Tuesday, September 30, 2008

David Cross and I Should Marry

I downloaded a bunch of his stand-up this weekend and now find myself walking down the street listening to it and bursting out laughing (and so looking like a crazy person). I don't care. He's un PC and calls women the c-word (well, just Paris Hilton and Nicole Richey. He has a bit about the Simple Life where he describes them as "two rich giggling cunts." In this case, it is the perfect, perfect description) and makes fun of gay people (while at the same time making the argument that homosexuality is not a choice, but genetics) and religion (not that I care about that) and jokes about lowing the age of sexual consent to 15 because "he's a grown man with skills," not like some acne-scarred 16 year old boy who's going to pop in 15 seconds, and I would marry him in a second. I like that he's angry and hates George Bush so so so so so much and also isn't too keen on rednecks or Republicans (has this bit about how after 9/11, he was so sick of all this rah-rah American bullshit, including the reissuing of that country song by Tobey Keats that the wrote for the Gulf War but then re released after Sept. 11 with the line about America that goes "and I'd surely stand-up next to you and defend her all the way..." He says, "Well, here you go, motherfucker. Here's your second chance. Put your money where your mouth is, you hypocrite...'Oh, I didn't mean me, I meant my neighbor's kid...'") and I like that he's completely nerdy looking and not afraid to emphasize that fact.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Screenplay or Everything's a Cliche

So what if I wrote a screenplay that another modern day Cyrano de Begerac/Roxanne where the central protagonist is a girl who writes letters for other people all day (not unlike someone we know) and she starts writing these letters to this handsome big important guy, but the letters are ostensibly from her (female) boss. He starts writing back and they carry on this epistolary relationship, with him thinking he's falling in love with the boss who doesn't actually read the letters and has no idea what's going on. Anyway, there's more to the concept, but it occurred to me as I was silently congratulating myself on my brilliance that the female version of this was one in The Truth About Cats and Dogs with Uma Thurman and Janine Garofalo. I think it was phone conversations instead of letters, but the conceit remains the same. Anyway, so what, I don't care about copying and I don't care about selling out. Actually, I do care about copying. The hardest thing about this weekend's assignment was coming up with something that hasn't already been done in some movie. I'm certain that what I wrote has appeared in a similar form somewhere, even if I can't think of the particular film just at this moment in time. Watched Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind again this weekend (which I just found out won best screenplay). Great movie, and re-discovered that David Cross has a small role in it.

What will this week bring? Hopefully only good things.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Friday Photographs: Not Exciting

Not a great week for photographs; can't really say why, because I did have my eyes peeled on most of my walks. I guess there were 2 mornings this past week when I didn't talk my longer route, so had less to go on. Plus, maybe I've finally run out of interesting Philadelphia windows. Don't think so. Especially since they tend to change with the seasons. Below, please find a chaotically patched cat for your review.

Here is a spooky cat. Only because he's looking down at you from above, like, Beware the mulberry bush. Many gargoyles and then one ceramic cat.

This door knocker can be found somewhere along Spruce--maybe between 15-16. You may not be able to tell from the smaller photograph, but the knocker is a lion. People in Philadelphia seem to love lions.

I am cranky today. Didn't get much sleep last night (maybe like three hours?), and I'm not complaining about the reason why and then there's all this sort of strange work stuff going on and I don't know if I'll like this screenwriting class, as the teacher not only referred to me as "the only adult in the class" about four times, he also gave me $20 and told me to buy him a large coffee from Starbucks before every class. Is that rude or what? But I didn't say no. It's also a pretty big learning curve for me b/c I've never taken a film or media or TV class--writing or otherwise and so the format is all new:

Fade in:

Interior office: mid-day. Woman quickly types at her computer.

Cut to: Strange man standing outside of her door.

Voice Over: That was the day a strange man stood outside of my door.


Is somewhere there or what?

Fade out.

The really good part though is that he gave us a disc with a bunch of screenplays burned onto it, including a few I mentioned in my last post as my favorites, and then a few others that I really like too, such as Princess Bride. Maybe it won't totally suck, but it's hard to be on campus from 8 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. and then not get home until almost ten thirty.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

My Inevitable Fame and Fortune

I'm taking my first Drexel class tonight: screenwriting. I probably should have waited to buy the software required until I see what the class is like before I spent $99 to download what's basically just a formatting program. Who knows, maybe I will have found my true calling and sell a screenplay for billions of dollars. I am certain my friends would agree I have a talent for glib, superficial writing that would translate well into a sit-com or a Geico commercial (though as an aside, I don't understand the amalgamation of the ads including car insurance and Aunt Jemima. Haven't we all agreed that AJ is a racist throwback mammy symbol? Maybe Geico's newest slogan is, Don't be a slave to your car insurance). I don't have any particularly brilliant screenplay ideas at the moment though. We watched Waitress when I was in CT; sort of an indie movie starring Keri Russell written by one of the other actors in the movie (who was subsequently murdered in her Brooklyn apartment). I liked this movie b/c she didn't end up with a guy at the end. She didn't need one. She had this baby girl who she loved in an instant.

I never saw Juno b/c I objected to what I knew would be overly-witty and smarmy teenage dialogue, but I know lots of people liked the movie. Fargo is another one of my favorites, but that seems pretty elaborate; like I'd have to come up with a plot with twists and turns and murders and mishaps and people getting stuffed into wood-chippers. What else? Other scripts I like: Garden State, Rushmore, Truly, Madly, Deeply, any of Christoper Guest's movies, Next Stop Wonderland, Amalie (I will write a film entirely in French though I don't speak a word), what's that other Hope Davis film with Parker Posey? Daytrippers. Oh, I also really liked Working Girl, especially the part at the end where Joan Cusack gets a call from Melanie Griffith and finds out she's moving up the ladder and she stands up at her desk and yells, "YES!" Maybe I'll write a screenplay about a bunch of writing graduate students and their boring little dramatic lives. Dead Poet's Society at graduate school ("Captain, my Captain!"). And someone can get murdered. No, someone can disappear and the clues are in the story she's been writing. See, I can't even think of anything that hasn't already been done or that doesn't involve some kind of weird, unnecessary intrigue.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008


When Liz visited this weekend to do her door-to-door campaigning, she let me have an "Obama/Biden" pin. This morning, I put it on my bag--this after some internal debate about whether or not it was appropriate to have a political pin visible at work, even though it wouldn't be visible since my bag is typically under my desk, not displayed in a case at the entrance to my office. But then wearing it, I felt slightly vulnerable, especially when passing a clump of fat white South Philly men who may or may not be supporters. Liz said this weekend that she thought lots of them would be Democrats b/c of being union men, but I've also seen some McCain posters nestled up next to VM's in the Union League windows, so you never know. And there's that shitty t-shirt display across from Geno's that reads "You're in America. Speak English." That makes me want to go over to the dude's at Geno's and say, "When your grandfather/father first came to America, did he speak English? Like, the second he got off the boat? You fucking idiots." And then the pin made me think that maybe all black people who saw me wearing it liked me just a little bit better (as if all African Americans are voting for Obama).

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Pictures the I Should Have Posted Last Week Except I Was Lazy

You might think that Philadelphia is just a cold, hard city without whimsy or cows, but look:

Last time I posted photos, my mom emailed me to ask if I had to seek out the Virgin Mary's that are usually included. The answer is no. Every other window or home in South Philadelphia is graced by the VM. This particular Virgin lights up at night.

Blurry photo of the night sky. I took this last Wed. while walking home from the subway after my first Kelly's Writer house meeting--a writing group at Penn that meets every other week. We went over three stories/essays. I might make friends.

I know the reflection in this photo is bad, but I still like the idea of the window. Very Marie Antoinette. And who doesn't love to see a porcelain man in a powdered wig?

Took this photo on one of my breaks from jury duty. Our case was held on the 6th floor of City Hall. A wonderful building though the bathrooms are difficult to find.

New phallic-imagery wall painting on South and 6th Street honoring black firefighters.

Piper in repose. This was one day after he and Paul Skoles had their balls nipped off.

He is becoming a cat. An eunch cat, but still a cat. It's kind of sad, because you wish they could always be kittens.

Though look how handsome he is.

American Citizen

Had jury duty for three days last week--I was certain I wouldn't get selected, but I didn't write down or say anything too unAmerican or smart or ignorant and so I was one of eight on a civil case involving a man suing the Philadelphia Housing Authority for a back and neck injury he allegedly sustained when an employee rear-ended him in a car accident two years ago. The group of people were pretty nice, though one lady seemed kind of simple when she said (after one hour of listening to a witness the first day), Well, they're dragging this on. I was like, We've heard one person. I didn't like the lawyer for the plaintiff that much because the judge (a woman) kept interrupting him as though he were doing something wrong and he spoke too fast and the court reporter got really irritated with him. We awarded the dude $33,500, about $23,500 more than I recommended (I didn't believe his testimony).

Liz and Luke were up this weekend to campaign for Obama and we went to dinner at Chick's Wine Bar with C&P (good pick, Carrie), but we didn't get to spend a ton of time together b/c they had to turn around and go home. We still got to laugh though, especially when both Liz and Luke were both separately blasted in the hip with my malfuncting soap dispenser in the bathroom. Luke called it the money shot.

Sunday, I made my film debut starring in LM's 2 minute black and white movie for her film class. I did not behave like a diva. I thought I was quite placid and agreeable. No acting required, but it's amazing how self-conscious one can become from knowing your actions are being filmed. For instance, in one scene, I just had to walk up these stairs and I knew she was just shooting my feet, but I had to think before I stepped forward like, Wait, how do you go up stairs again?

Monday, September 15, 2008

Back from CT

Spent the weekend in Danbury, CT visiting with my mom and stepdad and my stepfather's son (John) and wife (Patty), their two children (Elise and Nash), a grandchild (Payton), two cats, and a dog. Their part of Connecticut is really beautiful; lots of trees and A-frame houses with widow's peaks and clapboard siding. John and Patty's house is gorgeous and I slept in Elise's old room with the pillow-topped mattress. It made me realize that maybe it would be nice to be wealthy.

Below, please find a photograph of my stepdad who was mostly quiet the entire time I was there. He's not the best conversationalist and he mostly likes to just fish and play cribbage.
This is his son, John (not a great photo of him--he's making a funny face). I've known John since I was little, but we've always met at weird in between ages that didn't match (he's about ten years older than me). This time, we had a little more in common or at least it felt easier to talk to him.
Their Rhodesian Red-back, Levi, age 14. The breed is classified as "aloof." He totally was.

The two ginger cats, Casey (meowing) and Cinnamon, on death's door. I found out this weekend that most (possibly all) orange tabbies are male. Poor Cinnamon is 17 years old and has a smelly ear. I mean, he can't help it, but he does really smell like something bad. Casey's a few years younger and missing some teeth. V. friendly.
Here is Patty with the baby girl Payton. This is seconds before Levi woke up and bit her face off.

Another baby Payton. She has a round, round face and a habit of squinching up her nose when she doesn't like something. She didn't fuss while she was around us and she let me hold her with nary a peep.
Here is my so beautiful mom. She's 64. Isn't she pretty?

And here we are, back at home. Please investigate the photograph and let me know how many things Ernesto is doing wrong at one time.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Politics Plus Friday Photos

Here's what Matt Damon has to say about Sarah Palin. In a nutshell, he says that her nomination is like a plot to a bad Disney--conservative hockey mom makes it the White House. He wants to know why more people aren't talking about how absurd her nomination is.

Speaking of absurd (absurdly cute), how about this mournful dog?

This house is off of Morris and maybe 12th or 13th. I like that it's so ornate and strange; a little out place with the row houses surrounding it.
Plus, lions.
I love how skinny and strange looking this cat is and how he has on that way too big blue collar. You just know that the owners hear the bell ding-a-linging all day and night long.
Kitten and clocks set to all different times. I would like to meet the people who live here.

Will be going to CT today on Amtrak to visit family. I like riding the train because it makes me feel like something interesting or mysterious might happen ala a Hitchcock film.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Confessions From an Underwear-a-holic

I just saw a preview for this new movie (based on a book) called Confessions of a Shop-a-holic (not to be confused with Steve Martin's book, Shopgirl, also made into a movie starring Claire Danes); this particular film looks pretty bad--lots of slapstick like girl walking into windows, girl sliding across a floor filled with marbles, girl accidentally giving a blow job to a cop. And I don't really relate to the whole Prada, Gucci, Milana Blanhik (sp?) thing, but I do have an underwear shopping problem. I probably own maybe 50 pair of panties at the moment and yet I bought 4 more at the Gap the other day and then another 3 pair today at Urban Outfitters. But they were on sale, people: $1.99 each. I think it's also based out of the fear that I'll run out--this is after how many years on not having access to a washer/dryer---I now have this need to squirrel away lots and lots and lots so if I ever need to go for like 15 months without laundry, I'd still be okay.
Speaking of underwear, I had my own slapstick moment on Monday night when my landlady showed up for the money order. I wasn't expecting her (she was supposed to get it on Saturday) and so I did what I usually do the second I walk in the door which is to take off all of my work clothes as I'm walking up the stairs to my bedroom so that I can immediately be in a tank top and pj bottoms. So, I was not yet changed and not at all dressed and the doorbell rang. I knew if I didn't get downstairs quick, it would be even worse because the landlady has a key and would unlock the door and walk in. I ran downstairs and grabbed this raincoat, yelling, JUST A MINUTE! but she kept ringing the bell. Then I heard her open the screen door and raced to button up the coat and get to the door before she unlocked it. I made it and was able to hand her the $ order, but I'm sure she was like, Why is this woman walking around her house in a raincoat at 7 p.m. on a hot day? I said bye-bye and shut and locked the door. That's when I noticed that the bottom button of the coat had popped open so chances are good that my landlady has now seen my nonny. Maybe she'll feel sorry for me and knock a little off next month's rent.

Poor girl can't even afford underwear! she'll think.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Imagine Trying to Do This

Imagine you had this idea that you wanted the crux of your novel and the entire trajectory of the two central characters to hinge on a single physical act. Then think, what would be the most basic act, something sort of small but potentially devastating depending on the minds and lives of the characters? How about...premature ejaculation? How about PE being the reason that these two people who really do love each other but are naive and scared split on their wedding night and never see each other again? Well, I certainly couldn't describe it without it sounding like something out of Forum magazine, but Ian McEwan can. This is that scene from On Chesil Beach (note: spoiler plus sperm involved). Just to set it up a little bit, this is set in 1962 and both characters are virgins. Oh, and the guy has been abstaining from any form of self-pleasure for a week before this, God knows why. The female, Florence, is petrified about the act of "penetration" that she's only read about in some dusty volume on female sexuality. Anyway, here's how McEwan manages to write about this:

"She was without any other desire but to please him and make this night a success, and without any other sensation beyond an awareness of the end of his penis, strangely cool, repeatedly jabbing and bumping into and around her urethra. Her panic and disgust, she thought, were under control, she loved Edward, and all her thoughts were on helping him have what he so dearly wanted and to make him love her all the more. It was in this spirit that she slid her right hand down between his groin and hers. He lifted a little to let her through. She was pleased with herself for remember that the red manual advised that it was perfectly acceptable for the bride to 'guide the man in.'

"She found his testicles first, and, not at all afraid now, she curled her fingers softly around this extraordinary bristling item she had seen in different forms on dogs and horses, but had never quite believed could fit comfortably on adult humans. Drawing her fingers across its underside, she arrived at the base of the penis, which she held with extreme care, for she had no idea how sensitive or robust it was. She trailed her fingers along its length, noting with interest its silky texture, right to the tip, which she lightly stroked, and then, amazed by her boldness, she moved back down a little, to take his penis firmly, about halfway along, and pulled it downward, a slight adjustment, until she felt it just touching her labia.

"How could she have known what a terrible mistake she was making? Had she pulled on the wrong thing? Had she gripped too tight? He gave out a wail, a complicated series of agonized, rising vowels, the sort of sound she heard once in a comedy film when a waiter, weaving this way and that, appeared to be about to drop a towering pile of soup plates.

"In horror, she let go, as Edward, rising up with a bewildered look, his muscular back arching in spasms, emptied himself over her in gouts, in vigorous but diminishing quantities, filling her navel, coating her belly, thighs, and even a portion of her chin and kneecap in tepid, viscous fluid. It was a calamity, and she knew immediately that it was all her fault, that she was inept, ignorant, and stupid. She should not have interfered, she should never have believed the manual. If his jugular had burst, it could not have seemed more terrible. How typical, her overconfident meddling in matters of awesome complexity; she should have known well enough that her attitude in rehearsals for the string quartet had no relevance here."

There's more. She is disgusted, tries to get it all of of her by using one of the honeymoon pillows, and then runs from the room down to Chesil Beach. He is horrified and then angry. They see each other once more on the beach, but that's it. The marriage is annulled, they go on their separate ways, and both never love anyone as much (remember, it's McEwan of Atonement fame, known perhaps by pop culture only because that book was made into a movie starring Kierra Knightly, the British version of Winona Ryder). I was inappropriately trying to explain this scene to a co-worker and he said, Now I have to Google images of old men. I said, Why? He meant that he had to distract himself from thinking too much about the scene. I guess it was perhaps not the best topic of conversation at 10 a.m. on a Tuesday morning. I always forget that people don't think like I do and I don't find that scene or the idea of that scene particularly sexy. I was trying to explain how difficult it is to write something like that and still keep it charming and interesting in a way.

Dreamt last night that at a certain point in the next hour or so, the apocalypse would descend. I knew it was going to happen and that I would be erased, but no one else would believe me. This may come from listening to "It's the End of the World as We Know It" on repeat on my i-pod. "And I feel fine..."

Monday, September 8, 2008

Most Pathetic, "Pick Me!" Pop Songs

I don't know if I can come up with more than a couple in the few quick minutes I have before I must leave, but I have been meaning to write how every time this particular Abba song makes it through the shuffle, I always think, like, how is this appealing to anyone.

1. "Take A Chance on Me:"
"If you change your mind/I'm the first in line/Honey, I'm still free/Take a chance on me/If you need me, let me know/Gonna be around/If you got no place to go/When you're feeling down/If you're all alone/When the pretty birds have flown/Honey, I'm still free/Take a chance on me/Gonna do my very best/And it ain't no lie/If you put me to the test/If you let me try..."

Like, who would say, Oh, really, okay. It's the chase. The chase is more fun and also, you want to be with someone who has a life, right?

2. "All for Leyna"
Some of the lyrics: "She gave me a night/That's all it was/What will it take until I stop kidding myself, wasting my time/There's nothing else I can do/'Cause I'm doing it all for Leyna. I don't want anyone new/'Cause I'm living it all for Leyna/There's nothing in it for you/ 'Cause I'm giving it all to Leyna..." and... "I'm failing in school/Losing my friends/Making my family lose their minds. /I don't wan to eat/I don't want to sleep/I only want Leyna one more time."
This is one of my favorite, favorite old Billy Joel songs from Glass Houses. You have to hear the tempo to really appreciate it.

(As an aside, one of my co-workers was saying the other day that he has a mantra he uses. He wouldn't tell me what it is because, he said, "That's like saying out loud what you want for your birthday...You won't get it." I said, "I have a mantra too that say in my head all day." He said, "Oh? What's yours then?" I said, "'Don't fuck up. Don't fuck up. Don't fuck up.'" That's pretty much the truth).
Maybe more later, have to run...

Sunday, September 7, 2008

One More Thing

Just received a blog comment from Lisa Marie pointing out that I have 38 entries labelled "cats" and only a few labelled "Lisa Marie." That reminded me that I took photos of my two charges from this weekend, Paul Skoles and Piper. See if you can discern them from this passel of kittens in the photo below. Paul Skoles was always the biggest kittie, and Piper, the most skittish. And look, thanks to Carrie and Padhraig, they are real life cats now.Paul is the more assertive/obnoxious of the two. He needs to be in your lap, on your face, kneading your hair at every second. Piper is a little more demure, but still very friendly. I sort of prefer Piper because he's less aggressive, but the truth is that he's more of a behind-the-scenes bad boy. He misbehaves, but isn't as obvious about it as Paul is.

Plus, they are best buddies.
And Paul meows more often than Piper--this sort of low, mannish meow that makes you think that maybe he has been stabbed and is slowly dying, but doesn't want you to worry about it too much.

What Drugs Will Do to You

So, I did take a couple of the Tylenol-3's, just because, you know, I had them. I don't think I slept at all, the whole night. I sort of drifted in and out of consciousness and would have these startling moments where I would jerk awake in that way that feels like you've just been dropped from a ledge onto a mattress. Lots of vivid dreams/hallucinations, mostly about vampires, for some reason. Maybe because of all of the blood. In the morning, I flushed the rest of the Tylenol down the toilet to prevent myself from become an addict and showing up on the new season of Intervention. I don't know that I could ever get addicted to painkillers; they make me move too slow and don't knock me out. I have had the same experience every time I take Nyquil. It makes me feel like I'm floating on this endless raft between cognizance and sleep, very unsatisfying and weird and you end up sleeping in these weird positions but not realizing it until one half of your body has gone numb. For instance, at one point, I realized that I was lying on my stomach with one of my legs crooked up into the air as if I were dreaming of ballets. Don't know how long I had been positioned that way, but my leg sort of aches, so it was probably a substantive period of time.

Went with Lisa Marie to Rittenhouse today so she could complete her writing assignment for her screenwriting class. We watched an old lady lurch across the pavement and then collapse on the grass and pass out. She wore an old white t-shirt that was not only inside out, it was also on backwards--you could see the tag flapping just below her neck. She was also carrying a brown paper bag with what I guess must've been a liquor bottle inside of it. Every once in awhile, she would attempt to pull herself together and stand up, but she couldn't do it. She would get up on both knees and then try to stand and roll over on her back and sort of struggle for a second and then give up again. It reminded me of watching a bug or a turtle trying to right itself. We did nothing. I asked LM if I should call 911, but she said, What would they do? Arrest her? Is it better for her to be free range or locked up in a cell? Plus, I guess the cops probably wouldn't do anything. Doesn't she have a family? Someone? Who lets a 65 year old woman out of the house and get drunk at 3 p.m.? Well, clearly, she doesn't have a family.

Have been exchanging emails with someone I know from high school, thanks to Facebook. She moved to Florida from Texas with her family when I was in 11th grade and was in the drama club with me. She also became a cheerleader, possibly even the captain of the team. She wrote on my Facebook wall the other day; something about how she was looking forward to doing community theater when she retires and that reminded me of a bunch of the plays we did together in high school, including one where she played this vampy alter ego in a red dress and I played this wallflower type, studious, nerdy, just like I was in real life. But there was this great scene where my character got to be the sexy one, lost the glasses, wore a sexy dress, and shook her hair out--the whole ugly duckling to swan transformation. I had completely forgotten about that until she wrote. We also competed in drama competitions, including doing a two person scene from The Miracle Worker at a national (?) drama competition. No dialogue, except for at the end, where Anne Sullivan says, "Good." It's the scene where Anne Sullivan (the blind teacher, played by Margaret) tries to teach Helen Keller (deaf and blind, portrayed by me) how to say or spell water. It was a very physical scene. I think I even got to slap her or I was slapped, can't remember. I had to flail around on the floor and act like a maniac. I was very, very good at playing blind, particularly since I took out my contacts and so really was in danger of falling of the edge of the stage. We received a superior. It did not change my life. I also used to do musical theater scenes in competition, which, in case you're not familiar with the genre, requires you to dance and sing and act. We got a superior for a scene from Chicago, "Cellblock Tango," to be specific. I was Squish. I had a line that was something like, "And then, he ran into my knife. He ran into my knife 9 times." I think we also did a song and dance number from Company, "One," maybe. I learned how to do step-ball-change and something de poires. And yet last night, while walking in the rain after a dinner at Eulogy with a very nice man, I almost fell down (note: had only had two ginger ales with dinner). Life lesson: you can lead a nerd to grace, but you cannot make her graceful.

Friday, September 5, 2008

More Pictures Plus Blood

So, I made it through my latest dental appointment without too much trouble except for the excessive blood that keeps pouring into the back of my throat. I can't stop smiling at myself in the mirror and looking at the blood between my teeth. It appears that I've just lost/won a fight. I would take a picture but it's grody to the max. The oral surgeon was very nice. I had to have another one of those horrible shots to the roof of my mouth and he sang while he did it, "You're okay, you're okay, you're doing fine!" I paged through a magazine for a few moments while that half of my face went dead and he came back in and said, Now, tell me if you feel any of this. I thought he was just testing if I was numb and then he said, "One root out!" He had my head pressed against the side of his stomach and he was singing again, "Sit real still. Don't move. You're doing great! Keep still, almost there, don't move..." It was over in a jiffy. I didn't even feel him pull out the tooth which is so weird. And now I'm sitting here with gauze in my mouth. They don't like you using gauze too much for some reason--I guess it disturbs the area--but I was starting to feel sick from swallowing blood. Plus, of course, I know better than the surgeon. He also wrote me a prescription for Tylenol 3 but I'm not going to take that until much later because it'll probably make me sleepy.

Below, please find a cat who lives in a local marketplace. I believe he has been featured before. I didn't have many photos this week b/c we were off Monday, I was at the retreat for two days, and I didn't go in today. Still, a cat is a cat is a cat.

I'm not really sure what this white statue even is. A very long-necked lion? A dragon?A seahorse? I like the red door and the white together.
Here is an actual plate of Pope John Paul the 17th as ordered on late night QVC. So, yes, in case you were ever curious, people to actually buy these things and display them with pride.

Your Virgin of the week. This is one of a few Scottie dogs that line the gateway of a very pretty house
This is the other half of that mural (see previous Friday publication with the grandma holding the miniature grandma). I don't know why she's wearing a tie of dollar bills, perhaps she is the Saint of Strip Clubs?
Ernesto through my window. He couldn't figure out why I was just standing out there and not coming in to see him.
Here he is with a really round face. A pumpkin cat.
I'm still bleeding. This is disgusting. Padhraig just called to make sure I'm still going to check on the cats and he said it's normal to keep bleeding and that I should just put in more gauze. He said he's had loads of teeth removed and that it'll stop after a couple of hours. But the instructions say only to use gauze if you're bleeding a lot. I can't tell if this is a lot or a little.

Art Crumbs

Lisa Marie had her video installation reception last night at ICA (the Institute of Contemporary Art) which is located in West Philadelphia so that made it easy for me to walk over after work and people-watch rather than look at the pieces. Her video wasn't showing that night, so I'll go back to see it another time, but there was a video by a woman that featured her endlessly breaking through these walls with a heavy hammer and chopping at wood in a skirt. I didn't understand it and so decided it was dumb.
They're also exhibiting Robert Crumb's work. I went through six different phases of liking and hating him just in the process of moving from frame to frame. He's clearly talented and interesting, but then he has all of these violent and gross pieces like women stabbing each other while having sex with a strung out hippie or a hick chopping off the heads of chickens so he can have sex with them while they're wiggling. But then you also get the sense that he's making fun of a lot of the things that seem pretentious, like the extreme hippie culture . I wouldn't want to own anything of his (well, yes, of course I would if I could then sell it and keep the money), but I can see why people like him). I asked John what he thought and he said he's not really into illustration. I was like, Oh, right, illustration, since I tend to classify everything in the same way I did in elementary school. He does drawings, Van Gogh paints. Like that.

Met LM's friend who does have this sort of Clark Kent look about him. He was funny--looks kind of conservative but then once you start talking to him, he's wry and dark in a good way. Josh was there too. We waved. He was wearing a pastel button up shirt that reminded me of someone's dad. Another guy had on a red bandana jacket; like a giant, giant bandana made into a suit coat and he had his bangs pointed into a vee in the front of his head and wore a huge hoop earring in one ear. I guess he was going for some kind of pirate theme (success!). I am not made for an art scene or a drama scene or an artfully dramatic scene because I can't and don't compete to look the weirdest. Oh, that reminds me, some girl came over and started talking to us (she bummed a cigarette from me) and she wouldn't go away. She was new in town, I guess that's why she was so friendly. Even Clark couldn't get rid of her with his superpowers. We finally left to misbehave elsewhere.

I have yet another dental appointment in about an hour, this time at the oral surgeons. I just want it to be over.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Miss Me?

I have been awol for a few reasons.

1. Can't seem to find the time to write on the weekends, what with all my heavy socializing, reading of library books, cat chasing, looking at my new haircut from every angle in the mirror, and Solitaire playing.

2. Was away at a work retreat in Atlantic City for two days. I felt flattered to be included, but also kind of unequipped to add anything of substance, given my semi-newness at the University. That said, I'm also discovering that I know more about development and Institutional Advancement than I thought I did.

They published my newest piece in Maven, called "Two Boys for the Price of One." I'm slightly surprised that they published it as I wrote it, especially since I used the word "fuck" (though they did amend it to read "f**k" which could mean "fork" or "folk" or "funk" or "fink" or "fluk") I'm still in contact with one of the boys in said article, and one might wonder if I'm just a little bit worried that he will be offended to learn the actual details of the situation, but I'm not because (a). we've decided to just be friends (possibly friends with benefits); (b). I don't know if he even ever reads my blog; (c). the whole situation happened awhile ago; (d). I can always claim that it's simply fiction (e). he likely wouldn't care anyway, which is why we're just friends wb (maybe). In any case, I like the piece.

I can't tell you how happy I am that John McCaine Mutiny has chosen Sara Palintologist as his VP. I couldn't think of a less qualified, more hypocritical, and ridiculous partner for JMM, unless he were to have decided to enlist the support of Charles Bronson (he and Sara aren't all that different).