Thursday, April 27, 2017

It was a long day for me.

I almost woke up early enough to do laundry today. And I'll need to do that tomorrow, so that the cleaning lady has some fresh sheets to put on my bed. But I still have a lot of things ahead of me today, as I have to see my dad, take care of paperwork for renting out the family homestead, and then go to class.  I won't be home until at least 11 pm - and I'll be totally exhausted.

- - - - - -

As I noted, I saw the Cat Lady last night. We're at a state where we could stay friends, or become something more. But she has one annoying problem that I'm not sure if I can live with: She talks so fast, without pausing for more than a breath, that it's hard to keep pace with her and it's hard to get in a word edgewise. My mind was a little exhausted after being with her at her house after dinner last night. Being with GFJ is very different. She doesn't always feel the need to speak. And she is comfortable enough with me not to be always "on". You can easily understand why I avoided being in a position to see her yesterday (though it would have meant breaking a date with the Cat Lady), as I really don't want what we once had to be pronounced completely over.

If I end up pursuing something with the Cat Lady, I will need to deal with three things:
  1. Her tiring rate of speech. (I'll have to ask her to slow down a little for me to keep up.)
  2. Telling her about Marian
  3. Cats (I'll need to take allergy pills to prevent nasty allergic reactions.)
This will be trying to fit a square peg into a round hole, and not something I'd advise to other people.  For me, it might be worth a gamble.  But I doubt I'd have the depth of feeling I've had with a handful of women since my wife died.

- - - - - -

I'm a little behind where I want to be with my school studies this week. So playing "catch up" will be something very important to me in the near future. In addition, I must apply with PMI to take the PMP certification exam. Of course, I want to chat with my former boss, so that I can be sure that he'll certify my work - in case my application is audited.

When I was first unemployed, I was gung ho in finding a new job.  By the time this round with unemployment ended, I became ambivalent about finding a job. It was possible for me to "almost retire" and live off my savings. Do I really want to work as a project manager? I'm not really sure. But I do want to try and get this certification. Just like my Master's Degree, having the certification will say something about my ability to accomplish things. And it will tell me that I still had the chops to do what it takes - if I wanted to do so.

- - - - - -

I got out of the house around noon, and trekked to Long Island to see my dad.  He was in good spirits today, and it was a pleasure to visit him. There was only so much we could say to each other, and he knew when it was best to send me on my way.

Next, it was off to the town's bureau of records, where I found out what was needed for a rental permit. The fellow at the desk told me that it was not their policy to answer questions over the phone. So I'll bet that many people needlessly have to visit the office just to get questions answered. But he was very polite (very much like "Mayberry, RFD") and gave me the answers I needed. Then, he sent me downstairs to pick up the records I needed. It was interesting to see original paperwork that was over 75 years old regarding the house (Certificate of Occupancy and Land Survey), and then to have it photocopied for our use.

On the way out, I called my brother, and he said that the house failed inspection for a minor issue regarding sheetrock and the electric inspection.  It seems as if the inspector wanted to give someone a hard time, and my sister in law (and my brother) were the recipients of that hard time. My brother wanted me to go back to the town hall and pick up a copy of the electric inspection, and I wasn't in the mood to do so.  I had just enough time to drop off the copies to my sister in law, and then make it to NYC for my class.  He was very upset, but he can't complain too much.  If needed, I will go down there again next week and take care of things. Until my brother and I talk again, I won't know what my plans for next week will be.

And then it was off to NYC. I parked my car and took the train into Manhattan, reaching Patty at Grand Central around 5 pm. She was better than I was, having taken the time to do all of the exercises in the book. Class went well, and we took the same train back to Queens - where I would change to the Astoria line at Queensboro Plaza.

- - - - - -

Once in Astoria, I looked for the supermarket that carried Tipsy Scoop ice cream, but didn't find it.  Sooner or later, I will be able to get some and bring it home.  Until then, I'll just have to keep searching for something special....

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

As much as I try to get up early....

My plans for the day were to do some studying, and then go out and see the Cat Lady for a leisurely afternoon. But I didn't get to sleep until 4:00 am last night, the Cat Lady was also up all night (issues on her side), and both of us agreed to meet for dinner - all by several asynchronous emails.  The lack of immediacy in email is an asset, as replies can be at leisure, and no one need be awakened in the middle of the night.

- - - - - -

So when I finally got up and moving around noon, the Cat Lady was already on her way to the doctor, and to take care of errands she had to do. And again, via emails, we arranged to have dinner at the same German restaurant we ate at the last time we were together.

On the way over to see the Cat Lady, I got a call from my brother. We were interrupted by dead zones from Annesville Circle to well past the Bear Mountain bridge. But it was a good call, as we discussed many things - including my brother's relationship with his kids. And as I was just about to reach the Cat Lady's house, I received a call from GFJ. We had a nice chat, but I wasn't about to tell her where I was and what I was doing. So I said that I was driving towards the Bronx - just in case she wanted for us to get together before Thursday.

Once done with my phone calls, I went to the Cat Lady's house (which was around the corner from where I stopped to chat with GFJ) and picked her up for dinner. Both of us enjoyed a nice German dinner, and then we went back to her place to chat. (This time, I'm very glad that I took my allergy pill before going there - I was able to avoid the strong allergic reaction I had the last time I was inside her house.)  If any of you are thinking anything, it was just chat, and there was no hanky-panky going on. I was keeping options open, while things are still up in the air with GFJ.

- - - - - -

Eventually, it was time to go home. And I was in no rush to make it across the river. So I took the side roads back into New York, intersecting with roads I used to use when seeing an ex girlfriend of 30+ years ago, and a former female friend from 20 years ago. Although I could see nothing, I was able to relax a little before hitting the highway needed to cross the river and go home.

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

A dress, but not in my size

I got up very late (even for me) today, and spent most of it doing nothing. (Surprise, Surprise, Surprise.) And when I finally got moving, there wasn't much time for me to be Marian before a stretch of days I had to spend as Mario. So I decided to take a drive to Paramus, where I could do some window shopping at Catherine's and at The Avenue.

When I finally made it to Catherine's, I was surprised to find as many dresses on the floor as I did. Of course, being just after Easter, I'd expect that that their early Spring merchandise would still be on the floor.  And when I saw the dress above, I figured that I had to try it on - even though the dress was a size larger than I normally wear.  Luckily, the dress didn't fit right, and I was spared the decision of having to buy a dress I didn't need.

Before I go too far, if this dress was in a different fabric, I still might have bought the dress. It was comfortable and loose. but given the fabric, it was the type of garment that couldn't be dressed down to be casual enough for game night. And I already have too many dresses that would be appropriate for a more formal summer gathering - such as a casual outdoor wedding.

After I was done browsing at Catherine's, I went to The Avenue and did even more browsing. And there, I found a couple of dresses, had they been in my size, would have jumped in to my car with me for the ride to my closet. Again, I was lucky. Nothing there was either interesting, worth buying, or in my size.

Since it was now almost 9:30, I made my way home with a stop at the diner for a late dinner. Normally, I might not have mentioned this. But I had transferred the contents of my black handbag into a brown handbag for Easter Sunday services at the local church, and I had forgotten to transfer my reading glasses back to the black handbag for today's outing. So, I ended up squinting at the menu while deciding what I was going to eat. Unfortunately, I wish I had decided to go to a different diner.  No, it's not because the food wasn't good. (I actually enjoyed the mixed vegetables for a change.) No, it's not because the service was bad. (It was slow, but not annoyingly so.)  No, it's not because the food was overpriced. (It was slightly more expensive than what I get locally, but not unreasonably so.) It was simply because of the 6 teenage girls behind me that couldn't help but talk too loudly. And that's part of why I asked to take some of my meal home in a doggy bag instead of staying to finish my meal.

I had an enjoyable last night out as Marian, and will soon take the polish off my nails so that I can spend a day out with the Cat Lady tomorrow.

Monday, April 24, 2017

Happy Easter!

It'll be a week after Easter by the time this post is published, so I'm wishing all my readers a belated happy holiday. 

- - - - - -

It's been a long time since I've gone to church. And I figured that I'd wear the above outfit out and finally get some mileage out of a dress I purchased late last Summer. So, when 8:30 am came around, I decided to quickly get showered, shaved and dressed - and out the door for a 10 am mass. And I'm glad I did.

There is never much to be said for a mass, save for the timeless familiarity in its rituals and its traditions. They can be comforting, even for those people who aren't that religious. Yet, if I could have whipped my cell phone out quick enough, I could have gotten a picture that would be the definition of cute: Two little girls pulling a "Radio Flyer" wagon, picking up offerings of food for the needy.

When services ended, the congregation gathered in the parish hall for an Easter Celebration. Finger food was being served with a little bit of bubbly, while the little children were being entertained by an Easter Egg hunt on the front lawn. I got into conversations with several people, one of whom was also called to Jury Duty - and picked to serve on that 18 month impanelment.  At least he has only had to report in for one followup session so far.  After that, I ended up chatting with a woman who made an effort to talk with me (that if I were in male mode, I'd assume she's interested in me for purposes other than friendship). We were getting along very well, and we exchanged contact information with each other.

By the time I left the church, it was getting warm outside, and I'd have never made it into the city on time to see a last Sunday Matinee associated with the "20 at 20" special. So, I decided to go home and change out of the dress, and get into something more comfortable and appropriate for a casual Sunday.  And then, I stayed home for the rest of the day, as there was nothing else that I wanted to do....

Sunday, April 23, 2017

I wasn't sure of what to talk about first

I'm not sure if I should be happy or sad.  And I'm not sure of what I should talk about today. So I'll start with a mention of my status with GFJ.  She mentioned that she was going to Atlantic City with one of her girlfriends, and I made a comment that we should do something like that soon - and there was silence. She gave me the answer I was waiting for, without having to say anything. Is this such a bad thing?  Probably not.  If she couldn't deal with me being trans, it's time that the relationship should end. But I don't expect that she will say anything until we meet on Thursday for an early dinner. (I wasn't going to foul up Tuesday with the Cat Lady just to get official bad news from GFJ.) And in many ways, I'd prefer not to bother with that dinner unless she is going to say something pleasant.

- - - - - -

The next topic for the day is my niece. We had arranged to meet at the Guggenheim for the beginning of the "Pay what you will" Saturday evening. And though we were on time, the line stretched around the block. Yet, once the doors opened, the line moved quick and we were inside by 6 pm.

We went to the top level and worked our way down the ramp, seeing many works of modern art that held my interest. She and I are kindred spirits. Neither of us believe the propaganda coming out of the right wing news outlets, and we both know to challenge the "news" coming out of the outlets we get our news from. We both fear what is going to happen in this country, but this was far from the focus of our conversation.

This is the first time I've had the chance to talk about her beau (who currently lives in London), her marital plans (not yet on the horizon), her options for childbearing (she is not ready to have a child, but wants to have that option if she chooses), and her parents (poor matches for each other, and part of the reason that she is being careful about the first three topics). Although she is young, she is wise beyond her years, and I am envious of her - as she has her whole life ahead of her.

Both of us liked the picture below, and thought that capturing the viewer of the art in the snapshot made this a great shot.  What do you think?

Next is a shot of my niece. She liked this shot of her looking at the mobile, as it puts the art and the viewer into perspective. (Some art wouldn't exist if it weren't for the people who view it.)

And lastly, I liked this shot of her - for reasons similar to the photo above.

She has given me permission to show her face and talk about her by name in this blog. So you may find better shots of her (and of us together) in the future.

For some reason, both of us breezed through this museum way too quickly. (I figure that she really wanted to go to a party out on Long Island, and she felt that her aunt Marian would understand. (I did, and might have been doing the same thing in her shoes.) So we took the 5th Avenue bus downtown (it was much slower than the Madison Avenue bus I took to get there). Around Rockefeller Center, I bid her a fond adieu, and proceeded to kill some time before seeing "Sex Tips for a Straight Woman from a Gay Man." (Believe it or not, I have a copy of this book, having been given a copy years ago at an Eulenspiegel Society meeting.)

- - - - - -

Once at the theater, the elevator wasn't working. So I had to climb the stairs to the second floor.  Did I say "Second Floor?"  Although it was marked as a "second floor", one had to walk up the equivalent of 6 flights of stairs to reach the theater. And then, when I got to the top, I was a little winded - but I still had to wait to take my seat, as one lady was taking care of ticket problems for her group of 5 ladies.

Looking at the first of the three pictures above, you'll see that the background is set up to make a joke regarding the book discussion (Raame --- Ram Me, as they used for the acronym.)  The second shot had an audience participant (on the right) being there as a foil for the jokes involving the two cast members. And the last shot has three female audience members doing air sex handjobs.  Now, there were two parties of women there: the first being ladies celebrating one woman's 60th birthday (she's bent over on the left) and the other being a bachelorette party (one woman from that party is on the right).  The 60 year old gave the best air sex handjob.

This picture is the one other audience member who got on stage. She had fun giving him a massage, as well as using a tickler where it wasn't supposed to go.  Could you imagine if this T-Gal had been called upstage to perform in either skit?

I highly recommend this piece of fluff. It's way too short, as I wished the fun could've lasted longer than it did.

- - - - - -

Then it was time to go home.  I'm going to get out of the habit of being in contact with GFJ, as once she (by her silence) told me that we were no longer going to be lovers, I no longer wanted to share parts of my life with her.  I "kind of" knew that this would happen a while back.  When she never accepted my help in things such as being driven to/from her colonoscopy, I knew that she didn't want to open up and trust me to take care of her.  Yes, I'm in contact with Lili almost every day. But we never shared a certain intimacy that GFJ and I once had.  In many ways, I feel she was looking for an excuse to end the relationship for a while, as I caught a message directed to her by one of her friends telling her that she could do better than me. (This sounds much like what Lili has been telling me to do about GFJ.) So now she has it - but I don't think I want to be in regular contact with someone who didn't really want me.

Of course, I'll go through the motions of seeing her next week, so that she can say what she wants to say. But I might find an excuse not to do so - simply because everything has already been said and done....

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Sometimes, it's OK to expect to be treated as "Number One"

I couldn't resist this shot.  As I said in the title of this entry, it is sometimes appropriate to expect to be treated as "Number One."  This has nothing to do with the rest of the entry, except to show my readers what kind of mood I was in when I started to write down my thoughts for the day.

- - - - - -

Today was Good Friday. If I were religious, I might have been concerned about what food I'd be eating for the day. Instead, I started out by having an "omelette" made with ground beef. And this was my typical oblivious view of the world for the day - it may have been a religious holiday that many people honor, but it was something I remembered only when it was brought up to me.

Although I woke up at 7:30 am, I didn't get moving much until noon. My plans were to put in two hours of work at the GLBT Center, then kill some time before going to dinner with the FFGoW's. Well, my plans changed as soon as I reached the GLBT Center at 3:00 pm. They planned to close at 4, so I didn't get that much work done before they closed.

Once done at the center, I tried reaching Pat.  She and a man she was dating were on their way out to pick up her daughter at the group home, and then go to a restaurant to celebrate Pat's birthday. But that scuttled one of my options for killing time. So I decided to go to the bookstore, then get some iced tea and read a little.  It's amazing how one can easily kill a couple of hours at a bookstore is one has a mind to do so.

Next, it was off to the FFGoW meetup.  We had way too small a table for the seven of us. Two of the women were newcomers to the group, and one of them took an interest in my comments on Harpo Marx. (This woman was a professional actress at one time, and still has an interest in both stage and screen.)  Tonight, it seemed as if my feminine personality was smoothly firing on all cylinders, as I felt as if everything was working for me in my conversations with all the women at the table. And I was able to tell a joke that I picked up yesterday at "Not That Jewish" that almost got one of the ladies to wet herself. Later on, I got information from one of the regulars regarding an inexpensive education program she's part of - and I plan to attend these classes if I'm not working full time in the fall.

- - - - - -

All too soon, it was time to go home.  I wasn't sure about GFJ's holiday weekend schedule, so I figured that I'd wait to see if she reaches out to me via Facebook. This left me free to chat with Lili - and she doesn't want for me to resume things with GFJ if GFJ wants to come back to me. And there are good reasons for that - from my perspective. But I like having someone to hold. Lili wants for me to find a woman who likes people like me. This is a statistical improbability. So I plan to live my life among the company of women and be accepted as a peer.  Whoever I settle down with will know about my two lives, and have to accept both of them to accept me. Ideally, if the woman is truly a good match for me, this time around, I'll be wearing the pretty dress!

Friday, April 21, 2017

Not that Jewish.

Normally, my plans for a typical Thursday would have me going to the local GLBT center and doing some volunteer work. Today was different. I wanted to see "Not that Jewish" at the $20 discounted price available through the site. And I made my plans to do so.

The was one fly in the ointment.  I had promised my brother that I'd try to reach the town where the family homestead is, and try to find out information regarding a Rental Occupancy Permit that will soon apply for. They told me to expect a call back today - but it never came. So I'll have to pester them tomorrow morning.

Next on the list of things to do was driving to the Pelham Parkway section of the Bronx, so that I could park at the subway station and get to the play on time. For a change, everything went well. Not only did I find a seat on both trains on my way to the Times Square area, but I also was able to make a quick uptown connection that saved me a third of a mile of walking to the theater. This allowed me to get there in time to buy my ticket AND have a chance to go to the bathroom before the performance.

The play was enjoyable.  Monica Piper (pictured above) discussed her sense of Jewish identity, being a cultural Jew, but not a religious Jew. Anyone familiar with Jewish tradition (even if not Jewish) would understand all of her references. She proceeded to talk about her life up to the point of her adopted son reaching his teenage years, and having similar feelings about his Jewish heritage - albeit from a different direction.

Once done with the play, I made sure not to dawdle in the city, as I knew that rush hour was coming soon. So I got on the train, and made my way back to the Bronx, where my car was safely parked in front of the subway station.

- - - - - -

As I got in my car, I figured that I'd try to call Pat - but with no response.  That wasn't a big deal. I was only looking to kill some time before going to game night. So I proceeded to Panera Bread for dinner, and then made it to The Avenue for some window shopping.  Strangely enough, this store carried several dresses I may have been interested in, including a pretty polka dot number that captured my eye.  Only one problem - I don't like this year's "cold shoulder" style, and think that this dress will appear dated after one season. But I did find a blazer in a size 30 that caught my eye, and came home with me.

I can see this blazer being worn over a solid outfit (or dress) and giving it some needed pop. And I might just be wearing it soon on a night out with a female friend.

After emptying out my wallet a little, it was time to go over to game night. And the fellow that creeped me out came up in conversation. We were making jokes about not playing "King of Tokyo", and I noted that he is a little like a puppy dog wanting attention from me. The hostess said that he may not have a full set of social skills for someone of his age. Yet, she recognized that I wasn't complaining, but only commenting about him. So "no harm, no foul" to anyone involved or discussed in that chat.

Of course, I lost the one game I played.  But I was very distracted (I didn't put my phone away) by texts I was receiving from Maria (she has to reschedule breakfast), YGM (she is still recovering from an operation), and my niece (having to schedule a museum date for Saturday). I'll have to learn NOT to pull out my phone as often as I do. If I were a smoker, I;d have puffed away a pack or so in the 3.5 hours I was there. (No one smokes tobacco there, but I'm only illustrating how my need to play with something is being triggered.)

- - - - - -

On the way home, I tried to reach GFJ.  But I think that she actually has made an effort to try and sleep earlier. If so, bully for her!  Maybe, she'll finally get a good night's sleep for a change.