October 25, 2006

'cause we care and crap

New York CaresIn lieu of birthday drinks this year, I decided to shed some of the self-absorption and selfishness I acquired in the last year by inviting friends and family to join me in volunteering on New York Cares Day.

On Saturday, The Lovely Jess, A Lover and a Fighter, Azee, The Younger Sister, Steph and Amy joined me in sprucing up a high school on Manhattan's Lower East Side.

We scrubbed graffiti and the odd bit of spunk off walls and desks, cleaned classrooms and painted doorways, trim and radiator covers, among other things. We scarfed down Munchkins (which I picked up along with the thirst-quenching coffee for the questionably-dressed panhandler), BS'd like there was no tomorrow and had an all-around awesome time in the process.

Cleaning ourselves up afterwards was a bit of a bitch, as you can see by Jess's nails. We tackled the stubborn paint with a one-two combo of slimy gunk supplied by the custodian and a big ol' jug of paint thinner. Many manicures were scheduled on Saturday, I assure you.

By 3:00, we were good and high on paint fumes and quite giddy as a result. While cleaning up in the slop sink, I was quite taken with the noisy faucet. Its whiny, whistling shriek seemed familiar to me. And then I had my turpentine-fueled epiphany: "Hey, that sounds like Rudolph's nose."

Everyone agreed. And we laughed like it was the.funniest.thing.in.the.world. At least I did. Forget bong hits, if you want a real high, spend some quality time with oil-based paint and little-to-no ventilation.

New York Cares is a great organization. For you locals in need of something meaningful to do with your free time, I highly recommend giving this group a whirl.

I want to thank everyone who came with me on Saturday and all of you who sponsored my time with a nice donation. I really appreciate it. See you next year.

October 23, 2006

fuck the cup. pour it in my hand for a dime.

The scene: Outside of Dunkin' Donuts on Saturday at 8:30am. I am approached by a surprisingly well-dressed panhandler.

"Excuse me, miss! Would you mind buying me a cup of coffee? I am soooooooooo thirsty."

I momentarily pondered her snazzy leather jacket and her odd choice of thirst-quencher but figured a) scam or no, the two bucks won't kill me and b) whatever wets her whistle is really not my concern. So I agreed.

"Sure, how do you want it?" I asked.

"Uh, you know, in a container."

Kinda makes you wonder how she's received her coffee in the past, don't it?

October 17, 2006

on altruism and inadvertent anti-piracy measures

Picture it: The corner of Sixth Avenue and 23rd Street on a Friday evening. I had just surfaced from a short hop on the F train from Rockefeller Center and was waiting to cross the avenue teeming with rush hour traffic.

Over my shoulder, a soft voice asked a question: "Miss, when the light changes, can you help me get across?"

I turned around to see a blind elderly man facing in my direction with an expectant expression on his face.

I responded with a cheerful, "Certainly!"

"Thank you, miss. Would you mind if I held on to your arm?"

"No, not at all," I assured him as I offered my bent left appendage.

"Oh, thank you so much, miss."

"No problem. Ready? Here we go."

As we crossed the busy boulevard, people parted like the Red Sea and made way for the blind man with his cane bobbing from side to side and little ol' me cautiously leading him across.

Some people nodded at us. Others just did their best to not be that person, the one who bumps into the blind man.

I smiled as I once again found myself once again embroiled in a quintessential New York moment. Living in a walking city exposes you to insanity, offensive smells, piles of garbage and other unsightly things, not to mention the occasional bout of foot suckage, but it also gives you the opportunity to connect, however briefly, with someone outside your usual social set. For some, that's a turn-off. For me, I throw my arms around the opportunity and hug it to death. Um, except where my feet and unwanted advances toward them are concerned.

Despite my seemingly selfless act, there was a certain cockiness to my stride. I knew people were observing this display of man helping fellow man and just eating that shit up. And I won't lie to you... I really thought I was hot shit. I joined the ranks of those admiring my good deed and strutted across Sixth Avenue with a shocking amount of hubris. I rocked my halo with equal parts pride and "Gawd, I'm sweet!" arrogance.

However, my moments of grandeur and self-importance never last long. Not by choice, mind you. Instant karma does indeed get me. Right quick, in fact.

No sooner had I said, "Okay, we're coming up to the curb. Watch your step!" than the man barreled right into a display of bootlegged DVDs inconveniently situated on the busy corner of 23rd and Sixth. He then proceeded to stumble and stagger sending copies of Little Miss Sunshine and Open Season skidding across the pavement. He plowed through that pile of pirated movies like he was Jesus driving the money changers out of the temple.

I tried to regain control but he continued to stomp and smash everything in his path while saying, "Sorry! My fault! Pardon me! Oops! Sorry!" I was horrified by the bedlam that I helped cause. I echoed his rushed, sheepish apologies and then finally got a good grip on his arm and steered him away from the carnage. I offered him an embarrassed, "Sorry about that!" and then pointed him in his desired direction before hauling ass down 23rd Street. Awwwwwwwwwkward!

Now if you'll excuse me, I'm off to make a generous donation to Guide Dogs for the Blind as a means of doing penance for my "good deed"...

October 11, 2006

i'm a fan of chucking puppies myself...

Um, I know I shouldn't find this the least bit funny but dammit, I cannot stop giggling...
Twenty-seven-year-old Chytoria Graham of Erie, Pennsylvania was pissed at her boyfriend. Instead of whacking him with a cast iron frying pan or his golf clubs or something reasonable like that, however, she picked up her four-week-old baby boy by the legs and swung the infant through the air, hitting the boyfriend with the baby's head. (via BloggingBaby)
I'm sick and wrong, I know. However, if you picture that scene in claymation? Well, it's a hoot.

Update: Mejack and I discuss the physics of baby tossing...
Yours Truly: I'm picturing the baby being held by the feet and thrown like a hammer in track & field.

Mejack: See, I'm picturing holding the baby by its feet and doing like an airplane and swinging it around.

YT: I think you might get more distance if you toss with the feet. The head will provide some weight and carry it. And also, lofting it upwards by the feet will give you more air and better velocity.

YT: You know, so I've heard...
Fear not, we're both off to say a good Act of Contrition right now.

October 09, 2006

reliable sources

Overheard on the smoking deck of Cattyshack...
Whitney: There's a large Czech population in Houston.

Yours Truly: Really? I did not know that.

Whitney: Oh yeah. A large Vietnamese population as well.

YT: Isn't there a large Indian population there too?

Whitney: Native American Indians?

YT: No, Asian Indians.

Whitney: Hmmm... could be but I'm not sure.

YT: Eh, what do I know? I'm basing this assumption entirely on one episode of My Super Sweet 16...
Such an intellect, aren't I?