Showing posts from 2011

Kindness Rev 2

I ’d noticed his shades in the kitchen were drawn and his girlfriend’s red Prius has been here all week. That’s off, must be something wrong.   Walking the dogs tonight, the Prius was gone, and the blinds were up and he sat in his normal place at his kitchen table.   A clear view past his garage, the street and my fence to my front door.   I felt like a glass of wine and a chat and it was obvious that whatever had gone on over the last few days was over.   I poured a glass of red into a paper coffee cup and headed across the street to his front gate.   He noticed me as I approached the sliding door to his kitchen and waved me in.   Standing up awkwardly and unlatching the lock. Are you OK? I assumed and noted that I’d seen Sarah’s car in the middle of the week but it didn’t look like they were around.   He said Oh god what a week I’ve had and launched into his organ recital. On Monday I had 3 teeth pulled and I’ll need to get 3 um “implants, I volunteered. Yes, and it’s going to cost

JJ's Silverlake

Gimme another beer he shouted down the bar. It was mid afternoon at JJ's a local bar in the Silverlake district of LA. The damp grey air seeped in through the velvet curtain shroud surrounding the open door.   The floor had a layer of grease and dirt that no amount of borax could cut through.   Ashtrays on every table, and about 1 every foot along the L shaped bar that took up most of the space.   Jerry, a regular, sat at the far end of the room, in darkness. He was always there when the doors opened an didn’t leave until his kid showed up to fetch him home around dinnertime. Hold your horses said John Jr. the proprietor. JJ was a resourceful man and the bar venture was simply the latest in a string of businesses in a string of cities across the country.   There was the candy company and the sweet oil factory, there was the coffee grinding service and that farm they’d lived on for a time. Elizabeth, his wife of 30 years and the mother of his 9 children had slowly sagged into her a

Killing Time

God am I glad I just went to the liquor store, Stuart thought as the old lady put the stalled elevator emergency phone back in its cradle.   The three of them sized each other up.   Anyone got anything sweet?   The pretty teen with the Juicy sweats, directed her question to the old lady, but her eyes were on Stuart.   She was obviously only 14 or 15, but well developed for her age.   Stuart smiled.   I’ve got some beer and a bag of Cheetos.   The old lady had been observing them quietly, and was now sliding down to the floor using her back to maintain her balance.   She was too old for this shit, she thought, but didn’t say it out loud.   The young girl, Amy, was silently trying to (a) figure out how old Stuart was and (b) if she would be able to talk him out of a beer, even with the old lady and her disapproving expression. Edith hit the floor hard, on her bad hip, and let out an involuntary yelp.   As they glanced down at her sprawled out on the floor of the elevator, she said loudl

Sundays and Jesus, Rev 1

Sundays always disappear too quickly.   You sleep in, maybe just a half hour, take your time getting dressed and head out- with or without the dogs.   Sunday mornings involved lattes and muffin crumbs in the car, a bit of grocery shopping and maybe breakfast. When I was younger I went to church on Sundays, or rather passed through Sunday school on the way to Winchell’s Donuts with the boys, leaving an empty classroom for Jesus to stretch out in.   We’d buy a grape juice and pretend it was wine, a faux communion.   I was grounded from the youth group because I always took off.   I wasn’t doing anything daring at all. I was just bored. In those days they tried to pretend we were in a coffee house instead of a church, the days before self realization. Some of our leaders tried out things on us, that I think they read about in a book.   Unqualified but confident they were doing the Lord’s work.   Guitars- acoustic of course- were always present.   Walls painted black, with the Bible stuf

Tropical Breeze Rev 1

I ’ve lived in the islands for twenty years.   I moved here after my fourth husband beat the crap out of me and I had to leave town.   It’s so bloody humid here during part of the year that when I’m off work I usually hang out in my room- modestly covered by a pair of Costco ladies briefs in a bag, and lying directly in front of a fan, drinking something cold or with ice in it. I live in a big old house with 7 other random travelers.   I’ve been in this place for 6 months after the old house in Kakio Point was condemned.   All the houses on this side of the island are weather beaten with windows painted open and gaps in the walls.   I am used to the feel of tiny mice holding a grand prix in the middle of the night, my belly the first bridge in the course.   I work at the Tiki Lounge near Kalauea Iki; during the tourist months I make good tips and sometimes bring a big spender home for a few hours so I can pay the rent.   I’ve lived on the beach before when the money ran out.   It’s n

Love the Second Time Rev 1

I’d forgotten she thought, how stupid and obsessive I can be. I’m not quite sure I want to go back there, to that heart pounding, wardrobe despairing, self conscious, shy aggressive person I was so many years ago. I’d forgotten do I eat more when I’m in love, or lose my appetite. If I eat more, is it healthy food or greasy onion rings from Angels? If I lose my appetite will I get sick or anemic or look like an escapee from the holocaust, or will I look like I’m 18 again, wearing midriff baring tops and dolphin shorts, everywhere. I’d forgotten that my cell phone has a shitty voicemail that loses calls and muffles people’s voices so they become a bunch of gibberish. I am dreading the hours I’ll waste staring at it, willing it to ring, or listening to a message over and over. Is it my mother or him? Is it my dentist or a telemarketer trying to scam me out of cash? I’d forgotten that I was no longer wrinkle free and now resembled the Painted Desert more than Las Vegas-0 stretch mar

Deja Vu, The Return from San Miguel Rev 1

Our shuttle is late. The schedule was posted on the office door; I’d been back at Casa Luna for an hour trying to capture some details of the week so I can write from my blog later before it all fades. Every time the buzzer rings the staff has to walk through two gates and gaze through the little window. The guy selling dirt, the woman selling nopalitos dragging two toddlers door to door, young men looking for work. It’s the Wednesday after Palm Sunday and I am headed home to San Diego from San Miguel de Allende via Houston. The owner calls the shuttle company and only gets cell phones. He is very responsible, they probably got stuck on the way, and maybe another procession around holy week, I’m sure he’ll be here. Somehow, even though we are on the list on the office door, clearly marked for a 2:45 pick up, out pick up got cancelled. The owner calls another company, and we are escorted into the little gated room by the front door with our luggage. It’s now almost an hour later, and

Found Money Rev 2

Picking it up out of a oily, nasty looking rain puddle, he unfolded a think clump of $100 bills. What kind of joke is this he thought. On the same day his car was repossessed, he finds enough cash to pay it off plus. The sky was ominously dark, and rolling waves of thunder shook the ground under his feet. A bolt of lightning illuminated the figure of a man hunched over near a dumpster down an alley, just past the back door to the bar. He thought about it, not longer than a second or two and kept walking. The seven cocktails he’d downed in the last 2 hours hadn’t put him out, but his comprehension of the world had taken a detour that wouldn’t rejoin the main road until sometime tomorrow afternoon. He was approaching the diner, the fluorescent lights like a ships beacon on the point. The curved booths embracing young couples in love, and lonely old men. He could see Sally, his favorite waitress in her red checked uniform with the puffy sleeves and a full shirt. She was pouring coffee

Sports, Whatever Rev 1

My life is a train wreck. You’re welcome to watch. I hate gym class or rather I hate the uniforms, the smell of the lockers, what the sweat does to my hair, and most of all taking off my clothes and taking a shower. They give us tiny little white towels that only cover the front of you, and if you have no boobs like me, you attempt to create them with air using artful draping techniques. I am not graceful and the shorts always look way too short on my long legs. Then there is the actual sport or activity. Let’s start with pushups. When you have long arms and no boobs you have to have serious upper body strength to push back up- after the first down movement. And you usually hurt your back because your elbows are reaching for the ceiling as you try to keep your back straight and not lift your butt first. Next we have running- on the dirt track- around the football field where the boys are practicing for the game tonight. I think running is a stupid activity and I do everything I

Freeway Personals Rev 1

I should’ve had the air conditioning fixed and gassed up this morning, Sarah thought. well, there’s no sense dwelling on it now since I’m going to be either stuck here in traffic, or stranded at the side of the road- a mile or two from the Genesee exit. There are no gas stations nearby, so I’ve really got a couple of hours to kill. What’ve we got here? She wondered aloud. I’m bored. The car just ahead was about two months overdue for a wash., although it was a late model Lexus. The rear bumper was covered with stickers” Hang up the damn phone and drive” “Jesus loves unborn babies”, “My child was a royal screw up at Billings Elementary. The back windshield continued the diatribe “You suck, I’ll eat baby deer if I want to", next to a large rifle shaped sticker screaming “Shut the F### Up!" Oh boy, I thought, here we have a real winner. Is it a man or a woman? Where do they work? The driver of the Lexus turned her head and Sarah realized it was a woman. Oh God no. Her

Monument Sign Rev 1

I’d been waiting for the monument sign for six weeks. The company had broken the mold and had to order a new one from the factory. Urger Shack, people drove by and laughed and no one stopped in. What the hell is an Urger ? They’d yell as he sat on the bench outside the front door, always leaving the AC on since it was the middle of summer and the food in the kitchen would spoil fast. For six weeks he’d sat on this bench, trying to figure out how to use “urger to his advantage, maybe start a trend, even a cult would work if it got people to stop at the care, even for a coke. Urger Shack, Urger shack. Wait? That ‘s it. If we’re going be silly let’s go for it. Urger Hack, get rid of the S and pretend it was cool. Urger Hack, Urger Hack, or Hurger Sack, no that made no sense at all. It was getting later, around 3 or so in the afternoon when the bus stopped. A bus, 37 screaming kids in a school bus from Salinas. Hey buddy the driver yelled, got any ice cream to shut these punks

Runaway Rev 1

She was gone. Again. Running away from home. The creaking of the double silled window sliding slowly down after she crawled onto the fire escape. The flashlight used sparingly, just enough for safety, not enough to draw attention. Even though she weighed only 90 pounds soaking wet, Cindy’s footsteps on the metal decking made a squishy sound that was unmistakably her. Should I tell mom?. Now before she goes too far? I don’t want her to go, not again. I miss her. I sat up and walked over to the window to see her join Billy in his convertible, idling quietly on the next corner. At least she’s not alone this time, I thought. At least she’s with Billy He was her tennis coach, not hers really, but the “Girls” tennis coach. He had been a senior in high school when she was in junior high and he was friends with Jimmy, their neighbor up the hall. At least she isn’t alone this time. I wonder why I keep thinking that. I noticed a movement and saw Jimmy run up and jump in the back seat.

Last Day San Miguel de Allende

Really meant to keep up with this, but the minutes turned into hours turned into days turned into margaritas or art workshops or eating or shopping and here i am for the first time sitting still for an hour or so on the last of the battery.  I am totally spacey, yesterday took off my shoes in my room at lunch, and when i went back to the workshop i was wearing one tiva and one ecco sandal, and they don't even look alike.  I spent the whole week with these women but still couldn't keep their names straight.  Re hid my passport a million times and fortunately found it a million times.  Playing with the little white cockapoodle or whatever they call it that lives here.  The art we all created was amazing.  We all got along with only a few whines. Age range I'd say 50 something to 80 something.  I never got sick although a few did -  I have a pretty strong constitution.  Had rose petal ice cream, had walnut soup with chipotle, a seabass in a giant mocajete (i think that's

San Miguel -the last few days

I've lost all track of time, and my iphone by the way.  I've spent the days making art mosaics painting making books, shopping eating talking.  We went to visit artist's home-  Joseph and Eli and playing with dolls, Anato and his husbands amazing mosaic rancho using recycled glass and natural matrials.  I've bought rattlesnake rattle and turquoise earrings, and a beautiful tied stone necklace from Anato. We followed the procession on Palm Sunday through the Streets of San Miguel, went to visit the Unesco site At Antonico (sp), had amazing meals.  I've lost all sorts of things, mostly on the properties where we are staying. I had dinner one night with an older man Joseph, last name to come, his wife, her sister and friend from North County San Diego who I'd imagine is in his 80s from Oklahoma, who is a sailor, a sculptor a jeweler, and has a beautiful home ful of vintage items imported from the states.  It's been hot and humid and I gave up wearing makeup aft

Arriving in San Miguel Rev 1

So we all made it on the flight to Leon.  Small plane, not sure how many hours in the air but not too bad. Taxiing runway, rain on the ground, lots of chatter about raincoats and umbrellas.  The plane touches down and we head down the stairs, a short walk in the drizzle into the customs building.  We all got our bags, and introduced each other while waiting to go through the x-ray machine and the suspicious search lines.  Step up one at a time, hit the button, will it be red and I'll have to open my suitcase or do I get the green light and get to shoot right through to the line to the outdoors where the smokers are.  Fortunately not many, easy to get away from.  I stand outside, already realizing that I should've thought "Aussie" clothes vs San Diego clothes because it is really humid. Everyone makes it through customs without incident and we pile our luggage and our stuff into two vans for the ride to San Miguel, windy roads for about 1-1/2 hours. The countryside r


4/13/11 Air between SD and Houston TX on a Continental flight. My eyes itch; my knees are pressed up against the seat pocket where the sick bag sits. My arms are squeezed against my side, trying not to crowd the guy in the seat next to me, who has never made eye contact. I was going to say good morning but I am guessing he would prefer his privacy and to tell you the truth, so would I. This is just the transition. On my lap is my wallet with my cash and credit cards, and a thank you drink certificate from my friend who is a flight attendant for watering her plants last week. I am a little groggy this morning and am not sure if it is the Claritin or the Ambien hangover although I didn’t take a whole one last night. Its 9:29 California time and I just ordered a red wine since they don’t have sparkling. I felt the need to explain I was on vacation and the flight attendant; a guy,obviously didn’t care in the least. – Not whether I had the wine or not, nor whether I existed really. I don’

The Reluctant Musician Rev 1

My night as a musician began in an ordinary enough way. The thing is I had no formal musical skills other than perfect pitch. I’d never held a guitar, never moistened a reed, never pushed down on the pedals of a piano. The air was thick with smoke, the chatter deafening, the women loose, the men rumpled and charming. I stood in the alley looking in as people arrived and chose their perch, preening and screeching like macaws in the bush. I dropped the butt, embers scattering on the oily blacktop near the dumpsters and quickly stamped on it with my new leather shoes. I downed the last of my beer and took a place in the second to the last row of the orchestra, on the end. The girl sitting next to me was wearing a red satin shift that floated around her ankles. Her skin was the color of a glazed donut and she smelled like the gardenias in my mother’s garden. The conductor stood up, nodded his head and began waving a stick around. I sat up straighter in my seat, a tambourine at the r

The Library Rev 1

He was beautiful that’s the only way to describe his features; a tennis player body, thick hair that looked like it would take a team to cut, long legs and great arms. You know the kind of arms that say tennis or surfing, not free weights and the gym. He was unconscious of her presence and she stood just outside, half hidden, half visible, turned in such a way that she could stare but turn her gaze elsewhere should he raise his lips towards her. Wait, I meant his eyes. He was dressed comfortably, casuall,y but not carelessly or sloppy. There was no scent of tobacco or stale alcohol or the opposite extreme, girly freshmess from scented soap. His hair was shiny but not the 20 something shiny, just a healthy shine. His hands were smooth, his nails clean and neatly trimmed. It was obvious he wasn’t a laborer, or a real estate agent. An artist or a writer, I’d guess, from his quiet meditative pose, and from the glimpse of his expression visible through his mane of hair. Not a pretty boy b

Irritating Stranger Rev 1

OMG Aggie drawled, a very fake and pretentious accent clipping every word with hard edges. So obscure and amateur that I could hardly look her in the eyes. We were in the line in the ladies room at Lefty’s in Ketchum, when she got her period and asked to borrow a tampon once we were settled in adjoining stalls. I can keep my mouth shut, I thought that’s the safest way to opt out. No that won’t work. So Aggie, how do you and Susan know each other? It was difficult even looking in her direction. She had a top on that was straining at the seams around her bosom and the cap sleeves revealed a sloppy job of washing, evidenced by wet circles of perspiration under her arms, outlined in cakey white anti-perspirant. Her top was hot pink with silvery cowboy hats on it and her matching pants emphasized an extreme lack of fitness. It could be worse, I thought, she could be in a miniskirt. That blonde woman, what was her name Susan? You know, that loud drunk blonde who was drooling on Eddie.