December 17, 2009

see also: 'rithmetic.

A recent conversation between the woman who works the information desk at the Upland Library and me:

Me: Can you help me locate your study guides for the GRE?
Her: Sure, they're over here.
Me: Maybe my search failed because I can't remember what the 'R' stands for.
Her: Probably writing.

December 16, 2009

come on, texas, i'm a hell of a girl.

It's come to my attention that people in Austin are less than keen on people from Los Angeles. WTF? I'm awesome. Here are some reasons you should let this go:

1. In California I've lived in towns that can only be called suburbs of Los Angeles by a supreme stretch of the imagination. The geography snobs in Los Angeles assume I live in the middle of a mostly uninhabited desert, wrinkle their noses in confusion while asking if Pomona's in San Bernardino, and judge me silently.
2. I eat red meat.
3. I would choose good barbecue over In'N'Out any day of the week.
4. I don't own skinny jeans, I've never had an ironic haircut, and I get Silverlake confused with Los Feliz.
5. I know how to two-step.
6. I don't know--nor have I ever worked with--any celebrities. And if I did, I wouldn't name drop. Okay, well, there is one story I like to tell about Keanu Reeves, but it's mostly a joke at his expense. Trust me, Texas, it would make you laugh. If you resist the urge to snub me because I'm from California, maybe I'll tell it to you sometime.
7. I'm learning how to talk about freeways without using definite articles. I'm doing this for you, Texas!
8. I drink bourbon. I know y'all don't make bourbon, but I bet you would rather drink bourbon than whatever it is you assume women from Los Angeles drink (Zima? Appletinis?).
9. I think "y'all" is a valuable pronoun. It trumps other second-person plural pronouns employed by the non-southern parts of this country, e.g. "you guys" or (worse) saying, "you" while jerking your head or looking around at the faces in front of you to indicate inclusion.
10. My great-grandfather grew up in Texas, where he broke wild horses for a living. I inherited his charmingly foul mouth and appreciation for bad-assery.

I think we'll get along just fine. And if you're going to be stubborn about it, I'll just pretend I'm from Phoenix, Az.

December 7, 2009

i'm back! and saying goodbyes.

The epic technology shitstorm of 2009 ended last week when the wonderful computer surgeons at Dell returned my laptop good as new. Hurrah! I don't think the staff at the outsourced repairs call center were trained to respond to Americans offering to kiss them, btw.

I've been in Mt. Baldy with Willa a lot as part of my Saying Goodbye to Los Angeles project, and last week she saw her first deer. My long-legged girl pranced over a stream and play-bowed at a perplexed doe and fawn, who high-tailed it up the mountain when Willa tried to leap her way towards them.

I opted to stand statue-still and watch them rather than take photos, because I don't want life to become a series of photographs I edit to tell a Facebook narrative. So here's a shot of Willa looking forlorn next to a leafless tree. It's finally autumn in these parts. Goodbye, hiking in the mountains.

I ran a race with my mom. My mom is one of those people who runs when she's not being chased. I thought I was learning how to be one of those people, which you may already know because I've been chirping about it to no end. (Running is great! It keeps me from smoking cigarettes!) Well, running a race with 1,000+ other people just makes you feel like a herd of something. I run slow. Were we actually being chased, the predators would have singled me out somewhere around mile two. But whatever, it made the mom happy and I got a free t-shirt. Training for the race was kind of fun: The track at Pomona College is adjacent to the undeveloped part of campus, and it smells like California sage. Every drive home since the beginning of driving has smelled like that along the way.

So: Mountains? Check. Athletic Bonding with Mom? Sort-of Check.

December 4, 2009

saying goodbye to rex holmes.

When it first dawned on me that leaving Southern California actually meant, well, leaving Southern California, I was slouching in the dining room of The Press whisper-singing a song that I've heard Rex Holmes play more times than I can count.

They played it at the show at Border's, when we ordered cokes from the cafe and doctored them from hidden flasks. They played it in my living room, in the last of the great party houses of my twenties. They played it at the Knitting Factory and the Hi-Brow. Jerry played pieces of it sitting across a couch from me only weeks after we met, when he was still working out the lyrics. I've shared many 3:00 a.m. parking lot moments exchanging directions to the after-party with these five people, and they are the bee's knees, let me tell you--but it's time to do something else now.

So goodbye, post-bar drinks at Tracy's. Goodbye dancing in offstage shadows, rusty nails, the unhappy-marriage bicker-banter between songs. Play a show next time I'm in town, won't you?