Backlot, land of men.

September 30, 2008

I just went to the backlot to look at furniture for my bosslady. I secretly love the backlot. It smells like sawdust, people are always playing lame (but LOUD) rock music, and it’s full of MANLY MEN in toolbelts standing around with their hands on their hips looking critically at things they’re BUILDING.

And they always say things like “You findin’ things all right, sweetheart?” and then you blush and mumble and feel like a dumbass.

I think that how girl assistants feel going from the offices to the backlot must be basically how Victorian ladies felt when going from the domestic sphere to… er, I’m not really sure. That metaphor evaporated BEFORE MY VERY EYES.

(But the backlot! It’s quite good.)

The long weekend

September 29, 2008

My best friend/heterosexual life partner Naomi was in town this weekend. We had many excellent adventures (mostly related to food or dogs):

MOVIES: We went to see Eagle Eye (have you ever wondered what it would be like to slide around in the baggage-moving slide chute things at the airport? THIS IS THE MOVIE FOR YOU.) and Appaloosa (…dear Viggo Mortensen, maybe you could wear looser pants in your next role. I’m not trying to tell you what to do, but that looked chafey. Also whenever your pants area was in the middle of the screen I had to look awkwardly off to the corner of the frame.)

FACTOIDS: At dinner last night I learned that the American interstate system was developed so that troops could be moved easily from one state to another in case of an invasion! I HAD NEVER HEARD OF THIS! AND I LOVE IT! People were taken aback that I didn’t know about it (“YOU didn’t know that? I’m so surprised! You seem like the sort of person who would own books about that or something.”) which made me worry that… you know how you have a friend who’s always talking about golf, he’s just been playing so much golf, it’s so totally sweet…? I am now worried that I’m your friend who’s always droning on about defense-related things in a supremely dull way. OH GOD.

HUGGING: I am not a hugger*. Neither is Naomi. Neither is my friend Steve. HOWEVER, Steve’s friend Keith is totally a hugger. So whenever I say goodbye to them, Steve and I give each other these tense, awkward looks and then we make tense, awkward jokes about how Keith is a hugger but Steve and I are not, and then we laugh in a tense, awkward way. Every time. Sometimes we shake hands.

FOOD: Naomi and I went to a dinner last night, but we were so hungry that we decided to have a cocktail and an appetizer and, you know, PRE-EAT. Only we couldn’t find anything we liked near the restaurant, so then we thought that we’d just go to the restaurant and sit at the bar. But then when we got there, we realized that they didn’t have a bar. So we ended up sitting at the table and eating appetizers and then hurriedly hiding the evidence of our pre-eating when the other people showed up. “Quick! Brush the crumbs away! DO IT! Hey guys… no, no, we just got here.”

DOGS: My friend Julie lives in the best, most dog-heavy neighborhood, and when we hang out on her stoop there’s a constant parade of canines to and fro. Notable among them is a Boston Terrier who I describe as SCANNER DOG (he always looks to me like a dog version of a Terminator, with the giant eyes and the intent stare), but who Keith described as “That dog always looks like he just did an eight ball”.


Something else that’s exciting is that it just rained a little bit! I love rain. It’s in my PacNo DNA. In an idealized version of my life I would have, like, a BRACE of black labs (per my uncle Dean, “The official dog of Portland”) and some excellent floral rain boots and a yellow slicker and I would be walking around outside with a toddler (not mine. It should belong to someone else so I can feed it sugary foods and then send it home.) who likes to stomp in puddles.

*I mean, I of course hug my mom! And my tall baby brother, even though he’s too old and cool for hugging now and is all “Hey, hey. Watch the hair.” I’m just not a… casual, LA hugger, where you’re supposed to hug people you met NINE MINUTES AGO.

So this morning I walk on to the lot, and this guy with a dapper little white mustache opens the door for me.

“Hey,” I think. “How polite of him! Also, that’s Ted Turner. Huh.”

And then I turn and chat to the guard.

And the guard goes: “Do you recognize Ted Turner?”

(Ted Turner and his people are standing ONE FOOT AWAY, mind you.)

I go blank for a moment. Here is the inside of my brain: Am I supposed to recognize Ted Turner? Does he want to be recognized? Is Ted Turner the kind of person who will be upset if I recognize him? Or upset if I DON’T? Do I have anything to say to Ted Turner that isn’t “Hey, remember when you owned CNN or whatever? That was pretty cool.”? No, I don’t. OH SHIT.

“…am I supposed to recognize Ted Turner?” I say. But I didn’t mean “I don’t recognize Ted Turner! What a stupid question! He’s OLD AND LAME, WHY WOULD I RECOGNIZE HIM, I DON’T RECOGNIZE ANYONE WHO ISN’T IN HIGH SCHOOL MUSICAL!”, I meant “Um… hey guys, it’s 8:30 AM and I’m an entertainment assistant with an exaggerated startle reflex and I’m just trying to figure out what you WANT ME TO SAY SO I CAN SAY IT. SO GIVE ME SOME BODY LANGUAGE CLUES AND I WILL DO WHAT YOU WANT.”

“No pressure,” the blond lady with Mr. Turner laughs. Everyone stares at me expressionlessly. Ted Turner stares at me expressionlessly.

“…of course I recognize Ted Turner,” I say, panicking, hoping it’s The Right Answer. I look at Ted Turner.

He looks away. There is a horrible, awkward pause. I get the distinct feeling that everyone, Ted Turner, Ted’s people, the guard, feel really, really embarrassed for me.

I cringed, urged them all to have a good day, and ran away across the lawn, leaving them to have conversations like “That girl was pretty weird.” and “Seriously, who doesn’t recognize Ted Turner! Don’t worry, Ted. You’re totally famous.”

I think it’s safe to assume that if I ever need a huge chunk of venture capital I should probably not turn to TED.

Lover. Fighter. Muse.

September 21, 2008

I just saw this totally amazing bio on Facebook:

Professional Actress in Hollywood. Local celebrity – soon to be known worldwide! Former US Naval Officer. Writer/Poet. Athlete. Adventurer. Philosopher. Lover. Fighter. Muse. Role Model. Any questions?

Yeah, I have a question: what kind of personality do you have to have before it seems normal and acceptable instead of TOTALLY HILARIOUS to do your bio like that?

My uncle was just mildly complaining to me that my blog is false advertising, because he sends it to people and they’re all “…um, is this going to be about lesbian porn?” and then it’s like SURPRISE SUCKA! WHOLESOME DOG STORIES!

Something similar just happened to me. Google Reader recommended a blog called BLUE SKY and I naturally thought “OOOH I BET IT’S LIKE A SECRET DARPA BLOG WHERE SOME SCIENTIST TALKS ABOUT HOW HE’S TRYING TO WEAPONIZE PENGUINS THIS IS GONNA BE SO AWESOME.” and instead it was about something really boring like gluten-free baking. So very disappointing. 😦

PS, sometimes people looking for, erm, Mormon pornography (?!?!?!?!?) end up here. Man, they must be EXTRA disappointed. Plus I have a really difficult time imagining what Mormon pornography entails. “Here I am… in my loose-fitting and totally modest Secret Mormon Garment… Running my fingertips along my religiously-mandated store of 50-pound cans of wheat… Sexily being dunked in a pool for a round of proxy baptisms… doing HOT GENEALOGY RESEARCH!”

Listening to: Girls Who Play Guitars – Maximo Park

September 17, 2008

Something slightly weird just happened:

I was walking down the hallway with this assistant I know here – let’s call him PHIL – and he was explaining to me where the stairs are in this building. And suddenly this woman – I’m assuming his boss – walks up to us.

And glares at me really weirdly, and says to Phil:

“Who is THIS?”

And Phil is all “I– I was just showing her where the stairs are!”

The woman is totally suspicious. “Oh REALLY.”

And then I just ran away, because I didn’t want to get involved in whatever they had going on.


Cats: the best of the best

September 16, 2008

This is a video about cats. It’s like a greatest-hits of felines compilation, I guess. Set to awesome 80s music.

I am a bad person. Every time a cat tackled a baby I was CACKLING. I would watch ENTIRE DVDs of cats tackling babies. Man, I suck.

So this evening, I was hanging out in the kitchen with my cousin and his girlfriend – bike-riding hipster kids in town to look for an eco-friendly pad in Koreatown – when my roommate’s young man, an Army reservist, came home from his monthly drill weekend. Wearing his BDUs.

And I introduced them, and looked from the hipsters to the soldier and said “It’s like two subcultures are colliding! A BLACK HOLE COULD FORM!”

And then I realized that that’s one of those jokes you make LATER. Over the phone.

To Naomi.