Reflections

I retired my old Xanga blog today, and so I spent some time archiving all my old posts there, which of course led to my re-reading them all and losing myself in a little nostalgia. I didn't realize it, but I started blogging at the same time I first moved to New York City. It seems like so long ago now. I can so clearly see how upbeat and excited I was when I arrived, how the posts got progressively more disgruntled regarding work and east-coast weather, how I struggled to teach myself how to write fiction through a combination of night classes and writer groups, how I searched so hard for meaning and purpose in life with the fundraising, the volunteer work, the mentoring. I re-read the comments, too, and I felt renewed gratitude for the support of my readers throughout the years. Thank you again so very, very much for your insights, your encouragement, and your hilarious observations.

I realize I've been remiss in my blogging for far too long. Even those silly, short posts I used to make now seem precious to me, because they provide sneak peeks into my past that would otherwise be written off as trivial and forgotten. But taken in summation, they truly do give me a more informed perspective on my own evolution over the past four years. It's interesting to see which things I chose to write about, as well, since some of the most significant events of my life in that time period are only alluded to in the vaguest terms, being too personal for the mass Internet audience. Of course, those things I can remember without needing posts to remind me, but the passage of time colors how I look back on them.

I'll write a little about current events now, in the spirit of preserving the minutia of the day, knowing I'll look back on this someday and go, "Oh, yeah! I forgot about that! Good times..."

I went to see the Beastie Boys this past Thursday at the McCarren Park Pool for their first-ever concert in Brooklyn. The woman searching my bag outside the concert venue pulled out my umbrella and said, "The Beastie Boys don't want umbrellas in there. You can go back to your car and leave it there if you want. Or you can add it to the pile." She gestured to a growing mound of umbrellas at her feet that were left by their owners to be retrieved later - aka the Pile of Delusional Hope. Having bought my umbrella at a Roots store in Banff, British Columbia, only a couple of months ago, I wasn't eager to abandon it there. Of course, like most New Yorkers, I didn't have a car in which to stash it, either. I backtracked into McCarren Park, found a suitably branchy pine tree, and stuck my umbrella in the middle of it. It was still there when I got back, and despite a few threatening sprinkles that cleared up by the time the band came out, I hadn't needed it anyway.

The concert itself was enjoyable but not nearly as crazy as I had expected. It was an outdoor concert, so the noise never got unbearably loud, and the crowd was surprisingly sedate. There was no opening band and no encore. DJ Run made a cameo appearance between songs but just waved hello and then watched from the side of the stage. I did like the giant guitar-pick-shaped video screens that hung over the stage and the Warsaw Special I bought from one of the food vendors' tents. A plateful of pierogis, kielbasa, hunter's stew, applesauce, and rye bread for $6.00 make for some of the cheapest eats I've had in the city, and probably some of the most hygienically prepared based on what I saw of the outdoor cook-out-style facilities. I got a souvenier t-shirt to mark the occasion, and everyone exited afterwards in a remarkable orderly fashion. I got home at a reasonable time and would have gotten enough sleep if it hadn't been for the arrival of Eclipse in the mail that day. In short, it was a very good Thursday.