Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Hunkering Down, In More Ways Than One

Hurricane Update: (OK, tropical storm, but still.) Shiiiiit. I've never been through one despite growing up in Fla. So now I am trapped in my apartment, loaded up on food, water, wine, flashlights, books, books on CD, batteries and 250 pages of my manuscript to edit by candle or flashlight. My condo is shuttered, which is quite good because most people down here do not have hurricane shutters—these things that look like accordians for windows. But the winds are a blowin' and the shutters make this creepy noise. Thank God for Klonopin

I live in Miami, right on the water, and since there is an actual hurricane coming, I have limited time for damage control today. But, before I go out and buy food, water, alcohol, and DVDs, a few things.

Thanks to all the new readers and passersby who have offered encouragement. I truly appreciate it, especially from other writers, and people like "Gary Worth," whom I greatly admire and respect and know will prevail;)

Page Six blindsided me, as is its style, for a few reasons: 1. I left the NY media willingly about a year ago. 2. I won the lawsuit last April. I guess in gossip there is no old news. 3. I did not publish the excerpt of Dishalicious for publicity, rather I published it b/c I am a nice, Jewish girl who wanted to get her nice, Jewish, friends, relatives and family friends off her back and make them stop asking me, "When can I read the book?"

This time of year, perhaps because it's near my birthday, has always been when everything always hits the fan. It was around this time two years ago that I first made Page Six, Women's Wear Daily, Gawker etc. It was around this time two years ago that fugly Sara Nelson wrote her fiction about me in the biz section of the Post, which later got me sued. And, it was around this time two years ago that I was served by AMI.

For those of you non-NY media types, a few facts: There is nothing a media grunt likes more than delighting in the downfall of his/her peers. If you were chained to a desk for 12 hours a day, doing work that was essentially without merit, wouldn't you be resentful, jealous, wondering whether the grass was greener?

Working like a slave was never for me. I'm a strong personality; I'm spoiled; I'm opinionated; I'm used to getting what I want, when I want it, and not being at the mercy of tactless bosses; and I have morals made of steel, thanks to being raised by parents who are paragons of strength and virtue and sheer coolness. So, I admit it—I never had what it took to claw my way to the top of the magazine heap. 70 hour weeks are not for me. I like doing things at my own pace and believe that life is waaaaaaaaaaay too short to work for other people if you don't like or respect those people. So I said good-bye to all that.

And now? Now, as a non-member of the snarkiest club in the land, I don't give two shits about what Page Six, Gawker, Mediabistro thinks of me. I do what I want when I want. I work from 9-4. I have a fabulous apartment with a balcony on the bay, and I spot dolphins and manatees daily. I have great friends and family nearby. I go to the beach whenever I want. And I write whenever I want. I still have the "fabulous" life—the closet full of designer duds, more Manolos than I can possibly wear, more jewelry than any 30-year-old deserves. So go ahead and hate, for I probably would too, if I were still chained to a desk, working for nasty, marginally talented people with no hopes of earning a sustainable living. But ask yourself this, Conde Nasties, Wenners, Hearsties, in the end, is it worth it? I didn't think so.

I think these are the things in life that matter, that upon your deathbed you shall review and smile about—family, friends, truth, integrity, fond memories of fun, living a life that is true to what you want. Below are the people who matter to me, cause it does come down to people, not print, either black or white or green.

I will always write; I always have. I have been writing stories since the sixth grade. I published letters to the editor in Vogue and Interview when I was 16. I started publishing in national magazines at 19. I've written (a lot) for free. Because it's not about the money or the fame or the book deal or Page Six. It's the fact that writing is like oxygen to me, like cooking for a chef, like painting for an artist; it nourishes me. And whether you like it or not, well, frankly my dears, I just don't give a damn.

Now I'm going to buy food, water, batteries and close the hurricane shutters and bring the furniture inside. Here are some pictures of the calm before the storm. Wish me luck...