Monday, December 31, 2012

Wearing On Me

I like cold weather. Where I grew up, it was blisteringly hot more often than it was so much as brisk out, and so perhaps I see cool weather as a nice change of pace. Certainly that's how it felt when I left home for school. The frigid winters were one more way of getting out on my own. I also feel a certain connection to the older cities of the east, which is appealing to me. Another thing I like about cold weather is that it's jacket weather.

I'm a thin guy, so my frame is slight and my physique less than imposing. I'm not a weakling exactly, but I think it's just as well that some impressive clothes be draped over my figure in order to give me some sort of heft. There are a number of garments that I like getting out once they can be justified- and no sooner. I really hate affectations, and that's a bad one. It's nearly as bad as sunglasses indoors, I think.

Sunday, December 30, 2012


I don't get out to the movies that often (mostly watching videos at home as I do), but I enjoy myself as much as anyone. That's not to say that I don't have plenty of complaints, but then who doesn't? One of the things that bugs me is in that very rich vein of gripes, human behavior. People do irrational things. Emotion comes into play much of the time, and I think that may be why people will applaud at the conclusion of the film.

Attending live performances often enough (and sometimes performing them), I'll grant that applause is quite welcome, although the nature of my performances is such that laughter in advance of that is desirable. Those things matter to me because I'm there and can hear them. If anyone has ever applauded my efforts while watching a video, I was not aware and never became so. It must not occur to most people that the actors and filmmakers whose work they've just been enjoying aren't around.

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Leg Up

I've never really broken a bone. I guess that's already not true exactly, because I have some recollection of being told I had broken something, but I think it was some minor hairline fracture or something. I don't count that. It seems to me like it's got to be a compound fracture of an arm or a leg to really count. If not a compound, it's got to be the severest possible case of whatever it is that is less than that.

I really don't think I've had one of those. In grade school and before, a broken arm or leg was a real boost for one's social life. You showed up to school with a cast, and it was a whirlwind of activity from there. You had the whole story of how it happened to tell, and you could tell it again and again to the whole gamut of the school's student body and faculty. You also got everyone to sign it, and that was like getting your yearbook early.

Friday, December 28, 2012

Reading And Writing In The Air

Sometimes I feel a little old-fashioned. The consumer electronics that I am most enthused about these days are my VCR and my Nintendo 64, which ought to tell you plenty. Sometimes I would like to have more of the cutting edge stuff (although I have some), but one time when I am happy to go low-tech is on the plane. When other people are getting out their ebooks and other such items, I'm going another way.

If I'm reading, it's bound to be a paper book. I'm just not crazy about those ebooks. I don't know what it is exactly. I have to be able to rub the page with my thumb and forefinger. I have to see the fiber of the paper. I find it nice that there's no security hassle to it. I like that I can bring a totally disposable newspaper on board and toss it when I'm done. I like reading the inflight magazine sometimes, and the catalogs.

Thursday, December 27, 2012


I got some good eating done over the holidays. I manage to nourish myself tolerably well at all times, and so you won't hear me whining about starvation, but I don't eat such good food generally. I eat better when with my family during the holidays, and this Christmas just passed was no exception. Indeed, it was exceptional in a very positive way, if any. I shall delight in forcing an account of it upon you.

My visit commenced with fairly little food in the kitchen, and so there was a fair amount of scrounging in between burritos brought home by my saintly mother. I should say that the amount of food around at that time still far exceeds what I ever have at my apartment in Los Angeles. Typically I have six or seven cans of something, some cup o'noodle soups, and little else apart from mustard. It's economical.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012


At a Christmas party a bit ago, I made the acquaintance of a lady in a particular hat. Consultation of a picture from the party reminds me that it was either blue or blue-gray. Somehow, in the midst of a conversation relatively early in the party, the lady offered to let me wear it. I don't think that I made any request. I think it was a case of me making some compliment about the hat (for lack of anything else to say) and her offering it.

Being the lively spirit that I am, I agreed to try it on. That led to me wearing it for the duration of the evening. The aforementioned picture is of me wearing it. It was said during the party that I looked very good in it. I don't know how much I ought to trust that snap assessment, because we were all drinking. I do get complimented from time to time for hats that I wear, although I seldom wear hats anymore.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Today's The Big Day

Today being Christmas, I ought to say something about it. I know that I oughtn't assume that everyone's Christmas traditions are like mine. I know how the holiday has gone for me, and how I prefer for it to go. For me, it's a small, private occasion. It's shared with the closest of family, and it's confined to the home. When the lead up to the day is so loud and busy and takes you all over the place in search of gifts, why must the day itself follow suit?

Other people do things differently, and I grant that it is out of some necessity sometimes. People who work on Christmas and celebrate on a different day are not to be condemned, nor are those who cannot be with their family. There are, however, those who could have a properly traditional Christmas and who decide against it. I don't know why it is that that they do that, and while I'm going to devote the time to analyze it, I suppose I shouldn't bother.

Monday, December 24, 2012


It's funny how often the streets are wet in Los Angeles, considering how seldom it rains. Like my hometown of Phoenix, the city has a lot of people who thing that lawns of green grass are their birthright just because that's how things were back where they came from. That's just a guess born from personal frustration, you understand. Water is scarce everywhere now, and most of all places like LA and Phoenix.

Wet streets present their own issues. People adjust poorly to slick roads, or at least it seems so. I was taught in drivers' education to be very cautious when driving in the rain. One must lengthen the distance between cars and slow down. That knowledge is academic to me, as I don't drive, but most people could benefit from hearing it. They don't seem to have had such good lessons as I. It's almost enough to make you sorry for the rain happening in addition to all the cultivating of lawns.

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Heading Out

At this time of year, one's thoughts turn to the many facets of the Christmas holiday season. My mind conjures up various traditions, among them being reunion with family, the exchange of presents, the making and consumption of food and plenty more. Most of it is good, as one would expect given the popularity of the occasion, but plenty of it is bad. The bad is discussed fairly thoroughly without my help, and so I try not to pile on.

It's taxing to refrain from griping about such a thing as the unpleasantness of traveling. Even though I'm quite aware of its futility and that I have nothing original to add to that which has been said by those who are more enthusiastic about the matter, I want to vent my own feelings. I suppose that's reasonable, isn't it? One saxophone player isn't going to let his spit build up in the instrument just because all the others are letting their own out.

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Skating By

I saw something that caused me a bit of alarm the other day, although it passed. I was out trying to find Christmas presents, and I couldn't pass by the thrift store a block north of my apartment without stopping in to see what old VHS tapes they had. As it turned out, there were four tapes that I decided to buy. An old man was ahead of me in line, and he took his sweet time. When he started arguing with the clerk over a 25 cent discrepancy in the cost of some wrapping paper, I got mad.

That's not even the bit that made me alarmed. While trying to contain my frustration, I was looking around the store from where I was standing. There was this little girl in the store, and I would have given her no more than a glance and as much time's though except for what she was doing. She was roller-skating around the thrift store. I just could not help but worry for the store's wares knowing that she was about.

Friday, December 21, 2012

"Us" And "Them"

Something that's rather interesting about acting professionally is what types of people you are aligned with and what sorts you contrast with when placed in proximity. Whether one is on set or in auditions, it's common enough to be in large groups who share attributes with you. In this way, you can learn a little about yourself by seeing what company you are forced into. This is as instructional as what any friend could tell you.

I have hardly been acting for so very long, but I've been in a few auditions and seen what sorts of people are around me. They are not your conventionally handsome sorts. Some look more like me than others, but it all adds up to quite a picture, even when what you all share is a general inappropriateness for a certain job. That aside, I consider myself to be in an enviable position. There looks to be plenty of work for me.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Another Close Call

I love the prospect of genuine surprise when I sit down to watch a movie. You have to learn at least as much as the front of the box tells you in order to get interested, if not what is on the back. Even if you read every side the box has, you can be pleasantly (or unpleasantly) surprised. So it was when I watched my latest VHS tape, "The Danger Zone". Before you ask, the Kenny Loggins classic is not involved.

I had the idea that it was a post-apocalyptic scifi film, and as I love those movies, it was an easy call to snap this one up for a dollar. Of course, it was not any of the kind, as I would have realized if I had properly read the back of the box. What it was, instead, was a good old biker movie. Well, I can at least say it was an old biker movie while still being fair. It was not too good, for a number of reasons that would require considerable explaining.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Almost A Review

A while ago, as you'll recall, I bought up a bunch of old VHS movies. I've been trying to work down the backlog of unwatched films so that I won't feel bad about buying more when I inevitably buy more at the earliest opportunity. Luckily, I like watching them, and don't have to work too hard at finding the motivation. The last one was not the film promised, although that was perhaps a good thing. This most recent one was the film promised.

Entitled "Ballistic", this 1995 (incredibly enough) film tells the story of Jesse, a tough and competent (but naturally gorgeous) cop who pursues the villainous Braden while trying to clear her wrongly-imprisoned father. The film is peppered with a fair number of sexually explicit sequences, and so it's evident just what was the main driving force behind the film's production. That, however, would be to ignore the film's star power.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

New Dogs, No Trick

I have gotten into a bit of a habit with food. Once again, hot dogs are at the heart of it. Some time ago, I wrote about walking to the 24 hour convenience store near my old apartment. It was a worse neighborhood, and I was often a bit frightened to walk through the parking lot to the safety of the brightly-lit store. It was a walk I was always ready to make, the dangers aside. It was about as reliable as any other food option further away through more questionable territory.

Things are different now. I live in a nicer neighborhood, and while the walk to get hot dogs is longer, it is nicer. The people who sell them to me are nicer and more communicative as well. I don't go over there late at night as I did the other place, as the grocery store is my favored late night option. Instead of at night, I am most likely to hit the convenience store in the afternoon, after I have visited the library.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Clear Thinking

I like to think of myself as a good critical thinker, although that may not be entirely true. At the very least, I have a healthy skepticism about what I read and see. Plenty of other people, friends included, don't give off that impression too much. When a rebellion breaks out in some oppressed country, they're inclined to assume that the rebels are good because they hate someone bad. I wonder whether the rebels might not be worse.

This thing happened the other day that really annoyed me. It wasn't on the same level as one of those things, but it still left me upset. There was that horrific massacre a few days ago, which made me despair for the prospect of more peaceful days. I would settle for more clear-headed thinking than we seem to get. I don't know why we look to celebrities for statements to make sense of such a tragedy, but we do.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Epic Journey

I have been riding a bike for a while. Sometimes it's for leisure purposes, but it's very commonly just for the practical purpose of transportation. Trips of ten or fifteen minutes are common, sometimes stretching out to half an hour. That amounts to a few miles. My endurance is definitely growing, and I have been riding at length at higher and higher gears. These days, I am often at fourth gear, which feels the way second used to.

The other day, I had a pretty intensive day of riding. It was a busy day, and every place I had to go seemed to necessitate the bike instead of public transit or walking. First, I had to visit my agent's office. That seemed too close to mess around with buses, but actually it must have been something like eight or nine miles round trip. The way back was even lengthier, because I opted for the simpler route instead of the more complicated, shorter one.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Acting Up

I started writing about some bike riding I was doing the other day when I realized that a critical part of it was something that I hadn't really explained yet. This missive will really set you up to properly enjoy tomorrow's. To begin with, (and do forgive me if I'm mistaken and I have written elements of this before), a while back I got an agent to represent me in my acting endeavors. Needless to say, this was a delightful development that will hopefully mean great things.

I really was fortunate the way it worked out. Suffice it to say that the two most relevant factors for me were having a really unique look and going out to do things. They say that 90 percent of life is just showing up, and to an extent I have found that to be true. Some amount of actual ability is useful. In any event, it's been fun learning the ropes of being a professional. There remains a lot of mystery in it for me, but I've gotten my "acting legs".

Friday, December 14, 2012

Got Me Hot

There was this thing I saw that bugged me the other day. Now, I have a low threshold for annoyance. It doesn't take much with me, and that would be on a good day. On a bad day, things that don't bug me bug me anyway, but there are those things that are so firmly within the area of annoyance that it is irrelevant what sort of mood I am in. They put me in a bad mood anyway. Public transportation has a way of presenting me with such things.

What happened was that the other day, I was going someplace on the subway. It is typically the case that a crowd is exiting the station as I enter it, for I am getting on the very train they have exited. I enjoy the opportunity to ride the escalator down and watch the people going the other way. I also enjoy sweeping my gaze back and forth, taking in all of those who are there. This is out of curiosity and general situational awareness.

Thursday, December 13, 2012


Christmas season is firmly upon us, and no one is complaining about it now that we're past Thanksgiving and the ugliness of Black Friday. I never have and probably never will participate in such a thing as that, but I do certainly participate in gift exchanges. As the act of shopping is not something that I delight in, I don't much enjoy the procurement of gifts. A common refrain for me is "I hate this. I hate this. I hate this."

Of course I do it anyway, which is a testament to how much the intended recipients mean to me. It's actually an instructive experience. Ideally, the selection of a gift is very easy. If I know the person as well as I should, then it should be a very simple matter to settle on one of many interests and needs that I am familiar with in the specific person's case and then buy something that pertains to said interest or need. Sometimes I find I don't really know the person so well.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Swing, Swung

Something I was thinking about the other day, while casting about desperately for ideas, was the swings we used to have at grade school. I believe I came up with the idea while my leg was swinging around at my computer desk. In any event, I recalled the fantasies that reigned while we were on the swings. They often were not swings but some manner of fighter jets. Somehow we were enacting dogfights between ourselves (in the guise of Indiana Jones) and the Nazis, whose name a boyhood friend misspelled as "Not-Sees".

There was always the push to go higher on the swing. The mythical act of going beyond the top of the swingset and coming back around was ever on our minds, but I don't think anyone even dared to approach it. Something that you could do was to twist the seat of the swing so that it sat higher above the ground, and in that way you could get higher up and feel a certain illicit thrill. Really, I don't think anyone was ever hurt, but we were probably better off to have had the risk.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Bait And Switch

As I believe I wrote, I have been buying up VHS tapes. They are all of a charmingly low grade, or at least I expect they are. I can't exactly articulate my formula, but they are ideally from the golden age of the format, and I just feel it when I'm holding the right sort. I've gather a good number of them, and I'm trying to watch them so that it's a less cut and dried case of hoarding. So far I've watched a couple.

The most recent one was alleged by the box to be a thriller starring Pierce Brosnan and Ron Silver. That looked bad enough. The tape's label bore out the contention made by the box, and so I started watching. It felt wrong from the beginning. It was too poor of quality even for those stars as of the early 90s (which is when the film was supposed to have been made). I thought that maybe they had been less prominent than the box made out, which is common enough when an actor only becomes famous later.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Ride Away

My day yesterday was marked by disappointment in my leisure life. My favorite football team suffered its worst loss in team history, and as if that wasn't enough, they also contributed towards a likely defeat in my fantasy football league. This defeat would keep me out of our playoffs, and so you can see how I was an insufferable basket case. I badly needed something to distract me and lift my spirits. Luckily something came up.

Some friends had concocted a plan to see Christmas lights. What kind of person could remain in a foul mood in the face of that? Although it was against my nature to disengage from the poisonous atmosphere I had, I forced it on myself in the hopes that I would become someone who would be grateful that the angry me had done that. I remained upset at the outset of the experience, but that began to melt away.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Gives Me Pause

I have a compulsion. That's an amateur's opinion, because I'm no doctor and have no familiarity with or understanding of the American Medical Association's Diagnostic And Statistical Manual Of Mental Disorders, but let's not get bogged down in all of that. The point is that there's something I'm doing that I can't seem to control, and which I have little interest in controlling. For the time being I don't think it's doing any harm.

It's buying VHS tapes. Some time ago, I bought a VCR after not having one for some years. I had moved on to DVDs like everyone, but got to missing certain qualities that one can only get from the old tapes. I may have written about this in the past. Their faults are charming. I get nostalgic for the way they fail and fall short. They have poor resolution, tracking issues, no bonus features or ability to easily skip around the movie you're watching. I love it.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Dress Right

The other day, I had need of a Christmas sweater. It was, of course, one of those themed parties where everyone is supposed to have one. Like most of those parties, the theme was indifferently received by attendees, but for once I was one of those who actually made the effort. I would like to have come up with a gaudier, more ugly sweater, but technically the terms of the party did not require that it be so- only that it be a classy sweater. I did fairly well.

Of course, I did not try to find anything until the day of the party, and even then I was making minimal effort. I went to one nearby thrift store (chatting along the way with a friend who I bumped into) and found that they had already been stripped of all possible holiday garb. It turns out that such parties have become so fashionable that the sweaters are actually in demand. I didn't leave empty-handed, though. I bought eight VHS tapes, because I have a sort of a compulsion there.

Friday, December 7, 2012

Stop Me If You've Heard This

Recently I had the pleasure of visiting a friend in his 14th-floor apartment downtown. The interior of the place was nice and the building had some charming qualities to it, but clearly the most striking feature was its balcony. Stepping outside, one could see a considerable portion of the most appealing sights in LA's center. Bright lights and classic architecture were amply in evidence, as were people in nearby windows.

None of these things are present in my own balcony, or at least few. We are merely in a third-floor apartment, and while we avoid the worse fate of those below us by virtue of being on top, we still are not high enough to see much, not that there is much to be seen. There are no buildings within our direct line of sight to offer illicit views, and there are no buildings worthy of being looked at for their aesthetic merits.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Don't Bother

People say dumb things. I'm guilty of it myself all too often, so I'm really very credible on this subject. I like to think, though, that I and those I know are better than average about withholding stupid remarks. Others are often not so good on it. A prime example of that would be something someone known to a friend of mine. I don't know them myself, and so I decided that it was not for me to involve myself.

The Fresh & Easy grocery store chain is closing down. Started by the British chain Tesco, it was supposed to find a niche and, obviously, thrive. That hasn't panned out. I can only say that I went once and it was basically fine. I would not ever have relied on it heavily or primarily. In any event, while I'm more upset by the loss of jobs and tax revenue, others were genuinely fond of the chain, which I don't regard as the stupid thing.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Sleep Creep

Yesterday, I went and sleep in. I was displeased with myself, because I have done well over most of the past year at going to bed at a tolerable hour and rising at one as well. There have been necessary compromises sometimes in the area of an adequate number of hours sleeping, but I have at least managed to get up at 9 in the morning most days. I acknowledge that this is not early to people with real jobs, but for me it is.

Sleep is an interesting subject. There is still plenty that we don't know, I gather. We know some, and I know some of what we know. I've read someplace that an alarm invariably cuts you off from the amount of sleep you should be getting- that when you wake up naturally is when you should have gotten up. You can force yourself into more sleep if you are determined, but where you drift into consciousness of your own accord is the right time.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

I, A Student

Last night, I had myself an improv performance. They are becoming more frequent, so while they remain notable experiences, they are becoming less severe as triggers of anxiety. Sometimes circumstances make them a little more or less so. In this case, I was in a somewhat different situation than I usually would be, as this was a different class in a different place. The people and the culture were a bit different.

A friend had ensnared me in the class he was teaching, and I decided it would be a very worthwhile thing do to, because even what I think I'm good at in improv is probably not beyond improvement. So it was that my late Saturday afternoons were taken up by this class and that I never caught the second half of a Florida Gators football game. Even preoccupied by their journey this season, I made some progress in class.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Voice A Choice

Something I haven't given any thought to in quite some time is cereal. That used to be the standard breakfast for me as a boy, and I have gotten away from it since college. I suppose that it could be seen as not a very mature thing to eat, at least if one is eating certain brands. I never really did have a lot of the bad, sugary kids' cereals anyway. At worst, I was in the midrange of cereals that played to kids but at least had a semblance of nutrition.

As I said, these days I don't eat cereal. I mainly eat hash browns, and occasionally will do something like Pop Tarts. I've done oatmeal, but that's not for me and probably never will be. Some time ago, I was making pancakes a bit, but the effort involved is a deterrent. The same is true of most egg-based breakfasts, including the hard boiled eggs that I was doing a while ago. For now, it's just those hash browns.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

The Jerk In Life

A friend invited me to see what was described as "ninja theatre" at the foremost venue in my neighborhood. I had long hoped to see something in that theatre, and the aforementioned sounded very promising. It was just as described, and there was very little to complain about from either the material or the edifice. It was very well worth the act of attending an improv class in a relatively dressy outfit, I'd say.

It was not quite perfect, regrettably. There was a rather boarish guy seated behind us in the theatre, and he just would not let up. Prior to the "ninja theatre", there was another performance by a sort of vocal specialist. He did a lot of beat-boxing and juggling, among other things. He was pretty good, but he labored under the hindrance of this guy's persistent, unwelcome verbal contributions. It diminished things a bit.

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Bad And Getting Bad

There's been rain in Los Angeles over the last few days. It hasn't been too severe by even local standards, and presumably looked milder still to those from naturally rainier locales. It rains seldom here, but commonly rains hard for a week straight when it does. This wasn't one of those, although maybe it could strengthen into one. That's not the point, anyway. The point is more about our reaction to it.

What you usually start hearing about before long is how everybody is freaking out on the roads. I guess that's true. I'm not heavily invested in driving activities, as I don't myself drive. Still, I have the advantage of being strictly an observer and not a combatant in the wars that are driving and parking anywhere, let alone here. Do people really come unglued driving in the rain? I guess that's fair to say, to a point.

Friday, November 30, 2012

Not This Time

Over the last few days, there's been a big fuss over the latest big lottery jackpot. It amounted to something like half a billion dollars, if I understand correctly. That's a lot of money, and so it's only natural that some hysteria would develop. I didn't buy a ticket, but then I couldn't have, as California does not have Powerball. I don't think I would have bought a ticket anyway, as it wasn't really on my radar, but I do typically buy one when it gets so big.

Two winners did emerge from the latest drawing, and I gather that one was some family in Maryland. the other is somebody in Arizona, my home state. I don't think that they have been named yet as of this writing, but that hasn't stopped people from claiming to be the winner. That brings me to my point. There's this guy on Facebook who purports to have the winning ticket. He further says that he will give a million dollars to a randomly selected person who shares the photo of him with the ticket.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

A Regrettable Trend

There's this meme that was going around a couple days ago. A "meme", if I understand it right, is simply some kind of joke or idea that sparks a trend online. I never have cared for them myself, maybe because I've never been trendy. In any case, this one revolved around maintaining one's privacy on Facebook. Supposedly, if one posted a certain message filled with legal-sounding jargon, one's postings were protected from theft by Facebook itself or anyone else.

People can be dumb. Even the smart ones can act dumb at times, and so lots of people went and posted the message like it was going to do something. Of course, it wasn't and couldn't, so it was like having a magic amulet or something, except those at least are a nice piece of jewelry to wear. People really can be dumb. I just assumed it couldn't do anything, and so I didn't bother to go to the trouble of researching it.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

My Way

I talk a lot sometimes, and sometimes I talk fairly little. The only way I can account for it is that sometimes I am very comfortable with the people, the place and the situation. Sometimes that is not the  case, and I clam up. Mostly I think that these are correct judgments that I make subconsciously or consciously, and I do tolerably well in social situations as far as that goes. Other people might beg to differ.

Even I'll concede that sometimes it goes awry, and I talk when I shouldn't. There's some kind of crossed wire so that I get comfortable when I shouldn't. I'll feel a green light where there's just red. I should recognize that zinger after zinger is being met with the iciest of cold receptions, but I just don't. There are plenty of examples, and the day I made malpractice jokes while a doctor sewed stitches in my thumb is just one.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Looking On, Rather Wan

When it rains, it pours. After feeling like I had not been blessed with any remarkable public incidents to report on for some time, I had a couple in the space of a few hours. On this past Sunday, I had witnessed a seemingly drunken man and woman debating issues of dating and romance on a San Diego Amtrak train platform. Little did I guess then that there would be more to digest by the time I laid my head down to rest.

That train ride was more or less uneventful, but the same could not be said for the subway ride which took me across Los Angeles after the other train got me to town. Really, the subway train was mostly placid, but that stopped shortly before it reached the end of the line. I was listening to a comedy podcast, but raised voices started getting loud enough to pierce through that, and soon enough I had to take notice.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Not Douglas Against Lincoln, I'm Thinkin'

It had been some time since the last time I overheard something decent.  Perhaps I am at fault for getting the idea that the universe owed me really interesting incidents which I could take in and spin into some form of entertainment. Those who know me have the idea that my encounters with them could become material in one of my creative endeavors or another, but really it's strangers who ought to worry.

Anyway, the dry spell is over. There I was, waiting around in San Diego for a train. The station was a smaller one, and rather confusingly laid out. I was there very early, but people started to appear as the train's arrival drew closer. Many were curious about whether it was the right track for the train they wanted. I was as unsure as them. One couple did not ask anything of the kind. They were engaged in something else between themselves.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

A Talk On Not Talking

With the election done with, we ought to be able to enjoy a subsidence in political debate. The reality is that it will not be much of one, and may not last for long. However long we do manage to talk less about politics, we will probably not accomplish any less with it. We just don't seem to get anywhere in talking about politics. For my part, I try to avoid it, but all too often find myself ensnared in the futility anyway.

Of course I don't bring politics up, which is enough some of the time. If it does come up, I try to find some sort of common ground rather than trying to impose my point of view. I'm just not going to have my way. I've never been good at persuading people of something. What I can do all right is find some figment of something I can agree on so that the conversation is a little less unpleasant so long as it goes on.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Crowds Allowed

Something that I do not seek out is a crowd. I can put up with it. You can't attend a ballgame without crowds, barring an exceptionally unpopular team. I can deal with crowds in such a situation, and some others. One situation where I can't put up with it is any kind of shopping scenario. Malls are not my favorite thing. I have not spent much time in one in years. There have been a couple incidents where someone got me in one. They were not enjoyable.

A week or so ago, I inquired of my father whether he'd be interested in seeing the new Bond film. I thought I'd have to cajole him, but he was already planning on a group outing for it. All the time leading up to the day I eagerly anticipated. It came, and I found that the plan was to see it at a bustling mall on the day after Thanksgiving. That gave me pause, as you can well imagine. Why could we not see the film at a regular theater?

Friday, November 23, 2012

Margin For Error

In recent years, I have begun to straight up a little bit. I have placed more importance on things like getting up at a decent hour, keeping things tidy and all the rest. I'm hardly perfect at any of those things, or even close to it. I do have a system that basically holds together and at least gives me the veneer of being put together. I hope to be solid all the way through someday, but what I have is enough for now.

It's mostly enough. It's fragile, though. I never have felt that I adapted well to a complication or an alteration in things. It was not unusual when I was driving for a minor road closure in an area I knew well to make me hopelessly lost. Disruptions in areas like doing the laundry or cooking a meal are similarly fatal. Imagine my surprise a few years ago when a personality test claimed I was good at adaptability.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Food And Fondness

Today being Thanksgiving, it seemed as if it would be novel if I addressed the occasion rather than writing about something else as I usually do in such cases. There's a lot of ground to cover for a holiday that is now almost entirely overlooked in favor of the more commercial Christmas. That's enough to be the subject of a post all by itself, but who wants to get angry on a day with so much food? It's bad for the digestion.

The food really does warrant a comment. For our family, Thanksgiving kicks off with a lot of finger foods. We commonly have cheese and crackers, olives and various libations. These carry us through the first football games, but one must be careful not to eat too much of them. It is beyond an unpleasantness to get full early in the early going of dinner. One must not eat too little either, though. I think fasting does little good if one hopes to eat the maximum.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Look Of A Man

I have come home to Arizona for Thanksgiving, and what is a person's first experience on a trip anyplace but its airport? I've always liked Sky Harbor in Phoenix, outside of the time when I had to get home from it via public transportation. Any airport is a fine opportunity for people watching, partly because there are such multitudes there and partly because they are invariably pushed to extreme levels of distress, which is inherently dramatic.

Waiting to be picked up out front, I observed at length a very interesting minor drama whose players were several drivers kept from pulling away from the curb by each other. Everybody ought to see the interest in such a spectacle, but I know not everybody does. I've described such things in the past as compellingly as it is in my power to, so there's no need to go into it any further than I already have. Luckily, there were other things worth mentioning.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

In Cold Blood, In Warm Water

Doing the laundry is something I'm getting better at. I think I went whole semesters in college doing the laundry no more than a couple times, but I seldom let it slide so long that I have to start wearing dirty clothes. There are pitfalls for me, and getting stains out of things is one. The whole system I have  for washing three loads and reducing it to two dryers is tough to manage sometimes, and having enough quarters is a constant problem.

Another issue is in the behavior of other people using the machines. I rush to get my things out the machines and either transferred over or upstairs to fold. I may be the only person who places importance on that timeliness. I hate to inconvenience someone by leaving my stuff in a machine they need, and so I don't do it. I'm downstairs within a minute or two of the cycle ending, because I keep track.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Hurt By Those We Love

I've been in Los Angeles for something in the neighborhood of five years. It's actually probably four and a half, as I came here in the spring of 2007. I long ago started to feel at home here, and I recall that the first time it seemed so was when I was walking down Hollywood Boulevard to reach a job interview and found myself infuriated by the tourists clogging the sidewalk. That's something that has only become more pronounced with time.

Not only have I come to feel happier and more at home here, I have managed to shed many of my associations with my home town and state. Being that I'm from Phoenix, Arizona, you will probably see that it was not difficult, but it's not all bad stuff being left behind. Attending around two hundred Dodgers games in three years led me to lose my deep affection for the Diamondbacks, which is hopefully understandable.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Rest And Relaxation

As I write this, I'm concluding a fairly full day. It's true that I didn't have anything going on in the morning, nor could I have. You see, the previous day had been rather full as well, and concluded with a strenuous lesson in pole dancing. As this was the legitimate variety, it was a tremendous workout, and left me red-faced, gasping for breath and all bruised up. As a consequence, I left the following morning open for recuperation. It proved inadequate.

After trying to rest, I had little choice but to begin my day. My first major event was an improv class. Any attempt to prevent that from being physical would have been futile, but I did have the good sense not to ride my bicycle. I did not like my chances of being able to lift it over my head, as is commonly necessary when combining it with the subway. It also did not help matters that it was raining on this day.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Groceries, Mostly

It's rather unsettling to go into a different grocery store from the one you are used to patronizing. I find this to be true anyway. Obviously a store from another chain is going to be different in a variety of ways, but it's easy to adjust to that. You're very ready for the differences, and maybe even value them some. One chain will be strong in the bread area, and another may have overall better prices on things, but you need both.

Of course it's another matter when two locations of the same chain are different. Now, I like the differences I see in clientele. There has to be some advantage to doing your shopping in a more fashionable area of town once in a while, or even in a lesser area. It's just another change of pace in a life that can easily become dull- every once in a while, why not trade the people who live and buy food near you for those who do so elsewhere?

Friday, November 16, 2012

Game On

I played video games from an early age. I don't suppose I was ever very good, as I never beat very many games outside of those in the sports genre. I enjoyed the social aspect of it, though. It was hard to make friends if you did not have interests like the Ninja Turtles and video games, and so I got into it, although socializing was a struggle anyway. As you'll recall, I recently have begun again with games after locating my Nintendo 64.

Something that was a shared experience with the cartridge-based systems such as the original Nintendo and the Sega Genesis (both of which I had) was that it could be tricky getting the games going. This was due to the contact points on the cartridge,which could wear out. Of course, I didn't know this then. I just knew that you had to plug it in, sigh when it wouldn't work,turn off the console yank it out, blow on the open end, and jam it back in to see if it would work this time.

Thursday, November 15, 2012


The other day, a friend of mine inquired of me whether I wanted to be in a speculative commercial, and I of course accepted. This was for the big Doritos contest wherein the winner has their commercial played during the Super Bowl and wins a big cash prize. For Doritos the benefits are obvious, but let's not focus on that. The experience and its aftermath are enough for me to write about at length without making things unpleasant.

I knew very little about what the commercial was to be except that it was to take place in an office. I came to find that it was being shot very far away, and the plot of it became apparent to me after arriving. Suffice it to say that the nature of the commercial played much to my strengths, and that while I was far from the focus of it, there was plenty for me to do. Of course, I was granted the task of dancing on camera.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

A Couple Of Fools

Some people really drive me crazy. I get into these dark moods where I loathe everyone in the world and marvel that anyone ever got anywhere ever considering how dumb and contemptible they all are. These moods are as deep as can be, and it's generally best if I ride them out alone. If I'm among people or trying to do something, it can't help but come out badly. I just can't keep it to myself very easily at all.

There are these people who will come out with some wisdom, and everyone but me will ooh and ah at it like it's some really brilliant philosophy that they've never heard before. The person who says it will sound like they just came up with it and no one ever could have conceived of it before. It sounds to me like some superficial platitude that might have been spouted by some empty-headed- college student who just discovered the same writers that everybody ever has had to read.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Homing In

I have a particular look. I've got all this curly blonde hair, I've got this mustache, and these lines on my face. I'm skinny as a rail, and while I smile when it's called for, it seems to me that I glower by default. These are all self-assessments, of course. I'm glad to have a distinctive appearance, as I consider it a real plus professionally. I'm eager for any clues as to just how it may be defined and what may heighten it.

The other day, I was doing a scene for my roommate's short film, as I believe I've said. I was wearing the undershirt I wrote of previously, along with some jeans. I had a face-full of real uglifying makeup. It all make for quite a picture, and it elicited smiles and compliments from everyone who saw it. Nobody thought that I looked handsome of course, but the total effect was a look that really worked for me.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Kiss And Makeup, In That Order

It's a funny thing to wear makeup. For a man it's funny in any case, I think (although that's a less and less politically-correct viewpoint). For anyone it's a funny thing to do when it's the sort of makeup that you wear for performing on stage or onscreen. There's makeup to make you look as you should without makeup, for God's sake. Nixon eschewed it, and partly due to that lost the 1960 election. Kennedy had no problems with it.

I've had to wear makeup a handful of times in performance, and I expect that to become more common. It has so far been that sort of muted makeup,mostly. Once I requested unnecessary makeup from a makeup artist with nothing to do. I had to take the subway home from that shoot, and I worried that I might arouse unwanted attention of some kind, but it takes a lot to move the needle with people around here.

Sunday, November 11, 2012


I never in my life had possessed undershirts. Now, this is the sort of really mundane thing that I find rather interesting but can easily imagine that I am alone on. Maybe I'm not, but I sure wouldn't bet on it. In any case, I never had one, but suddenly found the other day that I needed one. I was to appear in a friend's short film, and you commonly provide much or all of your wardrobe. I was supposed to supply my own undershirt.

I left it not to the eleventh hour, but at least to the tenth. The day before the shoot, I went off to the nearest dollar store. I knew they carried undershirts, and I figured that there couldn't be much difference between a high-end undershirt and a cut-rate one. Perhaps there is no high-end one. I found them to be priced 6.99 for three, and I snapped up a package of small's. I figured that was a safe pick for my frame.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

The Drive To Succeed

Something that used to happen a fair amount, but which doesn't happen too much anymore, is that I would have to sneak away from gatherings of friends. It would get to where it was time to leave, and the rest would be driving. I would have walked there or taken public transportation, and I was self-conscious about it. I had no desire to be known as the guy who always needed a ride because he couldn't drive himself.

When people would leave, I would just try to confidently walk away in hopes that no one would notice me go and not stop at a car. It worked out that way often enough, but I would sometimes be embarrassed that it didn't. I'd accept a ride at that point, but had the notion that I wished the knowledge contained. Eventually everyone knew that I didn't have a car, but it seemed at that point to be a less stigmatized thing.

Friday, November 9, 2012

A Day, If You're Interested

As I write this, I am on the tail end of a reasonably eventful day. To begin with, I had my first Toastmasters meeting following my victory in a humorous speech contest. It's a lovely feeling to be the recipient of a lot of love and good will, and cake and gifts will do that for you. I was very proud of myself after the meeting for successfully transporting a piece of said cake on the back of my bicycle without any mishap in the process.

In the evening, there was an improv performance. It went reasonably well, and I credit myself with some of the good as well as the bad. I think that portraying a bartender working at a museum bar is enough to wash away plenty of sins. I'll admit that eating a giant bacon cheeseburger shortly before the performance may not have been my wisest decision, but it ultimately seemed to do no harm. It even may have helped by slowing down my thought process (and probably my heart functions).

Thursday, November 8, 2012

More Food Talk

I decided that I had to shake things up with my food the other day. I had been eating ravioli and spaghetti-o's for dinner, cup o'noodle soup for lunch and all too often just coffee for breakfast. Hash browns were there in the morning if anything. In any event, my eating habits had become broken along with my nascent good sleeping habits, so it was time for a chance. I resolved to get a little healthier and more substantial.

I had been eating cold cut sandwiches, and still had my expensive mustard. I went back to that, thus taking care of lunch. I have lately been drinking more expensive coffee than the bottom shelf store brand that comes in a giant can, and I kept that going, as well as the hash browns. That's not such a horrible breakfast, although I confess that it could be worlds better. I just have given up on making myself eat oatmeal regularly.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

The Last Night Before The Next

The election and the campaign leading up to it are finally over, thank God. Somehow there will be no respite, I'm sure. I got through the night watching partly at home and partly at a Mexican restaurant which erupted in cheers at the news that the president had obtained the required 270 electoral votes to secure re-election. That was a pleasant enough way to endure what had been a rather anxious experience.

I had read of election viewing parties, but the idea did not appeal to me. My politics were an open book when I was in college, but I play it closer to the vest every time around. It's not so much that I fear persecution exactly. I don't relish political discussions even among those with whom I agree, and this is so for a number of reason. There are more pleasant things to talk about, and more constructive things as well.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Playing Games

The last time I was back home, I was advised that I ought to go through those possessions of mine that remained in my parents' house. The ordeal of it did not appeal to me, but it proved to be a worthwhile experience. There were many memories which came back to the surface as I extracted box after box from the crowded spare room where it all has been since I moved away. These were all the items deemed non-essential at that time.

I rather regret not grabbing some things a long time ago. One of them was my beloved Nintendo 64. I went as far with video games as to buy the Xbox 360, but it got to the point of collecting dust, and I sold it several years ago. The 64 I bought on the day it was first sold. I lined up, got my number and played it enthusiastically until it became obsolete. I kept it even after that. I'm pleased that it survived to this point.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Enviable Problem

Not for the first time, I find myself struggling with how to accept praise. I know how obnoxious that sounds, and I don't mean it as some indirect form of bragging. Trumpeting my own accomplishments is as unpleasant to me as I imagine it sounds to others. I don't think I have any more than my own fair share anyway. Other people just seem to process it all better than I do. I'm getting better though, or I think I am.

When someone complements me on something, the first impulse I have is to correct them- to point out whatever mitigating factors make their compliment less valid or entirely invalid. They don't like that, of course. It goes beyond modesty and really veers into the territory of insult, calling into question as you are their judgement. I've gotten to where whatever someone says that is earnestly meant as praise, I say thank you, adding nothing more to it than credit to others where it is due. That seems to go over all right.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

No More

The Halloween holiday season is, as I have made clear enough over the last week or so, a time of anxiety over having to come up with costumes. That alone is hard enough, let alone all the other times when some people are inclined to come up with a costume and a reason to wear it. It used to be, I think that they had to keep such things to themselves once. I do believe in people getting to live out their lives in the manner that they choose so long as it affects no one else adversely, but there's a limit.

Anyway, what I'm getting at is that there was a party the other day where people were asked to dress in costume as a tribute to the birthday boy. I certainly can respect that, as I would myself be honored if anyone decided to do that for me. It hasn't happened yet, but it easily could one day. It's regrettable though that this birthday should fall just when I am in the throes of costume-concocting and wearing fatigue.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Victory Formation

As I write this, I'm coming down from a tremendous high. I should set the stage. I've been in a humorous speech contest for the Toastmasters organization for the last few months. It began with the contest of my own club, progressing to larger and larger contests encompassing more clubs. I had been used to winning in my own club and being defeated in the next round or the round after that. It was to be different this time.

My speech, which was meant to satirize the predatory efforts of those in the entertainment industry to purport to have it in their power to make stars of anyone who takes their seminar, won in my club, and then in the area contest. It subsequently won in the division contest, bringing me to the point of being one more victory away from going as far as you can go with a humorous speech. That would be the district level.

Friday, November 2, 2012

Write This Down

I've committed myself to quite a month, and yesterday amounts to the least of it. Yesterday I had my Toastmasters meeting in the afternoon and my improv class in the evening- my main improv class, I should say. There is also the one I have on Saturdays presently, and there is all the writing I do. I write this, I write tweets, and I write sketch comedy. I hope to find a profitable outlet for all that, needless to say.

There is one more writing endeavor that I must find a practical purpose for now. In September, I committed to writing thirty sketches in thirty days, and I did it. It was hard, and not everything I wrote was great. Some was lousy, but much of it was at least worthy of further effort- not that I have made further effort, because I have hardly written a thing alone those lines in the last month. I have one more thing to keep me from that now.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

The Last?

I've described a number of costumes that I've worn so far this Halloween season, and you can be excused for getting the idea that I have been consumed entirely by this solitary matter. As it happens, I have devoted no more than forty minutes to the bunch of them in terms of conception. I think about them after the fact far more than I do in anticipation of what I want to do. That's a regrettable habit with me.

I have given some thought to the pitfalls of costumes. You always start with some uncompromising vision, and if you're more motivated than I am, you actually carry it out. Let's suppose, for example, that you want nothing more than to be the female M & M from the commercials, and you procure the whole thing. It starts out great, with you admiring yourself in the mirror before heading out trick or treating or partying (depending on your age).

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

The Next Evolution

I've described each of the Halloween costumes I've worn so far this year. There have been two: the 80's yacht-owning rich guy outfit which I had recycled was the first. the second was that tentative, hapless step into cross-dressing, Morticia Addams. Neither of those seemed up to the task of being run out there again, and there was yet another party to be prepared for. Leading up to the party, I gave the matter little thought.

Somehow I kept thinking that something would work out for me- that I would just come up with something. Even an hour before I was to leave, I had taken no practical steps towards effecting a solution. I just figured I would work something out, and so it came to pass that I started looking into what to do with around forty minutes before I meant to head out for the party. The party was set to start at 8pm, and I was for once planning on arriving only when the party had gotten going for real: 9pm.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012


Yesterday I put on a costume for about the third time so far in the Halloween season, and the big day is yet ahead of us. The first two times, I recycled a costume from months ago that was all right at the time but becomes less acceptable with every wearing. I resolved to do better, and so I went with something else when a costume was called for again at a friend's pole dancing performance. It worked passably well.

I had available to me a costume which identified itself as "Morticia Addams". It contained the gown only, which was regrettable. I could have used the hair, to say nothing of proper shoes. I had little time to try and augment it with any accessories. Luckily, it was not too bad on its own, although it proved to be rather difficult to operate in. I worried over the tendrils hanging down from the fishnet sleeves, as they tended to get caught on things. I managed.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Outdoors, Outstanding?

I was able to do my one man show again the other day. If you have not heard or read anything about it from me, I should explain briefly. Some time ago, I was in a one person show workshop, and developed a piece that parodies the life of Mark Twain as well as the existing one man show based on him by Hal Holbrook, who is incredibly of no relation. Since then, I've had the opportunity to do it a few times.

So far, it's been successful with each staging. This most recent time would have to be the least successful, but by rights I can claim only partial responsibility. The thing is that the setting was a difficult one. There was a carnival at church, and a variety of booths were there for amusement purposes. People were just meandering around, and there was no real dedicated seating area for the small main stage where my performance took place.

Sunday, October 28, 2012


You do crazy things for people you care about. It's invariably birthdays for which I do things that I have no desire to do or which I haven't done in a very long time. It wasn't so long ago that I found myself playing mini-golf again for the first time since achieving puberty, and playing games in an arcade for the first time in nearly as long. These were for birthdays, one of which also entailed the birth of a baby, I think.

Well, a more recent birthday had me doing something that held little appeal for me. As I say though, you do these things when you care about someone. A good friend was having a birthday, as seems to happen all too often, and it was his wish that we play laser tag. I would rather have been to the sushi restaurant that preceded this event, but as it worked out I couldn't make it. I ate at home and made my way to the laser tag venue.

Saturday, October 27, 2012


There we were, my friend and I, venturing out to an improv show in Halloween costumes. It was to be a free show for those so dressed, and furthermore a "jam" (a free play performance of sorts) was to be open only to those so dressed. Now, I had not meant to go to to the show, but I changed my mind at the last minute. Had I resolved to go earlier, I would have ridden with my roommate in his car. As it was, I took the subway.

It's an interesting experience to ride the subway in a costume like that. Most people will pay it no attention. A lot of crazy things are to be seen there, and odd outfits barely register at all for them. You get rather jaded, as I can attest. Still, there are those who do comment on costumes, on the street as well as on the subway. Each of us, I ought to say, drew some remarks, although they were slightly different.

Friday, October 26, 2012

I'm Being Careful

Something that I've neglected to mention for some time is the bicycle I bought a little while back. A good friend had two, and made me a reasonable offer for the second. It's been a real blessing in supplementing public transportation, which is spotty for certain times and places. Besides that, it's really an incredible feeling to zip through the night on a quiet street and feel the wind through your hair (taking all possible safety precautions, of course).

It sometimes accompanies me on the train, where it is a bit cumbersome, but welcome anyway. I have yet to try putting in in the rack at the front of a bus. So far, the most lengthy, involved trips have been out to the beach. I highly recommend riding along through the freakiest stretches of Venice Beach. There is a rather striking contrast between the beauty of the beach and the earthy disreputability of the area's denizens.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

A Word To Regret

The library is nearly as fruitful a well of material on which to draw on for this blog as the buses and trains of this city. Mostly the incidents that happen in the library are either pleasant or harmless, but they certainly aren't always in the vein of a snack vendor getting shooed outside. They are something rather unpleasant, and the other day there was something which I found to be rather unsettling. I'm not sure what happened.

I was on the way to watch movies with some friends. On the way, I had to drop off dvds at the library. I resolved to go inside and see if there was anything I'd like to check out this time around, and sure enough I located a movie. While I was looking, I noticed a rather attractive woman also scanning the shelves. I didn't let my gaze linger. I didn't have the time in any case, but who wants to come off like a creep?

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

I Stand Alone On Standup

The other night, I was at a comedy show. Specifically, this was a regular standup comedy show which regularly features a mix of promising unknowns and big names. There's appeal with each of those. The  up and comers are putting their best foot forward in hopes of further climbing the ladder. The established stars are worth watching even if they're trying unproven material, which is a necessary step in the process before you see them on television.

On this particular night, all the unknowns were great. I should say that I use that term loosely, as several would be well known to those well-versed in the local comedy scene, but would in fact be unfamiliar to most. In any case, they were great. The host was all right too, but I was not sorry when he was done with his own material. He also has yet to master the subtle art of hosting, which I can confirm is challenging.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012


Today I take refuge in that pitiful subject, the weather. Don't think that I find any pleasure in it. In any case, I have formed an opinion of the weather we've had lately here in Los Angeles, but am reluctant to share it. I'm afraid that I may be very wrong, although under ordinary circumstances it would be crazy to entertain the very idea. These are not ordinary circumstances though, the modern climate being what it is.

You see, it seems to me that we may finally have taken a permanent turn for cooler weather- that we have put the heat of summer behind us. That would seem like a reasonable opinion in the waning days of October, except that we've had a number of false alarms. Several times have we endured fresh heat waves after an interval of cruelly cool weather. These bouts of pleasantness have each lasted enough to give us new hope.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Minor Developments

The ongoing struggle to make something of my room goes on. You'll recall that I recently acquired a bookcase to contain the tomes that had once languished in boxes and other undesirable situations. It is serving well so far, though I had initially feared that it might topple with anything but the most efficient distribution of book weight. Still problematic is my effort to beautify it with little trinkets and toys, as they get in the way of the books.

That's the general theme. The room becomes more and more functional, if not more aesthetically pleasing. The only way it's become prettier is that there isn't junk and trash all over. There is still nothing on the walls to speak of, outside of furniture and items on top of furniture. Those things alone obscure any of the standard white paint that comes with any apartment. I ought to do something about that.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Two Timing

The other night, I was at a pair of parties. Each had some merit to it, but neither so much as to render the other entirely unappealing. Together they seem worth some report, although that sort of social account is one I don't do much now that such parties are relatively common for me. In any case, the first one that I committed to was conceived by my roommate, and its central purpose was to make jack-o-lanterns.

I was looking forward to making jack-o-lanterns, and readily committed to the party. That seemed reasonable, as I didn't imagine getting invited to another and this one was being held in my own home. I could hardly help but attend, I thought. This was before discussions with another acquaintance developed into an invitation to attend her birthday dinner. The idea held considerable appeal.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

First Time Out

We are now firmly in the midst of the Halloween season. I take no notice of when the stores start decorating and stocking things, because that's a generally misleading indicator, but there are now legitimate signs that it's upon us. When you read this, I will have attended the first costume party of the season, and I must confess that it has caught me off guard, as it was initially billed as a mere birthday dinner. I decided to use a costume that was already together from something else.

As a child, dressing up for Halloween is very important, and then you get too old for it. I forget just what grade that happened in, but I remember the experience of doing it for one year too many. I think everyone does that, and it's just as likely that no one makes the mistake of doing it two years too many. I recall my "costume" was nothing more than my Charles Barkley Suns jersey, and no attempt to appear anything like Sir Charles. That's really probably for the best.

Friday, October 19, 2012

Might I Have Some?

I like ice cream. Who doesn't? Well, I suppose someone must not. In this fractured, polarized world, there must even be those who don't like ice cream. Possibly they even have valid reasons. It seems to me that there are ice creams to accommodate particular diets and conditions, including (but not limited to) varieties meant to be light on calories or on sugar. Even so, there are bound to be those who can't have it, or who can't afford it. Maybe those are the ones who could make themselves not like it.

I like ice cream, but it's been a really long time since I had much. When I was younger, it was a regular thing. We about always had ice cream in the house, ranging from half-gallons of fairly good quality ice cream to giant drums of cheaper stuff, and little single serving cups of the same. I liked chocolate chip of course, and coffee ice cream. I later learned to love pralines and cream, among others.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Holding The Line

You'll recall that I have been writing about my dwindling weight in recent weeks. I have been in the range of 134 to 145 pounds, and mostly on the low end of that. It's been enough to be alarmed, and yet I have done little about it except note the fluctuations and think about it. That mental energy could even have burned some calories. In any case, all I'm getting at is that keeping weight, let alone gaining it, has seemed a struggle for me through this time.

I finally have been doing something about it. Specifically, I've been eating more. It's a peculiar thing I suppose, that eating more could be a constructive remedy, given that eating less and exercising are the usual ways that things go for people, in this country anyway. Well, eating more is the way for me- I never have been one to go along with others. Why should I not buck the trends of eating less as well as needing to eat less?

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

The Best?

In a political campaign, we are subjected to a lot of speeches and debates from candidates- perhaps slightly more than during a non-election year. It would seem reasonable to assume that candidates for elective office would be among the more accomplished speakers and communicators. Even if you thought that was not automatically true, particularly with your lower offices such as the state legislature, you would probably think it was true for presidential candidates, who have either won a whole string of elections or succeeded in some other arena where speaking is key.

It's not true, lamentably. This aggravates me tremendously. I have been in Toastmasters for several years now, and while I don't claim to be the champion speaker of the world, I will say I have improved a good amount, and I see that in speakers around me as well. People start out terrified to speak, and they not only lose that fear, they become competent and even excellent given time and dedication. Even in their first tentative steps, however, new members of Toastmasters are way ahead of our president and his rival in some respects.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Sorely Needed

The livability of my bedroom takes another lurching leap forward with the introduction of a bookcase. It's not new by any means. It's rather worn, and comes to me free of charge from friends who want for space more than furniture. In any case, I'm glad to have it. Previously, I had been storing my books in a variety of at best unconventional ways, and now I have them accessible and arranged in an aesthetically pleasing way for the first time in years.

Just before this, I had the books I meant to read piled up on an end table. You may recall, if I remember my own writing correctly, that I was very pleased with that development. This is because prior to that, all my books were boxed up and in the closet. The closet being as it is, they may as well have been on the moon for how quickly I could get to one that I wanted. It's not as if I had an inventory to consult in advance, either. It was less than ideal.

Monday, October 15, 2012

A Chase

Yesterday I spoke of an apparently rather lusty gentleman who had engaged me in conversation while on the subway the other day. Naturally, that was not the only thing that happened on that train. These things frequently bunch up on you, so much the better for startling and throwing off kilter your mindset. Well, the next thing that happened was not so easy to understand, as I was not pressed into talking and was not about to initiate it.

There was this young guy who I saw run down onto the platform at one of the stations along the way home. He was rather reckless, and out of breath. I wondered just what he might be up to. In my mind was the picture of a marathon runner looking for a shortcut, only this was late at night on a non-marathon day, and this kid was no distance runner. He had a USC lanyard, I noticed. I surmised that he might be a college student.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Lothario, Evidently

You see funny things on the train, and if I've gone with this general conceit before plenty of times, it's because there's always something fresh and new. Today and tomorrow you will read of noteworthy incidents that transpired over the weekend. To begin with, I had a rather eventful Saturday that called on me to ride the rails a good bit, so the odds were certainly in favor of something weird or crazy happening. My luck just isn't so good that it wouldn't.

After making my way most of the way home after my day's plans were concluded, I really had the idea that I might be home scott free. It was not to be. After boarding my second train, the gentlemen near me motioned for me to take off my headphones. Being the good-natured rube that I am, I consented. Do you know, good reader, that his first words were to compare me with Tom Hanks in his star-making show "Bosom Buddies"? That is no joke.

Saturday, October 13, 2012


Something I never get tired of is telling people something I remember reading about Thomas Edison when I was young. It was said that in his work he had superhuman focus and dedication (and so did the employees whose work he took credit for, I must assume). They said that he would often forget to eat completely, and that he would have starved to death any number of times if not forced to eat by someone.

I guess that I like remembering that because I sometimes feel the same way. I used to eat in my bedroom, and suffered consequences from that which you can readily imagine without my spelling it out. I decided that the rule would be no food in my room, and now my room is cleaner. There is also now a greater impediment to my eating presented by the necessity of leaving my room and whatever I was doing there for even a few minutes.

Friday, October 12, 2012


Having a lot of hair, I have a lot of associated problems. One is drains. As I believe I've stated, I have a hell of a time with clogs. The drain in the shower gets clogged, but at least we have the little screen on there to catch the hairs. I toss them out with an exclamation of disgust and dismay, and that's the end of it. The hairs stuck to the walls of the shower don't go so easily, but that's another matter. So to is the sink drain.

For a hell of a long time, it was hopelessly clogged. We're talking water sitting in the sink overnight and only draining by morning. Now, I don't take fast action on such matters. I had been thinking for months about maybe buying some liquid plumber. I was living with it. I was using a jar to catch the water when I shaved, because otherwise the sink would have overflowed by the end. I found that a charming thing that I was doing.

Thursday, October 11, 2012


When I get through with showering and dressing, I often look in the mirror and remark with some surprise that "I've got an all right look". I'm pleasantly surprised, of course. That's not to say that I look as young as I did a few years ago. I look a bit rougher, I think. In ten years and twenty years, that will only be more pronounced. For the moment it's endearing, but eventually it will not be so much so. I just hope that I handle it all right.

I think that the best way to deal with getting older is to be graceful about it. Going down with a desperate struggle doesn't make things any better. When I get old, I hope to be a man about it. I hope to continue on all my days doing the best I can that day to make myself presentable, but to never try looking young when it is obviously no longer possible. As I said, for the moment it remains a feasible enterprise.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Two Signs

One of the things that I noticed when I went to visit back home was all the political campaign stuff. They love the roadside signs back home. There are crowds of them every place that it is legal to put them, or it at least seems that way. There is relatively little variety to them, and so I am tempted to vote for anyone who makes stylistically bold choices. There was someone who went with orange and mustard yellow as dominant colors several years ago, it seems to me. I liked that.

This time around, I saw something very interesting. It was actually an advertisement by a local sushi restaurant that explicitly endorsed Barack Obama. I thought that was bold, but unquestionably bad business, especially in suburban Phoenix. That had to cost way more prospective customers than it could possibly gain. I wouldn't even have recommended that in nominal college town Tempe. As it turned out, it wasn't what it seemed.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Short In The Front, No Party

I had a pretty full schedule for the time I was back home for that wedding. One of the things I found myself doing was patronizing a hair salon. I am eager to learn how to better care for my hair, and what better way than to consult with professionals. I did get some useful information as well as a very slight trim (the purpose of which was to enhance the health of the hair, not to shorten it). I also was granted some anxiety to take with me.

You see, I hadn't previously considered there to be anything really wrong with my hair. It's longer and curlier than that of most, but it's at least normal for those who have it as long as I. That's what I thought, in any case.  The woman looking after me set me straight on that point, though. I gleaned from some offhand remarks that she made that she though I'd trimmed the bangs area personally. It took sever attempts to convince her that I had not.

Monday, October 8, 2012

Always A Battle

I often think about the way we word certain very common things. One of the last things I find very interesting about a daily newspaper is the obituaries, and how they chose to say the central thing: that the person has died. There are a lot of creative ways that they go with, virtually none of which are terribly direct or honest. It's all "passed on" and "went to be with the Lord". I certainly respect those beliefs, at least in as much as I personally hope to enjoy life after death, but I also value directness.

When death comes by means of some long, lingering illness, how is it that we put that? Almost without fail, we say that a person who has died in that manner was in some way "battling" whatever it was. Let's say it's cancer. I don't mean to dishonor the dead or infirm, but is it always a battle? How do you battle an unchecked sub-division of cells? You get treatment, I suppose. All right, I'll grant that it's always a battle. We have a battling spirit, we humans.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Sizing Down

Yesterday I wrote of my emaciated wrists and my anxiety over them. Today there is a similar story. I was at a department store looking for pants. Quite naturally, the search began in the mens' department. I've never been on the high end of the sizes, but this day was something else. I found after some looking that there was just nothing there for me. Everything was too wide in the waist, too long or both. It all would have to have been tailored somehow.

The next place to look was in Young Mens'. There were more options there. Now, there was no overabundance of well-fitting clothes there, and there also was a higher rate of clothes that weren't my style, but there was one pair of pants that fit tolerably well after an extensive search. I was happy to get out of there with the location of one pair, or else there might have been more there for me. I'll leave that for the next time.

Saturday, October 6, 2012

A Wrist Watched

You may have noticed a recent preoccupation with my weight lately. I have lately noticed that I seem to weigh as little as I ever have in my adult live, and that does not appear to change, although I did get back into the 140's. That may have been a fluctuation of water weight or some such thing. In any case, there have been a number of weigh-loss symptoms. There was the latest notch I had to cut in my belt, for one. There was more besides that.

I wish I could cut a notch in my watchband. I have noticed that even using the narrowest notch presently there, the watch does not reliably stay put where it ought to on my wrist. Indeed, it slides over the end of the bone toward the hand with relative ease. This has become a real distraction to me, as if I needed any other excuses for fidgeting. It's hard enough to not clasp my hands behind my back or thrust them into my pockets, and now this.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Garter Fever: Catch It!

I have mentioned being out of town, and if I didn't say so, it was for a wedding. I like a traditional wedding, and this one included many conventional touches. One was the tossing of the bouquet. Another, which I think is sometimes dispensed with, is the tossing of the garter to the single men. This wedding had both. There was the usual good-natured jostling for the bouquet by the large compliment of single women, and then there was the garter.

There were not so many single men at this wedding, for whatever reason. I suppose that I ought to be glad for that. There might have been half or a third as many. Coming from out of town, I could have no designs on the single women at this wedding (although some would say this gave me ample reason to make attempts), but the dearth of single men helped me out in another respect: that of the garter-catching. I do hope to be married some day, although it's already a little late in the day today and tomorrow I already have plans.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Was It Me?

There I was at a sushi restaurant, eating dinner with my mother. We ate and talked, and this did not go on for very long before I noticed that a couple, seated behind my mother, got up and moved to another table. I spent plenty of time thinking about that. I wondered why they moved. There are some legitimate reasons why they might. Most of them have nothing to do with me, but you can imagine that I have little interest in those. Surely it must involve me.

The thing is that I know I am not the easiest person to be around a lot of the time. I'm pretty loud, and what I have to say is not appealing sometimes. Your typical suburban couple out for an adventurous dinner could easily get fed up with my musings within minutes and take the step of getting another table in a restaurant full of empty ones. My mother did not feel that I was being so loud or objectionable, but I'm not so sure about that as her.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

For The Trash

I get plenty of items in the mail from college. I went to two colleges, or I suppose I ought to say technically three. I got degrees from two (which would be an associates' and a bachelors' ), and took two summer classes at a third. I think I'm remembering this right. In any case, what is relevant is that I have gotten very little in the mail from the two junior colleges. I don't know what is the reason for their lack of interest in my post-college life, but I appreciate it.

That third school would be the one from which I got my four-year degree. I want to stress that I got a fine education. I have no complaints about that. If I did, they would have more to do with me than with the institutions in question. I had excellent opportunities to learn where I went, but I am not entirely pleased with what I get in the mail from that third school. They're always wanting things from me. Before my loans are paid, they want donations, and more besides that.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Why Drive?

I suppose that it is very hard to fly a plane. I don't know that being a pilot is one of the very highest-paying jobs out there, but as far as jobs controlling a vehicle are concerned, it must be the best or close to it. There must be a lot to know, because it seems as if your average person is fit enough to get it done. I know that it takes a while just to learn the controls, because you don't get to the point of even being in a plane until well into the learning process.

It must be the tremendous amount of importance placed on training that makes flying statistically safer than driving. I think that being a pilot has to be a lot harder than driving. Then again, driving is not so easy. The statistics that make it out to be so dangerous would be not as bad if only the most qualified were allowed to do it. Of course, I suppose they only mean to allow qualified drivers, but it doesn't work out that way, does it?

Monday, October 1, 2012

When It Was A Game

It has been a while since I played video games much. A number of years ago, I sold my Xbox 360 on Craiglist because I realized that it had been collecting dust and I figured that I could use the money. It was a kind of sad moment when they guy came around to pick it up, but it wasn't so sad when he paid me the money in cash. Of course, that occasion didn't entirely end my interest in video games. I still like the older, simpler stuff.

I enjoy the old games they had for the original Nintendo and Genesis. I could play some of those for hours, particularly back then when there were few alternatives. I shudder to think of how many hours I spend in vain trying to progress in "Tom & Jerry" or in "The Goonies 2". The latter game had me convinced that a sequel had been made to the movie, but it was alas only in video game form. I surely did have an interest in games at the time.

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Check Me Out

There is certainly an excitement to a hotel room, to begin with at least. You have a whole new home for at least a night, and there is a learning process. You must figure out where things are and how things work. I enjoy that part of moving, and so that's the main thing that I like about staying in a hotel. That is most of what I like though, outside of the obvious appeal of having a place that is very clean, or at least seems to be by comparison with my home.

I don't much like other elements of a hotel stay. Most of a day's routine is about making do under the circumstances. You just can't have all the things that you have at home, such as your own bathroom appliances. There are the little tiny soaps, shampoos and hair dryers, and it all feels like you are driving on four spare tires in a sense. How long could you live with a coffee machine designed to make two cups at a time?

Saturday, September 29, 2012


I don't think it happens often, but every once in a long while, the attention of a group falls on me, evidently eager to hear what I have to say. I am used to either listening and speaking in turn or forcing my thoughts upon people, occasionally getting some of them to land anyway. Seldom, as I said, has it been the case that a lot of people have turned the floor over to me, only asking questions to elicit more from me and never introducing their own thoughts.

I don't mean to say that's what I am after exactly, but it is terribly flattering when it happens. I can think of only a handful of occasions, often when I have happened to be very prominent in a performance or when I have been all talked up by some friend. The former has happened when I have done my one man show about Mark Twain. Theater of that kind is definitely right up the alley of anyone who can't bear to share attention.

Friday, September 28, 2012

Been A While

Something I haven't done very much of in some time is shopping at malls. When I was younger, the mall was indeed the center of social life away from the school. One spent time there eating, shopping and seeing movies. It was where one went to interact with peers even if one did not have any money to spend in order to have legitimate reason for being there. Since I've been out in LA, I don't know that I've been in a mall more than two or three times.

The malls I've spent a lot of time in are in Arizona, from which location I am writing this. I did happen to get to the mall the other day, and I insisted on walking around shortly before it closed in order to get a sense of what had changed. Since its heyday, the mall had fallen into decline, and had recently emerged to attempt a comeback. I was very curious to see how that had worked out, and there were certainly some surprises to greet me.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

To Arms!

I went to the dentist the other day, and suffice it to say that it had been too long since my last visit. We need not dwell on precisely how long. The point is that it was a trying experience, which doesn't actually distinguish it very much from past visits that have been on a more frequent basis. At any rate, there was a lot of probing of my mouth with rather imposing implements. It was well-intentioned, but tell that to a person's impulses.

My tongue is a rather noble organ. Without regard for its own safety, it again and again plunged into danger in hopes of warding off the aforementioned invaders. Even against my will, disregarding orders, my tongue put itself in between my sensitive teeth and everything ranging from pointy metal tools to sophisticated cavity-sensing electronic probes. It was a truly selfless, gallant series of sacrifices by the tongue that has already done so much.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012


Writing for this blog is a struggle far more often than it is a breeze, and for more reasons than my moribund base of readership. I relatively seldom seem to seize upon a subject that has me racing to keep up with the thoughts I wish to commit to writing. Today is one of those days that I have come up with something, although it is not one of the even rarer days that I choose to write about something topical. One out of two ain't bad, as Meatloaf might say.

Ever since Facebook introduced the "Like" feature, I have not cared for it. I don't like the fact that there is no complimentary "Dislike". You are left with the binary options of "liking" someone's post or implying by your silence that you do not like the post. I find that unsatisfying, and I know I'm not alone on that. Plenty of people say, if only in jest, that they would like a "Dislike" option for sad or infuriating posts. I know I would like that.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Game On

The other day, I found myself in a casino. As far as I can recall, it was the first time I had been in one since I was a child, at which age they tend to keep you a distance away from the various adult activities. That was in Las Vegas. This was in one of the Native American casinos that dot the Phoenix metro area. It's a modestly sized one, or at least it seemed to be. There was a vast sea of slot machines, and I had the vague idea that I might play those, but I didn't.

I did drink a fair amount, and watched (mostly) friends playing blackjack. I gather that it's a game whose odds you can turn closer to your favor than others if you are knowledgeable enough. I am not knowledgeable enough, as was proved out when I quickly lost each of the three or four chips I was given by a friend. My luck was regrettably bad, although I don't know whether my friends did any better. They may have just played more.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Play It Straight

There's something that annoys me about air travel. Now, you're right to be entirely fed up with decades of humorous observations about all the inconveniences and idiosyncrasies of air travel, for I know I am. That doesn't mean I don't have them myself, and while I try to spare others the more commonly held ones that come to mind, there are those which I think might be relatively fresh and unique. Those I feel it reasonable to share.

Take the flight attendants. Maybe my memory isn't what it is, but I recall them being friendly but professional. It's fair enough that the job isn't as great as it once was, and so the people holding that job maybe aren't as disposed to be so friendly or professional anymore. I can hardly blame them, and yet I do when I am at their mercy. They just don't behave the way they used to, and while most people might even like the new way, I don't really.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

A Man Alone

I'm a big fan of those "cup o' noodle soup" things. They're terrible for you, but they are tasty and they could hardly be more simple. What more need you do than boil some water and pour it up to the designated line? Even I can manage it, although I've forgotten the water and let it boil all the way down more than once. That is a risk for me, but it is a minor one, as I have learned. There is really only one area that calls for my full attention now.

It's getting the water to that level without going over or spilling. I don't boil precisely the right amount of water. I boil at least a bit more than I need, and probably a lot more. This is to account for the aforementioned problem of vaporizing the water entirely. As a consequence, it is necessary to be quite precise in the pour. Sure, I could include the intermediary step of pouring the water into a measuring cup before pouring it into the noodles, but you know that's not me.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

I Was There

There's been a lot of buzz surrounding the retirement of NASA's shuttle fleet, and for good reason. One rather interesting story is the ultimate fate of the remaining shuttles. One, the Endeavor, is destined to become a fixture of the California Science Center museum, and it's no easy feat to get it there from Cape Canaveral. Ultimately, it must bully its way along surface streets to reach the museum itself, but yesterday it completed to the leg of the journey immediately before that one: flying coast to coast while piggy-backing on a Boeing 747.

NASA kindly arranged a route which would bring the shuttle around to a variety of spots across the country which hold significance in the story of the shuttle program. The final destination was Los Angeles International Airport, but before it got there, the shuttle wandered to and fro all over the metro area. I entertained the idea of trying to be by the airport for the landing, but discarded it. I did notice, though, that it was to pass over Universal Studios, just a couple miles to the south.

Friday, September 21, 2012

Who To Be But Me

I was thinking yesterday about the notion of posing as someone else. There are many films, television shows and novels that depend upon the conceit of a person pretending to be someone that they are not. Such persons vary in the degree of success with which they carry off this attempt. In the episode of "Remington Steele" I was watching, the titular character managed yet again to maintain the show's central deception, but a guest star failed at the same thing.

I don't know that I would do very well at adopting a false identity. I never have tried really, outside the bounds of acting in character either on camera or on stage. A couple of months ago, I did give a fake name to the guy at a burger restaurant. It was on a night when I had gone in costume to a themed dance performance. Having taken on the garb of a yuppie, I thought it might be amusing to take the name of one as well, and 'Brent' seemed appropriate. I think I managed to pull it off, unless the guy listened to anything I said after that.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Staying Put

I am by nature a homebody, and I have grown a lot by overriding that as much as I can. I can even convince myself that I've gotten over it, but there is inevitably a moment where I realize that it is still there, and that I am still not naturally a person who flees the home at every opportunity. I still look for reasons to stay home- to decline opportunities to go out. I feel badly when I do stay home in the face of such opportunities, so perhaps I am straddling the line.

There are those times where I am holed up at home alone for a prolonged period of time, and it's a peculiar experience. The home can feel like an incredibly expansive world, even when you live in a modestly sized abode like mine. The far end of the apartment, which contains the living room and kitchen, can seem as far away and exotic as Thailand. The area between my bedroom and the bathroom can be all the space I feel I need.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Deal Done

It's a harrowing experience sometimes to be in a fantasy football league. One of the more challenging things is to negotiate a trade. I tend to be rather risk adverse myself, which costs me all too often. There have been plenty of times in life where I was afraid to accept the risk and ended up losing more than I would have for fear of making a move. Those were really more significant events than a fantasy football trade, but the latter encapsulates things well enough.

It's lovely, of course, when the first offer someone makes is a fantastic one for you, but that is not too common. Sometimes you have to be the one to make the first move, and that is something I do rather seldom, but I appreciate the truth of it. I certainly would like to think that I was the one preying on someone else, rather than fearing that I was being victimized by any particular trade offer made to me. Perhaps that will be my next trade.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Another Hair Piece

I have mostly got the hang out of caring for my hair these days. Tangles are not a real worry anymore, provided I have the proper conditioner and have worked it into my hair. Frizz remains a periodic problem, and of course there is the matter of clogged drains. It is terribly hard to keep drains clear of the high volume of hairs that I lose on a daily basis. I guess that really becomes more of a plumbing problem than a hair one, and who's so good at plumbing matters?

There is one thing that I occasionally struggle with, and that is when a tendril of hair falls from its ordinarily secure position and comes to rest over my face. This is very annoying, and there's a strong possibility when it happens that I will curse. It's like if your shoelace comes undone, but there is no way of fixing it except for a few seconds. That hair is just bound to come back down again and again, and there is no remedy for the issue.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Where, Oh Where?

I grew up in and around Phoenix, Arizona. Perhaps that's not something I ought to be trumpeting, and indeed I make very little of it these days. It was not the place for me to be, and initially I only thought not because of the work I hoped to do. It's evident now that where I am suits me somewhat better. Many people that I know dislike LA or even hate it, and live here only because they have to. I like it here. Even if the entertainment business wasn't my thing, I'd like it here anyway.

I wonder though how I might fare in other places. As long as I can remember, I've been interested in experiencing New York City. I wonder how I would like that, and whether it might foster in me productivity or happiness any better than LA. A city that loves public transportation does sound up my alley, and in my romantic imagination, I see myself strolling its streets both upscale and downtrodden. At the very least I'd like to spend a little time there. I have roots too deep here.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

My Day In The Sun

When I was in high school, there was little to recommend me as an athlete. There was more then than there is now, given that I am different only in being that much older. At the very least, I was more earnest in trying to do what the PE teacher asked of us than many of my classmates. Even in their indifference, they tended to outclass me in terms of strength, speed, agility and about any other measure. PE was a subject that I endured more than anything, my affection for sports notwithstanding.

I often thing about something rather interesting that happened one day, when I had the novel experience of being handed a task in my wheelhouse. One of the PE teachers, who was also a coach on the football team, approached me with the request that I think up some codes for audibles that they could call. The simple idea was that each word of a code phrase ought to start with the same letter as its corresponding play name. I was asked to come up with a few.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Wait, Weight!

Yesterday, I had to punch another notch in my belt. Now, for most people (especially these days) that would mean that they were getting larger around the waste. Most people would be expanding the capacity of the belt to circumnavigate their girth. This would be particularly true of people with as little inclination towards diet and exercise as I have generally shown, although I avow that I am getting better at those things. I am not getting larger, though.

I seem to be getting smaller, and if one takes the long view, not by a little. This notch is the fourth new one I have added, all heading in the same direction. It tells quite a story, and the climax must be that I suddenly am able to fit through a grate on the street. I don't exactly know how to account for that. I have not got the money for too much food, but I have got the money for food that is bad for me. I just do not seem able to hold weight.