Most of the stuff I plan to say about Comic-Con will be said in the August issue of Bookslut (I know who butters my bread -- or provides me free admittance to conventions, at any rate). But I will note that I saw many many nerd-gods, met several very awesome people, spent WAY TOO MUCH MONEY on comic books, indie and mainstream, and did something vaguely career-advancing that I'll go into later.
Now, however, I have to deal with the dregs of work and maintain small talk with the new security guard, who's a lot less creepy than the old one but talks so very goddamn much. So, in the meantime, I offer you a look at HEARTtaker, a wholesome little story about a resurrected Aztec virgin sacrifice who can rip a still-beating heart from a man's chest -- and likes tacos.
Busy again tonight. Gym and comic book store (despite the fact that I haven't read the one comic book I bought last week) and helping a friend with his website. May try to go to sleep before midnight. May try.
At least tonight, I'll be home before 10 PM. Granted, I'm just going home to shower and change post-sweat-fest, but it'll be nice to take off everything, shower, sit on my bed, apply lotion, maybe lay down for a minute...
Time for another diet Coke. Caffeine isn't the best of ideas, admittedly, but if I drink it, my mind will probably start functioning to some extent, and then I will:
a) stop singing the same two lines from Pat Benatar's "Heartbreaker" over and over
b) get some impressive amount of work done, thus allowing me slumber/comic book reading time later this evening
c) write coherently on some subject of actual interest to all you people who are kind and generous enough to come by and read these sad self-absorbed ramblings.
There's a lot about being busy that I love. For example, I generally tend to be busy doing things that I like to a certain extent -- the things that occupy my attention are things I value and enjoy. And when I'm busy in my usual fashion, it means a lot of bopping back and forth from place to activity to person, and in the process of this I feel wanted and appreciated and active and happy. This isn't a positive aspect of my character, necessarily, but it does cast some light on why I take on more than I really should, why there are piles of unread books and magazines in my room and unanswered email in my in-box, why I'm always so tired, why the closest I come to having a free night this week is Thursday, when I'll receive incoming brother at apartment, buy food for brother to eat (due to complete lack of food in apartment), design quickie website for personal project, make headway on Bookslut column for next month, pack for Comic-Con, and, potentially, sleep.
Take last night. Out of work at 6:15 (an early night, blessed be), arrived at my friend's house by 7, walked over to Sunset to see a sneak preview of Catwoman at 7:30. (Catwoman, sadly, wasn't even amusingly bad, just kinda dull, overly cutty, and plagued by decent ideas that never really came to full fruition. But hey, it was free and it was advance, so I can spare a lot of people the trouble of caring.)
After Halle Berry's underwhelming performance (everything was underwhelming in that movie), we went back and watched key scenes from Batman Returns to remove the image of Halle Berry whoring it up and replace it with the image of Michelle Pfeiffer tearing it up. And then, around 10:30, I went to the gym. Got home at 11:30. Showered, dried hair, watched a bit of last week's The Jury as I put lotion on my legs. Poked at a thing I'm trying to get done before the weekend.
Roommate came home. Talked to her for a little bit. Did some more poking at the thing. Read out loud bits of the thing to das roomie. She asked me questions. Das Roomie is exceptionally good at asking me questions about the things that I write. All she ever asks is "What's it about? Why do I care? Why are you bothering me with this?" but being asked those sorts of questions is extremely helpful to my creative process, a process often scattered with painful moments of self-realization and bad, half scrawled bits of dialogue and random character name changes. (Last night, "Tim the Science Guy" became "Dan Jackson, Man of Action." It's really not supposed to make sense.)
2:15 AM: Bed.
The day after getting less than six hours of sleep is always an uneasy sway between punch-drunk goofiness and cranky swipes at any and all who ire me. There's been a lot of ire potential today. I wish to do violence.
I'll just have to settle for more poking at the punch-drunk goofy, ultraviolent Thing.
I'm exhausted and caffeinated and my neck is hurting like a motherfucker. Thus, it is nearly impossible for me to put words together, but in an effort to be conscientous about the updating, I provide you with a look into what's inside my bag, and thus an idea of what's inside my head.
First, a description of my bag -- big enough to hold an entire life, but not too big to be unclassified as a purse. Hot pink in color, corderoy material, with a few smudges making the material look lived in. When I carry it -- which is pretty much all the time -- it hangs like a messenger bag, resting against my ass, a solid reminder of all the things I want and need to do.
And within it, you'll find:
honest-to-god Gucci sunglasses, found in a cafe by Das Roomie and bestowed upon me because they didn't fit her head
Alan Moore's Writing for Comics
glasses case (too small to fit the Gucci sunglasses)
cigarette lighter with sunflower on it (despite the fact that I don't smoke)
three hair clips
ticket stub for Anchorman
lipsticks (2, pink and fuschia)
Flash disc holding copies of po-mo rom-com, Girl Scout comic book script, and last month's Bookslut column
flyer for college friend's rock show
this week's paycheck
paystub from last week's paycheck
Dark red knit square with heart pattern
ancient, decrepit notebook of story ideas, opening sentences, research notes, and funny doodles
So my friend with the baby kittens has successfully managed to find homes for all of them (she rescued them from a couch, and has been running a temporary kitten shelter in her room for the past few weeks). This is fantastic news...
Except that one of the baby kittens has found a home with one of my aunts. And another of the baby kittens is staying with her.
Given that I see my friends fairly often and my aunt on occasion, this means danger for me and my poor poor sinuses. My bronchitis has already flared up, causing great looks of concern from these people unfamiliar with the ways of my lungs.
See, it's not the allergies. The allergies are pretty minor, all considering - I usually never have too much of a problem. It's just that the baby kittens are so very cute. And I feel the need to play with them. And rub them on my face. Because I'm A MORON.
The threat level has gone down somewhat now. But they're still around, those baby kittens. And they have evil in their hearts.
So, finished Time Traveler's Wife on Sunday. Definitely awesome. Sad and sweet and awesome.
Another thing that happened Sunday? Realized that I didn't really care about watching the new episode of Six Feet Under. I'm considering dropping it altogether... I mean, I'll try and catch the rerun tonight. But why watch something that's just falling flat for me? That's just crazy talk.
Last night, I couldn't sleep, and so I watched the pilot of The 4400, which was chock full of trippy X-Files nostaglia for me. Decent writing, decent acting, and a killer concept -- very reminiscient of JMS's Rising Stars, for you comics nerds in the hizz-ouse, but with the added advantage of being a limited run series, and thus HAVING AN ENDING.
Speaking of comics - totally going to ComicCon on Saturday and Sunday. Possibly with my brother! Possibly with Em and Punk! It's awesome. Totally awesome.
This complete lack of coherency is brought to you by six hours of sleep and a fucked up neck. Perhaps more later.
Yesterday, I spent a delightful morning with Em and Bron. We ate brunch at Joey's on Santa Monica, went hiking up to Sunset Boulevard, browsed BookSoup, and in between discussions of comics and Comic-Con the subject of Things I'm Done With came up.
These aren't things I necessarily hate -- these are just things I'm kinda tired of, see all the time, and would enjoy not seeing anymore. They include:
Subquality romantic comedies
Bad web design
Reinforcement of gender stereotypes in any media
That milkshake song.
I would like to replace these things with:
Fresh green beans
Dead Again, which I finally saw this weekend and really enjoyed (Mom, you would love it)
Five uninterrupted hours during which I can design a website for Nicky and Bryan
I picked up The Time Traveler's Wife over a month ago, out of desperation -- I was waiting in line for a movie that didn't start for two hours, and the book I had with me was so incredibly, mindnumbingly dull that I had to abandon my post in line, run down to the nearest bookstore, and acquire the first paperback I could find.
I mean, I'd heard good things about it and all. But that's pretty much how it went down.
I'm happy to report, though, that the book is actually really good. And long! I'm so happy it's so long. I don't feel like the space will be wasted.
Definitely something I'll have to lend to Mom, next time I see her. She'll flip over it.
They are. I swear to god. With their adorableness and their smallness and their sweet little claws and their FUCKING DANDER.
I'm sorry. That was strongly worded. But I'm one big mucous pinata right now (that metaphor grossed people out, back during the Big Mucous Fest of '04, but it's still apropos) -- the Robitussin I took last night and this morning barely making a dent.
This shouldn't be groundbreaking news, but the fact of the matter is that despite my incredibly valuable ova, I'm actually quite stupid. See, I've been feeling yucky for the past week or so, and somehow the fact that, three out of the past seven days, I spent up to half an hour cuddling cute baby kittens (even, god help me, rubbing them on my face) didn't connect in my brain with the symptoms I'd been experiencing. Granted, my brain was congested with EVIL KITTEN DANDER, but still.
Hopefully, some more Robitussin ::shudders at thought of taste:: will have me breathing like a human being again. In the meantime, I shall continue to demonstrate that I don't got the sense God gave me, and think about how much fun it'll be to play with the baby kittens again.
A couple's guide to sharing vacation reading from The Guardian includes this oh-so-precious quote: There are many books that he might like but which you [the woman] definitely won't, and must therefore be banned: anything by Paul Auster; sci-fi by Philip K Dick; anything involving Nearly Falling Off a Mountain; all 'cyber-punk' (whatever that is)...
Yay! Girls don't like science fiction! Boys don't like mystery novels! Girls like romance and the color pink! Boys like adventure and being dirty! Huzzah for the reinforcement of gender stereotypes! Huzzah!
Neuromancer, for what it's worth, is one of my all-time favorite vacation reads, beaten only by Ender's Game.
By the way, I'm totally in love with Chez Miscarriage right now. Go read it. Then volunteer to have her babies.
I'm like five minutes away from doing it, I swear to God. And my ova, the campus paper would always inform me, are worth serious money. Blonde hair! Blue eyes! Non-smoker! 1430 combined on the SAT! A family history of high blood pressure, thyroid problems and heart disease!
Oh, wait. Scratch that last one.
I just wish my own life were that entertaining. Last night I read comic books and caught up with my email. Oh, and I went to the drugstore. I bought new body wash and leave-in conditioner and lipstick and pink-lensed sunglasses. I'm looking forward to using some of these things when I get back from the gym tonight.
My desk is in a high-traffic area of the office, right by the door to the bathroom here, which means that I look up every time someone makes a move to the facilities, just to see if they're coming to speak to me or they're just passing by. Usually I accompany this with a friendly smile, or a nod, and say "hi" or "hola" or "bonjour," because I'm all multi-culti like that.
Yesterday, one of the writers stepped up to the plate, and threw Yiddish and Japanese greetings at me. I don't know Yiddish and Japanese. But! I have now bookmarked this page. We started off with Albanian this morning. I plan to move to Arabic next.
warped plastic covering graphic novels and rumpled sheets covering my bare legs
I have the day off. I may do some writing, go see a movie, lounge around Los Feliz or someplace. Sell some CDs to Amoeba, return some books to the library.
Yesterday I went to a party a girl from work invited me to -- hung out with strangers in Manhattan Beach and smiled. We climbed up onto the roof of the house when the sun set, scanning the horizon for whatever fireworks we could see. Hermosa Beach's were the most visible, close enough for the booms to echo towards us, and on the street below little kids down the block and big kids right in front of us set off bottle rockets and screamers. Twentysomethings in board shorts danced with sparklers. I ate chips and dangled my feet over the side, the gravel beneath me scattering downwards as I got up.
When the party died down I headed north on the 405, fireworks still going off to my right as we crept along at 10 mph. Every driver keeping pace, going just slow enough to stop, wonder, ooh and awe.
I arrived at my friends' house to find myself the only sober person there. A girl among them KNEW she knew me from something previous, despite my utter lack of recall -- we traced back our life stories, trying to figure out when they might have intersected, and when we figured out the connection we hugged, laughing, and toasted each other with diet Coke and Smirnoff.
There were baby kittens in a room upstairs, tiny and mewing and precious. They were rescued out of a couch a week ago, and are now hotly contested. They'll all find homes. They are so very lucky.
The strange discontent, the boredom I felt at the end of last week? Maybe I've just kicked this bug I caught. Maybe I just took the time I needed to relax, sleep, reset.
It's One of Those Days. Dreamt about having cancer, my hair coming off in the comb. In big chunks, like you see in the movies. And now I think I'm getting sick, the ominous tickle in the back of my throat, the pressure in my sinuses a black cloud hanging over my thoughts.
May see what other medications we have in the office. The cold/fever hot drink I tried was terrible.
I don't know what I'm doing tonight. I don't know what I'm doing this weekend (except, of course, for Free Comic Book Day). All I know is that the weekend is three days long, and that's a reason to rejoice.
Last night I couldn't get excited about writing, couldn't get excited about coverage, couldn't get excited about books, couldn't get excited about the freakin' Daily Show. Perhaps it was a prelude to looming illness, or perhaps I'm just a little... burned out isn't the right phrase. I'm just tired, and I'm tired of so many things I enjoy seeming like work.
May just go to bed early tonight, watching a movie or something. Maybe I just need a little break.