For three years I worked in the two-toned brown building in the lower right corner of this photo (Carnegie Hall Tower). Before the stupid “billionaires” tower went up right in front of it, our view was of all of Central Park. It was so nice. I think I can (almost) see the apartment building that I lived in for six years on Central Park West. 

I’m so glad that I moved uptown after college. 

First Hot Run

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I hate running in the summer. It’s miserable. The heat and humidity are unbearable so I haven’t run for a month. Yesterday, J and I ran a quick two miles (his Nike+ app said two miles, so whatever) in Riverside Park and along the Hudson River.

It was not an easy run at all for me. We walked up along the river for 20 or so blocks after we stopped running so we got a bit of a tan. We were exhausted after that. 

I can’t wait to run in fall weather.

The Upper West Side Wins

Of course it does. 

I feel like I keep seeing these New York Times’ and Curbed articles about people who love the Upper West Side. And then I feel extremely grateful that the prior few bidders on my apartment didn’t know how to fill out a board application and I was – or my broker was, to be clear, because that shit is complicated.

I live within a couple of blocks of the water and two massive parks. I live two blocks from the best bagels in the city (not my words, everyone else’s), I have some awesome bars, Columbia’s sprawling, green campus, an adorable independent pet store that comes complete with an adorable pet store kitten, Book Culture, The Hungarian Pastry Shop, and a Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods, and Westside Market. And lots of trains.

I love my ‘hood and I am very fortunate to be able to live here.

And if I have the means, I’m never leaving. 

The Upper West Side Wins

Cool Apartment

I loved my apartment from the moment I stepped into it. I walked in, took one look around, and said, “I’ll take it,” and thus began 6 months of paperwork and interviews. The set up of my apartment building is neat in that every room has windows – even the bathroom (which in New York is a total luxury). What I didn’t realize until last summer (and was reminded of yesterday) is that my apartment stays eerily temperate on hot summer days. 

Yesterday was New York’s first 90* day since last summer and I was worried about my cat. The air conditioners are from the last owners and they don’t work very well. The “temperature control” on the one in the living apparently doesn’t really work at all, so I couldn’t leave that one unless I wanted it to be on ALL DAY. 

To circumvent killing the environment, I put the AC on for the morning while I was getting ready to cool the place down and before I left, I open two of the windows (not big enough so she could jump out, but just enough for air flow).

While I was walking outside yesterday, I didn’t think it was too particularly scorching out but because I’m fueled by anxiety, I was a little anxious. I know cats like the heat and there wasn’t a lot humidity so I hoped for the best. 

The windows in my place face north and east. It gets a lot of sun in the morning and then not much for the rest of the day. This might sound like a downer if you’re a person who likes SUNLIGHT 24/7, but I’m not. The apartment gets light but not all-day sunbeams in the window creating sun patches for the little lion (aka my cat) to sleep in. 

Although my view is obstructed, somewhat, so is the sun. And that’s awesome because who wants to come home to a super hot apartment? No one, that’s who.

But I did order two new air conditioners yesterday anyway, including one smartphone controlled one, because I was paranoid during the day and I didn’t want to have to feel like that again. 

#cityliving

Inspiralized @ Whole Foods

J bought the Inspiralizer for me a few months ago and I use it in over 50% of my cooking now. I haven’t made actual pasta in months. And aside from when I had penne vodka over the weekend at a restaurant, I haven’t eaten it. When I did, it made me feel gross. Anyways, when it was announced that Ali Malfucci, founder of Inspiralized, was doing a demo at the Upper West Side Whole Foods, I was super stoked.

She demo’ed how to to inspiralize a plethora of vegetables, showed how to clean the Inspiralizer, talked about how she got started, answered questions, and then made a pesto dish with zucchini noodles. It was so good.

I bought her first cook book and she was super sweet – exactly the same as how she comes across in her videos. She clarified how to stabilize my Inspiralizer to my granite countertop; which was something that I’d had a load of trouble with.

I can’t recommend this kitchen tool enough! It’s changed my life and my palette. 

I missed this on opening weekend but got around to seeing it last Saturday. I went to the AMC on West 84th Street for the first time since they renovated a year or so ago and the seats are now all basically leather recliners. It’s a little nuts. I really love the original Cloverfield and although I suspected this one had very little, i.e. nothing, to do with the first one, I love John Goodman and John Gallagher Jr. so I was excited to see 10 Cloverfield Lane.

The movie opens up to the main character, Michelle (Mary Elizabeth Winstead), racing in her car down an empty road somewhere in the midwest probably while looking intermittently down at texts from her (now ex-)fiance asking her to please come back and not run away because she apparently always runs away when things get hard. When she turns on the radio, we hear about a massive blackout across much of the country (aliens?) and eventually she is driven off the road. When she wakes up, her leg is injured and she is chained to the wall of a steel vault with a mattress to sleep on. 

John Goodman appears after she’s had a few minutes to freak out, bringing her food, telling her he saved her life, and the questions begin. John Gallagher Jr. is introduced shortly thereafter. Goodman also saved his life and he now sleeps on a cot behind some food racks. He needs a shave. 

I walked out of the theatre a little perplexed. I wasn’t sure what to make of what I had just seen. Was John Goodman a good guy or a bad guy? There are probably 3 times that we’re lead to believe that he’s the good guy, with equally as many strikes against him where we’re left thinking he’s a total psychopath. Did he save them from something outside? Is the air really unbreatheable outside? Did he kill a girl? Why is he keeping them down there? I think he was probably really a psychopath but there obviously was something outside so was it just giving him a good excuse to abduct people? So many questions. 

I need to read up on analyses written about 10 Cloverfield Lane, but I enjoyed it. There was lots of tension and suspense, and unlike Cloverfield, they actually didn’t show the monster until the very end. 

My New Roommate

I’d like to introduce the cat I rescued a week ago. I’ve named her Playbill. She’s a small 8-year-old tuxedo cat that I met at a pet adoption event at Petco with an organization called Anjellicle Cats two weeks ago. When J and I met her, she stuck her paw out of the cage at us and we melted. She’d been living in Petco for the last month and was becoming depressed and on a hunger strike. I went back to play with her a few days later at Petco in a stress-free environment (i.e. there weren’t 200 people walking in and out) and I said FINE, I’ll adopt her. This was such a big decision because I’m 100% indecisive, always. After attending the required “new pet adopters” seminar the following Sunday, I paid the adoption fee and asked if they could drop her off the next night. 

A woman from the organization came by last Monday with her in a carrier and let her out and she instantly started running around and sniffing. She hopped on the couch and tried burrowing into the pillows. She ran under the couch and the bed (she cleaned under my bed by pushing out all of the dust bunnies, so thank you, kitty) for a bit.

J met her (again) on Thursday night when he came over and she is not afraid of strangers at all. Various friends met her on Saturday afternoon and she sat said her hellos and then just watched us from afar.

On Saturday J and I went to Petco and bought a scratching post, a bed, a brush, and a couple of toys to go with the ones that my mom sent a few days earlier. (Her favorite toy is still the catnip-filled hedgehog that I bought for her on Thursday!) She figured out what her bed was for in less than a day and claimed a pillow on my couch. She knows how to use her litter box perfectly and I applause whenever I see her using it (positive reinforcement, right?). She eats a ton and runs around the apartment and hasn’t scratched anything yet (knock on wood). 

On her first night, she woke me up once; on the second night she won’t me up twice and I got up to make sure everything was okay. I emailed Anjellicle to make sure her behavior was normal (it was) and they said, “This is her way of checking to make sure her new human is still there. When she meows at night, she’s saying, ‘New human, are you still there, new human?’” Awe. So, now if she meows in the middle of the night, I tell her I’m still here and that’s the end of it. She hasn’t woken me up in the last three nights though, so that’s nice (again, knock on wood). 

So overall, I’d say this was a great decision. It’s nice having an animal around and, as you can, she’s super adorable. 

My friend Ben put it best on Saturday why he, and myself as well, likes cats: “I realize that most of my friends are like cats. They want your attention sometimes, but not all the time like dogs do. If you had a friend that needed your attention 24/7, you’d stop being friends with that person.”