T-to-the-A

Posts Tagged ‘Los Angeles’

Just Got Schooled… I think…

In The Daily Drool on March 12, 2010 at 1:10 am

Well, I’ve complained about my noisy neighbors (to the left) a fair share, but tonight, my friends, the tables have turned… and it’s all Gerard Butler’s fault.

(sigh)

It started with THE UGLY TRUTH… a movie I made much point of avoiding when it was first released, but then (sucker!) a friendly “You might like this” note popped up on my Blockbuster page and I said “Aw, what the heck” to Gerard Butler’s handsome, (Ooooh, so handsome!!!) mug.  It’s been sitting on my T.V. for the past week, and I didn’t feel like staring at the computer anymore so I plunked down to watch it.

(And although this isn’t a review-post, I will say the movie is fun.  A lot of vagina jokes… but fun.  I mean, as long as you look at the Romantic Comedy genre as Fantasy, the occasional Katherine Heigle movie is good fun)

So, the end of the movie comes along and that reeeeeeeeeeally catchy Flo Rida song,  “Right Round” – you know the one they play at the end of THE HANGOVER – comes on.  So I don’t turn the dvd player off right away, but let it roll.  I’m even up dancing around the apartment a little… but not too much, because about 30 seconds later my neighbor to the right KNOCKS ON MY DOOR!   And I’m thinking – Who’s selling stuff this late?  Nobody… Should I pick up a vase?

But I peep out the peephole and there’s some brunette woman in a snuggie (okay, maybe it was a robe, it was hard to tell) and I crack open the door a bit and she’s all “I can hear you”

Ummm…. what?

“Your music?”

(Brain is still trying to figure out what she’s wearing)

“I’m your neighbor.”

And this is when I get it.  So I clarify – “Over there?”

To which she stupidly nods.  Er, rather, she nods at me as though I’m stupid.

“Oh, okay, well, it’s just the T.V. but I’ll turn it down.”

WOW!  I wanted to ask her if she was ever that aggressive with the people on the other side of me.  I mean, in this little equation here, she and they would be the wafer, I the cream filling – but certainly she’s heard their boisterous party fouls echoing across the courtyard… Does she ever “Snuggie” up and give their door a firm knockin’?   I mean, if I strapped my Snuggie on every time I heard the Beastie Boys echoing nextdoor, I’d be living on their doorstep – “Oh, pardon our neighbor, she has sensitive ears!”

I could sit outside with a little squirtgun and spray them when they over-spoke/danced/laughed too laud/got carried away with the Rock Band…

(sigh)

And I was just watching T.V. – was it really that loud?  Have I gone deaf in my not-yet-old age?  Is she a middle-school teacher who’s had a bad day and needed to knock some heads around?  (If so, it’s a shame I didn’t open my door up wider for her to slap her ruler at me)  And really, who wears their Snuggies a skull-crackin’?

Anyway, the point is, I played “Right Round” too loudly tonight, and Gerard Butler made me do it.

No Snuggies were harmed in the writing of this post.  Also, author wishes to clarify that she herself does NOT own a Snuggie.


A Letter to the man/woman/aliens that pick through my garbage at 3 a.m.

In The Daily Drool on March 9, 2010 at 11:00 am

Dear Early Morning Garbage Picker(s),

I understand that you are hungry/broke/bored… I respect the traumas that have led you to this part-time profession… and I hope that these early morning mining sessions of yours reveal the fruit you so desire: glass bottles with a swig left of scotch, half-nibbled pizza pies still in their box, or recyclables ripe for recyclin’.  But I beg of you, for just 21 more days, can you pick through my trash with less clamour, less bang, less NOISE?

You see, I don’t know how you came to find that us Almayo-ens produce so much of whatever it is you’re looking for, but it’s nigh on 4 nights now that you’ve been pillaging our plunder, and that plunder lay directly outside and beneath my bedroom window… a single-paned wonder that allows every damn crinkle of your crashing about to interrupt my REM cycle.

It’s stressing me out.

Last night, er, this morning, your noisy pilfering infiltrated my dreams and had me looking for the source of the disruption amongst wood beams and chocolate cupcakes standing stories high!  When I finally bubbled up to the surface of that confusion, there you were, the sleep-thief, thieving your way through our collective waste.  I wanted to open my window and rain down obscenities upon your brow.

But I didn’t.

Because I feel bad that you are down there in the first place, while I am cosily tucked into bed.

So I’m writing this plea to you instead… a plea to work quietly, to sift silently, to come and go like an elf.  Ask yourself, what would a garden gnome do?  How does Santa do it?  (or possibly)  Isn’t there somewhere better you could go?   And then, if stay you must, then let none know you were here, especially me, the sleeping monster just feet from the fray.  Because one of these morns, if the cycle isn’t broken, the monster will bellow.  She will bellow long and loud… She will blister your ears with her sleepless rage and the buildings around us will rattle… And then, once riled, she will have an even harder time getting back to sleep.

So please, please, just… Shhhhhhh.

Sincerely,

ME

The Long Gone Roomie Blues

In The Daily Drool on February 26, 2010 at 10:33 am

My roomate, my very kind and quiet roomate, left today for China.

And I am sad.

We didn’t hang out, per se, but we did live together for 2 years and had developed a very peaceful routine, and now that he’s gone, well, this whole “Vacating LA” thing seems all the more real.

And therefore terrifying.

Because I also had to write my notice to the landlord today.

Which makes things REALLY real.

Which means I am moving.

ACK!

And I’m not a big fan of change…  change… CHANGE?!?!  (insert scary music and dizzying lighting effects)

So let’s not talk about my change…  Let’s talk about Ian and China!

As he was waiting for his shuttle this morning he told me that he’s basically accepted a job in a country that he dislikes – a job in banking that requires him to be in utter obedience to his boss, the odds being pretty good that he’ll have to work 80 or more hours a week, where drinking is a near daily required social activity and where he’ll have to entertain clients at their mercy – this is where my quiet, kind-of-shy, homebody of a roomate is heading?!  I just can’t imagine it.

But he’s doing it because he thinks it will be a good work experience, he will learn a lot and it will look good on his resume, even though he already knows he will be (in all likelihood) miserable.  (Is that how you spell likelihood?  The red squiggle isn’t showing up, but my goodness that’s a strange looking word!)

I sat there, listening to him describe this terrifying sounding environment, (there’s no facebook in China!  WTF?) and just couldn’t believe he was going!  Knowingly going… knowingly heading into something he knows he won’t like… and I wondered if I could do it.

I didn’t wonder long, I mean, I’m not moving home because I’m unemployable.  I’m moving home because I didn’t apply for any of those full-time jobs that would get in the way of my writing.  I’m an artist, I give in to the muse and the muse doesn’t like strict rules or even 40 hour work weeks, much less 80!?  ACK!  There’s no way I’d survive that kind of life.

But he’s on his way, on his way to this new crazy place that sounds like some kind of punishment.  He said he’s thinking of it like a jail sentance – one year.  He thinks he can do it for one year.

I told him that since his boss here in LA is holding the door open for a return, if he gets over there and hates it?  He should feel no shame or worry at all about coming back… soon.

It’s interesting what we tell ourselves, and what we are willing to do (or think we are willing to do) when told it’s going to be good for us…  It’s interesting and a wee bit scary.

The Miracle of Caffeine

In The Daily Drool on February 24, 2010 at 11:46 am

Sometimes I wake up and leave a piece of my brain behind.  It’s not until later that night when I tuck my little face back into the folds of my fluffy pillow that it’s returned to me… and then we go on adventures big and small and totally strange.

Like last night… last night I was concocting all manner of reasons to max out my credit cards with cash advances so I could travel and live it up… I woke up with a shiver of “Bankruptcy!”  But somewhere, a little piece of my mind decided to stay with that fantasy instead of facing the cold hard reality of TODAY.

So I made myself a nice hot, sugary cup of tea… and wouldn’t you know it my mind woke up for that.

And now I feel like I can maybe make it through the day with some gumption rather than the pathetic drone-like stumbling to-and-fro I (barely) managed yesterday.

Today I feel AWAKE!

Because of the tea.

So…. drink up  🙂

SURPRISE!!

In The Daily Drool on February 22, 2010 at 1:07 pm

Last night my friends turned “Writer’s Karaoke” into a Surprise party, and knocked my perky little socks off.

This is what I’m talking about when I say that I have made some amazing friends out here, friends that I love and appreciate and who make me feel safe even amidst all the craziness.

And they are super crafty too.

I knew that Jacob had sent an invite to the cast of Jane Doe because it inadvertently got sent to me (I didn’t read it because I got a text message telling me not to, but I did see the subject line).  But I did NOT think that he had contacted everyone I had told I was leaving!  Walking into the bar and seeing so many faces that I wasn’t expecting to 1- see at all, or 2- see together, was very overwhelming and sent me into a bit of a spin.

A happy spin.

The kind that made me want to go back and re-live it when I woke up this morning.

It’s true that love can hurt, but people are what make this life worth living- the love that you share with friends and family really is all you need!

Because they will always have a place for you to lay your head and get your feet under yourself again.  They will hug you and hold you tight and they will remind you that even though you’re scared, they are there to help you get through it.

And that is more valuable than all the diamonds and gold and time-shares in the world…

So thank you, Los Angeles, for introducing me to these wonderful, beautiful people.

And thank you to my amazing friends for the awesome surprise.  🙂

‘Cuz you gotta have frieeeeeends

In The Daily Drool on February 21, 2010 at 10:31 am

This morning I will sip mimosas with the girls and tonight I will rock some karaoke with the writers.

Life is good.

Because even though I’m broke, with a busted car, and a damaging Visa bill, I’ve got all these wonderful people around me making me laugh, bringing over creepy movies (Ahh, Doc, how were we to know?), trying to help me find work, letting me borrow their car… It’s almost more than a little softie like me can handle without erupting into tears at their kindness.

So, I’d just like to say, from the bottom of my heart, THANK YOU.  (Apparently the heart wants to sing it… or shout it…)  Thank you for your love and support and kind thoughts and gestures.  You mean so very much to me, and you are the difference between this situation being a grand adventure instead of a terrifying nightmare.

Now… time to go see about some mimosas…

Cleaning House

In The Daily Drool on February 19, 2010 at 11:40 pm

I think it’s good and healthy, to know oneself.  To be privy to one’s own strengths and flaws.  It’s difficult, sure, on both fronts… One is often told not to brag, not to wear one’s strengths too loudly, and sometimes as a result of that ingrained humility, we forget how to wear them at all.  And of course, adding up one’s faults, or weakness, is uncomfortable for a whole host of reasons- probably chief among them the fact that once you admit to it, well, shouldn’t you do something about it?

I’ve had a lot of time to think about things like this lately. To try and tally my victories as well as the upsets… To look at myself honestly and without judgement. To simply… Be.

It’s not easy to do.

But I realized something tonight- not everyone has the ability to add any of this up in the first place.

And that means that being aware of this dilemma is, in and of itself, a strength.

Very often when I’m confronted with something, a bump in the road per se, I’m thrown, perhaps disoriented, but then I pick myself up and try to find a way over, around, beneath or through, that bump.  I don’t like to be stymied.  I hate feeling powerless.  I strive to reach beyond it.

And until today, I thought everyone else did too.  I thought that everyone else at least wanted to.

But today I realized, sometimes people reach those bumps and just… sit down.

And sure, they sit down for any number of reasons… but it’s NOT an option for me.  Sure, I might need to pull over and catch my breath, or I might make a hasty decision or two in my approach, but I will never just look at that bump, shrug my shoulders, and let it win.

Because I’m tougher than that.

Because I strive to be my best self.

Because I am not tethered to this road, but rather, it is here for me to step upon.

And I suppose one must learn when to simply step past the “sitters”.

Today I looked back at a hill and saw that I am the mighty one.

And that’s worth putting on my list.

Blowing Gaskets

In The Daily Drool on February 17, 2010 at 11:46 am

Well… the phone rang this morning with the despicable news that my car, lovely, scraped up Miss Irma, had not only cracked her radiator and ruined her temperature gauge, but she had blown her head gasket as well.

I don’t know what the gasket is responsible for, but evidently it’s major, because the voice on the phone was very serious.

And it’s deadly expensive.

BUT, and here’s the only real rainbow here, because I am the original owner, and because I left it in the hands of the dealer, this repair is covered under Hyundai’s 10 year/100,000 mile gaurantee.

Yes, say it with me now:  “WHEW!”

But I will be sans car into next week.  NEXT WEEK!

There is something about car problems that is absolutely overwhelming.  Here you have this big heavy machine at your disposal and absolutely no idea how it works… you are completely dependent on the service technicians to tell you what it needs and then you just kind of sit back and hope that it all works out alright.

Looks like I’ll be doing a lot more walking than I thought…

Feet, God gave ’em to us for a reason…

In The Daily Drool on February 16, 2010 at 4:00 pm

Well, the car debacle has gotten more frustrating.  I mean, to someone who’s completely without funding, a $1100 price tag for a repair is like, impossible and therefore borderline hysterical.

I spent the better part of the day arranging to have the car towed to another mechanic (thank you Doc) with excellent references (wow, Yelp is kind of amazing, isn’t it?  I only just discovered it.  Amazing!) who quoted me a lower price over the phone.  Then I called back the dealer to let them know what I was up to and they brought their price down to $850 plus tax.  Considering how much it was going to cost me to tow the car and how much was already due to the dealer just to diagnose it, it worked out to about the same cost.

So, long story short, a dealer will deal with you a little on the repair.  Good lesson.  Now, can someone direct me to the money tree?  Because it’s STILL TOO MUCH MONEY.

(pant, pant)

But then I think about how the car has been really reliable and this is its first out-of-warranty fix, and that amount seems more palateable.  I mean,  Visa and I are becoming better and better friends (she says wryly) so I can look at that shining piece of plastic and put off screaming for a month… and then I can scream a little bit every month until it’s paid off… which at this point is looking like a DAMN LONG TIME.

(pant, pant)

But that’s not why I’m writing today… I’m writing because amidst all the grump and harump and ‘Are you fucking kidding me?!’ I took my pale little self out on a walk and had the most beautiful stroll.

See, I am very close to many things- the grocery store, the bank, restaurants, the mall and movie theater… yet us West Coasters DRIVE EVERYWHERE.  It never occured to me to walk to the bank before.  But because I am without car, and because I had a check (WOWEE ZOWEE) to deposit, I trotted my little under-used legs on out the door.

And in case anyone’s not been paying attention to the weather, today it was GORGEOUS outside.  Like Spring weather, absolutely beautiful.

I walked through the neighborhood admiring people’s lawns, the trees, the blue, blue sky.  It was a truly happy experience and I was thankful that I had to use my feet to get there… because in the four years I’ve been living here I’ve never once walked to the bank!

All in all it was about a 45 minute round-trip.  I came home feeling exhilerated, I drifted off into thoughts of scripts and characters in the walking and found some solutions that had been eluding me.

I’m only going to be here for another couple of weeks, but I think I just might do a little more walking in the meantime.

Picture! Picture!

In Photography, The Daily Drool on February 16, 2010 at 12:50 am

My friend Meredith and I went out with my camera for some new yoga pics.  What do you think?