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Archive for August, 2008

Everyone has fantasies. Some of my best spring out of the time I spend in the shower in the morning. While some people sing or hum, I create little plays in my head (and sometimes out loud) based on my real life (or how I would like it to be). I date I in between shampooing and conditioning, chat on the phone as I shave my legs, and occasionally take vacations as I loofah.

Typically some event or person triggers these monologues, and always they play out the way I had envisioned them. It’s like when you think of that perfect comeback line hours after someone insults you and have no one to share it with except your pillow.

The latest scene came out of my first real experience posting on Craig’s List. After I established I would not be renewing the lease to my Upper East Side apartment, I decided to sell my bed (I wasn’t sure of the logistics of moving it from point A to point B, so I said forget it). I posted the twin IKEA Brekee as “Perfect for a small space! Great storage!” and only asked for $75.

I received a response from Simon Rosenberg* wondering if the bed was still available, that he could pick it up at my convenience. We traded emails for about a week (I was heading out of town for a conference), and he always signed them Best Regards, Simon.

So naturally…I began to wonder about this Simon and before long, as I felt like we knew each other, he became, Simon—my Craigslist Boyfriend.

Tall, 6’2” (he needed to fit in my bed to want to buy it), straight, employed, quarky, good-looking…not perfect, but just right. He told me to Enjoy my weekend, and didn’t need to know what I was doing that would make it fun. He worked around my schedule, asking If Thursday is still not a convenient time, how about Sunday or Monday? and Please let me know if that works for you. I told my friends and parents about him, sharing my secret about us dating and that I thought he was a real catch, a winner.

As we neared the date of pick-up, I got a little nervous. Our correspondence hadn’t changed…he was as thoughtful as ever It seems that with traffic to get across town to 73rd will take some time. So you do not rush for no reason, let’s say closer to 6:30pm. I can call you – when we are close – if you want – if you give me a phone number. But I had some concerns. Namely, what if he was a socio-path murderer rapist who preyed on women selling beds on Craigs List?

Though I did not particularly care for this plot about my CraigsList Boyfriend, every girl at one point or another has doubts about their BF’s. But just to be safe, I brought my wing(wo)man Neever. While not overly enthusiastic about meeting my BF and protecting me should he be crazy, she agreed to come.

He was also bringing his friend, so it was sort of like a double-moving-date. He arrived, late of course (so typical) and climbed the 5 floors to my apartment. Skeptical about letting him in until I could judge him as a normal character, I waited outside the door. I watched his head bob up the last flight. Huffing and bent over, he held is side and asked, “What? No elevator in this building?”

At this point, I must share that my fantasy was pretty much shattered, very disappointing. Around 36, he carried a little extra around the middle and was sweating profusely (I couldn’t fault him for that though; it’s summer and he just climbed 5 flights). He wore jeans, a plaid button-down shirt, and a kippah.

He shuffled into my tiny space and looked around, announcing the obvious “Not a lot of space or light.” I nodded (a well-what-do-you-expect-it’s-New York nod), and led him to the dissembled bed. “You moving?” he asked.

“Yeah, everything’s gotta go.”

“You mentioned something about a bookcase?”

“In here.”

“How much?”

“I don’t know…$25?”

“So, a hundred bucks for both?”

“Sounds good.”

“Great, what else you got. My friend’s downstairs and he buys stuff for furnishing apartments. He might be interested.”

“Well, I have that little bookcase, my TV, DVD/VCR player, some barstools…”

They ended up taking everything (except the barstools). I’m not very good at haggling out prices, but Neever’s a star. She went back and forth with the friend (a rather thin rat-like character with a long nose and beady eyes), turning red as he tried to rip me off while I chatted with Simon about his weight loss efforts and where he lives in New York. Simon was pretty nice, but combined with his friend, the two sounded like auctioneers: $40? No. $25 No? All right $35? No? $40’s too much for this. And so it went for each item. When we finally settled the money issues, with a sigh of relief from me, we all stood and surveyed the scene.

“That’s a lot of stuff, but I think we can make it in 3 trips with the girl’s help,” Simon declared.

Neever’s eyes popped. They seriously expected us to help them carry their purchases down to their van. “I can’t believe this. I am only carrying the light stuff,” she mumbled under her breath to me.

We helped lug it all down the steps in our work clothes. And when we went to say good-bye…Neever practically quaking to get away from them and me dying of dehydration from 4 trips it took to get everything out…they shook our hands, said it was a pleasure meeting and doing business with us, and then invited us to a barbecue at the Rat’s apartment on the Upper East Side in a few weeks. I squelched a snort as he asked for my number and said, “it’s in Simon’s phone.”

“Yeah I’ll give it to you later.”

“We’ll be in touch then. It will be fun.” Rat smiled and turned to climb into the van.

As Neever and I walked away from them, we convulsed with laughter and I announced that if we went to said barbecue, “they would most likely charge us at the door.”

“Right, it’d be $5 a cup and then probably extra for the food, plates, and silverware.” We looked back and watched them drive away.

“I’m hungry.” Neever said.

“Me too.”

“Let’s go eat.”

While my intial fantasy about my CraigsList Boyfriend was fun, reality turned out to be far more entertaining.  

 

Note: Most of the italicized portions are Simon* speaking in emails.

*name clearly not real.

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Today I quit my first job

and promptly threw-up.

Well, I thought about it anyway. Going into that little room to tell my boss who I love initiated the immediate secretion of excess amounts of saliva and sweat. I felt like I’d just stood in a steam room at 112 degrees for an hour. My cheeks were red, hands shaky, and I became suddenly fascinated by the skin on the sides of my fingernails, you know…that pillow-cushion pouch of skin that is ever-so tempting to naw on when you’re nervous.

The decision was not easy, and in all truthfulness only stemmed from the fact that my lease was up and I didn’t feel like finding another apartment…well that and a few other things.

I love my job, and would gladly stay but when the offer from another company came in, I realized it was an astounding opportunity, one I would be foolish to pass on.

So here I am…10:00 at the end of the day I handed in my two-weeks notice.

It’s amazing how sometimes things just fall into place. When I first decided to come to New York, I immediately took the necessary steps to get here. I found the job, then the apartment and in less than a months time I was taking the 6 and walking down Madison Avenue into my office building.

This change came with a bit quicker turn-around. I applied and within a week of submitting my application, I had two phone interviews and had set up a trip to Maryland for the face-face.

My half-day, planned-to-the-minute interview was to run from 8:30 in the morning until around 1:30. Ushered from office to office, I met with my potential colleagues and answered their questions about my job, my interests, my passions and my life; biggest change, best strength, one weakness, what would your manager say you need to work on, what do you like about your job/hate about your job. The clock whirled past 1:30. My interview finally ended at 3:30, and I was shmattered. Drained, I felt my switch super-glue and stick in the on notch so that when I walked into my sister’s house at the end of the day, I sat at her kitchen table and nodded, smiled, answered, nodded, smiled, and answered until they realized I hadn’t heard a word they’d said. My brain was mush. And when I surfaced and shared that I hoped it went well, my family all laughed at me. An interview lasting an unheard of 7 hours had to have gone well…right?

Right. They offered me the position right before I left for vacation, and sent me the official letter while I was on sunning on the beach. I had to take a drug test within two business days of receiving the letter, so while I was on vacation; to help, the company sent through directions to the nearest LabCorps in Atlantic City, New Jersey, our family vacation spot. Yes…AC…where drug paraphanelia once washed up alongside seashells. Naturally I passed as if there were any doubt, although Mom raised her eyebrow at me once or twice before the results were in.

When I got back from AC on Friday, I gave a lot of thought to if I wanted to leave NYC and this morning (a mere 3 weeks after it all started), I officially accepted the position. Another move, another change, another adventure. And to quote one of my favorite books, “so it goes…” and I’m going with it.

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