Saturday, March 29, 2014

Review: Google Chromecast

Over the last few months I've streamed some TV shows from Netflix.  I was getting tired of watching on my iPad so I purchased the Google Chromecast.

The set up was very easy, I simply plugged it into the HDMI port and a power source then downloaded the Chromecast application.  It took a few minutes for the software to download...then it was ready.

Unfortunately I got an error message about the Chromecast not finding my internet, so I turned everything off and went to bed.  The next day, I turned it on and it worked, so it must've needed to reset or something.

The following day I watched the first thing I streamed from Netflix onto my TV.  It took a few moments to show up on the TV and at times the quality of the picture seemed a little blurry but then would correct.  Watching episodes back to back was not as easy as watching from the iPad when it would run continuously, I had to click on the next episode and then it had to load.  Also, I have the lowest speed internet at home, so watching something on the Chromecast and doing something online on the computer or iPad is very difficult when one or both keep freezing...but this may not be a problem if you have higher speed internet.

Overall, I am very happy that I can watch things on my TV screen instead where the picture is bigger as well as having more control over the volume.

I have not tried to view anything else yet, but I think it should work just fine

For $35, I am shocked I waited so long to buy a Chromecast.

Thursday, March 27, 2014

still alone

This week a friend whose husband left her with 2 children had another baby, another friend who tried to have a baby for years was blessed with a baby, my sister's 300 pound friend got married and I found out my cousin who had a really bad divorce is dating a man after being single for 5 years...they all struggled with big challenges for years that they were able to overcome.

Huge accomplishments for those four people this week, after years of challenging and difficult times.  Then I thought about it...I've been single almost 8 years.  EIGHT years is a long time...and where am I?  I didn't seriously 'date' anyone. I was involved with ManFriend but we didn't do couply things, but at least that was for a year and a half.  I still haven't overcome my biggest challenge.

Sure, the first 2-3 years I 'wasted' thinking someone would come around, but he didn't...and while I waited, he was dating.  My first mistake.  Next thing I knew I was in my 30s.  I was no longer the young, thin, happy person.  I was a bit jaded, sad, lonely and starting to age; nothing attractive in that.  Add in that I didn't go out because I didn't have any more friends.  My few friends I had were in NJ and my other friends all were married with kids. I didn't have anyone to go out with and I was too shy to go out alone.  The only conversations I was making in public places tended to be with old men or married men...not quite what I am looking for.

When I would go out with my ex-coworker, she got all the attention, even though I was smarter and a bit more witty she had the more carefree and fun personality that drew people in. But those weren't the kinds of men I wanted for anything long term anyway. I wanted a man that was looking for more than just my body. More than just one night.

On top of all this, I live in a family town...there aren't too many singles. In fact, I just read an article that Westchester's singles have dropped quite a bit in the last few years.  Thus, limiting my chance of meeting someone closer to home even more.

What about online dating you ask?  Well, that is how I met SI...and well, psycho.  I did try a few years ago, but the people that reached out to talk to me were strange and the other half were just looking for sex. I was not able to find a guy that seemed 'normal' or at least on there for the same reason as me.  After a few months, I closed the account.

Eight years is a long time to be single.  If I get the opportunity to be in a relationship, the adjustment is going to be really hard.  I've become so independent, and I will expect that someone will hurt me. Of course I am going to be optimistic going into anything, but part of my mind will be on guard.  I know I can't let past men's issues be the next person's problem.

While I haven't overcome my challenge of a relationship yet, I think I've made a lot of progress so when it does happen, I will be in a better place to embrace it.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Review: NYS Department of Health Free STD Clinic

I figured I should probably get an STD check.  Last June I had one done after I found out ManFriend was with someone else after he moved and thankfully, I was OK for the 3 tests they ran.  So it was just the matter of Mountain Man, Cop#1 and the one night stand to worry about.

Two weeks ago I discovered the NYS Department of Health's FREE clinic.  And since I am so broke, I figured I should go there, it would save me an office visit of about $70 plus all the lab tests, which I think when I got it done last year was about $100-200.  What is even better it is walk-in, so I didn't have to schedule an appointment.

When I got there, I had to fill out a form.  The form had your standard information, name, age, address, email, questions why you are there, etc.  Each form has a number on it.  When the nurse is ready for you, they call out the number, not your name.  I spoke with a nurse who asked about any symptoms, the number of men I was with in the last three months, total number of men, last date of period, if I used protection, etc.  I was then given a new number and asked to wait in the waiting area.

When the  new number was called, I was brought into an exam room with two nurses. They asked me a few questions about my history and told me the importance of using condoms.  They left while I removed my pants, panties, socks and shoes.  When they came back in, they first looked the skin all over my body for rashes or bumps or whatever else.  Then it was time for the vaginal exam, which almost the same procedure as the pap, with a little scraping of the insides and then a feel of the uterus.  They left to bring the dish down to the lab and peered through the microscope while I got redressed and waited in the room.  Within minutes, they came back and told me some results, others would not be ready for about 2 weeks.  I was then asked to return back to the waiting area.

My number was called again and this time I went to the lab where I had a vial of blood taken and a finger prick.  Then I headed back to the waiting room.

15 minutes later my number was called again and I went into another room with another nurse to review the HIV test.  She was more than happy to print out the results, and then she gave me a goodie bag of 26 condoms to get me started.

2 hours later I walked out of the clinic.

So, it was free....but it took 2 hours, and they weren't busy.  If there were more people there I can't imagine how long I would have been there.

The nurses were all so nice and made me feel comfortable.  The front desk and 'security' person were rude and nasty.

Now I have to wait about 2 weeks before I go back for the results of the remaining 4 tests.  Overall, I thought the state health department did a really great job; very through (way more through then my other STD tests).

The rest is on start enforcing condom use or perhaps refrain from sex all together.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

a dreaded conversation

Whenever I get a note from my mother that says, "Dee, I need to talk to you, let me know when you are free" I get nervous, a conversation I don't want to have is coming.

I arrange to meet my mother at her house for breakfast, I don't want to be out in public crying.

We make small talk while eating and then finally she tells me what is on her mind.  She told me that she was very concerned for me because I seem very sad and she wants me to see a therapist.  When I asked her when she noticed the sadness, she said it was after I got back from seeing Mountain Man after New Years.  Yes, I would probably agree, I noticed a change in me then too.  I was upset that the thing with Mountain Man wasn't more, I was upset that ManFriend seemed more sick than he was letting on.  Then ManFriend died and while I blogged to you about it, I really didn't have anyone else to talk about it, and I just haven't snapped out of it.  I told my mother about my January and explained that ManFriend's death was hard for me because I loved him, sort of. and how can I talk about it to my family when none of them really even knew about him, let alone my feelings for him.  She said I was shutting people out, that I haven't let anyone in a while, that i have this huge shield protecting me and pushing people away.  She thinks is stems from SI.  She might be right, but it is not intentional.

Why should I see a therapist now?  I made it through the darkest days of my life without one, I don't think the loss of ManFriend and the disappointment in Mountain Man is worse than what happened 8 years before.

It hasn't been easy to find a single guy, I have a really hard time meeting people and even harder time to find someone who is interested in me in a possible future kind of way.  But, I did try to let people in.  I tried with ManFriend...and I was hurt and it was a messed up non-relationship, but I did develop very strong feelings for him and he knew a lot about my past, and if he wasn't such a bachelor, maybe it would have been more 'normal'.  Then I tried with Mountain Man....and well I don't know why he decided he wasn't into me, he just wasn't and I wasn't about to beg...I want a man to desire me and want to be with me exclusively (I learned from SI that I can't accept anything less) so that was that.  I tried.  I failed, which always sucks. But I tried.

So the question is, do I start to see a therapist?  I don't want to delve that much into my past, especially not my childhood...I don't want them to make me question why I am messed up.  And honestly, I really don't want to relive the pain of telling someone the stories of SI. I want to think that part of me is way behind in the past.  And I don't think I am THAT sad. I mean, I am not happy, but I am not as sad as I was years ago.  I am not in this fog where I am losing years of my life I don't remember because I am in shock.  I just have a lot going on....between the sadness, not feeling great and the stress of what is to come.

But I respect my mother and her courage to bring these taboo topics up.  She is worried about me and she is my mother and she would do anything in her power to make me happy.  You are never to old to have your mother worry about you, after all.  And after our conversation, I did feel a little better it was nice to talk about that stuff even if I was crying during most of the conversation.

Monday, March 10, 2014

feeling a little funny

It's been three weeks since I started getting these weird symptoms.  I had a week 'break' and then this past week a different set of symptoms have appeared, but with the multi-day low grade fever present again.

I normally hate baths - I get so bored and antsy.  The last few days I have been taking an Epsom Salt bath and I have to say how relaxing it was, I didn't want to get out.  During my bath, I thought a little about ManFriend and his illness.  How he knew his body so well that went to the doctor when something didn't feel right, but getting the news there was nothing to do, a 3 month deadline on life.

My mind started to wander, as it normally does, and I started to think that would I want to know if I was very ill or how much time I had left?  Should I be concerned with my strange symptoms?  And right now, with where I am in my life, I wouldn't.  I probably wouldn't go to the doctor right away, I probably wouldn't fight to live a little bit longer...for what?  However, I understand why so many people do, those people with families and loved one, of course they'd want to spend all the time with them as possible.

December, January and the beginning of March were very stressful months for me.  It is very possible that stress is the reason for how I've been feeling lately.  I suppose only time will tell if that is the reason or not. I've written down my health issues, just in case it gets to the point where I speak to a doctor, but I am not too worried yet, our bodies are generally really good about fighting things off.  We'll see what the next few weeks hold and if I have to keep wasting a few weekends not leaving the house and just be it.  But at this time, I am not worried about it being anything 'major' at all.

Friday, March 7, 2014


Growing up we ordered Chinese food when we rented a movie or had family game night. It was a fun monthly or bimonthly event that I remember fondly.

But eating the delicious Chinese food wasn't enough for me.  I was determined to use those two little sticks they included in our bag.  My family didn't want to use chopsticks and instead ate with a fork.  It took a while before I was able to really get the hang of it, but eventually I was able to pick up a grain of rice without a problem.

This paid off when I went on a class trip to China in was it 2003?. I was shocked that my classmates, for the most part, were struggling with chopsticks and asked for a fork. I was so embarrassed.

But with sushi being as popular as it is these days, people are becoming surprisingly proficient in their use of chopsticks. Why is that?  Why does sushi trump Chinese when it comes to people learning how to use chopsticks?  Is it just because the sushi pieces are larger and easier to pickup?  Well, people PRACTICE and small pieces of Chinese food will be just as easy to pick up.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

exchange of fulfilments

So, one good thing about drinking a whole bottle of sparking wine yourself, is that you start to think and then get pissed off.

I texted Cop#1 that because he didn't like what I had to say on Monday (he offered to set me up with his cousin a few weeks ago....and I said that since I don't plan to stay here a long time I decided I wanted a purely sexual relationship instead of dating) that I no longer wanted to see him.  This whole thing has needed to end years ago, and well, I've just been addicted to the occasional sex.   Since he was the first guy I had sex with more than once, we do it similar, and it is really really great.  After a while when ManFriend or Mountain Man would disappoint me, or I got tired of OK sex, I'd call on Cop#1 for a really great bang.  And he always delivered.  I was so fulfilled.

But no more.  it is an inappropriate relationship and maybe I just need to end it before the universe lets me move on.  I'll be happy to exchange those short moments of fulfillment for a long term fulfillment that another life can offer me.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

need to know

It's not quite 7 pm and I am borderline drunk.  What is the occasion, since this would be the fourth time in 2 weeks?  Well, I got some not so great news today.  I am not going to get into that stuff now, but it will come, eventually.  And I was disappointed so on my walk home I decided to pick up some sushi and some sparkling wine.  I am 3/4 the way through the bottle and noticed I've been either talking to myself or talking to ManFriend or a higher spirit...asking them questions about the turn of events and my future.  It was then I realized how fast sparkling wine goes to my head.  If I knew these effects, I would have just bought a bottle of Champagne or sparkling wine on my outings this past two weeks instead of buying 8 - 12 drinks; it would have been a lot more cost effective and faster.

Anyway, so my post tonight is about my confusion.  I believe in fate, so I can't get upset about it, but I feel like I just need to know everything will work out, that I will eventually be happy....or that I am destined to just be here, like this.  Is it bad to want to know a little about what will happen?  I mean, the difference of being alone living in a crappy apartment or finding a man, marrying and living in a nicer place...I kinda need to know.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

big sighting

I was out to dinner with a new friend, we went to dinner before we went to a Broadway show.  3/4 of the way through the dinner, our waiter came over and told us Chris Noth was at a table, so if we were to use the restroom, take a look around.  Since I had 4 drinks, I had to use the bathroom again, and sure enough he was there.  He looked a little more white haired, but still attractive.  We made eye contact and I smiled.  I wasn't about to approch him or take a sneaky picture as he was out in his private life.  My friend and I finish up dinner and as I was getting into my coat, I bumped into him as he was walking to the bar. I apologized of course.

Just six days later, I go out with the same friend and a few of her friends for restaurant week.  We were already seated for about almost an hour when I realize who walked through the door...Chris Noth.  My friend and I look at each other and were shocked - twice in a week he comes into a restaurant we are in?  And considering I very rarely go out, this seemed too coincidental, but what is the alternative, he decides to stalk 2 regular women?  Not likely.

It made for good conversation that night.

Monday, March 3, 2014

the creepy guy

It was 12:11 am, I was waiting 58 minutes for a train in Grand Central.  I was minding my own business, texting with a few people when I notice this guy staring at me.  By now, my buzz wore off so I asked this man "what?".  He comes closer, still staring at me.  I look around the empty station and notice where the police and other people are, just in case.  The man is inches from me and tell me that I am absolutely beautiful, he couldn't take his eyes off me and he leans in to kiss me.

whoa!  I couldn't back up as I was leaning against the wall.  I say "what do you think you are doing?"  to which he replied "you are so pretty I have to kiss you".  I shake my head and say "you are probably married, what makes you think you can just kiss a stranger?  Show me your left hand."  He pulls out his right hand and I laugh.  He takes out his left hand and sure enough there is a gold band on his ring finger.  I say "sorry, I don't kiss married men, but maybe this passed out lady right here would be honored, go bother her".  But instead he continues to chat with me and tells me about his plans with his family the following day.  Eventually he walks away.  I continue texting my friend and then 5 or 10 minutes later the man came back for more.  I am not sure if he didn't remember talking to me or if he just wanted to continue talking to me.  After a few minutes, I say that we should probably head to our respective trains.

I couldn't help but wonder if this man does this regularly, and if so, how many women actually go along with it?

Saturday, March 1, 2014

one night stand

On Tuesday I met a friend for drink before dinner.  It was a more upscale establishment and I was there for about an hour before she showed up, that is at least two glasses of wine.  The friend gets there, but I end up chatting with the bartender for a bit, it lead to an exchange of business cards and a few flirty texts during dinner.

Fast forward to Friday, I met up with two guy friends for drinks after work.  It was a late night, and I debated meeting up with the bartender afterwards, going home with one of those guys, or going home alone.  As usual, I missed my train home by seconds, leading to an hour of waiting...and texting.  Do I go home or do I meet up with a stranger? 

Having a one night stand has been on my bucket list for a while, but I've always been too nervous to do it because I didn't want to be murdered.  I am sure the odds of that are slim...but it is something I've feared.  And I am not going to lie, I asked him if he planned to kill me, yup, I am that weird girl.

So, I waste an hour texting him, fighting the desire to try something new.  I get on the train and we depart.  Then...I did something shocking, I got off at 125th street and took a cab to his apartment.  I wasn't drunk anymore.

It was about 2 am, I knew at this point that the next train home wasn't until 5:30ish AM.  So, I'd have to hang out there until I can get back home.

He was a little more 'regular' than I remember him looking; no beer goggles this time around.  We kiss, we kiss a little more, then we head into the bedroom.  He claimed not to have a condom; it was do I do it anyway or do I piss him off and end up walking around Harlem from 2 - 5 I went along with it...why not?  With all the guys I've been with rarely did I use a condom.  The insecurities that I talked about the other day...I didn't have them.  This was someone that I knew I wouldn't see again...and I didn't care if it was good or bad or what he was thinking.  I have to say, I enjoyed it more than I thought I would...not because it was good, but because I didn't care.  

Then we go to sleep.  Even though I asked before I went over if he snored and said no...he did.  I barely got a wink of sleep.  I forgot how horrible it is to sleep with someone snoring.  At 4:45 I got dressed, peed and woke him up to tell him I was leaving.  I asked if he'd go outside and get a cab with me because I wasn't sure if his neighborhood was safe, but he said I'd be fine.  I spent a ton of money the night before, so I also asked for $5 since I didn't have enough for a cab ride.

And that was that.  A one night stand.  Completed. Check.

And I survived.  It was so different to not have a date first, get to know a guy, think about if I liked the guy, maintaining conversation, or think about a was just sex.  It wasn't as horrible as I thought....and maybe I'll try to find another stranger but not just for one night, maybe for a few month fling. It would be nice to have sex with someone that I am not attached to from previous experiences.