Here is a link to recent a shot of Burning Man taken by a satellite -- our beloved city is already taking shape, how great is that?
Oh I can tell this is gonna be another long one -- not a bad one. Are they ever bad? No, what I mean, is that it won't be as depressing as some, it doesn't delve into the abyss of my depression; my adoption story, not knowing who my Dad is, if he is or was a rapist, a mobster, or a homeless guy, (You think I'm kidding?), issues with my Mother and her Jacqui hating posse, the rats that live in my Mom's house and mine, that I can't kill because I love rats, my running out of money, the acne I've had my entire life, and bla, bla, bla, etc. Actually, I can't promise, it won't be about any of these things, but I will tell you about; an accident I narrowly avoided, our preparations for Burning Man, and the TV I've been watching. Don't worry I'll toss a Live Journal cut in there somewhere -- I have to, this is four days worth of writing. I know I should feed you pretty pictures but I'm so behind and have been promising Scott that the next batch of pictures I Photoshop CS will be for him.
I'm watching Kathy Griffin. She's so funny. I love her! I know her humor is kind of catty, mean, honest, and celebrity targeted, but it's funny. I can't turn away. It takes mighty brain power to be that funny. I wish I could be that funny, WISH! There's no way that I could get my synapses to fire that quickly -- she comes up with these zingers ON THE FLY. She's that fast.
Today was all about trying to trick Beau into thinking pot is a bad, bad, thing and he'd better stay away from it or his head might pop off. I felt bad about that, but his shrink sure didn't. She said, "Beau, when it comes to pot, on a scale between one and ten, ten being very much against it, and one being a parent who doesn't care at all, where do you think your Mom stands?" Beau wiped a little sugar doughnut off his face, looked her in the eyes and said, "I don't know...one maybe." I had to kick him under the couch. "Ten, Goddamnit Beau! Say it's a ten."
Nahhh, just kidding, he said, "I think she'd be pretty pissed!" Right on Beau! Good boy, good Jacqui, that's the way to act just like your own uptight, booze-swilling parents, and try to buy a few more stoner-free months for your child. Now I just have to keep him away from all of the millions and millions of people who know how much fun it is to get high, while eating pretty much any flavor of Doritos, (except for the really spicy ones), and watching any Farrely Brothers movie. In my time, *Jacqui dons her creaky voice and cane* it was Pringles and the movie Airplane, which might still work under the right circumstances, but you'd have to be a Val Kilmer fan, oh no wait, I must be stoned, that was another movie ; )
(This is getting funny; I keep writing entries, then writing new ones and moving the last one down and writing, "Last Night," in front of it. I keep having to change them to the night before last night, and the night before the night before...)
Today was interesting. One of my oldest Live Journal friends, just out of the blue, sent a gorgeous bouquet of three dozen roses to me today. I don't know why he did this. How did he know how down I've been feeling? Does he read my journal that carefully, or was it something that occurred to him as he woke up this morning? "I think I'll FTD a few dozen, bright, spring colored roses to my friend Jacqui today." Whatever the reason, I was so touched and amazed. I am touched and amazed. It isn't every day that someone you've never even met sends you three dozen roses. He's always been kind like this, when I was having serious financial difficulties he Pay Pal'd some money to me. I sent it back, because I didn't want to take advantage of his generosity, but I will never forget the kindness. He even bought my permanent member status here, something I didn't even think to for myself, and for which I'll always be grateful. He's sent gifts for Beau, and I don't have the slightest idea what I've ever done to warrant this kindness. I'm just grateful and count myself very lucky. Everyone should have a cyber-Angel or twenty. I love you Mr. H.
The other unusual thing that happened today was a traffic accident. I was on my way to the fabric store and suddenly found myself in the midst of this major multi-car accident. Cars were smashed to pieces but miraculously no one was seriously injured. Nothing happened to me or to my car. It just all happened around me in this weird, surreal, way, and I was somehow protected from all of this swerving, screeching, and flying metal, rubber and glass. It was a little like watching a car chase scene in an action film, because I was stopped at the light and there was nothing for me to do but watch the cars come hurtling towards me.
I was getting ready to turn left at a major LA intersection, (Pico and Sepulveda -- like the song), at rush hour, and was behind another car that was the last car to make it through the intersection ahead of me. Just as he entered the intersection, at the end of a yellow light that was fast turning red, a woman in a red, four door car, coming from the opposite direction -- towards us -- came barreling through the intersection, forcing him to swerve left in order to avoid being hit by her. This forced him to cut his turn too tight, and veer towards the cars stopped at the light waiting to cross against us. In doing this, he lost control of his car, and basically drove up and over the hood of a car of a woman who was just waiting there helplessly at the light. He drove right over her the way you'd think a monster truck would, completely crushing her car, and then kind of flying in the air for a bit before he landed, only he was driving this little gold sport car. I'm guessing he was driving too fast.
I just sat there watching the whole thing; the woman in the red car who was driving too fast and swerved to miss hitting me head on at the last second, the look on the poor woman's face in the car that got crushed under the chassis of this other car, the way all of the people in all of the cars around us looked; shocked, everyone looked shocked, and frightened, and then the lights changed and everyone moved on, leaving us to sort it out.
The woman in the red car, who was at least partially responsible for the whole mess, pulled over and parked in a lot behind me. I could see her in my rear view mirror getting out and walking towards us, but then she must have panicked because she just disappeared. I pulled a quick U-turn in the middle of all of this traffic, and with everyone honking and flipping me off, managed to pull into a lot, parked in front of a doughnut store, "Mmmm doughnuts," and ran for the crushed car in the middle of the street. I was the first person to get there and the poor young woman in the car was in shock, amazingly not harmed, but in shock. She was totally out of it, cold, and shaking. I reached in and touched her and told her I'd help her and not to worry that she'd be okay. She looked up at me in a daze and said, "Did you see that? He just drove over my car? Am I okay?" Then, half expecting to see her legs bleeding and crushed, I yanked open her smashed car door, and saw that she was fine. What a miracle.
The next thing that happened, also kind of amazing, was that the man driving the little gold car that had shot up and over her car, came over to us and offered to help. He's the one who should have pulled a hit and run because he stood the most to lose. It turns out he's not only an illegal alien, but was driving without insurance, and as he said to me in Spanish, "La verdad es que yo no tengo licencia." I'm going to let guess what that means. So I wound up trying to calm him down as well, and acted as their translator/go-between gal. Funny thing is, when I ran up to help the pretty, young, Asian American woman in the smashed car, I was full of adrenaline and ready to go after the idiot who had literally run her over, but then when I met him, and saw his twisted up face -- saw how sorry and scared he was -- I got pulled in and started to feel sorry for him. I just wanted to do the right thing by everyone.
Anyway, I stuck around until the ambulance and the tow truck came. I got everyone to trade numbers and gave them mine as well, because I was the closest witness. After I could see that the woman in the car was going to be okay, I calmed the frightened man down. He thought he was going to go to jail. He kept saying, "I'm sorry, I'm sorry. Not my fault, but I'm sorry. I'll pay for this. I'll pay for this." It was pretty dramatic, standing there in the middle of the street in LA rush hour traffic, trying to comfort people and keep from being hit at the same time, trying to direct the traffic around us that was backed up for blocks because of us.
It sucks that so many people can gather 'round something like this and just watch the whole thing as if they're eating popcorn and watching a movie, just stand there watching without doing anything to help, without wanting to get involved. This woman needed help and no one, not one person, (well, other than the ambulance drivers, the tow truck driver, and me), came and offered to help for the longest time, and there were so many people right there when this happened, and then so many more gathered around to watch. I couldn't do it all; help the woman out of her car, calm her down, keep her from getting hit by the cars that were speeding around us, call the police on my cell, move her car out of traffic, and make sure that the guy who hit her gave her his information before he took off, but I was glad to try -- glad to help. I'm always glad to help. It feels right and good. I wonder how the woman who took off is feeling tonight.
Needless to say, I never made it to the fabric store. Or, I made it, but they were closed. I wanted to buy some thick, fuzzy, fake-fur fabric to wrap my bike in. I think I'll make it a fuzzy green bike -- something that'll look like a garden or meadow, and then I can hot glue or wire bugs and beetles and things all over it. I've been thinking of butterflies for the whole Psyche theme, (as Maria suggested), but so far I'm not feeling very butter-fly. It's just that it's been so done and it's hard to do it right. If I wanted to go with a butterfly theme I'd try to do big, dark moths covered in stones and glitter, or build some kind of papier mache butterflies and mount them on radio controlled car frames so we could make them zip around with us. Anyway, for my bike at least, I'm thinking bugs. I'm going to get strips of furry fabric and strips of no sew Velcro and cover the bike. I also need to buy new headlights because it's dark out on the playa and very easy to run into and go flying over a guide wire set up around some art installation. Things just come up out of the earth in the middle of nowhere -- that's the fun of it -- how surreal and disorienting everything is, so you have to be super careful, especially when you have kids. Things that light up at night and flash are on the way.
Knowing Beau he'll be spray painting his bike black again, and finding some way to attach empty plastic water gallons to it so it'll sound like a revved up version of the old fashioned kid's bike with cards in the spokes deal. He did this last year and it really sounded like a dirt bike. He kept it this way for a while here at home afterwards, until our neighbors complained because it was scaring their dogs.
I did manage to order all of our light-up-at-night toys to use and share with all of the kids. I bought two thousand glow sticks -- my biggest expense, other than food and supplies, and the motor home of course. I think that's about as many as we took with us last year, and whatever we don't use, we can always give away with candy at our annual haunted Halloween madness. I was so hoping we'd get it together to create something amazing with El Wire this year, but I wasn't able to pull it off. Although everyone loves it when you give them glow sticks at Burning Man, so we'll be okay. We also bought these fun, smushy balls that light up, and we'll give those out to all of the kids in our village, along with some light up wands, and little mini-flashlights that hang around your neck. I'll give those to the parents so we won't have any choking incidents. We had a wonderful light up maze in our village last year and apparently the terrific people who made it are going to be back again this year, so we're both looking forward to that. And of course we'll be making laminated ID tags.
I'm still working on trying to get someone with more resources than I have to donate condoms for us to pass out to some of the many people who hook up out there without thinking about this. I worry about them -- it's a little like Carnivale out there. I've tried APLA, Planned Parenthood, the Gay and Lesbian Center, and I still have few other ideas. We'll see. But if it doesn't happen I'm just not going to worry about being the condom fairy this year. I just can't afford it any more. Lord knows I don't need them, but wouldn't it be funny if this was the year I found myself in, (Scott cover your ears and say, "La, la, la, la, la,"), some intensely passionate situation without one. Buried in condoms year after year and then left without even one when I needed one. I can't bring them for myself though -- that'd be like premeditated cheating.
I'm such a good girlfriend. Just wind me up and I'm on auto-fidelity mode, whether you want it or not. My neighbor Caryn is going to have a HUGE, last-ditch-effort-to-find-the-perfect-gu
My prop frog from the plague of raining frogs from the movie Magnolia finally came today. It's definitely ooky. I love frogs, and I LOVED this film, but I'm not loving this frog. It's sticky and dirty and I don't know what I'm going to do with it. When I saw it on eBay, it was just so weird and it just shouted out at me; one of those things I just had to have, like the gorgeous headpiece I bought that was used in Moulin Rouge. Maybe I can put froggy in a plex box of some kind. I've got to do something with him. The cats are already trying to eat his greasy ass.
I think I've been a bit anxious and depressed lately. I don't know if it's chemical, because I've decreased the amount of antidepressant medication I've been taking, or situational, because as usual, in terms of preparation for Burning Man, (which is a very intimidating process indeed -- considering you can die out there if you aren't careful, and don't bring the right supplies and things), I've left everything to the last minute, and there's never enough money to go around.
I have so many errands to attend to before we leave. I sorted out things with my Mom last night and got a bit of money out of my account to help defray the costs, but it's never enough. I still need to face a few fears and gather up some more cash. I have to call one of my tenants and tell him that his annual rent increase took place in April and he's behind by a few hundred dollars times five months. I'm sure he knows this. He does this every year -- stalls until I nag him. I hate calling him though because I never know what I'll run into, he could be nice, he could be abusive -- it's a total crap shoot.
I went to see the movie Asylum tonight -- boy that was a real hoot and a half; all about a woman whose boring, scary, psychiatrist husband gets a job at an insane asylum in the English countryside in the late fifties. It's about a woman who embarks on an affair with a hot madman patient who has a personality disorder marked by jealous rages. Turns out he murdered his wife and scooped out her eyes, but he's gorgeous, and he does her in the hothouse in the garden, so what the heck. I saw it because I love Natasha Richardson, (Hey, anyone remotely related to Vanessa Redgrave will open a movie for me), was about madness, (Like I can't relate to that), was set in England, (Oh England my Lion heart...), and was guaranteed to have some nudity and sex. I love nudity and sex. It was directed by the same person who directed Young Adam, that strange movie with Ewan McGregor and Tilda Swinton. Anyone who uses Tilda Swinton and gets Ewan McGregor to take off his pants, and do anything other than ride around on a motorcycle, is all right in my book. Anyway, saw it, loved it, hated it, loved it, love it, got depressed afterwards, the end. My neck is killing me, and the TV beckons.
The Night Before Last Night
My friend Maria said that Mercury would no longer be retrograde as of today and I can really feel a shift. I know that there are so many more planetary influences than Mercury, and that this is the one everyone focuses on, but I'm sure that's because Mercury has such a powerful influence on communications and everything goes to shit when Mercury is in retrograde. Seriously.
Things went well today though. I managed to sort out all of the ruffled feathers from the past few days, and Beau and Mom and I had a relatively good time at Mom's house tonight. Rosa was even nice to us, although she did tell me that Jani always tries to gossip with her about me whenever she comes over, and that was just so disappointing; the thought that this seventy-year-old woman who has been in my life for as long as I can remember, has it in for me to such a degree that she and Rosa are kind of putting their heads together and talking about my relationship with Mom every time they see each other, is really disturbing. God, this freaks me out. If only I could talk about this with Mom, but she wouldn't believe me or care. Why, oh why, does she have to surround herself with contentious people who want to believe the worst about her only child? I just don't get it.
Do other people have easier family lives? I just feel like I've never had a normal life, never been the needle in the right groove -- things have always been scratch and hiss for me, cold weird chaos.
Beau just came and asked me for a Slip and Slide. He wants to take it to Burning Man. I don't know how we'd make that work. No hill, no hose, no running water -- unless we used Baby Oil or something...
I need to work on our shower situation. We have one in the RV but it takes up too much water to use and then fills up the grey water tanks. We had a solar shower one year, but the evaporation pond thing is the problem because if you don't have something to catch the water it turns the playa into this horrible, thick, clinging muck that is really hard to get off.
The Night Before the Night Before Last Night
(God, even I'm getting confused now.)
I'm watching all of my taped, (Do we say taped when the shows have been captured by a digital video recorder?) shows. Yeay, I'm so excited. I'm still in shock over Nate's having been killed off on Six Feet Under and I wait all week to see what's going to happen next. I am completely addicted to this show, passionately addicted. I'm also looking forward to watching Entourage, Over There, Stranded With Cash Peters, (a fun travel show, I think, I haven't seen it yet), American Princess, and The Girls Next Door -- the Playboy reality show.
I love The Girls Next Door. It's such a trip. Scott and I got into a kind of medium boil discussion about Hugh Heffner and his lifestyle last night. I'm pretty liberal when it comes to sex and lifestyles but it kind of bothers me that there seems to be a trend among wealthy and powerful men, to trade in partners, (like they'd trade in a car), as their women age. Scott scares me sometimes and then at other times, when I'm feeling more secure, I admire him and think he's right. I want to have a liberal, open minded attitude towards relationships and fidelity.
Beau just came in. He wants me to watch Robot Chicken with him, but I just noticed that Daphne Zuniga's new show is on, and I always like to root for my old friends. Daphne and I were friends in college. I got her cast in a play we were in. I don't even know if she knows that. I haven't talked to her in years and years. I've seen pretty much everything she's done, from The Dorm That Dripped Blood, (in which she got squished by a car), onwards.
Beau's been working on a drawing/design of an electric guitar. He's so excited about it. He keeps coming and showing me each completed stage of his work. That's nice, hunh? I love my Beau-i-o! He started drawing it yesterday after we saw March of the Penguins. I'm just really happy that he's drawing. I love when he's engaged in anything other than on-line gaming and watching South Park. Plus, well, I secretly harbor this belief that drawing, or painting, is the purest form of art. I don't know where I get this from. Film making should get my highest respect but for some reason visual art always has, maybe because I have never been able to draw and my best friend growing up was so good at it and always devalued it. She was so naturally gifted but was really hard on herself -- such a pity to avoid doing the one thing you are the best at. I wouldn't know anything about that.
I was out most of today, visiting neighbors and getting exercise. Lord knows I need the exercise because I'm gaining weight and I am terrified of this. Nothing against anyone lush and large, I am all about loving and supporting people of all sizes, but as you may know, I got so big it was becoming super unhealthy for me, I elected to have surgery, it was a big deal, I lost a ton of weight, and I just don't want to gain it back. I like; being able to move more freely, having more energy, being able to do things sexually that I couldn't do when I was so much larger, riding horses, walking farther without getting winded, not having to take high blood pressure medication and antacids, and dreaming about acting and scuba diving in Hawaii, although not necessarily at the same time.
From now on until the 22, my days are going to be all about getting ready for Burning Man. I'm so excited, and there is so much left to do. Preparing for Burning Man is serious work! There are so many things to remember to bring and buy and I'm always afraid I'll forget something. Oooh cat fight, gotta go watch ; )
Hugs for you if you made it through this whole thing, you've forgiven me for never commenting on your journal, and for having forgotten your birthday. If I owe you a card, I'll catch up, jest you wait and see...