Monday, August 5, 2013

Hear No Evil

Every few months, I begin a blog post with an apology about how it's been so long since I've posted, blah blah blah. I'm just going to skip that and say that I have the perfect story to bring me out of retirement.

I started this blog when I moved into my first apartment in the city, a sublet on 4th Street and Avenue B, so I could share all of my crazy stories about living in New York with my faithful readers (I think I'm up to about 8 now). Well 2.5 years, three apartments and four roommates later, a crazy enough story occurred this morning that I'm reminded why I started blogging to begin with.

Good enough for Lenny Briscoe. Good enough for me.
My parents raised me to be a good girl and drink Dunkin' Donuts, but I'm truly partial to street coffee. I love those Law & Order cups and the bond you form with your street coffee guy. When you live in a big city, it's nice to have those places where you feel like a regular. It makes the city a little smaller.

Since my brother and I just moved to the Upper East Side three weeks ago, my commute has flip-flopped (now I'm traveling downtown in the morning and uptown in the evening, rather than vice versa). As a result, I have had to find a new street coffee guy. Most mornings I take the bus, and I love my new coffee guy (even though he keeps trying to sell me on ice coffee.. ain't got time for that shit). On mornings when I'm running late, though, I take the subway. On those days, I get my coffee from Abdel.

Today was one of those days.

Abdel is mid-thirties-ish with a goofy smile. Today he had a buddy in his cart with him. The friend was wearing a soccer jersey. I'm not sure if these details are important but I like to set the scene/be prepared for an FBI sketch artist.

I walk up to the cart, "Good morning, Abdel!" He says, "You're back!" We exchange pleasantries. As I am about to give him my order, a firetruck roars up the block with the siren wailing. It startled me, and I jumped a little and then signaled the universal "I'll wait for him to pass because neither of us can hear what I'm saying."

At which point, Abdel reached out through the window of the cart and put his fingers in my ears.

In my ears.

He didn't muff them. He plugged them.

Ok, that is a thing that happened today. A (pretty much) stranger put his fingers in my ears. And his friend, a soccer fan, watched.

Good to be back, folks! Don't forget to always ride the bus, and tip your street coffee guy/ear plugger.

Friday, March 15, 2013

That's a little forward, don't you think?

In November 2011, my dad and I got our first iPhones. As you know, my dad is not very tech savvy. The cell phone he had before he got his iPhone was so old that the antenna had broken off of it. That isn't an exaggeration. That is a fact... that is true... about his phone... in 2011. He was so overdue on phone upgrades that he got his iPhone 4S for free.

In fact, his camera-less flip phone with half an antenna was so old, they weren't even able to transfer over his SIM card, so he had to enter his contacts manually. I was home for Thanksgiving when we got our new phones, and I texted my cousin Eddie saying that my dad had an iPhone and this was bound to inspire a great blog post (ok, I'm a year and a half late but here it is). I told Eddie that my dad had to enter his contacts one-by-one and Eddie said, "Wait, so your dad doesn't have my number in his phone?" Given that I just taught my dad a few weeks ago how to copy-paste on a COMPUTER, at the time of this iPhone tutorial I knew that it would be awhile before he'd get to the E's in his phone book.

Two minutes later, my dad informed us that he had been contacted by his iPhone texting assistant, "Stefan."

Eddie, sometimes you really are quite brilliant.

I managed to record the whole thing without my dad noticing (I apologize it's all vertical.. I was new to the iPhone as well). I've trimmed it down to one video with just the highlights.  Enjoy.



Thursday, March 14, 2013

I'm bad at the internet.

Kelly informed me that the video at the end of my last post wasn't working.  I've fixed it.  Sorry, internet. 


Monday, March 11, 2013

He was shitting on my deck. I got him.

I did not realize that between yesterday's blog post and the one prior to that, three months had passed.  Yikes.  Thanks to everyone who apparently still checks my blog and enjoyed yesterday's post - I appreciate you not giving up on me.  

Since it's been forever, let's play a little catch up.  I know my "dad" posts have been the fan favorites, so even though it's been a few months, I will try to relay some of the highlights of his visit at Christmas.  I kept some notes on my phone and am trying to dust off my brain and remember what they mean.  Let's take a look:

"Peter Dinklage" 
This was great. We were at a Thai restaurant for dinner and were sitting in the window.  My dad says, "Hey, you know who just walked by?  That little guy.. You know, the one from Elf?" Without even saying a word, I bolted from my chair and ran out of the restaurant in pursuit of Peter Dinklage (in case you weren't aware, I have a not-so-secret, inexplicable thing for Tyrion Lannister). I ran up the block only to find, it was a child with his mother. Not Peter Dinklage with his wife. It would have been offensive had it been just another little person but the fact that it was a child was a whole new level of rude.  Oops.

"Raccoon in a cage"
I am so bummed I didn't have the foresight to send myself this video from his phone. My dad is looking through his photos and then starts chuckling to himself, à la Mariel's-party-hat.  "Mariel, you gotta check this out." So he shows me this video on our back deck of an angry raccoon in a cage. I asked why he took a video of it and he just said, "He was shitting on my deck. [more chuckling] I got him."

"Drawing glasses on Evita"
While waiting for the curtain to rise at the Broadway production of Evita, I noticed my dad drawing glasses on his playbill. I asked if he was going to draw a moustache too and he just said "no" with a straight face. When he was finished drawing the glasses he laughed and said, "She kind of looks like your sister right?" Don't worry, Katy, I think it was a compliment.
A striking resemblance.

"I used to have hair like Ricky Martin."
I've mentioned his receding hairline paranoia before. I don't think I need to explain this one any further.

"He has pants on."
No recollection on this one. But it sounds awesome.

"Punjab"
That's what he would call me when I was getting ready in the morning and had my wet hair wrapped up in a towel. More or less offensive than the case of mistaken Peter Dinklage identity?

"The hillbilly you marry"
I don't remember the context of this but all you need to know is that this is not the first time he has accused me of hillbilly affiliations.

"Space Cowboys"
He was partnered with my uncle Joe for our family boozeball foosball tournament on Christmas and given their seniority in the group, he referred to their team as the "Space Cowboys." God, I love a good Space Cowboys reference. Dad FTW.

"Law & Order retirement"
His dream for partial retirement is to play "the neighbor" in a few episodes of Law & Order per season. His line would always be something along the lines of "he mostly just kept to himself, never seemed to bother anybody." I'm not sure how you get away with playing that part multiple times but if elaborate disguises are involved, I will lead the crusade for NBC to greenlight 8 new Law & Order franchises in the next 10 years.

"Instagram"
We went for a nice family walk in Central Park and I snapped a couple of nice Instagram photos out of it:



Not an Instagram pic, but please note that the first 4 times I tried to take this picture,
my dad would wave his hands around like a jazz clown right before I could snap the picture.

We went to a bar after our walk, and I showed the pictures to my parents, knowing that my dad's reaction to the filters would be similar to if I hopped in a time machine and treated Buster Keaton to a screening of Avatar. Obviously this was spot on, and I explained Instagram to him. Distressed that he was just finding out about this now, here was his response: "We've wasted so much time over this trip. You could've been teaching me this." Instagram? "Apps." There is not enough time in the world.

"Walking on the moon"
After leaving aforementioned bar, his Irish coffees had caught up with him and he just said "Whoo, I feel like I'm walking on the moon!"

And finally.. a short video I captured when he was trying to insist that since he's gotten an iPhone, all of a sudden everyone started to text him all the time and he doesn't know how they know he has an iPhone now..  Yeah I know.. If you think that explanation rattled your brain, just wait until you see what it does to him (note: Mary Manning is a nursing home on the Upper East Side):


video

Cannot stop laughing at that meltdown. Incredible.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Just Checking

I was on the phone with my mom today, and she told me that she and my dad were planning the itinerary for our trip to London/Ireland this summer. She then casually mentioned that she was looking through papers and notes from when we went to Ireland when I was a kid and found a note that I had written to her on the trip.  Take a look at this and join me in trying to figure out what the fuck kind of weirdo child I was once upon a time:


"Oh my god, what?"  (Yes, I heard you say that out loud. Don't worry, I had the same reaction.)

When I asked how and why I had creepily given her this note, she said she couldn't remember what the context was but that she thinks I PASSED IT TO HER UNDER THE TABLE. 

Oh my god, so we were sitting in a pub eating some shepherd's pie and I was in the corner sketchily composing THIS note under the table, like a squirrely little missionary? Like, oh man, I'm so excited we finally got to meet our cousins in Ireland. They're so nice and fun. Shit, what if they're not Catholic? What if these really awesome people aren't Catholic like me and instead of meeting me at the Pearly Gates, they're going to BURN IN HELL?!???  (for the record, I do not - nor have I ever - believed anything like this.. it's just fun to imagine the psychological innerworkings of whatever the eff prompted me to write this very strange note.)

Or was I crafting some clever joke in my head, something about three guys walking into a bar, a Galway man, a Limerick man, and the pope... and thought to myself, maybe it's only funny if you're Catholic. Expert comedy maneuver, Mariel.. definitely double check with Mom. Know your audience.

I really love the "just checking" at the end of it. Because it's like there's an unwritten "or else" that follows. Like I was sitting there and suddenly wondered whether they could be in cahoots with some Northern Ireland Protestants and this pleasant group consumption of shepherd's pies was about to turn into a Tarantino-style blood bath at any moment.  Quick, Mariel, better draw some shitty mountains, circle them, and write Mom a note confirming the religious preferences of our cousins... you know, in case we need IRA reinforcements. JUST CHECKING.

Speaking of messages taken out of context, I will leave you with a text from Kelly McKenna that I received tonight after telling her I was writing a blog post:

"If you site me in this one, don't make me sound like a racist."

No problem.

Friday, December 14, 2012

God Bless German Engineering

My dad sent me this video the other day via iMessage..

video

First thoughts... Did you mean to send this to me? Is that our kitchen table?  Does it play music?  Are these pigs involved?  What is that?

Let's find out:






That is some serious confidence in your 4 level German Christmas pyramid carousel, Dad.  Hope it lives up to expectations.  #ItWill.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

People You May Know

Tell me if you see anything unusual in this screen grab from my Facebook homepage this evening (click to enlarge).  I'll give you a hint: it has nothing to do with Duane Reade.

It's the title of this post.  Just give up.
That's right.  According to Facebook, people I may know include Nathan Thomas, friends with Anthony P. G. Berger, and Joe Rogan, host of Fear Factor.  Obviously I clicked on Mr. Rogan immediately because this sparked my interest.  Do I have a mutual friend with Joe Rogan?  Here is what I found:


Do you know Joe?

8 friends?!  You hosted a show where people won trips to Las Vegas based on how many inches of cow rectum they were willing to digest on national TV and I literally have 719 more Facebook friends than you.  Congratulations, Joe.  Evidently friends are not a factor for you.  You must be the most miserable human to interact with face-to-face.  When your friends want to hang out, do you make them walk barefoot through a tank of hypodermic needles and then feed them a pizza topped with coagulated blood and giraffe tongues?  Is that why you're so lonely?  Good lord, that gig messed you up.

Aside from your Fear Factor psychological trauma, though..  UFC (Color Commentator)?  Seriously?  You get ONE line from the resume that goes on your Facebook page and you're going with UFC Color Commentator rather than Fear Factor or NewsRadio?  No wonder Brooke Burns won't accept your friend request.  You are the Balthazar Getty of reality show hosts.

Given the fact that we have zero mutual friends and that this is clearly a fake Facebook account, I am curious as to why Facebook has suggested that we know each other.  Has Facebook been pushing Joe Rogan on anyone else?  Please let me know.  I'm probably going to lose 12 minutes of sleep over this once I'm done writing this post.

In conclusion:

Duh.