Archive for the ‘New York Limericks & Haiku’ Category

Covid-19 Vaccine Adventures (2-Verse Limerick Plus Vaccine Scheduling Tips)

Tuesday, March 2nd, 2021

What follows is:

1: A two-verse limerick about my adventures (and difficulties) in booking Covid-19 vaccine appointments in New York City for hubby Mark and me. (And yes, we both easily qualify by age.)

2: A blow by blow description of how I finally managed to snag vaccine appointments in the doesn’t-deserve-to-be-called-a-system New York Covid-19 vaccine scheduling “system.”

(I hope that the information I provide below my 2-verse limerick proves helpful to those who are having similar vaccine-booking problems, both in and outside of New York.)

Fin’lly got my first shot. So did Mark,
After problems with booking them — stark!
New York’s issue-packed system
(too many to list ’em)
Is so bad, I have fantasies — dark.

So how did I schedule our shots
In a system so tied up in knots?
“Push notifications”
Resolved our frustrations;
We were saved by some fine Twitter bots.

If you’re having problems booking Covid-19 vaccine appointments, here’s how I did it in New York City. I hope it helps you too. (Even if you live in another state, some of my info just might be applicable to you.)

1. After trying all the obvious methods for booking vaccine appointments, and failing abysmally, I searched Google to find out if anybody had created a Covid-19 vaccine appointment locator bot in New York. I used search phrases such as covid-19 vaccine New York bot and Covid-19 vaccine New York tracker bot.

This led me to these two Twitter accounts: @turbovax and @nycshotslots. (If you are having trouble getting a vaccination appointment outside of New York, try a similar search for your own state. And if you’re lucky, a Good Samaritan in your city or state created a comparable public bot. For example, this bot was designed for New Jersey residents, and this one was set up for Massachusetts residents.)

2. I went to Twitter, searched for both accounts, and clicked on “follow.” (I was already active on Twitter. However, if you’re not already a Twitter member, you’ll have to join it before benefiting from these or other Twitter bot accounts.)

3. For the next couple of weeks, I checked those New York bot Twitter accounts three or four times an hour. And from time to time, I actually found some potential appointments. Unfortunately, however, each time I went to snag a pair of appointments, I was already too late. This happened even when I started checking every five or ten minutes.

4. Finally, in desperation, I researched how to get “push notifications” from individual Twitter accounts. (In general, I hate and avoid push notifications. But this situation called for emergency measures!)

Fortunately, setting up Twitter push notifications on my laptop turned out to be very simple: All I had to do was return to the home pages of each of those two accounts I was already following (@turbovax and @nycshotslots) and click on the icon immediately to the left of the word “following.” (The icon looks like a bell with a plus sign.) Clicking on it turns on push notifications for that specific Twitter feed, and you’ll know it’s properly set up because after clicking on it, it will turn as dark blue as your “following” indicator button.

5. From then on, as long as I was near my laptop (and the sound was on) I’d hear a sound indicating that one of those two accounts had just tweeted. Additionally a visible notice would flash, then disappear very quickly.

6. As soon as I saw or heard one of those “push notifications” I headed to Twitter to read the latest bot tweets and see if it was for appointment locations/dates that might work for us. And the second I saw one that might be good, I clicked on the site, filled out the forms, and was able to successfully book appointments for both Mark and myself.

Even then, acting so swiftly, I ended up with appointments for us on consecutive days, and not the theoretically more desirable same day. But that actually turned out to be a blessing in disguise, because parking was impossible at that location (Hillcrest High School, Jamaica Queens, NY.)

So Mark and I took turns on consecutive appointment days, remaining in the driver’s seat, illegally parked in front of someone’s driveway with the blinkers on, ready to move the car at a moment’s notice, for as long as it took for the non-car-baby-sitter to get his/her shot.

Mark and I are both very relieved to have gotten our first shots and to have dates scheduled for our second shots. And I hope you too either have gotten (or will soon get) your Covid vaccine shots.

I also hope that you found this info helpful or, at least, enjoyed my limerick.

*****
FYI, here’s a non-Twitter New York State-wide bot that I haven’t tried, because I discovered it after booking our appointments.

Hope Springs Eternal (Limerick)

Saturday, March 19th, 2016

Though tomorrow’s the first day of spring,
My seasonal thoughts can’t take wing
Cuz of snow-forecast-blues-men
And wet blanket newsmen.
Are they wrong? To that dream I shall cling.

Not That I’m Complaining, But… (Limerick)

Thursday, December 24th, 2015

I’m not writing a climate-change screed,
But I’d wager most folks would concede
This is crazy as heck:
Icy drinks on our deck,
Late December, New York. Coat? No need!

Staten Island Chuck the Groundhog Lives (Limerick)

Monday, February 2nd, 2015

There’s been a Groundhog Day rules change at the Staten Island Zoo, in the wake of last year’s groundhog death at the klutzy hands of Mayor Bill de Blasio:

Staten Island Chuck the Groundhog Lives (Limerick)
By Madeleine Begun Kane

Seems the zoos of New York had their fill
Of Mayor-caused Groundhog Day-kill.
Last year’s groundhog is dead,
So “no holding,” they said.
“We are Chucking your touching rights, Bill.”

Limerick Fair

Thursday, November 6th, 2014

Limerick Fair
By Madeleine Begun Kane

“Your fare is unfair,” said the fare,
When he got from the fair to Times Square.
“You cab driving cheater,
You rigged up your meter.
Here’s a tip: I’m not paying you. Ne’er!”

(DversePoets asks us to write verse using the word fair.)

I Knew It Couldn’t Last (Limerick)

Wednesday, September 3rd, 2014

This summer’s weather in New York City, especially August, has been astonishingly pleasant. And then September hit.

I Knew It Couldn’t Last (Limerick)
By Madeleine Begun Kane

I was right with my weather suspicions;
We’ve reverted to dreadful conditions.
High humidity, heat,
Heavy T-storms compete,
As we weather their juxtapositions.

Limerick Ode To Our Pothole

Monday, June 23rd, 2014

Limerick Ode To Our Pothole
By Madeleine Begun Kane

I reported a pothole last week,
And the city did give it a tweak.
Have they fixed it? You’re joking,
Or possibly toking.
Adding cones seems to be their technique.

This dangerously deep pothole is less than a block from our house. Mark just snapped this pic of it:

pothole2

Brooklyn’s Nutty Penis Contest (Limerick)

Thursday, June 19th, 2014

I can’t possibly resist writing about Brooklyn’s Smallest Penis Contest.

Brooklyn’s Nutty Penis Contest (Limerick)
By Madeleine Begun Kane

A contest for tiniest dick
Might strike you as utterly sick.
But “reverse chic” is “in,”
So a dick, short and thin,
By that measure might just do the trick.

Weather Report (Limerick)

Friday, May 9th, 2014

Weather Report (Limerick)
By Madeleine Begun Kane

It’s springtime — a lovely May day;
Perfect temps, fragrant breeze from the bay.
Don’t be jealous or curse,
Cuz I’ve seasoned this verse
With deceit. It is cold, damp, and gray.

Foreign News Blues (Limerick)

Thursday, February 27th, 2014

Foreign News Blues (Limerick)
By Madeleine Begun Kane

It’s so windy, I have to go out:
Foreign papers are scattered about.
Though I clean up our yard,
It’s soon once again scarred.
This paper route’s making me pout.

True story: This afternoon, I look out our living room window and see that our front lawn is strewn with newspapers. It’s a windy day, and a neighbor’s Korean (I think) newspaper has apparently made a run for it.

I immediately stop what I’m doing and go outdoors to contend with the litter. Why the big rush? Because New York City Sanitation workers just love to peruse neighborhoods during windstorms, so they can give out messy-lawn citations.

Ten minutes after I finish, I look out the window once again, only to find that it looks like I never dealt with the garbage. So I go out once again, this time picking up similar-looking papers from the neighbors on either side of me, as well.

No, I won’t take credit for being a Good Samaritan. This was purely defensive.

It was only a matter of time before my neighbors’ messes decided they like my lawn better.

Cold and Bothered (Quatrain)

Tuesday, January 7th, 2014

Cold and Bothered (Quatrain)
By Madeleine Begun Kane

I live in a town where it’s pleasant to stroll.
We do most of our errands on foot.
But it’s frightfully cold. “Let’s stay home,” I cajole.
Forget milk! Let’s be smart and stay put.

Yet Another Limerick Ode To “Rabbit Ears”

Saturday, August 3rd, 2013

Yet Another Limerick Ode To “Rabbit Ears”
By Madeleine Begun Kane

Most New Yorkers can’t see CBS.
It’s a hairy Time Warner Co mess.
But I see it fee-free:
We’ve no cable, you see,
And use rabbit ears — access success!

Note from Mad Kane: This limerick was inspired by the fee dispute between Time Warner Cable and CBS. A previous feud between Time Warner Cable and ABC inspired my original Ode To “Rabbit Ears.”

Taking The Plunge (Limerick)

Thursday, June 20th, 2013

Today on Facebook, someone posted a photo of a short, female subway rider using a plunger on the train ceiling, so she could remain standing without losing her balance. Since I too am a short, subway-challenged woman, I was inspired to write this limerick:

Taking The Plunge (Limerick)
By Madeleine Begun Kane

I am thinking of taking the plunge:
Subway plungers might help prevent lunge
And thusly forestall
A terrible fall.
But I need one not covered in grunge.

Spring? You’re Kidding, Right? (Limerick)

Tuesday, March 19th, 2013

Spring? You’re Kidding, Right? (Limerick)
By Madeleine Begun Kane

Spring is legally set to begin,
Which in light of the weather’s a sin:
Last night we had snow,
Sleet, and ice here and so
There’s a seasonal mix-up herein.

NOT Hailing This Storm (Limerick)

Friday, February 8th, 2013

NOT Hailing This Storm (Limerick)
By Madeleine Begun Kane

A blizzard’s upon us. I’m worried,
Cuz in over a foot we’ll be buried.
The prelude is hail,
Then snow by the bale.
If only our snow flakes just flurried.

Super Bowl 2012 Limerick

Saturday, February 4th, 2012

While hubby Mark and I are New Yorkers, Mark went to college in Boston — Northeastern University. So, with the New York Giants and the New England Patriots in the Super Bowl, you’d think he might be conflicted. My limerick explains why he isn’t:

Super Bowl 2012 Limerick
By Madeleine Begun Kane

My husband is ready to gaze
At the Super Bowl game in a haze.
With junk food and beer,
For New England he’ll cheer.
We’re New Yorkers. The Giants are strays.

Dear Deer (Limerick and Photo)

Monday, September 19th, 2011

A month or so ago, hubby Mark took a wonderful photo of a deer just a couple of feet from our deck in Putnam Valley, New York. I’ve finally written a companion limerick for that image:

Dear Deer
By Madeleine Begun Kane

Dear deer, you’re adorable, true.
But there’s one thing about you, I rue:
Your habit of munching
And supping and lunching
On fruit my hub’s hoping to chew.

Deer A Foot From Our Putnam House Deck

(Photo by hubby Mark Kane)

Limerick Ode To The New Yorker Festival

Tuesday, September 13th, 2011

The New Yorker Festival is holding a limerick contest, and the winner gets a batch of Festival tickets for two. Here’s my entry:

Limerick Ode To The New Yorker Festival
By Madeleine Begun Kane

The New Yorker is hosting a fête —
A must-see for the erudite set.
Famous people galore
Shall be speaking full-bore,
And no intellect’s need goes unmet.

Heated Limerick

Wednesday, June 8th, 2011

I don’t mean to bitch (okay, maybe I do) but it’s hot as hell here in New York. And weather forecasters are saying it will hit 100 degrees tomorrow.

But hey … there’s no global warming, right?

Heated Limerick
By Madeleine Begun Kane

One-hundred degrees? I may swoon.
Yes, I’m singing a very hot tune.
And I’m down in the mouth
Cuz this isn’t the south,
But Bayside, New York — early June.

Dear Emily Dickinson, Please Forgive Me

Wednesday, April 6th, 2011

As part of its National Poetry Month and Poem In Your Pocket Day “Envelope Project” celebrations, New York City is running an Emily Dickinson related poetry contest. Basically, it involves writing your own poems using Dickinson first lines.

Although I didn’t enter the contest (I wasn’t thrilled with its reprint permission form) I chose four Emily Dickinson first lines and wrote four short, whimsical, New York City-inspired poems. Here they are, with Dickinson’s words noted in italics:

I shall keep singing though I’m bad,
and those who hear me shout, “Egad!”
You’ll never see me on Broadway,
unless you mean my street display.

*****

The Cricket sang.
My sleep is done.
I’d sooner hear an engine run.

*****

I started Early–Took my Dog
unleashed — don’t fret —
Just franks and grog.

*****

A Day! Help! Help! Another Day!
I wish sometimes they’d go away.
I much prefer the dark of night
So daylight please, go fly a kite.

*****