Sunday, November 30, 2008


WC and I intended to see a horror movie tonight. But it didn't turn out to be one. Twilight turned out to be... sweet, funny, a complete tear jerker, saved from our derision only because there was one gratifyingly violent scene in which body parts were torn apart and ultimately burned.

Different scenes got to us. For WC, it was the scene where the boy (a vampire) lifted his girl (a human) over the stairs because she had a cast on her ankle (a result of the violent scene I just referred to).

For me... it was when they danced. She didn't know how to dance. He lifted her and placed her feet on his. Perhaps it's because I am a daddy's girl myself. That is how I danced for years, balancing on my father's feet.

I turned to look at WC and we were both weepy. Although the wine that we smuggled in and drank out of paper coffee cups might have contributed to that.

WC's commentary as we walked out of the theater: "That movie was so sweet I'm now mad at J (her bf)."

But that isn't what I'm thinking about now. I'm thinking about... vengeance, violence, justice - the old testament kind. I'm thinking of the scene where the vampire tore apart the person who tried to hurt his girl.

It's completely unfair of me, it's completely irrational. I know it. But... even though I would have been furious at the suggestion that I couldn't protect myself, I never forgave the person who chose to be a f*cking poodle when I had told him what had happened, instead of personifying protective fury beyond imagining.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Memory Tells Its Own Story

It's a Beijing sky today.

Cognitive dissonance - I look up at the sky and then look down at street level and am surprised to see street signs and billboards that I can read.

But today, it's not a longing kind of nostalgia, not exactly. It feels more like a... happy secret, that I still remember. Because one day, I know I won't. Those reminders and connections will require ever increasing effort to reach.

Ergo wrote a post on the movie, My Blueberry Nights, and in her review, she wrote that "It transmits frequencies - love, lostness, connection, uncertainty, strength, desire, floating, seeking, loss, alienation, buoyancy, the curious intimacy that you can only share with strangers."

This reminds me of a conversation I had with her recently on the known versus the unknown.

A cursory look at my history and preferences might suggest that I'm addicted to what's new. But that's not how I'm wired at all. I like to KNOW. And I will go to great lengths to hold myself apart until I feel that I do, at least enough. New people and places might interest me, but only in the most superficial of ways. It's knowledge of a thing, person, or place that turns me on.

Every once in a while, I think I should work to change that. Because every once in a while, I read something that resonates with me, like Ergo's words, "the curious intimacy that you can only share with strangers."

But that's not today.

Today, I'm thinking that I need to visit Beijing and Hong Kong before they change beyond my recognition. Before I change beyond their recognition. Both those cities, particularly Beijing, have changed, according to my friends who live there. They tell me that I wouldn't recognize it anymore.

I want to see those changes. Like catching up with a friend you haven't seen in many many years. But despite any pleasure in the "changes," you still look for what's known, for what you remember.

I need to visit before everything actually does change. Because when intimacy and knowledge have been hard fought to win, their loss feels that much greater.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Wo Gaosu Ni Zhenme Zuo

Restlessness hit hard again. I have associated the holidays with passport necessary trips for some time now. Just doesn't seem right when "going home" involves only Metro North.

Since PC and I have gotten back in touch, we've exchanged the kind of long rambling emails necessary to catch up on a couple of years of lost contact.

He asked about my life, and in my reply, I asked if it were possible to still feel like an expat, even when back in the country and city of one's childhood.

The cliche will tell us that "you can never go home again," but my objective isn't to indulge in a navel gazing retrospective about nostalgia and growing apart.

Because the reality is, I DO feel like I am home. And that is the problem. I don't feel like an expat anymore.

There are myriad triumphant moments as an expat. As an expat, even something as simple as successfully taking a taxi, or bargaining at a local market, or asking for directions can result in such a high. And as the conversations and interactions become more complex, the feeling of triumph becomes that much greater.

And it's rare that I congratulate myself after getting out of a taxi in NYC.

Although, now that I think about it... perhaps I SHOULD meet Grabby Cabby Guy for a drink. Getting out of THAT taxi would certainly be cause for celebration.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

"Vacation, All I Ever Wanted..."

The holidays are a crazy time in the world of salons and spas and exclusive boutiques. But I'm in the mood for a vacation. I doubt I'll be able to carve out time for one, but a girl can dream, yes?

Because I need some quiet time. Just me.

I broke the dam, so to speak, on vacationing alone several years ago. And to be sure, going on holiday with someone whose company you enjoy is a unique pleasure. But holiday-compatibility is a difficult thing to find.

I spent YEARS vacationing according to someone else's preferences. I didn't regret it then and I don't regret it now. The trips were always fabulous, I always enjoyed myself. There's no "woe is me" driving this post. I always had the option to state my preferences but at the end of the day, I'm easy. Fun can always be had, no matter the place, the venue, the activity. And there can be pleasure in compromise, because it's the shared experience that matters most in that context.

But what a different thing it was to plan everything myself without having to consult another's preferences.

I've never believed it was important to share hobbies with friends or lovers. Mostly because my hobbies don't really lend themselves to being shared: yoga, horseback riding, reading, playing my piano. But holidays are different.

And sometimes it's the most important thing in the world to give yourself permission to be selfish, from time to time.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Me and WC

I've identified my limit: 40 hours without sleep. And then what happens? I hit The Wall.

Actually, it's more of a line which I cross to enter into "not fit for human company" land.

But the worst thing is, even after 40 hours of exhaustion, I slept 4 hours, and then I was done. Not refreshed, not well rested, just... awake.

So I did some work and decided to see what was on TV at 9AM on a Saturday morning. The answer? Romy and Michelle's High School Reunion.

WC and I saw this together and we giggled and howled our way through it.

We were never THAT stupid, but to be honest, we weren't that far off. But that hardly matters. It's the commonality of the experiences that matters.

I think I'll call her now and tell her it's on TV.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

12 Gauge Shotgun

I had a lovely evening last night.

In the spring, on one of my rare departures from Chelsea, I met my cousin for a drink in SOHO and started chatting with the lovely couple that was seated near us at the bar. Business cards were exchanged and somehow we stayed in touch over email. Last night, I saw them again for the first time since that night and it was delightful.

Despite the bad rep that New Yorkers have outside the island, we are a friendly bunch. Sure, sometimes it can be attributed more to nosiness than friendliness, and/or it might be an inevitable side effect of living in a crowded city (I have trouble writing that last bit with a straight face. NYC is hardly crowded after Beijing and Hong Kong), but regardless, we are a talkative, friendly bunch. Especially in a bar, with a couple of drinks already tucked away.

Of course, many of us are freaks. So rarely does a friendly chat at a bar turn into a real friendship, or even an invitation to additional "sightings."

But sometimes, it is glaringly obvious that the people you are talking to, are LOVELY. And that's not something that happens every day.

They are going to Westchester on an upcoming Saturday to run around the countryside with shotguns. Now don't get the wrong idea. This isn't a common activity in their world. And I have been invited.

I am so excited I can barely sit still. I've gone skeet shooting only once before, flaunted a badly bruised shoulder afterward, and loved every second of it.

It is practice for when I am old and perched on an Eames Lounge chair, clad in Prada, wearing Chanel N°19, chain-smoking through a foot-long cigarette holder, and taking shots at all the ugly fat people I see with my 12 gauge.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Chanel N°19

It's not even 6PM and it's dark dark dark.

This only surprises me because somehow I completely missed summer.

I'm taking a short break from work right now and listening to my favorite movement from my favorite symphony: Dvorak's Symphony No. 9 in E minor, the Largo movement.

I remember the first time I heard it - at music school. My string-instrument friends all played in the orchestra so I went to a performance. Students, you say? You are probably imagining something awful. It wasn't professional, certainly, but re-tune what you are no doubt hearing in your mind's ear. Their performance was surprisingly good. So much so, that I remember "forgetting" where I was. Instead of sitting on the edge of my seat out of nervousness for my friends on stage, I sat back and closed my eyes.

If you've never listened to it, do.

It's beautiful. It's complex overall, simple in parts, and sweet and triumphant and sad and wistful and happy. I listen to it frequently, but most especially in the winter. Maybe because it was winter when I first heard it.

I have this belief that innocence has a surprising ability to remain untouched. (Of course, I'm precluding all manner of dark innocence robbers from this statement). For example, you can tell a dirty joke - if it's understood, then you were hardly the one to mar that particular innocence. If it's not, well then, it's not, and innocence remains.

I was always a voracious reader. I grew up reading everything I could get my hands on. Which meant that as a small child I was reading books that would be considered shocking for adults. (Let's ignore the fact that my parents' library contained such variety). But what didn't make sense to me, simply didn't. And it was only upon rereading those same books when I was much older that I thought to myself "WTF?!?"

But this piece was different for me. And I'm not relying on memory here. I read it in one of my old journals the last time I was visiting my parents. When I first heard it, I was 14 years old. And I wrote, later that evening, that listening to it made me "feel... grown up, as if I had been in love - not just having crushes. And that being in love hadn't always gone well. And although I was sometimes sad, everything was still... ok."

Yes, laughable. Nothing is quite so pretentious as a young teenager.

But the thing that struck me as I was rereading that journal, was that I WAS struck. Not just because the music was "pretty" or "sad." It made me think outside myself and my experiences to date. Which I suppose all art is intended to do. So maybe it's just me, and that during a certain period of young adulthood, I had a surprising ability to remain unmoved, untouched by what happened around me. Except for the first time I listened to this piece of music.

Oddly, I'm now thinking of Chanel N°19. It had me at the first whiff. But I've never worn it because I decided that I wasn't yet complex and interesting enough to do so.

But maybe one day, I'll wear it and go to the symphony and see if listening to a world-class orchestra performing this piece makes me think of being absurdly young, as if life were just about having crushes and playing my piano and reading books I don't understand.

Monday, November 17, 2008


I saw Damage when it first came out in the movie theaters in 1992 and I was left unmoved. My personal review of the movie mirrored the following review I found this morning from The New Yorker:

A middle-aged British politician (Jeremy Irons, looking and sounding alarmingly like Boris Karloff) falls in love with his son's girlfriend, a mysterious half-French beauty (Juliette Binoche). The screenplay-by David Hare, from Josephine Hart's sensationally stupid best-seller-aims to create a sense of tragic inevitability out of a banal infidelity story: what it achieves is lethal predictability. For almost two hours, the movie alternates joyless, desperate (but tastefully lit) couplings with painfully awkward family gatherings; then somebody dies and everybody's sad and it's over. Director Louis Malle has played artistic sugar daddy to Hart's shallow little novel-provided a lavishly appointed flat for a story that isn't worth a cheap motel room. Also with Miranda Richardson (who is dreadful), Rupert Graves, Ian Bannen, and Leslie Caron.

-T.R. -Terrence Rafferty
Copyright © 2006 The New Yorker

But 16 years do not pass without some change in perspective.

Rather like when I read Madame Bovary for the first time at the age of 16. I HATED it. I didn't consider it to be Flaubert's "most important work" and I thought Emma was whiny and foolish and weak and naive - certainly not a signal of a new dawn of feminism.

It was only when I reread it MANY years later that Emma became more believable to me, and I softened slightly to feel more sympathy and understanding.

And while my change in opinion surprised me then, it shouldn't have. People change. Perspectives change. The lines we draw for ourselves and others change.

There's a purity and simplicity to black and white. But without all the shades of gray, where's the fun?

I've decided to read Madame Bovary yet again. I wonder what my reaction to it will be now.

à plus tard

The car service just came to pick up FC.

Her visit was entirely too short, and I miss her already.

Safe travels, FC! See you next in Beijing!

It's Not How You Play The Game

Solex has a new addition - a pool table.

Friday night, when FC and I were there, we teamed up against FT. And we won. All three times. Did I mention that we won? Yes, we won, me and FC.

Of course, we did cheat, with a total lack of subtlety.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Shopping For Others

FC brought me two shirts as gifts from Beijing, from my FAVORITE shirt store, Art Of The Shirt. One in particular struck her as something that I would wear. Her exact thought was: "I can see C-Belle wearing that!" But then, upon leaving the store with her purchases, she thought: "Hmm. Is it because I HAVE seen her in it?" (I do have a very similar shirt - purchased from the same shop - but since it is getting so worn from repeated washings, it is PERFECT timing for a replacement! Thanks, FC!)

But I digress.

I've been spending an extraordinary amount of time lately in the humidor rooms of various cigar shops.

I enjoy the occasional cigar myself, but it's been years since I've purchased them, because I never buy them for myself but only ever as gifts.

I had forgotten that I enjoy the ritual of cigar selection. Length? Ring gauge? Color of the wrapper? (Factors affecting or suggestive of the body and strength of the cigar).

There's also a sense of intimacy inherent in choosing a cigar as a gift.

It's less personal than choosing perfume or cologne. But it's more personal than say - choosing a tie. When I buy a tie for a man, the purchasing decision is based entirely on what I find pleasing to my own eyes.

With cigars... you have to think about the recipient, make some guesses, and sometimes be surprised that the man whom you thought would prefer a full-bodied cigar actually prefers something smoother.

But I suppose at the end of the day, the calculus involved is no different from what should be employed in buying ANY gift for ANY person. So many gifts are given without that specificity of thought. Or are more reflective of what you want to say about yourself, as the gift giver, rather than reflective of focus on the recipient.

Of course, mistakes can result in humor, immediate re-gifting, or even insult. But when you get it right... that's a pleasure in and of itself.

An Island

Thoughts of Asia never seem to be far away.

With FC in town right now from Beijing, and SL coming for a visit next month from Hong Kong, the winter of 2008/2009 is starting off with a strong Asia focus.

And just the other day, PC found me on facebook.

December 2005, I spent 10 days at the Kamalaya Resort in Koh Samui, Thailand. I didn't want to go home for the holidays, but I needed to get out of Beijing. And I was hungry to just be alone. An Iyengar yoga retreat in a gorgeous resort fit the bill perfectly. Besides, I was going to meet WC in Bangkok (en route to Bhutan) later that month so getting a head start to Thailand made sense to me.

It rained every single day I was in Koh Samui. It should have been dreadful. It was perfect.

My days there were reassuringly well-ordered. I started every morning with yoga in my room, had a lovely breakfast by myself, followed by 4 hours of yoga with the other participants. Then lunch with the other yogis, followed by yet another yoga session in the afternoon. A spa treatment, then dinner - sometimes in my room, sometimes in the dining room. There was never any pressure to be with other people.

I'm not sure if everyone who was there went there for the same reasons I did - in search of peace and solitude - or if somehow it was obvious that I needed to be apart.

I made two friends while there, despite myself.

HS, who incidentally, will be in town over Chinese New Year for the NYC premier of his movie, My Beijing Birthday, was absolutely lovely. He was one of the investors of the resort, and an avid yogi himself, and he always seemed to know when I wanted to be alone and when I was in the mood for company.

PC was there with his gorgeous, glamorous wife, F. They lived in Hong Kong, but were building a second home on Koh Samui - just minutes away from the resort.

I contacted PC in January 2006, letting him know that I had decided to relocate to Hong Kong, and he was wonderfully generous in introducing me to everyone I needed to know there.

I look back on that time with wonder. I wouldn't have thought it was possible to make connections with people when I was busy building walls around me.

The walls are still up. A bit thinner perhaps, and more transparent, but they're still there. It should be easier to pull down a wall than to build it in the first place. But apparently, not always.

But while I'm on the topic of building walls...

PC's amazing house in Koh Samui has since been completed. And his recent email to me contained probably the loveliest words known to man: "If you are in the neighborhood you are most welcome. We have lovely VIP guest quarters. Come."

The Stomach, The Expressway To The Heart

I'm not exactly a foodie.

First of all, I'm a grazer. I don't often sit down for a meal; I'm all about interval snacking. And for me, food is primarily a socializing tool, not an end in itself.

Don't get me wrong, I love a good meal. But in the "eat to live" versus "live to eat" divide, I fall squarely in the former. Actually, more accurately, I eat to drink. 'Cause far more than a foodie, I am a girl who loves her wine.

Last night may have changed that.

Six of us went to Momofuku Ssam Bar last night, and immediately following the appetizers, our entire group proposed to the chef. He graciously accepted and sent over steamed pork belly buns to our table to celebrate the engagement.

Have you seen the movie, Ratatouille? About the rat that dreams of being a chef? In the movie, Anton Ego, the gaunt, bitter food critic who loves food so much that he only swallows when he LOVES it, sits down to a meal, prepared, unbenownst to him, by a rat.

And with his first bite, he is immediately transported to his childhood - a warm, glowing childhood with a mother who cooks lovingly for him.

Biting into those pork buns last night produced an emotional response of the same intensity.

It was love.

It was warm, comforting, delicious, decadent, sweet, salty, tangy, satisfying love. It was get-weak-in-the-knees, slide-off-your-seat, love.

We lingered at Momofuku long after our meal was finished, wondering if we could just spend the night there and have breakfast in the morning. We then considered following our new fiancee back to his place and gazing at him raptly, expectantly, hungrily, until he continued to feed us.

We did neither of those things, but we did stand outside the restaurant for a long while, doing our respective "happy tummy" dances out on the sidewalk.

And this morning?

I'm hungry. And fairly certain I dreamt of pork buns.

For those of you reading this post, the chef, Francis Derby, is OURS. So back off.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

This Is The Way It Should Be?

Ergo recently posted about songs that describe how she would like to be in love, and those that describe how she's actually been in love.

That got me thinking about it as well.

Of course, of late, my love life might be best described by The Sound of Silence.

But aspirationally, what would it be?

I went through my iTunes music library, and found and rejected a number of songs that I love to listen to. Basically, the songs I love to listen to describe love as dark and painful, or wistful and filled with unrequited longing, or just plain naughty without any depth. What can I say, I like what I like.

But then I found this:

According to Paul McCartney, "this is the way it should be."

I'm not sure I believe it. Or in it. But it's a nice idea, isn't it?

In the meantime, I'm going to listen to something naughty. Perhaps Nina Simone's I Want A Little Sugar In My Bowl.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

A Little Piece of Home

FC comes into town tomorrow!

I've arranged for a car to pick her up from the airport, my cleaning lady is coming this afternoon, and I am fully stocked with wine and snacks.

My Baby Taylor is excited as well - it will be going to a good home - hers. It just hasn't been getting enough attention since My Love (the 630-scale Alhambra Classical) moved in.

FC and I used to talk to each other for hours a day. Usually at a bar, with our respective cars and drivers cooling their heels outside.

Ah, the good old days.

I no longer have a car and driver in NYC, but I think I can replicate the sitting for hours over multiple bottles of wine in a bar.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Waking Up

There's been something hovering on the periphery of my thoughts, sometimes forcing its way front and center before I shove it back. But the periphery seems to be getting closer and closer to the center lately.

It's not a crazy thought. In fact, probably as normal as you get.

So I don't know what my problem is. Actually, that's a lie. I do.

But it leads me to the point of this post...

Once upon a time, I was fearless. An ex of mine once told me that he wished I were MORE fearful, because then I would be more careful.

But that always seemed so boring, and so counter to my world-view.

But now, the only part of my life where I feel comfortable taking risks is professionally. I suppose that "risk" is somehow mitigated by my confidence that work is one thing I know I can do very well.

And I am, more or less, comfortable in this. Perhaps too much so. I understand my schedule, my priorities are well defined, I exert extraordinary control over the variables in my life. And it's not surprising that I would appreciate order, especially in light of the distinct lack of it a couple years ago.

But now I'm getting increasingly restless. And there's that pestering thought that keeps hovering and becoming increasingly bold.

My instinct is to swat it away.

But the fact that I haven't succeeded in doing so... perhaps the person I used to be is actually still inside me, just biding her time.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Sex, Sex, Sex

"I've always felt that a happy sex life kills a person's sense of humor about himself remarkably quickly."

- Stephen McCauley

I've been thinking lately of resurrecting my trashy novel. It is November, after all - National Novel Writing Month.

And so, of course, I've been thinking about writing sex.

Elizabeth Benedict, in her book, The Joy of Writing Sex, outlines five principles to follow when writing a sex scene:
1. Sex is not an ATM withdrawal
2. Hire a decorator
3. Your characters don't have to speak to each other, but don't forget that they can
4. You need not be explicit, but you must be specific
5. Surprise me
It occurs to me that these principles apply equally well to having sex. Not that I remember sex, but I think there's a certain fungibility there. And since I'm supposed to have sex next month, I've been reading this how-to-write-sex book and thinking about how it applies to having it.

Benedict divides her book into chapters which deal with different kinds of sex:

  • losing your virginity sex
  • wedding night sex
  • married sex
  • adulterous sex
  • recreational sex
  • illicit sex
  • solo sex

But what's on my mind now is recreational sex - particularly in light of the mandate I've been given to have sex in December. On one hand, I get it. The physical closeness, the endorphin release, having a sandwich afterwards, no emotional demands to counter. It's all good. But I get all of that (minus the first) after a good session on my yoga mat. And I don't have to wash my sheets afterwards.

There's also the pizza argument. Even cold, bad pizza is still pizza. But given my rocky relationship with carbs, I can masterfully avoid pizza, unless it's REALLY GOOD pizza that I really really want at that moment.

But this is my thought... it's what might be inconvenient or deemed "unnecessary" with sex that makes it interesting. And that's exactly what is, for the most part, lost with recreational sex.

Anais Nin said it best:

Without feelings, inventions, moods, [there are] no surprises in bed. Sex must be mixed with tears, laughter, words, promises, scenes, jealousy, envy, all the spices of fear, foreign travel, new faces, novels, stories, dreams, fantasies, music, dancing, opium, wine.

But now that I've just typed that, it seems like an awfully tall order. And, oddly enough, makes me think of going down to Ray's to get a slice, with everything on it.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Too Much Information

When using public toilets, I first lay paper down on the seat and then I hover.

But that's not what I wanted to write about.

PD, bless his heart, did me and my business partner an ENORMOUS favor a couple weekends ago. I won't go into the details because they are too ridiculous, even for my blog (which is saying a lot), but he very graciously helped us out, and his wife, the lovely SD, allowed us to borrow him on a Sunday afternoon.

So dinner is in order, my treat. We'd been going back and forth via email to find a date that works. And then followed this email exchange:

On Nov 5, 2008, at 11:51 AM, PD wrote:

So I take it we're not having dinner on December 7th?


On Wed, Nov 5, 2008 at 12:16 PM, C-Belle wrote:


Oh wait. You must have read my blog. *LAUGHING*


On Nov 5, 2008, at 12:26 PM, PD wrote:

Yeah, figured it was a question best asked privately, in case you wanted to tell me that you were planning an *extra-special* dinner for us that night, wink, wink...


On Wed, Nov 5, 2008 at 12:28 PM, C-Belle wrote:

"And now for dessert.... ta da!"

On Nov 5, 2008, at 2:40 PM, PD wrote:

The "ta-da" is definitely the icing on the cake.

As for regular ol' dinner, pick some weekday the week of the 17th, so we can give our nanny advance notice to stay late that evening...

It occurred to me that perhaps there are some details of one's life that are not publicly shared, as a general rule.

But then what in the world would I blog about?

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Use It Or Lose It

I have received scoldings lately from a number of different friends.

The message has been consistent, however: "Have sex."

Funny how that message has evolved over time. A year ago, I was under strict orders NOT to have sex without prior Board approval. Apparently, it was a decision I was not allowed to make on my own.

Now my friends, in the deathless words of a Nike advert, are yelling at me to "just do it."

I think it's because I've been talking about cats too much.

But in my defense, I've been BUSY. I schedule time to pee once a day, for chrisssake's.

IC and I took a quick break from our work day (during which I pee'd) and she followed me around before finally standing outside the bathroom door, earnestly telling me that it is "ok to be a ho-bag."


So, to take the pressure off, I have informed everyone that I will break the fast in December. (November is just entirely too busy). MM's comment: "December?!? What about TUESDAY?"

I even set a date. December 7th. It's on my calendar. With whom, you ask? No clue. I feel like one of those women who plan their weddings to the nth degree while leaving the name and face of the groom as a "TBD."

IC then engaged in her favorite activity - she made a list. I heard her muttering under her breath as she wrote in a name and then immediately crossed it out: "No. He's just not worth your vagina."

And it's for that last quote that I had to write this post. Of course now I'm wondering what kind of google traffic I'm going to get on my blog. I suspect people who stumble upon my blog while looking for porn will be sorely disappointed.


During dinner last night, SK and I merrily went through our song lists, and she gave me advice on how to order my set. I was all ready to order my songs based solely on key, but SK pointed out that I should think of which songs I would need to be fully warmed up to sing. So then I started putting all the more vocally challenging songs in the second set. She then pointed out that during the break, I would cool down again. Ah. Her far greater experience in solo vocal performance is SO handy.

And then, a bottle of wine later, we reached the maudlin stage of the evening.

I'm homesick for Asia. But my nostalgia isn't just centered around a place. It's centered around a time. But that doesn't quite tell the full story.

I committed to DC, when I moved there so many years ago from NYC. I committed to Beijing. And then to Hong Kong.

But when I returned to NYC two years ago, I never COMMITTED to this city. I know why. It just felt so much like home that I felt I didn't have to make the effort.

Perhaps I need to unpack my ever-ready suitcase. That would be just a small gesture, but even the smallest gestures can have meaning, yes?

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Sentimental Journey

One of these days I have to make a pilgrimage to my music school. It shouldn't be that difficult, it's in NYC, for cryin' outloud. I should be able to find a random Saturday when I have nothing else to do.

And it would make me happy.

Thinking About Things...

I've been trying to blog, but I keep getting stuck.

So I switch from one keyboard to another. It's been a lot of Schubert lately. Specifically, this:

I figure if I play it enough, eventually certain things I've been mulling over will become clear...

Sex Toys

What is it with men and whips/crops?

Halloween night, I was smoking a cigarette with a friend of a friend, on the sidewalk, watching the denizens of the lower east side walking by in costume. I commented on the whip-wielding technique of a passing dominatrix (I've taken a few whip classes, which I think now entitles me to provide knowledgeable criticism).

With surprise and not a little hope, I was asked, "Are you a professional?"

It took me a couple heartbeats to understand what he meant. "Er, no.." I then had to explain that my whipping experience was not of the black leather/lingerie clad variety, but rather of the smelling-of-horse and usually covered in dust and/or mud kind.

Far less sexy. In fact, not sexy at all.

I find this interesting. I have never been titillated by instruments of pain. But then, I find myself more excited these days by color laser printers. 'Cause Kinko's now OWNS my ass.