Tag Archives: apartments

I’m not a girl, not yet a hopelessly lame woman

Last weekend, we and some friends wound up at a pub on the Upper West Side. Those of you who are NYC locals, you know the type. You know that place that always smells like vomit from the curb after 11pm? Well, it’s a notch more respectable than that, so let’s just say we were probably the only people in the place who weren’t affected by some form of the dread Bieber f(i)ever.

Children, look away. This is one of the first documented cases of full-blown BiebFev. Photo reprinted with permission from the CDC.

Two of my girlfriends, let’s call them J. and N., decided they wanted to partake in the beer pong tournament that was going on in the back of the pub (I told you it was a young crowd). So, in order to convincingly relate to the youth, they gave themselves aliases. J. and N. were now Rutgers coeds Sally and Tish (this name choice should signal to all exactly how in touch they are with Generation TXT), in the Big Apple for the summer with internships in publishing (a glamorous selection indeed). At first, this was hilarious. But it didn’t take long for a few key facts to reveal themselves:

1. Their opposing team was 19 years old (bouncer, for shame).

2. Said 19-year-olds were very, very drunk. Do you remember how you acted when you were drunk and 19? It’s self-preservation that you do not.

3. Sally and Tish are a little rusty at beer pong, which placed them pretty evenly against the sloppy teenagers at the other end of the table.

Not surprisingly, the game stalled out after each team managed to hit about half their cups. One of the kids on the other team was much more concerned with a girl in a nearby group of friends, and when his teammate reminded him that they were still playing a game, he whipped around and publicly berated him for cock-blocking (except he used a cool Millennial term which I’ve never even heard, let alone remembered. Anyone?)

Maybe to amuse herself, maybe to make the game end, Sally decided to go for the big reveal and drop the “gotcha.”

“We’re really 28!” she crowed, beaming mischievously.

Long pause. Sneers of confusion and, ultimately, mild disgust.

“You’re old.”

No one is amused.

Tish, a little injured, a tad horrified, but hopeful to salvage their collective pride, piped in, “Well, we’re accomplished!”

The boys, unimpressed, point out that they have no knowledge of any alleged accomplishments, nor do they care to learn. They’re pissed they wasted twenty minutes on a couple of old women who, now that they look a little closer, are both wearing engagement rings. Newfangled-term-for-cock-blocked indeed.

Now that's an old-fashioned cock-block. Get it? Cause he's a rooster? Get--forget it. Kids today. Tsk tsk, I say I say.

So, I’m not pretending that 28 is elderly, and no, I’m not about to say that getting married = aging out, but let’s call a spade a spade. Marital status aside, we old. I’m not sure when and how this happened, but there it is. We don’t even know how to pretend to be 19 anymore, not that I really want to be 19 again.

Much.

I’m not down for the count yet, though. No, I didn’t want to play beer pong with college sophomores. And yes, I find the occasional gray hair (oh, god) and have to work a little harder at the gym to keep it all together. But I can still throw down and remain among the last old ladies standing. And I totally still resort to peer pressure to get my friends to keep drinking with me. That makes me young and cool, right? Are peer pressure and drinking still cool?

Unfortunately, all of this pales in comparison to the joy I felt the following day, when Matt and I went to Bed, Bath & Beyond and got storage containers for our extra linens. We came home and were able to clear away the piles that had been gathering with no home, and I danced around the apartment, ecstatically placing sachets in closets and boxes. I happily unpackaged my new digital food scale, obsessively weighing every food item in our kitchen.

“Matt! Matt! This cup of melon weighs 4.2 ounces!”

“That’s…good?”

“Yep,” I said, moving on to the smoked turkey, dizzy with glee.

Matt looked at me for a little while. “Does this, uh, will this serve some other purpose for you?”

I gave him a withering look while I considered the question. Ultimately, I’m not sure why I need to know that I put 2 ounces of deli meat in my salad, or that my cookie weighs 1.6 ounces. But I do. I know that much. “Yes,” I said cheerfully, and began to position a tomato on the scale. I forget now what it weighed, but I’ll tell you that I was thrilled to find out then. Thrilled.

I honestly can’t imagine a Twilight doll or a lava lamp or whatever the tweens are into these days being a better toy.

Oh! And we have new towels. They are soft and fuzzy, but not too fuzzy, and I didn’t even realize it at the time we bought them, but they match our shower curtain perfectly! Isn’t life good? I may be old, but people who can’t appreciate a new towel and a food scale and well-stored linens and a seafresh-something-or-other sachet are just plain missing out.

And yet, as I write this, it is 12:30 AM on a Tuesday and my husband is still out drinking. I am up for absolutely no reason at all, but I am taking this time to update my blog, a decidedly trendipoo hobby. Plus, I have yet to use wrinkle cream with any regularity or conviction (though I’ve been gravely warned against this cavalier attitude). So, I guess we’re not quite at our height of fogue*, either.                                                                                                                                           *That’s the noun for fogey. I made it up because I am forward-thinking and FTD.**                                                                                                                                          **That means “Fresh to Death.” Did you know that? I did, and I used it in a sentence.

Where does that leave us? And for how long? Do we have to pick a side? Because as much as I still love binge-drinking, eating pizza at 4:00 AM and frittering my money away on shortsighted crap (NOT referring to my food scale), I’m ultimately going to have to pick the team with fresh laundry, a clean bathroom, and an apartment where it’s safe to take off one’s shoes.

I hope — and I’m pretty convinced — that I can straddle these two worlds for at least a few years longer, or until my organs begin systematic shutdown. At 30, perhaps I’ll need to reassess. But for now, I’m comfortably in limbo, and I plan to chill here for a while. So I think I’ll just grab one of my very lovely new Riedel glasses, pour myself some $8 wine, and settle in for a few episodes of South Park before bed.

Welcome to my darling and well-stocked kitchen! Pour yourself a stemless glass from the jug and kick off your loafers so that you may enjoy my pristine floors. Dinner will be ready in just a jiff. I hope you like cheeseproduct!

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Welcome to my closet, I live here now.

Hello, friends, readers, and friendly readers!

Isn’t it a beautiful day? Doesn’t the sky look unusually blue, the sun particularly…shiny? Don’t you just love life? Don’t you just love New York? Somehow, lately, everything seems brighter, better, happi–

What was that? Do you hear something? It sounds like…singing. Wait, I think it’s coming from my new bedroom. Yes, it’s getting louder as I near my brand new, very own, personal, nobody-can-share-it-with-me closet. It sounds like…perhaps…a choir of heavenly voices? But it’s sort of muffled. Let me just dramatically fling open this door which is mine and only mine alone…

Click here for the full effect

I wish that you could be here, too, to share and bask in this warm, golden light which emanates from within my very own closet. To be specific, by that I mean I don’t actually wish you here in person to bask with me. I was going for more of a theoretical sharing. Only I may bask. Nina’s basking only. Get your own magical closet/gateway to Heaven.

Please don’t judge me or think me selfish and rude. It’s nothing personal. But you must understand that for the last five years, Matt and I have been sharing closet space in some of the least accommodating apartments on the Northeastern seaboard.

The closet in our last place. That's the previous tenant.

I know it seems trivial and materialistic, but I can’t quite describe to you how happy it makes me to have all my clothes hanging neatly side-by-side, not smushed together or falling on the floor (or, for that matter, heaped in a mountainous piles around the bedroom). And sure, some might argue that it has never had anything to do with the space I was given and I am just a lazy, messy person prone to throwing socks on the floor while watching television. To them I would say, okay, fine, you have a point. On the other hand, get out of my house. You are forever banished from my closet and its surrounding areas. Don’t ruin this for me.

For oh, it is so much more than a sacred little room for my possessions and no one else’s. This closet represents my graduation to the part of my adulthood in which I live in a space that is both comfortable and attractive. It represents my entry into a lifestyle which easily allows me to put my skirt away at night and keep my shoes lined up and out of sight, not strewn about the apartment in the manner of a lunatic hoarder. I can invite people over without having to spend three hours cleaning and trying to stash our things in heavily abused bureau drawers, already groaning under the weight of the crap that won’t fit anywhere else. It exists in a home which I am proud to show to those I consider grown-ups, where I can be in the kitchen yet not ALSO in the bathroom. Where I can turn out the lights in one room and still read in another. Where I can say something to Matt, and he won’t necessarily be able to hear me (because he actually can’t hear me, not because he has adapted to instinctively deafen to my frequency). Where I can select a measuring cup from the cabinet without triggering an avalanche of utensils upon my head. It represents a wonderful new kind of freedom, that while I’ve committed to share the rest of my life with someone, I no longer have to share EVERYTHING else with him, too. No more waiting for him to choose a tie before I grab the jaws of life to extract a dress from its sardine-like spot on my side of the closet. No more deciding who is later for work than whom, and who gets in there first. We can dress at the same time, together, but not on top of each other! Truly, we are now separate and equal. And isn’t that what every married couple should aspire to be?

You like where I took that? Yeah. Did I mention I commandeered the entire double dresser, too?

It's mine...ALL MINE!!!!!

 

Schwajak Cagematch

So, we’re moving, and things have gotten ugly in the Schwajak household.

It is T minus two days until our big relo. Tensions are running high. The other night I found myself flinging cardboard boxes and stomping around the apartment without purpose as Matt angrily demonstrated how he had been wrapping up our mugs and how I should continue to do so (stupidly, I might add). Then we both declared our packing materials insufficient, and I decided we should instead focus on that OTHER looming task, our thank you notes. So we sat down and spent the rest of the evening irritably passing the stamps back and forth and quietly fuming at each other as we wrote. (Friends, our gratitude is no less heartfelt, I promise.)

Yesterday, we got into a fight outside our building over whether we should put the junk we’re ditching out of sight for fear of being bad neighbors (Matt), or out on the curb for the trash-pickers who might REALLY want a third-hand menorah or several extremely used curtain rods (me, obviously).

Last night I nearly lost it when I saw Matt’s old shoes sitting in a shopping bag with two brand new pairs of my pants which need tailoring. When I rescued it from the trash pile and tossed the shoes out onto the floor, we devolved into an argument over whose possessions should “find a new home.” I won based on loudness and the valid logic that my pants lived in the bag first. And also, get outta here.

Tonight, somebody will die.

Also, I will grudgingly throw away some extremely old jars of spices.

Stay tuned.

"I'm...keeping...the...HUNGARIAN PAPRIKAAAAA!!!"