Archive for August, 2011

Announcing Laugh For Sight NYC 2011 October 3, 2011

August 16, 2011

We are thrilled and very excited to announce Laugh For Sight New York City will be on Monday, October 3, 2011 at Gotham Comedy Club. Legendary Comedian, Robert Klein will be returning for a fifth year to headline the biggest night in New York City Comedy. Confirmed to join Robert is Eddie Brill the Audience Warm Up at The Late Show with David Letterman and Comedy Central vet and crowd favorite Jessica Kirson. We will be announcing more of the lineup in the coming weeks.

The silent auction will begin at 700pm and the comedy show with begin at 830pm. Donations to the silent auction include A very Special VIP Private Tour of Yankee Stadium, VIP Tickets to The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, Kramer Portraits, Exhale Spa package, and much more to be announced soon. Tickets will be going on sale shortly, so check back oftn. Additionally, the newly redesigned Laugh For Sight website will be launching later this week, and all updates can be found at http://www.laughforsight.com. Please do follow us on Twitter @LaughForSight.

This year we will continue the tradition of getting bigger and better!

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The Long Awaited Part 2 to Nash is the New King of Queens

August 16, 2011

Well I know I said I would get back to being more consistent with getting back to the blogging of Nash and my adventures, but that was before I realized how hectic things would become in Queens. We left off with Nash and me moving to Queens. Unfortunately, I can’t walk you through everything, as things have been quite complicated since I wrote part one, but I will try and fill in the highlights.

We moved to Queens about two weeks ago. Both Nash and I were totally confused and lost as things out in Queens aren’t as well laid out as they are in the city. Luckily for us, my buddy Scott is out here with us, as without him moving to new area would have been a lot more frightening than it was. Nash was definitely not comfortable at first. I think he was wondering where that small studio apartment he called home for the last two years was. Nash and I have done a good amount of traveling over the past two years, so I think at first he thought this was just more traveling, but I had taken everything he owned with us. I did notice that Nash was a little confused as to where he wanted to sit. There were only so many options in the studio apartment. I think he was really thinking why isn’t the bed closer to the computer so he can lay in my bed and still keep a watchful eye on me. What is with this whole separate room thing? Hey Nash, welcome to how everyone outside of New York City lives. More space.

It is very strange to walk right outside your apartment and be outside, oh yeah and very strange to have a backyard. I started walking Nash for his bathroom trips out back, but there is so much dirt and weeds, and of course the Nasher had to go and investigate everything. I couldn’t tell if he was just being curious or sticking his nose in to things and eating it. I did notice that Nash seemed to have an upset stomach the first few days, and I wasn’t sure if it was from eating things outside, or something else. I have since found out that it was probably from the change in water. Also, some of the major anxiety that I had been feeling was probably being felt by him.

Yes, this entire move has been anxiety ridden. I am so used to walking outside and having everything right there for me. Not only is that no longer the case, now I have to learn just how to get out of the apartment complex that I am living in, as it is not just a straight shot. For the first week, I wouldn’t feel comfortable going anywhere without my buddy Scott. The first thing I did learn on my own was how to get to the trash dumpster in the complex so I could throw Nash’s little goodies away. That I did feel comfortable doing on my own, as it was just down the street from the apartment. Still it was odd the first time, as I had no clue if Nash would recognize the new apartment on the way back. I did count my steps to make sure that I would have some clue where the apartment was. I am happy to report that Nash did make the turn to the apartment. I had done about 15 trips to the dumpster, and that was the only place I had gone on my own. Then on Friday night, Nash and I got lost on our way back to the apartment. Not really sure what happened, but as you can imagine, it was quite frustrating and scary. We eventually found our way back home, as I had to just keep walking up streets and tell Nash home. Queens is nothing like the city, as there are not a lot of people out at night, at least not in the complex, or if they were out there, no one said anything, I they would have been able to tell that I was lost, as I was yelling at Nash a little. We got back in to the apartment, and I felt so bad, as I really had only yelled at Nash once before. It was more a yelling out of frustration. After a cool down period, I did apologize to Nash, we hugged it outt, and he got a few treats. I still feel bad about it, and am sure I will remember that bad feeling if there is ever another time that I want to yell at him, not a good feeling.

So we have dealt with a lot of frustration as we have not been able to go anywhere on our own, and then Hallejuah as a trainer from Guiding Eyes came out here a few days ago. I had my buddy Scott walk her through the main shortcut to get out of the complex, and her reaction was, uh no, that is a disaster waiting to happen. She said, there is no way you should be taking that shortcut, as there are to many ways for you to get lost, and one wrong turn and you and Nash will have clue where you are. Bummer, as I am all about the shortcuts when it comes to getting anywhere.

The trainer and I did work the main route out to main street, and again she told me it was a pretty complicated route, but very doable, just going to take some time for Nash and me to learn. We worked the route, and used a clicker to help Nash learn a few landmarks. Well, the training session was three days ago, and I am happy to report that Nash and I made it to the store and back today all on our own. It was a little uncomfortable as I wasn’t hundred percent certain where I was at all times, but Nash did a fantastic job. He really did seem to recall the landmarks. He was absolutely tremendous. I guess Nash and I have had it easier the last few years, as navigating NYC is pretty easy. Well of course besides all the annoying tourists who do not want to move out of your way.

In addition to all the stress and anxiety I have been dealing with moving to a new area, and trying to learn the layout of the apartment, the neighborhood, and where everything is. As if that hasn’t been enough on my plate, we have begun putting together Laugh For Sight NYC 2011, and there is so much work to be done. Additionally, I also upgraded my mac to the new operating system Lion, and it has been a disaster, as there are so many new things I am having to learn on the computer. Quite frustrating. So much for everyone who told me go ahead and upgrade to Lion as it is great. Definitely not the experience I have had with it. So you can see we have been quite busy.

Overall, I would say that Nash and I do seem to be on our way to getting to know the neighborhood. And while it is going to take a lot longer to get familiar with things, each day we are a step closer to feeling more comfortable. I think getting to he store today on our own was huge for us. I don’t think you sighted folk realize how difficult moving to a new area is. The only thing I could suggest is go to a place where you have never been before, close your eyes and try to get home without opening at all. Good luck, and no, I am not going to lend you Nash to try it with!

Nash is the New King of Queens

August 2, 2011

I know once again it has been awhile since I have blogged. What can I say it has been a complicated year, but things are beginning to pick up. So what have we been busy with since last writing? Well, Nash and I have a new zip code. After eight years on 8th Avenue down the street from the Letterman Show and 11 years in Manhattan, it was time to move on, or move out of the city. We didn’t want to, but things have been slow, and rent in the city will kill you. Nash and I are now living in Queens. Funny, as I have probably only been to Queens a handful of times if you don’t count trips to the airport. It is funny, as I move to Queens and save a boat load of money, yet I get a lot more space. That concept is still weird to me, but hey that is New York. Ends up some friends of mine happened to have an apartment in Jamaica, NY, although it is not really Jamaica, the apartment seems to fall right on the border of Jamaica, Kew Gardens, and Flushing, as I seem to be in a different area wherever I go, and that includes different sides of the street.

After eight years in the pad on 8th ave, moving was bitter sweet, as my building was great, but seemed to be under constant construction. I was used to the noise of the city, but the buildings noise was starting to really drive me crazy, and then there was the club out back of the building. That place drove me nuts as several times a year I could feel the bass music from the club. It would even annoy Nash as he would jump out of my bed when it was really vibrating the apartment, and he would go and sit in the bathroom, as it was the quietest place.Also, about a little over a year ago, the tourist bus companies decided to start dropping flocks of tourists off right in front of my building. Now don’t get me wrong, as I have been guilty of being a tourist before, but something strange happens when people come to NYC. It is like they don’t have tall buildings where these people come from, and forget about them ever seeing a blind guy before because they would never get out of my way, and would always try and pet Nash even when I told them not to. What are Nash and I part of the tourist attraction?

So on to Queens it was.

The really tough thing about moving this time is that it was really the first time I was moving since I became blind. The last time I moved in 2003, I did a good portion of the move on my own taking things on the subway with me. This time, I really needed a lot of help, as I couldn’t even tell what a lot of the things were in my closets. I was very thankful for my Aunt coming in to the city and helping with a lot of the packing. I began packing up the apartment days before she came, as my good relationship with the employees at Duane Reade paid off, as they gave me plenty of boxes. Nash freaks out when I pack a suitcase, so packing an apartment was going to be interesting. I guess I am smarter than your average bear, as I started the packing process late at night while Nash was fast asleep in my bed. He had no clue what was going on. I was able to pack a lot of DVDs and books on my own, but that was about it. When my Aunt Lona came in to help, Nash was wide awake. He and we did get lucky for a little while as my Aunt brought Nash a bone. So while we started packing the breakables, Nash was playing with his new bone. But that only lasted for so long, and then Nash became the supervisor. If we set a box on the ground to prepare to tape the top portion, Nash would walk over and stick his nose in it to check things out. Also during this process, Nash kept rubbing up asainst my legs, and would camp out on my feet. I think this was his way of protesting. We got a lot done the day my Aunt came over.

Luckily, my buddy came in to the city to help me with a lot of the move. Without a sighted person, I never would have been able to do it, or would have at least been at the mercy of the movers. The day the movers arrived, most of the apartment was packed. I put Nash on the leash for the time the movers were there, and he was definitely a little frazzled, like where is everything going? He kept going back and forth, maybe he wanted to tell the movers careful with that, and where are you taking that?Everything got packed up very smoothly, and after a few last passes around the apartment, and of course one last bathroom stop for Nash in front of the Letterman Show, it was off to Queens, and a new adventure. This was all this past Saturday, so come back soon for part two of The New King of Queens.