Friday, June 17, 2005

Funny thing is they call this town the City of Angles but everyone tells you that it will steal your soul. I'm no preacher and certainly a different kind of believer but I'm pretty sure no one can steal your soul. Here in LA there aren't any soul thieves but there's someone on every street corner who'll buy it if you're in the market to sell. They're tricky cuz they try to convince you it's a pawn shop and you can just leave your soul there a couple days for safe keeping in exchange for a few nights in Hollywood on Sunset Boulevard with pretty girls on your arms and a never-ending drink in your hand while movie stars float around on the light bursting out of the paprazzi flash bulbs.

If you're weak, you're screwed. Doesn't matter what kind of smoke-and-mirrors show they put on for you. The ground will shake. You'll be in the office on the 18th floor trying to eat a late lunch and the whole place will just start swaying back and forth. An apartment a few doors down might catch on fire. Red trucks pulling up with hoses and lights and loud noise at 8 in the morning. Girls will turn their head and look right into your eyes when you walk into a bar.. And you just think about the people in the world somewhere who are thinking about you and you want them to know you are thinking about them.

If I was a musician I'd be so into re-inventing myself right now but not in the Madonna way with some stupid new outfit, in the way that I'd be finding comfort and peace in the simple rhythms and melodies that are at the heart of every song. But I'm not a musician, so in between interviewing celebs on the red carpet at movie premieres, Checking out new acts at The Viper Room and sipping drinks at all the trendy hotspots and then expensing it to work I'm reading books and searching the blogosphere for the heart and soulbloggers. The Meat and Potatoes bloggers.

The One Child Left Behind has it down so well that I feel like I'm lost somewhere in the northwest with him. Lapsus Linguae brings me to the point of tears whenever she wants and I owe her dearly for it. I know there are more of you out there. I want to find you. If I do end up sticking with this journalism thing I want Eric to be my mentor.

I'm in the most transparent city in the world where bigger faster, prettier and pricier dictate everything and all I want to do is surround myself with the kinds of people who want to slow things down, buy them in bulk and skip the pretty packaging. And just like last summer, I have nowhere to live in 6 days. It's a wave.

Thursday, June 09, 2005

I sat down across from myself at the small window table for lunch. The waitress asked if we wanted to start with something to drink.

Two whiskey sours.

"Just one, I'll have a gin and tonic."


"Awwwww, Comb your fucking hair."

The waitress raised an eyebrow and Smirked.

Make that two whiskey sours and two G&T's

She scribbled lazily on her green pad and walked away.

I'll bet she'd bang you.

"Didn't you have enough to drink last night? Weren't those 12 AM Gin shots enough to keep you going until you get home?"

Sue me. I've had a tough week. My old roommate got called a nigger and then got his jaw broken just for being black. The magazine wouldn't pick up the article I proposed. My best friend turned 22 and I couldn't be there. My step-aunt got some bad news and then the only girl I've really loved went the one place that I can't follow.

Ya but here's the thing...

"What? Now you're gonna lecture me?"

The waitress delivered the drinks.

"She's got a really large mouth. Reminds me of Paige. "

Well you've got a big one too, so drink your drink and shut up. Lecture time.

I sat back and crossed my legs.

Don't do that, you look gay.

I scowled.

Now listen up. His jaw will heal. Your aunt will get chemo. You'll write more shit in this lifetime then you'll ever want to read when you're old, next year your friend will turn 23 and hopefully that will be as amusing as 21 and last but not least, The girl might have gone somewhere you can't follow but all your love doesn't go with her.

"Since when are we all chatty about feeling? who's the gay one"

Shut it. You're always up in this stuff. Always gotta have something to complain about. Just hear me out. The love. The feeling. The tingling in your stomach. It's had a face for a year -and a damn fine face I might add-

"You're not helping"

Shove it. Look. The thing about love, it's the transfer that's hard. Not to another girl. To the idea of someone. It's not an easy thing to do. And before you can pick yourself up and stop hitting that gin, you have to take that feeling and you have to unhook it from that face and remember that it's not always about a person but it's about a hope in something coming along that's going to totally knock you out of your little rhythm of working and blogging and drinking gin in your apartment alone late at night.

"You're a giant tool, you know that right?"

If you tell anyone that we had this talk I swear I'll make you eat dog shit.

The couple at the next booth both turned and stared, like I was talking to thin air. He flipped them off. I smiled. And maybe for a second all I had was a feeling. Like I didn't know what was coming next. But still there was hope.

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

It Never Rains When You Want It To

Funny how I'm in the most superficial town working with the most superficial industry (entertainment that is, not journalism) and I'm living as simply as humbly as I have in a good long while.

I bought a queen-sized air mattress before I set out on this journey. Didn't spring for the pump. I'm full of hot air. Brought my guitar that I still really can't play. A closet full of a few nice shirts and a lot of cheap ones. A couple pairs of shoes, few still looking good and comfortably wearable. A digital camera which I haven't used to take one single picture of me since I've left. My stereo for cranking out melancholy tunes upon command. When I was a kid I used to think Melancholy meant sadness laced with happy. It's just too happy sounding to mean only sad.

The chair's borrowed. Couldn't even spring for one with 4 legs. The fabric of the laundry basket is torn beyond repair. I drank the last Rockstar in the box before work because I only got an hour or two of sleep last night. Yes I'm wearing a wife beater. No, I don't ever wear them out in public unless they're covered by something.

I'm preparing you for something stupid like, "I don't have many material possessions but the people in my life make me rich as a king." Truth is I'm not easy to love. You gotta fight for it. And I can't preach but I'll tell you what I want to do more of. I want to tell everybody how much they mean to me. My family and my friends and my old roommates and everyone who's ever given me a little nudge in the right direction. Even if they didn't mean to. And I want to fight for them whenever they need me. Cuz without the fight I'm just another lonely guy in a wifebeater lost somewhere in the city of angels.

Monday, June 06, 2005

You know you''re preaching when something comes along and you just don't know if you can handle it the way youÂ’'ve told everyone else you could. I talked the other day about choosing a path and Robert Frost poems and all that fucking horse shit. Something about being happy with all the past decisions I've made. And I don't know how long you've been around but a little less than a year ago a girl strolled back into my life and floored me. But she lived so far away. The thing is. Love is about growing together. I know that. You can't grow together 2000 miles apart. So I did what I had to do. I stuck it out for almost six months but I had to do the right thing.

I told her we had to stop. And she cried. And all the 'I love you's' (well, all two of them) became 'I'm so mad at you's' and things slowed down. But I left it in the back fo my mind. Like someday maybe it would work itself out. We kept talking. Someday we would be close enough to make it right. I thought maybe this summer. Maybe I would be in NYC and she would be nearby and we could start again. For the third time. But then the letter came to send me to LA and I hadn't heard form her in a couple weeks. I could feel her drifting away. Yesterday I got a text from Idaho. She was driving west. Her ex, the one I knew wasn't right for her, lives in oregon. And he was with her. Together. They were driving. And today she told me what I should have known. That they're back together.

And I wish everything I said rang so true. That I looked back and all those old decisions make perfect sense. Like all those times I knew I loved her but never told her. That she was the only one I thought of every morning before my feet hit the floor. All those e-mails I wrote to her telling her how I felt. And then deleted them. Before I sent them. Because it was better for her. She was far away and if I told her the truth, what would it have done? I loved her enough to let her live her life without thinking about some guy 2000 miles away. And every time I went out with another girl, all I could think about was her.

God I wanted to tell her so bad. 6 numbers dialed. And sometimes you really have to put a little faith in... maybe it's in yourself... Or maybe it's in something bigger than you. Faith that it all really does work out. Or if it doesn't, at least she can be happy. At least she can be happy because she doesn't know how far down in my stomach she rooted herself.

So with 10 million people in this city, I'm stuck feeling all alone. But I never forget that it's always a wave. We're up and we're down... And either way I love her.

A year ago Today

K, so it's a slow day and for some reason there is not a shortage of things to say. I was out and about for a while enjoying the summer but once I returned the battle between Sete Gibernau and Valentino Rossi sucked me in. Marco Mlandri might be a guy to watch as well. do you know what it's like to go from 210 mph to 60 mph in under 4 seconds while skimming inches of the ground? Neither do I. that's why I need a ride.(and the seeds of superpowers are planted once again) I should have been born Italian. It would have worked out a lot better for me. The sports, the language, the ladies. viva Italia.

I decided today I need to live the high life at some point soon. I'm got to live in L.A. or NYC for at least a year. Maybe a year each. It's inevitable. There's just something about living at the center of it all. My friend told me the other day that there'sw going to be a really big earthquake in CA before this September so I don't think I'll be going out there any time soon. Of course NYC is never free of danger. It's a risk I'm willing to take. I'm talking about living the high life but inside my head I'm still wondering what 210 mph feels like on 2 wheels. Actually, I more curious what the g-force feels like on a 60 mph turn with my knee on the ground. I guess it's a testosterone thing.

I'm a little sad because I think I'm losing Lindsay. Ever since she was on SNL things haven't been quite the same and now that the MTV Movie Awards are close, she doesn't have any time to spend with me anymore. I guess it's better that way right now. I have been taking a lot of flack lately because everyone says she got implants. It's true. but we go back way back way before that so chill mamas. As long as Ashton doesn't try anything at the awards there's no problem. Fuck. Rain delay in the motoGP. Bust out the rain tires. Here we go. Moto GP in the rain. Now that is actually, certifiably insane. Anyone who can help me either learn to race superbikes or live the NYC/LA high life should definitely give me a shout out. Lates

Sunday, June 05, 2005

Sometimes I want this blog to be a discussion about important things like news and journalism and the future of my industry. Then I realize if I cared that much I would just start another blog.

It's easy to get down on things when you don't know many people in the place where you are. Moping is easy. Kicking your ass back into gear is what takes nuts. Cuz life isn't that bad. I've got a job that I actually kinda like. I get to talk to celebrities and chase them around town to fancy hotels and bars where they pay for me to have drinks. I get to work on the 18th and top floor of my buiding where there is a never ending supply of bottled water, Dr. Pepper and even A&W Rootbeer if I'm so inclined. Actually, I lie. it's the 17th floornot the 18th because people are still too pussy to work on a floor numbered 13 so 13 become 14 and the whoel world looks the other way. If that's not enough, my coworkers sent me home with a stack full of no less than 8 new TV pilots to review before the networks have even decided to give them a green light for a full season. So I've got something to do with myself even when I don't know anyone.

In a few weeks I'll have some serious access to free club level Dodger seats so if Tony Pierce didn't e-mail me back earlier he definitely will when I drop that bomb.

I live with two med students right now. Makes me feel pretty useless. That's my key to success. Surround yourself with people who so totally eclipse you that you really have no choice but to get up off your ass, get out and do something with your life. Truth is it's been that way since I was 10 and despite all the fact that we never did as many crazy things or talked to as many girls as we should have, I owe all my old friends dearly. Plus, we've all made up for the lost time. Thing is, it's not like we felt like we were really missing out on anything back then. No need to grow up too fast. Cuz inevitably you're going to wake up one day and all of you will be twenty-something with diploma in hand and absolutely no idea what's gonna get your rocks off. I could talk about important things, but what's the rush to grow up? There's plenty of time for that.

Thursday, June 02, 2005

There are over 8 billion people on this planet and if each one paired up with a star in the galaxy there would still be billions left over to smile down upon the rest of us unclaimed. One in eight billion and people take some decisions so seriously. Like the end of something old or the start of something new really changes anything.

People like to get all stuck in the middle of a Robert Frost poem where they're standing in that yellow wood standing and staring where those two roads diverge. Thinking maybe that if they can get their life to stop and just stand still for one minute. Just hold still for one god damn minute and let me take a longer look here and maybe I can walk a hundred yards down that one and if I don't like it I can come back. No wait, better yet, if everything stops altogether I can just stand here forver and I don't ever have to choose. I can't ever send my life spinning off wildly in the wrong direction.

No one ever thinks to turn around and look behind them. Because if they did all they would see is their path through hundreds of other forks in the road. All those decisions that brought them this far. They'll keep carrying you. They've done it for billions before you and they'll do it long after you're gone. There's always people around to tell you about taking your life into your own hands. Thing is, it's not always yours to take. You have to run it by all those 8 billions stars first.

Cinderella Man

Starring Russel Crowe, Renee Zellwegger and Paul Giamatti.

I've been in Tinsel Town USA for a week and a half now and I can tell you that life in LA is only the dream for a precious few. Lost life here is often at it's shallowest and most needlessly complicated. Sometimes I wonder why anyone pays all these people to run around in circles, star calling agent, agent calling publicist, publicist calling tabloid and stars reading tabloid.

Then I slough my 45 minutes through traffic to the Mann Chinese Theatre on Hollywood Boulevard and I remember why this town can support ten million people. Cinderella Man did more than I expected it ever would. A packed house full of jaded media and industry insiders sat in their seats captivated by the true-to-life story of boxer James . Braddock which Crowe has a knack for telling as much through his quiver of countless, revealing facial expressions as he does through the words they put in his mouth. Rene Zelwegger falls on her face as a Jersey housewife with a played up accent ready more for a patronizing Broadway satire than a film of this calibre but that didn't make me care any less about the plight of this riches to rags to riches story where Braddock shatters the bones in his hand just as the great depression began.

The fight scenes are filmed beautifully enough to make you tighten your stomach at every body shot and squint your eyes as gloves fly lightening-quick toward the camera. I was dissappoited that in Crowe's fall from glory he didn't get that serious, bloody, career-ending ass whooping but he does break his hand and takes his fair share of shots through the course of this film. I guess you can't blame them for sticking with some historical accuracy but I'm sure they used the creative license with plenty other details.

Paul Giamatti is brilliant once again and perfect in the boxing manager shoes. He's strong, supporting an charasmatic in the way that you want to pull him out of Crowe's corner and put him in your own for a little pick me up and comic relief when things get tough.

Cinderella man does everthing you could ask. Your girlfriend might turn away at the fight scenes but she'll cry when the family hits rock bottom and tries to hold on to that last sliver of hope. The moral of this story is the one that keeps millions of people in their dead end jobs working nine to five for 5 days a week. It's sad for the millions who never pull tehmselves up but brilliant for the few who do. In LA, the magic isn't happening out on Hollywood Blvd or Venice Beach, it's behind closed doors where maybe these people who seem so disinterested show a little heart.