I sometimes practice a controlled sort of procrastination in which I schedule a time to stop putting something off. I need to move at the end of the year, and I chose the day to start thinking about it.

I followed through, and even looked a few apartments online.

But then I found some really great one-bedrooms I certainly can’t afford on my own. One even has a fireplace.



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where we come from

Once, my baby brother said if I got married on Game Day, he wouldn’t come. And it’s probably true.

’Cause where we’re from, college football alliance is something like religion. “The Cliffords. . . they’re Presbyterian,” you might say about an entire, extended family, “and Tech fans.”

But maybe it’s more like ancestry. Us, for example-- we’re Scottish and Irish and some Cherokee on my maternal grandmother’s side. And we’re UGA fans (though I didn’t go there, and most of my family didn’t either), but we’re Auburn fans on my paternal grandfather’s side.

And on a Friday night, when I said, “Oh, tomorrow’s Game Day,” Ted said, no it’s not, because to him Game Day is Sunday.

So he cares about professional football and he doesn’t play golf and he’s never had a Christmas tree.

“If you ever live with me, you’ll get to have a Christmas tree.”
“Oh yeah?”
“Yeah. You can put whatever you want on it.”
“Whatever I want?”
“Jew-y things?”
“Yeah, if you want. We always had a Star of David on our tree.”

Which is true because one Christmas Eve my dad brought home two department-store presents, one in in red and green with a Christmas ornament, and one blue and white with a Chanukah ornament. They turned out to be gloves for me and my mom, but they didn’t fit and we returned them.


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kitchens and love

“I just want to move to a one-bedroom in the Lower East Side!” It was a declaration, “It will be cheaper. . . and nicer.”

“No, it won’t.” It didn’t make any sense. “How would a one-bedroom be cheaper than your two-bedroom with a room mate?”

“You don’t move into a one-bedroom by yourself.” he raised my hand to his lips and kissed it while we waited to cross Avenue A.

“Oh, right.”

“It will be so nice. We’ll have things like. . . counterspace. And. . . enough room to have people over for dinner.”

“And a table?”

“And a table. And it will have a big refrigerator and a set of good knives and a real oven and. . . a blender.”

“A blender?”


The boy knows how to make me moan with pleasure, whispering kitchen fantasies in my ear, and I’ve decided I’d also like a sewing machine. But our imaginary apartment was getting kind of girly, so I asked him:

“But what about you? What do you want?”

“Hmm. A big, flatscreen tv. . . .”

“Of course.”

“Aaaand. . . a paper towel holder.”

For real. The boy wants an apartment with a paper towel holder.

“What if I bought a washer and dryer?”

I gasped, and laughed at myself:

“My first thought was, I’d marry you.”

So he said he’d get me that and I wouldn’t have to worry about his choosing an ugly ring, and later he said he’d cover them in Swarovski crystals.

If things didn’t make so much sense, they wouldn’t make any sense at all.


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worth it

“Talking to me should be a safe place.”

“I know.”

I know.

And it got me through this day.


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“Yeah. . . . You know. . .. I don’t always think about babies. Sometimes I occupy my time by planning our wedding.”

I didn’t really say that, but this is real:

“I have a thrilling night planned: we’ll finish dinner, then we’ll go to the magazine store and then the grocery store.”
“The magazine store?”
“Yeah, I need to look at the new InStyle Weddings. I keep forgetting.”
“And you just remember you have to look at wedding magazines when you’re with me?”
“No. I just need to go look at it.”
“Whatever. You’d say yes.”
“Maybe? Well, there’s lots of time.”


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i can sleep alone, but it doesn't mean i like it

Unlocking the door of my apartment, I realize that it’s Tuesday and that I haven’t slept in my bed since Tuesday. It just worked out. And we were busy. And I’ve been here to visit and get clothes and blog and even just hang out. And I really didn’t mean to leave my phone at Ted’s, but once I was back there, it made sense just to sleep in his bed.

And I’m not annoyed at having to take the train to see him or of always having underpants in my bag or even of finding an elbow where I might want to roll over.

What if we fell asleep together every night?

I don’t want to shove with both hands. No get-out-of-my-bed get-out-of my-space get-out-of-my-life. That’s a feeling so familiar, I think I’d recognize it creeping up.

“It would be fun. . . lots of weekend activities and delicious things to eat. . . .”

“There would be a lot of boring parts, too, like making dinner and stuff.”

There’d be all the paying bills and cleaning the bathtub and don’t-forget-to-take-the-trash-when-you-go-out. Just life. There’d be all the life in-between.


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I met Ted’s grandma finally, which was nice. She’s really sweet and cute and all the things a gramma should be. Lots of smiles and hugs to go around.

And after the matzoh ball soup, she turned to Ted’s mom and, with a gesture in my direction, asked, “Is she Jewish?”

Then she asked me where I’m from and I told her, slowly, and she relayed it in signs to her plus-one Margo.

’Cause Grandma is Jewish, but she’s also deaf. And a lesbian.


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probably the most honest love letter i've ever written

If this is the hard part, I’m in.

If this is what things look like when they are bad, I think maybe I can do it. You can wake me up at 5 a.m. to blow your nose and break down whenever you want, ’cause I’m your people.

I’m not so scared anymore, and I think we’ll work things out. Just please don’t move to Seattle.

But don’t think about that now.

There’s no one’s snot I’d rather have in my hair than yours.


additionally, MLS, here, has an embarrassing story of mine to share. it will be published on wednesday at 10 a.m. GMT. it's cute 'cause he's british, but you figure out when that is. time changes are my learning disability.

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live blogging: new jersey afternoon

my boy said he forgets that when i'm with him, there's usually no new blog. so i'm making one for him. ta da.

i came to work with him even though it's in new jersey. there are some professional athletes who are kind of big, but there's also apple juice. and he bought me a sandwich.

i'm kind of sad for him because he has to work in florescent lights with a drop-in ceiling. i have to wear sunglasses to even be here, but i suppose there are trade-offs like all the juice you can drink and a coffee machine that speaks three languages.

i'm going to go draw him a picture and maybe look into this coffee contraption.

happy weekends all around.


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coney island: a metaphor of sorts

Ted took me to Coney Island because he said I had to ride the Cyclone so I could be a real New Yorker. The beach there has a lot of trashcans.

We went to the aquarium and watched people Shoot the Freak and ate a mango on a stick. We made out on the Wonderwheel and had lunch at a Russian place down the boardwalk in Brighton Beach. We went to the Freak Show, and it was disgusting and amazing, and when we walked out of it, it wasn’t summer anymore, but fall.

We bought tickets for the Cyclone and got in line. And we waited. And waited. Because the rollercoaster was stuck. It was full of people and had stopped at the top of the first hill. For a long time. They were up there for at least twenty minutes before anyone decided what to do. And the solution was for all the Cyclone employees to climb up there and push start it so that it could run the rest of the way. We got a refund because the rollercoaster couldn’t go again until after the inspector came. I guess it was a big deal, because when we walked out, we were bombarded by reporters who wanted to know what had happened up there.

And even though we’d witnessed what bad things could happen, we came back and re-bought our tickets and got back in line. It was thrilling and terrifying and so much fun. I forget how much I love rollercoasters.


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word of the day: payots

I called my mom while I was walking because that is what I do. I told her how I’m going to Ted’s parents to celebrate Rosh Hoshanna, and she told me about a conversation with the wife of one of my father’s very conservative business colleagues.

“She said her husband never would have let their daughter date someone who wasn’t Episcopalian, or whatever they are, and I said, ‘Beatrix is a grownup. She doesn’t live in my house; I can’t tell her what to do. And. . . and I trust her.’”

And that was cool, so I took a few minutes to gush about my boyfriend and talk about how the two of us should come visit her and my dad some time soon. I think she’s excited about this.

And, well, then she said that it was fine that I have a Jewish boyfriend as long as her grandchildren didn’t have to have those dreadlocks, by which she meant the curls, by which she meant payots, which I had to look up: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sidelocks

I really think she means well.


so, i had the kind of day that may or may not have involved my shouting at my boss that i he can't try to make me feel guilty for not wanting to work weekends (even though he knows i will) but he should thank me for being at work at all. and then i cried. a lot. and now i'm eating more pizza than i should. and i think i might have a cold and i just hope i don't have what sammy has 'cause it's GROSS, trust me, he emailed me a picture.

so anyway. feel free to tell me i'm pretty.


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I’ve never done this, but these things seemed just barely worth mentioning.

A List:

-If you have pets or children, it is your responsibility to corral them. If you are on one side of the sidewalk and your dog is on the other, it is your problem that his leash is blocking the entire path. If you have four children, you are responsible for making sure they are not blocking the aisles at the grocery store.

-I love Jonathan Adler. (Dear Jonathan Adler, Let’s be friends, please. Love and air kisses, Beatrix) His manifesto makes me love him even more. (Dear Jonathan Adler’s boyfriend, Would the two of you like to join us for dinner? Let me know. I’ll roast some seasonal vegetables and bake a cake. Awkward, minimal-body-contact hugs, Beatrix)

-The armrest on the non-end seats of an airplane is neutral territory. It should be used minimally and never, under any circumstances, crossed.

-Sharing photos of your pregnancy test is STILL GROSS.

-Ted suggested we coordinate Halloween costumes, so we need some ideas. Clever ideas that aren’t too cute (no Anthony and Cleopatra or Jack and Jackie) are encouraged.

air kisses to all,


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we talk so much

I realized, when Ted and I were buying some books from a taciturn man behind a counter, that the two of us might be too chatty for New York.

A waitress will ask how things are, expecting a “Fine thanks.” or a “Can we get more water and another fork?”, but instead she gets something more like this:

“Oh, it’s fantastic. This French toast is delicious.”
“How long has this place been open? This location is great.”
“Can I have a little more coffee. But only a little because if I drink too much I’ll be jittery and I can only have anxiety or coffee. . . one or the other.”
“I really like this.”
“I really like these cups. I really like your haircut.”

So today, at a festival in the park, we made a friend who was almost as chatty as we are. He was working at a non-profit’s booth, and I can’t remember who started it, but the boys talked about baseball and basketball, then we all talked about college and barbeque and when was the last time we ate a hushpuppy. I really liked his glasses. He and Ted exchanged cards, and somehow, I think we might actually hear from him.

We were only steps away when Ted said, “Maybe we should set him up with Sam!”
“That’s what I was thinking!”
“No, my Sam.”
“No, my Sam. Your Sam is a vegan, and this guy doesn’t want to date him just like my Sam doesn’t want to. No one can be happy without cheese and butter.”


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for i have sinned OR life's lessons

’s how I know.

I learned three things that night:

At nearly 22, I was too old for frat parties.

People will give you money if you ask them for it.

I am capable of cheating.


It was a girls’ night with a full slate. There were probably eight or ten of us, and we went to a little house party then stopped in at the volleyball game. Outside the arena, there was car fancy enough to catch our attention. One of the girls called dibs on the owner.

“I want to meet him,” I said, then asked jokingly, “Why do you get him?”
Jules looked at me with a serious face, “Because you have a boyfriend.”

He was forgettable, which is not an excuse.

We watched a little of the game, then grabbed dinner before our next two stops.

It must have been November, because one of the fraternities was throwing a Cowboy Christmas party. I was excited. The truth is, I look great in a cowgirl hat, even if it is paired with the preppiest of pink polos. But when we got to the party, I realized it wasn’t the house full of fun I’d first experienced as a fresh- and slightly numb-faced freshman. The ground was disgusting, the bodies were sticky, there was a gross smell, and no one ever really wants to drink a lukewarm can of Mad Dog. I knew I could live the rest of my life without ever seeing another frat boy in a grubby Santa suit, and I realized that maybe, just maybe, I’d actually be ready to leave this place in June.

Our next stop was a charity dating/kiss auction. The “charity” was ambiguous, and the premise didn’t quite make sense. But the girls and I had the tipsy idea that geeky and awkward Annette should buy our lovable but even-more-awkward friend Harrington. We were sure it would be a match made in the heaven of an uptown dive, but we didn’t necessarily want to bankroll it.

I guess I was just drunk enough to do it. I asked a guy I knew for money, and before I could even explain, he handed me a twenty. In a matter of minutes, a couple of us raised about a hundred dollars, and pulled off our little scheme.

Hugo was there. He told me I looked good. He was drunk enough to slur his words a little. Maybe it was the hat, he said. I was still wearing my hat, because that’s a night-long commitment. Maybe it was.

“If you wanted to go home with someone tonight, I’m sure you could.”

I laughed. He was drunk. He wasn’t making sense.

We circled each other for a while before he came up to me again.

“Earlier.” he said, “When I said you could go home with someone. Someone. I meant me.”

I rolled my eyes. Pretended his drunk offer meant nothing. Knew I couldn’t.

He shrugged, “You could call.”

When I got home it was late. I might have been drunk, but I don’t remember. My girl friends had gone home; my room mates were asleep; there was no one around to judge me, which is not an excuse. It seemed possible that the worst thing to do might really be the best thing. That maybe somehow, nine months later, I could put everything back together.

I scrolled to the name, and looked at it. The dial button was far too easy to press. The message was too easy to leave. Forgive me, for this sin was too easy to commit.


I don’t know if it would make me a different person if he had answered. I don’t know if my course would have altered if he’d called back.. . if I hadn’t woken up the next day with the phone next to my head, full of anxiety and dodging calls from my boyfriend until five or six p.m.

I don’t know if things would be different if Hugo’s phone battery hadn’t died and he hadn’t lost his keys. And even though I know what I would have done, I guess I don’t know for sure what he would have done. Though, in the end, I suppose it was just logistics that saved me from my fate.

And that is not an excuse.

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