Friday, August 30, 2002


Again I must apologize for the long delay, but work was again busy/hectic this week and finally slowing down today. Time to catch up ... amen!

Here is the buzz on my neck and back. The neck is improving and I don't need to wear that white neck collar anymore. Kind of a bummer ... as I was being offered seats on crowded subways whenever I wore it. Plus, cars would halt at intersections to let me cross and fella's would hold open doors for me. Whoa! I now only have to see the chiropractor once a week, as opposed to three times a week. Only thing is that my chiropractor still hasn't given me the green light about training at gym, just do cardio. Oh well....................

From previous entries in this journal you might recall me talking about Steven [NJ]. Well folks, I told him in an email on Monday [26th] that we just wouldn't suit and to please give me his address so that I could mail back that video/CD. That morning, in a short email, he's telling me to rewatch the video to check out slow motion section. I was like ... is this jerk pulling my leg or what. I told him like three or four times [since 15th] that I DO NOT have a telly at home and can only use office facilities on the weekends. So when I told him we didn't suit in email, I also mentioned ... "ARE YOU DENSE". You are not listening to me, never have, yada yada. He writes back that he's not dense, but was anxious I view tape again [Duh! Legend in his own mind!] ... gave me address ... said he wasn't interested in me as I wasn't his type. Then he follows it up with "I hope you know what you want out of life ... good luck". I wrote back saying ... "A word of advice, when you date a lady listen to her". I also mentioned "I do know what I want in life and its not you!" Basically he's a rude, inconsiderate, competitive person who is looking for a doormat type of woman. This gal is no doormat chick!!!!

On a brighter note ... I got to meet up with two gals from IRWT Yahoo Group, which I've belonged to since January. Melissa and Jodie had been doing the "driving vacation tour" around parts of the US to visit other members of IRWT. Before hooking up with me they'd visited Seany in Toronto and they left NYC last evening. Next stop ... Michigan to visit Kim. Anyhow ... we chatted on the phone Tuesday evening and then got together for lunch on Wednesday, August 28th, at my office. Their both fun, interesting, cool gals in their early 30s. Melissa brought her digital camera and we did pix scene. Naturally we talked about Pearl Jam, the concerts we went too, how we got hooked on the band and gossip about IRWT. [Meeting them and having a good laugh really broke up a stressful work day for me.] Melissa brought me some goodies that Seany gave her in Toronto. One was a video on the Seattle grunge scene called HYPE! and the other was a CD bootleg of Pearl Jam gig in Italy [1993]. I'll be watching the video up to my parents place when I visit them for the Labor Day holiday weekend. The CD totally rocks! Melissa, Jodie and I also talked about NYC stuff, men and the 9/11 disaster.

Gotta jet for now ... just seen the time and I have to haul my butt to post office to mail bills. Have a happy, safe Labor Day holiday weekend. Remember to keep rocking in the free world! Peace!

Saturday, August 24, 2002

Buenos Dios Mi Amigo's!

Mucho apologies for the long delay. Once again it was a busy work week ... plus I was feeling abit out of it from the chiropractor treatments. The neck and back are slowly improving, plus I can go for longer periods without wearing the white neck brace/collar. As for working out at the gym ... most of that is "on hold" until the chiropractor gives me the green light. In the meantime, he says I can do cardio and stretches. The cardio usually includes power walking on the treadmill and a session on the stationary bike. I'd get abit depressed if I couldn't do any gym work, so the cardio suffices for now.

Back on August 15th, when I had my lunch date with Steven, he lent me a video and cd. The CD is by a group called the "Mighty Bosstones". I'd never heard of them before and Steven's really into them. I finally got around to listening to it on the 18th. Its not too bad ... has some cool basslines & sax grooves ... but overall not my cup of java. [Steven's expressed his dislike of Pearl Jam and he ain't earning no brownie points with comments like that.] Steven wants to do lunch again this coming week and receive his items back. I'd rather mail them to him and be done with it. On reflection he just doesn't do it for me. He's an okay kind of guy, but I'm not attracted to him. Last time he called me at work, he nagged me about watching the video [ie: skydiving] and I told him [3rd time] my telly broke. Only way I can watch it is if I borrow office facilities. Can only do that on weekends when no one is around. Its like ... hey buddy ... I'm talking here but your not listening to me! Anyhow ... enough about that ... the video was kick ass cool. [Watched it today at office.] One of Steven's passions is skydiving and something I've been wanting to try for many years. I've done parasailing several times up to Lake George and I love it. Skydiving is a different kettle of fish, yah know. Well, he had someone video tape his first experience in skydiving. Now unless you have lots of training you cannot go solo. Newbies skydive in tandem with a pro. Well folks, I was mostly watching the "pro" who was Steven's tandem dude. Oh my god!!!! He was so f--king cute!!!! Sigh! Watched video twice to visually enjoy the skydiving experience [totally rocks] and look at that pro. At end of video it gave out info of the skydiving place [] in New Jersey. You better believe I wrote it down and someday I'll go skydiving [ie: spring 2003]. Naturally with a cute pro who'll be my tandem dude. Yeah!

Well folks, I've babbled on long enough. Time to sign off and go make dinner. Keep rocking in the free world ... Peace!!!

Monday, August 19, 2002

Greetings & Salutations!

I know I said I'd be more regular with this online journal ... but last week was sooooo busy at the office with meetings, projects, etc. On top of that I had a few commitments, then my lower back started acting up and its fine now. Then on Thursday morning I woke up and left side of my neck was in pain. Could barely move my head ... more on that shortly ... followed by Thursday at lunch time I had my first date with a chap since end of December. Hum ... what shall I talk about first ... date or neck situation?

I'll bore you all with the date scenerio. Met the chap [Steven - age 48 & works for Mayor of NYC Office] via Yahoo Personnals the week of August 5th. We corresponded for awhile before exchanging work numbers on August 12th. On my Personnal ad I state my preference for chaps in their 30s, but their responses are more like "lets have fun" instead of wanting to date and settle into a steady relationship. Then it goes to the other spectrum, where I get reponses from chaps in their 50/60s who only want a fling or are looking for step-mom material. Dating in NYC is not a picnic, not by a long shot. So I was like lets give Steven a try [he's been divorced for several years]. Our first phone call lasted 20 minutes and he did most of the talking about Wall Street matters [ie: stock market, etc]. He later apologized for hogging the phone line and said he was nervous. He finally asked me out for a lunch date, which we scheduled for August 15th, in my neck of the work woods. The day arrives and its hot outside so I wear a nice dress. Steven meets me in my office building lobby looking very sweaty and slightly hunched over. I'm like ... "oh dear" ... then I mentally told myself to give the chap a chance. Yah know ... don't judge a book by its cover. So we walk up the street to THE VINE restaurant. Steven is walking like some old dude and to find out he's got sciatica [spelling?] troubles but refuses to get treatment. Geez! Duh! At lunch he talked alot, has poor table manners and was abit show-offy with paying the bill. The topics we talked about ... yes ... I interjected my thoughts into conversation whether he liked it or not ... were interesting. I'll give him one more date try and then decide. I'm not attracted to him, but he is an interesting person. Oh well.................stay tuned.

I'll be back shortly ... I'm soooo hungry and need to buy lunch. Will finish todays journal entry in half hour. :-)

Hey all ... I'm back and happily noshing on brown rice/avocado/squash/zucchini/feta cheese. Total yummers!

Now on to the neck/back situation, which developed last week. Actually this has been going on and off since my car accident in 1980. Thats when the neck and back troubles really developed. Thru most of the 1980s I'd visit the chiropractor for adjustments and treatment. After awhile it got to be too expensive and I couldn't cover the costs. Not all companies medical benefits cover chiropractor visits. So for 14 years I went without seeing the chiropractor. Back in May 1999 I somehow hurt my lower left back while picking up a glass of water at work. Yeah, I know, these things do happen to me. Sigh! I was out of commission for awhile and couldn't do my usual gym or trainer routine for almost a month. Most annoying. Well, the back got better, but it still bothers me now and then. Last week it bothered me for four days. Ugh! Then after that clears up I wake up Thursday morning and left side of my neck is wacked out. Somehow I get thru Thursday and Friday morning its worse. I'm thinking ... does E&Y insurance cover chiropractor. Yep, they do and there is even a chiropractor in my Brooklyn neighborhood under United Healthcare. Hurray! Made an appointment [only one available was at 4:15pm] and my bosses were very understanding about my leaving office early that day. Their like ... "get well & soon"! Dr Abott did a consultation, x-rays, exam and then treatment. OMG!!!!!!!! When he cracked my neck I thought I was going to pass out. It hurt so much. I started hyperventilating and crying. Finally got my composure, dressed, put on white neck brace, paid my bill, made another appointment and went home. Took some Advil and waited for the pain to subside before doing my own wet heat treatment. My friend Larry helped me with grocery shopping and I had to cancel my session with personal trainer on Saturday. No working out at the gym for awhile. Sigh! Second visit to chiropractor on Saturday afternoon resulted in more wonderful heat therapy, massage and back/neck cracking. Yes, it was painful a second time, tho not as bad as first time. Sad to report I cried that time too. I have a low thresh-hold to pain.

Rest of the weekend I relaxed, read, did laundry, wet heat therapy, got a manicure, listen to music, eat lots of fruit, sleep and make phone calls. Now its Monday and I'm back at work, but seeing the chiropractor for a third time at 6pm tonight. Stay turned for more news.................

Monday, August 12, 2002

Greetings Net Surfers!

The lovely break in mini heatwave blitz ended yesterday. Sigh! Its back to this damn hot and humid weather. I am so looking forward to the early days of Autumn, as well as Indian Summer of October. Yeah! That's my kind of weather! Received the Con Ed bill on Friday and my first thought was ... OUCH! I've got to get me a new, energy efficient air conditioner, but will wait until Winter when there on sale. Okay ... enough prattling on that and on to weekend happenings.

Friday started out as a not so good day at the office, but I won't go into that. Lets just say the "situation" caused by four jackass frat boy employees is being dealt with by upper management and its not in their favor. HA!!!!!!! In the afternoon I got permission to attend an exclusive, free E&Y function at the Museum of Natural History. Left office at 3:45pm and headed uptown on the subway to westside of Manhattan. Hadn't been to this particular museum since 1996 and wasn't sure where main entrance was. Finally found it ... went thru security ... up the stairs and entered the "Baseball As America" exhibit, which is being sponsored by E&Y. We employees were treated not only seeing the exhibit for free [general public wasn't allowed] ... but also got to enjoyed ballpark snacks with soda or water. The baseball exhibit [all items from Cooperstown museum] was wonderful and spent a delightful 1 1/2 hours viewing all the displays. Left around 6pm as the museum itself was closing for the day. Overall ... being an E&Y employee has been a good experience.

On Saturday I went up to Yonkers, NY to do my volunteer bit at the ferret rescue shelter. Was there from 1pm to 5pm working with Joanne and her granddaugther Toni. On this visit I learned how to clean ferret ears. Its a tricky business, as the wee ones don't like it. So you have to scuff them by the neck and then swab their little ears with Q-tips and a special cleaner. Since my last visit to shelter on July 13th, Joanne had adopted out a few furkids to good homes and taken in some new rescues. Whenever new ones come into the shelter turf, during play time, the regular furkids will bully the newbies to show who's boss of the area. I was breaking up many such turf tussles on Saturday. Whew! After awhile Joanne and I put the fuzzies back in their respective cages so I could wash the floors and put down fresh newspapers in poopy areas. Then it was time to take out the six geriatics for their play time. These poor wee ones are very old and have difficulty in getting around. Their usually very sweet and docile. I went to the last cage to take out an ancient female [over 10 years of age] and my hands met with a curled up, tiny, cold body. I called out for Joanne and she could tell by the sound of my voice that something was wrong. I said to her ... "she's very cold". Joanne told me to step aside and took out the poor dead ferret. It upset us both. [Don't worry, she doesn't throw them in trash, but takes them to be cremated.] Joanne instructed me to totally clean out the cage, put in new bedding, poopy tray, fresh food in dish and we'd put a different ferret in it. After all was completed and set to normal, Joanne took me to train station for trip back to NYC. Quite a day............

Thursday, August 08, 2002

Greetings & Salutations All!

Two terrific Pearl Jam e-pals of mine [Erica & Sarah] also have online journals. There both really cool, funky web sites that reflect two groovy gals. [I've been corresponding (emails & phone) with Erica & Sarah since the Fall of 2000. Back when Pearl Jam was touring & they'll be touring again in 2003. Yeah!] Check out their "online journals" today:

Who knows ... maybe our "online journals" will inspire others to join in and create their own. Seize the moment & rock on!

Wednesday, August 07, 2002

Good Morning NYC!!!!

That damn seven day heatwave broke up late Monday night. Amen! I woke up yesterday morning to a lovely, sunny, cooler day. Had lunch with Anni, an ex co-worker and it was lovely sitting out in a park noshing on sushi. Anni is about 3 1/2 months preggers and was telling me all about her latest "trials & food cravings".

I'm so looking forward to this coming Saturday, as I'll be heading up to Yonkers to do volunteer work at a Ferret Rescue Shelter. I've been interested in wee furkids for several years and I couldn't even begin to tell you how it came about. All I know is I love the little critters and they'd make good pets. Sadly I cannot own a pet ferret in NYC due to the nasty "ban" law [ie: ex-Mayor Rudy can be such a prick at times]. Also, my landlady does not allow tenants to have pets or children in our apartment building. I'm glad about the children part, as they can get very noisy & unruly, but regarding the pets was a bummer. In the meantime I was checking out ferret websites and even have a ferret calendar in my kitchen. From Barnes & Noble I purchased several books to read up on the fuzzies [ie: care, feeding, etc].

Last year during July 4th holiday weekend I was visiting my family in upstate NY. Mom and I went over to Saratoga Mall to do shopping and I checked out the pet shop. They had three little furkids and I got to play with one for 10 minutes! Well that experience got me even more hooked. Finally, in January of this year, I made more inquiries about doing volunteer work at ferret shelters near NYC. A nice lady from a New Jersey based ferret shelter told me about Joanne Dreeban who runs the Ferret Rescue Shelter in Yonkers, NY. Gave me her phone number, email address and the rest is history. My first visit to the shelter was in early February and I've been going once a month since then. It brings me such joy to be working and playing with the shelter furkids. My duties include ... cleaning poopy trays [ie: cages & floor], filling up water bottles, bathing/brushing ferrets, mopping the floors, socializing with ferrets, cleaning cages, etc, etc. I love it! There are several fuzzies that are favorites of mine ... such as ... Sweet Pea, Oliver, Emily, Spats, Bouncy Bear, Raisin Boy and Badger. That last ferret got adopted by a nice family a few months ago. Occasionally some ferrets do get adopted into good homes and then Joanne rescues more. At any given time there are about 20 to 30 ferrets at the shelter.

Some ferret web sites to check out:"

Monday, August 05, 2002

Good Afternoon All!

Well its feeding time at the zoo and this lioness has some free time to update her journal. Rock on!

Had a good weekend [after that kick butt thunderstorm ripped thru NYC Friday evening] and got to see some really groovy things. First of all, the weather was a scorcher. Oh baby was it hot, hazy and oh so humid. On top of that I got my "monthly" two days early. For me the monthly and hot weather do not mix well. Enough said...........

On Saturday I headed up to southern CT to spend the day with my good friend Katherine. [We've been friends since our early elementary school days.] First we went out to lunch and had some yummy sushi [followed by girl talk]. Silly me didn't quite do the ordering correctly and we ended up with double California and Alaska rolls. Even so ... it was tasty. [One cannot do the "doggie bag" thang with sushi.] Went back to her house briefly before walking to the SoNo Art Festival. This is such a terrific festival in the older section of South Norwalk with booths displaying paintings, photography, jewelry, clothing, sculpture, etc. Plus there is free entertainment by bands, singers and dancers ... as well as the food stalls. Both Katherine and I have enjoyed going to this particular festival for a number of years. There is a similar one held in early to mid October in our old hometown of Pound Ridge, NY [Westchester County]. Like everyone else at the festival on Saturday, we sweated alot. I had water, ice cream and a banana/berry smoothie. Walked back to Katherine's house to chill abit, then hit a grocery store before dropping me off at Stamford train station. Soon as I got home around 9pm I immediately jumped into a cool shower to wash up. Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh ... felt so good!

On Sunday I did chores around the apartment, worked out at the gym and then at 6pm met up with my friend Wendy in Manhattan. We had a nice dinner at Times Square Cafe, which is located at 234 West 42nd Street. Food [Pre-Fixe meal] was pretty decent and affordable, which is always a perk. This cafe is located [second & third floor] in the same building as the AMC25 movie theater complex. After dinner Wendy checked her email at a nearby Internet place. I've never seen so many computer stations in one spot and you pay $1 for the first 35 minutes. When done with that we walked back to AMC25 cinema to see the 9:15pm showing of "Star Wars - Attack of the Clones". The seating is stadium style and seats are nice/cushy. Sweet! My first time seeing the film, but in Wendy's case it must be her tenth or fifteenth time. I loved the movie! Yoda kicks butt and Ewen [Obi-Wan] is very dishy. The fighting, chasing and battle scenes were excellent. Wonderful visuals and even tho I loved the ensembles [outfits] that Senator Amadala wore the "love scene" were stilted and weak. I've loved the Star Wars films ever since I saw the first one in 1977.

Well folks, thats it for this entry. Oh, almost forgot, in the mail delivery on Friday I received the watercolor painting items I'd ordered two months ago. I've been dabbling in watercolor painting since June 2000 and its groovy. Recently I took up pastels and learning how to do that art media.

Must get back to work, as lunch hour is almost over. See you all soon in the land of Net............................

Friday, August 02, 2002

Good Morning All! Another hot, hazy, humid day in ole NYC! I do not like it when its so damn ugly outside. Waiting for subways to show up on the platforms is brutal. The weather report says tomorrow will be abit cooler. I hope so. . . . .geez!

Got some interesting stuff to share with you all. I've recently visited a cool web site on Kabalarian Philosophy. They take your birth name and tell something about yourself. Its sort of like astrology, zodiac or chinese horoscope. In my case [see below] it was weird ... cause what they had to say about me was 85% correct. Mon dieu!

Your first name of Charlene has given you a quick-minded, sensitive nature. It gives you a creative ability in art, music, singing, or fancywork and an appreciation for refined surroundings. Your sociable nature expresses affection, kindness, and thoughtfulness to the extent that it is difficult for you not to be affected by others and governed by your emotions, rather than by logic and reason. As you respond to love and encouragement from others, your romantic and dreamy nature can easily lead you into love affairs. Your desire for peace at any price can result in going out of your way to avoid arguments and confrontation or hurting the feelings of others. Also, budgeting can be a problem as you enjoy spending money and can easily ignore being practical.

Those of you who know me very well know that I love to read and that my interests are eclectic. Listed below are some groovy books that I've read over the last four months or so. Check it out!

E.M. Remarque ... All Quiet On The Western Front
Diane Johnson ... Lesser Lives
Charles Spencer ... The Spencers
Peter Mayle ... French Lessons
James Thurber ... Thurber Country
Richard Bach ... Air Ferrets Aloft
Kim Schilling ... Ferrets for Dummies
James Thurber ... Lanterns & Lances
S.H. Adams ... Alexander Woollcott "His Life & His World"
P.G. Bahn ... World Archaeology
Daniel Quinn ... Ishmael

That last book I highly recommend, as it totally blew me away. Big time! Its got me doing some serious thinking on many topics and looking at life [and the world] differently. At the moment, I'm currently reading "The First World War" by John Keegan. Fantastic!

Gotta jet..................Peace!

Thursday, August 01, 2002

Oh My Gosh! I cannot believe I'm doing this ... an online journal. Whoa! One of those leaps into 21st Century Internet technology. Well folks ... I have Erica and Sarah [two totally cool gals who are into PJ] to thank for giving me a gentle shove in this direction. I'll try to be faithful to this endeavor and not leave many "wide gaps" between entries.

As I type this first entry I'm noshing on some yummy sushi in my comfortably, cool office in the Wall Street area of Manhattan. Baby its warm outside!

Hum ... what to say ... where shall I progress from here. I think a quick review of the work environment. Been working for E&Y since early 2001 and I love it. Great corporation and so far one of the best environments I've ever been involved in. When I first started working at E&Y I was hired as Office Coordinator/Manager for their small downtown office near Stock Exchange/Wall Street. [Duchess Note: Be patient all ... I'll throw in some fun stuff soon ... but first the ground work.] Occasionally I'd be asked to do secretarial duties for the small staff. Mostly the duties were to run the office, keep it stocked in supplies and organize the meetings. This year I'm still Office Coordinator/Manager ... but my secretarial duties have increased to aiding one partner and two senior managers. More challenging work and many changes, which is what I like. Those of you who are reading this "online journal" might be intrigued by my mention of Wall Street area. Yep ... E&Ys small office isn't far from "ground zero" of WTC and the events of 9/11. I'll relate my thoughts on that day in another journal entry. Since 1990 I've been with several companies [ie: WCP, KOLL & JER] of various size, staff, temperment, work, etc. Some of those company experiences were pretty good and others were like being in a never-ending nightmare. My goals for now include doing a great job with E&Y and then moving out of NYC in 2 to 3 years time. E&Y have offices throughout the USA, but I want to stay in the delightful northeast. Time will tell ... so stay tuned for updates.

Lets see ... should I talk abit about me? Hum ... well ... for now I'll just mention my interests and such. Here is the list: photography, reading, cooking, baking, music [more on this topic later], movies, museums, art, european history, theater, travel, antiques, flea markets, shopping, watercolor painting, pastels, working out at gym, ferrets [more on that later]. Oh geez theres more and my mind went blank. Fudge!

On that note ... time to get this "online journal" out to the Internet masses. Talley-ho! Gotta jet.........................