A Traveler’s Adventures

I recently started reading “The Facebook Effect” by David Kirkpatrick. I couldn’t help it, after attending TechCrunch Disrupt (a 3-day technology-related event I attended a few weeks ago) where he and Sean Parker talked about the book, where many speakers from Facebook spoke, and most importantly, where I heard the word “Facebook” in every second sentence. It’s a pretty great book really, for anyone interested in technology, social networks or entrepreneurship. Did you know that when Facebook started in Harvard and expanded to the Ivy Leagues, other colleges bribed Mark Zuckerberg with flowers and candy to expand the network to their schools?

Anyway, to save time in the day, I try reading on the subway. However, everytime I travel without a book, I realize that traveling isn’t a waste of time at all. Observing people can fulfill your daily dose of entertainment. Here’s why:

A sneak peak of Manhattan subway-goers:

#1: The New Woman
This is your classic, independent New Yorker woman. She is proud of her achievements, and work is her life. When she gets married, hopefully by age 50, she will make more money than her husband. She is perfect in every way, with straight long hair, carefully applied make-up, long, polished nails, smooth curves, and fashionable clothes. Most important, however, are her 5-inch high stilletos. She can run in and out of the train, race through the subway stairs, and do all other sorts of acrobatic tricks in them. (Me? I struggle even walking without tripping over myself in my half-inch pathetic excuses for platforms.)

#2: The i-Banker
This is the busynessman who wears his suit everywhere he goes. He is inseperable from his Smart phone even on a subway train where there is no signal – especially since Smart phones are great for everything except, you know, the basic functions of high signal strength and recieving calls. But I digress. He is well-groomed and satisfied. But he is also cursing himself for his string of one-night-stands that force him to rely on such lowly means of transportation.

#3: The Crazies
People in this category have the funky dyed hair that sticks out in all directions, body piercings on any and all face-parts, and huge tattoos covering every inch of exposed skin. They wear anything ranging from tights that are torn in all places, to short skirts with hooker-type stockings, to, well, nothing. I will also classify those engaging in inappropriate acts of PDA with themselves and with others in this group.

#4: The Diva
This group consists of the incredibly talented, the incredibly untalented, and the whack-jobs. That’s right – these are the ones that provide entertainment for subway goers by singing, dancing or playing an instrument. Many are truly amazing and can lift your spirits on a gloomy day. On West 4th street in particular there are 2 people who use paint cans as drums and play music that sounds really professional. The beat is so catchy that I often see people dancing and bobbing their heads to the music. Their expression immediately changes to one of pretend-boredom when they notice someone watching them. Other entertainers are, however, downright creepy. Travelers, be warned.


The drummers at the W4 St station

#5: The Mama
This is the group that I have the most respect for. It’s the lone-moms who handle their 5 or more crazy children. The children, I’ve noticed, always try to feed the youngest different kinds of junk when the mother isn’t looking. The mother keeps oscillating between smiling at her adorable creations and raging with anger at the nuisance they themselves create.

#6: The Regulars
And finally, we have the plain category – “normal.” This group consists of commoners that no one cares about, like you and me.

Of course, you will also find everyone and everything else between these categories.

And speaking of normal, I must illustrate a very not-normal situation I faced sometime ago at a networking event. I met a young man who was very intrigued to hear that I was from India, and he told me about his own adventures at the Taj Mahal. Of course, this made me feel some sort of subconcious national pride. As I was leaving, as per protocol, I asked him for a business card. What does he give me instead?

Barack Obama *HOPE* flavored condoms – Stay Safe? Yes We Can!

I stared at him in disbelief. Really? REALLY?

Why?

Because that’s what his company does. Because you cannot just hope. And because today’s irresponsible youth really needs to learn.

On my way home, I left it on the subway, hoping that someone else would make better use of it – such as the crazies, the divas, or..the i-bankers.

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But without you all I’m going to be is…..Incomplete

Let me start this off by saying thanks to everyone who commented on the previous post.

I think I just sounded like someone who won an award of some sort. Kind of like at the Tony Awards where Catherine Zeta Jones was “thankful to everyone in the world……..especially my husband, who is a movie star and whom I get to sleep with….. EVERY NIGHT!!!!

The random Tony Awards reference is due to the fact that I went for a Tony Awards party this past weekend and her thank-you comment was by far the most memorable moment of the night. The party itself was pretty awesome, especially with all the crazy Broadway fans. And by the way, did you know that they even have a social networking site called Broadway Space for Broadway fans to meet and connect with each other? The techies weren’t lying – it’s everywhere!

Now for those of you who aren’t totally in the loop of the hottest trends of today, the title of this blog consists of lyrics from the Backstreet Boys’ song Incomplete. That’s right. Backstreets Back, alright!

If that wasn’t clear enough, this blog is meant to be about my Backstreet Boys concert experience, only because at one point in my life, Nick Carter was the sole reason for my survival. Perri and I went for their concert (after smoothly cutting in a line that extended 8 blocks) at the Hammerstein Ballroom in NYC lst Thursday.

It was absolutely amazing!!!! Unlike the John Mayer concert, there were great special effects. They began by suddenly jumping out of the big screen, and ended by jumping right back in, which was followed by a video of them walking away. Also, unlike the JM concert, I knew every song. And again, unlike the JM concert, people took craziness to a new level. Yes, that includes the corporate business-clad men who sat right next to us. People were shouting, screaming, jumping, crying….you get the idea. I thought that I was going to go deaf by the end of the night.



The concert

Overall, seeing poster boy Nick Carter come to life was a childhood dream come true. Now I am super excited forLady Gaga in the Fall.

That’s all for now. Thanks for reading! And really, any and all comments are appreciated…….even if I don’t get to sleep with my movie star husband every night.

Posted in Broadway, Concert, Intern Summer 2010, New York | Tagged , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

City of Dreams

So I decided to give this whole blogging thing a try. I thought I may as well attempt it, especially after being surrounded by Tech-Sperts for the past few weeks and hearing all about how social networking has revolutionized our world today.

Although I’ve been writing in my overpriced, yet authentic leather journal, I figured I could write the not-so-personal stuff on here. Besides, who needs a journal now anyway, in an age where nothing is personal anymore? I mean, people post their credit card transactions online through Blippy, let the world see where exactly they are located through Foursquare, and, I’ve heard, even post their net worth online! Besides, next time someone asks me what I’ve been upto in New York, I can redirect them here, thus saving myself the trouble of numerously repeating my amazement with this city. I will also admit that fictional character Jessica Darling has played a somewhat influential role.

As cliched as it sounds, New York really is the city of dreams. When Khilen told me that living in New York is completely different from just staying here on vacation, I brushed it off as one of those arrogant “I-live-in-the-best-city-in-the-world-so-I-know-better-than-thou” comments.

Now? I totally agree.

Yes, I’ve stayed here longer than a week while on vacation, yes, I’ve traveled around and taken the subway often, and yes, I’ve been to places beyond the tourist-frenzied Times Square. But actually living here by myself, going to and from work daily, figuring my way around new places, heck, even getting fearlessly accustomed to crazy subway-goers in the wee hours who sing to themselves and/or pee on the railway tracks (yes, I have had the privilege of witnessing this multiple times) is a different experience altogether.

I am amazed at the energy and innovation I see all round this city, and I want to be a part of it. I meet workaholics who love what they do, and I feel inspired to be like that someday, as crazy as it may sound. But really… the passion is contagious. Having been here for over 6 weeks, and having experienced different things at work and at different networking-ish events (where mind you, I am pretty much the only undergraduate student surrounded by established people) makes it a lot harder to really sum up why this is the city of dreams.

For now, lets just say I’ve been able to experience everything and more than I could have possibly wanted from this summer, be it business-y, technical, social, personal and even political!

Hopefully I can keep up with writing this regularly and can catch up on the many, many things that I’ve missed out on due to my late blooming as a blogger. Until then, that is all.
xoxo
blogger girl
(that was incredibly lame, even for me, I know… but I couldn’t resist)
ओह एंड इ कैन अल्सो डी थिस!

Posted in Intern Summer 2010, New York, Social Media | Tagged , , , , , , , | 5 Comments