13 Jul

This is why I don’t keep blogs.  Because I never update them!   I’m not feeling focused right now, so I’m bulleting:

1. Last week, I found a chain saw in my street.  Rather, it was like the skeleton of a chain saw; no chain and no colored exterior, so it was basically a very heavy barbed sword.  My friend and I moved it out of the street onto the sidewalk, so no one would run over it, and then we realized it was probably a bad idea to get our fingerprints on it.

2. Today, I failed the motorcycle skills test (which is required to drive a vespa).  If I was still a working journalist, I would investigate whether the California DMV gets kickbacks from those $250- $350 motorcycle safety courses that the CA DMV recommends you take, because one is exempted from taking the road test if they complete a safety course and the California motorcycle skills test is, I would approximate, 80% impossible.  I’m honestly not being bitter about it–I don’t think you could pass that test on a unicycle.  The only plus side is that the guy administering the test was super-rude, and I called him out on it, and he actually seemed a little embarrassed and was immediately more polite.

3. I’m dating someone who makes me laugh and I love the smell of his pheromones.  I’m 90% positive he doesn’t wear cologne, but I love his smell.

4. I saw some really bad improv last week where, when the group was stumped, they would all chant the last word that the last person said in increasingly loud voices.  For example, if their scene was at the beach and “Joe” said that he wanted to go hunt for octopus because his tentacle collection needed updating, if no one knew how to respond, they’d start shouting “tentacles… Tentacles… TENTACLES… TENTACLES!… TENTACLES!!!”  It sucked.  I’ve been finding improv increasingly unsatisfying lately; I feel that overwhelmingly, improv is funny because you know the comedians are working without a script, but it’s not actually funny.  If the material you’re watching had been scripted, you’d leave.

5. For the past three years, everyone has been telling me that I had to watch Weeds because I would love it.  I noticed a few weeks ago that Netflix recommended it for me based on my viewing history… and I’m four seasons deep now and I have to limit myself to watching one episode a day, because otherwise I’d get nothing done.  Also, I realized in the second season that I had seen Hunter Parrish in Spring Awakening in December 2008. I knew he was on Weeds at the time but didn’t have much interest in the show then.  Anyway, it’s a great, totally escapist show.


Make it Upscale

5 Jul

Since almost everyone likes Q&A’s, I’m going to make one out of my first blog post.

Question: Who are you?

Answer: I’m a writer and recent college graduate living in West Hollywood.  I just moved here from New York.

Question: Why are you blogging?

Answer: It’s funny–I’m actually not a huge fan of blogs.  In a way, I think blogs ruined journalism and made lots and lots of people (like me) underemployed.  But I’m on my own this summer as a full-fledged grown-up in a new city and I have lots of say, so here we are.

Question: Why is this blog anonymous?

Answer: Because I have a more formal writing career and I don’t want to have to censor what I say here in any form.  Also, I want to be able to write about how much I hate the publishing industry sometimes, my adventures in online dating, the ironic things I do when I get fucked up, how dangerous it is to ride a scooter in Los Angeles (despite that I tell my mother how especially safe it is to ride a scooter in LA), and all the stupid things I say and do everyday. Maybe I’ll even write about my childhood.  Brace yourselves.

Question: Why can’t I post a comment?

Answer: I was a little conflicted about this one, but ultimately, I have a really tough time dealing with all the nastiness on the internet.  I think publications need to be held accountable for their comments and my solution is simply to not have them.  Sorry.

Question: Will this blog be funny?

Answer: Fuck yes!

Question: Why “Make it Upscale?”

Answer: In 2009, the author Barbara Ehrenreich gave the commencement address for the journalism school at UC-Berkeley.  She talked about how journalists are part of the working class now; we should plan to have back-up careers to support the work that we want to be doing.  And she tells this story about going out to lunch with an editor at Esquire that always stuck with me:

Then came the fat times, in the ’90s, which I realize now were an anomaly in the history of journalism. The industry was booming; editors would take me out for three-course lunches in Manhattan. I’ll never forget one of those lunches: It was with the top editor of Esquire, and I was trying to pitch him a story on poverty. He looked increasingly bored as we got through the field greens with goat cheese, the tuna carpaccio and so forth – until we finally got to the death-by-chocolate dessert, and he finally said, “OK, do your thing on poverty – but make it upscale.”

This always stuck with me.  I love this story, I love the editor’s cluelessness–I love what they ate! that sounds like my dream lunch–and I love how I can apply it to my life.

I’m 21, I’m living in an unfamiliar city, I’m working with a fraction of the income that I had two years ago, I’m trying to break into the entertainment industry as a screenwriter/ TV writer (and eventually producer/creator) and it’s a notoriously difficult industry to try to break into.   But I’m trying to make it upscale and, if nothing else, I think that’s what this summer is about.