Tonight was a spectacularly pleasant evening in the City; so much so that I abandoned my plans to go home and do some yoga and instead walked from work (75th & 5th) to the Barnes & Noble on 82nd and Broadway and bought a book called A Winter in Arabia, written by a woman named Freya Stark about her travels in what is now Yemen in 1937-8.
After Barnes & Noble I walked north up Broadway, popped into Duane Reade for some necessities (exceptionally un-charming cashier), then treated myself to a Grande Caramel Frappuccino at a Starbucks that was out of both napkins and straws. I had to walk all the way to the next Starbucks -- a full two blocks! -- to get a straw. I am not making this up, as Anna Russell says.
I finally got on the subway at 96th and Central Park West, so that's a pretty decent walk. Made small talk with a real Nu Yowark-type who liked my Bush button that says "Daddy's Little War Criminal." We both complained about Bob Shrum and then parted ways. Didn't introduce ourselves. Ah, NYC. (No, it wasn't a cruise, guys.)
So now I'm home while brown rice is simmering in the rice cooker and I'm listening to one of my all time favorite CDs, which I highly, highly recommend: The Best of Miles Davis & John Coltrane (1955-1961).
Last night I was rather annoyed by a large green fly that was buzzing around my room making lots of noise. I was tempted to swat it, but you know...how can you kill something like a fly that's totally harmless? So I let it be. Later as I lay in bed it came to rest on my nightstand and I watched it for a while. It was kind of handsome, actually, as far as flies go. I guess he was cleaning himself. He kept doing this thing, lifting up his hind legs and running them down over his wings, over and over. Then he'd fly up into my lightbulb in the nightstand lamp, bump against that 4 or 500 times, then settle back on the nightstand and stare at me. I pitied him and wished there was a way I could set him free, but it was a nippy night and I didn't fancy leaving the windows wide open. I don't know where he is now.
Speaking of having pity for things that annoy you, there is this woman where I work that recently had plastic surgery and, we surmise, a little Botox. That joke about how you don't have any facial expressions with Botox? It's true! Her face hasn't changed expression in a week. Unfortunately, the expression her surgeon left her with is Sudden Shock. She's looked permanently surprised ever since she got back from vacation.
I said "no" at work today. They had a project for me to do, and when they finished explaining it to me, I said, "I'm sorry, but that is a complete waste of time. It's ridiculous." I'm not talking about a project that would have taken 20 minutes or even a couple of hours. Optimistically, we were looking at 3 days' worth of the most tedious work you can imagine. I mean, it would rank right up there with taking 16,234 grains of rice and sorting them according to weight. If you want a full description of what they asked me to do, email me and I'll tell you (but do it soon, or I'll forget the details). So they went back to the drawing board, and together with a couple of other people we found a way to achieve the same result in about 3 hours. It was tedious, sure, but 3 hours over 3 days? Gee, tough choice.
I didn't yet read over Bush's remarks at the U.N. I'm just going to presume he insulted their intelligence, as he operates on the assumption that everyone in Europe watches Fox News, too, and they have no idea what's really going on. I hope he got a cold reception.
In other news...my Star Wars Trilogy on DVD arrived in the mail today...hurray!