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Hi! It's me again, back from Bridefest2K5 (a.k.a. where the female members of my family enjoy watching the soon-to-be newest female member of our family, my brother's fiance Jen, try on wedding dresses) and 1000 more well-earned miles on the 'ole Subaru.
On Thursday I drove up to Redding to see my parents and grandpappy, and lost half my body weight in sweat trying to run in 102-degree heat. I really didn't believe my parents that it was even scientifically possible to be that hot at 8:00 p.m., but I had to acquiesce to their claims when Penny and I later drove into town to the Barnes & Noble and the outside thermostat read 95 at 9:30. Still, I cannot feel too bad for Redding-ites because look at the views from my run:
Then Friday morning I took Katie for a walk during which she managed to get so disgustingly dirty ON MY WATCH that she wasn't allowed back into the house. This doesn't bode well for when I have children.
Also, my dad needed some help setting up his Excel sign-in sheet for class. After 25 years as a surgeon, he retired (kind of, long story short) and started teaching welding! Check out the artful surround he welded for the generator, which, BTW, came in handy when the house lost power Thursday evening, leaving me hauling garbage bags of unfinished laundry back to LA. Because I am 28 and still save up laundry to do at my parents'. Yes. Yes, I am 28 and still bring laundry to my parents'.
Saturday it was wedding dress after wedding dress in San Francisco, none of which I can show you because the designs are all PROPRIETARY and TOP SECRET and also Jen (yay! yay! yay!) found The (gorgeous) Dress which is also TOP SECRET (if not PROPRIETARY). We topped the day off with dinner at the Pacific Cafe, where only one of my pics, that of the beautiful bride-to-be and her awesome maid of honor, Nicole, turned out.
Sunday on the way back to LA I met up with Ursula for breakfast in Sunnyvale and passed off my FIRST EVER finished product, a scarf. Doesn't she look adorable in it?
BTW, Urs -- I found that 20 you stuffed in my sweater pocket when I was powdering my nose, you dork! Your sneakery will not go unavenged!! I will pay for a meal someday!
So now I am home with Fred & Ethel, who are safe and sound due to the loving ministrations of Laurie and Shannon and Karman, and so happy to have six (gulp!) more days to myself before school starts.
Random Bits. And Hi!
Hi! Remember me? I once blogged here. Well, I can't be so dramatic. It's only been 9 days. Still, feels like forever.
And really, I have no excuse. Only that there have been a lot of changes around here, and I've been mulling them. And I promised Carolyn I wouldn't get all philosophical again, but what can you do?
First, I am done with my summer internship. I try to be all YAY! about it, but really?
— Ethel's surgery
— Microsoft Access book
That is what futzing around with formulas and listening to my cube-neighbor talk about bagging La Perla models for two months netted me. $100.90! Thank goodness for kind parents, leftover tax refunds, Easy Mac, frozen corn dogs and 5/$1 frozen burritos. Oh, and a yard sale at Laurie's.
Also, I have started RUNNING. Not like, for my life, but FOR EXERCISE. Aside from three trips to the gym and a couple jogs around the block at Christmas last year, I have not exercised for real in THREE YEARS. My quads hate me. They are trying to secede from the rest of my body, but I am General Ulysses S. Grant and they WILL SUBMIT to the greater cardio-vascular good of this body-state.
Furthermore, the first of my best friends from high school, Tina, is getting married! She got engaged on Wednesday and is getting married on September 25. Of 2005. Yes, she is crazy but she has been with her wonderful boyfriend for 10 years so can you blame her? I can't believe I'm going to boogie down with this PYT in her WEDDING DRESS in a month and a half! The mind reels.
Other than digesting all this change, I've been keeping myself busy signing up for classes, painting my nails, seeing Ascensceur pour l'Échafaud, the re-release of Louis Malle's first film. Can you believe he made the film at 25? Miles Davis soundtrack was AMAZING.
p.s. You know who shouldn't direct but apparently now is? Gwyneth Paltrow.
When I saw the thumbnail of her pseudo-thoughtful frown marring my NY Times homepage, I was like nooooooooooooooo. Then I see the tagline, "Gwyneth Paltrow, Director." Noooooooooooo. The last thing this world needs is for her to suddenly start "crafting a story," "realizing a vision." Next thing you know that bitch will be writing screenplays. And I'll have to read more hideously insulting interviews with her in MY magazines. MY W. MY Harper's Bazaar. And of course if you read the NY Times article, you'll see that she has decided that she has an Instinct for directing. Because why on earth should she wait for, oh, you know, the cinematic community to decide whether she's worth her salt when she knows from watching the dailies from her 10-minute short that she's the next Steven Spielberg, a.k.a. her Uncle Mort.
I'm sorry. I don't know exactly why I hate Gwyneth. I really only Hate a few people on earth. Gary Bauer of the Family Research Council. This girl Mary from high school who slept with my boyfriend less than eight hours after I first hooked up with him. An old co-worker. And half the time I just feel sad for them. But not Gwyneth. Somehow I cannot conjure up even a drop of sympathy for that twit. Mainly I just want to lock her in a room and make her watch Shallow Hal and View from the Top over and over again, and then let's hear about your instincts, mmmkay?
Wherever I Lay My Hat Is My Home?
It's funny how everything seems to converge at once.
- A couple weeks ago, I see the Best Places to Live and start thinking.
- Then Saturday, hanging out with Penny, she tells me she's thinking of moving back to the Bay Area after school ends, to be closer to The Fam and to her precious Giants.
- Then, driving home, we pass through my old neighborhood, Los Feliz, where I lived as a nearly-married with my ex-boyfriend Allan, and where I've always thought I'd return to. And of course Allan called at that very moment to get the contact information of our old landlords.
- Because Allan is living in Texas, applying to rent a 2+2 with a yard and 2-car garage for less than I pay for my scrunched 1+even-scrunchier-1 here in LA.
- And today Laurie e-mails me photos and news of our love (well, hers, really, I am just along for the panting and political intrigue), Mikhail Khordokovsky.
- Then tonight Laurie and I talk again, and we analyze the cities available to us. What are we willing to sacrifice in terms of culture for space? Could we live in a red state, even if we found made its one blue blob our home? And right when we'd decided the only place for us to live was abroad...
- I read Sammy's post on even just the confusion of buying a loaf of bread when another country becomes your home.
And I wonder. I mean, I feel like an outsider here, in LA, only a few hundred miles from my hometown. And often I like it, the difference between Me and Them. Even if half (at least) of Them aren't even more LA than me. They're all transplants, the tragically ambitious. But I like watching them, in their miniskirts and cowboy boots (this year's Uggs) and their Mustangs and Bentleys. A parade of inconsequence and money.
And I like the challenge of finding good friends here, separating the wheat from the chaffe. It's almost a stronger bond because you've found someone real and good amongst the people who won't remember your name because it will never be in lights or get them anywhere.
Could the challenge of living permanently abroad be just what I need? Where will I end up? I'm here for another two years. And after that? Where will I make my home?