Thursday, March 30, 2006


Sound the alarms! We have a date set up with the Thinker for tomorrow night. Man, I thought I’d never see the day!

The latest was that I called him last weekend and left yet another message. I thought it had totally fizzled out, however I received an email yesterday, which said the following:

"I really enjoyed those early emails and was excited to meet you. But if we can't even make plans for one phone call or date then how could we have time for a real relationship? Anyway, I know I've been all over the place too, but I'd still love to meet you."
Of course, given my newfound zest for slowing life down, I adamantly agreed with him and pushed for a meet up this week. It’s time to just get this over with already!

It’s weird actually. This date will be unlike others since we’ve been “talking,” literally, for weeks. Due to the circumstances, I consider the ice to be broken so the date will either be a rousing success or a massive failure. It will all be based on whether or not there is that proverbial spark, and enough of a spark for Thinker and I to actually want to work around our schedules more regularly.

We shall see how it all turns out…

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Do You Keep Secrets?

Everyone has them. Whether it is a childhood memory you can’t stand to share with the best of friends, or something you did or thought recently that’s causing you inner turmoil. Secrets range from small personal turmoil to life-altering confessions, which can rock a person’s existence to the core.

I’m not one to keep many secrets about myself, since I consider being an open book to be a healthy habit. In fact, I’ve sometimes shared too much, but at least it’s out there and I can get real advice or thought from the people that matter in my life.

While watching the news this morning, I saw a story about Frank Warren, a man who started up a community art project surrounding secrets. He asked people to send him anonymous postcards with their clandestine thoughts inscribed on them. He receives over 200 postcards per day and has received over 25,000 to date. Mr. Warren even started a blog, called postsecret, to showcase some of the amazing cards he gets in daily. His little project is now being turned into a book.

So why is Mr. Warren’s secret art project so interesting? Honestly, it has nothing to do with each individual's plight; rather it is a fascinating look at human nature. Cheating, committing crimes, self-image, thought processes on interpersonal relationships…it’s all there, presented on colorful and poignant postcards. It’s a window into a person’s brain on what is literally eating them alive.

Check it out; you’ll be surprised at what kinds of things average people are keeping locked away from even the closest people they know.

Blogger gives dark secrets the first-class treatment USA Today

Monday, March 27, 2006

Fear vs. Desensitization: Which is Worse?

A moment of seriousness...

We’re all aware that it takes some major sensationalizing to make a product or social issue come to the forefront of our minds. The mentality that instilling fear into the public will cause action is a well-known motivation factor for us here in America. Picture a mass exodus to pick up canned goods and water when they announce a possible black out or a case of the bird flu. Or perhaps an average, understanding person turning against others because the government keeps telling them that “certain people” pose a risk to national security, thus making that person racially prejudiced. Fear is a catalyst for not only extreme behavior but also ignorance.

The New York Times recently touched on this briefly as it relates to health issues. The article was entitled: When Disease Loses Its Most Potent Ally, Fear. Disease is probably an area that this fear vs. desensitization issue comes into play more often than not. SARS, Bird Flu, Mad Cow…it’s amazing how crazy people get over these things. Especially when they don’t even recognize that obesity or smoking is killing tens of thousands more each year than all of the aforementioned combined.

On the flip side, we are also aware that too much of pushing an issue will cause society to get bored with hearing about it, as the Times article points out. Think the current state of the education or health care systems; contracting STDs or caring about our environment. People are so sick of hearing about all the problems that we have to deal with that they tune out altogether.

I feel that the current state of the American perspective is largely a battle between fear and desensitization and I don’t know what’s worse. Having Americans constantly afraid, leading to massive consumption of un-needed things and borderline mis-truths, or having the general populace not giving a shit and being ignorant to things that do need to be tended to? It’s a fine line these days, but I hope at least some of you can see through the fear mongering and actually care about things that matter to you.

There is too much going on these days to be indifferent.

Sunday, March 26, 2006

Rules for Sanity

If you read this blog often enough you know that I often bitch about how worn out I feel. Everything from being “too social,” to working long hours, to spending too much money, to not finding time to really talk with people…I could go on.

My weekend of borderline solitude, coupled with all the latest news-talk about sleep disorders and how brain functioning severely depreciates when it doesn’t get adequate rest, has lead me to believe that I need to stop the complaining and do something about my current state of being. Call it a penalty of the New York lifestyle if you will, but this Midwesterner has decided that the unhealthy pace of life needs some serious reigning in. Therefore, here are my proposed action points to remedy the situation:

  1. Work out at least 3 times a week. No bailing or bitching allowed.
  2. Cook at home more.
  3. Instill a three drink maximum at every social outing. (This inspired by my friend Ivy, and will clearly allow me to dismiss the disclaimer for obnoxious behavior that I so often put out there before the night gets dicey).
  4. Get to work at 8:30am and leave by 6:30pm (Of course extenuating circumstances do apply, but this will be my daily goal).
  5. Start sticking to a budget. (Clearly, sticking to items 2 & 3 will assist in this aspiration)
  6. Watch less TV and read more books.
  7. Try to get at least 7 hours of sleep a night (I figure this will work out if I stick to all of the items listed above).

I wonder if I can do it all. That’s a tall order for a gal who’s gotten used to a certain way of life. It will take an active thought process and a few social sacrifices to slow things down, but I really think if I stick to it my brain will start functioning in a smart way again and I will truly welcome the clarity that I hope to gain. I need to enjoy life more instead of feeling stuck in a constant game of catch-up. I’m tired of being tired.

Saturday, March 25, 2006


Today is a difficult day for me. As I was walking out of work last night, happily listening to some shuffled music on my iPod, I advanced to the next song and something happened…my iPod died. I literally stopped in my tracks and stood there staring wondering if what had just happened, really happened.

As people passed me by on that curbside (think: slow motion), I tried to revive my dear iPod, but to no avail. All I got was a tech support web address and a picture of a Mac with a question mark in the monitor. *Tear*

I am literally paralyzed today. I certainly can’t go to the gym without iPod. I can’t traverse the city. I can’t even listen to happy tunes in the comfort of my own home. What’s a girl to do?

Of course, I have a date with either Best Buy or the Apple store Genius Bar, however the last couple of genius bar visits were not so fruitful. I felt like I was waiting at the eye doctor. You know, the lone doctor in your rolodex that makes you wait upwards of an hour just to have a machine tell you how blind you are. It’s infuriating.

Anyway, I’ll be in mourning today until I know that iPod can come back to life. The thought of bringing an actual CD to the gym, so I have something to run to, is just too much to take right now. I guess until it’s fixed the soundtrack of my life will just inherently be more quiet…sigh!

Friday, March 24, 2006

Blogger Party

I hate being hungover. Really, I do. Every time I wake up shaking from vodka-overdose I kick myself and say, “Elle, you’re never drinking again.” To top it off, I’m at work right now and there is a child running the halls with no parental supervision…in other words, my worst nightmare.

Despite the rudeness of my morning, last night’s blogger party was quite a good time. It was great meeting Betty, Bama Girl, Nice Guy, Actor Serf, Monkey…just to name a few. And yes, Dolly and Polly…it was fabulous to see both of you again. Thanks for setting everything up…the nametags were a very nice touch.

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Seems that the cat is out of the bag…

Some of you may have noticed that our beloved Snob in the City has seemingly turned into multiple personalities. Well, I should let you in on a secret. Five people originally started Snob. Yes, five, and I was one of them until I started my own thing here on Avenue Elle back in January.

Behind the scenes we’ve had a blogger break up and the Snob that you have come to know and love has now relocated to Downtown Chic. Posts about fun below 14th street, scoping out cute service industry boys and skiers, the love for shoes and too much red wine now has now taken a new identity…so post a link and keep reading!!

See all you New Yorkers in mere hours!

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Ex-Text Nixing

When I started this blog, I mentioned I had just officially gotten over my ex. Not sorta of over, but really over. He’s tried to contact me once or twice this year and I’ve been strong in cutting him out. Well, given that he's a fan of electronic communication, he’s back again in the form of text messaging.

Let me just lay out the full scenario for you. He lives in Europe. He travels to the U.S. on occasion for work, and back when we were still speaking, he mentioned something about a trip here in April. Soooo…I’m thinking he’s resurfacing in attempt to prime his ground. (I.e., get laid while he’s in town.). How amusing.

I’m not even going to go into what the text messages he sent me said, because they are so incredibly lame that I would be required to pick it apart line by line to showcase how shallow this guy is, and frankly, he’s not worth my time anymore.

So my point, my friends, is this: you know you're totally over your ex when you can't even stand to spend money on a text message anymore. Which is, at most, ten cents. Now that is refreshing!

In a dating update…I’m STILL trying to meet up with the Thinker. We graduated from email to the telephone, however have been playing a very mean game of phone tag. Therefore the only real conversation we've had is through a series of voice mails. I’m losing interest just by the sheer effort in trying to get some voice-on-voice action. Ug.

Regardless of my current frustrations, I'm looking forward to another weekend in Vermont. This Saturday is the U.S. Freestyle Championships…and you all know what that means ;-)

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Balls and Alleys

As part of an effort to instill a “work/life” balance into employees, my company decided to host a bowling night. Let me tell you, I was totally reminded how fun an evening of leisurely throwing balls around can be. (In many ways of course…but I digress…we’re talking bowling here.)

I must admit that Bowlmor Lanes is an extremely cheesy venue and certainly a throw back to decades past), however the whole environment should be taken in and made light of (minus the part where I was forced to wear used shoes).

Let’s start with discussing how great the music was. Poison’s “Mama’s Fallen Angel,” Pat Benetar’s “Love is a Battlefield,” and Rick Springfield’s “Jesse’s Girl” followed by every 80’s song that was ever included in a Molly Ringwald movie certainly makes for a good time. Not only is it great bowling music, but we also all had a stellar time regaling with tales of dancing on tables in college while simultaneously taking shots and making out with strangers. Fabulous.

If I may go on…In most bowling alleys there is a bar; usually strobe lights. Ugly footwear is provided yet required so right there everyone is in the same boat and can’t be judged on fashion choices. And to top it off, no one cares if you really suck since it’s all in good fun. So yes, I was surprised at the enjoyment garnered from bowling…and I didn’t even suck that bad (I scored 125).

I do recall mentioning to some friends that monthly recreational game night should be instilled into our social gallivanting. Of course bowling, but perhaps also ping pong? Darts? Skee ball? I’m thinking it may just even lead us into a land of uncharted territory. Into a land of cute, recreational game playing boys who are all single, smart, low key and looking…ok, ok...I'm dreaming.

At the very least it will add a smidgen of variety to our typical nightly outings…

Monday, March 20, 2006

Socking A Faux Pas

Snob and I have been talking in recent weeks about the proliferation of a very disturbing fashion trend: Sandals worn with tights or socks. GASP!

Ever since the spring fashion issues have hit newsstands we’ve realized we’re in for a challenging spring shoe season. This became even more apparent after I read this Sunday’s New York Times Style Section. Bill Cunningham's "On The Street" piece did a round-up of fashion trends in Paris, and to my dismay his piece was plastered with visions of strappy shoes worn with tights.

The NYT piece isn’t the worst of it. Kate Spade ads suggest colored bobby socks and slide sandals. Dior models don patterned tights with t-strap heels. I’ve even seen a slight comeback of stirrup leggings! What is this world coming to? I mean, what’s next? T-shirt clips and scrunchie socks?

I suppose some fashion forward femmes can definitely pull this look off, however coming from someone who prefers to keep her day-glo sock wearing days in the 1980’s I prefer to refrain from partaking in this retro fashion movement.

Friday, March 17, 2006

Friday Slack

As I was reading the news this morning, slacking off from doing real work, I stumbled across an article that is a paragon for us working plebes in New York. Apparently slacking off is good for the psyche and better for company morale and productivity.

The article explains that incessant multitasking and being overly busy all the time impedes on a person’s ability to think creatively. In my mind this is no surprise. My best ideas come to me in the few minutes before I fall asleep (of course unless I wake up and write them down, I’ll most likely forget them).

Regardless, I think every company on the island should allow us all to slack off a little more. Yeah, yeah…bottom line…bla bla bla. But wouldn’t it be great if you risked your bottom line just a little so we could all be smarter? Smarter people = $$$.

Considering that marketing is a prime profession for a “lack of slack” environment to proliferate in, I’m a full supporter of the theory this article presents. In other words, I’m going to keep slacking on this lovely St. Patty’s Day and mentally start my weekend early.

Be Smarter At Work, Slack Off (Money)

Speaking of slacking off...for all of you NCAA b-ball fans...did you know you could get March Madness on Demand?!?! I know what I'll be spending the next 2 hours doing...GO BIG TEN!

March Madness On Demand

Wednesday, March 15, 2006


I love long weekends, especially when the family comes to town and I have justification for not listening to anyone from work for a whole weekend PLUS two days of vacation – all of which were to be spent with some of the best people I know. It’s also a bonus that quality family time allows me to “regress” in age about 10 years and pretend it’s perfectly fine for mom to buy me shoes and take me out to dinner.

SIGH…back to reality…

For a re-entry back into normalcy I’ll begin with an update on my conversations with this guy I’ve been chatting with over email for the last couple of weeks…the thinker. Thinker and I just can’t seem to find a date to meet up for the life of me and I wonder if this is a bad sign right off the bat. Is it calamitous that my life is so full of activity that I don’t even have time for a little cocktail conversation?

Time to ponder.

I’ve been reading a book about dating (full review to come later) and it talks about how young single professionals in the city get stuck in this situation frequently. I am interested in meeting someone, however am I really ready if I can’t pass up my normal exploits for a date?

On one hand, this could be another penalty of online dating; meaning without the immediate in-person meeting there will always be a question of true worthiness for time well spent. On the other hand it could be my own career-focused, independent, happy-go-lucky neuroses, which in essence “self-cockblock” any adequate man from my view.

The book would say that "self-cockblocking" is my problem. I should make time to date even if it really doesn’t exist in my day-planner and even if the dates are out of the realm of comfort. This is the only way we worker bees will ever make it to the hive.

The book makes some valid points, mainly calling out that I’ve become accustomed to having control over my life and how I spend my time. For lots of people the thought of losing control is just plain preposterous, yet the process of dating and getting involved in relationships in itself is purely about giving up some control.

So I’ll conclude my self-analysis with this thought. Complete self-control equates to self-cockblocking. I’m limiting my options by subconsciously not finding time to spend dating different kinds of people. Hence, must pencil in Thinker and give him an evening of dedicated conversation before making up mind.

How’s that Dr. Freud?

By the way, did I ever mention I tend to overanalyze?

Friday, March 10, 2006

The Power of Four

What do you get when you combine, four fabulous NYC bloggers, four pairs of high heels, four downtown watering holes and countless cocktails? Lots of fun and a high probability for trouble. (The good kind of course)

To echo the sentiments of Kristin and Snob, last night’s mini blogger meet up was a blast. Along with Dolly, the four of us went gallivanting downtown and from the moment we met, we could tell there would never be a silent moment. We all have plenty to say! Not to mention that we were a walking whirlwind wherever we went. I would say the only downfall of the evening was that I had to endure a six-hour client meeting today with a dull hangover and dark circles under my eyes.

Lovely to meet you ladies and I’m looking forward to the NYC meet up on the 23rd!

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Get Over It

March 9th, apparently is National “Get Over It Day.” Who knew? Of course, this is the result of some company like mine trying to promote something, however it is sort of intriguing. The concept of “just getting over it” is liberating; whether it is getting over a break up, the fear of something or just being stressed out.

Here’s the idea taken straight from those cheeky marketers themselves:

Regardless of age, of race, or of gender,
If you're tall or short, if you're plump or slender.
If you're hot or you're not, if you're straight, gay, or bi-,
This holiday is for YOU, and we'll now tell you why...

NOBODY is happy, EVERY day of their life.
Not an American Idol, not a Desperate Housewife.
Not MVP athletes, not Oscar-winning stars.
Not rich CEOs, not hot chicks at bars.

We ALL have our issues; ALL lives contain stress.
At some point, we're ALL, an emotional mess.
Ex-boyfriends, ex-girlfriends, ex-husbands, ex-wives.
There are people to get over in EVERYONE'S lives...

But as much as things suck, as bad as they get.
If you got cheated on, if you're swimming in debt.
If you're aging or balding or get a cold sore,
Don't ever forget, that it could ALWAYS suck more!

It's all part of life; it will help you grow stronger.
But this "pity party" of yours can't last any longer.
You can sit home alone, being sad and depressed,
Or you can choose to be strong, and do as we suggest...

How cute, they can rhyme.

My personal opinion is that I don’t think we all need a day to be reminded to get over this kind of stuff. Sure some of it is hard, but at the end of the day life is supposed to be fun, interesting, challenging even. Even a break up, while it totally blows, allows us to walk away better people for having experienced such a crap time.

I hope I’m not getting too mushy on everyone, but it might be a good place to start being a glass half full kind of person. We New Yorkers can definitely use a hefty dose of optimism.

**The cheeky marketers of this idea are those over at the Rejection Hotline. Given that this is the same company that will break up with people via phone on the behalf of others, it seems sort of hypocritical to tell people to “get over it” considering the mother ship itself is the bearer of bad news.

Monday, March 06, 2006

Getting Opinionated

Just needed to bring something to everyone’s attention…South Dakota just banned abortions.

The law that was signed today makes it illegal for any woman to seek an abortion in the state of SD. The only exception made in the law is for women whose health would be affected by going through with a pregnancy. It does not make exceptions for incest or rape.

I can’t even express to you how wrong this is.

As a woman, it is severely alarming that my health rights are going down the tubes. It just pisses me off. I understand that everyone has their opinions on whether an abortion is right or wrong, but who gives anyone the right to impose their personal beliefs onto those of others?

I think the meaning of pro-choice has been warped in recent years. “Pro-choice” was never a concept developed to mean “pro-abortion”…it was intended to convey the notion of respecting everyone’s personal choices as they apply them to their own lives.

This law essentially equates to banning an entire religion based on one group's notion that those religious beliefs are wrong. It equates to banning Viagra because some people don’t like the idea of horny old men running around this country. It equates to banning McDonalds because their food is too fatty and poses a health risk. Bottom line: everything is a choice people. Don’t penalize others because they don’t agree with how you live your life.

So why is this law so worrisome - aside from the obvious? Well, SD had just set a legal battle into motion that will eventually end up at the Supreme Court challenging Roe V. Wade. Not coincidental that this is rolling out just after two conservative judges were named to the court.

Yes, I’m opinionated. No, I’ve never been the protesting type, but this issue is enough to motivate me to do one of two things: 1) Fly to DC to start severely bothering ignorant lawmakers or 2) leave the country.

NARAL Pro-Choice America

Sunday, March 05, 2006

Vermont in a Nutshell

Top ten reasons why my weekend in Vermont was fabulous:

  1. I got a mad workout skiing the entire mountain (yes, I stuck to the greens and blues and totally looked like I knew what I was doing)
  2. People are nice
  3. A large majority of the men on the mountain were hot, and I mean good old-fashioned, tall, meat-n-potato, hunky, skier types
  4. A round of quality micro-brew for three gals was only $12
  5. Coffee tasted good anywhere, especially with my fabulously large blueberry pancake at the Blue Benn in Bennington, VT
  6. The ratio of guys to girls anywhere in our quaint ski town was at least 5:1
  7. Après ski was super fun, but Avant Discothèque (our coined phrase for “before bar”) at our share house with wine and cheese in front of a fireplace was even better
  8. Snob refused to be at a bar and not wear heels, so she checked her snow boots along with her coat
  9. Everyone got to make out with hot boys and dance
  10. Am completly sold on the idea that winter ski share is waaaaayyyy better than summer beach share, hence I plan on being a bi-monthly fixture in VT next year

Friday, March 03, 2006

Ah Friday… do I love thee. Let me count the ways…

This weekend Snob and I are getting out of the city heading north of the tri-state area to a lovely little state called Vermont. I’ve got my bags all packed with snow bunny attire and fashion magazines; red wine and a bikini (read: hot tubs!). It will be a weekend of relaxing by the fire and scoping out the mannish options on the mountain, which I’m hoping will be good old-fashioned, tall, meat-n-potato, hot skier types.

Clearly one would assume you’d have to be a decent skier to snag the aforementioned hot skier type. Well, I definitely wouldn’t call myself a marvelous skier, since my experience is limited to a couple of trips to Colorado and playing on what are essentially classified as hills in the upper mid-west. So obviously I will not be skiing moguls or going off-trail to jump cliffs, rather, I will be sticking to the greens and blues while attempting to look like I can hold my own.

There is, of course, the back-up plan of playing damsel in distress in the event I’m unable to avoid careening toward a large tree off to the side of the trail…I’m hoping to avoid this scenario entirely, since being “distressed” doesn’t really sit well with me in general. I’m no damsel.

Anywoo…I hope to come back to the city on Sunday with some first-rate stories that are not directly related to work, my current angst for the city or online dating…I promise!

Thursday, March 02, 2006

Conned Yet Intrigued

Not surprisingly, I was conned out of $30 by the online dating site I joined back in January…I already declared that I’m not really into this online thing, but miraculously my checking account was debited because I didn’t read the fine print and actively cancel my membership. Damn it!

I figure the lapse happened for a reason (or so I hope) so I’m going to give it one more month. Of course nothing has changed really. More of the same old, “Hi, I’m from X, have X siblings, and think you seem nice…let’s chat…bla bla bla.” Bor-ring…

Furthermore, I gave you a few snippets of uninhibited flattery the other day, which gets a guy nowhere in my book (I personally think over-the-top flattery for a person you haven’t met face-to-face is the modern day equivalent of talking with a girl and not being able to stop staring at her breasts when her face is a full eye glance away in distance).

Given my stance on the online thing, I was quite intrigued last week when I got an epic-length work of non-fiction in my inbox. Normally the lengthy email sets the alarms off since too much info right off the bat is daunting and makes a gal want to run in the opposite direction, however this email was very different. Not only was he witty, but I could tell he put a lot of thought and introspection into what he was saying, which made me want to keep reading. This guy is a thinker and plainly articulate…two notably sexy qualities in a man. Imagine that!

Given that I enjoy cutting out the bullshit in such circumstances…I responded (*GASP!*). At the very least I’ll have a few gratifying conversations, which is more than I can say about most of those I’ve met so far. On the other hand, I have to admit this could easily turn into a “psych-out” situation if it gets too intense too fast – coupled with worries of encountering crazy psychopathic mummy murderer…

I guess the plan will have to be not to overanalyze it like I usually do and just go with the flow…

Of course, easier said than done...