Adventures of the charmingly odd

Here is the story of how I’m the worst best girlfriend

Yesterday was Steve’s birthday and he had to work. Wanting to do something special for him, I decided to surprise him at work and take him to lunch. (I couldn’t find anything guy-ish enough to send him; he’s not the type to want flowers.) My problem was: nobody knew where he works. Steve is in IT and works at a doctor’s office, not the actually office of the company he works for. All I knew was that he worked somewhere in New York state right over the NJ border.

At a bar this past Sunday night, in between Steve’s bathroom breaks, his best friend Dave helped me concoct a plan-> I would sneak my iPhone into Steve’s car and then use Find my iPhone to track him to his work location. Then I would Google map directions and BAM! Best girlfriend ever showing up at his work on his birthday using her awesome secret spy skills.

Oh, oh how I wish it went down that way.

Let’s begin my tale, shall we? Monday morning I was able to successfully sneak my fully charged iPhone under Steve’s driver’s seat while he got dressed. He left for work and I dressed up in a black mini dress with knee high boots. My hair was blown out and my make-up looked fantastic. I waited until after 9am to iMessage him from my MacBook to ask if he had gotten to work okay. He replied yes.

Perfect! Now I could start my great big surprise! I tracked my phone on my computer and plugged in the location to Google Maps. I tried to print them out, but the room the printer is in has a ton of birds in there and I was promptly attacked by them when I walked in. So fuck the printer, I went super old school and wrote down the directions by hand.

Grabbing my computer, I drove off in my Mini at 10:30am on this perfectly crisp fall day. Everything was going as planned! Until I missed the exit for Steve’s job! Which would have been no big deal, if the next exit after that wasn’t for another 45 minutes.

I got off at that wrong exit and my air tire pressure notification started flashing. Oh, there’s a hole in my tire. Fucking awesome. Plus I was totally lost. I came across a Barnes and Noble and hooked my computer up to their WiFi from the parking lot. Steve’s job was roughly another hour away. So I wrote down more directions, proceeded to get very very very lost in this small town before finally finding a way to get onto 87 South.

I drove for another hour and found the town that Steve worked in! However, at this point my gas tank was getting dangerously low. I had decided to wait until I was with Steve to get gas because I was in New York and did not know how to pump my own gas. (It’s illegal to pump your own gas in Jersey, FYI) But as I drove around this town trying to find the doctor’s office he worked at, my car was getting way too close to empty. I finally gave in and pulled into a gas station, scraping the front left corner of my car against a concrete block I didn’t see. I also parked my car on the wrong side of where my fuel tank was.

Irritated and embarrassed, I drove out of that gas station and found a different gas station altogether.

Now I was parked correctly at a gas station! But I still had no fucking clue how to work the gas pump. Please take a moment to picture me in this stupid black mini dress and knee high boots, with a scratched up car, staring at a gas pump like a complete and utter moron.

I took a few moments, decided “fuck this, I’m going inside to ask for help” and noticed that my car would not lock. The key fob wouldn’t lock my door and if i pressed down on the lock it wouldn’t stay locked either. Welp, now I couldn’t leave my car or else someone would steal all my stuff inside because I obviously looked like a Jersey ditz who was lost and primed for robbing. (Turns out my solenoid is busted. A solenoid is the magnet part of the car that locks your car btw.) This day just kept getting more and more complicated.

I finally figure out how to pump my own gas and then look around to ask someone for directions. A man is putting air in his tires across the way and I go over and ask. He politely pointed me in the right direction and I’m back in business.

I go into the parking lot where Find My iPhone said my phone was and…..no sign of Steve’s car. At this point it’s around 1:30pm and I’m convinced he’s out at lunch and I have no way to contact him. Just in case, I drive around every parking lot on that street. Slowly driving….looking for his car….like a total creep.

By now I 100% give up on my mission and go into a Starbucks to iMessage him. I leave my car unlocked in the parking lot, not giving a single fuck if my stuff is stolen or not. I mass text Steve asking where he is and tell him to stop working and respond to me because I’m around the corner from his job and have been driving for the past 3 hours.

Steve texts me back saying that his boss took him out for lunch. And that he was in so and so town-

which is exactly the town I was in before. By the Barnes and Noble. At this point I tell, “Oh well it was worth a try-see you at home!” And get back into my car and drive the 45 minutes home where I immediately pass out for 3 hours from shear stress.

Steve comes home later, wakes me up, and apologizes for how everything went down. I laughed it off-because seriously, it’s such a great terrible story. He goes outside and buffs out most of the scratch on me car. Today after work I buffed out the rest; a little paint will cover the rest.

It was pretty bad guys. Lessons learned: never drive without a GPS ever again, the street signs outside of Jersey are small as fuck, and don’t cry over scraped paint because it’s a miracle what a little paint can do.

Next year I’m just fucking sending Steve flowers to work and call it a day.

This One Time… I Got Stuck in Kevin Bacon’s Basement

For about six months I was tutoring the teenage girl who lived across the hall from Kevin Bacon. For the purpose of this story, this girl will be known as Marissa henceforth.

kevin1_2451128bNow Marissa and her family, and Mr. Kevin Bacon across the hall, lived in a gorgeous building right on Central Park West. From their dinning room, where I mostly worked, I had a spectacular view of the park and I was envious every day. Their bathroom was the size of the apartment I was living in. Each floor had only two apartments, and this family shared a space with the man who fought for the right to dance.

I only saw Kevin Bacon twice during my time working there: once when I was walking up to their building and he was getting into a cab outside, and then again when I came to their floor as he was walking in his front door. Does this mean there are zero degrees of separation between us?

Now, sometimes my employers would go out of town for the weekend and they would ask me to sleep over with Marissa and her twin sister, Joy. The girls, despite being juniors in high school, had fake IDs and access to clubs where they knew the bouncers, so their parents didn’t make them come home until 2am. When I would sleep over, I wouldn’t have to head over to their place until midnight.

I would pack my backpack and ride my pink Schwinn Windwood bike and matching pinkschwinn-26-womens-pink-windwood-cruiser-bicycle helmet and ride over to their luxurious building. I had become friends with their doorman, Philippe, and he would let me sneak my bike into the basement instead of having to leaving it outside overnight where homeless men could have stolen it and sold the parts on the Lower East Side.

Now, the word ‘basement’ does not do this space justice. It was like…a hall. It 30 foot ceilings, two basketball courts, pool tables, two locker rooms, and an entire wall of bike racks for the families that lived there. On this particular night, I took the elevator down underground and parked my bike near the edge of the basketball court, because why not?

However, when I went to use the elevator to go back up, I realized it had just turned 12:01 am and that meant the elevators had automatically locked, for security reasons. I wandered around the massive hall, looking for a flight of stairs. Unfortunately everything was locked, which I’m sure was a major fire hazard. I began to mildly panic.

I walked in circles, looking for any way out of there. I tried my phone and I had no cell service and it was unlikely that Marissa and Joy would care that I wasn’t there when they stumbled back home drunk. The only window was 20 feet above me and it had bars in front of it. If there was a zombie apocalypse, this is exactly where I wanted to be. But until then, I was getting desperate.

How could I explain this one? “Sorry m’am, I wasn’t there to make sure your daughters didn’t need to have their stomachs pumped from partying all night because I got stuck in your basement from when I was sneaking my bike down there. I’m sorry.”

 I finally noticed a security camera by the elevator and started to furiously jump and wave my arms in front of it. Sometimes Philippe would hide around the corner of the lobby to text his girlfriend during her night classes, so there was a chance he wasn’t actually watching the footage at that moment.

Five exhausting minutes there I heard the elevator sound off and open before me, as if by magic. I then let myself into my employer’s ridiculously nice apartment, took a very long bath in the tub the size of my bed, and helped myself to their stocked fridge.

Things were even more surreal when the girls came home and we started watching “The Game Plan” starring The Rock as well as Kyra Sedgwick, Kevin Bacon’s wife. At once point I said to Marissa, ‘That’s your neighbor across the hall” and the girls let out an unimpressed “ohh”.  I then asked them, “The TV is loud, do you think she can hear her own voice coming from your apartment? Wouldn’t that be weird?” They then burst into a fit of giggles and I excused myself to fall asleep in the guest bed that looked like Sleeping Beauty’s because of course, why wouldn’t it?

daniel-day-lewis-gangs-of-new-yorkI didn’t find this out until afterwards, but Daniel Day-Lewis also lives that in that building. So technically I was stuck in his basement as well, and it’s too bad I didn’t have his number because he could have easily saved me. Or at least talked to me in his President Lincoln voice and told me stories about working with Steven Spielberg. I don’t know if Kevin Bacon could have done much except for swing from the pipes in the ceiling but I would have welcomed seeing some of his dance moves.

Zoe

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