Why don’t you come up and see me gum time?

We’ve established that bizarre stuff happens to me all of the time.  What you may not know is that this unique talent is not indigenous to Colorado, and in fact follows me wherever I go.

We were in New York City a few weeks ago when it struck.  Correction: we weren’t actually in the city – we were waiting in line to board the ferry which would take us from the Statue of Liberty to Ellis Island – when it struck.  And STUCK.

I was looking at my watch to see if we were “on track” with our sight-seeing.  You do that too, right?  Sight-seeing is stressful and you have to fit it all in in the allotted time.  So you gotta make sure you’re at certain places at certain times.  Otherwise you’ll fall behind in your sight-seeing and you won’t see all the sights.  There may even be yelling.  Hey!  Yew lookin’ at me?  YEW LOOKIN’ AT ME?!  Don’t look at me that way.  You know you do it too.   

Hubby, the kids and I are standing in a sea of humanity, it’s about a million smoggy, muggy degrees and some folks in said sea haven’t discovered the modern miracle of deodorant yet.  In addition, we’re all lined up in the most disorderly, someone’s-gonna-get-shived-any-second-now sort of line.  I’ve got my arm crooked, watch at waist-level.  When from out of nowhere a piece of chewed gum lands on my watch.  It happened so quickly that at first I thought the gum…somehow…SPRANG out of my watch.  Oh look, Kids!  It’s GUM TIME!!!  CONGA!!!  Dun-dun-dun-dun-duhn-DUH! 

Hubby has been expecting Gum Time for our entire married life so wasn’t surprised when it happened and didn’t flinch or look away.  He witnessed the whole thing.  He looks at the gum, looks at me (like it’s MY fault?  ‘Cause it’s NOT!  I was just STANDING here WONDERING WHAT TIME IT WAS!  It’s not like I was shouting, “Hey!  Anyone got gum?!  My watch sure could use some GUM.  So if anyone’s got gray, chewed gum, toss it on over here!!  Because according to my watch, it’s GUM TIME!”  CONGA!!!)

He looks one more time at my watch, shakes his head, then moves away.  Just quietly slips through the crowd away from me.  Sonny is still staring at me open-mouthed-with-gagging-noises-coming-out while Sissy has had the presence of mind to begin looking around for the perpetrator.  (She suspected the culprits were a one-year-old and a three-year-old acting silly in a double stroller.  But I’m not so sure…)  so they missed Hubby moving away from us; I had to tell the kids to hurry and follow Dad!

When we caught up to him (I didn’t care where he went, I just needed the banana peel he was holding to pull the ABC gum off my watch, don’t ask) I wondered aloud why he walked away like that.  His reply?  “In case there was more gum comin’, I didn’t want any part of it.”

Hmmm.  Fair enough. 

The Russian Tea Room

So the same chick who worked full-time while going to grad school full-time celebrated her birthday last week in New York City.  (Hint: It’s me.  Bet you woulduv guessed it right away if I had also mentioned that “she” is funny , pretty and smart; everyone says so.)

And on my birthday in New York City we: toured the United Nations, went to mass at St. Patrick’s Cathedral, had tea at the Russian Tea room, went for a carriage ride in Central Park, walked through the Plaza Hotel on the way to FAO Schwarz where we played the big piano, had a free coffee (thanks Starbucks!) at Trump Tower, saw the dark comedy Cripple of Inishmaan starring Daniel Radcliffe (Harry Potter) then waited at the stage door so my daughter could get his autograph on her playbill, finished up with a late dinner of NYC pizza complete with cockroach leg.  Who’s yer daddy?!?

Anyway, where I was going with all of this is that I’m pretty sure our waiter at the Russian Tea Room is in Fight Club.

After he seated us in our tilt-a-whirl compartment then closed us in with our table covered with a white cloth, I tried to feel him out about it by making polite conversation.  Soooo…how’s Fight Club?

But he didn’t respond.  Which further proved my point that he was in Fight Club.  Because everyone knows the first rule of First Club is to never talk about Fight Club.

However, I did feel he got overly annoyed at our request to NOT have the PB&J triangle with the kids’ tea because they’re both allergic to peanuts.

Of course, his annoyance may have had nothing to do with my Fight Club suspicions, and everything to do with the fact that as soon as we were seated in our sumptuous red leather booth, we discovered Sonny’s entire right hand was covered in filth from touching EVERYTHING on the way to the restaurant (including construction walkways, subway poles and escalator handrails going in the opposite direction).  And as we piled out of squozed position so Sonny could go wash his hands, somehow he got the tablecloth caught under his leg and basically dragged all of the settings halfway across the world before we clued into what was happening.

But no harm, no foul because he was more careful on his way back into the booth after he disappeared downstairs to the bathroom for a good half-hour.  Nothing says high tea like a nice…rest period…beforehand.

While he was gone, Sissy tasted her tea (a Rooibos Chai), which she discovered was very HOT!  This resulted in a lot of twitching and jerking as she tried her hardest to avoid touching her lips to her hot-tea-glass-placed-in-a-hot-metal-handled-holder.  Just FYI?  Dribbled chai leaves a stain, but is kinda funny to watch.

Despite the inauspicious beginning, the tea party was a success.  And the kids even got to taste caviar!  I gave them each three eggs from my serving which caused them both to shudder and die on the spot.  This made the rest of the tea nice and quiet for Hubby and I as we toasted each other with our complimentary glasses of champagne.  Until I tasted the caviar and shuddered and died my own self.

COME ON!!!!  Who likes caviar?!?  You’re a TOTAL LIAR if you say you like caviar.  LIAR!!!  Because it tastes like fish bait mixed with lox.  Rotten lox.  I mean, why mess up a good blini with that nonsense?!?

But on a positive note, all of the shenanigans in our booth eventually caused Fight Cluber to warm up to us.  Because he was more than happy to take our picture at the end of our tea to commemorate the occasion. 

Or was it simply because that picture got us on our merry way sooner rather than later??  Naw!  I think he likes to see yokels once in a while.  It breaks up the monotony. 

New York, New York. It’s a Wonderful Town!

Did you know that the original lyrics to the song “New York” from the musical called “On the Town” were:  New York, New York.  It’s a HELLUVA town!

But for some reason, they changed the “Helluva” to “Wonderful” when they made the musical into a movie.


But, hey!  Speakin’ of New York heh, heh, heh – see how that works? I was in New York City recently.  And all I can say is that New York City has the biggest hall pass of all time. 

Every bizarre thing that happens there is explained away with a shrug of the shoulders, hands spread wide and, “Eh.  It’s New York City!”

Mom, Mom!  I just saw a man taking plastic bottles out of that garbage can using a pair of spaghetti tongs!  Eh, it’s New York City!

Hubby, don’t you think it’s weird that you’ve finished your entire knish but my bowl of borscht hasn’t even come out yet?  Eh, it’s New York City!

Kids, of all the people on this dark sidewalk, why did that cockroach run RIGHT AT ME while your father yelled, “Get her!  Get her!”  Eh, it’s New York City!

Dad, why does this subway car smell like pee?  Do you think we’re sitting right on top of someone’s “accident?”  Eh, it’s New York City!  And no, but let’s move to that seat over there anyway.

See what I mean?!?  Hall Pass Extraordinaire. 

Also?  I’m not sure why they changed it to “wonderful”…“Helluva” was waaaay more apt.