Monday, April 24, 2017

Life at the speed of sound

So much happens every sec, no time to write it down, but I try...

So I wasn't allowed to drive in Los Angeles these last 3 months. My license expired in ny and I needed to renew it in person in Los Angels. I was able to get an extension, but it only permitted me to drive outside of California. I can be a real hustler, but I tend to be a goody goody when the stakes are high. I got back into town last week and I did not drive for a few days until I could take a cab to the dmv. A day later I drove my husband to the dmv because he was in the same situation.  I planned to get my car to my mechanic for an issue the next day. On the drive back from the dmv my car died on Santa Monica blvd as I was driving along alone and in the fast lane. The accelerator stopped working and some lights came on the dash and the truck behind me was honking away as I slowed to a crawl. I was able to coast as two cars passed me and then I pulled over and rolled into an illegal spot. Within minutes triple a was there.

The issue is expensive to fix and probably not worth it and I probably need to get a new car.

But I feel so much gratitude because I had an up to date license, no one was hurt, my kids were not in the car and I have triple a, Super easy tow to my mechanic. if I had driven to the mechanic on this day this incident would have taken place on the 101 and I am not sure it would have ended so tidy. I am in such a great place. I have the most amazing life with the most comfortable bed in the world, an amazing family, the best friends anyone could want, and as I sip my homemade lime basil elixir I understand the enormity of my luck and I feel so thankful to be alive and carless in l.a.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

The two things I didn't tell you

Lice are icky, but a part of having kids. You just deal with them. Even most of the most squeamish parents learn to accept them.  They are not as bad as fleas and certainly not as bad as bed bugs. They don't infest your place. They are drag because you have to do a bunch of loads of wash- clothes, outer wear and bedding- and you have to treat everyone in the household to a serious hair treatment but they go away pretty fast. You just have to be diligent and follow up to make sure that each and every microscopic egg got removed. Still the general public can get really horrified by them... That is why I did not mention that during the whole awards season lead up me and my family and lice.

I found it to be brilliant that while I was shopping for my Gucci and having cocktail dresses sent over from a really cool and generous shop that I was in the wake of a lice outbreak. My kids both got it and gave it to me. That was the first time I actually got lice as an adult. I thought I was immune, but no. I wanted to share the hilarity of my contrasting lives- Kensington Palace invites and lice follow ups- but I didn't want to scare off my generous sponsor. (Never mind, we won't be sending anything over). I had my final follow up check up a day before flying first class to the BAFTAs. I was clear. Thankfully. But I had to keep my little secret because of the delicate nature of everything. I didn't want people to shy away from congratulatory or consolatory hugs at the big events. We didn't have lice by the time we got there. But I could understand if people felt apprehensive. I don't blame them, that's why I didn't tell them. Ah the glamourous life...

The other secret ...oh you'll have to wait till next time.

Sunday, April 16, 2017

death and resurrection as Metaphors

i love the metaphor of Easter, how we suffer and "die" and then come back, rise again, resurrect. When I go through extremely painful challenges a part of me does die and then when I come out the other side I am a different person, stronger, smarter, more empathetic. It is not easy to "let go" of things that are not good for us- parts of ourselves, beliefs, habits, people, etc- it can feel like we are dying when we try, it can feel undoable, and then some outside force pushes us through and we curl into the fetal position barely making it, but making it out the other side, new and different. Or external circumstances happen, it is not even a choice- someone dies, or we are taken to court, or we lose someone/something, or some other calamity happens that affects our core, our family, something gets threatened and we have to fight with every bit of strength we have and we can't go on, we are done, but some how we do, we go on, we get through, and in time we are different, smarter, stronger, kinder. Easter happens all the time. Don't fight it, feel it.

Saturday, April 15, 2017

My hot unavailable boyfriend

New York is my hot unavailable boyfriend who causes me pain and heartbreak, who is so very gorgeous and fun and really couldn't care less about my human needs; when its fun it's great and when it's not, I pay. We just had a really good run. I ignored a bunch of my needs and just dug it.  Los Angeles, my dear good old friend who is there for me, solid and kind, provides me with ease and warmth, welcomes me with loving arms.
I left my hometown today, my greenwich village apartment with its beautiful view and its fireplace. It is impossible to be here without all of you. What will I do when I wake up tomorrow?

I can't move my body. I just got home. "Home" as in west coast home. I have two homes, east and west. It was impossible to say goodbye to my New York family, my family, the people I grew up with, as much brothers and sisters as my blood sister. I am back in the loving arms of the most wonderful people here, but the ties to my old old self are so very strong. This is glorious and hard.
I am too overwhelmed and wiped out to really write and find the words, but I am experiencing so many big feeling and I am going with it, and it is serious. I know all you dear friends here will kick in and snap me out of it, but the culture shock is so vey real and glittery golden idols can be so alluring.

I spent the morning in Washington square park with my kids and my mother and her significant other chasing giant bubbles while a New Orleans style funeral band played some serious instrumental versions of funk classics. The night before we did two boots pizza and ice cream from the truck in the same special place with amazing friends. That same week I did a photo shoot with super legend Guy Vanvoores. How lovely and lucky. Every minute life was dazzling, beautiful, exhausting, and magic.

On the aero plane today, some random guy was wearing a t shirt with a picture of an ex boyfriend of mine. Oddly, it wasn't a music related thing, just artwork of an ex. Really?

I suspect this blog is hard to follow. I get it. Now I have to hustle and get my kids started in their schools and then I will sleep every day for a month and then I will start my life again. My band, my friends, nature, great food....Talk to you then....
Kind of kidding....

Friday, April 7, 2017

I love ny part 2

we got off the metro north at grand central around 6 pm. The kids were melty. It was a long day in the country. We had come from a memorial. We were a little out of it. we got on line for a cab ( there is a cab stand there, like at the airport). the dispatcher was sending volunteers across the street to more cabs. I volunteered but it was a little unorganized and I didn't want to cross with the stroller and the kids and everything and find out that someone else had hopped in the cab. I didn't want to lose our spot. We needed to get home.

Then a cabbie comes along and seems to be interacting with the dispatcher and he asks how many we are. 4. He says, "Great, come with me I am parked over here". We follow. And then I see we have been suckered like dumb tourists- The guy is taking us to his town car a few feet from the cab stand. Not a reallybig deal, but a little deal, as we have kids, he may or may not have insurance, etc.

Harmless enough, I take it as a lesson learned and since we lost our place on the line, we go for it. He asks us where we are from, feeling us out. Hmmmm. We are going down 5th ave and I ask if it goes straight through, wondering if there is any construction today. He  says it ends at "union square, nyu". Hmmmm. We are flying down 5th ave and He turns on 19th, which will take us out of the way and add time to the trip. I ask him why he turned because I can see that traffic is running all the way to Washington square. And he says "traffic". Ok.

So I go into my coat pocket where I remember have the receipt for the same trip, opposite direction, when we left our place the day before. The only difference is that the first trip was during rush hour. $14 and change including the 20% tip. Cool.

I show him how to get to our building and I ask the price. $60 he says. Say what? $40. My husband gets out knowing to let me handle this one. I ask the guy to pop the trunk. My husband gets our stuff as I explain that we were on line for a yellow cab, which would have cost 12 bucks, and I ask if he has a meter. He doesn't. Ok then I am going to give you $14, which includes the tip. He tells me that it costs $20, which is a good price. I make sure the kids are on the sidewalk and all of our stuff is out of the cab. I give him the $14. He yells that I am "hungry", I guess he meant greedy. I don't want to rip off anyone. I want to support the greater good and bring everyone up along with me. I didn't take back the tip. I told him he picked the wrong people. He drives away yelling "Hungry". Whatever.

On a side note, he reminded me of what my lawyer told me in court. She said, " If someone answers a question starting with the word 'honestly," or "honestly?" They are probably lying." People in the wrong often  see or feel the opposite in their head. # 45 uses that word a lot. He also accuses others of all of the things he is guilt of- liar, fake news, the swamp, illegal, etc. it's the same when you or I attack someone, point a finger and there are 3 fingers pointed back.

Anyway, I couldn't believe I had fallen for such a lame tourist trick. I didn't pay his outrageous fee but I followed him to his fake cab. There were reasons, as the dispatcher was indeed sending people to different places, ( clearly still defending myself to prove I am not lame), but still, I got suckered. I guess I got a little soft these last 15 years. Not too soft, but a little. I guess it really is time to go back to LA.

Thursday, April 6, 2017

I LOVE New York

Day 1. Landed in nyc. Left our bags in our giant loft on the Bowery (ours for 2 days) and went to eat 10pm dinner with the kids at Odessa. Ran into two peope I know. Hugs. Happy to be home. Living the dream!

Day 2. Woke up to a rainy day, could not be happier. Hot coffee and the NY Times in bed. Living the dream!

Day 3. The Puerto Rican style New York accents of the administrative team at my daughters public school make me cry out of nostalgic no-longer-homesick joy. Living the dream!

Day 4. Moved into our West Village Prewar, (ours while we're here) with an elevator, a juilette balcony with a view, a dishwasher, a great view and a tiny parisain elevator. Could jump for joy typing these words. 

Day 5. Saw my mother and my sister! Living the dream!

Day 6. Had to call a guy and asshole. It was annoying to have to do that but joyful to do it. He needed to be shot down, as he was being inappropriate. Living the dream!

Day 7. Finally got to my beloved Coney Island with old friends, including a pal from the anarchist days, who I had not seen in decades. It was cold and grey when we left so I did not bring my suit or towel, but it got hot so of course I had to swim in my underwear, classic style. Could not be happier. Living the dream!

Day 8. Family day. So very happy to be here with everybody. Living the dream!

Day 9. Saw two rats. Living the dream (LTD)!

Day 10. Dojo is still there! Not on Saint Marks, but the other location is still around. I’d often crave that food, long for it. Over the last several years I would make a point to go there when we got to town twice a year or so, but then I would always change my mind and not venture over, not want to eat greasy food. Anyway, we got there. It was better than ever.  LTD!

Day 11. Went to Dojos again. Joy. LTD!

Day 12. Integral yoga natural foods is still there! The only vegetarian healthfood store in nyc. I am not vegetarian, but I love the quality of the food. LTD!

Day 13. Our elevator is the size of half a yoga mat. The outer door is heavy and bangs shut. The inner door is heavy and needs to be manually opened and closed in a very physically demanding way. The NY grind is real. I don’t care. Living the dream!

Day 14. Bed all morning in the half assed way you can with kids. Made decaf espresso and spinach fennel lemon juice. Glorious! This is the first time I have ever had a juicer. I always wanted one but was dissuaded by friends who told me they are a lot of work to clean. They aren’t. They are so easy to use and clean! Better late than never. Walked the Highline. LTD!

Day 15. Saw Kathy and Jimmy! Brunch with the family at Mogodor! Ran into Jesse! My son got hysterical at family Yoga because the teacher blew a Jewish horn and he got scared on some primal level. I carried him down five “please be quite” signs, down 5 stories while he howled bloody murder- poor, massage clients, meditation students and fellow yoga practitioners. Oppsy. LTD!

Day 16. Cut my knuckles on the brick wall opposite the heavy elevator door that I swing open with all my might. in new york, even when you have an elevator, it is a grind. LTD!

Day 17. Old friends are amazing! LTD!

Day 18. New Friends are amazing! LTD!

Day 19. Did I mention that groceries are 3 times what I used to pay. 3 times! Dealing.

Day 20. Village Natural restaurant is still there! LTD! An old friend used to work there in the early 80’s and she told me that a woman she worked with would arrive at work and put on tons of make up before each waitress shift and my friend would think to herself, “Oh honey, don’t bother. No one cares. Everyone here is gay or vegetarian or both” Ah the classic West Village vegetarian types, in my heart forever.

Day 21 and 22. Out of town for the weekend. LTD!

Day 23. The apartments I pass and peek into are mindblowing. Need to win lotto. LTD!

Day 24. Did I find a diamond? What?! LTD!

Day 25. Sometimes just the slant of the sun or the way a stoop looks makes my heart jump with joy. LTD!

Day26. Souen!

Day 27. Angelica’s kitchen!

...Front row bleecher seats for the Thanksgiving Day Parade, Christmas trees and seeing the Christmas windows, the museum of natural history whale, the central park zoo snow leopard, the Bronx zoo camel rides, playing a couple of shows, a retrospective of my  over a quarter century long music career, snow days, protests, pottery, toasting marshmallows in our fireplace, living the dream, nyc style….

Yep, I got to come home and stay in nyc on someone elses dime for a fat chunk of time and it was so sweet. and i got to show my kids everything i saw and loved a s a kid, which was priceless. I really am in awe of the gift ad so very grateful. 

these months flew by. i didn't even get to see everyone. (if i didn't see you, dont take it personal, i have a two year old and don't get out of the house that much)we leave in a few days, which is going to really really really hard to so. i love new york.

Sunday, April 2, 2017

Ramos with out the "m"

you know that restaurant on e 115th street where you can't get reservations unless you have reservations and most of the patrons are celebrities or mobsters? they make that sauce? yep, i went to that place.

Quintessential New York.

I have connections, namely my friend David Breschel. He took us to the Los Angeles joint a few years ago. It was great- great crowd, great people watching, great food. Everything was cooked perfectly. it wasn't exactly the type of food that i eat, but it was flawless.

then he took us last week to the original, the east harlem one. This time is was all that and more- it was sublime. the crowd was all mob, no celebrity, and actually felt dangerous. I wondered for a sec if being there was worth being the possible innocent victim of a shooting. I am 51 years old and more than one woman gave me a "look", the kind I would get in high school from girls from the outer boroughs who could want to beat me up. The crowd was absolutely made up of people who would have beaten up my boyfriend, and possibly me. (Not that I couldn't take her, whoever, she was, but because she wouldn't fight fair, one on one) Why on earth would I want to be put myself in the situation in the first place? Why on earth would I want to be here? And then the food came and everything I just typed went out the window.

It was one of the most delicious meals of my life, even if 80% of it wasn't exactly food I eat. It was way better than the Los Angeles experience, which I will chalk up to ny water, what else could it be? And I would go back tomorrow, caution to the wind! Did I mention that the reservation was at 930 and we didn't take a bite till after 10? I normally eat dinner at 5:30 and often I do not eat anything after that. We didn't get home from dinner till 1am. I gained 3 lbs that have not left me.  I would do it again tomorrow, but luckily I can't. I can only go again, not of my own free will, but at the invitation of someone with reservations. Fucking New York. How I love your secret magical hideaways...