Don't Mince Words



These little town blues 0

Posted on June 27, 2015 by Marna
Not a dick pic!

Not a dick pic!

Nothing makes me feel more alive than visiting New York. It also gives me an excuse to wear all my black t-shirts.

After I arrived in Penn Station, I helped five people with directions. I told the last person I had not lived there since 2003. “Wow, you just really look like you know what you are doing…like you live here.” That’s probably the best compliment you can give someone who has moved away and misses elements of New York.

I was above ground less than 30 minutes, walking down 14th Street, when a guy six feet away from me says, “Wow, you are a MILF. I need to get to know you.” While I am no mother, I will happily own the F part of that acronym. We exchanged numbers, I suggested getting a drink, and he said he’d text me (like a good Millennial would).

This small act by a horny Brazilian boy reminded me what I miss most about New York – real men. Men who do not hide behind screens but actually nut up and talk. It’s refreshing. I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve heard similar stories from girlfriends who visit New York. Invisible in one place – noticed in another.

I didn’t expect boy to text me, but he did the next day. We didn’t connect for that drink and he said he was “sorry” that I didn’t live there.

Several days later I was back in Richmond trying to enjoy my first Tinder date. It was over when he whipped out his phone to show me photos all his grandchildren. I’ve reconciled where I live. I haven’t quite accepted the dating pool I have to work with.

Cool Aunt Marna Camp 2013 0

Posted on July 06, 2013 by Marna

When my nephew, Sam, was two he came to stay with me in Brooklyn for a week.  He liked going to happy hours and museums so much, he came back in 2002.  Unfortunately, his younger brother, Dave, never made it because I moved to California and the soul brothers moved to Denmark and then China.  This summer I went on location to New England to test they hypothesis that my camp is more fun than hookers and blow.

After I recovered from a red eye, we took the train to New York.  Did you know the presence of electric plugs to charge devices makes kids happy?  Me either, but if they can continue to get their game on, the when-will-we-be-theres stop.  We walked from Grand Central up to Central Park.  The first official stop was Dunkin’ Donuts so Dave could get his #4 and I could get coffee.  Then we had to stop at the Apple Store to touch stuff.  Because that’s what ‘tweens and teens want to do.  We took a quick handsome cab around Central Park before walking down to the diner around the corner from my old Hell’s Kitchen apartment.  We made the Wicked matinee where Sam stated, “wow, these are good seats.” and I replied “I’m no cheap, boring aunt.”  Of course, during intermission, the Twizzlers, M&Ms, and other treats made me realize this was not going to be a inexpensive adventure.  These kids eat like every 2.5 hours.  Jacked up on candy and more bacon cheeseburgers, the soul brothers were able to power through two Aunt Marna happy hours where I was able to enjoy my friends and my favorite food group – beer.  The next day, after more museums and bacon cheeseburgers and pizza, the boys realized there’s a lot to do in New York.  We trained back and they made their list for the next time.

I had a few recovery days which are now hazy.  I remember more ice cream.  More cheese burgers.  More pizza.  And boys in their rooms with the doors shut.  It’s hard to make them stop whatever they do in there, but I managed to get them to figure out what they wanted to do at the Boston Science Museum so we could get our geek on.

While technology has changed, what I discovered this summer is kids haven’t changed.  They’d be happy staying in their rooms playing Minecraft all day.  if it were me, and it was the 70’s, I’d rather be in my room reading Judy Blume and T.C. Andrews books.  So, I get it.  I think the boys had fun with Cool Aunt Marna.  And they did giggle when I nicknamed them “Little Bitches” because the whining and the “do we have to” and “I don’t know” just made me laugh at them more.

Am I more fun than hookers and blow?  My friends would say so, but the soul brothers would probably say I’m OK, but not as fun as computer games.  Next summer, guys. You wait.

3,000 miles later, I can see for miles 1

Posted on October 24, 2010 by Marna

I was recently told that I was living my own romantic comedy.  Dot com-crash-to-Wall Street girl leaves New York for Los Angeles for personal growth.  Discovers the emotionally unevolved, focuses on health, gets laid off more, and then moves to a small town where she has a job and a sensible romantic life.

This is finally my fucking movie.  Finally.

Living in New York was truly one of the greatest experiences of my life.  I connected with a lot of smart and wonderful people.  But I also saw the evils.  I lived in fear for nearly nine months after I turned a dirty cop in to internal affairs.  After 9/11, I figured if I was going to get whacked by the mob, it would be a better death than burning in a building.  Needless to say, it all worked out and I happily left corporate slavery and chose LA as my backup plan when San Francisco was still in flames from the dot com bomb.

As I continue to look forward, it’s easy to reflect with the benefit of hindsight.  And I am one of those people who wouldn’t change anything in my life because even the bad stuff shapes the future path.  All those awful Los Angeles dates served some purpose (I know what I don’t want).  My odd projects, contracts and jobs all taught me that no workplace is perfect (I know what I don’t want).  Working is a fool’s errand.  You just have to try to pick your fools wisely.

The same holds true with dating.  When I was in the beginning interview stages in Santa Barbara, I went to the online personals to get a sense of the mid-40s dating scene in Santa Barbara.  Call it socio-romantic ethnography.  My random how-much-does-it-suck inquiry revealed dating there wasn’t much different than anywhere else:  crazy ex’s, drama, kids, liars, and the chemically altered.  And from that honest baseline, I developed a friendship with SB Man through a very, very long interview process.

But that’s not all.

My girlfriends in Los Angeles squealed when I told them that I saw SB Man four times in one week after I moved.  “It takes about six weeks to rack up that kind of time with one man in LA.  No one wants to make that kind of time commitment for fear of looking….available,” one admitted.

In New York, you knew your life was good when the trifecta of job-apartment-love was in balance.  Here, I know that my patience and perseverance prevailed.  I just don’t know how the movie is going to end.

  • About Marna

    Marna’s writing career started as a Pentagon intern. Early exposure to $500 toilet seat press releases made her appreciate creative nonfiction. Now she has more than 25 years of senior-level marketing and communications success working with Fortune 100 companies, government, nonprofits, small businesses, startups, and agencies.

    Stats: 369 Posts, 128 Comments

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