Can I Just Tell You?

Welcome to Can I Just Tell You?
Thanks for visiting!

Can I just tell you? This whole site needs an overhaul. My goodness! Thank you for visiting, come back again in a few weeks. I still appreciate your support. :)
 
I love your support. So many of you have encouraged me to keep writing all these years. I took a few years off because I wasn't feeling very confident about my skill and self-conscience about my subject matter. I really appreciate your gentle (sometimes haunting) push to get back on the proverbial horse. My favorite thing in the world is making someone laugh, typically at my own expense. It warms my heart to hear that my silly stories have helped you smile or laugh out loud when you felt like that's the last thing you could do.

 

I also really appreciate the support of many boyfriends who read through my entire collection of crazy and still chose to continue dating. I'm not sure if you felt bad for me or found me charming. Regardless, thanks for the encouragement.

 

I'm going to change things up a little bit. As you may have guessed, from some of my posts, I have aspirations of writing a book. (Or two, three, or four… We'll see.) Anyway, all of my stories, up to this point 8/3/15, are true and happened to me. I'm thinking about adding some characters to my stories and playing around with fiction writing. You'll be able to tell the real stories from fiction. I think. ;-)

 

I'm not sure what my books are going to be like, yet. I've always enjoyed reading fiction but, maybe non-fiction is the right path for me. I'm pretty confident with the voice I've developed in telling my silly stories and would like to continue to write in that tone. I know I'm going to start off slow because, as you know, self-discipline has never been one of my stronger qualities. I may try to play around with other subjects, too. Stay tuned.

 

This site is meant to make you laugh through stories that you may be able to relate to whether it's sour love, a cooking disaster, a social faux-pas, etc. So, bear with me as I stumble through my experiences, hopefully, more gracefully than the actual event, but just as funny, and either share the lesson or just make you laugh out loud.

If there's ever a story that really hits your funny bone or makes your day, let me know. I'd love to hear from you.

So, sit back, put on your reading glasses and enjoy.

Please, take a minute to sign my guest book. It seems I have readers from around the world. I'd be more than happy to put you on an update list so you'll know when I have a new post. Cheers!

  

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Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Catnip

So, I’m pretty sure God invented tapioca pudding solely for my benefit. That and, perhaps, ice cream in general. As you know, I’ve been on a perpetual diet for years. That has never stopped me from over indulging in any of my many food vices. Tapioca pudding and ice cream are at the top of the list.

Lately, I’ve been paying more attention to the family cat, Gatoulaki (that’s little cat in Greek.) When you enter the Demetri (my parents) household, no matter what your name is, it will be transformed to Greek. For instance, my brother-in-law, Ray, who doesn’t have an ounce of Greek in him, is Raymondi with the rolled ‘R’ and the soft ‘o’ with an accent on the ‘di.’ Not Greek but sounds Greek. Anyway, I digress.

Gatoulaki likes her catnip. She likes it so much that she will roll around in it on her scratch pad so it becomes one with her being and she can lick it off. Sounds a little perverse but I totally get where she’s coming from. If I could have a vat of tapioca pudding or ice cream to roll around in and savor as part of my being, I absolutely would. I had the good fortune of experiencing tapioca pudding while Gatoulaki was having a romp with her beloved catnip and I had to stop myself mid-spoonful to check in.

Can I just tell you? Gatoulaki and I were doing the same “how can anything taste this good?!” ‘roll-your-eyes-back’ dance! She noticed me looking at her and the look I got was, “Oh no. Nothing is as yummy as this stuff.”

Think again, cat.

Tue, May 25, 2010 | link          Comments

Monday, May 24, 2010

Ode to Country Music

So, I’ve been listening to country music for the last couple of months. It started as an endearing reminder of someone I held very dear to my heart. I was never a fan of the stuff because I thought it was a little too hillbilly for my cosmopolitan lifestyle but I found the stories were sweet, wholesome and funny. The twangy songs make me laugh because I inevitably imagine myself at a ho-down singing and dancing the night away.

It’s funny; I’ve always had secret aspirations of being an entertainer, preferably a too-cool-for-school rock or pop star. I’d dress in head to toe, skin-tight leather, preferably leopard print or firecracker red, every day, even to bed. If you knew me, you’d know why that is borderline hysterical. I wear slips. One can never be modest enough…

Anyway, I took voice lessons in college because I felt confident that if I just knew how to sing, I could win money at karaoke bars based on minimal talent but maximum charisma mixed with a little chutzpa. My dreams were shattered during my first a cappella in front of the class when the jerk in the front row clenched her eardrums in pain when I hit my high note. Whatever.

I redeemed myself during the final with my rendition of Patsy Cline’s, I Fall to Pieces. It was my first of two (so far) standing ovations. The other was from a packed gymnasium full of students but that’s a story for another day.

Can I just tell you? Little did I know, country was my calling. I’ve re-established my jam sessions during my long-ass commute and have found that either my microphone is better (my thumb) or I have a voice for country. I suspect it’s the latter.

My cowboy is history but the love affair I have with country may be forever. I broke down and purchased 6 songs already on iTunes.

Mon, May 24, 2010 | link          Comments

Scratch Ticket

I’m 37 and I have yet to fall in love. I’m not sure if I really love anything. I enjoy many things but what am I passionate about that could sustain me forever? Am I just a late bloomer?

I’ve been in New York for approximately 6 weeks and I have yet to find a job. I took a leap of faith that my experience and unique skill set would land me a new career relatively quickly. Not so, unfortunately.

I have met with every manager at every radio station in the city that I might have an interest in working for but either they weren’t hiring or they only had a few bucks to spare for pay. I have broadened my horizons into other fields and submitted an application at a temp agency. Truth be told, I should have made that move in December and applied at a restaurant while I was at it… C’est la vie.

After my meeting at the temp agency, I made a quick stop at Trinity Church to offer a prayer and ask for guidance. My guides suggested I buy a scratch ticket and hope for the best. It’s funny, I barely have two nickels to rub together but it didn’t stop me from spending $6.15 on a café mocha from a chocolate shop across from Bryant Park.

Why am I here in New York where people say in a church, “I hate kids. Don’t look at me like that. There are a lot of people who hate kids.”

Maybe I’m here because I thought it was kinda funny…

Mon, May 24, 2010 | link          Comments

Cyber Space

So, I do have a love affair with Facebook, I really can’t get enough of it.

Can I just tell you? I am so addicted I actually wake up and immediately check status updates of people I haven’t talked to in years! I know it’s crazy. They’re a few select friends from junior high (um, I’m 37), favorite students (I haven’t taught since 2005), best friends and some past crushes.

There is the “peeping Tom” business, though. You know, the ones who will see you at work the next day and make some creepy reference to something on your page. I’m not keen on that but, everything has its bugs.

I wonder if Emily Post will come out with a Facebook Etiquette book? The first chapter should touch upon status updates referring to dating when you’re “friends” with the last person you were dating…

Mon, May 24, 2010 | link          Comments

Mon, May 24, 2010 | link          Comments

Focus

Focus is the name of the game with basketball and direction. You have to know where to aim the ball in order to get it in the hoop.

As the Celtics make their way to their 18th banner, I’m struck by my passion for the game and sports, in general. “Passion” may be a little strong. “Appreciation” and “awe” may be better choices but it’s really more of an intellectual respect for the elements of the game. Can I just tell you? I’m amazed at the tenacity and stamina of these athletes and their sheer drive to win a game through bumps, bruises, blood and sweat.

Life is sometimes like that. You either triumphantly win the game or sit in the sidelines and cheer on your favorite player. You can’t be a sore loser or make excuses about why you’re not ahead. There will always be obstacles to slow you down, the defense before you make the winning shot or the opposing offense blocking your steal. The key, I guess, is focusing your eyes on the goal and play until you win.

If you’re good, you’ll have a cheering section to keep you going.

 

Mon, May 24, 2010 | link          Comments

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Friends

Can I just tell you? I drove through a fence Monday night. It wasn’t any old fence either. It was the fence of the friends that are letting me stay with them until I can find my own apartment.

My luck has been crap lately! I was babysitting their 5-year old while they were attending a Pearl Jam concert. I finished reading a bedtime story and passed out too for a good half hour. When I got up, I was a little groggy but remembered I had my windows down. I also needed to move my car closer to the street for my 6am commute to the gym. I turned my car on to roll up the windows and debated with myself as to whether or not I wanted to switch my car with my friend’s car so I wouldn’t have to do it in the morning. I went in the house to get the keys for her car, when I walked back out; my car was sailing towards the fence. I left it in neutral!

In my panic, I jumped in to find the brake pedal between the clutch and gas instead of grabbing the e-brake. It crashed right through the fence and did all kinds of damage to that and my car. Nightmare.

I called 5 friends to explain what happened in hopes of a little sympathy and soothing comments. Thankfully, I have the good fortune to have friends that will listen, laugh and say something like, “you’re not stupid, just a little ditsy.” Fabulous, thanks.

I couldn’t call my friend at the concert because I didn’t want to spoil her evening so I left a note on the counter. I got up at 6am the next morning and headed out to the gym. (I got into the habit of going early to avoid traffic. I’m a little pokey in the morning so it’s easier for me to brush my teeth, throw on sweatpants and head out the door with my shower gear and clothes for work.) Needless to say, I was a little distracted packing up my stuff that night after the “incident” so I wasn’t entirely surprised to notice I forgot to pack undies.

I did, however, manage to look on the bright side. I felt easy, breezy and beautiful all day albeit a little ditsy.

Wondering what my new housemate said about the fence? She laughed…

Sun, May 23, 2010 | link          Comments

Greener Pastures
On September 23, 2009 I got a call from my friend, Peggy, letting me know, in passing, there were 100 days until the end of the year. The question that followed her statement made a deep impression on me, “Did you know you can change your life completely in 100 days?”  

I thought about that question all night asking myself, “What would I want to change in 100 days?” I knew I wanted to change something, but what? Now, I have always believed that in order to grow, you need to make changes that often feel uncomfortable at first but usually lead to a win and movement in the right direction. The following day, I knew the answer to my question. One month later, I quit my job, ended my lease and started the process of moving to New York City approximately 60 days before the end of 2009. 

My life prior to New York was pretty simple. I was in the top 20 percentile of income earners, I had a beautiful apartment in one of Boston’s finest neighborhoods, and I drove a BMW. So, one would think that I had a fabulous job lined up and an apartment in a great neighborhood before I made the trek 4 and a half hours south. Unfortunately, that wasn’t the case. I liked the energy in New York and loved that it has a reputation for being filled with artists. So, I picked up and moved two suitcases to a friend’s apartment with the hopes of making it in Manhattan. Fortunately, I had a bed to sleep in, albeit, with my platonic friend, but still, a bed is a bed. 

I am very grateful to have a friend willing to share his bed and his space with me at, not only, no cost but also no obligation. I sleep on a sliver of mattress on the left corner. There hasn’t been any inappropriate behavior aside from a near mishap when my neck and shoulders were in serious need of massage after one too many trips across the tri-state area into New England.  

So, for the last 4 months, I have shared a bed with someone; whether it’s my platonic friend, my youngest sister or another friend’s cats. I don’t have my own closet, my clothes are scattered intermittently throughout random friend’s and family member’s homes. My once structured, OCD lifestyle has been turned on its head on some psychedelic trip. I frequently travel back and forth from New York to Boston via bus which, 6 months ago, I would have shunned in preference of the Acela or a direct flight. 

In early March, I made the trek back to Boston a little later than usual because I had been beside myself that none of my 3 shoe-in jobs had come in as anticipated and I couldn’t bring myself to pack sooner. I got into South Station around 11:30pm completely oblivious to my surroundings as my thoughts ping ponged in my head. I did remember seeing two riffraff, a man and a woman either drunk or on drugs, at the top of the escalator. The man had a bristly beard and sunken eyes with mousey brown hair spitting out from under the green trucker’s cap. He carried himself with the hunched shoulders of a beaten man wearing a jean jacket on layers on top of layers of mismatched flannel with black rubber soled shoes. He had to be in his late 30s but his sallow, weathered skin made him look older. She had long sandy blond straggly hair with the hint of an ancient perm that hadn’t seen a brush in what looked like days. She wore acid wash jeans and a hoody sweat shirt with flannel layers peeking out the bottom. She was barking orders at the man as I passed but didn’t give them another thought until I stepped into the freight elevator with my suitcase and pressed the down button. 

The two strangers slid in with me as the doors were closing. Immediately, the hair on the back of my neck stood on high alert as I cursed myself for not looking behind me before I stepped in alone. When the door closed, the woman sneered, “We can rob you right now, you know.” She was in her early 20s, more fresh faced than her accomplish and clearly the mastermind. Her chin jutted out like a defiant child as she spoke. The man, like an obedient dog, never raised his head as the tension between us grew. Immediately, I thought to myself, “you’re too late. It’s all gone. The only thing I have left is me.” I shrugged my shoulders, through a laugh, I said, “you can but, I doubt five bucks will get you far.” My predator seemed a little thrown off by my candor but immediately regrouped to stand within inches of my nose. When she realized I wasn’t kidding, she purred, “You seem like a nice person. We’re gonna let you go now. We’re homeless.” As the doors opened, I mumbled, “Me too.” and made a bee line for the taxi stand. 

I sat up that night thinking about my near mugging experience to explore the lessons of the past several months and look at the similarities between me and my could-have-been muggers. I haven’t slept in my own bed in my own room since November nor do I have a definitive zip code which kind of makes me a vagrant too. However, there isn’t an ounce of me that feels the need to take anything that doesn’t belong to me or hasn’t’ been offered to me. I can’t even begin to tell you how many friends have offered a space in their homes for me. My keychain is no longer filled with gym memberships and store cards, in their place are keys to family and friend’s homes. The fear of being robbed was lost because there wasn’t anything material they could take from me, it was already gone of my own accord. I barely have two nickels to rub together yet I’ve managed to have deep, enriching conversations with a variety of loved ones and explore all things free; whether it’s a walk in Central Park or going to church with my sister. I’ve had the opportunity to visit with more friends and family in New England than I ever did while I was living there. I feel richer now than I’ve ever felt in my life. In this time of unrest, I’ve managed to rekindle past relationships and realize true kindness and generosity. Material wealth has been exchanged for personal gain. I may not have found greener pastures in Manhattan but I have moved to the next level I was looking for. 

Now, decisions need to be made. I have offers on the table from the company I left in Boston and the one I wanted to work at in New York. Which is more important? Staying in New England to continue in career I know and nurture the relationships I’ve developed over the years at home or the excitement of continuing my career in a new city? I guess in a new city, I could cultivate the relationships I have and develop new ones by inviting friends and family to share my home every once in a while. Isn’t the key to life enjoying the present? Happiness comes from within and doesn’t necessarily have anything to do with geography. I thought that New York would bring some sort of status and prestige, Empire State of Mind has been my anthem since October. “If you can make it here [New York] you can make it anywhere.” Will I be able to make it anywhere if I stay in Boston? Does it matter? Probably not. 

It’s been roughly 200 days since I decided to change my life. My cards were thrown haphazardly in the air with no real direction on where to land. My life has completely changed. I’m still not sure where I’ll end up but wherever it is, I will be happy. I’m surrounded by friends and family. What more could I ask for? 

Too bad I didn’t realize it before I left my great pad.
Sun, May 23, 2010 | link          Comments

Solo

What is a single gal to do if she wants to see more of this planet but doesn’t have a mate to join her? Book it and make friends along the way.

Can I just tell you? I haven’t traveled alone in a foreign country since I was an early twenty-something and even then, I had friends and family close by. Chicago was my first trip to a city really alone. I had such anxiety in the airport, I nearly vomited. I ended up having a fabulous time and made some new friends so I decided to go to Miami alone 4 months later. I had planned on spending my days on the beach there but, unfortunately, I got caught in the midst of a cold spell. I did, however, make a friend and had a great time.

So, when Aer Lingus decided to have an AMAZING sale to Ireland from Boston, I said, “What the hell?” I can’t even begin to tell you how empowering it is to be able to pack your bags and fly to a city or country you’ve wanted to see. 

My family thinks I’m crazy, maybe I am.

Sun, May 23, 2010 | link          Comments

Red

My excitement lately has been going commando at an 80th birthday party in a mini dress. Well, mini for me. It stopped short about an inch above my knee. The unintentional pantiless predicament wasn’t for a cheap thrill; it was out of necessity from a wax gone wrong. It was just another addition to the list of mishaps during my tenure as homeless.

I did make note of my surroundings, however and couldn’t help but notice the care an elderly woman put on the application of false red fingernails. She barely had a handful of teeth yet her paws were perfectly pressed with scarlet stick-ons. She was the best friend of the birthday girl and as she pushed her walker to go, I thought to myself, I need red. Red anything will do. Red always makes a statement whether it’s a blouse, lips, nails or shoes, red shouts, “look at me, I’m better than fine, I’m great. Whatever comes my way, I’ll handle it with as much grace as I can muster up.”

Can I just tell you? I traveled far and wide for the perfect fire engine red anything. I found a pair of pumps but they’re a little too comfy to be scandalous so I’m still looking.

Maybe I’ll find my soul mate at the same time.

Sun, May 23, 2010 | link          Comments


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