Friday, January 30, 2009


This morning (between pushes of the snooze alarm)the folks on the radio were doing a lot of chatting about the Super Bowl. Until then, I had no idea that the Super Bowl was this weekend. And you know what? I'm all smug about it. It's not pretty, but it's true.

Sunday, January 25, 2009


I'm not so good on Sundays. Never have been. I wake up too late, put on not-quite-dressed ensembles of sweatpants and old t-shirts and the sweaters I don't wear in public, start drinking tea and listening to the radio and then, somehow, never really leave the house. That could be fine, of course, and sometimes is, but usually it carries with it a general sense of ennui or perhaps malaise. Something gloomy and French, in any case. Today is no different except that it's possibly worse. I find myself listening to some radio station from London streaming online. It's something I bookmarked in some long-forgotten past moment and today clicked on accidentally. First I half-listened to an interview with a British-Iranian filmmaker and then it transitioned into something called "The Organ Hour," which seems to be some kind of um...alterna-punk-metal show, purportedly to do with organs, although I'm not really hearing organs. And while, for you, this might be a happy accident or a veritable treasure trove of musical delight, for me, it feels like some kind of Sunday afternoon rock bottom. We just heard something by a band called Lime Headed Dog. I am not a fan.

I've got to get out of here. Want to go for a walk?

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Latest developments

1. Marquee over the Adult DVD and Video store on O'Farrell and Polk:
Now No Bush.

2. I had a brief email correspondence with my friend Samantha (have you met Samantha? You'll like her) in which I told her that I check her blog frequently and find her regular posting to be inspiring. Her discipline spurs me not to be such a blog slacker. Further, I suggested that "blog slacker" sounds like an invention of Dr. Seuss. She replied, "I would totally read a rhyming book about a bog-dwelling blog slacker." Me too.

3. Speaking of children's books, the second in the Chicken and Cat series by my awesome friend Sara is soon to be released. Do you have a child? Know a child? Pay attention.

4, Today my mother revealed, conversationally, that she has a Facebook profile. Apparently, there's a picture of the two of us on it. Of course, like everyone, my mother has also had a cell phone for years. I have neither of these things. Food for thought.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009


You know all that civic pride I was talking about?

It's back.

Welcome, Mr. President. We're awfully glad to see you.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Weather Report

I know it's lame to wait days and days and then only talk about the weather, but really, it's the most notable thing. I've been restraining myself mostly out of respect for the Kingstons who were so briefly in San Francisco and beside themselves with joy to shed their snowsuits for a week, only to return to another Massachusetts storm. However, I can hold back no longer. With apologies to the rest of the country, it's gorgeous here. Crazy the-world-is-clearly-coming-to-an-end gorgeous, but gorgeous nonetheless. It's been short-sleeved and sockless. It's been eat lunch in the back yard, but don't forget your sunglasses. It's been switch to the less aggressive bedding.

Today on the radio the announcer said, "In Minneapolis it's 40 below zero; in Chicago it's 20 below." He reported the rest of the newsworthy national events, such as heroic plane-landing in the Hudson River. Then he got to our own weather report. "Clear and sunny today in the Bay Area. In San Francisco, high of 67 degrees; in San Jose, 70."

And that's just how it's been for days on end. I'm a little giddy with it. If it makes you feel any better, it's nowhere near this nice in the summer.

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Back to work

The party's over. Everybody back to work. Yesterday I was prepared for it to be a bit of a disaster since, for me, coming back from vacation, even when I haven't traveled at all, requires a time adjustment that is not unlike the battle to overcome jetlag. On Saturday night (if you will) I went to bed at 3am and then got up at noon on Sunday. Unsurprisingly, I could then neither sleep on Sunday night, nor wake with any ease on Monday morning. Having shuffled into the office, I discovered that the heater was broken in my part of the building. It was about 47 degrees out and raining. (Please don't go on about how 47 degrees is practically balmy compared to sooooo many other places. I wasn't in so many other places. I was here. And it was cold. Very cold.) I did not unbutton my coat all day, nor remove my scarf. At one point, I put my gloves on, but typing was hard. It was all somewhat Dickensian. I did not enjoy it. Where were my slippers and constant supply of movies and books and pots of tea and snacks and blankets? Nowhere, that's where. Ah, vacation. How I miss you already.

Now it is a bright new day. It is no longer raining. It is several degrees warmer. However, after another night of thrashy, unsatisfying sleep, I dragged myself out to move my car for street cleaning. And then proceeded to drive in circles for 20 minutes, unable to find a single parking place anywhere proximate to my home. I could not simply drive to work since I was wearing an ensemble that was basically built around pajamas. Finally, I found a spot, returned home, and took a shower. Then, having dried about 30% of my hair, my hairdryer broke. No fanfare. No burny smell. No weird noise. Just ceased to function. I refused to walk to work with 70% wet hair, partially because of vanity, partially because of fear of pneumonia. I got dressed, went upstairs, and borrowed a hairdryer from my neighbor (thanks, Nicole!) which then for some reason, I couldn't get to work in the bathroom? So maybe my hairdryer isn't actually broken? Who knows. No time to figure that out this morning. I dried my hair in the living room, walked to work in not-so-great-for-walking-to-work shoes, and arrived 40 minutes late. Ta da!

In my real life, I wouldn't even be out of bed yet.

One small discovery, though, made while tromping to work. What smells more Christmasy than Christmas? The garbage truck that is gathering up discarded trees from street corners and pulverizing them. Obscurely depressing to witness? Yes. But so, so fragrant.

Sunday, January 04, 2009


Just home from the Revolution Cafe, which feels a lot like Paris only with a great deal more pot smoke and one fully open wall even though it's January and very cold. The band was fantastic (although every one of them had to blow on their freezing hands between songs). During the last hour some girls started dancing. One of them, Anna, could do a mean Charleston. We were delighted. And then she was delighted by our delight. "God it's good to be back in the Mission," she said. "Can I give you a hug?" And she did. "I was just in the Marina. Everyone was so blonde. And the attitude...." I knew just how she felt. No one is playing that music in the Marina and sure as hell no one's doing the Charleston. I said, "I know. I always feel absolutely hideous in the Marina." Anna further endeared herself to me by saying "You're so not. I wish I could rock bangs like you." So, ladies and gentleman, no longer am I "sporting the same haircut I've had since I was five." No. I am "rocking bangs" in 2009. I am also hugging Charleston-dancing fourth grade teachers who also purportedly teach 9-year-olds how to Jitterbug. I am hugging handsome, pot-smoking, anti-Christian, tile-laying, heavy metal drummers. I am hugging petite Japanese-American fiddle players. I am borrowing functional pens from the bartender so I can write a letter to Jules in Switzerland. And, as ever, I am smiling so much at the solos that my face hurts.

Thank you, gentlemen, for the music. Thank you, Revolution, for a glimpse into a happy 2009. I wasn't sure, but now I am.