Looky, it's Meow all grown up. Not the best picture of him, but isn't he cute?
I can't get online because, for some reason, my computer wants to log on using Beau's wireless signal instead of mine, and Beau has disconnected his router. He's at the movies with his friend Shayan, and our computer pal Ron isn't available on a Saturday night, or I wouldn't want to bother him on his night off. When I'm done writing I'll go into Beau's room and my studio and disconnect and reconnect the routers and see if that'll do anything. If you're reading this, I guess that means it worked, lol.
I've got some kind of awful headache that started coming on yesterday after two days of an odd runny nose. I rarely have headaches and have always considered myself so lucky because I have so many friends who suffer from them. I've taken Tylenol, an Excedrin, Claritin, Mucinex, (pretty name don't you think, not), half of a Vicodin, lots of vitamins, and have been drinking plenty of water. The only think that's helping is the ice pack I have propped up against the back of my neck and head -- this is helping a lot.
I still have Burning Man stories and journal entries to share, and of course tons of pictures, but I haven't had a chance to edit the entries, or get all of the pictures sorted yet. I've been working on it though. I finally downloaded and installed the J-Album software that I like so much and now all I have to do is continue removing some of the duplicate and private photos that I don't think my friends would want me to share publicly.
I think I've been avoiding writing here because it still feels odd to be writing about small happy things when so many terrible big things have been happening in the world around us. However, if anything I write about here takes anyone's mind off some of the sadness, or entertains someone out there for a little while, then I guess it's all good. I just want you to know that I'm mindful of the suffering of so many people and animals, and am praying for and sending out my love to everyone. I'm even sad over the loss of so many trees, shrimp, and fish -- the poisoning of the gulf with sewage and oil. But I'm happy about the recovery of the dolphins and am trying to focus on the good stories instead of zeroing in on the bad ones as I have been over the last week or so.
I've offered to go to New Orleans to help my friend Mary salvage what she can from her home, and in the rebuilding of it, and she knows I'm sincere about this, but obviously she doesn't need another body around to have to worry about at this stage. After she assess the damage and gets sorted out maybe she'll take me up on my offer. I'm funny, I won't drive east of Westwood to see her or any of the many people I love, but I'll fly across the country to help her out. This had got to be the oddest case of agoraphobia on record -- the afraid to travel near but willing to travel far kind. Honestly, I'd fly to Bali to rescue a bug if I had the money, or go to Africa to see a giraffe, but I won't drive to Hollywood. Oh Lord just one more thing for me to work on. I'll add it to my overly long list of needed self improvements. It's okay, I think this is what it's all about anyway -- here at the planet earth school of soul growth, fortitude, and strengthening.
Here are the gals at Anna Marie's studio today with all of my dresses.
I had to make myself go to a fitting for the fashion show, (Sunday, November 6), today in Downtown Los Angeles, and it was hard for me. I kept wanting to turn the car around -- to use my headache or tiredness as an excuse not to go. But I knew Mary would be there, and I felt I owed it to her to show up. I also want to be involved and Anna Marie is going to let out one of the vintage dresses I bought to wear.
I'm so glad I went. Anna Marie's studio is on the eleventh floor of an old fashion building in the garment district. Ever since I took collage and neon art classes in Downtown, LA, I have wanted to have a studio or an apartment there, a loft. Anna Marie's place was so cool. It's a corner space with great light -- windows all around -- and it would be perfect for an artist. She pays seventy-five cents a foot and has about a thousand square feet. I admire her so much for being so young and having put herself out there like she has -- for starting her own company. I am praying that I will find my own way soon and find some healthy, creatively satisfying way to make my own money so I won't have to spend the rest of my life relying on my Mother and my dwindling trust funds for my survival. I am so tired of being a child in this way. I have so much to offer, so many gifts, so much talent, it's just a shame that I'm spending my life here at home, while the world is moving ahead without me. I would so love to have a space like Anna Marie has -- a white space with big windows and a view; a room of my own, so to speak.
Here's Mary wearing one of my absolute favorite dresses. I don't think this picture does Mary or the dress justice, but you get the idea.
It was fun to see Mary and all of the models who were there to try on my Mother's and Grandmother's dresses that I have worked so hard to collect. I forget how many gorgeous dresses I have and it's so exciting to see them on women who look amazing in them. One of the best things that happened was that Mary managed to get to wear my favorite dress -- the Jennifer Aniston dress -- and this is as it should be since without Mary there wouldn't be a fashion show. I wish I'd thought to tell them to reserve this dress for her, but it all worked out perfectly. Life can be cool this way.
I'm watching a cool movie I grabbed with my new DVR, (the old one was too clogged with cat and finally burned out), Beautiful Thing, a love story about two teen boys who live as neighbors in working-class London who discover they are gay. It's so sad and moving.
The paint that the kids finger-painted on the Cruise America RV we rented wouldn't come off, or the paint came off, but despite the fact that this was supposed to be children's, washable, watercolor, finger paints, the desert heat baked it into the painted surface of the RV and now there's a trace of everything left behind. You can see the flat marks of kids' handprints against the shiny non-painted parts of the motor home. Understandably Cruise America was not at all happy about this, and this does not fall under the insurance coverage, and even though I have spent over four hundred dollars to make it look almost like new, they want to charge me SIX-THOUSAND-ONE-HUNDRED dollars for the repairs. Now I understand why so many people teased me about it at Burning Man. I don't have this kind of money, I am kicking myself hard right now.
Beau started his Freshman year of high school at New Roads this week and so far we are both loving it. This is the coolest school. The teachers are so open minded and accessible. The classrooms are named after brave people who began important political and social movements.
Beau wants to learn to fire spin like some of his friends at Burning Man and made his own practice poi balls out of things we had laying around here at the house. When I saw this I bought him a pair on eBay and he'll be so happy when they get here. They'll be so much easier to work with than the taped up tennis ball things he made. David Bryant, the brilliant and uber compassionate man who started New Roads saw Beau swinging these things around at lunch and came over and complimented him. Where else would something like that happen but at New Roads. I think anywhere else the principal would freak out and confiscate them.
Beau brought his friend Angie over yesterday. She is soooo sweet. I'm so happy for him that he gets along so well with girls that he can have friends without all of the attendant sexual tension that makes it hard for women and men to be pals. Angie is two years older and they became friends at the middle school when Beau was in sixth grade and she was in eighth. He went to her birthday party last spring but they really haven't seen each other all that much since she moved on to the high school.
She's a pretty amazing kid. She went all by herself to Venice Italy this summer to participate in this really cool art program that happens in conjunction with the Venice biennale. Artists from all over the world are invited to come and create anything using the city of Venice as their backdrop for their installations. One man made handcuffs out of bread and had the pigeons liberate him in San Marco Square, another artist walked naked through the city holding a bouquet of flowers. I would so love to do something like this. Angie's Mother is a Ph.D. professor at UCLA, the head of the art department, and her father is a nuclear physicist. Pretty impressive parents don't you think? It's no wonder she's such a cool kid.
Beau has gotten close to my best Burning Man friend's daughter Jo/Josephine, and I couldn't be happier. I LOVE Jo! She is sooooooooo good, smart, kind, funny, wise, and compassionate -- basically everything you'd want your son to find in a partner. It's too bad they live so far apart, but as long as they're happy chatting away every night on the phone, and no one gets hurt, I'm thrilled. I feel like some kind of weird matchmaking mommy. It's kind of a mini dream come true when your child falls for the wonderful child of your friends and they're happy about it too. Cross your fingers for us all?
Oh my, I had paused the movie I was watching, it finally gave up on waiting for me and switched back to cable and now I'm watching handsome, sexy, Antonio Banderas and gorgeous Jennifer Connely making love pretty intensely -- graphically. That's nice, there's not enough sex for me in film, seriously, I'd love it if there were more NC17 films. I like rich, realistic, character studies, with lots of story, terrific cinematography, and sex just seems like something natural that should be included in films. We're just way too prude here in the US, way...too...prude!
Oooh yeay Beau just came home with one of the biggest apples I have ever seen, and a bowl of delicious, Persian, rice pudding that Shayan's Dad made and sent home for me. All of our Persian friends are so generous. If you don't have Persian pals you are really missing out. Go get some, hurry, hurry, they are truly some of the finest people I have ever known.
I had so much fun making halvah at Atra's house the night before last. The grandmother of one of their daughter's friends passed away and halvah is a desert that is traditionally made when someone has died : ( Usually the elder women in the family make the halvah and Atra and her sister Maryam haven't had a lot of experience making it, but now that their Mama isn't completely well, and there aren't any older aunties around, the task has fallen to them. We spent hours making batch after batch of this candy, standing over the stove mixing ingredients, stirring and pouring and stirring some more, with each new batch failing to pass their super discerning palates, before I finally gave up and had to go home to bed. I got to bring some home with me but everyone here hated it : ( Beau said it tasted like bleach and Ana said she wouldn't eat it if she was starving, which I can't understand because I love it, but I think you have to develop a taste for some of the spices and flavourings of their food. I've begun to crave cardamom, rose water, and saffron. Who knew?
Okay, well, that's enough rambling for one night. I just wanted to check in and say hello. I hope you're all well and happy.
Love you gals/guys,
PS: Look at this insanely overpriced dress of my Granny's. Man, if all of my dresses are worth this much I'd be set, well, that is if I could part with them. Everyone asks me if they can buy them and I have to stand firm and say, "No," because they belong together as a collection, and they're our legacy. Beau can decide what he wants to do with them someday. He can give them to his wife, or his daughter, or donate them to a museum.
PPS: Here are some pictures of my visit to Anna Marie's studio today, and some of the dresses and models who will be wearing them in the fashion show : ) We've selected over a hundred of the best dresses, so these are just a few of them that some of the gals happened to be trying on today