April 18th, 2006


Full glass with a speck of empty

As mentioned previously, even when things are great I tend to fixate on that nagging negative thing. Come to think of it, that nagging negative thing I previously wrote about (and never explained) is still nagging, though not as strongly. It's a guarantee that whatever is bothering you will fade with time.

Back to the present, things are good, mainly in the "Wordplay" arena (and if you don't like hearing about the movie constantly, read someone else's blog). Late last night I chose my Tribeca ticket raffle winners. I listed the 24 entrants (who requested a total of 46 tickets) on Excel, assigned each a random number using the function RAND(x), and ordered the results.

The winners' list turned out to be about as balanced as it could get: a high school friend, my newlywed cousins, the head writer at Millionaire, an elementary school friend, and another ex-Millionaire writer. The numbers worked out perfectly. I notified the winners. I notified the larger list so they would know they were not the winners. Everyone was happy. People thanked me.

EXCEPT... When I sent out the original mailing, one recipient (a puzzler) apparently misunderstood and thought I had her on the list by mistake since she was well aware of the movie. I guess she missed the fact that there was a contest - where I was giving out tickets I bought with my OWN MONEY (well 4 of them were; one was free from IFC, and 2 I bought with Amex points). I guess I should have removed her from the list when I sent the follow-up today with results, because she wrote again asking to be removed from any future mailings on the topic.

Fine. I wrote a note apologizing and also pointing out that maybe she didn't notice the opportunity for FREE tickets. It got bounced, saying my address was blocked! Now this really miffed me, to be treated like a common spammer. I considered sending it again from an ISP I rarely use, or even buying another ticket and mailing it to her (the "kill 'em with kindness approach"). I did neither. This too shall pass. I'm sure she'll see the movie, just not on my dime.

My Amazon buyer still hasn't removed the negative rating, either.

Swag, limos...delusions: the REAL life of a movie star

Our swag experience has been skimpier than Bai Ling's outfits, but I forgot to mention that at the closing night Philly film fest party, we got a mesh bag from a health food store containing playing cards, mints, a pad of paper, and brochures for Philly tourist attractions. Cell phones, leather jackets, designer jewelry - feh, who needs them?

Since my taxes were done a week early (gasp!), I was free to spend my birthday...working! I went up to Westchester and spent the afternoon updating the database with at-home and online registrants. I was particularly finicky about pens, rejecting them for being too fine, too felt-tippy, too fine again. I ended up using a Marriott pen from my purse. The at-home puzzles are coming back fast and furious; be patient, they will be processed soon (I'm getting my helper on board).

Since it was my special day, we went to dinner at Mediterraneo, one of Pleasantville's finer dining establishments. I had clams casino (a tad messy, with little bits of topping not staying on the fork) and veal sorrentino (with eggplant and cheese) with fennel. I don't think I've had that dish since Buon Gusto in Great Neck. I got back to the city around 10.

The next day was Easter. Not my holiday.

On Monday, I got to the Times at 6 pm to work on Sunday's puzzle, as Will was headed for Dallas the next day. It was one of those stressful nights with everything going wrong. I can't figure out the Style section printers; what used to work perfectly well now is temperamental. Of course, after I called tech support, my non-printed items with postscript errors all suddenly decided to print. The puzzle itself also had Across Lite issues I still need to resolve, and one of the Acrostic clues was too long (Mikey confirmed the Java program doesn't like long clues). I left almost 10 pm, and that was just Sunday's puzzles. Dailies won't come until Wednesday night.

This morning I was awakened by a phone call from Patrick. "You're in the New York Times!" WHAT?? It was a Tribeca insert containing a full-page ad with the new poster. He kiddingly told me I was wearing a tuxedo. No sooner did I hear that when I went online to find a note from ex-coworker Marcus (the dudest DUDE of all dudes): "Gurl, I just saw your movie poster. Right On !!!!" with a link to www.chud.com.

It's cute. No trace of the unfortunate depilatory accident. But I'm focusing on my dress which is bunched up and could use a good tug. Eek. Weren't there any pictures where the dress hung properly? Oh well, maybe Oprah will be moved to give me a makeover. Credits: necklace from Nana collection of fine jewels, dress by Ms. Choice petite from Lina collection of fine couture, shoes by Fabio Rusconi from Shoe Inn warehouse sale.

I headed downtown to pick up my Tribeca tickets. Downtown might as well be in Philadelphia; it's another city. On the map the ticket office looked very close to the Canal A/C stop. I got off and headed up 6th past the game show runthrough building from last summer, but didn't see Laight St. after 3 blocks. I crossed over to Varick and headed down, hoping Laight would appear. I finally saw a sign for Tribeca Cinemas, and the ticket office was next door. My Daytimer pass was brought out, complete with the photo I E-mailed. I also picked up my other tickets, all "Wordplay." The 2 paid for with Amex points went through, but they claimed the other 4 had already been printed out. Impossible. They finally gave me my tickets after conferring with someone in the back. Of course I told them I was IN the movie. "Oh, are you an actress?" NO!!! "Actress" has never been something I could do (I got a rare C in junior high Speech class), and here I am in a movie.

I headed back uptown, getting off at West 4th just to buy the NYT at a newsstand on the platform. Wow, look at that, a full page. Then to the post office and supermarket. I arrived home to find a message from AOL that my inbox exceeded 1000 and would no longer accept mail; I cleaned out the junk to get it down to 700. Now I'm wondering what I missed. If you sent mail that bounced, send it again!

Tomorrow's agenda: NYT dailies, Uptown puzzles, laundry.