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11/30/00
It's snowing in a very damp way outside. The news said it isn't supposed to stick, but still, it makes things slippery. I drove 35 mph to work instead of the usual 40 (you have got to see this road up here, all steep curves), and had to be extra careful on Old Mill Road itself, which isn't paved. It's OK when there's actual snow on the ground, but the rain and damp sleet make it dangerously slippery.

I have decided that David Blaine is either crazy or Jesus. Perhaps both.

I'm hoping it does stop snowing today. I need to go to the grocery store - when I was there last night I forgot to pick up laundry detergent, and I need to do laundry. I did, however, get gas last night (at the self-serve pump! I thought they only had full serve up here!) and rent You've Got Mail and There's Something About Mary, so I can have a videofest. Luckily they're 5-day rentals up here, since I ended up getting into my book last night and not watching either of them, and tonight is Must-See-TV (actually, the 'NSync Holiday special, and ER). So tomorrow I'll watch them.

The video store makes me laugh. Or cringe. You've Got Mail was listed under New Movies - they both were, actually. There are no movie musicals except Grease, which is listed under Drama. They don't have The Sound of Music. And this is an area where more copies of MI:2 were checked out than Gladiator, and that's scary.

Tomorrow is December 1st. That doesn't seem right. When I was scheduling my next orthopedist appointment, they told me to come back in four weeks. And that's December 22nd - the Friday before Christmas! It can't be almost Christmas! I wish I could enjoy the holiday season more, but I'm feeling very un-holiday-like up here away from everything. I brought up my Christmas cards to write out, maybe that'll help.

Check that, ER is a rerun tonight. Movie and laundry time!

Our boss is wonderful - we have a four day weekend over Christmas, with Tuesday as an extra day. Of course, Tuesday is also his birthday, so that might have something to do with it, but I'm not complaining. I probably won't be going anywhere either - I guess I'm going to Dad's on Christmas Day (since Mom and I are celebrating early), but other than that I have no plans except limping around the city to soak up the holiday spirit.

James sent me some new CD's from 2die4 Music - his production company. Very talented singers, and the Christmas Survival Guide is perfect for those people who, unlike me, have had too much Christmas spirit. Plus it has Roger Bart - can't go wrong there!

And the snow has at last stopped. Whew.

11/29/00
Pixel decided to crawl into bed with me at 5am and sleep on my chest until 7.30 - nothing like a warm cat to make you not want to get out of bed. So I slept in for another hour, with both cats on the bed with me. It's like having hot water bottles that purr.

I'm plowing through a lot of work here - lots of internal stuff and lots of partnership work, too. It's a lot of fun, even tho the partnership part involves talking to strangers, something I'm not too fond of. But anyway, it's all going well. I love when I talk to companies and they already know who we are. It's all warm and fuzzy. Almost like having purring hot water bottles. But I do not love this feeling of "too many cooks" that everyone from an agency background will understand. I was sketchy on the idea of individual ownership of project sections when it was proposed, and today is a prime example of why. Frustration.

Almost. Today was one of those days that I could have spent in bed. But I think a lot of that is that when I sleep, all of my crutch-worn muscles relax, and when I wake up, they stiffen up again and I just don't want to move. But once I get up and going, it's alright... but until then... ouch. I have achy joints because of the crutches - they take their toll on my elbows and shoulders. Really.

Do flies have hives like bees do? Every morning, there are two or three more flies circling the light in the bathroom. I spray, they die, I sweep up or throw them away, but every morning - more flies. What's up with that? In other house news, I saw bluejays! Real, live birds! I think I've only seen them in pictures. And there was a strange red car parked out behind Bo's house last night and this morning - but I'm not sure if where its parked is actually part of Bo's property or the house next door or what. And knowing me, if I hobbled over to it (which I am not going to do), there would be a dead body or something unsavory inside. That sort of thing happens in the country, you know. It's scary out here.

I can't wait for the revival of 42nd Street in May. We did it in High School and had a blast - we won some competition in Bucks County in 1990 with the production (the only time prior to Eve's wedding that I had been to Bucks County). Anyway, it's a great show. I'm listening to the cast recording now.

1005 miles on the car.

So I listened to the Copenhagen CD from Fynsworth Alley and highly recommend picking it up. Even if you haven't seen the play - the CD is so well produced. My one comment would be that it doesn't capture the energy and passion of the live production all the time, but then, it can't. So go get it - you won't regret it. Since I hear the show is closing on Dec 31st (another one to put on my list to go see as soon as I'm home), this may be your only chance!

I should have set up direct deposit before I left - I'm kicking myself that I didn't, as my paychecks are sitting in a desk in NY, and my checking account is creeping towards zero. Ugh. Wish there were Citibanks up here, so I could have my checks mailed and I could deposit them. Welp, I shall stretch out my bills with their minimum payments until I get home.

11/28/00
Still congested and have a sore throat, but I'm back at work today. Bleh. All I want to do is put my foot up and sleep all day (again).

At least I'm not sick like David Blaine - he's a different kind of sick. Missy and I went to see him when he buried himself underground last spring, and now he's frozen himself in a block of ice. They're going to unthaw him tomorrow night at 10pm, on ABC. Scary man, that David Blaine. Creepy! Yet, I feel compelled to watch! I like this blurb from Penn, of Penn and Teller:

Jillette, who performs with the silent Raymond Joseph Teller as Penn & Teller, told PAGE SIX the stunt will be a snap since Blaine won't actually be touching the ice. He'll be inside a cut-out of his body with a tube pumping in warm air and water. "He's going to be very comfortable in there," Jillette claimed. "Pumping hot air into a phone booth and putting ice around it and standing around without a thought in your head isn't a trick . . . Give me 'Moby Dick' and an easy chair and I'll be in there forever." Jillette says the same crew that constructs "Penn and Teller" shows built Blaine's prop, and he knows "the ice isn't touching him. He's not against ice, he's near ice. Are you really going to do a headline that he's near ice? It may be remarkable that David Blaine is walking erect, but that's not a headline." "The hardest part of this trick is being in there and looking good without a shirt on. Think about it, there's me, Teller, Siegfried and Roy - only David Blaine looks good with his shirt off."

And OK, enough with the election stuff. If we're going with "one person, one vote," then we should be using the popular vote to determine a winner. Not the electoral college. I like the idea of just keeping Clinton in office for another term.

Mom and I picked up tickets for Music Man (thank God for discount codes) for Jan and Feb... I still have to figure out when I'm going to conduct it for BC/EFA. I was expecting to be off the crutches now, but since it won't be until the end of December, I don't know how long it's going to take before I can walk well enough. London on a walking cast will be interesting, but I can't reschedule that trip. I'm glad I have a cane at home, so I can beat the young whippersnappers out of my way if need be.

Mike Piazza, dumped by his supermodel girlfriend. Now if only he'd shave that thing off his face.

11/27/00
I've been sneezing since Thanksgiving, and it hasn't stopped yet. Today I'm also congested and stuffy and achy so I'm working from home. It isn't very exciting. The cats have made the house their own - Pixel's appropriated an armchair for her own, and Mimi's been curling up on the couch. They seem much more relaxed with all this space to run around. Heck, I'm much more relaxed with all this space to run around. Or hobble around, as the case may be. But being home today answers the age old question of what cats do when you're not there - they sleep. That's it.

It's also still raining and cold out. Foggy, too.

I'm wavering back and forth on the living in the country thing. While I do want to be somewhere where there's lots of space, I also want to be near the city. And I want a house that comes with maid service. I can't clean on crutches (boy, that would be a sight), and this house is pretty messy (melted snow on the floor, stuff like that). If I had my own house, someone would have to clean it for me.

I'm annoyed that I will be on crutches through the holidays. I love walking around NY in the winter and kicking tourists out of my way. I like going out drinking in the village and shopping in out of the way stores. And I'm sad and aggrivated that I can't do that this year.

My heel's aching under the cast today - surprisingly, since I haven't done anything today except lay on the couch with it elevated and answer some work-related emails.

11/26/00
OK, I *AM* glad that I drove up last night - it's pouring rain out. At least it washed away all the snow. But it looks slippery out there on the porch and I wouldn't want to make 4 or 5 trips in from the car in this weather. I slept til noon today. And now I'm going to veg out on the couch and watch PBS - they're airing the Les Miserables concert, and Jerome Pradon is somewhere in the male ensemble. Hee.

I ended up going to the grocery store to get paper towels and milk - and a very nice girl about my age pushed my cart to the register for me! What was that about depending on the kindness of strangers? I stopped by the video store, too, to see if there was anything good, but I remembered that Titanic was on TV tonight, so I'll just watch that. I'm sneezing and my throat is starting to hurt, so I think I'll curl up on the couch and just watch the movie.

11/25/00
Happy Birthday Kenny!

Where to start... I'm back in MA after a quick trip home. I drove home on Wed night, and noticed that the snow disappeared as soon as I got out of my driveway - stopped at the mall on the way down to return that book, whew. Got home to NJ with almost no traffic at all, which was nice, and the trip took about 4 hours. Not too bad, and what I expected. Mom and I did dinner at the diner (where our high school crew used to hang out after shows), and then went to Blockbuster to see if they had any copies of Gladiator in - and they did! They had one! So we watched that (mmm, Russell Crowe) Wednesday night.

We had thought the homecoming football game was on Thursday, but it wasn't, so I planned to sleep in late. Alas, I was woken to the sounds of the Music Man in the parade on TV, so I got up to watch the rest of the parade and just hang around the house. By the time 2pm rolled around tho, I was so tired that I went to nap for a half hour before the big turkey dinner. And there was food! And there was family! And it was good! I drove back to the city after dinner - I wanted to get there before it got too dark out. Parked the car outside my building (which, yes, did merit me a parking ticket in the morning, which is still cheaper than putting the car in a garage would have been. I am not paying it, it is not my car). Plowed through my mail and fell asleep.

Friday - a day off. Started out by getting up early to go to the doctor, where they kept me waiting for 45 minutes before seeing me. I had been expecting to get the cast off and get a walking cast. But no - they did take the cast off, took a quick look at my leg (two incisions, need to shave, the usual), and said "OK, re-cast it, come back in 4 weeks, then we'll do physical therapy). So I am re-cast with a real fiberglass cast and am back to being on crutches for another month. I'm really not happy about that, since I wanted to be up and walking around, and because it means I get my new cast off 2 weeks before I go to London! I was really not happy to hear that news, and spent the day in a funk.

After that, I watched a lot of TV (boy, I've missed NY1!) and reorganized my photo albums, which I'd been planning to do. Dad and I went to the movies in the afternoon to see Unbreakable, which was not as good as The Sixth Sense - it was as if the movie ended just where it could have gotten really good - I really wanted to know more about what happened next. Got home, had dinner, and went back out again to meet Kenny after the show. I survived the subway on crutches. Whew. Kenny's cousin and his daughter and her boyfriend were there, so we all went uptown to the Raccoon Lodge (I used to go there when I lived uptown) for a drink, and then I crashed at Kenny's. We watched parts of the Gladiator DVD (deleted Russell Crowe scenes!) and I took a Vicodin to sleep - the new cast is less comfortable than the old one was. But after that, I slept well. Took a cab downtown with him this afternoon before his matinee, and I just splurged and stayed in the cab all the way home - didn't want to deal with the subway again.

Finished my photo albums, and got back in the car to go to NJ - I wanted to drop off some xmas presents with Mom and pick up some more sassy booty-socks from her (they keep my cast warm). We had leftover turkey for dinner, mmm. Drove back to NY, grabbed my stuff and the kitties (with the help of my neighbors in the building, who helped me lug stuff to the car), and drove up here. I was going to come back tomorrow morning, but just wanted to get here and settled again. I started to doubt that choice about halfway up, as I was really tired (and sick of waiting for the accident on the Taconic to get cleared), but am glad we made it. Getting the cats etc. into the house was more of an ordeal, but I managed on my own. They're hunting around and getting used to it - the litterbox and catfood is in the kitchen, and Pixel has discovered it. I think Mimi is still sitting on the stairs - all of the doors upstairs are closed so they can't get anywhere, but I think Mimi is a little apprehensive overall. They were really good on the drive up, only yowling for the first half hour or so before falling asleep in their carrier.

Anyway, I'm back in MA - I missed it. Glad I have the cats. Would be nice to have Kenny up here, too, but it's nice to have alone time, too. Off to check my email!

11/22/00
The Elton John concert will not air tomorrow - the new air date is Dec 1st - thanks Jim, for letting me know. Hopefully they'll show Jim on the show, how cool would that be (and you'll hear the 6 of us cheering him on as everyone around us went, "who?").

We cat littered the porch and driveway at the house this morning, although it wasn't icy (but boy is it snowing like crazy) and I've left the house for the weekend. I packed this morning and had Jen toss my stuff into the car, so I don't have to go back to the house after work. I do, however, have to run by the mall on the way home - when I was there on Friday, I bought a book (Killing Time by Caleb Carr, not worth the link to Amazon), which is unimpressive and I can't bear to pick it up again. So I want to take it back to Waldenbooks and see if I can return it. And then I'm zipping home, w00.

Can't wait to get on the road - I'm all antsy today.

Well, since I'll be computer-less for the weekend, have a great Thanksgiving, everyone. Enjoy the turkey. Don't drink and drive. Tie a yellow ribbon 'round the... nevermind. I'll be back online in MA on Sunday.

11/21/00
Jen, Kristin and I went to see Almost Famous last night - a movie about a bunch of people that I have no sympathy for. It was well-made, but I didn't like any of the characters. I called Kenny and left a message asking him to explain this musician/fan thing one more time ;-) When they played Tiny Dancer in the movie, all I could think of was Trish singing. "Hold me closer, Tony Danza," and it sort of ruined the mood. Sort of. Heh. It also reminded me of Jen's caption for her pictures from the EJ concert - "Hold me closer, Tiny Elton."

We have snow! About 2 inches on the ground and more flurries coming as we speak. The snow is alright, it's the sheet of ice covering the driveway that's bad - I'm going to go out and get some cat litter to sprinkle on the ground so I don't slip on crutches and break my neck, too. Coworker Jen (thank you!) drove the car to work this morning (she's staying at the house this week) and dropped me off closer to the stairs that I take up to the first floor. I hope the parking lot here isn't too icy, as I have to get back to the car this afternoon to go to the massage place and then to return my video and buy cat litter. I figure I'll do that all in one stretch this afternoon.

With the exception of the danger element, it's beautiful. I love waking up and looking out the window and seeing mountains - the house is ideally located for the views. Stunning. I think the cats will love it.

I am my broker's MVP of the year for the amazing stock options turnaround earlier this year - Xceed stock has continually tanked since I sold it, and the company reported an unprecidented loss this quarter. I asked if I get to meet Derek Jeter because of that. He's working on it.

Ooh, massage. That felt great. And seeing that Amazon shipped my copy of Gladiator is even better, so I can watch it when I get back to the city on Friday.

11/20/00
Whatever I did to my calf still hurts, I must've whacked it good. Had to take a Vicodin to sleep last night and some Aleve this morning. I wish I could properly stretch it out or something. I'm going to make a massage appointment with a local place in Williamstown to have someone get the cricks out of my arms and back - the crutches are a pain. I found a place down the street (literally! 125 Water St!) and am going to call to see when I can get in there.

You know folks, a simple mailto link on your site can make my life so much easier. I'm doing some research on local development shops in areas where we're focussing our fund development, and the past three that I've been interested in have NOT had a mailto link. Two had online forms (which do not hold the quantity of intro text that I need to send) and one just had a phone number. Oh, and one also had a "download my virtual business card to get my email address!" No! Just put a mailto link there! It isn't that hard!

Excellent - got an appointment at the massage place (they actually moved from 125 Water to right across the street) for tomorrow afternoon, right after my last meeting but before the Beaujolais dinner at Mezze.

Kristin and I are plotting our attack on Burlington, VT. We're going up Dec 10-13 to meet with our fund manager in the area and also talk to some local companies. We will be too busy and/or disabled to do any skiing when we visit Stowe, but not so busy that we don't have time to stop in at the Ben and Jerry's factory tour on the way back. It'll be a blast, the trip is pulling together nicely, and everyone we've talked to is excited about the partnership work we're doing.

And in even happier news, Kristin will indeed bring her vacuum over! She, coworker Jen (up from NYC) and I are going to see Almost Famous after work at the theatre in Williamstown.

In checking my calendar, I see that I wrote down that la Boheme is airing on PBS sometime in March 2001. I have no idea why I bothered to write that down.

11/19/00
I guess all that driving yesterday tired me out (or the crutches, or whatever), as I fell asleep at 6pm, woke up at 10 to turn off lights, and then fell asleep again around midnight after tossing and turning for a few hours.

I did mention that this house has a fly problem, right? So I went upstairs to take a shower (which I haven't gotten to, yet) and the upstairs was buzzing with flies. Tons of them. Which is bad not only because it's disgusting, but because coworker Jen is going to stay here for a few days this week. So I came downstairs again and got the can of Raid, and went back upstairs and sprayed the bedrooms and bathrooms etc with Raid, and flies started dropping like... flies. Immediately. It was a fly onslaught. Really nasty. And when the flies fall to the ground, they start buzzing and spinning in circles and you either have to let them die a slow death or stomp on them. There were so many that I just decided to let them die their slow death. I also sprayed the bathroom I've been using (there're 3 bedrooms and two bathrooms up there) and am waiting for the flies to die before I go take a shower. I should really be using the big bathroom, the one with the hot tub and standup shower, which would be much more comfortable, but there's a much higher fly count in there.

I might ask a favor from coworker Kristin and see if she has a vacuum she could lend me (or better yet, see if she might like to vacuum for a bit as I have no idea how to figure that one out - the being able to use the vacuum while on crutches, not the vacuuming in general, no comments from the peanut gallery please). It's pretty gross with all the bugs.

Well, time passed and I did something relatively domestic. After letting the Raid settle (that stuff is amazing, by the way), I went back upstairs and armed myself with the fireplace broom-thing. While this house has almost no furniture and less cookware, it does have fireplace tools. So I swept up the fly carcasses into piles in the corners of each room, which is slightly more bearable than having them all over the place. Showered in the big bathroom, which was much nicer than the little bathroom. Perhaps I shall explore the hot tub tonight.

I have used the entire can of Raid, by the way. Must buy more.

The biggest NY thing that I miss right now is NY1. There is no equivalent here, and there's really nothing on TV on Sundays other than football. Kinda sad. And I miss the cats. I may bring them back up with me after Thanksgiving - we'll see how happy they feel about the car, and how happy the doorman feels about helping me bring their carriers downstairs.

More time passed, and I have enjoyed the wonders of the hot tub. I wrapped my foot in plastic ala showering, and was able to either rest it on the edge of the tub (which is nice and deep!) or pull my knee up to my chest to rest my foot out of the water. My leg is in a half-cast up to the knee, FYI. Anyway, I learned not to test the jets before the tub water has covered them, as water sprays everywhere. And somehow, when leaning down to test the water temperature, I lost my balance and did something non-weightbearing, yet nevertheless painful, to my calf - like when you pull a muscle and it really smarts, but in this case, I can't do anything about it because I can't rub my leg through the cast and the cotton padding and the plastic bag. Ow. But submerging my body in the tub with the water covering me (nice change from our shallow tub at home) and the jets making the water bubble... ahh. Time well spent.

27 degrees out. Snow soon.

11/18/00
Beautiful nice cold day up here. I drove to Weston (60 miles, about an hour the way I drive, 380 miles in the car so far, 338 of those before I had to get gas). I went to the 11.30am mass at the Priory, the only church I enjoy attending, and well worth the drive up. I also stopped off in Manchester to look for shoes in the outlets, but didn't find anything I was crazy about. Hrm. Will bring up more shoes from home when I go back this week for Thanksgiving. I'm driving down to NJ on Wednesday night, and have to go to the city on Friday for my followup appointment with my orthopedist. I also need to stop home to pick up my Visa bill (which I thought Jen had mailed up here when it came last week but I was wrong) and feed the cats since Jen and Missy are also away for the weekend.

While my lifelong goal is to be on Jeopardy, my real goal is to move up here, and I think it'll happen in the next few years - as long as Village Ventures is around to keep me employed. At the rate we're going, I don't think that's going to be a problem. While Williamstown is beautiful, I still much prefer southern Vermont - the drive isn't bad (considering I'm in VT in 10 minutes driving) and as soon as you cross the border there's more space, more land, more trees and mountains. I've wanted to live here for as long as I can remember, now all I have to do is figure out saving the money to do it, and of course deal with not being in the city. But by the time I'm 30, I'll be ready to, I think.

I rented Keeping the Faith, a movie I already own on DVD at home, and Notting Hill, and I'm ready to settle down on the couch and veg out up here.

I worked on editing my book proposal last night for a while, and have to do more today and tomorrow. I'd like to get the second draft ready this week to mail down to my agent.

My hands are killing me from the crutches.

later on 11/17/00
I drove to the mall (the quicker way this time, down Route 7), and saw Bounce - it was not as good as I was expecting, but it wasted a few hours. Also managed dinner in the food court and observed the locals at play. Hee. On the drive home, I got stuck behind the world's slowest driver (seriously, they were doing 30 mph the entire way home, ugh), and managed to pass them somewhere near Williamstown. And when I got home, I looked up at the sky, and it was full of stars.

Silence.

Night.

Stars.

Beautiful

11/17/00
So I woke up this morning and was in such pain that I couldn't move. Not my foot tho - my hands and arms and back - I forgot how much crutches work the rest of your body. So I emailled in late and got in at lunchtime.

Roger Bart is going to be in the The Producers - just what I needed, another reason to see it!

I drove to the mall last night (as with everything here, it's farther away than you think). Hopped to Old Navy to buy some long skirts, since I don't have enough pants that'll fit over my cast (and I do not like to do laundry). The employees are very helpful there, one guy carried my things to the dressing room and then to the register for me! I tried on a sassy red and brown sweater and realized that with my new hair color (relatively), I look great in red. So I bought it, and also bought a red chunky turtleneck sweater at the Gap. Once again, I thank God (or Kevin from Marketing) for the sassy Village Ventures oversized messenger bag, into which I crammed all of my purchases. I wish I was walking so I could shop the rest of the mall, but I get tired too easily on crutches to do much.

In the world of dot-com failures, garden.com is closing. Their big sale starts today and goes through Dec 1st. Go shopping!

I am getting so many compliements on my red sweater! I've never been a bright colors person (come on, I live in NYC), so this is super! I hope I don't get ostracized from the city for wearing non-black.

My friend Don sent me a stuffed bear - in a hospital gown with a sling and a crutch - I've named him "Gimpy" and he lives on my desk at work. If I had a digital camera, there'd be a picture up already, but I took a regular picture instead with my snazzy new Elph camera. Which I love.

11/16/00
127 miles on the car so far, I don't think I'll go over my 2500 mile limit for the month.

It's funny - it's so dark and secluded at the house, that if I forget to leave the porch light on (like I did yesterday), and I get home after dark, I'm more scared than I am in the dark of the city. There're trees around and not much else, so who knows what's out there... probably nothing, but it's still very creepy. Didn't expect that. Very quiet.

Another reason to move to Ireland instead of New England - I'm still more comfortable driving on the other side of the road. Not that I'm swerving off to the right or anything, mind you.

I am becoming rural! I just called the mall to see how late they were open! Ack!

In non-foot related health news, the burn on my thumb from the exploding match book seems to have healed!

later on 11/15/00
So I watched Jerry Maguire, the cutest movie ever, but it was a chore to watch it. The house has a TV, yes, and a VCR, but no cable connecting them. You really can tell no one lives here. So I drove to the video store, but they don't sell cables, so I came back and just yanked the TV cable from the wall and hooked it to the VCR that way, and that worked fine. Love that movie. I also went to the grocery store for my first solo run, got to use the handicapped higher-than-usual shopping cart to support half my weight as I wheeled around. I noticed on the way out that they had Target-esque wheely carts, but it was too late. I'll remember that next time.

The house now has a scent of Raid about it - I bought bug spray and spritzed the entire downstairs. I love that the flies now make this sad buzzing sound and twirl around on the floor before I squash them like, er, bugs. I would sweep, if there were a broom. But I'm getting really good at smacking bugs against the wall, the floor, the door, you name it. It's like a dead bug museum in here.

My ankle itches like crazy, but I can't get to it, so I've taken to smacking the side of my cast. It's also burning at times - like a really bad, hot itch on my outer ankle bone, and I don't know if it's because of stitches (tho I don't know why they'd cut there) or what. Tomorrow is the one-week anniversary of having it all wrapped up, and I hope it feels better. If it feels worse I'll drive to the North Adams hospital and ask them to re-wrap it for me or something. It's weird - it doesn't hurt at all like I'd expected it to - I've only had to take two Vicodin all week, and Aleve maybe three times. I love that.

11/15/00
I joined the video store last night in Williamstown, and rented Jerry Maguire - that little boy is too cute. I'll probably watch it tonight, since last night was Buffy - Spike is too much. I discovered that the house has basic cable, not the expanded set of channels that we have at home. But that's alright - as long as I can watch ER tomorrow, I'm OK. Unless the power goes out in a freak storm, it'll be OK. So right, video store - $3 for a 5-day rental. I might have to fight the hordes off next Tuesday with my crutches so I can rent Gladiator. But I will also be home next Thursday and Friday, and in the city for part of that, and perhaps my Amazon order will have arrived and I can sit on the couch at home and watch it, too.

So the house collects flies. Dead and alive. I am going to buy flypaper tonight.

The Times gave a rave review to Betrayal - I might go see it again. Liev Schreiber is, as noted in the article, a wonderful presence on stage. Did I mention that I saw his Hamlet four times?

These roses smell great. I wish I knew who sent them.

I hate websites with embedded sound. For a minute here, I thought my Carousel recording was screwed up, until I realized that a website in another window was playing sound on top of my CD. Grr. I also hate the background noise of the guys doing construction work right in our office. The office, of course, is new to us and requires heavy construction and drilling etc, but it sure is loud. I love the office - we're in the old Tripod space, in a mill, here in Williamstown. I love that neither of our offices is conventional.

11/14/00
First day in the office here - I discovered a doorman (old, crusty, doorman-like) in the building who enjoys operating the freight elevator, so he helped me upstairs today. Hopefully he'll be there every morning. It must be the clean mountain air, but I was up and at work by 8.30am this morning - usually I'm just rolling out of bed then. I think I'm going to pull a half day today since it's more walking around than I had planned on. I do have to make a trip to the grocery store (Stop&Shop!) again today to get the things I realized I needed now - like plastic sandwich bags for bringing lunch to work in (hard to wrap peanut butter and jelly in a garbage bag, which is all I have) and some snack food - whatever I can carry to the car. I love my Village Ventures shoulder bag - it's big enough to hold everything I could possibly need - a large messenger bag. Very cool.

I spent the morning getting set up at work - Fred the tech guy has been amazing at getting my network connection up and my monitor (which I did not bring from NY) set up for me - I'm not doing well with carrying things at all, so I'm glad to have people around who are helpful. And coworker Michael - faithful reader of suck-my-big.org since before he was my coworker - carried my laptop and bag of stuff (Yankees poster, Rolodex etc) up from the car, since, again, I am not carrying anything. I have problems with open beverage containers, too, so I should really have brought my Village Ventures coffee mug with the swanky lid, but alas.

On Friday (I think it was Friday, it's all a blur), Jen went to see the boys at the Bloomingdale's window unveiling - and she took the video camera (with newly fixed zoom). Check out some of the pictures she took - how cute are they? How old am I again?

Somebody (James?) sent me really lovely purple roses this morning at work, but signed the card, "Jonathan Pryce" - whom I've never met. I mean, that would be lovely, as he's quite the man, but I don't think so.

I'm sorry, but if, according to the news, the popular vote has no influence on the Florida electors' votes, why the heck are they recounting?

I am 8 miles from the nearest McDonald's! I have not seen a Starbucks! This is heaven. I am going to drive around after work before it gets dark and find things.

later on 11/13/00
Despite the fact that I had to call Jen's parents to ask what temperature to set the thermostat at (what, like I have to worry about that in the city?), everything is settled in fairly smoothly here. I love the house, I love driving. I don't love that the turnoff to the dirt road to the house is on the side of the road and practically unmarked, so I went sailing past, but I'll get it sooner or later.

I love this house. I think I said that. It's the kind of house - in the kind of location - that I would have picked out for myself. I'm getting to a point where I'm trying to figure out how much time I really want to spend in the city, and what's really going to make me happy. This month is going to be a big help in figuring some of that out - we'll see if I go screaming into the middle of Times Square and kiss the ground when I get back (well, I won't be kissing the ground anywhere in the city, but you know what I mean). I do know that I want to end up here eventually, but figuring out when is part of that.

Dinner at Mezze with Judith and Kristin - and it was much fun doing a girl's night out. Since Mezze is the swanky place here (and since it's part-owned by Bo), it's a VV hangout - Matt was there, and Wil was there with his Dad and some friends. Very fun. Kristin and I are going to go back next Tuesday for the Beaujolais Nouveau "release" party/cabaret they're throwing. Terrific food and a great atmosphere there, I really had a great night. Figured out the lay of the house, got all unpacked, found NBC on the TV so I won't have to worry about missing ER on Thursdays.

In the realm of things to worry about, my friend Peter's mother is in the hospital with a minor heart attack - fingers crossed that things come through OK. It's looking hopeful, but still, it's a worry.

And tomorrow, worry about navigating the office (with Audrey the wonder-dog in attendance) and stairs and breakfast and painkillers and daylight and boy is this place quiet at night and quite deserted down here at the end of the dirt road with no one else in sight. Glad I packed a flashlight (rather, I'm glad I bought one in the checkout aisle at Target the other day) since getting the key into the lock of the car at night is a tad tricky.

11/13/00
Well, I am in Massachusetts! And it's beautiful here. But let me not rush... Spent the weekend in NJ at Mom's. I'd like to say I sat on the couch and did nothing, but that isn't true - we went to Target and shopped, and we also went last night to my grandmother's house in Toms River (Dad's mom) - went out for dinner and had a very nice time. I saw Nanny at her 80th bday party in May, but I don't know when the last time she and Mom got together.

Couldn't sleep last night, my foot was hurting too much. So I popped a Vicodin at 2am (I think), and that put me right out. I did manage to get out of bed at 9 this morning to pack the car (er, watch Mom pack the car) and we were on our way. The drive was fairly uneventful - we got the new car/cd player thing working (which I bought last night to replace my old cd player, which had died), so we had music all the way up.

Stopped at the office in Williamstown, to say hi and gimp around, and to get better directions to the house (the ones I had were from another direction). Found the house alright and OH MY! This is the house I would buy if I could. I think I shall offer myself as an indentured servant to Bo so I can have the house in exchange. It's at the end of a dirt road off Rt. 43, and is two stories, 3BR, 1.5 bath. They did indeed bring a bed down from upstairs to the den for me. It's got cable, a LAN connection, a pot or two, and not much else. You can tell it's unlived in (and that it's unlived in by a guy). I think it's going to be a peaceful month. I also think I'll get a lot of writing done in my Misery-meets-The Shining thoughts. Very quiet. I like it very much. Coworker Kristin gave exellent directions to the grocery store, and she and I and coworker Judith (from NY, here for a few days) are going to have dinner tonight. The only thing I need to get sorted out is the SMTP server for outgoing email, since all of my other connections seem to work except for that. So - people to whom I owe email - sorry 'bout that - I can't send anything right now.

Did I mention that the house has a deck? Two of them? And lots of land and beautiful views? I want it. I am all unpacked into the den, and ready to settle in. Too bad I have to work while I'm here ;-) But I have the rental car and the office isn't too far away, about a ten minute drive. (Rental car guy: "What'd you do to your foot?" Me: "Totalled my last rental car.")

later on 11/11/00
I do love having crutches - I'm back to hobbling as fast as ever on them. Slipped once, on the porch, but luckily landed the brunt of my weight on my right foot. Other thoughts from yesterday/Thurs: hospital food still nasty (didn't eat any, just admired), very cute PT guy came by with crutches, he was a redhead, and if he had been single I would have made him wait for Jen to come by, things could always be worse - the guy in the pre-op curtain next to me was there for some sort of lung tissue biopsy, and everyone at Beth Israel was really helpful. I highly recommend that everyone go there for surgery.

Mom and I went to Target, so now I'm not allowed to say I've never been. I got to ride the handicapped people cart around the store, terrorizing little kids. But I also finished more of my Christmas shopping. And now I am going to continue my weekend plans of sitting on the couch with a good book and wondering how I'm going to wash my hair.

Aleve is making my foot feel better without making me ill.

11/11/00
Well, I am alive and well, although it took me a while to remember what day it is (I called Jen's voicemail at work to leave her a message before I realized it was Saturday and not Friday). Anyway, the surgery was not much fun. They postponed it from 10am until 2pm on Thurs, which meant an extra few hours of sitting around pre-op with an IV in my hand. I had a panic/anxiety attack, which didn't help any. I was glad for it to be over, and when I woke up afterwards, there was a patient-controlled morphine drip in my hand, very ER. Very nausea-inducing as well, as I spent Friday morning vomiting my stomach up. Dad came to visit on Thurs eve post-surgery, and Mom and Jen came on Friday morning to pick me up and get my home to NJ (where I am now, having figured out how to dial in via Mom's dialup connection).

This is not much fun. I hate being immobile, and I hate the pain meds making me nauseaus. Bleh. Time to check email, read news, and go back to bed.

Oh, and for anyone who wants to send well-wishes my way, I'll be working at the Village Ventures office from Tuesday until mid-December: Village Ventures, 160 Water Street, 3rd Floor, Williamstown MA 01267.

In happy news, I got email from John that said he spotted the Tank in Freehold NJ! My old car! Which I thought was dead! I wrote back and asked him to find out if it's in one piece and driveable because if it is, I want it back! My car!

11/8/00
OK, explain this to me. How can states with only 50% of their returns declare their electoral votes, while Florida has to do a recount, and they have 90% of their votes in? Why don't we just recount ALL of the states? Really. I have decided to leave the country if Bush wins, so I hope there are some attractive Irish readers out there who will take me in.

I stayed up til 2am watching the election coverage (it wasn't that exciting, trust me), and they still haven't figured it out. They're going to announce the winner tomorrow, so I'll be doped up for it.

The second concert last night was much more fun that the first - our seats didn't have any obstructions like the first night, even tho we were farther back from the stage, and the audience was much more energetic. We left the city at 7.30 and got there at 8 (no traffic), just in time for the 3rd opening act - we learned the night before that the first two weren't worth getting there on time for. And even though we were parked about as far from the entrance as you could possibly park, we still got out to the car in record time after the show, and were back home on the couch by 11.30. Amazingly little traffic. It was a lot of fun, and I'm glad I had earplugs again. I don't know that I need to go see them live again, but it was worth doing to see what I missed out on as a kid. And to see the boys live, of course. (That's 'live' as in 'live on stage', not as in the opposite of 'dead'.)

My surgery is tomorrow at 9.30am. I am mostly packed (awaiting the arrival of laundry from the cleaners tonight), and made a trip to Old Navy today to pick up socks etc. We had a meeting at our colleague's office this morning, so I went to the store after that, since it was around the corner. I ran into my friend Lisa in Old Navy (she was also using her lunch break to do some shopping), that was pretty cool, so we walked back to our offices together (she's around the corner).

So tomorrow, right, 9.30am. And I'm bringing a good book, since I'll be there overnight. And then home Friday, and miserable and in pain all weekend - joy. Actually, I'll probably be so incredibly doped up on painkilers that I won't notice anything at all. I have some stuff to take care of tonight - like going to the store, finishing what packing I can, packing my work laptop etc. up for the trip.

11/7/00
So I got plane tickets to London, and reserved a hotel room (hopefully the room will be cleaner than the last time!). Tim said he'll go to the closing of Whistle Down the Wind with me, and now I have to figure out what else to see/do. Probably Blood Brothers since I've been craving it, and while it would be great to try and get to Stratford to see The Secret Garden, I have no idea how to get there or how far it really is from London. (update: it's 3 hours away, that's really far)

So the concert was fun! It was so much fun that we should do it again! Like, tonight! I was surprised at how well-behaved the crowd was for the most part. The entire thing was more like a circus than a concert - at least, what I consider a concert. It's just so staged and scripted, like a really expensive play. But it was entertaining. The two scary things I noticed yesterday: they announced songs from "your parents' generation," such as Bryan Adam's Summer of '69, and you know you're getting old when you go to concerts, and instead of looking for boys in the audience, you scope out the single dads.

Election Day - I hope everyone voted today. I had a hard time choosing between Clinton and Lazio for the Senate race, so I voted for the Socialist candidate instead (whose name I can't remember) - a few other people that I've talked to did the same, voted for a third party candidate. It was just not an appealing race. But it was good to see such a high turnout in our district - the lines in the polling site were out the door when I went this morning.

I spent good money on Frank Rich's memoir, Ghost Light, about his theatre days. I disagree with everything Frank Rich ever said about theatre, so it'll be interesting reading. I'm putting together the bag of books I'm taking to MA with me - and this is going on the pile.

I'm having one of those days where I want to get out of NYC and settle somewhere for good. But I would have to settle somewhere close to the city, so I could get back. It's one of those days where the city isn't doing it for me, and I feel bad for thinking that, because this is a place where you can get everything you need. But for some reason, it isn't working for me today. So I am playing all of my sad MP3's today, because that's my mood. Getting out of the city for a month will either reinforce this mood, or send me running (er, hobbling) back screaming to Times Square.

How cool is Circuit City? They already fixed my camcorder zoom and I can pick it up tomorrow!

later on 11/6/00
No traffic at all on the way to NJ and back, so we made it home by 11.30pm - impressive! The concert was fun, and the seats weren't that bad. And the teenyboppers weren't THAT loud. I was correct in my assumption that we were the oldest people there that didn't have kids with them. And I am glad that I wore earplugs, my ears would be shot without them from all the screaming.

My fake nails have lasted a week and a half - after popping two of them off (and losing one) tonight, I have soaked my fingers in acetone and removed them. Which I would have had to do before surgery anyway. So they are a mess and covered in glue now, but much more comfortable! I do not understand fashionable things like nails.

And I am spending the time before bed sewing the lining up in my leather jacket, it had torn in a few places.

11/6/00
I fell asleep at 6pm last night - I hope I don't get sick. I do not want to be sick. But I did not have quality sleep. I popped a nighttime cold pill, which knocked me out, but I kept waking up all night, not much fun.

Before falling asleep, I had a great lazy day - went to breakfast with Kenny, and then went to Circuit City to drop off my camcorder for fixing (I later realized that I had left a VHS-C tape in it), to K-Mart for $7 sweatpants, and to the Strand for books to read while in MA. I love the Strand - I can't walk in there without buying something. Then I watched the first two Prisoner episodes on DVD. I also got some packing done for the trip to MA - suitcase full of clothes, bag of books, etc. I'll try and do more on Wed - I have a lot of work stuff to bring up (laptop, palm pilot cradle etc - I have a list).

I got back my pictures from the Yankees parade - my favorite is the one of Derek Jeter looking our way and Tino Martinez pointing. Ooh baby. I also got back the Elton John concert pix, which are blurry and too far away, tho the one of the guy in front of us (who kept jumping out of his seat and waving his arms around) came out nice and clear.

We are off to the world of teenybopper fans tonight - the first of two 'NSync concerts this week. Egads. I don't think I've ever been to a teenybopper-filled concert before - I just don't get the screaming/crying thing. So this should be interesting, but fun - it'll be cool to see them sing live.

I am going to London in January, crutches or no crutches. But I should be off them by then. I'm more worried about the scar I'm supposed to end up with down my calf than I am about being on crutches - can't wait to see how that ends up. But anyway, yes, I'm going to go to the closing of Whistle Down the Wind, which is the first weekend in January, and see some other shows, too. As many as I can cram into 2.5 days, that is.

11/4/00
We all went to see the Charlie's Angels movie last night - what a blast! It was funny in a cheesy, campy way, and we spent the rest of the night making "ka-ra-te" hand motions. Afterwards, we went up the Abbey Pub (how I've missed it! GoBoy Jonathan was there!). And something happened to me that has never happened before - when I went to light a cigarette, the entire matchbook went up in flames and became a small fireball. In my hand. So my thumb and forefinger are blistered now, but not hurting nearly as badly as they did last night. Ow. I had my hand soaked in damp papertowels all night at the bar.

We didn't stay out too late last night tho, because we had to get up early to get rush tickets for Aida tihs morning - got there at 8, no problem getting tickets. We met a girl on the line who lives in Orlando and works at Epcot. This was her first trip to NY so we gave her lots of advice on places to go etc, and she promised to get us discounted passes to Disney World (we're planning a trip for May or so next year). Very cool. The show was good - took friend Matthew from WA, who just moved here, with us. He moved here for theatre, so we're helping him out with getting cheap tickets. I broke a nail (ha, never thought I'd say that!) at dinner, so I went to get it fixed afterwards and now I am back home for a bit before going out to meet Kenny.

I'm starting to think about packing for MA. Bought bathroom stuff and also some new photo albums, as I need to reorganize mine, and what better time to do it? I also bought a new camera (Canon Elph! so cute! so little!) because mine has been acting up ever since I (oops) dropped it on concrete a few weeks ago. The new one takes Advantix film, which I haven't used before, but it sure is cute and I'm sure it'll take great pictures.

At Aida, Jim said that the Elton John concert thing that he played at (and that we went to) will air on CBS on Thanksgiving. Everybody watch for Jim! He also said he'd take off the night from the show when I conduct Music Man, which is so cool. Everyone's going to come see it! Jen's going to get a group discount for our friends, I think, heh.

11/3/00
Well, the best part of going to the gala was that James and I got to sit 10th row center in the orchestra, so we could schmooze with the celebs - including Hinton Battle, who was next to me. He violated one of my theatre ettiquete rules by opening a crinkly chocolate wrapper at the start of act two, but who was I to tell him to put it away? ("Hello Hinton - I realize you've won three Tony awards, including one for this show, but could you please not open that candy bar right now? Thanks.") Also spotted near us: Willy Falk and his mom, Susan Stroman, most of Johnson-Liff, Ruthie (hi Tim!) and Cameron Mackintosh in the row behind us.

The cast is really not that good these days - the Chris is bland - he looks like Will but sounds like crap, the Kim whiny, the John un-noticible. Margaret Ann Gates as Ellen is still the best of the bunch - she's terrific.

Hopefully the quality will improve soon - the show is being extended for a month, and Lea Salonga is coming back. Hopefully, Will Chase will be coming back with her as Chris - he's really the best I've ever seen.

After the show, Hinton, Liz CALLAWAY CALLAWAY CALLAWAY and Willy Falk led the cast, and a handful of past cast members in "This is the Hour", and then Jonathan Pryce (!!!) came and did "The American Dream" - with Cameron et al coming out in the car. Right before he came out, they moved the American Dream set onto the stage, and I leaned over to James and said, "Wouldn't it be cool if they had Jona..." - and wham, he came out. After the song, Jonathan stepped forward with the entire cast behind him, and said it was great to be back on the stage - and noted the warm welcome he received 9 years ago (right). He introduced Cameron, who announed the return of Lea and the show's extension (like you couldn't see it coming), and they shot tons of confetti, streamers and balloons into the audience - messier than Rocky Horror, as James said.

To to say it again, the best part was that we had great seats. And that we looked very snazzy.

I really want to move to Ireland, I have decided. Since I can't, maybe I'll just go to London in January. I miss it. And since cheap airfares are abounding... must ponder.

It's so beautiful outside today. Except for the construction outside my window at work - that's not so beautiful. I went out to mail my packages and go to the drugstore, and was halfway to the post office before I realized I had left my Pilot with the addresses in it on my desk. It's a good thing it's so nice out, as I had to come back and get it and then go back to the post office.

Since I assume that I will not need my SQL Server 6.5 or Cold Fusion books at this job, I have used them to raise up my monitor - hopefully this'll stop my hunching over and getting backaches.

11/2/00
James and I are going to the Miss Saigon 4,000th performance gala thing tonight. Another chance to get all dressed up - I'm going to wear the dress that I wore to the Ragtime opening - short, black, beaded. Very sassy. I'll be sure to take pictures.

Betrayal last night was good - if rather pointless. It's typical Pinter, full of pauses. I liked that it was told backwards - you meet this couple who had had an affair, and you follow the story as it jumps backwards in time until you get to the point where they met. Liev Schreiber was, as always, yummy. Plus I think he's a terrific actor - I don't think I've mentioned recently that I saw him 4 times in Hamlet last season. Excellent actor.

The Chekhov Now festival starts this weekend - go check out some of the productions. This year, the festival is down at the Connelly Theatre on East 4th Street - a real live theatre. I'm going to try and see my friend Dave's shows next weekend, provided I'm doing alright with the lethal combination of painkillers and crutches I'll be dealing with.

Russell Crowe is a sexy bitch.

11/01/00
It's the day after Halloween, and I have 2 cases of Corn Nuts. Let me explain.

So I come home from work last night (after stopping at the bookstore to see if there was anything I wanted to pick up - there wasn't). Being Tuesday, there's nothing I want to watch on TV, and Jen's out somewhere. So I decide to make dinner. But I can't get to anything in the freezer, as it's covered in a thin sheeting of ice. Time to really defrost it - so I empty the freezer, and start chipping ice off the inside with a spatula (plastic). That somewhat works, but not really, so I revert to Mom's age-old trick of using the hair dryer to melt the ice chunks. Much better. As I'm emptying the ice-collection drawer under the freezer, the phone rings. It's my friend Dave from Faux Real, asking if I wanted to go to the last performance of the Haunted Ship down at the Seaport. Sure, no problem. So he came to pick me up, and we went. It was much better than last year, we had a blast. This is the show I would have worked on if I hadn't been planning to go to SLC this weekend.

So after the show, we were talking with Megan's mom, who ran box office, and she said they had 400 cases of Corn Nuts, did we want some? So I ended up with two case of Taco Flavored Corn Nuts. I talked to Mark, the Faux Real director, quickly after the show (he had been making the "we need to talk" motion at me during it), and he asked if I'd light FunBox2001 this spring, which we're going to do in a real live theatre on 42nd Street (and it isn't Show World!). Very cool. I'm waiting for him to let me know when the dates are.

Dave and I grabbed a drink at the North Star on the corner after the show (and ate Corn Nuts), and then I called Kenny (no answer). Home, sleep. Back to work today.

6 days til Election Day. I hope you're all going to get out there are vote Gore, like I am.

8 days until surgery. Bleh.

I need to come up with a non-offensive title for my book. Help me out here, folks.

I had a really great chicken burrito for lunch today - from the folks around the corner on Second Ave. It always amazes me that NYC is full of Mexican restaurants staffed by Chinese employees, and vice versa. Does that happen in other places?

-catherine

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