Saturday, July 30, 2011

Mysteries of my own mind

I'm doing a little blog tinkering and I discovered this in the drafts folder from February 16, 2011. It was nothing but a link to the Webster's definition of this word:

It is, undeniably, an excellent word. It is also a word I have no recollection of learning, let alone setting aside for the edification of my 2-3 readers. Is it possible that senility sets in prior to menopause? That seems unjust. Nevertheless, we shall try to adopt a pococurante stance on the matter.

Haute couture: not quite dressed

The other day I saw a teenage boy sort of tiptoe-shuffling his way down the sidewalk in what I'm sure, if you move in the right circles, was a very chic outfit. He wore a jacket, a bulky sweatshirt, plaid boxers, jeans belted entirely below his ass, and unlaced sneakers into which he had inserted his feet only half way. Is this a new trend? For those who want not only their butts, but also their heels to garner the benefit of a refreshing breeze? Niiiice.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

It seemed like a good idea

Several months ago, someone tried to break into the trunk of my car. At least, this is my theory. I got a bag out of the trunk, went the store, came back 15 minutes later and was unable to open the trunk with either my key or with the trunk release lever inside the car. As far as I know, locks don't just up and break themeselve, so I suspect foul play. Apparently, it will cost $150 to replace the lock, so I have chosen to ignore the problem since there are scores of other ways I'd prefer to spend $150. And have. And continue to.

Today I had two bags with me--my purse and a tote bag (for additional things I was obliged to tote). As we all know here in the big city, it is a mistake to leave a bag sitting in the car even if it has nothing of value in it because someone is still likely to break in just on the chance that you have left a sack of cash carelessly on the backseat. So, I couldn't leave it there. Still, I was annoyed at the prospect of having to schlep this second bag to the movies with me.

Just as I was preparing to get out of the car, it occurred to me that I could use the fold-down capability of the back seats, sneak the bag into the trunk from the inside, fold the seat back up and be on my way. I got into the backseat and began to pull vigorously and with considerable force on the seat backs. This did nothing whatsoever, though I did try for rather a long time with increasing agitation. Finally, I fetched the owner's manual to see if there was some sort of release button I wasn't seeing.

There is. It's inside the trunk.

Story time (Part 3)

Levi's has (or had?) an initiative as part of their "Work" campaign called Levi's Workshop: a physical workshop that would be set up in a city for a few months to do cool things, then shut down and moved on. We had one on Valencia for a while last summer. It was full of printing presses and things and it was sad to see it go. They invited Porchlight to collaborate with them to make a little book of stories about work. Alas, I was not included in the wee book, but I was invited to fill in for someone at the last minute for the storytelling performance. The story (about being fired by the Red Cross) as a whole was not recorded, but there is still evidence that it happened. And that I made this face:

There are bits of me onstage here (I mean, all of me was onstage, they just recorded moments):

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

There's only so much to say

I assume that people who write for clothing retailers and magazines and the like sometimes look at the blank page and think things like, "what else is there really to say about cardigans?"

Moments such as those lead to emails such as today's from Anthropologie. Subject heading: "That's the thing about dresses" Email: "They make our world go round."


Photographing the model next to a globe didn't do all that much to clarify the assertion.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Plus, there was cake

My birthday was on Friday and I felt very well celebrated. There was miniature golf and lunch and a handmade birthday crown. Then there was fancy pizza and Harry Potter in the balcony of the theatre where you're allowed to drink wine (I drank wine). But the very best thing of all was this.

I walked in with my two friends to find our seats. We were in a little row that was three seats together (enough for us), a little table, and one lone seat in which a man was already sitting. I put my birthday crown on the little table and saw him glance at it.

"It's my birthday!" I explained. (I'd been telling people all day in case they might be very excited.)
"It's my birthday!" he replied.
We shook hands very enthusiastically and then wished each other happy birthday for the first of several times.

And if that's not jolly, I don't know what is.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Life in a small dwelling

Sole: A Cautionary Tale.

Kitchen. Dinnertime: Yum! That smells delicious.

Bedroom. 8AM the following day: Dear god. What a revolting odor. Has someone sneaked a dead fish under my pillow?


Friday, July 15, 2011

Equal opportunity

I went to the Sports Basement today (I know; I'm practically an Olympian) in my continued quest to find some kind of sweat pants that don't look like they were developed as an anatomical guide (seriously. yoga pants = too much information) and to replace my swimcap. There are various kinds of caps, each of which is helpfully on display with a little sign explaining its merits. The sign under the one I purchased said "Gentile on hair."

I'm not even entirely sure what that would entail, but, to be on the safe side, I borrowed a Sharpie from the clerk and now the Jews of San Francisco are free to swim with non-denominational caps.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Making a list, checking it twice

I mentioned that I had made this list of things I'd like to do and that I'd taken preliminary steps to do some of them. I am pleased to report we have moved to secondary steps.

On Tuesday, I went to the gym for my "fitness assessment" which actually was not as horrible nor as shameful as I anticipated. The trainer who conducted the test would strongly disagree, as attested by her look of pure horror when calculating the amount of my body that is comprised of fat. Apparently, a lot of it. I suggested to her that she might want to work on her poker face. She replied, "But these are not the numbers you want to see!" Uh...right. Exactly. Maybe she has never heard of a poker face. Anyway, my level of fitness is "fair" in most areas, which it really has no right to be. And my so-called "fitness age" is only three years more than my actual age, rather than being 15-20 years more than my actual age. Again, a miracle. While the trainer was very scowly about all this, I thought it would be more appropriate to be popping the champagne. Not that she'd approve of that.

Immediately following Fitness 2011, I went to my Italian class. Buon giorno. Come stai? Io sto bene. Grazie.

See? It's totally working already.

Yesterday, I actually went swimming in the serious bathing suit and hear this: I did not die. My spindly arms felt like they might snap off, but still. It was a beginning.

Then I ate vegetables.

I know. At this rate I may become a superhero.

Will she continue on the path of righteousness? Or will she spend the weekend eating chocolate cake in her nightgown? Stay tuned.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Story time (Part 2)

This is my favorite. (I originally mentioned it here). Plus, although orange, I look pretty good. Later evidence will show that this is not always the case.

Porchlight's 8th Anniversary Show, July 2010. The theme was "Magic 8 Ball." Video once again by Evan Karp, whom I do not know, but who I made laugh a couple of times.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Festivals and parades

If festivals and parades aren't your thing, then maybe you could do some dancing in your living room or have a quiet drink. The point is, celebrations are in order. My accursed neighbors with their crashy, screamy children are moving away by mid-August.

There are no words to describe the joy this brings me.

Say a prayer to the gods of tenancy that whoever the new neighbors are prove to be light-footed book-readers who enjoy silent contemplation of life's mysteries.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Thoughts from Tahoe

1. Smoking indoors is legal in some places. You will have forgotten this. It will not be pleasant to remember.

2. When you win on a slot machine, it will be completely unclear to you why even though the "pay line" is helpfully highlighted.

3. Lake Tahoe itself is primarily made of melted snow, which makes it very cold indeed. Nevertheless, it is unaccountably elating to swim in it. After taking the full underwater plunge, you may not laugh uncontrollably for five minutes, but I did.

4. It is possible for a bed to be too soft.

5. Miniature golf is pretty much always a good idea.

Monday, July 04, 2011

Go jump in a lake

The "I am going to" is silent.

Off to Tahoe, but I'll be back.

Saturday, July 02, 2011

BART's new service

A slightly garbled announcement is broadcast over the BART speakers.

"A reminder that passengers with bicycles must use the stairs or the elevator. Thank you and enjoy the sunshine."

Meanwhile, two guys hoist their bikes over their heads and make their way up the stairs. "What did he say?" one guy asks the other, "Enjoy the french fries?"

Ow: redux

You know what's more fun than a mammogram? A second mammogram. Oh, yes. After I had written this, I got a call that the screening showed some abnormalities and that I needed to come in for additional imaging and was I free that afternoon? And so I cried. And cried and cried. I was weirdly never concerned that I might have breast cancer; I just didn't want another test--particularly two days after the awful one.

I bring this up merely for the record. Now hear this: Mammogram #2 turned out to be much more like I expected mammograms to be to begin with. That is, kind of weird, a bit painful, not something you'd want to do as a special treat, but not horrible. Perhaps it was the pad they used the second time? Perhaps it was because I was crying and they took it to heart? Perhaps Friday was just a more robust and hearty day for my boobs than Wednesday? I don't know, but I am relieved.

Additionally, I don't have cancer, which is pleasant.

And now, I'm going to the circus.

P.S. During the ultrasound part of the screening there were three doctors and a nurse in a very small, dim room with me. Each of them, with the exception of the nurse, took a turn um...sonograming. When the attending physician had taken the wheel, as it were, another doctor said to her, "Do you mind if I just show this fellow how the machine works while you conduct your exam?" Since he was the only man in the room I thought he was going to go out in the hall and come back with some random chap who was interested in sonogram machines. Only slowly did it dawn on me that the other young woman--still a med student-- was "the fellow."

Friday, July 01, 2011

Story time (Part 1)

I have been weirdly paranoid about putting images of myself on my own blog, but then, I am a person who was for a long time very distrustful about depositing checks directly into the ATM. This Safety First stance might have had some merit back in the days when there really were no images of me online, but those days are long since past. There are all sorts of unflattering photos of me onstage, as well as some nice wobbly videos available for the determined Googler, so why be coy?

Out there in public over the past few years, I have told stories at Porchlight, and the Mill Valley Public Library's First Friday series, as well as done a reading for the Literary Death Match. For my own benefit as much as yours, I decided it was time to gather the evidence.

The first story I told for Porchlight was in December 2008. The theme was "All that Glitters is Not Gold." There is no evidence that this ever happened (with this small exception), which, considering that it was a story about an ex of mine, is just as well.

The second story I told was in March 2010. The theme was "Danger!" or "Beware!" or something like that.

It went like this:

video taken by Mystery Videographer, Evan Karp.