Category Archives: friendship

36 hours in NYC – wish ribbons, blue shoes, and friends

We ran off to NYC for a quickie get-together with friends.

I’ll get to that later…

First, we got to the hotel around 7 pm, and cabbed it over to the 2nd Ave. Deli for matzoh ball soup and pastrami sandwiches. I still think this is the best pastrami in the city. Also, I really like the free mini-shots of chocolate soda that come with the check.

Then I had to wrestle with rugrat kids in the hotel business center at 9:30 pm to get on a pc before the 10 pm chat that Max Adams kindly arranged for her 5150 screenwriting workshop with guest screenwriter Terry Rossio. This was no picnic, trying to get that pc. A couple of kids on one pc. 2 Spanish guys on another, a surly teen girl on another, and an older man with a yarmulke on the last one. At about 9:50, after much exaggerated sighing, I announced “I have a 10:00 meeting with someone in Hollywood, is anyone getting off soon?!” Yarmulke guy kindly gave me his pc. It was a great chat – lots of great information and advice from Terry. And – Johnnie Depp is hotter in person than in the movies. So I hear.

Friday we had lunch at Luke’s Lobster in the East Village. It has recently been named one of the best lobster roll places in the city. It did not disappoint! Yum. The place has no real seating, just about 8-10 stools at a bar. We luckily got window seats and polished those babies off.

Then we cabbed it down to the New Museum on Bowery and Prince. I love this place because it is so off-beat.

There was a Rivane Neuenshwander exhibit in the lobby [other floors too, but I am telling you about the lobby..] – called “I Wish Your Wish.” She is a Brazilian artist.

It is walls of colored ribbons with people’s wishes printed on them. The ribbons loosely poke out of little holes. Visitors are invited to select ribbons printed with a wish to tie around their wrists. [The guy in the exhibit instructed me to tie three knots – I did.] When the ribbon falls off, Brazilian tradition is that one’s wish will come true. Visitors may write another wish and place it in the empty hole. [I did.]

So – I now will be wearing this yellow ribbon and green ribbon on my left wrist for – who knows how long?

There is this shoe store in Soho just a few blocks from the museum on Prince St. My favorite NYC shoe store – John Fluevog.

But. It was getting close to the time we had to be downtown for the reason we came to NYC in the first place – the party. I did not want to be late, but the husband insisted – insisted – we go get me some shoes. Who am I to argue?

I got me some baby-blue John Flouevog shoes.

They were even on sale, yay!

All this, and still – the best part of the trip – was seeing my old friends.

Friends I used to work with years ago. The occasion – an informal retirement party for a few of my old bosses, at Captain’s Ketch in the financial district. About 60-70 people showed, and caught up with each other over many glasses of wine and other alcoholic beverages.  It was way cool to see everyone again.

There is a core group (okay, clique) of seven women that are still really close – even though 4 of us have scattered off from that job. And we huddled and caught up with each other as if we had all been together just yesterday instead of 2-3 years ago. The best kind of friends to have.

The party was scheduled from 5 – 9pm, and at 10pm a whole lot of us were still there when the place turned on the lights to signal – hey you guys are running over – so we did what we used to do.

12 of us trudged up to Wo Hop in Chinatown for dinner. And pigged out on homemade wonton soup, dumplings, sesame noodles, egg rolls, and various versions of Chow Fun. 

And we all again hugged and went our separate ways. Until next time.

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XOXO

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Crawling out of funk-dom to wish all my dear friends and family a merry one.

Love, hugs, kisses,

Michele

Faux camping

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The pitter of rain hits the tree tops, with hardly a drop breaking through onto us.  Dusk is falling.  I sit around the campfire, with husband, friend Ira, and the ex-boyfriend, the man I lived with for seven years and have seen twice in the last ten.  It is a cozy scene, that fire burning light onto our faces.  The sips of wine and beer.  The reminiscences – how is so & so doing, how’s your mom, your dad?  And the rain – it never does hit us.

Until – the crackle of the fire is overwhelmed by the crackle of thunder and we run to the picnic table and huddle under the orange tarp hanging from tree to tree.  We are sheltered.

The other wives [Ira’s, the ex’s], the four kids, all girls, ages 6 – 14, return [dare I say from Bingo?]  And now there are 10 of us, all under the tarp, close, very close.   A long discussion on – should we stay or should we go?  It is a given that husband and I are going – we do not camp – but the others have tents set up in this campground just 9 miles from Ira’s house.  There are votes.  Everyone talks over everyone.  The 14 year-old is cutting deals with her dad (my ex).  Or trying to.  Ellen, Ira’s wife, is yelling – “it’s too loud!”, her hands over her ears [she wants to go home.]  Ex is saying to me – “hey you know this would be a great movie scene you should write this.” 

Finally, some decide to go back to the house, some decide to stay.  Ellen & Ira & their daughter will sleep at home, shower, and return to the campground tomorrow.  As will myself and husband, but that was our plan anyway.  The ex and his wife decide to stay.  They are the true campers. 

The rest of us – we are faux campers. 

Chop Suey

Sometimes I ramble. I have not done too much of that on the blog [some may disagree] but today is my birthday so I am allowed to just ramble. Just today.

Last night my sister called. She lives in NYC – well, 30 minutes north, but it is still NYC in my mind – I live hundreds of miles away now. She has company and called to ask me where to take said company to shop for clothes in NYC. It just boggles my mind that we are from the same mother [and father]. Me the consummate shopper, she the “where do I shop for clothes?” sister. After I told her specific stores, specific floors, specific times to go, directions on how to get there by subway [which is also so different I am a cab girl], and then where to eat lunch and dinner and how to dress for said lunch and dinner, she says “Thank you. Are you jealous?”

Husband and I ate dinner at a Vietnamese restaurant last night and talked vacation. As in, where should we go. We have not been on a real vacation, and by real I mean one that is more than a long weekend or one that is far away, in years. We are talking Canada in October. That is as narrowed down as we have gotten so far. We stopped at Carvel for ice cream cones and came home and looked at a map of Canada. And decided, heck, Canada is big.

Tonight I go to a barbeque at the house of – I will not say friends I will say acquaintances. We were invited a few weeks ago, and although not connected to the birthday we are going. There will however be friends there. And bosses – the boss, the boss’s boss, the boss’s boss’s wife. There will be lots of wine. I will try to behave.

And now – it is way early in the morning and husband is still asleep but when he wakes up, and after I join him on the porch for coffee and a smoke, there will be presents. Yay!

That picture is “Chop Suey” by Edward Hopper.  I love Edward Hopper pictures.

What’s up?

cornellis.jpg photo26_thumb.jpg I heard a song one day that I have not heard in years and it reminded me of Beth, a college roommate of mine senior year when I lived in an off-campus apartment with her and 2 other girls [Ellen and Bobbi].   The last time I saw her we had too many margaritas in some bar in Manhattan on a weeknight before we went our own ways in the working world of NYC.  Maybe 15 years ago?

And I wonder.  I had a lot of good friends in college.  Some in high school too.  And if life had not taken us different ways we would probably still be friends but I do not even know where the hell they are now.  And I would like to say, “What’s up?”

So.  Here is an experiment.  Sometimes people google themselves [I have been known to do this.]  I am going to list the names of some old friends that I have “lost.”  If you find yourself on this list, please comment.  I would love to catch up with you.

[My name is Michele by the way…]

And, yeah, those pictures on the top?  The left one is college, the right one is high school.

Beth Bey [shit or is it Beth Bay I always got that mixed up] – hey girl!  Look at my chicken.

Deirdre Dreyfuss – we talked a few years ago.  I lost your number.  We threw a pie at someone once …

Wendy Gardner – we saw each other through boyfriends (Walt – yours.  Dave, Paul – mine.)  There was a gum incident…

Valerie Linck –  we talked a few years ago too… are you running that inn in Vermont yet?

Christopher Park – remember North Campus dorm #7?  The last time I saw you, you gave me a ride on the back of your motorcycle in Berkeley…  do you still idolize Dylan?  Remember Glo?

Lynn Sessa – you emailed me for high school reunion.  I emailed you and it bounced back.  You have a twin. 

Marta Minnerop – we had homeroom together for years.  We cut classes one day and went to Manhattan to see “A Man and a Woman” with French subtitles.  Then we went to Macy’s to shop for shoes.

Yumiko Ikuta – we shared that damn van from Queens.  Every day.  With Augie and Greer. 

Monique Stoehr –  you were my best friend for years, you helped me run away.  And then it was all over.  I am not mad anymore, I hope you are not either.   

That is all for now.  I would add some guys but, well, maybe next time [Milldog, Finkelstein, Dinner bell… okay I am happily married – stop that…]

So, what’s up?

– Michele

Passing by my past

Yesterday I was walking in NYC with husband on Second Avenue, on the plaza close to the 59th Street Bridge [you know the 59th Street Bridge song – “Feeling Groovy?”]  I digress.

I do not live in NYC anymore. 

We pass this guy walking with a white-haired woman.   I think I know this guy.  The key word here is “think.”

I turn.  I look.  I say to husband – “I think I know that guy.”  Husband turns around and looks.  The guy has the dark short curly hair look.   Husband says “He has a common look.”

Um, yes he does.  I say “slow down.”  We slow down, I turn around again.  He is talking with the woman – deep conversation.

I say [quite meekly almost on purpose] – “Jeff.”

He does not hear me.  But I spot a birthmark. 

I lived in an apartment with Jeff and my ex-boyfriend in Stockton, California for 3 months one summer in the 80s.   I know that birthmark.

We cross the street.  I am 99% sure now that this is him.  I have the courage to make a fool of myself.   We walk about ten feet past the corner and I tell husband to stop.  I will say something.

I turn around. 

He is gone. 

   

“Can we still be friends?”

698271_love_heart_necklace.jpgBeing a novice “screenwriter” getting ready to write my next script, I have begun to think about themes.  Here is one that I have been thinking about –

Can exes remain friends? 

“When Harry Met Sally” explored if men and women can be friends without sex.    It should be easier for exes to remain friends if sex is no longer an issue, shouldn’t it?  [that is of course assuming they want to – which is a whole different matter.]

So, I examined my past.  I am a serial monogomist that has had 3 significant long term relationships [well, to be truthful, there was some overlapping going on but that is just “transition”].  The last of the 3 is my husband, so he is not an ex.

That leaves 2 examples.

#1 – We dated for 1 1/2 years – and for half of that time – I was in NY in college and he was in graduate school in California.   He cheated [hey a 21 year old 3000 miles away has a hard time keeping it in his pants], I dumped him, he came crawling back three months later – but I had moved on to #2.  We did stay friends though.  And every year he sent me a birthday card.   He and #2 actually met a couple of times, and all was very friendly indeed.  And then, about 6 years later, the “Goodbye I am getting married” call came.  Never heard from him again.

#2 – Well this was the 7 year living together so basically married relationship.  I cannot encapsulate this one, save for the fact that after 7 years together and not having a truly rancorous break-up [he helped me move], we stayed friends for quite some time after – [yes it got muddy sometimes in the sex area during “transition” but that passed.]  He and #3 [heck, the husband] met and became friends.  #2 did renovation work on #3’s apartment.  We went to each others’ weddings – he married a friend of mine – well more like a friend of a friend.  I caught the bouquet at their wedding.  We had mutual friends [still do].  All appears fine, right?

One day, after I had moved, with my husband, away from NY, I found myself calling #2.  I had been on assignment in NYC for 2 weeks, and had 3 more weeks to go.  I told husband I was going to try to meet #2 for dinner one night.  Husband didn’t care.  #2 said, sure, let’s meet, you’ve been in NYC for 2 weeks and you are first calling me now?  I’ll get back to you on details. 

I never heard from him again.  [I did hear from the mutual friends that #2’s wife hit the roof.]

[Footnote – We saw #2 and the wife at a party last year and everyone was friendly – but that was an aberration I think]

So here is my theory –

You can remain friends with your ex until they marry [or remarry].

What do you think?