Thursday, June 26, 2008

Can my swimsuit come with a cummerbund?

The pool/rec center next door caught on fire a few weeks ago. Going next door to play basketball (on the one hoop they haven't taken down), do flips off the diving board, or go sit in the inexplicably large cement cylinders, is just about all there is to do in this neighborhood. Well, who ever is in charge of fixing things at the pool has decided to take their sweet time fixing things so we can go swimming again. By taking their sweet time I mean doing absolutely nothing. It just sits there. Just like when the showers broke, then the water fountain, then the showers in the clubhouse. I shouldn't have been surprised that this wouldn't be any different.

Man, what happened to the glory days??! Really, the pool next door used to be amazing. First off, there used to be a whole lot of kids in the neighborhood, and we all hung out in the summer time. Sharks and Minnows was about about real survival, and rife with tenuous alliances. There used to be really cool lifeguards. We used to do battle with them during break/adult swim.

Halfway through the summer there were several weekly after hours Teen Nights, that essentially turned into bacchanalian aquatic bruhaha. A Hydrophonic Teenage Wasteland. We would pull the speakers out of the clubhouse and blast TLC, Greenday, and the Beastie Boys into the twilight. We would do flips off the guard chairs and throw all the patio furniture into the deep end, pushed into a mad frenzy by over-indulging in Cheetos and grape soda that tasted like anger!

My family has almost always lived right next door, and my siblings and I regularly climbed the fence and trespassed at all different hours, any time of the year. It is probably because of us that they stopped giving out keys. Like we needed them! LosArs! We were the Boy Scouts of Anarchy, we didn't need any stupid KEY.

Anyway. There's no point in breaking in these days. The net is sagging in the tennis court, the lawn is overgrown. There is only one basketball hoop (without a net), no showers, no pool, no ping pong table, no one to kiss on the playground. And I don't even have a bathing suit.

I went to Macy's today to try and buy a new swimsuit. Poor selection, and I am not looking like the hotness right now. I tried on about twelve suits and gave up. I was so depressed, I had to go and buy a shirt instead. About a month ago I had complained about not being able to wear my bikini from last year, and refusing to attend pool parties.

A woman on a message board I frequent pointed me in the direction of the Burquini.

I should send one to Comptron who is spending her summer in the Middle East. She is currently in Yemen. If you haven't been tracking her trip via her blog, you should. It is fascinating.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Highlights from the VizzAy, Redux

So apparently the Dismal Swamp has been steadily burning since the week before I came here. The Dismal Swamp is partially famous for having been a hideout for runaway slaves in the antebellum (and midbellum?) South.

Every morning I wake up to the smell of barbecue chips. Who knew burning swamp would smell so festive?

Speaking of runaway slaves, I often ponder how particular my education was growing up in Virginia. History class is just totally different here. I swear my entire elementary education focused on the civil war, slavery, and civil rights. I guess it makes sense that you would really focus on the history of your region. But man oh man did I know a lot about American Slavery! Well, that and Jamestown.

Black History Month was also a really huge deal. The entire month's curriculum was devoted to it. We had assemblies, festivals, parties, and projects. I did a biographical report on Katherine Dunham (I was scandalized when my friend Mia did hers on Josephine Baker!), and I stood in as the first letter "I" in Martin Luther King Jr. It stood for "ideals!"

Was it different at your school? I for one never had to build a model of the mission system, unlike many young Californians. Do you even know what month is Black History Month? Who Emmett Till was? What area of history did you focus on?

Check out this amazing website, The Geography of Slavery where they have indexed all kinds of maps, advertisements, and information about slavery in Virginia. I once spent an afternoon looking up different runaway slaves by first name. (Run, Big Jenny, run away from Norfolk!) They've even indexed WHY they ran away, etc. Why they ran away. Seriously. Maybe this is why the Dismal Swamp is burning. This land has a lot to atone for.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

On the DL

So you know how T-Mobile has their evil clutches all over the internet in American airports? And you have to pay to use that mess? Whatevs! LAX, Terminal 56/58. Free interwebs! I feel like such an anarchist! Wearing jeans most likely sewn by small children. Sad face.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

I did not find true love on Flag Day.

But I did eat pound cake.
And the circle is unbroken.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Old School.

Before I ever really learned any photo/rendering software I made this picture of my mom.

I still think it is hilarious.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Oh my gosh, you guys!

I am so happy with the way my final project turned out! I went over to my pal Mark's (my old boss from Hi De Ho Comics) house this morning and we cut down the wood and set the acrylic over it. I got to use power tools, which was very exciting. He showed me how to start with the bandsaw, and then let me do most of it. Then he let me drill all the holes into the acrylic and pick out which screws and washers I wanted to use. He had the great idea to use the plastic tubing to make it snug.

It's titled Matunda Chungu Chungu, which is kiswahili for "bitter fruit." I actually hope it makes it into the art show, now.

(Click the image for more detail)

I haven't bathed for a while and am still covered in spray adhesive, but at least I got to wear my swank safety glasses.

My bad.

So because a girl at work quit without notice at the dance studio I've been working extra shifts. I had to go in early this morning, after waking up even earlier to finish a paper, and then turn in said paper on the way to work. I didn't get home until around 3:45 in the afternoon. I don't even want to get into all the crap I have to do. Two and a half jobs plus full time school has eaten the face off my soul. Anyway, after picking up some Tacos Por Favor to go I started working on my Final Project for my digital art class.

It's serious business; anytime you start sanding wood for a digital art class you know that jimmy janks is for real. So I'm running around town to the printers and OSH, then am all sanding, dark washing, x-actoing, and pasting away for hours on end. I just finished at 1:30 am. As I was scrubbing at all the dried glue and paint on my hands (still can't get it off) I suddenly remembered it was Tuesday.

My choreography final was Tuesday. Oh. Dang.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008


It's Aaron Alexis' birthday. Holla.