A geeky girl living in the big city, making her way, the only way she knows how... no wait, that's The Dukes of Hazzard. Who am I again? Oh yeah, a pop culture obsessed writer, publishing person, and occasional nerd. And I'm getting married. I talk about that, too.

Saturday, December 31, 2005

Happy New Year!

Just about to head out to a friend's party, but wanted to take a quick sec and send a special "Happy New Year!" to all my cyberspace buddies. May 2006 bring you continued happiness, the companionship of loved ones, a renewed sense of adventure, laughter, joy, and enough surprises to keep it interesting.


And this is why...

...I shouldn't have nice things. Or, alternatively, why I should clean my bathroom naked. Or not wearing black. Witness what Ajax with bleach does when in comes in contact with one of my favorite black shirts.
Thank god I'm a proper New Yorker with a ton of black clothing, that's all I can say.

Friday, December 30, 2005

Next time I think to yank at something in the bathroom...

... Someone please remind me I'm not a plumber, ok? I mean, I fixed the clog in our bathroom sink, but in so doing, I kinda pulled apart the little drain plug. Got it disconnected from the little metal thingie that's connected to the level you pull or push to open or close it. So on the plus side I have a deeper appreciation for the engineering aspects of plumbing, and the sink doesn't take an hour to drain. On the minus side, the plug is just kinda sitting there. Not connected to anything.

Oh well. I can't do everything, right? Going to put away the Christmas tree decorations and watch a movie, I think. I rented "The 40-Year-Old Virgin" and "Layer Cake," for I am nothing if not multi-faceted.

Oh, and in a similar vein, for those who like their news topical, the top 5 things Roto-Rooter technicians recovered on the job this past year. It's ok, it's not gross.

Thursday, December 29, 2005

I love White Christmas

Love it. LOVE it. really. I've mentioned this before, but every time -- EVERY TIME -- the General walks into the room, and he sees all his soldiers lined up, and they start singing: waterworks. It doesn't matter if I saw it just the day before, or that I know it's coming. I'm a sucker for an old war buddy.

Anyway, tonight Bloom and I saw "White Christmas" on a big screen as part of Loews' "Fan Favorites" program: a couple of times a month (it may, in fact, have been weekly, but I'm not sure), their new theatre on 34th Street showed an old favorite for free, and all you had to do to get tickets was register online and reply to an email. Unfortunately, for whatever reason, they're not continuing the program into the new year. Which is a crying shame, if you ask me. I loved the theme screenings they'd come up with: Irish films in the month of March, like "Michael Collins" and "The Brothers McMullen" and "Waking Ned Devine". April was Murder Mystery month, with showings of "LA Confidential," "The Usual Suspects," and "Mystic River." May was Diaster Movies like "Deep Impact," "The Perfect Storm," and "The Day After Tomorrow." Then there was a month of Summer Blockbusters, and a month of Independence movies in July, August was Open Water month, September was Back to School, October was Horror, of course, November was Comng Home, and December was all about Holiday Classics. Anyway, I'm going to miss the program. It's not like the theatre doesn't still make a ton of money -- I'm sure a lot of the audience members are like me, and figure if they're not paying for the movie, they have more money to spend on concessions -- like $12.40 for two drinks and a popcorn.

Remind me to send Loews an email.


Got this from Rob. What's a "meme," anyway? Who came up with that word?

7 Things to Do Before I Die:
-Travel around the world
-Have a book published
-Ok, have a couple published
-Be in love
-Get married
-Do something life-changlingly spur-of-the-moment
-Fall asleep and wake up again in someone's arms

7 Things I Cannot Do:
-Play Baseball
-Play a musical instrument
-Have a political conversation with a member of my family
-Be deliberately mean to someone face-to-face
-Pass by a shoe sale without at least browsing
-Go more than a few days without email

7 things that attract me to people:
-Sense of Humor

7 Things I Say Most Often:
-I know!
-Shut Up.
-Bite me.
-"Thank you for sending me your novel, which I am declining with my regrets."
-Oh my god, I totally forgot to tell you...

7 Books or Series I Love:
-The Princess Bride by William Goldman
-The Princess Diaries by Meg Cabot(Shut Up. I'm a girl)
-His Dark Materials by Philip Pullman
-The Discworld series by Terry Pratchett
-The Alanna series, or most anything by Tamora Pierce
-The Chestry Oak by Kate Seredy (runner-up: The Good Master)
-The Eight by Katherine Neville
(I could so go on and on and on here)

7 Movies I can watch over and over:
-The Princess Bride
-Serenity (Twice in the theatres and I just bought the DVD)
-White Christmas
-Any of the Indiana Jones films
-Four Weddings and a Funeral
-Buffy the Vampire Slayer

7 people I want to join in:
-Yi Shun

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

New head!

No, not really. just a new haircut. And I timed it, so I'd have fresh swanky hair for my sister's holiday party tonight, which I'm heading out to in a bit. I'm also working on a thing from Rob's blog, but I need to sit down and think about some of my answers.

Oh, and last night I finished playing "American Mcgee's Alice," which, ok, came out several years ago, but I needed a game to play on my computer that didn't require an internet connection, and that one was recommended by the roomie. Damn that Jabberwock, though. Harder to get through him than the final fight. Slithy trove, my arse.

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Home again... no, the other home

I get confused about which place I refer to sometimes as "home." There's my apartment, which is certainly where I live, but then there's Mom's, which was home for a long number of years, and still remains so, to a degree. Anyway... I'm back in my apartment. And though I was having wireless issues, I got them all sorted out and am back on the web with a vengeance! Hooray!

Now I just need to figure out where all my loot goes, and decide with my roomie if our wee little tree looks too sad now to keep up. This one just didn't last as long as last year's -- it's all smooshed and droopy on one side, and still a little wobbly in the pot we put it in (in lieu of a tree stand).

Oh, and I went out a did a little bit of post-Christmas shopping. I just had to get "Serenity." Actually, speaking of movies, I have to relate my adventures last night in a suburban Blockbuster's. First of all, as you know, I love to watch deliberately bad movies with the roomie and MMJ. Last week, we chose "Cry_wolf," which was really quite bad. Not super-intelligent killer sharks bad, but pretty bad. At one point during our screening, I cried out, "You know, there are good movies at the video store. Movies I want to see. Why can't we get those?" Only to be shot down.

So last night, Mom and my sister and I decide we're going to watch a movie. There's nothing on TV, and though it's only 7ish, my sis doesn't feel like going out to the local Blockbluster (a five minute drive away). So I dig through theirold pile of VHS tapes, most of which are of movies and sporting events taped off tv, or few rejects from a library. Slim pickings. So I volunteer to hit the Blockbuster, knowing that the last time I was at (my NYC local) video store, I saw lots of interesting titles on the New Release wall.

Not so much at Blockbuster. Sure, you could get Tommy Lee Jones in "Man of the House," or whatever drivel Ashton Kutcher's put out recently. Heck, "Star Wars" was available, and even "Cry_Wolf." So I call my sister from the store, listing our options... only to have each and every one of them shot down. "Murderball"? Too depressing. Mom won't want to watch a documentary about paralyzed rugby players. "Layer Cake"? She'd never heard of it. She even shot down my beloved "Serenity," which may explain why I had to go buy it today.

So what did we end up? Sigh. "Sahara." With Matthew McConaghey and Penelope Cruz. Now, ok, not the worst thing ever, and Steve Zahn was highly entertaining at times, even as William H. Macy chomped on his role with an air of "I so deserve a better movie." But to pick is up and rent it without irony? Oh man. I felt like I had to explain myself to the video clerk. Like, "No, I don't really want this, but it's just the only thing we could agree on. I'd prefer to watch an art film myself."

And then I remembered I was in suburbia. And couldn't wait to get back home to my apartment, to the corner video store where they don't mind if we ask for the worst action movie they have, or the latest art film. I love New York.

Sunday, December 25, 2005


Ok, that's better. Happy presents. Almost everything I wanted, including, most happily, my Swiss Army Knife/memory stick and a new laptop bag. And all the Whos down in Whoville broke out in a new chorus of "Fa Who Doree."

Now for the eats.


If they don't let me open up some presents here soon, I think I'm going to explode.

Kate-bits everywhere. It won't be pretty.

Merry Christmas!!

Not like I get to open any presents yet, but it's official. Merry Christmas!! With apologies for the brevity of my last post -- I thought we had ages before we had to leave for mass, and I could post a nice little "Twas the Night Before Christmas" tribute, but Mom was Mom, and wanted to get to church in time to hear the choir's pre-mass vocal stylings. And oh my, would it really kill them to take some of those songs down a couple of keys? I mean, really. Either that, or get a soprano that can hit the notes -- don't just let some nice woman screetch and try to hit them, and think we won't notice. We do. Well, I do, at least.

And then the pastor, who's not a good speaker by any stretch of the imagination -- don't they make priests take pubic speaking classes at seminary school? -- started off the homily with a rant about the oppressed Christian minority, and the powers that be trying to take Christ out of Christmas... and I crossed my arms and tried to think of other things. Like the hilarity that would ensue if my mom ever noticed that I don't recite the part of the creed that states "I believe in one holy Catholic and apostolic church," or what fit my uncle would throw if -- when I ever get married -- I chose not to have a church wedding. Sigh.

But, in other news, the cookies are all done -- 9 different kinds -- and the tree is all decorated. The presents are wrapped and tagged and beribboned, and there's a can of cinnamon rolls for breakfast sitting in the fridge. And despite my mom offering me a new pocket knife, I'm going to continue to hold out hope that one of the beribboned and bowed packages nestled under the tree is the shiny Swiss Army Knife/memory stick I begged and pleaded for. And with that last Christmas wish...

Good night. With love and warm Christmas wishes to all my friends and readers.

Saturday, December 24, 2005

Christmas Eve

About to drive my mom to Midnight Mass - gotta get there early so we can hear the choir. More later!!

Friday, December 23, 2005

Home for the Holidays

Up at my mom's for Christmas, and had a very busy day of picking up the tree, decorating the house, wrapping presents, baking cookies, and so on and so on. Still more to do, of course -- my sister and I will decorate the tree tomorrow (need to let it sit overnight so the branches drop into the proper position for hanging ornaments), as well as stringing up lights on some of the outdoor branches. Got a yummy home-cooked dinner, too, and about to sit down and curl up on the couch to watch a cheesy movie with my sister.

I love this season. Love doors closed because people are wrapping presents, love the smell of gingerbread, and unwrapping all the ornaments we've made throughout the years, or received, or seeing what decorations come out each year -- the potholder I made 15 years ago, the hand painted ornaments Mom gave us all two years ago, the little sheep we bought in Ireland, and the Santas my sister picked up on another trip. Love lights on the houses, even the ones that are way overdone, because what would we talk about in the car as we drove past them except how excessive they are? I love going to midnight mass with my mom, even if I never go the rest of the year. I love Christmas songs, especially sung by Frank Sinatra, Bruce Springsteen, and Big Bad Voodoo Daddy. And I love when my family gets together, and the kids are running around playing, and everyone's talking, and laughing, and telling stories at the dinner table.

And I love watching Bing Crosby in "White Christmas" sing "What do you do with a General?" which makes me cry each and every single time I watch it.

Thursday, December 22, 2005


Weirdest thing. After having just mentioned to one friend that Google had indexed a picture of me from a show I did years ago in NYC with some folks I knew through the Ren Faire, I got an email from another friend, not party to the first conversation, who forwarded the same picture and asked if it was me. So, since it's already out there...Yes, this is me. And I still have the sword, so no one think of cyber-stalking me, ok?

Jingle-y things

Listening right now to the horn section of Big Bad Voodoo Daddy take on Jingle Bells, and shedding all over the place from my purple pashmina. Little fuzzies flying around my office on the breeze from the vent above my head.

Walked to work again today, AND brought my camera, so maybe I'll get my act together and take some holiday-ish city pictures. I still haven't done anything about a Christmas e-card, which I want to get out tonight. Then I have a few more presents to wrap/finish making, and I need to figure out how much laundry I can bring to my mom's. The folks orchestrating the transit strike have gone back to the negotiating table, so there's some hope it might be over soon, but I'm still planning on having to walk to the train station, so I have to pack light. Well, as light as I can with presents and my little lappy to bring. So there's a good chance I'll just be wearing the same thing or two all weekend.

Oh! But exciting big news! MMJ is no longer with her previous agent, and has crossed over to the dark side... I mean, has signed with me. Without actually signing anything just yet. Which doesn't make things any less official, except in the purely literal sense. Bringing my total number of clients to... drumroll, please... 5.

I know it doesn't sound like much, but there's a few more unofficially for now, and I'm being very select.

And I sent in a professional registration request for the New York Comic-Con in February, which is just cool. Though I'm tempted to buy the regular ticket too, since then I get a limited edition "Serenity" action figure. And there goes my mind, wandering, wondering just what accessories a Kaylee action figure might have.

Ahem. Anyway...

If the strike continues, our office will be closed tomorrow, though otherwise we only have a half-day, so that's not too bad. I got through three mansucripts yesterday, and should be able to devote some more time this afternoon to reading a few more, so I have more time over the holiday break to read for fun. And write. And play. And be social with my family and friends.

Joyeux Noel!

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

When life gives you lemons...

As I said, I walked to work today, and couldn't help but notice on my happy little journey that several stores I passed were offering Transit Strike sales. The Super Runner shop, for instance, was hosting a "Walk to Work Sale!" with 20% off shoes. Now, that's capitalism. Or entrepreneurship. One of the two.

Still, I felt like the grownup that had to go to work while the kids stayed home on a snow day -- the roomie took the day off for his trip home for the holidays, and MMJ, who stayed over last night after our gift exchance, wasn't going to work either. Meanies.

I suppose I'll have to do some thinking about getting up to my mom's this weekend if the strike continues, but even that's not too bad. Dress warm, pack light, and take Metro-North. Luckily, my sister with the car who lives downtown has the heavy presents I'm giving out. I'm like some kind of genius.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Weird day at work

It feels a bit like a holiday, with so many people not in the office, and the phones barely ringing, that I have to keep reminding myself that it's only Tuesday. It is Tuesday, right? It didn't help that we had some sort of email problem earlier today, but that at least seems to be working now.

Anyway, though it's only just 5pm, our front doors are locked up tight, and we've pretty much been given the go-ahead to head on home. So I'll shortly be bundling up in my warm clothes, wheeling my bike to the freight elevator (they let me bring it into the building at lunchtime), and heading back uptown. One of the assistants just told me a judge is fining the Transit Union $1 million a day while they strike, so hopefully that will be an impetus to settle soon.

I brought my camera into work today, thinking I might try to get some shots of this historic strike, but all it looks like is just a lot of traffic.


Yep, so it happened. Transit Strike. Luckily, today I didn't have to get anywhere besides work, which is a scant 30 blocks from my apartment (about a mile and a half, by those who reckon such stuff), and since I was tripping over my bike in my room, I decided to take it out for a spin. Still hit traffic, but it was completely manageable. And hopefully I'll be able to duck out of here earily-ish, and get home to wrap a few more presents before our little giftie exchange this evening.

Monday, December 19, 2005

He wrote my number down wrong

Yep. He emailed this morning and said he tried to call four times this weekend, but kept getting an "out of service" message. And though I know I left it for him on his answering machine, and he confirmed I did, he said he erased the message after listening to it without writing my number down again because he thought he already had it. Except he had it wrong (switched two of the digits).

Which... *sigh*

Just *sigh*.

Back home from Cincinnati

And it's a wonder I'm still an optimist.

I mean, it was great to see my friend Jay, who's very Christmas-y in "A Christmas Carol," and to meet with one of my authors. And the bar Jay told me about months ago was everything he said it would be -- which is to say, a giant fire pit in the back garden, with kind waitresses bringing us warm alcoholic beverages while we chatted and listened to a very good musician.

And Jay and I had a great time playing the Xbox game I got him for Christmas, "Call of Cthulhu: Dark Corners of the World," though we didn't finish, of course, and I made him do most of the playing that required actual dexterity.

And it was a nice, relaxing break, when I got to finally read Terry Pratchett's "Thud!", and got through a couple of other magazines, some for work, some for pleasure.

But the other reason I was going to Cincinnati, the whole hoping to meet a guy I've been emailing with since, oh, I don't know, April... that didn't go so well. In that we didn't actually meet. I was there, I was available, we spoke and made tentative plans for Saturday afternoon, and when it actually came time to firm up those plans -- I never heard from him.

Which throws a bit of wrench into the whole "How to Date a Superhero" proposal. Because, yeah, really, how does a girl date a guy who doesn't actually follow through with plans?

I mean, it is me? Am I terrifying somehow, that I scare him away by the very fact that I'm interested in meeting? Is that so crazy?

All I can say is, so far, I'm 0 for 2 with my "fake internet boyfriends." But my real friends -- they rock. Hearing a conversation this weekend between Jay and the NY-based friend that introduced us several years ago, as they discussed my not-date in more and more entertaining and non-complimentary terms -- well, it just warmed the bitter cockles of my heart.

Does my heart have cockles? If not, it warmed wherever they may be.

In any case, for those of you that this relates to, please know that I am still very much looking forward to coming to Denver. Because I'm still an optimist, as mentioned above, and because I'm coming for a very different reason: to be with friends. Also because I can't resist the detailed itinerary I was emailed! See you soon.

Friday, December 16, 2005

So far, so good

No transit strike. Whee! Hopefully, it will be smooth sailing to the airport, and then on to Cincinnati. i should write more, but I suddenly noticed the time, and I should probably get going. I woke up super early this morning, turned on the tv, got the news that the subways and buses were all functional, and went back to sleep for another hour. Still, I should be fine. My flight's not til 10:55, and I'm not checking anything, so, fingers crossed, I'll have plenty of time.

Now if only a certain someone would get his act together about planning something for this weekend, and let me know, we'd all be good. I mean, really, how am I supposed to write a book called "How to Date a Superhero" if I can't get a date arranged?

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

We're not big on "reviews"...

... or feedback, or any of that other namby-pamby corporate stuff. The senior partner likes to give out Christmas presents, but perist the thought that he'd sit down and talk about how you're doing, etc. etc. Nonetheless, my direct boss just sat down with me (after I walked her through using her fancy new iPod video) and told me how well I'd done this year, how happy she was with my work, and that all signs looked very good for a nice raise and a bonus. She also stressed that I should remember, even if I don't hear it from others (AKA the Senior Partners) that I had an excellent year.

Which is really nice to hear.

I'm working on a book deal right now in which the author imagines conversations with Aristotle, and basically transposes his ideas and philosophies into contemporary self-help speak. And one of the things she talks about is the idea of loving what you do, and how that leads to true happiness. It's not about having a super-exciting job or being the tippy-top of your field, so much as being happy and satisfied, and letting your work be a passion in your life. And for me, now, it is. And when I look back, even just at the few years I've been blogging, about how I felt about my job somedays, I know that somewhere along the way I was able to realize that, and it's made all the difference.

Even if I spend a portion of my day blogging, or trolling the web, or chatting with my friends, I know -- I love what I do, and I'm happy doing it.

O Christmas Tree!

Just look at my sweet little Christmas tree!

Isn't it too adorable for words?

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Writing to keep my eyes open

It's just after 5pm, and in a little more than half an hour, I can head out home, safe in the knowledge that my work day consisted mostly of a 2 1/2 hour, over $300 lunch, bookended by conversations about offers for a book I'm working on. The side effect of that full, delicious meal of pumpkin ravioli, sirlion steak, and warm chocolate cake with vanilla ice cream, plus a glass of red wine, is that all I want to do is close my eyes and take a nap. Which I really shouldn't do. Not if I want to get out of here soonish. Plus, tonight the roomie and I are heading out to buy a Christmas tree, and I want to get some holiday decorations up in the apartment. And I should figure out how much laundry I need to do, and what I'm going to bring for my trip this weekend, and figure out what I'm going to wear for the cocktail gathering I'm hosting tomorrow night, and when I'm going to make the rest of my Christmas presents, and then try to get into CoH/CoV...

And ok, I think I need that nap, just to keep up with everything I have to do.

It's probably not all that bad, but laying it all out like that makes it seems like a ton. Still, I'll get through the next couple of days, and once I get to Cincinnati, I figure I'll have nothing to do but relax and hang out with my friend (and those certain others I'm meeting with), so I won't feel quite so harried. And I'm looking forward to reading books, rather than manuscripts.

But first... a few more manuscripts to read.

And oh, I am such a wuss. I was listening to Christmas tunes on the way to work this morning, taking the bus down Lexington Avenue with the huge shopping bag of presents I brought in for my coworkers, and I nearly started crying listening to "The Cat Carol" by Meryn Cadell from the Christmas CD "A Winter's Night." I love this season.

Monday, December 12, 2005

Blog Potato takes on Buffy

Blog Potato's most recent post, following their discussion of Superman and Batman, compares Buffy with Wonder Woman. Go. Read. Report back.

In other news, it's Monday again at work, and the pile of manuscripts I was supposed to read this weekend didn't get any smaller -- whcih is what happens when I don't actually read them. I'm hoping to get into them today at work. If I can manage not to be distracted by shiny things on the internet. Oooh, shiny!

But I did get my second villain on CoV up to level 10, and picked up a power that lets me bring folks back from the dead. So far, she's very interesting to play -- escpecially with all the zombies I get to tote around, it makes for a character that is, I think, the most unlike any of my others. And now, with the healing and the resurrection... well, she's just cool. I still need to write her in-game bio, though. Same with my stalker.

Oh! And I really like some of the maps in the game. Last night, I had a mission that took place on a cargo ship -- first on top of it, then inside. Very cool. Long, but cool.

Saturday, December 10, 2005

I did say I'd do it later...

As promised, a picture of the view outside my window yesterday morning.By the end of the day it had pretty much turned to grey slush, although there were still some signs of pretty as I walked around doing some Christmas shopping today. Got my little munchkin relatives taken care of, and found some stocking stuffers for a couple of my sisters. Still don't have anything for my sister's boyfriend, but I'm counting on her to make some useful suggestions. And the list of presents to buy gets a little shorter. Tonight I'm planning on getting out my crafty hat, and making a few more -- though I'm not certain that making gifts really ends up saving me any money, since I still spend a lot on supplies. but oh well.

For now -- a nap.

Friday, December 09, 2005

Snow, snow, snow, snow!

Except it's mostly turned to freezing rain, which isn't as cool or pretty, but it was snowing when I woke up this morning and looked out my window, and I got a couple of great shots, which I will post later when I get home. And I'm so very very grateful that the little shindig I'm going to tonight is practically downstairs from me. I mean, not in the bar directly downstairs, but the one three doors down. My cozy little Irish local. More later.

Thursday, December 08, 2005

Made Me Laugh

So I was trolling around on a couple of snarking tv-oriented websites, and in light of my vacation in Florida, where I think my sister made me watch almost every single show on this list, I present unto you The Subliminal Reassurances of Procedural Dramas.

In other news, was anyone else nonplussed by last night's episode of Veronica Mars? Even more so because I think we're stuck with repeats now until January? Or does asking about this show make me seem like (as one friend wrote) a 19-year-old girl?

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Stuff I need to write

Been meaning to get this down somewhere, so I may as well do it here. It's a good little checklist for me, in terms of projects I'm working on -- or want to be working on.

Deadline wise, Yi Shun told me about an anthology looking for submissions from female writers on the topic of "She's Such a Geek," that's due by January 15th, so I need 3,000 to 6,000 words on that. My initial thought right now is to rework the proposal for "How to Date a Superhero" for a stand-alone essay on the same topic.

There's another anthology deadline of January 31st on the topic of "Sex and Music" which intrigues me. That one's 4,000 to 6,000 words.

Even sooner, I have to turn something into my writer's group for critique for Monday, December 12th. I'm thinking of giving them one of my Storyball contributions, and see what they think of it as a stand alone. Partly out of curiosity, partly because I haven't done anything else in the last few weeks!

Then, there's no set deadline, not externally, at least, but I really want to rework "How to Date a Superhero" in the next week, before I head to Cincinnati and a possible meeting with one of the guys profiled in the piece. Which would help with the "She's Such a Geek" essay, so there's that.

And then I'm having some fun with roleplaying some stories on CoH, mostly to do right now with my main character's boyfriend's death. Sturm und drang, and all very sad. On the plus side, it's really making me want to spend more time playing her, as opposed to my two new villains on CoV. Which reminds me I need to write both of their I.D. cards, too.

And I think that's about it.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Blog Potato

A coworker's husband is lucky enough to work as a curator at the Museum of Television and Radio, and they've just started up a fun blog discussing pop culture-y things. Go. Enjoy. The first post is on Batman and Superman, so I know you'll like it.

Monday, December 05, 2005

20 years ago tonight

Wow. I can't believe it's been that long, but yes, it was twenty years ago tonight that I broke my arm. I know, I know, you're thinking "Big whoop, I've broken lots of things," but, well, I haven't (aside from a single finger incident on a jumping castle at a Homecoming Carnival in college. Let us speak no more of it). So my first break was a big deal, and to this day, it's still a damn impressive scar on my arm -- two dozen stitches, I think, or thereabouts, and two spots where the pins were. Yes, there were pins.

Plus, I like the story of it. I was all sporty back in my youth, and broke it attempting a vault in gymnastics. Ok, so it wasn't a very difficult vault, and the break really came when I fell down after I didn't stick the landing, and hit my elbow on the metal supports of the apparatus -- which should have been covered by the mat, and we should have sued, but we're not litigious folks, even though it would have nicely covered my college tuition, I'm sure. But the whole thing sort of plays like a beautiful cause-and-effect "tipping point" moment in my childhood. Because I broke my arm, I was in a cast. Because I was in a cast, I couldn't take gym. Because I didn't take gym, I used the free period in the computer room. Because I spent all that time in the computer room, I started playing video games and learning more about computers. Because I knew computers... etc etc etc... voila, I am a geek!

OK, fine, there's probably a few other steps in there somewhere. Something about my spending all my free time reading fantasy novels and just anything I could get my hands on, and not having as big a group of kids to play with in the neighborhood when I grew up, but I think it's an interesting hypothesis.

Plus, it's a cool scar. As I said. Though something about the way they put everything back together makes it hurt like a mother if I'm ever so unlucky as to hit my funny bone. It's not funny at all. More like a shooting, numbing pain running right to my fingers.

Anyway, that was twenty years ago. Two decades. It doesn't seem possible.

Sunday, December 04, 2005

First snow of the season

Standing waiting for a train to my Mom's and everything's just so darn pretty! It's another thing I love about New York in winter.

Friday, December 02, 2005


So pretty!!

I Love New York... in Winter

I've always loved New York, I have. But lately, I think because I'm often given to looking at it from an outsider's perspective -- that is, from your perspective, gentle readers -- that I notice more of the things that I love about it. Oh, and because I had a couple of cocktails last night, and was happily tipsy.

Here then, in no particular order, things I love about New York in the wintertime.

I love the smell of roasted peanuts from street corner carts, the giant cyrstal snowflake that hangs over the intersection of 57th Street and Fifth Avenue, the smell of Christmas trees being sold on the sidewalks, bare trees decorated with white lights, the wreaths around the necks of the lions in front of the main branch of the public library, and the decorated topiary dinosaurs on either side of the main entrance to the Natural History Museum.

I love ice skating in the park under an open sky, meeting friends for holiday drinks, hearing a lone saxophonist playing "Silver Bells" as I drive by warm and comfortable in a cab on my way home, outdoor holiday markets in the public squares, and the window displays at Lord & Taylor's, Bloomingdale's, and Macy's.

I love hot chocolate.

I love when it snows, and they annouce that "alternate side of the street parking rules are suspended" because no one can move their cars beneath a heavy blanket of snow. I love watching kids drag their plastic sleds along the sidewalks to get to Central Park, and seeing them go swooshing down the hills around the Met. I love looking out the window in my apartment and seeing a perfect layer of snow on each band of the fire escape, and ice carefully encasing the branches of trees.

I love not having to shovel.

(and I'm sure there's more I love, but my new laptop just arrived and I can't put off opening the box any longer!)

Thursday, December 01, 2005

My Sweet Little Laptop...

... Has shipped! Hooray! Flights of angels, and all that.

Stories From The Land's End Hotel and Resort

So, for the past month, as my Nanowrimo contribution, I've been working with an incredibly talented group of writers on what we've termed a "Storyball" project -- taking a shared setting, and writing in waves, each story touching on several others, and sort of "rolling" along. And, well, it turned out better than I think any of us thought it would. Part of that -- a huge part of that -- is due to the incredible talents of the writers involved. Another big part, I think, was more unconscious. Half the time, I'd get my ideas for my next story only when I sat down to write, or just before falling asleep. Fairies and broken wings, people disappearing into paintings, chessboards and ever-winding towers, tunnels underground, whorehouses and lemon groves, and through it all -- the hotel.

It's just... cool. A little Neil Gaiman, a little David Schickler (read Kissing in Manhattan if you haven't already), a little of a lot of other ideas, but still, something entirely original, even as it touches on Shakespeare, Stephen King, ancient myths, and 19th century poetry.

All of us who participated are chomping at the bit to do it again -- ok, maybe not for December, but January's looking good. And we're trying to figure out the best way it would work in print, without the hyperlinks that were a huge part of the project.

Anyway, I'm not sure yet if I'm allowed to give out the link, but since it's officially done, and half of the people who read this were participants anyway, I figured I'd go for it.

Go here. Dive in anywhere. And enjoy.