Thursday, October 30, 2003
Back in the saddle again:
I know you are dying to know the details of my trip and I know I didn't satisfy any of your curiosity with that cryptic post yesterday because the only real fact I disclosed was that I drank a lot of Guinness, and you probably already knew I would do that. So here is a slightly more detailed recap of my trip. I will not give you blow-by-blow details because I think you would get bored reading "and then I had my 9th pint" over and over.
Last Monday I ran around doing a few last minute things like making bank deposits and packing an extra pair of underwear in my carry-on bag in case my suitcase got lost like that one time I went to Boston. Then I went to my friend's funeral, the details of which I will not go into because everyone knows funerals are sad so I don't need to tell you that. I went to the airport and got on the big green plane with a shamrock on it (no, I'm not kidding) and off I went.
I arrived on a lovely, clear, sunny Tuesday morning and dropped off my stuff at my hotel. I then immediately proceeded to go out and take photos of things around Dublin. I went back to the hotel for a couple of pints and a nap and when I woke up it was raining, so since I couldn't take any more photos I decided to drink some more, which continued when I met up with some friends later in the evening. They took me to the best pub in all existence, which only has heavy metal on the jukebox. Seriously. Best. Pub. Evar. \m/
Wednesday saw more rain and some hail, so I could only go out for about an hour and a half in the afternoon to take photos. Then it started pouring again so I proceeded to drink lots of Guinness and watch football on the telly (translation: soccer on TV).
On Thursday morning, my flight was cancelled because the airline was on strike, so I had to spend an extra day in Dublin, which was fine by me (more Guinness). I found a beautiful church and went to sit in it because old churches have a really amazing atmosphere and are very calming for me. Fortunately, I didn't burst into flames when I entered the church so I must not be as evil as I thought.
I arrived in England on Thursday night and stayed up late with my friend Emma gossiping. On Friday we went shopping in Manchester and I bought stuff because that's what you do on holiday. I decided that I really like the area where Emma lives and so I now have a genius plan to obtain several million dollars so I can buy houses there and here and just be a jet-setting mamma who summers in the English countryside.
On Saturday we went to a lovely old mansion and walked around the grounds and then Emma had a housewarming party. Of course, I drank loads of Guinness. I also answered everyone's questions about American culture, things to do in Los Angeles, Bush's foreign policy, and the Governator. I am happy to report that I convinced at least four people that not all Yanks are ignorant. Of course, I looked really fucking hot that night so I think that helped.
On Sunday Emma and her boyfriend Iain (who are ridiculously happy and in love, which normally would make me nauseous but I actually found it quite refreshing) and I recovered from the party by walking around the grounds of this beautiful, 200 acre park. I took a lot of photos of that but you will just have to wait to see them because not a single one is digital so you have to wait until I get them developed and scanned. Don't hold your breath because I am a lazy mofo.
On Monday we went to this town called Chester and walked around some Roman ruins and had some ridiculously expensive brunch. I was feeling a little bummed out, so I went to a camera shop and bought a nice new 500mm lens for my camera. Nothing cheers a girl up like retail therapy! Of course, I am not the average girl so my retail therapy usually involves cameras or electronic gadgets instead of clothes and makeup like most chicks, but whatever.
I flew home on Tuesday and was unfortunately seated next to a drunken 70 year old man who not only kept drinking tons of booze during the flight, but kept spilling wine on himself and farting. He also wouldn't get up to let me out when I needed to go to the restroom and made me climb over him. I swear to Christ, if I get like that when I am old any of you have my explicit permission to shoot me in the face.
Now that I am home after flying through the disturbing amount of smoke generated by the fires surrounding Los Angeles, I realized that I really didn't spend enough time in England so I am going to have to go back more often. So, anyone who feels like donating to the "Kathleen's frequent trips overseas" fund, please let me know. The rest of you can just sit back and wait for me to stop talking about my trip and return to my regularly scheduled programming of misanthropic hilarity.
P.S. Tonight I'm co-hosting the Los Angeles National Novel Writing Month kick-off party. This is roughly akin to herding drunken cats. Wish me luck!
babbled by Kat @ 8:40:00 AM |
Wednesday, October 29, 2003
On my trip..
I lost: my head, my convictions, the plot, 50% of my liver function, all the buttons on my winter coat.
I gained: a broken heart, many cheesy souvenirs, a belly full of Guinness, a greater appreciation for what I have, a bottle of fucking amazing Irish whiskey, some perspective.
I saw: great beauty, a lot of people who look like me, Roman ruins, rain followed immediately by sun followed immediately by hail, how lovely it is to live in the English countryside.
I learned: tea is a Very Big Deal, the difference between rugby league and rugby union, people really can find true love, my capacity for consumption of Guinness is far more than I thought it was, Tylenol with codeine can be purchased over the counter in the UK, I am much better suited to a life of leisure.
babbled by Kat @ 9:41:00 AM |
Saturday, October 25, 2003
Out on the piss:
You'll pardon me if I type with an Irish or English accent for a while, won't you?
I had a brilliant time in Dublin even though it rained the entire second day that I was there. I must have consumed my weight in Guinness while I was there, but oddly never crossed the line from buzzed to drunk. Disaster was narrowly averted yesterday when I thought I'd never get to England since my airline was on strike, but fortunately they were able to rebook me on a much later flight and I am now safe and sound at my friend Emma's house in Knutsford. For those of you in southern California who are used to everyone being on strike by now, you probably have no sympathy for me, but I don't care because I'm on holiday and you're not.
Tonight Emma is having a party during which I will meet many, many English people, some of whom are military men. Men in uniform, ooer! Since I can't upload photos while I'm here due to the fact that I didn't bring my laptop with me (shocking, I know), you will just have to wait until I get back to see what a fab time I'm having. However, I assure you that it is really fab and you should all envy me.
babbled by Kat @ 5:20:00 AM |
Saturday, October 18, 2003
Last night I had a fabulous time at the Novel Cafe and the somethingsomething Irish pub in Santa Monica with some people from NaNoWriMo. Yes, it's that time of year again, and I'll be bugging all of my writer friends to join up shortly. I've just been a bit too preoccupied to harass you yet, but never fear, I'll be doing it soon and often.
Today I had to go run around all over the goddamn place getting things ready for my trip. I was all proud of myself, because even though I was up until 3 a.m. last night totally losing it (which I'll explain in a moment), I woke up on time and got out the door on schedule to run my myriad errands.
However, I forgot the checks I was going to deposit.
I didn't realize that until I got all the way to Pasafuckingdena.
So, with the bank closing in an hour and the round-trip from there to my place a good 45 minutes, I had to make an executive decision and decided to abandon the banking and just execute the rest of the plan, so I went to the American Express office to exchange some money. May I just mention that Euros are pretty funny-looking? I haven't been back to Europe in a few years, and so I'd never seen them in person before. They have this weird silvery strip thing on them. Anyway, I'll be spending them in Ireland in a few days, so what the fuck do I care?
After running the rest of my errands, which included a stop at Mold Gravy and stocking up on film at Freestyle, I came home and surveyed my kingdom, and all was well with the world.
Well, not really.
See, the reason why I was up late last night was because my friend Jeff passed away. I got the e-mail from his brother yesterday afternoon, and for some reason the reality just didn't fucking hit me until I got home. I'm worried about all of my friends who are affected by this. I'm angry because he was only 21 and he was one of the nicest people I've ever met, and it's just not fucking fair that he was taken when he was so young. And I'm sad because he and I hadn't talked that much lately, and that's exactly how it was with my friend Libra when she died - I kept meaning to spend time with her, and then bam, she was gone.
Yesterday, I didn't know how to deal with it. At first it was some form of denial, I guess. I checked the Forest Lawn site to see if his service was listed.. to see if it was really real, I guess, and I saw his name there. I guess a part of me knew it was real, but I don't know if I just didn't fully acknowledge it, or if I was just dealing with it by being around my friends for some kind of comfort, or what. But when I got home and talked to my friend Wes, and saw what he and Jeff's other friends had written about him in their journals, I just broke down and wept.
I don't know what else to say. So many people were touched by this wonderful person's life, and we'll all miss him.
babbled by Kat @ 7:14:00 PM |
Friday, October 17, 2003
Every day I wear this bracelet that my friend Steve got me for my birthday. It's from Tiffany, of course, because I'm fancy and I need fancy jewelry. Well, not really. I'm pretty unfancy. Anyway, I also wear a pair of amethyst plugs in my ears that he gave me a couple of years ago. (If you don't know what plugs are, go learn something.) All the other jewelry that I wear daily was purchased by yours truly, because I like to give myself presents. So what does it mean when I wear all this stuff that a boy gave me? Steve thinks it means we're engaged, but since he hasn't proposed, I don't think it's official. Actually, now that Jean-Luc himself is single again, there's some serious competition, as I'm pretty sure that Patrick Stewart's impression of Jean-Luc Picard is better than anyone else's on the planet.
On an entirely unrelated note, I kind of regret posting my opinions about baseball now. I'm not like most baseball fans who get all rabid about how much they hate this team or that team. I do hate the Braves, but who wouldn't with that tomahawk chop thing? Really. But I recently saw something on someone's blog (and this is someone whose blog I really enjoy) that made me really consider never talking about it in my blog again. Basically, she was just ranting about how much she hated the Yankees, but in her rant she said "I hate their fans". See, I might hate a team, or want them to lose, but automatically hating their fans? That's just too much animosity, even for me. I can hate someone who cuts me off in traffic or kills someone I care about or throws a dog into traffic or shoves my friend, but I am not going to hate some random fan of some team that I don't like. When my team loses I root for other teams. Hell, I root for teams in the NLCS and I'm not really fond of the NL at all. But whether I'm a fan of a team or not, I don't accuse their fans of being retards. I don't tell people who are fans of any team, even if I dislike that team, that they suck and are sub-par human beings. But that's what people have been telling me lately, and so I've decided not to discuss that shit anymore. I'll add sports to the old adage about not talking religion or politics with friends.
And on yet another entirely unrelated note, I am making my final preparations to go to Ireland and England. I'm really looking forward to this trip. It's a much-needed, long-awaited vacation. Plus, Ireland is the land of my people, and I always feel like I'm going home when I go there. I'll try and blog while I'm there, because I know that you are all just sitting by your RSS aggregators fucking dying from anticipation of my next brilliantly insightful and witty post. Try not to actually die, though. I don't want that shit on my conscience.
Scott + me = BFF!
babbled by Kat @ 10:44:00 AM |
Tuesday, October 14, 2003
Drink, drank, drunk:
As if the impending takeover by the "Governator" wasn't enough to make the rest of the country thank their lucky stars that they do not live in California, we southern California residents now have two major union strikes on our hands that are making things just super fun. Actually, the transit worker strike only affects Los Angeles county, so I am sure those of you in San Francisco or the O.C. are just laughing at us while we sit in even heavier traffic than usual. Of course, instead of taking the bus to work, we could all just go grab a snack at the local supermarket... if they weren't also on strike. Neither strike really affects me directly because I don't use the abysmal public transportation system in L.A., and I rarely shop at the chain supermarkets that are affected by the strikes. I get all my groceries at Trader Joe's because their prices are better and their checkout clerks are hotter. However, I am indirectly affected because a) no public transportation means more people clogging up the already clogged freeways, 2) most of these people drive like they have their entire head jammed up their own ass, and d) there are already enough people on the fucking freeway that drive like complete assmasters, so the addition of 400,000 more of these dickholes to the freeways is enough to send me into a murderous rage.
That said, I know you are all absolutely dying to hear about what happened this weekend at the Artwalk. I know you are breathless with anticipation. I know you are all on the edges of your seats waiting to hear about the superstars in attendance and the wild sex parties and the alcohol and substance consumption that we all engaged in with reckless abandon.
Well, I can't tell you about any of that because I was sworn to secrecy by several naked rock stars and at least eleven and a half C-list celebrities. I can tell you that it was alternately stressful and fun, nerve-wracking and exhilarating, stone-cold sober and blissfully intoxicated. I even sold some art, shockingly enough. I also drank enough alcohol to kill a small elephant. I wasn't the only one. I have already begun drafting the apology letter to my liver.
Now that AlcoholWalk is over, I must turn my attention to my next adventure, namely my trip to Ireland and England. I will be departing for the glorious Emerald Isle next Monday afternoon, and for the next several days I will be wandering around taking more photographs than I know what to do with. I might even manage to drink a Guinness or two. Then I'll be off to northern England to visit a friend and take more photos. I am sure that there will be a lot of alcohol consumption, and I am positive that I will make a complete ass of myself at some point, which I will be sure to ask my friend to document with plenty of digital photos for your viewing pleasure. After all, that's what I'm here for - to make an ass of myself for your entertainment. I'm ever so selfless, don't you agree?
babbled by Kat @ 9:51:00 AM |
Thursday, October 09, 2003
Remember how I told you that I was going to bug the living bejeezus out of you people about the upcoming Artwalk? Well, aside from linking to the Brewery Arts website every other post, I think I haven't really kept that promise that well. Well, wait, maybe I have. Since I know most of my L.A. area readers in real life, I have bugged them in person or via e-mail. (So you had better show up!) However, even if you do not live in L.A., you can live vicariously through me as hundreds of people wander through my living room, because I will be posting photos here the whole time.
That said, I'm almost completely done getting ready for the damn thing. I still have to frame 4 more prints, paint a couple of frames and make a few more small paintings, but I can do all of that tonight and tomorrow morning. I am taking the day off tomorrow so that I can spend it doing super fun stuff like cleaning and going on a food and alcohol run. I don't know how much I'll be blogging, but I'll at least try to take a few photos so people who don't know what the hell an Artwalk is can get an idea of what I'm always fucking going on about.
Caryn is dead-on about the LA Times
babbled by Kat @ 11:38:00 AM |
Tuesday, October 07, 2003
Vote for me if you want to live:
I will assume that if you live in California you have done your duty as a citizen and voted. If you do not live in California, please carry on pointing and laughing at us as you observe the circus.
I will not delve any deeper into my feelings about this election, but if you are a regular reader you have probably figured out my political leanings, so I will leave it up to your imagination. I will tell you one thing, though - I didn't vote for Gary Coleman. Though I was amused by his television show when I was a kid, I can't bring myself to vote for a dude who stands eye-level with my snatch.
I am sure that since you are reading this obscure and only occasionally interesting little website that you are acquainted with other sites that give you information that is actually valuable. Since that is surely the case for most of my readers (except the stalkers - thanks for hitting refresh 17 times a day!), I will assume that you have heard about all the ruckus that's being raised over the National Do Not Call Registry. Personally, I think it's a great idea. I really fucking hate telemarketers. It would be far more convenient for me to place my name on one universal 'do not call' list than to ask each individual telemarketing company to put me on theirs. I don't get many telemarketer calls anymore, since my phone company has a privacy screener service which eliminates any computer-dialed calls by forcing any caller that has caller ID blocked to state their name before their calls gets put through. It looks like the national list has the green light for the time being, but I will be interested to see how the court battle pans out, because I am amused by the telemarketers' argument against the national list. In case you don't know, they claim that the list violates their First Amendment rights because it exempts charities.
The reason that I find this amusing is because I think it's ridiculous. The First Amendment protects free speech, yes, but it doesn't protect an invasion of my motherfucking privacy. I am no expert in constitutional law, of course, but I think that once you cross the line from public free speech into coming into my home, using my telephone (which I pay for), that is no longer considered protected speech. I don't know, though - I would be willing to consider it protected speech if someone invented a device that would allow me to reach through the phone and choke the living fuck out of these people.
I saw another example of this type of argument recently in a forum that I moderate. A girl came in to each of the California regional forums and posted a political rant. Three sentences were devoted to urging people to vote on the recall, followed by 14 paragraphs detailing her political views. Since the forum is a writers' forum, that is specifically supposed to remain on the topic of one particular writing project, this was inappropriate. When she was called on it (in every regional forum, I might add, even by people who agreed with her politically), she insisted that she should be allowed to post it anywhere because she was guaranteed the right to free speech by the First Amendment. You know what? That is just fucking ridiculous. Yes, you are allowed to say what you want, but when you are on a privately owned forum and you are using someone else's resources, the forum owner has every right to decide what the forum posting rules are. This one is even more ridiculous than the telemarketers, because in this case the government wasn't involved - just a few forum moderators who gently reminded her that there were forums designated for off-topic posts.
Don't get me wrong - I absolutely believe in the First Amendment. But when people try to fall back on it because none of their other arguments hold any water, I think that's doing it a disservice.
P.S. I will try to stop being all serious and shit and resume my normal mind-numbing hilarity soon. I'm just all wrapped up in Artwalk prep, hellish project deadlines at work and aneurysm-inducing baseball playoffs. I swear on the souls of your first born children that I will post something lighthearted soon. No, really.
Achey breaky Jakey directs good phone porn
babbled by Kat @ 9:18:00 PM |
Sunday, October 05, 2003
You wouldn't know it from reading this blog, but I'm a total baseball freak. I don't usually talk about it during the regular season because I find the postseason much more exciting and therefore don't watch many regular season games. So, since it is now the postseason, I have been watching pretty much every game. Well, not every game - I missed some of the Marlins-Giants games, but I've watched almost all of the AL games and a few of the Cubs-Braves games. So far, every team I've been rooting for has won, which is probably giving my neighbors quite a fright since I tend to shriek loudly when the team I'm rooting for wins. I just got to watch the Cubs beat the fuck out of the Braves, which was nice because a) I liked the Cubs 'cause they were the underdog and b) I fucking HATE the Braves. Tomahawk chop, indeed. There's only one more divisional series game left - Boston vs. Oakland, tomorrow night. Now, I'm a Yankee fan, but I am rooting for Boston in this series because it'll be nice to see that old Red Sox-Yankee rivalry in the ALCS.
One thing has been bugging me lately - people who give me shit for liking the Yankees because "it's not much of a challenge". You know what? I have been a fucking Yankee fan all my life. My whole family are Yankee fans, with the exception of my dad, who is a Dodgers fan (why? I couldn't tell you). Granted, I didn't get really into baseball until about 5 years ago, but even when I wasn't following it that closely I was still rooting for the Yankees. It's called team loyalty. You can go ahead and accuse me of being a mindless bandwagoneer all you want, but if I were just rooting for the Yankees when they won, I would've dropped them after they lost the World Series two years ago. Sure, maybe I would've overlooked that, because they were fucking robbed in the last inning because the pitcher with the lowest ERA in the league fucked up, but I certainly would've dropped them last year when they lost to a fucking Disney team. It's pretty fucking challenging to proclaim that you're a Yankee fan in the middle of a sea of red-shirted bandwagoneers in southern California, let me tell you.
Whew. Now that I've gotten that off my chest, I'm going to go watch the Simpsons. Worst. Episode. Evar.
babbled by Kat @ 8:21:00 PM |
Moblog, exciting and new:
I went ahead and jumped on the moblog bandwagon and got myself one, so you can actually see all the shit I'm talking about instead of having to visualize it in your head. You may be disappointed, however, because unlike what you've been picturing in your mind, I am not having 24x7 lesbian orgies. Anyway, go look. There's at least one semi-lesbian there.
I'll be taking lots of photos and moblogging them during the Artwalk, so those of you who do not live near me can see what the hell it is I've been going on about for so long. Of course, if you do live near me, I fully expect to see you there, so you will have no need to look at the moblog, because you will be here with me, drinking alcohol and making fun of the suburbanites.
Thym laughs at my dead baby jokes
babbled by Kat @ 1:16:00 PM |
Friday, October 03, 2003
I'll be busting routines and rhymes all night:
I would just like to let you know that I am typing this while taking a little break from work. I am sitting on my couch, with my cat curled up next to me in one of those cat positions that looks like it is really uncomfortable. I am wearing pajamas at one in the afternoon, and I haven't bothered to even comb my hair, so it kind of looks like a cross between the hair of a mad scientist and the hair of a teenager who just rolled out of bed after her first illicit tryst with her high school English teacher. Working from home rules.
The other day as I was driving to work (yes, I do actually go in to the office sometimes), I started thinking about how I actually live in three separate yet overlapping worlds. I used to think that I only lived in two - my work world, which includes the office, the technical writing I do, and speaking at conferences, and my home/art world, which is really separate from my work world because I live in an artists' colony and many things that are considered commonplace here are weird to people at work, and vice versa. But I also realized that I live in a third world - my online world. As I mentioned, these worlds overlap - I have some work friends who are also into the art thing, and I have some online friends who are also techie geeks and are somewhat involved in my work activities. But there are people I know at work that I would never tell about this 'blog, and people I know in my home/art/weirdo realm that really have no fucking idea what I do for a living.
Maybe the reason that I have all these separations in my life is because I have so many diverse interests, but I find it interesting that I can not only live in these distinctly different yet peripherally interrelated worlds, but that I can slip so easily back and forth between them and feel comfortable no matter which one I'm in. I guess I'm just lucky.
When I think about Shane I touch myself
babbled by Kat @ 1:34:00 PM |
Wednesday, October 01, 2003
Jon Udell made a really good point recently about how technology is affecting our memory:
We all like to joke, nowadays, about how Google has become humanity's collective memory, and we're properly grateful not to have to remember a lot of things that we know we can just look up. We've gone through this before, of course. Pre-Gutenberg, we routinely memorized vast amounts of verse. Then we learned to offload chunks of memory to print. Now we're learning to offload a whole lot more memory to the Net. I'm not saying I'd have it otherwise, but sometimes I wonder about the tradeoffs we're making.
He gave some examples from his own life, which resonated with me because I find myself doing many of the things he mentions. I find myself forgetting more and more things, or not bothering to commit them to memory because I know I can just go to Google, or dig through my e-mail, or even check my 'blog archives for the answer. I don't have anyone's current phone number memorized anymore, because I can just look it up in my phone. (Oddly enough, though, I still remember old phone numbers that I knew pre-cell phone.)
Now that I've thought about it some more, I realize that much of the information I don't retain or have difficulty recalling is information that I gathered from an electronic source. For example, I recall things I read in books or magazines more easily than I recall things I've read online. I, like Jon, wonder about the tradeoffs we're making; however, I might just use this as a good excuse to disconnect and go read a book.
babbled by Kat @ 11:39:00 AM |