I Climbed a Freaking Mountain!

Memorial Day was a day of firsts that left me a sweaty, sunburnt, bug bitten mess, but me and my newly skinned knee have never felt so strong.

Started From The Bottom

Started From The Bottom

FIRST FIRST: HITCH HIKING… SORRY MOM

Evan and I intended to take the 7:43 Metro North train to Manitou, but of course ended up missing our stop. Being tried and true New Yorkers, we got off at the next one, with the intent of walking back, however it wasn’t that easy. It was a four mile trek that started with a hike in the woods, and ended with us being picked up on the side of the road by a nice man named Auggie.

Auggie was headed to the same exact place as us, or so we thought, and he flaunted his local status as “Maybe I’m Amazed” blared through his truck’s speakers. After we covered all the hot topics for dads… directions, distance to the city, the train we took to get there… Auggie dropped us off at the base of Bear Mountain.

SECOND FIRST: ACTUAL HIKING

As you can probably guess from my leopard print hat, this was my first time going hiking. And boy did I go big before I went home. The trail Evan and I intended to take was a literal walk in the park, but the one Auggie brought us to was an intense, uphill trek.

I visualized my impending Beyonce-esque thigh gap one lunge at a time as we climbed up over a mile’s worth of rocks, pushing my heart rate to a record high. There were certain points when not just me, but my body wanted to quit, however there was no Starbucks or air conditioned snack tent to retire to. The only option was to keep on climbing, and think about how “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” was probably written by someone who’d never actually scaled a mountain.

But then we got to the top.

The feeling of accomplishment was beyond comprehension, and made even better by the fact that we could see the now tiny speck of street where our climb had started. It was a view made for instagram, and after about a thousand mosquito bites, and two thousand selfies, it was time to make our way back down.

THIRD FIRST: STARING DOWN A VERTICAL, ROCKY DESCENT AND REGRETTING I CHOSE THE CHEAPEST OPTION OF OBAMACARE

Disney’s “Tower of Terror” has got nothing on the hour of terror Evan and I spent climbing down the mountain, where no less than three people stopped us to suggest we turn back. But, as I clung to the rocks for dear life, looking for my next footing, there was nowhere else to go.

Evan and I took our time, mostly relying on Madonna-like arm strength, and precarious looking branches for support, but scooted down the rocks on our butts when necessary. This was not a time to worry about looking silly. This was a time to worry about what color cast I’d pick if something went wrong.  Thankfully, nothing did, but if you’re wondering, I’d go with purple.

FOURTH FIRST: PURPOSELY STANDING NEXT TO A SMELLY GUY ON THE SUBWAY TO COVER MY B.O.

This one’s kind of self-explanatory, but I want to thank the guy I stood next to on the D train for managing to smell worse than my day’s collection of blood, sweat, and overcome fears.

BRIDGEFIE noun: selfie with a bridge

BRIDGEFIE
noun: selfie with a bridge

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The Real Moonrise Kingdom

If you haven’t seen Moonrise Kingdom yet, I suggest calling your boss and saying you won’t be in to work today. It’s still early. You could catch an afternoon showing, one at night, or if you hustle, maybe a matinee. Just see it as soon as possible, k?

I am a HUGE Wes Anderson fan, so I feel comfortable saying in Moonrise Kindgom, he corrected all the flaws present on prior films like Darjeeling Limited and Life Aquatic. There’s a strong, compelling story, almost-likable characters, and the pacing is tight with only minor meanderings. But as always the visuals and art direction are out of control amazing. It was so cool to see Wes Anderson Wes Andersoning-up a forest and a beach and other places that you wouldn’t think have the capacity for much variation.

On that note, I was lucky enough to pay a visit to one of the “sets” or “exterior locations” (if you’re fancy) of Moonrise Kingdom. My roommate Alyssa spent last summer in Rhode Island working her buns off as the DGA trainee on the film and almost one year ago today, I got on a slew of buses and trains to go visit her.

As you can see in the pictures below the location we visited wasn’t “dressed,” but it was featured prominently in the film. I can’t really tell you how cause I’m not into spoilers. Just check out the pictures and then check out Moonrise Kingdom, k?

Also, on a total aside, those jean shorts I’m wearing no longer fit. They are waaaaaaay toooooo big. I could fit one of the child actors from Moonrise in them with me now. So that’s exciting. And weird. For the record, I would never try to fit a child with me in my jean shorts.

Alyssa thinking about what she’s going to say when she wins her Oscar.

JACK WHITE GET OUT OF MY BRAIN!!!

Oh my gosh guys, it’s here. I have it. Blunderbuss has entered the building.

Now, if you’re a dedicated reader (as I know about 3 and 1/2 of you are) you’ll find the disc art interesting.

Especially if you read this post from a couple weeks ago that contains the photo I’ve been using as my iPhone wallpaper since.

This means Jack White and I are soul mates… Right?

1,000 Views!

OMG you guys! I broke 1,000 views today. How exciting! Thanks for checking this humble project of mine out and feel free to keep coming back for more blog fun.

Speaking of fun… the roomies and I celebrated fake summer today.

Stacilyn looking pretty.

This is the closest you'll get to a pic of me today.

Be sure to look really closely at this last pic. Focus on the background.

This is my new favorite picture ever.

My FAVORITE Place in New York.

Not sure how my mom is going to feel about this, but my favorite place in New York City is a church. You see, I was raised to be very Jewish, so the idea of loving a church is a little bit radical. One time, I asked my mom if I could get one of those cool cross necklaces like Buffy wore and it was as if I had asked to eat pot wrapped in bacon with an absinthe reduction.

But, religion aside, tell me this isn’t beautiful… If you venture up to 112th and Amsterdam, you’ll see the Cathedral Church of St. John the Divine. It’s kind of hard to miss as it’s freaking huge. St. James holds regular masses, which I’m obvi less interested in, but the great part is it’s open to the public if you’re ever in the mood to roam around.

The architecture is straight out of an art history book, and the main sanctuary is surrounded by hidden chapels that line the building’s perimeter. Each chapel has its own unique design aesthetic and they house a regular rotation of art and exhibits, so you’re never going to see the same thing.

The coolest one I ever saw was based on a man who traveled the world and filmed eight family dinners from a fixed aerial point of view. He took great care to make sure the positioning of each dinner guest was consistent, but otherwise let things run their natural course. At the exhibit, they shrouded one of the chapels in black cloth with a dining room table and chairs set in the middle. On a constant loop is the sound and footage of the dinners projected onto the table from above. As a spectator, you’re supposed to sit in one of the seats to be one of the guests at the meal. Every five minutes took me from Asia, to America, to the Middle East, and more. Had a gaggle of European tourists not come in, I would have sat there forever taking in the different foods, languages, table settings, and utensils (or lack there of).

If you can believe it, the cathedral is only half of the experience. I always look forward to venturing outside and walking through all of the different gardens. They’re meticulously maintained and house many sculptures and even three peacocks. Have you ever seen a white peacock? Cause I’m about to show you one.

This guy wanders freely and was very eager to show off. Like most Jews on Easter, I took my friend Lindsay to St. James yesterday, and perhaps you’ll fall in as much love with the place as I am based on the pics below. Can you believe this exists in NYC?

Lindsay in one of the gardens…

This is where you sit if you misbehave… My offense was having too much fun.

This sculpture reminded me of Pratt in Brooklyn where I went to school…

Roommate Outing Edition 1.0

Okay, so I’m playing around with the idea of having regular features here and maybe this will be one of them. We’re all in this blog thing together, k?

To give some backstory, I have 4 roommates. As in 5 of us all live in one apartment. Oh, and there’s also a significant other who’s here pretty regularly as well. That said, we have a lot of adventures. Most involve some type of food, and most are spur of the moment. Such was last night.

Another bit of exposition is that everyone in my apartment works in the tv/film industry, so we don’t keep regular schedules. That’s why on a random Monday afternoon Marlo and I found ourselves looking for something to do.  They happened to be shooting the new Cohen Brothers movie  down the street (20 blocks) so we decided to visit some of her friends on set.

I’m aware that having the ability to do that is like a really cool thing. In my heart, I will always be the girl in Indiana watching TV and envying all the New Yorkers who had crazy awesome things happening right in their backyard. So rest assured, I’m not jaded… yet.

After walking along the river and through Riverside Park, we started seeing telltale signs of a shoot. Campers were parked all along the street and the biggest lights ever rested on cherry pickers outside of an apartment building window. Then busy looking people with walkies, paperwork, credentials, hoodies, and cigarettes started rushing by us. We were on set.

Marlo knew every single person and we stopped to say hi to all of them. How come every production boy is the cutest boy I’ve ever met?  They were shooting inside, so we didn’t get to see much, but all that standing outside and trying to be alluring was making me hungry. It was time to eat.

You can see more pics by Marlo on her Twitter at the link above. She kills it on Instagram!

We ended up at Mel’s Burger Bar an UWS restaurant that I’ve walked by and wanted to go into a million times. It was a great meal. I’m teaching Marlo how to drink whiskey, so she got a Powers on the rocks. I’m in a house ale phase and got Mel’s signature draft beer. $4 dollars. Light and delicious. Done.

The veggie burger was one of the best I’ve ever had. It was home-made and had a sweetness and crispness to it that most meat-alternatives are lacking. It was served on the most toasted rye-toast ever and we shared the Atomic Fries between us. Atomic fries are basically a marriage between fries and buffalo sauce with FRESH jalapenos chopped up on top. For the record, they were as delicious as they sounded. Then came a baby sized cotton candy ice cream sundae and the decision that we were definitely walking home.

Another pic by Marlo. Her tiny cotton candy sundae and my tiny cookie monster one just hanging out waiting to be eaten.

I almost forgot… On our walk we saw the first flower of the year. It’s almost Spring, guys! More adventures to come…

Spring is springing!