New York City Diary

Words and pictures from my interesting life in New York.

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Location: Brooklyn, New York, United States

Tuesday, October 24, 2006


Last Saturday I took a day trip to Boston for my friend Webster's bachelor party dinner. I was calling it the Webchelor party. I would have liked to spend the night, but Jenn needed my assistance on Sunday morning to help set up her baby shower. I took a 12:00 noon Greyhound bus to Boston and arrived at South Station at 4:20 p.m. Since I was early for dinner I decided to be a tourist and walk through Boston Common, a public garden established in 1837.

The weather was noticeably colder than it was in New York. There was a big pumpkin event in the park where they attempted to beat the Guinness world record for the most jack-o'-lanterns lit at a single time. (They did.)

Dinner at Locke-Ober was great, and we all gave Webster our best wishes. Before long I had to go, so I walked back to South Station, stopping by a 7-Eleven on the way to buy a bottle of Poland Spring water for the trip. I caught a 10:30 p.m. bus and was in bed in Brooklyn by 4:00 a.m. The next day was a bit rough but I managed. (Read my Gridskipper semi-review of Locke-Ober here and the rest of my skip stuff here.)

Jenn and I are now less than one month from parenthood. I'm excited and a bit nervous, but I'm sure it will be great. We graduated from Lamaze class last night, and have a handwritten certificate to prove it. We're about to go on quite a ride, I know, I know.

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Discus Dude and Me

It's Sunday afternoon and I've been so busy this weekend that I feel like Discus Dude best represents my struggle. He is resolute in his determination to toss that discus farther than anyone believes possible, and I am resolute in my determination to do everything on my list of things to do. Of course, there are some differences between us. Discus Dude is a bit more muscular than I am, but my head is a more normal size in relation to my body, so we're even. Don't burn your backside on that eternal flame, Discus Dude!

The image, as most New Yorkers will probably guess, comes from your typical New York coffee cup. In this case, the coffee cup is from David's Bagels on First Avenue at 14th Street, an excellent New York bagel shop which happens to be run by people from Thailand.

I should also give credit for the term Discus Dude to Meghan McCormick of the Globe Trekker series of travel shows. Jenn and I love Globe Trekker. I bought the DVD set for Greece before we went on our honeymoon (to Greece) and Meghan did the Greek Islands portion. Meghan is a great presenter (of course we are also fond of the great Ian Wright and Justine Shapiro, who essentially defined the genre for those who came after them). I'm less of a fan of the young lady who did mainland Greece, who seems a bit of a snob. Anyway, Meghan was perusing some of the replicas of ancient Greek statuary available in a tourist shop, and she highlighted Discus Dude. So we bought one while we were there, as a tribute.

As for being busy, I'm not lamenting my situation at all, just trying to get it all done before our little boy comes into the world on or around Latvian Independence Day (November 18). There's nothing like impending fatherhood to motivate you to get your house in order. My list of things to do is so long I had to tape two pieces of paper together. Essentially, I've got to finish about three ongoing freelance projects in order to get "well-begun" on a fourth. My main accomplishment today, however, was scrubbing the upstairs bathroom, which I did with alacrity. My hands still smell bleachy, but it's the smell of cleanliness. It's not my favorite pastime, but there is some satisfaction to scrubbing a toilet, or at least having scrubbed a toilet.

It's a lovely fall day in New York. The sun is out and the temperature is 22 degrees celcius (71 F). Now it's back to work for me. Enjoy your Columbus Day tomorrow, those who have it off (unlike me).

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Birthday Cake

By way of catching up a bit, this is a photo of the birthday cake Jenn got for me from Fortunato Brothers Caffe and Pasticceria.

Here's a picture of Jenn.

And here's a picture of me. It was a great birthday weekend, despite, or perhaps because I was so busy. My birthday was on Friday the 29th, but that evening I had an event for karate, the penultimate test for my second-degree black belt (nidan).

The final test, and the ceremony where I received my belt, was early Sunday morning. I arrived at the dojo at about 6:15 a.m. It went very well.