Just Swell

A guy on the train and I are flirting madly. We’re having fun, but I know it’s not going anywhere. As time draws near to when I’m about ready to leave, I let him down slowly with a contrasting statement.

“How is it this not enough, yet too much?’

“Because you can’t do what I do.”

“Like what?”

We’d been conversing for a while; I knew I was deep in his head space. I arch a brow, slowly tilting my head back and to the side, as I even more slowly lick the inside of my lower lip before pursing them and then wait as he watches me. His response is near instantaneous and far too easy.

His pupils dilate and breath catches a little.

A vein near his jaw starts to pulse rapidly.

A hand reaches up to rub the back of his neck in nervous curiosity. He realizes what he is doing and quickly brings his hand down.

I know my smile turns into a slow, but teasing grin. Like I said, too easy.

“How  – I don’t even know what to call it – what is it you do?”

“Apparently manipulate sympathetic divisional responses in your autonomic ganglia.” I grin, mostly to myself, for I absolutely adore the times when I can successfully reel off such information at a moment’s notice as though it were pedestrian conversation filler.

“My what?”

Luckily, the train pulls into my station, so I stand and head to the door.

“Sorry, not telling, a woman has to have her secrets.” I wink exiting. At least I left him with a smile and tumescence.




Let’s see how others are slicing through this Tuesday:

10th Annual Slice of Life Story Challenge! – DAY 21

Loving View of You

He has learned to love himself through “her” eyes, and through the eyes of others. To believe he is worthy not because he himself thinks he’s worthy, but because they say so. He searches for himself in how they view him, but he forgets that when she leaves, when they leave, all leave with their views as well – so what’s left of him then?

She has to unlearn that peace with Self in never going to be in the desires of yet another lover’s eyes. She has to unlearned that love is physical, that she has to be touched by another for love to be felt.  She does not know how to fall in love with the soul and mind of another, let alone her own self, thus she forgets her body’s worth. She has not learned the power of loving her own self, loving her own company.

When we are  looking for others to complete our sense of self, we fail to realize, we will never be complete unless you are within ourselves. We have to unlearn searching  for ourselves in the eyes of our parents, especially the absent parent – whether physically, but especially the emotionally one/s. We become adults and eventually move out of caretakers physical grasp, but the psychological ties, good and bad, bind so much longer. What parts are who you are, and what are who they say you are?

We continue giving valuable pieces of ourselves to the wrong people; they will continue to leave us feeling empty, and yet we continue to look to these same people to fill these holes. Being lonely is no excuse. We need to understand the difference between compromise and settling for less, to believe that it is not okay to lower our standards, mediocre is not good enough.

There’s a reason the phrase “I can do bad all by myself” exists. Because the people we let into our lives – not colleagues or families, as we often have little to no choice over them – I speak of the remaining that we let into our lives, is a reflection of what’s outside of us, and that reflection should always be of something good. They reflect how we choose to see what is outside of us, they can never destroy the core within us, we you don’t let it.

Stop looking for a partner...

We get trapped in the stresses of trying to live up to impossible perfection. We subconsciously learn  that to be in any way flawed is an offence. We try to fit into these images created by others and forget how to simply be ourselves. We forget the power we have within ourselves, to love ourselves first.

To love ourselves, first. When we do that. everything falls into alignment.

Writing Our Lives #52essays2017 Challenge – Week 12


A year-long weekly personal essay/memoir/creative nonfiction writing challenge. To learn more about this challenge or to participate, check out Vanessa Martir’s website and learn about it.


It’s Lamb Time!

Spring equinox 2017 in the Northern Hemisphere will be at 6:28 AM on Monday, March 20 EST

I cannot lie, with the exception of the previous week, Winter 2016 has been relatively mild temperature wise. Granted there will be a couple more fights twixt lion and lamb for the next few weeks before we really feel like spring in our bones, but boy I am very happy to officially be on this side of the equinox at last.

Central Park Promenade in early spring

Central Park Promenade 1st Day of Spring 2016

Like most seasons some signs of spring appear before the calendar states such. The days are noticeably longer, grass has started to show its first shoots – though last week’s snow storm may have done a number on them, any day now I expect the landscapers by my job to start planting their annual tulip bulbs, there’s even the tiniest hint of what will be buds on the cherry blossom trees. Starbucks have the new coffee cup sleeves for spring and the annual joking, but not funny memes requesting people to please, for the love of all that’s holy, please get pedicures before breaking out the strappy sandals. Ahh spring!

To all of my southern hemisphere people, now entering autumnal equinox: may your coming winter be even more gentle than our past one. And please take time for Hygge.




Let’s see how others are getting through their First Day of Equinox:

10th Annual Slice of Life Story Challenge! – DAY 20


Most Facebook like me know about its On This Day feature. On This Day displays anything you’ve posted  post on your own page from previous years.  As an avid, I almost typed rabid – pretty close, Facebook user of eight years it is now rare to come across any given day that does not have at least four entries.

For the most part it’s a lovely trip down memory lane. All the jokes, the quips and memes, blog posts that I’ve chosen to share bringing memories. The only  major downside is a bittersweet revisit when I come across where I’ve posted on someone who has left this realm – a loved one, a friend or a favored celebrity. One can choose to delete the any upsetting posts to avoid such in the future revisits, but I do not delete mine. I feel if I deemed it important enough to post in the first place, then I should live with it. After all I’ve have learned the hard way everything heals with time. And speaking of avored celebrity  RIP Chuck Berry – who left us yesterday after 90 years and is now playing with his Ding-a-Ling for all eternity.

The other occasional downside is when I share something from another website —

photo of Facebook post Christopher Walken dancing

I click looking forward to revisiting the fun of it only to see–

screen capture of unavaiable video apology on youtube

— it gone. It’s not my content so I have no control over it when this happens. For the most part when someone else decides to delete the content or the site altogether – it’s gone. I have had posts where my only descriptor was “HAH!” and I’ll never know what was so funny on that date – now those I will delete as it serves no purpose to connect to a dead link. However, this is YouTube where there is almost always duplicates of everything – especially things that amuse and delight. In this case it is a compilation of scenes from movies in which Christopher Walken is dancing. It underlies with C+C Music Factory’s “Gonna Make You Sweat (Everybody Dance Now)” and I adore it. So I knew, KNEW there was no way there were not other posts of this out there, so – to the Google! My trust in this clip amusing others, as it does me, was valid. At least this is one dead post I can edit and keep the fun going.

And now for your and especially my own entertainment:

Christopher Walken Dance Now




Let’s see how others are getting through their Sunday:

10th Annual Slice of Life Story Challenge! – DAY 19

Old Feel In New Places

When I was looking for a new place, I had my priorities and I met all of them. With my needs met, it was only after I settled in there was one thing I did not consider. My local bar.

Because sometimes I don’t want to sit and have a drink or two alone in my place. Sometimes I want to pop over to the bar, have a few brews, watch a game and shoot breeze. But I don’t want to go all the way downtown or across town to do so. A friend introduced me to her good friend’s bar and it was a good fit then. It wasn’t walking distance local, I definitely needed car service to get home, but I made friends and acquaintances there and always felt welcomed there. Since I moved I’ve missed that. I am much further away now, so getting there and back home is not as easy. While I still so  pop over there now and again – I know it will not be as often.Thus, I started considering half-heartedly looking for a watering hole closer to where I live now.

A couple of months ago I noticed this bar where I transferred from the subway to the bus on daily commute, Bar 180. Usually I only notice it from across the street as I am waiting for said bus, but I knew it was there.  Earlier last month I made myself pass directly in front of it one evening, taking a peek inside the window. Dark, but inviting, a touch modern with it white marble main bar top. It was early in the week, but there were enough customers to not look empty. It looked promising, but I was tired that night and really just wanted to go home. I considered the options. If I like the place it was closer to home travel wise and I would have a choice of bus or cab depending on when I left, which I did not have before. It really could not have been more convenient short of it actually being within walking distance of my place. So I told myself I really should stop in and check it out one evening. Last night as I was walking to my bus bright green balloons caught my attention. It was St. Patrick’s Day – of course! What better day to check out a bar?

I arrived at a good time, it was not yet crowded I was easily able to get a stool at the end of the bar. The first tender was a cutie, his professional greeting smile in place as I ordered a Guinness to start; it was St. Paddy’s Day after all. I started removing my coat, revealing the kelly green and orange colors of the day while I checked the place out. Main bar along one wall, a mix of bar height and standard tables and seating throughout to the glass paned walls facing the streets. Dark and medium woods, contrasted with metal trims and mirrors gave the place a nice cosy, but not cramped feel even as the place filled-up. A bright white full size bicycle was perched high up on one wall, in a corner, was an attention getter. My two favorite things so far 1- the ladies room was on the main floor, no wobbling down stairs to a basement bathroom, especially when wearing heels – yes! 2- the custom chandelier above the main bar. A steam-punkish vibe, made up of at least twenty individual plumbing pipes hanging from the ceiling in various odd angles terminating in Edison bulbs. The bronze-burnished pipes, with the sepia bulbs contrasted beautifully with the ceiling.

A listing of what was on tap, plus their standards appeared. They had a really nice selection of IPAs and a couple of ciders, plus their happy hour and St. Patrick’s Day special. The crew flowed in and out around the bar; a good camaraderie as they joked and teased each other as well as a few of the customers.  I don’t know who did their playlist, but the music was on point. Several of us, including the bartenders,  could not help but call out, raise our hands and glasses and bop our heads as various personal favorites came across the speakers. As I enjoyed my next Guinness, a small plastic bag appeared near my elbow. I smiled as I opened it, immediately donning the right green beads with the requisite shamrock bearing the Guinness logo – a fitting promotional swag for the holiday. A little tote bag just as mysteriously appeared, okay not so mysteriously as the promoter was standing there when it appeared by my hand, but hey.

The best part of the evening happened when a pretty blond asked if the stool next to me was empty and took a seat once I indicated it was. She clearly knew the bartenders and jumped right in as I teased one of the guys. One placed this pistachio ice cream green concoction before her and I was intrigued and asked for the same. It was a take on the classic vodka grasshopper, but with a little twist and tweak, it was so delish. As they had not come with a name for it, I promptly dubbed it the Irish Hopper  in honor of the day.


Irish Hopper

Charming and engaging she and I joked and chatted, learning we were both Virgos and adored Broadway  musicals. As I am still relatively new to the area, she told me about the good, okay and bad eateries. We spoke of our day jobs, and as it turned out, her side job was as a server at Bar 180, but it was her night off. She was there because her husband, the resident beer guy was working. That’s how she knew everyone there so well. It mattered not for all had did their respective jobs well and I was successfully charmed by Bar 180. I will never be any bar’s “Norm!”, but I do believe I have found a new local bar and that’s a good thing.

Edited to add: Lights!@For those who wanted to see them…




Let’s see how others are slicing up their Saturday.

10th Annual Slice of Life Story Challenge! – DAY 18

Erin Go Knock Knock

What’s black, green, orange and purple and impatient?

That would be me.

It’s Saint Patrick’s Day, I’m wearing my traditional kelly green, over orange tee shirt. Normally, I would wear this with a white suit to represent the colors green/white/orange of the flag of Ireland. However, though spring is mere days away by the calendar, the weather remains absolutely winter sucky. The streets are still slushy from Stella. The wearing of any kind of white was not happening, so I’m wearing black instead. And of course, for those who don’t already know, my hair is purple.  Yes, I’m being really subtle

As for the impatient – no it’s not to rush out of here and get my green beer going (ugh!).  My office floor is in the midst of a major floor renovation. The section where I sit was the first to be taken apart and worked on. As the partition wall is partially glass, it has a rather distracting bug under a magnifying glass feel. All day there has been a constant stream of colleagues from other areas on the floor, who have come walking around to get a good look at the finished product. I get it I do, as this will be their future as well, but it’s a cubicle – not a reinvention of the wheel.

As I said it was rather distracting, but this is me, always finding  a way to put my tongue firmly in cheek and snark things out.  The constriction guys left a portable line barrier off to the side in a room. They clearly forgot it was in the room as all other supplies have been moved to the next section.  So I decided to put it to good use.

click for full picture…

Yes, in a direct tribute to Les Nessman, the sign actually requests visitors to my cubicle to “Please Knock”. You’re as young as I am points to the first person who knows exactly where I got that from.

In the interim – unlike Erin – I’m not going braugh-less, but I am getting my Guinness on.

Happy Saint Patrick’s Day!!!




Let’s see how others are slicing up their St. Paddy’s Day:

10th Annual Slice of Life Story Challenge! – DAY 17

And I Think I’m Going Out Of My Head

My afternoon session over, I’m part joking around with a student and part mentally prepping for the next day’s training when my train of thought crashed spectacularly. It must have shown on my face.

Student: You okay?

Me: Yes. No. Tomorrow.

Student: Tomorrow?

Me: Yes, Tomorrow…

And this is what it sounds like when my brain fries

and tomorrow, and tomorrow, creeps in this petty…wait no, that Shakespeare, that’s not tomorrow… creeps in this petty pace from day to day… NO!..Tomorrow never dies……what about tomorrow?… To the last syllable of recorded time… what the ever loving fuck?! I’m having a damn Shakespearean earworm!! …pace from day to day…day by day, oh dear Lord three things I pray…wait. What? No! My mind is shot…arrows… suffer the slings and arrows…GOD DAMN IT WILLIE SHAKES!…arrows…shot through the heart and you’re to blame…NO!…I will burn the heart…I have been reliably informed that I don’t have one… Oh Sherlock…Moriarty…Mycroft Masada Holmes…dammit no… Mycroft and Sherlock…broken heart…playing Operation…operations?…YES! Office of Operations! That’s who is coming in for training tomorrow!…

The mystery of tomorrow solved, I sigh in relief returning to what I was doing.

It was the very amused expression on my student’s face that informed me that entire stream of unconsciousness had in fact occurred aloud.


For the record I referenced:
Shakespeare's "Macbeth” and “Hamlet“,
James Bond’s “Tomorrow Never Dies“,
Day By Day” from the musical “Godspell”,
Bon Jovi’s “You Give Love A Bad Name“,
From BBC’s “Sherlock”, the pool scene
A friend and fellow blogger whose name (Mycroft Masada Holmes) coincides with a character from the show and finally,
An operating scene from BBC’s “Sherlock”




At the halfway mark! Let’s see how others are slicing up their day:

10th Annual Slice of Life Story Challenge! – DAY 16

π In The Sky

So today  is March 14th; or as beloved by most math and food geeks National Pi/π/Pie Day. What is that? some may ask –

Pi Day - fruit pie with some of the mathematical numbers of π as its crust - Google.

Pi Day – fruit pie with some of the mathematical numbers of π as its crust – Google.

*clears throat and dons  instructor’s cap*
March 14 is Pi Day. It is a day to celebrate the mathematical constant pi (π) and to eat lots of pie. Celebrated in countries that follow the month/day (m/dd) date format, because the digits in the date, March 14 or 3/14, are the first three digits of π (3.14), Pi Day was founded by Physicist Larry Shaw in 1988.
*class dismissed – tosses instructor’s cap*

With my usual burst of planning ahead, I had the brilliant idea last night to go to the supermarket and get what I need to make a pie to bring to work in honor of  the day. This would be fine on a normal day, however, yesterday was anything but normal.

I had completely forgotten that the City was preparing for Winter Storm Stella. Predicted to possibly dump upwards of two feet of snow in the Northeast within a less than twenty-four hour timespan, it was going to be a big one, and we humans (mis?)behaved accordingly. Why is it whenever the word snowstorm appears in the forecast, people in the City raid their local market as though it is the end of the world? I understand those who live in further reaches where getting to the local store involves just shy of a snow mobile and when honestly could be days before you can did yourselves out to restock. I’m questioning the City dwellers like myself where most businesses are back in business, if they even close at all, within 24 to 48 max of a storm’s start.

People stock up stormy weather essentials. This almost always includes what my fellow blogger Arjeah humorously calls a French Toast Alert. The trifecta of bread, milk, eggs that is almost always the first things to fly off the shelves.

Empty shelves from the bread section of a supermarket - Flickr.

Empty shelves from the bread section of a supermarket – Flickr.

As I joked later, add cheese to the list and one could have French Toast in the morning, grilled cheese in the afternoon and, depending on what’s already in the fridge, make a frittata later. All of which is a semi moot point to my being at the market at the moment – after all I wanted were ingredients to make a pie, right? Right.

I walked into the supermarket and saw the lines at check-out stretching nearly the length of the store. That should have been a deterrent right there, but I am stubborn. It took a full half hour to navigate through the store to learn other than butter and milk, the two things I did not need to make a pie, everything else was g-o-n-e. No sweet potatoes, no apples, no cherries – fresh or *shudders* canned – could be found to save my life. I repeated this at two other supermarkets to no avail. I mean seriously people! Did half of the City decide to make pie on their expected snow day too? Alas, no pie to be made last night.

So here I sit, on National Pi/π/Pie Day – currently still without pie – but the day is yet young, I’ve time to remedy this.


Let’s see how others are slicing up their Pi/π/Pie Day:



10th Annual Slice of Life Story Challenge! – DAY 14

How I See It

Writers see the world differently. Every voice we hear, every face we see, every hand we touch, could become story fabric - Buffy Andrews

Ah Buffy, I do not know you, but oh how writely (<- not a mistake), you’ve nailed this. This reminded me of a conversation I once had with a friend on how a Facebook post I once wrote came to be in the manner it did. It came down as such.

When I see/hear any thing, it’s all a matter of part of me registers it first. Casual me sees things at one level, writer me see things at a different level and poet me let things resonate on another. Then there are the times when it all converges effortlessly as one.

Looking at the last of autumn leaves on my street is rendered as follows–

The casual me says:

The trees on the block were so pretty last week, now all the leaves are almost gone, it makes me sad. 

The writer me tomes:

A week ago, this tree-lined block was in full bloom of autumn colors. Now only few leaves are left on graying branches to testify to that erstwhile splendor. It’s near maudlin in my heart to compare.

The poet me pens:

Leaving memories 
Reflected in these gray tears
Golds and rubies fall

(PS: Yeah, I know not the best haiku, but hey, not all my two-second poems are going to be gems – shoot me)

And when they all came together in the Facebook status post in question:

There’s a tree-lined block I walk through almost daily. A week ago this block was awash in the vibrant hues of fall. Today gnarled gray fingers claw at pink cloud-dotted cerulean skies, desperate to hold on to their remaining gold and ruby jewels in the ever shortening daylight of mid-autumn. I watch one such topaz jewel lazily drift to its final resting place upon the concrete. It felt as if watching a tear fall.

The same eyes saw the same street, the same leaf, at the same moment, yet each part views it, and thus tells it, differently. Still, not matter how it’s seen/heard/felt…

Warning: I'm a writer. Anything you do or say may be used in a story.


Let’s see how others are slicing up their Monday:



10th Annual Slice of Life Story Challenge! – DAY 13