According to my mom, my grandmother left her two pieces of advice:
“Never carry a package by the string”, and “Never trust a man named Doc or Whitey.”
My grandfather had his own sage words, too, like “Never lose altitude unneccessarily.”
Now, after bitter experience, a splitting headache, and a day when I was three and a half hours late to work, I have my own piece of advice to add to the family wisdom:
Never, ever drink Scotch and Grappa on the same night.
On Tuesday night, after I got done at my desk, I walked a couple of blocks down to the ABC building in Times Square to see David Blaine frozen in a block of ice. There was a long line, composed of Viacom workers from across the street, theatergoers who had just gotten out of their shows, and German tourists. The questions everyone was asking each other in line were “how is he getting paid for this?” and “he’s wearing a sweater, how cold can he be?”
Seeing him in person, though, was pretty impressive. The ice was much thicker than it appeared to be on the webcam; twelve or fourteen inches.
New Yorkers appear to be united in heaping calumny on the event, though. I took a cab home from Times Square, and the taxi driver, Abdul Hakim, was ranting about it the whole way. “He is cold, so what? He is wearing a sweater. Now, if he were dead for three days, and came back out of the ice, then his body would be not human, you know? So that would be something.”
Yeah, that would be something!
I had a great Thanksgiving weekend in Philadelphia with my special friend Kate — we went to see the Christmas display at Longwood Gardens, learned to dance James Brown-style from this cat named Lenny at Vincent’s Jazz Bar in West Chester (more about that another time,) and went to the 15th Annual Turkey Pro Motorcycle Rally, hosted by Kate’s dad. The main event of the Turkey Pro is the Slow Race, where competitors try to go around a twisty track in the greatest possible time. The winner gets a huge monstrosity of a trophy, complete with motorcycle handlebars and a working horn and headlight. In fact, the winner is required to take it for the year.
Longwood Gardens is really, really cool — Kate and I bought season passes. It has a really large Victorian-style conservatory, which is a great thing to visit in the dead of winter.
For the past couple of months, I’ve been having “Aroma Corporate Cleaning” come by on alternate Tuesdays and clean my apartment. It’s kind of expensive (seventy bucks) — two people come by for a couple of hours, which seems like a lot of person-power for one small place. So I talked to Jennifer, the nice woman at Lafayette Cleaners, where I do my laundry, and she had a friend named May come by. May did a nice job, and it was fifty bucks, so I figured that I’d save forty bucks a month. Except that I forgot to cancel Aroma this week, with the result that May came by on Monday and cleaned my apartment, and then Aroma came by on Tuesday and two more people cleaned it. That’s three trained professionals cleaning an area the size of a postage stamp.
When I got back home on Tuesday night, the apartment was aggressively clean — the bed had razor-sharp hospital corners, the shower curtain looked as if it had been sandblasted, and the floor seemed to have gained some sort of protective diamond carapace.
This was found by my uncle Laird in my grandmother’s 1927 yearbook from The Tutoring School; she was a junior.
Although the personality of a tree varies with the individual, each variety has its special characteristics. Take the poplar trees, for instance. As a whole, they are inclined to be a little nervous. They like to talk and gossip among themselves, but are true aristocrats, and can be as gracious and stately as the occasion demands. Willows are graceful and beautiful, but too aloof and languid to be interesting company, and the hedges are stiff, proud and formal, with not overly much intelligence. A pine is like an Indian. It is straight, strong and carefree, with a fresh, vigorous type of beauty, while a sycamore is a huge grandfatherly policeman.
Trees vary in character as much as dogs or cats or people. It really is better that they can’t talk, because they wouldn’t be so interesting.
– Sarah Laird, ’27
The verdict? My “Hot or Not” rating is… 1.4, out of a possible 10! That means that I just barely edged out this guy! Having touched off a 24-hour “Hot or Not” craze at work, I now know that there are lots of rules on the site:Men with shirts on rarely break 3
Lots of men write their e-mail address on their pictures.
Women’s scores are inversely proportional to the amount of clothes they are wearing,
unless the photo is in soft focus and she is holding a rose; then the score plummets.
Uniforms do very poorly.
People who look at the site for more than ten minutes tend to feel dirty.
Oh well, maybe my Iron Chef halloween costume will rate better next year!
Am I hot or not? What about when I have a fake chin beard, a cigarette holder, a monocle, spats, and a sword? Rate me at http://www.amihotornot.com! I got this link from my friend Dan Check, who you can rate here. His halloween costume is a “gay cowboy,” though I think he looks like a dirty, dirty Cary Elwes.
(Of course, at the same time, I’ve been reading the last of the Harry Flashman books that I haven’t already, Flashman’s Lady. ) I’ll probably go home and finish the book now.
Whew, I just got finished making changes to the page. I bought a cheap-ass Visioneer scanner especially to make updates to this site over the weekend, and it seems to work okay if you scan things at a high enough resolution and then fiddle with the levels, run a sharpening mask, et cetera.
I got on the elevator in the middle of the morning, to find four or five stockbrokers from the ninth floor in their shirtsleeves talking about the recent economy.
“My son is six month old today. The day he was born was the last time I made any money.”
“It’s a good thing I only have two black tetras, two neon tetras, and a clown welch in my aquarium! I can’t afford food for them anymore.”
“Yeah, they’re starting to look pretty thin.”
“I don’t know, that Clown Welch is pretty meaty. Maybe we could cook it up for food!”