Saturday, 20 November 2004 (canny peaks)
Phred came over last night to watch Chuck Barris movies (both of them) and eat fondue. Yes.
This next week keeps getting more interesting. Beth Lisick has asked me to speak on Monday night at her Porch Light storytelling series. The trick is that it has to be unscripted and relatively unrehearsaed. This is more than a little scary to me, since I lean heavily on the crutch of the page. (I don't rehearse all that often, at least not with my own writing, though I've been practicing the JT Leroy piece.) Of course, the scariness means I simply had to say yes. The fact that it's one of those all-too-rare paid gigs is a also strong incentive (rock beats scissors), and makes up for the fact that I'll have to skip my radio show, on the night of my planned Jhonn Balance memorial. Maddy has offered to sit in for me at the station, so it's all good.
Three gigs in a row, and then nothing until January, and that's only tentative. I'm sure something else will come up before then.
Later today, Taos will be reblonding my roots.
Friday, 19 November 2004 (que clase de animal es usted)
Today's phone interview was scheduled for two. They were supposed to call me; I was quite certain of that. By half past two, the phone had yet to ring, even though I'd checked it several times to make sure the ringer was turned on, which is exactly the sort of OCDing which can result in the ringer accidentally being turned off. Nope, it was good. So, I worked up the courage to call. After getting lost in the labyrinthe of their automated directory, I finally got through to the HR guy who was supposed to call. Seems he hadn't noticed the appointment in his calendar. Fair enough. He was very apologetic, and I'd like to think I scored a few points with my graciousness. Anyway, the interview has been rescheduled for eleven on Monday. Good, because I didn't have enough to think about next week.
Thursday, 18 November 2004 (principalities of desire)
The wheel keeps turningI had a phone interview this morning for yet another admin position. I guess it went well, since someone else from the same company will be calling tomorrow. They wouldn't do that if I'd blown it entirely, would they? Good thing Taos is reblonding my hair this weekend, since I can only hope I'll be going in for an actual face-to-face interview next week. It wouldn't do to have unsightly roots. Between the (potential) interview, the shows on Sunday and Tuesday, and Thanksgiving, I'm going to be on display a lot next week.
I also reapplied for unemployment. My final check arrived and my remaining balance is nil, but it's worth a shot.
For the Harold's End reading on Tuesday night at City Lights, we each get to select the part of the book we want to read. It's a ten thousand-word novella, so it didn't take long to go through. It was obvious which section I'd be reading aloud as soon as I got to it; it gave me a very strong sense of god, i've been there. I can only hope I do it justice. It almost feels like that acting gig I've been pining for.
For the record, it's a terrific book. (The text, anyway. I haven't seen the illustrations yet.) A problem remains, however: is it possible to call it the most touching story about a boy and his snail you'll ever read without sounding facetious? Of course, that isn't even half as problematic as the fact that I keep wanting to call it Howard's End. If I ever actually meet JT (and I don't expect to, since he's something of a millennial Salinger), I'll have to ask if the title's a reference. Nah, I probably won't.
Wednesday, 17 November 2004 (unintentional tributary)
Last night I had a horrible epiphany: I'm most inspired to write these days when I'm stoned. That cannot be a good thing.
As I write this, I'm very much sober, sitting at the Canvas taking advantage of their free wireless internet. Free with purchase, anyway, thus accounting for the slightly overpriced sammich I just ate. Really shouldn't be buying expensive food to support my online addictions.
Tomorrow morning, I have a phone interview for a "high energy juggling act" of an admin position. In a while, I'm heading into
the Castro to look into a possible barback position at the Midnight Sun. Lingo translation: I'd be picking up empty glasses and stuff
at one of the biggest gay bars. Not exactly my ideal work situation, and there'll probably want someone with prior experience or
strong knowledge of C++ or something, but it's worth a shot. Hell, Lynnee's a bouncer at the Endup. Not sure exactly what the relevance
is, but there you go.
That's when the awful truth hit me.
I'm into soap operas.
Good lord. Just another way that I'm turning into my mother. Which is not a horribly bad thing by any stretch of the imagination. And, in her defense (inasmuch as she requires defending), so far as I know she was only ever into All My Children.
We watched The Triplets of Belleville last night. It's the first movie in very long time which has made me grateful I wasn't on acid. The last one I can think of would have been Little Otikand we were on acid for that, though at times I wished we weren't. (If you've heard me read more than once, you've surely heard that story by now.)
Tuesday, 16 November 2004 (glacial eden)
I'm fairly happy with how last night's Rush Hour on the Event Horizon turned out. I continued with the aggro mood I hoped I started last week. It wasn't until this morning that I heard that John Balance of Coil died over the weekend. This bums me greatly. Normally I don't give a shit about celebrity death, but he was still actively making music I enjoy. Fuck. No more Coil. Since they rarely played in the US and never in the Bay Area in the last five years, I didn't get to see them live. Now I never will. Fuck. Guess I know what the theme of next week's show will be.
I had an interview with a staffing agency this morning. Didn't go horribly, but didn't go well, either. Their office is right across from the Embarcadero Cinema, which is hiring. Asked for an application. All the cool kids are doing it these days.
She asked me how I felt about my old boss. Christ, how unfair a question is that? I told her that proper interview etiquette forbids negativity about one's previous employer. She said she was mostly trying to figure out my feelings about micromanagers. Does anybody like being micromanaged? I did tell her about the night he kept me late rewriting someone else's proposal, rendering it functionally useless, all the while constantly criticizing me and making me late to Poppy's reading in the process. Left out the part where I then went into the restroom and cut up my arm, though. Not exactly relevant, and in the long run, that's something I did to myself.
She said that I'm obviously an "artistic" type, and am likely to get bored at less challenging jobs. Translation: don't call us, and we won't call you, either. Sometimes the thought crosses my mind that I'm having a difficult time finding a job, especially an office job, because I'm a tranny. If I was going on more interviews in the first place, I'd be more inclined to believe that.
Right across from the Embarcadero Cinema in the other direction is Danielle's apartment. It was just after eleven, so of course she wasn't entirely awake yet. Fucking vampire hours. We discussed some business propositions, including taking advantage of what she's long considered to be my resemblance to the Assistant DA on Law and Order: Special Victims Unit, even moreso now that I'm blonding. She says knows masochists who would pay to get ripped a new one by me. I'll believe it when it happens. (This probably accounts for why I ultimately believe in so few things.)
While I was there, she had a rather heated discussion with her mother on the phone. At one point she handed the phone over to me, and I found myself explaining the San Francisco job market. It was very odd. That kinda sums up Danielle Willis: she can turn any situation into edge play. Believe me, talking to her mother counts.
We've decided that we simply must stage Cabaret with me as Sally Bowles (an idea that's been in my head for a while now, natch) and Danielle as the MC. Truth be told, I'd actually been thinking about Flipper for that part, but Danielle's an interesting idea as well. Living in the same City helps, too.
Sunday night was the first readthrough for Macao, the play I'll be assistant directing next year. I really need to get off my duff and get a project of my own going. Crash is a probably a bit too experimental for my first time out, and while Collette's suggestion of The Phantom of the Paradise is intriguing (not to mention Jim's been itching to stage a musical for a long time), that's probably a bit much, too. Time to revisit Talk Radio with Sid in the lead.
Though I haven't attended any rehearsals (why would I?), The Princess Bride seems to be coming along nicely. The decision not to audition was mine and mine alone, because I simply couldn't commit to the rehearsal schedule. It was not a snub. Still, it stings to see the pictures of the actress playing Buttercup, and there will surely be a little tug when I see the actual production, just like watching Mrs. White in Clue. that could have been me. if they'd really wanted me, they would have asked. ergo, i am not wanted. last year, when i was skinny and employed, i would have been wanted. now that i'm fat and destitute, they don't. I know it's not true, but my brain gets like that sometimes.
Speaking of being wanted, the cel phone company never returned my call. That I do know to be a snub.
I have an appointment tomorrow morning with The Nice Lady. Not a moment too soon.
Monday, 15 November 2004 (nesting instinct)
From an interview with Spalding Gray on Fresh Air in 1997, regarding his monologue It's a Slippery Slope (which I was fortunate enough to see him perform):
TERRY: At the end of your new monologue, you confess that you were having an affair with another woman at the time you were married, and in fact while you were married she became pregnant with your baby, and you've since left Renee. This is such a surprising thing to hear.You are so missed, Spalding. You were honest, and didn't give a shit what people thought about you. I wish I could be that brave, to tell my story as I see fit.
Eventually, it will all be told.
I was supposed to be in Los Angeles yesterday. There was an event where I would have been welcomed and loved. But I wasn't.
Sunday, 14 November 2004 (nihilisticomicon)
sometime after midnight
Temple's new home is in an old factory in the sticks of Oakland, not too far from the old Chevil Ate location. It's big and roomy and just plain neat. I haven't felt hausenvy in a long time, probably because I live in San Francisco and most of my friends live in apartments which, while possibly larger in square footage than ours, don't feel bigger. I'm pretty sure that Temple's room, while technically smaller than the other bedrooms (she has two roommates), is still bigger than our entire apartment. Not only that, it has no natural light. For most normal humans that would be a problem, but to me it's a selling point, being the cavedweller that I am.
After helping her move, then having dinner at the fan-fucking-tastic Cambodian restaurant Christa introduced us to during Spookycon, Maddy and I came home and dropped more of the acid. More of nothing, as it turns out. Put on the blacklights, Grok Gazer, even did a Whip-It. Nope. I guess after a decade, even in a freezer wrapped in foil, it evaporates just like anything else. Not fair, but what is?
We've heard good things about Salvia, and it's legal. Worth a shot.
Saturday, 13 November 2004 (darkening haze)
We went to a cutting demonstration given by Patrick Califia at the LGBT Center yesterday evening. I haven't spoken to him since he officiated Dana's wedding four years ago, in which I was a very stocky bridesmaid. We didn't really get a chance to talk last night; he may not recognize me anymore.
The guy working the counter downstairs at the Three Dollar Bill Cafe recognized me, however. Cindy's open mic was happening at the same time (that's San Franciscoeverything happens at once), and he remembered me from featuring a couple weeks before. Said he really liked my work, did I have a website, would I be reading in tonight, et cetera. It was really very sweet of him.
My gay boyfriend Horehound was at the Cafe, the first time I've seen him in months, and certainly the first time he's seen the blonde. Says he's also confirmed for the LeRoy reading in a couple weeks. Yay.
The cutting demo was fascinating, and it changed our minds about the feasibility of using scalpels. The room was packed with familiar faces. It just figures. Says a lot about the San Francisco sex/queer/kink community that the general reaction to seeing familiar faces in a class about cutting was not oh, no, they can't know that i'm into this sort of thing! but rather yeah, it figures they'd be here.
Note to the person sitting in front of me as Califia carved the the spider pattern into the tranny boy's back: if your initial impulse is to refer to a person by a pronoun different from their birth gender, go with it. It's probably correct, since a genetic female with a boy cut, an androgynous name and baggy jeans in this town is almost certainly identifies as male. Even if they simply identify as a butch dyke, "he" is no great insultcertainly not as much as calling a tranny boy "he" and then immediately correcting yourself with "she," as though you'd made this horrible mistake since it's plainly obvious that they're really a girl, is just not cool. You might as well have just followed it up with "it" or "whatever."
I know, I know, I'm sure it was an honest mistake. I just felt his pain, is all. I saw the look in his eyes as he had to (for surely the zillionth time) say He, Actually. In front of a room full of people, no less. That hurt much more than the scalpel.
Later today, we will help Temple move from San Rafael to Oakland.
Friday, 12 November 2004 (near side)
Had a brief phone interview this morning for a contract position at Electronic Arts, doing game localization testing and other things I don't understand. The job would have involved driving to Redwood City (farther than Sausalito, but no bridge traffic) for long hours for relatively lousy pay. Lots of paid overtime, which is not necessarily a bad thing, although it may well have cut into my radio show time, not to mention and I might have had to flake on the J.T. LeRoy reading as well. I'd hate to miss that, but it's income, isn't it? Gotta do what you gotta do, right? This is maturity and being a grownup and stuff. Lauren works for EA, and is regularly late or absent altogether from our writing group every other Tuesday because of work. (I'm unemployed, yet I'm frequently absent from group. What's my excuse?) I'm willing to make those sacrifices if I absolutely must, but the deal broke down entirely when I did the math and realized the the contract would end two days after Maddy and I leave for New Orleans. And, they assure, me, I simply must be there for those last two days. So that's that.
As they often will, friends have been suggesting that maybe I dodged a bullet by not getting the job at the law office. Dunno. Doubt it. Still hurts too much. Looks like I dodged one this time, though, what with the class-action lawsuit for unpaid overtime being filed against EA. Yeah, just as well.
Thursday, 11 November 2004 (beneath the black wave)
God, yesterday sucked. Horribly, horribly bad. For as much as it hurt, for as much as it increased my current sense of despair a hundredfold, not getting the job wasn't the worst of it. After the emotional trauma of last night, turmoil between Maddy and I, it's amazing anything in my personal universe is left standing.
Not going to Los Angeles this weekend. I simply can't. As much as I loathe the thought of flaking on Ryka, it feels like it would be a mistake on levels both practical and emotional.
Good things still happen, though. Bucky has asked me to participate in a reading for J.T. LeRoy's new book Harold's End. Thing is, he never reads his own work, opting instead to let other people do it. Well, almost never; rumor has it he actually did so last week, at a reading also featuring Carrie Fisher, Jerry Stahl and Susan Dey. (Susan Dey!) (She was such a hottie on L.A. Law. Not that I ever watched. As I recall, it followed Night Court, after which I went to bed. I do remember becoming interested in an episode in which Claudia Christian played a tranny, and...I'm digressing, aren't I?) The guest readers for a show this Saturday in New York will include Lou Reed, Shirley Manson and Tatum O'Neal. Then, on November 23 at CIty Lights, the lineup is shaping up to include Lynnee, (e), Horehound, and...myself, quite possibly the most obscure person ever to be involved. Go figure.