Things I Love Thursday, September 23rd

Today is Thursday, September 23rd, which means it’s Things I Love Thursday! This week, IAmDann discusses showering, cleaning, drinking, Brooklyn, and putting numbers onto activities. Yeah, it’s pretty intense.

I’ve had to check three different calendars just to verify that today was, indeed, Thursday. Unbelievably, it sure is! This week has absolutely flown by. I feel like it was just yesterday that I was writing my last Things I Love Thursday post. But, sure enough, it was a whole week ago. Which means it’s time for this week’s Things I Love Thursday! Hold onto your hats, because this one is chock full of things I love! Just like every other Things I Love Thursday post!

ShowerShowers in Manhattan: One of my hesitations when making the decision to start biking into the city was needing a place to shower once I arrived. After an eight mile bike right, you’re not exactly at your optimum freshness. Luckily, my friend Leah jumped in to save the day with a FREE MONTH to New York Sports Club. There is a location about one block from work, which means I’ve been able to bike into the city, hit the showers, and have plenty of time to get breakfast and relax before it’s time to head into work. I’m sure the employees at this New York Sports Club look at me weird when they tell me “have a good workout!” as I’m walking in only to wave goodbye fifteen minutes later as I’m walking out the door. But who cares! I get to feel fresh and clean all day at work even though I biked into the city. I’ll have access to those showers for the next month, after which I’ll just have to wait for this new $20/month gym to open near work at some point this winter. I’ll just have to get some winter biking clothes.

SwifferHaving a Clean Room: I usually don’t get my bedroom get too messy (nothing that can’t be straightened enough for company in about 20 – 30 minutes), but, for some reason, my room collects dust like none other! I usually put off dusting way too long, but when I do get around to thoroughly cleaning and dusting, it feels so damn good. This past Monday was my day off this week, and I decided to do some much needed spring cleaning. I woke up early, straightened the top of my desk, shelving unit, and coffee table. Then I sweeped my entire room, vacuumed, then swiffered. Then I took a swiffer pad and dusted every counter top and every ledge in the room. I then took a pet hair remover brush and de-cat-haired by bed and by couch, and sprayed allergen removing fabreeze on every fabric surface in my room. After finishing this last touch, I headed into Manhattan to run some errands, and when I came back the room just felt so good. You just feel better about life with a clean room. Every thing you do just brings a higher level of satisfaction. Even sitting back and watching some TV is more relaxing after you’ve cleaned. And only took me about three hours, which is not bad at all. Totally worth it.

SmartwaterWater: I absolutely love water. It’s not because I’m on a health kick, and I don’t constantly strive to consume my recommended amount of water each day. Hell, I don’t pay attention to any of that. All I know is that given the choice between water and any other drink, I’ll most likely choose water. I mean, sometimes I’ll be in the mood for a soda, fruit juice, or even a glass of wine. But most of the time I’ll just crave a tall glass of water. In terms of bottled water, I’m a SmartWater person. Not quite sure why, or what it is, but I rarely buy any other brand. That being said, I usually just reuse my old water bottles by filling them up with Manhattan tap water. Which works out perfectly, because New York City has some of the best tap water in the country. Seriously. It tastes as good, if not better, than most bottled water you’ll buy in a store. And there’s an endless supply, and it’s FREE. It makes saying “water is fine” in a restaurant all that much better, because the water tastes amazing. I guess I am just passionately in love with the good ol’ H2O, and I’m not ashamed. And for a water lover, there’s no better place than New York City.

Getting to Know Brooklyn: I’ve lived in Brooklyn for around three years now, and I still know almost nothing about this borough. Things in Brooklyn are just so difficult to get to and from. There are plenty of trains running into Manhattan, but if you’re trying to get from one point in Brooklyn to another point in Brooklyn by subway, you’ll most likely need to take at least three different trains and/or go all the way into Manhattan in order to go back to Brooklyn. In order to get to the JFK Airport from my apartment, you can either take a twenty minute car ride or an hour and a half four-train ride. It’s ridiculous. But now that I’ve started riding my bike a bit more, my bubble (as I like to call it) is starting to expand. Which means I’m starting to know more and more places. I recently found that people were talking about certain streets in Brooklyn and I knew exactly where they were talking about. I’ve rode my bike past there. It’s a little similar to when I had a car, but exploring Brooklyn on a bike really is such a different experience in so many ways. I feel more attached to where ever I am, as opposed to that degree of separation you get when driving in a car. On my bike ride home, I cycle past the corner of Hoyt St. and Dean St. where there’s a really lovely retirement home that’s super easy to miss if you’re not paying attention. It makes me really happy to see people sitting out on the porch enjoying the weather, and knowing that I’m one of the people that they’re spending their afternoon watching. It’s those little things that make you feel connected to your city.

Bike Ride GPS MapQuantifying My Life: I really enjoy finding a way to attach numbers and statistics to my activities. When I tell people that I got an iPhone app to track my bike rides, they roll their eyes and say, “of course you did.” It’s true, if there’s an app that compliments an activity that I enjoy, chances are I own it. But it goes so much further than that. For me, everything is numbers. Writing a short story, for me, is plugging the right plot elements into a literary formula in order to evoke a certain response from the reader. So finding a way to put numbers to any physical activity can only further increase it’s level of enjoyment. It’s like looking at the same topic from two different angles. I recently got an iPhone app called 100 pushups, with a program to help one work their way up to doing 100 pushups in one sitting. A friend of mine seemed really bothered that I would purchase an app such as this. Their argument was that you should just do pushups. And if you want to do more, do more. In her viewpoint, the 100 Pushups app was completely useless. And for her, that might be completely accurate. But it’s exactly the type of thing that I like. Having a mathematical formula that determines the exact amount of pushups and reps I should be doing each day (with an option to do either more or less), timers to time breaks, graphs to chart progress. For me, these items aren’t extraneous, but an almost vital compliment to the activity itself. You’re able to look at pushups from a different angle. They’re not just the physical activity of laying face down and pushing your body up with your arms, but now they’re numbers that go higher when you work order. There are breaks that are timed so you don’t feel about about sitting back and relaxing for a minute or two. There are charts to compare your last week self with your current self (without the fallible concept known as memory). Sure, these may not be important elements for everyone, but they definitely add a whole new level of enjoyment to my activities.

The Rest: The moment on the Manhattan Bridge where labored peddling turns into effortless cruising, stories about tipping straight edge piercers with $20 of blow, sharing the OK Go Rube Goldberg video with people, hearts spray pained onto bike lanes, housewarming parties, giving housewarming gifts, discovering that while I’m unexperienced I’m definitely not the worst cyclist on the road, this version of I Will Possess Your Heart, Curb Your Enthusiasm, Cere’s presentation on rigging, people mentioning things I’ve written about in my Things I Love Thursday posts, reading everyone else’s Things I Love Thursday posts, retweeting #TILT tweets, Cherry Poptarts, challenging myself, my iPad, spray paint, stickers, arts and crafts, muscle thighs, suburbs of 73rd and Amsterdam, intelligent conversations, people somehow thinking my life is exciting and/or interesting, Nag Champa, Max, cat hair brushes, great ideas for new projects, waking up early yet well rested, turkey egg and cheese, being a regular at Le Basket, finishing a carton of milk before it expires, going out to dinner on Wednesday night and still getting this post done before I go to bed.

Manhattan Bridge View

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