Self-Portrait, Uncensored

In South Park, I'd still have a stabby instrument. And alcohol. Because being a pirate princess rules.

Get your own at www.sp-studio.de


Still Intact, Thanks

Dad and I decided to take a drive today, up the narrow Angeles Crest. It's beautiful up there right now. And very green thanks to the wet season earlier this year.

It's also very dangerous. On one side you have the jagged mountain face. On the other is a sheer 2000-foot drop. It's where motorcyclists go to hot-dog their way up the mountain, living off the thrill of the sharp curves.

On this particular holiday weekend, someone was taking the southern route down into La Cañada a little too quickly.

He was moving so fast that the blue F-150 had drifted into the opposite lane, coming around a curve at about 40 miles an hour. A curve where the speed limit was 25 mph because it was particularly tight around the jagged mountain face, with only a guardrail between him and certain death.

At the same time, two cars were moving up the mountain, at about 35 mph. The red coupe in front came around the bend and suddenly I was staring directly into the blue truck's front grill.

In the 2.6 seconds between that instant and what could have been the World's Deadliest Bumper Cars episode, my body tensed, my car stalled, and I waited to hear metal crunch, either from in front OR behind.

My little car must have some sort of force field around it, or it was the grace of a god I don't even believe in, because we completely avoided ever touching each other. He wrenched the truck back into his lane at the very last possible moment, but it was oh so close. I mean about an INCH of space between that huge truck and me, and yet, not even a scratch.

Thankfully, the Camry behind me had left enough room between us, too. Thank you, Camry driver.

I couldn't get my car started again for a few minutes. The cop that pulled up .03 seconds too late to see the near-hit pushed me into the turnout, then went and hassled the jackass that almost made my dad and I a holiday weekend statistic.

Dad drove us back home. Where we promptly passed out from the shock.

Other than that, it's been a wonderful weekend. To everyone who leaves during long holidays, please stay gone. There is NO traffic when you're not here.

And to the guy who nearly killed me, fuck you. Next time, you might not be so lucky.



Dear John Letters #3

I was having a really good day. Then I decided to play beach volleyball. Great for the tan, bad for the back. Which is now hurty. Which then leads to cranky. Which gets you this little treat:

Dear Avery & Other Binder Makers,

This is a class-action letter, in reverse. I am but a single person, but I'm taking all of you to task. Why, if you make binders with clear pockets from which to display stuff, do you then put stickers on top of the plastic that are impossible to take off and then leave a black film behind? If I wanted black streaks on my covers, I could just print them that way. Don't you see how counter-intuitive this stickering is? I mean, you're not selling fruit. Save my manicure, stop the stickers.


Dear Retail Store Pricing Device-Making Industry,

Again, with the class actioning. Because all of you are guilty of shoddy products. Why on God's green earth does the sticker tag need to be scored in such a way that makes it impossible to take off in less than 30 microscopic pieces? That, by the way, will embed themselves under my fingernails that then take forever to get out! I understand that you want to curb theivery in the stores and deter people from switching tags, but with the sophistication of SKU technology these days, is that really necessary? Peeling those tags off when you're giving them for gifts is a bitch and a half. And the recipient either receives a tag that's half-removed (tacky) or a gaping hole in the packaging where the tag ripped it away (also tacky). Please, cut it out!


Dear Tony Tomey,

I'm very proud of you for making your own Captain America outfits and shamelessly strutting about in them along Hollywood Blvd. But since you were being photographed for a 2-page spread in Los Angeles magazine, would it have hurt to remove your underpants before putting on your costume? Visible panty lines on women are unsightly enough; on men, they're downright disgusting.

Next time, go commando. Your fans will appreciate it.


Dear French Fries,

You are, by all accounts, the demon food of the century. You are filled with all that is toxic to the body: bad carbs, malevolent oils, evil salt, and all that other junk that leads to heart attacks. And yet, you are also incredibly tasty. But the price I paid for scarfing down a handful of you at lunch just wasn't worth the lethargy of the food coma one hour later. It was impossible to think, let alone operate properly. Productivity hit -45. I could have been fired and it would have been all your fault! You evil temptresses!!

(Editor's note: I don't know why I decided that French fries are female. Just go with it.)


Dear Citysearch,

OMGWTFLMA:LJFLJDFOU()*&%)$&(*#$!!!1!!!11. If any of that makes sense to you, you are an idiot. Because while teenagers IMing themselves into stupidity is one thing, those of us in the profesional realm should be utilizing the English language to the best of our abilities, not the worst. And having a link that says "Send 2 Phone" on every restaurant listing as a convenience to your users is giving me the Grammar Nazi Dry Heaves. Is it really that difficult to write out the word "to"? I get that you're being edgy because text messaging lends itself to this ridiculous shorthand, but guess what? It's still stupid. And makes me H8 you.

I hate myself for doing that.


The Jaked Effect

I've always loved the name Jake. It's just so damn cool. And you know what else is the embodiment of cool? Guitar players.

In college I met a man named Jakey. Who played the guitar. In a soul funk band. He had tattoos. And nice lips.

I had fun with Jakey.

He's married now, but I'm pretty sure his wife will forgive me this story. She's a sweetheart after all.


There's this face that guitar players make when they're in the middle of a solo. All of them, with few exceptions, scrunch their faces up in stern concentration, like they're racing towards an orgasm. Much like when they're having sex!

(I've done empirical testing. Trust me on this. "I've done the research!")

So, I took to calling this face the Jaked Face. As in, "he's getting Jaked." Much like getting naked, since seeing a musician on stage is the same thing as eye-fucking them.

It's much better up against a car at 4 am on some Los Feliz side street, but I digress.

ALL of THAT backstory is because I'm watching this run of "Brilliant but Cancelled" tv shows on Bravo, one of which stars Jason Bateman. Who I adore (even though I never got around to watching Arrested Development). It's called...The Jake Effect. Because what ELSE can you call it? Jakes make me weak in the knees. Jason Bateman playing the hottie ex-lawyer high school teacher makes me weak in the somewhere else. He doesn't even need a guitar-as-phallus-substitute.

I'm waiting to see if he gets Jaked. Because that would be overwhelmingly hot. In fact, it might be too much.

Fine, I'll just enjoy what I can get. From eye-fucking him.


More Housekeeping

I just doesn't end, does it?

I need an additional layer of protection, even if it is imaginary. It's horrid what a little paranoia will do to you. First, the stalker, then this. I love my job and I loved my life before the birthday week from hell, so it's time for a little distance.

Short of deleting this blog completely, I'm changing my name to an old standby. You may now call me Ghetto Photo Girl.

Hi, nice to meet you.

Please don't refer to me as anything other that, or GPG, from now on. I realize this is a bit of a pain in the ass for those of you who are linked to me and now I'm gonna have to explain who I am all over again when I post to my favorite blogs and whatnot, but that's the way the cookie crumbles.

Mmm, cookies.

Maybe tomorrow I can post something more interesting than my identity crisis.

Housekeeping & Updates

I've finally been attacked by blog spam. It's not yummy, not like real Spam. Which we used to eat on camping trips till that one time we were all so hungover it made us wretch almost immediately on contact.

That was a fun trip.

Anyway. It took 2 whole months, but they got me. So, in an effort to deter the spambots, you can no longer post anonymously and you have to do that silly squiggly word verification thing. Sorry, but it had to be done.

In other even less stellar news, the telephone stalker reared his ugly head again. After getting shut down by my date last week, he waited a mere 5 days before resuming his annoying calls.

I finally picked up the phone:

Me: Who is this?
Him: It's Psycho.*
Me: Why are you calling me?
Him: Because you gave me your number.
Me: Look, I don't know who you are but I want you to stop calling me. I don't remember you and I don't want to speak to you ever again.
Him: Uh, okay.

*not his real name

That's the abridged version, and lacks that tone of bitchiness I'm so good at.

I need honest answers here from the man group: if a woman ignores all of your (20 desperate) phone calls, then on the last try a man answers and tells you to leave her alone, what part of the brain makes you think it's okay to call AGAIN???

Fucking hell.

Now that's made me all paranoid that he's a psycho stalker in real life and knows where I live. So when I left the house last night to see my boys play in Hollywood, I spent $10 to valet my car instead of walking around a dark neighborhood by myself.

So wrong. On every level.


Change of heart: anonymous posting is allowed but the word verification stays.

As for the other problem, I'm calling the LAPD to see what, if any, recourse I have before I find myself in REAL trouble.


The Photo Project That Will Not End

In late 2004 I decided I wanted to have a showing of my photographic work, but no real cohesive theme to pull it all together. One day the song 88 Lines about 44 Women came on the radio and suddenly I had a theme: I'd illustrate the song through portraits of the 44 women. Perfect!

In April of 2005 I finally started shooting it. I got lucky that my shameless friends readily volunteered to model, and brought me more local talent from their theater groups. Everyone agreed to pose for the free pictures. I had good momentum going, shooting anywhere from 3 to 5 girls a week. I even traveled through Reno, Seattle and San Francisco (all in one weekend!) to keep it authentic. I promised my models (or, as I affectionately refer to them, my whores) the show would be up by the end of August and they could all have their pictures then.

I already wrote about what happened in August:
I got fed up.

So now it's May 2006. It's been well over a year since I came up with the concept and put it in motion. I'm so very close to being done that I can taste it, but something is holding me back. I only have 6 "vignettes" left to shoot. But I'm 9 months past my deadline. With 6 ideas still left to pull out of my ass and make "fit." And the longer I stare at what I already have, the more inclined I am to make more changes, giving myself even more work.

This has to stop. I need inspiration. I need focus. I need more whores.

I need a swift kick in the ass.

But mostly, whores.


On Being Plastic...and Icky

I've already admitted that one of my guilty pleasures is watching the puerile reality shows that litter the MTV airwaves. There ain't no shame in it.

Tonight there was a marathon block of "Super Sweet 16," the premise of which is that prima donna teenagers have lavish parties thrown in their vain honor all to merely illustrate how utterly shallow they are.

Got it? Okay.

One of the episodes featured a Long Island girl throwing herself a $300,000 Egyptian-themed party. Goody for her. Daddy took her shopping for a car. She got into an $82,000 BMW Z4. He questioned the price for a half-second before saying "whatever makes you happy." Then she started looking at Porsches.

Here's where I swoon. I love me a Porsche something fierce. Hate that they come with automatic transmissions, but hey, the impotent guys need something to drive, so whatever.

Anyway, the girl had her pick of any single car in the world. ANYTHING. And she ended up with a 700 series BMW.

Hmm, Porsche or granddaddy beemer? Uh...

I kept yelling "STUPID GIRL!!!" at the television and then realized I'm way too invested in the superficiality of strangers. Daddy isn't going to buy me a Porsche, I can get one myself, so why do I care what some hicktown brat is getting?

Actually, the goal is to buy dad a Porsche. My brothers and I are in an unofficial race to see who can afford the 911 first...my baby brother just got a promotion, so he might be winning.

See, we were raised right.


In other news, I have a telephone stalker. I made the drunken mistake of giving my number to a guy in the bar during my birthday party the other night. Clearly on the booty call hunt, he called SEVEN times between 1 and 2 am that night. I finally picked up and told him to give up because I was going to bed.

SEVEN times, yo.

He stayed away for a couple of days, then called twice yesterday afternoon--and twice again at MIDNIGHT last night.

Needless to say, I haven't answered any of these calls.

Today alone he's called four times and texted me twice. Truth is, I barely remember the guy. And after FIFTEEN increasingly desperate phone calls, I'm not in any way interested.

He's creepy. Anyone got a solution?

UPDATE: in the 30 minutes since I posted this, he's called twice more. Fucking hell.


CHG Confessions #4

The CHG appreciates the compliments in regards to the new sassy look. The CHG really likes her new sassy look. But the CHG also really liked the previous mermaid look. So comments like "oh, it looks so much better this way!" or "don't you like it better like this?" are not exactly complimentary as just plain rude.

The new sassy look is not "better." It is simply "different." No, she didn't get tired of the length, the upkeep, or anything else that goes with curly hair down to one's ass. She simply wanted something...oh yeah, different.

The next person who utters either of the above two phrases is getting the cold stare that comes moments before the knife plunges into flesh.


It's What I Got

I have some pretty awesome friends. I don't know if I've trained them well over the years, threatened them enough, or they just came out of the box that way, and I don't care. They're pretty fucking cool.

They'll dress like pirates for my birthday, pose crazed and/or naked on a moment's notice, protect me from drunken slobs, write sentimental blogs in my honor, and let me play the princess whenever I damn well please.

And when life turns not-so-fair, they're here to hold my hair while I'm puking, hold my hand while I amble recklessly through the big bad world, hold my tequila so I don't spill it, and threaten to put the hurt on whoever makes me unhappy.

You can't buy love like that.

And I love them back just as hard.

Smoochies kids!


But I'm Too Damn Lazy...

Things I could be doing with my Friday night:

- buying myself an outfit for my birthday party tomorrow night. I'm looking for a white dress. But, obviously, not very hard.

- tweezing my eyebrows.

- making dinner. I just ran through Trader Joe's and bought absolutely nothing to make a meal with, except some Pinot Grigio. Which I have no desire to drink.

- cleaning my bathroom. I will have company over tomorrow, after all.

- uploading music to the new nano. I have no reason for not doing this, seeing as I have to run on Monday.

- paying bills. Eh.

- watching "You Got Served!" in preparation for the dance-off I hope to foist on my pirate rock star party-goers tomorrow. Must be prepared.

- washing clothes. I don't know when else I'm going to have time to do that this weekend.

- not be home. My roommate invited me to come check out a band down in Venice. I've just said no to live music on a Friday night.

I'm clearly losing my edge.


Happy Birthday to Me!!!

On this last hour of my day of celebration, I present to you 28 random facts about little ol' me:

1. My stupid human trick is that I can identify the make and model of a car from its headlights in my rearview mirror. But I'm still a little sketchy on the newer models. I don't actively work at this. It just kind of comes naturally. I have no idea how or why.

2. If forced to, I could subsist on a diet made up completely of hummus, sushi, chicken satay with peanut coconut sauce, and Jack in the Box tacos. And tequila. With some diet Coke thrown in once in a while for variety's sake. Oh, and some water too.

3. Being half Puerto Rican, the joke amongst my friends is that I am violent when angry (which is not necessarily true--or untrue). Rumor has it I will cut you if you displease me. My ex-boyfriend bought me a little pocket knife just for that reason, thinking it funny. He did this on the day we broke up. Can you say "stupid"? He did stay out of reach after that, though...

4. The other half is Mexican, and as such, I am an utter tequila snob. I like what I like and don't care what anyone thinks about it. My three favorite brands are, in no particular order, Cazadores, Corzo and Corazon. (I have a thing for Cs, apparently.) Don't try to entice me with Patrón or, worse yet, Cuervo. Because (see number 3) I will cut you!

4a. Don't ruin my tequila with salt, lime, or worse yet, margarita mix. There's no need for window dressing on good tequila. Chill it, serve it, sip it. That's how I like it, that's how I want it. No training wheels.

5. My mother, who is from the state of Jalisco where tequila is made, is a bona fide border jumper. 30 years ago she ran across the border. But last summer, when I was stuck on a bus trying to get back in the country and make it to Street Scene on time and called her to ask where the damn trail was to sneak back in the country, she couldn't remember. Apparently becoming a citizen means you forget that rubbish.

6. Spanish was technically my first language, but it quickly disappeared once I started kindergarten. I'm rather ashamed of this, and wish I wasn't too lazy to relearn it.

7. I have this strange TMJ issue that causes my mouth to lock up on the right side. When it finally pops, I'm always reminded of a snake unhinging its jaw. Needless to say, I don't eat rats...but sometimes I can't eat at all because I can't open my mouth. As you can imagine, this has a negative impact on certain activities.

8. My favoritest time in my life so far was my early 20s, when all my friends were guys in bands and every weekend was one debaucherous adventure after another. That was back when I could get by on little sleep and my lockjaw didn't hinder my fun at all. Now everyone's grown up, or gone on tour, and I need more sleep than I'm comfortable admitting.

9. That last statement made me feel really old.

10. At work, I'm the youngest person in my department. But also a level below everyone else. This doesn't bother me since I consider it a very temporary situation (the level, not the job), and know I shouldn't be comparing myself to other people my age. But sometimes I wonder if I should be farther along in my career, now that I have one that I absolutely love.

11. I was once involved in a completely unsatisfactory affair with an egotistical yet awful lay of a man. I don't understand why I still yearn for it on occasion. Maybe because he was a really great kisser.

12. I hate egotistical men. Arrogance is a huge turn-off. But so is wimpiness. I like my men confident, ambitious, but sweet and creatively-inclined. And tall, dark, and handsome. But I'm not a cliché.

13. The way a man hugs is almost as important as how he kisses. I need strong, enveloping embraces. A man who can't do that needs to a) learn how, or b) stay away from me. Because I love to hug.

14. When I was about 4 years old, I was nearly run over by a car. Because I was laying in the middle of the street. Waiting for it to run me over. Because I wanted to see what would happen.

15. That story got me accepted into UCLA. Twice.

16. It took me 6 years to graduate from college. My Ivy League credits didn't transfer for shit. Because the Ivy League sucks. And so does Philadelphia.

17. College made me terrible at math. I can barely do long division anymore. Thank god for calculators.

18. I love scary movies. The first movie I remember being really scared at was The Lost Boys. I was 9 and couldn't get to sleep that night, despite the fact that my mom slept in my room with me. I was convinced the vampires were going to fly through my window at any moment. It's still one of my favorite movies.

19. I don't care for Jennifer Aniston, Claire Danes, Jason Schwarztman, Gwenyth Paltrow or Julia Roberts (except in Pretty Woman). I won't see their movies unless forced to at gunpoint. And will be very grumpy about the entire experience.

20. What I really wanted for my birthday was a trip to the shooting range. I want to fire my friend's carbon fiber shotgun, but I'm afraid of the kickback.

21. I bruise too easily. It's not unusual for me to wake up with bruises I never remember getting. Given that I'm pathologically clumsy, I just accept I bumped into something at some point. It's not pretty.

22. I share my birthday with Bono, Fred Astaire, and my nephew C-note (not his real name). On C-note's first birthday, I turned 26. He had a piñata party in the park (so Mexican!). My friends and I crashed the party, brought my own piñata, and took over the bounce house. It was the best birthday I've ever had.

23. When I was a teenager, I wished Holden Caulfield was a real guy so we could play catch in a rye field. I didn't realize at the time what a drag depressed people are.

24. Sometimes I miss the thrill of being a teenager sneaking behind her parents' backs. There's nothing like the risk of getting caught doing something naughty. There's nothing comparable to it now that won't land me in jail.

25. I recognize my short-lived adrenaline junkie phase must have scared the shit out of my parents. The older I get the less I want to bungie jump.

26. I really must be an old lady.

27. 27 was a really good age.

28. That's why I'm staying that age for another year. At least.


Training Week #5

I was a bad girl today. For the first time since I started this damn running program, I opted out of a run.

But, I had my reasons. One, whatever I had for lunch did not agree with me or my internal organs. So I felt like shit all afternoon. Two, I smacked my knee up something hard against my desk. It's the kind of hurt that is sharp and immediately radiates down your leg. In fact, the sound of impact was so loud, people several cubicles over were asking if I was okay.

I'm pathologically clumsy, so this was not an unusual mishap. I was actually due, since I've been pretty klutz-free lately. But that hurt like a bitch. I was a limpy gimp the rest of the afternoon.

Maybe tomorrow I'll wake up early and run along the bike path. It's 1.6 miles in each direction. How cold is it at 6:30 am? Okay, maybe not.

I'll just run on my lunch hour.

Ah, problem solved!


Tuesday is Exile's birthday. Go on over to his blog and wish him a good one!


Mais Un Petit Péché

Tag, I'm it. Rodger Jacobs over at 8763 Wonderland wants to know what it is I covet. And since wanting to weigh less, have more free time and make more money are pretty universal desires, here's what I'd take with my 5 wishes:

1. A classic Corvette or Porsche Roadster convertible. Either black or red. 1960 was a good year.

2. A man servant. Preferably Greek. With long black hair. And a penchant for strutting around in white linen pants and nothing else.

3. The proper gallery space in which to hang my 44 Women.

4. A year spent traveling the world perfecting my art.

5. A cure for PMS. I fear this last one is going to put a damper on this entire week, and all I want to do is turn 27 again in peace!

With that, I tag Exile, the Lil' Princess, and both Grace and Karen over at The Single Life.


Training Week #4

Would you believe I've been marathon training for an entire MONTH?! Wow. I mean, WOW. I'm actually rather impressed with myself.

Today my brother and I ran 2 miles around our high school track. And I realized this one minute but singularly important fact: quite simply put, running outside SUCKS. The weather, the air quality, the dirt in my shoes. I'm having none of it!

If only I could run an entire marathon on a treadmill...

So from now on, I have to do more outdoor training. Otherwise I'm going to fall apart mentally.


By this time next month I should be ready for a full 5K. Outside. Ouch.

Of Lowered Expectations

Yesterday I required the services of not one, not two, but THREE government agencies. What I understandably expected to be a day of hell actually made me realize that not all government agencies are created equal. And not all government employees are homicidal maniacs.

Probably most, but not all. Which made it a mostly good day.

As promised, I found myself in the DMV line as early as I could muster: 7:30 am. That put me third, right in front of a woman who, while we watched the employees arrive, observed that you must be predisposed to crankiness to work at the DMV. True to form, the woman who helped me was sour throughout our entire 7-minute transaction. She refused to smile. I think she has damaged funny-bone DNA.

The guy who took my picture was a much more personable sort. He, and the woman watching over him, were both overly complimentary of my smile. (I gotta look into doing toothpaste ads, yo.) But that picture is still going to look like the standard issue ID photo. Ick.

Since that put me back home by 8:15 am, I'd have to say it wasn't the anticipated dreadful experience. And too short to gather stories on the sorrowful people sure to populate it later in the day.

Next up was the Office of Finance, Van Nuys division, where they make you take a number, like at the deli! Luckily I was, again, the third one called. And though my mother had warned me, I still almost didn't believe the man behind the mirrored glass was quite so accomodating. He actually stated, in front of a room full of witnesses, that they would help me fill out my tax forms next year to ensure I file on time. Wow, really? So I gave him my card. And now, I'm fully licensed to do business in the City of Los Angeles.

But here was where I finally got my weird character run-in, in the form of a young, pregnant, Eastern European woman. She was in to rectify something gone haywire with her business. Her male companion appeared pretty useless and she kept cutting him in their native tongue. All I got out of it was that some fire code had been violated. Guess the bun in the oven put them over capacity.

Imagine an 8-month pregnant blonde 20-something, in a strapless bright pink baby doll, spitting in...Czech, for argument's sake. She was not unattractive, but so disheveled I felt rather sorry for her. At the same time she was pleading for assistance from the person behind the glass, she was shushing her partner rather viciously, and it made the whole sorry scene fitting in its own depressing way. Because the sad sterility of the typical government agency begs this sort of experience, no?

My last stop was the Post Office. I did not have high hopes for the this. It was, after all, 4:30 pm on a Friday afternoon. If anyone was going to be cranky, it was going to be the postal workers. But I had to mail a cd to a client, so I didn't have a choice.

And yet, when the man behind the counter asked if he could further assist me or if I needed to buy stamps, I believe his sincerity. He clearly had no intention to come back and gun down his fellow employees or patrons. He was simply going about his business, doing his job, and seemingly, not hating it.


What kind of day is it when multiple encounters with the government don't leave one frustrated with the urge to move to Canada? Better yet, how sad is it that we've come to expect so little from the people who help run our country?


Bureaucratic Hell

I just remembered that my license expires next week. Thankfully, I'm off tomorrow AND the Culver City DMV is within walking distance...unfortunately, they don't have any appointments tomorrow.

And we all know what that means: getting up at the ass-crack of dawn to wait in the damn line that is always full of the most sorrowful looking people.

Dammit. I wanted to sleep in!

So if anyone sees a bleary-eyed girl wandering the streets of Culver City at 7 am tomorrow morning, offer her coffee and an early happy birthday. I'll need it.


In other news, happy birthday to my mom!! Who probably doesn't need to renew her license, and is better off for it. Yay mom!


Reflections on a Job Well Done

The last 2 weeks of my time have been taken up with planning a birthday party for the 90-year-old founder of our company. What started as a simple afternoon gathering for roughly 50 VIPs exploded into a 2-part happy hour/media event replete with the local mayor and was attended by about 350 people. It was the largest function I have ever handled. This is how it went:

4:00 am - wake up freaking out about the entire event. I'd just had a nightmare about it turning into this weird public circus and me completely missing it because I was too busy fighting with my mother. But all my high school and rocker friends were there, so it wasn't a completely horrible dream. Try to calm my nerves and go back to sleep.

6:00 - wake up again, an hour earlier than need be, but no sense in fighting a bundle of nerves and excitement.

7:45 - arrive at work with with less than 7 hours till go-time, too many messages and too many emails to make sense of, forget to grab coffee.

10:00 - realize I also forgot to pick up the flowers for the centerpieces, run to the wholesaler, wonder about filler flowers, give up, spend $30 and rush back to work.

11:45 - decide I want a grilled cheese sandwich and fries for lunch, run into the Executive Chef in the Café who is dying to show me the cake for our party later...can't find the cake. I refuse to panic, and he buys my lunch.

1:10 pm - finish tying up last minute details, hear that the cake arrived but has the wrong message on it. Decide to let it go and check on the progress of my cocktail party setup.

1:30 - 2 hours to go-time...cocktail party room is nowhere near ready. Hustle the crew...realize the OTHER room isn't set-up properly either. Make jokes about getting bitchy. Instead, smile sweetly and things get pulled together immediately. Even find a free second to flirt with the bartenders.

3:00 - 30 minutes to go-time, don my high heeled boots. Guests begin to arrive. Watch the reunion unfold in the lobby. Meet the inspiration for our iconic toy. Feel honored.

3:30 - wrangle the guests, set them loose on the bar and appetizers. Having put Part 1 to bed, check on progress of Part 2.

4:00 - Chef brings my team tasty appetizers and the news that the CEO gave me props for pulling it all together. Peek inside the cocktail party, hear that they'll be breaking in 15 minutes. Shovel down the rest of my "dinner" and inform the AV crew to cue the music in 10 minutes. Greet the mayor.

4:15 - people begin sneaking in to the party, I steal a cupcake.

4:30 - guest of honor and entourage make way into the main hall. Doors open to the rest of the crowd. Revel in a moment of pride at the sheer numbers of people, make a joke to my VP about knowing how to throw a party.

5:00 - presentations wrap up, birthday song sung, mingle mingle mingle. Someone wants to discuss logistics of an event taking place next week. Tell him we'll deal with it tomorrow.

5:30 - guest of honor's assistant drags me to meet him, am repeatedly complimented on my smile and the fine outcome, give profuse thanks to my entire crew.

5:40 - chat with the chef about my own birthday festivities in 7 days...I think I'm in for a great surprise.

6:00 - run 2 miles.

7:00 - come home and pass out.

8:30 - shower.

9:30 - breathe a sigh of relief that the day is finally over.

I'm more exhausted than I have any right to be. But that just means I need to go to bed now. With a smile on my face and a fantasy about my own party next week.


April by the Numbers

I was going to write a whole post about how today's national protests have led to a great deal of personal inner conflict, but went with a double post instead. I missed March's numbers because I was sick in bed for 27 days and nothing else of note happened.

April was a different story.

0 days spent sick in bed
3 weeks spent marathon training
13.2 miles run over those 3 weeks
24 hours logged at the gym
4 glasses of wine consumed the ENTIRE month
8 pounds lost

17 points between UCLA victory and reality
1 early birthday gift received
2 independently created birthday countdowns being kept
1 set of twins celebrated their first birthday
4 elementary school friends celebrate a 20 year reunion
50 dollar government refund received
2 additional photo shoots closer to 44 Women completion
1 short evening spent with my favorite rocker whore
5 day Easter vacation break
3 novels finished in that time
14 inches lost to the hair surgeon
8.3 billion times the new hair elicited a response along the lines of "oh my god, did you cut your hair?! It's FABULOUS!" (Because its true.)

I'm Not Above Bribery

I just read this astounding review and am compelled to see it. The first person to offer to come with me wins a free drink.

Tequila!! (Or whatever you prefer.)

Question is, do we drink it before or after?

PS: as proof of its utter awesomeness, the only LA theater showing it is at the Beverly Center. I'm so there.