Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Bag Lady gon' hurt yo back. draggin on dem bags like that. i guess nobody ever told you, all you must hold on to, is, is you, is you.

~Eryka Badu, Mama's Gun, 2000

The first and only time I've lived out of my suitcase lasted about 3 months. 

The amount of stress that accompanies a situation like this is inexplicable, and only folks who've endured various forms of homelessness truly understand. 

For those of you who don't know, "couch surfing" is one form of homeless that is seemingly less severe than other types, but homeless nonetheless and prevalent among homeless teens.    

Granted, during my time of living on the edge, I still owned a house and a car half way across the country and had a lover occasionally pluggin funds into a dry account. Not having a home was a conscious decision until I got my feet on the ground. But let me tell you! Not having money to rent, not having a job to get money to rent, not knowing where you'll rest your head that night, not getting a full night's rest because you must be the last one asleep and the first one awake as the guest in someone else's studio apartment, no privacy, dirty/smoggy skin from taking the bus everywhere, eating when your host eats, always being on another person's schedule. It's what we call hard times.

Would I do it again?

Heck yes. 

As a trade off, I explored a city, met good people I never woulda met, lost about 20 lbs (ha!), became tight with Solar de Cahuenga, got out of my comfort zone, got a low-level job in the tv industry learning the ins and outs, and most importantly, minimized my lifestyle. We all need to minimize sometimes. Shed some lbs and realize all you need to hold on to. Realize life isn't always about building and building and building. Sometimes it's about deconstructing and seeing how you can handle a re-build. 

it feels so much better. so much better baby.
bag lady, let it go, let it go, let it go, let it go. don't need it.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Tuesday before 28

Wake up 5 min prior to leaving for work.
Laundry strewn in the living room from night before.
Stagger out of bedroom in bra and sweats.
Glance in dining room mirror at disastrous hair.
Approach pile of clothes to pick day's wardrobe.
Drop pants for quick exchange.
Glance over at forgotten about sleeping Bill that stayed over the night before.

"OH SHHHHIIIooooot...."

Run back into bedroom with no pants on.
Try to figure out how to get back into living room for change of clothes.
Try to figure it out.
Is a towel enough?
2 minutes before take off.
Run! Grab! Retreat!
Change clothes.
Kiss sleeping husband.
Find keys.
Off to work.

Friday, January 23, 2009

LA likes its People, like it likes its Bagels

Since we're on the topic of food...I will tell you the funniest thing I came across not long ago and was reminded of this morning.

So LA people are weird about food--everything should be all-natural, fat-free, sugar-free, gluten free, carb-free, and organic. I get down with that some of the time, but if you make my latte with skim milk instead of 2% or whole milk....we're gonna fight.

Anywho. When I started working at the Paramount Lot, I found out the company has two special days where they bring in breakfast and coffee for the staff: Muffin Mondays and Bagel Fridays. I've been know to eat a muffin or two lol but I've never been fond of bagels....until now. Now I faithfully eat a Noah's bagel every Friday morning with a cup of their magnificent house blend. Très magnific!

(Getting closer to the funny part.) My first day at the bagel stand, I see a woman huddled over the garbage can working frantically at something. As I get closer I can see she's ripping and tearing away at the bagel and throwing pieces into the garbage can bit by bit.
I approach asking, "Dang. Is there something wrong with today's bagels?" Typical Mandy-approach to the situation.

Startled, she looked up at me with wide, darting eyes. "No. I'm hollowing out the bagel. Less calories."

"Oh..." I begin slowly. "Why don't you just cut it in half and take half a bagel, instead of the whole thing? Or a fourth?"

She looked up at me, shrugged her shoulders, and scurried down the hall.
Back to the present. This morning. So today I was telling the guys in my office, "You know...I think I'm over the bagels. I may have eaten my last bagel. If I have one it'll only be as a last ditch effort at goodbye. And because I just like eating." Smile.

And as I left the office for the bagel stand, I sigh, "Here I go...I'm gonna have a bagel." With feigned dissatisfaction in my eyeballs, I pass a colleague.

She picks up on my vibe and yells after me, "JUST DIG OUT THE MIDDLE...LESS CALORIES!"

Popped My.....Taco?

Today is a very anticipated day for FIRST TACO TRUCK experience! I don't know whether to be scared or excited. lol I'll let you know how it goes....!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

I give it a B-/C+...but in a good way.

I just finished reading this book and I have to say....I was pleasantly surprised!! Keyes, a writer out of Ireland, has a writing style very similar to Anna Maxted (Running in Heels). She sets this novel in Los Angeles so I was able to visualize the lounges/restaurants/neighborhoods in which she based her stories. Also, the characters are so typically Angelino, it's nuts! Because people who've lived here long enough know that Angelinos are a DIFFERENT BREED of people.

Another reason, the main reason, I liked this book is that it approached the issue of marriage from a very interesting perspective. Keyes shows the complexities, hardships, craziness, and pleasures of being united through marriage, and she reveals it in a retrospective fashion. This way, the reader comes the realization of the story at the same time as the main character, Maggie, does. It makes you feel like you are experiencing things right along with her. 

I won't give away the book in case you wanna read it...but one thing I did NOT understand was the title! It didn't go along with the book at all! I kept thinking, "When do we get to the part about angels???"

"The Girlfriend" is getting to be a bit "Annoying"

Men are so easily pleased!

Give them an at least half-way beautiful woman with a european accent and some cleavage talking about how she accepts all of the short-comings of man... et voilà! Instant boner! lol

Every man's fantasy:

  • The accent is sexy because it means she is from unfamiliar lands. The accent also means he doesn't mind when she's talking to him because it doesn't really matter what she's simply SOUNDS sexy! And more than likely she won't be very good at talking in English anyways...the less talking, the better.

  • The boobs are nice due to their seeming perkiness, and they are a nice distraction from her face.

  • Let's face it, men just wanna be men. So if that means going to strip clubs or being fat and harry, so be it! All they want is endorsement of the lifestyle they love. 

I applause Jim Beam on appealing to their key audience....American male sports enthusiasts. Nice work!

The only thing that sucks is watching the broad during EVERY commercial break!!!!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

hel-LO Mr. President!

More than a President,
and more like a role-model.
More than likely,
an approach to world
that's a bit more "kindly".
A bit more like ME. :)

A Hundred Million Gazillion

Today I signed up for Twitter....and it makes me wonder: How many social networking (SN) sites will I join in my lifetime? There will always be something bigger and better and completely irresistable. If SN was the only temptation to man, I wouldn't feel so bad, but we all know this is simply a reflection of humanity.

My other observation? The Social Networking Divide. Similar to the Digital Divide, but to another degree. Is it because I'm getting older that many of my friends aren't as plugged into the world of SN? Or are my friends the kind that don't "play the game" of SN? Or perhaps, just perhaps, at the end of a work day, some people have better things to do than be glued to their computer?

I do know this, though. I've always walked a fine line between being a SNW (use your imagination) and continuing to be a bit elusive.

Once again, elusivity prevails, as I've never been known to wear my heart on my sleeve.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Don't Be A Snitch!!

Upon reading the 3rd chapter of the book of Genesis, I realize that Adam is a snitch!! Yes I know that Eve was the one who took the forbidden fruit and ate it, but A. Adam did NOT complain that she was offering him forbidden fruit and B. He ate it! Even though it was forbidden!
Forgive me if I'm a little salty that Adam spilled the beans the way he did. In Genesis 3:12 Adam says, "The woman whom thou gavest to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I did eat." Now typically there would be nothing wrong with this answer, if God would've asked where he got the fruit. BUT God did not ask that! He asked, "...Hast thou eaten of the tree, wereof I commanded thee that thou shouldest not eat?" (3:11) A simple YES would've sufficed! He threw Eve under the bus! He didn't just nudge her into the street into oncoming traffic. Dude grabbed her by the ankles and swung her around and around, doing the Pamchenko Twist (think The Cutting Edge 1992), and lobbed her underneath the city bus that is double the length of a normal know, the one that has a rotating disk in the middle? And when you sit in that portion of the bus you are contantly being turned for different points of view? Yeah, one of THOSE busses.
But I digress...
I mean, Adam and Eve were supposed to be in it to win it. Eve was created out of one of Adams ribs, for crying out loud! I'm not so sure God's verdict would've been any different, but I will say that the whole scene says something of Adam's character. Does it not?
Moral of the story: JUST ANSWER THE DARN QUESTION. No more, no less.

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

It's All Love

I haven't quite figured out why I agreed to do this, except for that I'm a sucker and haven't been inspired to write about anything else lately. So Tasha did this weird writing exercise and suggested I do it too. Something about tell all of the people you've come across in life what you think about them without mentioning their names. Supposed to be therapeutic somehow. So here I go. Splat.

1. I wonder how life will treat you in the long-run. You can be so giving and loving, but when you choose to turn it off you really do. What makes me worry is that your survival mechanism will never allow you to learn compromise or forgiveness or conflict resolution. However, I think the off-switch was best, otherwise we might've had it out in the streets of Mpls. lol It's all good though. I forgive myself and I forgive you.

2. I think you're happy, and you've known what you wanted far before most others. When you get what you want, you are enjoyable. But when you don't (didn't) you let go. I believe you are one of those people who, although we could've been very close friends, would not have helped me grow creatively. You have a beautiful family though, and I'm happy for you.

3. You are the mister of my life (remember that? lol), and we always have a ton of fun. Thank you for many things, but mostly for making me think before jumping. Although I still love to jump unexpectedly sometimes to mix things up. I love you so much but can't get into it without being super mooshy. Your creativity is immeasurable and admired, but what I love most is your faith. Oooh I just LOVE you! lol

4. I never got the chance to know you, but thanks for taking that extra few minutes in the 80s to have a little fun and create such an intriguing piece of art. I look at it everyday and wonder how much of it is a reflection of you. Maybe some day you'll sit me down for an art lesson?

5. Man...where do i start??? You are amazing, in that you give physically, emotionally, verbally, etc. I try to be like you when it comes to giving. You are one of very few people who knows me well, which brings extra comfort as of late, and who didn't pre-judge me when we first met. You balance my quiet, intense, South Dakota demeanor with fun and jokes and style. When you make a conscious decision to take control of your life, you are strong, decisive, and beautiful. I hope to see nothing but that in the future.

6. YOU, my dear, are a bit elusive, which is the secret to your mystery. You are good at heart, and I wish I knew you better. I think our lives now are compensating for how much time we were forced to spend together as children! But I trust all will come full circle, much like you and your travels. You always manage to swing through to say hi for a quick hug and a shower.

7. You are someone that I admire very much. I aspire to be like you in the kitchen and in my values and approach to life. You are such a good person! I was sad to move mostly because of what you helped me accomplish. Thank you!

8. And I come to you...Miss Bossy. Thanks for agreeing, for once, with something you don't understand. You often explain and define your life in reference to the man of the moment, more so than anyone I've ever met, which I never understood until a couple years ago. The intensity of your relationships is shaped by your only-child personality traits and the blame you put on your father. Only when you stop blaming will you be able to find peace through love. Your ability to so intensely verbally articulate your thoughts and observations is intriguing to me, but also goes hand-in-hand with your tendency to take life so literally. Our friendship is definitely unique. Different than I've ever had.

9. I haven't spoken to you much as of late, besides the random text, but you seem so much more peaceful now since you've expanded your family. I am really happy for you. Try not to THINK so much! I believe that is what gives you an almost somber appearance. Your life is beautiful! Family, friends, success...what else could a man ask for? Ha! Silly question...since man's appetite is never full.

10. You've provided for me what many young ladies in my circumstance can only imagine. We gone through rough times and you've gotten me through rough times....and You have no idea how much I love and appreciate you.

11. stress me out!! Get it together. Stop wearing your heart on your sleeve, go to school, and stop making excuses!!!!!!!!!

12. I respect your game! You always have a man in love with you and you always know when to stop the relationship before you get fully sucked into something you don't really want. This is a great quality! You recognize when love is good for you and when it it not. You have mastered what many women never will.

13. You are the strongest person I know, and I try to be the same. And of course we are the same in many ways. There was a moment when I wondered who you were, but I know we all go through things that are inexplicable. Nonetheless, you have my heart.

14. I remembered when I was younger, I wanted to be like you. I learned a lot about music from you believe it or not. That first Erykah Badu CD that I'd listen to for hours on end while locked in my bedroom? That was yours. And I remember very vividly how devastated/shocked you were to find out Tupac was killed. You allowed me the space and independence I so craved, so I thank you. Even despite the time you whacked me over the head with the telephone receiver because I wanted to call Jeanne and tell her you were being mean. LOL Now, though, I think you feel trapped by your family. I wish that you would find how to turn your passions into profit because then I know the wine and weed would no longer be your refuge.

15. I feel like you gave up on success somewhere along the way. Or perhaps you're simply another person who has always had it handed to you and will always expect it to be handed to you. But you have a good heart and a great family. I'm excited for the day that we can be friends again.

16. Man you've got some issues. Perhaps psychological. Maybe you are aware and maybe you're not, but I can see it in your eyes. I never really knew what to believe when you talked.

17. Marriage and motherhood has treated you well!! I know, though, that you will find that missing link. Maybe you'll open your own business, or start doing photography? I'm excited to find out what it'll be!

18. You crave success, and your hard work is paying off. You've done almost everything you said you were going to do, or at least you're on your path to doing it. I like that in a peson. I wish you well. For some reason, I still think about your dad(s) and his motorcycle, and your mom, and your sister.

19. You handle the crinkles so well and set yourself up for success. You say you're not a very passionate person, but you are a planner and I respect that. You weigh your options and make very responsible decisions. I love how you are smart with your money and how you get to travel and be young.

20. And to all the rest I can't think of right now: Thank you! Every person I have met has taught me some life lesson and has made a large impact, which is probably why I only let a small amount in. If not, I might go into overload!

2 Days in Paris

I watched half of this movie last night, and I was pleasantly surprised. I used to watch a lot more independent films so was excited to try one out again. My plans tonight are to go straight home and finish it. A quote:

"It always fascinated me how people go from loving you madly to nothing at all, nothing. It hurts so much. When I feel someone is going to leave me, I have a tendency to break up first before I get to hear the whole thing. Here it is. One more, one less. Another wasted love story. I really love this one. When I think that its over, that I'll never see him again like this... well yes, I'll bump into him, we'll meet our new boyfriend and girlfriend, act as if we had never been together, then we'll slowly think of each other less and less until we forget each other completely. Almost. Always the same for me. Break up, break down. Drunk up, fool around. Meet one guy, then another, fuck around. Forget the one and only. Then after a few months of total emptiness start again to look for true love, desperately look everywhere and after two years of loneliness meet a new love and swear it is the one, until that one is gone as well. There's a moment in life where you can't recover any more from another break-up. And even if this person bugs you sixty percent of the time, well you still can’t live without him. And even if he wakes you up every day by sneezing right in your face, well you love his sneezes more than anyone else's kisses."