Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Solo, Shirtless, and Souless

By Pauly
Hollyweird, CA

I pulled an all-nighter on Sunday working on Coventry. I passed out for about forty minutes sometime around sunrise after diligently "live blogging" the setlist from the epic Phil Lesh and Friends show at the Warfield. They played three sets and played past 3am. I spent the rest of the wee hours updating the site. I passed out sitting on the couch and woke up to finish working.

I struggled, but still wrote for a bit before Nicky eventually woke up and we wandered over to Nick's for breakfast. I was dragging ass, but we wanted to get a day at the beach in since Nicky had to fly to New Orleans for a work assignment on Tuesday. Once we got back to the apartment, we shifted into going to the beach mode and made necessary preparations such as gathering up beach books and proper attire and sun block and filling up the cooler. We've been going a lot and we actually have a routine.

The drive up to Malibu was quick. No traffic on PCH. The weather was perfect in the low 80s with sunny skies. There was a light wind but the first thing we noticed were the humongous waves. The only time I saw the waves that high... were once when we went to Zuma in February and too a walk while the ocean was roaring.

We stayed for several hours. I didn't sleep. Instead I read for a bit and jotted down notes for a couple of posts. I let my thoughts drift out to sea and allowed my mind tor ace and wander. Brainstorming. I came up with some refreshing ideas. I let go of some bitter grudges. And I reminded myself what my goals were for the upcoming two months. When I left the beach... I felt lighter... sort of like taking a mental shit. I used to be all sluggish but now I was walking swiftly and with more confidence.

On the way back to the apartment, we stopped off at Zankou Chicken. For $10 you can eat a feast for two. There were times when I was traveling in Europe or Australia and I'd wake up in the middle of the night craving the garlic sauce from Zankou.

After dinner, we settled in and watched a flick... Margot at the Wedding. It was writer and directed by Noah Baumbach (The Squid and the Whale). He's sort of my generation's version of Woody Allen. I adored Squid and was looking forward to his next project which was Margot which included Nicole Kidman, Jack Black, and Jennifer Jason Leigh.

Kidman plays Margot, a self-absorbed writer from Manhattan, who travels out to Long Island with her son to attend the wedding of her slightly-odd sister Pauline (Leigh) who is about to marry Malcolm (Jack Black) a nebbish slacker who dabbles in the arts but doesn't appear to have a job. He reminded me of myself in the late 1990s. Margot couldn't stand Malcolm and felt he wasn't good enough for her sister.

"He's not ugly. He's completely unattractive," she flippantly said.

The witty and snarky script is the strength of the film. Here's one of my favorite exchanges:
Pauline: I was dating that guy Horace back then. Do you remember him?

Margot: Was that the guy who liked to rough you up?

Pauline: No, that was our dad.

Margot: Our dad used to strip down to his skivvies and beat us with a belt.

Malcolm: That man had a sexual screw loose.

Pauline: That's awful, that stuff that happens to kids. Malcolm was fondled by a male babysitter.

Malcolm: Just use that information however you want.
This is not a dark-comedy about a dysfunctional family... rather a dark film with some comedic moments. Jack Black really plays a serious character with a penchant for teen-aged girls. I won't spoil the ending.

Like Squid, I might have to see this a few more times and even read the screenplay before I can fully appreciate the depth of characters.

My favorite line? Jack Black is standing in the mirror inspecting his junk... "My scrotum is longer than my penis."

Here's the trailer...

On Tuesday, we grabbed breakfast at Nick's something I always do on the morning that I leave LA. This time it was Nicky's turn. There was light traffic to LAX. I dropped her off and drove back to the apartment. I got stuck in traffic and it sucked.

Once I got back to the apartment, I enacted Operation Boxer Shorts and Bong Hits. I had the entire place to myself for 48 hours. I cranked up the music. I wrote. I played online poker for a small profit. I watched the Yankees get spanked by the Orioles. Jeter got drilled which sucks since A-Rod finally returned from the DL. And in true A-Rod fashion, he hit a meaningless solo HR when the game was out of reach. Nice way to pad your stats, pretty boy.

I also watched the Celtics take game 1 from the Pistons. The Celtics covered and I didn't bet on the game. The Lakers play the Spurs tonight. Should be a good game.

Showcase stopped by to pick up his mail and we hung out for a bit and caught up. Since he's no longer Nicky's roommate, I never get to see him anymore.

I spent the rest of the evening writing and listening to different music. We had gotten in trouble with a band from Portland called Au because BTreotch posted a link on Coventry which pointed readers to a download of their upcoming album which hasn't been released yet. There was some minor drama but everything was cleared before Midnight. We took down the link but I managed to snag the new album before the link disappeared. My reaction to Au's new album? Interesting, different, peculiar... but I didn't like it.

I passed out around 1am and woke up by 5am to write. I even went for a long speed walk down Olympic before I returned home to write.

I have 24 more hours of raging solo before I have to pick Nicky up at the airport tomorrow morning. I actually have a ton of work to do... so I'm better get to it.

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