New York City

A couple of months ago I joined hundreds of New Yorkers in celebration of Margaret Atwood’s birthday. I sat in the audience, by myself, as Margaret Atwood and Neil Gaiman engaged in witty conversation, running the gamut from books to politics to film to America. Something Ms. Atwood said resounded so poignantly, it moved me. Mr. Gaiman told her that he counted her as one of the few role models he could look up to, for she was a poet, a screenwriter, an inventor, and an author of speculative fiction as well as historical fiction.

Shirley Manson is a rockstar. On Friday night, three of my friends joined me for the Garbage concert at Terminal Five in New York City. The concert hall was chock full of fans, most of them longterm fans such as myself, and the energy was a palpable buzz that pushed and shoved its way through the crowd. The two hour show was frenetic, and our voices were hoarse, and aside from a few drunken idiots who didn't listen to their bodies yelling “no more”, there were grins abounding. The night was a perfect alliance of music, best friends, nostalgia, dancing, singing, joy, and New York City.

Over the last two weeks my friends and clients have been asking if I have made any New Year's resolutions. I guess that is a standard go-to query directly after January first, and I wonder how many people proffer similar responses. How many people talk about diet and exercise, going to yoga, reading certain or more books, traveling, making more money, caring less about money, finding more alone time, being more social or less social depending on which way the pendulum swings. How many people make promises? To themselves, to each other? Or review promises from the years past?

Justin is a man, but almost a boy, or at least he looks more like a boy when you get up closer. His beard is deceiving, his big worn hands are deceiving, his homeless status is somewhat deceiving. On my first go around, I saw a dark head tilted down into a jutting collarbone, dwarfed by a large cardboard sign that said, "Anything helps" (anything helps, need work, I am trying to pull my life together, please) I made it three stores down before I turned back. When I addressed him with my perky and sunny "Hi" he immediately looked up.

Last weekend I went to my first comic convention. Let me clarify, for of course I have been to comic conventions before, but this was the first time I had my own booth. Let me clarify, again, for even though I had a booth that showcased my comic and the adorable JLLT underwear we had made, it was not, in fact, “my own” booth because I shared it with five other comic creators.

One year in Manhattan. New friends aplenty; I am still surprised with the amount of friends I have managed to finagle. Old friends who are like new again. Two weddings attended, two more celebrated. Two bike accidents, one visit to the ER. Countless novels read, dozens of comics written. One short film, three scripts tossed aside. A trip to New Hampshire. Montauk. Long Beach. Rhode Island. Catskill. Hiking in Jersey. Hiking in apple country. Hiking with four crazy dogs. One day of leaf peeping. Picnics in parks and beaches and on the Westside Highway.

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