Preparing for “Winter” in New York

This angry bird was unprepared for snow in October

When the end of October came around and New York City saw its first snow, I began to reevaluate my survival skills and wardrobe. Heading into my first east coast winter with a leather jacket, three pairs of jeans and two scarves was not going to cut it. Clearly unprepared, I asked around to see what exactly I needed to mask my obvious inexperience with living in the cold. Instead of encouragement, I learned very quickly that New Yorkers get a sick pleasure upon hearing its a California girl’s first winter in New York.

Scene: I’m at work and bored so I begin to make small talk with two women sitting at the bar. The conversation naturally goes to the weather and the upcoming winter.

Woman #1: “Last winter was so bad.”

Me: “Was it that bad? Its my first winter in New York.”

Woman #2: “First winter? Where are you from?”

Me: “California”

Woman #1 and #2 begin laughing.

Woman #1 (face lit up with excitement): “You’re going to die!”

After this uplifting conversation and many more like it, I decided it was time to take some action in postponing my impending death.

First line of defense: a proper winter coat.

In early November, I walked into the massive coat department at Macy’s, repeating my roommate’s instructions on what kind of coat I needed to buy, over and over in my head. The more  I thought about the qualities I was looking for, the more it sounded like I was shopping for a bomb shelter. “Long, down, waterproof, wind resistant, with a hood.” Luckily, there was no shortage of black, long, sleeping bag coats and I walked away ready to fight for my life against mother nature.

Second line of defense: proper boots

After learning what indestructible boots I’d need to stomp through the blizzards of winter, I decided to wait until I’d actually need them before I blew an entire paycheck on moon shoes.

Sunny January in SoHo. New York

Today is February 1, 2012, its 60F, sunny, my coat is as good as new and I still have yet to buy boots.  I’ve been getting the “just you wait until winter really hits”, for two months now.  I’m waiting. Is this so-called-horrible winter coming this month? Or is this an El nino winter? Will I be eating my words by the end of February?  I wouldn’t mind a good snowstorm where fresh snow covers my neighborhood and makes it look slightly less ghetto but I am also very comfortable with 60 F.

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A look into the love and life of John Lennon and Yoko Ono

Wooster St, Soho, New York City

“Hey kid, you just get off school?” A pleasant ginger at the steps of 76 Wooster St in the Soho district of New York City greeted me.  I smiled and dug through my backpack and nicely corrected, “Off work, yes. I just got off work.” Can’t blame the guy. I do have a face of an 20 year-old, and what 25 year-old woman wears a grungy green backpack to work? Pulling out $5.00 to throw in the donation box I peeked up at the large sign hanging above me. “IMAGINE PEACE love john & yoko”

76 Wooster St is like many others in the neighborhood, a building of history. Most famously, the building is rumored to have been one of Andy Warhol’s reclusive hideaway spots.

Today it’s housing the exhibit of John Lennon’s personal artwork. From October 7-10th you can peruse, and purchase Lennon’s art depicting him as a husband, father, political activist, and lastly, a musician.  While Yoko Ono has all the originals, you can purchase hand printed copies of all these lithographs, serigraphs, and copper etchings ranging from $200 up to $21,000. Naturally, no one was approaching me and my grungy green backpack, in hopes I’d be buying… nonetheless the staff was helpful, knowledgeable, and seemed eager to talk John Lennon and The Beatles.

This romantic exhibit and peak into John Lennon and Yoko Ono’s love story is a “Visual tribute for John Lennon’s 71st birthday.” The no frills space entertaining the event is perfect for Lennon’s simple, to the point, tribute to his wife Yoko, and son, Sean. Mostly hand sketched, the drawings chronicle Yoko and John’s life together. From simple black and white sketches of their faces and Lennon’s infamous smirk, to full on, almost pornographic images of their sex life (all of which were imagined by Lennon) the exhibit is a look into Lennon’s prolific and romantic sides.

Walking through the exhibit, listening to Beatles and Lennon tunes, you get a great sense of the man. His love for Yoko, his political stance, and refreshingly, his humor; has you leaving inspired and feeling like a child of the 60’s.

The patrons exploring the exhibit were just as entertaining. I stopped to people watch as they appreciated, commented, or searched. A girl in a Beatles shirt and her boyfriend who resembled a young John Lennon lingered  in the “Erotic” section.. The woman who was getting her hair done next door, clearly had money, and asked about prices of the pieces instead of appreciating them. A Euro trash couple speeding through and making obvious comments. She wore a fur vest and he had bobby pins holding his bleached hair out of his eyes… An older lady, a true Beatles fan, who was there to check out the newest released piece, “On Cloud Nine” which depicts Yoko and John with a guitar, sitting on a cloud. The only sketch where you’ll find John’s guitar. Everyone there was on their own agenda.

I propose bringing your lover a long for the journey so you can make puppy eyes and bask in the romance John has visually portrayed. On the other hand you may leave pouting and demanding your partner start drawing their feelings.

This free exhibit recommends a $2.00 donation that will help benefit Citymeals-on-wheels  and if you donate $10.00 you get a free poster. If you’re in NYC this weekend stop in for a look into John and Yoko’a intimate life together.