Thursday, November 18, 2010

Random Brain Droppings: The Crystal Version

By Pauly
Compton, CA

For the second time in three nights, I found myself in Compton after Midnight. This is a neighborhood that's gotten a bad rap over the years for its propensity for gang violence. Most of that gore has subsided, but still, this is a part of LA that I usually don't hang out in after dark, let alone after the Midnight hour.

I ate McDonalds for the first time in I can't remember when. That's what happens when you're in a working class/poor neighborhood because fast food joints are usually the only available options for food. I do what I can to avoid McDs as much as possible and only eat it out of necessity -- usually when I'm traveling and there's limited options, or it's super late when I'm on the road and there's nothing else open.

I got something in the mail from my buddy Jonas. He asked me for my address the other day and it occurred to me that I omitted the apartment number. Luckily I noticed the package left out by our mail box (not in it, mind you). The postal worker never bothered to read the inside of our mailbox to figure out that's who the package belongs to. Luckily, no one stole a special shirt designed by JT, a friend of a friend, who created Dance Police t-shirts for different party people in Colorado.

I have five books that I want to read, but I've been too busy the last two weeks to pick them up and rip through 100+ pages a day. I'm looking forward to the next few weeks, because books are on the Top 5 things on my agenda for the remainder of the year.

I had to fill out like 12 custom forms at the post office to mail five books to a bookstore in London. Man, it's just the UK! What the hell was all that paper work for anyway? The post office is always an unpleasurable experience, but I'm prepped for a horrible time before I even set foot inside. So on the rare days the lines move fast, I'm incredibly elated. Low expectations usually lead to more pleasant experiences. Shit, the post office is actually a breeze compared to some of the hell I'm reading about regarding cock checks at domestic airports by the TSA.

I finally caught up with Empire Boardwalk. I was sick on Sunday and once football was over, I fired up the DVR and watched six episodes. Man...did I really do that? Maybe it was five? No, it was six. The pacing definitely picked up. I had a couple of episodes of Rubicon in my queue, but ever since I found out that that show got canceled, I lost any urge to watch those episodes collecting dust in the DVR's memory banks. When I left for Phish tour at the start of October, I all but stopped watching anything on TV, especially those hoarding shows that I got hooked on and couldn't stop watching. When I was in NYC, I caught up with the final two episodes of this season of Mad Men via online torrents.

I bought tickets for the Knicks-Clippers game at Staples Center for Saturday night. The seats were $60, but I got them for $23/each. All three were $69, or just $9 over face.Most of the time, my friends seeking Phish or Yankees playoff tickets are getting raped on Stub Hub. In this instance, I made out like a bandit on Stub Hub. Shit, I could have gotten tickets as low as $11. Sure, they were cheap seats, but that's insane. No one in LA wants to see the Clippers play, let alone play the anemic Knicks. Most locals rather watch the Clips on cable. it's much easier than paying good money for tickets to watch futility, not to mention the downside of dealing with traffic and paying $25 for parking. Shit, the more I think about it, maybe I should have just stayed home and watched the game on TV because I can't smoke weed inside the hoops arena!

I went to work on Thursday and as soon as I attempted to set up my laptop in the press area, I realized that I forgot my power chord. I was pissed on two accounts.... 1) I was heavily distracted with negotiating a potential work assignment, and 2) the last time I went to work and forgot my laptop's power chord -- Vegas in the summer of 2008 and I got into a car accident on the way back from the retrieval. Luckily for me, I was 100% safe. No accidents, despite having to navigate three freeways (each way) to get from Compton > Slums of Beverly Hills > Compton. The drive takes 25 minutes with no traffic and about 35 minutes during the late morning when we had been heading there. My journey home took over 75 minutes. Yes, it was light traffic too. On my way back to the casino, I had to abort the trip -- 20+ minutes in due to heavy congestion. It took ten minutes to get two blocks from my apartment, then took another ten just to get on the freeway. I got a call from Nicky who had been checking and noticed that most of my journey had all red routes. Yes, red is bad. So, I turned around, headed back to the apartment, and wait until the rush hour commute was over. Kinda bummed out that was the case, but then again, I was glad I didn't get stuck in a bumper-to-bumper road-rage inducing jam.

That's it. I'm outta stuff to say. The little tap inside my head is getting turned off in 3...2...1...

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