Feb. 3rd, 2009

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This is hardly the most significant thing I could be blogging but I've just caught up on the second ep of Being Human and FUCK it was good. Sexy, dark, funny, serious but undercutting itself as well. And oodles of plot as well. I can hardly believe this is British. If it keeps it up this could be a classic. (And no one on my FL seems to have mentioned it!)
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I was thinking in New York that it was almost exactly twenty years since I'd first visited New York. Oh my, oh my. And it's taken almost that long, and three more visits or so, to get over the appalling impression I had of it that first time in 1988 - basically of Gotham City.

I stayed back in 1988 in the Washington Heights, Upper Harlem, 121st St, with [livejournal.com profile] catabolism on our TAFF trip; generously hosted by Stu Schiffman (now on FB but not LJ, I think?) who along with Patrick and Teresa N-H, and half of then NY proto-pro fandom, were living pennilessly in these cheapest and tiniest of all possibly apartments, but clinging manfully to the Outest Outskirts of Real Manhattan - realfans didn't live in Brooklyn (well, unless they were Moshe Feder.) 20 years on, I look up the guidebook I bought, and discover it still doesn't advise tourists go there at night :-) (In the same time, Daredevil's own Hell's Kitchen has apparently become a millionaire yuppies alley - I went there for dinner with people who worked for Nokia and were so stunningly upmarket and worked out they reminded me of actors from Lost. Doesn't anyone want to change the area's name??)

It was amazingly generous of Stu and his roommate (whose name I forget, though I think it was actually his room Chris and I slept in) to take us in, but tbh, I wish we'd just sprung for a hotel - that part of the trip still gives me nightmares. It was hot, drought hot, in late parched August, we were next to a crack factory, the apartment was tiny and full of cockroaches, I was terrified to eat anything for fear of bugs and roaches, the air filled with police sirens at night, there was desultory air conditioning and everytime Christina and I walked to the subway I was frankly scared for my life in a seeming sea of huge black men. Teresa told us one night that when the flying cockroaches arrived from Mexico she was giving up and moving out; I guess they never did. I've wondered about those flying roaches ever since - maybe she was just messing with the white girls?

Twenty years on, I'm staying in TriBeca, a miracle of easy cool (but the cheapest hotel we could find is $150 a night, duh, amd a pound is a dollar, pretty much - double arg. ) I wonder why I've never spent much time away from the skyscraper canyons of Downtown Manhattan, or the nidtown of the Empire State Building, and R advises me it's maybe because the areas we wander, SoHo, Greenwich Village, West Village, are mostly off the subway. I like these low rise areas way better, cafe culture bonanza, and the shops are to die for. I must see if Anthropogie, which was like Urban Outfitters only ten times cooler, has a web site because i want to buy ALL their plates and glasses :-)

I feel for the first time like I'm really in the Sex and the City New York everyone else has always seemed to find. Cutey cupcakes with matched up wines and beers, to die for already! Godiva chocolate martinis. Mango margaritas. Belgian omelette with mesclun and stoempe (carrot amd turnip mash, mm) in a cafe where there are Tin Tin comics to read. Real down home Chinatown dim sum (R has never tried it , to my amazement) where we both eat till full for ten bucks between us. Live crabs and baby bok choy for sale for almost nothing on the streets of Chinatown. A real Jewish deli (as prev noted) on the West Side where the clientele all look like my great-uncles. God I eat. My stomach is still protesting as I heave myself on the plane:-) My attempts at exercise consist of failing, twice, to go skating (both times I arrive too late, at glitzville Rockefeller Centre and gorgeously sunny Central Park. Weep.)

Thanks so much to [livejournal.com profile] girl_on_the_go for chumming me round!!

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