Sunday, December 7, 2008

Randomness

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 ...

I GOT NOTHIN'!

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

Yeaaaaaah....



... 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 eyes....wow, 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, uh...new 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.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008



I wanted to steer clear of politics for the duration of my birthday, but...just bumped across this YouTube post while checking out vids on the Lehman Brothers and now the AIG fallout. It's about that happy-go-lucky, central-casting-perfect Focus-on-the-Family-approved Alaskan Stepford Wife for the new century (yeah, can you tell I'm slightly cynical, perhaps a mite sarcastic?) Also, there's so little time left to take on this latest Karl-Rovian bull pile; the economy is a screaming mess, and we have a nearing-80-year-old waving his cane at the Russians because his foreign policy advisor, among others, is heavily invested in that Georgian oil pipeline even if the jackoff Saakashvilli attacked his so-called own territory first knowing the Russians would come in but expecting he'd trounce them with a little help from American "advisors" --- ugh, nevermind, could go on forever there.

So I laughed out loud truly while the video above played on. Only one point where I disagreed with the man: I used to think "Gee, maybe she's at least a good, down-to-earth person." That hope was immediately shot down by this article -- as well as a host of other fundamentalist fringe-group-pleasing, oil-company-handjobbing factoids I found thereafter.

OH and thank you all for your b-day wishes, JOHN: MUAH!!!

OK, back to birthday dinner planning.

ETA: Because I'm just now discovering the amazingly funny world of Wall Street junkies, another vid where I'm just left gasping and laughing "Right on!":



AND the AIG-related one:

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Well, hello there, public blog.

Every other day I think of some way to end the post stagnation, but I just don't quite get to posting. And life gets in the way. Like the move to the new office building. The blood, the sweat, the lawyer tears, my sanity packing its bags and hopping the border back to Rosarito without me ...

So that's been going on, plus a funeral for one of my sister's co-workers, who was also a sweet, wonderful friend.

And writing offline. Finally getting some writing done offline. Ink and lovely paper. And another online course ... how did fall come crashing down so fast? August went by faster than usual, even with the staggering humidity.

Ah -- my birthday is this week, the 17th -- my legal overlords were kind enough to give me the day off. Hoping DH can get some time off, too.

And tomorrow it's back to the old grind in the new office's retro-modern vibe. And all I can safely say here about what's new at work besides the location, other than the usual never-ending cycle of deposition digests, interrogs, pleadings in need of drafting, clients in need of hand-holding, is:

THE RUSSIANS ARE COMING!!! THE RUSSIANS ARE COMING!!! LOCK YOUR DAUGHTERS! BURY THE STOLICHNAYA IN THE BACKYARD!!! THEM THAR RUSSKIES ARE COMING AND THEY'RE GONNA GIT YER BEST NIGHT CLUBS AND TOURIST SHOPS AND-AND-AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHH!!!

...whew. And that's all that duty of confidentiality will allow.

Yes, I'm beat, calling the Diehard before I go to sleep, and promising myself again to visit my long-neglected luscious blog faves Google Reader line-up soon. Missed you all so very much, good night.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Friday, August 15, 2008

DAMN!



it feels good to be a gansta.

... just because lawyer Slick was blasting this track on our way back from the very favorable settlement hearing of a case he's been busting his Dockers over now for two years.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Porque soy chiva ...

Once upon a desert time, way back when Bob Hope's tortoise-shaped house was but a blur in a vision-questing Cahuilla's nightmare. Way, way back in the day, when not even the highest vista from the Santa Rosa Mountains would yield a golf course view ... There was a herd of sheep:



A herd of sheep, frightened by a thundering fall storm, wool singed by lightning fires, so scared that they fled to an old man's hut, a man who had promised to guard them from heavenly fire and hungry coyotes, in return for their wool, and their faithful obedience. Roaming around aimlessly with no one to guide them caused heavenly fire to rain down on wayward sheep, the old man warned them:




And at first their was hemming and hawing among some in the herd, wondering whether this could be true, or they could trust the old man, but when they turned around, they were met by the glare of the old man's dog:





And just then, lightning whipped the horizon. The sheep bleated and cried, huddling closer, and followed the old man, with the old man's dog following close behind. "SEE!" the old man thundered, pointing to the horizon, "The Great Shepherd has spoken!" And he led them to the back of his hut where he had fenced off land, and in that fenced land he sheared their wool, and painted numbers on each one.


Two generations passed, and a young sheep was born and Daryl was his name (yes, his name was Daryl, look it up):





Daryl was barely out of gangly lambhood, when he was caught outside the pen, having dug up a fence post. The old man's dog caught up with him and bit at his heels. Bit and bit until he yelped and jumped his way back into the pen. "OW OW OWWWW! Don't taze me, man!!"

"WHAT?!" barked the dog.

"I mean don't bite me, man!" Daryl yelped as the dog chomped at his hind legs.

"DOG! I'm a DOG, stupid!" growled the dog.

"OK OK! DAMN --"

"And DON'T CURSE -- there are low-lying clouds tonight, the Great Shepherd is nigh!" the dog snarled.

"I mean DARN, HECK, SORRY!" Daryl yelped as the dog bit his woolly butt one more time and Daryl squeezed back through the fence break.

The old man came out of his hut to see what the hell -- I mean, what the heck -- was going on. "What in the Great Shepherd's name is going on here?"

The dog pointed at Daryl and told the old man what had happened. The old man fumed, towering over Daryl, yelling "How DARE you destroy the safe haven I have sacrificed so much of my time to build you?"

"Um, well I ... um, was -- "

"WHAT? You were WHAT, sheep?!"

"I um,was bored...and I thought I saw a-a-a ... g-g-goat ..." Daryl stammered, bowing, eyes lowered, and scratching at the dirt with one soft hoof.

"A WHAT?!" yelled the old man, alarmed. "How many times have I TOLD you along with your brethren that if you EVER see those evil beasts you MUST tell me so that dogs and men can be rounded up in time to bring them DOWN!"

Daryl kept looking at the ground, and finally whispered, "But he looked like a -- one of us, but with, with -- "

Suddenly Daryl felt crushing pain against his back and thought he'd been hit by lightning by the Great Shepherd and felt like he was on fire. But when he staggered back on his shaking legs, he saw the old man swinging his six-foot wooden staff at him again. Daryl leaped away just barely, away from the old man.


The other sheep were now at the front of the fence, faces pushed up against it, bleating for Daryl to come back.

Daryl was more frightened than he'd ever been in his short sheep life, and felt warm pee trickle down his woolly thighs. But he could not stop, he just could not. There was this pain, this burning searing thing heavy and furious as desert sun, that told him that if he did stop, if he did turn back, he would implode, burn to ashes from that scorching knot's unbearable gravity. And Daryl ran, and ran into the canyons, where hungry coyotes, deadly scorpions, wretched rattlesnakes, and worse...those Shepherd-forsaken creatures, dwelt.

And the sky fire, the angry Great Shepherd's sky fire, crackled over him, and Daryl's bladder finally ran out of scare-piss, and he evaded a coyote pack on his way to a smoke tree grove where he rested.

And then, as Daryl woke from nightmare-riddled sleep in full moonlight, a shadow passed over him, and he turned around, and there it was, again ... And then ...

Two long years went by and no sight nor sound of Daryl. The sheep quietly missed and looked out for him in the canyon's shadows every sunrise and every sunset. But loudly they proclaimed "good riddance," for the dog and the old man's benefit, and maybe trying to believe it themselves.

Then one day, just before the last rainwater stream from the Santa Rosas was soaked up by the summer sun, a lamb saw a shadowy figure against the darker shadows of a boulder. The lamb pressed closer to the fence posts and watched as the shadow came closer, and closer, and ... oh Dear Great Shepherd, the shadow spotted the lamb watching him, and the shadow hollered "HEY BABY BOO! It's your uncle Daryl! CHECK OUT MY BLING!"

The dog heard, and came tearing around the corner of the old man's hut followed by a pack of dogs from the old man's village. Some of the dogs yelped and turned tail, but most were still high on the thunderous sermon that the old man had just given, about sin and redemption and the virtue of fearing the Great Shepherd above all, oh sacred fear! So on they tore, straight on! Straight into ...

... Daryl's crown of horns.







Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Testing 1, 2, 3 ...

IT'S ALIIIIIIIIIIIIVE!!!

WHOOT. Anyway, Madam Z's comments reminded me to update about Die Hard man's chin follicle issue. I've nipped that in the bud, in a way. DH didn't admit to wanting a "chin caterpillar" -- thanks, Steph! But a massage-cum-shave deal over the weekend was warmly accepted ... get your minds out of the gutter, people, I don't mean that "cum." OK, I meant to take you to Guttersville, so never you mind.

Besides that, I've got nothing. Nada, mi gente. Except to tell you that it's been DELICIOUS just lying around after work catching up on books and reading--and-writing along to the one I've been meaning to get to forever. It's great to actually get out of the office when my job description says I'm supposed to.

AND even my dreams have been as ho-hum as my waking life. The only good news there is I finally remembered one upon waking and jotted it down in my very neglected dream journal, which is also very squished from having been pushed into the crack between bed headboard and mattress under a pillow.

I dreamt that I stopped by for dinner at a place called Norman's. There's no such place around here, that I know of. It had the feel of an oldster high-end hangout, much like Melvyn's Restaurant and Lounge in Palm Springs. Like Frank Sinatra's ghost still lurking at the bar would be no shock. And the owner of the dream restaurant, Norman, kept repeatedly passing by my table and others, asking us how our dinner was, and twice I choked out "Great, it's great" between mouthfuls. It's like Norman would forget he just asked two minutes ago. Anyway, now that I think about it, the owner also reminds me of Sherman, of Sherman's Deli in Palm Springs. Seriously, if you're ever in Palm Springs, Sherman's Deli is the place to go for kosher and OHMYGOD the made-from-scratch, deep dish apple pie is HEAVEN.

.... mmmmkay, asleep yet? Yes? Good :)

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Another day, another earthquake ..

The news is barely catching up with it but so far it's come in at 5.8 on the Richter scale. Centered in Chino Hills, and here felt just a rolling motion for about 15 seconds at work. Got out for lunch and was passed by an Edison truck trailed by a cable van heading up my street....oh yes, interesting utilities interruption times ahead.

A'ight, "see" you when I can see you, at a hotspot near me or after Time Warner and friends are done digging up dirt.

ETA: radio saying now that it was from over 7 miles deep, so that's why it felt so light for a 5-plus-pointer.

Monday, July 28, 2008

FYI

In Monday's jarring light, I see my Saturday post is not quite the intended nuanced essay on how some science fiction and fantasy films and television series are really fables for adults, not children, and their marketers should not shy away from their intention and proudly sell them as such. And I didn't quite do justice to Mr. Eros's smart post about DP and its connection to adult "fairy tales" and much-needed escapism, for lack of a better word right now.

Anyway, dropping in to say that the cable company finally fessed up about the on-and-off service interruptions since monsoon Sunday; they'll be digging up a pole and the fiberopticwhatever around it up the street come Wednesday. So getting this post in before that deal goes down. I'll try to polish a couple of tag-filler posts that have been languishing in this blog's draft ghetto, but not sure if they'll ever be ready for prime time. The cable mess should take till next Sunday or Monday to clean up, per the Road Runner drone, but I'm not holding my breath. So I'll post before that only if a cable service miracle happens and service is back up before that, or if I can make quality time with the laptop at Starbucks -- and if the homeless regulars panhandling for latte change will let me.

In the meantime, feast your eyes on -- or turn away from -- a beautiful trainwreck called Till in an epic moment of turning on many a straight man fan in spite of themselves:



Just look at some of the facial expressions of the men in the audience. When I watched this played at a party, I'll never forget the hardcore kitty-loving jock who drunkenly blurted out: "FUCK, if I go to prison I'm HIS BITCH!" And then the look of terror as he looked around to see if anyone heard him above the blasting sound system.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Back from dinner and movie with DH, and still buzzing on cabernet. And yes, it was That movie. The line was still out the doors of the IMAX, and wow, it's all that the most enthusiastic reviewer has said, and then some.

This week, Slyde's post about The Dark Knight got me thinking about Star Trek, and Mr. Bananas brought up Trek on his most recent post. ... hmmm, should I be posting while sort-of intoxicated?... Anyhey, this and Batman got me thinking about how good a Star Trek movie would be if it focused on Cardassians!




NO! Not the Kardashians!



The Cardassians:







In other news, Mr. Eros offers up the most succinct and solid argument to straight men about a certain activity which many appear to fantasize about but are afraid to admit to because, well, as the man says:

"I have heard guys scoff — in theory, as these opportunities arise rarely outside of porn and your better class of orgies — at this sort of woman-sharing. Usually they proclaim, loudly, that they’d never do such a thing because your dick would be, like, almost touching another guy’s dick. Too close for comfort, anyway; if you’d do that, you’d have to be gay.

Yes, they say this like it’s a bad thing.

Word of advice to those guys: Like Ron White says, we’re all a little bit gay anyways. Grow up, nut up, and get over it. You’re still stuck in your high school locker room, while the grownups — the Men with a capital M — are out seizing the day and eating the oysters and, yup, laughing at you."


OH YES -- his link is so not safe for work -- and SO effing happy I uploaded pics and pasted links this morning. Typing and posting is a hellified buzzkiller.

... so yeah, double penetration and lizard men...that has to connect somehow, no? mkay, crawling into bed now, sleeping on it, so to speak..

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

TMI

I have this nagging obsession that's been growing and growing, so to speak ... I mean, this is what Die Hard man's chin usually looks like after a weekend of no-shaving:



But lately I've noticed a darkening between his bottom lip and chin, though he's been shaving regularly between weekends as usual. My obsession with this is that there's this one front desk clerk at the lobby of my place of litigious employment who sports what should never be called a "beard" -- cannot honestly be called a beard, or even a goatee <-- haaate those, too.

Anyway, this thing looks like a woolly patch of FUNGUS. And I've googled this random guy as an example of this chinfungusamungus:



See what I mean? SEE.IT?!!! :O

And front desk dude's is bigger! And FUZZIER, as in hairs crawling above his bottom lip -- I have to keep conversations thisshort with him or I'm afraid he'll notice I'm grossed out.

That ain't right, it just isn't. And I'm afraid DH's, um, growth is headed in that direction.

So I've spend the better part of my free-thought time between a flurry of interrogatory preps and calls and yammering attorneys plotting how I'm going to approach DH with his own razor and shaving cream and pull a Delilah on his chin hair ... because I can't just be HONEST, now can I? I mean what am I going to say to him: "Gee, baby, um ... if that fuzz on your face grows to shag carpet-sample size, I'd rather lick a dirty pot scrubber than nibble your tasty lips again" ... :(

Yes, I know. I can hear the world coming to a screeching halt -- Obama postponing further troop visits, activists' fingers freezing over keyboards as they were typing furious e-mails and posts about the perma-petro-war -- to work on this little crisis. So in my best paralegalese, I bid you a sincere Thank you for your anticipated courtesy.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Desert Monsoon

Who sent us India's weather?

Desert Sun photos of high waters flowing down Racquet Club Drive in the Chino Cone area of Palm Springs:





Rain that sounded like hail just nailed us around sixish a.m. and off and on all day. But it wasn't bracing, cool invigorating rain like last time. Oh no. It was the kind of rain that beats you down and sticks to your body like warm glue because it's 105 degrees Fahrenheit and the humidity is, oh, about 110 percent.

If a caravan of Asian elephants had crossed at the intersection of Date Palm and Ramon, where the traffic lights were out of order as in most other intersections this afternoon, it wouldn't have raised a weary eyebrow.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Because the tumbleweeds & dust bunnies are out of control on this here blog ...

... I'm posting what my procrastinating, heat-addled butt should've posted on Sunday.

As per usual, the products of my camera-snapping aren't exactly stellar, especially after two or three margaritas under this bar palapa:



So this is how I spent the better part of Sunday: At the casino, again. And I don't even gamble -- usually. But got an invite to the "Wet Spot" pool party at Fantasy Springs, and roped into playing volleyball for a short spell:


(and no, that's not me in the pink bikini, but she's family, and yes, she gets a lot of ribbing about the "tramp stamp")

The DJ was outstanding -- clear, slamming sound working a great mix of rarely heard outside of LA tracks and club and pop favorites. But we were out barely past an hour when the heat was just too much and we were starving so we headed for the air-conditioned -- hell, refrigerated -- buffet dining room.

And while we were cramming our gullets with all the Ahi tuna and oysters we could load on a plate without looking like total pigs, we were privileged to overhear various conversations among the wanna-be game show contestants who'd been loitering at the casino since the crack of dawn. Deal Or No Deal was auditioning contestants at the casino and it seemed like the entire frekking valley was trying to get a shot at game show infamy.

Two of the people in tables next to us ended up squealing with joy after taking cell calls: One of them I'm acquainted with from my substitute teacher days in the east valley. She's pretty cool, but I don't understand her desire to be on a game show -- besides a reality show, it's my worst nightmare. Anyway, she has huuuuuge cushiony breasts, all natural, and she was wearing a cute summer dress that pushed them up to full effect. The other guy who was picked to go to LA for the show was a guy who I swear was the spitting image of Homer Simpson come to life.

We bantered on and off with some audition rejects who were pissed off about it, noting that the producers of the show seemed to be going for "character" type contestants: The big-boobed teacher with the cute little locket between her hot boobs, the Homer Simpson look-alike, and a sympathy-grabber -- a lady with an autistic son at home and another in Iraq. So interesting times at the casino.

And now I'll try to catch up on some more exciting bloggers than yours truly before I hit the sack, 'night ~_~

EDITED TO ADD this Mad TV gem I just found, which succinctly illustrates what Deal Or No Deal is all about:

Friday, July 11, 2008

Dancing fire, coyotes howling, smell the rain ...




AAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!

Nature's fireworks burst over the canyons behind my abode and grazed us on their way to wake up my mom in Desert Hot Springs.

... I blame Whiskey Marie

;D

Tuesday, July 8, 2008



Yeah, I know what I said about gossip before, but I've met the esquire escorting Ms. Brinkley. Don't meet him all by your lonesome in a dark alley.

Christie is so getting the kids, and then some.

UPDATE:

Settlement rumors swirling already, of course Mr. Cohen not only could be Donald Rumsfeld's bastard brother, but Rumsfeld is cuddly in comparison. He's very suave and a great conversationalist though, but I'm not exaggerating about not meeting him alone in a dark alley if he has a score to settle with you. He will shank you, call the police to report a grievous attempt on his life, and then sue your estate for pain, suffering, and lost future productivity due to post traumatic stress.

UPDATE 2:



"Cook gets $2.1 million - much of which will go to legal fees - while she gets custody of the kids and all the real estate."

The big guy at work laughed and read this out loud to us today. He recalled his conversation with Mr. Cohen about his divorce from his first wife, and Mr. Cohen casually itemizing how his ex's lawyer could have skewered him financially but blew it. Big guy's relieved that the former Mrs. Big Guy didn't pick a lawyer that into his profession and that experienced.

And so true is this comment from this gossip site:

"LOLOL!! 2 mil and nothing else??? Ohhhh she had some good $h1t on his ass for him to settle out of court for that measly amount and NO property?? Damn!! I wanted to see this on court tv every fukkin day! Life's not fair"

True, even with all the dirt that had been aired about Cook, I also thought he'd be offered more if only to make Chrisite look a little more generous. So Cohen must have had even more surprises in store for Cook if he insisted on continuing his public bawling and insinuations on the stand.

...ugh, and now I need to back awaaay from the gossip news.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Fourth of July Fly-by Pics

At the Valley Station at the base of the San Jacintos; the original blue tram bucket is to the left in the first pic:





"Hey there, hot chivo!" Inside the tram boarding lobby:



The tram conductor, jaw clenched and determined to get us to Mountain Station 10,801 feet above without giving in to smacking one of the tourist rugrats squealing at ear-bleeding pitch and running round and round:



Up, up, and AWAY! Chino Canyon down below:



Zipping on American wires in a fancy Swizz bucket between ancient rocks:



A marvelous view of my bony back and Dish Network ears:



"Hey babe, let's hang out at the balcony and take in the view, chill a while and maybe I'll catch up on this book I packed -- oh HEY, there's two empty seats at the bar!"



Three raspberry lemon drop martinis later:



The two guys to the left were on their honeymoon; they took pics of us and we exchanged e-mail addies -- they're planning a reception/nuptials celebration in San Diego. Eric, the one closest left, is a service union lobbyist and his husband is selling his house to mafiosos. And the het couple to our right worked on the set of the Sex and the City movie. They claim Chris "Mr. Big" Noth is an egomaniac who wouldn't talk to the crew even when directly asked work-related questions, surprise surprise. The blurriness is reflective of my buzzedness at the time. All in all, great conversation and a terrific bartender :)

So a couple of last-call beers after that, our lens-aiming and flash-using were a complete failure when the fireworks ten thousand-plus feet below began:



Contrary to the disclaimer posted at Valley Station that fireworks visibility wasn't a given, the fireworks from Sunrise Park in Palm Springs, Civic Center Park in Palm Desert, and a bit from Indio were in fact very visible, but you could barely hear them from that high above. There was a wonderful hush up there, watching below with the tourists from pretty much everywhere. And the climate so, so wonderfully cool aaaaah! Got to run now, may edit for coherence later.

Edited to add these random images of the view from Mountain Station by much more competent photographers:





(Winter views)




(View from the restaurant balcony)

Sunday, June 29, 2008



Because I'm sharing John's "blogstipation" tonight, I'm also sharing my comment inspired by his post Learn to be Still:

"I wish I could recall in greater detail the sensations of my first Zazen session, but most of that 30-minute period is lost on me. What I do remember, and really, the only important thing I need to relay to you, is that when the session ended, I never felt closer to God than I did at that moment. I found him. I found myself."

Ah, exactly. And the book that finally got me to muster the courage to give meditation a go after a couple of years of reading about it and taking yoga classes was Old Souls. That book literally fell on my lap while I was looking for something in my sister's partner's meager shelves to read and kill time, the night before we were to drive to Scripps hospital to be with dad as he was released to go back home, to home hospice care.

And the silence and the closeness to the divine, so, so different from a priest's tirades about atheists and abortionists, and so different from the mass hysteria of the Pentecostal meetings my poor mom was talked into a couple of times.

I sometimes walk by a Baptist church after running, and one night last week I could hear the pastor's booming, angry voice from across the street. As I passed by (only the first row of parking space was taken), I felt sorry for the poor souls in there. It was such a starry glorious night out -- there's a poem I'm trying to remember that was written by a WWII pilot who loved flying and the line "touch the face of God" comes up thinking of how close the sky was, how sweet the silence.


There -- blogstipation circumvented! Thanks, John! And the Maná video needs no stinking explanations; simply the latest heavy-rotation hit from Mexico's greatest rock export.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

The owls, watching me watching them tonight.







The owls on this tree are both well over a foot tall. Even clicking to enlarge on the first photo doesn't do them justice. They played this game with me where they'd swoop and stand motionless on the green next to the pond, doing a 360 with their heads in unison as I slowly approached them trying to get a close shot; then as soon as I readied my camera, they'd swoop back up to the tree. I gave up, laid out my blue mat and carried on with yoga in the beautiful old neighboring country club. They watched and cried encouragement now and again. Yoga studio al fresco.

Ah, and the following shot of Mount SJ past sunset doesn't do the mount justice either:



San Jacinto looms larger at and after sunset; it appears to creep up higher and wider against the horizon, breathtaking.

Work was insaner than usual; needed to get out and just couldn't stand more driving and small talk even with the good people at the PS studio. Finally feel clear-headed enough to think and call back on my phone messages...exciting post, I know. Oh well, good night & namaste.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

It's getting hot out here.



But it's a dry heat, y'all! Whoop.

This is the silver lining in the larger-than-expected workload at the office this summer. Besides the long seconds in park when I'm broiling in the car as I blast the air conditioner with the windows rolled down to push out the convection-oven hot air, this month has literally flown by. I have a wonderful someone with whom to wrestle off the post-menstrual hornies, and I may be overseas by next summer, maybe even next winter.

I had an unexpected early response to one of my applications and résumé submissions to several NGOs last Monday. I arranged a telephone interview during lunchtime Friday, and it went very well. So now it's a waiting game. And makes me give serious consideration to just how culture-shocked I will feel in the country I may be in next year or sooner.

It makes me look at the horoscope I put up behind my desk and on this site for New Year 2008, the one that made me screech to a halt all these must-do resolutions that made my heart sink. That horoscope made me realize that I'm always pushing myself to set all these self-improvement goals, and then I let the years fly by working and finding more work on top of that, and never use my mad Virgo planning skills to search for and plan fun, pleasure. So my desert fun must-dos for this year have been pushed to the top of the agenda, literally. I must take a ride on the tram to the top of my beloved Mount San Jacinto soon; that Die Hard man better be up for it.

Oh, and here's another addition to my blogroll that's a great resource for wrestling the hornies and it's written by by one savvy, intelligent blogger. Depending on your tastes, some of the items may be a personal "aahhhh" or a "ewwwwww" but it'll have you coming back for more. And it has some pretty decent freebie porn links ;)

Not safe for work, of course, but very satisfying libido and brain candy, as is my golden oldie Missy E video above. ... "I got the magic stick, I can go for hours, from the bed, to the flo', to the sink, to the shower!"<-- LYRICAL GENIUS.

¡Buenas noches, camaradas en cabronadas!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

...at least the agony is over


... Ah, and both my Die Hard man and my sister are now saying that at least Kobe won't get the ring before Saint Shaquille O'Neal. Can't blame them, though, love the Shaq, too. But I don't understand this thing because Shaq had his with the Miami Heat in 06 IIRC, oh well, I blame the Brazilian sunsets imbibed while cringing at the bar...going to bed with these lofty matters in mind.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Friday, June 13, 2008

Friday the 13th hits hard.


"Was Mike Bibby holding his nose in pain after he ran into Kobe Bryant's elbow? Or did the Kings' performance just stink?" -- Caption from ESPN.

Someone say this is NOT SO.

First Tim Russert dies of a heart attack while doing voice-overs, next R. Slime Kelly is ACQUITTED (!), and now this?

I didn't want to post about basketball again because thinking about the Lakers not climbing out of the hole the Celtics dug them last night is PAINFUL, but here are the leading paragraphs from the article linked above, because if any of this is true, LA losing that historic 24-point lead could be karma striking a painful blow:

LOS ANGELES: For an NBA player, it was the kind of loss that can take years to get over. Now the Sacramento Kings are dealing with it all over again.

A foul discrepancy so lopsided they couldn't help but wonder if they were being cheated. And this week, six years later, accusations that, in fact, they were.

On the verge of playing for a championship they would have been favored to win, the Kings lost Game 6 of the Western Conference finals to the Los Angeles Lakers, 106-102. Los Angeles shot 27 free throws in the fourth quarter, scoring 16 of its final 18 points at the line, to even the series.

Former referee Tim Donaghy alleged in court papers filed this week that two referees, known as "company men," purposely ignored personal fouls and called "made-up fouls on Team 5 in order to give additional free throw opportunities for Team 6."

NBA commissioner David Stern, and Kings owners Gavin and Joe Maloof have rejected the claims from Donaghy, who has pleaded guilty to betting on games he officiated and taking cash payments from gamblers.

But Doug Christie, remembering how his teammates felt after the game, said he still believes they might be true.

"What's been in the dark comes to the light, and the truth can squash a lot of things. And so if this is the truth, then all of a sudden now it adds validity to things people were thinking, things that our teammates and I'm sure the coaching staffs and the Maloofs were thinking at that particular time," Christie said.

"Just the other night they complained about 38 free throws vs. 10 for Boston vs. L.A., and we're talking about 27 free throws in the deciding final quarter of an elimination game that has such the big, big stage from the standpoint that the defending champs are about to be put out. I mean that's just an incredible number, and when you look at the fouls that were called, players fouling out ... I mean there's just so many different things that magnify that situation. It's crazy."

Christie was a starting guard on a team that won an NBA-best 61 games. Chris Webber, Peja Stojakovic, Vlade Divac and Mike Bibby were the other starters for the Kings, a high-scoring group under Rick Adelman who felt it was their time to finally get by the hated Lakers.

"We thought we had the best team," Gavin Maloof said. "I know the Lakers had a great team. Remember you had Kobe and Shaq in his prime, I mean that was a tough combination. But we had a lot of great players, too. We had what we felt was the best team in the league."

The Lakers went on to take Game 7 in overtime at Sacramento before sweeping the overmatched New Jersey Nets in the finals. Webber tore up his knee the next year, and the Kings never came close again to winning a title.

Now, Donaghy's allegations have them thinking about what might have been.

"You never get over it," Maloof said. "It was a tough loss and to rehash it all, to have everybody calling from years gone by, it is tough because it brings up bad memories."


-- or, it could be the refs doing dirty for Boston this time, some kind of payback, or...maybe this guy is the real owner of the Celtics these days:



Oh HELL, I'm BEAT. This week felt like two, kind of like the pastor's-son's freakout week but without anyone breaking ugly "artwork."

Poor CC is still living down that incident, along with the big guy, who's taken a bit of flack from the property owner and management about security issues and controlling proceedings in our offices...pretty much an excuse to ramp up the lease payment when the current lease agreement expires in September. Just yesterday, CC's clients Bert and Ernie looked up at her like they just gazed upon Athena striding up to greet them in the lobby, and Bert said to Ernie, "See, we have the best lady lawyer in the business, made a grown man cry I hear!" Yep, he said the "lady lawyer" but it was nothing but love from Bert and his strange forties-loving ways. Bert and Ernie were dressed in their swing WW II-era suits for their dance lessons that evening. CC winced but grinned extra-wide and with a "come on in, boys" marched them to her office.

Oh yeah, and the murdered burnt pizza was a "treasured gift from a dear friend" of the landlord -- yes, my eyes are still rolling. But at least CC and the big guy got major leverage on the case. Pastor's son is naturally on leave and a partner has taken over and unusually favorable negotiation points have been floated. The case went from full-on contentious at every point to let's-get-to-that-compromise-and-release-walk-through from zero to 60.