Adventure, Change, Community Garden, Dogs, FUN!, Garden, New York City, Recycle, Save The World, South Bronx, Spring, Things to Do

Project: Community Garden 6.20.14


Holy Mother of Pearl is it hot out! This week has been an up and down weather event! On this beautiful last day of Spring we decided to venture out to fill in the mystery hole (yes, it’s as dirty as it sounds) and fix the places that were plowed over by a city truck. Yes. A truck drove into our garden and did this:

140611_003

Of course we can’t be too mad because the truck is very wide and we are probably (most likely ) trespassing. The flowers that were run over seem to be okay, but we are considering transplanting them to avoid any future destruction. They also seem to be thirsty in their current location, so that is also a factor. Perhaps next time.

I popped over to Union Square Market on Wednesday to pick up some new additions. The garden is looking a little yellow these days, so we were hoping to add some purple, white, and green to make it a well-rounded display. Here is what happened next:

140620_001

Shasta Daisy “Lacrosse” and a bunch of New Guinea Impatiens of various colors (NOT YELLOW!).

Today we vowed to get that hole built up. I carried our supplies over to the heap (minus the 5 gallon jug of water that Captain Clam so victoriously lugged) and a palette was recovered from the back of Dino Gadget (our pick-up truck). I had been on an adventure to rescue a neighbor and her groceries when I spotted a pile of pallets outside of a Burger King on 149th Street. I dragged the Clam there later that evening and we recovered a few of these wooden boxes for our little diamond in the rough project. This might be the only time that Captain Clam ever said “Thank you Burger King!”

So we toiled and dug and raked and sweat into the evening. It’s still amazing to me how an hour and a half and a pallette filled with some plants can change your day and the neighborhood that surrounds you. It was so depressing walking by that giant hole everyday, and the inner sense of fulfillment is so grossly satisfying that I can’t even begin to describe it. Seven (7) people stopped in their cars/trucks/vehicular transports and shouted the most encouraging things to us. “Good Job!” “Nice Garden!” “Keep it up!” Maybe it’s just Friday and everyone is driving home and are in a good mood, but it was so meaningful coming from strangers. I don’t even know if they live in the neighborhood.

Today’s achievements include filling in the strange hole, adding a new palette garden, repairing the damage done by the drive-by, and fixing the moat system, which was working well until the flash flood rain storm came upon us last week. We have also befriended the car shop downstairs, who lets me use their hose and bathroom when it’s absolutely necessary.

Without further rambling here is our progress:

140513_006

WAY BEFORE!

140620_003

WAY AFTER!

140514_006

BEFORE (MAX!)

140604_001

WAY BEFORE!

140620_004

DURING.

140620_006

AFTER.

140607_009

BEFORE.

140620_007

AFTER.

140620_009#1

GLAMOUR SHOT.

We still can’t believe we are actually doing this! We are covered in dirt and enjoying a well earned can of cheap beer. We can’t reiterate just how much we love the South Bronx and  what is is like living here and working out way into a very unique community.

Stay tuned for more #Garden134 updates, as there will be more to come very soon.

 

 

Advertisements
Standard
Adventure, Community Garden, Dogs, Drink, FUN!, Garden, joy, Life, Overload, Save The World, Spring, Things to Do, Today was Awesome

Project: Community Garden 6.7.14

What a fun fucking day! I had visited the Union Square Farmer’s Market again yesterday and picked up the items below from Patchogue’s own Fantastic Garden. I was a little mad, so I felt that I deserved flowers out the wazoo. I may have gone overboard… totally worth it.

140607_004

Today’s lovelies include Early Sunrise Tickseed, John Proffit Ice Plant Delosperma, Red Valerian Jupiter’s Cock (just kidding, Jupiter’s Beard) Centranthus, Early Sunrise Coreopsis, Zagreb Threadleaf Coreopsis, and shrubs that I don’t know the name of.

We woke up late today, probably a little hung over from the mystery shot of whiskey from a good friend down at the pub last night. We motivated, and spent nearly 3.5 hours in the garden today. Captain Clam was quite the machine, and I am so happy to have his motivation (and other things) in my life. Our “grand garden” is becoming a reality, and he has just been the best these past few weeks. Considering that my back is “out”, The Captain has had the greatest enthusiasm and has been supportive with the garden and other home stuffs. He hasn’t  yet had to wipe my ass, but I’m sure he would if I needed it.

ANYWAY, today was Fucking awesome. I can’t even begin to explain how many people we met. Most people had the same questions, which include:

Are you doing this for yourself?

Are you funding this yourself?

What are you doing?

Why are you doing this?

Is this for the city?

Do you have a cigarette?

Of course most people were full of compliments and very happy to have the neighborhood being cleaned up and respected. Our answers to the questions were so easy.

No. We are not doing this for ourselves. As much as this benefits us as two people who seek relief from our own vices, we really want to make a nice, safe place for a community of dog walkers, grandmas, babies, toddlers, grown ass men, hopefuls, dreamers, and anyone else who needs a place to go and get lost and find themselves in nature… one little flowering plant at a time.

Yes. We are funding this ourselves. We have spent just under $100 for what we have already done. We look for things in the trash and gladly accept donations from our neighbors, which have included 0ld baby crib pieces and water from the hose. The garden is community based, and will be suported by the community via labor, donation, and whatever can be salvaged from what others are discarding. Maybe that’s gross to you, but please know that we wear gloves and aren’t particularly picky.

We are making a garden. We are playing in the dirt. Today there was some day-drinking from paper bags going on. We are trying to make a place for people to feel welcome and think “Oh hey, that’s really nice!” We are doing a community service. It isn’t even court appointed. It’s a little selfish, but at the same time, it’s for everyone. We WANT you to come and visit the garden… spend time there, share your stories, come and help…. be a part of something important.

We are doing this because: WHY THE FUCK NOT? How many people do you know who live in a huge city who have a yard or garden? Nature is so much more important than most people realize. To be able to transform a desolate, littered space is such a blessing for me and Captain Clam. We revel in the dirty work  and hope to inspire other to follow suit.

No. This is not for the city. You’d have to be a real asshole to reprimand anyone for planting flowers and making a space beautiful. If you do, then you are a DICK… and probably don’t have a grandma. I feel sorry for you.

Yes. We can share a cigarette. Always.

So. Today’s journey started with a hangover and the passion of a Clam. I might sound a little wispy and in love, but that’s only because I am. Today’s gardening started with a few beers and a gross amount of hope. We headed out and saw some people sitting under the overpass getting their car repaired. I thought that they were BBqQ-ing, but I was sorely incorrect.

We said hello and started digging, pretending they weren’t there. At some point, we needed beer, and I ran to the store, making sure I asked everyone in the vicinity if they were in need of anything. I ended up buying a bunch of waters for the mechanics, and some beers for the gardeners. After I returned, brown bag and all, I made sure to give the gal waiting with her boo a giant beer. My only words were: “Just take it.” And she obliged. I think her boyfriend was happier than she was. She may have also needed a massage.

Long story short (as if that is ever a real thing), we kicked ass in the garden. We met so many people, a lot of them neighbors, who were very interested in helping out and had advice on different programs we could get involved in to receive free supplies and plants, etc. We met a neighbor who lives below us and we are getting ready to head down there right now to share miojitos and horror stories.

Today was fantastic. We had received an old crib from our neighbor, which The Captain made into stairs:

140607_006

That’s a baby crib.

140607_008

That’s a baby crib.

140607_010

That’s a baby crib.

There was a ton of progress today. We planted the flowers and some shrubs, and realized that the “soil” was just sand and rock clean fill. We built a moat/irrigation system for watering, and are fairly confident that it will be effective.

140607_012

A River Runs Through It

140607_007

A River Runs Through It

140607_013

A River Runs Through It

There was a particular amount of testing done on the new watering system, with at least 3 runs to the local car shop to gather water in a 5 gallon Great Bear Jug.  We are confident that the plants and flowers will thrive with the new configuration. We also hope that they don’t drown to death.

I have a lot to say today, and don’t have enough puts-pa to get it all out. We were in the garden for 3x longer than usuall. We met 1 million people. We are sore and sweaty and sunburnt. And we are ridiculously happy. At this point, all I can do is show you this:

140607_003

BEFORE

140607_008

AFTER

140607_007

PROGRESS

140607_011

A Sexy Clam!

140607_015

An exhausted Clam… still sexy.

140607_005

We are about 10 bags of garbage, 2 palettes, 1 baby crib and $80 in plants deep.

140513_005

Just for fun, this is where we started almost 4 weeks ago. It might not look like much to you, but it’s pretty awesome. And yes, I wish we still had Max here.

 

Lots of progress going on here today. We look forward to showing you more. Please stay tuned for more #Garden134 Updates, and keep it real. That’s important. Time to go tend to this sunburn. Heyo!

Also, PS… what important things have you been doing lately to make your community a better place to live, and thrive and just be?

 

Standard
Pedicure, Things to Do, Yoga

Have You Touched Your Toes Today?

toe-touches

This post goes out to my friend Rich Small. He once told me that I should touch my toes every day for “health reasons ” (coming from a man whose middle name is “bacon”). I have tried it and it really does make a huge difference. I was advised to do it as soon as I wake up so that the blood will get-a-flowin’ and all of the muscles that hurt and ache are stretched properly. (Sidenote: Rich gives really good massages and once commented that I had the worst knots in my back ever (in his time as an amateur masseuse (I am so proud)).

Now, I don’t exercise like I should (or at all). Every now and again I do touch my toes, as advised by the bacon guru. I breathe in and out and yoga move myself (very slowly) up into the air, as if reaching for the sun, and then down to the bowels of the earth. I let my self hang there, feeling the stretch crawl from my brain through my back and buns, down my thighs and calves and into my soul (Oh look, a pun!). I slowly grow taller and feel as if I have awoken from a dream filled with rainbows, unicorns, leprechauns, and David Hasslehoff (The Night Rider Years). I rinse and repeat, keeping my eyes open this time and what do I behold… my awful feet!

Now I’m a lady… crude? Yes, but a lady nonetheless. This summer had been a dread for pedicures. Every time I would plan to get one I’d develop a blister, or get a million mosquito bites, or clip my toenails crooked or too short. There is no way I will go to a salon with an “open wound” sort of thing going on (A) becasue someone has to touch my feet and (B) I am not getting other germies that might be floating around in that little foot spa bath.

The worst is when I go to the nail salon and my feet are finally taken care of. I can hear and see my foot beautician cracking jokes about the amount of cuticle on my toes. Like… I see you showing that tool of yours covered in my skin to your co-workers… Everyone is laughing in another language and having a ding-a-ling-a-ding-dong-gay old time. Of course, I will be the first one to make a joke, but It’d be nice of you to include me in yours. I know I have skin filled toenails… why do you think I came here in the first place? Duh!

Needless to say, I have yet to have my feet taken care of by a professional this summer. I am ashamed. I was either too poor or suffered from the above ailments that deterred me from the professional toe-maintenance technicians. I do have my little foot scrubbie and relied on a late summer beach trip to help exfoliate all the hot mess that is down there, but my feet are a disaster. And yet I still (shamelessly) wear flip flops in public.

I heard somewhere that the minute you stop taking care of your feet is the minute your body starts dying. I also heard that your feet absorb everything. For instance, if you smash up garlic and put it in your socks, in about an hour your breath will smell like garlic. I have not yet tried that one, but I do spend more time worrying about my feet now that I am an “experienced” gal and have had years of wear and tear on these old dogs (yeah, I’ve been around a block or two). Growing up in boys shoes, I have developed a wide foot with a super high arch. Then I stuffed then into high hells and ballet slippers for a few years and what we now have is the beginnings of a Frankenstein foot (I am exaggerating, of course). I’d like to think my feet could one day be sexy, but unless you’re a fetishist, they are not and never will be. Oh, and they smell (because I hate socks).

If you don’t know, now you know (Biggie Smalls (he’s the illest, apparently (Would be as ill if he’d touched his toes everyday?))).

Keep watch over your feet, friends. They are important to your well-being; you use them everyday. They carry you to and fro like the the dance of the ocean. You follow them wherever they may lead you. Touch them often. Doing so will help your entire body (according to things that I read somewhere a while back and have no bibliography for you to reference). And do me and my pal Rich a favor and worship those dirty dogs every day. Bend over as soon as you get up and let the blood rush from your head to your toes and back again. And that was not meant to be dirty… I swear.

Every now and again get a pedicure (even you guys out there). Tell your feet, “I love you.”

Oh and now that it’s in your head…

Standard
Bucket List, Things to Do, Uncategorized

That Good Old “To Do” List

I recently saw a good old friend; the kind of friend who I hadn’t seen for over a year, but, as we always do, we were able to just pick up where we left off in this shit show that is “life.” It seems that we are both going through some hard times. Her hard times are a lot harder than mine and yet she is still making the extreme effort to help pick me up from the dirt and mud and shit. Gotta love those good old friends (and we do).

When I lost my job 2.5 months ago, I was devastated. I still am, sadly. It wasn’t even a job I liked. It kept me up at night and kept me in bed in the mornings with the dread of a thousand panic attacks. But it was a job. It wasn’t that unemployment check that you hope gets directly deposited each Wednesday without any hiccups (and trust me, with this unemployment system, there are some serious fuck ups…. but I digress. That is a blog post for another day).

Before my last day at my crappy job for the worst person I have EVER met, I used my last week to think about a lot of stuff. I got a tax ID for a business, printed a bunch of resumes, organized my work computer, and made myself a to-do list (among other things). It’s on a hot pink extra large post it note.

After visiting with my old friend, I literally rummaged through a closet to find this tiny scrap of paper. I read it now and laugh at how hopeful I was. I do remember feeling like unemployment would be like a summer vacation. Unfortunately, it’s not. And being just above broke during the summer in New York City really depresses the shit out of even the most hopeful of optimists.

So… Without further anticipation, since I know you want to know what I was thinking 2.5 months ago….

Below is the list. I have added commentary for your enjoyment because I love you.

Truly.

To Do

Image

Eben

That’s my Captain Clam. He’s the love of my life, so naturally I’d “do” him. No more information is necessary.

Visit the Girls

I have friends scattered throughout the world. Two of my faves are Westerly. One in Austin, TX and the other in Los Angeles, CA. I am dying to see them and miss them terribly. I send them snail mails with small tokens of my affection, like seeds and giant erasers. No one ever writes back. They have real jobs and are busy.

Climb a Hill

I’ve gotten fat and need the exercise. Plus, I want to see the top of the world.

Fly a Kite

Fun. Enough said.

Um, Make a Kite

See above.

Bake

Captain Clam bakes. But it’s too hot this summer, so I think this one will wait until the fall.

Photograph at Least 10 Strangers

This is my favorite to-do item. I have been inspired by my bravery 2.5 months go and have been out taking photos. I have yet to photograph anyone with their permission, but I am working up to it and am starting a beautiful project that will no doubt make me famous and adored by all. No. I’m kidding. It will just make me happy. This project will have the shit blogged out of itself, so stay tuned.

Remove Mustache

Seriously ladies, we all have one. Unfortunately,  I am too broke for threading these days. BUT I did get a tan and the sun has bleached it and I am happy enough with the results. Mustache removal is up there with baking…. waiting until autumn.

Start a Business

Unemployment forbids it. They want to make you suffer for being an entrepreneur. Corporate America is a curse on Humanity. This one will have to wait. Sorry, etsy.com.

Get out of Town

Self explanatory. Who wants  to host me and Captain Clam? And who want to cat-sit?!

Sing Karaoke

Well, duh, what better way to ward off stress. And seriously, I got me some pipes. No joke.

Yoga 4x Weekly

Ha! yeah right.

Spring Clean

I actually did this one. The great purge of 2013. Was simultaneously rewarding and sad. Sigh*

Sing in the Subway —> Start a Band

Two dreams joined together by an arrow on my small, hot pink post-it. This dream will come true one day. For now, it stays on the hot pink post-it. But I am up for collaboration, so BRING IT.

Sunbathe Topless on the Roof

Yeah, maybe in about 30 pounds! Yikes. I still might do this soon, so cover your eyes!

Haircut

Did that, but I think I need another one. Waiting for fall again! I’ll learn to bake and remove my mustache at the same time. woohoo!

Toenails

Not even sure what this means. Probably a pedicure. Yeah… too broke for all that, but I definitely purchased polish, so perhaps I will ask Captain Clam to hone his painting skills this week.

Ice Cream Cone

Yum. What a goal.

Win Lotto 

Does a $2 scratch off count? I won my money back!

Volunteer

I have done extensive job searches and have even inquired to jobs that I am not qualified for to see if the need volunteers. No answer. Assholes.

So, on the back of the paper, It seems I scribbled some wine induced “to-do” items. They are as follows:

Kiss butterfly

Pet sheep

Tie-Dye Blanket or Socks.

Yeah. Those would all be nice.

So here it is. I am sure to add to this list and am trying to not feel pathetic.

Job loss is so depressing. It’s hard to get up and shower and get dressed. I haven’t worn make-up in at least a month. It’s like a bad break up. But life goes on. Oh Blah Dee Oh Blah Dah.  Blah being the key word.

So here I am… bored out of my fucking face and yet completely inspired by my good old friend and a little piece of hot pink paper. It’s all clear to me now. I will be okay.

Standard