Saturday, May 31, 2008

If I was the sun I would shout/I've got so much shining left before I'm out

I found out at kind of the last minute yesterday that I had one spot on the guest list for the Phantom Planet/Hush Sound/Motion City Soundtrack/Panic at the Disco show that night. I put out a couple feelers to see if anyone I knew was going to the show, though I knew it was rather hopeless. As much as I love Phantom Planet, I have come to [mostly] accept that none of my friends share that love. I also knew that, as a woman of a certain age, I would be presumed to be a parent to some pubescent attendee. Ugh.

So I debated, a little. Should I go alone to a show knowing no friends would be there and miss a band I really, really like? Or suck it up and just go? From the way the bands were listed, it looked like Phantom Planet would go on first so I could escape early, having no real interest in the other bands. On the promise of an early start/early exit, I decided to go.

I got to the Pageant before 7:00pm and it was already hopping. PATD had their beautifully painted tour bus outside and some booths were set up to give away something or other from their corporate sponsor, Honda (not very rock and roll, really). When I picked up my ticket I was handed two. What the? Steve's contact had assured him that since the show was sold out he could only spare one spot on the guest list. But don't look a gift horse in the mouth, even a last minute one. Since I had talked to my co-worker Karen about the show before leaving work, I called and offered her the extra ticket. She would meet me there after she got off work.

The venue was packed, though the bar area wasn't terrible since the majority of the crowd was under age. Phantom Planet took the stage promptly at 7:00 pm and proceeded to charm me as always. They were very energetic and charming and didn't seem to mind opening the show. Halfway through their set they played their great song, "Big Brat" with members of the Hush Sound helping out on extra percussion. So great and raucous. During their last number "California" (their most familiar song, it being the theme song of the show "The O.C.") Alex Greenwald somewhat wistfully asked the crowd, "You guys
do know we wrote this song, right?" Their set was soon done and it was only 7:31.

Unfortunately, Karen hadn't arrived yet so I had to hang around. One more beer and some wandering and then the Hush Sound's set, which wasn't bad but neither was it particularly memorable. The kids seemed to love them, though. Their set done, I bought another drink, closed my tab and waited for Karen's call. She finally called and I met her in the Halo Bar and gave her the bad new that I was bailing. I
had gotten up at 3:45 am that day and worked for 9.5 hours so she understood. We talked for a bit then she headed into the show and I headed home. A rock show, drinks and home before 9:30 - a dream come true for an ageing hipster.

Monday, May 26, 2008


I woke up this morning with the word internecine reverberating in my head, not even sure of its definition. I suppose it's not entirely unlikely since I had a weird night of sleeping/not sleeping, my in between dreams so vivid I was quite sure I had never been asleep at all. Well, except when I awoke from a dream of myself and Colin Farrell starring in an action comedy. Sadly, I cannot recall the plot, but it was funny, and better than your average Colin Farrell movie.

Maybe the constant loud thunderclaps and torrential rains contributed to putting such a violent word in my head. Steve was similarly affected: he dreamed he was an assassin (he cannot recall his target) trying to prove his innocence despite a swastika and a scrap of paper with the words "harmony in my head" written on it found in his car. Of course it makes no sense, but it's odd that the Buzzcocks figured in his dream.

Not much else to say. I have to prepare a crock pot of soup before I head out to work. No three day weekends for retail wage slaves...

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Another Sunday dawned with both Steve and me off from work. Yay! First stop, back to my work to load up on caffeine and the miracle that is my company's +Energy supplement. It's a wonder, I assure you. A little visiting with Michael, Lisa and Emily and then on to an estate sale, our first of the year. This was in the rather schmancy neighborhood off Wydown, just west of Big Bend. Most things were priced ridiculously high - a sheared beaver coat for almost $10,000????? Seriously? The house had lots of art reproductions, weird Louis XIV style furniture, and most frightening of all, a table in the basement laden with surgical and medical equipment, including an evil-looking heavy metal speculum. *Shudder.*

I didn't get too much at the sale, but my money got me this:

I have no idea what this book is about, but holy cow! how about that overwhelming amount of phallic imagery? The tool belt, the tool, the smoke, the scarf, the spikes and, oh, maybe the GIANT POLE he's hanging from. Wow.

And I can never resist random boxes of old sewing stuff:

I haven't even had a chance to root through this stuff yet. Can't wait to examine all the buttons. The little leather case holds a bunch of pretty and odd keys. I love old keys.

I also got a set of tiny tin molds (what were those things for?), a vintage paring knife and a couple of gifts that I must not reveal here. So, all in all, not a bad haul.

Next stop was Trader Joe's for stocking up on cheap wine and good frozen stuff and Dierberg's for various groceries. Woo hoo! Aren't we some kind of party animals? At least we made it home before the torrential rain started.

Now I must stop dicking around on the computer and try to be creative...wish me luck.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Wake Up, Charlie! Let's Go to Candy Mountain!

Yesterday I spent the daytime hours in an extended online psychoanalysis session with a friend. It wasn't on purpose; it just evolved from our conversation and I ended up having at least two epiphanies about a lifetime of my behaviors. It was quite revealing, upsetting and relieving at the same time. Remember that sun analogy about me a while ago? Well, I'm not sure I applied it in quite the right way when I received it. During the course of the conversation yesterday I realized that I was always looking at things solely from the point of view of the sun; I've only thought of burning, not the burned. Or something like that. I'm not sure I'm ready to articulate it all yet.

Here's the other thing that's mildly interesting; I have four tattoos and, arguably, all four of them have an aspect of the sun about them. Two overtly and two implicitly. Is it possible I've just realized this? How stupid does that make me look? But on the other hand, whoa. Did my subconscious place me at the center of my universe long before I realized I had done it? So I want the world to revolve around me; is that so wrong?

After the hours of analysis, I had an evening of working with Michael ahead of me. It was just the two of us for several hours - talking, bickering, gossiping, laughing. It was barely like work and, in reality, it was barely like work. Both of us, separately with a different co-worker, are able to get out of the store barely one half hour after closing, the store looking great. Last night it took us nearly 50 minutes to get everything done. D'oh!

We had decided we were going to go out afterwards and we decided on the Loading Zone again. Steve opted to meet us there and we headed down the street to start drinking. The bartenders were adorable, the patrons were okay looking except for one beautiful emo-haired boy. Some guy growled at me as I waited for the bathroom to become available. I'd like to think it was a sexy growl, not a 'get out of my gay bar, vagina-bearer' growl. Later he came and managed to touch Steve, me and Michael a few times in passing. Strange guy. At any rate, we got drunk. Kind of stinking drunk. The drinks were going down like water and they kept coming. While I'm a tad hung over today, I don't regret a moment. It's been a while since we've just sat in a bar and drank and laughed and acted silly and I was really happy to have Steve and Michael there to do it with. And this time there were no bitchy old queens who made their nasty little dog try to bite me, unlike the last time were at the Zone.

Re: the headline? Go to and search for 'candy mountain.' And then search for 'charlie bit my finger.'

Thursday, May 22, 2008

You gotta spend some time--love, you gotta spend some time with me

Though it's hard for me to admit it, I'm currently really digging the latest Death Cab For Cutie single. I've played it over and over at the workplace this week -- customers are going to think it's my theme song. It's embarrassing, liking DCFC; I've expressed my disdain for them on many an occasion. I'm somewhat happy to say I haven't liked anything else from the album.

Anyway, I also like the video for the song. It's an extended version, twice as long as the radio edit. Kind of melancholy, like the song.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

So the maples formed a union/And demanded equal rights/The oaks are just too greedy/We will make them give us light

Today has been a rather blissful day off. The weather is perfect -- bright and sunny and just warm enough for shorts but not so hot the leather seats in my car burn my bare legs. I've been putting off planting anything in my many outdoor pots because I haven't had time and the weather has been so awful. But lying in bed this morning I decided that the time had come. After chugging an iced latte with the best invention known to man, the powdered energy additive, I took off for my first stop, Home Depot. I didn't find much there; things were either unpriced, which I really hate, or they were overpriced. I did buy a strawberry pot and a couple geraniums, but nothing else. Next stop, Bayer's, where I should have just gone first. The herb selection was a little less than I would have liked, but I got some good stuff and the prices were right.

Then an afternoon of chatting online, an evening of grilling and wine and a girl can't ask for more.

I had to take photos...

A pink geranium paired with asparagus fern.

Variegated coleus and a false (or Mexican) heather.

A gorgeous, dusty pink lisianthus (seriously, the photo doesn't do the color justice) paired again with asparagus fern.

A white geranium, it's concrete pot surrounded by the wild ivy that is overtaking the house.

Mmmmm, dill! After I got home with this, I noticed I had three dill seedlings springing up in last year's pots. Guess my plant last year spread its seed.

This is some new kind of basil, paired with the teeny-leafed creeping thyme I planted last year.

It's probably fruitless (ha ha), but I had to buy these pickling cucumber plants. Hopefully I'll get them to bear a bountiful harvest of cukes. Homegrown Sub-Continentals!

My spindly serrano pepper plant. I have four altogether, so I'm sure I'll get something.

More coleus.

Rosemary, planted in an antique enamel chamber pot. I don't particularly like the taste of rosemary, but I love the scent.

And finally, my view of the sky, from the backyard deck, through our three big trees.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Every time I see your face/It reminds me of the places we used to go/But all I got is a photograph/And I realise you're not coming back anymore

I'm not a particularly nostalgic person. I don't think of the past and long for my so-called salad days; nor do I look the future with hopes and dreams. I live in the present, perhaps to my detriment. Maybe I should look to my past more for lessons I've learned. And it's probably not good that I don't plan at all for my future, but hey, it's worked out okay for me until now.

Yesterday work prevented me from joining Steve in meeting up with Duwan Dunn, an old from from way back in the day. Duwan is a photographer and always had a camera in her hand. Actually, back then, many of us in our crowd documented our every little moment, staged and not. Anyway, Duwan gave Steve a disk loaded with her photos from the early to mid-80s and a lot of pleasant memories were evoked when we looked through them. Honestly though, in all these intervening years, I don't remember the specifics of most of the photos I'm in. But here's my favorite:

I believe this was taken in 1982, and possibly in this weird place in north county we referred to as The Bombed Out Building. But it's brilliant, isn't it? Duwan entitled it "Cathy Calls Hell."

I have absolutely no recollection of these next two photos being taken. That's how often we had photo sessions -- they all blur together at this point. From the titles (and the tell-tale streetlights), I know these were taken on Euclid Avenue. Our gang spent a lot of time on Euclid. Back then the CWE was the purview of the artsy, the edgy and the fabulously gay. It had not yet been countified and inundated by the cookie cutter Preps who eventually took over. On the steps of where Golden Grocer now resides we used to gather and just hang. My first wedding shower, such as it was, was held there. Once we found a box of old silk neckties and spent a couple of nights feverishly selling them to passers-by. Lest you think we were awful punk rock panhandlers, I assure you it was more performance art than anything else. We were the local color people came to the CWE to gawk at. We always had a boombox blasting music and we danced and danced. On one perfect night we formed a Soul Train (named after a segment in the eponymous show) and danced down the middle of Euclid, gathering strangers until our single file line was several car lengths long; we took it all the way down to Left Bank Books. It's a little hard to believe that very little to no alcohol nor any other substances were involved. We were just young and crazy and happy.

This is Duwan and me. I don't remember this vintage dress, but I wish I still had it.

Steve, an unremembered person (I say Frank, Steve says not), and me.

I love this shot of a young Steve. I don't think I've ever seen this photo before, and I'm pretty sure it was taken before I came around. But I really love it, from the paisley shirt and windbreaker to his rock star-thin hips to his fabulous jaw line.

OK, so maybe now I'm feeling a little nostalgic.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

No blue cars will run my world/no playboys will black my word/i would walk a million smiles/for one of your miles bob/stop

I spent the first half of my day off yesterday visiting my mom for a slightly post-Mother's Day celebration. As usual, she made it difficult to celebrate her. I arrived to find two of her ginormous and delicious apple dumplings ready to take home for Steve's and my dessert. Then she suggested we do a little shopping before going out to lunch. Even though I am, ahem, of a certain age, my mom still insists on buying me stuff when we go shopping. And being the baby of the family, I am apparently unable to resist.

Not able to justify the purchase of a completely impractical, but highly desireable pair of shoes, I allowed Mom to treat me. Just look at 'em:

You understand; I could not resist these. I have a thing for metallic shoes. They're like catnip. I've not really been into much of the '70s-styled stuff, but these made the cut.

After our shopping trip, which took much longer than either of us realized, we headed for lunch at La Carreta, a Mexican joint in a typical St. Charles strip mall. I was rather charmed when the host/server referred to us as "senioritas" and "amigas". It was cute, what can I say? Lunch was delicious and ridiculously cheap and it was really good to spend some time with my mom alone. However, the check came and she absolutely refused to let me pay. Mom! She's immovable when she's decided something (hmmmm, something else I've inherited, perhaps?), so I had no choice. And you know, I didn't really get spoiled when I was a kid due to certain circumstances -- I'm not too old to enjoy it now.

In other news, Michael has not been amused by any attempts to keep him here in St. Louis (by me or anyone else), so I have stopped making any comments or actions in that regard. I do sense him pulling away from me emotionally and physically as I've hardly talked to him in days. I'm not sure whose benefit he's doing it for, or even if he realizes he's doing it. I'm hoping for things to normalize soon so that we can actually enjoy the time we have left to spend together. We work together Saturday morning, so we'll have a good deal of alone time to discuss the situation. And you know I love discussing situations.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

You're waiting for someone to perform with

Anyone who knows me knows I'm not overly fond of small children. But I'd invite this kid over for a drink.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Yeah no one likes a smartarse but we all like stars/that wasn't my intention, I did it for a reason/it must have got mixed up/strangled beaten up

Today we went to Crestwood Mall (or whatever the sad thing is called these days) to meet Steve's family for a Mother's Day lunch at a rather bad restaurant called Fletcher's. (Steve found a bread wrapper twist-tie in his pasta...we didn't know it was a bad restaurant beforehand.) I haven't been to a mall in months and it's always a little bit fun to look into the stores even though I have pretty much learned to hate shopping.

Since the heyday of last spring/summer, I've neglected my search for found objects. Well, I don't guess one actually searches for found objects, but you know what I mean. On our trip out of the mall, I spotted something sitting on the outside window ledge of the Disney store. It was this:

I'm only slightly ashamed to say I hurried over to the ledge and snatched the horse up before its rightful owner could reclaim it. There was no question in my mind that I had to have it. Check out that face! That suspicious horse eye, just like the real thing. As a self-proclaimed (laughingly so, I assure you) horse whisperer, I have been given that stink-eye by many a horse.

But it is that time of year for found objects and I hope to keep adding to my collection in the coming weeks.

After scoring the horse, we wandered into Forever 21, my favorite age-inappropriate mall store. I managed to find a six dollar blue track jacket with double white stripes down each arm, stand up collar, ruching along the bustline and an adorable silver heart shaped zipper pull. On a blue streak, I also got a cute short blue dress with handy side pockets for a ridiculously cheap 12 bucks. Gotta love the F21.

We hightailed it out of the mostly depressing mall after that and headed towards the warm weather mecca of St. Louis: Ted Drewes. Yum. Carb and sugar overload, but so good. Not exactly warm weather today though; in fact it was rather horrible out what with the gloom and cold and rain. The sun is now trying to peek out from between the clouds and I can't complain about that. I'm so tired of this gloom. More than a couple days of cloudy, dark weather and my mood plummets. I'm hoping for blue skies, sunshine and warm temps tomorrow.

On the Michael front? He's given me a challenge: find him a serious boyfriend before the end of June and he'll stay. He's mostly joking, but I'm now accepting applications. Seriously.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Where were you/Hope to chain this memory/We could have been the last time/Show me a sight in the side of chance/Hold tomorrow/One foot in one foot out

It seems the universe is playing a cruel trick on me. Or perhaps I've accumulated some really bad karma (is there a point in promising not to mock any more customers?). By putting it out in the collective consciousness (more on that subject later) just how much Michael's presence in my life means to me, it's being taken away. Yep, he's decided to move away to the east coast. By the end of June.

Of course I want him to be happy and if moving from here is what will do that, then he has to do it and I won't begrudge him. But fuck. I don't want to be selfish and only think of myself, but FUCK! He's become a daily part of my life. He's my gay boyfriend. He's my only real ally at work. I can be a reprehensible human being around him and he will not only not judge me, but say something even worse himself. Nothing I tell him about my life shocks him (and I can and do tell him just about everything). Nothing he tells me about his escapades shocks me (though I won't say I'm not a little concerned about those Mr. Goodbar moments).

I know his decision to move away from St. Louis has little to nothing to do with me. Yet I can't help but be affected by it. Saying I will miss him understates the matter ridiculously. I will feel a gigantic hole in my life once he's gone. Work could, and most likely will, become unbearable without him around to help me deflect the craziness. He even said himself, a few weeks ago, that if I quit he would have to leave too.

How could life be so unfair as to give me something so special only to whisk it away so quickly? Can cliches help me? What doesn't kill me makes me stronger? If you love something, set it free? Everything happens for a reason? So much bullshit.

I'm not angry -- I'm really not. It's just this sense of losing something before it could really blossom that is making my heart ache. I know that we will stay in touch, but it won't be the same; I won't have him here with me to exchange disgusted glances, to share knowing looks and barely stifled laughs.

At this point I'm reduced to nothing but base profanity. Fuck.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

I will show another me/Today I don't need a replacement/

I'll tell them what the smile on my face meant/My heart going boom boom boom/"Hey" I said "You can keep my things, they've come to take me home."

Inspired by my friend and co-worker Michael, I hereby swear to blog every day for at least seven days. Now I just have to figure out what to write about. Perhaps I'll start with a general state of the union address.

I've avoided my usual bitching and whining and ranting and raving for some time, not because I didn't have anything to rant about, but because it was getting tedious, even to me. Work has had its ups and downs; downs so low that I was thinking of desperate means to be able to leave it. Things got better, mostly, immediately after the apex of misery. I'm inherently lazy and very disinclined to go through the agony of a job search, so I've decided to stay put and wait until some other opportunity comes to me (hey, it could happen!). And then there's Michael. I don't make new friends very easily or very often. When it happens at work, it's kind of extra special to me. I mean, I have to be there, I have to go to work -- having someone there I actually love spending time with makes the job so much more tolerable. Knowing I'm going to work most or all of a shift with Michael makes it feel more like a social event than work. That's invaluable to me. My point is, as long as Michael is there, I'm most likely not going anywhere. [I will deal with the possibility of him moving away soon...never.] And there are other people there I enjoy spending time with, so I'm hanging in there, trying not to take the little insanities and inanities that surround me personally.

Which leads me to my general state of mind these days: Happy and contented. Maybe it's the onset of spring with its warm temperatures and longer days that has boosted my mood and my energy levels. Maybe it's my very regular diet of real time and virtual time sex that has conspired to make me a calmer, happier person. Or is being a calmer, happier person why I'm having more sex? Honestly, with the results what they are, do I care which came first? I think not.

Tomorrow, or maybe even later tonight, I will write about Iron Man and my renewed lust for Robert Downey, Jr.