Monday, November 30, 2009

Four Days in November

11.26 ~ Thanksgiving at my sister's house. Since Grandma died, our family spends the day with my sister and her in-laws. She's got it good - she cleans the house, everyone else brings the food then cleans up. I bring my Tupperware and a fork (I'm good that way!). I really wasn't in the mood to be social, put on the happy face, etc. But, it's family. And I needed a hefty dose of it! My brother + his kids were in San Diego with his wife's family; but my niece was in from Las Vegas (she's in the Teach for America program). I got to talk with Dad for a while, got to cry to Mom for a while, got to laugh with Trey & Mia for a while, got to eat for a while. It was all good. I left that night feeling full of food and family.

11/27 ~ Connected with my cousin Nepunnee at Duke's in Malibu. All she wanted was to drink with family! And I, of course, was more than happy to oblige. I'm so impressed by her - she was this extremely shy child, clingy with her mom, barely talked; now, she's talkative, bright, funny and wants to have a drink with her favorite cousin! :) We shared family stories - hookers, dogs, Transformers, Grandma's pies, cousins + family. It was a great time! Makes me want a family reunion...

11/28 ~ Had an incident at the hair salon - glasses off (can't see a damn thing!), hair in foil, Glamour magazine at my nose, trying to read. Next to me is an empty salon seat then two stylists each with a customer. The 4 of them are talking about the Tiger Woods incident...blah blah blah...

"Well, he is half black and all black men are violent. Just look at that Chris Brown."

I lowered the magazine, squinting my eyes to see who's talking. It's 2009, right? I didn't hear that, right? It's 2009, right? I don't even know what kind of look was on my face. Probably not a very good one.

Stylist #2: "That...was...just one incident." I was fuming, so anything said after that was static and noise.

I wanted to say something intelligent and wise. All I could think to say was something vile and angry. And, I sat there. Silent. I'm still shaking my head.

Later that night, Diana, Scot, Rochelle and I met at the Troubadour in West Hollywood for the English Beat show. We danced up in the VIP loft area which is all fine and dandy; I just love dancing down in the crowd. It was a very good show! I've been to a lot of Beat shows. A LOT. And this one was very good - everything fired on all cylinders: the band, the crowd, the vibe, the songs, everything. They're off to Hawaii this week; then back to ring in the new year in Redondo Beach.

11/29 ~ private shopping event @ Nordstrom! We get food, personal shoppers and the store to ourselves for at least an hour. I did some Christmas shopping and holiday shopping for meeeeee (boyfriend blazer, 2 sweaters, adorable holiday top). I'm in love with a fabulous Marnie hobo bag - navy leather, brown strap, big and gorgeous. It's even marked down to $1,290.90!

Left the event to have sushi @ Midori (our favorite all-you-can-eat sushi place) with Joe. LOVE HIM!! I'm glad we had the chance to catch up, haven't seen him in a while. We always have a good time together, no matter what we do. Just seems that we have a particularly splendid time eating at Midori...

And,'s pay rent and back to work. Pffttht!

Friday, November 27, 2009

Rant: Smooth Away

I really should not be allowed into Bed Bath & Beyond without supervision.

I hit up Burbank's BB&B to purchase one thing. Shoulda known that was impossible. All I needed was a shower caddy. Found that section and their selection, no problem. Turned around to see a pillar covered in Smooth Away boxes *and* a TV infomercial on endless loop.

Have to admit I've seen the product advertised...and wondered how 'crystals' could make hair removal instant, easy and pain free. Painless isn't exactly a term used with hair removal - whether it's waxing (physically painful) or Nair (painful frustration - and smelly, too!).

I watched the infomercial loop for several minutes, grabbed a box and checked out.

Sucker. I know.

Inside were two different sized rubber 'applicators' and several 'crystal' pads in two different colors. I prepped my skin according to the directions and used the recommended light pink crystal pad on my upper thigh. Clockwise 3 times, counter-clockwise 3 times. Repeat until hair is gone. If that didn't work (it didn't work), instructions said to switch to the dark pink, more coarse, crystal pad.

Clockwise 3 times, counter-clockwise 3 times. Repeat several times. All I got was sloughed off dead skin; not much hair removal. I admit there was some hair removal. Just not sure how it works - is hair removed by the twisting or by removing so much dead skin that the hair falls out?

I'm sticking to my razor.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

Thanksgiving used to be a trip to San Pedro to visit my grandparents. They had the tiniest house; somehow there was plenty of room for everyone.

Though the usual Thanksgiving grub sat on the table, I was more interested in the sticky rice and chicken adobo and Spam. Grandma would spend the entire day cooking and baking. Ohh, the baking! Everything from scratch. People would place orders for her pies. She would bake pies for the sisters and priests in the rectory behind the house. She would bake pies for our Thanksgiving dessert as well as bake pies for families to take home. And she would bake a lemon meringue pie without meringue just for me...

At Grandma's funeral, someone (Uncle Nicky maybe?) mentioned her pies. There was a collective groan from the crowd.

Not sure why this memory came to me. I'm sure glad it did :)

Thank Your First Commenter Day, Year Two

I filched this from Neil over at Citizen of the Month blog: he thanks his blog commenters once a year. Isn't that a great idea?!
Last year, I thanked Lys for being my first-ever blog commenter. This year, the title goes to...MHB! He commented on my 02/08/06 blog post about poor grammar.
Hey - I just realized Lys introduced me to MHB...anyway...

Today, I thank YOU, MHB - my 2nd blog commenter!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Review: Save New Wave II

Save New Wave II
House of Blues Sunset - Los Angeles CA
Hosted by Richard Blade
Blasphemous Rumours
Joshua Tree
The Cured

Any gig with Richard Blade's name attached is a sure-fire way to get me to go. I mean, c'mon - any (every?) SoCal kid who grew up in the 80s knows Richard Blade - KROQ, MV-3, Video One. He introduced me to my favorite bands and my favorite music...ahhh, Richard you, call me...

I have no expectations going into this show. Cover bands are cover bands, y'know? Except now they're known as 'tribute' bands. Yeah, I don't get it either. Tomayto/Tomahto. I've only seen one other 'tribute' band - Hollywood U2. And they were ridiculous! In an awesome way.

Before the gig, HOB is spinning the requisite 80s music - Duran Duran, Flock of Seagulls, PFurs; all the familiar stuff, the usual, the stuff kids now know and call 'oldies' (uhh...OUCH!).

First up - INXSive. Sound GREAT! The curly-haired Pauly Shore-looking Michael Hutchence-channeling dude is pretty much hittin' it. I'm dancing and singing along, thoroughly enjoying this band. Musically, all the members are pretty talented. They played most of the INXS hits - Don't Change, What You Need, Never Tear Us Apart, blah blah blah. I enjoyed them quite a bit.

Next, the Cured. The lead singer dude was wearing a wig. A horrible horrible wig. Fail. His so-called Robert Smith moves were fail, too. He forgot lyrics to a couple of songs. FAIL! I was totally bummed. He mumbled and fumbled. Ashley said: it's okay to pay tribute but don't try to BE Robert Smith! The guy walked around the crowd in his wig for the next two sets, all but begging for attention. Sad. Fail.

The Joshua Tree was up next; by this time, I was ready to go. I did not want to stick around for more tribute fails. Joshua Tree performed the Red Rocks concert from 1983. They did a fine job.

In between the sets, the 80s music became more obscure and fantastic: Let Me Go, Plans for Nigel, 80s by Killing Joke were a few standouts.

Blasphemous Rumours closed the show. OK. The opposite of FAIL! I was blown away. Martin Gore-looking dude was great. The lead singer dude was fantastic! I danced through the whole set. Well, except for 'Somebody' - I just sniffled and comforted my friend. But the rest of the set was crazy good - People are People, Enjoy the Silence, Get the Balance Right, Everything Counts, Master & Servant. They hit the big DM hits; though I was disappointed no Blasphemous Rumours or Just Can't Get Enough to be heard.

Overall, I had a great time with friends - dancing around to fun 80s music. I will not see the Cured again. However, next time BR hits Romano's in Riverside, I may have to go home for a night...

Monday, November 16, 2009


He was a gift from my roommate, Peggy, for my 30th birthday. We sat in the living room, watching him prance and stumble about, calling out names to see which one suited him. When I said 'Riley' he turned and walked toward me.

Riley was soooo little - 8 weeks. He couldn't make it up the stairs; he tumbled down them. He would curl up with Daze, Peggy's cat; they'd groom each other; steeple-chase around the house.

Peg told me Riley was a girl. So, for several weeks it was all "she she she" or "her her her." When I took Riley to Dr. Moon's office to get fixed, he said "Mama, Riley is a boy. How do you not know if your baby is a boy or girl?" He chuckled. "If it was a human, I could tell! How can you tell on a cat?!" The office staff laughed. Poor Riley had a complex his entire life because I couldn't stop calling him 'her'!

Today, Dr. Winter told me Riley has a tumor growing behind his eye. It's causing his eye to bulge out (which means broken bones) as well as impede his breathing. The diagnostic estimate was $4k; treatment would be a completely different estimate. I was floored. I called J, asked her to come to the clinic - I couldnt' function nor think rationally. She did...asked all the detailed questions about the tests, the surgery and long-term for Riley. Dr. Burbridge said with home treatment, Riley would have 1-2 months of not-good quality of life. I could not do that to him. He was already suffering quite a bit.

I sat with Riley in my lap, kissed him. I kept apologizing. I put him back in his carrier box, leaned in for a kiss - he gave me one; then he head-butt my hand - his signal for love & attention. I walked out.

I will miss him curling up in the crook of my knee. I will miss the face-pawing - his way of waking me up. I will miss his little face in the front window when I come home from work. I will miss his belly-ups. I will miss his head-butts.

I will miss you, Riley.

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

NaBloPoMo IV: 4"

Torrid sent me an email yesterday announcing a 3-hour online only shoe sale (I know!). Of course, I clicked on the link. Whoa.

Selected booties on sale for $19.99! I couldn't get through on the site - too much traffic going after those booties. So, I gave up.

An email came this afternoon - sorry you couldn't get into our site, heavy traffic, sale extended.

OMG! It is love:

I love these shoes! I want these shoes! I deserve these shoes! I only have to pay $19.99 for these shoes!'s a 4" heel. And I really have no business wearing 4" heels.

What say you?

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

NaBloPoMo III - Already?!

It's only the third day and I'm ready to quit.

I won't. But I feel like it.

These first few days of the month have been extremely hectic - work, my boss, home life, personal life. ACK!! So many different directions, so many different things and I can't get a handle on any of 'em.


Devo starts their tour tonight here in L.A. at Music Box at the Fonda. Excited! They'll be playing their first album...should be tons o'fun. Will let ya know...

Until then, please enjoy this selection from Devo. D-E-V-O!

Monday, November 02, 2009

NaBloPoMo II - writing

Yesterday also marked the start of National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo). Similar to NaBloPoMo, except at the end of the month, you will (should) have a 50,000 page novel. After a writing drought, wouldn't ya know I signed up for this, too! Ai yi yi!

As much as I love creative writing, the thought of writing a novel never ever crossed my mind. Never. Ever. My writing and creative thinking is better suited for short stories. So this novel writing thing is completely terrifying! I wanted to at least give it a shot...maybe I could write a bunch of short stories and call it a novel.

Yesterday, I struggled. I had no plot. I had no characters. I had no idea what the hell to do. I called Lys - help! Just needed to talk it out. A lot of it was crap; but some of it was doable. I finally settled on a character that had been in my head for a while; just wasn't sure how I could put her into 50,000 pages. I wrote about 200 words and was soooo over it.

A conversation I had had with a good friend several years ago popped into my head. Something she'd said...*that* was my story! I sat and wrote. I didn't hit the 1600-word goal; but 466 isn't too terrible.

We'll see how this works out...

Sunday, November 01, 2009

NaBloPoMo I: ...and they're off!

Today marks the beginning of National Blog Posting Month (NaBloPoMo - lovingly referred to, by me, as NaBlahBlah). I've done it before. I've actually made it through an entire month blogging every day. I know, right?! So, I'm back. Don't call it a comeback; I've been here for years.

I haven't written in several months. Nothing. I haven't blogged. I haven't done any creative writing. I haven't even journaled. That alone is cause for alarm as I've journaled since the age of 19. Yeah. It's not like I haven't had time...I haven't had the desire. I'm calling it a midlife crisis. Who's gonna argue with me?

November should be a fairly exciting month full of blogworthy topics - lots of shows (Devo, Cy Curnin, the English Beat, Ray LaMontagne to name a few), lots of family time and lots of regular everyday type o'stuff.

So...let November begin.