Monthly Archives: October 2003

heidi

every so often i get to see my heidi. she flies around the world on tour with ani difranco and makes me aware of approaching concert dates in my area and in areas where my sisters live. i keep this date in my head and when i see her at the merchandise table hauling boxes or smiling at someone i feel a rush and feel lucky that she is in my life.
i had known about the concert date on 10/29 for months now. it was in long beach and i didn’t know how i’d get there. this morning there was a window of a few hours where i wasn’t thinking about it. my morning music selection was the cure’s plainsong though and as soon as i played this subconciously chosen cassette in my car at a stop light, it came to the forefront “tomorrow i see heidi!” and i had the perfect person to accompany me, elinor, recently introduced to ani and just the right energy for the event. but, by midday, elinor told me she couldn’t go and then tsafi needed the car and i got depressed. my heidi in california and not one hug? unfathomable.. i let it sit for an hour and then i made the call…
“heidi…it’s chere… i can’t come…” and plans without possibilities surfaced and faded and we were left in apologetic silence. i got off the phone and cried. i miss her so much and it hurts when she’s so close yet so far. a few hours passed and she called back, her voice mission-like. she found a solution. “you’ll come tonight instead of tomorrow night and my friend, brett, will pick you up from your apt at 7pm! he lives 10 minutes from your place!” and a surge of excitement welled up and sprung a leak of joy. cuz when heidi makes something happen in theory, it comes to fruition. and so it was time to go. my second night driving in pitch dark home from burbank. i got hoom with 10 minutes to dress, black and white checkerboard tights, black dress, black cape, patent leather boots, washed my face, ran pomade through my hair, twisting it up into two fast ponytails, glitter on the eyes, on the lips and i was golden. skipping down stairs to meet brett. tattoos and a mohawk and a soft voice, car full of toys, beeker from the muppets, cookie monster, a plastic doll of a pregnant white trash girl. we were chatterbox strangers and after a good long while of what i thought was a journey to long beach (a 30 mile trip) i found out we were half way to SANTA BARBARA! (2 hours!) i laughed silly at this evening-altering non-information-from-heidi and i called tsafi to tell him i’d be home after midnight surely. brett told me of his boyfriend, joe, who is “half jewish, half irish”. and who’s favorite color is yellow. brett loves tori amos and tool and is liking more color in his life. he told me about a cool gathering spot near my house that we can walk to for halloween called ‘the abbey’ and how everyone in the area gets creative on halloween… he is going to dress up like roy…from seigfried and roy fame…tiger, blood and all!

weekend on the east coast / danny’s wedding

at dawn, last sunday, i wrote danny a letter that was two-decades in the making. it was the dawn of his wedding day. when i go through life changes it is surreal but when jen or danny go through their life changes, my sentimentality bleeds through, time shifts for me, and i can’t help but pour it all over them, my oldest childhood friends.

for example, when i left america for israel, it was so surreal that i could not write not one letter (except to my sister, diana) but at my going away party, i received such amazing letters, poetry and love. i felt it most from danny and it was his music and words that sustained me when i was abroad. his brother, andrew, summed it up in his best man speech at his wedding. danny “is the kind of person you can call at 3am and talk to him about everything.” and so the weekend revolved around the permanent figures in my life… my family and my best friend.

i stepped off the bus in milford, pennsylvania and annoyed the bus driver as i proceeded to take my suitcase out from under the bus, having not heard him mutter,”i’ll get it.” i dragged that beast over freshly painted parking spaces and over the curb to the hotel and to my surprise not only were danny & sarah there in the lobby, but his parents were there, his brother and his wife. sarah and i attacked each other with hugs. “OOOOH! MY FAVORITE COUPLE!!” i yelped as i hugged them. everyone looked so tired but it was a great feeling to see them all together the night before what promised to be a beautiful event.

danny handed me the bag with the video camera, explaining to me various technical things. “i know! i know! i read the manual online.” i assured him i’d make the best wedding video known in the faerie kingdom. satisfied, he handed me over to the front desk to get settled in and registered. sarah, in the meantime, showed me these amazing wings that she made for me. on each wing over the shoulder was written “VIDEO” “FAIRY”. it was red and black and all kinds of autumn colors. a creation of envy and an extension of sarah so creative and beautiful i instantly loved it. we went to the bathroom jumping and yipyipyipping about her getting married tomorrow! spinning the fae energy, inquiring of mental awareness. the night before one’s wedding is always surreal. the wings fit perfectly and so we went hopping back to the lobby for goodnight hugs and morning plans.

wide eyes and “TOMORROW!” and i checked in to a room with a king-sized bed and crisp, tucked-in sheets so stiff that i had to lift up the mattress to prepare my sleeping quarters just so, life as an insect burrowed in warm leaves. the first thing i felt was spoiled. the second thing i felt was hyper and so i jumped on the bed with my boots on and ran down the hall with a bucket, filling it to overflowing with ice that i had absolutely no use for. the bathroom had an eerie red nightlight that got me to thinking how many people got murdered in this exact room. it must’ve happened at least once. or a suicide… “i’m going to end it all… in MILFORD, PA!” no less.

these thoughts filled me with a curious panic and before it escalated i flipped on all the lights and then jumped on the couch, turning over the cushions in search of stories or at least laundry change and that’s when i got hot. the switch for the air conditioning was hidden behind thick curtains. i peeled one side of the curtain back slowly and that’s when i saw the full moon and it’s reflection on the lake below. i quickly switched off some lights and gathered the curtains around my face to feel nothing between me and the reflection. and that’s when danny’s letter began… “how surreal to mark time by events such as these….” but i didn’t run to write it. i let it sit til morning. there was more solitary mayhem surely in store for me. i tried to find free porn to giggle to on the tv but to no avail…so i took a bath.

days of travel faded away and the tub filled up with pink hair dye staining my cuticles. i used up all the free samples left tubside and took my time shaving my legs and laying out my outfit for the next day… a red and black glitter dress, black boots, a black boa stole, and of course, the wings. i fiddled with the camera, put the wings on and off…and on again, adjusting the straps, testing their jump factor and resilience. and then it was time for sleep…or so i thought….

i watched the moon until my eyes burned and still could not sleep. i turned on the tv again and watched the life story of jane mansfield. her story kept me awake for 3 more hours as i had lucid dreams about owning a heart-shaped pool like she had. i finally decided to take drastic measures and deprive myself of sight and sound. ear plugs went in, lights were turned off, eye mask put on and then i burrowed into the sheets so starchy that upon waking my skin felt properly exfoliated and new. when i woke i was so proud that i slept…that is, until i read the alarm clock… 5am… and i punched a pillow. 3 hours of sleep in 2 days… how is this possible? and what was worse, i was wide-awake…

mischief turned to excitement like the first day of school, the new status of being in a new grade, the worry if the day would go right (would i shoot a good video for them?) and will i look ok (was my black boa and pink hair too much?). the worry was 2nd to the excitement and upon checking if the moon was still there (yes it was, just across the sky to where i couldn’t see without effort) i began to analyze this excited feeling… it wasn’t MY wedding day, it was danny’s…but that’s how soul connections are, i suppose. his happiness is my happiness… and that first day of school feeling kept coming, somthing about the autumn scenery at dawn when we rode the school bus together, and i was anchored to a pen and hotel stationary pouring out how proud i am of him, how he seizes his happiness, and waht a great person he is and how wonderful his chosen bride, their mutual creativity, their serene quirky lifestyle. the hotel stationary was too impersonal to i later tore pages from this journal and rewrote it during cocktail hour when i should have been mingling. i had a tightness in my throat not just for the wedding but for how much older i feel. i put the draft away and waited for 7am, when the breakfast hour began.

the elevator going down stopped one floor below me and i wasn’t surprised when the door’s opened and danny’s father got on. we had breakfast together. he told me how he met his wife at a dance in manhattan, not far from where my parents married actually. he says he is happily married. he told me how he and his wife think sarah and i have similarities and i felt a bit squeamish. “we’re both just hyper and into faeries is all” i offerred, dismissing the notion and giving my take on how perfect she is for danny. “he’s my brother.” i said flatly, “he was always meant to be my brother” and he delved into that magnified time when, in 8th grade, we called ourselves ‘boyfriend & girlfriend’ when we never so much as kissed. “yeah, the closest i got to your son the boyfriend was riding bitch on his dirtbike” and we laughed. “that was the summer he bought you that locket and wood carving of your names.” this man had a good memory. it was the family’s ongoing joke that until we were both married we had a 1% chance of getting together and upon the procession of the wedding party that day, i had a great brattish surge as i greeted his dad, video camera in hand, and the other in front of the camera in a perfect zero. “NOW…it’s zero percent!” i said while filming.

he toasted a few slices of bread for barbara and drank two cups of coffee as we talked more about my friendship with danny. “i knew you were close when i heard you were calling each other to and from israel.” he said. we talked about tsafi and about israelis and politics and about marraige and about neighbors and our families… and then it was time to dress and head to t he inn. i repacked my bags and was early to leave. sure enough, in the elevator, michael got on again, this time on an errand to the car. i put my stuff in the car. barbara soom came down and we were on the way. they’d parked in a handicapped zone and i worried over her health. she walks with a limp now… michael has lost his hair. yes, our parents are getting older now.

the car pulled up to the cliff park inn and there, at the edge of the golf course were a VERY handsome couple being photographed. video pixie kicked in front and center and i went to work. sarah wore a renaissance dress with a tiara and danny looked perfect in his tux with an orange carnation. i filmed the story of hte progression of the day. i filmed every precious creation sarah made, her pixie party favors handmade with acorns for hats and each one individual and spritely. the waiters hit on me. the place was haunted. i kept losing track of where i lay my wine glass. i couldn’t look danny in the eye. i sat in his chair in the sun and transcribed my letter, sealing it and writing ‘for danny on his wedding day’.

bridesmaids arrived all dressed in wine-colored gowns, danny’s roommates past and present arrived. if it wasn’t art in my frame, it went by unnoticed… at least until the ceremony. i remained speechless until after the ceremony. there were pink tulle-framed bubbles in a basket, a tri-fold panel of photos (one of the photos was of me and danny at our 8th grade dance), wings and fairylights surrounded the dance floor, white bridal wings were attached on sarah’s chair, a cake topper much like the one she made for me and tsafi’s wedding cake… there was a welcome house on the porch and a guest book with a white-plumed blue pen, husks of colored corn on the cob hung on doors and pumpkins, of COURSE pumpkins, and flowers and fabric leaves strewn on tabletops, everything handmade by the bride and perfect.

soon people took to their seats. some people opened their bubbles and began to blow them. i fretted over where to set up for the best shot for the ceremony without being in the photographer’s way, ultimately figuring she could always photoshop me out if need be. the ceremony began and i was stage right capturing sarah’s smiling profile and danny was turned towards me. the walking down the aisle was precious, something special about walking down steps from a porch and into the open…

the ceremony was performed by the mayor. it was short and non-religious. when danny answered his question if he will be a good husband, etc, with an ‘i will’, his voice was full of assertive intention and devotion and my eyes filled up. exchange of rings and a kiss and danny and sarah were wed. soft guitar played and smiles abounded. the wedding party clustered inside the inn and when i got there sarah was crying of happiness and release. danny looked stunned, yet proud. he held up his ring to me in silence and i hugged him.

the party began and red wine was my friend. i sat next to danny’s boss in the sunny side of the tent. we talked of napster and about jobs. i’ve seen her a bunch of times over the years, me showing up to danny’s office like a dirty traveller dragging bags and yet i always forget her name. it was in that office that i showed up straight off a plane, one day after tsafi proposed to me, and while filming, held up my engagement ring capturing his reaction. i think it was ‘fuck you’ or ‘shut up’ or something witty like that. i’ve always been totally oblivious to whoever was around me at that office besides danny but looking back, i’ve seen her a whole mess of times. happy warm funky solid classy energy from her and i was really happy to be sitting next to her.

cure and violent femmes played and and photos were snapped and i had to leave early. danny’s cousin was driving me from pa to nyc. i passed out in the car over bucket seats after much comical convorsation and awoke in time to be sifted through the subway system. rats and people puking in trash bins, hot stale air being blasted out at me as trains arrived. i made my way from 72nd street to the village and found susan’s apartment, my old roommate/friend. she is such an absolute mess and it saddens me that i can’t help her. we went to a lounge and caught up over a bottle of white wine. i hadn’t seen her in years. she was recently engaged to a jew and ready to convert but it didn’t work out. her mother is dying of cancer…and she’s really into coke supposedly. very sad about this.

i had planned on sleeping for a few hours before my 6am flight back to los angeles but her drug episode kept me awake and worried. she uses people… i couldn’t believe that she invited some guy over from way uptown and upon his arrival asked him to leave so she could go out with someone else. and all the while i’m tucked under blankets begging silently for quiet. at 3am i gave up and shared a cab with her friend, this model from Vogue on his way to new zealand for a photo shoot. i made my way to jfk airport and flew back to l.a. in sleep-deprived insanity, spent the entire day in bed with my love and dragged myself to work the next day. busy busy weekend~~ but well worth the travel!

warner bros.

today i got hired full time at warner bros. studios. throughout the day i slowly let it sink in. i said it aloud, i called my mother and told her, i hugged the girl that works next to me, i rolled it around in my head…. i work for warner bros… it was a regular day until i left for the day and crossed over the WB insignia carved in stone on the floor of the lobby. i usually walk around it in my temporary-don’t-leave-a-mark-or-assume-too-much status. today i crossed a sort of threshold and felt entitled to walk on that WB floor and, as i exited the building, i nodded my head in respect to the huge billboard of batman & bugs bunny. “warner bros…. ok then”.
interesting initial characters surround me at WB. denise, the girl that sits next to me, with her straight blonde hair, love of cats & folk music. she had a certain perfunctory air about her and surprised me when i noticed photos of stone circles on her desk. we got to talking and she told me of her trips to scotland and the stone circles there, older than stonehenge even! she went to scotland with her sister to trace her ancestry and found herself in a castle that belonged to her family centuries ago. there was a painting there of a man with all the features of her father. i would have loved to have been a fly on a wall when she tugged on her sister’s sleeve, calling her attention to it with gaze unwavering and saying aloud “hello, dad”. i told her stories of my time in england and ireland, hunting druid tales and arthurian legends and we recognized a similar spirit in each other.
gary, the english guy with the office opposite my desk who has race cars lined up perfectly spaced, x-box and video games everywhere on his desk. he’s a grown up kid, the best kind, with a terrific accent and a great job. he’s a producer of WB video games. it tickles me to see joysticks on his desk and professionally huge headphones for the full sound of what he creates
everyone on the floor seems to be from different departments. marc, my boss, and i are the only ones from consumer products (aka TOYS!). everyone else in our department is on the 2nd and 3rd floors. their desks decorated with scooby doo and power puff girl toys and plush animals. their long slow glances sizing me up, the new girl….and i try hard to access them. we all do the same thing… and we all like candy. i hope to make friends in the department soon (and in time for the halloween pumpkin carving contest! i’d hate to turn my freak on alone in that contest and OH doncha know i’ll win it too!…pumpkin carving, it’s the right of all crisp autumn pixies & i intend to claim my own). there’s also a baking contest but i doubt my skills in that one. on my floor, there are many people temping, unable to get to full time status. like me, we complain of woeful recruitment procedures. it’s almost as if you must cut off a limb or offer your first born to land a full time job here. they go to great lengths to verify references and your resume and when they’re done with their initial probe, they hand it all over to an outside agency whose fact-checking prowess scared the bejesus out of me. israeli references were not swift to respond and caused internal seizures.
it all ended well enough though. i belong somewhere… my work, acknowledged, and in WB, i will be taken care of with great benefits that kick in on 11/1 for me and the hubby, a daycare center on the lot for newborns, 401K, a gym, stock in the company and most importantly, FREE TOYS AND CANDY!!

officially spoiled by travel

i love seeing my family. touching origin, making memories, acting up, celebrating. today i slam danced to hava nagila i was so happy. the occasion? my cousin, austin’s bar mitzvah. he’s most definitely in puberty. squeaky, awkward, cute, shy, well-mannered, transcending. today i told uncle eli that he’s one of my role models and how much respect i have for him, how he built up his own successful business and made life work for him based on this vision. cousin stef makes me laugh so hard that i pee my pants and cousin matthew likewise, with his impersonations of a gay goat-boy in various situations. aunt jerri looks slimmer each time i see her and she loves me so much, i feel it. uncle eli is an old school visionary prone to chauvinism but has the best intentions and a strong sense of family. alan is starting to go gray but will always be cool to me in a NY billy joel sense and ‘big’ stef, his wife, is starting to have wrinkles but is the sweetest, most understanding and happy woman i have ever met… my father and niece, alexis were the cake AND the icing of the day…

i arrived into JFK at 5am and fell asleep sprawled out on top of a table at au bain pan until dad arrived in the jeep. i saw the reflection of the sky in the windshield and smiled, dressed and ready to go to austin’s bar mitzvah in long island. it’s almost as if the transcontinental flight was a subway stop with television sitcoms.

i arrive and don’t miss a beat. i’m officially spoiled by travel. i don’t know where i’d be without the wright brothers. dad hugs me big, hands me directions to the temple, appoints me navigator and we’re off. we arrive before anyone gets there and i do alexis’ hair in the sunny parking lot smelling of autumn. i fly down the walkway to hug uncle eli and aunt jerri and everyone, overjoyed and delirious with sleep deprivation.

today my family was my caffeine. despite no sleep on the flight, i’m still going strong. i left the bar mitzvah early, changed in the car with dad standing guard as i went from my dress to travel clothes, emerging as i tie shoes hopping on one foot.

i hug my father in three stages, each one more clinging. “i love you bigger than the sky!!” i tell him bursting.
“bigger than the sky?” he asks and kisses my cheek.
i wave as i run down the parking lot away from him.

dragging a green suitcase over grass and sand, defying crosswalks, i travel on foot to the bus station that took me to the train station and now i’m inches from passing out. need zzzzzzzz but not before my 6pm bus to pennsylvania for danny’s wedding tomorrow morning…. pant pant pant. let no one ever dare say that i was never where i was needed…

airplane prozac

macro panning image of lotus flower petals, silken weaving sea creatures, fields of light and dusk insects, modest roses, indecisive bumbling things, starfish sun through blades of grass. airplane prozac is on the television, bulbous cherry blossoms full of cotton candy bowls of soft pink fleshy petals, time lapses of ice-covered strips of sea. stormy clouds unfamiliar race up away from winter branches. danny’s getting married in two days…

FLIGHT FROM LA TO NYC – hyper at long beach airport waiting for a sleeping pill to kick in

calm calm the sugar gliders, blue stone sleeping pill, a rock in my belly trying to tire me, nerves fight against it. will i belong to warner bros or will beaurocracy spit me out at square one? it’s not a new job hunt that upset me so much it is having me dye my hair normal again… i do have my priorities…
repetitive noises escalate me. snoring currently, but repetition in general. i relocate. i put my black coat on. it smells like my father’s house. maybe the sleeping pill is wrestling the B12 vitamin that i took at dinner. i will not get sick with rainy east coast weather and recycled airplane air. i have robotussin just in case. practical human concerns.

must remember to come up and out of my immediate situation. either i work at WB or i work somewhere else. it’s pre-written and useless to worry. they either want me or they don’t.

a tall, fat man rocks the seat behind me as we sit in wait for boarding time. he’s dressed in a navy suit with worn brown pointy cowboy boots. the asian man fumbling with his bags asks me to watch his bags as he goes to the bathroom. he gave me a square peice of gum and a smile. i asked him the time to calculate sleeping pill injection time. i’m so hyper that i might actually need to take 2 pills now. the one-pill dosage is something unisom prides itself on, perhaps for a reason. best be patient…

zzzzzzzzzzzzz
*zonk*

just kidding

ok so let’s review..our savings is now down to almost nothing. tsafi’s not working. the IRS is after me. creditors are sueing me and i have an unstable work history that might cost me a potential job.

tsafi and i are great though and sometimes that’s all that matters. he’s getting closer to taking his CPA test and i’m going to see my family alot in the next few weeks. shaunte’s getting married and she wants me to be her maid of honor. these are good things…

i have cysts on my face from stress. the vein in my neck hurts. i wonder if that’s bad. i smell jesse. the lotion he used… i recently became addicted to cd-burned mixes. i bought blank cds and protective sleeves and found great happiness in making music cds for everyone and mailing them out to people unsuspecting. i sent my sister a blue scarf. i sent my other sister a practical magick poster and i bought a plane ticket to go to my other sister’s graduation in january. it’s only a few days after i return from the family trip to cancun. exciting stuff planned. all cause to look forward and not fret.

so my problems are just financial…good. better to have them about money than about health or love.

sitting on the plane dizzy now. sleeping pills make me high, not an all together UNwelcome feeling. while we were boarding, it occurred to me that this worried emotion is the direct result of not being in control of my core, of leaving my fate up to someone else. i never decided clearly to take THIS job. i asked for A job. who knows if this is THE job but desparate times call for certain seizing of opportunities and this company does take fantastic care of their employees. what will be, will be….

i walk into an empty starbucks on la cienega and stand at the counter being ignored by two cute gay men. one is black with cute curly ringlet hair all wild, smooth skin, a freshly shaved chest with just a hint of regrowth showing; the other, white, small and expressive. they pay no mind to me as they continue their conversation about teenage crushes. “i used to WOOOORSHIP luke skywalker” the curly one says. i smile to the floor and giggle and they stop and look at me “….me too.” i admit. and we have a laugh. instantly, we begin a starbucks therapy session, starting from theorizing what was so fierce about luke and why he’s not kewl now, and ending with a teddy bear that curly had up until he turned 20 years old and his mother found out he was gay so she took all his stuff. i told him the story of how my sister’s roommate and i joined forces to kidnap her doll named ‘clownie’ to lighten things up. they both say that there is nothing going on in l.a. and asked me my impression of it so far, as i ordered a coffee finally. “are you a student?” they asked me. i smiled and said “SURE I AM!” and got a free coffee, using the money instead for their tip.

this morning we woke up late. elinor had spent the night after we all went to paramount studios to see the premiere of ‘school of rock’ (loved it!). we had a lazy morning of chocolate chip pancakes, long showers and an episode of ‘will & grace’. after we each listed all the things that we had to do that day that we knew we’d never do, we got ready to go roller blading along the beach in venice. while tsafi got sidetracked by a back massage, i took up the task of fixing my macintosh computer. i’d had a scare this week with it. the mac is on eBay. the auction is going to end tomorrow and when i tested it earlier this week, the thing wouldn’t even start up! so i figured it out and fixed it, only to discover the thin layer of dust all over the monitor. i wet an old towel and wiped it clean. and, as my mad cleaning habits kicked in stealth-like, i began to de-dust the whole apartment. every table top, the tv, the bathroom. it all ended in a mess of bleach and toilet bowl cleaner when someone stuck his head inside my opened front door. in broken english and covered in paint, he asked if i planned on staying home for a while. he said he was cleaning the floor outside and then planned on painting it. that’s when i surveyed what i’d been doing and how it started. i have never in my life been on such auto-pilot like when my cleaning freakshow starts. it feels compulsive, chemical, biological, all a part of nesting, to be sure. and it was nice to have tsafi out of my hair, not standing there not helping and scratching his head calling me a freak. he’d fallen asleep and elinor was in the shower.

i roused them and we all headed to the ocean for some roller blading. we parked far away and had to walk barefoot carrying our blades. we sat on a curb and put them on. i taught tsafi how to stop (in theory) and off we went. we headed passed the santa monica pier toward topanga canyon. tsafi only falls when we’re near him so we kept our distance most of the time. elinor and i talked about how we planned to get back into shape and what our favorite body parts are. we got all the way to the end and turned back. i wanted to hold tsafi’s hand and elinor raced ahead of us. “romance!” i demanded brattishly. and that’s when he fell, comically and with lots of screeching, in front of a beach cafe, no less! nothing bruised, we continued. we took a break as tsafi turned from flailing roller blade master to monkey boy. he swung on a row of rings after watching a little girl fly on it effortlessly. she was a professional, this little girl. her and her dad had the white powder and the stamina. tsafi, however, my poor wounded monkey man, returned with red punctured palms and a bleeding pinky finger. i kissed them and we continued on our adventure. on the way home we stopped at an art store where elinor bought a tube of paint. we had lunch at home, admiring the (now) dry painted floor and passed out like rambunctious toddlers.

my car got towed! damn the man!

there is nothing like the feeling of discovering your car has been towed. it’s a small death, like how people say “but i just talked to him yesterday!” “the car was just here a minute ago!” as if it couldn’t possibly be true. such was the case this evening.

after work i drove to a store to buy a desk lamp for my new job. the parking lot was full so i crossed the street and parked in the k-mart parking lot at the far end by a fence. i didn’t see any handicapped signs and figured it was fine. ross didn’t have desk lamps but i easily got enchanted by the aisles of candles and useless gifts. i carried a candle to the register. a soft blue scarf caught my eye and i remembered my sister, renee’s birthday next week and how her last winter’s coat had a hole in it. i paid for the scarf and the candle and left the store carrying two grey and blue ross bags. my feeling of glee over getting an additional 10% off the candle for a scratch on it temporarily turned to a quick moment of pity as a tow truck exited in front of me, turning left into oblivion with a screaming staccato siren of a car alarm sounding out in protest. the alarm only began when the tow truck turned in front of me. in retrospect, i imagine it saw me and, like a wild child beign kidnapped at gunpoint at a fair, called out for me panicked, as i, oblivious, thought it was just in front of me doing the things that cars do… park and stay parked, chatting it up with other nice, good PARKED cars beside it… but on no… not MY car… my car was being towed ass-up and screaming through the streets of culver city. i just didn’t know it until i got the far end of the lot and didn’t see my car.

“maybe i parked it further down,” i thought. look left. look right. no black corrolla. i frantically fished out my keys thinking the lock/unlock beeping would solve the riddle. slowly i press ‘unlock’ once…nothing… i face the opposite direction, arm extended high in the air, press it again… nothing. three more times frantic now in all directions… nothing…

i calmly approached a middle-aged woman working in the parking lot collecting shopping carts hating her life. “i think my car got towed. do you know who i can talk to?” she pointed to a guy in a shadow of the parking lot. i asked him what to do, why this happened. he, taking his job way too seriously, huffed about not being allowed to park in the k-mart lot and shop in the ross store across the street. before i could defend myself, he pointed to my bags. “ah HA! ROSS!!!!” he seethed… caught, was i. buti truly had no idea i wasn’t allowed to park there!

my thoughts turned to how much this is going to cost and how bad our money situation has gotten, and my eyes glazed over. i asked to borrow his cell phone. he directed me to pay phone… at ROSS! i had no change and patience was thinning. just then a sweet man that was passing offerred me his cell phone. i told him he was an angel. i called tsafi. he didn’t answer. he’d been waiting outside for me for an hour to get dinner. i called his cousin, the savior, adi. he came to get me in his new SUV with the fancy new rims and 2 dvd player monitors behind the 2 seats. while i was waiting for him i went into k-mart just to be seen there. i started to form a strategy, in the long run, to no avail. adi came and saved the day, drove me to culver city to get my car out of the dungeon. $140 later, he left and i was alone in my car cursing as i drove home. i told tsafi the story and we went to eat at subway. i started listing in my head all these recent and unexpected humungous expenses and wondered how we’d pay them all off with him home studying for the cpa test, not working, and me still temp status at warner bros studios. on line at subway, i began to cry and sat on a stool smoothing out a straw wrapper slowly as if i were smoothing out my worries, as tsafi devoured a sandwich and assured me all would be just fine. “it’s just one of the expenses of owning a car.” he said.