Monday, February 8, 2010

Je voudrais un croissant.

Tomorrow is my first day of school. When I finished college, I secretly wished I could stay another semester or two and just take classes that I wanted to for fun. But since I'd already been there for 5 years and gone on study abroad (twice), I figured it was best not to try my parents' patience any further.

Anyway, I'd been thinking for a while about taking a class of some kind, since there are so many options around the city for continuing education. I settled on learning a new language, and decided to try French on for size. My reasons include 1) the fact that I took Spanish in high school and was awesome at it (we won't go into my retention, which is probably more relevant now that I live in a heavily Dominican neighborhood, but whatever), 2) it sounds pretty, and 3) it is one of my life's ambitions to meet a cute foreign boy and have zany/romantic adventures together while riding around on a scooter, a la Passport to Paris.

(For reference, my other life's ambitions include winning an Oscar for Best Original Score, meeting Ben Folds, and being a contestant on Cash Cab.)

My friend Zach signed up to take the weekly class with me, and we've already envisioned great things for ourselves. We're convinced that our plan to speak to each other exclusively in French after about week 5 will amaze both friends and strangers, even though our conversations will mostly consist of things like, "Where is the library?" and "I like oranges!"

I figure that, after the 14 weeks are up, my life in general will look something like this:

Wednesday, February 3, 2010


One night last week, I made my way to the store to return a book. As I crossed the street, a group of hooligan teenagers passed me, each waving a book in the air and yelling, "OZZY RUUUUUULES!" While I appreciated their enthusiasm, I was confused as to its source until I entered the Time Warner Center and saw the massive line outside of Borders. Next to the line was a poster: Ozzy Osbourne Book Signing. Apparently the Prince of Darkness himself was in the store to promote his recent biography, and these people were waiting to get into the signing.

Unfortunately, that meant that the checkout line was also filled with customers waiting to buy their copies of the book. I sighed and went to the back of the line, wondering if the $5 refund was really worth it. A few moments later, an associate came to the front of the line and announced in a shaky voice that he was sorry, but they were completely sold out of the Ozzy book, and those who didn't already have copies would be leaving empty-handed. He looked so terrified that I felt sure he'd never worked a Harry Potter midnight release party. There were loud grumbles from the crowd and, to my delight, 90% of the line dispersed.

As the crowd of mostly overly-pierced teenagers and aging rocker-types were turned away, I was surprised to see a conservatively-dressed man in his 60s. He walked slowly past me and said, in dejected tones, "You heard they're out of the book, right?" I looked down at my green peacoat and skinny jeans and then back at his neatly parted hair and sweater vest, and my gut reaction of, "Do I look like an Ozzy Osbourne fan?" disintegrated. So I just smiled and said, "Yes, thank you," and went to the front of the line.


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