Archive for August, 2010

It’s Getting a Little Bit Primitive ‘Round Here

One of the Project Managers in my office is leaving us to work with another company. As a farewell gesture, we all went to a German “restaurant” down on Venice boardwalk to have lunch and wish our co-worker all the best. (I put restaurant in quotes because no one really goes down there for the cuisine.)

For those of you who don’t know, Venice Boardwalk is the place to go when you want to see “crazy.” All kinds of people are there, from your beach bums to your zoned-out stoner. Add in a mix of out-of-state tourists, and you’ve got the population that walked back and forth in front of us as we sat in the patio area. It was the perfect setting for an oceanside lunch, even if the marine layer was still hovering over our heads.

Suddenly, the PM sitting to my left grabbed a couple of napkins and started wiping the side of his shirt.

“Did a bird just shit on you?” I asked.

“I’m not sure,” he replied.

He pulled up the napkin for inspection, but the stain didn’t even look like bird poop. If anything, it looked like he may have gotten peed on.

Fast forward about thirty minutes: the food has arrived and we’re all digging in. The PM next to me suddenly blurts out, “I think it was a chicken wing.”

I didn’t know what to say except for, “What was a chicken wing?”

“I think someone threw a chicken wing at me.”

Venice Boardwalk has its eclectic mix of characters, but I didn’t think that any of them would stoop so low as to start throwing food at others.

And then we realized the wing probably came from the table of Eastern European tourists sitting behind us. They’d been drinking pitchers of beer, smoking, and ordering numerous plates of appetizers. Further inspection lead us to discover a couple of stray bones in the potted bushes right at the front of the restaurant.

So the next time you find yourself having a meal down by Venice Beach, heed my warning and beware the flying chicken wing.

Magical Thinking

It’s exactly a week from my birthday, and if I make it to that date, I will officially be exempt from membership for the 27 Club. (I know I’m not famous, but I like to play it safe.)

I kind of miss celebrating my birthday with people I’m not related to by blood. Unfortunately, the Sunset Strip Music Festival usually falls the same weekend I try to plan something, and most of my friends live in that general direction. Traffic is murder, and no one in their right mind would venture outside of their homes unless it was absolutely necessary. Gone are the days of picnics where people have to identify themselves with a nametag and I somehow require bandages on both knees:

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I’ll still be counting down the days, and will have a box of bandages at my side, just in case.

Under Maintenance

This year for my birthday, I’m giving myself the gift of mental health. I can afford to treat myself to this, as I found employment in April and [finally] received steady health insurance this month.

Back in 2008, I was surprised to be diagnosed with anxiety and depression. Treatment for both of these began, and I was on the road to becoming a more functional being in this society. Things were looking up, and I was able to reach goals that I thought I’d never be able to do (like sticking around to see a chick flick by myself while being surrounded by female cliques of three or more).

When I was laid off from my job in December 2009, I was in a rut. I didn’t have the means to be able to keep up my treatment and had to stop. Thankfully, I was at a point where most things didn’t bother me too much and I figured that as long as I took precautions on my end (breathing exercises, going to the gym, and staying as mentally active as possible), I should be okay. And I was, up until a month ago. Small symptoms started popping up, but they were small enough for me to pass it off as just being a bad day.

It’s small day-to-day things you take for granted that made me realize I couldn’t pass things off as just being a bad day: getting out of bed, making myself presentable, interacting with people on the most basic levels… This started pushing other things to the side, things that I take pleasure in: seeing friends, blogging, baking, and volunteering with dogs.

It’s uncomfortable to be in this place, to say the least.

Happy Birthday

In the midst of celebrating over California’s exciting announcement, I almost forgot what day this would have been.

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Happy Birthday, Chris. I sincerely hope that you’re getting the perfect martini every single time, wherever you are.

One Small Step…

Back in May of 2009, I wrote this post about my anger and frustration on Proposition 8’s passing; my reaction was very similar to the two times Bush became the President of the United States:

OH. HELL. NO.

After much anticipation, the Honorable Judge Vaughn Walker made the decision today that Prop 8 is unconstitutional and that California “”has no interest in differentiating between same-sex and opposite-sex unions.”

When I heard that Prop 8 had passed back in November 2008, the first image that came to mind was of all the newly wed gay and lesbian couples who stood proudly with their spouse at a Gay Men’s Chorus of LA concert. These couples had that look of being deeply in love – something I thought died out with the birth of Reality TV. These were the couples you could wager not to get a divorce and walk away fully confident. But the most impressive (and touching) part of seeing those people standing? Not a single one of them looked to be under the age of fifty. Which means that these were couples who most likely had spent years and years together and were finally able to make their dream of becoming one legally true.

These people the ones who, to me at least, embodied what it truly means to enter into marriage. That’s an image that will stay with me for life.

I saw the headline when I got back from lunch, and I got a little bit teary. California will regain its reputation for being a crazy liberal place, and I can hold my head up again in front of Iowa. Most importantly, my two gay uncles (one on each side) have the right to marry.