Monday, November 9, 2009

One Eyed Jackie

We looked at an apartment today.

Another apartment within our building. I guess our management really does have a soft side and feels guilty for renting us an apartment next to a bat shit crazy woman. Welcome to the neighborhood, suckers!

There are many pros and cons with the other apartment including less storage space but bigger kitchen. Smaller bathroom space but maybe some room for our dining room table in another area. Yada yada. I could go on and bore you but I won't.

The BEST pro of all is the free cat!!!

Yeah, you read that right. The girl that's moving out can't take her newly adopted kitty with her. The sole fact that the kitty was adopted and is now being brought back to the animal shelter is really heartbreaking to me. She's the cutest little thing (I played with her the whole time while Ben was planning out where our furniture should go. Whoops!). She's black and has a little white mark and oh yeah... she's missing an eye. Minor detail. But I actually think that it adds to her cuteness. Am I a weirdo for thinking that? Anyhow, if I could adopt her I'd name her One Eyed Jackie (she's a female, after all).

I've been begging Ben all night if we can keep her but he's not budging. Nevermind the fact that he has severe pet allergies - they were so bad at the apartment showing that he had to leave - but he is telling me that I should start slow with a turtle or fish first. He's explaining how I'd need to clean the litter box and what a big responsibility that would be for me. I am sad.

And in kind of related news, we found something out tonight that was truly disturbing. Our crazy neighbor had a kitty cat that was taken from her the second time she was hospitalized. Ben always thought it was weird that she named the cat a human's name. I didn't give it a second thought.

Tonight while we were seeing this apartment the woman tells us about her past experiences with our neighbor and that her ex-boyfriend "J" used to help her with things around her apartment.

Ben says, "Our crazy neighbors cat was named "J" too."

We both looked at one another and were like, NO WAY! We all started laughing and the woman says that she can't believe it and is calling her ex to tell him. I'm dying laughing because, Come On! this is weird shit! I mean, she's naming cats after men who have helped her in the building? Are we going to come to find out that she has a little dog named Ben hiding out in her apartment with her too?

That is just plain freaky!

And on that note, I bid you all goodnight.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Quote of the Day

It's 9am on a Friday and this is the conversation in the kithen at the office.

"I don't know about you but I'd drink a box of Bordeaux before I'd drink a bottle of Riesling."

Ain't that the truth!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

An October Update

So what have I been doing this month?

Running around with friends for cocktails after work, finally enjoying our quiet apartment, attending lots of dinner dates with other couples and celebrating my birthday.

But more than that, I've been eating. Like a lot. Massive amounts of food I tell you.

Last Friday we were invited to dinner with my friend Wendy and her husband. We tried a cute little restaurant over in Park Slope, Brooklyn. It's called Palo Santo and has some great Latin food. I ordered the grilled trout and also had a funky appetizer (of course, I can't remember the name now) but it was all very delicious and we topped the food with their homemade Sangria. Wendy and I were pumped to go out afterwards but the boys had work and school so it was a no-go.

Saturday night we were invited to a dinner party at Trattoria Cinque in Tribeca. My friend Rachel, a hometown friend, invited us to celebrate her boyfriend's birthday with 14 of his closest friends. It was so much fun and Rachel was a fabulous hostess (I took notes!). After dinner, she had the servers give everyone a glass of Champagne for a toast. The guest sitting next to me asked me for advice on what she should dress up as for a Halloween party she was attending. She had to dress as a music artist and sing one of their songs at this Karaoke Halloween shindig. I told her that Cher was too predictable but maybe Bonnie Tyler would work and then started singing...

"Turn around, every now and then I get a little bit lonely and you're never coming around..."

Well, let me tell you. All conversations stopped and the next thing I know the entire dinner party is belting Total Eclipse of the Heart to an obnoxious sound level. The birthday boy is slamming his water carafe on the table in time with the song. It was just one of those fun and ridiculous moments. And thank god it was past midnight and there were only a few guests at the bar.

Sunday we had dinner at my Italian class friend's apartment. Elena was so gracious and fabulous. Her husband made homemade pasta (for real) with a delicious bolognese sauce, a beautiful salad complete with candied walnuts and gorgonzola cheese (all from the farmer's market) and for dessert she popped out a puff pastry tart with apples and a brandy/brown sugar drizzle for the top. I was totally impressed and then thought, "Damn! We're gonna have to cater when they come to our apartment for dinner." Honestly, it was the most lovely pre-birthday dinner ever!

And then on the big day (Monday!!) Ben took me out to dinner at Boqueria in Soho for some tapas and delicious vino. We had such a nice night together and I was able to stare at Chef Seamus Mullen and ooh and ahh over him the entire dinner. He's such a great chef and is also competing for Iron Chef title right now. Good luck to him!

...and just to throw you for a loop, I went to dinner YET AGAIN on Tuesday evening with Ben and his father. We ate the freshest sushi ever at Kanoyama. It's my favorite sushi restaurant in all of Manhattan and possibly anywhere in the world (until I visit Japan).

Now I'm trying to eat salads for the rest of the week since I am visiting Florida this weekend. We all know how my parents love to force food down my throat like it's going out of style - Honey, why don't you just order the surf and turf? No! I just want a little something...I'm not that hungry. She'll have the surf and turf, thanks. - I have to eat sensibly this week because I might not be able to fit into my clothing come Friday and wouldn't that be embarrassing to arrive home wearing an oversized T shirt and sweatpants, am I right? Not to mention how unstylish that would look.

More stories to come. I haven't even touched on the 2009 NYC Food & Wine Festival two weekends ago.

We'll let all this digest first.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Accents & Leather Jackets

My friend Big Apple Angie invited me to grab a drink with her last Thursday at the John Varvatos Store at 315 Bowery. The super cool thing about this store is that it used to be the home of CBGB (Country Bluegrass and Blues – did you know that’s what it actually stands for?), a music club best known for its punk rock scene. The club propelled some of my favorite bands to stardom, among them Talking Heads, Ramones and Blondie.

After a quickie dinner and getting lost somewhere near Chinatown we finally made it to the Varvatos store. Angie didn’t have much information on the event, only that her friend’s husband was having a jam session at the store and that there would be free booze, both of which were fine with me. Free booze and live music = good time for Lex.

The place was packed. Apparently we didn’t get the “leather and lace” memo. I felt a bit out of place in my JCrew dress, Nanette Lepore coat dress, and gray booties. I do have a funky tragus piercing so that could have worked in my favor however, my office chic look was a tad misplaced and dominated what little coolness I possibly possessed that night. Womp womp womp…

Angie’s friend’s husband was lead singer/guitarist for a band called Slinky Vagabond. They played a lot of their original music but also gave a nod to Talking Heads with “Psycho Killer”, which was totally awesome! Their fans were made up of middle aged rockers going crazy to the music.

There were lots of models flitting about and accents and leather and Mohawks. Besides the fact that we felt like total dorks surrounded by so much punk fabulousness, we had a blast people watching, getting our punk rock on and those free whiskey lemonades weren’t too shabby either!

Thanks Ang for a rockin Thursday night!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

There's something about New York City in the Fall

All photographs are property of Lex and the City

Monday, September 21, 2009

Manic Monday

See what I did there?  I added a somewhat predictable title to this post but then I totally went for a bit of irony since my literally "manic" crazy cat lady neighbor started showing her tell-tale signs of mania today. 

After a peaceful week long break from the cat lady's antics, we are now back to smoky halls and crazy notes being posted in our apartment building.  And no, the cat lady was not on a fabulous week long trip to Bermuda or Bora Bora but visiting a hospital.  If today's note is any indicator, she will attempt to destroy our lives (and the landing outside of our front door) in T minus 5 days.


Creepy yet funny note on our shared bulletin board in lobby

You see, when I first moved into this apartment and the crazy cat lady neighbor was seemingly (kind of) normal, we had a conversation about the laundry room.  She told me to be careful of leaving anything in the dryer because there was a person who stole ladies undergarments.  I can't believe I actually believed her and thought some sick bastard really took peoples underwear out of the wash.  How sick.  And how gullible of me.

I laughed so hard when I saw this note after work today.  I was laughing all the way up to the my front door.  I walked in the door hunched over and squealing with laughter when Ben asked me, "Did you find her underwear and put them on her door?" and I lost it again.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

The Crazy Cat Lady Chronicles - A Preface

I still remember how big a pain in the ass our move was.  I mean, it was only a month and a half ago.  How could I forget?  Finding the perfect apartment in Manhattan can be difficult but fortunately for us that part was the easiest.  The pain, sweat and some tears (mine, of course) were the result of moving 30 plus boxes 30 blocks south in a five hour time frame for hundreds of dollars.  

The unpacking of these boxes was most unpleasant.  Due to our downsizing of square footage (we traded 650 sf for approx 475 sf), we had to unpack all the boxes before we were even able to assemble our dining room table.  Chairs were stacked on chairs in the kitchen.  Pots and pans were placed on our bed and the apartment was so tight that I must have banged my shins into the sharp corner of our bed 10x that first week.  Ah, city livin'.

Once we found homes for all of our joint belongings, we were excited to begin hanging up paintings and start on a few home projects.  Please note, our building is almost 100 years old so when I say there are a few home projects to start, I mean there are quite a bit of home improvements that can be made.  Like ten thousand of them.  The place does have potential though and the most charming little kitchen (I promise to post pics when all is perfect).

We met a few young neighbors during our first week in our cute apartment and a few grumpy old ones as well.  Our next door neighbor - let's call her Ms. C - was extremely chatty and friendly that first week.  Ms. C would knock on our door every time she heard us walk into our apartment and chat with us or ask us for a favor.  Maybe some help lifting a heavy bag of kitty litter out of her shopping cart or maybe she needed someone to help her bring a table down the elevator for her weekend stoop sale.  

Although I started to find Ms. C to be extremely annoying and a bit rude and pessimistic - especially when she pointed out they did a shitty job in cleaning and refurbishing my wood floors compared to her beautiful and shiny wood floors and Hey! why don't you take a look for yourself - Ben couldn't say "NO" to her.

Who would have thought that being nice to a lonely lady with a cute little red kitten could have turned into a literal shitshow?  And who would have known that the scary notes that were taped in our hallway over the next few weeks and the debris and trash that would be scattered on our doorstep weren't cryptic messages meant to scare us but part of a "manic" phase of bipolar disorder?

Because I gotta tell you, I didn't figure any of that out until we were already knee deep in this shit*. 

*Pun definitely intended