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Sandy: the Grinch who Stole Halloween

(You can read my initial post regarding Sandy here.)

This morning I was mourning the loss of Halloween… I know it’s a minuscule loss compared to what so many others are missing, but I’m grieving the sense of normalcy I associate with the holiday. For those of you not in affected areas, please be grateful for what you have.

I was lucky enough to have celebrated my favorite holiday on Friday and Saturday nights, before Sandy hit. I usually go all out for Halloween, and this year was no exception. I dressed up as Miss Frizzle from the Magic School Bus.

On Friday, I had a wonderful time at a party hosted by friends. Then on Saturday I went to my new favorite dive bar. It was a mix of Coyote Ugly meets Cheers meets karaoke. I actually won the costume contest there, and it was a ton of fun.

me and my big winnings! I also won a cup filled with prizes.

Halloween is such an important holiday in my life. I’ve had homemade costumes almost every year since I was 10 (per my own doing, not my parents’!), and I get reeeeally into being ridiculous.

I was Bea Arthur my sophomore year of college….

Colonel Sanders my Junior year of college (my then-gf was a giant chicken!)…

Eden Wood and her mom Mickie last year…

and then The Frizz this year.

I know today is Halloween, but it doesn’t feel like it. The annual NYC Halloween Parade has been CANCELED for the first time ever. Many towns have postponed Halloween. Some have canceled trick or treating altogether.

I’m seriously bummed out, and I’m not even a kid. I understand why the postponements are necessary, but canceling Halloween? That’s just cruel.

I actually have a cauldron of bracelets I got for my students for Halloween. (We’re not allowed to give out candy as per new healthy eating guidelines.) They say “Wicked,” “Spooky,” and “Freaky.” I purchased them last week, and, oddly enough, they describe how I feel about Sandy.

I spent most of the morning trying to decide what the point of dressing up was, and if it was worth it. There are evacuees staying in the lounge of my apartment, and I felt like I’d be a huge asshole if I dressed in my cheery Miss Frizzle garb. However, even if Governor Christie did move Halloween to November 5th, it felt like I’d be going against everything I believe in if I didn’t recognize the holiday.

So, I dressed like Miss Frizzle after a hurricane.

giving Liz the Lizard a kiss to reassure her we’ll go on a field trip soon

My family is currently visiting in my apartment. Pumpkin bread is baking. Coffee is brewing. Above all, we’re together, and they’re enjoying the warmth, electricity, and internet connectivity of my apartment, something I’ve taken for granted in this post-Sandy world.

Stay safe wherever you are, and remember to be grateful for what you have.

Happy Halloween?


The American Red Cross is in desperate need of donations to help fund Hurricane Sandy relief. You can either donate by clicking here or texting “REDCROSS” to 90999 to make a $10 donation.

Donate blood and blood platelets. There are many hospitals losing what little power they have left, and people need your help. Find out more about donating blood through the Red Cross by clicking here, or to find out more about donating blood in the New York/ New Jersey area through the New York Blood Center click here.

Any and all forms of help are appreciated!!!

mixed emotions about Sandy

I’ve spent the past 36 hours reassuring people that I am fine. So, here’s a rambling update of a post for those of you who were wondering about my status in central NJ.

No, I am not injured.

Yes, I have food.

No, my car was not damaged.

Yes, I still have some power and my cell phone is charged up.

No, my family was not hurt or injured.

Yes, I did stay on campus, but my campus has turned into a refugee camp for evacuees from across the state and for evacuees from other campuses, including the one I lived on for three years.

I’m just unsure of how to react to it all. I’m mixed between grieving/guilt and feeling thankful/lucky. I’m surrounded by refugees who may have lost everything, whereas I’ve lost nothing, so it’s an emotional rollercoaster.

My family is without power and I feel really guilty. They’re coming over tomorrow, and my mom wants to watch the news. I don’t think anyone realizes how bad it was until you see the images on tv/ on the computer. It’s chilling. This morning, I felt really guilty about NOT going home by my family, especially when I realized I was better off than they were. Buttttt I felt like I needed to be here for my RAs and whoever else needed me. It’s in my blood to continuously help others, and I think I would’ve gone crazy if I weren’t helping others today.

I couldn’t help but feel incredibly guilty and privileged even more today. If I wasn’t blessed with the opportunity to go to grad school and live on the campus I live on, who knows where I’d be? In a weird twist of fate, I also accidentally live in a handicap-accessible apartment on campus. Due to its handicap-accessible status, there was a generator connected to my room and I had minimal power throughout last night and today before the building’s backup power finally kicked in tonight. If I weren’t in the handicapped apartment, I would’ve suffered like the rest of people on campus. However, the fluke in this system allowed me to take the duty phones from my RAs on one campus and charge them in my room on another so that they wouldn’t be disconnected in case of emergency once the power ran out. My “handicap” privilege was extremely useful here.

Before the storm really picked up, I baked hurricane cookies for my RAs to calm my nerves. Baking is soothing to me.

Also…is it weird that I’m excited to see all the entirely different columns and blog posts that will be posted these next few days? I have so much to say, but none of the words to say it. I’m hoping someone else will be able to find the words for the emotions I’m feeling.

A lot of the individuals being shown on the news have lost their vacation homes, even though a lot of the people living on the Jersey Shore are of lower socio-economic status. How will the world react to this natural disaster upon seeing the media’s interpretation of it? How does this disaster compare to Katrina? Will people make accurate comparisons, or will they be blindsided by the media?

I have so many memories that have made me who I am on the Jersey shore… Some of them suck, but they still made me who I am. Some are even memories I tried to forget, but when I saw the coverage of The Beach Bar being destroyed, or of AC, I started crying. It was so odd to be grieving the loss of memories that have caused me heartache in the past.

I’m feeling like part of my identity died, even if I’m more of a Central Jersey gal than a Jersey Shore Gal.

This is such an emotionally conflicting situation. Oy.

What are you feeling? How has Sandy affected you?

Seeing a Melissa Etheridge concert is something every lesbian should get instead of a toaster.

There’s an old lesbian joke that basically refers to an already experienced woman sleeping with a woman who has never before slept with women. The experienced woman would get a toaster for taking the other woman’s virginity. instead of a toaster, I vote for Melissa Etheridge concert tickets. (Or at least a cd of her older greatest hits since she doesn’t tour that often…)

On October 20th, 2012, I was lucky enough to see Melissa Etheridge in concert at the State Theatre in New Brunswick. The state theatre is a local theatre that’s a pretty neat venue– in the past I’ve seen The Wanted, Cobra Starship, “A Farewell to Pine Valley,” and even Jack Hanna there! All of the seats are “good” seats, and the intimate atmosphere makes for a great show no matter where you are sitting.

The State Theatre always has this on the wall. I found it amusing at the Melissa Etheridge concert… #recruiting

I spent a lot time in high school being convinced that nobody knew I was gay. I even asked for a cd of Melissa Etheridge’s greatest hits for Christmas my Junior year of high school. (Note: That should’ve been a sign.) Once I turned 17 and got my license, I spent many drives to school and work belting Melissa Etheridge songs. (I particularly loved “Ain’t It Heavy” and thought the lyrics were MEANT FOR ME. “I’m feelin’ kinda loose/ I’m feelin’ kinda mean/ I’ve been feeling kinda wild since I turned seventeen/ Or is it madness” obviously discusses how both Melissa & I turned 17 and struggled with out sexualities. For me, being wild meant listening to Melissa as I drove to school. For Melissa, it probably meant a lot of R rated things. 😉 ) Melissa was my outlet before I realized I needed one, and the first woman who taught me I have a thing for women with raspy voices and the ability to play a guitar. *drools*

I saw Melissa perform once before at Live Earth in 2007, along with a ton of other artists. It was a great experience, but the sound was mediocre, I didn’t appreciate her music as much as I could have, and I didn’t understand myself well enough to understand the power and emotions in her music.

Fast forward to today. Oh. My. GAWD.

Melissa Etheridge is a goddess in person.

(The rest of this post will probably consist of incomplete sentences, photos, and videos I took FOR THE PEOPLE and not for my own viewing pleasure.)

By the way, did you know Melissa uses a TON of different guitars, banjos, and harmonicas during her entire show?



Look, it’s like she’s Jesus. She has a glowing halo, or something like it.

Play those keys, sexy lady.

Melissa playing “I Run for Life” in the pink lights…

At this point, the friend I went to the concert with said, “I want to be that harmonica. Imagine all the things she could do with her lips!”

Oh, and this is our hair and smiles at the concert. I don’t have permission to exploit my friend’s identity on the web.


Okay, fine, she’s not great marriage material, but she really fulfills that fantasy of hot rockstar. Don’t believe me? Take a look at these videos I took at the show.




Melissa, you can come over and bring me some water whenever you want.