Sunday Confessions #23: Shopping Fail, A Walk with a Friend, Chores, Kittens, and Cheetos


1. I went out with the mission to buy new shoes and new pants and returned empty handed. I’ve been so inactive since moving in with James and working out of the house that I somehow crept up two pants sizes and I currently own two pairs of pants that fit me. I pretty much was unaware of all of this the past six months because I was just wearing t-shirts and yoga pants and not leaving the house most of the time. Now that I actually have to go to work, I’m finding that nothing fits so now it’s time to buy new clothes…. and I’m obviously still resisting this process. I went in the store, got disenfranchised with the price of pants and walked out. Then, I went and looked at shoes at DSW, and I found absolutely nothing that I liked. So, shopping mission fail.

2. I may have been derailed from my shopping mission by running into a friend in Union Square. I caught him out of the corner of my eye and texted him, “Did I just see you or your doppelganger walk across Union Square?” and watched him pull his phone out of his pocket. We ended up going to Whole Foods where I bought an orange soda and a tirmisu and we walked over to High Line (it’s a park that’s on where the elevated train used to be on that side of town) and hung out.

3. I cooked dinner, washed the dishes and cleaned the bathroom floor yesterday. I’m happy with that accomplishment. I should probably do the kitchen floor tonight, but I’m already feeling lazy and I don’t think it’s going to happen. Soon though. Maybe tomorrow.

4. I spent the morning researching options for adopting a kitten. This may have something to do with the fact that James was pretty much ready to kittynap the bodega kitten. Ever since he met that little guy, it’s been all about how we ought to get Logan a little friend to play with. We shall see how this develops…

5. I just impulsively ate half a bag of Cheetos and now regret it. I’m pretty sure this is how I jumped up two pants sizes in the past six months… Random eating of junk and not walking enough. Need to knock that shit out!

Domestic Saturday Night

There are days where I’m pretty sure blogging and Facebook and Twitter and Pinterest and all of those social media thingies pretty much exist to give me an inferiority complex.

I’m sure there are days when you’ve felt that, too.

I don’t know what your reality is, but I know that my home isn’t exactly the place that’s going to be photographed for a magazine… and that’s sort of what the homes of people who post pictures of their home on the Internet’s homes look like.

Or at least, that’s what the illusion created is. I don’t know if there’s a disaster in your kitchen when you posted pictures of your clean living room which is now probably trashed because you have kids. Geesh.

I have a tendency to assume that people who aren’t me are prefect, and I’m green with envy over the ability that some people have to just be able to look at a pile of crap and organize it AND do it a way where it looks fantastic.

I was not born with this gift.

I’m more the type that’s going to sit here and write a blog post about how I seriously need to do some chores right now and I’m attempting to shirk out of my responsibilities for just a little bit longer by writing a blog post about it… and I’m contemplating doing that thing where I post really embarrassing photos about what a mess my apartment is in hopes that I’ll shame myself into doing what I’m supposed to do so I can post after photos.

Well, instead I’m just going to post a photo of the cat and save you the horror of how bad it actually is, and just describe it to you instead.

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The Kitchen
- The sink is overflowing with dishes.
- The cat box is in the middle of the kitchen floor, where it’s been for probably going on three weeks now…. it got moved there after the last bathroom flood which took me two weeks to do round one of cleaning on.
- The kitchen is in desperate need of a vacuum and a mop.
- There’s stuff all over the desk in the kitchen that needs to be put away.

The Bathroom

- Round two of bathroom cleaning post flood is needed. Particularly a vacuum and another mop, but I really ought to go out and buy a new mop because the mop handle is really bent and it needs to get tossed.
- Sink needs cleaned.
- Toilet needs cleaned, but I need to go buy a toilet brush.

Actually, know what? I’m going to go do that. Excuse me for a few minutes…

Okay, I’m back. With mop. And toilet brush. And new bath mat.

Living Room

- Hutch needs decluttered.
- Top of dresser needs decluttered.
- Dresser needs to be reorganized.
- Pick up all the random crap on the floor and put it away.
- Vacuum.

Bedroom

- Put clothes away.
- Make bed.
- Vacuum and mop.

Oh yeah, and I bought chicken so I could make myself barbeque chicken for dinner. So, I’ve got to do that too.

Clearly, I have my work cut out for me on this chilly Saturday evening when I’ve chose to stay in and pretend to be all domestic.

Bodega Kitten Climbs a Tree

I took a work from home day yesterday because my boss was out of the office for meetings and it was the lone day off for James this week, and we needed to run some much needed household errands… and while we were out and about the neighborhood, we met this little guy.

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Out in front of one of the bodegas, there was an old man sitting on a milk crate and a tiny little cat who decided to run right up the tree in front of the store. After being so kind to pose for my picture, he tried to climb down and James helped him and snorgled him for a bit and went on about how he wants a kitten.

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The old man told us that the little guy belonged to the bodega in Spanish or something to that effect. It was mostly a conversation of smiling and pointing, which is typically how my conversations with the elderly in my neighborhood tend to go. They don’t speak much English and I don’t speak much Spanish, but we’re pretty good at smiling and pointing at things.

A kitten is a pretty good thing to smile and point about, I think.

Out of My Comfort Zone

I’ve had lots of thoughts so far this week, but every time I try to put the pen to paper (or cursor to text area as the case may be) either nothing comes out, or something that I’m not terribly compelled to share with the entire world comes out. Some days are like that, and often times with me I feel like they tend to come in a row.

My job has me out of my comfort zone and working at a breakneck pace on a project developing a training course. It’s the first time I’ve worked on something like this before, and let’s just say I’m feeling a little wobbly on my feet. I’m supposed to have it roughed out by Friday, and I feel like I’m a quarter of the way there…. I did an impromptu presentation of what I had so far on Tuesday with my boss and one of the employees of the company who we share an office with. I got some valuable feedback, but I also got a big jolt of fear.

I realized that I’ve not made peace with the fact I very well may be presenting this day long training course in the not too distant future… and well… this might surprise the people who know that I don’t have much problem taking my clothes off in public, but speaking in front of a group of people puts the sort of fear in me that anxiety attacks are made of.

Seriously, someone ought to call in the Xanax prescription right now because I’m probably going to need it.

I haven’t much doubt that I’ll conquer the fear. I know I’m more than capable and I have expert level knowledge to share, but I’m at that point with my fear of public speaking where given the option I would avoid and run away, and want at very least to drag my heels and process the fact that, “Yes, this is happening.”

Which is probably why I got shit all nothing done on it yesterday. I felt like I was staring at the wall most of the day and feeling paralyzed with how to proceed… That’s not entirely true, I spent a lot of time thinking about how I wanted to approach some technical issues unto which are somewhat complex, so what didn’t get written at least got thought about…. which I suppose is progress because the next time I sit down to write, things will come out much easier. But a day with a lack of tangible evidence of progress? Utterly nevewracking.

I keep having to remind myself to be kind to myself, and the be patient. Things will come together.

Sunday Confessions #22: A Wedding, Photography, Sleep, The New Adele Single and Chores


1. Often when I have a very busy weekend, I find myself not wanting to sit down and blog about it because I’m just too damn tired… and then because I didn’t do it right away, I never get around to it. In particular, this weekend was quite busy because my good friend Jonathan and Rachelle got married! I feel entirely too tired to recap the event, and I didn’t end up taking any pictures myself, but our friend Anna whom I traveled to the ceremony and reception location with got some good ones that I can share!

Anna & Nikki
Taken on the walk between the bus stop and the venue.

Wedding Sign
Adorable wedding sign that Rachelle made.

Jon & Rachelle
Jon & Rachelle during the ceremony.

2. I used to be the girl who was running around with the camera at these types of events. Back in my early 20s, I was always the one running around with the camera…. and sometime after I moved to New York, I just stopped being that person. I rarely take pictures with my DSLR outside of the house because I’m loathe to carry it anywhere. Half the time I can’t even be bothered to pull out the cell phone and take a shot…. and overall, I think this is a good thing. Maybe it’s not such a good thing for my memory books, but because I’m not hiding behind the armor of a camera, I’m much more apt to be socially engaged with the people around me.

3. I love my new job, but this whole needing to get up and leave the house in the morning thing is tough to get used to. My first week was awesome, but the only thing that I feel a little off about is my sleep. I’m sure things will even out in the weeks to come… but the first week was hard! It’s really tough when your partner comes home from work in the middle of the night! There were a couple of times my night’s sleep was split in two because I got home and climbed immediately into bed and then slept for four or five hours, then got up when he got home and hung out for a few hours and then napped for 3 or 4 more.

4. I am seriously digging Adele’s new single “Skyfall” which is the theme to the new James Bond movie. I was reading that the track features a 77 piece orchestra and was recorded at Abbey Road Studios. Now… listen.

5. I am incredibly behind on the household chores. My tasks to get completed this week were to clean the bathroom, do the dishes and take over the laundry… and my current status? Bathroom is half cleaned. I kinda got stuck on that one because the handle on the mop bent so it’s a really big pain in the butt to mop now, but I did it anyway. The floor was pretty disgusting due to the flood so my approach is to clean off a layer of dirt, let things dry a bit, then go over it again and then it should be better…. I think I’m going to try and do the dishes before I crash out for the night.

Flashback Friday: Ohio at Age 3

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One of the things that I think is interesting about pictures is how they can help you to sustain rather mundane details of a particular day over the course of time. It’s not always the case of course, but it always surprises me when I go through my childhood photos and can recount precise details of a day that happened 25 years ago that would probably have been forgotten if their hadn’t been a picture to affix that memory to.

This particular picture has that quality…

This picture was taken in Ohio when I was three years old. It was my Uncle Gene’s birthday… I’m not sure which one, probably 80th, and the extended family all went to Ohio to throw him a party. It was the first of three times I visited this particular branch of my mother’s family.

I remember being loaded into my father’s van in the middle of the night, stopping at a McDonalds for breakfast somewhere in the middle of 11 hour trip and waking up in Ohio.

I remember following my cousin Ricky who was probably somewhere in his early teens around like a shadow.

I remember being puzzled as to why these people who my mom referred to as my aunt and cousins seemed to show up about 10 minutes after we did anywhere and asked her, “Why do they keep following us?”

In particular, I remember that in this photo I really had to pee and the adults on the other side of that table were just not getting what I was trying to communicate. They snapped my photo, they told me the cake was for later and I was just stuck gesticulating wildly trying to get their attention for someone to help me find a bathroom!

How to Ride the Subway in High Heels

42nd St-Bryant Park

As I teetered towards my subway stop, I debated my approach to my destination. Today is a “do it in heels” day after my flats got soaked in the rain yesterday.

I decide the C train is best, living at the end of the line has it’s advantages. It sits in the station empty until departure time and you’re guaranteed a seat, sitting is optimal when navigating the city in heels. It’s a longer ride, as it’s a local train and stops at every station, but I will sacrifice time in exchange for knowing I’ll have a seated ride.

When I get to the platform, the C is noticeably absent… but she generally doesn’t stay gone for long. I walk down the subway platform to where the front of the train will arrive, I know that all of my options for the rest of the trip are best served if I stay to the front of the train, and it’s more efficient to walk it while I’m waiting than to do it later. This will shave minutes off of your commute time, valuable minutes that you’re planning to squander on the local train.

An A, the express train arrives but I pass on her shorter but crowded standing room only ride in favor of the C’s longer seated one. She leaves me at the station.

I wait, and my desired C train stays away.

Another A arrives, so I take it. I waited long enough. I say a silent city prayer that someone near me gets up at the next stop so I can sit. I ponder my transfer options. To get to Bryant Park, I have several options…

One, screw the whole transfer nonsense and walk from 42nd and 8th Ave. This is my preferred option generally, I need the exercise but it’s not good for high heeled shoes or rainy days.

Two, get off at 42nd St and take the 7 train one stop. Good for rainy days, but bad for high heels. It’s nearly a block long walk underground and there’s a precarious steep ramp involved that I’m terrified I’m just going to topple over on one day.

Three, transfer to the B or D. This could be done one of three places, 145th St is no good because the transfer involves stairs. 125th is iffy because the train is likely to still be full. Lots of people get off starting at 59th St, it’s my best bet for a seat.

I choose option three… I get off at 59th St, and a minute later a B arrives across the platform. I get a seat, I go my two stops, and then I’m at 42nd St-Bryant Park. I note when I get off the train which car and door is nearest to the stairway so I can make for swifter exits in the future. Near the front, but towards the back of the second car… and this will bring me to corner of 40th St and 6th.

I note that the subway exit from the B and D is marginally closer than the nearest one off the 7 to the office. It only takes two street crossings to get to my office, where as the end exit off the 7 takes four.

These are all the little things you think about on the way to work at a new location, when you want to conserve every step. Soon, it will all become routine. I won’t even think about it.

Soul Food Monday: Laugh At Yourself

PonderWonders

Today was a big day for me… It was my first day back at a real 9 to 5 (ermm.. 10 to 6, this is NYC after all…) job. I’m working for someone with whom I’ve worked before so it’s not nearly as nervewracking as working for someone totally new, but still… I wanted to start out on the right foot. I wanted to dress nice, put on my makeup and be ruling today! So, I picked out my clothes the night before and was all, “This is going to be awesome!”

And well… Some days, NYC likes to serve caviar and other days it’s humble pie. Today was humble pie day.

I got up, showered and then went to go get dressed only to discover that my butt no longer fits into the skirt that I wanted to wear. The work from home lifestyle I’d been living for largely the last year had very obviously caught up with me. The last time I had to wear nice clothes to work… That skirt fit.

Which left me rummaging around for something suitable to wear. I settled on a dress with a cotton top and a velvet bottom, black tights and because it was a little chilly this morning I grabbed my long leather coat.

I rush through my makeup, and realize that I’m now set for a departure of the homestead 10 minutes later than what I wanted. I rush around and pack up my computer and the rest of the stuff I need and run out the door and then put my hands in my pockets and discover that I have left my keys locked in the apartment…. So I have to call James, and thankfully he picks up on call #2 (that man is a champion phone call sleeper through-er remind me to tell you about it sometime) and gives me my keys… I give him a kiss goodbye and head to the subway stop.

On the way there, I notice a group of men kinda giving me a funny look… It isn’t terribly unusual in my neighborhood to get cat called or leered at, so I just sorta made a mental note and did an internal eye roll.

I get there, and I need to buy a Metrocard… as I’m going through the motions the annoucement comes through that there’s an Express train arriving in the direction that I want to go, this is the train that I ideally want… and I’m missing it. It is what it is.

I finish my transaction, frustrated by my lateness and sorta wanting to turn around and go back to bed, but I summon my courage and head down to the platform and start walking to the opposite end which is where I need to transfer when I get to my stop. The bell rings to signify that the Local train is about to leave and say to myself, “Fuck it, might as well take the Local.” It’s slower, because it makes all the stops on the line whereas the Express train skips most of them but it goes to the same place. I’m already running late… What’s another few minutes? And besides, I’m guaranteed a seat.

So, I get on the train… and there’s a woman sitting there that I’m about to walk by when she points to my dress and says, “Honey, you might want to look…”

I look down.

My dress has managed to ride itself all the way up around my waist.

I’d been walking around for I don’t know how long with the top of my tights and my underwear showing.

“Oh my god…” I shake my head at myself, “It’s been one of those days,” I explain to the woman and the other lady sitting across the aisle and we laugh together.

“I guess that explains all those guys looking at me funny…”

One of the ladies laughs, “Yeah, I bet you made their morning!”

On the positive side, I did have my jacket on… So, no one saw from behind, and I buttoned myself the whole way up before I got off the train just to have a little extra coverage in case it happened again (and it did… apparently, the friction between the coat and the dress caused it to roll up).

Today’s lesson was you gotta slow down and not stress, and you’ve got to laugh at yourself when these things happened. Sure, it was a little embarrassing… but I have to say, it was a lot more funny than mortifying!

In what ways have you learned to laugh at yourself lately?

Sunday Confessions #21: Glitter and Corset, The Bathroom, The Burlesque Edition, Panic and Computer Troubles


1. I just finished writing my submissions for Fifty Shades of Glitter AND for the the next issue of Corset Magazine and now I’m having a sexuality retrospective hangover. I think I just did a bunch of conscious realization of just how low my self-esteem really has been over the past 15 years, especially in the realm of the bedroom. Writing those pieces was incredibly cathartic.

Also, If you hadn’t heard, the absolutely fabulous Dead Cow Girl is pulling together an anthology of women’s stories about sex. The deadline for submissions was extended until October 20th, so if you’re a lady you should totally submit your story (don’t worry, you can be anonymous). Find out more information here.

Corset Magazine is an indie magazine about all things sexuality.

2. I didn’t clean the bathroom today because we didn’t have any water for most of the day. We have water now, but now I’m totally demotivated to do anything and I’m trying to get myself to be tired so I go to bed at a decent hour. I have a feeling that’s SO not going to happen.

3. It was incredibly terrifying to post The Burlesque Edition of I’m Proud of My Size. I went back and forth as to whether or not I should have posted the final picture of that post because it might be going too far by showing bare boob and I wasn’t sure if I should have posted the video… but I decided to go with bravery. I’m not ashamed, I’m empowered by this stuff. I do feel a little disappointed that I didn’t get more of a response… Was it too brave? Did I scare people?

4. I briefly panicked because I thought I had lost the first three items on this list. I clicked save draft and then the Internet appeared to eat it because my router was acting up. Thankfully, it must have gotten through because after I reset and came back, everything was still here thanks to some miracle of science. Woo!

5. I am so looking forward to not having to share my computer. Again. James’ power supply bit the big one earlier this week so we’ve been computer sharing again which basically means when he’s home, I have to share and it drives me crazy because My Computer is Mine! He went and bought a power supply this morning so when he gets home and puts it in, he (fingers crossed) should be fixed and all normal order restored to the house.

Sunday Social: Childhood

Sunday Social

I found this week’s questions from the Sunday Social compelling so I figured, hey… what the hell… I’ll bite.

1. What do you miss most about being a kid? Having all of the major stuff just taken care of for you. I liked being blissfully unaware of things like bills and having mom make the phone call to see make doctors appointments when I was sick.

2. Did you have a nickname growing up? Well, I guess Nikki which is short for Nicole… but that’s still what people call me. I was told that when I was a baby, my dad dubbed me Stinky but the name didn’t stick after I ditched the diapers… and there was a two year period in middle school when a few of the boys dubbed me Medusa because whenever anyone was doing something dumb, I had this crazy eyed knock it off stare I’d do…. which was nearly all the time because 7th graders are constantly doing dumb shit.

3. What was your favorite thing to do at recess? When I was really young, the thing to do was Chinese jump rope and I was among the girls who kept the trend going the longest at school… Later on, the thing to do was hang out on the swings or hang out underneath the big slide talking.

4. What did you want to be when you grew up? I felt like I never had a definitive answer for this… Though, I have a memory of being about five and sitting on the steps up to the porch watching the guy who was replacing our electrical meter and he asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up and I said a plastic surgeon to which he replied “Oh… That’s interesting. Why do you want to be one of those?” and I said, “Because I think doing surgery on plastic would be interesting!” I obviously had no idea what that was other than the words plastic and surgery sounded good together.

5. What was your favorite toy? I had a stuffed rabbit named Megan that had a plastic face that I chewed right off. I brought her everywhere.

6. What is the funniest thing you did as a kid that your parents still remind you about? Apparently there was an incident when I was around 3 years old where my mother had brought my grandmother and I out to lunch and we were sitting in a booth and somehow I managed to knock over my orange juice and then proceeded to stand up in the booth, look at the table scowling and while wringing my little hands out muttered, “Stupid! Stupid! Stupid!”