Buddy Holly

“ I like your style, but you need to wear more color,” said my father, a marine.  When I hit thirty, I grew into one of those New York boys, who didn’t have an inch of bright color in their closet. Therefore, I wanted to liven up my wardrobe without sacrificing my sense of style.

A funky and colorful edge arrived, in the most unexpected of places. A fashion designer friend of mine gifted me a pair of glasses. These weren’t ordinary hipster glasses. Instead, they were loud and featured a tortoise shell pattern, which I lovingly dubbed the Buddy Holly glasses (with a twist, naturally). I instantly fell in love with the style. However, I didn’t actually wear my decorative for a while.

One faithful day, Anna and I wandered around Harlem. With the grey autumn skies, cinematic apartment blocks with stoops, enchanting hills and icy breezes, we knew to capture our special day on camera. I had a quick scavenger hunt in my tote bag and found the Buddy Holly glasses. Afterwards, I placed them on, Anna loved the look and as did I.

On a stoop, I took a photo of myself wearing the cool glasses. This would be my new signature look. We then headed to lunch and I found myself part of a new subculture, where eyeglasses ruled the land. I felt funky and a bit more creative, just by wearing the new accessory.

The unique design made me into a museum piece. On the subway, onlookers would study the design and symmetry of the glasses. It was something I never quite experienced, since I always remain under the radar. It proved, that being ham in life can quite fun.

From that day on, I wore my glasses everywhere. It amazed me how a simple accessory could liven up my wardrobe. Therefore, I didn’t even need to wear bright colors in order to change up my look. 

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Howling Winds

I love my weekend routine. On Saturday mornings, I wake up early and head to my favorite Upper West Side diner. After devouring the lumberjack breakfast (pancakes, bacon and scrambled eggs), I walk off my calorie intake along the quintessentially Manhattan sidewalks.

After a quick commercial break (bathroom break at Columbus Circle), I take the B/D (subway) to West 4th. I love listening to the live piano player at Washington Square Park and then heading to the East Village for some cozy coffee house madness. In the grand tradition, of all things New York, the unpredictable blew in my direction.

As New York dropped to unseasonably low temperatures, it brought about a surprise. While preparing for a night out, I heard intense and romantically eerie winds. I ran to my window, as my concern grew to joy. “ Snow, it’s snowing,” I proclaimed happily. An unexpected snowstorm hit the city. Rather than hiding for cover, I ran down five flights of steps to enjoy the icy goodness.

I roamed around, as snow filled my pea coat to the brim. Like my coat, snow soon piled upon trash cans, cars and trees. It was more romantic than a Shakespearean sonnet. About thirty minutes later, the snow magically disappeared. Talk about cameo appearances. Later that night, New York froze to temperatures only polar bears and penguins would enjoy.

 

After attending a birthday party in Hell’s Kitchen, I maneuvered around the people traffic of Times Square and was determined to enjoy the city regardless of freezing temperatures. While the crowds slowly disappeared in the west 50’s, the sidewalks became increasingly empty.

At that moment, the city felt like my own private playground. The glittery lights of Midtown reflected against the store fronts of the Upper West Side. Something about New York in wintertime makes my sweet tooth go bananas. Therefore, I stopped by the diner for a carrot cake and decaf coffee. It was a very simple evening, but quite delightful.

The next day, howling icy winds dominated the sidewalks more intensely. My pea coat served as a shield, similar to a warrior in battle. However, I found the beauty in the incoming winter months. The parks were livened up with dead trees and colorful leaves. Ducks merrily swam and wandered Harlem’s hilly St. Nicholas Park.

On Fredrick Douglass Boulevard, the leaves were swept from the pavement. They circled around and danced to the beat of Mother Nature’s urban drum. It was an unexpectedly gorgeous sight. The icy temperatures persisted and even in the most intense winds, I found the charm in a wintry New York. After all, there’s nothing cozier than bundling up in winter fashion, admiring holiday lights and enjoying a hot coffee by a quiet park lake.

The Perks of Being Extremely Campy in NYC

With leaves falling, leaving trees barren, the city transforms itself. The brightly lit canyons of Midtown give way to holiday camp. It’s a gradual process, which paints the sidewalks with lights of glittery green and red. On one faithful night, I went on a date.

As I sat at Sophia’s wine bar in Midtown East, sipping on a sauvignon blanc and eating a Panini, I couldn’t feel any romance. My date was a delightful dinner companion, but I couldn’t romanticize the situation. After dinner, we took a walk crosstown. There was certain magic in the air. While my date was as romantic as a beer pong tournament, I rekindled my love affair with the city.

We approached Rockefeller Center. Terrible club music blasted, as we walked toward the tourist mecca. Surprisingly, I found delight in one of the most fabled New York traditions, ice-skating in the middle of Rockefeller Center. My date and I reveled in watching the skaters.

The skaters represented a social hotch potch of humanity. Tourists (naturally), families, couples and the young at heart, enjoyed the cheesiest of traditions.

Naturally, the most fun came in the form of schadenfreude (German for laughing at somebody else’s misery). There were plenty of slips and falls, but since it was New York pre-holidays, even the injured were laughing off their misfortune.  I looked to the left; under scaffolding was the famous Christmas tree. Although, it’s a sight, I ‘ve seen many times, there was a surprising magic. The sight reminded me, the holidays were around the corner.

I walked my date to his bus, although there were no sparks, I had an unexpected and very quintessential evening in my own backyard. From that faithful night, Christmas madness slowly crept around Manhattan. Christmas shops popped up everywhere from Little Italy to Bryant Park. Fifth Avenue dazzled the pupil with bright lights decorating the fancy shops. The Time Warner Center sparkled with ever changing lights.

I once again, visited another skating rink. As I sat at Bryant Park with my holiday beverage, watching ice-skating mania, my jaded smirk turned into a smile. The holidays and enchanting cold weather was finally upon us. Living in the holiday capital of the world, has made me appreciate every minute of Christmas camp.