19 January 2010

Mafioso Types on the LA Metro

Yesterday, right when I was about to buy my metro ticket to go to SC, this woman dressed all in white, puffy, animal fur hat that looked like a massive sea urchin, eight or nine bags, her teeth missing enamel in the center, asked me how to buy a ticket. So I showed her what buttons to press + each time it was her turn, she would take too long, the machine would beep at her, I'd hit the "need more time" option + then we'd start all over again. And then suddenly, in the middle of our tutorial, she leaned into my ear and whispered in a thick Russian accent:

--I was taken by mafioso. They drop me here, she said smiling, half in shock.
--Oh, I'm sorry, I said, not know what else to say.

Then this sketchy black dude who had been watching our entire conversation next to the pay telephone, walked towards us, circling around like he was either:

1. Checking out her loot
2. Checking to see if I was strapped

+ then he retreated into the corner again, half-staring at her bags, observing us nonchalantly. I kept thinking: --Yo, I really don't need this shit right now. I just want to get to school + read my fucking poem out loud to my poetry + composition class, come back home later, write novels + spend time in Japan + grow old with LB + our two kids. Just let me do that please.

I wished her good luck, flashed her a worried smile + then walked down to the train platform. The devastating thing is, I never saw her board the train. . .

07 January 2010

LA Drama

LA is a nexus of drama: film studios, movie stars + starfuckers abound, off-broadway theaters litter Santa Monica Boulevard, every third person you see is connected to cinecittà somehow. I guess because we live in Hollywood, of all places, I shouldn't be surprised when random drama + interconnected celebreality invades our less glamorous world.

Among other things:

1. Went to Venice Beach
with LB, my mom + my brother + watched kids shredding it in the skate park before counting head shops, fortune tellers + crazy outfits. I do love me some Venice: crazy, beautiful, surreal, out of control.

2. Bought my first MacBook Pro
(possibly the slickest piece of tech I've ever owned), thanks to LB, the coolest girlfriend in the whole world. As it turns out, the roommate of the Apple salesgirl we'd been chatting with--she had this really awesome island vibe about her--was the acrobatic redhead in the all-girl dance crew, We Are Heroes.

--Yo, we loved that group, I said. We were rooting for them all the way from Buenos Aires.
--I'll tell her that, she said.
--So wait, which one was your roommate? I asked.
--The redhead, she said. --The one that does all the flips.
--Oh yeah, LB said.
--She's good man, I said.

3. Right as we about to drive to the post office to send another copy of my novel to NYC for the Bellwether Prize (long story that) + get some dinner at the impressive vegan restaurant RFD (Real Food Daily), LB said:

--Oh shit.
--What? I asked.

+ then I saw:

Granules covering the ground in the garage in a million glass shards. Somehow, our car got broken into inside the apartment garage with two locked garage doors, two security cameras in plain view and a back fence covered in barbed wire. It was crazy. How the fuck did this happen? And why our car? Our little Rabbit was flanked by shiny black Beamers, Mercedes, a Lexus, a Jeep Cherokee with a Dartmouth sticker. Why our tiny fuel-efficient Volkswagen Rabbit with the SC decal?

And guess what these thugs were looking for? Our fucking iPod + a goddamn GPS console. The money it will take to replace the window will cost twice as much as that old iPod + the hand-me-down GPS.

Anyway, after sweeping up the glass, we drove to RFD
with the air pouring through the window + we ate amazing vegan Reuben sandwiches + a seitan Salisbury steak with mash potatoes + Caesar salad.

For an hour, everything felt completely normal. Then we walked to the car, took a deep breath + laughed. What else could we do?