Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Walking Home

I just finished reading War by Sebastian Junger and it seems like one of the main things he is trying to get across is that the guys in a unit put their life on the line for their fellow soldiers, that the life of the guy next to you is just as important as your own. The brotherhood that happens in combat can’t be recreated anywhere else and it’s because of this that readjustment into civilian life is so difficult. Survival depends a lot on the ability to compartmentalize. After one battle where three men were killed, a sergeant says, “I wantcha to mourn, and then I wantcha to get over it”.

One of the soldiers that Junger writes about, Brendan O'Byrne, says (on his own website) that 1000 years ago, even 200 years ago, after a war had ended, soldiers had to walk home. During that time they talked to each other, they had a running re-cap of everything they had been through that sort of helped them process everything. Now, he says, they can be in combat one day and in their hometown grocery store the next.

I don't know what my point is except that it was Memorial Day and I was thinking about these guys.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Back Alley Dork

Yesterday I was walking down a back alley way behind my house. In L.A., back alley ways are not like in the east coast, they are not narrow, dimly lit, rat infested scary crime scenes. They are usually paved roads, sometimes sandy or pebbly, with the gated backs of houses on either side, sometimes there is bouganvilla along the gates, or graffiti on the garage doors. They are still crime scenes, just sunny ones. A lot of times in a Quentin Tarantino or Ice T movie these back alleys are where cars speed away, or people sneak in to houses where 5 people are nodding out in the darkened and smoke-filled living-rooms.

Harry and I used to play handball back there, and once at dusk a car with a blaring alarm shot down the road going so fast, probably around 50, that we had to press ourselves up against the fence to stay out of the way. Anyway, yesterday I was walking the dogs when I looked over and there were two cops with their guns drawn and heads leaning gently against the side of the house, listening. I stopped, deer in headlights style, and one of the cops (a woman) (they were both wearing blue windbreakers, but she had a ponytail) waved at me. The thing about it was the wave wasn’t a get the hell out of here moron kind of wave, it was the kind of wave a dork walking down a middle school hallway gives to a person who is not yet a friend but hopefully will be one soon. It was so sweet and shy and friendly that I almost stepped towards her and said, “hey what’s goin on, can I play?” But then she waved again and I realized it really was a get the fuck out of here you colossal idiot wave.

Say no more.

I walked around the corner and back on to the main street where all was calm and quiet and a woman with wet hair and a steaming mug of coffee was getting into her car to go to work.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Voodoo, Music, History, and Not Posting

Hi Everyone,

Yes I’m still here. Are you tired of looking at that dog? So much time went by that I had to let more time pass trying to figure out how I would jump back on. I decided no more thinking about it, just write. So I’m going to start with a series of ideas I’ve had the past few weeks; maybe I’ll get to write a post or maybe they’ll just be part of a list.

-my Dad’s (yes, he’s still recovering) recent adventure as an extra in a movie shot in a fancy glass house on Mulholland.

-going to the movie Bridesmaids with 5 girlfriends and two sisters. We actually screamed with laughter, stood up, and talked to the screen throughout the movie. We were completely obnoxious and brain-dead and had so much fun.

-the voice of the afternoon radio person Mee-shell Norris. Every single day, when I’m sitting in heavy traffic and my fuse is already low, she has pasty cotton-mouth, in addition to over-enunciating everything. I have battled myself about whether or not I should even bring this up. It seems so trivial, but come on! This has been going on for years. It’s not a one-time happening. Can someone please get that girl a glass of water?

-New Orleans! My visit with Mo and Ryan. I think I have to write a full post on this one, but here are the highlights: flying on the plane with Ridley Scott on the same day that I finished writing my script (short film) and then opening my magazine to a page with an ad for “Ridley Scott’s Character Project: A Series of Short Films”, arriving at midnight, the next day every single place we went we saw a person with a bruise on their face (like we were in the middle of a David Lynch movie), driving through the 9th ward where some of the houses have been rebuilt like boats on stilts, visiting the place where Mo and Ryan are going to have their wedding and meeting 3 aerialist acrobats who said they could perform at the party, feeling like an old lady and singing a song about it (our theme song through my whole visit), going to a bar with Mo and Ryan and their friend Sunny Dawn and singing karaoke for the first time EVER. Drinking coffee and eating chocolate and turning into an insane crack head while having a tour of the historic district. Going to Boot Camp at the Athletic Club in a Ball Room with Chandeliers, eating sausage-shrimp-alligator cheesecake…How much I love Mo and Ryan.