Back From Hiatus (or, How I Spent My Summer Vacation)

I know it’s been a long time since I’ve done a blog entry. You faithful readers have probably forgotten about me. It’s such a gift to be able to write and I do enjoy it, but I’ve been so busy. I had a baby. Ok. My daughter had a baby – but really, that means, everyone around her had a baby too. It takes a village, y’know.

So since then I have been unable to actually put words together to form sentences. I speak to a toddler all day. I take care of this sweetie three days a week, 10 hours a day. All by myself. Nobody else. Just him and me. I spend the day making sure this new human being not only survives the day but is entertained, educated and loved. My apartment looks like it’s been ransacked, books on the kitchen floor, bowls and kitchen utensils in the living room. And that’s after I’ve just picked up. You can see where this is going. After a day of running around the house, back and forth, up stairs and down, crawling under the couch for the 5th time to retrieve something he’s tossed under there (because it’s soooo funny to watch grandma try and reach it), I’m ready for that cocktail when mommy gets home. Bedtime is now 10:00. I’ve heard there are people, nobody I know of course, who will sometimes fall into bed at 9:30 after a day of babysitting. Again, no one I know.

My ability to wander through the streets of New York City discovering something quirky to write about is greatly curtailed. I can still meander about, but it’s not the same. My walks now are to Storytime at the library. My former life – getting up every morning with no plan but to wander and discover the city, not to mention my exciting background work in movies and television – those days are over for now. So long Mrs. Maisel, I have a real job now! No time to sit around at my computer (besides, my brain is mush, I haven’t put a grown-up thought together in 2 years.) How do I describe my day: Poopy diapers, singing, making lunch and dinner, which he may or may not like, going to the park, reading the same book over and over again, playing “Where’s your belly button?” If you don’t have kids, you can’t get it. Cuz this is all so amazing! A new person is here, someone who didn’t exist a couple years ago! A most delightful person who loves to laugh and play and cuddle (minimally, slightly more than the cat), and dance to his favorite Harry Belafonte song (“Jump In The Line.”) A person with limitless energy and lots of love.

Giving the cat some love. Kitty is super excited.

This job is only for the robust. Following a fast-toddling 16-month old through the house is exhausting and your eyes can’t wander for a second. There are stray cat treats to be picked up and eaten. I have to carefully examine my apartment before he comes upstairs to make sure there are no choke-able objects on the floor. Soon the ‘everything goes into my mouth’ stage will be over, and we can breathe a sigh of relief before moving on to the next stage, The Terrible Twos.

No, not going to change the name of this blog to a ‘How to be the Perfect Grandmother’ – tho, I admit humbly, I’m good at this. I really hope to get back to sporadic grousing and discovery, even if it’s just jotting down a few notes as I get into bed before drifting off at 10:01.

Gradica Ristorante

Gradica Ristorate

Sweet little restaurant tucked away on West 13th in Greenwich Village. It looks so inviting, and I love the pink chairs. I’ve never been here. Across the street was a cozy bar and restaurant where a friend and I would meet up. White tablecloths, intimate, mostly literary types so the conversation tended to be quiet and not boisterous. It closed one day, just like that. I’ll really miss it. I guess next time we meet up we’ll go to Gradisca Ristorante.

Clowns Among Us

 

The news is making me crazy lately. Apparently it’s affecting other people too, because lately I see a lot of women dressed as clowns. At least I think they’re clowns, I can’t be sure. They seem self assured and they don’t have clown hair, but there’s something about them…it’s a fashion thing.

I remember in the 60’s, our bell bottom pants were so long they’d get caught underneath our platform shoes, causing some nasty headers (not that I would know.) The new clown lady bell bottoms are very, very – extremely – wide, and they’re short. It’s rude to stare, which is why I always wear sunglasses on the train. I saw one of the clowns yesterday. She was standing, as the train was crowded, which gave me a perfect vantage point. Even the most delicate and beautiful ankle appears scrawny and pale in these short, billowy trousers. And insult to injury, they’re always paired with ankle boots or even dress pumps. If these pants could talk they’d scream, “This is just wrong!” Do I sound old and crotchety?

There are so many, um..unusual ways of dressing here in New York. That’s a great thing about this city. Seventh Avenue (Fashion Ave) is right here. I see hundreds of people every day, and I do appreciate self expression through personal attire, tho I mumble snarky stuff (to myself) like, ‘geez, what the hell is that?!’ which old people have been saying forever. I bet Aristotle muttered about kids and the provocative drape of their garments. Every year, new, totally unaffordable and unwearable fashions are paraded out and we (and by we I mean women) toss last year’s Salmon Bisque Pink for this year’s Kelp Green because someone on 7th Avenue said so. And being the age I am, I’ve seen a lot of fashion comings and goings: shoulder pads, leg warmers, fanny packs, Qiana. They all come back again. (Tho I’m skeptical about a return of Qiana.)

No one would mistake me for a fashion icon. I wear stuff I had in high school – and I’m old. I was afraid of the New York fashion scene when I arrived here a couple years ago. I thought the whole city would be totally tricked out, but that’s not the case. You can find everything here, but you don’t have to dress up and most people don’t. As long as it’s black, you’ll fit in. Due to my fortunate love of black and the fact that everything in my closet is black, I’m a real New Yorker.

I’d suggest this mumbling is probably because I don’t dress fun anymore and I really wish I could. I think when you’re over a certain age, you just look kind of nuts when you wear kooky clothes. Trends wax and wane, I will continue to stare and mumble, wearing my skinny black jeans when those in the know advise me to wear clown pants.Clown train B&W