My Mistress: A long story about how I met The Times

(If a woman keeps a mistress is it then called a “Mister” because I’m not keeping a lady. Come to think of it, I’m not even keeping a man.)

The New York Times has become my evening lover. After Toby gets home and we settle in beneath our blankets on our couches, I read the rest of the paper. Usually, I begin reading it sometime in late afternoon after having finished my work for the day and before I begin making our dinner. The paper has become something I enjoy every single day. It’s the little things in life and this “little thing” makes me feel spectacular.

Since we moved from New York City to Washington, D.C. And then from D.C. all the way to San Francisco, I haven’t read much of the New York Times. While we were in San Francisco, I was buying The New Yorker and the Sunday Times. However, for reasons I am not proud of, I didn’t do it very often as occasionally I would become too homesick. On worse days, I’d become bitterly resentful for having left. I’m not proud of either emotion, but it’s the truth.

And I guess that the clich� is true as well; one never really shakes this city after having lived with it. Then again, I guess you could say that about any city, really. It’s not that it’s the greatest city on earth, on the contrary. But it does have it’s way of sinking in. I liken it to a first love; not always the best one for you, but definitely the one you can’t and never will let go of.

For a while I was keeping (what I’ve deemed as) a bad habit. I was spending too much time reading only a circle of blogs and forums. And while this medium has its place and is often times a hoot, it’s not really good for my head—I mean, ALL the time. I started to feel sort of stagnant. I was sitting around clicking through the same old circle of bookmarks, reading through the same topics, seeing the same old arguments. All the while I was reading about someone else’s life, I was retreating more and more into my own (and very small) head. This routine was making me very anxious. (Does anyone else go through this? Sometimes I believe that it’s just me and I succumb to my weaknesses too easily.) Anyway, after one long night lying in bed beneath the self-deprecating chorus of an old hit called “You’re such a loser, Michele” I made a deal with myself that I’d change a few things.

  • 1) Lessen times spent reading Web sites.
  • 2). Don’t spend time getting into lengthy internet discussions about topics with no definitive answers. (Save these topics for face-to-face conversations.)
  • 3). Read the news.
  • 4). Turn the people in your life into real people and not HTML and AIM conversations.
  • 5). Get out and discover more.

I have veered off track again. I do apologize. One of the changes I made was geared toward my reading habit(s) and so I ordered The New York Times for our Paper Anniversary. It’s now delivered every single day. And every day I look forward to the thousands and thousands of words thrown onto my doorstep. (What a smart and worldly lover!) I get excited about the blue wrapping they use during the wetter months (i.e. now). The crossword puzzle makes me giddy (except for Sundays and sometimes Saturdays. Then, I just shrug it off). I get excited over the Arts section, the Metro section, stories about our nation, stories about the world. Like I said, it’s the little things. (Commence with the dork comments, please.)

I learn things, too. In an annoying way as I wish to share the information sometimes with others. (For an example, see today’s post.)

Did you read about the Submarine traveling 30 knots that hit an underground mountain 400 feet beneath sea level becuase it didn’t show up on their map?

Toby will be going about his business, his PHP business, and I’ll break his train of thought.

I didn’t know it was legal to drop off an unwanted baby within five days of its birth at a church, a hospital, or firestation in the state of New York.

The other night I was reading The Arts section and there was a story about a woman named Ruth Gerson. The article was called A Star Isn’t Born. She’s a singer/song-writer who, like many others, has had a rough life. She’s turned down record deals with big labels and instead releases music and tours on her own. Even Bob Dylan asked her to perform for him specially one evening. Apparently, she’s amazing. (But don’t take my word for it, it’s all in the article.)

Tomorrow night she’s at Bowery Ballroom (whose site, in my humble opinion, especially the calendar section, could use some help). And I want to go. The way the New York Times article made her out to sound, we’d be insane to miss the show. If all goes well and our visitor from D.C. cares to join us, I think we might head out on Thursday evening to see Ruth belt out some tunes.

Like I said, it’s the little things. But no one ever said that the little things can’t totally change your life?

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