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« July 2002 | Main | September 2002 »

August 30, 2002
face it

Litza told me that "questa sedia solo per me" (see picture number 2 of Edith, below) means "this chair just for me." Also, that's a lollipop in her hand in picture 1 (inscription: "my house," but you probably figured that one out). The sucker has been mostly licked, but does not appear to have been bitten. Anyway, a lollipop makes more sense than a french fry or a piece of straw (two other hypotheses).

Steve is on the cover of the Pittsburgh City Paper this week. He's moving to New York on Saturday, but his visage will remain in the Pittsburgh area until next Thursday. It will be seen on bar counters and café tables, school desks and sidewalks, discarded without thought. It will quietly haunt those who are sad he no longer lives among them.

Anyway, how strange it must be to be on the cover of a publication. People on covers are the norm for so many publications, but I rarely think about how the person on the cover feels about being on the cover. It means much more to them, probably, than it does to everyone else. Unless they are on covers all the time and are accustomed to that sort of not-quite-famous thing. I wonder, were I on the cover of something, whether I would start looking more familiar to people (in a "have we met before?" sense), or whether the separation between a cover with an unknown girl on it and real life would be great enough to remain anonymous.

File under DAILY. Posted at 12:00 AM

August 25, 2002
How I Spent My Saturday, By Beth

Chrissie and I left early to visit Becca in Baltimore. I am jealous of Becca's downtown apartment, particularly of the three tall windows in her living room area. The visit made me pine for the sort of comfortable domesticity she seems to be sharing with her boyfriend George. But I'm split regarding whether cohabitating is a good idea for me. I have at least six months to figure that out, but having a long time to think about something doesn't necessarily help me.

We went to a junk sale a few blocks from Becca's place. Most of the things there truly were junk, but I bought two photographs of someone named Edith. I can't translate the writing on the second one. There are no dates, but I think the photos were taken some time between 1938 and 1944. I wouldn't be surprised if they were slightly older or newer, though.

Edith is hot
Edith welcomes you to her adobe

After perusing the junk, we went to Cafe Hon, which was cute and friendly and served tasty food. Then we did some thrift shopping, and then I watched a video of Becca's television debut on a Beloit public access show from 2000 (I think), hosted by a guy who is really into Deloreans.

Chrissie drove us back to Media and I went to dinner with my parents. Then I tried to drive back to my apartment, but there was an accident on a road right near my abode. It's a twisty road and it was wet at the time, and people regularly do twice the 25 mph speed limit there, and accidents happen sometimes. I'm okay with that. But I really had to pee. I waited awhile. I called my parents to ask if they knew an alternate route to my apartment (I should have figured one out by now, but I'm a dork), but no one was answering any phones.

I sat and switched among radio stations impatiently. I watched cars turn around on the road and emergency vehicles drive by on the wrong side of the street. Ten or so minutes later, Mom called me back to tell me her own pee story: she had set off the alarm on my dad's car when she went to pee at a bookstore. Dad was returning movies and was taking awhile. Mom didn't know how to turn off the alarm, and Dad was in the movie store unaware; a crowd gathered and Mom had to find Dad to fix the situation. I told her, "I don't care, tell me if you know how to get to my apartment or I'm driving to work to pee." She didn't know. Dad didn't know.

So I drove the twenty minutes to work and tried to think about other things. Work was dark and kind of creepy, but I peed there and it was good. When I got back into my car post-piss, the phone was ringing. It was Dad. The road with the accident was closed in both directions, he told me, because of the accident and because it was flooded. So, since 10:30 p.m. is not the best time to try to figure out new routes to places, I drove to my parents' house and slept rather restlessly in my old bed. I dreamt about a talent show.

File under DAILY. Posted at 12:00 AM

August 12, 2002
time out

I spent a longish weekend at the beach with my folks in Ocean City, NJ. In between playing a very long game of miniature golf, walking a lot, getting knocked down by waves a few times, admiring humanity on the boardwalk in all its unabashed cellulite-ridden glory, getting ice cream all over myself, and drinking a lot of lemonade, I read. Mostly, I read newspapers. I also read my free monthly copy of Jane magazine. And I continued to reread Please Kill Me, which has been my standby book for a number of months now.

I really like the New York Times. I learned a lot this weekend. I think, too, that when I read things on paper, they stick better than when I read them on a screen. Normally I would not have remembered that the country whose leader is renaming a month after himself is called Turkmenistan. Normally, in a conversation about something that would lead me to reveal this strange tidbit, I would say, "I read this story about some country in the Far East, or maybe it was like the Middle East," and then I would try inarticulately to remember the details of the story and ultimately feel foolish for mentioning it, because this is just how poor my memory retention is. Anyway, this is the story.

Things I could talk about now, but lack the energy to explore at the moment:

  • A fascination with the fact that people of all shapes feel perfectly comfortable wearing so little clothes in the boardwalk setting
  • The memory retention issue and whether the internet is to blame, or whether I am just getting stupider as I age
  • The possibility of attempting to become a vegetarian (I think, if anything, I'll just become a sort-of vegetarian)
  • Life plans and how I should start making some
  • How, when reading about just how bad it is for people in some countries, it makes me think, "I have no reason to complain about anything, ever," but how, ultimately, I don't really believe that. Everyone's individual problems, even when compared to the outrageous injustices throughout the world, should be taken seriously, if only because each person is as intrinsically valuable as the next. Many of us may not be trying to live in a three-room apartment in Algiers with twenty-four other people with no running water, but everyone has his or her own private tragedies, and they affect us as deeply as any other. And besides, our conflicts (and how we respond to them) sort of define us. They keep the plots of our lives skidding along. But perhaps only someone who has never known constant discomfort and pain would say such things about problems, right? Ergh. I'm not being very clear about this, but it doesn't matter.

File under DAILY. Posted at 12:00 AM

August 07, 2002
[today was an uncharacteristically huge bore...]

Today was an uncharacteristically huge bore. But the week hasn't been terrible. Monday I cut out early to go to a baseball game with Dad. Sunday I spent at Knoebel's, an amusement park that reminds me of a European amusement park but also makes me think of 1960s America (because I was alive then, right, so I would know). It's a really nice park, though.

I've been twisting my hair a lot lately, which is something I do when I'm anxious. So I'm anxious, I guess. It's annoying, not being able to pinpoint the anxiety. Maybe I just need to think harder. I mean, I can think of all the things I'm not completely happy about in Life, but they just add up to a bunch of little things. It's almost like, I haven't had a lot of time to reflect lately, and it's thrown me off, because I'm used to having way too much time to reflect. So I'm out of touch with me. (As a result, I write crappy, boring updates.)

Tomorrow I am going to visit Greg (who just received an offer for a new job, finally) and we are going to see Laser Britney and Christina at the Public Museum. I have never been to a laser light show of any sort, so I expect to be thrilled.

I took a lot of personality quizzes today, because I had so much to do at work, but I just couldn't keep myself from learning about what flavor I am. Not really. I'm mocha, though. I'm also a movie star, and my "celebrity style" is Casual, similar to that of Meg Ryan, Sandra Bullock, and someone else.

File under DAILY. Posted at 12:00 AM