820. Who am I?

Because I seem smart ( I use words like “formulaic), people are always asking my opinion on smart people’s stuff. I don’t like to disappoint them.

“Did you see what was on “Face The Nation”?”

“Sure did. Thank goodness that Senator spoke up”  (I’m sure there was a big mouth
Senator on yapping.)

“What about that piece on fracking”

“Good but formulaic” (See?)

The people that know me well know that my interests lie elsewhere and it confounds and annoys them.

For instance I watch every single one of the Housewife shows. In fact I love most reality shows, except for the snooty ones like “Top Chef”, mainly because it makes me hungry.

But my new addiction would push even my closest friends and relatives over the edge.

It’s “Love and Hip Hop Beverly Hills”.

Man them bitches are dope. I couldn’t believe it when Yung Berg was thrown off the show just for beating his ho senseless. How fake is that? I wasn’t down with that at all.

Maybe I’m beginning to understand why when Liz was here this week she put a smart person’s book on my Kindle. I think I’m starting to frighten her.

Liz being here was so great even if Rupert scared Ray to wits.

Poor Ray he got trapped behind a plant because Rupert fell asleep on the exit path and Ray was too scared to walk past him.

And Lizzie fell in love with my Israeli nephews. She was taken with how handsome, happy and smiley they all were.

She said she wanted to put the picture I took of them on my terrace on her Christmas card and write  “OY To The World and Peace on Earth” on the inside.

Traveling home with her 16 year old dog proved difficult though. The woman from the airlines was giving her so much trouble that she almost cried.

She was forced to say something very harsh (for Liz), “Who  peed on your Wheaties?”

I told her she should have threatened to cut the bitch.

Since she was bringing Rupert to New York with her she decided to try putting her Dad’s dog Oz into the very fancy and hands on kennel that her parents used so he wouldn’t be lonely.

Oz is a service dog. He was extremely expensive. He was supposed to help Liz’ father do lots of things that his arthritis made difficult.

Somebody should have told Oz. Absolutely the only thing he did was bring his plate up to the sink when he finished eating. That’s Oz’ plate, not Dr. Tom’s.

Well this skill turned out to be extremely popular at the kennel. The lady said that he not only brought his bowl into the kitchen but he went to all the other dog’s rooms and collected their bowls.

He enjoyed it so much that Liz had trouble getting him to come home.

busboy Oz

He might just be the most expensive busboy ever.

 

 

819. Give a little, Get a little

Day 2 of living with my new garbage can.

I still can’t bear to put anything in it. I just slide it in and out from under the sink. I carry all my garbage out in my hands.

This is actually not new for me. Liz got a beautiful new sweater. It was very expensive  and I was surprised to see that she was wearing it over her pajamas.

“Why are you wearing it now? You should save it for “good”

“This is “good”

I realized then that whenever I get something new I wait to wear it even if it is a tee shirt. I wonder why I do that.

My nephews left at 5 this morning. I got up to say goodbye and have coffee with them. It’s great that I made such a connection with them in only a week even with the language barrier.

I’m really going to miss them. I actually had tears in my eyes when the elevator closed. I could barely see to take the towel off my Saint Francis statue and put my Pope magnets back on the refrigerator.

I know some people can’t understand why I did it but just realize how important it was to me to make the people I love feel comfortable in my house.

And they did the same for me. They totally accepted that I am a mental patient when it comes to my dog.

dinner with ray

818. The gift that keeps on giving.

We’ve all gotten gifts that stand out.

I don’t know why but a walking doll that my mother bought for me for my birthday that she kept on the floor of her closet is one of those. She let me play with it in her closet but nowhere else until my birthday.

Now I’m starting to think of a million gifts that I’ve loved, my niece Randy buying me a fish tank with fish in it when she was only about 11 years old. She used her own money.

Or the time I went shopping at Zabar’s with Julie right after dave left. I put about 10 things in my basket and then just left the basket because I didn’t have the energy to actually wait  on line and buy them.

My birthday came weeks later and Julie had gone back and bought me every one of those items and gift wrapped them.

I’ve gotten a lot of great gifts in my life, diamonds and such.

But I’m seventy and I don’t care about stuff like that so much any more, at least that’s what I’d like to think about myself.

Back to what I was trying to say from the beginning.

I’ve been wanting a trash can for my kitchen for months. I go and look at them and either they’re too expensive or too cheap or too big. Anyone who’s ever been in a New York City apartment can testify as to how small the kitchens are.

Remember I said Miss Liz and Rupert are back? Just  a quick photo to remind you how lovely they both are.

liz

 

Well she obviously got tired of hearing me talk about my search and did something so sweet.

She bought me a garbage can that fits under the sink and is on a track so you can pull it out and dump stuff in it.

But that isn’t the best part of the gift. Liz can do anything. While her fiancé David couldn’t hang a picture without hitting his thumb and whining, she could build a house. I’m not kidding. She’s like a guy.

She came over with her drill and hammer and got down on the floor and installed it. She was just coming back from lunch at some private club and was all dressed up wearing high heeled boots. She didn’t even take off her jacket.

So now feel free to come over to my house for dinner. You won’t even have to finish everything on your plate because I have a wonderful place for your scraps.

can

 

817.Hostess with the Mostess

Ya know how you never really notice what’s in your house until you see it through someone else’s eyes?

Now that my mother is no longer here to point out when I gain weight or if my curtains are shabby I’m pretty much on my own.

Of course I do have my niece Stephanie who won’t say anything about my looks (well she may be forced to correct an outfit but that’s as far as she’ll go in that direction) but as to my house? Fair game.

I’ve been grateful for that too. I remember when she slept in my bed in Montauk and was horrified at the condition of the mattress.

“How do you sleep on that thing?”

It was only then that I realized that dave and I had been rolling into the slope in the middle of bed for years and just accepting it.

I got a new mattress and it was sweet dreams from then on.

The situation I find myself in now is quite different.

My nephew and four of his sons are here on a visit from Israel.

lenes

Sure it’s a little crowded but I couldn’t be happier. The boys are all sweet and loving and I adore them. When I say boys, except for the youngest who is in his teens the others are married and have families of their own. My nephew nee Eric now Yitzhak is the light of my life.

Usually he comes alone or with one kid.

Since he lives in fear of getting goy cooties from anything in my house I have a big black bag full of kosher pots, bowls and serving pieces that I take out each year for us to use.

We eat on paper plates and use plastic utensils. Mostly we eat tuna fish and salad or Yitz will bring kosher prepared foods from Brooklyn.

Still I am always found wanting. Last year I went to heat the chicken he lugged from Brooklyn in my oven. I thought he’d faint.

“Did you self clean that oven before I got here?”

He didn’t really have to ask because a blind man would have seen the remnants of a sweet potato that had exploded on the top shelf of the oven the week before so I had to fess up.

This year I was determined to get everything right. I wanted my nephew to be proud of me in front of his sons, some of whom I was meeting for the first time.

I did do the self cleaning thing the night before he came and may I say it wasn’t a good experience. It got so hot that I was terrified that it would blow up and kill me and Raymond. He and I kept peeking into the kitchen during the night expecting to see a black hole in the place of that room.

Since there would be six of us eating, tuna wouldn’t be sufficient so I went to Brooklyn myself and brought back any food with Jewish writing on it. Chicken, matzohs, hummus gefilte fish, I got it all. And it couldn’t just be Kosher it had to be Super Kosher.

Now I’m a proud Jew and though it’s definitely part of my identity it falls in the category of a cultural trait. It isn’t the main part of my life except in the fact that I say “oy” a lot.

These guys are serious Jews but I was prepared for them. At least I thought so.

I just never gave any thought to the wooden statue of Saint Francis of Assisi that Liz gave me to thank me for helping her with her cat and dog.  He’s holding little birds and looking really sweet. I only saw him as a lover of animals not a religious figure. That is until I found a towel draped over him.

Then I understood. It kind of embarrassed my nephew in front of his sons that I had an icon from another religion on my terrace. Remember being Jewish is their gig.

“You covered my Saint Francis, Yitz? Not a problem” I said to him this morning as he and the boys were leaving for temple.

“Saint Francis is the least of it. Your refrigerator? Your refrigerator has magnets of the Pope all over it. what kind of Jew has pictures of the Pope on their refrigerator?”

“The kind of Jew that went to Rome. What was I gonna bring back, a magnet of a bowl of spaghetti ? (I actually did bring home a magnet of a bowl of spaghetti which was right next to my Pope magnet.) And he’s a great Pope”

After he left I decided to go around my house and remove anything that might make my guests uncomfortable.

Down came the photo of me and Billy Graham sharing cocktails at the Plaza. In the closet went the picture of me and Louis Farrakhan at Comicon and I had to ask Liz to hold on to the painting of me and Gandhi at Woodstock. That guy really knew how to party.

I’m only glad that I had a falling out with Brigham Young so I threw away the letter he wrote me telling me that I was one hell of a gin player instead of  framing it like I might have.

I’ll put them all back when they leave.

 

816. No heroes in this house

Liz is back from Santa Fe for awhile and she’s brought Rupert with her.

For those of you who don’t remember Rupe,  he’s the beautiful redhead in the carriage that Liz and I shared for most of his life. He’s spent the last 3 years living in Santa Fe and we did miss him.

Well he’s back for a visit. Upon hearing that Lizzie was bringing him I was a little worried.

When I walk Ray on the street he tries to attack every dog we pass. Rupert is 16 years old and will have no defenses against Ray who’s a tough little guy.

I could have put my mind at rest.

Rupert saw Ray and limped over towards him with  his little tail wagging. Rupe has arthritis, hence the limping.

As soon as Ray saw him he jumped up on David’s chair and shook like he was doing “The Twist”.

It reminded me of when Elvis lived here. Ray pretended he simply didn’t exist. As I said then, he couldn’t have picked Elvis out of a line up. The same is true of Rupert.

Rupert is constantly following Ray around the house wagging his little tail and Ray is pretending to examine his nails, whistling.

He sits by the door staring straight ahead or in any direction that Rupe isn’t.

by the doorRupe won’t give up. He knows that if Ray would just look at him they’d be fast friends.

lookin at ray

So far no luck.

pretending rupe isn't there

I’m going to Brooklyn today to buy Kosher food for my nephew and his kids that are coming to visit me from Israel.
I think I’ll stop in a pet store and see if I can buy my dog a backbone.

815. Boys will be dopes.

I had plans last night to go to dinner with my old friend Bill.

I was waiting for him to arrive when I got a “cocktails?” email from David.

He knows and likes Bill and Bill likes everyone so I said bring your drink over here.

“I’ll be right there. I want to show you what I just got in the mail.”

He arrived with his drink in one hand and a hatchet in the  other.

“Why would you buy a hatchet?”

That made him mad. “Don’t call it a hatchet. It’s not a hatchet. It’s a Sog Tactical Tomahawk. It can split a kevlar helmet.”

“You live in New York City. Where are you going to find someone wearing a kevlar helmet? Even one that doesn’t need splitting?”

Naturally he ignored the question. The guy has enough knives and guns to form an army. Of course he needed a tomahawk. He had to be ready if someone wanted to attack him on his couch which is the only place he goes especially during football season.

“Here’s the thing. I can see someone like you looking at a tomahawk but to actually call and give them your credit card- Why?”

Again my question wasn’t worthy of an answer.

“I’m going to just leave it next to me and not say anything when Bill comes. Don’t you say anything either. Let’s see if he notices it.  Wait, take a picture of me pretending to hit Raymond with the Tomahawk and you can put it on your blog”

NOTE TO READER: You think I exaggerate my descriptions of David but if this doesn’t clearly say what this jerk is nothing does. HE DOESN’T EVEN CARE THAT I CALL HIM A JERK.

“Remember, don’t call it a hatchet”

He leaned over to make sure that I wrote “Sog Tactical Tomahawk” correctly.

“I want your facts to be right. A hatchet would make me look like a weirdo.”

hatchet

Bill and I went out to dinner. Since the restaurant was just down the block we decided to risk it and not be armed.

814. Slim Pickens of Friends after Divorce

I know it looks like my life as a divorced woman is going pretty well.

That’s kind of true. Not totally though.

You are much less desirable as a companion when you don’t have a mate. Especially a mate that rubs elbows with the stars like mine did.

Ergo you have to take friends where you can get them which explains my relationship with Liz’ fiancé  David. (does anyone know what “ergo” means?)

Two or three nights a week we have cocktails and sometimes dinner together and many weekend mornings we have coffee.

We don’t really like each other but since Liz spends much of her time in Santa Fe and dave is working on doing whatever is necessary to go to “H” “E” double hockey sticks (at least in my mind) we occasionally find ourselves with nothing to do and no one to do it with.

Sometimes we go out to eat but when we eat home it’s usually something we send out for or David cooks. He refuses to eat anything I make because he claims he hates my cooking.”You might want to include flavor in the next meal you make”

Not that I don’t offer. Just the other night he and his son were about to go out and I mentioned that to save them a few bucks I could share my dinner with them, a delicious salmon pie.

The kid who’s cut from the same rude cloth as his father said he’d prefer to be stabbed in the thigh with a butter knife.

I didn’t care. More for me.

But it’s usually just me and David.

The conversations are nothing special. He rants about Obama and the democrats and I pour over his copy of the New York Post all the time mumbling what a piece of right wing shit that paper is. Mostly we don’t listen to each other but every once in awhile one of us says something that gets the interest of the other one and we converse.

For example the other evening he told me about some guy who works for his old Wall Street company Jefferies Investments or something who’s going through a really messy divorce. It seems that the wife is laying it all out in the paper about how there were drugs and trading partners and a bunch of stuff like that. David says that the guy could have still held his job with that but when she said he crapped in the bed, it was all over.

“You can’t come back from creepy” he told me nodding wisely.

He should know what you can and can’t come back from.He really is the worst person I know personally.

I’ve never seen him actually be mean to anyone but he absolutely judges everyone by their race, creed, financial status and … hell, take everything written on the Statue of Liberty and reverse it.

Even my dog, he loves my dog Ray but he keeps saying that he’s not truly a “white man’s dog”.

(In case you white men want to know what kind of dog to get, any kind of Lab’ll do ya, according to schmucko).

Enough about him. Last night was Halloween and not one kid came to my door. Maybe it was because on Facebook I said that I ate all the m&m peanuts.

 

813. The Style Section

I consider this blog a chronicle of my life. I’ve written about my ups and downs, my family and friends. I’ve gotten political. I’ve discussed the arts.  How many times have I talked about the Real Housewives?

Sadly I”ve had to write some Obituaries.

I’ve done local and international news (remember the slut from Japan who stole my husband?)

Why don’t I just say it? I’ve been writing the New York Times of Mattie.

So as the title says, here is my first Style Section.

It’s Fall and the weather is starting to get snippy.  I suggest a medium blend sweater to fight off the chill but still give plenty of movement.

fall2

We still have warmer days that don’t warrant a sweater but due to inclement weather may scream a light jacket to keep one dry.

rain

Then comes Winter. It’s time for the big guns. A fleece lined down jacket should do the trick.

winter

 

As you can see, dealing with the changes in weather shouldn’t have to include a lack of style.

And don’t write to me about the pink thing sticking out of the model’s pee pee in the first picture. He was nervous because he thought the bold pattern made him look fat.

 

812. Tragedy thy name is lunch

Riiiingggg (that would be my phone ringing)

It was my nephew. He was driving back from a business meeting.

“I don’t know if I should even tell you this. It was so awful”

In any other family that could mean anything even death but my mind went to what would be the most likely for a relative of mine, either humiliation or food”

“Lay it on me”

He did.

“Since my meeting was at noon the guy I was going to see (We’ll call him Jared) suggested that he pick up lunch. I agreed “.(I started to lean towards food)

“When I get there he hands me my sandwich.

“I hope tuna is alright”

So I,(my nephew (who we’ll call Clark) is a real health nut ) not wanting to be difficult said “Sure”.

I open my sandwich. It was on a big white flour roll and the tuna was that mayonaisie mush.”

(Yep food)

“Then Jared opens his sandwich. It was a whole wheat wrap with fresh vegetables and turkey. The vegetables looked really crispy.

I couldn’t concentrate. All I could think about was “What about me suggested this overbloated white bread mess?” Is this how the guy sees me?

If he had gotten the same thing for himself I would have just put it down to a matter of taste but this just didn’t compute. If he thought his choices were acceptable why not offer to split the two sandwiches and each eat half?”

I understood completely. I too lived through something similar “The Day of the Jelly Sandwich” when I was stuck on a boat with my sister and she brought jelly sandwiches on packaged rye bread for lunch. Not peanut butter and jelly. Just jelly. (pull yourself together, Mattie. You’re getting all hot under the collar again and it was 60 years ago plus the perpetrator, my sister Iris, apologized numerous times and she’s even dead)

Back to me comforting Clark.

“It was the housing”

“What?”

“Remember when Stephanie (my niece, Clark’s cousin) started crying in the car because Julie’s then boyfriend bought her a sandwich on incorrect housing? I believe it was a roll then too.”

“You’re right. It was the housing that put it over the edge. But Julie’s guy was a bank robber. What’s Jared’s excuse?”

NOTE: For more information on Julie’s bank robber boyfriend, you can find it in “Please Excuse My Daughter” by Julie Klam.

“Clark, you have to accept that sometimes things happen that are just unexplainable, like Yeti or the Kardashians. Let it go”

“I guess I’ll have to. By the way I ate some of it on the way home. It wasn’t bad.”

811. A good dog is better than a lousy husband any day

My niece Stephanie told me that if I write about Ray one more time she’s going to just erase my blog but this is a story that must be told.

I’ve had the flu this week. I stayed in bed for 2 days straight.

Since “Self Pity” is another of my names in addition to “Truth” I spent much of the time feeling sorry for myself and bemoaning the fact that since dave left me to endure my twilight years alone I had no one to comfort me.

I was just about to writhe around on my bed of pain when I bumped into a little fat warm body. That’s right, Raymond.

He never left my bed except to go out on the terrace to take care of business. Luckily Cheryl had gone home so I could leave the door open.

He spent the whole time snuggled up against me. I figured he might be getting bored so I  even brought some of his toys on the bed but he ignored them. He had a greater job to do.

This reminded me of 9/11.

dave and I watched the horrors of the attack pictured on our TV.  A few hours later dave put on his coat.

“Where are you going?” I asked.

“To the office” He wanted to get to his friends so they could all discuss what was going on.

“Are you crazy? People all over New York are trying to get home to their families and you’re leaving?”

I could see he was annoyed but he took off his coat and later we gathered friends from the building to come up and so we could all find comfort together.

Raymond would never have dreamt of leaving me.

comfort