Thursday, April 30, 2009

Take a Contemplative Coffee Break

Before you jump on that next conference call with that Debbie Downer executive, enjoy your next Venti Skim Latte with an inspirational boost from one of the dear old Brahmin poets, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow:

The Rainy Day

The day is cold, and dark, and dreary;
It rains, and the wind is never weary;
The vine still clings to the mouldering wall,
But at every gust the dead leaves fall,
And the day is dark and dreary.

My life is cold, and dark, and dreary;
It rains, and the wind is never weary;
My thoughts still cling to the mouldering Past,
But the hopes of youth fall thick in the blast,
And the days are dark and dreary.

Be still, sad heart! and cease repining;
Behind the clouds is the sun still shining;
Thy fate is the common fate of all,
Into each life some rain must fall,
Some days must be dark and dreary.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

What the World Needs Now...

Last week, I was walking down a bustling New York City street, lost in my own thoughts, when I heard a loud, cantankerous voice shouting in my direction.  A bit startled, I narrowed my focus and saw an older gentleman, struggling in along in a walker up the street as he approached me, and, as I did not recognize him I assumed he was either senile or had mistaken me for someone else.  He drew nearer, and I finally understood what he was struggling to yell...

"You have a lovely smile," he said. "Fantastic, dear.  It made my day."  

He reached out, took my hand to his old wrinkled lips, and kissed it as a gentleman of The Greatest Generation would.  With that, he clack-clacked along past me on his way.

This encounter started me to wonder about the ways we inadvertently affect people through our very presence and demeanor on a daily basis.  How do you project yourself when you are walking down the street, furiously messaging on your Crackberry or iPhone, unaware that others are aware?

The attitudes that we convey on a day-to-day basis are often projected to the masses, despite our ignorance.  When we ruminate on a fight with an ex, a dispute at the workplace, or even when we internalize our offence at the rudeness of being cut-off in traffic, we are often unaware of the furrowed brows and frowns we wear down the street.  

Perhaps it sounds a bit too prescriptively Pollyanna for our bustling, self-absorbed society, but smiling as you walk down the street (or, God forbid, saying "hello" to people you pass as is customary in the South), speaking kindly to people you are in line with at the grocery store, or showing gratitude to the waitstaff who are working hard while you unwind at your local restaurant can all go a long way towards making a person's day.  Try to foster an awareness of those around you.  After all, one day, God-willing, we will all be clack-clacking down the street and the smile of a stranger may be one of the last remaining rays of sunshine we have in our lives.  

Smiles are free - give and take liberally.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Dust Off Your Library Card and Check These Out...

Read This: Nine Stories by J.D. Salinger

Most famous for Catcher in the Rye, J.D. Salinger offers bite-sized offerings of his talent in this collections of short stories.  Every tale draws readers in, usually with the same unconcern discomfort evoked by Holden Caulfield, the depressed intellectual youth and main character from Catcher in the Rye.  In fact, one to the stories in this collection, For Esme with Love and Squalor, captures much of the same powerful wistfulness of the loss of innocence as his more notorious text. Plus, busy Recessionistas may delight in rediscovering the short story - perfect time filler between subway stops or to relax you as you wait for your date to show.

Watch This: Vicky Christina Barcelona starring Penelope Cruz, Scarlett Johansson

Playing, once again, with our general fallacies when it comes to love, Director Woody Allen serves up a tale of romance abroad, with two women falling prey to the seductive qualities of a handsome foreign man.  Enter into the love triangle a fourth, Penelope Cruz, who plays the ex of Juan Antonio (said Don Juan),  and you produce a complex, tragic but beautiful tale about the uncontrollable, uncontainable effects that passion produces within our lives.

Listen to This: The Fame by Lady Gaga

Even if you still have an N*Sync hangover from early this decade, the pop of Lady Gaga is edgy enough to warrant a listen.  Her latest released track, Pokerface, fuses dance-club-electronica with bubblegum pop in a distinct song that will have your body unintentionally moving in no time.  Plus, her costumed, exaggerated look ensures you won't confuse her with any other pop princess (no offence, BritBrit.)

Friday, April 24, 2009

Weekly Top Five Freebies and Cheapies

Every week, I scavenge the Internet, US cities, nay, the world to bring you, my beloved, the best freebies and cheapies that life has to offer. (P.S. I promise to include at least one "date" offering for my penny-pinching friends who know that lack of income should never mean lack of love!)

1. Free Beach Read. For those of you heading ocean side this spring, nothing compliments the smell of suntan lotion and taste of that first pina colada like a good, old-fashioned chic lit novel. Get a free copy of the book (most recently turned film) Confessions of a Shopaholic for that perfect vacation trifecta.

2. Cheap Fashion. Maxstudio's Supersale, with many items 70-80% off, allows Recessionista's to indulge their inner Fashionista without the trip to Confession post purchase.

3. Free Comedy at Your Fingertips. For those of you who cut cable extras, like DVR, to save some dinero, you no longer have to miss out on the latest from those cuddly, crass characters of Southpark. Check out for the latest episode in its entirety (with no commercials!) Just don't overindulge in the cheesy poofs!

4. Reduced-Price Lingerie. This Recessionista simply can not "bare" to describe La Perla undergarments as "cheap!" NYC Recessionistas can indulge in this exquisite line's sample sale today with as much as 80% off. Tres Jolie!

5. Free Recession Lexicon. To be en vogue these days, you must stay on top of the vernacular of the moment. Thankfully, the ladies at Recessionwire are giving up-to-the-moment vocab lessons to keep you trendy and clever at cocktail hour. Learning terms like "Slay-offs" and "Funemployment," you will be the hit of the discounted happy hour you attend tonight!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Love Don't Cost a Thing

"Ignorantly is how we all fall in love; for it is a kind of fall. Closing our eyes, we leap from that cliff in hope of a soft landing. Nor is it always soft; but still, I told myself, still, without that leap nobody comes to life." - Salman Rushdie

Love In the Time of Internet

Once upon a time, there lived a lovely princess, with no shortage of suitors. At that same time, there lived a prince, who earned the affections of every fair maiden in his land. Though the princess, with her perfect manicure and Manolos, and the prince, an utter Metrosexual and affinity for fine wines, were perfectly suited, miles, nay oceans, between them, there was little hope of ever meeting...until the the world wide web was born, that is.

Internet dating has arguably become the American take on arranged marriage. Who has time to to rely on a chance encounter? There must be an algorithm to help with this check box of the American dream! With the inertia of every day life, the metamorphosis of gender roles, and the general desire, no, compulsion towards instant gratification, Internet dating sites have found a lucrative market in a romance-starved society.

For love of the Recessionista readers (and a desire to remind myself of that life exists beyond my computer), I signed up for a short trial of one of these sites. The following represents a series of observations, concluded with some advice, should you choose this adventure...

1. Not Everyone on Internet Dating Sites is a) Desperate, b) Unattractive, c) A Player, d) A Freak, or e) All of the Above. While my busy schedule only allowed for a handful of dates from the site, all of the individuals I went out with were observably classy, witty, attractive, and VERY busy. This perhaps provides insight into why many might choose to seek love online - time is valuable and nightlife can be a crap shoot.

2. There is a Defined Etiquette to Online Dating. In my sophomore year of college, my best friend and I tried out "The Rules," a silly book that essentially promoted females playing hard-to-get until they get a diamond.  A decade older and wiser, I figured game playing was not for me, but, alas, it is alive and well online. Who initiates the first contact?  Is an email too bold or a wink too passive?How soon is too soon for an actual human encounter? How does one play coy through "LOLs" and "TTYLs"? I was not very good with games when we spoke in English a decade ago, and I am even worse in acronyms.

3. If Someone Asks You Out, Meet in a Public Place. I was very fortunate in my experience with online dating...every man who took me out was entertaining and a gentleman. However, knowing people who have been preyed upon (men and women!) in the dating scene, you MUST be careful, no matter how many points you match up with the person.

4. Expect Honesty, and Settle for Nothing Less. If someone posts a picture of his/herself circa 1990 and they look completely different, or they claim to be a liberal, but are, in fact, a card-carrying member of the NRA, call it out. Dishonesty is never an attractive quality.

5. Set Expectations for Yourself. I certainly have friends who have gone to these sites expecting to meet "the one." I also know friends who sign up for this type of matchmaking as a, "see, all the good ones are taken" justification for not braving the dating scene.  I suggest sitting down with yourself and having a clear conversation, one on  one with your heart.  Are you really looking to meet someone or are you looking to date many?  Are you ready to fall in love or are you really flirting with lust?  There are no right or wrong answers, but doing a bit of a self-assessment in advance will help you be a more honest cyberdate.

All and all, I have heard stories of people who met online and fell in love. I have also heard stories of disastrous dates that seem almost fictional. Personally, I think Internet dating sites are as good a jumping off point as a happenstance encounter at a bar or chance conversation at the grocery store. Still, my personal bias is to have the story..."he came up to me, and I told him to get lost...he persisted" or "she laughed so obnoxiously that I turned around and immediately fell for her." Forgive me, I was an English major in college.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009


Spotlight: A Night Under the Stars

By the time April has come around, most of us will do anything that we can to get outside and enjoy the warming temperatures and signs and smells of spring. Though April evenings can sometimes get chilly, my friends and I would not let that deter us from hosting parties and events outdoors in early spring. For those Recessionistas looking for an antidote to spring fever, consider hosting a group of friends for a glamorous but budget-friendly take on the drive-in cinema.

Since you will be hosting the theater and providing the venue for a sizable crowd, lower costs by asking guests to bring an appetizer to pass and a bottle of their favorite spirit for this starry night soiree.

Cost: $200/20-30 guests

What You Will Need:

  • A Recessionista movie screen - $99*: Recessionista found this amazing deal on one that is not only reasonably-priced, but super easy to set up at
  • A movie projector - $99*
  • Your laptop (just plug into the project - EASY!)
  • A favorite DVD

Tell Guests to Bring:

  • 1 Bottle of favorite spirits and mixer if required
  • An appetizer to pass
  • A blanket or two

Set-up is easy, and the tone of the gathering can be as casual or elegant as you prefer (choose an appropriate film to match your theme - it is a bit awkward to sit through Team America in a black cocktail dress, as I can attest through personal experience.) Despite the initial cost of equipment up front, you will be able to replicate this theme party and offer different versions throughout the good-weather months. Even if you only use the equipment 4 times this season, it breaks out to $50/party and you can not beat that!

The magic of a night with friends under the stars beckons nostalgia, enchantment, and the creation of new and lovely memories. Under the blanket of night, rest are amongst friends.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Weekly Top Five Freebies and Cheapies

Every week, I scavenge the Internet, US cities, nay, the world to bring you, my beloved, the best freebies and cheapies that life has to offer. (P.S. I promise to include at least one "date" offering for my penny-pinching friends who know that lack of income should never mean lack of love!)

1. Free Personalized Radio. This was a fantastic discovery of the week! Pandora prompts users to enter the name of a favorite song or artist and will immediately begin playing songs and artists similar to the the one you entered. I put in Lady Gaga, and, in addition to hearing her latest "Poker Face," I was treated to music from M.I.A., Rhianna and more. You can create multiple stations and infuse multiple artists into your station. Watch out, Samantha Ronson, there is a new DJ in town!

2. Free Reason To Smile. For the .02% of you have not yet met Susan Boyle, check out this uplifting tale.

3. Cheap Groceries. If you can pull yourself away from searching the millions of reduced cost books for sale at Amazon, you can utilize a $25 off coupon for grocery purchases of $69 or more. You don't even have to use your Greenpoints (sorry, inside joke for NYC Recessionistas!)

4. Free Ice Cream. Our favorite left-wing cats out of Vermont are sharing the ice cream wealth on Tuesday, April 21st. Saunter out to your local Ben and Jerry's ice cream shop for a free ice cream cone from noon to 8 pm, and you may find yourself having a Howard Dean "yee-haw" moment!

5. Free NYC Haircuts. This is a secret I was tempted to myself. The Carsten Institute of Hair and Beauty, an Aveda teaching school offers free(!) haircuts, reduced hair color (think $30), and more from morning until 3:30 pm on Tuesday-Friday. Call and make your appointment today with a graduating student!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Importance of MeTime

In the last several years, a number of my girlfriends have had children. It has been quite a magical experience to watch ladies that used to veer towards the wild side adopt a warm, compassionate, and tame lifestyle and observing them caring for their children has been really inspiring to this Recessionista. Though I personally am not certain that child-bearing is in my future, I have a tremendous respect for the women (and men!) who serve in the most important job in life, that of a parent.
However, the aftermath of pregnancy is often times less than a series of perfect, Lifetime-movie moments. To go from a constant state of only having to worry for one to spending the majority of your time constantly worried about another can be exhausting, to say the least. Additionally, a woman's identity shifts from that of a full-fledged person to that of a "mother." (Thanks, Society!!) Phrases like "well-rounded" and "work-life balance" become laughable. That life goal of learning Japanese feels far from achievable.

So, when I learned of MeTime, a company started by an extraordinary, not to mention beautiful young woman named Bea Arthur (with zero resemblance to the Golden Girl), I was immediately impressed. The mission of this company is to provide non-baby-centric activities and outlets to moms, giving them a "night off" from their identity as a mother and reminding them that they are , in actuality, fabulous women! MeTime will offer a series of get-togethers and activities, like Japanese cooking classes, to remind mommies that there is life outside of baby and they deserve to enjoy it!

Last night marked the debut MeTime event - a cocktail creation class sponsored by Domaine de Canton, a French Ginger Liqueur, as well as bar/restaurant Haven in Midtown east. With upbeat tunes and a high end lodge/lounge vibe as backdrop, our instructors Jennifer Craig and James, walked all of the MeTime attendees through the art of making cocktails that will not only impress dinner party guest, but, as I pointed out, we can make on a quiet night in just because we are worth it.

I learned three important lessons of the evening. The first and foremost, mothers are my heroes. What these ladies have to balance requires superhuman abilities and most do it with a constant smile on their faces. Second, I found a liqueur that I would actually buy. I am normally a pretty simple cocktail consumer - a glass of wine or a vodka martini. However, Jennifer proved me wrong with this delicious (and not super sweet!) ginger, honey, and vanilla infused liqueur. I challenged her and James, and through a series of cocktail creations, they made a believer of me - a bottle of Domaine de Canton will now be a regular part of my cocktail concoctions. Finally and begrudgingly I admit this, I realized that (some) models have brains, as I spoke with James who not only makes the world's best mojito, but has appeared in Men's Vogue and works full-time as a model. Snaps to both Jennifer and James, who were very patient and excellent instructors, even when the mommie crowd got a little rowdy.

Thanks to Jennifer for introducing the MeTime crowd to a lovely and elegant liqueur. Thanks to James for being patient with me as I over-poured my mojito. Thanks to Bea for putting on a lovely event that truly provided an escape from the everyday role that mom's have to play. A special thanks to the folks at Haven - an exotic, eclectic local with excellent service and great drink specials - a must if you are ever in NYC!

Domaine de Canton Mojito

2 Lemon wedges (yes, lemon!
4-5 leaves/sprigs of mint
1/2 ounce sugar syrup (depending how sweet you like it)
1 ounce Domaine de Canton
1-2 ounce(s) white rum
1 splash of soda/seltzer water

Muddle lemon, mint and sugar for a good 20-30 seconds (as James said, work out some aggression here - make sure you are really pressing the flavors out). Next, add the Domaine de Canton, followed by the rum. Add about a cup of ice, then shake it, baby! Top off with a splash of soda and even an extra squeeze of lemon, if you are feeling sassy! Then, drink up!

Monday, April 13, 2009

As A Recessionista Thinketh...

Once upon a time, in a world very different than today, I accepted a date with a man who, prior to our first date, gave me a small book as a gift. The small green hardcover text was As A Man Thinketh, by James Allen. Fast forward several years, and the wisdom of that book, much like the lessons learned from the lovely time I spent on that date and the relationship it developed into, has continued to make me a wiser individual and better person, despite some challenging self-examination that both prompted. Here are a few of the lessons Allen teaches in a book that every Recessionista can learn from...

1. "Man is buffeted by circumstances so long as he believes himself to be the creature of outside conditions" In the difficult economy, it is easy for all of us to feel victims of the circumstances around us. Allen offers that we are directly in control of our circumstances via our thoughts, our outlook. For instance, I have two friends who have recently lost their jobs - one is completely overwhelmed, feels helpless, scared, frustrated, and is, unfortunately, flailing, whereas the other has remained calm, self-assessment, and, as it happens, is now being courted by prospective employers. Coincidence? Maybe. Yet, we are clearly at an advantage as masters of our own thoughts, so give it a go.

2. "Circumstance does not make the man; it reveals him to himself." These difficult times can bring out a range of emotions and behaviors. People never inclined to moodiness have devolved, and I have seen the coolest of cucumbers revert to a trembling mess. However, this difficult time has also revealed amazing strength in others - I have seen those who have experienced great loss turn around and give away more, those who are suffering who spend their time comforting others, and a spirit of camaraderie that has pervaded the nation. Difficult times offer the opportunity for us to examine who we really are...and they offer the opportunity to change that.

3. "Good thoughts and actions can never produce bad results." This, in my opinion, is an inarguable truth. I have consistently found kindness and understanding, as well as keeping a clean, honest spirit, is a recipe for happiness, and by proxy, self-sustainment and fulfillment. Across most major religions and societies, the concept of being kind to your fellow man/Recessionista persists, despite Darwin, war, etc. My grandparents have shared stories of the Great Depression with me - people used to share what little bread and meat they had with their neighbors..."survival of the fittest" did not define the "Great Generation."

4. "A man can only rise, conquer, and achieve by lifting up his thoughts." I have an inkling that the author of the book "The Secret" has read James Allen before. This sentiment might feel a little Oprah, but actually, I will testify, it works. Keeping "intelligently positive" as I say, will serve as a method to waylay anxiety, keep your head clear and spirit up. For Recessionistas interested in purchasing a copy of this short yet powerful text, go to For Recessionistas even savvier with the dinero, it is also available for free online.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Weekly Top Five Freebies and Cheapies

Every week, I scavenge the Internet, US cities, nay, the world to bring you, my beloved, the best freebies and cheapies that life has to offer. (P.S. I promise to include at least one "date" offering for my penny-pinching friends who know that lack of income should never mean lack of love!)

1. Cheap Way to Stay Healthy: As the weather warms up, we tend to spend more time outside. Most people know they should wear sunscreen, but most people do not know that moisturizers and foundations purporting an "SPF" typically do not offer "broad-spectrum protection" - namely they only block out a portion of skin damaging UVA rays. Take an extra 20 seconds and apply Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Dry Touch Sunblock SPF 85 to exposed skin; a tiny investment ($10) now can save you a lot of pain later.

2. Cheap Way to Look Healthy: I expect a fear of following #1 is trying to make Casper the new tan. Recessionista, puhlease! I wouldn't leave you out to dry! Try Physician's formula powder bronzer for $10 at the local drugstore, or, for a recovering Tan-aholic, perhaps you should splurge on Benefit's Jiffy Tan bronzer, a liquid that caused the Chairman of the Board at my company to ask me where I went on vacation.

3. Free Chance to Show Off Your Snuggie: Rather than let that fleecy blanket-cum-garment continue to collect dust at the back of your closet where it has been since Christmas given your inability to regift it, show it off at the The Snug, a 9th Avenue NYC bar that will be hosting The (free) Snug Fest this Saturday, April 11th. Be sure to take pictures and send them to that great aunt of yours who, bless her heart, knew you needed a snuggie.

4. Free Healthcare: With so many people I know losing their jobs recently, Walgreen Clinics have stepped in to play Healthcare's White Knight to the recently unemployed. If you have lost your job since the end of March, you are likely eligible for this program. Click on the link for specific details, and hats off to Walgreens for having a heart.

5. Free Way to Save Yourself Alot of $$$: If you think that the time and complexities of getting to a customer service representative to ask about a bill, make a complaint, are just bad luck or an afterthought of an engineer, then I think you might cut back on the Margaritas, Recessionista! With the help of this incredible directory to an extraordinary plethora of major business, you will get to experience the natural buzz of getting directly dialed in...saving yourself time, frustration, and, because we all know humans are much more respsonsive than prerecorded, non-emotive, robotic voices (well, most humans anyway...), you will save money.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Dust Off Your Library Card and Check These Out

Read This: A Fairly Honourable Defeat by Iris Murdoch

With themes of defeat owed to faulty morality, silence, and comedic circumstance, this book invites one into the microcosmic world of eight London residents. Through unforgettable characters, rather than predictable plot, Murdoch invites us to gently learn, through moments of comedy and tragedy alike, self-involved, self-centered love will never succeed. Though individuals looking for the rapid page-turning plot twists of many American writers might take 100 pages to acclimate to the character-driven style of Murdoch, the end of the novel alone will make you glad you resisted defeat.

Watch This: Hero starring Jet Li, produced by Quentin Tarantino

From the vault of Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dagger Art in Action Cinema, the epic story of love, war, and revenge will have you sitting up straight in your seat. The lavish sets and incredible cinematography will have you scooting to the edge. This is a film that can be enjoyed among a group of women on a Ladies' Night In, as easily as it will succeed on a cozy date.

Listen to This: Wikked Lil' Grrrls by Esthero

Celebrate a little late week naughtiness by listening to this catchy, jazz-infused album by the hidden gem of an artist, Esthero. The title track will have you lusting for a little naughtiness, but but try to limit the inspiration you take away from the seductive If the Mood...cheating is not cool, Recessionistas!

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

The Single Scene: It's A Small World After All

Spending the week at a huge industry conference in Chicago, I have gathered anecdotal evidence to support the importance of good behavior and the detrimental karma brought on by bad behavior. My professional experience and observations this week in a field where everyone eventually knows everyone else remind me of how small the world is. Well Recessionistas, it is time to use that fact to your advantage in the dating world. Here are a few tips to avoid bad dates and less-than-you-deserve relationships by putting to use the interconnected nature of our planet.

1. Have Your Date Vetted: Now, I am not suggesting that you ask your date for references. However, given your mix of friends in various industries, it does not hurt to ask the question - "Do you know Mr./Ms. X?" to someone in their professional field. Reputations - good or bad- pervade industries and you probably don't want to be involving yourself with "the girl who cries in meetings" or "the guy who reads Playboy in airports."

2. Do Your Homework: I am not suggesting that you Google your date or stalk them on Facebook, but reading up on other information you may have available may help provide a clearer picture of who you are involving yourself with. For instance, in his article in New York magazine, Michael Osinski discusses some less than classy (well, in fact, vulgar) competitions among Lehman employees. Maybe your date is not a participant in such activities, but work environments can influence people greatly, so be sure you are careful.

3. Be a Student: Watching a person's interactions with the "extras" on the set of your date can offer insight into their personality. Pay attention to how he/she talks to the waitress and how they tip staff. I have found that the best men I have dated and the best friends I have consistently treat individuals serving them with a tremendous amount of kindness and respect, traits that have continued into their personal relationships.

4. Safety First: Many states offer the ability to access public criminal records online. Especially with the popularity of Internet dating, it is important to check for signs of danger. I know, I know - it kills the romance a bit. However, it is better to be skeptical and safe than to be romantic and blind.

At my conference, two women from different companies who had never met before discovered they were dating the same man and that he was sending them the same texts and messages. I have many male friends who have shared stories about the seemingly normal chic who turned out to be a "psycho." Sadly, I think most people have their own "I thought he/she was a totally different person" examples. Your time is valuable, Recessionista, so don't let the undeserving waste it.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Weekly Top Five Freebies and Cheapies

Every week, I scavenge the Internet, US cities, nay, the world to bring you, my beloved, the best freebies and cheapies that life has to offer. (P.S. I promise to include at least one "date" offering for my penny-pinching friends who know that lack of income should never mean lack of love!)

1. Free Love-in: Chicago Recessionistas looking for love in the written word take note - Loose Leaf Tea Loft is hosting a free Poetry Love-In event this evening, featuring readings from poets including Sid Yiddish, Lee Grobman, and others.

2. Cheap Wine: It does not have to come in a box, Recessionista! Check out for outstanding deals and helpful buying tips.

3. Cheap Mea Culpa: New York magazine features an apology from Michael Osinski, a former Lehman Brothers and Wall Street Fat Cat, as well as an explanation of how we found ourselves where we are with the economy. (Warning: this article, with all its good intentions, can get a little esoteric at times - oy, acronyms!) By reading this article, the next time you hear someone say, "How did we get here," you can say, "well, actually, I know exactly how we got here..."

4. Free Help Finding a Job: Take one ounce of Monster, mix in a dash of Craigslist, and sprinkle in a bit of Facebook. Voila! You have, a site that will serve up a range of job opportunities without the mass quantity of spam you have grown accustomed to from other sites.

5. Cheap Shoes: So, cheap is a relative term. However, when a pair of Christian Louboutin pumps crosses the Recessionista Roadmap at a drastically slashed price of around $200, we have to let our lustful fashionistas know.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Words Are Cheap

Yesterday, I had the amazing opportunity to participate in a Poetry Reading in honor of the Feast Day of John Donne, the English Poet. During the course of the evening, and in addition to the work of Donne, other poets were introduced. Below, I have included a contemporary, not-yet-well known work by the Seattle-based poet John Brehm, because, during a recession, creative outlets are key and it is imperative to see cheap forms of inspiration. Plus, a little bit of culture never hurt anyone! Enjoy and thank you to Recessionista Kat for introducing me to this amazing poet...

Over and Under by John Brehm

So sexy to slide under-
neath a river,
to sit inside this
snakelike sub-
subway car and
freely imagine
the world above—
the Brooklyn
Bridge invisibly
trembling with the
weight of its
own beauty,
the East River
still guided by
the grooves
Walt Whitman's
eyes wore in it,
the bulldog tug-
boats pushing the
passively impressive
barges around,
and the double-
decker orange
and black Staten
Island ferries,
with their aura
of overworked
and beyond them
the Atlantic Ocean
which I lately learned
was brought here
by ice comets three
billion years ago,
which explains
a few things, like
why everybody
feels so alienated,
and of course
the thoughts being
thought by every
person in New
York City at
this moment—
vast schools of
undulating fish
curving and rising
in the cloud-swirling
wind-waved sky,
surrounded by
the vaster emptiness
of non-thought
which holds them
and which they try
not to think
about and you
lying in bed in
your sixth-floor
walk-up sublet
on St. Mark's Place—
such a breath-
taking ascension!
imagining me
rising now to meet you.