Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Webbing You Now

Hey Everybody,

It's been awhile since I posted, but I think the new to New York thing has worn off. I know, I know.... you are probably thinking I have no more stories. Not really. I have plenty of stories, but the thing is, now, it's a common thing for foolish things to happen. Now my response usually is "that's that New York stuff" or "only in New York" or "really New Yorkers, really". When I first moved here, the first thing I would say is, "I have to put this on the blog or I cannot believe this". The turtle on the leash, the drunk man passed out in the middle of the sidewalk, a man about to do a pole dance in the middle of a packed train in the Bronx. WHEW! The list goes on. For those of you who are just tuning in, check out the prior postings. Long, but crazy. What I want to do is compile this into some sort of mini book series. ... thinking of a title... It Happens: NY Chronicles. Not sure, but I'll keep you posted. 

Anyway, so I'm thinking that the blog should change a bit and can focus not on specifically New York foolishness, but general topics I would talk about anyway. Some of my interest, my musings, my pet peeves... I mean, I am not that interesting for you to care about these things, but I think it's funny. 
For instance: This is my new favorite thing to do. Well, full disclosure, I've always done this, but now, this picture captures it so well. 

My coworkers informed me that I always squint, when encountering this type of thing. It happens more often than it should. I'm just saying! Seriously, it's a running joke at my school now - everyone squints - mostly to be funny and sometimes, just because the words we are hearing does not align with common sense. See, a nice way to put the "S" word. 

The other thing is webbing people. I think the comedy of Kevin Hart is hilarious, not just because he's from Philly, but his act is genuine from what I can tell. So, I now "WEB" people to get them to be quiet or just get a laugh:

Check it out!
To skip to the "WEBBING" story, start at 4:04. The whole thing is funny though!

Alright, see you guys the next time! 

Tammy J - signing out!

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Big Bugs/Angry Drivers

Hey Everybody!

I'm back! Well, we'll see how long, but I had to share this with you. 

In my studio apartment, which I'm just saying is very small. Believe me, if you have read this blog from the beginning, this is not a complaint - I thank God everyday! However, I see this bug that had legs all around it in my 'kitchen area'. So, remember this is a studio. That means the kitchen, dining room, living room and bedroom are all in the same area. Which means this bug is too close for comfort. So, I'm like, "Hold on Jabroni",  took a picture of it, because I have never seen anything like it, until I MOVED TO NEW YORK! Just saying! And then I did a WWF move on this bug, one of "The RoCK" moves, because I smelled what he was cooking and I also could not stand to cook in a kitchen with huge bugs in it and roaming somewhere. So, my sandal, my "ROCK" eyebrow arched and I put that thing to sleep. In my Kevin Hart voice, "you want to go night, night, buggy, you about to go night night, buggy!"

To top off this day - a taxi cab driver hits a cyclist right in front of my school. The cyclist is sitting on the ground and a lady is standing behind him. I asked my security guards if they called the cops, so one of them yells to the cyclist and the lady to see if one of them is calling the cops. The lady yells back, that the cyclist who is still sitting on the ground (not necessarily looking injured) is trying to call the cops, but this guy (the taxi cab driver) keeps yelling at him. So, the taxi cab driver looks at her and starts yelling, "SHUT UP, SHUT YOUR MOUTH, THIS ISN'T EVEN YOUR BUSINESS" The lady yells back with the New York accent, "YEAH, WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO DO, RUN ME OVER TOO". I was done! I was absolutely no help, because I'm watching the exchange, giving my commentary, like, "Ut oh, Ut Oh, UT OH". ROFL. It was too funny. 
The ambulance finally came and that is when and only when the cyclist got up. ROFL. I had to go back to work, so I couldn't commentate the rest of the yelling! 

Alright peoples! 
Night night
See you soon

Tammy J

Thursday, November 14, 2013

I'm back!!!

Hey Friends and Family,

I'mmmmmm baaaacccckkkk!

Yes, I was on a hiatus, but as you know I found a job and it's been almost three months. That is a long time and I've honestly missed sharing my days and weeks with you. There were so many times when I saw something and thought I cannot wait to share this with everyone. Of course I didn't write it down and of course I don't remember. Hence why having a blog is helpful, since my memory could be a lot better. I'm just saying. 
Anyway, what's new with me.

Nothing much, honestly. I'm working hard and now I'm working on my personal self. Meaning getting back to the blog, podcast, business and books. Yes, people. I'm about to do the dang thang

I watched the movie, 12 Years a Slave, and I left asking myself where do I have that "slave mentality". Thinking I can't do this, dumbing myself down to do that, allowing certain things to go on that shouldn't be. How do I dare to make a difference? So, that made me think, where have I dropped the ball and here we are. 
It was a great movie to see, so I would definitely recommend it, but it also allowed me to see how the same things are still going on now. Not with forcible slavery, but the slavery of the mind. It's tight, but it's right. 
We have to change our thinking. 

So, if you want someone to hold you accountable or want to share stories, struggles and encourage others who have the same goals. Join My Accountability Board. The website is here and be sure to go to Facebook and like the page. 

This is a new group, but our goal is 250 users and 100 likes. 

I'll be in touch soon.

Tammy J - Feeling blessed and signing off

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Saturday in Brooklyn

Today was supposed to be a lazy day. School starts on Monday, so I, with my genius timing decide to drive to Walmart. Ha! It looked like Black Friday. Everybody and their mom was there. The shelves were empty and people were more rude than ever. Ok - not sure how many people tried to cut me off in line,  because I've been in New York now for four months, so I've learned my lesson. Now, I'm like - not today homie. The lines were so long, even in the 20 items or less line, that they allowed the home and garden cashiers to take on all customers. I immediately go back there, but this lady, her mother and son decide to bring their two carts, FILLED to the brim and in the process held up the home and garden line for twenty minutes. I of course am standing behind them. Ugh! 
I finally attempt to leave the Walmart parking lot and again, people are attempting to cut me off because I have a small car. Well, not today - There was this van, the ones that you can sleep in and he thinks he is going cut me off. So when I did not allow him to cut me off - he beeps his horn. Well, it's not a regular horn sound. It was like a clown car horn sound that played a stupid tune. He kept pressing that thing and I just kept laughing - like really! It's playing a clown song with every beep.

I get back home and my apartment is on the 7th floor. I was relaxing and yes, not unpacking. I mean- don't ask me how many boxes I have stacked against the wall. Don't ask me why I won't unpack them. I can eat, shower, and sleep. Those are the necessities at the moment. Anyway, all of a sudden, I hear music coming from below me. Hmm, it's not so bad. The bass wasn't that loud. I can handle it - even though I could hear the words. I keep reading my e-book. Then I hear louder music on top of the music coming from below - but this music is coming from outside. It was so loud. So I decided to use my phone to see if I could Shazzam the song. (Shazzam is an app that will allow you to identify the music that is playing). You usually have to be close to the music, people have to be quiet, and the song will display and allow you several ways to either hear the song, buy the song or share it using some sort of social media outlet. So, tell me why, I'm on the 7th floor, windows closed and I am able to use Shazzam the song that is playing outside on the ground level. Smh. It was Chris Brown and the song was Beautiful People - the club remix. Well, thanks East Flatbush for introducing me to the neighborhood.  Although, the apartment building is pretty quiet and they stopped playing the music around 10pm. I'm not mad at that. 

Good night! 

Tammy J. 

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Washing clothes?

Today was the day I decided to wash clothes. Well, I go down stairs to the dungeon and find the washers and dryers. I bought the washer and dryer card, because they no longer accept quarters - which I guess is efficient. But the stupid card cost $3 and they don't take ones or $20's. I guess the car idea makes sense, because who in the world carries around rolls of quarters? 
The washer, all the washers have dirty water in the bottom of them. I think - maybe this is the way it should be and once you get it started the dirty water will go away. Umm, no.
I put my card in all of them and nothing happens. I get the super for the building who is playing his Spanish soap operas loudly in the room next door. This is after he comes into the laundry room to reintroduce himself and let me know that he knows what apartment I'm staying in. That's very observant of you, sir. Now that i need him to do his job, he reluctantly comes to let me know why my card is not working for the washers- he realizes that not just one, two, but all three are not working. He apologizes and says he will call the people and that I can go across the street to wash my clothes. Umm, excuse me? He's waving me over there and says, oh yeah, they have the same system. That's comforting? How about I don't live over there and I don't need security or the super grilling me or escorting me out of the building with dirty clothes. So, I do what any sensible person does - walk across the street and act like I live there. 
They only have one washer working! Makes me feel a whole lot better and their dungeon looks worse than ours. I only washed one load and made my way back to my apt.
I went back to get my clothes - they were still there - thank God. I am leaving the premises with my laundry bag and this guy who is dressed up in maintenance gear is eyeing me suspiciously. I'm like - I'm caught, but at least my clothes are clean. So I hold my head up high and walk across the street - like sir - everybody does it. I've only been here for three days. Lol


Friday, August 23, 2013

No Romance/NY Apt Drama

Call me a hopeless romantic, but does it bother anyone else to have these things plastered in the streets or on trains.

Yes, I am aware that this is a reality, but I'd like to see some advertisements for couple's counseling with a picture of a couple in love and not just for Viagra ads. 
That is just too much. I'm just saying, really? Was this banner necessary?

I'm doing well. Thanks for asking. Currently, I'm on the train on my way to my job to help set up some computers. Yes, I have a job, but I do not officially start until the 9th of September. My job will include career counseling, scheduling and some technical support. This job allows me to do the things I love and explore the things I want. EXCITING STUFF!

I've finished my apartment hunt and I will be moving on the 30th. Yes, I found a studio apartment in Brooklyn about 30 minutes on the train from my job. It will be hard going 
from a townhouse to a studio, but that's the price of moving to lovely New York. There are apartments everywhere and as soon as one listing is posted, is as soon as the listing is gone. Especially in the summer! Literally, an apartment would post and 1 hour later, it would be gone! Sold! Oh and the other things about NEW YORK. They deal with brokers. It's been a while since I've had to search for an apartment, but apparently there are brokers fee's that are equal to the month of rent. Let me break it down. For an apartment that cost $1,500 a month. One could pay the following just to MOVE IN.

  - First Month:                    $1,500
  - Security/Last Month:      $1,500
  - Broker's Fee:                   $1,500 (only if it's equivalent to monthly rent. Some agencies want you to pay 15-18% of the annual fee. That is for one year @ this rent amount, you will pay - $18,000. Depending on the broker, you may pay $2,700 for the broker's fee or @ 18% - #3,240.)

Let's add this up! To move in an apartment, you may have to pay one of the following!

$4,500 with the broker's fee being $1,500
$5,700 with a 15% broker's fee
$6,240 with 18% broker's fee

Please have good credit and you must make 40 x the rent. Meaning, if the rent is $1,500, you will need to make no less than $60,000 a year. Oh, and lets' just say your credit isn't the best - you can get a consigner. This person must make 80x the rent and have a credit score of 700 or more. Who has this kind of money? I don't - that's for sure. I mean, are these people kidding. Who has this kind of credit? 80x the rent. I was speechless on the phone when the realtor told me that. Who makes over $135,000 a year with a credit score over 700? SMH - Sorry, I'm drawing a blank. I'm not sure if I hung up on him or he hung up on me, because my mouth was wide open and I couldn't get a word out. This is a down payment on a house. 

One broker told me that one apartment, which was being renovated at the time would cost me, the first month, last month, security and an 18% broker's fee. Let's not forget that the floor was being redone and I could see outside. I should be able to see outside, if we are on the third floor. I understand the floor is not complete, but I shouldn't be able to see outside, right? I also shouldn't see a cat come from out the floor from the outside. I looked at the broker and the realtor and they just acted like he was the apartment cat. I almost said, does the cat come with the apartment, but thought that he might actually say yes. I mean, really. A cat coming from out the floor. That took the cake. Highway robbery, as my Grandma would say.

Now on to the hassle's of moving. I signed my lease and was told that the apartment needs to be 80% carpeted. I looked at the lady, like are you going to provide the carpet? Are you kidding me? I then ask her if I can hang up pictures. Well, if you know me - I don't hang up pictures - the walls will stay bare for all I care, but I just wanted to see what she was going to say. She says, it's an old lease and she is sure I can hang up pictures. I looked at her, like whatever - rest assure, that if there is a hole in the wall, they'll deduct that from my security deposit - quick!

I won't even complain - I have a place to stay and it's clean!!!! So exciting!

The other thing I realized is that my furniture will not fit into this studio. :-) Therefore, I've been attempting to sell my furniture on Craigslist. The bad part is, most of the furniture is very nice and I've had it for less than a year and then there is the tech stuff, which is still in the box and never used. At this point, I need to sell it, in order to buy new furniture and live until I get paid. Well, here are a list of responses I get from Craigslist.

  • One guys tells me that my brand new TV is on sale on Amazon for $29 more and therefore I shouldn't consider saying it's a sale. (Sir, really. Thanks for sharing that news with me. I appreciate you telling me how to sell my products. It makes my life easier)
  • Another guy asks me if I would trade my new TV for (2) of his new iPads still in the box. (Sir, I can barely sell the brand new TV, $400 less than what I bought it for and you want me to try to sell iPads - I'm good).
Craigslist is a trip. 

As I was riding home from work, I finally got a chance to sit down. A few stops later, this guy sits next to me, talking, looking for napkins to wipe his face, playing with his phone, listening and singing to music. When I say singing, I mean - hand gestures and all. Mind you, we are sitting hip to hip. So, every hand gesture is in my frontal line of site. I put my phone away, because all I could think about was getting stabbed in the throat. Everyone else is looking another way, because you can't meet crazy head on. Well, as he sat, doing his seat interpretation of Prince (The Artist) dances, moving his hands, he spotted a lady (maybe in her 40's) standing there. He stop singing his song and gestures for her to sit down - more like demanded for her to sit down. She shakes her head frantically, like, Heck to the NO. She wasn't going nowhere near that seat. So a younger lady sat down. He proceeds to stand up, but before he does he shouts out -- "Show me some love, strip off your shoes, and take off your socks" and continues doing the standing version of Prince (The Artist) dances or Michael Jackson. He was on his toes and wiggling his hips. I couldn't look at anyone and resisted taking out my phone to record him. Why? Apparently, he was listening to Missy Elliot (4 My People). I had to look it up. We didn't know if he was talking to any of us or not.

Two people down from me, this lady is sitting there and she starts cleaning her nails with her other nails and stuff starts flying and falling the floor. I almost gagged. What in the world is under her nails. I had to look back at my hands in my lap. The guy that was standing in front of her, looked up from his e-reader like, What in the world? I traced the lines in my palms. SMH

Anyway, it's been a day. Had to share.

Will keep you posted on my adventure and the move.

Signing off,

Tammy J

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Could be me

I left my fellowship job around my normal time today, walked to the train station and sat on the platform bench. I’ve let my guard down a little bit, it’s been 3 months in this interesting city - so I can spot crazy from pretty far away now. I sat a couple of seats down awayto a sleeping guy, who one couldn’t probably tell was homeless or not, but he looked a little dingy. I was reading my e-book and then I smelled the guy and realized why the seat was open. I watched him sleep and I noticed his sneakers that were too small and they had feces on the insides. In that moment my heart broke for him. He was just trying to get some rest. I just sat there looking at him, thinking that could be me. What would I look like? How would I go about getting on my feet? What if I felt like I couldn’t? What if I didn’t have family and friends who cared for me? Which station would I sleep at to get rest

My train came and as I walked to the apartment that I share with a couple, I became teary-eyed, because I, honest to God, felt like that could be me. I became very grateful about my room that I can afford to rent, my family who would take me in if I hit rock bottom and my friends who would provide encouragement and a room if needed. These things are extremely valuable, probably priceless. About two weeks ago, I got that message loud and clear. After hearing a rejection about what felt like the 50th job that I’ve applied and interviewed for – I just broke down. All my high hopes, my dreams, my boldness, my ambition – seemed like it came crumbling down. It wasn’t that I did not have the faith that it would happen one day, it was that it did not happen the way I thought and when I thought it should. I became upset – quite upset.

Then I let it go. What’s the worst case scenario? I can move back to Philly and start over. That’s the worst case. It’s not ideal, not treasured and certainly not what I would like to do after being on my own for over 10 years, but if spending time with my family, catching up with old friends, hanging out with my nieces and nephews and ensuring they can say “Auntie Meeka” – then so be it. I had finally resolved within myself, that if my plan does not work out – I will be okay. :-) It took almost three months, but after I left my last interview – I realized it wasn’t just a thought – I realized I was actually okay, if I didn’t get that job. LOL. Crazy feeling, but liberating.

I’ve been out of touch for a few weeks, but you know – NY has been full of surprises and the foolishness has continued, but the only thing that I’d like to share for now is:
  •       I received a job offer – today at 11:20 am 
My brother prophetically told me that a lot of things would come at the last minute back in May and I’ve never forgotten those words – but as it turns out. I received the fellowship placement at the last minute, I was able to secure my room at the last minute and my fellowship ends next Thursday and my last day to rent this room is Aug. 22nd - More last minute stuff.  SMH

Now on to my next adventure – Finding a place to stay. I'm guessing that would be the last minute as well, but again - whatever it is - I will not be anxious. What's the worst case scenerio. My commute will be 1.5 hours traveling from the Bronx to Brooklyn. Not ideal, but I will not complain!

Honestly, I just thank God that I have a place to rest my head, because in case I forgot – everybody doesn’t. Don’t mean to damper your mood, I know these posts are usually funny – but I’m just thankful and no longer bitter or upset about the process. Even the lesson learned. God knows the ways, the path that we should take and even if He doesn’t decide to share the details, it’s for our own good. We just have to be okay with that.

Signing off

~ A Grateful Tammy