“Occupy Wall Street” #70

Posted on October 17, 2011

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My parents drove me to the train station for my meeting with the potential publisher.  I told them I had a job interview – not a chance to publish the blog that was all about them.   I got on the Manhattan-bound train racked with nerves.  All I kept thinking about was my “platform” or lack there-of.  I don’t really have enough of a name, fame or following to constitute the platform that these publishers seek.  But, I went with high hopes anyway.  And sat on the train trying to imagine the book launch party.  The cocktails.  The dress I’d wear.  My speech to all the guys who never called me back for a second date.

Here’s me on the train:

If I look disheveled it’s because I’ve been hanging out with you-know-who.

When I finally got to the Woolworth building in downtown New York City, I took a deep breath, applied some papaya-flavored lip-gloss, and recited internal affirmations like, “I live and breathe creative success.”  The secretary showed me into “William’s” office, and surprisingly, he greeted me with a warm smile.  I was put at ease, and my hopes shot up instantly.  He said he was very happy to see me, and did I want anything to drink?  I replied, “Apple Martini, please,” and was glad to see he got my humor.  He excused himself for a moment and walked into the office next door.

I took a glorious breath.  And started to feel warm and fuzzy.  Until I started to hear shouting.  A grand fight between William and his boss.  The argument escalated.  I rose to take a peak at the fight now occurring outside the door.  The big boss man was shouting something like, “A Crazy Parents Blog?  Are you kidding me?  What other silly things are you going to waste my time with?”

They returned to the boss man’s office.  William got fired.

In a daze, I let myself out of the office.  And somehow made my way into the descending elevator.  Unsure what I was doing or where I was going, I put one foot in front of the other, as if on autopilot to no particular destination and headed for the rotating door.  I was spit out onto the street…and right into the mass of bodies marching with “Occupy Wall Street.”  In a confused state, I was suddenly part of this momentum.  Although many of the protestors reminded me of the punks and hippies from college who joined any opportunity for leftist uprising, there was a lot of intelligence and overall a great sense of acceptance and unity.

Me and the Protestors

This was pretty cool.  I walked with them, past some Wall Street types who shouted, “Get a job” at us, and through a narrow barricaded part of the street.  There was plenty of room on the street, but the police had created a bottleneck section with the barricades, I assume to slow and frustrate protestors.  Before you know it, in the momentum of the crowd, I was pushed up against the side of the bottleneck and unknowingly pushed one of the metal barricades down.  Within seconds, I was arrested.  I was taken to the downtown precinct, my crime labeled a misdemeanor, and released two hours later.

Here’s a picture of me with the NYPD after my release, no hard feelings between us.

Soon after, I found myself being interviewed by Channel 4.  I hated that I didn’t get to brush my hair, but nonetheless, I tried my best to speak about the experience, as if I had intended to be there.  

I have to say, I kind of felt like Obama on the campaign trail – charismatic, magnetic – I mean, I must have been, because I was drawing a crowd.  I started to talk about losing my job and having to live with my parents, which was affecting my self-esteem, not to mention love life.  For a moment, I forgot about my shitty luck with my writing career.  I was part of something more important.  Or at least experiencing a different kind of fame.  When my cell phone rang with my father’s name on it, I wondered if he was watching me on TV.  However, I didn’t want him to kill my buzz, so I ignored the call.  

There was no way I was just going to go home and listen to bickering about the accumulated and unsellable storage.  I decided to camp out with the protestors in Zuccotti Park.  I was part of a movement, man.  This was like Woodstock, but 2011.  And political.

Joining the slumber party at Zuccotti Park

I wondered why no celebrities were down here supporting this.  Too busy creating their own perfume line?  Where was most of America?  Playing video games?  Trying to look like a celebrity?   I didn’t know any of these protestors, but I was accepted.  There were volunteers at makeshift food stations.  Poetry being recited in the corners.  A feeling.  A movement.  A coming together.

After a few hours with no sleeping bag and my mind wandering over the dashed hopes of a book deal, I felt an Apple Martini was in order.

I walked into a nearby bar, just a few blocks away, and again, wished I had brushed my hair.  There were men in here, and they were sitting near me.  Halfway into my second sweet green treat and practically snockered, I was giggling it up with Rick.  It was 11:30 and he just finished work.  I wound up going home with him.  Oh, by the way, he’s an investment banker.

He had the crib to end all cribs.  An enormous, clean, modern apartment in Battery Park overlooking the Hudson.  While he was brushing his teeth, I sat on the couch looking out the window at the Statue of Liberty in the distance.  I looked at all the nice things.  At this nice apartment.  This is so confusing.  I’d like some money, too.

He had asked me what I was doing out so late on a Thursday night.  I told him I was in meetings about my impending book deal.  He wanted to know what the book was about, but I told him I wasn’t at liberty to discuss it.

He was a gentleman.  Didn’t try anything.  He did go into the kitchen to make us a snack.  Something like pizza muffins, but more upscale.  When he returned, I was teary-eyed.  He asked if I was crying and why.  The truth was, I had just seen a Norwegian cruise ship go through the harbor.  I wanted to be on it – not return to lockdown in suburbia.  But, I told him my sister’s birthday was the next day (the truth) and that I wished I could be with her and her family in California, where she now lives.  He said that a future famous book author should be assisted in this matter, and he bought me a ticket for the next day.  He said that he didn’t want to be photographed for my story.  I said I understood completely, as was the case with many of the celebrities in my book.

Here’s me before sunrise on my way to LA.

JFK

It was unfortunate that on the plane, I sat next to a cell-phone talker.  I almost pulled an Angry Gladys on her.  But, I was too hung-over.  So instead, I quietly passed some gas.

Six hours later I landed.

At LAX.

Just in time for my sister’s birthday.  From one dysfunctinal home to another.

To be continued…

Posted in: Humor, Life