Drum in the Halloween Parade or Take it Easy?

I still haven’t decided what I’m doing tonight. Choice 1: take it easy and walk around and take pictures, enjoying the sights. Pros: I will see all the Halloween action I miss every year because the parade takes up the whole night. I love taking pictures. I love seeing all the children all dressed up, and all the adults all dressed up to entertain them. Also, I only slept a couple of hours last night and I’m tired. Also, it’s cold. And, my next door neighbor is having a party on our stoop. That should be fun, too! Cons: None.

Choice 2: drum in the Halloween Parade. Pros: It feels great to walk up the middle of 6th Avenue drumming. My band has a good spot in the parade too, so it shouldn’t be as long a wait as usual and it’s exciting to be in front. I’ll see old friends. It’s good exercise. Cons: You have to line up hours before the parade starts and then wait there for hours shivering (although again it won’t be as long as usual). It’s cold. I’m tired. I’ll miss all the local action in my neighborhood because I don’t get back home until late.

You can see which way I’m leaning. Except the guy who runs the band sent out email asking everyone to show up. We have a good spot it’s important to make a good showing.

A ghost on 11th Street. 11th Street seems to be beating out Perry Street this year.

Halloween Decorations, West Village, New York City, 2014

More of the Best Halloween Decorations, NYC, 2014

There’s still no Tardis, which concerns me. I hope the people who normally put it up are okay. Maybe they just moved away.

But the people on 11th Street came through. This is the place which had the creepy girl on the swing last year. They were never going to be able to top that, but they still did a great job. Thank you people on 11th Street and West 4th! This is all at one house, by the way.

I just remembered! Last year, it wasn’t until Halloween that you saw the best part about the little girl on the swing, when she started to swing and sing that haunting little song. (See that here.) I wonder if any of these will do something more tomorrow?

I’m going to cut to the chase and start with my favorite first. Here she is close-up. Stunning!

Halloween, West Village, New York City, 2014

This is pulled back a little, so you can see her in context. Absolutely incredible. Whoever does this is such an artist.

Halloween, West Village, New York City, 2014

They had another creepy hanging girl to the right. Are girls just scarier?

Halloween, West Village, New York City, 2014

They are when they they are crawling up out of the ground!

Halloween, West Village, New York City, 2014

You don’t have to tell me that cats are evil! I’ve got one curled up on my lap right now, plotting my destruction.

Halloween, West Village, New York City, 2014

Poor dogs. They just die I guess. They do not zombify and come back to kill you.

Halloween, West Village, New York City, 2014

More Police Activity Under My Window

This was a little different than my recent video, and sadder. I was at my desk and some man started screaming for help as loudly as I’ve ever heard someone scream. The sad part was he was screaming because he was getting help. Apparently a workman was in the building (I think it was a Time Warner guy) and the man thought he was in danger and he turned on all the gas and started yelling. What I heard was his screaming as they put him in the ambulance. What you hear in this video is a lot quieter than what it had been a minute before.

I hope he’s getting whatever he needs and life is starting to improve for him.

Your Life Is a Book: How To Craft & Publish Your Memoir

I participated in a Q&A for a new book about how to write a memoir titled, Your Life Is a Book: How To Craft & Publish Your Memoir.

Ah, I see that OPRAH.com picked it was one of their inspirational books for October. It will help to become “more successful, happier, calmer, and more focused and connected to others–and yourself.” Nice!

From another review: “Affable, confident, and candid, the authors teach that the process, when done right, can be a journey of personal growth, illustrating their points with poignant examples and metaphors. Part 1, Crafting Your Memoir, introduces the genre and covers an array of topics: death, abuse, family secrets, food, travel, spirituality, animals, and more. The advice on what does and doesn’t work with each topic is razor sharp and is the overall strength of the book … The second half, Getting Serious About Publishing, offers insightful perspectives on blogging, agents, editors, handling rejection, indie publishing, and more … —VERDICT: This is a reassuring introduction to how writers should approach their first memoir and an honest discussion of what it will take to publish one.” Paul Stenis, Pepperdine Univ. Lib., Malibu, CA

How much sugar do you consume?

I watched John Oliver’s most recent show, the one where he talked about how much sugar we eat. The average American consumes 75 pounds a year, he said, which is INSANE. I thought since I’m a vegetarian, who eats mostly vegetables, and only one desert a day, a very small cup of yogurt ice cream, which I know has added sugar but how much could it have? And I understand that everything has added sugar, but when all is said and done, I can’t be eating all that much sugar, can I??

I can. I eat the same things all the time so calculating my consumption for a year was easy: 30 pounds. Certainly less than the average American, but still INSANE. When I picture 30 bags of sugar my mind just explodes. 30 pounds! The thing is, if I cut out that daily yogurt, and the Amy’s Pizza I just love, my sugar consumption would go down drastically, but I’m not prepared to do that. Except, it looks like I’m killing myself (just read that Times piece about sugar).

I could also switch the Fage yogurt I eat in the morning to plain, with fruit mixed in, but I hate the taste of yogurt otherwise. I’m not sure fruit will do the trick. But I have to start somewhere, I guess.

Another pretty place to live, in the West Village, New York City.

West Village, New York City