Saturday, May 31, 2008

I spent... exquisite afternoon on a park bench in Central Park today.

And that's all I'm going to say about it.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Best t-shirt ever

Up until today, my favorite t-shirt saying was one that Cindy wore in the book which said My therapist says I'm a great catch.

But I think I came across one that tops that.

While sitting at The Bean at 6th Ave and 10th St (my new de facto office), working on Book #3 today, a guy walked by wearing a shirt that simply said


Saturday, May 24, 2008

Separated at Birth

Click here to read Ariel's column in the Sunday Times Magazine this week. I am 'Sophie.' (Actually, I was Sofia, but it got changed. I was a little upset when I heard because I feel Sofia is a lot more sophisticated and glamorous than Sophie which is either a 85-year-old or 5-year-old Jewish old woman/little girl, but I'm coping.)

Please note that I wrote my recent blog entry about her without knowing what she had written.

I'd say it's freaky, but as you'll see from reading, it's really not.

Ode to Michael Rosenberg

I'm on the phone with the real Michael Rosenberg, who called me to ask why he's not on the blog.

So I'm putting him on the blog.

I should also mention that when I met him 10 years ago, it wasn't exactly love at first sight like it was with my girlfriends, but it was something at first sight as evidenced by the fact that -- as Michael likes to remind me of at least a few times a month -- we "did it." (One of things I love about Michael even though I roll my eyes when he does it is that he likes to use words and phrases from the 1970s such as "did it" and "dynamite") We no longer "do it" -- and have not for many, many years -- but we've remained dear friends, save for a year and a half when I didn't talk to him because I thought he was stalking me. It turned out he was just calling me occasionally to say hello, but I tended to be a bit drama queen-y back in those days.

Michael is my most favorite person in the world to yell at and to quote lines from Annie Hall with -- two very important qualities that one should look for when choosing friends. The only real issue I have with him nowadays is that sometimes when he calls, he doesn't leave a message, even though I know he's called because his name comes up on caller ID. However, after yelling at him enough times about this, he's gotten better and now leaves messages saying "I wasn't going to leave a message, but I know you'd yell at me if I didn't."

Anyway, this blog entry is for you, Michael.

I love you.

Even when I'm yelling at you.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

I may not be prom queen material...

...but Jeanine Le Ny was nice enough to lend me her tiara at the Prom Night Borders reading on Monday.

Benefits included

Last nite my doorman Pete told me he'd marry me in a heartbeat.

Yes, there's the slight hiccup that he's already married, but he's got a pension.

I'm not exactly sure what a pension is, but I have a feeling it's a good thing.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Love at first sight

I'm supposed to be writing. And I am, but what I mean is that I'm supposed to be writing the next book. Not blog entries. Or maybe I am supposed to be writing this blog entry because somehow it's going to inform the book.

Who knows. I certainly don't.

Anyway, the last few weeks I've had a bunch of experiences where I've come into contact with people -- either through MTV, or Facebook -- and there's just been this instant bond and a ton of crazy synchronicities. Really amazing.

For instance, I've been dealing with this rather challenging interpersonal relationship (sounds like something on a Human Resources report) and I alluded to it on my Facebook status and got an email from a woman in L.A. who I've known for a while but didn't know-know. For whatever reason I ended up telling her about said challenging interpersonal relationship -- no idea why -- and the amount of identification she had, and the fact that she had gone through something SO similar just blew me away. I like to joke that I keep hoping that one morning I'll wake up with a typed letter from the Universe under my pillow giving me very specific answers to my problems and, honestly, that happened. But it ended up in my email inbox rather than underneath my pillow. Not that she had the answers, but she walked through a very similar experience, which made me feel understood and gave me hope that maybe one day it'll just be an interpersonal relationship rather than a challenging interpersonal relationship.

Okay, so that was just one of the crazy random synchronicity experiences. But the MAIN one occurred on Saturday night.

So on Saturday night I went to an opening for an artist I know and as I was saying goodbye to him, this woman arrived and walked up to him. He introduced us and I immediately recognized her name and we started talking...and kept talking...and kept talking...and kept talking. Through the rest of the opening, through the cab ride to dinner, through dinner, through the movies the next afternoon, through the hour-long conversation we had on the phone AFTER the movie...through our emails the next morning. She's a writer, she's Jewish, our birthdays are 3 days apart in the month of January and we have about nine million other things in common that don't need to be written about in a public forum. Oh, AND it turns out that we had a mutual friend in LA fifteen years ago and met at some point out there. About the only difference I've found so far is that she goes to the doctor on a very regular basis and has the Web M.D. website saved in her "Favorites" folder whereas I, as Amy well knows, prefer to remain ignorant about how the human body and antibiotics work and just suffer.

It was love at first sight with Ariel -- just like it was with Amy eight years ago.

So on Monday, Ariel calls the artist and says "I just want to thank you for introducing me to Robin -- I feel like I've found my long-lost sister." Just at that moment an email from me landed in his inbox. He opens it and it says Thanks so much for introducing me to Ariel. I feel like I've found my long-lost sister.


How's THAT for a synchronicity? Carl Jung must be dancing a jig in his grave at the moment.

My experience is that the older you get, the harder it is to make friends. Acquaintances? Not a problem. Friends? Not so much. I'm pretty sure it has to do with the fact that (hopefully) as you age, you just know yourself better and therefore you know what works and what doesn't. And if, like me, you're someone who not only spends a lot of time alone but actually enjoys it, it's even more difficult.

It's not that there isn't room to be suprised by people, but sometimes there's just this...instant knowing with friends. This instant bond.

Just like sometimes there's this instant bond with people with whom you then go on to have challenging interpersonal relationships.

Which can be excruciating when you're repeatedly discovering by putting your palm smack in the middle of a hot skillet that that instant bond isn't enough to overcome the "challenges" part of the equation.

The last few weeks have brought what I feel are some new friends into my life. Some of those relationships will blossom and turn into names on my speed dial of people with whom I can just say "Hi it's me" when I call rather than "Hi it's Robin." Or, even better, just "Hi," like I do with Amy and Michael Rosenberg and a few other people.

I'm happy to report that Ariel and I are already at the "Hi" stage.

And some of those new friends who I've met will be people with whom a feel an instant rapport when I see them, or through our emails, but not necessarily people I talk to on a daily basis.

Both are good.

In fact, as my friend Julie says (who was also an instant friend when we met all those years ago at a New Year's Day brunch), it's all good. All of it -- even the challenging interpersonal relationships. They may not feel good in the moment, but somewhere in your heart of hearts you know that they are because they take you where you need to be, even if you have no inkling of where that is.

The shitty part is that sometimes it takes a while for the feeling and the knowing to catch up to each other.

Monday, May 12, 2008

New Yorker Cartoon of the Day

I stole this from my friend Patrick's blog.
I had to...a) because it's funny and b) because I'm burnt out and therefore can't think of anything to write about.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Glass, Cuba and Spring

Sometimes the stars line up just so, or maybe you just get tired of toting around these very heavy bags of expectations and ideas of what life should look or feel like and instead you just go live it, and this alchemy happens where you just let go and end up having an absolutely perfect day which is what I was blessed to have yesterday.

After a few days of rain, spring has shown up again and NY is in that sweet spot where it's sunny but not too sunny and warm but not too warm and people are smiling rather than grumbling about the heat and humidity. So after writing I went to the Philoctetes Center which is this amazing place affiliated with the New York Psychoanalytic Society that has these fantastic lectures and roundtable discussions centered around imagination. I went to see Scott Hick's documentary Glass, A Portrait of Philip in 12 Parts, about the composer Philip Glass, which was beautifully done and inspirational. Then I walked around the Upper East Side which I never do because, well, it's the Upper East Side and ended up at Schaller & Weber which is a German grocery store that sells sausages and spaetzle and chocolate -- stuff that brought back all these memories of my grandparents' house in Germany. And then after that, I went to meet my new gay soul mate Juan for dinner where I marveled at how kind the Universe can be by introducing you to truly lovely human beings on a semi-regular basis. And then we went to see a play called ALL EYES AND EARS by the very talented playwright Rogelio Martinez which is set in 1961 Cuba in the period between the Bay of Pigs and the Cuban Missile Crisis. Really, really interesting -- I'm still digesting it and pondering it so I feel as if I can't write all that much about it yet, but afterwards we were talking about the idea of fear, and how living in that climate affects your behavior, and what you end up doing that you wouldn't normally do if you weren't afraid...(okay, I'm going to have to stop writing about this so I can go back to thinking about it)...And then after the play I went across the street with Rogelio and the cast and we talked about writing and writers and the filly from the Kentucky Derby who met a tragic end and a bunch of other stuff and it was...well, it was as delicious as the single piece of milk chocolate I bought at the German grocery store that afternoon and the perfect end to a perfect day.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Prom Night at Borders!

And even though my prom was a long, long time ago I get to go again.
Okay, so maybe it's not at a hotel, and maybe they won't be serving chicken kiev, and maybe I no longer have blonde frosted highlights, but it'll be awesome.

When: Monday 5/19 6:30p
Where: Borders Columbus Circle
59th and Broadway/Time Warner Center (you can get dinner at Whole Foods)
New York, NY
Who: Me (Robin Palmer, CINDY ELLA)
David Levithan (21 PROMS)
Jeanine Le Ny (ONCE UPON A PROM)
Why: Because there will be punch and cookies and streamers. Oh, and authors
reading from funny books.

(P.S. How awesome would it be if I went all CARRIE during the reading?!)