Thursday, May 29, 2008

i just counted fifteen

dirty bowls on my counter top and coffee table. i didn't even know we had fifteen bowls? but surprise! we do! and i used them all up in the past week eating a wide variety of foods like cream of wheat, oatmeal, and cream of wheat.

clearly, i fell a little behind this week on some things - like cleaning and eating things that don't fit in bowls. it's tough to realize, but whenever i fall off my constitutional-by-the-water and zen regimen, i just don't keep things together as well as i do when i don't. i had some sniffles and my knees were hurting and i got grumpy and pressed pause. then uh, suddenly i was surrounded by bowls, wearing the same baggy socks for the third day in a row.

but i'm back on track, people! the bowls are in the dishwasher and i'm even thinking about putting on pants with a zipper. more importantly, i'm packing because next week the beyonce and beyoncee are going to hawa-ii for a delicious seven days. crack out the fake tan and one piece suckas! bja's going surfing.

Monday, May 26, 2008

i'm not sure if you know this,

but i'm famous.

a tv star, to be specific.

here's what happened. at the old job, i worked on the account of a very large cable provider. actually the largest cable provider, if that clears things up for you. among other things, we were interested in making satellite tv look unappealing, dirty, a crime against humanity.

so for this one commercial (clip unavailable, plus i'm still kind of pretending not to use names), we wanted to show how huge a satellite is. how it will absolutely ruin everything about your homestead with its extreme...hugeness.

our creative team was unavailable that day, so inexplicably i was deemed responsible for creating photographs that showed the scale of how unwieldy the thing was. we put all these things next to it (a shoe? an umbrella?) but it just looked stupid. finally - as a joke, people - i picked the thing up and acted all me with it. and by "me", i mean insane.

well, fast forward to our client presentation of the latest clip. doh dee doh, i'm just sitting there all innocent, probably typing on my blackberry to clay. but when it's time for the satellite image to pop up, it's me. struggling and wincing and veins popping. er. maybe i didn't label those shots correctly? under the "please do not show to other humans" file?

so, we'll speed things up here, a) the client fell in love with the shot b) we re-created the shot on a playground, in better lighting c) the client loved it even more d) i signed a contract e) the commercial airs every night f) every month or so i get a check for some shoe money.

i may be gone, but my legacy lives on!

keep your eyes peeled. you won't be disappointed.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

mii likey

if you kept time in the 80's, you may remember the nes power pad and all its wonderments. it entailed much running and jumping in place and it sort of looked and felt like twister what with the socks you were wearing and the circles you were stepping in and sometimes it worked and sometimes it didn't, but the idea was cool and it lent a sense of fitness to the sloth of gaming.

well, fast forward to now and we've got wii fit, nintendo's new take on making video games good for you. we got ours in the mail last week (handily pre-ordered by the man of the house) and i wasted no time ripping in and hopping on.

the white board acts as both an accurate scale/bmi-tester (it won't shy away from calling you a fatty, so leave your sensitive pants off) and a crazy movement sensor. you step on up and it keeps track, on your boob tube, of everything you do.

you can train in four categories: yoga, strength, aerobics and balance. each has a series of games or exercises you can choose from, lasting a few minutes each, and you mix and match different games to custom fit what you want to work on.

me (mii), i like to bounce between the different categories. i tell myself it's circuit training or interval training or one of those things shape tells me to do. i'll start with some hula hooping (frantic hip swiveling to keep the hoops around my waist going and manic arm reaching and head leaning, to duck under and through the hoops thrown at me), then a session of head butting soccer balls (i suck big at this one), wrapping up with a few sun salutations at the yoga studio. the better you do, the higher your score (on a 4-star scale) and the higher your score, the more new levels and games you unlock. sometimes i get a 1, and they play this really sad music and my trainer shakes his head. i don't want to talk about it anymore.

in terms of the bad - sometimes, even if i'm desperately leaning, my on-screen doppelganger isn't leaning too. clay tells me this is probably a result of placing the board on carpet vs. wood. so that can be annoying. also, there's something weird to me about grading yoga. maybe they could have chosen a different system there? just seems too not-the-point. and sometimes the trainer guy talks too much at me. "GOOD JOB! YOU'RE REALLY STRONG!" when all i did was lift my leg an inch. so i wouldn't mind an option to shut his trap. i guess it's called the mute button.

but aside from those minor complaints, i heart its sweet, plastic face. anything that's genuinely fun and makes me sweat off the cheddar, swiss, brie and american cheese squish, is a buddy o' mine.

if you haven't seen this yet

i think you should. my most loved (only loved?) commercial out there right now. just you try and resist its charms:

mike rowe! les stroud! bear grylls! jamie and adam! stephen hawking! singing a campfire song! ah, happy.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

what envelope glue will do to you

yes, he wears brightly colored footwear and sports a sporty pony, but mario batali's smile scares the s*%t out of me. it's like he knows my mind and he's laughing at me quietly and maybe he's plotting how to blow me up with butter.

or maybe i'm just into hour four of iron chef america and hour 10 of a twizzlercaffeineritzcracker binge and he's simply interested in making the best spiny lobster broth he can, trying to make his cuisine reign supreme.

Friday, May 23, 2008

oh my stars first of all, i just found this movie on tv. this is my neighborhood in sf! we actually prefer it be called specific whites, but tomato, tamahto. i've only been watching for a few minutes, but michael keaton is already scaring my undies off. oh oh, i hope they show him doing creepy things in front of my building and then i won't sleep all night yeah!

and in other news, while the beyonce enjoys a weekend away with his boys (men?), i plan on enjoying a low key weekend bah mahself back in sammy frisco.

here's what's on the schedule:


2) going to dinner with my old assistant, the one who used to get the britney-threat phone calls. there is much, much talking-about-the-ones-who-stayed-behind to catch up on.

3) today, at the airport, i fell in love with twizzlers again. i'm trying to avoid gratuitous sugar consumption, but when i fly, i let myself do whatever i want. i'm going to finish the bag and you can't stop me.

4) playing wii fit until my face falls off.

there will also be sleeping in our delicious non-hotel bed, maybe a massage bought with an old gift certificate, and some oatmeal at the grove. also some spicycreamyperfection chai at la boulange. and i still want to buy a jack-tripper-esque beachcomber bicycle for my bay side jaunts. in summary, i'm gonna go wiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiild!

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

things i am obsessively doing

playing this:eating these:

if only that pigeon would stop talking

as surprising as it may seem, reader, yesterday was the first day i felt a little...embarrassed by my current life of luxury. maybe "embarrassed" isn't the right word exactly - maybe it's "aware" or "restless" or "bored". it was two months ago today that i left my crazy job behind and, as clay reminded me last night, we guessed it'd probably take exactly that amount of time to even feel like myself again. and right on schedule, i do.

which is nice, because one of my last weeks at that place had me making frantic phone calls to my assistant telling her i was about to "pull a britney" and i "wasn't f'ing around so please have my bail money ready." and that's no way to live now, is it?

thankfully, i kept my hair, stayed jail-free and have since calmed it all down with lots of long walks, zen, plot-driven novels and a rediscovered love of tlc daytime programming.

though i'm not exactly sure what comes next career-wise, i've got a good idea of the direction and i'm relieved to discover i feel excited about it. that i'm not so pleased with a no-working lifestyle i'll try to keep it and turn into a weird post-feminist housewife type. of course with the wedding happening two months from last monday (ay caramba!) it's not the best time to make the job thing happen today. which is how i usually work. monday, i'm fine. by wednesday i need a job. stat.

so until the post-hitched pavement-hitting starts, i'm going to accept the pleasant absurdity of my life for what it is and enjoy it. today's itinerary = oatmeal at corner bakery followed by reading by the pool followed by swimming in the pool followed by sherlock holmes computer gaming followed by meditation followed by writing at starbucks followed by oh i'm getting tired maybe the pool again? it's tough, people, but someone's gotta do it.

Friday, May 16, 2008

why not

i'm back in texas, folks. i thought it might miss me, so i brought it on home. don't be jealous! ugh i knew it; you're jealous. again. sigh.

on the plane ride here, i read half of this book. as you can see, it's about a girl falling in love with a vampire. while on the plane i didn't question this premise: yup, yup! fangs, love, blood, high school. it all made perfect sense, 30,000 feet above ground. then clay picked me up at the airport, we enjoyed some dinner out, returned to the hotel, watched a documentary about cochlear implants (better or worse than the men's hula documentary we spent two hours watching last week?), and then, come bedtime i started reading again.

and i'm all - in love with a vampire?! what?! i go away for a few hours and i'm suddenly, and possibly irrevocably, annoyed by this book. don't get-a me wrong, i'm still reading it like crack, but sentences like:

"he was a different edward than the one i had known. and i felt all the more besotted by him. it would cause me physical pain to be separated from him now."

make me shudder in protest. i'm pretty sure a victorian girl wrote that in her diary about her first cousin. not a chick from arizona in lust with a creepy vampire stud. but who am i to judge love? i'm in texas right now. voluntarily.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008


because i've spent substantial amounts of personal time with both of these groups, i know that people who Want To Be Serious Actors and people who Want To Be Important Screenwriters would find certain, specific gigs to be unacceptable, gag toast, just-below-prostitution.

for the Serious Actors contingent, this would be Acting In A Soap Opera. the horror! dude, i'd pay someone (no more than minimum wage) to star on one of these shows. i'd get to hang with the ridiculous matriarchs of daytime television (susan lucci what up!), live surrounded by free foods, get my hair professionally blown out, and enjoy an e-list level of fame that wouldn't really interrupt my regularly scheduled life, just enhance it subtly. you're thinking way too hard if you think any of this is bad.

for the Important Screenwriters camp, this would be Writing For Shows Like Murder She Wrote. never-you-mind that it went off the air in '96, i'm just talking about that general genre. i also might be watching it right now. but again - what a gig! i'd spend my days dreaming up ridiculous plots involving scorned secretaries and eye patches and a million different ways to say "something isn't right here!" and if i happened to write an actually-worthwhile scene or slip in a good joke here and there, it'd be a bonus, not a pressure-filled requirement. it would be like living inside of a mystery science theater 3000 episode!

don't front; you'd like it too.

Monday, May 12, 2008

unh huh, unh huh, unh huh

many people cooler than i love radiohead. people close to me, people who know lots of things, people whom i look up to and like sitting next to. and it's not like i hate radiohead, because you can show me some of their songs here and there that really sound great and make me bop my head. but i just don't ever think to myself as i'm driving along, or writing or eating - hey! you know what would make this so much better? thom yorke!

it's caused me much distress over the years. they're british! and angsty! and artsy people love them! what is wrong with me?

i was having this conversation for the umpteenth time with my little brother over christmas. he was playing different radiohead tunes for me, all animated, explaining their beauty and appeal and transcendent glory. and i sat there blankly. again - it's not like i want to block my ears or leave the room screaming. i just don't need to put it on again. kind of like shortbread cookies. when i'm eating them, i'm not mad. it's just that, when given the chance, i'm always going to choose something else. like a hunk of cheese.

so i'm asking him over and over why are they so great, what am i missing? and he's trying hard to explain and then he's on my computer, scanning my itunes collection. suddenly he looks up and says casually, but with an air of epiphany:

"amy. if you're a person who pays 99 cents to download 'froggy went a'courtin' - you're probably not going to love radiohead."

and oh my! how well put! i have paid almost-a-dollar for a ukulele tune about animals getting married. and therefore, following all logic, i cannot also love radiohead. it's really a relief to stop trying so hard.

Friday, May 09, 2008

oh, san francisco

you are pretty - you are - but why so cold? was it something i said?

last night we flew back from the big t; this time not in first class, sad face. clay had a seat up yonder, but i couldn't grab an upgrade, so my buddy came back and sat with me instead. gem! we had the very last row to ourselves, which was ridiculously loud and perfumed by the bathroom, but it brought us special attention from the flight attendant who, i think, was in love with our love? she kept bringing us things we didn't really want but felt we needed to take. her last treat of the night was three small bottles of champagne. and then a shot of disaronno (on the rocks!) because "the champagne isn't very good - you'll want to chase it with this." i nodded and smiled, then ditched it all in a trashcan outside the plane.

and now we're back in our little city and i'm in a big sweatsuit but still shaking like a leaf. texas teased me with warm sun and green grass and iced tea sipped in a tank top. also cute houses with yards for under 200 grand. but i digress.

my goal today is to get our chateau in fighting shape. this postage stamp is cute as a button, but turns messy real quick if you blink. and since i've got book club here on tuesday, i am letting the fear of social humiliation spur me on. but really, instead of just tidying, we need new organizational systems. what to do with tools? boxes of frosted mini wheats? our mail and the 12,435 magazines we receive?

i'd appreciate any of your tips on staying streamlined in this messy modern day of ours. we thank ye kindly.

Wednesday, May 07, 2008


after much discussion about various careers i could partake in - teacher? social worker? yogi? - clay really hit the nail on the head.

i want to be jack tripper when i grow up.

now that that's cleared up i can carry forth with a plan! phew.

lighten up, francis

so i finally, successfully, visited the modern yesterday. how thoroughly enjoyable, fort worth! i was starting to peg you as the soccer mom of american cities, but this shook me up a little. the building is supercool, the art is tasty and the cafe dreamy. the pic below shows the view you get while eating foods (a pulled pork sandwich with potato salad and an iced tea, thanks for asking) and staring wistfully out the window. i like to pretend i'm planning my next major installation instead of my next post.

a little strange, but some of my favorite pieces were these stripey paintings by sean scully. i learned in my psychology of perception class that certain shapes or alignments can really strike a note with you if your brain has its receptors in that specific arrangement - or something like that. all i know is, whenever i scribble, i draw all sorts of lines and boxes intercepting and meshing. so when i walked into a huge room filled with these paintings, my brain sort of sighed in homey happiness.

i bought a few postcards of the stripes; maybe i'll make a shrine.

i also bought a pack of teaberry gum. when i was little, i used to wander through the woods out back of my house and pick teaberries. they were pasty but delish and this gum tastes exactly the right way. unfortunately, the goodness disappears in about 15 seconds, leaving me with tasteless, hardened chew. but i'm okay with that.

it's pretty murky outside again, but i don't really mind. whenever i'm allowed, guilt-free, to read and watch things on screens, i can't complain. baby mama is showing down the street and i do believe there's a seat waiting with my name on it.

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

press play

and you'll see a kativity that's kept me busy in my living room for the past twenty-odd years.

the girl in real time is dancing to a video of her 4-year-old self. watching this makes me happy/nostalgic/jealous. very cool idea, wish i'd thought of it myself.

fw, continued

yesterday, i rather forgot that museums like to stay closed on mondays and so treated myself instead to a whirlwind tour of fort worth's walgreens. then i looked at delicious cowboy boots - $475 a pop, thank you very much - that will never grace these po' feet and jumped around to a couple different cafes for snacks and people staring.

it's been gray and sprinkling down here, so my outside constitutionals have been swapped for some elliptical action instead. in the hotel gym i was the lone female in a swarm of beefy marines, all gathered here for some kind of conference. i realize a man must keep his hair close-to-shaved in the military, but does it have to have that two-toned, flat top action? does it? because maybe it does and they're not choosing that style and if so, i forgive them their trespasses. if not, then i'm going to continue to judge harshly. either way, i felt like that 45 minute workout period was the perfect time for some disaster to befall the hotel because i'd be all safe and stuff. nothing happened, so hopefully the bad guys will wait until i'm back again, pumping iron with the good guys.

rain makes me want to read and read, so i'm going to go do that for a bit more before i try up the modern again. i tell you, the amount of culture in my little pinkie would just topple you over.

Monday, May 05, 2008


my entire elementary, middle, high school and college careers proved i only work well on deadline. currently, i put an hour or so a day into my draft, whilst slowly sipping tea and looking out the window at things. this, my friends, is not how books are finished.

and so it's time i impose some hard dates upon myself to get this thing rolling serious style.

june 1 = hand it over to my First Reader (as yet to be determined). oh excuse me! i just threw up in my mouth.

the next deadline will = start sending the thing out; since that'll be based upon the june 1 results i won't put anything definite out there yet. but i'm thinking in the october 1 vicinity? surprise! more throw up.

and for now? breakfast in fort worth followed by a little modern art perhaps. followed by a boat load of editing.

Friday, May 02, 2008

don't mess

i continued my mini tour of dallas yesterday, with a trip to the nasher sculpture center. clay and i visited there a few years ago, when he spent a summer working in dallas (i think? or maybe we came in the winter once) but i wanted to go again. there's something uniquely lovely about a midday, weekday visit to a museum by yourself. aside from some tibetan monks in tevas (wouldn't they be happier in something a little less chunky?), i was alone to eat my tomato basil soup in the cafe, then wander the sculptures in the shady garden out back.

my favorites =

1) jonathan borofsky's "walking to the sky"

2) george segal"s "rush hour"

3) magdalena abakanowicz's "bronze crowd"

a very good afternoon, thanks.

and now i'm busy planning today's events. currently, mj fox is on tv running around as a bellhop and the weather is looking steamy. perhaps a dip in the pool followed by another stroll along the overpass to reach some french toast and tea?