Long overdue trip report: NYC

I never did write about the trip to New York, did I?

This was a business trip for me, but Karsten had been talking for some time about wanting to get up to New York to visit some galleries and get a feel for what’s happening in the NYC art scene. So Karsten and I went up Saturday morning and spent the weekend bumming around, and then while I was working Monday through Wednesday, he visited galleries.

All in all, that plan worked out pretty well. The other aspect of the trip was a tour of the many vegetarian restaurants in NYC. We had delicious meals at Teany, Kate’s Joint, both Candle Cafe and Candle 79, Cafe Spice, and a random falafel cart. We also ate with my coworkers one night at Asia de Cuba, which was fun. NYC is definitely a good place to blow your diet.

One random thing we encountered was a huge pillow fight in Union Square. When we came across it, I assumed it was some sort of anti-war protest, but now that I look it up, it appears it was simply a silly event. Maybe I overanalyze things. Huh. It was fun to watch either way.

Pillow fight in NYC

Speaking of things that might be considered fun to watch, through a work connection, we had free tickets to Rent on Monday night. We were appreciative but wary. After all, an employee of mine years ago was a huge fan of the show and, to spread her enthusiasm, insisted once that we all listen to the soundtrack together. Contrary to her hopes, we didn’t fall in love with the songs. We also suspected that, having seen Team America: World Police and their send-up of Rent (if you haven’t seen the movie, their version was called Lease with a song called “Everyone has AIDS”), we’d effectively seen the show. Yeah, I realize it was groundbreaking to have not just token GLBT characters but actual G, L, B, & T characters and all these controversial and socially challenging storylines and all that, but it’s just, I don’t know. I’m not saying I’ve seen and done it all, but I have been exposed to various kinds of Bohemian lifestyles, I’ve had friends with HIV, and I and many other people I’ve known have struggled with not being able to pay rent, and somehow it’s never occurred to me to sing peppy, jaunty songs about it all. So yeah, anyway, we weren’t getting into it and we left at intermission.

Anyway, as we walked along Broadway through Times Square, we heard someone say “What the hell are you guys doing here?” and for some inexplicable reason, we turned around and looked rather than just continuing to walk as if nothing had been said, which would have been a far more appropriate response in almost any urban setting. But it turned out to be one of our neighborhood buddies from Nashville! Weird. So we all went back to the bar in our hotel and laughed and drank and had a good old time until way too late for a school night.

Oh yeah, and the work part of the trip was pretty good, too. The end.

7 thoughts on “Long overdue trip report: NYC

  • Wow, what a great story! What are the chances out of the millions of people, places, and times you could have been at that very spot in NYC, you would run into your neighbors! I am always amazed when things like that happen. Too cool!

    I haven’t heard anyone feel quite the way you guys did about “Rent”. I haven’t seen it, and really haven’t wanted to for personal reasons, but there is something refreshing about you voicing your true feelings about it rather than just the patronizing, “great show!” just because it’s the trendy thing to like.

  • Rent is my favorite show (I really haven’t been to many as I don’t exactly dig live theater), but we can still be friends. I like the story of community and hope behind it all. The movie really brings this out at the end. When I saw the live show in NYC, I liked the theater it was housed in, and the vibe that was present.

    -Sam

  • My wife loves Rent. I think it sucks.

    However, it is very cool to run into people you know in NYC or other big cities. I once ran into a friend from Nashville walking down the street in Philly and learned we were living 4 blocks from each other in Philly.

  • My response to seeing Rent was “Hunh…I wonder why people are making such a big deal about this?” Maybe it’s the same reason part of your reaction wasn’t as hot…almost all of the plays/musicals I see are glbt related and performed. Which is not many, admittedly, but still… I found myself watching the technical aspects of the performance long before the show was over.

    I nearly have locational amnesia…if I see people even that I know very well, but they are in a place I don’t expect them to be, it can take me close to a minute to even realize I know who they are when they start talking to me. If my mind is off doing something on it’s own while I’m wandering through an airport or something, it’s even worse.

  • As we talked about the other night — I completely agree with you on Rent. It is great that a show can deal with the issues that it does, but it just tries way to hard and comes off silly. Team America nailed it.

    But in fairness, about halfway through the show, they sorta seem to stop shouting “look how topical we are!” so much and just start focusing more on just telling the story about the character’s interrelationships, and it gets palatable from there. Not to the point where you should feel you missed anything by walking out, but enough that one can see the whole thing and not have to feel like “well there’s two hours of my life I’ll never get back”.

  • That is SO funny that you ran into friends there. I have a couple of acquaintances and one old friend in NYC but I bet a chance meeting like that would never happen. Glad you had a good trip, Kate!

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