Friday July 3 was that most rare and delicious of days, a Federal holiday. A chance to sleep in and get some personal things done. All I had to do was email some voice-over stuff by 3:30, and get a grant application postmarked. Easy peasy.
Read the news on Twitter, then went to Rite Aid and bought a ream of paper, chips, and bottled tea. Came home and wrote futuristic news announcements* to be recorded in DC later in the day as voice-overs for pre-show and intermission at my DC Fringe show, "MAY 39th/40th." Also cancelled drywall guy because kitchen ceiling had started leaking again. (Long story.)
Started grant application (proposal, budget, tax returns, cover letter, cover form, CV). Concurrently printed 90-page sample script and 4 pages of work-in-progress on ream of new paper.
So far so good.
Take a break and drop off laundry to be done. Ready by 5pm.
Still working on grant application. Knock at door. Super and plumber. Unexpected, but great that they are now on a mission to suss out why my kitchen ceiling is gushing like a cheerleader on prom night. I let them in and then ignore them because I'm in deadline mode.
Grant application printed, assembled, enveloped. Moved on to final script edits of "MAY 39th/40th."
Plumber and super are now AWOL, so I tell IJ** not to escape and I leave my apartment unlocked.
Catch a cab (there are never cabs where I live--This day is going SO well, I think to myself) 20 blocks to a wifi cafe so I can email the script and voiceover stuff before 3:30pm deadline.
Buy a fruit cup, open netbook, and repeatedly fail to send emails.
Learn from neighbor that wifi is turned off from 11am-4pm.
"Sh*t. I'm f*cked."
Contemplate finding a Starbucks and figuring out how to buy wifi access there, and decide instead to beg cafe owner to turn on wifi. "I took a cab, I bought your fruit, I have a deadline, I'm happy to pay."
Email script and voice-over goodies from wifi cafe. (Never underestimate the power of "Please.")
Now that I've got a little time (post office doesn't close 'til 5pm, right?), I answer emails, listen to a woman fight with her mom over Facebook, and eavesdrop on a middle-aged couple going down in flames during what appears to be their first date. The guy is silent, mostly. She: "Well, she sounds great! Why are you here, go be with her!" and, "My cycle is 21 days, not 28, so my eggs..."
I kid you not.
I Twitter the fruits of my eavesdropping, and restrain myself from posting a surreptitious picture. (Believe me, a picture would explain a lot.)
Pack up and walk the 10 blocks to the post office so I can get my grant application postmarked.
Have I mentioned it's a Federal holiday?
Sh*t. I'm f*cked. Again.
Now, in my defense, I thought since post offices are open on Saturdays, that meant that they'd only be closed on Saturday the 4th. As in, you know, the actual holiday? A quick scroll through Safari on my iPhone tells me that most post offices closed at noon on Friday, July 3rd.
This is when The Twitter made me want to marry it.
I put a call out on The Twitter.
"Emergency: post office is closed. Must get grant application postmarked today. Am way uptown 180th Street. Anyone know other post offices?"
Email Grant Lady, asking if it were possible for me to mail my application on Monday, saying I understand if not.
I have received no less than 20 replies, and I now know that the 34th street post office is open until 7pm. Score!
I show up at the laundromat 15 minutes early. My laundry is right there, I see it, waiting to be folded. I say I'll take it unfolded, I'm in a hurry. They do not understand English. They insist on folding it. I mean, insist. Like I ask four times, smiling and saying, no need to fold, in a hurry. (Even though I have 'til 7pm to get to 34th Street, I live a good 50 minutes away by subway, and I'm not thinking now is a good time to push my luck timing-wise.)
I give up and leave the laundromat.
I return to the laundromat when I realize they have all my cute jeans.
I am given my laundry. I tip $3 to dissuade them from thinking I'm a typical impatient gringa.
Cat still there. So is the ladder and mess in my kitchen. Try to find super so he can get his ladder, then give up. Shower. Dress. There is nothing like putting makeup on your face when you are sweating your balls off. Nothing like it. While putting on sneakers that will later give me blisters, realize the only thing I ate were chips and fruit.
Leave house, taking touch-up paint with me because you never know when you might meet one of those mythical single guys in New York City. On the way to the subway, notice silver shoes some huge guy on the street is wearing.
Guy holds elevator to train platform for me. Train comes right away. Get on, then nearly get off in the naughty sense because this is the first time I've been in air conditioning all day. Realize iPhone is out of juice.
Enter post office.
Read email from Grant Lady saying no problem, I can mail the application on Monday.
Try to Twitter my good news and thank everyone, but 3G blows, so I buy a hot dog and give a homeless guy a dollar. Get on subway.
Arrive at fancy restaurant.
New York is great. I'm only this nuts because I'm trying to do so many things. Working 3 jobs, writing plays, and other things, so everything gets left to the last minute, and there's no room for surprises. But now all my deadlines are met, and it's just the 3 jobs for a bit. I certainly don't want to complain, because right now I know many people don't even have jobs, so I'm super lucky, having just moved to NYC, to have all the work I do.
That said, I really did feel I should have at least gotten some at the end of a day like that.
Thank you to all my Twitter friends who came to my rescue. I honestly don't know what I would have done, because I couldn't get any useful info about USPS offices on my iPhone, and I didn't even know about the 34th Street post office that has extended hours all the time. So if I get this grant, I'll take everyone who helped me out for drinks!
*E.g., "In other news, North American President Jane Hansel will travel to Japandia this week in a bid to strengthen diplomatic ties between North America and the emerging super-colony. Japandia’s newly elected Prime Minister, Matsuda Haiko, known by her colonists as 'The Iron Cherry Blossom,' said that she hopes the visit will 'repair the wounds of the past.'”