Just before leaving for China for New Year, Karissa published a post about why she stays in New York.

I’m not like her in that I don’t have other places I’m drawn to. I don’t have an option, never mind a wish, to leave. In fact, I’m pretty hopelessly in love with New York still. It hasn’t broken my heart yet (despite some requisite rocky early days). I don’t want to jinx anything, but I think we might be in for the long haul.

But I did want to do a post like hers, itemizing all the enormously cool things I got to do this year in New York. Memories slide together and I’m at risk of losing all this coolness if I don’t scratch it down a little.

  • ABT (American Ballet Theater) Nutcracker at Brooklyn Academy of Music: a brand-new original choreography and fantastic but still very traditional set design. It was a splurge (ABT is always pricey) but totally worth it. The dancers are so athletic and precise. And I love the Nutcracker music so much it almost wouldn’t matter (it makes me sad Tchaikovsky got so much crap for writing it back in his day). (Here, have some Waltz of the Flowers, one of my favorite pieces of music ever.)
  • so many lit readings at KGB, including my own (my first reading ever)
  • David Garret live in concert (hm, didn’t really like his ‘tude that much, but going did make me start playing violin again, which brings me to)
  • getting my violin repaired by an old-school Juilliard master violin maker
  • karaoke benefit for Japan earthquake relief with author idol Ellis Avery
  • lots of AAWW open mics (Karissa is the video-happy person in the audience)
  • so many awards galas–Edgars, Strand, American Academy of Arts & Letters, Lamda (I’m such a lucky duck, I know)
  • free yoga classes
  • Chinese Puzzle Box exhibition
  • throwing a company party at Housing Works used Bbokstore
  • Spoon River Project in Green Wood Cemetery–a staged reading of the Spoon River poetry collection at dusk in a historic Brooklyn cemetery? Amazing.
  • writing group at amazing East Village Bohemian wine and cheese bar
  • Sleep No More–maybe the coolest imaginable live performance. An old hotel has been shut down and five floors are converted into a set stage (a reimagining of Rebecca‘s Manderley) you walk through on your own. Extremely athletic dancer/actors perform a (wordless) reinterpretation of MacBeth(-meets-Rebecca) around you and occasionally involve you. Very intense.
  • So You Think You Can Dance–I’d never seen the TV show, but Karissa wanted a buddy to go with her to the live performance. Wow.
  • Billy Elliot, the musical on Broadway
  • Urban Ballet Theater Nutcracker in the Lower–a great independent ballet company’s contemporary New York reimagining of the Nutcracker. This was my second year going and I will definitely go again.

It seems a little mean to post all these cool things, doesn’t it? I guess the moral of the story is, come visit.

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4 Responses to stay

  1. JES says:

    NYC feels so heartbreakingly right on so many cultural dimensions… and I can say that even though I know almost nothing of boroughs outside Manhattan. This post was mean only in the sense that it made me miss it, especially right around this time of year. 🙂

    Have a lovely time over the next N days. (I trust you will be getting out of the city at some point, no???)

    • i’m in MA with the folks now, but i’m heading back to nyc tomorrow. my boss is great and gives us the whole week between christmas and new year off, and for once i’m not crazy traveling or anything. i’m planning on bumming around in brooklyn and looking at lights and eating leisurely brunches 🙂 i think it will be awesome.

  2. drwasy says:

    So very cool to read @ KGB. I would have loved to hear you read, and bravo to you. Um, there is likely a fictionaut gathering in June. I may travel up, and if so, there will be an open mic. So, perhaps we’ll KGB together. Happy holidays to you, no better place to celebrate than in NYC. Peace…

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