Tuesday, March 30, 2010

What? Again?

I know. It's crazy. Two days in a row. Yesterday, I spent ten minutes trying to remember my login information and today....I didn't. So, see? Progress, positive reinforcement, etc.


Living alone is delightful in many ways, but it has drawbacks. Most notably, being unable to lift heavy stuff with my own two spindly arms and having no one around to help. I have asked many a stranger on the street to get furniture out of my car for me. I'm not proud. But I am, apparently, impatient. During the aforementioned period of furniture shuffling/purchasing, etc. I did carry a surprisingly heavy armchair up a flight of stairs, ditto a chest of drawers. (A thing for which I think I ought to have sold tickets. Kinda weak, stubborn girl+wide dresser+narrow outdoor staircase+rainfall=hilarious. For others. I did not find it hilarious, but it's over now.) Various other things, particularly those made of particle board, I could not lift, but at one point I did get a (different) chest of drawers out of a room by very laboriously dragging it on a towel.

By now, I have the great majority of my furniture in place, so most of that sort of thing should be done, but the prettifying still continues apace. To wit: bedskirt. In my very girly bedroom, I did need to solicit aid to hang the chandelier (that's right. There's a chandelier. In my bedroom.), but I figured "bedskirt" should fall well within my skill set. I mean, it's not like I was setting out to sew one. True, I did spend quite a lot of time ironing it, but on the whole, Operation Bedskirt is pretty low-tech. You know what, though? I cannot lift a queen-sized mattress by myself. Did I spend a half-hour lifting it a millimeter at a time and trying to drag a piece of fabric underneath it? I did. Was I absolutely certain I did not need help? Even when it was clear that the box spring was coated with some kind of nonslip surface to keep the mattress in place, such that fabric dragging was virtually impossible? I was. Did I sweat and swear and hurt my back? Yep. I then realized that the method I was using was really efficient at one thing: wrinkling fabric. A lot. Rendering forty minutes of ironing irrelevant. Damn it. I admitted defeat, removed it, ironed it again, folded it neatly and plan, begrudgingly, to ask the neighbors for aid tonight.

Following this household mishap, I went to a release party for the Nice Guy Trio's podcast. It was held in some kind of artists' collective space which means a big empty room with some instruments, a sound board, two kind of questionable couches and about 20 bicycles hanging on the wall. There were a lot of twenty-something guys with intentionally disheveled hair and/or beards. Had there been a contest, the winner would have been this one guy with copious white-guy dreads and a long pointy beard who was wearing shiny, possibly spandex polka-dot pants with a ruffle at the bottom, a jaunty ladies' hat from the 40's, and a little blazer. He was friends with the long-haired dude wearing the enormous furry hat with animal ears on top (a sartorial description that is sadly very generic in San Francisco). I also met an unassuming young man who was visiting from France where he 1) recently sailed from Bordeaux to Turkey, 2) plays saxophone in some kind of genre-defying band and 3) is about to go on tour in Eastern Europe with what is apparently a very famous metal band (think: opening act for Metallica) for whom he is a sound engineer and producer.

And I thought: you know what these people are probably not too worried about? Bedskirts.

Monday, March 29, 2010

I was never really gone

You'd think I'd have some sort of amazing story to share about how I've been trekking through the wilderness or was kidnapped or in an enchanted slumber or something. But no. Just not feeling very writerly. If it makes you feel any better, I always feel really lousy about myself when I write nothing for months (or years) on end. Actually, why would that make you feel better? You're not mean spirited.

But here we are on the brink of April and springtime and Easter. Rebirth galore. And I had a weekend full of great art:

1. ODC Dancing Downtown, which I think has now closed, but you can take a look at some video of my two favorite pieces "Grassland" and "Waving Not Drowning" here.

2. The Nice Guy Trio playing a fantastic concert of music by local composers (many of whom I know, which made me feel QUITE special, I don't mind telling you). You can see them playing a short set of their own music on this great podcast released every full moon. Tonight's the full moon and I don't know whether the new video is released werewolf-style once the moon is shining, or if it will be up sometime today.

3. Dan Hoyle's The Real Americans. I think Dan Hoyle might actually be magic. If not, I can't really account for how he inhabits so many other people onstage so entirely that you don't see him up there at all half the time. I don't really think it's because he puts on a different baseball cap. Lucky you, his show has been extended to May 30. If you want to see it, you should buy your tickets immediately, because part of his magic is that his shows sell out in the veritable blink of an eye.

If all those people can do all that beautiful work, I can probably update my blog. I can try. I mean, my friend Katy is committed to writing a new song every week for a year and that has got to be much, much harder than this, no?

So what have I been doing all this time? Well, lots of things, of course. But the short answer is: I moved and I met a fella.

I moved in January after thirteen years in one place. I only moved over the hill from one San Francisco neighborhood to another, but it still counts as a big deal. The new apartment is very lovely indeed and also very noisy. If you have an unusually loud vehicle of any kind--anything from skateboards or grocery carts full of bottles to semi trucks and Harleys--I invite you to join the endless parade outside my window. I wouldn't want you to miss out on the fun.

I think that all the noise may be to keep me from being insufferably smug, so enamored am I of the apartment itself. Is it possible that all my creative energy has gone into choosing furniture? I think it is.

As for the fella, I also spent quite a bit of energy (pointlessly, as it turns out) trying to win him over. He is determined not to be won, but, even still, it is refreshing to meet someone who awakens interest. I began to think such a thing was never to happen again.

At Saturday's concert, Nice Guy trumpeter Darren Johnston said at the end of a song, "I love those bittersweet songs. I do. 'Cause that's life. They're like 'Alleluia anyways.'"

And isn't that the glass-half-full view of "real life despite my best intentions?" Nothing really goes quite according to plan, but here I am in the middle of the messy celebration that is my life. Beautiful, noisy apartment. Delightful, standoffish man. I'll take it. Alleluia anyways.

Amen. Amen.