Wednesday, November 6, 2013

A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to SoHo

I can't believe it's already been a whole week since I've moved to New York. I've been trying to keep myself busy to avoid thinking about the drama filled flight here. But at the same time I was glad Joshua and I were able to come to terms with things.

I honestly felt like a new person walking out of the airport. My confidence was quickly shattered when I wasn't able to hail a cab as gracefully as I wanted.

When I arrived at my apartment I was pleasantly surprised to find it really did exist. Okay, don't judge me, but I found this place on Craigslist. It seemed decent enough and I was desperate to find something before I came into town. Plus it's impossible to get a place this cheap in the city. Which is why I didn't think it was real. (That and the renter's excessive use of exclamation points!!!!!).

It may not have been the best location, oh who am I kidding, any location in the city is perfect!

It was cheap by New York standards but it was costing me an arm and a leg. Hopefully it'll be just an arm once I find a roommate.

I still can't understand how this place is meant for two. Every common space can only occupy one person comfortably. Don't even get me started on the bathrooms. Aside from the sizing issue, the place itself is fairly livable. The quaint architecture really gives it a cozy feel. I can get use to calling this place home.

I had my medical school orientation in a week and classes don't officially start for another week after that. I decided to come a couple weeks before orientation to settle in and get to know my neighborhood a little bit better. Having loved New York since I was young, I always thought I knew the city. But there's a huge difference between Google street view and actually walking the streets to familiarize yourself.

Oh, and the subways! God bless the subways! I don't know why New Yorkers complain about it so much. Sure it's grimy and disgusting. Some one, or thing, may throw up on you every once in a while. And I'm pretty sure it's possible to non-sexually contract an STD while down there. But that's besides the point! It literally stops everywhere. Why don't more cities offer this convenience? Get on it, subway makers!

After a morning walk through the streets I decided to make my way over to SoHo. The last time I came to the City I ran into a ton of street vendors selling their art pieces here. I was desperate to find some unique artwork to put up in my poorly decorated apartment. And of course my favorite pizza place was just around the corner.

All this walking was making me hungry. No wonder everyone here is so thin. Now I just need to know how they all manage to effortlessly look so fashionable. Every one seems to know when I'm “trying”. Ugh, I blame this on the year I lived by the “sweatpants, hair tied, chilling with no make up on” motto. Damn you Drake!

I rounded the corner onto Carmine and made my way into Joe's Pizza. It was pretty much a crime scene by the time I left.... because I murdered that pizza. (Yes, I did actually say that. No, I'm not sorry.)

As I happily wobbled down the street to the subway I ran into a young man handing out fliers. I normally don't stop for fliers since their fate ends up becoming purse stuffing. But, the guy passing them out caught my eye. He was just about 6 feet tall. It was impossible to tell if his hair was actually light brown or a dark blond. His dimples gave him the perfect boyish touch.

“Hi, what's your name beautiful?”

“Lynn Lee” I slightly rolled my eyes.

“Lynn Lee? As in you have two names as your first name? Or you're one of those sophisticated people that gives their full name when meeting someone?”

“Lynn Lee, as in both of my parent's middle names put together.”

“Oh, that's unique! You'll be just fine in this city, Lynn Lee”

“And what makes you think I'm new here?”

“Well, you stopped to talk to me for starters. And you've got a bit of a Southern thing going on when you say your name.”

I couldn't help but let out a laugh when he said that. I went my whole life thinking I didn't have a Texas accent. I blame it on all the TV I watched as a kid. But, it was funny that he was able to pin point the lack of enunciation.

“Here's the thing Lynn Lee, Despite what you might think, I don't do this with every girl that walks my way, but I think you're beautiful and I would like it, a lot, if you came to my show tonight at the Comedy Cellar, and then joined me for dinner afterward...”

“ Sure”, I said while grabbing the flier from his hand. I started to examine it while he continued on

“It'll be fun I promi-Wait...What? Really?”

I looked up at him confused, “Why are you so surprised?”

“It's just I've used that line on every girl that's walked by today and it didn't seem to work.”

He saw my smile quickly turn into a grimace.

“I'm kidding! I'm totally kidding! I'm a comedian, that's what I do! Make a fool out of myself in front of pretty women like yourself.”

I couldn't help but crack a smile. Not because of his corny lines, but because he actually seemed nervous to be talking to me. Joshua and I were together for so long I had forgotten what it felt like to flirt with strangers.

“I'm sorry, I didn't get your name.”

“I'm Jonah.” He said while extending out his hand.

“Well Jonah, here's to hoping your punch lines are better then your pick up lines. I'll see you at 8!”

Jonah's pale cheeks flushed pink as his smile grew.

Why are guys so confident when they're hitting on a girl, and then suddenly clam up once the girl plays along? He wasn't necessarily a guy I would normally go for and I wasn't interested in anything exclusive. I needed to figure out who I was in this city before I could commit to anything else. Plus I just put a fresh bandage on the whole feeling-like-a-terrible-person-for-leaving-Joshua thing. Regardless, I didn't know many people here and I wanted to make friends outside of school. I was barely able to handle having too many pre-medical friends when I was back in college (Those kids need to lighten up.)

Anyway, I figured I would give tonight a shot. Jonah seemed like a stand up guy (pun intended) who knew how to have a great time.

Before jumping back on the subway I decided to stop by a boutique to pick out an outfit to wear for the show. I didn't have the time or the patient to go through my suitcases. And plus, it was a special occasion. It was my first night out in the Big City!

I decided to keep it casual with a purple high-low dress. Something that didn't scream “I'm desperate for a good time”. I threw on some jewelry and completed the look with my Naked palette.

It was a few minutes past 7 so I decided to make my way over to the comedy club. Once I got there I scoped out a seat towards the back of the room and ordered a drink.

Because the club was so crowded I had to share a table with a couple, Mandy and David. We chatted a bit before the show. It was their one year anniversary. They seemed really nice and down to earth.

Mandy asked me why I was by myself and I told them I had ran into one of the performers and that he'd invited me to the show.

“Oh, you're a lucky girl!” Right then a performer came out to start the show and Mandy began to whisper, “These comedians are all accomplished and work with some big name people in Hollywood.”

Jonah was the third performer to come out on stage that night. When he walked out I could see him scanning the room. We made eye contact. He smiled with relief and gave me a wink. “Oooh” Mandy and David sang in unison.

I was pleasantly surprised at Jonah's performance. He really knew how to control the audience. He was charismatic and confident, completely unlike the guy who was passing out fliers. Making everyone laugh came so easily for him. Needless to say Mandy, David, and I were in tears. Jonah was doing such a great job.

Once the next performer came on stage Jonah made his way over to our table. He came up behind me, put his hands on my shoulders, and whispered in my ear, “Grab your things, let's get out of here”

We walked out of the comedy club and Jonah proceeded to hail a cab.

“So, who was that in there?”

Jonah smiled exposing his dimple. He knew exactly what I was talking about.

Right then a cab stopped and we got in. Jonah gave the cab driver the name of a restaurant and I pretended like I knew the place. Once we got there the waiter sat us at a secluded booth.

“Well, now tell me, 'Miss Lynn Lee'” Jonah said in a Southern accent. “What do you do for a living?”

“I'm just about to start Medical school.”

Jonah looked surprised as he tore off a piece of bread the waiter had given us. “Wow, impressive!” he began to pour olive oil into a plate to dip the bread into. He casually went on, “I was actually pre-med back in college.”

 “Really? What happened?”

“Since I was a little kid, I had always been involved with theater. Acting, producing, writing, you name it. It's something I'm really passionate about. Once I got into Harvard I...”

“What? You went to Harvard?” I cut Jonah off mid sentence. “I'm sorry, that was so rude of me. But, that's amazing. Pre-Med is tough, but you have to be a genius to endure Harvard's Pre-Med.”

Jonah laughed as he leaned back into his seat clearly entertained by my enthusiasm.

“Yeah, well I was committed to becoming a doctor. I didn't think show business was a suitable career. But one semester after another I started to slowly realize it wasn't something I was passionate about. That's something you'll learn eventually. There's a huge difference between love and passion. Being a doctor was something I loved, but expressing my emotions through writing was something I was passionate about.”

“That's amazing! Kudos to you! But, now tell me, where did the whole “comedian” thing come from?”

I could tell Jonah was enjoying my interest in his life

“I'm a 29 year old comedy writer in New York City that has to come up with fresh material on a daily basis. It's competitive. It's stressful. It's definitely not as easy as it seems. Being myself on stage is pretty therapeutic. I get to let all my aggression out and make people laugh at the same time.”

Our waiter came back to take our orders.

So far I was enjoying Jonah's company. He was a fun loving guy, which I wasn't use to.

The rest of our dinner was spent talking about how crazy the Breaking Bad finale was, quoting our favorite movies, and just about life in general. I would occasionally look up from my meal to catch Jonah looking at me. Once we had finished dinner Jonah grabbed the check, like a complete gentleman.

We walked out of the restaurant and after looking around I realized we were only a few blocks from my apartment. I guess my morning walk exploring paid off.

Jonah offered to walk me home. As we slowly made our way down the street Jonah brushed his arm against mine. I looked over my shoulder to acknowledge his gesture and he grabbed my hand just as we made eye contact. My heart began racing. I was starting to like Jonah but I didn't want to jump into something so fast. I didn't want to give him the wrong impression by holding on to his hand. But at the same time I could feel a huge smile on my face.

We walked in silence enjoying the bright lights of the city. There was a crowd of teenagers walking towards us as we turned the corner. Jonah let go of my hand and wrapped it around my waist, pulling me in closer to him, as the crowd walked past us. When he had done so, I instinctually leaned in closer and placed my hand on his chest. Realizing that I might be sending the wrong message I let go of Jonah and apologize for invading his personal space.

“Ha! I've never had a girl as pretty as you apologize for coming on to me. It's usually the other way around”

I gave him a slight smile. He knew something was wrong.

Jonah stopped walking. He turned towards me and stared at my face. I was avoiding eye contact at this point.

“Did you know your eyes twinkle whenever you're excited?”


“Did you know your ears turn red when you're shy?”


Jonah pushed my hair behind my ear. His fingers traced my jawline and he gently placed his hand on my chin.

He was inches away from my face.

 “Did you know when you're nervous, the outer right corner of your lips tremor ever so slightly?”

I felt my heart drop. I couldn't believe Jonah had picked up so much about me so quickly. This is what I had always wanted from Joshua, for him to notice me. I finally gave in and looked up at Jonah. His deep hazel eyes looked back at me. He let out a slight laugh. He took my hand again and we continued to walk.

“You're in big trouble Lynn Lee.”