Mia: Shaken Not Stirred

The true life stories of a NYC female.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

A mission of God

There’s a middle-aged woman in our neighborhood whose sole mission in life seems to be the spiritual salvation of others. It’s not a bad calling in life when you come to think of it it’s just that there’s a time and place for everything.
My mom and I were standing in line at Rite-Aid waiting to pay for my stuff when the preacher lady who was ahead of me launched a major soul intervention mission. I don’t know what the heck the cashier did to the preacher woman to make her go off but the woman was on a mission….(deep voice here) a mission of God.

Preacher lady : Jesus died for your sins Carmen! Jesus loves you and has put me in your path to make sure you do right Carmen! Carmen you can enter his kingdom in heaven!

The cashier looked around obviously embarrassed that this loud ass woman was drawing attention to them. Carmen decided that her best option was to keep ringing the lady’s stuff up and avoid eye contact but it was too late. The woman was on a roll. She preached a mini sermon in a matter of 2 minutes. All through out the sermon she kept referring to cashier by her name “Carmen”. I guess she was trying to add a personal touch to her sermon. Finally Carmen had had enough….

Cashier : My name is not Carmen.

Preacher lady : What?

Cashier :My name’s not Carmen. My name is Natalie.

She pointed to the name tag on Carmen’s red smock.

Preacher lady : So why does that say Carmen if you’re not Carmen?

Cashier :Because I forgot my uniform and borrowed this one from Carmen.

The preacher lady seemed to doubt the cashier’s story. She glanced in my direction and spotting one of my tattoos and glared at me. I always get that reaction from the older “born agains” one look at my tattoos and they think I’m a child of the corn. I hoped she wouldn’t say anything about my tats because I didn’t want a repeat of last year’s Pathmark episode.

Preacher lady : Carmen don’t be afraid of what these sinners think.

WTF?! How does she know I'm a sinner? Is it written all over me? Damn my cousin Mahmoud and his hash cigarettes!

Preacher lady: I know this is hard for you to hear my message but Carmen I promise you I was put in your path by our lord and savior Jesus to help you.

The cashier handed the lady her change and slid her bagged purchases towards the preacher lady as the lady continued her sermon. Oh crap I thought the sermon is almost done! I wouldn’t be surprised in the lady whips out a bottle of water and baptizes Carmen right here at register number 4.

Cashier:Yeah whatever but my name is not Carmen

and to prove her point she called out to the cashier several registers down….

Cashier:Ay yo tell this lady what my name is!

Cashier #2: Natalie!

Cashier: See my name is Natalie not Carmen.

The preacher lady just stared at Natalie not knowing what to say. I stepped in front of the preacher lady and placed my stuff on the counter…then she spoke…

Mom: Ahhh well I guess that means you’re officially fucked Natalie! Straight pa el carajo ( hell) you’ll go. Mira nena next time you see Carmen let her know Jesus is looking for her ass. In the meantime mija let’s keep this moving… do me a favor and ring this up before you’re consumed by a cloud of fire and sentenced to eternal damnation. I don’t have time to wait til you get out of limbo to do this (pointing to my frizzy curls). My kid needs this conditioner NOW!!

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Posted by @ 11:02 PM
6 comment from: Blogger Ammar456, Blogger J@ckp1ne, Blogger christina/ohio, Blogger DannieS72, Blogger Mia, Blogger Mica,

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Waiting on a friend

It was one of those magical New York nights when the stars and planets are aligned in your favor, and even though the weather was a little hot and humid it was breezy enough that your curls behaved nicely and were not doing the afro puff thing. Life was good.

The evening had started out with a one man show by Rick Cleveland called “My Friend Bill” about his friendship with the former president. One story in particular about Christopher Walken smoking a joint in Amsterdam was really funny. After the show we met up with friends at a Mexican lounge for dancing and drinks. I was introduced to a drink called la cucaracha (the cockroach) and after a sip I understood why it was called that, my leg shook as if I were a roach from el barrio (them heffas are mad tough) on the losing side of a battle with a can of Raid.

After a bit of dancing one of my friends needed a cigarette break so we stepped out side and sat at one of their sidewalk tables while she puffed away. We weren’t there for long when this guy on his way out of the lounge looked at me and double backed. "You’re Puerto Rican aren’t you?" “Who me?” asked my Guyanese friend… "No her." he said pointing at me. I took a sip of my bottled water before replying, "Yeah I am." "I knew it! I can spot my own people a mile away!" He was a Puerto Rican attending college in one of the "red" states where the only Latinos around were the ones that had crossed the border. He was visiting New York for the first time and really excited about finding one of his own people so far from home. "There’s more of us here in NYC than there is actually on the island so stick around man you’ll be spotting another one of us any minute now!" I told him. Talking to a fellow Boriqua even though I was New York born seemed to ease his homesickness for the moment.

Our conversation attracted the attention of a sailor standing near us trying to hail a cab back to his hotel. I caught him looking at me and chuckling at our jokes a few times and invited him to join us. He was on leave and also visiting NYC for the first time. His leave was almost up he was leaving NYC in the morning and in a matter of days he'd be headed out to Iraq. We spoke about life in the service; life on a submarine,college life, and of course politics. In between we laughed a lot and discovered how much we all had in common despite coming from different backgrounds and different parts of the country. As we sat there shooting the breeze someone drove by blasting an old Rolling Stones song, "Waiting on a friend" and it just seemed to fit the scenario perfectly.

Finally it was time for me to leave, after nearly two hours a small posse had been formed and been sent in search of me. I called a car service for the guys and waited with them until their cabs arrived. Before I left we all hugged and the guys asked to take a picture with me. We took a couple of shots of us as a group hugging each other and another few acting silly then of course there were obligatory cheesy grin ones. As I headed back up the stairs into the lounge I felt compelled to turn around for one last look. The Puerto Rican guy shouted out to me,"Hey you owe me a dance!" "Next time!" I shouted back at him as he took one last photo of me before getting into his cab and driving off. The sailor stuck his head out of his cab window as his car pulled out giving me a salute and gentle smile. I saluted him back before disappearing into the crowded lounge.

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Posted by @ 12:07 PM
3 comment from: Blogger DannieS72, Blogger phoenix, Blogger Emory,

Monday, June 18, 2007

Old porn star vagina

My dad took his dog Kane to get fixed yesterday and we were all anxious for the dog to get home. The house seemed really empty without Kane lumbering about. We were all waiting by the door for him when he came in. He looked at his welcoming committe and weakly wagged his tail in appreciation. He was obviously happy to be home. The cone around his neck made him look silly. He kept bumping it into our legs, the walls and the furniture. I know the cone was a necessity to keep him from licking his stitches but come on a pit-bull the size of Kane with a cone ? Tee-hee hee damn it, it’s funny. As he walked towards his bed still groggy from the anesthesia we all got a good look at his empty dangling sack.

Us: (in unison) Ewwwww

Dad: Yeah it looks kind of nasty. Now I know why people get the testicle implants for their dogs.

Mom just happened to come in at that moment glanced at his empty sack and without missing a beat …

Mom: Damn that looks like an old porn star’s vagina.

Mia: Ma!

Mom: What?! What?! What did I do?

I don’t even want to know how my mother knows what an old porn star’s vagina looks like.

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Posted by @ 7:58 PM
8 comment from: Blogger laila, Blogger Mia, Blogger DannieS72, Blogger christina/ohio, Blogger phoenix, Blogger Mica, Blogger Mia, Blogger christina/ohio,

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Mia Paparazzi

I was looking through my computer and phone the other day and was shocked to see how many pictures and videos I have of my friend Guay’s 6 1/2 month old son Alex aka Wu-gee ( that’s what I call him.

I actually have more pictures of him than his mom. As a matter of fact more than half of the photos she has have come from my collection. I already see what type of parent I am going to be. I’m going to be like my parents stalker paparazzi when it comes to documenting my kids childhood. Throughout our childhood my folks stalked my siblings and me with their cameras. It’s still going on, you never know when one of them is going to pop out from behind one of the potted plants and shoot pictures of us doing the dumbest things.

This is the way I am with Wu-gee. Every little thing he does I capture it on film. Wu-gee and I chill in my crib at least 3 times a week so I have more than ample time to stalk him with my regular camera, digital camera, and camera phone. He gives me a lot of material too. So far he’s learned to sit up, crawl,and stand while at my house. He's even mastered the skill of waving bye-bye. His current favorite song is Itsy Bitsy spider. He tries to do the hand movements. His favorite part is when I act out the water splashing down. It sends him into fits of giggles (see video below).

His mom comes from a dysfunctional family so as a mom she is just learning to show her emotions to her baby. I’m trying to document as much as I can of his infancy because she doesn’t realize how quickly time flies when they are babies and I know one day she’ll regret not having it all on film. So until the day comes when she realizes how precious these moments are I’ll be Mia Paparazzi.

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Posted by @ 12:27 AM
6 comment from: Blogger phoenix, Blogger DannieS72, Blogger christina/ohio, Blogger Mia, Blogger Ch@rl0tt€, Blogger SKITTLES,

Monday, June 11, 2007

A celebration of Puerto Rico

Shhhhhh New York is kind of quiet today. We’re recovering from a three day house party. Every year on the second Sunday of June The National Puerto Rican Day Parade is held. However during the past decade something phenomenal has happened. Freak the second Sunday we’ve basically taken over the entire weekend. It’s become an unofficial official holiday here in New York for us Boricuas and party people in general.

The jam officially kicks off on Friday with clubs packed to capacity as the best of the Latino musicians hit the city for concerts and club jams. On Saturday there is the 116th street festival in El Barrio which is not to be missed because of the food and the music. Established and up and coming musicians play well into the night. Then it’s time for more clubbing. Yes we do love to party… true story.

On Sunday the parade itself transforms NY into a sea of Puerto Rican flags and pride. Don’t get me wrong we Boricuas are proud 24-07 but it’s just that on this day everyone regardless of race or color seems to join us in expressing our pride. Our pride transcends generations and unifies us all whether we born on the island or like me here in the states. To see our flag flying by the thousands yeah I said thousands believe me that is no exaggeration all over NY makes the heart swell with pride. What?! To be a Puerto Rican born in New York wepppaaa it’s the best of both worlds.
¡Que viva Puerto Rico! ¡Que viva Nueva York!

Here’s a little bit of paradise a place called Puerto Rico…with music by Marc Anthony, Hector Lavoe, and Frankie Ruiz.

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Posted by @ 6:20 PM
2 comment from: Blogger DannieS72, Blogger christina/ohio,

Saturday, June 09, 2007

Touché pussy cat

My friend spent the night with her baby and caught my mom in a cooking mood which meant that breakfast at our house was going to rival IHop and Denny’s. I guess the sound of pots and pans clanking in the kitchen woke him up or maybe it was the smell of mom’s cinnamon-apple pancakes. The kid was hungry. I offered to warm up the baby’s formula and was informed by the mother that there was no need. She then popped the bottle straight from the fridge into his mouth.

Mom: Hold up this is first bottle of the day right? Breakfast?

Friend: Yea.

Mom: and you’re giving it to him fresh out the fridge, cold? What are you, nuts?!

Friend: I always do that. He doesn’t know the difference between hot food and cold food. Food is food.

My mom gave her “the look” and my friend meekly handed over the bottle. Mom then went off towards the kitchen muttering something we couldn’t make out and judging by her tone it was anything but complimentary. A minute later she returned with a warm bottle. The baby latched on to the bottle, drained it quickly and started crying for more. Mom went back into the kitchen and made him a couple of extra ounces. The baby’s mother was amazed at his reaction to the warm formula. After being burped the little guy went right back to sleep.

Thirty minutes later Mom called us to the dining room, breakfast was served. I took a sip of my café con leche while my friend dove right into her plate attacking her cheese and veggie omelet first and made a weird face…..

Friend: Uy this is freezing! Where did you have it in the refrigerator?

Mom: Actually no it was in the deep freezer. I put it there while you were feeding the baby.

Friend: Why? This is cold now! I can’t eat this!

Mom: Why not? If cold food is good enough for your baby it should be good enough for you. Food is food right?

It was as if a light went on over her friends head. She got the point ma was trying to make….

Me: Touché pussy cat, Touché.

Mom: merci beaucoup, baby girl merci beaucoup.

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Posted by @ 1:19 AM
4 comment from: Blogger christina/ohio, Blogger DannieS72, Blogger Mia, Blogger Mia,

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

The competitive world of chips

I have a dream that one day the Frito-Lay guy and the Wise potato chip guy can stand beside each other in front of the UTZ display case in peace and harmony. It’s a vicious competitive world out there in the snack industry. I just never knew how vicious it was.

My uncle’s friend Tony owns a lucrative snack route delivering snack foods. Under normal circumstances all the guys from the different companies get along. After all they are all just working stiffs. That is until recently. There’s a new guy working the snack route and I guess he doesn't believe in giving the customers a choice.

Tony had been getting a lot of returns from store owners, this was a first for him. At first he couldn’t figure out why so much of his merchandise was being returned damaged. Damaged merchandise needless to say cuts into the profits and the reputation of the vendors. Store owners depend on the vendors to deliver the products unharmed and if they can’t the stores switch providers. This means stores get dropped from the route and that amigos effects everyone down the line the route owner, his employees, the warehouse where they get the products and the garage in which they store their trucks. It’s just like a food chain… a snack food chain.

Tony decided to stop in on each and every store of his route unannounced to track down the source of the damaged merchandise. After hitting a few freshly stocked stores and finding his merchandise either damaged or moved from their regular display racks and hidden behind other products he got to the bottom of the mystery. It seemed that one of his competitors was causing the damage. He got to the last store on his route while his competitor was still there and witnessed the guy slicing open several bags of Tony’s merchandise with a box cutter.

At this point I should mention that Tony has anger problems that he’s in therapy for and until that day he’d been doing great. But now someone was messing with his livelihood…uh uh not cool at all…

When he witnessed his competitor purposely damaging his products he lost it…big time. He grabbed a bag of his competitor’s product and stormed out of the store yelling all kind of obscenities.

My uncle tried to calm him down and jumped into Tony’s truck when he took off. At first Tony wanted to ram his truck into his competitor who after seeing Tony ran out of the store and was trying to make it safely back to his truck. Chino managed to talk Tony out of running the guy down but now Tony wanted to ram his truck into his competitor’s truck parked in front. “Tony, Tony, man calm down! Remember your anger management therapy!” my uncle yelled, “Anger management? Oh shit! Yeah you’re right Chino…thanks man!” he said before slamming the brakes on his truck. He then made a U-turn and drove to Home Depot several blocks away.

“I got this Chino. I got this. I’m okay man. I’m okay” Tony said as he made a beeline for the out door tool section and picked up an Estwing Camper’s Axe. My uncle tried to talk him out of whatever he was planning to do with the axe as they stood on line and then as they drove back to the competitors truck which was now parked in front of the warehouse. When they got there Tony jumped out of his truck and ran over to his competitor’s truck with my uncle chasing after him, “Tony what are you going to do with that axe?!"

By this time a crowd of men had gathered. Among them the guy who had been damaging Tony’s merchandise. No one was about to approach Tony with an axe in his hand. “Chino do something with that crazy Italian! I don’t want no trouble up in here!” yelled the warehouse owner towards my uncle. My uncle physically blocked Tony’s path and said, “Yo bro come on man let’s do the counting exercises…let’s do that thing you were telling me about…”

Tony stopped in his tracks axe still in hand and began a series of breathing exercises. Then started counting quickly backwards from 100 and when he was done he said, “Fuck this shit Chino.” and walked over to his truck. He then pulled out the bag of his competitors chips he’d taken from the his display rack at the store. He carefully placed it on the hood of his competitors’ truck stepped back and drove the axe into it pinning the bag of chips onto the hood. He then stepped away and looked at what he’d done, pointed at his competitor and yelled out, “Hey YOU! You son of a bitch… I want to return this bag of chips. It’s damaged!” Chino then put his arm around Tony and led him towards his truck as crowd gathered around to look at the bag of chips cleaved to the hood of the truck. No one dared say anything as Tony drove away counting backwards at the top his lungs.

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Posted by @ 12:54 PM
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