cage in sight, she flipped her shit a few hours ago and has, after yowling and growling from the windowsill for a while, retreated to behind my oven.  She took a break from hiding there to knock down my leftover (arugula, gorgonzola, spinach and potato) pizza. Bitch.  She's also managed to tear off a piece of the radiator that goes along that wall. Superb. At least it's summer.

Up until the destruction I was feeling very patient and tolerant about the whole thing. Poor thing, she's obviously having some kind of Vietnam style flashback.  It will pass. But that pizza was delicious, you guys. And I don't know how easy/hard it will be to put the heater/radiator back together. I am not super handy like that.

(Note: She has extracted herself from the oven area and is now in the doorway hissing at myself and Shiale.  Charming.)

So WTF? Am I the only one whose cat is out of its mind? What can I do to snap her out of it?  It's super, super annoying. It's like she goes feral or something.

Edited to add: Now she's in the hall in front of the bathroom and front door. Hopefully I don't have to exit/pee anytime soon.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Great Cobbler - MMMM

Today I made the easiest dessert known to man.  So good. So easy. Sigh.

It's half peach, half blackberry. I like the blackberry half better. In the interests of science though I will eat both sides to make sure that the peach doesn't eventually win out.  It's sooooo good.

I got the recipe from a good friend. All it takes is 1 of everything =
1 stick of butter
1 cup of self rising flour, milk and sugar

Mix the non-fruit together first, pour it into the pan you're baking it in (or mix it in the pan to begin with, as I do to save dishes), then pour the fruit over and give it a gentle stir.  It doesn't have to be perfectly mixed. Stick it in the oven and bake at 350 until the edges get a little brown. It will probably still be bubbling in the middle, so don't worry about that. Let it cool down a little and then eat!

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Growth of a garden

While my current apartment leaves much to be desired in terms of space and light, one thing that is infinitely better is that I have a little cube of outdoors space in which to grow some green things.  And they are growing!

From this :     

To this :

And from this to this :

Even the Forget-me-nots are growing: 

And now I have six little baby tomatoes, hopefully to ripen quickly.  

I'm very proud of myself.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

I can see!

So apparently I've been walking around with a super outdated eye prescription.  Now that I've spent $500 (gulp, omigod) on new glasses and contacts I'm expecting that investment to pay off with xray vision and a new job as a superhero.  It seems only fair.

In related news, I will soon be on the job prowl again as my freelance job is winding down.  Job hunting = oodles of fun.  I'm looking forward to it.  It's like playing the lottery, with hundreds of resumes going out and a response or two trickling in.  I guess it's good that I'm a qualified to be a superhero now.  See, the universe has its own timing.

On the home front, I've also managed to pick myself up the cutest little armchair from my aunt's apartment building.  It's from the 70s, and looks it, and once I steam clean it and get it properly situated I will take some pictures to post.  My boyfriend has mentioned, unflatteringly, that it makes him think of his grandparents old furniture but he's just bitter that he had to carry the thing onto the subway for me.  Bitter and jealous that it is MINE and not his.  Either that or he has sadly bad taste but I don't want to think that of him, so petty jealousy it is.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Mission Accomplish - Tomatoes on the Horizon

Do other people not know what they should capitalize in these titles? Is it just me?


I managed to actually get out and buy gardening supplies and I successfully planted tomatoes, basil and forget-me-not seeds this weekend (in pots, in case you were curious. I can't afford a yard).  Tomatoes and basil are my annual summer staples, but I just couldn't resist the forget-me-nots. I think they're the sweetest flower around and if it wasn't morbid I'd say I wanted them planted on my grave one day.  Which I'm not saying because I'm not morbid, but if I WAS...

Hopefully, unlike previous years, the tomatoes and basil will actually grow and flourish and I might make back some of my investment in nice dinners.  Either way, I love how both plants smell.  They remind me of my childhood and my grandfather's wonderful garden.  Every year I try to emulate and live up to that garden in my own little way, and I think if I live to be 90 the smell of fresh tomatoes will remind me of my grandfather.

I'll post pictures once things start sprouting.  This year they will grow, I feel it...

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Tomato Nation

  It's that time of year again.  The weather is warming up, the clothes are getting skimpier, and things are blooming.  I'm now in plant lust again, as happens every year, and am probably months late to be planting (as happens every year...).  This weekend is going to be my farmer's market weekend.  I'm going to cook, clean, plant and bake (myself, not anything edible - I need a tan).
  If I was feeling more poetic I could probably find some kind of analogy in the changing season for my current state of affairs.  Things in my life are approaching another transition, both professional and personal.  I have a lot going on and am trying to keep a lot of it private, both because I don't want to talk about things which involve other people and because a lot of things are still so up in the air I don't even know what to say.  And I don't want to talk to the internet about what I haven't even spoken to most of my friends about yet.  I'm a little nervous about what the future will bring, but am feeling a little more comfortable with things as they stand right now.  They won't stand there long of course but despite everything I'm maintaining a certain sense of zen.
  I started this blog for a reason, to write one thing every day and learn to put myself out there and connect with people.  I think every day might have been overly ambitious, but I will try for at least every week, if not more.
  Wow, this post was all over the place huh?  I'll see you this weekend. With my tomatoes.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Another song. So sue me.

I'm feeling musical.  I'm also feeling like I don't have the energy to post about my private life right now.  Not that it's all bad. Today was very nice, and very New Yorky.  But it's a bit confusing right now, so you all get music instead.

Sunday, April 4, 2010


I love Pandora.  And since I live in NY now and no longer listen to music in the car, it's my only source of new music.

I also love youtube.  It allows me to obsessively replay the songs I discover on Pandora.  This song, Almost Lover by A Fine Frenzy, I've played at least 20 times today.

On another note:  Sometimes days sneak up on me. Happy Birthday Uncle Gigi. I miss you.

Monday, March 22, 2010


I'm too tired to write much now, but looking at the headlines it looks like we did it.  We got 219 votes.  Now let's see this health bill in action.  I have a feeling a lot of people who were scared of it will really appreciate it once they see what it can do. Major victory for all Americans tonight.

Sunday, March 14, 2010


Last year was a long, depressing bastard of a year overall.  Not that it was all bad at all, and in fact I think a lot of the foundations I tried to build career wise will end up helping me avoid another such year.  This year  is so far shaping up to be better (knock on wood. A lot of wood).  I'm trying to keep my goals simple though, so as to not set myself up for disapointment.  SO. Only three months late here are my goals for 2010:

1. Work more then last year. 
2. Make more money working then last year. Not quite the same thing as 1.
3.  Try to sort out my personal life so it isn't so up and down.
4. Be neater and cleaner - I'm too old for my apartment to look like a freshman dorm.
5. Don't let my family's craziness get to me.  Seriously.  
6. Learn to listen better and not assume mid-sentence that I know what someone is about to say and interrupt to agree or disagree. A really bad habit of mine.  I've been trying, but this one is hard to break.
7. Visit Italy before my family there forgets what I look like.  My grandfather is also in his 90s now, but I don't even want to think that I might not see him again.  
8. Save some money.
9. Make some new friends and become better about keeping the old. 

Those are my goals, but we'll see...I think they're realistic so I hope by the end of the year I'll be able to say I've made progress on all of them.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Mish Mash

Lots to report and not much at all.  I'm loving my new job, and just hoping it keeps going well - which is all I'm going to say about it because I also read Dooce. My brother is in the hospital and has been for the past four days for a bone infection that both my father and myself told him was probably just growing pains. Go us. And his friends told him he was being wimpy for complaining about, before we knew what it was.  He should be fine however and will probably be discharged in a day or two, finally, so I'm glad he finally got the help he needed and it wasn't worse.   And he can hopefully milk this for all he's worth with his friends and teachers. He has earned it.

Then there's the fact that I'm quite annoyed with my sister for something very petty and yet I can't help being annoyed.  I've been asking her to visit me in NY for a year and a half, but she keeps playing the busy and broke card. Well, guess who went on vacation to Philadelphia.  Obviously she can go wherever she wants, but I can also be pissed about it if I want.  If she doesn't understand why being considered less important to visit then (probably, I'm guessing) a boy she barely knows, then she needs to turn her brain back on.

But anyway, I've gone this past year from not working but wanting to, working in my field but barely getting paid, working and getting paid but in a job outside my field that I was severely overqualified for, to finally working in my field in a job that I'm thrilled about.  Things with my bf are going well, though he is going through his own drama, and my family is relatively ok, bone infections aside.  So right now, life is looking pretty positive.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

National Security

Generally I tend to think airline security goes a little overboard, rather then the other way around. Like, seriously, you're confiscating my tequila*?  Or, why is the little plastic razor I'm bringing with me to shave my legs considered a hazard? I really doubt anyone would be particularly intimidated by me if I attempted to wield it.

However, they really dropped the ball on my last flight. Not because something happened. It didn't. I just happened to realize, as I was making my way through the airport ON MY WAY BACK that I had pepper spray in the pocket of my coat. I always do. I bought it and it ended up there and there it sits, in the unlikely event that I ever need it. What this means is that the coat I wore through the airport both to Florida (for business, aren't I just so grown up and professional) and returning from Florida, the coat that both times went through the scanner on the conveyer belt, had pepper spray just sitting in the pocket.  

Now, had I remembered it was there I obviously wouldn't have brought it with me to the airport. I don't need that kind of trouble.  I certainly would not have expected to make it through security with it TWICE.  

Seriously.  They need to be glad I'm not a terrorist because pepper spray is totally more of a potential weapon then a shampoo bottle or nail scissors. Those, those they confiscate.

*Bought in the Mexico City duty free arriving there before leaving to go to Germany to see the World Cup a couple years ago. I made it through security (with the open bottle) and through a flight once with it, but since I don't drink that fast I still had some on my way back and they took it then.  I should drink more. What a waste.  Oh, and I don't actually think it's that ridiculous they took it. Just sad. Very sad.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Long overdue

I'm crawling out from under the mound of work I've been doing to type a quick update post.  Things are good! Things are busy! It is good that things are busy! I've been working full out with almost no sleep for the past thousand years (it feels like).  I'm working my night time diner job at night, and working on film work during the day.  Rest is secondary. This means however that I feel stretched to the limit on every front, so I'm glad the period of hectic activity is coming to an end. I don't think it was sustainable.  I'm also glad the film I've been working on since last year is down to just one more day to shoot. We should have finished this week but it was just too cold to shoot outside.  I'm looking forward to finishing.

On another note, I find myself totally losing patience with my cats. They climb on EVERYTHING. They go everywhere they don't belong. I feel like I'm constantly screaming at them and pushing them off things and that it's not effective. If this is practice parenting I'm failing. Are there some tricks to training cats to do what you want? Or are they just alternatively sweet purring angels and annoying hell-beasts and I just need to learn to deal?

Tuesday, January 26, 2010


I'm about to head out to the airport, and I'm hoping this stomach bug I've been fighting decides to cooperate. I have visions of airport security swooping in to kick me off the flight (they can do that if you're sick, I think). This might be an unrealistic fear, but it's my fear. I'm owning it :-).

At first I thought I had finally given myself food poisoning and the thought was like bitter, bitter ashes in my mouth. I pride myself, and brag unduly, about my stomach being able to handle everything.  Well, yesterday I feared that everything didn't include Thursday's pasta, as I slowly progressed from nausea to dry heaving to throwing up. At work. In a restaurant.  No, they didn't send me home.  It would in fact be totally deserved if I did get food poisoning, if only due to the amount of boasting I do about not ever getting it.

I ended up calling out sick today, since I still felt crappy. I'm hoping this doesn't get me in trouble, since I'm so new, but who wants a pukey waitress? Seriously? And it's not like my last few tables of the night got good service anyway. I had the energy of a slug. One covered in salt.  It's hard to be perky and upbeat when you're trying not to throw up on the customers.  However, they all knew I had a flight today so I hope they don't think I'm exaggerating my illness due to my flight.  I guess we'll see. I think they like me, and I really was sick, so I'm going to try to be optimistic.

Thursday, January 21, 2010


I've always been someone who gets attached to objects, sometimes overly so.  I've carted boxes of books, trinkets and furniture across the country in a minivan, packed so tights that my cats were stacked in their carriers in between the front seats.  I hold onto things I no longer need because I can still remember the moment when those things were new - it's hard for me to view it as junk.

One of the things I dragged with me on my move from Florida was a delicate little glass vase, filled with smooth white stones and a small posy of fake lavender. Sometimes the lavender gets replaced with a real flower, but even when I don't have fresh flowers in the house that dainty little vase brightens it up.

It's probably not really anything special to look at for anyone but me, but I love that vase. I got it in Germany during my graduation trip with my dad to the World Cup.  It was a once in a lifetime trip and I was excited and pretty pleased with myself for being there. I had just gotten my first job, right out of school, in a company I had been interning for and I was feeling optimistic and happy about my future and my present.  Walking along sightseeing I saw it displayed in the glass front of a store, along with other colorful housewares and glass jewelry.  It looked so sweet and fresh that I went in and bought it, stones, fake flowers and all.  I wanted it immediately, even though packing a delicate glass vase into a suitcase already crammed full isn't either easy or practical. It's made it across an ocean and later across a country.  I wanted to be the kind of person that had those kind of things; to be just as sweet and fresh and clean as that vase looked to me.

This morning I was rocketed out of bed by the sound of breaking glass. One of my cats, who loves to touch everything with her paws and takes advantage of night time to go where she shouldn't, had knocked it off the shelf it was resting on.  The vase was shattered and the pretty river rocks were scattered across my floor.

It was just a vase.  But still, looking at those pieces of glass, which reminded me of the shiny bright store in Germany when my future looked at that moment just as shiny and bright, I couldn't help but cry.  It was just a vase but I loved that vase and the hope I was feeling when I bought it.

I think that hope will come again. I'm not meant to be a waitress for life; I know that.  And I am doing other things now, things that will hopefully build a scaffolding to future paid work.  I've got a college degree and have always been praised for being "a smart girl." And not just from my mother, though she led the chorus.  There is more waiting for me out there once I get past the rough patch right now - in fact things are already getting busier and I think (!!) that they might be better soon. But still, right now in this moment I don't feel like I did when I was right out of school, a job under my belt, traveling in Europe.  And looking at the pieces of that vase made me feel for that moment the chasm separating when I felt then and how I feel now.

A short film

I worked on a short film last year that is just about ready to be sent to festivals and then to be available to buy.  I don't want to give anything away, but I think the plot is thoughtful and somewhat controversial, and I'm hoping that it makes people want to talk about it.  I'm really excited about it getting out there and I think it will do really well.  It's called "The Empty Playground." If anyone is curious about it you can check out a trailer for it here :


Let me know what you think!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

So cute!

I worry that I'm going to be one of those parents that just shows everyone pictures of their kids and is constantly cooing about how cute they are.  I think it's a legitimate concern.

This was cuter in person. She looks slightly evil as she rests on her sister and glowers at the camera.


Surprisingly, my brilliant plan of working nights to leave my days open for job hunting and other things isn't going quite as well as planned. I overlooked one small detail - sleep.  Understandable oversight.  I have been coming home from work early, early in the morning and then spending (wasting) another hour or so online before passing out. Then I wake up just in time to dash off back to work, food time optional.  Rinse, repeat.  Yesterday it was shower or eat, so I showered.  Apparently I fear judgement more than I fear hunger.  Since I work 10 hour shifts generally and transportation eats another 2 hours (it sounds like a lot but it seems like it takes me an hour to get anywhere in NYC, no matter the borough), I really don't have a lot of time to do much else on days I work. And the day after I worked I'm recovering from it.

So.  I'm going to need to start managing my time better. Or sleeping less.  I'd love to only work 4 nights at the diner per week, so that I can actually use this job as planned - to pay the bills while I look for something in my field.  Right now they have me at 5, and I'm a little nervous about 1 week in asking for less hours.  However if I don't get my shit together and manage to use my days more productively, I'm going to have to.

Friday, January 15, 2010


Is it weird I moisturized my boyfriend's hands while he slept? In my defense they are so dried out the skin is cracking...and they now smell delicious.


Does thinking my cat sneezing is cute make me a crazy cat lady?

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Case in point

I forgot my leftovers at the diner I'm now working at two nights in a row.  This is typical of me. Tonight I remembered, and my leftovers from Sunday were still there so home they came too.  I'm eating them, and hoping that they don't give me food poisoning. This is also typical of me.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Life update

So I am now a late night diner waitress.  In a greek diner filled with Russian waitresses.  I've been meaning to learn a new language...

In other news I've been sleeping to 4 since starting at this diner. It's not easy staying on your feet all night. I don't get home until the sun is up.  Good news, however, is that at least it's employment and the fact that it's at night means that theoretically it won't interfere with more conventional job hunting/doing.

In other other news, I've always been a proud Italian, but news like this makes me ashamed of being a citizen of a country that would act like this or tolerate this sort of behavior. Everyone involved should be punished.  I'm sure hoping they feel bad is overly optimistic, but I certainly hope they can be made to feel bad.

Monday, January 4, 2010


I'm staring at the screen smiling right now.  You know, in case you were curious. No, I haven't found the job of my dreams or won the lottery or anything, but today seems much more manageable then yesterday. I bit the bullet and applied for a night shift at a 24 hour diner, so that I can still look for work during the day. I'm supposed to go in tomorrow for them to check me out, so wish me the best. I also have another interview tomorrow for a job handing out surveys on a street corner - again, not exactly  the same level as being hired by, say, HBO but at least it would be two weeks of steady money.  We're trying to shoot a few more scenes of a film I am working on later this week so that will be some work too, though not much.

I hope by writing about these interviews I haven't jinxed them, but having my day start out with two potential job nibbles has brightened everything.  Being unemployed, or even underemployed, starts to really really drain your optimism and your self esteem after a while.  It doesn't take much for me for it to all bounce back - I'm a basically happy person with a fairly stable sense of self worth. But after months of only working a few days here and there and counting pennies, even my generally annoyingly cheerful attitude dims down a few notches.

So we'll see how it goes tomorrow.  I'll either be back to being a Pollyanna or continue on with my teenage sulk phase.

Sunday, January 3, 2010


I've decided, after a lifetime of looking askance at it, that I love eggplant. This love affair started years ago, when I working at TGIF and they had this fried mozzarella and eggplant sandwich, but I resisted.  The mozzarella got all my attention while the eggplant stood by watching sadly.  But now I've finally realized the error of my ways. The eggplant was the true star, all those years ago, and I finally know it.

In other words, I've started frying up eggplant with just some salt, olive oil, garlic and curry powder and dumping it on a plate full of rice and it is delicious. So simple, so good.  That is what I look for in all my favorite recipes - I can make it with relatively little effort for a big payoff.  One day, when I have a larger kitchen, I may become more ambitious with my cooking but right now the one or two pot dishes are ruling.  And eggplant is, at the moment, leading the pack.

P.S. I should try to make that curry again, that I blogged about months ago...I'd kind of forgotten about it, but it was really good. And eggplant heavy.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Digging my way out

I'm in a rut. This is largely due to having too much time and not enough money - in short, since I'm freelancing I have large chunks of time when I don't have any work to do, and therefore no money coming in.  Since I don't have money to spend I end up home on the computer all day.  This isn't healthy and it isn't productive.  I job hunt every day, but let's be serious - applying to jobs only takes an hour, max, if that.  After that, the rest of the day just looms up.  I'm sleeping too much, online too much, sitting too much, just generally wasting my life right now.

What I've been saying I'm going to do, and what I need to do, is find myself a night job or some kind of part time job so even when I don't have film or tv stuff happening, I still have a reason to leave the house.  It will also alleviate the money stress a lot, since when I don't have film stuff happening I've been falling back on UE income, which I'm almost out of (since I didn't live in NY originally when I applied for it, and applied as an out of state worker, I'm not eligible for most of the extensions).  This has been really stressing me out. I HATE that I'm 26 and don't have a reliable source of income, can't afford to go out, can't buy myself the occasional treat, and am just generally broke and discouraged.

I've been applying religiously to jobs, but I think that I need to switch things up. Just find some kind of income producing job. It doesn't mean I give up or that I can't still try to find the perfect  job, but if I have to waitress somewhere for a few months it's not the end of the world. It does feel a bit like failure, but I know I need to do it.

That being said, I've actually tried to get waitressing jobs before (though I could probably try harder).  It's not actually that easy right now either. The recession has hit the restaurant industry hard, but I really don't want to work retail - I'm horrible at earning commission and those jobs pay terribly.  I don't know that I could even make my bills on a retail job salary.  Not that those jobs are falling out of trees either. Catering is great, but really unreliable and even working for (now) three companies, I only get a couple days a month usually.

So basically, I'm at a point where even getting a restaurant job is seeming like an insurmountable challenge.

So I'm in a rut. Now I just need to find a way out.

Tavern on the Green

I occasionally cater to make some extra (extra, who are we kidding?) money.  I enjoy it actually, as it means interacting with people and it is easy, well paying work. You just have to smile and be willing to be as helpful as possible. These are traits I am perhaps overburdened with in my everyday life anyway, so it works for me.

Yesterday I worked at the New Year's Eve party at Tavern on the Green. It wasn't the fanciest party I've ever worked, but it was probably the biggest, and it definitely made the most news. Last night was the last night that Tavern on the Green, a NYC staple, will be open.  The city is now going to be renting the land to someone else.

The party itself was crazy, like absolutely packed full of people.  I'm not claustrophobic at all, but I started to feel a bit sick and I'm thinking the absolute lack of breathing room (that and the yummy shrimp) may be to blame.  I wasn't the only one - I heard someone else fainted and I personally witnessed one extremely drunk, unconscious woman end her evening in the back of an ambulance.  Classy.  Classic actually, in a New Year's Eve type of way.  Nevertheless it was a perfectly appropriate sendoff for such a historic building.  Plenty of free booze, great food, and lots (lots!) of people.

My job was seating people and bringing them their vodka and gift baskets, so not exactly rocket science.  We were done by midnight and able to all have a glass of champagne together to ring in the new year. I wish I could have been with my boyfriend, but making history at one of the biggest parties at one of the most legendary locations in one of the best cities in the world wasn't bad either.  I didn't even have to use my pepper spray going home - I've had it for month and haven't needed it yet.  Would that be considered intelligent spending?

So Happy New Year all, and I hope everybody had a happy and healthy one! No ambulances for you. My resolution is simple - more money next year.  I hope the same for all of you.