It starts out simply enough when someone also from NYC asks you quite tepidly “so, how was LA?” The way they even say LA “Ellll-aaaaaayyyyhhhh” implies that they have probably never been, but having lived in New York, The City, they have to hate it, lest The City overhears you saying such horrors and you go home and suddenly there is a roach farm in your apartment (you’re welcome!).
The problem when you’re honest to a fault and you don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings, but lying makes you feel like your insides are squishy and melty and not in a good way (can that ever be construed as a “good way” to feel?). So you start out slow:
“It was…good. It’s SO different from New York.”
“Oh yeah, I bet!”
“…and I mean, the driving! It’s so weird to have to…drive places. I hate that the don’t have a good public transportation infrastructure.”
“Yeah that is so unfortunate!”
“But, I mean, you know, I had a good time.”
“Oh, that’s good.” (They’re getting nervous.)
(Your tone gets hushed) “You know how they say you’re either a New York person, or an LA person?”
(They wince, hoping you’re not going to say what they’re afraid you’re going to say) “ha, yeah, I’ve…heard that.”
“I mean I don’t think I AM a LA person, per se, but I mean, I didn’t hate it. They’re just so different!”
“Like apples and oranges—you really can’t compare the two!”
“But I suppose I can understand the appeal…”
“—For other people, I mean!”
“I mean, if I had to, like, LIVE there, or something, I mean, I could deal.”
“…Not like I would do that by choice though! You know!”
“But, I would adjust. It would just be so expensive.”
“Yeah! Having a car!”
“But, you know, it was fun. I really enjoyed myself. I liked Silver Lake & West Hollywood.”
“I’ve heard it’s fun there…”
“Yeah, totally fun. I just wish there was a subway!”
“The subway’s the best!”
“…Yeah. But it was nice. Good to experience something different.”
“Yeah, I bet.”
(laughter to cover up the truth) “But it’s funny how really everything I want to do pretty much just exists out there which means eventually I’ll probably have to move out there! Which is so weird! You know?!” (more awkward laughter.)
“But, you know. No subway! It’s so hard!”
(We both awkwardly, nervously laugh.)
Today I traveled home next to a merry band of The World’s Worst Friends.
Maybe you’re thinking this is hyperbolic, since, you know, I haven’t seen these friends kills their friends babies or anything. And you would be right! But, they also said some of the most ridiculous things on the 25-minute travel time from West 4th street to 124th, so, you know, I have to share the choice bits.
Also, I can promise this was said with total sincerity—I am fluent in sarcasm and there was totally none of that here. I can 1000000% assure you I would even bet my 401K on it.
It started out simply enough. ”It is so hard to house people for visits.” Which, while a bit harsh, can sometimes be true—especially depending on the friend. ”Houseguests are always so selfish!” OK, I thought, maybe they just have shitty friends. That’s their own fault then, whatever. I continued to play my little fake-Bejeweled game on my phone, still listening though because Dude 1 (it was 2 dudes and a gal—Dude 1 & the Lady were boyfriend & girlfriend. Dude 2 was just…hangin’?) had a seriously BOOMING voice, so I couldn’t avoid it.
Then shit started getting weird slash absurd. The girl chimes in “Yeah, like, they’re always wanting to talk to you about their day.”
EEERRRRRRRREEEEEEEEECCCCCCSHHHHKKK!!!! (Look! That’s my verbal interpretation of screeching breaks against tires!) Stop the wheels. Wait…what? Since when is trying to engage in conversation with your supposed friends about your day…selfish? Plus, you’re staying with the person in their home—how fucking weird would it be if you just hid from them the whole time and didn’t talk to them? Wouldn’t that be the more selfish option? Sitting around in their house and not talking to them? Right?
But Dude 1 elaborates (after Dude 2 laughs and goes “Oh man totally!”), “Yeah, and like, they want to tell you what they did and it’s just like, …dude, I don’t care! Why would I care about what you did? Why do I have to now entertain you and this conversation for 5 minutes?”
I mean, totally, dude! Talking to your friends—how selfish they are to want to talk to you! I mean, I hate it when my friends try to engage in friendly conversation when I see them—what DICKS they are! Don’t they see I’d rather just sit here in total silence and pout and pretend their lives don’t exist? GOSH!
I’m going to go ahead and invite their friends to stay at my house from now on. Because I totally love talking to people about their days and engaging in my friends lives. I guess that makes me a douchebag-enabler, then, huh?
I have a really intense desire to vomit right now.
Now that might be from all the dumplings I just ate for dinner because I am an adult now and I can do things like eat all of the dumplings for dinner and then feel crappy about it afterwards, but it might also be because I’m coming into that age and time when we really, actually, all start becoming adults for real. Well, at least, my friends are.
Like, really. They’re dating people, and not just in that “we suck face when we’re drunk sometimes” sorta way. Like, they’re moving in together and people are buying other people really fancy rings. And none of them have been mood rings. Not one! I even heard one friend talking about moving somewhere because it’s “in a good school district” and they’re not just more forward-thinking Billy Madison types, but adult people that WANT TO HAVE BABIES. And want their babies to get really well-educated!
Oh my god!
These friends can’t go out and spend 40 stupid dollars on overpriced cocktails or hoards of beer and sangria at a dive bar, where we talk about how adult we perceive ourselves to be, even though we lack any serious responsibility, and have entry-level jobs with enough downtime to regularly tweet or update Facebook or search Eater for the greatest restaurant we have to try this week. Sometimes, we’d even be drunk enough to rationalize a $20 cab ride home. And all on a Tuesday! A TUESDAY!
No, those friends are now “saving money” and “bringing lunch to work” because they want to buy a house someday or at least (in more normal New Yorky terms) rent somewhere that doesn’t involve precarious neighbor situations and might have a patio.
These friends are also getting really into their significant others, and picking out the perfectly coordinating lamps and curtains rather than “which tapestry says ‘I am a serious adult ladyperson, tee-hee’ rather than the ‘this shit looked awesome when I was stoned in college’ look” of years past.
Friends who before you could call on a whim to talk about nothing or how funny Richard Lawson’s recent RHoWhatever recap was on Gawker, or to analyze this week’s episode of the Bachelorette, or to catch that really shitty movie neither of you wants to publicly admit you totally want to see…now can’t talk about those things because they have to DVR their favorite shows or catch up on their RSS feeds because they’re busy doing things like spring cleaning or learning a craft or spending “quality time” with their boyfriend and/or girlfriend and/or some book that will educate them into graduate school.
Sometimes, they’re becoming DOMESTIC GODS AND/OR GODDESSES!
See where all the vomit is coming from?
OK, so like, am I the only 25 year old broad in this city who still giggles at the word broad, would prefer to drink out at bars on the weeknights, swear they’ll be single forever, and do stupid reckless shit because it’ll make for a great story later? More worried about their twitter character count than their savings account? Who still thinks it’s a better life decision to kiss that musician-probably-douchebag fun guy on the mouth rather than the sensibly-dressed vanilla dude who works at a hedge fund?
Because, like, I typically consider myself a pretty neurotic, worry-wart of a person that can sometimes feel like the most adult of the bunch. But right now all my friends are making me feel straight up adolescent, care-free & stupid. What happened? Since when does putting your naughty bits together in a long-term, monogamous way mean you’re more adult than I am? Is it because I think it’s hilarious to watch episodes of “Ghost Adventures” and laugh at Zach Bagan’s never-ending supply of Ed Hardy and “demonic” feelings?
But maybe I’m just wrong about everything and it really is just the dumplings.
So Fashion’s Night Out is tomorrow night. Last year Chelsea & I went and had a blast. Being around that time again reminds me of how much fun we had, but also of the adorable Brit named David who I am still sort of kicking myself that we didn’t get to hang out more. Our encounter was probably my ballsiest (craziest?) girl moment to date.
(So, quick recap for anyone who cares) After things finish up with FNO around midnight, Sarah, Chelsea & I decide to go to the Standard Beer Garden down next to DVF’s shop. As we’re waiting to get in, we get chatted up by two adorable British boys here on holiday (holiday! so quaint). I—since I’m with my very cute roommate and model friend—immediately assume the “funny friend winglady” position because I was sure they were only interested in the other two (I mean, come on, they immediately pegged Sarah as a model about 3 minutes into our conversation). Anyway, I ended up really hitting it off with David, and when Chelsea went off on a quest for a hot dog (damn you, Chelsea!), and Sarah for a cab, we parted ways but said we’d meet up with them at another place. David did one of those arm squeeze/stare things to me after we hugged goodbye and said he really hoped he’d see me again. I had a moment where I wasn’t sure how I should take that, and after explaining it to Chelsea, she was dead set on us going back to that club and meeting up with the boys (hot dog aside, she is the ultimate winglady). So we head over and—wouldn’t you know! We were, unfortunately, in the MPD—there’s this stupidly expensive cover just to get in the door. And they weren’t having any of it with us as we clearly did not look like the big spender/club types. Chelsea even offered to have the body guard come in with her to find the two boys, but they were all like “oh hell to the no.” Our plan at that point had been to at least invite them out with us later. But, money being what it is these days, we went home, sans closure with the Brits.
But wait! The internet exists! So there we are, in all our girls-of-modern-convenience glory, facebook stalking on Chelsea’s iphone in the cab home. However, David does not have facebook, and the other boy (who’s name escapes me) is not traceable given what we knew. We were sure it was over.
…and the next day at work is when I had my crazy-ass, ballsy lady moment. I remembered that they were staying at the Dream Hotel, a random mention they made when we were talking. David’s friend had a very Indian name, so I was sure that my chances were good that he would be the only one with that name at the hotel. So I decide to write David a note, telling him how much fun we had and inviting them out to Brooklyn that weekend for Chelsea’s party. After hemming and hawing over the idea, I told my boss and she was ALL ABOUT IT & even walked with me up to the hotel (it is semi-near my office) and give the note to the concierge on the off-chance they would take it.
The walk was maybe the longest one I’ve had in this city. Also a black cab drove by and so of course Dagmar (my boss) was all “it’s fate!!” and we laughed. I was so nervous that we would awkwardly bump into them at the hotel and have a total Liz Lemon moment, but thank goodness they were out doing normal things like NOT lurking in hotel lobbies. ahem. So after a bit of begging the concierge looks them up by David’s friend’s first name, and wouldn’t you know he was the only one! I leave the note with him with instructions to have someone bring it up that day.
…the only problem being they didn’t bring it up that day (jerks)! I was convinced they got the note, freaked out over how creepy and stalkery I was, and left it at that as a story to tell to all their mates (mates!) back in London.
…only on that following Tuesday I got a call from David from his cell phone! They had just gotten the note as they checked out and he was gutted (gutted!) that he never got a chance to hang out more. We had a nice chat for awhile with the intention of “well, keep in touch!” at the outro, and I fluttered about over that for the next few days until it sort of fell off my radar/I became more and more convinced it would be a terrible idea for me to text him or call him afterwards because I am a chickenshit. Dagmar was maybe more excited that the whole thing essentially worked than I was. It was hilarious re-telling her the story.
So now, a year later, it is STILL the ballsiest thing I’ve ever done to get a boy’s attention (I realize that is probably a very good thing, considering). And being that it is FNO again I was reminded of it. Part of me regrets that we didn’t keep in touch (since we know that snogging (snogging!) probably wasn’t in the cards given the timeline), and wishes that he’ll just magically appear at whatever event I end up at tomorrow. He probably won’t, but still, wouldn’t that be such a story?
$3 million for this in the East Village? NBD, get ready for ROOFTOP & GARDEN PARTIES, Y’ALL!
home sweet Bowery.
I just have to say there is something incredibly invigorating, thought-provoking, and calming about walking 80 blocks (nearly 4.5 miles) home by yourself from Times Square through the Upper West Side into Harlem. Walking up parts of Columbus, Amsterdam, and Central Park West—even when surrounding and walking near probably hundreds of other people—I felt at ease, calm, and satisfied with the choice I made, even if my flats hurt my feet a little bit by 110th street.
I’m planning on doing this as often as possible as the weather gets nicer and holds up. Love, love, love this city. I fall in love with it all over again every single day.