On Being an Uncle
I sat in my apartment, eagerly awaiting a photo of my newborn nephew. “Such a cute little peanut,” My relatives all said, using a variety of other food-related descriptors. “A darling biscuit, I just wanna eat’im up!” I’ll believe it when I see it, I thought to myself. Like an adult after a head injury who has to relearn human emotion by watching reruns of...
As usual, the F train set out to inflict its misery upon an otherwise fantastic evening in Park Slope, Brooklyn. “No Manhattan-bound F trains at this location,” the sign read. I hardly batted an eye. The F train has beaten me into compliance with its inefficiency. Slowly wearing me down after months of living in Brooklyn, it wants me to know my place. I am its bitch, and it will...
I noticed the woman’s expression over the pages of my book. Different from the curmudgeonly, disinterested expressions of everyone else on the 6 Train, she looked worried. “Dumped,” I thought. I eased back on the door and continued reading. She inched closer, her gaze intensified. Again, I looked up from my book. She moved right in front of me. Her delicate porcelain...
The Golden Rule
It started with a cryptic status update on Facebook between two good friends. “I attempted that ‘thing’ we discussed earlier,” said Friend One. “I just couldn’t bring myself to do it.” The update concluded with the emoticon to denote sad uncertainty. :-/ Friend Two was unsure what he meant. “Something warm?” she asked. The suspense was killing me. A warm activity that was so bad it needed to be...
9:45 a.m. — I struggled for fifteen minutes to schedule a meeting in Outlook. This is an activity I have done upwards of seven times before, but I withered in despair after discovering there were four entries for a, one, Juan Lopez. I just couldn’t do this… Juan was needed in a meeting, but I didn’t need all four. I didn’t even know them! So I wept. This unexpected and...
The Muse of Workplace Detachment
I settled into the toilet seat and positioned myself for the long haul… It was one of those mornings. I exhaled with eager anticipation. I was excited for this for a few different reasons—most of which would be inappropriate to discuss here— but suffice it to say that it’s my opportunity to disengage from the world for a few minutes, not to mention the fact that I do some of my best...
The Anatomy of a Titty Bar
Originally published for slackerology on April 11, 2009 Today, I am a new man. Yesterday, my titty bar virgin cherry was fully intact. As pure, untouched, and wholesome as the freshly fallen snow… Today, however, the aforementioned cherry lies fully popped, deflated and (in keeping with the theme) looking not unlike the chest of Pamela Anderson after a breast reduction. I have to say,...
The Pizzeria on Front Street
What is there to possibly say about Front Street Pizza? It has every ounce of charm you’d expect from a Brooklyn pizzeria. Behind the counter, balding Italian American men exemplify the stereotype by tossing around expletives, proclaiming their fierce loyalty to their mothers, and saying things like ‘youse guys.’ There is no line; you order when one of them deems it convenient to...
Missing Murray Hill
I find myself laying in bed. The silence of DUMBO, Brooklyn caving in on me with it’s deafening embrace. Last month at this time I found myself laying in the same bed, in a room overlooking a neglected back alley in Midtown Manhattan. A neighborhood with all the sterile charm you would expect from that perfectly gridded section of the island. My evenings were spent falling asleep to the hum...
Towels & Tribulations
There I sat, behind a register in the bath department of the JCPenney Home Store, eyeballing a rogue hand towel I had straightened only moments ago. It laid there, crumpled at the top of a pile with the rest its well-groomed squadron stacked perfectly underneath—a veritable accordion of chartreuse linen. I scanned the aisles in search of the guilty party. This crime bespoke of the wily means of a...
The Knicks, Unicorns, and Sylvia Plath
I darted toward the closing elevator doors as the kindly stranger held them open for me. I ran in and thanked him. He took my gratitude as an invitation to visit awkward small talk on me. “What’s new and exciting?!” asked this stranger, with the same zeal as if we were old college friends. Never mind the fact that he was about 30 years my senior. Oh, and also the fact that I had...
The nurse excitedly spouted off a complete listing of the booster shots she was going to give me. She did this with the same routine vigor of someone who’s been in nursing perhaps a bit too long. Someone who, quite likely, sneaks into the rooms of sleeping patients and pulls out their eyelashes, letting their cries of anguish waft over her with a sense of complete and utter...
The Tragedy of a Life Without Bell's
Status updates from acquaintances are starting to trickle in regarding what is known as Oberon Day, and formerly one of my favorite days of the entire year. Oberon Day marks the release of Bell’s Brewery’s renowned beer, Oberon. The fact that this brew is not available year-round sends beer enthusiasts into a frenzy to be one of the first whose tongues may be blessed with this sweet,...
Sunlight and Syntax
Sunlight streams through the windows at the New York Public Library, shimmering across the gold-plated ceiling, bathing everything in an encouraging flaxen hue. There could be no better place to spend the afternoon writing, I think to myself…
Moonlight Over Gramercy Park
I thrust open the window and slid into an agreeable corner of the couch, gazing at the twinkling lights of Midtown in the distance. The refreshing spring zephyr danced across my face, washing away the stressful chaos that comes with living in New York City. “Life is good,” I thought to myself, completely satisfied. …and that’s when I farted. And we’re not just...
Cream with your mocha?
I walked to Union Square, certain to avoid the pomp and circumstance of the Oscars. Award shows are not my thing. I hate the inescapable hype surrounding it all. Computer in tow, I entered the Starbucks situated on the northwest corner of the square, determined to ride this out with the help of Tumblr, Missy Elliott, and a few thoughts bobbling around my head that I wanted to get on paper. ...
My evening commute home takes me past a pet store in Midtown which hosts ‘Doggy Playtime’ every night around 5. I peer in the window, my eyes invariably darting to the same corner—the naughty corner—where nine times out of ten sits a militant and crabby looking dachshund, sequestered from the group for it’s unruly behavior. Not for one minuscule fragment of a moment...
Why I Write: A Preamble
“…and what about you?” snapped David King, band director of the middle school I attended. I was always caught off guard by his menacing lazy eye, perpetually confused as to whether or not he was addressing me directly. This rarely happened, as I was amongst 60 other matriculating Mozarts—which is to say it was normally easy to blend in with the crowd. Bulbous, bossy, and intimidating,...
Slinking through Grand Central to catch the 6 after a tedious visit to the bank, I look upon this magnificent space and can’t help but revel in the cheery lunchtime bustle. I crack a smile, for it appears that even in the most flavorless of errands there lies an element of delectable charm.
This is probably one of my favorite times of the year—that lull between the bustling chaos of Christmas and watching the ball drop (and because I think this requires clarification, I mean the ball in Times Square.) The pandemonium dies down and you’re left to reflect on the happenings of the past year, and also the sad and final resting place for all of the holiday food you’ve consumed. ...
In the land called Halloween.
Sometimes life is like that one grueling and dictatorial boss that heaps an exorbitant amount of work on top of an already towering inbox. You sit there with this overwhelming sense of irresolution—you have no idea where to start, and pinning down a place to begin seems like an impossible task because you have to deal with all of these seemingly separate, conflicting issues that are all...
Where IS the love?
Sometimes it takes a major wake up call for you to come to the realization that you are actually a douchebag. This realization occurred as I traveled home tonight… A temperate summer evening, my commute took me through the ghetto of Kalamazoo, Michigan. My iPod (I call her Sal) came with this unique feature that senses my mood, and plays just the right song accordingly. I’m not sure...
The smell of fallen leaves...
Sunday evening found myself partaking in a favorite pastime of late: a leisurely autumn stroll on 7th Avenue through the ever-quaint Park Slope. And, yes, I realize this makes me sound like a newly retired professor from the Philosophy department at NYU, but the beautiful thing is that I am completely okay with that identifier. This night—on first contemplation being no different than any...
What you are in love with, what seizes your imagination, will affect everything....– Pedro Arrupe
Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you...– Mark Twain
Spider Solitary Confinement
Humility makes great men twice honorable. These words were spoken by the late Benjamin Franklin that, when combined with my experience of writing as a means of conquering personal adversity, result in the motivation required to share the following sordid tale with you. Let me pose a hypothetical to you all, in hopes that a far more reasonable response will be conveyed… Imagine driving down...
Religion has actually convinced people that there’s an invisible man,...– George Carlin
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful citizens can change the world....– Margaret Mead
Westboro Baptist Church, known for picketing... →
I’m sorry, I know that attention is just what they want, but I had to share this solely because Shirley Phelps- Roeper is quoted as describing Betty Ford as an adulterer who “loved to sit with tawdry reporters and blather about sex.” Who talks like that outside of cheesy movie villains? I can’t stop laughing.
When you’re unemployed and haven’t seen the wee hours of the morning in six months (and when I say wee hours, we’re talking anything before noon), 11 p.m. is the perfect time for a late-night adventure… My trip took me to Fourth Coast Cafe, a venue that I sometimes frequent when I feel the need to immerse myself amongst the happily unwashed masses of Kalamazoo. I’ve...
You don’t write because you want to say something, you write because you...– F. Scott Fitzgerald