Monday, May 30, 2011

exhibit A

i'm sitting at the coffee shop where i came to do work. it's like a character study on couples. i think because it's a holiday and the lawyers are off playing golf or whatever it is they do when not working. i miss them. today it's all couples because i think that they are coming from across the street where there is a famous hotel (hint: richard nixon got married there) and these couples come there to rekindle romance (because nothing bring romance to mind like the nixons) or whatever it is you have to do when you've been fucking the same person for way too long and there ain't no end in sight and now you have a house and kids and it would be too costly to sort through all of that. there are couples doing crosswords together and sitting and not talking. and the there is the couple that are having their first date (i know, right? 8:30am on memorial day? who even does that shit?) after having met on....the internet.

and speaking of which, dating online, this was suggested to me by an old friend. she said you could tell a lot about a person's character by how well they can construct a sentence. and based on this could make an educated guess as whether it would be worthwhile to commit to an entire dinner. just make sure that they pay for it.

so i'm sitting here drinking my hot tea with no milk because i'm still feeling sick and milk makes it worse and i'm avoiding work because i'm tired of reading about targeted killings and i can't seem to hit on the appropriate framework and i came across this advice (?) article via yahoo. it's about how to make other people know that YOU are a catch. and it totally relates to what i was mentioning in the previous post. about how sometimes it's better not to be listening...

this is suggestion number 1:

1. Whatever you’re passionate about. Maybe it’s your love of art and culture. Or history. Or tropical bird-watching. Anything, in fact, except celebrities and what’s on TV. You want to show that you do things in your spare time that enrich you as a person, not just sit on the sofa with Us Weekly. And even if you and your date are both super into celebrity gossip, it’s hardly a unique trait to build a relationship on. Spend those early dates getting to know the important facts about each other; specifically, the passions that make each of you tick and distinguish you from the other single folk out there.

Sample segue: “I liked The Book of Eli because it got people talking about the Bible, which isn’t true of most popular movies! I’m one of those people who loves getting into a literary discussion of the Bible — how about you?”

let me just point a couple of things out. first, how exactly does this separate the speaker from someone that sits on the sofa with usweekly? i mean, the ONLY place you would read about that movie is in people or the like. no one i know even saw it. and second, any random piece of celebrity gossip is more interesting than that statement. even played-out britney gossip or who alex rodriguez is dating now (seriously, the only reason i even know of him is because he supposedly slept with madonna) is more interesting than that comment. and third, on the off chance that i was listening when the above comment was made, i would probably just get up and walk out.

and anyway, anyone with half a brain can apply a biblical analysis to any movie. it doesn't have to be actually about the bible. because all the bible is really, is this sort of archetypal allegory. it's like marxism or feminism. you can apply it to anything and make yourself look smart. everyone knows that. and, if you chose to go that route with me, you had better know your shit. because i do. just ask the guy who quoted (incorrectly) simone de beauvoir to me at the bar. that night ended in me walking out. however, i was drunk enough to have given him my phone number and he called for days. he would have been better off not talking at all.

but, if you read closely, the article suggests only that you say that you like conversation, not that you actually have it. apparently, it's enough to just suggest that you could discuss things.

Sunday, May 29, 2011


i went to see my psychic today. actually, i shouldn't call her a psychic. not that she doesn't have the gift, i just hate that word. she's more of an intuitive reader, if that phrase is any better. my analyst referred to her as a fortune teller once, and i feigned indignation and was all like 'spiritual advisor, please.' and immediately burst out laughing at his serious look as he thought that he had really offended me. it is actually very hard to offend me and my analyst can be quite serious, so sometimes i like to tease him. as i do with all serious people.

anyway. so i went to get a reading and we were talking about love or lack thereof and then she pretty much called me out for failing to be fully present in my interpersonal interaction. she asked me if when people were talking to me was i thinking about other things.

only all the fucking time. but the thing is that if i were fully listening when most guys were talking to me, i would be bored to fucking death. and as tb was telling me the other night, people can visibly feel when i'm not into them. apparently i have not so subtle body language and vibe.

and my mind is always working. always. so unless i am talking to someone extremely interesting, then i am thinking about other things. things i read. things i want to read. the different parts of models (formal models, not fashion models).

she told me that if put as much work into relationships as i do into my work, that i wouldn't be alone anymore.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

boba is the new blow

a few weeks ago someone took me for chinese food. this particular restaurant also had bubble tea, which i hadn't had in forever.

apparently i forgot how much i liked it. the way it feels in your mouth all squishy and sweet and starchy. and now i can't get enough. i have an all-consuming desire for it.

i was at boba tea house just yesterday(where the girl knows me by name) and whole i was standing in line all i could think about was the satisfaction that i was going to feel when the boba was in my mouth. i was watching people enjoy their boba in envy, salivating in anticipation. the ritual of inverting the cup to disperse the boba before puncturing the plastic covering with the pointy straw.

i have an addictive personality. that's what i realized. it's true what they say, a junkie is a junkie 3-6-5. my whole life centers around the satisfaction of desire. the desire to fill the part of me that feel lacking. and so i give into myself.

nowadays it's mostly harmless things. going to see the psychic. boba tea. the occasional cigarette. seriously. i don't smoke that much and i will not give them up. not now. not ever.

my only concern with bubble tea is the sugar, but i came home and weighed myself and my weight is down since yesterday and at an acceptable's ok. between a size 4-6 is not fat. this is my new mantra. because i just don't think i have it in me to lose 10-20 more pounds.

i'm walking out the door now to boba tea house now...

i went to get the boba. the girl who knows my name totally outed me, "you're, like, addicted to boba!!!" she said. i laughed nervously. "that's ok," she said, "it's just boba. at least it's not alcohol."

Friday, May 20, 2011

it ain't me babe

last night i met one of the great (living) american novelists. and he turned out to be quite charming. if i sound slightly surprised, it's because i was.

when i learned (via twitter of all places) that bret easton ellis was making what he claimed was his last bookstore appearance EVER (in the u.s.), i thought perhaps i should go. only perhaps, because if there's one thing i've learned from dating artists it's that sometimes it is best to keep the art separate from the person creating it. and that artists aren't necessarily any more interesting or intelligent than ordinary people, just more narcissistic. so two things. but the point is that when i meet an artist and start to get a sense of them as a person, it can really fuck up how i perceive their work. so sometimes separation is good.

the other reason why only perhaps was that the bookstore at which he was reading is in los feliz. which, to me, is the most overbearing neighborhood in LA. like a million times worse than beverly hills (where i actually love to go). the people are unbearable. when you think about LA and your mind is inundated with visions of self-important, talentless hipsters who move here on their parents' dime to try to make it in the industry (as in entertainment), this is where they congregate.

so there are a lot of great bars and good restaurants, but the conversation is really shitty.

it's a lot of 20 somethings all trying to outdo each other in terms of how poor they can look, as if a lack of taste as evidenced through thrift store clothes can legitimate you as an artist. think blanche devereaux tops/dresses and skinny jeans and vests and ugly shoes. in reality, this kids don't know the first thing about being poor or having to actually work seeing as how their parents are obviously footing the bill. i know this because i know that there is no way that their customer service day jobs could ever pay for their silver lake rent and their acting classes that they are chattering on about.

then there were the aging hipsters who were talking in intentionally elevated voices about how the hadn't read 'american psycho' in, oh, twenty years, before most of the people there were born, apparently not realizing that stating this fact aloud didn't make them seem special, just old. so tragic.

it was a fabulous scene, but i digress. this isn't even the interesting part of the story.

when i got to the bookstore, it was still early. the only people there were some really awkward guys who seemed to be creative writing students. i sat there reading the copy of 'imperial bedrooms,' i had just purchased. i realized that i hadn't opened a novel in almost four years.

as the room filled with writers and hipsters and the like, i also realized that i was the least artistically creative person in the room. or at least one of the only people there that didn't at least attempt to engage in the artistic process. although, i would say that game theoretic models are the closest thing to art that my discipline has, i don't feel that anyone there would have gotten that.

and also i started to feel a massive amount of anxiety. i hate being in a room full of people. especially these fucking narcissists. it sucks the life out of me. the only thing that brought me relief, albeit temporarily, was the fact that i sat in the very front row. i sat here for two reasons. first, i can't see very well. and second, i wanted to see the author and the back off someone's awful haircut.

but the front row filled last. this is totally an LA thing. people love to look at other people, but they hate being looked at. even though they try to make it as hard as they can for you to look away, they are the most self-conscious people on the planet.

so bret easton ellis was running late. and i was considering running for the door and calling my friend w. and going to have that drink we were going to have after the reading. not because i care about the lateness, but because i could feel a panic attack coming on. but i would have had to get through the what was now a sizable mass of people and as i was contemplating this, the author showed.

he just kind of walked straight to the podium in a very hurried way. he paused, looked at the audience and sighed really disparagingly. he took out a really old copy of 'less than zero' and read the first page. and his hands were shaking.

hearing him read from this particular book was absolutely not what i was expecting, but still was one of the most beautiful things i've ever heard. maybe the most beautiful. the way it was read was exactly the way i had always imagined it would sound.

it was the only thing he read. but it was more than enough. he didn't read from the new book. he said it was just too painful.

instead he just took questions from the audience. the questions were mostly unimaginative, but i very much enjoyed hearing him speak.

i didn't ask anything.

but here's the best part of the story...

when i went to get my book signed, our conversation went like this...

BE-E (putting his glasses on and sort of peering at me): don't i know you?
me (totally thrown off and not sure if i heard him correctly): sorry?
BE-E: um, i mean we've met before somewhere right? i feel like i know you from somewhere else....
me: no, i'm sorry. we...haven't.
BE-E: really? um...i mean i guess you do so many of these things and sometimes people look familiar and...
me: no...i...i'm sure of it. was really great. thank you.
BE-E (looking right at me): thanks. thank you so much for coming.

and he sounded completely genuine. i was so thrown off that my book isn't even signed to me. it's just signed. i wished that i could have thought of something smart to say. but i couldn't. maybe it's a better story that way.

he was exceptionally charming.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

mommy dearest

i called my mother to tell her thanks for having me. although, i don't know that her having me matters all that much. in the grand scheme of things that is. i don't say that to be depressing. it is what it is. i just don't really feel like i have a purpose right now. i am totally in this satisficing phase.

and the next person that wishes ME a happy mothers day is getting an earful. or at least a scathing look. so far i've let it go. the assumption that because i'm in my early 30's i must have some kids because that's what women do.

dig this conversation from the coffee shopt this AM, between me and this weathered old ex-con (seriously, he was rocking prison tats):

him: happy mothers day, ma'am.
me: [blank stare]
him: do ya got kids?
me: no.
him: [condescending/pitying look] yeah...well...i guess have a good day anyway.

i have a lot of love in my heart. and despite my selfish ways, of which there are many, i think i would be a good mother. mostly because children are the ultimate vanity project. sadly, i have only met two people who i would actually be willing to bring life into this world with. two people. in my whole life. that sort of constricts my options.

on a more uplifting note, it was upon the birth of my niece that i realized what true love was. it was then that i was struck by how much you could love someone that you didn't even know. and i realized that it doesn't matter what kind of person that she turns out to be. she is loved anyway. end of story. at least by us, she is.

i've only felt that kind of love once in my life. the kind which transcends any temporary action that the other person takes in favor of the larger picture. it has brought me more pain that i have ever felt. it also brings me hope that i can feel it again. for someone that feels it back. or at least, that can show me they feel it back.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

ooohhh, you sneaky fucking russians...

here's some cold war era game theory:

we have three different antiaircraft defense systems A1, A2, and A3, only one of which we can use. our opponent has three different airplanes B1, B2, and B3, only one of which he can use. our goal is to shoot down the airplane, our opponent's aim is to get his airplane through unharmed...

straight from russia with love.

remember the innocuous number matching game that all the game theory books love to use as an illustrative example? well this is how they played behind the iron curtain, bitches. so man up, throw back some vodka and hope you picked the right defense system. lest america blind you with the light of democratic enlightenment/freedom.

the above game came from a book published during the 1960's as part of series to bring math to the people. apparently they didn't just want people to understand strategy, they wanted them to live that shit.

and while i'm not sure why it ever got published in english, i am sure that it is one of the best introductions to game theory i have read.

and to my reader in the russian federation, please don't be offended. or stop reading. i love russians. i just wanted to make some cold war humor.

and to all my readers, feel free to comment.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

one hundred million years of solitude

because i have to take it to the extreme.

i've been trying to go out as much as possible lately. with anyone. to anywhere. to do anything.

ok. so "with anyone' is a stretch. but, as i told my analyst, i think that right now i would even be willing to date a republican. i'll try anything if it will make me forget the other. it isn't that i want to forget them. or that i even could, if i tried.

but...they left me no choice. i've reached and reached and reached out. i hope they come back, but i can't sit waiting. i don't want to go all miss havisham.

i want to not miss them. the problem is that no matter who i go out, i feel nothing. and i'm terrible at going through the motions. at least it feels terrible. i still try though. as george michael said, all we have to do now is take these lies and make them true. somehow.

maybe intense emotions are not the truth. maybe it is supposed to be boring. maybe.
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