Friday, June 30, 2006


This pale anemone crab is one of three crab species in the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands that invite the soft-bodied animals to piggyback on their shells. The stinging anemones discourage the crabs's predators from attacking and are given a free ride in exchange.

Dear Book Club Aftermath,

To the wine, glad you're already gone.

To the chocolate rice krispie treats, you may notice your absence from this photo. It's like you never existed, really. But know that you were celebrated while you lived; in fact I may throw a parade in your honor.

And to the half-full bag of dark chocolate Hershey's kisses. You don't have long. I give it a few hours, tops.

Penelope with little to no self-control

Where I

greetings from the workplace. with my mad covert op skills i took the following pictures. note the beauty of the intact orange peel. i left it on my moniter, but no one noticed it. i quietly threw it away a few hours later, all but biting my tongue at my success and the tasty orange. behind the magic is the pilotware program. this is what i spend my time in a lot, with the trusty moniter to the left. i've remembered that if under heavy monitering from the fuzz, compose emails in here. they'll think you're doing actual work. i don't do that, bcs i'm a conscientious worker, but i thought you'd want to know.
behind me sits the story assistant. i am covetous of her job. she's an actor and just wants it so she can go on auditions. she does not want to grow up to be a story producer. she is not working her way to the top. i however want to work in story. and i want to one day be mad with power. she, and people like her, everywhere, are interfering with this. still she's nice, and says that i deserve an ottoman, i think she meant chaise lounge for all the squirming, folding, and kicking up the feet i do in my chair.
this is the hallway where the sensor was so they could track me, no one is in that office, but if there were someone, i'd totally be friends with them.
here's the right side of the room. ah the quiet people. i think hopefully they'll have more to say soon...
i glance up here in wonder if the ac is or is not working well on any given day. i also like to look up here and look at the arch of the warehouse when i've kicked up my feet and am shelling sunflower seeds. i'd share my seeds but no one seems interested.
here's me. i'm trying to think of other things i can bring in, to liven up my work space.
and of course here's the breakroom in all it's glory. very very rarely i find people sitting in here. it is perhaps bcs of the orange chairs, although they don't know anybetter.

please feel free to ask me what else you'd like a picture of, or anything else i've missed that's worthy of investigation. i'm perhaps thinking of asking my co-workers words of the day... or maybe even better questions of the day.... i'll think about it. right now i'm tired and am wondering about breakfast.

Thursday, June 29, 2006


THIS IS WHAT I GOT WHEN I GOOGLED RANDOM PICTURE... HUMM. he looks sort of sad. this other picture was the very last one that came up in a group of stamped concrete pools and random stone designs- just makes me reaffirm how sad i am that i've never gotten to have a pool. it looks delicious and inviting doesn't it. why don't i get to have a pool? will i ever have one. i really really want one. ah, pools. limpid, dark, delicious, refreshing pools.


currently i'm psyching up to blog about things that matter but i can't quite bring myself to focus. it could be my dying braincells or the heat or the fact that since the retreat i keep waking up at 645. bing. awake. bing. here i am. bing bing. i yell at myself to go back to bed, appauled by it's perky 'can do attitude' but it doesn't listen. i chose instead to shave my legs, pluck stray chin hairs- people i came back from camp with a carpet of black hair on my chin- ew gross is right. no, i can't let it go. and yes one day i will pay for lazer hair removal. i always pride myself on being not vain and yet, there it is, me, conforming to societal standards on appropriate hair growth even though my body clearly has something else in mind. but i digress. i pack my bag, think about what to bring for a day. listen to the radio. fruitlessly turn on my computer, nevermind that i will spend 9 hours with it at work but. i. have. to.

i decide. no. i will not bike. it's going to be 94+ today. i am weak. i pick out my outfit and decide i need more skirts. i remember, i get paid today. note: pay irs back, buy skirts. i'm ready to go. but i vow not to get there before 830 lest the afore mentioned alarm situation reoccur. stop blogging out of boredom. since there is so much more that i could say by not saying it.

have a good day, and drink plenty of water.

Wednesday, June 28, 2006


just a quick hello from work. right now i’m watching him skate some event in san diego ... i’ve eaten way too many sunflower seeds, drank too much fountain diet coke and am warmer than i’d like to be. i just cracked my ear bcs it was aching and have my shoes off. no socks. i feel scandalous.

my plan after work is to go to yoga. and hopefully by then won’t have messed myself up digestively in such a way as to make poses more painful than my already weak limbs will make them. this weekend a friend joanna looked all limber and what not doing upward bow poses and back flips against the backdrop of the sea. i wonder if i shall ever be so free.

more detailed nonsense later.

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

ok, let's be positive.

Recent interview quote from JK Rowling re: 7th and final Harry Potter book.

"The final chapter is hidden away, although it's now changed very slightly. One character got a reprieve. But I have to say two die that I didn't intend to die," she said. "A price has to be paid. We are dealing with pure evil here. They don't target extras do they? They go for the main characters. Well, I do."


Interpretations, anyone, anyone?

OMG, if it's Harry...or Ron...or Hermione, Ginny, Hagrid, Mr. or Mrs. Weasley--hell, any of the Weasleys for that matter. Or Lupin. Or Tonks! Not Tonks! Or... Gah!!


The other day while driving, my baby tooth started to ache again. Usually it only aches in the middle of the night, possibly due to teeth grinding or something to that effect. Yes, I still have a baby tooth. I'm missing 3 total adult teeth and also all 4 wisdom teeth, which is yeah, a good thing, but dealing with the 3 other teeth makes up for it, both expense and pain-wise. Two of the adult teeth have been taken care of, at least for now, with miscellaneous bridges I have little faith in. Eventually, I suppose all 3 spaces will require permanent implants, a situation I choose at this time not to ponder. Here's what I can't help pondering, though. The one tooth, the one that's still here and aches and itches a lot, it's on the brink. It's like 5 seconds away from falling out and forcing a series of detestable trips to a dentist, and--for the love of pete--one more hateful payment plan. And it is yet another in a series of near-misses I can't stop myself from noticing.

Like driving. Caught up in the flow of traffic, the whole thing is a near-miss. Your car is mere inches from the car or truck or motorcyle or (the worst) concrete barrier next to you. What's to keep you in line. And blow-drying one's hair in the bathroom, inches from the sink or tub, what's to keep you from getting the thing wet and somehow electrocuting yourself. Or... using scissors. A few weeks ago I cut my shirt by accident, how come worse hasn't happened. I mean, I suppose--logically--it has to do with dexterity, caution, being taught way back in the day how to use scissors properly--or to drive--or to blow dry one's hair. But to me, it very often seems both scary and amazing how close we are, every single day, from a complete and total state of Mishappery.

I think these may be thoughts of someone with entirely too much time on her hands. Maybe. Or... maybe that's where the idea, "Don't think, just do," comes from. I'm famous for doing too much of the Thinking and too little of the Just-Doing. The thinking trips you up. And in raising K.Lo, so far I think I have, miraculously, done a lot of Just-Doing. I mean, what the hell do I know about babies--let me tell you, not a whole effing lot. In fact, I can count on one hand the number of times, before K.Lo, that I held a small person. Changed diapers, fed, entertained, taught, interacted with on any level? I don't even really need a hand to count those times, because they don't exist. And here I am, just kind of bumbling along, doo do dooo, taking care of a baby. And she's still alive and thriving? Amazing. And scary.

Scary, though, only when I really start the Thinking. Thinking about whether I'm doing a decent job--which, yes, is definitely necessary to a point, so as to kind of check yourself. I think people in general probably don't do enough of that. But then thinking about what the hell I'm going to do when she gets a little older. Will I still be doing such a good job? And then what about all the near-misses in her life. Now those freaking scare me. Really I can't even go there. So I guess I'll just keep winging it? I guess there's not really too much of a choice. Or, there is a choice, but I notice that so far, with the Just-Doing, I'm getting a whole lot better results. (At least, I Think.)

Monday, June 26, 2006

Set to Stun

dear blog nation: i've been a little squirrly at work- and my chair has developed a really loud squeak. you can see how much this might upset me. plus the banana bread conquered me at work and sent me into a late afternoon sugar spiral. i'm so depressed. i have a 1/2 hour left and am with a pile of sunflower seeds restoring my soul. not unlike a woodpecker who burrows out a hole to store his nuts for winter. (it's true)

i started the day by accidentally setting the alarm off at work. good times. i innocently enough walked in and set my stuff down. but knew it was a bad sign that there weren't any lights on. then a beeping started like the sound of def-con 5 (or more aptly like the countdown on Lost- i understand now the contextual necessity for hitting the button every 108 minutes. just to stop the damn beeping- if nothing else. bcs like all castaways i was running on low sleep, had just woken up, and was running on a sip of diet coke and a hashbrown) i jumped back up and stared aghast at the alarm- knowing futility- there was no other way to stop it without the code. i stepped outside to look for help, then decided, as the alarm was now loudly sounding, to hit the 'delay' button. (bcs if nothing else i could delay the inevitable consequence of not knowing the code.) and then hit it again- hopefully in time for help to come. it stopped. thank god. for a good 5 minutes or so. i saw someone, then heard another person moving around. i figured someone had set the alarm to OFF. but then it started sounding again- loudly- i heard a woman on the phone talking as if she didn't hear anything and that there wasn't anything to worry about, like a nuclear holocost. i asked her what the code was: she luckily and non-chalantly said, 5694. i ran to the alarm's rescue, lest the place explode. and crisis averted.

i slunk back to my desk waiting for the police to come find me and admonish me for walking into a building i work in and setting off the alarm no one told me about. kind of not like the time i was in kindergarten and pulled the official gleaming red beacon- aka fire alarm on the wall. i remember distinctly the school superintendant asking me why i did it- i was embarrassed and so answered nothing, as kids do, by furitively shaking my downcast head and shrugging my shoulders- i could not answer 'bcs it was there'. by god! bcs IT WAS THERE! and i wanted to know THE TRUTH.
half way thru the day i was happy to note that no one found out about the 'incident' until the blonde woman approached me. She had the time i entered on a piece of paper and exactly where and which direction i walked- there was of course no escaping the undeniable fact it was me (which set me off on a paranoid tick of musing for the rest of the day about society and it's one day, total mechanization, where machines rule the earth and tell the people working at the phone company when to turn off your phone no matter what, or whether or not i qualify for a loan or when one day.... she politely ahemed and called my attention away from the termination of freewill back to the current problem at hand. she talked about the police being summoned and the bill they would receive and wondered why it kept happening in this sector and why people didn't know about the alarm- i thought oh god. i hope she doesn't tell anyone else. i hope i don't get fired. i breathe deeply and continue to sip on my trader joe iced tea and look as professional as possible. i hide the tennis ball and the picture of a possum on a wire in my desk drawer. i sit up straight. i think: blend in. blend in. not a word not a sound- and maybe another alarm won't sound.


a little word from story logging nation- btw my contraban sour/cream and onion chips and my togo roastbeef sub- i hate how the chips get stuck in the indents of my teeth. i have to fish the goo out. this is so not cool. i realize also with each passing day that my nose only pics up distinct odors and scents- for instance, this weekend, apparently a baby dropped a bomb and the mother almost threw up, the 2 other people in the room were aghast and i sat there with barely a reaction. cuz i couldn't smell anything. people really don't understand this. also i must play the- i can barely smell this amplifies my hearing card- which must explain my neurosis to car signal clickers, loud gulping, and ambient ticking dripping scratching sounds of any kind- and why if and when i become a mother i'd embrace ear-plugs. my use of the word 'bomb' also is of note bcs the more i listen to skate language and these 2 characters in which i log the more their vernacular is going to seep into my head- that's why chil'dre'n it's best to mind what you watch. cuz dog, u dropped and i was about to think we had a situation.

more lat'a on church r-treats and work.

Friday, June 23, 2006

inspiring words

Excerpt from Mia's student presidential campaign speech, Princess In Training, the Princess Diaries series, Vol VI.

"Maybe things like the lottery and television were invented to sell products, bilk workers of their hard-earned cash, and lull us all into a false sense of complacency, and distract us from the true horrors of the world around us. But maybe we NEED those distractions, so that during our leisure time, we can enjoy ourselves," I went on. "Is there something wrong with, after our work is done, hanging out and watching a little of The OC? Or singing karaoke? Or reading comic books? Does something have to be complicated or hard to understand to be culture? A hundred years from now, after we're all dead from the Yellowstone caldera, or the ice caps melting, or no more petroleum, or killer algae taking over the planet, when whatever remains of human civilization looks back at early twenty-first century society, which do you think is going to better describe what our lives were really like--an essay on the ways in which the media exploits us, or a single episode of Sailor Moon? I'm sorry, but as far as I'm concerned, give me anime, or give me death."

Sub in The Office or The Hills for anime, and hurrah! I love Meg Cabot. And it heartens me to know that still, though she seems to churn out books faster than Joyce Carol Schmoates, she clearly still spends quite a bit of time watching shows like Gilmore Girls. And I so respect that.

Thursday, June 22, 2006


You know how people get Seasonal Affective Disorder in the months when there's less light? I feel like I have that beginning in JUNE, because of the light. Or the heat. Or maybe it's just the moon. Maybe it's just a mood, and it'll be over in a few days or a week. I hope so. I seriously needed some more wine this evening, to go with my whine:
I despise the wall of heat that swallows you when you open the door. I like the sun, but I love a good rain. I hate seeing the plants all withered and crispy. I feel antisocial, and suddenly I hate shopping. The sheer plentitude of products in Barnes & Noble depresses me, mainly because they are all so fucking nice. And I'll read in my lifetime, what .02%? Maybe. And all the memoirs, blah, the memoirs! Like the stories these people tell that are so monumental and written in such an engaging way that (miracle of miracles) they were actually published, and now here they are, lost in the Barnes & Noble amongst so much other stuff. Just like people, the stories are lost in the crowd. Why is someone going to pick this person's memoir off the shelf instead of, say, a bargain cookie recipe book. Or a grow your own shamrock kit. It's depressing. I wish I could buy and read every one of them, even if more than half were crap. It's someone's life story we're talking about here.

And there's a sign up in the front of Barnes & Noble, too, advertising the reading of a fellow MFAer, a really nice person, and a good writer, and I hope people go to that reading, and I hope people read her book, and I hope they like it. But I won't be there, that I can all but guarantee. Socializing, ugh. MFA degrees, ugh. Now wine, wine is nice.

And fucking Verizon. I always feel like once a whole year passes, you're rid of an icky situation for good. (Although some situations take much longer, particularly for those who tend to obsess, consciously or subconsciously-who, me? And particularly, I will say, with situations that involve lots of guilt. Ah, guilt.) And I'm in a drastically, wonderfully different space than I was last year at this time, but still, there's a few months left before I'm completely out of the woods and rid of those abhorrent fucking customers from Paramus, New Jersey, and all their cellular problems. Oh, and the Vermont people, too. Their minute overages and equipment failures and lack of coverage and the incompetence of the company tabulating their bills. I've spoken with a few different cell phone companies over the years, not to mention the cable company, the landline company, and the insurance company. And the banks. And I have a sneaking suspicion they're all about the same, so, you know. There's really not too much I can say about Verizon Wireless in specific that wouldn't apply to any major corporation, being either their customer or under their employ. But I still hate those damn commercials, I hate the store that just recently opened next to Dunkin' Donuts, and the next time Alltel comes on TV, if that guy could go ahead and pop off Verizon Man's head for a round of bowling instead of the Cingular cartoon's, that would be great, thanks. (Actually, what would really make my day is if he could pop off Catherine Zeta Jones' head. Hee hee.)

And speaking of time passing. It's not been a year, but geez my head is spinning lately with how fast it all goes. It's downright stomach-churning, throat-tightening, how quickly the days and months and years tick away. I want to pin down each second and make it stay longer, make the people I care about stay longer, and--well, you know. Et cetera. It's an icky downward spiral.

Anyway, hurry up, September. Or even the end of August will do. But oh wait, you'll be here before I know it, won't you, and the summer that a year from now I'll be nostalgic for will be too quickly over and done.

must type

hey all. must adjust to the working life- it's hard. whine. with all the working and the hours and the sitting and the watching. have managed to not get fired for a whole 3 days. yes! so awesome. it's all chill. i look forward to showing you pics. and trying not to break my non-disclosure confidentiality agreement i signed. currently my hands hurt from all the typing. i have to be so careful of my form. doing my ball exercises. it'd be different if my hands and arms weren't in pain when i started but the carpel = tendinitis flare ups and what have you are here and making themselves known. why hands! why!

+ the kitchen has all these snacks. i might as well be working at a place called -EXCESS. too much typing, too many goldfish crackers.

monday i'm going to start biking to work. and tomorrow i'm going to an actual old fashioned (of sorts) church retreat up in santa barbara. how much do you want to know??

currently i need to put pants on, before the shoes. totally noted. and eat some breakfast. and find food to bring to work so i don't become a cow on corn feed.

other things to ruminate about: casual sex, laundary, chapped lips, robotic arms, books to take with me, potholes, flat tires, kinetic energy and the unfulfilling nature of cereal.

currently listening to: disneyland commercial aka pirates of the caribbean.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

pet peeve #4

Men who drive around town with their shirts off. Sorry if this applies to you, but ew. It is so tacky, please don't do it. Maybe it's just me, thinking of my high school boyfriend who was such a ghetto slob, riding around in his beat-up station wagon with a set of 15" sub-woofers in the back and yes, his shirt off. I know it's hot outside, but geez. The sweat! The pasty skin! The hairy bellies! PUT ON SOME CLOTHES.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

The First Day of the Rest of my Life

Today I start my new logging job (the one about watching realitytv footage, not the northwest)
I spent the night making lists about payback order when the checks start coming in. The IRS is the first, as apparently theyve finally sent me that- uh, don't you owe us more? than $2- letter. Dammit- they're on to me. I also started a new list about things to do for fun- like camping or going to Chicago. I'm eating cereal and contemplating what snacks to bring and how long i'll be there. I started a new book called 'Wings of the Dove' by Henry James. My he's wordy. And it's just all these words packed into meandering sentences, so you really have to focus on what he's trying to get across, not the best thing to read having gorged yourself on watermelon and are lying comatose on the floor, making new lists titled: taking it one day at a time is not an exercise in futility, filled with admonishments about over eating, too much sugar, and lack of exercise.

Alright I think I'll sign off as anything else would be trying to aimlessly fill the minutes before I have to go.

Mental noted: Put pants on and go to work with shoes on. These are words to live by.

penelope pet peeves, continued

1. White noise. For example, ceiling fans, box window fans, air conditioning, oven fans, bathroom vents. Leaf blowers and flourescent lights. Maybe leaf blowers aren't really white noise. And none of these really bother me to distraction, in most cases, but I notice that when they're finally turned off, I suddenly feel much more peaceful. The absence of said noise is downright lulling. And yet some people need white noise in order to fall asleep. Humm.

2. When someone says repeatedly and emphatically, "You just don't understand." As in, you don't know my plight. This expression used in any form used to immediately raise my blood pressure until one day I realized that it's not supposed to be perceived literally. Like, What the eff, I'm trying to understand--maybe if you stopped saying that? So now it only bugs me when someone is driving it home as though using a sledge hammer. In which case I have to remind myself, a) it's not literal, b) whomever is speaking is simply riled up about his or her own situation, and c) it will probably get stuck in my head and at some point in the next week, I will inadvertantly use the expression myself.

3. Boys who tell their girlfriends, fiances, or wives to "shut up" in a non-facetious manner, and/or call them "stupid" or "dumb" in same manner, such as Wes to Johanna on the Road Rules/Real World Challenge. And by the way, Wes? This girl's way out of your league.

Sunday, June 18, 2006

pop thoughts: let's discuss

1. Britney Spears. Okay, what do we think about the Matt Lauer interview, besides that it was oh-so-entertaining to watch. My thing with Britney Spears, I've decided after much thought, is this: I don't buy her hicktown accent. She didn't used to speak like this, as was evidenced by multiple video clips within the Dateline interview; she used to have a nice, even "public" voice with a little twang, and actually sounded like an intelligent girl. I don't mean to say she sounds like an idiot now because she boasts quite the Southern drawl, not at all-it just seems less like she's dropped the persona everyone supposedly wants to see and hear, and more like she's putting on some kind of bizzaro act under the guise of "being real." And that is the turnoff-FAKENESS, ugh. She slips in and out of that accent so often--and did the same thing on the repulsive Chaotic-that I shudder to listen. I mean, Britney, go do whatever you want with K-Fed, try not to drop your baby or send him flying the windshield, whatever. But can you at least pick the accent that's Really You and stick with it? And maybe a less frightening haircolor for your skin tone. That would be great, thanks. Or, sigh-maybe I'm just a shallow asshole who misses the polished version of Britney Spears. P.S. What the hell was that ginormous clump of black on her lashes? Not mascara, was it?

2. Heidi from The Hills. All I could think when watching the latest episode of the Laguna Beach spinoff was, She does exist. She fucking boggles my mind, this girl. I've never seen anyone try so hard not to work in my whole life. She's convinced herself that she wants a career in PR planning hot parties that she can "get all her friends into," and even dropped out of school after landing her "dream job"-but the look on her face when she had to stuff those envelopes. Priceless. It was like they were asking her to transfer roaches with her teeth into the envelopes, rather than invitations. I wonder what she thought she'd be doing exactly. Also, and it's not clear what the exact financial circumstances of her life are, so who knows, but it seems like she doesn't really have to work, that if she wanted to, she could just be rich and play all day. So part of me is kind of silently rooting her on for that. Because I mean-whatever. It's all about vicarious experience and ogling anyway, watching these shows, so why not. Although it is lots of fun to watch her struggle.

3. BEHIND THE MUSIC WITH NICK LACHEY. OMG. Thanks Ash and Mel for your adament recommendation; I may have missed it entirely otherwise. The part where he's like, "Holding that little girl...That's what it's all about." It makes my throat hurt just thinking about it. All of this really has no impact on my life whatsoever, but if Jessica could just watch it and see... He still loves her. They could work it out. I just know it.

Up next: should I blog more about my life? I ponder. Today the baby cried and cried and cried and puked into my cleavage. She is, as J-Lo says, "going through something." Except we don't know what. Currently (still) reading The Devil Wears Prada, leaving The Breakfast Club to play in the background every time it's on VH1, and considering all the ways in which I mask whatever is my "real" personality. Hmmm. And I give Britney such a hard time.

happy happy to all you dads out there.

good morning. mmm. yawn.

i woke up a scarce 20 minutes ago. Well intentioned to be out the door by now but alas. I'm working on an hour delay- and may officially blame my 8pm dacquri, preparing my father- a father's day present, and reading a friends sript. now i must actually shower, eat breakfast, and ponder my wardrobe choices for such a hot day. i may even go with shorts. yah man. yah. i'm so daring.

so i never get my dad anything. usually i'm like hey dad- happy fathers day. and he's all, thanks. and i'm all, your welcome. sometimes that saying about familiarity breeds contempt. i think probably in my case distance would too- but it's never too late to start making small gestures. saying true things- like thanks for making me. bcs it is all about me. normally on mothers day mom gets a card that says, happy 'me being born' day. bcs if it weren't for me- where would they be as parents. nowhere. clearly.

so i got dad some socks- bcs he really has horrible taste in socks. i got him some that wick-away moisture, that have cushioning, that do not- ride up past his ankle- he wears sandles and he never wears pants anymore... just the dickies version of bermuda shorts. so you know- ankle socks with teva sandles are seriously necessary. why certain people, aka my dad, just snap one day and say i will only wear this bcs i know 'this' is comfortable- and never consider that anything else might also be fashionable and comfortable- is a mystery of the ages. also i got him some flavored old fashioned soda- like grape, orange cream-sicle, and black cherry cream. i am like, such a good daughter- like the best on earth.

okay but now i really have to go- have a good day and stay cool where-ever you arein blogland.

a pic of my dad forthcoming.

Friday, June 16, 2006

latest recruit

The Ivy Casting Agency is pleased to announce our newest talent, Full Upper Body Tattoo Man. FUBTM is a virtual chameleon, adaptable to any role, as evidenced here:

In the market for a man with two "big guns" wielding two big guns and a grenade? How about a sexy, impassioned rescue worker/construction guy/crossing guard? Or a thoughtful pipe smoker. A crazed MD with a penchant for severed fingers. Or a...guy, um, holding a skull and rosary...a patriotic priest possibly performing an exorcism on an inanimate object, angry archaeologist, or... one of the Hamlet gravediggers pondering Yorick's skull. Okay, we don't exactly know what he was going for in that last shot--but one cannot deny, this man can act. Many times with his eyebrows alone.

Look out, Academy, as FUBTM will soon be invading theaters near YOU.

Thursday, June 15, 2006

thems the brakes kid.

so the summer before i left for grad school i went up to Alaska to volunteer and be a camp counselor. pretty tame for 'going up to alaska'... i always did regret my choice not to gut fish or something for the summer. it just turned out to be one of those insanely memorable times anyway- like any time at camp i guess. just amplify that for 2+ months- we had a crazy/militant director, there were coolers of hash and booze hidden in the forest, we got eaten alive by mosquitos, the nearest civilization was literally called 'the north pole' where the wendy's there was always christmas, we had a rickety suburban, the counselors were all making love matches... one ended in marriage a year later, the wedding i went to, in colorado, and they're still together 6 years later. the other ended in an on-again/off-again romance. the next (cary)- her words "i am not going to spend the rest of my life with him. period." typical of my life i had no love match but picked up a younger brother named tim (above) and his match was annie (also above). the on/off agains. while most of the time was spent as prototypically as possible- contemplating my life alone- canoeing on the calm waters as an eagle soars overhead-alone, to watching a double rainbow to staring out of a broken tent- alone- getting eaten alive by mosquitos- alone. while not ruminating about my poetic self standing on the abyss of the future alone i was counseling tim. he was a hot-head and i loved him like a brother- i heard all about the difficulties of his fathers approval, his mother, their life in minnasota, how he wanted to be a musician, how his father wanted him to be a doctor, his love for annie, our shared hatred for the director- i helped him cook for a few weeks (since he was the chef), listened to his music- went on reckless outings with him and meng- if he hadn't been such a stoned latently hostile asian i suppose he wouldve been my match, but mainly he was getting stoned in various empty cabins... alas. alone.

this is one of my favorite pictures because it's so quintessential. it tells a story i think. and volumes, even if i didn't know them. perhaps a bit sentimental. i kept in touch with them for the first couple years- with at least 5 of the counselors i made friends with. and then it dwindled down to 2- the married couple in montana. the last i heard of cary was that her boyfriend was taking her on a hot-balloon ride over the mountains, and i lost touch with tim completely. but i always wondered about him, hoped he was doing well- wondered if he and annie decided to stay together. and then the years back in LA passed and i wondered about all of them very little- you know those treasured mental snapshots, played over and over- certain moments. if that. so then,

annie finds me on myspace. i generally can't stand myspace but must love and cherish it for reconnecting me with 2 long lost friends. one from college and the other from this camp. i asked if she kept in touch with anyone and behind that 'anyone' was a certain name. tim. and i was so so glad to hear from her. because she was a great fun girl.

turns out though, tim died. apparently he'd been in a horrible car accident, they'd broken up 8 months before and she'd had and refused a chance to see him- he recovered from the accident only to die after he was released- not from an overdose of the pain medication, as thought, but because of a heart defect he'd had since birth. undetected. he died 3 years ago, last month, alone in his apartment. and i sit shocked and realize how much i wondered about the future of friends i let go, or let me go, or we just got cut adrift, and you never think that their lives ceased as you go on thinking about them and imagining them. but his did. and there's no more wondering what happened to him or where he is or what he's doing. and then the platitudes about borrowed time, all of it, borrowed time.

and so thems the brakes kid. that's life. and here's to remembering him just as he was.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

today's mishaps

1. Opened ginormous umbrella in rain/wind gusts, planning to use said monstrosity in shield fashion to protect mom and baby. Umbrella doesn't flip inside out (which I hate!), but instead, because it's so sturdy and big, yanks me several feet down the sidewalk. K.Lo laughs.

2. Screen door gets caught on stroller while leaving house. Push stroller forward, thinking door will simply swing shut behind us; instead, door smacks cleanly into forehead. May have bruise.

3. Cut into package received in mail using scissors. Noticed the blades weren't moving. Realized shirt was caught, and sure enough, there is now a hole.


okay- like, painting your room is hard. sure i thought you know, throw everything in the middle of the room and slap some paint on. but really no. it was more involved- like actually protecting stuff from getting paint on it. moderately successful. taking all the pictures down. the problem of painting the ceiling- trim for instance. agh! but you know it was a completely worthy task. so i recommend doing it anyway. i'm ruminating on what to do next. nothing most likely. and that's the way i want it! besides finding things to buy on the internet. i love the internet bcs i ordered my handsfree and my new sandals and both have arrived along with a belated birthday gift! so awesome. other things i want to buy: 4 more books, a gift certificate and perhaps, okay no- nevermind, i wont go craZy. afterall thee job hasn't started yet...

today i went to the chiro and then treated myself to a new clear deskmat for writing and gazing and it's beautiful- and in a sheer show of decadence, a new bottle of white out to replace the one from 1989. also- awesome.

here is what i've been doing for a week and a half (the blooming cactus flower is thrown in for free. the pic of my cats refused to load- why blogger why!?)

you've managed not to lose interest, bcs you know my room is endlessly fascinating- especially if you can read all the book titles... what should i do next: hang ferns, finish designing walkway, start apple blossom painting, or ask for short story ideas from you, the beloved blog reader... or get frozen strawberries so i can make dacquris tonight.

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

roads traveled: many

baby finally sleeping: one
sweet and sour chicken wings eaten: twelve?
blog entries not written: approximately four...and a half
truths stretched: hmmm...
dvr'd shows to catch up on: when it comes down to it, not enough
tropical storms approaching: one
yellow squash picked from garden: THREE
bills to catch up on: uncertain
loads of laundry to do: two and a half
rooms to vacuum: none! (thank you, J.Lo)
pretty flowers received: a bunch (thank you, thank you!)
currently reading: The Devil Wears Prada

I'm watching the Janice Dickinson Modeling Agency (which, by the way, airs Tuesday nights on Oxygen), and can I just say...Janice Dickinson. There's nothing really "likable" about her, is there? I mean, she's good TV, though not quite in the lovable way that Simon Cowell is good TV. I think The Surreal Life ruined her for me more than a little bit. Now every time I see her, I don't think, "caustic but wacky ANTM judge, pre-Twiggy days"; instead, I see her holding a knife over Omarosa's head, or getting all squirmy and accusatory with Balki, or (by far the worst), meeting in the bathoom with her "makeup team"--which apparently she very much needs. Every. Single. Day.

Anyway, mendacious, I thought of you because on last week's episode, which I'm now in the middle of, JD fires these triplets she had hired to be assistants--well, what she does instead of firing them is assign them a total downgrade project in the form of adding "myspace" contacts. Oho! The triplets would NOT have that, as they shouldn't--clearly they were no longer wanted for any task of substance. They get up to leave, and JD's response?

"Two words!" (She points to the door.) "Out!"
Then, realizing this is in fact only one word, she quickly says again, "Out!"
And then she sputters something about the big mistake the triplets just made, and blah blah blah.

Whatever, Janice Dickinson. I can't even wrap my head around you...which I suppose is what keeps me tuned in.

Monday, June 12, 2006

real post coming soon

in lieu of actual thought out words i will say that i went and had hotdogs for lunch. we bemoan the rising hotdog prices. italy just won over ghana? or something - a nursery is closing. gas prices are still high. i'm installing a shelf today and hanging curtains. the yard is a yard if there ever is one- the pathway is almost done. i ponder the word: sale- my visceral reaction is excitement tempered with a healthy skepticism.

Friday, June 9, 2006


We've been very bad. We sincerely apologize. My last attempted post was on Wednesday where I was starting to spiral into depression. Then I realized, besides feeling the universe's embrace that I must learn to be contented in all circumstances. I forget such things all the time in the face of one thing or another not being in alignment- but life is all about things going out of alignment all the time. I'll have a job, then i'll be unhappy about not being married. I don't pay rent but I can't stop complaining about my debt. That is the nature and beast: desire. Where is that delicate balance btw wanting things and going after them and engaging in the hapless quest to attain, strive- abase yourself with your own inadequcies, failed timelines, quelched possibilities, until dissatisfaction is all you see. Rumblings, disquiet- your mind won't quite shut up. Shh. I say. Shh. Shut the fuck up mind. And just live. Set yourself a path and go. But don't drag yourself down by degrees while you try to get there.

And after my plucky and absurd rebound- go team!- i got a call and am once again employed. (Shh.Quietmind!) I start the 20th. It's an editorial assistant position- aka 'logger'. Basically what I was doing a year ago when I worked on the 'Inferno'. And the gig lasts till the end of September. I hope to wash the vialness of that other job behind me. (ah dyslexia- vileness)... And live and breathe again.

So since I last left you:
Saturday/Sunday: Worked a Stila Make-up sale: while i'm not much of a girly girl i do love to put on a face. And may I say, getting things 75%+ off is like better than Christmas- plus all of the customers were HAPPY. Why? Bcs it's better than Christmas. These girls got a $30 thing of foundation for uh, $3. (!!!) Dude, I know. But it's true. I myself couldnot resist- while I made maybe $100 working the sale I spent $22 on a whole bag of stuff. It's hard not to be decadant when faced with such bargain prices.

Monday: Began clearing out my room to paint it.
Tuesday: Went to the beach but did not go to the beach. I call this a bait and switch. Don't do this to your beach loving friends when you live near the beach. It makes them very melancholy. Spent most of the day in a funk. Related and unrelated.
Wednesday: Made great painting strides.
Thursday: Almost completed painting striding.
Today: Must finish list of to do's: wash floor, felt chair, army chest, paint cork board, hang curtains, paint design on wall, hang pictures... perhaps after lunch... this morning my cat Marley caught one of the juvenille mockingbirds- he came bolting into the backyard with the bird frozen in its mouth. i went to save the bird and i think after it bolted into the garden it recovered, and hopefully won't die from infection. My cat was pissed so I gave him a can of tuna. He is now sleeping on my bed and understands that when I see him fulfilling his natural instincts I must do what I can to thwart them since I supply him with food. What's the phrase- 'Nature will out'...?

Things to ponder: haven't heard from the IRS. father's day gifts, stacks of papers, lost curtains, sewing projects, june gloom.

Things I owe you: picture of soon to be completed walkway and my now 'black orchid' room. tres manufique.
AuRevoir, MonAmis.

Tuesday, June 6, 2006

18 days later

I think my garden may be taking illegal, performance-enhancing drugs. It's sure to be kicked out of the league. Or else, the long-lost 3rd cousin twice removed of the Little Shop of Horrors plant has possessed the soul of my yellow squash and intends to very soon eat our house.

Remember the garden gnome post? That was 18 days ago. This is how the garden looked then:

This is how it looks now:

Bye bye, Mr. Gnomey.
Specifically, here is the yellow squash plant:

Similarities, anyone?

OMG, and the gnome's name is Seymour! I totally forgot!!

Saturday, June 3, 2006


How many funerals have people actually been to, and are they more memorable than weddings. I always thought that compared to some people I hadn't been to any funerals at all- 2 actually (although a lot of people on my momside have died). And a few when I was young I refused to go to- the only impression I have is a very strong opposition to the entire affair- like either I didn't feel I needed it or maybe I was secretly unwilling for my last memory of them to be of that. I don't know- it was the memory of me, arms crossed, sunken in the seat and just immovable and as my mom remembers- not talking.

On my way there and all through the morning my mind was in a loop: I've been here before. I was here before 2 years ago for Sy's funeral. I was here before in this chapel 2 years ago on this exact weekend... I was compelled but tried to divert my impulse to say that to everyone I met at the funeral. Bcs what else is one to say- Hi. Other person: Hi. Me: Sucks doesn't it? Other: Yep. I managed to have a real conversation with only 2 people and it was comforting enough that I could find something intelligble to say to two friends I hope I know as long as I live. I extended myself to another person, having just glanced at the coffin, and sort of sighed, Hey, Dalton. (Which is actually the person who died.) And in the same breath I said, Hey, D.Paul. (Which was the guy I was actually hugging.) But it was strange because somehow I needed to say it. And it felt good and consequently a weird relief to be able to say goodbye in a single moment- even if it was accidental. Because before that it, as a friend said, seemed like we were in a play. Quietly filing in, setting up, unreal, as if at any moment the audience would applaud and this particular act would end, and the part of mourner, griever, friend of friend would end.

The other thing that ran through my head was that overwhelming sense that I was among my family. I mourn Dalton because they mourn him and I had that sense I was there to show my support for them if only in a periphery-sense. Because I'd only had 1 real conversation with Dalton- and that was when he thanked me for linking him to a surgeon. And his wife Tricia, the same- Hi, Tricia. Her: Hi... And that's all that's really needed.

And in an interlude: "When tragedy comes, it comes not in single spies but in battalions." And I see the horror of a truncated life, but perhaps his was but a brief and vibrant bloom:

Name: Dalton
Age: 38
Cause of death: Cancer (everywhere)
Wife aged: 30
Son aged: 1
What was said: love of God, sense of humor, honest, straight-shooter, love of wine, of things mid-century modern, of a life lived and not stilled...

And of course I had those ponderings about my own death which having been in a dark sense my entire I life I feel at most times- I'm reconciled to- if only in an abstract sense... and those odd petty concerns about the place you'd like to lay your broken vessel of a body- to take up space on the earth, or be fertilizer'd to the wind... to be flung into space, and how expensive are coffins?!. Perhaps for a tree to be planted above it, for the absense of astroturf to please me from above- for there to be a soundtrack over the silence of nothing left to say.

Friday, June 2, 2006


hello and goodmorning.

chin hairs tweezed (5) (relentless)
dogs taken for car ride (2) (makes me smile)
hashbrowns eaten (2) (scandalous)
funerals to attend (1) (unfortunate)(oddly coincidental, having attended a funeral in the same weekend, at the same funeral place, in the same chapel- 2 years prior, which for LA and not a small town is strange. strangely possible.)
job interviewed for (1) (tingling)
drinking 1 diet coke (preserving insides)
knuckles cracked (3) (its not bad for you)
cats in my periphery (2) (-2) = 4
showers to take (1) (looking forward to one day having a bathtub i can stretch out in or one that has shower streams coming from all sorts of directions)
lawns being watered (2) (coolest thing ever, luxury, gentle facade)
gum needed (2 pieces)

currently: chewing gum
listening to: an ATT commerical
thinking about: developing film, ordering sandals, aching right hand.

Thursday, June 1, 2006


Pronunciation: bi-'reft
Function: adjective
1 a : deprived or robbed of the possession or use of something -- usually used with of
b : lacking something needed, wanted, or expected -- used with of
2 title of memoir we read in grad school; don't remember much, except it was crap
3 what I feel in the summer when I think of TV

Our DVR is virtually empty, save for a long-ago unwatched episode of "The Apprentice" and several "Band of Brothers" that I can't even be in the same room for when Scott watches them (I'm sure they're "fantastic," just--ugh, way too intense for me). There are a measly few new shows still recorded every day, namely the MTV set: Real World, RW/RR Challenge (Fresh Meat being suprisingly, um, dare I say hilarious? this time around), The Hills, Laguna marathons, etc. But they're consumed in this house quicker than chocolate. Like lightning, man.

And I know, there's books, and Netflix. There's tomatoes growing outside, and a higher frequency of backyard bbq's. I'm so there, on all counts. But the blazing heat, the air conditioning bills, this tragic lack of good TV--I have to say, summer is my LEAST favorite season of the year. Don't even get me started on the issue of jeans vs. shorts.

Brief Reminder, though: "The Office" repeat marathon tonight on NBC. Good chance to catch up on lost eps (mendacious), or to hop on board (Kim). Wahoo!