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Contain Yourself: Narrowed Minded New York Nest

LeAnn Stephenson


In past posts I have made it abundantly clear that I have a bit of crush on Cary Grant. I think he's dreamy and he makes my heart do the cha-cha. He always seemed to portray in his films some version of the "man-of-the-world," or of himself, which seems to me to amount to the same thing. I believe he was the last of the truly elegant men. He was cosmopolitan but strong, absurdly good looking, but self-effacing, a cutup who could be a bit of a scoundrel, even a little wicked, but in the end, he would always do the right thing. In short, he was the man women yearned for and men yearned to be. He was one-of-a-kind, just like his former residence in New York.




If you missed last week's post featuring a home constructed from shipping containers you can check it out here.  In today's Contain Yourself post, I'd like to share photos of Mr. Grant's former home at 75 1/2 Bedford St. in New York City. At 9½ feet wide, it's the narrowest house in Manhattan. And you're in luck because it is back on the market. But, you will need long pockets if you want to live there because the asking price is a whopping $4.3 million, which is twice what it sold for in 2010. Other luminaries who have slept between its narrow walls are Pulitzer Prize winner Edna St. Vincent Millay, actor John Barrymore, anthropologist Margaret Mead, and cartoonist, William Steig.



The home has been meticulously renovated.


Just enough room for a bathtub.


The house has become part of New York's tourist trail

Photos courtesy Curbed, Daily Mail, and Alamy

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It's "Snot" You, It's Me

LeAnn Stephenson



The Hubbs and I celebrated our 17th year of marriage back on the 15th with a date night, which involved a swanky dinner for 2 and a movie. There is a back story, however, which is required for the following accounting of the evening. I've had a summer cold for the last few weeks. My nose is all stopped up and my eyes are all water-y. What makes me even more appealing is the fact that I sound like Gilda Radner when she portrayed her Lisa Lubner character on SNL. This, however, didn't stop me from trying to entice the Hubbs with a little make-out sesh before the movie started. So, I shot him one of my signature sideways looks accompanied by a raise of one eyebrow and a little coy smile - which is code for, "I'm ready for a smooch-fest." And, as luck would have it, it worked. As he made his move to give the kiss of the century (insert the swell of violins here) . . . I coughed . . . right in his face. The Ricola lozenge that I had been sucking on shot out of my mouth, ricocheted off his forehead, and landed in the hair of the lady seated in front of me. I immediately looked at the Hubbs, who was turning a lovely shade of purple and shaking uncontrollably in a fit of silent giggles. The mechanics of the throat are lost on me, apparently - "breathe air, swallow spit," I tell myself constantly. At that point, I figured my only option was to liberate the lozenge without her knowing it, because the only other person besides me and the Hubbs who was aware of this event was the guy 3 seats down who shot me a toothy grin while raising two thumbs-up gestures to his chest and nodded in a "what-a-loser-you-are" fashion. So, I stood up, bumped her seat pretending to leave to go to the bathroom, and thwacked the lozenge out of her hair. I apologized to her for the bump and continued on to the bathroom. When I returned, the Hubbs turned to me and began to say, "Hey, happy anni . . . .", he stopped short of finishing his sentence and had kind of a confused-disgusted expression on his face - I couldn't help but notice that his gaze was fixed on my nose. I didn't understand the look until I saw IT. I didn't have his view point, but I could see it - something slick, shiny and spherical, which was growing ever-larger as I breathed. It was an enormous bubble, of the mucus persuasion, looming from my left nostril, and it was the size of one of those clear hamster exercise balls.

Later that week, on our actual anniversary, the Hubbs presented me with a present . . . It was a gift certificate . . . for a flu shot . . . .

Aaahh, good times . . . good times . . . .

This post was triggered by a couple of fabulous gifts that were given to me by a darlin' creature named Stan. When I emailed him that I had received my gift, I mis-typed and wrote ". . . you are the darkin'-est creature." Stan Williams is the author of The Find, and my new all around best-est bud. He is not only fabulously gifted and talented, but is one of the most generous people I've ever had the pleasure of meeting. When Stan was here in July for a book signing, he presented me with an absolutely gorgeous version of one of his Hooch Bags. A vintage black purse was full of goodies like vintage nylons, a vintage French paperback book, and a French dictionary to help me make my way through the pages, since I don't speak French. Also included was a vintage Air France hand-held fan, along with a vintage French postcard inscribed with a dear note from him on the back, all of which are some of my most prized possessions. And, as if that weren't enough, I got an email last week telling me that something he ran across spoke my name and he was sending it to me - if you are keeping count, I'm 2 presents behind! He sent me the brightest, happiest vintage printed napkins from one of his favorite stores in NYC called Angel Thrift Shop. I requested that he stop being so wonderful already, and let me catch up!



Thank you so very much for all my lovely, thoughtful presents, Stan! I mean they're not a certificate for "a live virus" or anything, but they are truly appreciated and loved. You are "The Darkin'-est!"

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