Saturday, December 17, 2005

Washington Heights Dunkin' Donuts Part III

And, yet again, I found myself stymied by the phenomenon known as the WHDD vortex: where information provided to servers goes into a black hole, never to be seen again. Since I don't have any plans on breaking up with my boyfriend, I fear that the sequels will be many and mediocre, somewhat akin to the Friday the 13th or Nightmare on Elm Street series'.

Dunkin' Despair in the Heights

Today was an experiment in consistency. I tried to avoid the same developmentally disabled employee, but no amount of averting my gaze could erase the fact that I was next, and she was the server available.
"A large hazelnut latte, please."
[I'd like to note here that it seemed as though she read my lips, and considering that I'm pretty sure she doesn't know English, I found it a slight cause for concern.]
She goes to grab a cup, turns around questioningly. I repeat myself.

"Large hazelnut latte."
Finally the coworker who has a brain cell [and whom I suspect has thrown me knowingly, once again, to this imbecile, because she was able to take my order just a second before but wouldn't make eye contact] says something in what I believe is Spanish to my DDE. And no, I am not refering to Dwight D. Eisenhower. I wish. Latte making commences.
Coworker: "Would you like whipped cream?"
WHA??? I can have WHIPPED CREAM??? Why was I never presented with this option before? Oh, fie, FIE upon thee, Washington Heights Dunkin' Donuts!

So experiment performed with inconclusive results. Except for one. I am 3 for 3 in dissatisfaction.

Friday, December 16, 2005

According to CNN

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In other news: Dr. Evil wants his job back.

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Washington Heights Dunkin' Donuts Redux

So, once again I found myself testing my patience by ordering a Hazelnut Latte in the 'hood.

"Can I have a large hazelnut latte?"
"Hazelnut. Latte. Large."
"You want caramel?"
"How many sugars?"

A little better than last time, but man, I ALWAYS get the woman who clearly has no familiarity with fancy coffee drinks. Or English.

Monday, December 12, 2005

I'm famous!

In a fit of procrastination, I Googled myself last night and found out I was just mentioned in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

Pittsburgh on Broadway: A reunion at Times Square

Just so you don't have to waste your time reading the whole article, here is the pertinent bit:
Composer/director David Lenchus recited a roll call of Pittsburgh actors he's worked with, including Champlin, Christopher Hoch, Patricia Phillips and Brenda Bush, in his musical, "Poe"; Bush and Manu Narayan in "Chrysalis"; and Jason Carvell, Lori Faiella, Matthew Fletcher, Michael McEachran, Benjamin Moore and Cory Waletzko in Scott Sickles' "The Philosopher's Joke."

Sort of mad that I didn't know about the photo op, though. Probably could have been a good networking experience.

Who am I kidding? I'm such a wallflower.

Thursday, December 08, 2005

Maudlin Morning Mind Meandering

I should know better than to have "deep thoughts" before finishing my morning coffee, but it's just one of those things - once it's already happening, it's too late to prevent it.

On my way to set this morning I noticed that someone had strewn rice on the sidewalk. Perhaps as a "traction" measure for possible iciness (much like kitty litter). I don't know how effective it would be, but hey there it was.

Then I thought maybe it had been left out for the birds. Now, I had always been told you can't feed rice to birds because it will swell in their stomachs when it comes into contact with bodily fluids and cause the birds to explode. But I've also heard that is just a bunch of poppycock.

But then I thought, well, what about the birds in Asia, where the rice is grown. Do they not eat the rice? I thought that to be unlikely, but thinking of that led me to this.

As I walked to set, drinking my fancy Dunkin' Donuts Hazelnut Latte - and don't even get me started on how difficult it was to obtain that in the Washington Heights location
"How many sugars?"
"Uh, one?"
"Milk or cream?"
"What? It's a LATTE."
"Oh." (insert unintelligible muttering here between employees)
- I couldn't help but think about the people who must have farmed this rice, backs permanently bent, getting their few hours of listless sleep right now. People who could be just like me, only they were born to rice farmers in China. People with dreams and desires...people. For this rice, so easily bought in the store and tossed nonchalantly across the sidewalk so us poor New Yorkers wont slip, or worse, to fatten the pigeons.

It's strange how I can depress myself by thinking about how good I have it.

So let's look at a kitty, instead:

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Captive Caption Contest

I found the photo too irresistible. Of course I'll take all of the good ones...
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"Don't you make me turn this car around!"

"Why it says right here in Chapter 3, Subsection H of the Dictator's Guide to Genocide..."

"If the book doesn't fit..."

"Don't cry for me Argentina"

"This Book of Shadows is WORTHLESS without the Charmed Ones!

"What Would Harry Potter Do?"


The Gripes of Wrath

Two for the morning so far. Okay, maybe three.

Episode I - The Post Office

That's right, gentle readers, I made the mistake of ordering something and having it delivered via USPS. Now since I don't have a buzzer or intercom system on my building (an inconvenience that I believe is finally being rectified, because it just may be illegal), it is virtually impossible for me to receive anything when it is actually delivered unless they call me on the phone. Which the USPS is not going to do. And I would not want them to have my number. Ever.

Because I believe the USPS has a special method of finding it's employees. And by special method, I mean special. As in Ed. As in Special Ed. Because these people are not normal. And they clearly are not intelligent. Today's example:
"I don't even work over here."

Really? And how exactly is that more my problem than yours? Am I employed by the USPS? Am I responsible for your late coworkers? Perhaps, in fact, they're late because they're being delayed at some other lameass government agency where the employees have no incentive to provide good, if any, customer service whatsoever. I mean, where and to whom should we complain? Don't we pay their salaries through our taxes? In other words, aren't they accountable to the American people.

Which, as we well know, means they're accountable to no one.

And which leads me to the following statement, which I would never say about anything else: that mother fucking shit should be privatized.

I am not one of those people who thinks big business can do it better or that free markets are always the answer (health care, hello!), but in this instance I am moved to concede that only with competition will the postal service ever be able to mend its ways. When profit becomes the bottom line, lazy, inconsiderate and ill-skilled workers will be passed over for more competent counterparts. Not that they'll be perfect (take any fast food restaurant in the city for example). But they just HAVE to be an improvement. I mean, at this juncture, cardboard cutouts hitting the Staples "That Was Easy" button would be an improvement.

And the worse thing is that they have you by the balls AND THEY KNOW IT. So you can't start complaining, or saying things like, 'Lady, the post office has supposedly been open since 6:30am. It is now 8:30am. You mean to tell me that this is the first time you're noticing that 'No one's here yet'? And that I'm supposed to feel bad for you because you 'Just walked in'?" Because they have something that you need - that you can't get from anywhere else. YOUR PACKAGE. The item you already paid for. The parcel from Grandma. The letter from your LTR. So no matter how frustrating they are, or how incompetent, or rude, you just have to stand there and fume, add some cortisol to the layer of stress-induced belly fat, and probably take it out on some innocent bystander on the subway.

And don't even get me started on the way the mailman manages to mangle the mail while stuffing it into our mailbox. It's bestial.

Episode II - The Subway

Next stop, the A Train. Nothing wrong with the train. Don't get a seat at first, but that's fine, it's going express, it's moving, we're all good. Except for that bag in my hand. Which contains my lifeblood. A bag of hot mothers' milk.


I get a seat by 14th Street. Arrange my package at my feet, purse on lap, backpack still firmly planted on back. The bag is still in my hands, taunting me with wafting coffee aroma.

I look around. No one else has a beverage. I wait.

59th Street. Train clears out considerably - it's time for the longass express haul up to 125th Street. I remove the coffee from the bag. I look around, surreptitiously. Still I wait. I am a coward, but I convince myself that the coffee is probably still to hot to slurp comfortably.

125th Street. I decide that I'm going to risk it. I flip the top open and Oh! coffeeliciousness. I glance around guiltily, savoring the comforting blend of coffee, sugar and half and half. I wait for someone to try to deny my pleasure. In vain.

I exit the subway at 145 street, unticketed.


Yes, dear readers, apparently the MTA has finally decided to enforce the long-standing rule of "No Open Containers" on city subway trains or buses.

I emailed them last night to clarify this rule. I mean, what really constitutes as an open container. If I flip the lid tab up on my coffee does that count as it now being open? What if I have a travel mug? Is it only open when I'm sipping from it? What if it's one of those "no spill" mugs, what then?

What about water bottles? Only open if I'm drinking it or if the seal is broken? What about fountain sodas? Closed without straw, open with?

I think it's patently unfair that in these times when every entrance into the subway is taking a risk of not coming back out again that the MTA would choose to focus on something that is not only so petty, but also such a waste of resources. Yes, transit cops should be on the lookout for businessmen trying to perk themselves awake with some joe, instead of terrorists or rapists or muggers or thugs. Not.

Episode III - Location

Well, I was going to gripe about the fact that the heat still isn't fixed. But then production managed to score about space heaters. So it's cool. 1 for 3 though.

Monday, December 05, 2005

Baby, it's cold outside

For those of you who do not currently reside in New York, we're having a bit of a cold snap. As I left the apartment to walk to set today, I realized there was snow on the ground. Snow. Now since I didn't leave home all day yesterday (my only day off), it hit me as a surprise, because the forecast led me to believe we wouldn't see precip until Tuesday. But that's not what I wanted to talk about.

I get to set and after setting up, I begin to wonder why it's seems a tad bit chilly. I ask someone if the heat is on. I am then informed that it is once again not working and hasn't been since last night. And the super isn't coming until 3pm.

So it's 34 degrees outside right now. It's about 50 degrees inside. I am sitting indoors with a wool coat and hat on. I think I need to pull out my hair dryer.

I hate being cold.

Friday, December 02, 2005

"Get busy livin', or get busy dyin'."

Okay, I acknowledge that last night's post was a little self-pitying ("A little?!?" you scream). However, I do believe that there was a salient point to it, which is this.

I'm not getting any younger.

Which leads to the above title, a quote from Shawshank Redemption. Inside all my boo-hooing and self-loathing lies the central kernel of the actual problem: I'm not making anything happen. I'm not recording, I'm not writing, I'm not networking, I'm not jamming. I'm the one who's going around calling myself a "singer/songwriter" with nothing to back it up. No demo. No gigs. Just scribbled lyrics and music.

I mean, it's just plain embarrassing. I claim this is what I REALLY do, who I REALLY am. Make-up is just a day job, coordinating just a day job, a way to pay mama's rent.

But all I REALLY do consistently is complain and regret how much time is passing. And question when/if I'm ever going to get around to living the life I feel I was meant to. Or is life just going to be a series of day jobs, of treading water, of just getting by until one day I awaken, sit up in bed and wonder how I've become a total stranger to myself. If I even still remember who my self is at that point.

So, I know I better get busy livin'. I'm aware that this should happen.

Wanna take any bets on whether it will?

Music makes the people come together...not

So. I'm awake, upset and I need to be on set in 5 hours. Why awake? Because I'm upset. Why upset?

Because I'm never going to do anything that I dream of doing.

Wait, you say. Whoa, you spurt. What do you mean?

I mean that I am just a wannabe...actually, no, I'm worse than a wannabe...I'm a wannabe that's better than. In other words, I know that if I could just get my shit together (or perhaps, if I had gotten my shit together when I was hot enough to matter) I could be a real something and kick a lot of other people's asses.

Well, why upset then?


This is who I work with. She talks about being a "singer/songwriter" all the time. And even though I feel I could dance musical circles around her the point is that I haven't. And she's hotter than me. That, too. It's like, why do I even try.

And then I realize.

That's the problem.

I don't



So what the fuck am I living for.