Thursday, May 31, 2007

Once in a Blue Moon

Weird things supposedly happen when there is a full moon. But what about a blue moon?

Maybe tonight's blue moon is why I fell in Central Park today and then sat down next to a homeless man with his penis hanging out. Or maybe that's just because I live in New York City.

But more about that tomorrow.

For more information today about tonight's blue moon, visit "Once in a Blue Moon" as defined by

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Phone Photo Op - Disney on Broadway

Terrence and I went to see "The Lion King" on Broadway tonight. It was amazing, especially the costumes and special effects.
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Afterward, I asked Terrence - a former Broadway non-enthusiast - which he had liked better: "The Lion King" or "Les Miserables," the first Broadway play Terrence had ever seen, which we saw in December. After a moment's pause, he replied, "Les Mis."

He won't admit it, but I had noticed that he was misty-eyed during the closing number of "Les Mis." A fellow Broadway aficionado was born that night.

Phone Photo Op - Baseball in Bryant Park

On our way to dinner, Terrence and I passed by Yankees fans gathered for an away game in Toronto that was broadcast on a big screen in Bryant Park.
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Phone Photo Op - Morning Commute

Taking the wait for the subway to a whole new level
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Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Phone Photo Ops - Drinking in the Skyline

Stages of sunset from the rooftop bar at 230 Fifth during Happy Hour with Terrence (boyfriend visiting from Atlanta), Jenny and Victoria (coworkers), Matt (Jenny's current main squeeze) and new acquaintances.
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It was an evening of overpriced drinks and great conversation and the cliché ideal of how I had once envisioned my life in New York City. I also take those corny mental snapshots of people and moments I want to remember. I have one of Jenny.

The sun was setting over the Hudson River, Bruce Hornsby and The Range's song "The Way It Is" was playing on the outdoor roofdeck speakers, and she leaned toward Terrence and me and was laughing at something funny he had said. I didn't tell her that she had just created a moment that I will always remember, but I did say out loud, "Isn't this life great?"

I've been saying that a lot since I moved to New York.

Monday, May 28, 2007

Memorial Weekend Highlights

Terrence - flying standby - didn't arrive today. All the flights from Atlanta to New York were full (courtesy of Memorial Day) so I'm blogging to pass the time before I call it a night and to provide a little weekend recap.

In an impromptu battle Sunday night between me and a cockroach, who startled me suddenly from under some plates in my kitchen sink while I was preparing a bowl of ice cream, I accidentally grazed the open box of Breyer's butter pecan on the counter with a stream of Raid bug spray in my haste to kill the little twerp. I was eventually victorious in the assassination of the infamous New York City inhabitant - second only in disdain to the rat, but I am still mourning the subsequent discarding of an entire box of butter pecan.

Aside from entomological homicide, my weekend was fun. A lot of firsts. Some good, some not so smart. But no regrets.

First ride on the MetroNorth.
First visit to Scarsdale.
First BBQ with authentic pinky-ring, velour-suit, gold-chain Italians.
First time in an exclusive New York club.
First Memorial Day in New York City.

But my favorite first was a fun game that I learned in Tenjune with a new friend Nazar. From our booth overlooking the dance floor, Nazar proposed an interesting challenge: "You pick any girl in here and give me any line, and I'll go say it to her."

"Interesting," I said. Then he added, "Then I get to do the same for you with any guy of my choice."

"It's a bet," I replied. This game went on sporadically over a span of three hours between dancing, drinking and bobbing to the beat in the booth. Some of the lines I gave him included:

"My favorite animal is a liger. What's yours?"
"Hey ... I like your moves."
"Why don't we get out of here?"
"You come here often?"

He gave me equaling lame lines to say to random men he selected, and I have to say that this is my new favorite game.

Sunday night I had dinner at a french restaurant on the Upper West Side with friends-of-a-friend from Charlotte, North Carolina. We were going to hit up my favorite Caribbean food spot in Harlem, but they were a little late getting up here from Brooklyn. Both of them are from Trinidad. Alvin currently lives in Charlotte, but plans to move to New York soon, and Miguel stays in Brooklyn.

I'm glad Alvin didn't judge me by our first phone conversation. Monique introduced us via email following a mass message she had sent regarding my blog and a recent post about our trip to Miami. But the first time we spoke was when he called to let me know that he had arrived in the city on Saturday. As soon as I heard his accent, I blurted out, "Are you from Jamaica, too?"

Monique was raised in the United States, but one can still catch twinges of her accent from time to time, and to the inexperienced ear (like mine), Alvin pronounces a lot of his vowels similarly to Monique.

In response to my momentary ignorance, Alvin replied politely, "No, I'm from Trinidad."

I immediately felt stupid and made a mental note to apologize later. Having spent most of my life explaining to people that I am not Mexican, Puerto Rican, Hawaiian, Native American or even Chinese, I am usually sensitive to not assuming ethnic backgrounds, but I also have the tendency to say random things without thinking first.

I've never actually taken offense to the incorrect assumptions of others, and I was relieved to learn later that Alvin hadn't been offended in this particular instance. Though I did call Monique immediately after speaking to Alvin the first time and asked her, "How offensive is it to ask someone from Trinidad if they're from Jamaica?"

"Well," she replied laughing, "We're all pretty proud of our own islands."

In any case, it was a weekend of a lot of firsts and new friends. And the holiday marks the coming of my first summer in New York City.

Sunday Mornings in Manhattan

It's an uneventful Memorial Day spent waiting for Terrence to fly into La Guardia from Atlanta so I'm once again "shamelessly" pasting a recent post from my friend Eileen's myspace blog because I love Sunday mornings like this in Manhattan: I just woke up and decided to go to Bonsenior (sp?), a French bagel shop ... to get some AM coffee and enjoy the first nice morning we have had in a few days. It is gorgeous outside. I'm housesitting in the West Village and love going out and exploring my favorite neighborhood in the city. As I left Bonsenior... I found myself singing "Bonjour" from Beauty and the Beast... lol... because of all of the interesting things I saw in my little 2 block adventure.

If you don't know "Beauty and the Beast" ...Belle sings a song as she is walking through the village noting all of the activity going on around her.

I made my way over and noticed that the streets were much more quiet than they are at noon in this popular neighborhood. I approached Bonsenior... walked in and noticed some interesting characters.

1) The elderly woman w/her fabulous pearls draped around her neck, her beret and brooch. Beside her was her toy poodle w/matching pearls. I just loved this little duo. She was reading the paper and just being all together fabulous.

2) The girlfriends who were recapping a Saturday night of debauchery... both looking a bit of a mess but finding relief in their bagels and coffee.

3) The "take myself too seriously" guy who was wearing his aviator sunglasses inside of the bagel shop and being a jerk to the girls behind the counter. Poor thing...

4) The girls behind the counter w/their socks w/cutouts worn on their arms as "arm warmers" and the purple sequin headbands... so fabulous.

So, I'm loving all of these different personality types... and then my fav. dog comes in. A little Pug came in panting w/his owner. He was ADORABLE. I get worried about my fav. little pups... as pugs, you have to be careful in the summertime... as they can't breathe easily... so I worry but he looked like a champ... he was okay.

My coffee is up... I turn around to walk in... and a FILF (Father I'd like to 'flip pancakes with')... w/his BEAUTIFUL daughter wearing... can you handle it... FAIRY WINGS!!!!! adorable!!!!!!! It isn't isn't a weekday where she may have had to dress up... it is SUNDAY and I bet she said to her daddy, "Daddy, I want to wear my fairy wings to the bagel shop" ...and he said... "Sure" she did... ABSOLUTELY ADORABLE!!!!!!!

That was it... I walked out and the disney song started ringing through my head... Bonjour, Bonjour... BONJOUR BONJOUR BONJOUR!!!!!! ...and my coffee was fabulous!!!!!

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Naval Warfare (as blogged by Chris, a.k.a. the East Village Idiot)

From the web pages of East Village Idiot - It was so funny that I had to repost it as my girls and I recently had a conversation in a bar regarding men in uniform, which was incidentally prompted by Fleet Week and the Naval sailors currently perusing the streets of Manhattan. I have to say that I am a little disappointed that they aren't swarming the streets in the abundance portrayed on an episode of "Sex and the City," but men in firefighter gear also have a similar effect.

Without further ado is the warning issued on May 24 by the East Village Idiot:

Men of New York City,

For the next seven days, you will have a mortal enemy. He is desperate to get laid. In a head-to-head battle, he will always get the girl. You will spend months trying to get into a woman’s pants, and he will get into them in one night. You will wear your very best designer clothing to impress a woman, and your enemy, in his standard-issue polyester uniform, will take that woman home. You will meekly suggest going back to her place, and she will laugh. He’ll suggest the same thing, and she will graciously accept, and perhaps even offer to pay cab fare. You will wonder what consequences come with taking a woman home, like how long you have to wait to call her back after that night. Your enemy won’t even be in New York in a week, or a month, or perhaps a year. He’ll be out at sea, somewhere far, far away.

Gentlemen, this is your enemy:

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Beware Fleet Week. He may be a mere Seaman on the open waters, but for the next seven days, he is the Captain of the Civilian Cockblock.

And SUBWAYblogger announces: Hide your daughters: It's Fleet Week

Phone Photo Ops - Beerpong, BBQs and Booths

I spent five years as an undergraduate in college, but it took a Memorial Day Weekend barbecue in Scarsdale with some ridiculously hot Italians to get me to play a drinking game. My coworker Jenny invited me up to East Chester to join her older brother's friends for an afternoon of burgers and beer. Jenny - in her hilarious Beerpong T-shirt - taught me the rules of "flip cup" - which I found that I am quite good at. In fact, I would venture to say that my skills as a first-timer were extraordinary.

Disclaimer to my mom and other moms: I played with small amounts of beer in my cup during each round, and I quit before I had drank enough to barely equal two beers so please spare me the phone call that will likely follow after reading this post. I know, I know. I'm 27 years old and should know better. But as you always say, anything is ok in moderation - except maybe crystal meth.

Getting to Scarsdale from the city was surprisingly easy. On the Metro-North train from East 125th Street, I was in Scarsdale in about the same amount of time that it would have taken me to get to West 14th Street on a downtown no. 1 train.

I returned to the city early so that I could attend the BBQ of another friend at his apartment and roofdeck on Bleecker Street. It's rare that you meet insanely wealthy and successful men who aren't equally pretentious, but Kevin (despite his "my driver will take you anywhere you want to go" line from Wednesday night) is not one of them. In the short time I've known him, my impression of him is one of a very down-to-earth, fun and genuine individual. Not quite what one would expect of someone who regularly orders car service.

After the Bleecker BBQ, several of us went to Tenjune, where he and his friend dropped the $1500 minimum for a booth to get all of us into one of the hottest (and harder to get into) clubs in the city. I had never heard of Tenjune before - being a green and unproven clubgoer, whose idea of a late night is anything after the 11 p.m. showing of "Sex and the City" on TBS.

I was pretty proud of myself for staying out until 4 a.m., which has become an increasingly rarer occurrence since my early 20s. However, despite roughly four hours of sleep, I woke up early this morning in a puddle of sweat in the sauna that is my apartment and immediately decided that today will be the day that I make legitimate efforts toward finding an air conditioner and having it installed in the air conditioner box under my window.

As the back of my legs began to stick to the normally soft microsuede on my couch, I came across reruns of "Run's House" on MTV and noticed in one particular episode that DJ Rev Run's birthday party had been held in Tenjune recently.

"Oh, that's where we were last night," I thought to myself as I seriously debated whether or not to buy a lawn chair at the corner $.99 store and camp out in the frozen food section of the C Town across the street. I've had two cold showers in the last seven hours.

Flip cup in Scarsdale
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Booth in Tenjune
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Friday, May 25, 2007

Phone Photo Op - Juilliard Diploma

Today I attended my best friend's graduation from the Juilliard School. She is finally done with four years of intense training and has earned a diploma in drama with the special honor of scholastic distinction.

Scholastic distinction at the Juilliard School:
"The Juilliard School [was] pleased to recognize three students for Scholastic Distinction, an honors program for exceptional undergraduate performers and composers who wish to expand their scholarly activity by engaging in an extended independent research project in their senior year. Working under the supervision of a faculty advisor, these students prepare a substantial document that is reviewed by committee in the final semester. Successful completion results in the awarding of credit and the designation "with Scholastic Distinction" on the graduate's diploma and permanent record."

In addition to this year's graduates, the school also awarded seven honorary doctorates to Frederic Franklin, Benny Golson, Dan W. Lufkin, Sam Shepard, Stephan Sondheim, Audra McDonald and Stephen H. Clapp, who are among the greats in their respective arts and accepted their degrees before an ecstatic auditorium.

Audra McDonald, with whom my best friend has now joined the ranks as a Juilliard alum, also had the honor of serving as this year's commencement speaker. Though her speech was inspirational and riveting, I couldn't help but imagine that it might be my best friend on that stage one day addressing a graduating class of Juilliard students as their commencement speaker - and perhaps even accepting an honorary doctorate of her own. I am almost positive that all of her family members in attendance and her fiance were looking up there and wondering the same thing.

As the graduates crossed the stage, many families erupted in cheers and applause despite an initial request from the President of the school to hold all applause until the end. While it can be considered tacky by some, even the President seemed to understand that - regardless of the traditional protocol to request the withholding applause - sometimes you just have to let your joy break the rules.

There are few things I have been absolutely sure about in my life, but here are two - that moving to New York City is the best decision I will ever make - and that my best friend will have an amazing acting career. Fame and international acclaim are no guarantee; even Whoopi Goldberg said that those elements of the industry are strokes of luck as there are thousands of talented actors gracing the world's stages.

One should be careful not to confuse fame and success, but for my best friend - there is no doubting the latter.
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Phone Photo Ops - New Yorkers and Baseball

There are two things I generally don't debate:
1) Religion (with anyone)
2) Baseball (with New Yorkers)

Thanks to Summer Fridays (our company lets us out of the office at 2 p.m. on Fridays between Memorial Day and Labor Day), I caught the below featured camera phone photo ops on an uptown no. 1 train during a heated debate regarding the Yankees and the Mets, which diverted momentarily with a few mutual stabs at the Red Sox, a quick dispute over homerun records, and then came full circle back to the Yankees.
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Thursday, May 24, 2007

In the Company of Relatives

What is the likelihood that I would move from North Carolina to New York City and gain employment in the same company as an extended member of my family (on the side that isn't even from the United States), and who I didn't even know existed? I don't know the exact odds, but this is why I should not marry a Filipino:

Me: [sitting in my cubicle in our midtown office building]
My phone: [starts to ring]
Me: "This is Katie."
Voice on other line: "Katie, this is Caroline. I work at [our downtown office building]."
Me: "Hi. What can I do for you?"
Voice: "Tita Elsie told me to call you."
Me: [confused] "What?"
Voice: "Tita Elsie."
Me: "Who?"
Voice: "Tita Elsie. Do you know Tita Elsie?"
Me: [I do know Tita Elsie, but I was disoriented by the context] "Wait. Who is this?"
Voice: "This is Caroline. I'm Tita Elsie's niece."

Tita Elsie is my mother's cousin. Apparently Caroline has worked for this company for five years. We've even walked by each other several times in either building or at different company functions since the start of my employment nine months ago and never knew that we were related.

A similar situation happened to my mom in Asheville. She realized that she had second cousins living 30 minutes down I-40 in Waynesville after living in Western North Carolina for almost ten years. If I do marry a Filipino, who ends up being my second or third cousin, maybe the White side of my genes will dilute the chromosomes enough to ward off any mental or physical disabilities.

Girls' Night and the City

Since I am too lazy to transcribe last night's events in my own words, I am shamelessly pasting the following excerpt from Eileen's myspace blog. After all, she was there and she's already converted the memories into bloggeries. She came, she saw, she blogged:

Alright...another day in the crazy NY Single gal's life! Today we have two celeb sightings to discuss. I would say two B listers ...

1) Renee broke the case at Dos Caminos on Park Avenue last evening...she came back from the restroom and said "Charlotte's husband... what is his name... from Sex And The City... is sitting over there"... TREY MCDOUGAL!?!?!?!?!? ...BUNNY'S SON!?!?!? I was so there. Adrienne and I planned our nonchalant walk by after getting his coordinates from Nae... We did a casual walk over... I recognized his long gross hair immediately... the same "do"... or should I say "don't" that he was rocking on "Desperate Housewives"... anyway... there he was... VERY THIN which surprised me... but never the less... enjoying some chips and guac w/a friend and a younger girl... We had the plan of walking back to the bathroom... thinking we had gone the wrong way... and turning around to come back. Wingman Katie walked up and was like "Guys... I think the bathroom is back that way"... to get us turned around to rejoin our group after seeing him... but a server heard her and was like " are going the right way... it's just back there"... so we had to walk back to the bathroom.

I told them when we camped at the bathroom for a moment "I don't see him as Trey McDougal right now... I see him as the dude that had the wild sex w/Eliz. Berkley in 'Showgirls'"... what a scene... what a bad movie...!!! Anyway... there is was.

And I'm also including the continuation of Eileen's post because it's "so new york" and it includes an additional recap of last night and a fun glimpse into her life as a designer in the fashion industry:

2) This AM on my way to Bonsenior (sp?) to get a coffee before going to work... I was j-walking (as I tend to do on small streets)... and this van was approaching... so I stopped to let him go... who was it in the van... Oliver Platt. I know, I know... I had to look him up on IMDB to get his name. When I saw him I was like "Oh... it's that guy'"... he was driving slowly... looked at me, smiled... did a little "thank you" wave for letting him go. Get this... he was in a soccer mom van!!!!!!! It was slightly surprising... you don't really see those up here... we are more of an SUV folk. This was like the Brown Plymoth that Gail used to take me to soccer and dance in! It was fabulous............. in 1990. Anyway... that was a cool way to start my day. Here he is case you are still confused.

So, last night... was Iris's BIRTHDAY!!! I'm going to change my Top Eight to the Birthday Crew after blogging so all of the players are there :)! We started the evening at the rooftop bar on 26th and 5th... on the 21st floor... the most AMAZING view of Manhattan EVER!!! It isn't really my 'male' scene... as it is a lot of OOBER rich dudes... and the future trophy wives who are slobbering over them. It was Iris, Nae, Gi'v'a and myself initially. Gina looks at me and says "I see your future husband"... I thought she was joking at first... but I looked over and realized... she knows me so well. It was a business guy w/salt and pepper hair... prob. checking in at 45 years old. I have a strange attraction to older men... not sure why... never the less... He has the most blue eyes I have ever seen and a nice suit... GORG. I didn't talk to him... just admired from a far... he was in one of the roped off company areas anyway... NEXT.

Katie & Neesho joined us later and we made our way to Dos Caminos... to have a FILLING dinner and celebrate 24 years that Iris has graced our globe! Diva looked FIERCE w/her BCBG Max Azria "Trench" dress... it was a trench coat material w/a plunging neckline... Loved it!

Adrienne joined us there also... 10/22 mafia sticks together... later some other friends came out. We all drank way too much sangria and mojitos and filled up on Chips and Guac. I'm so glad I split my entree w/Ade and Nae... way too much food.

ONE MORE THING!!! ...and this is the most exciting... I saw my first pedestrian carrying a bag I designed yesterday!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Granted he was in our building... but he didn't work for our little corporation. I said "That looks great"... which was prob. weird to him... and Gina jumps in "She designed that"... LOL. He said "I love it... I carry it a lot... you should do more bags in this color"... It was bright orange! lol... hey, the guy likes orange... I ain't gonna fight him :)!!! Anyway, it looked great on him and I was SO excited
to see something that took so much work... being carried and filled w/someone's STUFF and not stuffing paper :)!!!! It was a cool moment!

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Phone Photo Ops - Girls' Night and the City

Cocktail hour at 230 Fifth
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From the roofdeck bar at 230 Fifth
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Eileen showing some leg on Broadway
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Mirrors at Dos Caminos
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I love sangria!
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I've never had a guy send me home in car service - complete with the line, "My driver will take you anywhere you want to go," which would have sounded completely lame except that this guy is totally cool and a good, sincere friend of my girls.
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Monday, May 21, 2007

1300-Mile Walk of Shame

I spent a long weekend cheating on New York, and after a Sunday all-nighter, I took an early flight back from Miami this morning in last night's make-up and the matching tank top that my friends and I had worn to the bars a few hours earlier. On the front, it read: "Tosha's Bachelorette Weekend, Miami 2007". On the back, each shirt had a funny phrase individually pertaining to each of us over our three days in South Beach. Based on our shirts alone, it is clear that Miami did not disappoint, and now it was time to return to my reality in NYC. In day-old clothes, it was like a 1300-mile walk of shame back to the city that I love after a steamy, tropical fling.
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Delta Airline's "Cheat on New York" campaign; photo by Lindsay Beyerstein

As much as I had been looking forward to this weekend trip, the best thing about leaving New York City on Friday was knowing that I was coming back on Monday. As the plane took off from Laguardia, I remembered how leaving New York (the few times I had been here prior to my move) once had me feeling sad and longing to return.

This time I only felt the excitement of meeting my friends in Miami and knowing that I would return home to this city after the weekend was over. I guess that's another way for someone like me - a former military brat with no specific origin - to know that I've finally found a hometown.

Ten of us congregated in Miami from our own varying origins - Atlanta, Georgia; Charlotte, North Carolina; New York, New York; Newport News, Virginia - for a bachelorette weekend that we will not soon forget. It was your basic bachelorette itinerary: dancing on Friday night, beach on Saturday, all-male review strip club on Saturday night, shopping on Sunday, bars on Sunday night. Our group - ranging from an NBA dancer to a district attorney ... to me - gathered to celebrate and honor our friend Tosha, who will be getting married next month in Charlotte.

I had not realized how much I needed a short vacation until I was floating in the Atlantic Ocean about 30 yards from the sands of South Beach. The past two years have been a whirlwind. Working three jobs in North Carolina to fund my relocation (August 2005-July 2006), moving to New York City, temping in midtown, living on an air mattress in the Bronx for three months (August 2006), new apartment and permanent employment (November 2006). Not starting 2007 in North Carolina with photos. It has been go-go-go for almost two years.

The shrinking view of Miami through my airplane window today prompted thoughts of how far my friends and I have come since our college days in Cullowhee, North Carolina. What were once awkward girls coming into our own and searching for our paths were now sophisticated, successful women reuniting for a carefree weekend in Florida to celebrate an upcoming marriage.

I fell asleep thinking about that somewhere over the southeastern coast and woke up to a view of the Jersey Shore as the captain announced: "We should have you on the ground in about fifteen minutes. We've got sunny skies and 70 degree weather at Laguardia. It's a beautiful day in New York."

As the plane banked left for it's approach into the airport and upper Manhattan and the Bronx came into view, it was my own imagination and the captain's voice in my head that announced: "It's a beautiful life in New York."

Phone Photo Ops - M.I.A. in the MIA

Things More Likely to Happen in a New York airport
- Catch the same flight to Miami with MTV VJ Sway (Friday afternoon)
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Things More Likely to Happen in Miami
- Party it up South Beach-style with MTV at Sobe Live (Friday night)
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- See Shemar Moore walking on Ocean Drive with his shirt off (Saturday morning)
- Take a photo with Shemar Moore on Ocean Drive with his shirt off (a few seconds later)
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- See Shemar Moore walking on the beach with his shirt off (Saturday afternoon)

Things That Could Only Happen in Miami
- See Reebok ads in the sky that read: "Be kind to your implants. Run easy, Miami."
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- In New York, some of those ads read: "Stop and smell the garbage. Run easy, NY."
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[This is me and Monique texting at the speed of chat on South Beach]
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- Celebrate Tosha's Bachelorette Weekend with nine of my girls and the end of single life as Tosha knows it

... And a random cruise ship, which wasn't more or less likely than anything else - just a phone photo op.
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Friday, May 18, 2007

Intercontinental Family Correspondence

On 5/17/07, my mom <> (in North Carolina) wrote:
Did I give either one of you my Filipino cookbook? I have been looking for it and can't find it.

On 5/17/07, my brother <> (in Shanghai) wrote:
I know I didn't take it with me. Katie is the most likely person, but she doesn't cook (well).

On 5/18/07, I <> (in Manhattan) wrote:
WHY would I take a COOKBOOK anywhere?

On 5/18/07, my dad <> (in North Carolina) wrote:
Cookbook found.

My family has gone global with cyber assumptions, accusations and sibling rivalry. But whatever, I'm headed to Miami!!!

This is Katie, signing off from New York City. Tune back in for my next installment: Hot New Yorker in Florida's #1 Hook-Up Town, which will unfortunately be censored because my parents read this blog. Just kidding, Dad! Sort of. Well, not really. I mean, totally kidding.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Six Stiches of Separation

Things more likely to happen to me in New York than in North Carolina:
- Forget my cell phone in a taxi for the second time in less than two weeks while commuting between the downtown and midtown offices
- Pay the cab driver $20 to bring it back (he was already in Queens and - for peace of mind and wallet - I justified the expense without argument since he was saving me from having to pay the $50 replacement fee again + the added inconvenience)
- Ride the elevator next to a dress worn by Anne Hathaway in "The Devil Wears Prada"

I just got back to my cubicle after meeting the cab driver, who brought back my cell phone (for a tidy sum, of course), and then riding in the elevator next to a dress worn by Anne Hathaway in "The Devil Wears Prada."

I entered the elevator behind a very tall, very attractive girl and immediately noticed her dress, but I did not immediately recognize it from the movie.

"That is an adorable dress," I said to her as the doors shut.

"Thanks!" she replied. "You might recognize it from 'The Devil Wears Prada'."

"Wow," I said, thinking at first that it must just be the same style, but then it occurred to me that she might have meant it was the exact one. After a brief pause, "... the same dress that ..."

"... Anna Hathaway wore. Yes."

"Wow! How did you ...?"

"I used to work for Calvin Klein."

"Oh. And now?"

She mentioned one of the designers who works in our building and then asked where I worked.

The dress: the green one Anne was wearing when she was trying to get Meryl Streep the unpublished manuscript of the latest Harry Potter novel.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Cyber Relating

I really enjoy reading other New York City blogs - especially ones that provide true insight or have posts to which I can relate. Here are several from the East Village Idiot that had me laughing out loud, nodding in agreement or rolling my eyes in empathy:

Stocked with Amenities - I live this life, except that the reaction of guests upon entering my apartment is: "Wow! Your studio has a separate kitchen!" (i.e. I don't stare into my oven from my bed).

New York: City of Peeves #49 - I've encountered this scenario on many occasions in the main lobby of my office building. My label differs only slightly as I refer to them as "Elevator Nazis" - even though the guys down there are generally nice and I know they're just following policy. I've used this analogy whenever commenting on common sense or lack thereof: It's like performing a "random" search on an 87-year-old woman at an airport security checkpoint just to emphasize the random. It doesn't make much sense, and it doesn't make you any safer.

Overheard at Starbucks - I overhear more random ignorant or inappropriate conversations in New York every day than I generally overhear in the South in a week. No topic in the streets of Manhattan, on the platforms in the subway, or any line in Starbucks is taboo. It's not that Southern Americans are generally smarter than Yankees. I think it's because the city feels so big, you don't expect to again see 99% of the people made privy to your conversation anyway so you don't care who overhears. And depending on what street you're on, most of the people around you do not live within a 100-mile radius of the city anyway.

It's like tripping on the street. In the South, I might feel embarrassed if I stubble over something that isn't there. In New York, it doesn't matter if I trip over air while crossing Fifth Avenue. By the time I get to Madison, no one ever knew it happened.

Phone Photo Ops - Lunch in the Park

One of the best things about my workplace on 42nd Street is that we're right across the street from Bryant Park.
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Our digital marketing team had reservations at Bryant Park Grill today to welcome our newest team member.
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Piano in the park
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My creme brulee; exciting, I know
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Passing Bryant Park Cafe on the way back to the cubicle
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Monday, May 14, 2007

Phone Photo Ops - Subway Performers

Tonight: New York City Float Committee
(I pass them entertaining the tourists and the locals
in the Times Square station 2-3 evenings a week)
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Two weeks ago: my favorite Michael Jackson Mini MePhoto Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

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BNY Updates

I've backdated and updated several posts from May 8-11, mostly to add photos that I was too lazy to upload last week (many had actually been saved unpublished as drafts). Todd, the "Blog Name Removed" blogger - who openly admits to shamelessly backdating posts - says this is a form of bloggy cheating ... meh.

We're blogger rebels. Pushing the laws of blogging to the limits. I still refuse to apologize to my reader (a.k.a my mom) for not keeping last week up-to-date.

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Phone Photo Ops - End of East Village Servitude

I did not take a city walk today because I met a coworker for brunch around noon and then concluded my two-week cat-sitting stint in the East Village. However, I did take a quick walk along St. Marks Place and Avenue A before returning to my boss's apartment to tidy up the place and pack my things.

Brunch at Jules Bistro
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Looking up from our table just below sidewalk level
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Our cute table nook and my mimosa!
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Another adorable outdoor cafe along St. Marks PlacePhoto Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Along Avenue A
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Thanks to the 18-year existance of my boss's cat Stella and her need for constant companionship (literally that cat sits on you wherever you go), I have returned to Harlem with some fun East Village memories and half a grand richer.

Creating Coincidences

We can find profound coincidences in strange places (even more so if we're looking for them). And events in our lives that coincide with fictional television stories are like daily horoscopes. Everyone can relate to them because they're generic enough to provide a connection. Ironically tonight's episode of "Desperate Housewives" asked questions that have been recently prompted in my own life.

"From the moment we wake up in the morning till our head hits the pillow at night, our lives are filled with questions. Most are easily answered and soon forgotten. But some questions are much harder to ask because we're so afraid of the answer: Will I be around to watch my children grow up? Am I making a mistake by marrying this man? Could he ever truly love me? And what happens when we ask ourselves the hard question and get the answer we've been hoping for? Well, that's when happiness begins."
- Mary Alice's voice from wherever she's watching her friend's lives on Wisteria Lane

I made the choice to move to New York and let myself fall deeply in love with the city in a matter of months. What was once a loose plan to live here for a few years is shifting into a strong desire to remain here for the rest of my life. There are questions that follow this shift and that I am not ready to ask, but I have begun to feel them looming.

Reviving my Greek Life

The best thing about NPHC fraternities and sororities is the lifelong membership. Last night, I joined my sorors and fellow Greeks at a step show in Harlem. My LS (and best friend) Tokii joined us for the show at PS 194 and to dinner afterward at Baton Rouge Restaurant on West 145th Street. After four grueling years at Juilliard, she had become slightly detached from Greek life, but felt an almost instant reconnection within minutes of meeting our New York sorors.

After the show, we hung out in the restaurant so long that we missed out on the afterparty. But sometimes you'd rather just have a chill evening with your girls than dance and party hop.

Tokii and her fiance Nate just signed a lease on a condo in New Jersey since she has decided - based on the response to the fourth year showcase - to begin her acting career in New York City rather than Los Angeles. Although she'll have an NJ zip code, she'll only be 15 minutes from midtown and has decided to reactivate her sorority membership with the New York Alumane chapter after she gets through her summer wedding plans.

I've told her about four dozen times how excited I am that she and Nate have decided to live in New York after she graduates from Juilliard later this month. She gets the keys to her new place on the first of June.

Based on all of the above, we made a dual resolution to get involved with the wide variety of community service projects and programs that our sorority offers at the alumnae level as well as revive our Greek social lives.

Friday, May 11, 2007

Phone Photo Ops - Alfangi Salon

I decided to try a new salon per a friend's recommendation. Stephanie had received an amazing haircut and some referral coupons for 40% off all services for new clients. This evening I had an appointment with the same stylist Magaly, who added some trendy bangs and layers to my almost waist-length hair.
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I love my new style, but I loved even more that I was served wine during the cut. There's my empty glass. Typical.
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And now I'm going to meet an old UNC colleague from my days in higher education administration. He is in town for tomorrow's NACAC College Fair at the Javits Center. It's strange for me to remember that about a year ago, I was having drinks in a hotel bar in Edison, New Jersey, with him and several other college admissions professionals and talking about my impending move to New York City. What a difference a year makes.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Phone Photo Ops - Company Roofdeck

Looking south toward the Financial District from the
roofdeck of our downtown office building
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This evening's company cocktail hour with our founder/
former CEO/publishing and television celebrity
... and our current CEO and colleagues
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It's Second Guess Thursday!

I'm not generally one to send e-cards for no reason unless I am certain that the gesture makes some kind of meaningful impact on the recipient (i.e. the card is hilarious). I'm the same way with forwarded emails and text messages. Nothing annoys me more than when someone (especially if they're not in my Verizon in-network, where unlimited text messages do not apply) sends me an arbitrary text message about National Friendship Day and further instructs me to pass on the text to 10 people in my address book.

I wouldn't be surprised if there is someone hired within cell phone companies for the specific purpose of starting these chain texts to help boost text messaging fees. If you're a close friend, you don't need a National Friendship Day text to remind you. I'm a text messaging wizard so you hear from me enough to know that our friendship is valued.

However, today I received the funniest e-card from a friend of mine in Atlanta. He knows me well, and I'm sure he never second guesses himself in knowing that passing along forwarded emails making fun of George Bush and e-cards like these are always ok with me: It's Second Guess Thursday

In rare Katie form, I had to pass this card along to my colleagues in honor of nothing in particular except that it's Thursday, and this card makes it funny as hell.

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Phone Photo Ops - The Inexplicable & the Entertaining

Almost as if cued by yesterday's post on SUBWAYblogger "We need to slim down," I witnessed the below scene this afternoon while lounging on the front steps of the New York Public Library with colleagues during our lunch break.
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Look closely, but not too close.

In more appropriate attire, the Expedia crew was singing and dancing along Fifth Avenue. Here's a shot as they proceeded north after performing in front of the library.
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