Stand in the Sand.

Last week, I escaped the population density of NYC and flew south, landing in the small seaside town of Ocean Isle Beach, North Carolina. My family has been checking out the island for a while now, and it’s very possible that it will become a semi-permanent destination.

I prefer the canal side. Or any house with a hammock.

Ocean Isle Beach boasted a whopping population of 426 at the 2000 census. I think it’s been steadily growing since then, but there exists a calm sense of anti-development on the island. The canal side (see above picture) stretches out blue and green and tangoes with the Intracoastal Waterway, while the Atlantic Ocean laps at the sand on the other side. My favorite time of a beach day anywhere is low tide, when the sand takes a stand against the ocean, and low tide here created a city avenue-wide expanse of shore.

I came to North Carolina beaches almost every summer as a kid, and being there last week tugged at an old part of me. Now one of the adults with a beer in a koozie, hiding from the sun under an umbrella (melanoma is not for winners), I looked out at the Atlantic Ocean and remembered boogie boarding in waves I once thought were 10 feet tall, fishing with my dad and cousins, taking freckled pictures with my sister in coordinating summer outfits, and eating shrimp in restaurants built on top of piers.

...

Walking on the beach my last day in town, The Black Keys doing their thing inside my ears, I (gracefully) clomped and (inadvertently) splashed in low-tide puddles scattered across the beach, happy to be barefoot and on vacation, if only for a little while.

Language Barrier.

I used to live in Queens (GASP) in an overwhelmingly Spanish section of Jackson Heights. My building was near-brand-new, owned and watched over by a little Asian couple who referred to themselves as The Tings. Susan and Austin (in no way their real names) Ting were pretty intense about a few things – namely the elevator and the deck. The deck was always locked, possibly out of fear that one of us crazy tenants would accidentally launch ourselves onto Roosevelt Ave below, or more likely/god forbid we would touch one of the plants they had placed sporadically across the space. The deck weirdness can be summed up by the fact that they nailed down the tables and benches.

This rigidity was also found in the elevator. Susan often scolded/warned that if anyone should hold the elevator, it would break. I guess someone refused to heed her warning, and one day, a sign appeared. A few days later, this correction was made:

Uh oh.

I believe I snorted the first time I saw it. I snapped that picture, and good thing, because Susan ripped it down shortly thereafter.

Keep Looking.

I was waiting to catch an L shuttle (UGH weekend transit pains) from the Morgan stop in Brooklyn, a hop skip and a 10 minute walk from my house, when I came upon this picture, glowing amongst trash and graffiti.

smooch.

There are gems amongst the wreckage here. And it seems that I am not the only one looking.
...

...

Dirty Glitter.

I recently went to Las Vegas for work… for 10 days. Of straight working. I saw the outdoors four times and left the hotel grounds once. It was madness, but the work itself was great (we produced motion graphics for a large event), and I told a goodlooking celebrity that he couldn’t cut in line for beer at the after-party.

I wear boat shoes. That smile is useless on me!

By the time the final morning rolled around, I was dying to go home. As one of my coworkers put it, “Being in Vegas for this long is like being stuck in Times Square.” It’s a whole lot of flash and dirty glitter. And not somewhere you really want to spend all of your time.
Taken through a CLEAN cab window!

Our plane finally (West to East Coast time traveling is depressing) plopped onto the tarmac at JFK, and I plopped my beat-up self onto the backseat of a cab. Like a happy dog, I stuck my head out of the window for nearly the entire ride. The wind licked at my face and cast my travel-sexy hair in every direction. I took pictures from another taxi backseat, but I like these slightly better.
...

...

All Flash and No Fire.

As the MTV Movie Awards came to a close (yes, I watch them. What?), I heard sirens outside, whining to a crescendo. I exchanged quizzical expressions with my roommates and visiting sister. “Um.. is that on our street?” one of them asked. Red light dancing on our living room wall answered the question.

Why, good evening.

Perched on a balcony, we watched a total of four fire trucks roar onto our street. Most impressively, one of them parallel parked directly in front of our house. Firefighters entered one building and investigated the front foundation of several buildings next to it, seemingly without haste.
investigation station.

After around 15 minutes of scrutiny, the members of the FDNY hopped back into their trucks and rode off without explanation or any sort of fire fight.
What were you guys doing?