My distant cousins from Edmonton and distant cousin the family historian were picking me up in a cab at 6:45 to go to the River Cafe. Since I had a little time and Jeffurry lives across the street from the theater, I suggested he come by, and we talked for a few minutes before the cab arrived.
I had never been to the River Cafe, just across the Brooklyn Bridge. It boasts a spectacular view of downtown Manhattan, and oozes elegance. The portions looked small in large plates, but I was full after porcini mushroom soup, a roll, salmon entree, and sorbet.
On Tuesday, I was too lazy to get to a movie and then it was time to meet my distant cousin (this time on my mother's side) at Symposium. I last saw her when she was a baby, and now she's about to graduate Barnard. If I were writing this closer to the event, I'd have more to say about both dinners.
Wednesday I went to my new job.
BEEP *#*%^%^&@)# WARNING DANGER *BLARING SIRENS* BEEP
Sorry, can't talk about it.
I will say: Is it unreasonable to demand a dog-free workplace? I think the pooch is only there once a week, but YEESH! I'm not allergic, just extremely scared and uncomfortable.
The undisclosed location is in the lower part of Manhattan, which to me is as unfamiliar as Philadelphia. On Thursday I got lost trying to walk to the West 4th St. stop and ended up at 14th and 8th Ave. Friday, coming from our other office, I had a hard time finding Canal. I need to study a map.
Due to all the work ahead as well as looming freelance deadlines, I'm stressed and fried. On Wednesday, I worked until 7:30, then worked at the Times until 10:30, cooked dinner at 11:30, and worked on at-homes until 2:30 a.m. I felt better the next few days as I made a dent in the pile, but it'll be a relentlessly busy month. Will is speaking out west, so we got another week of NYTs prepared yesterday and we're ahead (but won't be when he comes back).
I passed up the Tribeca fest while I was working (it didn't seem right to cut out early with, "Bye, going to a movie!"), and on Saturday decided to sleep instead of make a 10:30 a.m. movie. I immediately appreciated how nice it is to sleep late on weekends when you have to get up the rest of the week. I dragged myself up and out to the Kips Bay AMC for a 3pm showing of "Unstrung," a doc about junior boys' tennis and their Stamford at Kalamazoo. Engrossing, and it even had a nerdy character, who just when you thought it was overkill that he played high-level tennis AND did math problems for fun, he pulled out his violin. The director, producer, and former tennis star and mom of one of the subjects, Carling Bassett, spoke afterward. Given the movie's similarity to "Wordplay," it's not surprising I was recognized 3 times, starting with the people next to me ("Excuse me, weren't you in...").
Today I again slept in, missing a movie with Robert Downey Jr., who I hope was NOT at the Q&A or I'll feel really bad that I missed it. I was back at Kips Bay at 3 for "Hellfighters." Shockingly, of the 305 public high schools in New York City, only 43 have football teams - and none of them are in Harlem. This movie is about the scrappy Hellfighters team, established to allow kids from these unserved schools to play football. More interestingly, it's directed by our old pal Jon Frankel.
Who? Remember when "Nightline" did a piece on Stamford in 1999? Or as Uc called it, "_ightli_e," because it's missing an En. He was the announcer. Blue shirt. Good-looking. Very good-looking. I'm blaming the editorial decision not to include me on the producer and not on Jon. We liked Jon. And there he was, after the movie for the Q&A (as well as some of the football team, but this is about Jon). He's looking older, and he's now married with kids. Afterward, I had to walk directly past him to leave, but was too shy to say anything. Besides, he probably didn't remember me and what would I say: "Um, remember your 'Nightline' piece about the crossword tournament where I was left on the cutting room floor but then I won in 2001 and I was in 'Wordplay' - did you see it? - oh, and I enjoyed your movie."
8 movies seen
Daytime pass = $128 with AARP discount (normally $150)
Single tickets would = $143
So the AARP discount made the pass worthwhile, plus there's the convenience of not being locked in to specific movies. If I hadn't been working and were less lazy on weekends, I could have seen more, but I'm still glad I went.
I finished a few books:
"Sloppy Firsts" by Megan McCafferty. First of a teen series. Jessica Darling copes with the "clueless crew" in her high school and finds herself getting attached to the local bad boy.
"Bee Season" by Myla Goldberg. Ostensibly about spelling bees, it's more about dysfunctional family and spiritualism. Ultimately unsatisfying for me. Everyone was thinking too much. Less introspection, more spelling!