Friday, August 17, 2007

Habits - Friday 8/17/2007

Apparently, we humans aren't as unique as we'd like to believe ourselves to be. I sat at a different table this morning at Bob's. (Damned interlopers! How dare they!?)

Anyway, I put my spoon down exactly in that worn out place on the counter. What's up with that? We aren't even all proportioned the same. How does this happen? I guess when the diner's been here since 1949, these things will happen.

Of course, I had to take a picture of it.

The nice police officer sitting in my regular booth peered over the frosted glass divider at me right after the shutter clicked.

Having made this astonishing discovery, I could no longer be disgruntled with him for taking my spot.

An Exercise in Immodesty - Friday 8/17/2007

Okay, Liz tagged me, and I like Liz a lot, and Liz did this on her always-fascinating blog, Los Angelista’s Guide to Happiness. So I’ll step up and play.

The first thing that comes to mind is the snarky lyrics from the opening of Bring It On. Fantasy sequence of snotty cheerleaders…. "I'm wanted. I'm hot. I'm everything you're not."

Yeah right.

1) I can bring the funny. There are probably a lot of deep psychological reasons why this is a bad thing, a symptom of something lacking in my personality that drives me to entertain. I think I developed the funny in order to get the attention of my siblings, who were enough older than me that they seemed glamorous with their worldly abilities like reading and riding bikes and eventually driving and dating and moving out of the house. I enjoy a good laugh probably more than anything else in life. And good humor breeds intimacy. I feel closer to people I’ve laughed with.

2) I am accepting. I don’t really take any credit for this. My parents set a good example, and I was an absorbent kid. One friend waited until she could visit me from more than 2,000 miles away so I could be the first person she came out to. “I knew you’d react this way!” she said, hugging me. It’s one of the best compliments I’ve ever had.

3) I’m adventuresome. Driving down a country road I’ve never been on before gives me a weird thrill. I’ll try new cuisines, explore old buildings, whatever.

4) I am comfortable in public places. This probably really isn't anything to be proud of, but I do like it in myself because it brings me a lot of pleasure to hang out in coffee houses and diners.

5) I like finding out as much as already knowing. I hope that this helps keep me from being pedantic. It’s part of the reason I like my job. I actually enjoyed reading about the personal tragedies that hounded Super Bowl XXVI (1992) Quarterback & MVP Mark Ripian and that Super Bowl XXIX (1995) Quarterback & MVP Steve Young is the great-great-great-great grandson of Brigham Young as part of my research job yesterday. It’s nice to be easily pleased.

6) I care deeply about my biological and chosen families. I’m not sure they always know it, but I do. I’m not always the greatest about calling, but when we do talk or see each other again, it’s usually like picking up right where we left off.

7) I am usually enthusiastic. I love hearing about and supporting my friends’ and family’s endeavors. Although the crankies sometimes overtake me and slow the process, usually if I commit to doing something, even if I’m not gung ho about it, I will try to take the attitude that I will enjoy it more than I expect to.

8) I try to network. Although I am surely as competitive as the next person, I have this idea that we’ll all get what we need if we go for it. If my friends do well, I do well on some level. I maintain an informal mailing list and when I find interesting looking markets for creative writing (usually when I am trying to place something myself) I pass them along. If you tell me you’re working on something and I know someone who can help, I will let you know.

9) I take a great deal of pleasure from the arts. I enjoy witnessing and participating in a lot of different art forms. I believe that the arts, whether they are literary, graphic, musical, etc., enhance our ability to connect with each other across cultural or arbitrary boundaries. And it just makes me feel good to spend some time creating something or exploring someone else’s creation.

10) I am trying to be a better person. Cause you know that for every one of these items, there is a tiny abyss of self-doubt waiting for my errant footstep. I want to be a better friend, spouse, sister, daughter, writer, photographer, worker. Even though I’m reluctant to seek professional help, mine is not an unconsidered life.

Now it's my turn to tag! I'm tapping the following:

1) The American at An American In Toronto.
2) Fingers to the Bone over at The Last Bedroom.
3) Danny Beans at Lefty Writes
4) Always Megan at Lyrical Whispers
5) KimN at Yay! Blog!

Jeep Art - Thursday 8/16/2007

See the cool bird etched onto the side of this Jeep? Saw this when we drove into Palmdale last night in search of food.

Couldn't get into our favorite sushi place even after waiting almost an hour. Sigh.

Fame - Wednesday 8/15/2007

Driving past Hollywood and Highland in the morning, I had to wonder what it would feel like to have your photograph covering a quarter of a building. I'll bet he sees his bumps.

C for Effort? - Tuesday 8/14/2007

I was trying to get a shot of the swirl of the chair arm translated inside the wine glass at the Elegant E's place on Tuesday. It didn't really work.

Yes, this is what I disrupted the meeting for, ladies.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Wild Child - Monday 8/13/2007

I've been reading this book The Four Day Win by Martha Beck, PhD. It's about changing the way you think about food and, actually, a lot of other things.

Decided to draw what Martha describes as my Wild Child... the part of me that gets all defiant about eating whatever she dang well wants. She'd be scruffier if I had the patience to draw in all the sticks and straws she gets into while scrounging for treats.

Sweet Memory Sky Flower - Sunday 8/12/2007

Bought this vining flower to plant in the yard, but didn't get around to it yet. It's called Sweet Memory Sky Flower, which I've never heard of before. Found out on the web that it's only cold hardy to 25 degrees, which doesn't bode well for its long term survival, but we'll do what we can with mulch, etc. this winter.

Also bought these annuals, some Mexican heather and some Blue Salvia. None of it is in the ground yet, but they're lined up along the porch looking nice.

Did anyone get a good view of the Perseids on Sunday night? A friend came up for dinner, a little music, and then lying in the back yard looking up. We saw three very impressive meteors before calling it quits a while before midnight. Worth it, but not really the light show we were hoping for.

Cool Thing: a schedule of upcoming meteor showers.

Monday, August 13, 2007

The Lemonade of Love - Saturday 8/11/2007

Okay, you would probably respect me more if I didn't tell you how we came to drive over this bridge on Big Tujunga Canyon Road on Saturday. But I can't seem to help myself.

After the fabulous Mort Sahl concert on Friday night, I realized that I hadn't brought home the work I needed so I could sleep in after watching Sunday's Perseid meteor showers. Hydra offered to drive us from the West Side to Toluca Lake at 9:30 at night without batting an eye.

As we approached, I realized that I left my keys on my desk in the office. Good grief. I mean, really. To make a long story short, on Saturday OneL graciously agreed to meet me at the office so I could retrieve my files and my keys. (I'd offered to pick them up at her house, but she is just that helpful!)

Hydra drives down with me to get the keys, etc., and we took the long scenic way home, stopping along the way to take photos.

You ask how we made it 20 years? I'll tell you: it's all his fault!

(I can see the movie title now: I Married a Lemonade Machine.)

I saw these steps down to a little tunnel.

"Hey," I called up to Hydra, "I'll bet you could totally tumble right out of this opening!"

I was right! The other side of the little tunnel. This doesn't really show how far you would continue to drop if you fell out this end. It's a couple hundred feet to the creek bed.

Is this not a lovely vestige of old school road building? I love stuff like this. Next time I need to get a shot from the other side of the bridge. One of the nearby tunnels was built in 1941, so I'm guessing this is of a similar age.

Hydra likes to say things like, "Don't count on those pillars too much when you're taking that photo," when I do stuff like hang over the edge to get a shot of the dangling broken chain against the pretty stone wall.

Probably every time we drive past this road house cafe I fantasize about living in some place remote like this (but still only about 50 minutes from L.A.), running a business where people would come to you, so you wouldn't get lonely and start behaving like some character out of a Stephen King novel.

I promise, Hydra, we won't even own an ax.