I'm bad at keeping journals. I lack the bull whip discipline necessary to write an account of myself every single day. Besides, I get easily bored with myself. I like my dramas on the stage and screen not in my reality scene.
However, the mama drama can storm into my calm orderly existence like a hurricane that doesn't come in a plastic tumbler glass with too much ice, so I have a few random bits from last week. I attempted to be deep and expansive about some of these bits, but all I got was muck and standing water. So here are some bits from last week. . .
New Orleans. Oh no.
Last week, an acquaintance of mine celebrated her eighty-fourth birthday, so naturally there was much celebrating and rah-rahing. Red meat was even eaten.
During the course of the celebration, the birthday celebrator told us several times that she was really turning forty-eight. If you turn the digits four and eight in forty-eight, you get eighty-four (and vice versa). Get it?
I suppose it's nursing home humor. Imagine a ninety-one year old saying, I'm turning nineteen. Hah, hah, hah. Okay, let me just tell all my future co-habitants of the nursing home, I've heard that joke---many times. I don't need to hear it again. Please. Let me just sit quietly and read Finnegan's Wake, and no, you can't borrow my large print copy of Gravity's Rainbow.
Nevertheless, I did enjoy the birthday celebration, and the bread pudding desert was a good breakfast the next day.
Then, one evening, last week, the doorbell rang just after dinner time. I opened the door to find a woman standing there. She was in her late forties although she dressed like a twenty-something.
‘Is that your car parked on the street over there?' She asked.
‘Uh. Yes.' I said. Oh no, it's been flattened by a giant hummer. When I looked over, I saw that it was fine although it was once again the crow toilet.
‘Would you be able to move it? It's just that I usually park my car there.' She said in a whiney voice.
Another sign that I've lost my New York edge. I didn't just say, ‘no, get a life, bitch'. No, I wanted to nice and neighborly. I looked her up and down and up and down. I had just had a really nice Pinot at dinner (yes, the wine from THAT movie).
‘Okay, maybe a little bit later. What's your name?' I asked. After all, if I'm doing a favor for someone, I like to know for whom I'm doing the favor. It's the Godmother in me.
‘Gayle.' She said and nodded and walked away.
I closed the door.
‘Gayle wants me to move my car, so she can park in front of her house.' I announced loudly. I can be just so passive aggressive sometimes. However, all the windows in the house were open, so Gayle heard me and announced as such. She was passive aggressive too.
I decided that I did not like Gayle, but I didn't want her to steal my windshield wipers or slash my tires, so I decided I would move my god damn car after I had drunk a cup of tea and watched the Dodgers lose (don't get me started, it's painful this year). Sure I was parked on a public street in a space where anyone can park, but I was gonna be neighborly if it killed me.
A half hour later, the doorbell rang, and sure enough, it was Gayle.
‘Hi, you don't have to move your car, it's okay, it's just that the neighbor is very particular about where they park, but it's okay, I didn't mean to upset you, you don't have to move your car.' Gayle said same thing three times in a single breath.
Then, there was Wednesday night which was epic and joyful. I have a page of notes which I had hoped would serve as a list of memory cues when I wrote the epic story out. However, I'm lazy, and I think the list pretty much sums it all up.
Wednesday Night by Sunshine Jen:
Bright red building Pretentious Art Party ‘It's a certain kind of event' Yeah, the kind with models. Don't touch the models!
Get in thanks to Trek (he's a Star!) Even though Sunshine Jen is on the list. I'm a star. A martini glass with Citrus Skyy Vodka, Campari, OJ, lime liquor Walked back and forth among the art ‘It's really cool. I think it's cool.' Just because you say ‘I think', it does not mean you're thinking. Sushi. Yes! DJ spinning. Square islands in stones. Speeches. Thank you, Thank you, Thank you. It's all about the art And the alcohol. How did I end up right in the front for the speeches?
Couldn't take it. Left pretentious art party. Went to coffee shop. It was open mike night – oh jesus. An old guy liked my necklace because it's green. Green is a powerful color to him. His wife loved green. She passed. ‘I'm sorry.' I said. An old lady rapping on the open mike. An old white bearded guy sits down next to me And asks if he can smoke his pipe. He's a polite hippie freak.
Cell phone call. Back to the pretentious art party. I'm not going in there. It will swallow me whole. Eeeeee! Eeeeee! Girlie Scream! You're here, and I'm here. We're here! Into the jag Onto the highway Go! Go! Go! Fly! Fly! Fly!
Spaceland In the door Drinking beer Silversun Pickups Dancing up and down among thirty-somethings A drummer named Joe buys me a beer Gotta go though, Joe, gotta go. I'm too damn old. Back in the car Back on the highway A good Justin Timberlake song Back home Dreaming of Malaysia Myles away.
So that was Wednesday. Then, on Thursday, I went to a reading---a good reading. The authors just sang out with their prose. I was moved.
But hovering in the background, on the news, on the Internet was New Orleans. Ladies and gentlemen, let me present to you, the invisible poor. We like to think in the land of positive optimism that no child is left behind. No one is ever abandoned. After the drama of the hurricane, there was abandonment leading to desperation. It's not heroic, it's not pretty, it was there. We hope some good will come out of it. What good? We must move on.
Okay, I'm being melodramatic. I apologize.
I had a great time in New Orleans. I hope the restaurants come out okay. Yes, I know that's shallow to say with thousands of people losing everything. Still, I had some great meals in New Orleans.
On Saturday, Myles came back and promptly went to sleep (jet lag).
On Sunday (which is technically this week and not last week, but when have I been bothered with technicalities), Myles and I met up with some of the west coast happyrobot crew along with special guests, Robot Master Rich and Mrs. Robot.
Meeting other writers on the robot is like meeting famous people. You know stuff about them, but you don't know them. Still, it was all good. No one picked their nose while talking. We sat on couches and had a delightful time. After we left, Myles bought two chairs and a table in Santa Monica, then I drove him home.
On Monday of this week (not last week), we went sailing.