Monday, March 23, 2009

toby and the taylors

just walked down the hall to dump my recycling in the bin and toby is barking like a maniac from behind eve and byron taylor's green door.

can i tell you how much i love my neighbors? like the majority of the reason i don't want to leave tribeca - or even this building - is how i adore them?

a year or two ago, when rara had to present a speech to her class on someone she loved and admired - instead of choosing her mum or dad or grandparents - she chose eve taylor.

and when sasha and zarina were tiny, they used to grab their blankets and camp out outside eve and byron's door on weekend mornings, waiting for them to wake up.

eve was the person i called when my kids were home sick and i couldn't look after them, when someone needed to meet them at the pediatrician or someone needed to take the dog to the vet.

the other day, i came home from work with a colleague and made her creep down the hallway, whispering, "be quiet..."

and she said, "wait, isn't that your dog? what's he doing over there?"

and i whispered, "shhh. that's his other family."

quite often byron will come over mid-morning and pick up toby to take him for a walk or to take him home.

and i haven't even BEGUN talking about betsy haddad where i used to drop rara off in her pajamas with her breakfast in a tray when she was 1.5 and i had to get sasha and zarina to school.

or umbreen sheikh, my british pakistani neighbor, where i hang out for hours drinking tea and gossiping about our families. and zarina babysits her son on weekends (and then calls me to bring her snacks and stuff from our house.)

and michael and tammy rubin who have 3 boys to my 3 amazons so i call them every time the wayward boy ends up in the girlworld that is my apartment.

oh - and there's the doorman who is a fashion photographer, walks my dog for nothing if i don't have the money and is always trying to help me get work and save money.

oh my gosh, cool as brooklyn is - if i can't transport my extended family - how could i live anywhere else?

Saturday, March 21, 2009


light is streaming in the windows, the apartment is so warm and sunny
and my next door neighbor eve came over and we hung out - i'm drinking tea, she's drinking coffee - and talked about our complex families and in-laws and work situations.

i am continually thinking of plans out of my current financial disaster though realizing that things are not nearly as bad as they could be.

it makes me laugh when i see how my exhusbands and their partners are reacting.

andrew douglas, my first exhusband and a commercial director, is going to shanghai with his new wife.

his answer to our financial straits? 2 giftcards to whole foods for $250.00 each.

not that we're not grateful. food is food and that is a very fancy place with lots of cake to eat.

his wife lenore - who my kids adore - told sasha that history (not her best subject) was more important than math because then she would sound intelligent at dinner parties.

and i'm guessing she was trying to be motivating

but up until now, i've brought my daughters up to believe that it's better to be self-sufficient, and valued for breakthroughs in neurobiology, let's say, rather than ornamental charm at a dinner party.

(btw- how do i know they are going to shanghai? james is cozying up to them, of course...)

they say that in an emergency, you discover what people's priorities really are.

right now, mine is sunshine.

and a big salad. and maybe a trip outside.

cold morning

waking up the first morning when the amazons go away is always so strange and liberating.

this is the first day i've had no kids since last summer. oh no - they were away at new year's.

i get up and then realize there is no real reason to get up and go back to bed.

then i am irritated with myself and get up again and hover around the apartment like a ghost, wondering what to do.

i feel sorry for myself. abandoned. old. tired. poor. cold and achy.

i am lonely.

i am calm.

so serene and self-absorbed. what a luxury. what an incredible, vast space of time and sound to indulge in. all to myself.

i am immersed in joy.

i get going, make beds, wash dishes, put things away with the satisfying certainty that all will stay like this - tidy, organized, clean - until they are back.

then, midway through a task, let's say, pulling out the dead flowers from a vase and re-clipping the live ones and adding fresh water so they will last longer - something i would never have the time or attention to do normally - i am distracted

and i wander over to the newspaper and read a few articles

or i pick up a book that's been lying ignored and potent with ideas under its dust-covered dust cover and read a few paragraphs

then perhaps i make a cup of tea

or sit in my favorite chair and stare into space.

or meditate. (well, i try, but patience is not amongst my strengths.)

the sun gets brighter and starts to splash rainbows on the walls. and it is so quiet. so deliciously and voluptuously quiet.

and i am so happy. like a 4 year-old surveying a collection of jellybeans. counting the colors and the flavors all just waiting to be eaten.

so incredibly greedily grateful for a day that is all mine.


my two exhusbands and their current partners - one wife, one girlfriend - are hanging out together. having lunch and generally bonding.

all so weird and slimy.

though james is like that, he gloms on to any of my friends who might be useful to him. and the next thing i know he's going to dinner parties at my agent's house or having an old colleague set him up with women.

ugh. like something stuck to the bottom of my shoe. so vile.

Friday, March 13, 2009

mr roache

so the head of the business office - which really means accounts payable in polite terms and bill collectors in honest ones - is this nasty guy called steven roache who has been bullying and intimidating parents for the last few years.

and in the process, has changed the entire spirit of the school. from one based on respect, peace, kindness and humanity

to one more like the zeitgeist of america 2007 - the end justifying the means in every instance.

mr roache - along with the director of the school, the principal of the junior school and rara's teacher - pulled rara out of class mid-morning, told her to collect her things and sit in the office and wait for her mother.

this was, according to mr. wrye, the director of the school, a way to get the parents' attention.

despite the fact that we had been talking to them all along.

nasty piece of business.

Sunday, March 8, 2009


after a week of psycho drama lows - i am emerging!

i spent last night meditating on loving my exhusband. not lust. not IN LOVE. just pure love. for him with all his weaknesses. and strengths. even though i don't always see them.

it's insane to assume that someone will appreciate you for what you do. i think women do this often. beat themselves into a pulp doing things for people and getting angry when the person doesn't care.

so i decided i just have to love james the way he is.

he is the sort of person people give things to. people want to look after him. people want to hand him stuff - cars, fishing rods, apartments, checks.

he doesn't appreciate it - i mean he is incredibly gracious and says thank you beautifully - but two minutes later, he's forgotten. he just thinks he deserves it.

he told me that he believed artists were performing a service to society and for that reason, they should be respected and given money.


anyway, that is just james.

can't be angry about it. it works for him.

now all of a sudden, i am not mad.

and a friend called with a brilliant way out.

let's see if i can make it work.