Friday, August 10, 2012

we've moved.....visit us at our new address

So far, it's only one person, one city...but am told that will change soon.....catch up with us at:

Hope you'll join us as we continue to navigate life.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

time to say good-bye (lyn)

I'm talking to M the other day and she rightly points out that (a) the blog is no longer about two friends, and (b) the one friend it is about (me) is no longer on a diet. It's become difficult to stay on topic, and I find myself gravitating to topics that are unrelated to the theme of this blog. As hard as I try, it is difficult to find any relationship to eating well and having a problem with Verizon. 

 Reluctantly I've decided that it's time to sign off. I may start another blog themed something like, The New York Diarist, and that way I am not limited in the topics I write about. If you are interested, please write to me at and I will let you know when and if I start writing again. 

 It's been a cathartic experience, and with your support, I achieved my goal of losing 40 pounds. I will miss the discipline of writing almost every day, but I think I need to direct my discipline into other areas, at least for a while. I don't want to be a chronicler of life, I want to live it. 

 Alexander came home from school yesterday and his stuff is now all over my apartment. While I could do without the empty water bottles in the living room, and the dishes in the sink, I love having him back. I already have a list of things I want to do with him, and hope that he'll agree to at least a few of them.

I intend to stay small in my frame, and hope to become bigger in my experiences. Thank you for being with me through an exciting ride. It's time to move on.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

mother's day (lyn)

Alexander won’t be home until next weekend, so I won’t be with him this Mother’s Day.  And I won’t be with my mom until Tuesday.  But I am getting to spend the day with Valerie and her family.  We meet at her club in Long Island for Mother’s Day.  There are 10 of us.  The dress code is “elegant casual” which I translate to mean “no jeans.” 

After lots of consideration, I wear a black Jil Sander pantsuit (that I had always thought was navy, until I look at in in the sun today and realize it is black).  This is one of the suits I recently had altered; it was bought in 2006 at Bergdorf’s, when I was working and had money to spend on Jil Sanders.  Today is the first time it’s being worn.  It’s not exciting, but it’ll pass the dress code.  I could also wear it to my next Board meeting, if I only had a Board.

We all meet at the club around four.  The food is exquisite.  First, we spend in hour having appetizers.  There are four stations:  one with all fresh sushi and sashimi being served by a sushi chef; one with all sorts of hot appetizers; one with cold cuts and salads; and another one with fresh fish, including smoked salmon and shrimp.  I eat too much of everything, and secretly admire the restraint of just about everyone else in our party.  Before entering the beautiful main dining hall, everyone reluctantly agrees to be in one picture.  “But please hurry up; this is so embarrassing,”--- a sentiment voiced by more than one.

Dinner is a served goat cheese salad followed by a buffet of filet, lamb shops, and fresh turkey; three kinds of potatoes; and three vegetable choices.  The dessert table would fill the perimeter of my apartment.  I have two lamb chops, a few slices of steak, a dollop of creamed spinach, a bit of mashed potatoes, and tastes of several desserts.  I am so full by the time we leave it’s hard to imagine ever being hungry again. 

Saturday, May 12, 2012

something every clothes-owner should have (lyn)

A few years ago I was in line at the Container Store.  While there, I saw something called a fabric shaver by Evercare.  It promised to remove “unsightly pilling” and “restore clothes to a like-new appearance.”  It was $6.99.  I had to have it.

I came home, put it away, and forgot about it.  The other day when I was cleaning closets again I came across it, still unopened. I thought I’d finally try it out.

Amazing.  In a few seconds it removed all the pilling from a purple cashmere sweater I bought this fall.  Today I try it on one of my favorite wool Wolford skirts.  The skirt looks new again.  Really.  

I wasn’t sure if this item were still being sold, as I bought it so long ago.  I check on Amazon and find that it is:

Many reviewers say it created holes in their clothes.  Maybe they are doing something wrong?  I don’t know, but I think it’s a great little gadget.

Imagine if there were something like this for removing just a few inches here or there.  Just put it on your skin (in my case it would go on my little love handles) and zzzzzzzzzzz---------- gone.  Now that would be a gadget worth having.

Friday, May 11, 2012

another customer service story (lyn)

Dealing with Verizon could cause a girl to go on an eating binge.  Fortunately, my healthy obsession (at least I hope it’s healthy) prevents me.

The Problem
For the past few months, my answering machine (in the phone) picks up immediately when someone calls, despite my having set the phone to pick up after two rings.  I assume I need a new phone.

I spend time researching the best phones. I have lots of criteria. I find one I like and put it on my Amazon wish list.  Other things have had priority, so I haven’t yet gotten around to buying one.

Yesterday, out of the blue, I try to resolve the problem of my phone picking up seconds after the first ring.  I call Uniden.  Surprise. Surprise.  They tell me it’s a Verizon problem. 

Thursday, around 10am
I call Verizon.  I’m on hold for 18 minutes.  Finally, I get Dan.  He’s very helpful and tells me, after some research involving my hanging up and his testing the line, “It appears the wires in your area are wet.  That would cause both static (which I also have) and the immediate pick-up of calls.”  This is great news.  I won’t need to buy a new phone.  I wish I hadn’t waited months to call.  After additional research Dan says, “We can send a technician out to your area tomorrow.  You don’t need to be home because the technician will be fixing the wires outside your home.”  Even better.

Thursday, 2:08 pm
I receive a voicemail from Verizon asking if I’d rather schedule my appointment between 8 and 12 or 1 and 5.  Huh? I call and relay my conversation with Dan.  This time I’m told, “Dan was incorrect.  On further investigation it appears that the wires outside your home are not wet.  They are fine. We’ll need to check the wires within your home.”  Frustrated, I schedule an appointment between 8 and 12.

Thursday, 7:07pm
I receive an email.  “This is a friendly reminder regarding your scheduled repair appointment on Friday May 11, 2012.  The technician will be arriving before 7pm.”  What?  No need to be home morphed into need to be home between 8 and 12 and is now stay home all day until 7pm.

I call Verizon.  I get an unctuous and argumentative Jeff from Albany.  Finally, after listening to his ridiculous defense of the three conflicting Verizon messages, Jeff tells me that I am the second person scheduled so someone will definitely be at my house by noon tomorrow.

It’s a perfect weather day.  Sunny and 70.  I’m inside waiting for Verizon to show up.  By 12:30, no one has arrived.  I call and ask to speak to a supervisor.  I’m on hold for an agonizing 17 minutes, listening to awful music, without anyone coming on to say they are sorry but someone will be with me shortly.  Finally I get Lori from Brooklyn.  “Yes, ma’am.  Are you calling about today’s repair?  Someone is schedule to be there this afternoon, by 7.”  I feel like I’m in a Twilight Zone episode.  This is my fifth contact with Verizon, and every single time I get a brand new time frame!  I explain the problem and Lori says she’ll call me right back.  She does, 90 minutes later.  She tells me I’m that last one on today's route.  That means they might not get to me at all.  I almost start crying.  Lori is empathetic---either that, or she just doesn’t want to hear a grown woman cry.    She puts me on hold, calls the dispatcher and probably says something like, “Listen.  I think this person is a nutcase.  If you don’t get to her house soon, she could have a nervous breakdown.  Can’t you PLEASE move her up on your list?”  Because when Lori comes back on the line she says, “The technician will be there soon.”  I hang up and within five minutes, the doorman calls up, “Verizon’s here.”

So this very nice, and competent man arrives.  He checks my wires.  He checks the building’s wires.  He tests my phone.  His conclusion:  it’s the phone!  

I'm right back where I started.  But at least now I know not to get FIOS.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

a few of the week's highlights (lyn)

I have a meeting with the company I’m working with, and one of the technical people accuses me of “going way beyond my responsibilities” when I suggest new copy that can better describe how to use the product we're about to launch.  I am proud of myself for not responding angrily, which is what I feel, but I calmly sip my latte and let him rant.  In the end, the copy does not get changed and users remain confused.  I leave the meeting frustrated and upset, but happy for my restraint.

My mom had wanted to come up for Mother’s Day, but does not feel comfortable leaving my dad.  Instead, I make plans with Valerie to go up to the Cape and visit my parents next week.  Jean will also come up and join us.  My mom is thrilled.

Bloomingdales gives me too few Loyallist points.  To apologize, they are sending me a $25 gift card.

I do another closet reduction and find more clothes I thought I couldn’t live without.  But since I’ll probably never again wear the pink Akris jacket or the light blue Piazza Sempione jacket that used to go with a matching skirt or the silver quilted Tory Burch flats (that never were comfortable), I will give them all away.  Designer Resale insults me again by rejecting everything I bring them but assures me it’s not personal. 

Robyn and I see a screening of Dark Shadows.  It’s another well done, imaginative film by Tim Burton that I don’t love; perhaps it’s the vampire theme that doesn’t thrill me.

I adore my Myabi Kaizen 8-inch chef’s knife, and find myself using it to cut up everything from tomatoes to chicken.  I’m looking forward to Alexander’s return as an excuse to start cooking more.  There are a few hundred other reasons I’m excited about having my son home for three months.  This is only one of them.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

why I shouldn't leave my house (lyn)

I need to buy some groceries at Fairway.  I need to have rubber soles put on three pair of shoes.  I need to get a free replacement for my iPhone’s iVisor screen protector, that I had no idea shouldn’t be cleaned with a dry cloth but rather run under water and air-dried. And I need to buy a couple of cards.  So off I go with these four errands on my list of things to do.

I eat a quick, simple lunch of Fage yogurt with berries and honey.  I’m about two blocks from my apartment when I pass Pachute, my favorite little boutique.  Not only are their clothes hip and gorgeous, the one salesperson, Lisa, is totally wonderful.  Tiny.  Effortlessly chic.  Nice.  Not pushy.  Interesting.  And knows my tastes (and my wallet) perfectly.  I stop in.

The first thing I see is a gorgeous white linen top.  Lisa takes it out of my hands and tells me it’s too expensive.  She’s right.  The lines in it are beautiful, and you can just tell that the detailing is exquisite.  But at $500, I’m not even tempted.  I look at a few things, talk to Lisa for a while, and then head out.  As I’m saying goodbye, I see a scarf hanging toward the back.  I walk over and feel it.  It’s soft and lightweight.  Grisal, a company I’ve never heard of, makes it.  The fabric is something called Ramie, a natural fiber found in Japan, where the scarf is made.  It feels nicer than modal, which isn’t a natural fiber.  I try it on and fall in love.  It drapes beautifully.  Looks fabulous with my favorite black nylon coat.  Goes with a million other things.  I buy it.

As I’m paying, I see the perfect clutch (by Clare Vivier, whom I've never heard of) sitting on a bench.  I’ve been wanting a black clutch but not wanting to spend $600 or more to get one.  I pick it up.  The leather is soft.  It’s the perfect size.  I feel grown up with it.  I buy that too.

Finally, I make it to my other errands.  I spend only $34 at Fairway and have enough food for the next five days.  That’s a good reason to leave the house.  As for the stop at Pachute?  Not so much.