Sunday, December 7, 2008


Thanksgiving four-day weekend flew by between dinners at my mom's, at Josie's, and finally at Diehard's dad's house. We started eating turkey and pie at the north end of the valley at 5 and had gobbled our way down to the south-east by 10. "Gobble" -- get it? Oh YES, lame word-play, I'm all about it!

And then on Sunday morning there was the small plumbing situation at the glorious villa apartments where I reside. The post-traumatic stress still lingers, so let's just say that glancing down as one showers and watching rust-colored water ooze up the freaking drain is hurl-inducing. At least I was not alone; a gaggle of dripping wet neighbors in robes and/or hastily thrown-on t-shirts and shorts were already outside the apartment manager's office when I got there.

I'm also post-Thanksgiving thankful that my weekend wasn't a blazing hell of a lot worse. Monday morning December 1st, one of Slick's client's arrived half an hour early for his appointment. He left his sunglasses on as he slumped into a chair. I cheerily offered him a cup of freshly brewed coffee with a smile and was about to launch into perky half-hour-killing chatter when he took off his sunglasses. His black-and-blue swollen-shut eye froze me mid-sentence. He smiled weakly, and I poured him some coffee without saying a word; the man needed some quiet time to blank out after most likely explaining the shiner more than once or twice and to various law enforcement personnel.

Slick didn't appear surprised by his client's appearance when he arrived, greeting the man with an "Oh, hi ... yeah, follow me." The client put down his cup, which he'd been clutching to chest like a disaster victim at a storm shelter, and meekly followed Slick into his office.

Besides that, nothing dramatically blog-worthy happened last week, but lots and lots, and lots, of holiday and post-election-volunteering work. I've been keeping my three-times a week two-mile track run commitment. Oh yeah, I'm aiming to run the Palm Springs half-marathon in February. And the Women Running Wild 5K in March is tempting, but I don't know if I can put my bowed legs through the abuse it would take to not be embarrassed by straggling waaaaaay behind the narrow-hipped, gazelle-legged type-A runners 5K's attract.

Anyway, that's all for now; feel free to hit the sack. Hope this thrill-filled post didn't scare the sandman away ^_^

Friday, November 21, 2008

Because of original material for public consumption ...


And because while watching this guy's routine, the Mexican side of me cracked up while the Filipino side said "WHAT THE PUCK?!" -- and vice versa, enjoy (oh yeah, FYI: plenty of blue language):

Part 1

Part 2

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Well hello again, criminally neglected public blog !

No, I didn't spontaneously combust from election landslide shock on November 4th. I survived the pounding nerves and lived to tell, albeit two weeks late and a dollar short as usual. The NaNoWriMo project has hit a wall, too, but I'm not as worried as I was in the beginning with keeping up with the daily word quota. It's as if the story is napping for a spell, still there, and I'm relishing sketching back story for my three characters for now.

So back to Super Tuesday 2008. Continuing this blog's tradition of shitastic photography by yours truly, here are shots taken from my new cell phone -- taken before I noticed that there was a lens-protecting plastic film still covering the lens.

At local Democratic Party HQ, the wonderful people I met calling Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Florida for 8 hours nonstop:

If you live in either of those three states and voted Obama-Biden: THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!!!

If you hung up on, "fuck off"-ed, or barked "I'm voting for McSAME" and then hung up on me or my cohorts: FUCK ALL Y'ALLS! I kid, I kid! ...sort of.

After my spit ran dry and I hit the break room for the Sam Adams lager donated by one of Big Guy's neighbors, I handed my cell phone and its 1500 free weekday minutes over to my relief and refused to look at the live feed from the precincts that were just closing in the east coast. My nerves were a mess and I just could not bear to watch after hearing that Kenucky went to McCain. DH picked me up soon after and we headed to the Agua Caliente casino where the post-election banquet was scheduled for 8 p.m. We killed time feeding the video bandits on the main floor. DH made sure I didn't wander to the sports lounge on the way to the restroom in the meantime and tear my hair out while watching the news crawls on the flat screens all set on CNN, MSNBC, FOX, etc.

Neither one of us dared to check our cells for news either; we turned them off. We turned them back on once we were approaching the ball room at about half past seven...oh wow, we heard thunderous noise, and when we entered the projector above read "PRESIDENT-ELECT OBAMA..." and around that point I started shaking -- maybe it was all the Sam Adams and pots of coffee for the last two days, and sugary snacks from the volunteers but oh man, I really didn't see this emotional freight train coming at me.

Ever since that long night before the nomination, when he appeared to be losing to Hillary Clinton, I've been just not wanting to hope for so much, so afraid of waking up to another razor thin margin that allowed for Diebold voting machines and "hanging chad" means of stealing another election. We hugged, and then the people around us starting jumping up and down -- was booming and with everyone's jumping and wailing and next thing we know we're in the middle of this massive group/ballroom-sized hug. Words fail me. And when I looked up at the screen and saw the student in blue live from Spellman College, on her knees crying, I lost it.

Then it was the party-of-the-year-time:

That tiny casino staffer serving the cake looked terrified: over 500 drunk, laughing, crying, sugared to all shit liberals who hadn't slept a full night in weeks all converging around her, drooling over that blueberry and strawberry-bedazzled cake, with more pouring in from the valet entrance.

Locally the Democratic candidate and party HQ chocolate chip cookie snatcher Manuel Perez won the State Assembly seat but Julie Bornstein couldn't pry the US Senate seat from Mary Bono Mack's clutches. But at least Gary "Race Baiter" Jeandron is now just an ugly campaign memory.

Oh yes, regarding the razor-thin margin that allowed that bigoted piece of filth Proposition 8 -- that's a whole other post, and there's no time to do justice to how disgusting it is that my sister and my uncle's civil rights are being stomped on by "evangelicals" and Mormons who are run by the biggest closet cases -- Ted Haggard anyone?

I also have a Blogger-related experience to share regarding this issue. One of those closeted Christians who turned out to be deeply sucked into this Australian-based fundie scam sect was one of my first favorited bloggers when I started this blog. He appeared sweet, intelligent, and open-minded as far as his professed missionary work seemed to allow. But from what I gathered from my last visit to his blog, he disappeared for about 2 months then had a church-issued bride when he posted again.

What first pinged my gaydar was his frequent pitches for and links to Hillsong sites, but also this feeling from some of the pictures -- he was a pretty skilled amateur photographer -- but some of the pictures taken of him had this vibe, like I was looking but not looking at him, and one photo in particular where he was in front of one of Hillsong's ugly office building mega churches with a caption about what a thrill it was and a chance of a lifetime to be their with multiple exclamation points, as if he was meeting a rock star instead of "reverend" Brian Houston with the child molestor dad and homosexual "therapy" projects. His eyes looked so sad and it was jarring with the big pasted-on grin he flashed.

(OK,here comes a New Age California moment, you've been warned!). I've learned to heed that third-eye sense I get from people's faces, expressions, postures in pictures, because I've ignored it before to my detriment and it's never lead me astray. Which is probably the core reason I hate to be photographed myself unless I have full editorial control of the finished product. I think the native Americans were right in that a little bit of your soul in that moment in time is captured by film no matter what you do or wear to hide your true self/state of mind.

So this fills me with deep gratitude that my family, while originally conservative Catholics, were not as maniacal as to coerce my gay uncle or my sister into one of these "gay reprogramming" programs. It looks like I'm scrunching weeks' worth of posts again, so I'll stop there.

Anyway, I was also here last Thursday night, walking alongside my sister Josie and the love of her life, whom I've considered my sister-in-law since before they entered a domestic partnership.

Oh, and while we were screaming/crying/hugging in the ballroom somehow I managed to answer my cell to the Big Guy calling from Ohio yelling "WHOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO YEEEEEEEAAAAAAAAAHHHHH!!!"

Definitely not a WHOOOOOOO YEEEAAAH kind of guy on any given normal day. And when he returned last week he was still ruddy and beaming. And a lot of backed up work sucked us all up since then. And oy, I still haven't told him about the return-to-sort-of-teaching tentative offer. That's just too much in the air right now due to budget shortfalls-wrangling; and yes, I'm feeling a bit guilty putting out feelers for a new job but playing like I'm sticking around for another year or so.

Here are some photos from the Desert Sun:

Finally, Sylmar, you are in my heart tonight.

Monday, November 3, 2008

I'm really missing my old chillaxing blogger reading days now :(

Hope to catch up with y'all soon, but came to drop by to say I'm going to try to capture and post some of the anxiety/drama/fun/VICTORY (!!!) of tomorrow night's local Democratic election party at the Agua Caliente casino. Will be spending all day with the rest of the legal crew at the Dem HQ again. Our Big Guy won't be with us; he has bigger fish to fry in Ohio. Yep, he's a Democratic Party Voter Protection Program volunteer.

Makes me cringe at all the assumptions I used to have about lawyers. Not all of them are completely craven weasels :)

I have never seen the big guy like this. His brother said last week that it's like the sixties again and he's that young "Kennedy Democrat," risking a perma-file with J. Edgar Hoover's FBI in civil rights demonstrations. A couple of layers of world-weary cynicism seems to have been peeled away. So from now on, no matter the outcome, it's all or nothing, he said. Finally, the walking-deadness of the Bush-Cheney-Rove-FauxChristian tyranny is shattering. Let's hope.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Ain't no lipstick on THIS pitbull!

Time has flown, and the tumbleweeds have clogged this blog once again. Why I think I spy a nest of rattlers down yonder by my links!

Up top is a photo of a new friend I made while helping my fellow bleedin' heart, hell-bound, children-corruptin' liberals with a last push to get out the vote.

The online class has eaten up my internet time, and I was very good about not wasting it on mindless surfing. Unfortunately I got too good at feeling guilty about saving my internet time for just that. And coming anywhere near Blogger was a no-no; so I've neglected every one of my blogs, and didn't avoided reading my Blogger favorites to stay focused on the class journal and assignments. And it was one of our wiley instructors first instructions: "Invest your time and energy" you have to give to it and don't "use yourself up" on "time-eaters." She's really good.

So my favorite holiday is barreling down on me in a day, and I have NO PLANS but whatever we can get to at AFTER I'm done with a "phone-in" on the 31st. The big guy is donating our Halloween day to the liberal agenda. I heart him truly :)

I may also go back to the field of education by next year (crossing fingers) not as a teacher but in a position where I can more directly and sometimes one-on-one help students with both personal and academic issues. So yeah, maybe I'll have to remove the lawyer nanny on my profile. I haven't shared this with my favorite lawyers yet, just don't wanna jinx it, so I better stop yapping about it here, then.

OK, what else is new? Oh yes, this NaNoWriMo business. The bug has bitten me again, and the creative writing course that just wrapped up left me feeling energized about the character sketches and short stories that I think can lead up to at least a short novel. I've never gotten past the first week of a NaNoWriMo before, and I've gone to bat twice. But this time feels different. And the strongest of my characters has even appeared in my dreams twice. So I hope that's a good omen. And I don't want to jinx this either, so I'll stop elaborating.

And I hope I'll finally get to cleaning up around here, and to finally adding my favorites to that Blogs I'm Following new-fangled doohicky. Good night, and hope to catch up with y'all on your blogs soon.

Thursday, October 2, 2008


... as Bill Lumbergh would say. I'm reading back the post below after it's 20-hundreth grammar and spell-check, and I'm STILL wondering if I should have just chucked it. Or copy and delete and post again so the date will show I finally posted this mess last night, because I've been beyond blogstipated, in a snowballing guilt trip that started with feeling like I Should Be Writing For Creative Writing whenever I found myself with time and wanting to check up on my favorite blogs. The more I peaked in those wonderful bloggers lives and creations, the more my festering blog entry and Must Creatively WRITEWRITEWRITE pounded me down, so thus this.

Sometimes personal journal entries aren't quite as tight as one would want to, you know? But it's funny to me to read back how, before I hit the wall drink-wise, my recollection of events was so vivid, then BAM: Blur City whizzing by. But kind of glad the class has got me back to journaling old-school regularly, because I don't think I could have retained the detail I could still piece together without pen and paper next to me and being back in that groove.

So again....yeeeeeah, I'll go back to sipping my coffee and wondering What.the.FUCK? ...again. And maybe later I'll post about how I managed to scramble to work the following morning with DH's help (thinking about him that night-day still makes me cringe, wanna dig a hole and hide in it for a sec).

And now paraphrasing the late great Rick James: Alcohol is a helluva drink...OK, that made me cringe, too, later...

Edited to add the video above. I love the original video, but Sony appears to have requested disabling embedding, the grinches. Its truth hits harder with all that has happened this birthday month. September seems to bring on the karmic consequences; maybe because fall is the season for reaping, OK now I'm gonna be depressed so I'll stop -- but listen to it, forgot how beautiful and in a strange way hopeful Destruction is, and how masterful Faithless and Maxi Jazz are. (((HUGS))) and later :)

Monday, September 22, 2008

The Birthday, the Buyer, the Banging Hangover

Another Wednesday has come and gone and I haven't posted about Birthday Wednesday, my journal tidbits festering in draft mode for lo these many days. So let's talk about Birthday Wednesday.

Everyone managed to make it to the appointed restaurant roughly about the same time, with only my brother and sister-in-law running late. This particular restaurant has valet service and my mom was adamant that valet service is an outrageous expense, so after she walked across the street in 105 degrees Fahrenheit from the parking structure a block away in downtown Palm Springs, I got an earful about the multiple double-parkers in SUVs, etcetera.

Our tables were still being readied when DH and I got there, so I greeted mom with chocolate martini in hand at the solid marble bar. Mom squints at my drink with distaste, and chirps "Happy Birthday!" She pecks me on the cheek as I order a strawberry daiquiri for her. Then she glances at the cordoned-off tables where wait staff is finishing setting up our reservations, and DH says hello and mom beams as she hugs him.

My sister Angela arrives with my chocolate-strawberry cake, breathless, glances at mom, eyes rolling before mom turns around, and mouths "happy birthday" and grins as she beelines to the reserved tables. Mom sighs as Angela places the cake on the center table, taking a tight sip from her drink. I can read her mind: What a waste of strawberries, should have been strawberry and angel food cake. Mom is one of the few women on earth who detests chocolate; at least we have strawberry love in common. And mother's birthday is the oncoming Sunday, the 21st -- yes, mother-daughter Virgo tag team.

My cell phone rings; it's CC, texting me...ah, hell...I check the text: CALL ME URGNT....yeeeeah, so much for a work-free birthday ... I call her. "OH HI, HON!" CC is yelling, traffic almost drowning out her voice, "thanks for calling - need a HUUUGE favor from you, sweetie, I know this is your birtday -- HAPPY B-DAY by the way -- but can I pretty-please-with-strawberries-on-top (sharp laugh; she knows about my strawberry-and-chocolate mother dilemma). ANYHEY, pleasepleaseplease may I drop the interrogs by from yesterday with some minor-but-ABSOLUTELY-CRITICAL changes?"

I exhale hard, moving my mouth away from the cell just in time, I hope, so she won't register my exasperation. She knows I'll say yes, Friday is the last day to Fed Ex overnight them to defense counsel, and we've already been granted a two-week extension. "Yeah, CC, it's cool, I"m at --"

"Oh I KNOW where HAHAHAAAA! No worries, hon! My driver-du-jour is ALMOST there!" As I wonder WTF -- did she slip a GPS micro-chip in yesterday's coffee to track me down, I remember that I mentioned the place to the big guy and her because the buyer for one of CC's clients had business dealings with that restaurant's owner. Oops.

And as I'm putting my cell back in my purse, through the open window slats of the bar I see a midnight-blue, drop-top Mercedes pull up to valet parking. A valet opens the passenger door and CC steps out as the driver steps out and in almost one motion hands the keys to the valet and is at CC's side, CC hooking her arm to his. The "driver" walks with a dancer's grace as they enter the restaurant. His slacks and silk shirt exactly match the midnight blue Benz. He takes off his sunglasses and his, his eyes. His eyes were a light blue, but like crushed ice, with a striations in the irises. He smiles, a brilliant dimpled smile.

And CC. CC straightens her curly hair on very rare, very Special with a capital 'S' occasions, and this appeared to be one of them. Not only was her hair flat-ironed, but it was freshly cut, her hair ends cut to frame her face softly, and -- oh my -- she was giggling at something the buyer said, something the buyer said with that light, crisp accent ...

Just then, a tall, skinny blond waiter dashed over booming "HELLO! I will be at your service tonight, my name is Jim!" Big smile on Jim, directing his greeting to all of us but eyes fixed on the buyer. "May I see you to your table?" Again, his swooping arm motion included us all, but he directed his suggestion at the buyer, assuming the buyer was part of our dinner party.

CC locked arms with the buyer and introduces him to us. ....Did I just see my mom bat her eyelashes? This guy cannot be unaware of the effect he has on people ... on women, on our waiter.

All find their seating arrangements without any major drama or disagreements (another little miracle) as CC and the buyer sit at an free table next to us while I'm flipping through the folder o' interrogs she's passed me. DH asks me "Is that a, lawyer?"

"Oh nah, that's a prospective buyer and business partner for a client who has some issues with the -- oh nevermind, kind of boring ..." I'm wondering what happened to CC's boyfriend, the one she is engaged to and unengages from periodically, as CC's thigh edges closer to the buyer's.

The buyer seems oblivious to the attention, and when Jim brings us our drinks, we are absorbed in his story about his flight to LA and drive to Palm Springs because he loves the drive to Palm Springs even when it's a "how do you say -- pain in the ass" and the way he says "pain in the ass" is so funny and awkward, and yeah, hot. And Diehard whispers to me, "So, was this guy invited, because.." and he glances at the time on his cell phone. And as I'm saying "well..." and thinking what to say next because what to say next has now become a delicate task, CC glances at her cell and yelps "OH MY! Look at the time, we really need to be going!"

The buyer rises and helps CC out of her chair; CC blushes. I suppress an eyeroll. The buyer then comes up to me and takes my hand with his left (ringless, I note) hand and kisses it. "A very happy birthday to a very beautiful lady," he says, glancing up from my hand with Those Eyes. I suppress a squeeeeeee!.

CC is suddenly at my side, all "thank-you-SOOO-much-Letty" with just the slightest edge in her voice. Jim our server is now behind the buyer, right behind him, big brown eyes gazing up at him: "Is the gentlemen leaving us so soon?" Jim sounds like the thought of the buyer leaving is breaking his heart. "Oh yes, yes, I'm so -- " and then the proprietor of the fine dining establishment bounds over and gives the buyer a big bear hug and is rattling off names of friends who've been wondering where the buyer's been. As the buyer chats hurriedly with the owner, Sade's "Smooth Operator" plays on the sound system. Smooth operator indeed.

The buyer is now bidding farewells again but suddenly turns back to me and opens his arms, no words needed; he's hug-ready, smiling that little boy smile, and...those eyes, lit from within. I rise and am sort-of just drawn into that hug, my cheek sort-of this-close to touching his...mmmmm he smell GOOD. The buyer's married right hand lightly slides over my waist as he steps away. Yes, his married, Orthodox right hand, the ring on which I didn't notice until mom pointed it out as soon as he was out the door. Mom looked disappointed, and I thought shit and then why do I give a care exactly?

CC locks her arm to his again and leads him out of the restaurant with a quickness. When Jim comes around to inquire if I want more of the same alcoholic beverage because I've gulped down my margarita so fast -- my throat so dry all this time -- I say "a white Russian sounds good" and feel like a total idiot as I say it. I glance quickly at DH feeling like a schmuck and a slut rolled into one -- a schmut.

I catch DH and my brother Manny, who arrived with my sister-in-law about the middle of all this, as they both stare at their beers, then look up and strike the same hand-to-chin pose, eyes aimed at the flat screen TV over the bar at the opposite side of the restaurant, as if riveted by the muted Bloomberg channel. God, I wanted to slide under my table and stay there. My sis-in-law then tells Manny, "You should try out something like that next time at the mall, I mean just to see if it looks that good -- um, just if it looks good on you I mean," meaning the buyer's ensemble, then shuts up mid-sentence and takes a big gulp of her margarita as my brother sort of slams his elbow forward to lean in for a better view of the Bloomberg report.

The dinner rolls on well; I'm starving by the time my duck curry (yum!) is set before me. And the servers who sang Happy Birthday to me must be a barbershop quartet on their off time because that's just how they brought it down, outstanding! But best of all -- or maybe not -- when the bill came and I was insisting on paying for two, maybe three -- OK four -- drinks, Jim said "Oh no worries, the gentlemen (insert whistle Jim eye gleam there) took care of it."

And as Jim leaves with our plates, DH says "He tells us now. Super Fly didn't want us to know before we ordered, myabe we'd order the whole menu -- make him shit gold bricks." Manny fist-bumps him in solidarity and they both laugh laugh laugh.

Later we met up with my sister Josie who worked late that day, and her partner at a drag show a friend of theirs was in; he was Cher. It's kind of a blur. I'm what's known as a light-weight, you see. Running, yoga, and occasional drinking spell disaster when you overindulge on the odd special days, with a high metabolic rate and over-drinking to stamp out social stress and nervous energy and -- oh nevermind, short story: I.was.smashed.

I remember leaning on DH as we walked across the club parking lot and yammering away about how CC must be finally going midlife-crisis on us and blahblahdrunkasshellbladdyblah, and feeling like the world was spinning as he helped my wobbly butt into the Rover. Don't recall the drive back to his house, remember stumbling through the door after deciding it wouldn't be such a bright idea to cross the extra street to my apartment building seeing that there was a police unit parked next to it and a cop listening to the cat lady of my building rant about my next-door neighbor's music.

Next I recall gingerly laying myself down next to DH on his bed in the living room, grateful for the soft faux-candle light from the front window because I think the glare of full-on lighting would have seized up my throbbing head, and I felt like if I turn my head too fast I'd puke. DH's bedroom and the rest of the house is a construction zone right now, because the renovation from hell is still going on, and so it's like camping indoors, and back to OH MY HEEEAD and the vertigo. But somehow I'm still yammering away and I'm telling DH how it was a great party and thanks for putting up with the drama ha-ha-ha...

And I fall asleep for about an hour, and wake up as the last shred of a vivid dream is fading: Even in sleep I'm trying to keep really still, keep my head steady, and the soft whirring from the air conditioning vents becomes the soft purr of a high-performance Mercedes convertible, as I sloooowly turn my head to my left, and the buyer turns to me from the drivers seat, married hand on the steering wheel, and he smiles that smile and those eyes just glow, as he tells me how he loves to drive back through the desert to LA late at night, with Los Angeles rising before him glittering like a dirty jewel.

And I'm awake again, and sloooowly turn my head to DH, and he opens his eyes and leans over, smiles his Die Hard smile, and kisses me on the tip of my nose, ahhh... and GOD I'm a sucky girlfriend, I almost say, as I black out till the alarm shrieks an hour later at 5 a.m.