Archive for August, 2011

Nobody Recognizes My Genius

August 31, 2011

Subtitle: So I’m Forced to Brag About it Myself

Pending Magazine Pitch:

Dear Editor,

Sorry for the unsolicited email, but ———– told me you’d be the right person to contact about this.  I am a writer and editor, currently employed at the ———- Publishers in SoHo.  Recently, I have been in contact with a travel group in the UK called The Adventurists –– –– tag line: “Fighting to Make the World A Little Less Boring.”  Since 2001 (unofficially), The Adventurists have been leading races, the first being the Mongol Rally, a race from London to Mongolia in which each team drives a vehicle with an engine size under 1 liter.  Since then, they have added other adventures, including the Rickshaw Rally, which runs through India, the Africa Rally, and the Mototaxi Junket, which runs through Peru.  It’s kind of tourism that’s popular right now amongst the young and disaffected (think ex-bond traders) and the middle-aged and slightly bored –– those with the means to pay to take a big risk.


That’s the background.


In February, they’re doing a trial run of a new adventure, just named “Ice Run” –– a motorcycle (and sidecar) race 1500 kilometers across Siberia.  There will be probably sixteen participants, divided into teams of two.  They’ve invited me on to write about the experience if I can find a publication that would be interested in printing the story.  I haven’t yet decided on the arc of it yet, as I think that will determine itself.  I imagine it to be something like Ian Frazier documenting his travels in Siberia for The New Yorker (except instead of mosquitos there will be just snow and instead of a writer who won’t drink vodka with the natives there will be one who… well, will.)


I’ll admit straightaway: I’m a pipsqueak, both in a journalistic and physical sense.  I graduated from Columbia University in 2006 and the ————— Nonfiction Writing program in 2010.  I write book reviews for the blog, bar reviews for New York Magazine, and my agent recently sent out my first book to publishing houses (fingers crossed.)  I have a blog, of course, but who doesn’t?  Physically, I am five foot nothing with blond hair and cute fingers, which my boyfriend says I will likely lose in my journey across the tundra.  But hey, I’ve worked for Anna Wintour and a terminally ill, tempestuous true crime writer.  I’ve hunted Burmese python in the Florida Everglades (true story.)  I think I can handle it.


If you’re at all interested or want further info (resume, clips, etc.), please be in touch.  I hope you’re having a lovely summer!




This Is Excellent Cinema

August 30, 2011

Sometimes technology is wack, but sometimes, like when you are haunted by a Lifetime flick you saw when you were a kid, specifically the scene in which Valerie Bertinelli fondles a piece of raw meat, it’s immensely gratifying.


Oh, and PS –– you’re welcome.

Unsatisfying Natural Disasters Lead to Poorly Written Blog Posts

August 28, 2011

I think I blog/write/do in order to keep from feeling idle, which brings forth in me a guilt almost impregnable.  The easiest way of not feeling idle, though, is if external forces make it so that you are participating in something without any real activity on your part.  This is perhaps why I was so thrilled that a hurricane was coming to my area this weekend.  (This the same week as an east coast earthquake –– TGIA = Thank G-d It’s the Apocalypse!)  My roommates and I shopped for supplies (read: liquor) and prepared the Netflix queue and sat in anxious anticipation.  Everythingelse –– blog posts, unfinished essays, existential crises, etc. –– would have to wait until after the storm.  But the storm, unfortunately, never came, and because of its absence the surge of motivation I wanted to do do do also never arrived.  I remain limp without a maelstrom outside to make me stand at attention.

So… here is what I was planning on saying before the storm:

My friend MH and I, much to the amusement of her husband, make lists every season of new clothing we would like, and this past list I wanted to cite a picture of Edie Sedgwick in which she wears a maxi silk (?) dress (gown?) that has sleeves so long they go over her hands, and yet even though I knew I had seen the picture before, I couldn’t find it for the life of me.  Until yesterday, when, biding time, I relapsed on an old addiction (Edie was someone I thought gorgeous when I was young and stylishly sad) and found exactly what I wanted:


She looks pretty badass, yes?  Unfortunately maxi dresses don’t look good on me, as I’m not a waif, but rather a miniature Barbie figure (according to my BF’s sister’s mother-in-law… awkward, I know.)

I straight up “stole” this picture from another blog (run by two teenagers –– I’m assuming –– whose handles are Sienna893 and LilStarGirl or something equally twee and egomaniacal) on which the administrator posted something really silly like, “Please don’t just take these pictures and reblog without giving credit, xoxo!”  You’re probably 14 years old and blogging pictures taken by photographers in the late sixties, and you’re claiming ownership?  Modern life is so sad and empty.

Speaking of sad and empty, one last Edie reference before I leave behind that adolescent fixation until… I am feeling bored and itchy yet again.

I want this necklace:


August 26, 2011

I am planning to propose to A&E (or maybe I’ll go out of pity to TLC first because they always get A&E’s sloppy seconds) a television show a la Hoarders and Intervention but in which the camera follows around for a few days two hardworking folks who make some mistakes, sure, cause they’re human but for the most part are fighting the good fight and trying to be honest people/good parents/nonviolent beings/contributing members of society/decent employees/et al and at the end, there’s a little intervention during which the people in their lives come together to tell them, “Hey, you know what?  You’re pretty great.  Life is tough, I know, but you’re doing okay, and you deserve some slack!”  Then the “interventionist” whisks them away in a white minivan to take them to the airport where they fly off to Malibu or Arizona or somewhere else warm and dry to a spa/self-discovery retreat/private island where they are given fresh meals and early bedtimes and yoga classes galore.

Well done, normal people.  Well done.

Intervention Quotes

August 24, 2011

I’m beginning to compile a list of the best quotes from Intervention (the second Intervention-based list I have in progress these days which… says a lot… about my life, and my hobbies) and I have to stop and admire the insane white trashy logic of this statement:

“Now there’s foster homes out there and I don’t want the baby in a foster home.  We want the best for the baby, and if it takes us keeping it to keep the best for it, then that’s what I want.”

Grandpa, on why he doesn’t want his meth addict granddaughter’s baby put in foster care

Real Estate Obsession

August 15, 2011

Brooklyn Navy Yard

Janis Joplin, Guru

August 14, 2011

After three months of coveting a Richard Avedon photography book displayed prominently in The Strand, I finally bought it.  This was the Summer of 2001, and even when I look at it now, after having read it probably thirty times, I’m amazed at the wisdom of Janis Joplin.  Here, re-typed (and probably re-blogged, though I haven’t bothered to Google) are Pearl’s pearls:

September 3, 1969:

I have like what anyone would call like, say, a loneliness, a loneliness of my own.  But it’s just a private trip and probably shouldn’t be forced on other people that much, you know what I mean?  God, fuck it.  Who cares how lonely you feel.  You just have to learn to deal with it like everybody else does.  Everybody has that, I think.  Everybody.  Even Christians.

I remember I used to think, goddamn it, it’s because I’m a chick or it’s because I haven’t figured it out yet.  It’s because I’m not twenty-one.  It’s because I haven’t read this or I haven’t tried that… Well, I’ve done every fucking thing and now I know better.  There is no “because.”  And it’s not going to get any better.

My father… see, my father is a very intelligent man and I used to talk to him a lot because he reads and he’s pretty sensitive and I was a mixed-up kid and too smart for my age –– right?  Anyway, so when I was eighteen, I ran away.  Well… went to California.  One day this thing comes along and I learned something.  It went pfshutt right in the side of my head and I sat up… and realized something.  I ran up and wrote a long, long letter to my father all about how I’d felt growing up was like climbing a hill and that sooner or later you’d figure it out and it’d all come together and you’d level out and it wouldn’t be such a fucking struggle every day, you know?  … But then I realized there wasn’t any leveling out, you know?  You have the same fucking problems –– or more –– when you get old.  I mean, you got more to deal with.  It isn’t going to turn that corner, man.  It just keeps going right on straight uphill.  So I wrote my father and explained this whole thing.  Well, the next time I came home –– my father has this friend, another man who’s also very intelligent –– and my father had evidently let him read my letter.  You know, “Look what Janis is going through.”  They were proud of me because I was a thinker and they liked that because they were thinkers.  So when I got home, this guy comes up to me and he says, “Well, I hear you learned about the Great Saturday Night Swindle.”  That’s what he called it.

The realization that there isn’t going to be any turning point… there isn’t going to be any next-month-it’ll-be-better, next fucking year, next fucking life.  You don’t have any time to wait for.  You just got to look around you and say, so this is it.  This is really all there is to it.  This little thing.  Everybody needing such little things and they can’t get them.  Everybody needing just a little… confidence from somebody else and they can’t get it.  Everybody, everybody fighting to protect their little feelings.  Everybody, you know, like reaching out tentatively but drawing back.  It’s so shallow and seems so… fucking… it seems like such a shame.  It’s so close to being like really right and good and open and amorphous and giving and everything.  But it’s not.  And it ain’t gonna be.


I live pretty loose.  You know, balling with strangers and stuff… a lot of people live loose, don’t you think?  Everyone I know lives incredibly loose.

Sometimes, you know, you’re with someone and you’re convinced that they have something to… to tell you.  Or, you know… you want to be with them.  So maybe nothing’s happening, but you keep telling yourself something’s happening.  You know, innate communication.  He’s just not saying anything.  He’s moody or something.  So you keep being there, pulling, giving, rapping, you know.  And then, all of a sudden about four o’clock in the morning you realize that, flat ass, this motherfucker’s just lying there.  He’s not balling me.

I mean, that really happened to me.  Really heavy, like slam-in-the-face it happened.  Twice.  Jim Morrison and Leonard Cohen.  And it’s strange ’cause they were the only two that I can think of, like prominent people, that I tried to… without really liking them up front, just because I knew who they were and wanted to know them… And then they both gave me nothing… but I don’t know what that means.  Maybe it just means they were on a bummer.

Meeting someone and balling them… means something, but it doesn’t mean near as much as it used to.  It doesn’t mean, like, this is it forever.  It means, Wow, I really dig you, let’s get together.  It just… takes it a step farther than, you know, talking on dates.  Know what I mean?  Really getting together.  It just means you dig somebody and want to be with them.  And that happens a lot, you know?  YOu meet someone, you like them, and you… be with them, maybe for a while, maybe for a couple of days, maybe for a couples of hours, maybe for a couple of years.


When I was twelve or thirteen, you know, there’d be the chicks who’d let the boy sitting two seats in front of ’em do their homework for ’em.  Me, I’d always say, “I can do it myself, man.  And better than you.”  I think these things get formed in a person really early.

I always wanted to do my own fucking number but I didn’t really have any person to be or anything to build my trip around.  So this music thing came along.  It was just… it was everything I needed.  It was something to do with all the feelings I had without changing.  You know?  It was something to believe in, something I could love and that would love me.  It was all there.

I think it creates distance for men, though, just because… you’ve already got something.  It’s likely already having an old man –– do you know what I mean? –– and then trying to have a sincere affair on the side.  There’s just something in the way.  For me and them both.  That I don’t really need them.

Like, I would want to need them.  I would really dig it if I could need a cat that much.  I think that would be just a wonderful feeling for a woman.  I know it: that’s what women are for.  Take acid and you realize that’s what women are for –– to need and be with a man and bear children, that whole thing.  But I got another trip going.

Well, maybe it’s like the grass is always greener, you know? –– it could be that.  “I’d be much happier if I just had a home in the country and an old man and three kids.”  Who fucking knows.  But I think that is basically a chick’s trip.  I know that whenever I have been in love and really just wanted to be with that cat, that’s the happiest I’ve ever been… Well, except for those few times on stage.

Bob Marley Tweets?

August 14, 2011


Perusing my father’s iTunes, I see a bar at the side that says you can follow Bob Marley on Twitter (@bobmarley.)  He has 118,462 followers.  If this twitter account is actually owned by Bob Marley and he’s tweeting from the Great Beyond, I may consider getting myself an account.

Thank You!

August 12, 2011

This morning I came in to work to find a barrage of emails from WordPress telling me that all these people with French names “liked” my blog post.  I’ve mentioned this before and it’ll sound just as ridiculous this time around, but I’m not very good with technology –– I don’t exactly know what it means to “like” something (I think you just press a button?), I’ve never had a Facebook account, and I still am afraid of “apps” because I can’t quite untangle the philosophical ramifications of little things that do things for you.  Anyway, all these French people seem to be on something called Gravatar, which is a mystery to me, too.  Gravatar seems to think all these French people are based in Mcalester, Oklahoma, and when I click to see their profiles, all I get is one big symbol and their name.  I’m sure I could poke around and find out more about them (WordPress gave me a little guilt trip about it –– they liked my stuff, maybe I would “like” theirs?) but see again confession of ridiculousness.

Anyway, thanks, French people!  I’ve always enjoyed your cheese and wine!

Announcing Protest to Begin SUNDAY, AUGUST 14 @ 11 AM

August 11, 2011

THIS SUNDAY, August 14, at 11:00 AM, The Committee to Save the Chelsea Hotel will march into the front lobby outfitted with suitcases full of ridiculous clothing, bubbles, books, whiskey, marijuana, blankets, paint, canvases, kittens, snacks, bouncy balls, occult talismans, flashlights, chess sets, and anything that plays music (from bongos to ipods with speakers.)  They will proceed to bust into guest rooms (which ones are guest rooms and which belong to permanent tenants can be determined by the door or otherwise by asking the protest leader, ID), make themselves comfortable, and then barricade themselves inside.  Whenever possible, new residents are encouraged to sneak out from their rooms in the night and hang things they’ve made on the wall.  Protestors are committed to remaining in their rooms until forcibly removed.  For that reason, we recommend anyone who plans to join us in this endeavor to pack appropriately, eat a large (but not sedating) meal before the siege, and prepare to bring their a-game.


If you would like to join us in our attempt to save the Chelsea, please email, and we will respond with the location where we will meet on Sunday to gather before the March.

Fasten your seatbelts, Chetrit family.  It’s gonna be a bumpy ride.