Wednesday, August 31, 2005


Am recruited by the Dean's office to help with the new student orientation. The Contessa and I assigned to table in lobby of building to direct new students. Attempt to complain. The Contessa becomes unpleasantly superior and says she Loves the start of school. Says she is fine helping out as long as she doesn't have to do anything with any of the Board Members. (She reminds me of graduation.) There are no snacks to be had and extremely bossy Student Services person keeps his eye on us to make sure that we don't stray from our posts. Same student services person Forces us to wear Orange t-shirts about five sizes too big. The Contessa claims that she looks like a House but student services is not impressed. Extremely humid and lobby inadequetly airconditioned. (But much, much better, presumably, than New Orleans for many reasons. This thought doesn't help self-pity--only serves to make feel worse about everything. i.e. have prevented self from linking Hurricane with Global Warming even though clearly related) Day spent giving directions to students (fine, mostly) and parents (trying). Spend long conversation in lady from Dallas who thinks that having an East Side and a West Side is Dumb. Why not just have the house numbers run all the way across the island? And why is Fifth avenue the dividing line? Who decided that? This enlightened creature has much to say about everything, including the asbestos dust she found in her daugher's room, the drug deal she saw in Washington Square Park, and how Julie (her daugher) is the artistic type (does she mean lesbian?) Many similar conversations. Jaw hurts. The contessa says she feels grimy. Student Services says that we can Keep our t-shirts.

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Fart Machine

Dave very interested in fart machine. Thinks it is Funny. Try to convey how tiring such a thing can become, even if highly amusing at the beginning. Say, It is like Dating somebody who is cute but not much else--you think that it can last forever but it can't. Dave pretends to take offense at this--Does that mean that you will lose interest in me soon? Say, No, firmly. So does mean that you think I'm Not very cute? (still joking) Say, no, I think you are Very Attractive. Dave says, Um, Does that mean you--blushes. Oh.

Monday, August 29, 2005

Becoming Animal

Unfortunate new addition to the office introduced at Staff Meeting. The Contessa and I ushered into the New Man's office and sat down in arm chairs opposite desk. The New Man produces doughnuts from the Doughnut Pub, two for each of us. Am very glad that Vice-Boss in rehab. Plan on eating one doughnut immediately and then sustaining self through meeting with small bites. Meeting promises to be trying. See that the New Man has an alarmingly long list in front of him. List has the header, Tasks. Squint eyes and make out first task on list, Organize C.V.drawer. C.V. drawer full to overflowing with unsolicited applications for the fellowships which the institute offers. Have often thought that if the C.V. drawer accidentally got ruined by water spilling on it, or a small, harmless fire was set, or if we had to move offices and the C.V.s got left behind, we would all be much better off. The New Man says, briskly, We've got to get those C.V.s under control. There are bound to be lots of people who are worthy of our consideration. The ones who aren't at least deserve a letter. Taps his pencil at the top of the paper. Who would like to volunteer-- Sentence interruped by very noisy fart coming from the Contessa. The Contessa gasps and says I Did Not do that. The New Man squints his eyes. Are you saying that you didn't just pass gas? The New Man can't keep up act and laughs, slapping legs. The contessa Red and I can tell very, very angry. The new man shows us the button for the fart machine, and, when the Contessa gets up, shows us where he hid the speaker under the Contessa's cushion. The Contessa says with hauteur, I guess this is the end of the Meeting. Later in the day, Romeo the copy machyine guy is startled by the fart noise coming out of the copy machine, but thinks it is funny when shown the appliance. Libby stops by and when she bends down to pick up a pen dropped by the New Man, the alarm is sounded. (Am ashamed to join in the New Man's mirth) Libby highly indignant, says, you are both Twelve. The New Man makes the noise in the office by himself, and when am called in for Just a Second, brace self for inevitable noise. Noise arrives in middle of what is becoming to be an interesting conversation about the Mass MOCA exhibit called Becoming Animal. Begin to hate machine. By end of day am very suprised that batteries haven't worn out .( When ask, weakly, the New Man says, I brought extras!) The Contessa and I reduced to nervous shells, waiting for the noise to erupt again. Had not thought that anything could be worse than the Vice-boss.

Friday, August 26, 2005

Bad Day

After working for two hours this morning on Mystery, attempt to reopen to add Idea and discover that no changes have been made. Feel weakness in middle of chest and top of head. Take shower and go to work, happening upon hubbub when get up out of the subway. Many, many cops and yellow tape. Also see large truck on the side of the road. Can't find the trouble until see white high heeled shoe (attached to leg) poking out from under tarp in middle of road. Am unable to eat for rest of day, which makes lightheaded. This, perhaps, contributes to heartfelt disagreement with Dave about whether or not we made plans with each other after work. Rather, I made plans thinking he would come with me and he made plans thinking I would come with him. Both of us become adamant about not being able to break plans with respective friends. Hang up phone, shaking, and wish could Hide.

Thursday, August 25, 2005

Going Away Party

Work day broken up by going away party for an associate dean named Harry, a good Friend who is in his early hundreds and who, in disregard for health codes and the changing times, continues to chain smoke in his office. Correction: until today he has smoked in his office. In the good old days when thought that smoking cigarettes was fun, would go to Harry's office with offerings of coffee and chocolate. In return, Harry shared his Marlboro Reds and we talked about Books, the history of the school (Harry a pack rat--kept boxes of vintage stationary in office, old programs, canvas bags, and was also guardian of silver Tiffany punch bowl decorated with school insignia). Harry also very helpful with romantic woes. Darling, he'd say, Have another Cigarette. Tell me about it. Would leave office feeling light headed and queasy, but better. At party, punch bowl on display. Serve self punch, which is the kind made by childhood piano teacher -- gingerale and sherbet -- but this punch, unlike piano teacher's, reeks of booze. The contessa sidles up to me, and says with eyes wide open. I think Libby got into the punch. Libby leaning against wall as though if she moved wall woudl fall down. Party catered by the good caterer. Eat shrimp, crab Puffs, very fresh vegetables including snap peas. Everyone in good mood, including me. Harry gives speech. Says he started 45 years ago and -- pulls fedora from behind his back -- wore this hat. Feel lump form in throat at thought of not having Harry around.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Fistgloves Anon

Dave claims that he is Scared of the fistgloves and wishes that I would zip up my bag so that they don't fall out.


Receive fistgloves in the mail last night. Look like large black balloons with nubs (to fit the thumbs). Feel ashamed of self but not sure why. Am slightly disappointed in the quality of the gloves. Feel was tricked into paying ten dollars plus shipping ($7) for something that must have cost two and a half cents to make. But also feel that if it helps swimming, will be worth it. At lunch break while getting ready to go to the pool, fistgloves fall out of bag. The Contessa shrieks, What are those? Explain her her the principle behind the fistgloves--that instead of using the hands like paddles, the Body is trained to cling to the water with what is provided (a fist.) The Contessa says, I think it looks kind of kinky. Become upset. SAy. Don't be like that. Like what? There isn't anything wrong with S& M. People pay thousands of dollars to be wrapped in latex. Do not think this deserves a response and leave office. At pool, follow instructions, filling balloon half with water then sqeezing in hand. Hand has alarming aspect, as though it has been amputated. Swim one lap. Rubber threatens to cut off circulation and hand gets very hot. Swim one more lap, hand feeling more like a stump with every stroke. Rip off fistgloves. Become aware that somebody is talking to me. It is the New Man, in the Fast lane. Says, Do you do TI too? Say No, in shocked voice. Think it is very presumptuous for New Man to ask me. Start to swim again. No longer care to know about the New Man's kinks. At end of swim realize that TI is short for Total Immersion.

Monday, August 22, 2005

International Cheese

Very trying day at work. All of a sudden the event schedule is due, the rooms need to be confirmed, and catering needs to be ordered for the first events of the fall. Peruse catering menu. Get to the section with hot foodsL: pigs in a blanket (usually burned at edges), mini quiche (traditionally frozen in the center) and chicken Satay sticks with peanut sauce (acceptable but not anything to look forward to.) Hot foods too expensive for our purposes, so turn to cheese and crudite page. Must choose between revolting Domestic cheese or (slightly less disgusting but much more expensive) International cheeses. Mind provides image and taste memory of the cubed Domestic cheeses, waxy, sweaty, and one unfortunate time when tried a bite of the cheddar, extremely musty. Thought of cheese fills me with extreme existential dread. Think about Time. The Contessa says, What is wrong? Say, I'm upset that am still here and that the school year is starting up again. We promise each other that by this time next year we will no longer be secretaries. We will not be ordering the cheese we will be eating it. (Existential dread grabs hold of soul again, forcing to admit that there is no difference between one thing and the other. Unless things, are much, much worse, like being Homeless. Think about other worse things. Very long list.) To try and pull self out of morbid thought, ask the Contessa about the Wedding. She says that the bride's husband is balding, pudgy and has fat fingers. She also made very rude comments about the Contessa's Life Style, insinuating that the Contessa ought to settle down. Which, really had nothing to do with how the Contessa behaved at the wedding. The Contessa did not trip on her cape, kiss anybody else at the wedding, or grab the husband's ass (Not that she would, ew, but just to make the point). She didn't even get drunk because the wedding was dry. Am disappointed in her and say so. She says, well what did you do this weeked. Say, Dave and I rented Movies. The Contessa says, Very exciting. Remember to tell contessa about Stash found in the vice-boss's office. The Contessa says, Hmm. Ask, What does Hmm mean? She says, Do you think she stole all the beauty products at her house in Amaganesett? Picture the Vice-Boss methodically stealing each thing (there were hundreds of bottles on that bathroom sink) For the first time, feel something like awe for the Vice-boss. Ask the Contessa if she wants to look behind the bookcase to see what is hidden there. She becomes very upset with me, says, of Course she does. Why didn't I say something before. We let ourselves into the office. My arms aren't skinny enough to get the object and the Contessa's are too short. We find a clothes hanger and after much sweaty and dusty work, we retrieve a bundle, which when shaken out (more dust) turns out to be my sweatshirt. In many, many other instances would be thrilled to discover lost clothes, but am not happy to see this particular sweatshirt which is a bilious sea green color with a too wide neck. Am thoroughly disappointed in day.

Friday, August 19, 2005

Textbook Adoption

Discover hitherto unexperienced awful task. New Man at office when I arrive several minutes late. I poke my head into his office to say hello. He glances at his watch. He says, I'm glad you're here. Hands me very long list of books. Am to request books for the courses the New Man is teaching in the fall. Books may be ordered online and feel that this will not be a difficult job at all. Optimisim misplaced. First off, am alarmed by the name that Barnes and Noble has given this process, Textbook Adoption. Before able to fill out form am required to hunt on difficult to use Barns and Noble website to find the ISBN numbers and publishers for books. Search function does not like to search for title and author at the same time, which makes for tedious searching when title is Selected Works. Halfway through the first class list, press the back button. Discover that this has erased everything have inputed. Curse silently. (Must never, ever, wish for company in the office again. Or use word input again. It has an extremely vulgar and yet clinical sound to it.) While filling out forms, mind fixes on object lodged at back of bookcase in the vice-boss's office. Am very upset that Dave's interruption with the dark chocolate and supsequent leaving of the office prevented me from finding out what the object was. Rub eye vigorously, which casues contact to fold itself up into eye. Spend frantic minutes until take self to bathroom. Think that it is not physically possible for the contact to get stuck behind the eyeball but am not positive. Look at eye in mirror and tell self not to panic. Contact slips back into view. Am througouly grossed out. When go back in, New Man still in office. Now mind has attributed powerful magic to hidden object. Sit back down at desk. Look up some more ISBNs Wish that Dave would deliver dark choclate again. Am very disappointed in self for wishing he hadn't visited yesterday. Call Dave. Dave not at the salon or on his cell phone. Try to come to the terms with the fact that he is either tired of me or dead.

Thursday, August 18, 2005

Wanting to be Caught

The Contessa gone today, so pull out pending file and look through its contents. Hear overly dramatic sighs escaping from body. Tell self firmly that one has a Job and is being paid for Job. There is no use feeling sorry for oneself. Sighs continue. First document on top of pending file is the contract for the copy machine. Am shocked at the monthly charge, possibly as much as a Jaguar costs (not sure about this). Contract clearly issued by the Devil's minions. Have clairvoyant flash that when sign contract it will catch fire and blood (mine) will splatter on the wall. Nothing of the sort happens. Work through pending file, sneaking glances at the phone and at the door. Would very much like the New Man or the Dean or even Libby even to come in. Hand hovers over phone, poised to dial Libby's extension. Get a hold of self. Immediately lose head and call Libby. Get her voice mail, in which she says she is on vacation. At the end of her message, she leaves her home phone number and her cell phone number In case of an Emergency. Type vehement email to Libby expalaining that nothing we do at the school could ever possibly devolve into an emergency and if there were an emergency at work (i.e. a stabbing or an anneurism) there would be very little she could do from afar. Erase email message. The phone continues its silent ways. Perhaps it is broken. Or the phone line is cut. Begin to construct fantasy in which the rest of Greenwich Village has been evacuated. Am the only person left. This train of thought no longer fun. Chew on pen. Am almost at bottom of pending file but want to save the rest of the work for tomorrow. What to do? Exiting idea presents itself. Let self into the vice-boss's office (know she isn't coming in) to look for other bottles of vanilla and/or stolen goods. Don't find anything in her filing cabinets, or in any of her desk drawers. With a flash, begin to look behind the books in the bookshelf. On the top shelf find two empties (small glass vanilla bottles, not the large size). Also discover hair clips, face cream from Bigelow, horse shampoo from Khiel's, honey made by the Bees of Nova Scotia. Stolen or not? Look on bottom shelf behind books and find three bras, a cashmere hat and matching scarf (from Marc Jacobs) see something lodged between the bookshelf and the wall. The phone rings. Stand up very quickly, flushing. Dave on the phone. Says, what are you doing? Reply, Nothing. Dave says, Are you busy? Say No. Says, Well I'm going to stop by and bring you a treat. This produces very dirty thought. Treat turns out to be a small box of dark chocolates decorated with edible gold. Show Dave what I've found. Ask, Do you think this is stuff she Stole? Dave give me a look, raising his eyebrows, asks rhetorically, "What do you think?"

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

The Big House

The Contessa speaking to the vice boss on the phone as I come in. She nods her head, and makes sympathetic noises, but when she sees me, she moves her index finger in a clockwise boy is she crazy motion. She says, Let me know if There is Anything I Can Do, then sets the phone down in the cradle like it is hot. Well, she says. Yes? The good news is that she doesn't have to go to the big house. As, What is the bad news? The same, the Contessa sighs. Says, I really wanted there to be a trial. Suspect that the Contessa is picturing a soap opera trial. To test suspicion, ask What would you wear to the trial? A suit, the Contessa replies quickly, blinking her lashes and looking up at the light. Do you own a suit? No, but I would buy one for the Occasion. Tomorrow, the Contessa leaving for the wedding in which she will wear the cape. She makes me swear on all that I hold dear that I will call her cell phone and tell her if I hear anything else about the Vice Boss. You know I can't stand to not know everything. Have uncomfortable realization that haven't spoken to the Contessa about Dave coming to Whidbey Island for Sigrid's wedding. Tell her. Oh, she says looking at me strangely. Are you dating? Say, Ye-es, stretching the word out to two syllables. The Contessa stares at me. Well, we will have to go on a double date. Can't tell if she is mad or not. Ask, what is going on with you and Justin? Is he still going with you to the wedding? She smiles. Not mad. Yes, this is a test. A) can we travel together and B) will he still like me after he sees me in an ill-fitting dress with a cape? Say, Well, you have to keep me posted. We seal the deal with iced teas, the Contessa's treat.

Tuesday, August 16, 2005


Order fistgloves online today to see if will improve swimming as promised in book. Am positive that they will.

List of Information About the V-B's Arrest

(Courtesy the Contessa's sources and reported to me by the Contessa herself, on the edge of her seat and sucking down a huge iced coffee.)

1. The v-b was actually arrested. (With handcuffs? Absolutely, the Contessa says, I'm almost positive.)
2. The v-b didn't have to Spend the Night (contrary to rumors)
3. At the precinct, discovered that she had a half empty bottle (the Large size from Costco) of vanilla in her purse.
4. Charge of public drunkeness added to shoplifting.
5. She is Not going to be fired. (Confirmed by Dean's secretary, Nathan.)
6. Instead of firing, the School will require her to go to a Residential Facility (for what? Alcoholism or Shoplifting? Both.)
7. She is to go immediatly and won't be back until the middle of September.

The Contessa shakes her head. The Rich get Richer? Not understanding, say, What do you Mean? (Mind provides image of the Vice-Boss receiving a check for her bad behavior.) What I mean is that she gets to have a whole month Off. Say, I don't think going to rehab is a vacation. Isn't it? Asks the Contessa rhetorically, Isn't it?

Monday, August 15, 2005

Bergdorf Goodman

Arrive at office dirctly from Airplane. Face greasy and eyes Red as promised. When walk in, the Contessa looks alarmed. Explain to her that have just gotten off of plan and feel loopy there is nothing to worry bout. Seh says, No, no, it isn't that at all. What is it? She takes a deep breath, the Vice-Boss got caught shop lifting at Bergdof Goodman. The Contessa says this with glee. Ask, What? How? The Contessa tells me. The New Man opens the door to his office, calls us in. The Contessa forced to hide her good humor when the New Man says, well, this office has been struck with tragedy. Wish to raise point that the Boss's and the Vice-Boss's situations objectively different. The boss did not choose to get cancer whereas the vice-boss stuffed the camisole down her pants out of her own free will. Head reeling with lack of sleep and high grade gossip. Ask, What is going to happen. The New Man says firmly, We don't know.

Sigrid's Wedding and So Forth

Sigrid's wedding actually very nice. During ceremony (performed by so called priestess, actually Sigrid's one time girlfriend at Smith, wearing an emerald gown), discover unexpected Lump in throat and am glad to be wearing sunglasses (very Hot and sunny day for Whidbey Island, glare very bright off of sound) to cover up tears. Sigrid and new husband to go to India despite rock solid advice against such a plan as this is the Monsoon season. (Sigrid, as usual, contrary and says that she's always wanted to see a Monsoon. Grandmother and Sigrid's voices raised over this point, ending with the grandmother saying she won't be surpised if Sigrid gets swept away and Sigrid replying with vehemence, Well, she hopes she does. But everyone on best behavior during wedding.) Reception and dancing in tent set up on property. We are unmolested by Fred's helicopter but one guest leaves by Sea Plane. Take Dave down to the water to watch the plane take off, actually into the sunset. Extremely Romantic. Arrive back to wedding party to find that brother of the groom's hand has swelled up to the size of a canteloupe because of a Bite suffered at the mouth of his cat (he and wife travel with cat(s?) because they can't bear to leave them at home. his wife explains cats get Nervous when traveling. Is this man my brother in law or not? Hope no.) Brother-in-law's brother whisked off by ambulane and party continues without him. Much Champagne drunk and head muzzy in the morning. Spend day showing Dave around. Make him jump into the sound and swim with me. Say, See, it isn't cold at all. Dave turns an alarming shade of blue and we get out of the water. (Thank god.) Depart from Seattle airport last night on the Red Eye. Plane delayed for two and a half hours (the fanciful part of the mind provides reason of the same hundred year old man vomiting in airplane Again, but rational brain knows this is highly unlikely.) Dave able to book seats on same plane as me. When we check in, have panic that maybe David is not Fun to Travel With. (Recall trip taken in extreme youth when told travelmate with shocking honesty, You need to stop Freaking Out. Remember hysteria creeping into voice, undermining point.) But Dave says, Let's go shopping. Discover signs for the Pacific Marketplace on the other side of the security lines and construct elaborate fantasies about what will find. Pacific Market turns out to be a food court and the usual news stand, travel store, and Gifts from Seattle type of shops. After several glasses of wine, (Dave very funny about Cat Bite) go to wait at gate. Gate situated in front of astonishingly irritating contraption, a large machine encased in glass, a ball rolls down a ramp, causing a lever to rise up, which strikes a Tambourine, plucks a miniature banjo, causes a dog to run up a ramp and sniff something, touching his nose to a button that sounds the kind of chimes that are meant to be soothing but that are assuredly not. Glass does nothing to muffle sounds. Am afraid that this contraption is Art. Noises cause a lesion on mood but am determined to be Cheerful. Do not want Dave to think that am Bad to Travel With.

Sunday, August 14, 2005

Lord of the Rings

More about Sigrid's wedding and Dave etc. later, but would like to note a disturbing interest in Lord of the Rings, Star Trek, and Star Wars among the liberal bloggers I admire. (Why?)

Friday, August 12, 2005


Last night, Sigrid stays with us and her betrothed stays with his family at the house they are renting up the road. Arrangements with the airline and Dave will arrive today at eleven o'clock. Last night though feel a bit melancholy at the thought of losing sister. Sigrid, howeer in extremely high spirits and she suggests a game of Celerity as a family. She explains the rules (one of her favorite things to do.) Celebrity similar to charades in that each person submits names of clebrities on slips of paper and the group is divided into to teams. In round one, the person drawing the slips of paper out can use as many words as he wants (witnout saying the actual name) to explain who he has drawn. The point is to get one's team to correctly guess as many celebrities as possible in a minute. Round is just the same except that the reader may only use one word to describe the celebrity (cauasing the reader to say the word oer and oer again in different tones, bulgin g eyes, etc.) and Round three forbids the use of words, which turns the game into a version of charades. In the portion of the game in which one only says one word, the Grandmother says Anklet for Martha Stewart. Which causes Sigrid and me (who are on the Grandmother's team) to gasp for breath laughing.

Thursday, August 11, 2005


Sigrid gets in on the conversation about Dave and it is determined that he Has to Come. Sigrid presents the self-serving argument that he Has to Come to help with the hair. Twere planning to do their own hair, but that was when everyone was supposed to dress creatively. Now that things were more Traditional, it would be nice to have a hair stylist who knew how to do something other than Mullets and Perms (this is, presumably, all the local hair cutters are able to do). The Grandmother offers air miles for the cause. Feel very excited. Fingers fly on telephone keypad. Phone rings and the receptionist answers. Dave in the middle of cutting hair of and am asked to Please Hold. (While on phone, Discover white Hair on big toe. Have had a sprinkling of white hairs on head since eighteen, but up to now, tops of feet unscathed by time. Have never thought white hairs on feet possible until now. Yank out Hair and examine closely to make sure that it is white and not just bleached from the sun. It is white.) Dave gets on phone. Stifle urge to tell him about white hair. Instead, present plan for Dave to fly out on Friday and back on Sunday with me. In description of plan get hung up on the details of the miles and forget to emphasize the most important part--that I want Dave to come. He is confused. I slow down and explain things all over again. Oh, he says. Do not know what Oh means but do not care for it. Reconsider plan. Dave still quiet on the other end of phone. Into silence, pour story about hair on tow (making self even more undesireable.) Dave says, I'd love to come. I'll rearrange some--conversation is interrupted by the sound of the helecipter. Sound of helicopter made worse by the simulganeous yelling of Sigrid and Grandmother. Put hand over receiver so that Dave not scared away by the racket. Get back on Phone. Decide to wait to tell Dave about his hair styling duties later, even though know that will wake up in the middle of the night in a cold sweat to worry about omission. Push this thought aside. Dave says he has to go back to his Lady. Endearments exchanged.

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

The Helicopter

Sigrid's wedding is Saturday but am determined not to let this ruin my vacation. Early this morning, take Kayak out and paddle around under the overcast skies. Contemplate Life. As paddling, the skies clear. Life problems seem very small and manageable. Contemplative mood broken by the noise of helicopter passing very low overhead. Watch helicopter land on dock next door. Put away Kayak and march up to the house. Grandmother in the kitchen. Says she is going to buy a Gun. She is going to buy a Gun and shoot that (expletive) Helicopter. If the (expletive) Helicopter Ruins Sigrid's wedding, she is going to have Fred's (the next door neighbor's) hide. Grandmother says, He turned forty and decided he needed a porsche, a helicopter and a girlfriend. He is a Pig. Grandmother fixes me with a stare, very like Sigrid's (As the Contessa says, She didn't lick it off the grass,) she says, Enough about Fred. I will Deal with him later (this sounds very sinister, as she intended) what about You? Reply, What about Me? She says, there is something Different about you, what is it? Tell her about Dave. She nods. Says, Well, he has to come to the wedding. Am thrilled at the prospect, but world has tipped--had gotten myself excited about Pining Away for a week.

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Sigrid's Wedding

Am in Whidby Island and feel very far away from New York. Feeling accentuated by extremely ancient and slow internet connection. At last minute, Sigrid decides that all of the wedding party is to wear suits (the men) and dresses (the women). Her friend Bobby (a woman) is not allowed to wear the men's tuxedo she bought and is now being difficult about it. Arrive at my Grandmother's house in the middle of Sigrid having an impresssive fit about bobby's tuxedo. Mother attempts to calm Sigrid down, reminding her that it was she who said we were to be creative. I never said anything like that, Sigrid tugs at her hair. Say hello to Sigrid. Do not correct her as she has a murderous look in her eye. Would like to remind her that to be a high strung bride is highly unoriginal, but don't. Still have sick feeling about Dave, but it is the good sick feeling like the world is going to end, but in a pleasant way. The night before leave New York, sit down with Dave at apartment and attempt to have convesation about Relationship. We agree to See How it Goes. This sober talk accompanied by not being able to Keep Hands off Each Other. On airplane ride to Seattle (massively delayed when one of two very aged men who, originally think are Longtime Companians but who, further experience reveals, are father and son, the father of whom is in the bathroom when the plane is attempting to take off and who the stewardess discovers in a bad way, and about whom the pilot explains as we drive back to the gate that the Aft lavatory is Extremely Soiled. Battle opposite feelings of wanting to see just how bad it is, and smelling the situation, which makes me want to get off plane too.) After excitement, spend the rest of time on plane fantasizing about new life with Dave. Think that we will pick out China very Soon. Now Sigrid is crying. Now, in kitchen of grandmother's house, think that elopiing a much better option.

Friday, August 05, 2005

Movie, Day 2 (yesterday)

Yesterday morning, after discovering proximity to Dave, also discover that neither he nor I have on clothes. Become alarmed. Attempt to recreate end of evening to discern how badly have misbehaved. Head hurts. Get out of bed and put on clothes strewn about the room. Mind provides images of night before: Weaving down sidewalk, the buying of seltzer water and guzzling of same on street. Look in fridge to see if any seltzer left. No. But find smoked cigarette stubbed out in teacup on kitchen counter. Both Dave and quit smoking many years before, but when got home last night, remember insisting with vehemence that need ciggie (the diminuitive causes less guilt). Hunt ensues. Search highly unlikely places, the medicine cabinet, behind books in bookshelf, in Refrigerator. In overcoat, Dave finds ancient Gauloises. Both of us have no trouble remembering how to smoke (like bicycle). We both claim to love smoking. Can't think why we ever gave it up. Humor turns black. Global Warming is going to cause us to die of heatstroke or starvation anyway. With that sort of Devil may care attitude, say to Dave, (in morning and now, blush at boldness) Usually the cigarette comes after the other thing. Clothes removed, etc. The night recreated, brace self for remorse. None comes. Dave stirs in bed. Opens eyes and says, Hi. Whisper, I've got to go to the movie, Go back to sleep. (It is five thirty in the morning & call time is at 6.) Walking over to cafe for Day Three of filming (also known as Sitting Around) am confused in what seems to be a good way. But extremely nauseaus. Am firm about one thing: resolve to Never Drink Again. See Justin the producer. He says, Oh good, you look Tough this morning. Have begun to realize Tough a euphamism.

Thursday, August 04, 2005

Movie, Day 1 (continued)

New friend the leg model (discover her name is Alex) is a very bad influence. Last night after the shoot (Which went on until eight at night--no opportunity to say lines in front of camera and no leg sex scene. Discover shared interest in Books. Am ashamed and yet relieved when conversation very quickly turns from books to celebrities. Continues all days, devolving into game of Roseanne Barr or Oprah Winfrey?, Ozzy Ozbourne or Sharon Osbourne?, Clay Aiken or Reuben?, etc.) we leave to go gallery opening of friend of Alex. Friend constructs statues out of gum wrappers. Am more inteterested in food table, which features shrimp cheviche. Other gallery goers behave like hyenas and, after much work, am only able to secure four shrimp and three crackers with Manchego cheese. This (though don't know it yet) will constitute entire dinner. Foolishly drink two glasses of white wine very quickly. Say to Alex, I've got to go home. She forbids me from leaving. Forcibly holds my mouth open and pours down an half bottle of wine (choose to forget own cupability). Alex says, you are coming to the next place. The next place a secret lounge whose entrance is dumpling shop in Chinatown. Bar extremely dark, lit only by candles and dim sconces. Very flattering light. In alcoholic haze, borrow Alex's cell phone and call Dave. Arrives in what feels like seconds. Joins us at table. Martinis follow soon after. Feel that we are all extremely glamorous and beautiful. Also, become very, very witty. Tell many jokes and the drinks keep coming. Begin contest to see who can balance spoon on nose the longest. Alex disturbingly good. This morning, wake up next to Dave.

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Movie, Day 1

Arrive at set at five in the morning. No real coffee is to be had at the craft table, only percolator coffee available. Pour self coffee, which is extremely nasty, even with four sugars. (or because of four sugars?) Forgot to bring book, so look around to see if can make Friend for the day. Before have selected somebody to talk to, young man asks me, What is your name? Tell him, Fritz, what is yours? My name is Dan, but my friends call me Zach. Wonder why, but barely, and am afraid he is going to tell me. Instead, recites his resume at length, studied acting in college, has been in Law and Order (of course), and in several movies in which he played a high school student (even though he can't be a day under twenty eight), and once was in a crowd scene in the Sopranos where he was supposed to play a DJ, but didn't. This is the boiled down version, the other, much, much longer. Young man says, well, I'm going to go get myself a banana do you want one? Mouth long out of practice, so Shake head no. Notice tall blonde woman sitting and meditating in corner, quietly. Would like to talk to her (perhaps she read Jonathan Franzen's article about global warming and how it and his inability to connect with women is his mother's fault, more or less? Although have noticed in the past that while Like people who do yoga, am not always able to have sustained conversations with same.) But the meditating woman has her eyes closed, so am not going to interrupt. Find self walking across room (the side of the cafe not taken up with lighting equipment)and sit down next to woman. She opens her eyes. Asks, Is it time yet? Time for what? She closes her eyes again. Time for my scene. What are you playing? I ask. I, she opens her eyes, am the Leg model. Am unfamiliar with this term and say so. She explains, The producers think that the lead, very famous, actress has Fat Ankles so I am going to play her legs in the sex scene. What sex scene? The one in the bathroom of the cafe. (my line, Is anybody in there? suddenly becomes much more interesting. Have long train of thought about Context. Come to very unoriginal conclusion that Context is everything.)Ask if she knows who the very famous actress is. Well, I'm not supposed to say, she looks around the room, but you'll find out anyway. Her first name rhymes with Kenneth.

Tuesday, August 02, 2005


The New Man comes in today. Says he has some things to Catch Up on today and tomorrow. The Contessa says, looking at me, You have your Root Canal tomorrow, don't you? Nod. Am positive will be found out in lie. New Man frowns, looking very concerened, asks, Are you in a lot of pain? Nod. He says, well, maybe you should go home and take some Advil. Agree. Go to pool. Though have been swimming, Roll very stubborn. Feel that muscles all around and underneath Roll have developed but that Roll very happy where it is. Tell self that must Cut Out wine. Get in pool. Swim using Total Immersion exercises. Am very slow when doing exercises, which is nice in a way. Don't feel the need to Compete with lane-mates. To the contrary. Feel protective of fellow swimmers. Dawns on me that am not only in slow lane, am in Slow lane. Figure this out when young man asks me what time it is. Say, I think that clock on the wall is right. (Point at clock.) Young man clearly not satisfied with this answer. Tell him the time. (Also in lane, Woman who floats on back and Woman who stays on deep end and stays under water for alarming amounts of time.) Total Immersion exercises do not make one look especially graceful and feel not unlike neighbors.

Monday, August 01, 2005


Dave calls to invite me to drinks on Saturday night. Dress up in tailored white shirt purchased in Paris ages ago. Think of shirt as Lucky Shirt. Think the white sets off tan nicely. Roll up sleeves to above elbows. Take a very long time arranging hair and trying on different belts, shoes and pants. Finally settle on dark cotton pants and brown leather shoes (the Weather indicates wearing flip flops, but do not like to have bare feet able to be touched by street.) Take subway to Lower East Side. Careful toilet undone by humidity. Ourside of bar, extremely young girl says to her companion, in tone of disgust, Let's not going in go in there, it's just a Dark wine bar. That exact description is what I look for in a bar. Meet Dave. We order wine. Talk about Edith Wharton (Dave halfway through graduate English program before dropped out to learn how to Cut Hair.) As wine gets drunk, we make increasingly clever points about the parallels between New York then and now. Dave says, I like her much better than Henry James, he stops talking. What? I ask. He nods with his head. See extremely plain looking young woman with limp brown hair, wearing horn rimmed glasses, sitting at table with five other women. Dave whispers, That is Sofia Coppola. Am very glad we were talking about Books instead of Us Weekly. Have idea (no idea from where) that Sofia Coppola is somebody who Reads. Begin fantasy about being asked to be in her next movie. Dave and I order another bottle of wine. (Fantasy of being in Coppola movie very well developed, will be filmed in Cuba and Paris. Am offered part of the second best friend to the hero.) Finally draw self away from conversatin to go go to bathroom. Walk past Sofia's table, keeping head held high and back straight. On way back from bathroom, am stopped by one of the party. Say, yes? Think, Very, very rarely do fantasies turn out like this! Incline head to hear proposal better. Sofia says, We're done with our plates if you want to take them. Say, stiffly, I'll get your waitress for you. (Later, think up much, much better responses.) March back to own table. Dave thinks this is very funny. Makes me re-enact the the scene several times. Fail to see the humor in it and say so. As evening progresses, however, find Funny Bone.


On Friday, go with Dave to Brighton Beach. Stop on Brighton Avenue to purchase poppy rolls--rolls look like have ground up bits of chocolate inside and am very excited. Walk down to beach, which is perfect temperature. Sand clean other than pieces of glass. Dave a good friend, i.e. does not require me to play Frisbee or similar, instead, allows us spread out blanket, Read, and Swim when Get too Hot. Dave has lost weight and gained muscle tell him so. He says, Let's go swimming. Water temperature refreshing without being cold. Use Total Immersion techniques in ocean. Feel like Fish. Emerge from water and talk with Dave about movie. Dave knows about movie, because cuts the Director's hair. Director turns out to be somebody somewhat famous and there is one very famous actress and two semi famous actors. Feel silly that hadn't figured this out on own, but blame the Contessa. Had thought that the movie very small and unimportant becuase own portion of script very bad. Even though when think about it, own conversation with coffee person very ruduimentary, limited to Yes, Please or No, Thank you, Have a Nice Day which would make for exeedingly dull script. But still have doubts about script. Dave and I unwrap our rolls. What thought was chocolate is chopped up raisins. Try not to be disappointed. Dave and I talk about the large Russian ladies, the pigeons (haven't ever seen pigeons on a beach before and brain causes me to look at pigeons and think, What strange Seagulls!), we also talk about whether or not Dave should cut my hair before the movie. Dave thinks yes. Firmly decline. Go swimming again and have very brief moment of extreme dismay when find self with plastic shoppingn bag wrapped around forearm. Soak in the sun and feel body producing prodigious amounts of Vitamin D. Am very happy.