Mail carrier

Straight to the Point: Why Does the Mailman Eat Lunch in My Foyer?

Mail carrier

A couple months ago, I was taking a staycation day and went for a run. When I came back, the mailman was standing in my apartment foyer eating a sandwich. The next week, I came back from a run, and the same mailman was there again. He wasn’t eating a sandwich, but he was listening to his iPod. Which leads me to a couple questions:

  1. Why was he listening to an iPod in 2017 (it was December, so no need to remind me that it’s 2018)?
  2. Why does he take his lunch breaks in my foyer, which is not very pleasant and rather chilly in the winter?
  3. Is this legal?

I’m writing about this now because I told my roommate about it the other day, and she was home today and told me she saw him eating in downstairs, too.

I’m not saying I care exactly, because he doesn’t seem violent, but it doesn’t seem like something he should be doing. It also makes me want to become friends with my neighbors, so we can talk about him. Has that ship sailed after living there for 2.5 years?

the Future is Female

#MeToo and My Trump-Related Panic Attack

the Future is Female
My boyfriend got me this shirt on Etsy.

I just finished Hillary Clinton’s memoir, What Happened, and I would equate reading it to having a long panic attack. Do you ever have those moments where you suddenly remember that Donald Trump is president and want to kill yourself? That’s what this book is, wrapped up in a 500-page package. I’m not saying you shouldn’t read it. You should. I’m just saying, in the words of Scar (from The Lion King, duh, do you really need to ask?), “Be prepared.”

I do wonder how much different this book might have been if it were published a few months later in light of the #MeToo movement. For instance, would Clinton’s takedown of Matt Lauer be made stronger by the confirmation that he is a uniquely terrible predator, as opposed to merely a bad journalist? Might she have addressed her collaborations with Harvey Weinstein? (Probably not.)

I also wonder whether this movement would have had as much traction—or exist at all—if Hillary Clinton were our president today. Certainly the country’s overall tenor, and the fact that our commander in chief is also a high-profile predator, contributed to the rise of this movement. Am I saying that I prefer a Trump administration to a Clinton one? God, no. That’s like saying I haven’t awoken internally screaming every morning since November 9, 2016.

Still, I think about the time a college student from my neighborhood had his entire family die in an accident, and a former classmate posted on the obituary, “At least one good thing came from this: You know how much everyone cares about you.” I remember thinking what a weird and tone-deaf thing that was for someone to say. But let me try to follow suit by finding the positive in a sea of despair: At least Trump’s presidency has taught some of us (those italics are directed at you, Mitch “child rapists are better than Democrats, I guess” McConnell and Paul “this is what a jellyfish looks like and all the tax cuts” Ryan) how strong and resilient we can be in the face of true horror.

And Trump bragged about sexually assaulting women and then won the presidency three weeks later, so I doubt having an affair with a stripper or asking the FBI director for whom he voted are going to sway you, but to those who still support him, do better and also why?

What exactly is wrong with people that Roy Moore is a more appealing option than Doug Jones?

Moore is a little younger in this picture than he is now, but still not of an age when it would have been appropriate to have sex with 14-year olds. Fun fact which apparently needs stating these days: It’s never okay to touch someone, no matter what his or her age, without consent!

In case you’ve been living under a rock, horror show of a dumpster-fire human Roy Moore, who is running for Jeff Sessions’s senate seat in Alabama and conflates homosexuality with bestiality, is also a child molester.

So, not only does Roy Moore say heinous things, but he also does heinous things!

Don’t worry, though. It’s okay because of Jesus. “Mary was a teenager and Joseph was an adult carpenter. They became parents of Jesus,” said Alabama State Auditor Jim Ziegler, defending Moore, I guess.

Now, I’m Jewish, so I could very well be mistaken, but isn’t that total bullshit? Isn’t Joseph not actually Jesus’s father, and didn’t they not have sex? Hence Mary being a virgin and all? I kind of thought that was a central theme of the bible. Either way, that defense is dumb. But please let me know either way, right or wrong.

Also, watch this clip of Trenton Garmon, Moore’s lawyer, just being randomly racist on MSNBC, I guess in effort to defend his client? Not sure even he knows what’s going on here.

Meanwhile, Doug Jones, who is finally leading Moore in the polls, but man did that take awhile, is an Alabama lawyer who prosecuted two Ku Klux Klan perpetrators of the 16th Street Baptist Church bombing that killed four African-American girls. To summarize, normal guy who locks up child-murderers vs. gay-bashing child molester who wears a cowboy hat.

(P.S. I won’t tell you what to do, but you have the option of donating to Doug Jones here. Or let a child molester/all-around garbage human be a senator. Again, the choice is try to prevent a judge who deemed marriage equality worse than slavery and likened it to the Holocaust, essentially, and support a prominent lawyer who prosecuted two Ku Klux Klan members for killing children, or be like, “Nah, that sounds fine to me.” Here’s that link again:

Pregnant Women: Everyone’s Property

First, a disclaimer: I’ve never been pregnant.

Ergo, I don’t know what it’s like to have another gym member grasp my belly and murmur prayers or whatever to the fetus inside. But that’s something I witnessed when I walked into Bodypump class this week. This poor pregnant lady was standing there, just wanting to get her workout on, while another woman smiled and stroked her tummy.

Which begs the question: What makes it okay for strangers to randomly touch pregnant women? Like, if someone came up to me and rubbed my tummy, I would cry bad touch. And I would imagine a parent would do the same if someone did that to his or her child. Why is it okay when it’s a combo of the two?

Maybe I’m wrong, and pregnant women really like having their bellies caressed by distant acquaintances, so if you’ve been pregnant and enjoy that, feel free to let me know.

Really Bad Service and Eternal Damnation

On Father’s Day, we took my dad to a horrific speakeasy in Soho. To clarify, the food was fine, but the service was so horrifying that we didn’t tip—something I don’t think any of us has ever done. I mean, when the service is bad, I tip 15% and call it harsh.


We were escorted downstairs, where the hostess told us to walk “that way.” We walked through a sweltering hot kitchen where the chefs were shaving meat from stakes. As a vegetarian, I did not appreciate that, but to each her own. On the other side of the kitchen, we waited to be acknowledged, which took some time. Eventually, a hostess came over and told us to “wait here.” We stayed where we were, and she huffily commanded, “Sit down!”


Finally, another hostess came over and took us to a table for two crammed against a wall.

“Is this also ours?” my father asked, pointing to the table for two next to us, which was less than an inch away from ours. There were four of us.

“No,” said the hostess.

Immediately, our waitress came over and told us they had sparkling, still, or tap water. “Can I start you with sparkling or still?” she asked rhetorically. We asked for tap. Then she began rattling off appetizers at lightening speed. “Can we have a minute?” we asked. She said yes, and gave us an extra 19 minutes for free.


Twenty minutes later, the waitress returned to take our orders.


The waitress delivered our drinks and appetizers. Interestingly, the guacamole we had ordered seemed to be of the deconstructed variety: some chopped tomatoes accompanied by slices of avocado. Later, we were charged separately for these items.

Approximately one minute later, a server came to deliver our entrees. Remember, we were four people sitting at a two-person table. “Are you finished?” the server asked my mom.

“No,” she said. She took a bite, and as her fork was raised, the server took the plate out from underneath her.

“Are you finished?” he asked my brother and dad.

“No,” they said.

The server sighed. “I don’t have anywhere to put these.”

While shoving plates around, he held a wet cutting board over me and dripped water in my lap.

“Excuse me,” I said.

He looked over. “It’s just water,” he said.

Well, I did prefer that to hot lard, but even better would be if he could drip nothing on my lap.

After the server slammed down the rest of the items, he walked away in a huff.


…was something we did not order. However, the waitress presumptuously brought over four plates and forks and set them on the table.

After she brought over the check, she stood over us and watched us pay. We paid exact change in cash, because no way were these people getting a tip. As we stood up, the waitress reached across us and scooped up the money, before we had even walked away from the table.

Other Notes

°This restaurant has a bouncer.

°Every employee who passed our table gave us side eye, like we were going to steal something.

°My plate had crap on it, but since that has happened at other restaurants, I decided it wasn’t crucial to the story.

°We went to a lovely whiskey bar and sat outside after this. A homeless man came over and asked us for money. When we said no, he threatened us with eternal damnation for approximately five minutes, until the bartender chased him away.

Strangers dry-humping on the subway

It was a crowded train. Like, the kind of crowded where I almost considered waiting for the next one, but also really wanted to go home. So I braved it, and found myself crammed next to a young couple.

I didn’t know it was a couple at first, but that became obvious imminently, when the guy maneuvered his arms around the girl prom-style as she grasped the pole—a tremendous fete, I assure you, considering how packed the train was.

At the next stop, someone got up from a seat, and the guy made a beeline for it to hold down the fort for his lady friend. She sat down, and he stood above her as they continued to hold hands. They also continued to hold hands as he shouted into his phone. Somehow, he gets service underground, and I never do. Also, I don’t dry-hump my boyfriend on the subway. Two ways in which we differ.

She briefly let go of his hand to run her fingers over a minor scrape on his wrist. Then she brought it to her lips. Understandable—he had clearly suffered greatly.

He pulled her up and sat down in her seat, but lest you think chivalry is dead, he pulled her down on top of him. She sat in his lap for the next three stops.

By the way, it’s not like they were fifteen. They were in their early twenties at least. Maybe it’s understandable that they needed the closeness after spending their days apart at their respective offices. That’s like eight hours.

Lyft Strangers

Lyft, Uber, Trump, and how they all conspired to ruin my boots

“Why aren’t you smiling?” my Lyft driver asked me.

“Because you’re ugly,” I said.

No, I didn’t really say that. That’s what my friend suggested I respond, though.

Really, I wasn’t smiling because he had made me walk two blocks in the rain, after I had input my exact address into the app. I was wearing new boots. Then he made me listen to Bollywood music and asked if I liked it.

I wish I could still use Uber. It wasn’t better, exactly, but the drivers were a little less chatty IMO. I like my space. (If you don’t know why I’m boycotting Uber, read this.)

My trip to the West Coast yielded some really fruitful encounters with Lyft drivers, including a Hispanic (relevant to the story) man who began the ride by denouncing Trump. I was on board, duh, until he suggested that Hispanic people don’t deserve what our fearless leader is doling out, but maybe Muslim people do. That’s where he lost me. By the time he was saying he couldn’t wait for Trump’s impeachment so we could have Pence, I was all the way on the other side of the map.

Yeah, I can’t wait for the giant party that will be Mike Pence’s reign.

Also, how about Bill O’Reilly? Just while we’re loosely connected to the topic of sexual harassment. My real question is why are we surprised? I was under the impression we knew he had been doing this for years. Maybe I was just confusing him with Rush Limbaugh. All these Republican propagandists are the same to me.

Beauty and the Beast - strangsonthesubway

A trip to the movie theater and a reminder about misogyny

Last week, two friends and I went to the movies to see Beauty and the Beast, a charming childhood tale of bestiality and Stockholm Syndrome. (I still love you, Belle!) The cartoon version is the first movie I remember seeing in a theater, so it holds a special place in my heart. Also, in spite of the message it sends about how if you are kidnapped it’s actually pretty cool to fall in love with your captor, because then you will become a princess, and also how if your captor is a dangerous animal he is probably really a handsome prince with daddy issues, and also how Stranger Danger isn’t really a thing and you should invite crazy old women into your house the way I did when I was 11 (hey, just like the Beast!), and it happened to be a Jehovah’s Witness who tried to convert me, and when my parents came home my mom was like, “Why do you have this brochure about Jesus? What exactly did you do while we were gone?” (starting to realize this movie is actually very problematic)…it’s actually a pretty awesome movie. Just ask my brother, who had to listen to me play the theme in a loop two weeks ago.

We met the very charming ticket taker, who gave us each once overs, because he was all about inclusion.

“Wow,” he said, like he’d never seen anything with two X chromosomes before. “I’d take any one of you.” Lucky us!

He also hinted at a potential foursome, which was super tempting, but one of my friends is married, and also we had a movie to see. If only we hadn’t each shelled out $20 for the tickets. While we’re on the topic, when did movies get so expensive?

Unfortunately, by the time we left the theater Prince Charming was gone, so we weren’t able to take him up on his generous offer.

American Boy Doll Logan

Mattel launches my new nemesis, American Boy Logan

You saw him in a bar.  It was open mic night, and he was playing an original song he wrote on a napkin when inspiration struck. It was about his first love who left him for his best friend. She stole his heart and also his truck. Now he can’t seem to get his head out of the bottle except to debut his new material at the local dive bar that has a Bud + whiskey shot special for $6…because who would miss that deal. His name was Hipster Ken. I mean Logan. He was the first American Boy doll.

By now you may have heard the news. Mattel, makers of the American Girl dolls that taught us about history and girl power, has debuted a new kid on the block. His name is Logan, and he is the first American Boy.

This is part of Mattel’s big diversity marketing effort, and I’m so glad it’s happening, because white, sandy-haired men are so underrepresented in American culture.

Let’s read the description, shall we?

Meet Logan, Tenney’s bandmate and drummer! The 18″ Logan doll has gray eyes that open and close, and short brown hair. Logan’s unique hand positioning helps him hold instruments! He arrives in a plaid button-down shirt, a T-shirt, jeans, underwear, and shoes.

I am so excited about Logan’s unique hand positioning, because then he’ll be able to to do things girls can’t. Difficult, talented-people things, like holding instruments and generally being better than you.

Tenney, for the record, looks like this.

The 18″ Tenney doll has light brown eyes that open and close, freckles on her nose, and long, curly blond hair. Tenney’s unique hand positioning helps her hold her guitar, banjo, and pick! She arrives in a graphic tee, denim vest, faux-leather skirt, and ankle boots. Also included are a woven bracelet and the Tenney paperback book.

You may think Tenney is a popular girl, but really she’s an artsy girl. The giveaway is her graphic tee. In this life, you can either have a lot of friends or a lot of talent, but not both, ladies. That’s just greedy.

You may think Logan and Tenney are going to get together someday, but probably he’s going to keep her at arm’s length and repeatedly tell her their friendship is too important to him and he doesn’t want to ruin what they have. Meanwhile, Logan will sleep with Tenney’s best female friend, but will never call her his girlfriend because he’s not into labels. At some point, Tenney will find out that Logan is sleeping with her friend (let’s call her Haley), and Tenney and Logan will have a big fight and eventually start hate-kissing in the rain. Then they will have sex, and Logan will think it’s out of pity and Tenney will think they’re in love, and then Logan will ignore her the next day and it will destroy their friendship. Then Logan will move onto a new girl, not Haley, who will no longer be friends with Tenney because she slept with the guy Haley liked, but some new chick he met at open mic night who wears crop tops and has a tiny stud in her nose. Tenney will pretend everything’s fine, but it’s not, and Logan will pretend not to understand because HE TOLD HER THEIR FRIENDSHIP WAS TOO IMPORTANT TO HIM and thought she understood. Anyway, now they are no longer even Facebook friends.

So let’s all congratulate Mattel on this great push for diversity!

2017: new year, new president

I have some bad news for you. There will be some celebrity deaths this year.

2016 was a bad year. The United States elected an orange reality star who is packing his cabinet with a new flavor of bigot each week as its president. (I know. I’m still in denial, too.) I’m sure you’ve been through some things this year, too. I know Hillary Clinton (#stillwithher), that treasure of a fine woman (in the words of my drunk brother on election night, “my queen”), has probably had it the roughest. (Putin, on the other hand, seems to have had a grand year.) Personally, I’ve been through some things, too. My grandfather, who was not a celebrity, died, and my best work friend, who is also not a celebrity, moved across the country. I’m ready for a new year.

So let’s ignore the fact that we’re kicking off 2017 by actually making this monster our president (also, fun fact: January 20th is my terrible ex boyfriend’s birthday) and instead think about the good things that will happen this year. Like The Bachelor! It premieres tomorrow, and the contestant list is packed with dolphin-lovers and Little Mermaid fans. The latter makes sense (Ariel is the best Disney princess. Don’t even talk to me if you disagree.), while the former is a bit perplexing–did I miss the dolphin memo? This is like bubble dresses all over again.

Also, I’ve set up some brand-new resolutions.

  1. Send daily thoughts of love and support to Ruth Bader Ginsberg.
  2. Be more tolerant of people who don’t watch The Bachelor and maybe don’t want to to hear my play-by-play recaps; they know not what their lives are lacking.
  3. Commit to regular meals, instead grazing out of containers throughout the day (last year’s resolution broke down a bit)
  4. Limit my crying about how this is the last full year of my 20s (yeah, I discovered that harsh reality) to one 20-minute session once a month

Happy 2017! It will only be the age of Trump if we let it.