Tuesday, September 2, 2014

A Labor Of Love

It used to be on Labor Day I'd wash all the windows.  Or scrub the house down.  Three-day weekends were, more often than not, spent alone and nothing says "I don't care, I'm fine" like Windex.

I had a very neat house for no one to visit.  It was all very artist-like, my lament of loneliness.

This Labor Day, the Mariner working, I couldn't have cared less about how clean the windows should be.  There was no loneliness in the house, not with electronic messages going back and forth with the Mariner at work and certainly not with two cats insisting on the many things that comprised the lifestyle they had come to expect.

A perfect time to pull out more files of letters, spanning four decades and one city with a brief visit to China in between

You get to know the nature of your nature, someone once said to me.  She was encouraging me to see what I was doing to, how I was building my life.  I didn't at the time.  All I saw was the world saying no to my own wishes and desires.  That heartbreak always looked good in the movies, so why not?

Opening stuffed folders and old envelopes, in between delightful scrawls on lovely stationary from friends traveling the world (like Delaware), were these notes.  No matter what decade it was or the circumstances I had shared with them, a handwritten page here, a typed letter there, acknowledging I didn't want to talk to them but if I changed my mind, would I....

And then an email, neatly printed out and carefully filed as one did in those early days of computer post, from a friend saying how hard it was to hear I had never felt loved when our many years of friendship clearly proved otherwise.

All those years in words here and there, letters kept and never answered, offers spurned...the nature of my nature.

One apology has already been sent, another being drafted in regrets and thoughts.  No pretty paper needed, just a quick search on Facebook, the white pages of the 21st century, and three more boxes to sort out.

The note sent, and the futures ones to follow all carry the same message:

I'm sorry, I was an idiot and thank you for the love.

Related Posts:

 Failing Into Success

 Letters At The Speed Of Light

Summer Reruns: Sunday Memories Of Letters From The Deep

A Poem Becomes Her

Sunday Memories: Forgetting The Past

Sunday Memories: On The Cusp Of Marilyn

Sunday, August 31, 2014

Sunday Memories: When Love Was Free

It was her friend's for a long time.

Then it was her's.  For a long, long time.

Then one night, a long, long, long time ago, she left it downstairs in the lobby where Christmas was celebrated and neighbors traded books, bowls and file cabinets.

Who knows why the little sofa was perched so politely by the mantle?   Maybe kids' allergies, setting free unneeded furniture, a need to shake out some space in an apartment lived in for decades.

The little note said, "Free Love (Seat)".

The end of the 1970's had confirmed a couple of sad truths: hair really did not look good that way;  disco was not completely dead, just the good songs; and there was no such thing as free love.

But, here, like a fairy-tale ending tailored to real life, there could be a seat of love that cost nothing.

How could one resist?


Related Posts:

Sunday Memories: It's A Wonderful Lobby

Flying Time

Sunday Memories: Even the Cat Was Found On The Street

Friday, August 29, 2014

Friday's Child Is Loving And Giving And Old And Wise And Has Got It Together!


Skippy -- this really, really smiley little gentleman here -- was adopted a few weeks ago.

Social Tees fell for him as soon as he arrived, as he looked like a cuddly cross between a wombat and a wolverine. Not long after he was rescued from the kill shelter, a super damn cool family spotted him on Instagram and became obsessed.... and the rest is history.

His new mom says: "Adopting an adult dog was the best idea I've had in a while. He fits right into our schedule and the personality of our home. We only adopted him a few weeks ago yet I feel like he has been here forever.

I have two boys (11 and 14 yrs.) and there are tons of boys in and out all day long. Skippy is there to greet everyone and rolls over for his belly to be rubbed the minute you give him some attention.  Skippy is a true "boy" dog in every sense of the word....If you toss him the ball he will leap in the air and catch it in his mouth. All the boys are so impressed and fight over who is going to throw the ball next!

The other night me and my two sons walked up to the avenue to the store and they took turns walking Skippy. No fighting.... just mellow and happy. It warmed my heart and I am so glad this all turned out the way it did. Keep doing what you're doing! I am a big believer in the universe....random acts of kindness....karma....and what a blessing we've all received!"


These two tiny seniors (under 13lbs) from the kill shelter, but need foster homes ASAP! 

They are super sweet, good with dogs/cats and fostering will last about 2-4 weeks. Please email us if you can help!! They are so sweet and deserve a new shot at life! 

email: Dimitra@socialteesnyc.org


One of Social Tees' dearest volunteers has offered 2 rooms in her basement to use as a temporary safe haven for sick and injured animals.  It's a bit empty!  Now all they need is some decent furniture for their volunteers that will be taking shifts caring for those sick and injured animals! 

If you or someone you know has some decent furniture that they do not need any longer, please email Social Tees!! 



Come Volunteer!!!

Come Visit!!!!

 Come On In!!!!!

 Social Tees 
325 East 5th Street, NY, NY 10003  

Thursday, August 28, 2014

The Rear Window To Hope

My favorite light.

Not sunrises (too early).

Not sunsets (you got to be on the right block or high up).

Occasionally the moon (but you needed to hold someone's hand to make it more beautiful than sad, and that hand wasn't always there).

No.  It was when evening fell and yellow glow from home windows sang hope to me.

Whether after an F train ride down from Macy's, walking along the windows of East Broadway's nicer apartments wishing I could float into one and be safer than I was in the light I lived in...

...or the many years traveling alone by foot on night streets, peering up into the dark for a story of some happy room I might one day step into…

That light was hope.

This night, leaving a home I loved as intimately as one loves family, the Mariner and I looked up and saw in the dark of evening, yellow glow from home windows singing hope.

Only this time, there was no wishing or peering into other people's stories.  Waiting for us in other windows was a happy room offering that safer light.

So we took some pictures of the past, and talked about better cameras than phone ones.

Then we strolled into the dark towards home.

Related Posts:

Sunday Memories: Part Six: A View From A Kitchen

Sunday Memories: Of Light And Night

You Got Your North Star, I Got Mine

The Walk To Hope

What Really Happened In Rear Window

Sunday Memories: Moving Day

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Running With Wolves-New York Style

Robert and Cody work it out before they turn the lot into something else that can't be played in.

Related Posts:

Field of dreams

The Definition of Heaven on Earth

In Comes Company

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Sunday Memories and Happy Birthday Wishes To A Native New Yorker:
This Is Her New York

Originally posted on November 18, 2008.

Florence had just died and like any reasonable insane adult in denial about grief, I jumped into a heartbreaking affair immediately after.  

Who else could I have sought out to pour bewilderment and confusion onto a dinner table, but her.  When someone knows the molecules that built you, they are the only ones who know how to guide those pieces back when everything else falls apart.

Today is her birthday.  I do not understand those numbers for myself or for her.  The minute I lay eyes on her I only see us, teenagers, her wilder and braver and me wishing I could be, running happy through the streets of Our New York.  

A Happy Birthday to my dearest friend.

This is one of my oldest friends. We met when we were twelve.

Before that I was on Grand Street, which was tough, and she was on 109th Street and Riverside, which was dangerous. We didn't know any different and if you ran fast enough it really didn't matter.

How my then 17-year-old sister decided we should meet and how she, with me in tow, traversed the many bus and train lines from the lower east side to the upper west side to make sure we did I don't know, but within minutes of meeting one another this other twelve year old and I became the best of friends.

In the ensuing three decades we spoke all the time, we didn't speak for years, we survived a new age spiritual community together, we recovered from that community apart, I visited her when she ran away to the then delapitated Fifth Avenue Hotel to be a 15 year old groupie, she was the only example I had of successful defiance, I was a bridesmaid when she married a man, host to her and her young girlfriend at the time after she left her husband and then host again to her and her current boyfriend, and during the recent New York City blackout in 2003, even though we hadn't spoken in years, stranded, she knew to come my house and spend the night.

So during my own blackout where the lights in my heart disappeared I knew to come to her and on a rainy night at the tiny French restaurant older than how long we knew each other, just as worn and welcoming as the home we felt for one another, the food as comforting as our affection for one another, a relief spreading across a tiny table, we were reminded that 40 years of friendship held dear and strong through loss and storm and and change.

No new words were said. But walking down the streets of our shared history, an emotional neighborhood that hadn't been obliteraged by sudden and not-so-sudden events, an internal city we didn't have to explain to one another, old familiar words offered new hope.

Friday, August 22, 2014

Friday's Child Is Loving And Giving And Brings World Peace One Cuddle At A Time


Remember the babies that were born a few weeks ago to two Chi mamas that Social Tees rescued off the euthanasia list during its LA Rescue Mission? 

Well, the pups have opened their eyes and are starting to scramble around. 

There are a total of eight puppies, and they are all eating a lot and using the bathroom (...the floor) a lot -- 

If you can, PLEASE MAKE A MATERIAL DONATION via Social Tees' Amazon Wish List so that the folks there can continue providing the round-the-clock care these guys require!

What do they need?  LOTS of wee pads, chew sticks, weaning food, cleaning supplies, and puppy and adult food (moms are hungry, too!).

You can find donation details here http://amzn.com/w/WY8BHUIGRAAO and THANK YOU SO MUCH!!


Chloe is a really damn attractive Angora mix. 

She's six years old and awesomely friendly, just wiggles up to the front of her cage, meowing and head butting the bars for affection when you get close to say hello. 

Chloe is a big bodied lady, and while her curves are delicious, she could stand to shed a few pounds for her own good. Some solid playtime will take care of that!

Come frolic with her! 325 East 5th Street, New York City.


Dusky's owner just passed away and he has nowhere to go.

He's 10 years old, 15 lbs, very shy at first but friendly with everyone and extremely loyal and loving. 

Good with other animals! Pickup is ASAP at Social Tees; fostering lasts
two to four weeks. 

Email samantha@socialteesnyc.org now if you can help!!!!


Come Volunteer!!!

Come Visit!!!!

 Come On In!!!!!

 Social Tees 
325 East 5th Street, NY, NY 10003