Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Adventures in Unemployment

Day 36...

cigarette stomp out- 10th st. btw Ave. A & B

...Mondays are especially hard for the unemployed. The weekend seems to grant the idea that since everybody else is off you should be too. But when Monday rolls around and everyone with a job goes back to work, waking up at noon loses it's romantic, bohemian side and becomes yet another Monday with no job.
I do the usual. Flip open my laptop, switch on IM and pick through production job sites looking for gigs and emailing all my contacts for any upcoming news or positions. After all my contacts are worn out and I've searched every possible job site I close my laptop clamshell and prepare for the day.
Preparation is a minimum. Wearing a t-shirt either purchased "on the rack" at Urban Outfitters or something purchased at a thrift store or borrowed from a friend and a pair of worn-out, A&F two seasons ago, cargo shorts containing my wallet, cell phone, keys, camera, and handkerchief as well as a backpack containing my gym clothes, lock, current book, NFT NYC Guide, glasses, rolling papers, stamps, pens, moleskin, and a single sock, I head out the door and walk to Union Square.
By the time I get to Union Square and finish scarfing down my Chipotle Barbacoa Salad breakfast/lunch it's 2:20. I read for about an hour and get a call from Max. Max, waiting for Law School to begin, similarly has nothing to do and invites me to see a documentary, Crossing the Line, about an American Soldier who crossed the DMZ during the Cold War to become a citizen in North Korea. The movie was at Cinema East and began at 3:30. Max met me in front of the George Washington statue in the south end of Union Square and together we walked to the theater.
It was a pleasure to see Max. It had been awhile since the two of us had time to catch up on one another and the walk provided the opportunity for us to do so. We talked about life, the future, his girlfriend and the movie we were about to see. Max was excited to see the film because he never has seen any actual footage of North Korea. I informed him this would be my second documentary on North Korea, the first being, A State of Mind focusing on North Korean society and life while using the Mass Games as a backdrop.
Crossing the Line was very well done and quite an interesting documentary. Like State of Mind, Crossing the Line offers that extremely rare glimpse into the forbidden and Anti-American North Korea of which we hear so much. For me, witnessing North Korean daily life was much more interesting than the soldiers story as it shed light on the idea that communist or not, oppressed by government or democratic, the human condition has a limitless ability to adapt and accept his surroundings. I also relished in the idea that people were riding bikes, fishing, jogging, talking walks, enjoying Pyongyang and the country wasn't a freedomless government controlled communist concentration camp as we're sometimes swayed into believing. For the most part, aside from consistent electric power and food rations the North Koreans seem to be pretty happy and content.
After the movie Max and I went to the gym and met up at Sushi Lounge for dinner. Max and I have a special connection to Sushi Lounge because one week this past February Max and I happened to eat there at least four times in one week. Since then whenever Max and I go out to eat it's always Sushi Lounge. Sushi Lounge is an East Village treat that takes 50% of all rolls to costumers dining in. This means that you can get about 5 rolls for under twenty bucks, a steal when eating in Manhattan.
Max and I enjoyed dinner and talked for a good while after the bill had been paid for and forgotten. We continued talking until I was to meet my friend Lindsay for Lesbian Bingo Night at Mo Pitkins restaurant.
Lesbian Bingo at Mo Pitkins is a Monday night must! Host Murray Hill and on-stage side-kick Harry Halloway (or Linda Simpson otherwise) call out numbers as the crowd fills their bingo cards and finish pint glasses. The prizes offered are mostly gimmick novelties, lewd and inappropriate sex toys and accudroma, drink tickets, and a final jackpot of about one hundred dollars.I met Lindsay and her friend Morgan and we immediately bought cards and got ready for some hot rounds of Bingo. Lindsay had never been and was surprised both Murray Hill and Harry Halloway put on such a comedic routine for a typical Monday night. The crowd grew rowdy and the games wore on. Lindsay, having a steady Head O' The Web/Video Department at Good Magazine, had to go to work the next day and she and Morgan took off leaving me all their extra Bingo cards. During the last two rounds I managed to keep on top of all the numbers called while overseeing ten cards at once yet still didn't win
I shrugged, thanked Murray and Harry and pushed myself through the door and out to the streets en route to my apartment.

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