30 November 2009

I am not important

Yesterday I called to chat with my dad. Quite quickly, he told me that he was scared that he may be suffering from anemia or writers block. Apparently, he is so boring Chaya (his dog) is avoiding him. I assured him that it would pass and he would be inspired again. Seems like I was right. Email to me (Eric cc’d)


Saw the concert last night on HBO. You must not be a very important person since, once again, you could not deliver any tickets for your father, the man responsible for giving you life.

I watched the concert for two main reasons—to determine how aging has affected the artists and beards. Of course, I was very anxious to see if the old performers could stand up for long periods of times. Would they need bathroom breaks? Would they need to sit and catch their breath? Would they have little elves reminding them all the lyrics? It really was mind blowing to see that all the song writers remember their own lyrics. How do they do that? Do you think they hide index cards with reminders? I forget almost everything now, especially that I am married, and most of the artists are older than me. Do you think they take special vitamins? Maybe you can look into that for me (since you failed to get me tickets and I gave you life).

Next, I was trying to get some inspiration for facial hair. It is a tradition of mine to grow a beard during Thanksgiving break---yes I still think I’m in school and therefore get a “break.” I was looking for some creative help from these artists. What’s hot right now in the facial hair forum? Are they sporting beards? Any new side burn patterns? I was hoping my personal favorite, the mustache, was back so I can finally grow mine back. I know you say they are perverted but It really does cover my thin upper lip. Sadly, I got no signs, no inspiration. I am not sure I can pull of the ZZ Top thing, but I like the way he looks--beard, hat and sunglasses.

As usual, I shaved but for all the wrong reasons. I have lotions, eye cream, organic skin softeners, special shaving cream, facial scrubs and tons of after shave to apply. I mean can you do a facial mask with a beard?? I think not. Your mother and I have a special night planned for tomorrow where we will bond over this new facial detox program I have come up with---facial mask plus facial peel plus super duper lotion your mother gets from Italy by way of New Jersey.

So, I did what every normal man would do and shaved off my beard. The beard is gone and will stay gone until I run out of product. By the way, will you buy me some new face products? I saw a picture of you and your face is looking really good. Are you using something new?
Love you.

19 November 2009

Part 2

As I waited to meet the fam at dinner, I popped into Borders. As I started browsing through my favorite aisle (obvi “self help”), something caught my eye...a book entitled “The Rules.” In case you are not up on this kind of lit, the book's premise is that there are "secrets" to capturing the hearts of Mr Perfect and by secrets they mean play hard to get, training men and being well groomed. Since my paid friend had recently "suggested" that I may in fact be sending bad signals to men on dates ( so much so that they feel they can hold my hand all the time) I figured I might as well pick it up. I mean if spending $9.99 teaches me about proper boundaries, why not?

As soon as dinner started I told everyone I was planning on evolving into a "rules girl" in the next week or so (or however long it will take to read this bible). Eric and Jess seemed very excited. Instinctively, I knew they were excited about different things. Naturally, my dad became the focus for the rest of the dinner so it wasn't until me, Eric and Jess drove to Franklin Lakes that we breached the topic again. As soon as Jess had the floor, she had lots to say...

Me: So in this book, it says that girls should not be loud, opinionated or funny.

Jess: Well, not at first. At first just be nice. It’s not important if you are funny or opinionated. Once you have them, then you can be funny. Also, I wouldn't talk so loud.

Me: So basically be someone I am not...trick them ?

Jess: Yes, just in the beginning. Everyone is pretending in the beginning. Eric tricked me. He said he liked going downtown to all the restaurants and having long dinners. We know he is scared of going below 42nd street and we have never ate below 72th street. He only likes to eat at two restaurants.

Eric: Jess, that is not true. We go to CPK alot and that's in the 60s.

Jess: And Alison, I think it sounds like you are mean to boys. Be nice, supportive and smile a lot. Always smile.

Me: Yuck. I don't look good when smiling. More importantly, how does one act nice and supportive?

Jess: You know, make them feel important. Nod your head when they talk. Smile like they are interesting. Sometimes I didn't even listen when the guys would talk, I just nod and tell them they were right.

Eric: Wow, Jess. Any other thoughts for her?

Jess: Well I don't think its a good idea to make fun of them. Let them be funny, you just listen. Don't talk a lot.

Me: This sounds horrible. I am not even sure I can do it.

Eric: Alison just channel Jess when you are dating.

Jess: Yes, that's a great idea.

Eric: How about we role play??? (we agree) Hi, I am Matt and I work at a hedge fund because I want to be rich. I love the suburbs, golf and cars.

Jess: Ok, Alison what would you normally say?

Me: Yuck. That sounds horribly depressing. I would probably slit my wrists.

Jess: Alison!!! That is completely wrong. The right answer is-- I understand. It’s hard and its nice to have things.

Eric (smiling from ear to ear): I would listen to her. She did well for herself, she got me.


16 November 2009

Part 1

This weekend was the big Franklin Lakes engagement party. Naturally, my parents and my grandmother flew out for the occasion. There is just so much material here that I am going to break it up by activity.

The weekend festivities began with dinner on Friday in the Time Warner Center. As family, we gravitate towards malls, even in the city. Within 10 minutes of sitting down, my dad said, "Alison, can you go to Sephora and buy me the lipstick you stole from me? Also, I need new moisturizer. I keep getting zits so I am thinking I need to try something organic or soy based." Yep, that's what he said word for word. His mother looked up and said, "Allen why are you wearing lipstick?" My mom interjected, "I think he means chapstick. Allen and Alison like the same chap stick." Note that the tube really is lipstick-like.

The company at dinner was perfect-- my bro’s BFF (Jon) that has been living on Eric and Jess’ couch (you can follow his shenanigans here www.twitter.com/hakakhasays), my grandma, Dad, Mom, Eric, me and Jess. Shrage could not make it since he was on a date with a girl named Alyson (with a y) at the Knicks game (um, yes you read that correctly). Anyways, the combination of people creates the most radical situation. Jess believes everything we say, Jon tries to convince my grandma that he is good enough for me to marry (he keeps asking her if he can date me and she keeps saying no way) and my Dad, Eric and I try to make each other laugh. Some of the dinner’s high points--

- My dad telling Eric and Jess that he wants his grandkids to call him Mr Hellman

- My grandmother telling us that as a young child she would take my dad to stores and sit him outside on the bench. When she came out, he would act like he did not know her and that she was crazy

- Jess telling me that I need to be less funny, nicer and quieter in order to get a boyfriend (note, there will be an entire post dedicated to this later)

- Jon asking for a black napkin, noting that if this was really a nice restaurant they would have already offered

- My mom whispering to my brother loud enough for me to hear that they should lie to me and tell me to get to his apartment 30 min before necessary so we would not be late for the party

12 November 2009

An Email from My Dad

I think its only fair that I share an email from my dad each week, almost like the best of Nella...

Last night's email to me and Eric (my mom was cc'd)

Subject: Packing

As you know, Deb and I are on the 8:30 AM flight from LAX to beautiful EWR. Today, we went to see Koji (um, hair dude extraordinaire) and I left in pain and penniless. My back is so sore from all the massages I got from his three assistants (yep, Koji has three hair assistants who, for no reason, massage my dad's back while my mom and I get our hair done). l told them that after they were done, just like Dancing With The Stars, I was going to send the least talented contestant home. It was such a smart plan--each massage was better than the one before. I was very kind and told them they were all great and I could not kick anyone off but we all know that I was lying. The Spanish girl has to go. She has no style, and with all the cool Japanese men she just doesn't fit in (side note: my dad bought hot pink Adidas that he saw on TV to impress the cool Japanese men at Kojis...real normal).

The other issue with us leaving LA is Chaya (his dog). She spotted the luggage and is not happy. No tail wagging. No little smile and she is not even attacking the TV when the Aflac duck ad comes on ( Chaya, the worst behaved dog in the world, attempts to jump into the TV as soon as an animal appears on TV. Naturally, my dad likes it and laughs every time). It's really hard to leave her but she's a dog and they forget a lot and she gets us back by doing things like using the house as her personal toilet the night before we leave.

I have my clothes ready to go, which is funny because I wear the same thing every day when I come to New Jersey. The theme of this trip is Johnny Cash. I'm only bringing black clothes. This makes it extra easy-- I am bringing one black belt and one pair of black shoes that your mother thinks are brown. For some reason these "brown" shows are causing tempers to fly in this house. They REALLY are black but let's see what happens.

I can't wait to see you guys, it's been too long not seeing you (note, we saw each other 3 weeks ago)

11 November 2009


I am having problems coming up with blog posts. Obviously I have an abundant amount of incredibly inappropriate ideas but since I am a professional, I cannot go there. Out of fear that I already blew my load, I turned to Eric.

Our exchanges went something like this…

Me: Can you write a post for me, I got nothing. And it has to be about me, not dad.

Eric: Come on, there is so much crazy in that head of yours. Have you talked about x or y (insert inappropriate ideas)

Me: Mr Bluth will get mad at me if I talk about x and mom said no one will date me if I talk about y.

Eric: Ok, let me write something tomorrow morning, I am like Emerson, I do my best work before the break of dawn.

And so, Eric sent me a post (which Katie had to edit, obvi)….

Two summers ago, we embarked on a family trip to Israel. It was nice to see the motherland and all but the one place I really loved was Jordan. While I was amazed by the art and the history of the place, Alison was focused on other things.

Our tour guide, Louie Louie (not making it up), spoke about how he met his wife. Apparently, when a man is ready to settle down, he summons his family together and declares, "I am ready to settle down and start a family now. Please find a woman I can do this with.” We were all intrigued and bothered by this unromantic way of life. Louie Louie even had his sister go and inspect his future wife’s, whom he had yet to meet, toilet and bathroom hygiene to make ensure she was not a pig.

While he was talking, I looked over at Alison and saw that something was a-brewing in that unicorn head of hers ( does everyone know that she was slammed into a wall as a child during summer camp and for many years she had something trying to break free from her forehead- a la unicorn head?!?).

After a few more days in Elat, we went back to NY. After we boarded the plane, and waited for take-off, Alison asked everyone to gather. The stewardesses must have thought something bad was happening…I mean a bunch of Jews standing around together and talking could ONLY mean bad things. But no. Alison, in her most serious tone, told us that she was ready to start a family and needed us to go find her a man. She even pulled me aside and said "..make sure his bathroom habits are clean and he knows how to cook a mean brisket."

Alison has been on numerous dates since -- homosexuals with mustaches (not that there is anything wrong with that), perpetual hand holders, hipsters who think not showering is the new cool, and many others. She still hasn't found the one which she likes to blame me for. I love it when she threatens me too. I love my sister. I have been telling her to go out to non-threatening places like church, temple, mosques, Barnes and Noble, Biscuits and Bath and many other places but she still is depending on me to find her the catch. To this day when we discuss her dating life she will say "it’s been over a year since we had the family gathering on the plane and you still haven't delivered." Who wouldn't love my sister….she is special!

03 November 2009

Bat Mitzvah

Sometimes, pictures tell the best story. So.... these are some highlights from my Bat Mitzvah with some commentary. Yes, my nose may be a bit smaller now, but that's because I had a deviated septum. And yes, my hair was brown.

Below is a picture of me, Ree and David. I was in love with David. Notice the excitement radiating from my face....it was LOOOOOOVE. He was from Long Island. Now being from LA, and not knowing about NY culture, I thought Long Island was some tropical, mystical area....then I went to GWU and learned otherwise.
Yep, me and Nella. Yep, he has a mustache.

Nella and his mother, my favorite, Grandma Doris. I love this woman. She wears limited edition sneakers, blasts opera music in her house and does yoga every week....'nuff said.

Classic. Look at all that metal...looks like we are laughing about something....I bet he farted.

Please note the sheath dress. I only wanted a sheath dress. Apparently, I was difficult at this time. My requests were the following:

1. If we had it at a hotel, I only wanted it at a Sheraton or Hilton (so radical that I was already brand conscious)
2. No theme, naturally the party was the theme 
3. No make-up or fancy hair ( my mom and I settled on letting her brush my hair and putting on mascara)
4. All Sunflowers. So my dad and mom hate sunflowers...ummm, they think sunflowers are like 2nd rate flowers.....looks like I won!

Look at my mom. How cute is she?!? Seriously. She is sooooo adorable!!