Thursday, February 28, 2002

I can't seem to get Zero 7's "Destiny" off repeat in my car stereo.

Wednesday, February 27, 2002

Why didn't anyone tell me about Pizzicato Five earlier? I now have "Baby Love Child" stuck in my head. Sigh.

In Honor of the Brightest Full Moon of the Year

And now
just like it's always been
You My Lunar Queen
-Cousteau, "You My Lunar Queen"

Under blue moon I saw you
So soon you'll take me
Up in your arms
Too late to beg you or cancel it
Though I know it must be the killing time
Unwillingly mine

Up against your will
Through the thick and thin
He will wait until
You give yourself to him
-Echo & The Bunnymen, "The Killing Moon"

I saw it written and I saw it say
Pink moon is on its way
And none of you stand so tall
Pink moon gonna get you all
It's a pink moon
It's a pink, pink, pink, pink, pink moon.
-Nick Drake, "Pink Moon" (Yeah yeah yeah, I know it's technically The Snow Moon tonight. Wait. Oh my God. I know it's The Snow Moon. That's just so sad.)

Excerpt from Unpublished First Novel Slow Road to Suckage

The biggest exercise of futility when I was a wee little boy of seven with scabs on my knees and dirt under my finger nails was dealing with the neighborhood bully, Dennis Smith. He was a huge clod of a kid in torn up jeans and stained shirts. Dennis also had sinus problems. The sound of sniffling was the sound of terror for many a seven-year-old. I still get chills during the height of hay fever season.

One of Dennis’s favorite forms of torture was the “yes-no” exercise. You’d be walking merrily along your way down a street lined with towering maples, the theme of The A-Team in your heart. Suddenly, the air fills with the chainsaw sound of a husky psychotic nine-year-old inhaling air through his mucus-clogged nostrils. The next thing you know, you’re lying on your back with Dennis straddling your stomach and his elbow in the air, his fist cocked and aimed square at your nose. “OK runt. Yes means no and no means yes. Do you want me to clock you?” Dennis would say. No matter your answer, rest assured you’d be walking the rest of the way home with your own sinus problems.

Monday, February 25, 2002

Action Plan

When giving me advice (often unsolicited), my pop likes using middle-management inspirational phrases such as "marketing yourself is a full time job" and "what you need is an action plan." He made me read Dale Carnegie's How to Win Friends and Influence People when I was in third grade after I told him that I wasn't fitting in. (I went from being a sullen boy who didn't fit in to a sullen acting like a door-to-door aluminum siding salesman from 1955 boy who didn't fit in. I haven't asked my pop's advice on my social like since then.) Lately, I've begun to see why certain people are attracted to the middle-management mentality. What it does is simplify life - gets rid of all the messy complications like the economy and chance and human interactions, and leaves you with very straightforward steps that you can take.

If I were to tell my pop about LA Chick, he'd say (after berating me with "Well, you know there are more fish in the sea" - pop likes the cliches as well), "What you need is an action plan son." That action plan would consist of the following:

1. Find a job in L.A.
2. Move to L.A.
3. Get the girl.

Ta da! Sounds like the tagline to a Nora Ephron romantic comedy, no? Put in those terms, I get dangerously close to optimistic.

Now, when I start thinking about how to go about finding a job in L.A., well . . . Hmmm, I think I still have some Sierra Nevada Pale Ales left in the fridge.

Anyway, I have started putting the Action Plan in motion. I've got a headhunter down in L.A., and I'm trying to use my law school's job postings to hunt down potential opportunities. But the problem is the lack of control. After I send out my resume, it's just sitting and waiting. I'm not a Type A kinda guy, but the lack of control thing does get on my nerves. And I know I should be using the waiting period as an opportunity to continue my creative efforts (how I do hate middle-management speak), but that's a lot easier said then done. Sigh.

Sunday, February 24, 2002

Quote I Wish I Wrote of the Day: I am waiting for the stars to change so we will talk again I'm impatient for the sun to change so we can meet again . . . "Cherry" by Curve

Your Results:

You were male in your last earthly incarnation.

You were born somewhere around the territory of what is now know as modern East Australia, approximately in the year 1825.

Your profession was: philosopher, thinker.

A brief psychological profile of you in that past life:
Timid, constrained, quiet person. You had creative talents, waited till that life to be liberated. Sometimes environment considered you strange.

A lesson that your last past life wishes you to learn in your present life is:
Make the world more beautiful. Physical and spiritual deserts are just waiting for your touch. Keep smiling!

do you remember?

Heh heh, this may explain why:
1) I've always wanted to visit Sydney;
2) My pop's fave city is Sydney;
3) I'm doing this whole writing thing; and
4) I shudder when I think of my eventual return to the law (litigation tends not to make the world more beautiful).

Saturday, February 23, 2002

At least I'm in the 4% for now.
February 22, 2002 – 4:43 P.M.

So I’m back down in L.A. now, waiting for my pals to show up. It’s kind of difficult writing something I know I won’t be pleased with (yes, I see the dangling participle, but sometimes correct grammar sounds incredibly awkward) in two days.

Well, the only way I’d be pleased with this entry is if (1) I see her this weekend and (2) she’s actually pleased to see me. Theoretically, the first bit is possible. In all likelihood, I could see the pal who introduced me to her a little over a month ago this weekend, and then convince him to get her to come out with us (unless he utters those terrible words “She’s seeing someone”). The second bit is tougher.

Why do I keep thinking about her? Mainly because she is as much as a music geek as I am, she wasn’t afraid to sing in public (though the alcohol may have a lot to do with that), and she was easy on the eyes. How many women who aren’t afraid of singing Shawn Colvin songs about therapy can you say that about? My pal kept saying, “You two should get a room.” Unfortunately, I was way too subtle about exchanging contact information and I didn’t get her phone number. I e-mailed her at work, but that’s not the same. The e-mails remain unreplied. The fact I currently live over 350 miles away from her probably doesn’t help either.

OK, I know most guys are just able to move on. To paraphrase Beetle from Vurt, “Life is short, and my bed is warm and wide.” Unfortunately, my self-esteem is a bit shot (proving The Three Visit Barrier may have been a bad thing for me), and blue-eyed blondes tend not to go after my type (I ain’t a round eye). So I don’t exactly have a line of cute woman queuing up at my door.

And even if I did, I doubt any of them could discuss Liz Phair albums, and debate whether Lenny Kravitz is a no talent regurgitate 70s funk hack who couldn’t write an original song to save his life (she didn’t think so, I kept my opinion to myself in one of my few moments of intelligence).

If I did manage to see her, my left eye has suddenly gone disgustingly wonky. Everything to the left of the iris is red, the type of red you’d see when you mix Tabasco with egg yolk, with the same consistency as well. I don’t think it’s pink eye since I don’t have a runny discharge. Anyway, it’s not improving my self-esteem any. Sheesh.

So now I’m waiting for my law school pals to show up, and by the time I get to post this, I’ll either be disappointed (95% probability with a myriad of possible reasons why – most feared – “Oh, she’s doing fine. She’s seeing someone now”), still uncertain (4%), or ecstatic (1% - she’s coyly asking from the shower when I’ll be ready). Sigh.

Songs You Should Avoid When Yearning After Someone:
Shiver – Coldplay
Destiny – Zero 7
How Soon Is Now? – The Smiths
Teardrop – Massive Attack
Oh L’Amour – Erasure

Wednesday, February 20, 2002

Quote I Actually Wrote of the Day: "I can be a very persuasive man with a sidearm." Jack Parsons in first draft of Untitled Second Novel by Yours Truly.

Which tarot card are you?
The Three Visit Barrier
When I told my pal about The Three Visit Barrier, he thought it was just an excuse I made for not talking to Record Chick at the local Borders. To see whether my theory was bunk or if I actually knew what I was talking about (for once), I made a visit to Borders. The release of the Another Late Night compilation by Zero 7 served as my cover.

So what's The Three Visit Barrier? OK, let's say you see some sweet thang at the local Starbucks, Borders, Tower Records, [Insert Corporate Conglomerate Sucking the Soul out of Independent Stores Here]. You have three visits at the maximum to make your move. If you don't make your move within three visits, you become "The Creepy Guy Who Keeps Coming In and Furtively Staring at The Coffee Chick/Book Chick/Record Chick [Insert Retail Lackey Here]," and who the hell wants to go out with that?

Record Chick at the local Borders is cute, though not overly so. Blonde hair done in a very simple straight chin length cut, blue eyes, a face two steps across the Plain Jane county border into the Attractive city limits. She wouldn't turn heads if she was walking though Westwood or the 3rd Street Promenade, but in Silicon Valley, she's head and shoulders above the average woman you'd see on the street.

Anyway, the local Borders is a hop, skip and a jump (minus the skip and jump) from my pad. Since of late the second novel has been coming in fits and starts, I've been going to Borders to gain some inspiration. I left The Three Visit Barrier four state lines ago, and continued to make furtive glances to Record Chick (c'mon, what do you expect, I'm a guy living in an area where there are 3,000 excess single men).

When I hit Borders yesterday, I used Title Sleuth to see whether the Zero 7 compilation had arrived. It hadn't. So I improvised. There's a DVD that I had been wanting to get, Title Sleuth said Borders had a copy, but it wasn't on the shelf. So as Record Chick was heading to the DVD section, I managed to talk to her and ask her if they had a copy of aforementioned DVD.

Record Chick's Flirtation Filter was set on max. Rigid stance, avoiding eye contact as much as possible, very forced smile afterwards. So I think there is some validity to The Three Visit Barrier. "Well, maybe she was creeped out before The Three Visit Barrier." Ah, but ya see, Mr./Ms. Wisenheimer, before I hit The Three Visit Barrier, Record Chick actually smiled at me a couple of times (not "Meow! You look so yummy I can eat you right up" smiles, but definitely not "I'm only smiling at you out of store policy" smiles).

Oh well. This might be karma trying to tell me to stay away from blonde blue-eyed women who are into music.

P.S. - Record Chick isn't the woman not so obliquely referenced in earlier posts. Ugh, I'm using double negatives.

Tuesday, February 19, 2002

Quote I Wish I Wrote of the Day: "I have given up trying to recognize you in the surging wave of the next moment." Rainer Maria Rilke

Which John Cusack Are You?

Way too on the nose if you ask me.

What Pattern Are You?
Being in a creative funk sure gives you a lot of time to (1) navel gaze and (2) web surf. So why not combine the two? Back when I was finishing up my first attempt at writing a novel in October, I went on an on-line personality test binge fueled by a helluva lot of Coronas. The "So Accurate It Makes You Want To Scream 'Get Out Of My Mind!'" Award goes to the Keirsey Temperament and Character Sorter. Apparently, I'm a Healer. The good news is that William Shakespeare was a healer. The bad news is that healers are supposedly found in 1 percent of the population, and that Sir Galahad "The Chaste" was a healer. Doesn't really increase my chances of getting laid any time soon. Sheesh.

Monday, February 18, 2002

I can't get the lyrics to Coldplay's Shiver out of my head. Sigh. Unrequited love may be the basis for great songs, but it really screws with your serotonin levels.
So for the past month, I've been caught in a rather unhealthy cycle. I keep swinging between pseudo-deep musings you'd hear from your Aunt Mabel in Iowa like "life is too short to give your heart to someone who doesn't want it" and equally unhelpful but true thoughts like "she was cute, she wasn't afraid to sing Shawn Colvin songs in public and you actually sang in tune when you were around her, you were meant to be Ewan to her Nicole - way not to get her phone number jackass." Throw into this mix the fact I left an extremely well paying but extremely stressful professional gig to follow my muse, and am recently coming to grips with the fact that in the war between art and commerce, commerce pays a lot better while your muse tends to leave you at inopportune times (a gust of wind, an e-mail unreplied) and doesn't pay diddly, I'm not exactly the poster boy for stability right now. A couple of weeks ago, I read about blogging in Time and promptly forgot about it. Then, tonight, I was doing a random google search on Kids in the Hall, and after a few more random permutations, I read my first blog. What the hell, this is better than watching Everybody Loves Raymond reruns and wondering if I have an original voice or instead I'm just bogarting from Michael Marshall Smith, Jonathan Carroll and Nick Hornby. Now, here I am, hoping that somehow I manage to regain some equilibrium through this.

Quote I wish I wrote of the day: "Love and death are very similar, because they're the times in your life when you most want to believe in magic, when you yearn for some symbolic act or retrospective edit which can change the world you find yourself in." Hap from Michael Marshall Smith's One of Us.