Saturday, June 30, 2007

I've said it before and I'll say it again

I'm a shitty blogger. Don't judge me, I have an excuse, and I won't even patronize you by saying I've been too busy. I've just been too boring. The whole point of the blog was to share the fabulousness of my NYC lifestyle. Well, small obstacle in that my lifestyle ain't so fabulous. It's pretty much exactly the same life that every other normal person in the country lives, except with more work, more tedium and it's more expensive.

Okay, I'm exaggerating a leetle. It's been a busier summer than I expected it to be and this month Josh and I both had to travel on business and then went home to Toronto for a few days, but it's not like we've had no fun. The summer associates are here, which is pretty awesome. All the major NY law firms, investment banks, consulting firms, etc, hire summer interns as a recruiting tactic. They are expected to do some work, but mostly, we bring them over from all over the world to spend millions of dollars on them in desperate hope that they will neglect to notice the pale, pudgy, demoralized faces of the "real" associates who work at the firm and
decide to join the firm full time once they graduate from law school because it is just sew, sew fabulous to be a NY lawyer.

Okay, I'm being bitter again. Point being that with the summer associates come summer budgets to do things like eat at the swankiest restaurants, drink at the snootiest bars and manicure and pedicure ourselves to death. I've been on a healthy diet of a mani/pedi a week, checking out all the city's spas, and billing it to the firm. Life could probably be worse. Maybe.

Other than that, we've had the regular rout of social engagements and shopping and dog-centered activities that make up our life. I had a dinner party for Monsieur le French Chef et sa femme! I think it went pretty well, although clearly nothing close to his calibre of stupendousness. Before that I had a girls' brunch at my place and got totally tanked by 11am, which is always a good time. Going home to Toronto for my brother's graduation was lovely - I met my little half-sister for the first time.

More than anything I've found myself longing for a more domestic existence, though. I'm home so little and I love my home so much - my pets and my hubby and my books and my kitchen and my TV! This 700 square foot place is my favourite place to be on the weekends, which contributes a lot to my lame existence, but I can't regret it too much. We're thinking seriously about buying a place here but that raises so many serious questions about ourselves and our future that I usually get too frustrated and put it out of mind. Like, do we want to commit to a small condo in the city, and thereby commit to an insane mortgage that will force me to work at a really high paying and possibly miserable job for years and years? Or, should we move out of the city, spend a little less, but commit to a soul-crushing commute? Do we even want to live in NY for a few more years at all?

See what I mean? This isn't entertainment, it's mindless rumination. Sorry to disappoint! I promise to be back soon with some fun times. Maybe even a pic or two!

Sunday, May 06, 2007

Best Dinner Party Evar.

And I didn't even host it! *sob* A few weeks ago I met up with Josh and some of his co-workers at a bar, where I met his friend Jason, a recruiter from HR. We got to talking and he casually mentioned that he happens to also be a classically trained French chef. Whaaaa? I fully thought he was tormenting me but it's true!! He also invited us over for dinner for the next night but seeing that he was half in the bag by then we just laughed at him and told him to call us over for another time.

So it was last night! And fortuitously he and his wife live like five blocks from us. Armed with a bottle of red and white, we show up, not knowing what to expect because he's kept it all sooper seekrit from Josh. And oh my gosh...every single meal I'll ever made has been put to SHAME!

We started with a glass of Prosecco and spiced olives. That's cool, something I'd likely do. Then we are called to a beautifully laid out table, poured a glass of white and the first course comes out!! It was a beautiful little portion of goat cheese nestled in puff pastry, surrounded by mache lettuce, roasted grape tomatoes and minced black olives. It was so perfectly flavoured and portioned, and just so beautiful on an oversized white plate. Already I'm thinking, shit!! I can't serve this guy butternut squash lasagna when he comes over! :)

People...he served a five course dinner!! By himself!! His wife just entertained us while Jason popped in and out of the kitchen. Truly amazing. The next course was a gorgeous little espresso cup presentation of polenta, fricasse of wild mushrooms (with the most adorable little baby enokis!), topped with more goat cheese. Incredible!! Then we had stunning little portions of seared tuna with an aromatic crust, pea shoots and this amazing spiced oil. Everything was so perfectly portioned that you could eat the whole course and not feel entirely stuffed. The final savory course was paparadelle with braised short ribs and fresh chives...aaah. By this point, though, I was fading and couldn't finish, and damn it hurt to have to leave anything on the plate. Even dessert, despite my valiant efforts, went largely uneaten by was a strawberry-rhubarb clafoutis with vanilla ice cream with one of the best crusts I've ever tasted.

Suffice to say...this is the best meal I've ever had at someone's house. He clearly has the advantage of the French training but it's totally inspired to step up my own game! I'm already plotting the amazing things I'll have to make when he and his wife come over! *off to stalk RBM's food blog*

Thursday, April 12, 2007

An exercise in sloth, more like...

I have a dreadful confession, which will come as no surprise to anyone who actually knows me...but drat! It's so hard to say out loud.

I am completely non-functional without my husband. I don't know how it is that I got to this point because surely I would have been mortified and put a stop to it had I been aware of it! Right?? I can't move from A to B without asking him where he put my stupid thingy...I have no idea how much we have in our accounts until he tells me to cool it with the spur of the moment drugstore sprees...I would be halfway into collections by now if he didn't know when to pay That Outrageous AmEx Bill. It's gotten to the point where every time I open my mouth to say "Hey, where's my..." he just cuts me off with "Did you LOOK for it??" The latest in my sordid tale of dependency is that I am making him wake me up to go to the gym now. Because an alarm clock just wouldn't work, now would it? No, because I'd just ignore the stupid thing. I ignore Josh, too, but he's supposed to try a few times! He also has coffee ready for me too because there's no way I'm doing anything without it at the crack of dawn. Anyway, long story short, the process malfunctioned this morning and somehow I woke up at 6:30. And then it was just too depressing to work out! It's all raining and grey out and no one would haved noticed my post-workout fabulousness anyway. Bah. Looks like I have a few more weeks of hiding under baggy clothes anyways, judging from the hideousness of the elements.

Things have been more or less tolerable since my return from Houston, although I did have to work on Good Friday. *grumble grumble* But in happy, happy news, we're taking a much needed vacation to California! Northern, of course, so it's not exactly bikini weather (as if I'd be caught dead in one anyway), but it's San Francisco! And wine country! We're doing the whole cheesy tourist schtick, including a renting a convertible and riding bikes over the rolling hills of Sonoma. It'll probably be way too cold to put the top down, and we'll be far too drunk to bike, but dammit, we'll have done it. I've never even been out to the West Coast. Isn't that obscene?? I'm seekritly hoping Josh falls in love with it and insists we move out there. :)

Friday, March 23, 2007

Way to ruin a good run, right? I think this is the biggest gap between posts for a while!

Basically my professional life just went into a full-on meltdown mode in the last month. We had asked the court for an adjournment in the upcoming Houston trial that was (shockingly, to us anyway) denied, and so we had to go hurtling into the biggest class action in history with a few weeks' preparation. Totally insane! I basically moved into work - in the last week I billed 113 hours in seven days, including three days of working 19, 17 and 22 hours. When the actual preparation was over, I had to start preparing myself for a move to Houston, which I patched together in about a day with the help of some wardrobe boxes and a very patient husband.

Then Monday morning I board a plane for Houston, land in the early afternoon and head to pick up my luggage. While I'm standing there waiting for my bag, I'm flipping through all my e-mails and receive a new one on my Blackberry from one of the partners on the case. He's attached the text of a decision from the Fifth Circuit and a terse message: "Reversed and remanded." Those three words changed everything. For anyone who is interested in the actual legal import, you can Google "Fifth Circuit" and "Enron" (it's been all over the news), but in a nutshell - we've pretty much won without having to step foot into the courtroom. The Fifth Circuit basically said that our client could not be held liable in the way that the plaintiff was alleging and now, barring more procedural shenanigans and/or intervention by the U.S. Supreme Court, it is over. It's over! I didn't quite know what to do standing there at the airport, so I figured, I'm definitely going to stick around for the party! And party I did, for two days...oof, that was one painfully hung over flight home on Wednesday morning. Now I'm basking in two glorious days off before heading back to the office on Monday. Having no idea of what's in store, of course...I could be put on another case right away or get a brief reprieve. But anyway, that's the sordid tale of where I've been.

Sorry, I know it's not a real glimpse into my glamorous life ;). But for better or worse...this is what I do and why they pay me the big bucks! But now that New York is blooming into a reluctant spring and my entire future doesn't look blighted by this trial in Houston, there could be some interesting things around the corner. Including things! And weekends off!

Saturday, February 17, 2007

What's with the 'tude...

About etiquette? Seriously? As if using the right fork and stationery were ever meant to be so inflammatory!

Of course...anyone who knows anything about etiquette would know that it's hardly about cutlery and inner envelopes. It's about respect, courtesy, graciousness, thoughtfulness, generosity...all those things that never go out of style and are not only things that miserable old biddies with wagging fingers care about.

One issue that particularly interests me is how people who are anti-etiquette have been successful as recasting it as a class issue. I guess that's not surprising when harpies like these get play in the popular media (they had good advice in some cases but honestly, the pearl-clutching, modern martini-eschewing, Sinatra-worshipping really grated on me). I don't care about white after Labour Day, I care about good manners, and it's such a crying shame that some people seem to think that only snobby people would concern themselves with being mannerly. There is one particular poster on a forum who I would dearly love to slap, hard. She keeps screeching about how etiquette was made up by rich people and how she loves to rub her "poverty" in their faces by doing crass things. ??? As if etiquette finds poverty to be crass! What's crass is people straining to live beyond their means and expecting other people to bankroll it. There is no shame in living and entertaining simply...I would have far more respect for someone who had a lovely dessert and coffee wedding reception for everyone they wanted there than someone who felt that they had to make a big splash at a fancy hotel and then asked for cash gifts and asked me to pay for my own drinks and dinner after they clearly B-listed me.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Happy Valentine's Day!

Reading over yesterday's post, I realized two things. One, that was a crazy jumble of unconnected thoughts...and two, I forgot to mention something kind of cool that happened last week. I was admitted to the bar! I am actually a lawyer now, licensed to practice in New York, appear in state court, give advice and all...and in more realistic (and immediately likely) terms, I get my own business cards and finally get to use firm letterhead to write my letters.

I'm sure some of you are like "What?? You haven't been a lawyer all this time?" It's a loooong, drawn out process! First you graduate from law school, then you write the bar exam plus an ethics exam, then you fill out a painful application and send them eleventy million references, then you show up for a character and fitness "interview", THEN, if nothing's screwed up along the way, you take the oath of office and tada. Done.

And now, for fun times, pictures of Fergus the dog.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

It seems as though winter is finally gracing us with her presence, just in time for Valentine's Day tomorrow. A majorly shitty thing about NYC? You don't "get" snow days. If the subway's still working, you're going to work. Still, it's okay, it'll be nice to visit the flowers Josh sent me at work today! They were some beautiful favorite! Can't wait to see if they've opened up and to smell their springy goodness!

Things have been mercifully quiet although work is definitely gearing up in preparation for the April start date of our trial (although we recently filed a motion for adjournment...pray that we get a decision soon!). We are now starting 9:30am conference calls to keep the partners abreast of what we're working on. Bleeeurgh.

Fergus is growing by leaps and bounds and actually going outside to potty now!! We took him for his first walks, all over the Upper East Side this weekend. He went to Petco and sniffed many a dog's butt. Good times. At first he was wrenching and pulling and scurrying all over the place - it took us like ten minutes to walk three blocks! - but he was in better shape on the way home. The guy loves attention - gotta give him that. People keep stopping and fussing over him and he eats it up shamelessly. It's the perfect amount of physical activity in the winter, really!

I just had to go to a new salon for an appointment this last weekend and I found myself in a stunning part of the Upper East Side I'd never seen before. Who knew? Madison in the upper 50's...stunning! Bitter jealousy-inducing! My salon was in the Fuller Building, adjacent to a Prada (but of course). That's the stuff fantasies of Manhattan are made deco buildings, fabulousy expensive boutiques and couturiers, tree lined streets, yellow cabs and sleek Lincoln towncars and limos lounging outside the Hermes nonchalantly. Reality, of course, is jockeying for position on the 4 train in the morning, trying not to have your butt get too close to the pervy looking guy behind you and praying hard that the next sudden stop or lurch doesn't send you sprawling.

I did some really good pro bono work today. Not that I don't love my other cases, but they're more like your standard issue litigation which will go on and on and on until I'm dead and the worms are eating me. This was a Wills Clinic shift at the New York Presbyterian Hospital, where we draft and execute estate planning documents for indigent AIDS patients. We executed a will, power of attorney and health care proxy for two clients today. It's great work in that you get to see results almost immediately when you hand those documents over...but wow, so weird to sit there and talk to someone really calmly about their funeral arrangements and have them be an imminent reality. Not necessarily super imminent, of course, as AIDS patients can live very long and mostly healthy lives nowadays, but still. We actually have done bedside visits for very ill clients. This time was the ceremonial/formal parts of document execution (a lot of signing, legalese, notarizing, etc) but next time I'd like to do a first interview and actually discuss estate planning.

Oh, forgot to mention, almost. I went to my first New York City Ballet performance at the Lincoln Center last week. It was really so lovely. A huge perk of my job is getting free tickets to hockey games (Josh went the week before) and other cultural events. As much as I love the arts, it's not really in the New Regime (i.e.: living on a budget) to pay $80 a ticket for me to see this stuff on my own.

Saturday, February 03, 2007

Blissful quiet...9:30 on a Saturday morning, Josh is at the gym, the dog's in his crate and all's well with the world.

Uneventful week on this front. I ate like utter crap and will continue this trend into tomorrow with my Super Bowl party. I've actually been avoiding one of my favourite blogs (MrBunsRocks', for those of you who haven't checked it out) because she recently conducted a Vegan Week experiment and I'm sure she's brimming with stories of her virtuousness. I, on the other hand, have carb bloat and my butt hurts from sitting squarely on it all week. I fully plan to work out when I get back from this morning's meeting with our investment advisor (hee! I feel so grown up) while watching 10 Things I Hate About You and reading last month's Vanity Fair. That's after we swing by the Crate & Barrel at Madison & 59th to pick up a few party supplies for tomorrow.

Work's been fairly lame. I had a bit of a meltdown this week where I decided I was going to another firm because people at my firm are Sew Meen. Then I calmed down after talking to my friend who is a fourth year at my firm. Honestly, people aren't really so much mean as they are...well, busy. No one really has time to look out for the juniors. It sucks, but I guess part of being "grown" is sucking up the little disappointments and as Lizzy would put it, putting on your big girl panties and dealing with it. Sometimes I think I'm just too soft and squishy for BigLaw. Thank god I'm not in corporate, where the super cold and uncaring bastards are. Litigators tend to have more humanity about them. On the Houston front, an appellate court will be hearing an important issue in my case next week and hopefully shortly after that we'll know if the case is going to go ahead more or less as scheduled. Wouldn't that be New York-based blog all of a sudden turns into The Trials and Tribulations of a Baby Lawyer in Podunk, Texas. With shining examples of literary genius in such entries as "Had Taco Bell for lunch today. Awfully hot out. This hotel bed's pretty far as hotel beds go."

I've spent way too much time on the Internet lately, particularly at a Canada-based wedding board which I was supposed to have left a long, long time ago. It reminds me of home, so much, and there are some sweet and smart people on there, although sometimes I really have to give my head a shake and remind myself about why I "left" in the fall. There's this really pervasive attitude on there that if you don't subscribe to the school of "It's YOUR wedding! Do what YOU WANT!" then you're an evil judgmental bitch. I used to flinch against that epithet - judgmental - but honestly, I'm beginning to wonder if the negative connotations of the word have overtaken the fundamental meaning behind it. Because really, what are we without judgment? I don't judge people for essentially harmless practices that I think are just silly (such as vow renewals - another topic of discussion at a different forum) - but I come down harder on other things that I find inconsiderate or as my first year philosophy prof called it, actions that are "Other-regarding". Like, I just can't believe that it has to be explained that one's guests should be told whether they are witnessing a "wedding", based on common societal expectations and the bare definition of the word, or what is essentially a "commitment ceremony", particularly where they're flying their asses out to Mexico to attend. And the people who justify not disclosing this salient fact do so on such grounds as "the guests might not take it as seriously if they knew it wasn't a legal wedding." ?!? So you get to make that decision for them? I think somewhere along the line brides have been fed this nauseating idea that the day is All About Them. In a basic, obvious sense, yes, of course the day is about the couple and their love, etc, but to me, the principles of hospitality still trump. When you're inviting people to share that day (which is pretty integral to the process, otherwise you wouldn't invite anyone!), their comfort and enjoyment takes priority. But try telling a forum full of single-minded brides this and you're the nasty "harsh" judgmental pariah. Hooey.

Okay, enough of that. I know a lot of girls from there read here, and I don't want to offend anyone, but it does get frustrating that the discourse can be so incredibly one-sided. Who knows, if I'd spent tens of thousands on my wedding, I'd probably have gotten quite single-minded myself. I can only hope Miss Manners would have kept me grounded ;).

I should get moving. Hey - best of luck to you, Ali, if you're reading! (Ali's my brother, who is writing the LSAT next week...hopefully I haven't totally terrified you with my whining about'll be great.)

Saturday, January 27, 2007

Funny how I always have the urge to blog when absolutely nothing's been going on. Now for a change I actually have news to share, which was supposed to be the purpose of this blog, as opposed to being a place to ruminate when I'd finished the internet! So here's a juicy (well - as far as my life goes) update.

We got a puppy!!
We've been talking about it for a while but I kept resisting because I thought it would be way too much work. A few weeks ago, though, my officemate N got a little Puggle and things seemed to be going really well. Her husband is a consultant, so they also have wonky hours, but with the assistance of a puppy-visiting service, they make it work. So...we were at the pet store last week getting Olivia groomed and just "happened" (nice work there, Josh) to be there when they brought in the puppies for the Adoption Hour. We fell in love with a 10 week old little guy, who they told us was a Shepherd mix, but on further examination now looks kind of like a Boxer/Lab mix.

Anyway, without further ado, here's Fergus!

You'll see why we can't "make" him for any particular breed. Apparently he's going to be big, though, because of the size of his paws. He's got a ton of energy - he's really sweet and loving and playful - and pretty smart, too. He's been hitting the pee pad about 80% of the time. There's a weird New York City thing about how dogs can't go outside until they've had all of their shots because they could catch an airborne disease, so he's being potty trained inside the house. We have a puppy visitor who comes every day at around 1:30 to play with him for half an hour. Eventually he'll start going out for a two hour walk every day. Right now he and the cat seem to have come to an uneasy truce. Poor guy - he just wants to play and stalks her (playfully) all over the apartment - and she's having none of it.

I got a raise!
Well...I personally didn't. But salaries at the New York law firms just went up! The way it works is that one firm will raise, and then all the rest have to match. Squeee for capitalism and golden handcuffs!

Okay in all seriousness though - my whole sense of money is going to be skewed for life. Going from scrounging for dollars while waiting tables to almost $200K USD for my first job?? $15K raises that drop out of the sky?? I should be thrilled - and I am, really - but it's making me almost more paranoid than ever. Isn't that weird? It's my naturally suspicious and pessimistic nature. It's like - this can't last! And it can't, of course, there's no way I could do this job for years upon years, which is why I've put us on such an aggressive saving schedule. We're putting away $31,000 (the IRS's maximum for tax free contributions) away for retirement and then $3000 per month into investments for a down payment on a property. But you know what's disgusting?? It's not enough! A decent 2-bedroom condo in Brooklyn is going to run us around $700,000, so even if we somehow manage to scare up $100,000 for a down payment, taking out a $600,000 mortgage makes me sick to my stomach. Even at a decent interest rate that's like $5000 a month, not including general costs of upkeep!

Honestly, I don't know how people do it nowadays. My next big dream is moving to California in a couple of years. I'd always sort of assumed I'd work at this firm for two years and then move on to something more manageable for the long-term, start having kids, etc. A cursory look at properties in the San Francisco area - $700,000ish again for tiny little detached homes. It's unbelievable - how do people live in these places?? I mean this is supposed to be a starter home for us. Why does anything decent cost a million dollars? And it's disgusting to be complaining because financially I can hardly complain. We're already in a better place than most of our friends in Canada (note: compared to our friends here in NYC, we're poor. Seriously. Almost all of my girlfriends at the firm are married or engaged to other lawyers, investment bankers, and hedge fund employees.) But whatever income level you're at it's never nice to think you can't achieve your goals in whatever arbitrary time horizons you'd set for yourself.

People who read this blog probably think I'm obsessed with money :/. Unfortunately I think I kind of am - I've made some choices along the way that probably haven't been for the best in the sense that I traded off a lot of things that are important to me for short-term gain. That's not to say it's necessarily a bad decision - too early to tell - but it's hard not to think of what could have been had I thought more about the long term when I was deciding what to do with my life. I live in this incredible city but it's just not doing anything for me. Maybe (hopefully??) it's just winter blahs and the general uncertainty about what's happening with my job (with the possible upcoming move to Houston for the Enron trial!) and what I'm going to do next. I feel like while people around me are making decisions and plans for the future I'm still waiting for my real life to begin - subjecting my poor husband to this too! Argh.

Hopefully I'll follow with more cheerful news shortly :). Saturday morning are Josh's budgeting time so usually by now I'm ready to crawl back into bed with a bottle of vodka.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

The promised leisurely update...and damn, it's a long one

Could anything be nicer than waking up on a Sunday morning and not having anywhere to go immediately? I used to cringe at the word "homebody" because it just sounded so lame. Like something nerds would describe themselves as to validate the fact that they had nowhere cool to go. But honestly? I think I'm ready to own the word. At some point I must make it to the gym, the grocery store and Banana Republic so Josh can use his shiny new gift certificate, but other than that we're free agents. And to add to the deliciousness, tomorrow's a holiday as well - Martin Luther King day here in the U.S. I just asked Josh what we'll be doing and he said "Nothing." Sweet.

I should probably say something about last weekend, right? Where I took my second vacation day in the four months I've been working? It was pretty cool - my friend Lizzy came to visit from New Hampshire and we had a really relaxing three days. On Friday evening, we went for manicures, pedicures, and then dinner at our favorite local restaurant with Josh. Saturday we left the house at a respectable 10am (ish) and took a ride on the Staten Island ferry as our one concession to the NYC Tourist Experience. It's actually a commuter ferry that some really unfortunate people take every single day to get to their homes on unfortunate Staten Island. I'm really sorry if I'm offending any Islanders reading this but good god, that is one ugly ass place. Still, it was fun to see the city skyline and sail on past the Statue of Liberty, which I've never really seen up close, and the weather was absolutely insanely gorgeous, so we stood out on deck and felt positively summery.

After that we swung by Century 21, which I'm sure I've mentioned here before (discount designer store downtown) where I tantalized Lizzy with the prospect of getting to fiercely elbow tourists in there, as the place is a zoo and a half. But so weirdly - the place was completely dead! Total let-down. Anyway, we browsed a bit and caught a glimpse of the Word Trade Center site outside, as it's right across the street. Neither of us were really up to getting up close and personal with it, especially since the place is crawling with tourists taking pictures of themselves with the site. Seriously. We stopped in really briefly at this ancient Episcopalian church right by the site - St. Paul's. There were tombstones from like the early 1700's. It's always so lovely to stumble upon little pieces of your city's history so inadvertantly. The site tells me that it's the oldest public building in continuous use in Manhattan, and was home to a significant relief effort after the September 11 attacks.

We were running kind of tight on time since we needed to be back at my place by around 5 for a small party I was throwing that night. Thankfully our cleaning lady had been in the day before and I tasked Josh with the last minute clean-up before I arrived. It's harder than you'd think, trying to get food for a party ready when you're also out all day! Anyway, we went exploring the West Village for two stores in particular - Amy's Bread and Rocco's pastry shop. From the former we got a baguette, delicious rosemary bread and an olive loaf. From the latter I got what looked like and was described to me as an Oreo cheesecake. When we actually ate it later it was orange flavored. Kind of unexpected, but not bad by any means (except for my one friend - let's call her Mel - who called it "weird"...more on her later!). After that we stopped in at Crate & Barrel where I found none of the things I needed and then flew home on the subway. All in all a pretty fun night - people came at around 8 and cleared out about 1 or so. This is what I served:
  • fresh, homemade guacamole and chips
  • store bought hummus and roasted eggplant with crackers and carrot sticks
  • store bought turkey meatballs and sweet & sour sauce
  • a cheese plate (gouda, triple creme brie and goat cheese) with the breads described above
  • store bought sweet potato chips
  • nectarines and honeydew melon
  • the main dish - homemade macaroni and cheese
  • homemade cookies brought by C and that Oreo cheesecake
Everyone seemed really happy with the food, except for Mel, who planted herself in the kitchen early on in the night and proceeded to tell me what I was doing wrong, that all my ingredients were icky, that I shop at a dirty grocery store and some of my food choices creeped her out!! Even Josh was like what the hell?! She was also rude to some of my other guests by making judgey comments about "cheap" restaurants and contradicting things that they know about NYC. Unbelievable! I'm still actually pissed off and this happened a week ago.

Otherwise the party was fun, we had a ton of wine and we ate ten times as much as was good for us. The next morning we got our slightly hung over asses out of bed and visited the Frick museum for a few hours. We stopped at Central Park for a hot dog afterwards and then strolled over to the Met. Both are fabulous art museums, both in their own way. The Frick is a majestic building that was once a private residence, filled with mostly portraits. The Met is far more institutional, much larger, with a greater variety of art. Loved them both. We got back, crashed and ordered Chinese food.

Monday was nothing much to write home about. We were planning to explore mid town but there was this mysterious gas smell in the area that was causing some people to have breathing problems, which is always a bad idea for asthmatics like myself. Then my plan to head to Central Park was thwarted by bad weather. So instead we ate the leftover bread and cheese from Saturday night, went to watch The Good Shepard (three hours gone, right there!) and then ordered pizza at night. I felt super guilty for not making Lizzy do more New Yorky stuff, but writing it all out it actually seems like a fairly active weekend. She was a lovely, mannerly house guest and she brought me Veuve, so I love her.

The rest of the week was pretty crazy, as I'd alluded to before, with the 20 hour day on Wednesday. We finally got to celebrate Josh's birthday last night! I took him to Morton's (gasp, I know, would any true New Yorker go to a chain steakhouse? But I've been to other NYC steakhouse institutions and wasn't particularly impressed, so there!) which was pretty good. I do agree that it's kind of overpriced for what it is - $250 for two drinks, a bottle of wine, one appetizer, two steaks, and two sides. Still, Josh wanted to go and what the man wants for his birthday, he gets! His gifts from me were Family Guy season 4 (I think?), a Banana Republic gift certificate, a subscription to Maxim (which he loves, ew) and a new iPod. Such a princess he is. It's more than we normally spend on birthdays but his one and a half year old iPod just went on the fritz and he uses one so much that I figured he deserved it. Hope it was a good one, baby!

OK that's probably more update than anyone wanted, but thanks for reading this far if you made it! Ta!

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Baby lawyer's first all nighter!

And seeing how I couldn't possibly do anything in a half arsed manner, it was for a Supreme Court brief and in a pro bono death penalty case. I suppose if you have to suffer that badly it may as well be for an actual client with a serious interest at stake, as opposed to Wachovia or Shell Oil or something...right? But okay, bit of an exaggeration - I wasn't there quite all night. I was home and in bed by 4:30. Still, I was feeling weak and nauseous by then from way too much coffee and bad food we had to order in at 3am. You know that whole thing about New York, city that never sleeps, you can get anything you want at any hour? Well, not so much in lower Manhattan, apparently. Wall Street is just not that happening at that hour. The choices in Midtown are so much better. We had to settle for disturbingly chewy mozarella sticks and sad french fries...from a place called Bully's, at that. Pretty sick. But this thing is out the door and hopefully I can be a normal person today. It's Josh's birthday, but I have a feeling it'll be another late night tonight because of another brief that needs to be cite checked before it's filed tomorrow...and of course the partners aren't done with their changes yet.

I noted the other day on a board that I used to post on, now mostly lurk and infrequently (for me anyway) contribute, that a few people live my "fabulous" NYC life vicariously through this blog. Hee! Too funny. Hi girls! I figured I was boring the crap out of people because all I really do is talk about work and complain about how expensive things are. The context in which this whole thing came up was when someone mentioned she would be moving to Manhattan for a couple of years and people were raining on her parade by holding forth about how they could never live here. I'm the last person to over-exaggerate how fabulous Manhattan is (I've only spent the last couple of weeks researching Anywhere Else In The World to move to) but seriously, what gives, people? Whatever happened to manners? Would anyone ever be like "Wow, you're moving to the Prairies? Holy shit it's boring there. How could you live with all those hicks, in that cold?" Well, I guess some people would say stuff like that, because they're rude.

Anyway - being at work until 4 in the morning does not give you a free pass for the next day, at least as a Manhattan lawyer (!) so I'd better eventually shower and stuff. More update soon, I hope.