Monthly Archives: December 2010

Party Preparations

The Sister is holding an NYE party here at the apartment.
As I’m fortunate enough to have today off work, I’m tasked with the honor of cleaning the living room area for the party.

This duty includes relocating the sister’s extensive collection of alcoholic beverages (she’s a mixologist by trade). So many bottles of so many things in our apartment!
[Now granted, I don't even drink!]

Anyone want to come over for a drink???

Cable is back!

The internet and TV went out in the area sometime yesterday, and didn’t come back online until this afternoon.

I blame the weather, and the Mayor. Why blame the mayor?
It’s the latest trend!

Tretherous commute

So my commute to The Work this morning–sucked. That’s being polite.

It was still snowing when I left The Apartment (5:20am ish). Most streets didn’t’ appear to be plowed.The Avenues looked to have at least been plowed more recently. Even worse, plowing the avenues left sizable snow beams at the end of the blocks where the avenues and streets meet. Sidewalks for the most part were a completely lost cause at that hour. I decided to walk up to the cross-town street and walked in the road. There was a virtual absence of vehicular traffic. In fact, there were more people than cars!

Walking down the street, there was car partially spun diagonally in the middle of the road. It was unoccupied but had its hazard lights on. On the sides of the street there weer a few unoccupied taxis, also diagonal, covered in mounds of snow.

The Lexington Avenue train ran normally for me. When I got to 59th Street, to transfer to the N/Q/R [I get on whichever shows up first] I stood and waited. And waited. Then over the PA system comes the announcement that there will be no trains at that station.

Now I”m left with the puzzle of how to get across town to Hells Kitchen where I work.

I get out of the train station and take in Bloomingdale’s holiday windows (thankfully they’d snowblown their sidewalks). I walked down to E 57th street, where the M31 and M57 run across town. I stood with a few others in the road–as there was a sizable snow beam from the curb. It was also a good 2-3 feet in height no less!

And so I waited in the ocld for a while, and then after seeing no bus for what seemed like ages, said “screw it..I’m walking”.
There I was, strolling down a semi-lplowed 57th Street. Just as I’d seen on 86th street, there were spun our and abandoned cars in the middle and on the side of the road. The sidewalks were hit or miss around there, so it was easiest to stay on the road.

So in pure character building fashion, I hiked my way down the street, in the darkness, through the snow drifts Bags on both my shoulders (one with food the other my gym bag). And I walked and walked. Neither of the cross-town buses passed by. Eventually I made it to my destination, a bit winder, but psyched nonetheless.

After the gym, and fighting to find some warm water in the showers (it was a Monday after all) I google-mapped my trek. All 1.2 miles of it. Pretty cool–but it left me really tired for the rest of the day.

The commute home was thankfully easier. It’s now stopped snowing and the sidewalks were mostly shoveled. The snow prevented a majority of the office from even coming in today too!

Simple Beauty

Staring out the window, there’ something simply beautiful about watching the snow fall against the city skyline with the purple-gray backdrop of the sky

Positive Thinking

I’ve come to realize, the more I think about work, the less happy I become.

Therefore, I’m resolving myself to not think about work as much as possible.

Now there’s a resolution I can probably keep!

Impending Blizzard?

There’s all sorts of headlines of some “Impending blizzard” that’s supposed to hit the East Coast momentarily.

Alas, usually the result of such media fear mongering is this

Nonetheless, I shall make the daily trek tomorrow downtown to
get my groceries, and of course the weekly run to the butcher

Now I do have some other errands to run, so it will ultimately be a test of my wills and character.

Speaking of the latter, if I was back home, there would be this kind of discussion taking place

What’s a Jew to do?

It’s Saturday night…but it’s Christmas day.
There’s nothing open, save for Chinese restaurants, over priced movie theaters (with nothing I want to see) and few bars.

Alas, what am I to do?

Perhaps go back to the book I’ve spent most of the day reading will have to do.

Surprise Party–Fail

Last night a few of my sister’s friend’s threw her a surprise party.

Problem was, when she got there, she wasn’t surprised. One of the “party’s hosts” over-texted her and she figured out that something was obviously up.

Then when she got there, she also thought something was up as I’d not come home yet. Before she’d arrived, I told people at the party that I’d come straight from the office. Even though the office closed early (pre-holiday closing), I hung around [I had work to do anyway]. The party was called for 7:30, and The Sister was to arrive at 8.The way I thought of things, if I’d gone home then gotten ready to go out again, she’d probably figure something was up, as it’s ‘not my normal MO. Plus, lately, I’ve not been getting home until close to 8 anyway (a different work related issue).

So that said, it was a nice gathering all together, and though she wasn’t surprised, the gathering of this small group of friends (and one family member–yay me!) did almost “make her cry” (her words).

Now if only I can figure out what to get her for her Birthday. (Help! Please!)

In Memoriam

The Curious Jew has an excellent post on the (secular) calendar anniversary of our late grandfather’s passing. (Bonus: cute old photo included)

I do not have much to add to her all ready well written post. My grandfather’s memory is readily in my mind. As I sit here with a cup of green tea in front of me, just as he drank, my many happy memories of him come flooding back.

He was always very proud of his children and grandchildren in all of our accomplishments. He had high expectations for all of us, and he was always pleased when we met or exceeded them. His life story, while not often shared is one when put together is a tale of an amazing, emotionally challenging journey.

There are everyday things that still remind me of my grandfather. From cans of “Choc Full o’ Nuts coffee” and boxes of Shredded Wheat which were always in the kitchen (save for Pesach). To the many books which he sent me in the mail or gave me in person over the years–that furthered my Judaic studies. And most noteably, my pair of Tefillin, specifically for a left-handed individual, which he sent me on the occasion of my Bar Mitzvah, which I still use today.

In as much, with his strong belief in Zionism, it was a great honor to visit Grandpa’s grave in Israel last year before the Chag.

May his memory continue to be remember for a blessing.

Trip to the doctor

As part of my attempt to be productive today, I made an appointment with the doctor for this afternoon.

I get a call from the office inviting me to come in earlier, as I’m overdue for my annual physical (which is true), so it’s a win-win. I get to have my problem(s) addressed by the doctor and at the same time get to have my annual physical done. The doctor’s office wins because a physical brings in more revenue than a standard follow-up visit.

At the appointment, I also got myself a flu-shot. I had to for work. Do you hear that Jenny McCarthy, Andrew Wakefield et. al? I got vaccinated!

Now to make some more phone calls….

A pleasant experience at the DMV

Off work today for “Christmas eve” I just went to renew my Drivers License at the DMV. It was simple and fast!

Fast, ease and simplicity are usually oxymoron when it comes to the DMV. However, I went in, waited <10 minutes, went to the counter and the whole thing was done in less than 5 minutes! Amazing! Heck it was more difficult navigating through the masses on 34th Street (near Herald Square) than it was at the DMV!


Unfortunate Signage

Today at Costco, besides my success in finding some lower prices on the items I was looking for (yay!) I came accross an interesting bit of signage.

Right under the prominent sign, which reads “Kosher Bakery” atop the cake display case were a large number of “Merry Christmas” cakes.

While not as funny as the Hannukah Ham at Balduccis from a year or two ago, this still made me chuckle.

’tis the season

This week marked the start of the arrival of gift baskets* from vendors at the office. The girls at the office love the baskets (though in a week or two they’re going to be complaining about their weight–mark my word! They’ll even admit to such). To me, all the sweets and junk food are a nice gesture, but it doesn’t change my opinion.

What I look for is quality customer service both for our office and to our patients. That’s what makes the difference to me. If you are able to satisfy our patients and reduce my workload–I appreciate it a lot more than any basket or sticky notes/pens/notepads.

Thankfully we don’t really deal with any drug reps at the office, otherwise things would be worse!

Death By Busy Work

I’m one of those people who hates busy work.
I like to think. I like to plan. I like to problem-solve. I like having my brain work.

Alas, there must be a conspiracy at work, as I got saddled with busy work most of the day today. It was to the point, that I set up a triage for busy work to try to avoid the most tedious assignments! (The worst was copying information from a database onto paper)

Sure, there are some people who love busy work, and that’s great….It’s just that I’m not one of those people! Anyone want to trade?

A dusting

When I went outside this AM (I don’t usually bother looking out the window)–there was snow on the ground! Finally!

Alas, it was what those of us from Cleveland would consider a mere “dusting”. Speaking of Cleveland, The Brother was off school for a second straight day due to wind-chills.

My instruction to him was simple: “Go shovel the walk…it builds character”

Alas, my words didn’t find the most receptive audience…

Miserable Monday

Lest it be said I’m being overly pessimistic, let me explain how my Mondays have recently started to go at the office.

A report on my buisness units productivity is due by 11am (well now it’s been moved up to 10am). Alas, that includes literally includes counts of reports (yes, a report on reports), appointments, procedures, etc. The challenge is though, that as we’re open on the weekend, traditionally all of the weekend billing was performed Monday morning. Alas, in addition to compiling the productivity reports, I must first complete billing (which includes demographic entry) a large volume of charts just so I have the numbers. On top of this, what’s wanted in the reports keep changing every week.

Oh, and once it strikes 9am, the phones go live too, not to mention the start of people needing me in the office for this or that…And they want these reports by 10 now???

This is why I hate Mondays….make sense now?.

Dreary Weather

It was pouring and gusting winds this morning. Yet, stubborn as I am, I proceeded downtown to grocery shop.

It was pouring! The rain was made worse by the gusting winds. Yuck-ola! It makes the idea of shopping via Fresh Direct and/or all the more appealing!

The weather is only conducive to one thing today–watching football!