Monday, May 26, 2008

Float with the Stone

By Pauly
Hollyweird, CA

The last few days have been bittersweet. I'm forced to deal with polar opposites... either I'm trying to relax and enjoying myself or I'm running around like a nut nailing down errands and feverishly writing to finish off future assignments and/or working on the blogs.

The weather was kinda crappy in LA. We were hoping to squeeze in the beach a couple of times this weekend, but alas, it rained on Friday and the blah weather continued through Saturday.

I was on work tilt on Friday. I've been trying to work out a deal and the person on the other end has not responded to my emails. They are either lazy or blowing me off. Either way, it didn't sit well with me and set the tone for the day. I also had several other fires to put out which irked me since I wanted to relax during my last weekend before Las Vegas. That never happened... and I ended up pulling an allnighter (my second of the week) in order to catch up with work. I'm slightly worried that I'm entering Vegas a little stressed and tired instead of calm and relaxed.

At least I'm used to staying up to dawn and have been getting in a few sleep deprived nights.

On the good end of things, I have been enjoying one particular writing project involving Phish's Japan Tour in 2000. I have been chasing down the flashbacks and writing and researching those epic concerts. It's been a lot of fun returning to warm memories of one of the greatest trips and adventures that Senor and I ever embarked upon. In 2007 I got sent all over the world, but even those travels could not compare to the vibes that we encountered in Japan. Fun times for sure.

As much as that project took up a ton of time over the last few days, I hardly noticed it since it was sheer enjoyment to explore those memories.

On the opposite end of that spectrum, I struggled to write up a article on an online poker tournament. I admit that my research was a half-assed effort because I really didn't want to do the assignment which landed in my lap at the last minute. But shit, money is money, right?

The good news is that I completed all those assignments in the can. I have a deadline in less than two weeks but once I get to Las Vegas, that assignment will write itself.

So late Friday night and early Saturday morning was the dead zone for me as I methodically put out all those fires that sprung up. Even when I was done, I was wide awake and had a severe case of insomnia which I tried to cure by watching bad movies on cable (like that awful Jessica Beil vehicle London) or flicks that I had seen before such as Running with Scissors or Pirates of the Caribbean 3. The best thing I caught was a German flick called Das Leben der Anderen (translated... The Lives of Others) which won an Oscar in 2007 for Best Foreign Film. It was set in East Berlin during the Cold War in the 1980s and involved the East German secret police, the Stasi, spying on a writer and his lover, a famous stage actress.

On Saturday night, we ate dinner at a cheesy Hawaiian burger chain called Islands and caught a flick at the Landmark Theatre. They had reserved seats and when we bought tickets to War, Inc. there were only a handful of seats together. We settled on the last row. Since it was opening weekend and War, Inc. was only released in one theatre in all of Los Angeles, it was a sold out showing.

I watched a lot of baseball, hockey, and hoops over the weekend. I caught every Yankee game this week in mlb.tv and got my money's worth. I guess that I subscribed to the service at the right time since the Yanks ran off five straight wins to pull to an even .500. Granted, they swept the lowly Mariners which is the worst team in the league. They should have whopped them good.

The Lakers are up 2-1 after dropping last night's game. For the first time in the entire NBA playoffs, the Lakers got spanked. They had been the dominant ones and went from crushing teams to looking flat and lifeless. The Celtics have their hands full with Detroit but are two wins away from returning to the NBA finals.

On Sunday, I had to buy a new phone. I only wanted a new battery but for the same price, I could have upgraded to a new phone. Verizon had crackberries on sale, but I stayed strong and avoided the temptation. Instead, I got something that was on sale that included a rebate so I practically got a new phone for next to nothing.

I kinda preferred Nicky's phone better than mine. She's a Sprint customer and Verizon did not sell her model of phone. I had to settle on Verizon's equivalent. I'm still on the fence about the new phone but at least it has a qwerty keypad which will allow me to write text messages faster and I could write more extensive notes.

I spent most of last night doing laundry and reorganizing my iPod. I ran out of space! I had to remove a lot of video stuff that I accumulated like old episodes of 30 Rock and The Office and a couple of documentaries on Metallica, Neil Young, and Bob Dylan. I also had to get rid of a lot of below average sounding bootlegs (including random jazz, Radiohead, Phish, and Galactic). That took longer than I wanted and I was up late last night organizing that clusterfuck.

Now it's Memorial Day and we're supposed to head over to Nicky's parents house for a BBQ since that will be the last time Nicky gets to see them for two months. Her sister will also be on the road for a while shooting a film on location in Utah. Once the BBQ is over, the countdown to Las Vegas begins as we start packing up all our gear for a two month stint in Vegas.

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