Thursday, October 27, 2005


as I told a friend recently, I am having trouble focusing my thoughts. Inspiration has been coming in fits and i'll find myself overcome with bouts of beautiful sentences in some horribly inopportune place. In the meantime, my thoughts are occupied with the following:
the stretching sensation of raising and lowering my soft palate--sharp, then slackening muscles down my throat.
highway construction, headlights, and blindness.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

monty pynchon

Tuesday, October 18, 2005


It's 3pm and gloomy here, plus I have a migraine--the type of headache where my brain feels like it is flying around my cranium. So I'm really feeling like bed. This has got to be the best migraine weather, however. no sun to force my eyes shut.

I couldn't hack it in Iceland. I place the possibility of finding a job that employs me for 6 sunny months of the year and gives me the 6 months of darkness free so I can read, hibernate, build fires and play the xylophone somewhere between unlikely and impossible and apparently I am of no real substantive value during the dark daytime hours (though I'd love to think otherwise). Two weeks ago Chris and I went to Sigur Ros concert at the Hollywood Bowl and were mesmerized by the opening act. Five Icelandic girls stood around a table tooling on various instruments. It looked like they were baking a pie, or at a quilting bee. is this what people in Iceland do, we wondered? Do they make multi-layered orchestral pieces in the gloom, the silence and the night? And there is something about a bell tone, after all, that illuminates the world around it with an aural glow as the pitch reverberates off of the surfaces surrounding it. And when I get down to it I realize that music is, really, a bit like baking.

Monday, October 17, 2005

Heat and Steps

Gradually, I stopped noticing the heat. I can hold a triangle pose, aligning and straightening my skeleton and watch the sweat roll down my arms. Everyone shows up in shorts and bras except for me; i'd arrive in a parka if they let me. But I keep coming. Yoga is something that I'm good at. Once I signed up for a step class and as I stood outside, waiting for the class to begin, the pretty West Hollywood boys preened and primped. One extended his leg up by his ear. The girls, by contrast, were uniformly boxy and compact. They were, in a word, jazzed. And in the class, taught by a maniacal Romanian woman, I was on top of the step when they were all jubilantly down and fell off more than once. But I kept going, despite my ineptitude. I maintain an unspoken trust in and respect for Eastern European tradespeople like trainers and estheticians and will follow them without regard for myself.

"How bad does it burn? On a scale of one to ten." My Swiss facialist dabbed acid on my face and it gradually heated to an intense burn, like a blush.
"Five?" She raised her eyebrows and shook her head with disbelief. "Eight?" Better. She tells me the only thing preventing the acid from penetrating through the bone is the buffer. I wonder what it would be like to be warm down to my bones. It's supposed to kill everything on its way down, but instead brings up nasty pustules and inflammation lurking in the dermis. I'm breaking out for weeks.

like julie andrews but without the bowl haircut

There are many things that i love about LA, but I really love it when it rains while the sun is shining. Don't get me wrong, there are many things that I hate about this city--traffic and rent are two examples--but we do rain really well. Some things rain gets me in the mood for: Miles Davis, Matzo Ball Soup, long sprawling multi-generational novels...

I do not, however, adore the smell of wet ash. During the fires, we watched the black smoke creep closer, saw the flames lick the tops of the hills, waded through flakes of ash. It's strange how remnants of it linger--a sore throat, the smell of char.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005


Our FedEx man runs to deliver packages, and wipes his face with the bottom of his shirt. When he hands me the signature sheet for my packages, the paper is always matted and black on the corners from hand oils. His long, greasy silver hair, the spots on his polo shirt and his persistent panting scare me. Sometimes when I see him pull up, I hide so someone else--the mild-mannered latin man, the french economic analyst--can sign for and receive the filthy parcels. The french analyst thinks he bathes on Thursday evenings--he has Fridays through Sundays off--so he appears disheveled again by Monday.

He was supposed to be temporary. Last Christmas--before I started working here--our regular FedEx guy was decorating the exterior of his house for the holidays and fell off of a ladder. The fall crushed his hands. He thought he could come back to work soon, but his hands have needed to be broken and reset three times this year. I never met this guy, but I think about him often. I imagine him at home, with all the doors kept open. I imagine his sixteen year old daughter driving him around town, carrying his shopping basket for him while he walks around with bandaged monster-movie hands. His young son anticipates Halloween; his father's costume outdoes all the other grownups'. It will be the one day when people on the street won't clutch their own hands when they see him and his son won't have to feel guilty about wanting a light-up Santa on their roof for Christmas.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

My summer as a loan shark

Old people tend to really make me sad. My grandmother has skin that's thin like rice paper and it freaks me out. At this job, there are a lot of old men who lost their previous jobs and are trying to set up Closeout deals. They come into my office, hunched over a box of jumbo ladies hi-cut briefs and they look disheveled, dirty. Usually they wear old hats and have red-rimmed eyes. They call me kid. We're the cast of a geriatric film noir.

I love Musso & frank's because the bartenders know what they're doing and because Faulkner was at that bar; not because the waiters are old, balding, and career. Once at the Pantry downtown our waiter was the spitting image of Humphrey Bogart if he was still alive and had suffered a stroke that left his left side droopy. It broke my heart to have him wait on us.

it started as a need for serif

Sometime during the night I awoke with an urge for serif font to plasterd it's little frilly self all over this damn blog. so, by god. i went out and did it. Doesn't hurt that my office is absolutely empty today, either

Friday, October 07, 2005

I'll be making every effort possible to post SO MUCH that you won't even see The Donald by the end of the day