Instead of blogging, I’m…

July 17, 2008 at 7:59 pm | Posted in Outings, Random Stuff | 2 Comments

1. going to free concerts in the city (Yael Naim, the 2 free NY Philarmonic concerts in Central Park, Bon Jovi); on this note, I though the sound system for the 2nd NY Philarmonic concert sucked; there didn’t seem to be as many speakers placed around the lawn and it seemed more crowded for this concert than the last one.

Now I can say that I’ve seen Bon Jovi in concert. For a jersey girl not to see Bon Jovi live, what a travesty ; ) Seriously, I never really appreciated Bon Jovi until recently. Their upbeat songs all sound the same, not much variety in their music until recently. I don’t like their new stuff as much as their 80s stuff but their show was phenomenal, made standing on line for what seemed like eternity worthwhile. Jon Bon Jovi is one good looking man who should be sponsoring toothpaste, seriously did you see how white his teeth are?  How many times can you say you saw a rock concert on the Great Lawn? Plus, the sound system rocked!

2. trying to get back into running; I got new running sneakers (Brooks Addiction, in case anyone’s curious) and have been running 2-3x a week (might alternate with spinning class, swimming, dancing one day a week and lift weights or do yoga 1 day a week), there’s an awesome pre-season sports conditioning class at the gym that is super popular, whenever i’ve come to the class, it gets at least 20 people, sometimes close to 30 or more people; what I like the most is the class does it all for you, you get your cardio with the sprints we do in class and you get strengthbuilding from the different exercises with free weights (lunges with bicep curls, pushups, mountain climbers).

3. exploring the great outdoors. Last Thursday, I went hiking in Morris County, NJ with the JOC; we hiked 6 miles and there was so much variety, we walked on roads, grass, had to climb up rocks and the scenery was beautiful, everything from waterfalls, forests, green meadows; oh, and my fellow hikers were very nice as well : ) Yesterday, I went to the Bronx Zoo (another JOC adventure) and decided that I want a lemur as a pet, forget about dogs! Other than the weird eyes, they are cute furry creatures and it would make for a great ice-breaker. I saw tigers, snow leopards, monkeys, giraffes, and tapirs (yes, you heard right).

4. seeing family; Fathers Day was great; we went to a sculpture garden in NJ followed by a family barbecue. My nephews are awesome; a couple weeks ago my mom and I took Big Peanut to the Children’s Museum followed by a sushi lunch. Little Peanut is now walking, it’s funny because he hasn’t quite figured out yet how to work his knees while walking. There is a youtube video of him walking, it’s the most adorable thing ever.

I remember a time when I used to post everyday but the pace was too much for me to keep up with.  There has to be a middle ground between posting everyday and posting 1x a month. Also, I debate with myself over the format of my blog. Don’t worry, I’m not putting away the pen yet, far from it.

How Time Flies…

June 4, 2008 at 8:19 pm | Posted in Outings, Random Stuff | Leave a comment

I have been in one of my “no blogging” phases, this occasionally happens; what have I been doing over the past month?

1. I saw 4 movies in the past month: Iron Man, Baby Mama, Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, Sex and the City. Guess which two of these movies I saw with Bill?  One of these movies required me going back to the rat theatre, a friend who I’ll nickname Little Debbie (LD) had free passes. In the interest of keeping this post on the short side, I’ll review some, if not all, of the movies in future posts.

2. Bill and I have been spending some time with our nephews; we’ve been asked to do some babysitting. Bill has taught Big Peanut to run towards the pigeons in the park and make them fly away. BP also got a new bike that he absolutely loves. He can ride the bike very well with training wheels, I don’t think I even rode a bike at 3 years old.

3. I went to the JOC (Jewish Outdoors Club) event at Bear Mountain State park. Bill and I did an easy/moderate hike; there was very little easy in our hike. The first few minutes of our hike involved walking over a stream and walking up a steep incline. We were rewarded with some pretty amazing views. The downhill part of the hike was more challenging in my opinion. You constantly had to watch for tree root. On our way back to the park, it started raining and when we got to the barbecue it was pouring. It was my first time at Bear Mountain and I loved it, there are a variety of hiking trails, the zoo was not too shabby either. I would love to go back, just as long as it’s not raining.

4. A friend of mine, Little Debbie, has moved to my neighborhood. We initially met through mutual friends at a Shabbat meal about 6 months ago. She has already made a few Shabbas meals, there is a nice backyard in her building that she has access to.

5. The Israel Day parade was fun; I’m generally not into parades but I always go to the Isarel Day parade. It’s a chance to catch up with friends who you haven’t talked to in a long time and more importantly, you make it known that you support Israel. I knew of some friends who were walking in the parade but I didn’t get to see them : (  After the parade, Bill and I walked with a friend to the concert in the park, and went to a barbecue on the rooftop of the Jewish Center.

6. Thanks to the writing group that I’ve participated in for the past 4 months, I’ve started writing a personal essay on getting my ears pierced for the first time and have started writing 2 fiction pieces based on personal experiences. If I get my butt in gear, I might even submit my personal essay to some writing contests.

7. My younger brother, Rebel Lawyer, graduated law school 2 weeks ago. The ceremony was very long and Dr. O and I did not get to see RL get his diploma since we had to go back to work in the afternoon. RL is stuyding for the bar.

 

Viva Las Vegas

December 31, 2007 at 2:48 pm | Posted in Outings | Leave a comment

If I told you that I did not gamble in Vegas, most people would not believe me. After all, isn’t that what people do in Vegas? I would have tried my luck at the blackjack tables but I was too busy looking at the aquarium at Mandalay Bay, going to The Beatles Cirque Du Soleil show at the Mirage, hiking in Red Rock Canyon, and touring Hoover Dam.

Everyone should take a family vacation at one point in life. Due to busy schedules, it’s a rare occasion when everyone in my family is in the same place and we were together for 3-4 days. These experiences are more special to me now, g-d only knows when our next family vacation will be. Everyone had a wonderful time, there was hardly any complaining (except when we were all waiting for my dad to finish reading about every exhibit in the Hoover Dam museum). I’ll fill you in on a little something: we went to vegas to celebrate my dad’s birthday, which was actually yesterday. Since I don’t think he would like me to reveal his age, I will say that it was a very special birthday : )

My little nephews love Las Vegas; while I still don’t think Las Vegas is the first place that comes to mind when I think of vacation spots for kids, LV is not a bad place at all. Other than the aquarium at Mandalay Bay, our hotel has a lion habitat that’s very popular with the kiddies and Circus Circus has some great stuff for kids too.

Time to get back to work : ) I will write a more detailed post of the Cirque Du Soleil show later this week.

Vacation: My Most Favorite Word

December 23, 2007 at 11:02 pm | Posted in Outings | Leave a comment

Tomorrow starts my vacation in Sin City aka Las Vegas. Mentally, I started my vacation the minute I left work on Friday. I had a lovely young woman stay with me for Shabbos; it was her first time in my neighborhood for Shabbos and hopefully not the last : )

Saturday night was Bill’s birthday party. He plans a party every year with his friend, E. and this year it was at another bar in my neighborhood. We had the downstairs room to ourselves and it was a rockin’ party. There was great music and even better company. The party was very laid back and non-pretentious, just like Bill.  There was karaoke upstairs and a bunch of people stayed afterwards to watch two people butcher “Total Eclipse of the Heart”.

So what will I do in Vegas? A little bit of gambling, watching some shows, eating, and maybe see some of the other sites in Vegas. You will probably not hear from me until Friday; until then, happy holidays to my loyal readers : )

Not Your Typical Bridal Shower

December 19, 2007 at 4:33 pm | Posted in Outings | Leave a comment
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When you think of a bridal shower, what is the first image that pops in your head? If I told you that I played a rousing game of basketball at a bridal shower, you probably wouldn’t believe me. But that is exactly what happened last night at my chavrusa’s bridal shower. For more background, read this post .

The bridal shower took place in Brooklyn. I forgot to mention that it was a surprise bridal shower. I got subway directions from hopstop, and didn’t realize that in addition to a long subway ride involving 2 trains, there would also be a fair bit of walking involved after I left the station (try 15-20 minutes!).

There were about 7-10 women there when I arrived, and the bride-to-be had not arrived yet. About 15-20 minutes after my arrival, the bride showed up and yes, she was in shock. As much as I kvetched inwardly about the long subway ride and walk afterwards, I loved seeing the look on my friend’s face as she walked in and saw all of our smiling faces. I almost wanted to ask her to go back out and walk inside again.

In addition to basketball, there was food (what would a jewish event be without food?!?). We had a nice meal of pizza, salad, and chips followed by a make your own ice cream sundae station. What about the game? As tempting as it was to sit and stuff my face for the whole night, I did play some ball.  All of the girls were playing in skirts, with exercise pants underneath.

It was my first (and last) time playing basketball in a skirt. How anyone does not trip over their own feet playing in a skirt is beyond me. I managed to stay upright most of the game. I forgot how much fun basketball can be; don’t ask me to actually shoot the ball because I can’t make a basket if my life depended on it but I can run up and down the court all night long. I couldn’t stay for the second half of the game. Thankfully, I had someone to travel back with for part of the way and we got a ride to the subway station : )

Sometimes you don’t feel like going to certain events and you can come up with a litany of excuses for why you don’t want to go (it’s too cold, i have to take 2 trains, it’s in brooklyn). When you decide to go anyway, sometimes you end up having a better time than expected and that is exactly what happened last night. Unfortunately, I cannot go to the wedding because I will be in Las Vegas with my family. Maybe I’ll win some extra money at the blackjack tables and give my winnings to the newlyweds. Stranger things have happened….

Invasion of the Upper West Siders

December 7, 2007 at 8:33 pm | Posted in Outings | Leave a comment
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The weekend before Thanksgiving, there was a triple birthday party celebration at a neighborhood bar. Bang It Out had their Hanukkah party at another local club/bar in my hood. Bill and I braved the cold weather to check this party out.

The venue was more spacious than I thought it would be, there’s a bar area in the front and there is a back room for dancing and another bar in the back. By the time we got there, it was packed. We missed out on the latkes but somehow managed to grab some anyway. It would have been a good idea to have dinner before, unless your idea of a good dinner is pretzel, chips, and booze. Music was your usual Black Eyed Peas, Nelly Furtado, Timbaland mix; I would go back to this place again and I’m not just saying so because it’s in my neighborhood, although it certainly helps.

My Encounter With Mr. Big

November 29, 2007 at 3:19 pm | Posted in Movies, Outings | Leave a comment
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My closest run-ins with celebrities have been a picture of me with Jesse Martin taken 6-7 years ago and a Saturday night at Brandy’s last winter with Theatre Chick where we struck up conversation with an Apprentice cast member. D-Listed and People are among the websites I surf daily and I have been known to peek at Perez Hilton once in awhile. Some people go insane over anything Hollywood. I never understood how anyone could stand in line for hours just to see a celebrity and get an autograph, to me it seemed like a big waste of time.

When I learned that Sex and The City was filming in my neighborhood, I had this intense desire to see every bit of filming that I could. As this New York Times article shows, I was not only the only person to feel this way. The woman who couldn’t care less about getting autographs from celebs was all about seeing everyone from Sex and The City, specifically Mr. Big. I was peeved when I learned that I missed an opportunity to see the first day of filming with SJP and Chris Noth by the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Thanks to the NY Daily News, I learned that the cast was shooting on the corner of 70th St. and Lexington Ave. the following day and I went after work.  Chris Noth and Kristen Davis were supposed to be shooting a scene.

We must have stood there for at least 30 minutes; there was a lady telling us all the rules, no flash photography, no standing beyond the sidewalk, blah blah blah. Suddenly, I hear a buzz in the air and we see Chris Noth, aka Mr. Big aka Detective Mike Logan, in the flesh. It is hard to believe but he is so much better looking in person than he is on TV and he is not a bad looking man at all. Even though I stood around for at least 30 minutes and I only saw Chris Noth for a minute or two at most, it was so worth it.

Movies, TV, and music can serve as an escape from reality and/or as a window into the lifestyles of people whom you might never get to meet in real life.  However, there are those few times when you watch a show and you identify with some of the characters, despite the differences in lifestyle. That’s how I felt about Carrie, Samantha, Charlotte, and Miranda. Even though I might never make enough money to buy a pair of Blahniks, or go to all the hottest clubs and lounges, I felt like I had so much in common with them Who has not had dates that have gone horribly wrong, relationships that seemed so wonderful at first but ended in the most heartbreaking ways, and unexpected events in life that have forced you to re-evaluate your goals and dreams? Raise your hand if you have never gone through any of these things…..anyone, anyone? Okay, didn’t think so.

There are TV shows that bomb spectacularly, TV shows that last a season or two and then disappear, and then you have those shows that everyone talks about years after it ends. Through syndication, SATC has gained new fans and even the fans who have been around since the beginning can watch the Fab Four again and again. Will I be standing in line for opening weekend in May of 2008? In the words of Mr. Bib, absof*ckinlutely!

To reward your patience for reading this longer than I thought post, I have enclosed a few pictures for your viewing pleasure.

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Happy Turkey Day (Gobble, Gobble)

November 21, 2007 at 8:49 pm | Posted in Outings, Random Stuff | Leave a comment

Before I head out of the office early, I just wanted to wish all my readers a healthy and happy Thanksgiving. Plans are to catch “the headless parade” with Bill tonight on the west side. That is Bill’s funny way of describing what happens the night before the Macy’s parade; all the floats are on the upper west side and are being prepped there before they are taken to midtown. I will be with Bill’s family for the Thanksgiving meal, then we are going to rent “Die Hard with a Vengenace” or at least Bill thinks we are, jk : )

I’ll be seeing my family (and hopefully a few friends) over the weekend, it’s been almost a month since I’ve seen my parents and almost 3 months since I’ve seen Real Genius. He is probably on his way home now as I’m typing this. Hope he got a seat on the train, 4-5 hours is a long time to be standing on the train.

Future Posts: continued recaps of Heroes and Project Runway, a “Learning with Maya” series where I talk about all the cool lectures I go to, this is just scratching the surface 🙂

I hear the writers and producers will resume talks on the Monday after Turkey Day, let’s hope they reach a resolution so we won’t be stuck with a season full of reruns and dredges of reality TV.

Another Rainy Monday

November 19, 2007 at 2:51 pm | Posted in Outings, Random Stuff | Leave a comment

Yep, here I am in the office blogging when I should be working. The weekend was a nice one; friday night Bill and I had dinner with his family. His youngest sister passed the bar exam : )

Saturday night, Bill and I went out for sushi; more accurately he had sushi and I had avocado & cucumber rolls. We spent the rest of the evening at a bar in my neighborhood, there was a triple birthday party going on. It felt like I was dropped off at a frat party. The floors were sticky, the place was crowded, people went up on the bar and sang badly, beer pong was played in the back.

Sunday, I did absolutely nothing. Other than going out to Starbucks for coffee with a friend and brunch with Bill, there was not much going on. I rented Dreamgirls, enjoyed that film immensely. Even though it was 2 hours long, it sure didn’t feel like it.

One more great piece of news: Bill is an uncle : ) His sister gave birth yesterday; mom and babies (yes, she had twins) are resting.

That’s all for now. Maybe I should try this thing called working.

ETA: Bill has two younger sisters

Guess Where Maya’s Going on Vacation Clues 3 & 4

November 15, 2007 at 3:03 pm | Posted in Blast from the Past, Music, Outings | 2 Comments

Clue 1 and Clue 2

Now for the final clues, I will show a couple of videos and by that point you should know where I’m going on vacay.

The name of the city I’m traveling to is included in some popular songs, I have not heard this song in years.

I’m sure everyone is familiar with this song:

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