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I definitely celebrated my independence on Saturday, my first 4th of July in New York City. I found that I wasn’t the only woman doing this–all day long, I saw women of all ages with books and glasses of wine. It was as though we all agreed, “I know I’ll have a fun holiday if I’m hanging out with me.”

I started my day by sending my family a hand-picked media medley of Americanness. They got a kick out of it (or tolerated it?) so I figure I’ll share.

American food.
Fast food meals are deconstructed and reconstructed into “fancy” food. I’m not sure if they’re just supposed to look fancy or should also taste good, but I bet they don’t include the recipes for nothin’! I love the creativity.

More American food.
Again I’m impressed with the ingenuity in this here fine country of ours. I almost went to this–a Jell-O mold competition at the Gowanus Art Space in Brooklyn. It was a rainy Saturday, though, and I found myself enjoying lunch on the house at DBGB instead. No complaints there.

Even more American food!
Amazingly, this is the only fake American food of the three.

American art.
I follow this artist on Twitter, and I love his stuff. It screams “America!” –or at least points to it.

Fireworks! Specifically, redneck fireworks.
Not a video of someone launching a bottle rocket from their tuckus, no thanks to several people I follow on Twitter. This is a nice PG video that may or may not take 2 minutes of your life you’ll never get back.

Patriotism! “Today, we celebrate our Independence Day.”
But this you have to see.

I needed the morning to finish moving into my new apartment and take care of some business online (other than emailing a link to a Jell-O cheeseburger to my family). But, you know, Al Gore invented the internet, so at least I was doing something patriotic.

Mid-afternoon, I walked through big crowds at Ground Zero and along the West Side Highway, stopping for an overpriced lunch with a fantastic view of the Hudson River and some talented skater-dudes. I checked out the free music festival in Battery Park but ultimately parked myself on a bench looking out toward Lady Libs and Ellis Island for a couple of hours in the late afternoon to read and write and watch the sun set. The woman next to me was studying an ESL textbook, and I thought that was just cool. I wandered around the Meat Packing District to kill time until the fireworks show, had two glasses of wine at different spots, got a very private viewing of a designer’s showroom that I totally can’t talk about.

Around 9, I put my blanket down in a small Tribeca park, and when the fireworks started, my view was blocked by trees. I kept moving around trying to get a better view and finally spotted a firetruck and three hot firemen. As I approached, three very cute college girls had the same idea I did, and we all got the invitation to watch the show from the rig. I still couldn’t see! As this was my first fireworks show in NYC, that actually mattered to me more than scoring a date with the NYFD, so I thanked the guys and watched the finale from a pedestrian bridge. I had a great time with me and covered 7 miles on foot.

Then I went out in Alphabet City and had a great time with friends.

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Skaters.

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Another independent woman reading and sipping wine near me, at Gogino in Battery Park.

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Sure, we could be at the Hamptons. But sand is so déclassé.

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I’m just going to call this “proof.” I know, I took this after I got off the rig, but why would I lie? No one reads this anyway.

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