A real live gentleman, up close and personal

I’m female, and when I get together with other women, the topic of discussion always turns to men and how inconsiderate they can be…”my husband is such a pig, and and that asshat shouted ‘hey sweet thang, bring your plump ass over here‘ at me from across the street, and he saw me standing there on the subway, my arms full with my laptop bag and my two year old son, and he didn’t even offer me his seat, that bastard, areamong the comments we make to each other about men in general.  Or titanic will air on cable TV and we’ll elbow our man in the ribs and say How come you don’t love me enough to die for me like Jack died for Rose?  (And when we say any version of “how come you don’t love me enough to die for me”, YES, we’re completely batshit crazy).

And we are, just totally batshit insane, for wanting the knight on the white horse to rescue us, for wanting a happily ever after, for expecting you to stop catcalling us and start writing love sonnets.

Or are we?

Earlier today, I had to go pick up a perscription for some cream to put on my hives (yeah, I broke out in hives over Thanksgiving weekend, I don’t know if it was from an allergic reaction to something I ate or from the stress of my mother bitching at me for a long weekend or whatever), and the pharmacy likes to play this super fun game where when ever I go in to fill a perscription, the pharmacist (a middle-aged blonde woman in a blue smock) tells me my insurance has been terminated.  Except that’s not the case, I am in good standing with my insurance carrier, having visited a doctor yesterday (who do you think prescribed the cream for the hives?) and if there was a problem with my insurance, the doctor’s office would have said something.  So I called my insurance provider from the pharmacy, and I put it on speaker phone (I fucking LOVE speakerphone) so the pharmacy bitch could hear the representative at my insurance provider say that YES,  my insurance coverage is active, and to put the perscription through.  So the pharmacy bitch filled the perscription, but as she did so, she said, “Well you shouldn’t be angry at me, y’know, THEY TELL ME to tell people their coverage has been terminated.”  I just rolled my eyes at her…I was awake for my high school and college European history classes, and that old “I was only following orders” defense didn’t fly at the war crimes trials at Nuremberg, and it damn sure doesn’t fly with me.

thoroughly pissed by the time I left the pharmacy, I thought, to hell with trying to be more health conscious, and to hell with trying to save money, and I went across the street to buy a pack of cigarettes.  I smoke and I promise my mother I’ll quit, and I smoke, and I make a half assed effort to quit, but mostly I SMOKE.  Inside the deli/bodega/liquor store, I asked for a pack of my brand, and handed the man behind the counter $10 and a manufacturer’s coupon for three dollars off a pack.  He said, “I don’t take coupon“, I pointed out it was a manufacturer’s coupon, not a coupon from another store, and asked him why he refused to take it.  He repeated that he didn’t take coupons.  Wanting very much to strangle him, I looked in my wallet for 3 more dollars, didn’t find it, and said I’d take a pack of something cheaper.

But there was this guy who’d come into the store to use their ATM machine, he was on his way out when I was saying “fine, gimme a pack of something cheaper, and I don’t understand why you won’t take a manufacturer’s coupon,” and he stopped and asked the man behind the counter how much I was “short” for a pack of my brand…the guy told him, and he proceeded to say, “It’s ok, I got it.”  Just like that.  Utterly flabbergasted (this is Brooklyn, NY, strangers don’t just show up to do you favors here)  I asked this man his name, and he said, “I’m John Q. Citizen.”  And with that, he left.  Whoever he was, he’s one of the few real live, honest to god gentlemen on this earth.  He may not ride a white horse, and he didn’t save me from a fire-breathing dragon, but the man did me a favor and wanted no recognition for it, and that’s rare.

So the next time I get together with the girls, and we get to talking about men and somebody mentions how inconsiderate they are, I’m going to insist that they’re not ALL inconsiderate, and I can prove that I’ve seen at least ONE MAN be kind without having any ulterior motive.

TMI Tuesday: Fill in the Blamks

My dream vacation is to …cross Europe by train, and I mean all of Europe, not just the okaces like Rome and Paris that tourists always visit, but to really see the whole continent

Right now I’m in…my cozy basement in Brooklyn, NY, USA.

I’m done with…pretending to be something or someone I’m not just to please and/or placate another person.

The most enjoyable time about the holidays is…I don’t know.  I mean, when I was a kid, it was the presents.  Now that I’m an adult, Christmas is about my mother and my sister’s mother in law engaging in a knock down drag out battle over who “gets” to host everybody for the holiday (my mother insists that SHE host everybody because my sister’s mother in law is not a great cook, and not a great housekeeper) but the good news is this year that fight is settled by way of my sister offering to host everybody for Christmas before my mother and my sister’s mother in law could start their yearly battle of “well, I’d like to have it at our place” and “But you ALWAYS have it”, so I guess this year no ridiculous fight over who “gets” hosting duty is my favorite thing, if that makes any sense.

Dashing through the snow, in…Ok, here in Brooklyn, NY, we don’t get that nice pristine, white snow.  We get sloppy, brownish slush (complete with a layer of black ice underneath), and I don’t dash through it.  If I go outside in it at all, I walk very gingerly from the house to the car, praying I don’t fall and break my ass in six places.

When my blog is broken…well, I have a lot of TV to catch up on.  All those shows I DVR’d and never watched, I should probably get to that.

If only…my mother wasn’t a narcissistic borderline personality; my father would stand up to her just once rather than let her verbally and physically abuse him; I had a better relationship with my  two younger sisters; I had gotten sober at age 25 instead of 35; I had learned to love the body I have so much sooner.

Bonus:   I saw the most amazing Italian-language movie on cable TV this last night.  

Some things I’m thankful for

It’s that time of year when we go around the table and say what we’re thankful for.

I’m thankful for…

My health, because I’m actually walking upright and wearing my own internal organs, and some people who knew me in the bad ol’ days (when I drank like a fish) would be surprised about that…well, they’d be surprised to know I still have my original liver (I only have it because I got sober 3 years ago, and while I didn’t quit smoking, I’m not oblivious, so I notice what’s going on with my body, which is why I’m not as falling apart as some people would think/expect me to be.  I’m thankful to have the health I took for granted all those years.

My social life, which is a relatively new thing.  For years, the man who delivered my bottles of scotch was the only person I saw face to face (outside of work), but now I find myself wanting to go to board/game night, or trivia night; I’ve become a regular at a comedy show that features a rotating lineup of up and coming entertainers (the show’s producer calls me and my sister Stadler and Waldorf).  It’s good to get out of the house and out of my own head.

My niece and nephew.  I was not sober when my niece was born, so I wasn’t allowed anywhere near her, but she doesn’t remember that, or at least I don’t think she does.  All she knows is that, like everybody else, I’m her minion.  My nephew (he’s not two yet) thinks I exist to open the cabinet that contains the treats.  Seriously, that’s all he knows me for.

The fact that I get to live in NYC, a place where everything is just a subway ride away…a ballgame, the theater, the opera, the best shopping ever, five star restaurants, nightlife, if you can dream it, you can find it here.

My meditation practice, because it keeps me sane.

So what are you all thankful for this year?