Well, I at least like it more than Poughkeepsie, although that isn't much of a comparison.
Okay, let's go back further. Much further. Or not too much further. The plan was that Kathryn (my roommate), Abel (guy who lives across the hall), Dan (guy who lives down the hall), and me (...me) would be going to NY using the Metro-North Railway 7:33 AM train to Grand Central Station. Kathryn had to work on a paper all night, and for some reason I couldn't go to bed either. So instead of attempting to sleep only to wake up at 6 AM, we just stayed up all night. For some reason we both got the munchies (actually, I was having serious munchies...I'll talk about my Friday morning after I talk about today) ar 4 AM. I had some fruit (no duh) and Kathryn had ramen (or as another girl once called it, "ramden"). So we were up to see the sun loom over the sky in that wonderous thing called "sunrise" during that time of day called "morning" usually not seen by college students. Whoaaa.
So we all left at 7 AM to take the train. I had more thoughts about the sun ("Wow, it's rising!") and such things. A roundtrip ticket to Grand Central Terminal is $24 (during off-peak times) which I guess is good. Then again, it used to be less, just like the DAMN SUBWAY TICKETS. Anyway. The view was very line along the Hudson River and there were some weird sights along the way, such as what looked like a prison just in the middle of the river and this weird castle looking thing on a small island on the river. It was almost like a toy castle, except it was...well, big. I mean, it looked surreal. ...After doing a little googling, I can point you to the Bannerman Castle website...because that's what it is. Hm. Alright then.
It was a nice 110 minute or so ride to NY. It's much nicer than a bus; no traffic! When we got to Grand Central, we waited for one of our schoolmates (who lives on the same floor), Annie, since she was the reason we all decided to go to NY. She had to go to the Metropolitan Museum for her art history class. When I first decided that I wanted to tag along, I thought I would go to the museum as well, but when I realized we'd be in NYC from 9:30 AM to 5:00 PM, I thought "Hey, I can do whatever I want!" We met up with Annie a bit later than expected, which worked well for me because I wanted to go to the Cooper Hewitt National Design Museum, which opens at 10 AM. It was blisteringly cold (that might not be a real word), which I wasn't expecting. Damn wind. Air displacement crap. So anyway, we all got off at the 86th Street subway station and then parted our ways.
As I walked to the NDM, everything felt very peaceful and clean. There is some satisfaction in just wandering around in the early morning. Even though NYC is polluted like the inside of a smokestack, when you're next to Central Park it doesn't feel like that. It's almost surreal to have this huge park plonked right in the middle of a sprawling city bursting at the seams with humans. I didn't actually get to go into the park, but someday maybe I'll try it out. :)
The NDM is very nice and compact, which is how I like my museums (aka, no matter how nice it may be, the Louvre will never be my "thing"). It was formerly a house, which is probably why it felt so nice and cozy. I was interested in seeing the "Inside Design Now" exhibition since I've heard of some of the designers, and it was very nicely done. Jhonen had a really small blip on the wall though, along with a TV playing an episodeof Invader Zim, but I was surprised to see him there at all. I mean, the show isn't even on anymore, but it's nice that he gets a nod from the museum community. Or maybe that's weird. It'd be neat to see an ehibit based on his comics. Besides Jhonen there was also some neat stuff by Geoff McFetridge on some walls which also displayed skateboards with his designs. It's so easy to like his designs, but they're not easy in themselves. (Same thing with Paul Frank...sometimes I hate myself for liking those things, but they're cute). There was lots of other cool stuff, like robotic flowers and a weird glowing car. There was another funky thing with a bunch of things dangling down...wow, that couldnt have been much more vague, eh? Or maybe it can. "There was a thing with stuff coming from the thing." I've outdone myself. Well, back to what I was saying (or not), there was also a nice room put together for Nest (ultra-cool magazine) where you coudl sit down and read their backissues. I tried to sketch the room but it came out awful because I don't know how to draw. Oo well. I tried to draw what was on the chairs too, which was a simple line drawing of a bunny giving birth patterned all over the chair. Mm! Splendid.
I probably only spent about 30 minutes in the museum. Or maybe it was more. Well, definitely less than an hour. I browsed around their shop and was delighted to see an open copy of Pictoplasma 1 & 2, and now I am sure...I want those books. Either one. I've wanted the first one for a while because I heard it was good, but now that I've seen it, I'm definitely interested in it. It's pretty much a book filled with different characters, but it's neat to look at. I'd love to have a great webdesign book, but I tend to not like those as much. I'd like to figure out how to create good characters, although I think Poofy is as good as it's going to get. But hey, people really like my animal buttons for some reason. ...Okay, I should stop with all this design crap because that's almost definitely not what I'm going to do when I get out of college unless I can make a fortune off of Poofies and fishies that think they're moist.
After leaving the NDM, I decided to go downtown and check out Jubb's Longevity. I was really planning to eat lunch at Quintessence, but my friend Jen, who goes to Parsons School of Design, got back to me after I attempted to make very last minute plans to meet her (in addition to wishing her a happy birthday; she turned 18 today!) and we got to meet! But! Before that, I went to the Lower East Side and came across a clothing store called Lord of the Fleas. Not sure where this name came from, but it's cute. I'm glad I passed it, but I'm kind of not glad at the same time because I spent something like $70 there. Erp. (Actually, now that I think about it, I'm not sure how much the shirt and the shirt I got costed; the socks were about $10. Jesus, I'm going to turn into a really reckless consumer if I go around shopping by myself, NOOO.) Well, it's a nice little store, although I apparently went to their warehouse and not their more store-like...store. I was just looking around when I touched this incredibly soft black long sleeved shirt with a huge poofy neck (I have a photo; it will make more sense). It's synthetic, but...hohum. And I got a...*brace yourself*...black ruffle-ee miniskirt. Why? Well, it looks really nice, not that it looks that great on me, but it could potentially look good. (Note to self: must go to gym more) The guy running the store had a British accent (always a plus) and was very nice and helpful without seeming overhelpful. Do you know what I mean? Sometimes people are really helpful and it freaks me out because they seem like they're too enthusiastic. Oh, whatever, I could obviously never be a clothing salesperson. So the store and the dude who runs the store are cool. I also bought above-the-knee socks to go with the skirt, except I think I'm too short to wear a miniskirt plus the socks (because normal humans have longer legs) but I'll do it anyway.
...whoa, what the hell am I talking about? Uh. Anyhoo, the guy told me that if I go to the other store I could find a pink soft poofy shirt in my size. The store's business card is actually on an outer paper case for a free condom. I find that very funny. And I'm glad I didn't go there with my mum. Then again, we'd probably find it funny. Also, it acts as a 10% off coupon. And, of course...a condom (it says "MAKE LOVE NOT WAR" on that packaging).
When I was in the store, Jen called me and that's when we made plans to meet. I had time to kill because she had just woken up, so that's when I went to Jubb's Longevity. That. Place. Is. Awesome! (Or to make this into super corny chowdah: RAWSOME!) It was a little messy because the store owner had just opened a new restaurant, but it was still great. I really wanted to try the cakes and treats on display, but I didn't want that to be my first meal of the day. The woman running the store (not that young, but looked quite beautiful in that radiant, happy way...I wonder how long she's been on raw food) gave me and another customer samples of her flax seed cracker and it was absolutely delicious. What's in it, I don't know, but must be some yummy spices and things. She also made something else from...well, now I don't really remember, but it was really good too. Another cracker-type thing that was supposed to resemble corn chips. In my opinion, raw food imitations of cooked food never really taste like the cooked food, but just act as a guide and in the process creates a completely new type of cuisine. I love it. Just can't eat it that much. She also gave us samples of the brazil nut milk she made; wow, absolutely delicious. I ended up buying a cup of that and a bag of the flax seed crackers.
I had more time to kill so I went to Air Market just to look at the odd Japanese things and the too-expensive clothing (I saw this after I splurged at that other store...?). They've also got lots of mumbledolls which I used to be interested in, but now not so much. I think I'd still like an Uglydoll but ...mm. I have so many freakin' Poofies. (I entertained the idea of going into one of these kinds of not-tacky novelty stores and asking if they would sell my poofy dolls...maybe someday.) I managed to buy a birthday card for Jen and a tiny (really tiny) crocheted dog for my mum because I think she might like it. While I was finishing up paying, my phone rang, which was good timing since the store did not allow people to talk on their cell phones inside.
From Airmarket I walked to 6th Ave to meet up with Jen. Yay! YAY! So happy! It's just cool seeing someone you've known for so long (out parents were friends before we were born) in such a big city. She was pretty busy but we spent some time in her dorm room, which is for four people. I feel better about my room now. The ceiling in my room is higher and it jsut feels roomier than way. Her room felt impossibly cramped, even though it's larger. At least I think so. Also, her room was really messy. I would never be able to live in that room. The funny thing is that when we were in there, one of her roommates was still sleeping. She was still sleeping by the time I left, which was around 2...something. Past 2:30, I think. We spent the time just talking about how school is and such...man, art school sounds killer. 3+ hour classes? She says she's going to have a 9 hour day next semester. I wouldn't be able to handle that! I guess I shouldn't think I have it bad then.
After having to say goodbye, I decided to eat that meal at Quintessence I had been looking forward to. When I got closer to the restaurant though, I noticed a store next door that I swear I had never seen before. I actually can't remember the first time I went to that Quintessence, which is weird, because I'm sure it was with Diana and that I must have taken some photos, but maybe I didn't take that many. (looks for photos)...wow, I have absolutely no idea. Well then maybe it has been a year since I've been there? (Help me, Diana! My brain is dying.) The store next door is called Live Live and it's a raw foodist's dream/nightmare. Why this combination? They have the best, most delicious raw junk food. It's like my heaven, except it will make me fat and blech. Raw junk food is mainly cookies, crackers, and anything people can invent to be dehydrated (the raw food way of baking) and it all tastes delicious in a way unlike cooked food. I bought $30 worth of stuff, including apple-date cookies, granola, some sort of nutty candy, and oatmeal cookies (they are DELICIOUS, although I forgot when I bought them that they have oatmeal in em...no duh. Oh well, it's probably soaked or something). I could have easily spent $100 there, but I stuck to buying things I've never seen online before (for instance, they had just about all the stuff from Glaser Farms, although I really wish I had bought some because those things are really tasty, especally the brownie). Now I want to run back there are get more, more, more! The raw nut candy was really, REALLY good, and I can't even compare it to anything else. It's got its own taste; not like any sort of conventional candy, just delicious. I was given little container of homemade lip balm, although it was really fluid and when I put it on my lips, I more or less ate it. Tastes like banana. :)
After indulging way too much (well, I'm eating half of everything; going to give the rest to me mum, of course!) I went to Quintessence (for further endulgement). I've never eaten there alone and am usually accustomed to going the whole nine yards: appetizer, entree, and dessert. However, I noticed that I was pressed for time and that I did not have a bottomless stomach, so I got a sunburger with marinated mushrooms. Man, sunburgers are really good, although I forget what the patty is made of. Mainly sunflower seeds, I'd suppose, although it doesn't taste like sunflower seeds. Patties for sandwiches, like crackers and cookies, are also made by dehydration. The burger was phenomenal and I would never see how cooked food could be more satisfying. Even after eating so much, and knowing I ate a lot, I still felt fine. However, I knew I ate too quickly. :|
By this time it was a little past 4 PM. The plan was to meet at Grand Central at 4:45 PM. I wanted to go to one more place, Etherea, and then I realized I was doomed. Actually, I wasn't that doomed, but I had being late and tried to go down the 6 or so blocks as quickly as my little legs could possibly take me so I could look for some CDs I wanted (I ended up buying three CDs and the new issue of Magnet...oh jeez. Well, the CDs sound pretty good; Polmo Polpo - The Science of Breath, Barbara Morgenstern - Vermona ET 6-1, and Solvent - Solvent City). End price? Roughtly $50.
Now came the tough part; going back up to 14th Street. I love Etherea, but it's in this dead spot where it's not particularly close to any subway station. TIME TO RUN! Or run, hack, cough, walk, run. I'm so out of shape. I called Kathryn to tell her I would be late, and after hobbling onto the L train, leaving the L Train, running to catch the 4, 5, or 6 train (I'm really getting a hang of subways now, thank god), wait for the 4, 5, or 6 train, getting on that and running (very slowly) into the main concourse of Grand Central, I made it just about when I said I would (4:50 PM). We were still waiting for Annie though, so maybe I didn't have to do the half-assed running.
That was basically my day, in a very large nut shell (perhaps a nut tree in this case). It was a lovely day and I'd do it again.
[I have many photos...just not now]
Friday was a rather busy day as well. I didn't have Japanese class because it was Japanese Culture Day! WOO! We got to do a bonduri dance, which I actually got the hang of after a while, and we got to tabemasu nihonryori. I thought I could fast since there wouldn't be anything for me to eat, except there was a huge salad bowl and a fruit salad bowl. Crap. I ate lots and lots of salad, which I'm sure increased my body's water percentage and nothing else. Will I ever learn to fast? Not likely. And if you're wondering, no, fasting is not unhealthy; starving is. Do you know how long it takes to starve? Quite a while, figuring you are a semi-average person from an industrialized nation. So. BACK TO JAPANESE CULTURE DAY! We also watched an Ikido demonstration, which was somewhat amusing. Just another one of those things I will never do.
After that, I went to the gym for some intense workout-ing, WOO! I used the elliptical for 30 minutes and the treadmill for 20 minutes. I can run 3/4ths of a mile without dying! Keep in mind that this is at 4.5 mph, but I had no idea. I used to have awful asthma that would prevent me from doing the simplest activities in physical education class, such as "change into your gym clothes", but I'm much better now. (What is with all this weird information about asthma? It's generally known as being incurable, but a lot of people have cured their asthma, I think. Mine just seemed to get better as I got older.) I really want to make it a point to go to the gym at LEAST three times a week, and while an hour would be optimum, 30 minutes would be okay too. I wonder if I can pull this off...