Thursday, September 29, 2005

Barn Door

Twice in the past seven days I have been halfway through the morning and realized my fly was open.

Wednesday, September 28, 2005


About four weeks ago, I decided that I was going to teach myself to meditate. By, you know, reading up on it a bit and practising every day. That lasted for about two days. I really would like to be able to meditate, I think if I forced my brain into a regimen of this kind of focus that I'd be a more relaxed person and generally feel more in control. These days, it's too hard to differentiate between meditation and sleep. Or, you know, not let one slip into the other.

But to that end, I have been trying to think of an idea for a script, and given my serious misgivings about the inauthenticity of most of the stuff we see on screens these days, and given the fact that I recently printed up the Dogme 95 Vow of Chastity and stuck it to my wall, it is not such an easy thing to dream up a producable (and that's KEY) short script that is at once hyper-realistic and complete fantasy at the same time.

And yet, it's like I wrote my order down and popped it into a slot in my head and three days later I get an idea. Because I did, last night, get an idea. To the point where I had to wake up a little and get my notebook and write it down (I also discovered that my room is so small I can get my book off the shelf, my pen out of my bag and crack a window to let some light through all without getting out of bed).

When I was around 13 or so I had the sensation that my brain was a seperate entity from me. Like: I didn't think of that, my brain did. That sensation has faded, but sometimes it still pops up. Sometimes I'm still proud of the way my brain recombines things into different things when I'm not looking and then pops them out fully formed. Like Athena! From the head of Zeus! What an idea!

Sunday, September 25, 2005

Scorned As Timber, Beloved of The Sky

Lately, this is my favourite painting.

Friday, September 16, 2005

Can Man

The street in front of my house is busy for the narrow throughway that it is. We get a, like, smorgasboard sampler of street noise, mostly people who believe that one's car ought to be very noisy via music and no muffler, or people walking up and down, or kids playing very involved games that have something to do with the speed of a plastic trike coming along the sidewalk in one direction and someone else running in the other direction at the same time and everyone shouting.

But a constant, and by now familiar, sound is the can-crusher man.

He lives directly across the street and comes to stand on the sidewalk with the same regularity that wooden birds in swiss clocks display. He has a plastic bag of pop cans and he puts them on the sidewalk and rrrrreet, squishes them with his foot, one by one. There's a permanent wet stain on his sidewalk spot from leftover bits of drinks in the can.

rrrrreet ... rrrrreennt ... rrrrnt

That's what the afternoons sound like around here.

Once a can is squished it goes into a seperate bag. Once all the cans are squished, he recedes back behind the palms.

Tuesday, September 13, 2005


I'm trying to think of how to describe the very specific kind of joy that comes from putting on a pair of pants you haven't worn in months and finding some mysterious shape in the pocket. It's a combination of the thrill that you could find something that you've been missing for so long that you've forgotten to look for it and the thrill of being a detective of your past self. In this evening's case, the mysterious shape was three American dollar bills and a square piece of notepaper with a rough map of Vermont and 7th and 8th streets in someone else's handwriting...

I've just remembered: this is from my old landlord when she was telling me where the key-cutting place was near her office so I could make my subletter his own set of keys.

So the last time I wore these pants was the end of April and the three dollars is the change from getting the keys cut. Change that technically belongs to her! Minor event, but it's still satisfying to the detective in me that I have these artifacts from this day.

I want to read The Mezzanine again.

Friday, September 09, 2005

Change One Thing Change Your Life

So there's this thing Oprah does where she has someone come in with, you know, life barriers, and then she changes something and then the shows about how all their problems went away as a result. Euphoric, right? I've never actually seen this kind of Oprah show, but I've heard it enacted many times by Janey (especially the show about the girl with the "unruly cowlick") to feel like I'm well-aquainted to the format.

While doing a massive pile of laundry today, I was thinking of this particular concept, the Change-One-Thing-Change-Your-Life thing, and people I know who have introduced me to One Thing that has Changed My Life.

Here we go:

Sarah- If you want to laugh in a movie theatre, go ahead and laugh. Loudly.

Jeremy- You don't have justify your existence to people who want to "know what you're up to" as long as you lie credibly.

Steve- How to spell "together".

Gill- You can wear the same clothes for four days running and your inherent sexiness will still speak for itself.

Genevieve- Mini Pearl.

Doretta- Drip dry it. All of it. And cute shoes are important.

Janey- It is possible to be so intellectually intimidating that everyone knows you but is afraid to talk to you and to simultaneously be very interested in recipies. Also, ironing.

Mom- The sleeve trick. And that it's all going to be okay.

Dad- If you want to win at Hearts, you have to be brave and go for control.

Katie- Draw on your clothes.

Angelo- All you need is a little down light, maybe a little fill...

Jordan- You can sing in the car even if someone else is there.

The BC Ferry Corporation- Money is a poor substitute for quality of life.

Trajan- Your life is right now.

The Nation of Japan- The rules are not necessarily made for your benefit, so you better figure out what you need and do what you have to do to get it.

Tobias- Being kind of an asshole is just fine. In fact, it's kind of great sometimes.

Dr. Kealy- Having your own ideas is more important than synthesizing the ideas of others.

Michael- Figure out how you want to do it and do it that way.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

ekx ekx ekx ekx ekx

I just wrote a long entry about how I'm sick of film and wish I could make music instead and would, these days, prefer to be doing things all by myself in public social spaces, and how Smog inspires me to work hard to not be a crap filmmaker (by not being a filmmaker at all). And how my head is folding in on itself because I'm trying to navigate the matrix of decisions that is a film but it's putting my brain on hold in this shocking way but that being invited to move to the country (just me and him) by Bill Calahan while he makes his pretty fucking great music made me think: I'll just make really incredibly realistic movies that are totally dull or utterly nonsensical movies that have no logic or reason.

It's better that it got lost, because it made no sense anyway.

Just like all my future films.

Friday, September 02, 2005

ABC, Talking About 123

I want to memorize the police letters alphabet. Just to be cool. My friend Katie, who was in LA for 13 hours today and whose hair I cut in my hallway this evening, had to memorize all of English's prepositions in elementary school and can still rattle them off. Me, I can do Frost's "Stopping by Woods On A Snowy Evening". Thanks Mr. Meikle!

When I sold tickets for BC Ferries, I used to have to call the tower to process dangerous goods paperwork and that invovled telling them license plate numbers over the intercom. I used to make up my own words for the letters, much to the amusement of the folks in the tower. "S as in.... syzygy", etc. The day a truck came through with the license plate "0069 BJ" my pause at trying to think of words other than the ones that automatically spring to mind inspired me to look into the official alphabet.

Once while driving with my mom, she noted the car's plate number in front of us was "007 BRF". She said, "License to ill!" and it was one of those moments when you are so proud that this is the person who gave birth to you.

I love looking at license plates. It's especially interesting in LA. Lately, I have noticed a lot other people looking at plates too. I was pulled up at the curb in the fashion district a few weeks ago and a man asked me if I was from Columbia, which was awesome. I see people checking out my bumper while I'm waiting for them to cross the street. I hope they, too, are wondering if I came from Columbia.