No Longer at This Address

Tales of a Kentucky girl attempting to make it in NYC

movie with a view.

thursday night i went to brooklyn bridge park and watched the big chill with some friends. the view was AMAZING! we had a little picnic of hummus, veggies, cheese, crackers, and wine.

 just before the movie started, i was laying on our blanket and looked up in the sky and saw a plane flying overhead. all my life when i’ve seen planes in the sky i wondered where they were going and wished i was on them. when i saw the plane in the sky on thursday night, for the first time, i didn’t even want to be on the plane. i felt perfectly happy exactly where i was.

brown muffin incident.

new office. on monday i got moved to a new office in my building. not just any office. a CORNER office. this is prime real estate no matter where you are. in new york, however, a corner office is like gold. let’s be real here though. i do share it with two co-workers. the view is not the stuff that post cards are made of. nevertheless, it’s a big step up from the windowless cave i had for the first 6 weeks. now my office has three giant windows (i’d estimate 6’ by 3’ each). sunlight pours in. because i’m the newest, i sort of deferred to my co-workers and let them pick their desks first. perhaps spatially they got the better desks, but i’m not complaining b/c i ended up with the desk directly under two of the windows. when i look out, i can see the construction of the freedom tower 2 blocks away. i seriously feel like pinching myself sometimes.

brown muffins. this morning i was out of milk, which meant i could not make coffee (this girl’s gotta have milk in her coffee) and my usual cereal wasn’t going to happen. i decided to stop by a breakfast truck on my into work. trying my best to resist the bounty of delicious donuts and chocolate croissants, i spied a healthy looking muffin on the top shelf. i asked the man inside the truck what kind of muffin it was. he said, ‘brown muffin.’ i started laughing b/c compared to the poppyseed muffins it was certainly a boring-looking, whole grain muffin. i said, ‘sir, that’s definitely a brown muffin, but what’s in it.’ he said (in his thick middle eastern accent) that he wasn’t sure except that it was a brown muffin. then he asked me where i was from. i told him kentucky. he said he knew i wasn’t from new york. i asked him how he could tell. he said that if were from new york, i would know what a brown muffin was. i stood there believing him because i feel naive and clueless roughly 70% of the time about all things new york. then he said brown muffins are healthy. suddenly it dawned on me. between my accent and his, it had gotten lost in translation. he was saying bran muffin, not brown muffin. 

commonwealth. an intern, turned friend from my time as a law clerk in frankfort, recently contacted me and told me her younger sister had just moved to new york. she put the two of us in contact with one another and we arranged to meet for a drink tonight. she, like her sister, is so sweet and adorable. i really enjoyed chatting with her.  the best part of all is that we met for a beer at….wait for it…..COMMONWEALTH BAR! it’s in brooklyn and owned by a guy from whitesburg, ky. i’ve heard about this place from several people in recent months and it was nice to finally check it out. there were several ky-inspired drinks on the menu, which were a nice touch. in keeping with the ky theme, i ordered a ky bourbon barrel ale, a rare commodity around here. it was delicious!

ky connections

my lovely ky pals ea and sarah are lifesavers. they hauled me to mardi gras when i was broken hearted and depressed. they made me get texting for the year 2012. they let me run around and act like a wild 25-year-old with them when i found myself suddenly single, nearing 30, and without any single friends my age. but alas, perhaps their biggest contribution to date is pairing me with their dear friend, kate, as my new nyc roomie! 

nyc is expensive. like crazy expensive. i needed a roommate. i’m not sure i know anyone under 40 that doesn’t have a roommate in this city. it’s just the way things are here. clearly, i didn’t know a single soul when i decided to move up here, but at just the perfect time, kate was transferred up here from her nyc office. without even having met each other, we agreed to be roommates based on ea and sarah’s assurances we’d love each other. we finally met yesterday all of 15 minutes before we began the day-long death march of apartment hunting in nyc. we hit it off immediately and i had a good feeling about things.

we met our realtor (you pretty much have to have one here), whitney, in front of the first apartment. whitney is a gay guy who is kate’s boss’s friend. whitney is perhaps my favorite person i’ve met so far in this city. he had me laughing all day long. after looking at 8 apartments (3 of which seemed promising), we went for drinks at harlem food bar with whitney and kate’s boss. it’s apparently a gay bar. my pineapple mojito was perfect. had a great time talking to whitney and kristin who told the story of their first apartment in nyc when they moved here from wisconsin 11 years ago. apparently they were broke and had to take in a third roommate who was a midget. 

then kate and i went back to her sister’s insanely awesome apartment in chelsea to let her sister and her sister’s partner’s dog out to go to the bathroom. this male tiny white pomeranian is male named marley. he is aaaadorable and apparently usually has a mohawk, which they dye hot pink along with his tail.

finally, kate and i went to dos caminos to meet another girl from lexington named abby and her bf sean. we went to a restaurant in soho called dos caminos. abby works at another location of the restaurant, so she knows the chef and he hooked us up with a ridiculous amount of free food including guacamole, three kinds of ceviche, roasted plantain empanadas, taquitos, crab molotes, and a grilled shrimp quesadilla. for dessert he brought us salted caramel cake, chocolate cake, and banana ice cream. we only had to pay for our drinks. i got white sangria and a mexican star (tequila, sparkling wine, and muddled strawberries & lime). go there if you’re ever in town. it’s delcious. http://www.doscaminos.com/

philly phriend visit!

i got really lucky the summer i interned in philadelphia. it was one of the best summers of my life and i came away with some amazing friends. one of these friends made her SECOND visit to see me in nyc. well, maybe this time the trip wasn’t about visiting me. she had all kinds of job interviews, but crashed with me on thursday night. we met after i got off work in downtown and rode the subway to the upper east side where she had been staying with her law school friend’s place for the few nights prior. we went into this girl’s parent’s apartment and it was iiiinnnnncccredible. there was an original juan miro on the wall. and all kinds of other amazing artwork. and a piano. and giant furniture. and a balcony. and amazing views. the best part of all, however, was how warm and inviting the family was. i expected them to cold and snobby. not at all. her mom popped a bottle of champagne and we all sat there and drank and laughed and talked for wwwaayyy longer than we intended on staying. then my philly friend, her law school friend, and another one their friends went for sushi at haru.

one of the girl who went to haru with us is training for her first marathon. here’s her blog about going from completely out of shape to marathon runner in a year and a half. http://rileduprunner.wordpress.com/ she is running the marine corps marathon in d.c. just like my dear friend ashley in ky is!

sister’s visit!

my sister came to visit from 8/3-8/9. at work on 8/3 i felt like a kid on christmas. i don’t know the last time i’ve been so excited for something. i doubt i can remember everything we did, but here’s my best shot.

friday.

visited the world trade center site and st. paul’s cathedral.

free evening at the moma. 

sushi at taro in park slope, brooklyn.


saturday.

took the long island railroad to robert moses state park. it was only 1.5 hours away or so by train. but it felt like another world. the beach was completely undeveloped. there was a pretty good crowd, but there was plenty of wide open beach too. we spent the day laying out, walking in the surf, and jumping through waves.

dinner at beet, a thai restaurant in park slope brooklyn.

sunday.

hong kong dragon boat festival in flushing park, queens.

5 pointz, an amazing street of graffiti, in long island city, queens.

monday.

met my sister after work and went shopping at uniqlo, joe fresh, and anthropologie.

tuesday.

after work walked with sister along prospect park. my sister made us stop at quite possibly our 8th bakery of the trip. i forgot the name of the place, but i do know that she walked out with a cake. an entire cake. it was on the small side, but an entire cake nonetheless.

dinner at mr. falafel. that was my sister’s pick. my vote was for pita pan. best.name.ever.

wednesday.

met sister after work and explored union square and williamsburg (mecca for hipsters). i had heard so much about williamsburg that i was left feeling largely unimpressed. i was, however, quite pleased with the guava cupcake that my sister and i split from brooklyn cupcake.  http://brooklyncupcake.wordpress.com/menu/

drank a perfect dark & stormy at melt in park slope.

thursday.

sister left in AM. very sad, very tired.

One month in NYC!

One month in NYC!

movies and mooburger.

met rebecca, the daughter of that filmmaker from frankfort, after work today. i first met her and her boyfriend a couple of weeks ago. she contacted me to see if i wanted to hang out one night this week, so that’s how all this happened. i’m pretty sure she’s being super nice to me because she thinks i’m moderately crazy for moving up here all alone. whatever. she’s interesting and nice, so it’s nice to have her company.

we went to her apartment in brooklyn, had a beer, and just chatted for awhile. she, like her mom, is in the film industry and her boyfriend is and architect. he also builds furniture on the side. naturally, their apartment was awesome. it wasn’t sleek or modern, but rather warm and intellectual looking with books and projects everywhere.

we then wandered around carroll gardens and boerum hill. that is when we happened upon trailers and tents set up along the street where they were shooting a movie called they came together. i saw michael showalter (who wrote and played the dorky guy in wet hot american summer). apparently amy poehler and paul rudd were around too. if i had seen paul rudd, i for sure would have given him my friend anna’s phone number since our former secretary of sorts thought he was the perfect guy for anna.

after rebecca’s boyfriend got off work, he met us at mooburger for dinner.

moo burger interior.

random bits of monday.

  • upcoming work outing = beach! got an e-mail that the entire office is going to long beach on sunday september 9th. it’s about 1.5 hours away using public transportation. i hear it is a little less crowded than some of the beaches really close to the city. i googled it and found this picture:
  • new yorkers think, at best, their city is the center of the universe. at worst, they think it is the only place in the universe. mostly, i’ve discovered that people are really clueless about u.s. geography. even places in new york state that are 90 miles north are a complete fiction to some of my co-workers. the south is giant blob of land with no distinct states. at the water cooler today, one of the attorneys mentioned to me “how hot in must be in mississippi.” he was genuinely trying to be nice. but to him, kentucky=south carolina=mississippi. blows my mind. the only thing i can compare it to, is how i felt as a 3rd grader trying to learn the states and feeling confusing about all the tiny states in new england. but seriously. i was 8. this man was like 48. get it together.
  • at lunch i went to a fruit stand on the street near my building. i bought a pound of cherries. it’s pretty amazing to be able to just walk out the door and find this outside. also makes it easier to resist skittles or starburst.
  • after work, i took a big step as a nyc resident. i opened a bank account here. there are no branches of my bank back home here and i decided i didn’t want to deal with atm fees and all the other inevitable inconveniences related to not having a bank here. so…i took the plunge. naturally, i walked into the bank and got assigned a personal banker who i am convinced should be my new best friend. she was from atlanta and moved up here 3 years ago without any friends or family to speak of, just like me. we were exchanging all kinds of stories. when i busted out my ky driver’s license, she nearly died and then she told me one of her best friends manages the only california pizza kitchen in ky, which is the one at oxmoor mall in louisville that i’ve been to a ton of times with my grandparents (this also happens to be a nasty cheating boyfriend’s favorite place). she was telling me about how you could do all kinds of fancy banking stuff with your smartphone. she must have read it on my face. ‘do you have a smart phone?’ she asked. i was like, ‘um…no!’ i told her i only got texting in february after my friends staged an intervention. she was dying. she told me i had 6 months to get it together and get a smart phone. apparently, she’s my personal banker now. she swears she is going to call me in december and make sure i have a smartphone by then. i am also embarrassed to say that in this bank on broadway in manhattan we were laughing so much that the manager came over to see what was going on. 
  • i also noticed an interesting food item on one of the food carts. pretty much every block has a little cart that sells hot dogs, pretzels, and drinks. i saw one today that was selling chestnuts on top of the usual fare. this confused me. who really eats chestnuts? i’ve only heard of them in christmas songs. and the more pressing questions is who goes to a food cart and says, “i’ll have a hot dog with ketchup, an orange gatorade, and a bag of chestnuts?” 
  • and last, but not least…peppermint hair. yes indeed. i saw a new hairstyle on the subway on my home this evening. a guy appearing to be about 19 or 20 had shaggy brown hair that looked uncombed. nothing to write home about. but…BUT…get ready for it. he had all kinds of peppermints stuck in his hair. i would estimate about 10. it looked like he had stuck them in his mouth for a while until they got nice and sticky and then lodged them strategically in his hair. kind of like christmas ornaments. or a grungy, angst-filled male version of katy perry. not sure.

weekend update.

friday.

thanks to a tip from ashley, i went to see the head and the heart at a free show on friday. the show was at prospect park, which has seating for 2,000 and a lawn that holds 5,000. another band called lost in the trees opened. both bands were great. i was alone (i’m getting to be a pro at doing whatever i want and not caring if i’m alone or not). it ended up being fine because a lady who was also there alone sat down beside me. she was probably 60 and we talked about all kinds of stuff. she said she could i was from the south because i called her “ma’am.” 

here’s a link to a video someone made during the show:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fssK1f8fJ6o

my housemates are getting married in california on august 5th. they left saturday and will be gone for 2 weeks. before they left, they introduced me to their friend who is staying here while they’re gone. she was nice, but WAY intense. like she wore me out right away. in fact, i met her as i walked out of the bathroom in my short bathrobe. since my 37-year-old male housemate was standing there while i was in my dangerously short bathrobe and my hair in a towel, i was really trying to make it to my room to put on some clothes, but there was no escaping this girl. i was cornered. she’s an artist. after exchanging a couple introductory questions like names, where we’re from, occupations, etc, she launched into this epic story about her book, her latest project, her painstaking artistic process. quite frankly, i’m not sure she took a breath. even while she was shoveling ben & jerry’s ice cream in her mouth. this went on for at least 20 minutes. it could have been 45. i think i blacked out. finally there was a slight pause in her talking and i said, ‘well, it’s been so nice to meet you. i’ve had a long day, so i’m gonna crash. i look forward to seeing you more.’ this was obviously a lie. not because she not nice, but because i don’t have it in me to get cornered again.

saturday.

went to farmer’s market. felt really green and inspired. therefore bought way too much imported-to-nyc, over-priced, organic produce. also had two apple cider donuts and a diet dr. pepper. for breakfast. 

then went and got a $20 mani/pedi. that’s right. my rent is damn near that of a mortgage on a mansion in the highlands in louisville, but they nearly give away salon services ‘round these parts.

discovered a grocery store that more closely resembles what i am used to. it was probably no bigger than the trader joe’s in louisville, but that’s quite spacious for nyc. plus, the prices were a little cheaper on some things than i’ve seen at other groceries here. oh wait. no one here knows what a ‘grocery’ is. it’s a ‘grocery store.’ both words. just say ‘grocery’ and people are confused.

rainy night. decided to watch some netflix. since i use spanish quite a bit at work now (yay!), i decided i would make a somewhat educational endeavor. i watched a romantic comedy in spanish. it was called ‘no eres tu. soy yo’ (it’s not you. it’s me). it was pretty good. not really actually. a mexican rom-com? okay. it sucked.

sunday.

heard the arrival of intense temporary artist roommate. spent much of the morning trying to hide from her. just didn’t have it in me to deal with all that today.

went to the laundromat. you can drop it off or call for them to pick it up at your house.  i hear doing that it not that much more than doing it yourself, but i don’t like to dry a lot of my stuff and so i don’t trust them. so….$7 and one hour later, my 3 loads of laundry were done.

iced coffee at hungry ghost. i must say that this is the second coffee shop i’ve been in where they use an ipad in lieu of a regular cash register. i guess there’s an app for that. it’s somehow wired to drawers under the counter where they get the change. it looked something like this: 

took the subway to downtown brooklyn and walked all the way back home. it was about 2 miles. i mostly did it because i wanted to explore these neighborhoods called carroll gardens and cobble hill that i’ve been hearing about. in particular, there’s a street running through them called smith street that has lots of little stores and restaurants to check out. 

i cut back towards my neighborhood and as i was about to cross the gowanus canal, I happened upon pretty much this scene:

it’s apparently two djs that call themselves mister sunday. they dj every sunday night from 3-9 pm. because it’s nyc and why wouldn’t you just go dj dance party on a sunday evening? it’s at this obscure venue that is basically an unmarked warehouse. you walk in and go to the back which overlooks the (nasty) gowanus canal. this evening’s event was apparently particularly special because it was the 100th event. so it was called ‘mister 100’ and people were flocking to it. i didn’t even go in, but i could see all this happening from a little bridge.