Wednesday, December 27, 2006

polar bear

The polar bear is being proposed as an endangered species as a result of global warming.

Washington Post article.

final post of 2006

I'm about to pack my bags for my journey. I have a real nervous feeling about going away. I thought I'd never say this, but I'm starting to feel like I don't want to go away for so long anymore. I've had so much instability lately that I really wish I had something that wasn't here today gone tomorrow. It would be much more exciting to embark on a new adventure in life, exploring a world that is unknown to me, yet that I don't have to travel halfway around the globe to discover. I'd also really like to feel safe again, and at home again, and in my own space again. Shacking up with mom is great and all, and has allowed me to save money for travel and save in general. In fact, staying here has been quite enjoyable. I've had a chance to spend time with my mom in a way that most people my age never get to experience. We've spent some real quality time day in day out. On top of that, I give her props for putting up with my messy room.

I saw the tall Dutchman last night. He was very cool. I think he knows that I'm going off to have fun, and that I'll most likely be having fun with other men, so he didn't even attempt to ask me to be exclusive. He surprises me by being very cool every time I see him. I really enjoy spending time with him, and I wish I could have met him earlier or later, just not right before I leave, which leaves me feeling a bit confused.

There was a crazy winter storm last night, so the water level in the creek has risen considerably. It's as if the day that I leave the current also picks up. Unless I specifically make time today, I won't get to see the salmon running this year. Out back, the water is a muddy brown, so I'm not sure if I would even be able to see them clearly.

Monday, December 25, 2006

on the threshold

I have 3 days left until I'm on a plane bound for Miami, then Panama, and 4 days left before I see Alexei again. As I sit here in the Lower Haight, gazing at the morning fog hovering over the San Francisco skyline, I imagine myself in a matter of days in a foreign land, interacting with a foreign man whom I haven't seen in a year. How will I feel? How will he feel? Will we shoot the shit about music and films and books, or will we try to figure out if we have a future together? Just a few more days and I'll soon be gazing over a different skyline, contemplating more questions, probably with a cervezita in hand and looking onto El Capitolio or El Morro as the sun sets into the Caribbean Sea.

Julie C. and I were talking about relationships the other day. A few years ago, she was with a great guy, but for some reason she was stalling. Something was holding her back from making the plunge with him. Then James came along and she knew he was the one. She said, "I know it sounds cliche, but it's the truth. You just know."

I saw M.W. on Friday night. I was walking to the bus and deliberately went out of my way to pass by the Dog. He was walking out the door to smoke a ciggie as I peeked my head in. It was precisely where I ran into him in the first place about a year ago. We exchanged a few meaningless words, and then I ran to catch my bus. I was left with an empty feeling after our visit, because it was an empty exchange.

Two nights ago, the tall Dutchman invited me to see Dave Chappelle at the Punchline. Or should I say two mornings ago, because the midnight show didn't start until 2:30 and didn't finish until 5:30... I am embarrassed to say that I may be the only person in history to fall asleep during a Chappelle show. But you can't blame me, I've been sick with a nasty cough lately, and the cat has been crawling all over my head every night. Even in my semi-conscious state with my eyes closed and my head resting on my date's shoulder, Chappelle's jokes wandered in and out of my brain, and I appreciated his genius delivery, but I must say that in the future, unless it's the Stones, I won't be attending 2 am shows.

Jeffrey Daumer is just a gay Gargamel. Enough said.


My friend Erin sent me this message yesterday:

My Dad wrote this and I sent it to you now. with love, erin

Yesterday morning, our friend and the first born daughter of Ken Wipff and Mary Rodel, Kristin Marya Wipff succumbed to her illness after a year and a half battle. When she was first diagnosed, we agreed to face her condition with grace, courage and love. She achieved this goal in full measure. During the time of her illness she was cared for especially by her sister, Erin Wipff, her mother, father, her brother Willey and loving friends. While the cycle of Kristin's life is complete we will continue to honor her in our he arts and admire her strength. Throughout her illness she taught her family and friends important lessons in love , humility and courage. She asked that those who would remember her please do so in a donation to an ASPCA and with love for her memory and each other.

I saw Kristin a couple times this year. Once at a party I hosted this summer at Chantal's house. That was the first time I saw her since high school. She looked fine and seemed in good spirits. The next time I saw her was at the farmers' market, soon after she had a tumor on her brain removed. I am posting a picture of Kristin that I took at the party I gave, with a prettier backdrop. Kristin is in my heart this Christmas, as is Erin and her family. I hope they have all found peace.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

extreme weather

I just heard that there was a severe windstorm in Vancouver that knocked down over 1000 trees in Stanley Park. Yikes! And that storm rode in on the coattails of record rainfall and flooding in November, which apparently caused the water to be undrinkable. Indeed the weather is changing, and we can't ignore the fact that global warming has something to do with it. I know I sound like a broken record, but if our government continues to treat global warming as a hoax or something that is beyond our control, the situation will only get worse. In fact, there are already many things that we as individuals can do about it. David Suzuki has asked Canadians to join the Nature Challenge in order to counter the effects of global warming one person at a time. Americans can follow his lead, and do the same. Leave the Hummer at home, and ride a bike once a week! Or walk! Our country leads the globe in greenhouse gas emissions. It's time we become leaders in cutting our emissions.

Saturday, December 16, 2006

my elfamorphis

Check it out before I turn back into a human!


Just had Christmas dinner with Monique, Jeanine, Tony and my mom. Monique and I decided that we're going to start wishing people a blessed pagan druid winter solstice festival. Maybe I should druidize myself.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

magical realism

I just saw a film with Sultan called Pan's Labyrinth. It was about a mother and daughter living in Spain under Franco. The mother was pregnant with a military captain's baby, and she brought her daughter to live at the military compound with him. He was a tyrant and had no reedemable characteristics. The daughter dealt with her unhappy and depressing living conditions by diving into a world of fantasy and magic with fairies and fauns and magical spells. It was a beautiful film, however, it was neither a children's film, nor a film about the war itself. There was too much on-screen violence for children to be able to sit through it without having major nightmares. Some of the characters, especially the captain, were kind of flat. He was just too cruel and cold-hearted to be believable. Anyway, Bond still rules as the best film I've seen this season.

And speaking of Bond, my old neighbor Kathy Evans agrees with me. She also finds Daniel Craig to be the most enjoyable Bond character in years (especially sans tuxedo). I ran into her after the movie was over. I haven't seen her in several years. She was with her daughter Allie, whom I haven't seen since I was in high school and she was still a little kid! It was great to run into them. I love randomly seeing people I know in the street. It makes me feel like I really belong here. And more often than not, the random run-ins prove to be more serendipitous than coincidental.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

travels/journeys pt. 2

I just read this description from the NRDC website of one woman's journey to the Tongass National Forest in Alaska. I would very much like to see the glaciers and the icebergs up north. I've seen--no--I've walked on glaciers before in North America and Europe. But back then, I had no idea that these natural wonders were in danger of disappearing. I wonder if the glaciers I encountered in Montana and in France are still there, or if they have melted away significantly.

I just got an e-mail from M. Didn't think I would ever hear from him again. He invited me to his birthday party. I know it was just a formality, and that he really didn't expect me to come, but the invitation simply means that he is thinking of me, and hasn't forgotten. So this was his way of reaching out after a few months of silence. I must say that being in communication with him again, even through a mere e-mail, has brought the feelings I've tried to bury to the surface, which tells me clearly that I'm not ready to see him yet.

The tall dutchman in Sweden has been flirting with me via e-mail, which is cute. Somehow it seems ironic that we are being prevented from spending a lot of time together before I leave. Maybe it's because I need to resolve myself with Alexei first, instead of complicating the situation by entertaining other options.

Now I need to pack my bags to journey across the Golden Gate for my housesitting gig with Squelly the kitty.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006


Only 16 days left until my big two-month aventura. I'm a little nervous once again to spend so much time with Alexei, but I am open to some much needed soul-searching, some time off, some warm weather and mojitos. Of course, part of me wishes to be able to visit Sheila in Barcelona, but perhaps I'll get to visit her next year, especially when my dad is renting the villa in Valencia for a month. What I really want is to free myself from worries and decisions, and at the same time resolve them, and of course I can't do that by running away from Alexei. Better to face the fears and search for truths, all the while enjoying the experience of being with him again.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

la ti dah

I just returned from a weekend in LA. Although there are many nice things about LA, I must admit that I am thrilled to never have to call that place home ever again! I love my friends down there, but like Woody Allen's character in Annie Hall, I suffer from chronic L.A. nausea. So try as I may to acquire a taste for that city (if you can call vast urban sprawl a city), it leaves a sour taste in my mouth without fail. I'm glad I got fired there. I'm glad I never fell in love there. I'm glad I never felt at home there. Most importantly, I'm glad I didn't die there!!! I feel like I was given a second chance to build my life and enjoy it.

And so, that is precisely what I am doing.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

a quote from david suzuki

From RealScreen Wildguide: "It is absolutely unbalanced reporting if you have 99% of climatologists saying one thing, and one percent saying the other, and yet journalists present it as a 50/50 proposition."

Herein lies the reason we as media producers have the responsibility to present the truth.

Another great quote from the same issue but by Ivan Hattingh of the Wildscreen Festival: "If you think bugs copulating to Mozart are going to change the attitudes of people to the environment, you're mistaken."

Sunday, December 03, 2006


How do we perceive and judge art? Why does some art have a profound effect on someone and cause another person to simply shrug her shoulders? An artist can never expect to please every onlooker. I guess I'm still processing last night, and because I was one of the "featured artists," I cannot objectively comment on my experience because the whole night was a blur. I was happy to have so many of my friends in the audience: Jessica, Josh, Young, Julie, Jeff, Lilia, Gabriel, Jayson, Estelle, Jon, Sultan and Tanya. And of course Chantal and Noemi were there because Chantal was actually one of the featured artists as well since she filmed the piece (and might I continue to add that the filming she did was beautiful). Anyway, I was a little out of my mind with anxiety, and I can't honestly say that I even remember seeing anything while our piece was on. I just kept hoping that people liked it and that it had a positive impact on them and that it was memorable (in a good way, and not in a torturous way). I appreciated meeting KT Nelson of ODC Dance Company right before the show, and it was special to me that I got to sit next to her and watch her reactions as the images flickered away on the 10 screens that surrounded us. After our screening was over, she reached over and congratulated me and I was happy to see that she was pleased with our work. I felt relieved because I feared that she might hate it. And not only that, my friends enjoyed it too, with the exception of Chantal, who thought there should be more images of the dancers and less water, but other people thought otherwise (most notably Linda Bouchard, who hired me). So the moral of the story is that you can't please everyone.

Speaking of pleasing artistic experiences, I just saw the latest James Bond film, Casino Royale. This is by far the best movie I've seen this season. It was a truly enjoyable film through and through, lots of action and quite thrilling indeed. Especially the scenes where Daniel Craig showed off his pectoral muscles. But seriously... this 007 film showed a side of Bond that was more human and fallible. Also the Bond girl was much more well-rounded, and I don't mean curvaceous. She was smart and deep and strong and had motives other than sex. Furthermore, the film portrayed the life of a secret agent to be a dangerous game, rather than a walk in the park as in former Bond pics. Instead of dusting off his tux, this James Bond got bloody and scratched up, almost died and even had his heart broken. In the vein of the new Batman, this pic was part psycho-drama and part action/adventure and part love story.

Much better than Borat. Borat bad. Bond good.

Friday, December 01, 2006

being green

Some of you know that Suta and I volunteered at the Green Festival in San Francisco this year. It was total madness, a little overwhelming, but inspiring nonetheless. One of the speakers I wanted to see was scientist David Suzuki, also a leader in the environmentalist movement from British Columbia. I just found this link to his speech at the San Francisco Green Festival. I suggest watching the whole thing:

David Suzuki's speech

I am re-inspired after watching this clip!

Thursday, November 30, 2006


Just went to Recombinant Labs today to tech the show for Saturday. I was definitely inspired. Seeing the films projected around me with the sound score filling every corner of the room made me appreciate how special this place is! And I'm so honored to be part of the event.

Here's the definition of recombinant from

re‧com‧bi‧nant  [ree-kom-buh-nuhnt]
1. of or resulting from new combinations of genetic material: recombinant cells.
2. a cell or organism whose genetic complement results from recombination.
3. the genetic material produced when segments of DNA from different sources are joined to produce recombinant DNA.
[Origin: 1940–45; re- + combine + -ant

I wish I could be more eloquent today, but my brain is nearly fried from all the technological challenges over the last couple days. I'm going to check out Borat tonight.

more on darfur

You can watch a clip about a recent trip to Darfur at the link below: has a post called "Video from Chad" that's worth checking out...

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

the rise of slime/global warming

I just read an article in the Nov 20th New Yorker by Elizabeth Kolbert about the effects of global warming on our oceans, notably on corals and micro-organisms. Basically, we are experiencing a rate of change to our ecosystems that is similar to that of the so-called Cretaceous-Tertiary period when a six-mile long asteroid hit the earth. "Half of all the coral became exctinct, and it took the other half more than two million years to recover." She also writes about the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum (PETM), which refers to another period that took place 55 million years ago, when most of the prehistoric mammals became extinct and new species emerged as a result of more CO2 in the atmosphere. These changes occured over a period of one to ten thousand years. The changes we are wreaking on our environment have largely occured in the last century. She writes, "Currently, CO2 is being released into the air at least three times and perhaps as much as thirty times as quickly as during the PETM."

What is it going to take? I'm convinced that we need to engender a new race of ecologically conscious youngsters who see conservation and preservation as not just a priority, but the norm for social behavior. And that humans are merely one species that inhabits Planet Earth, and that it is an honor to even be here.

She quotes another scientist who explains that the result of rising levels of CO2 in the oceans will be that most of the organisms in the oceans' food chain will become extinct and we'll be left only with the likes of jellyfish: "... at the end we will have the rise of slime."

remembering darfur at thanksgiving has a post called "Materials for Thanksgiving Action" that's worth checking out...

Thanks again for including the people of Darfur in your Thanksgiving celebration. We truly appreciate your help.Below are links to download the two documents you'll need.1. A one page Microsoft Word document that provides a brief overview of the crisis in Darfur. … Read more

Friday, November 17, 2006

pic from the past

My dad just sent me this pic from my graduation ceremony from UCSD.

women who have it all

Praise be to estrogen! I am among the lucky ones to have such great friends! Last Saturday my gal pals from UCSD and I converged on Union Square for a mini-reunion. I call it mini because in reality we only had 24 hours, which is not enough when you have big talkers among us, and when so many changes occur in the course of a year. Although I felt that we only barely brushed the surface, I am still thankful that we all motivated and got together. It is important that we all continue to prioritize our bond and make the time to be together after all these years... 14!!!

My mom likes to watch the Today show every morning (of which I don't necessarily approve since it's not really news, but to each her own). There was a story about women who work, travel for work and have families. And Meredith Veira made the point that men who work, travel for work and have a wife and kids are considered to "have a life," where when women have the same, they are considered to "have it all." I think this is a good point. It is a double standard in our society, that women are still supposed to do one or the other, and men are supposed to "have it all," and it's considered normal for men and abnormal for women. So I retract my earlier statement about Hillary Clinton having it all. Let's just admire her for her having what she wants from her life and consider her a role model for young women and women of all ages.

And I'd also like to recognize my girlfriends for having what they want too. Jen for setting the goal and running her second marathon during her first 2 years of motherhood (would she have had the time for this accomplishment had she been a working mom too? I'm sure she would, but not working surely made it easier!!!) Angela for being positive and healthy and ambitious throughout her second pregnancy, working steadily and maintaining her position during another round of layoffs (all the while feeling like she wanted to barf!), as well as patiently supporting her husband's decision to seek professional happiness. Laura for taking the step to search for personal truths through voice lessons (Vegas, baby Vegas!), all the while having to be the mother and father of her 3 sons while her husband is stationed in Greece for a year. And finally Sujata, who boldly went to seek her own personal truths away from family and partner for two months in Spain, and returned with a renewed sense of self and vision for her future. I am proud to have all of you as friends!!!

I'm going to be working on a new video art piece that I'm super excited about at Recombinant Labs featuring choreography and performance from the ODC dance company. Come one, come all. It should be cool. Check it out:

Monday, November 06, 2006

symbols, signs and omens

On Saturday, Young, Julie, Jeff, Sultan and I went to the Day of the Dead altars at SomArts. Some of the altars were very chilling in how they remembered the dead. There was one altar that featured old black and white photographs from the wakes of those who have passed, some of them mere babies. It was very spooky to see a newborn child so still and lifeless. I've been lucky to be present for the births of my nieces and see them only hours after their births. But I had never seen anything like these photographs before. Other installations were less somber and more celebratory about the lives of the people who were lost. All of the installations were incredibly creative. One represented a tea party. Another represented the time period when the artist's grandfather had to leave Germany for Peru to escape the Nazis. The most interactive and fun was a huge statue with the torso of an angel, and when you stuck your head into a chapel with a camera, your face would appear on a round screen above the shoulders of the statue, topped with a halo. We had a lot of fun with that one.

I think about death a lot, mostly because I am reminded how fragile life is because I see so much road kill out here in West Marin. I know that often animals cross the road when it is not necessarily safe, but I am a little disturbed by the thought that the people driving the cars don't slow down at night when they know that nocturnal animals are out and about. I always see deer, raccoons, foxes and rabbits on the side of the road when I am coming home at night. For this reason, I always drive with more caution than usual. But apparently others don't, and when I drive by these listless bodies of deer whose necks and legs are bent in unnatural ways, I am saddened by the loss of life. I want to contact whoever is responsible for Marin County roads and ask them to put up more deer crossing signs and more streetlights out here to protect the sanctuary for the wildlife that lives out here and roams the roads at night in search of food and water.

My friend Tanya told me that the other day she was hiking on Mt. Tam. She actually was trying to find her ex on the mountain. She knew he was up there, and she knew that she shouldn't try to find him because it was over between them. When all of a sudden, a coyote crossed her path. The coyote looked scraggy and skinny and ugly. She took this coyote as a sign and immediately turned back and walked back to her car.

I rode my bike into the city on Saturday. It was a gorgeous sunny day. When I was in Mill Valley, my hometown, a flock of Canadian geese flew in front of me, right as I passed by my old high school in a beautiful V. On my way home from San Francisco on Sunday, I rode by the high school again, when I saw these same geese fly by me again. They were flying so low to the ground that I felt like I could jump into the V and join them on their path.

Friday, November 03, 2006

piece d'identite

I started filling out my application for permanent residence in Canada today. The whole concept of nationality and borders really perplexes me. I mean, how and when did our governments decide to make it so difficult and bureaucratic to move from place to place? Columbus didn't need a visa to come here. The original settlers didn't either. What about Marie Antoinette? Did she need to fill out immigration forms in order to marry Louis XVI and become the Queen of France? Or was the paperwork resolved with a simple handshake?

So when I move to Vancouver, and if I ever decide to become a citizen, will I no longer be an American? What about Tony Aguerre, the Basque man who I've known since I was a baby (Monique's dad)? He is still seen as Basque, even though he's been here for 40 years. But he's lived here longer than he lived in France! And even in France, he's not considered French, but Basque!

This line of thinking reminds me of the questions about identity that Young brought up one day:

1) how do I see myself? (citizen of the world!)
2) how do others see me? (american citizen?)
3) who am I really? (that's a tough one!)

I'm still working with Jessica on our new dance film about identity, which I hope we're able to finish before the end of the year! Anyway, thought I'd share a photo of her and her beautiful foot.

Thursday, November 02, 2006

reveries d'une dejeuneuse solitaire

It's raining cats and dogs today. So I didn't go on a bike ride. Instead I finally cleaned my room and put my clothes away. My mom will be thrilled. I took a bath. It was very relaxing. I had all sorts of aromatherapy products and candles lit to enhance the experience. Before my bath I spoke with Alexei. He sounded happy. Again, surprise surprise, I did most of the talking. Although he told me about how his cousin lives in Denmark and used to be married to a girl from there. When I asked what happened, his response was that his cousin's ex-wife was crazy, and that he didn't think that people from the Caribbean and people from Northern Europe were a good match. Of course, I had something to say about that! I asked him what he thought of a relationship between someone from the Caribbean and someone from North America (especially our two countries). His response was that it was different because he and I have so much in common.

I wonder, how can he know that when our relationship is mostly based on e-mails and a monthly 30 minute phone call?

When I was in the bath, I got a phone call from my friend Angie, with the sad news that some friends of ours are getting divorced. Another international couple, but there is no way one can say that the reasons they are splitting up is that he's from France and she's from England.

What it comes down to, of course, is that the couples that stay together do so because they have learned how to communicate with each other and they grow together and they are still working towards the common goal of being together, not to mention working at maintaining the love and romance of what connected the couple in the first place.

After my bath and after cleaning up my room, I prepared some lunch. I lifted the blinds and sat at the table by the window, so I could feel like I was sitting out on the deck in nature, and still look out the window upon the creek and the raindrops falling on the water, and the yellow leaves falling through the air. As I opened the blinds, I saw a snowy white egret land in the creek for an afternoon repose. A new visitor to my backyard nature sanctuary. (I almost forgot to mention that I saw a fox crossing the road last night on my drive home.) I reflected on the concept of wu wei, and how I can apply the concept to the many decisions I have to make in life. The wu wei concept would say that I don't have to make any decisions, that I shouldn't do anything. This concept constantly reminds me that no matter what we do in life, we will eventually land where we are supposed to land, and things like the egret will unexpectedly land in our path, and we should just wait and see what happens next.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

hillary rocks/i still love hillary

Just finished reading an article in The Atlantic about Hillary Clinton. This woman is a role model for all women. She is proof that we can have it all. She is the New York State Senator, and will be re-elected for a second term. She could run for president if she wanted to and give John McCain a run for his money. Certainly she would be able to raise more campaign funds than he could even imagine. She is a master in front of the press at answering questions so as to never incriminate herself (John Kerry should take a few lessons). She has won the support of many senior senators, on both sides of the political divide. She is extremely successful in her political career and she is also married to probably the most powerful politician in the world (yes, I believe that Bill Clinton has more political sway in the world than W. That man can move mountains if he wanted to). She is the mother to a very intelligent and successful daughter (what better role model could Chelsea have than her own mother?). So long live Hillary Clinton and I am still a supporter of Hillary!

Tuesday, October 31, 2006


My friend Monique is an incredible artist. She always has been! I've known her since I was a baby. She lived across the street from me in Mill Valley. We would spend hours and hours doodling with crayons as children. Whereas I would draw stick figures and smiley faces, she would draw these fantastical images of fairies and unicorns and pegasi (that's plural for pegasus). In fact, the reason I probably learned about all these mythical creatures may have been partly due to my friendship with Monique. She has an unparalleled ability to dream and create. Whenever I recognize this gift in a person, I feel that I am in the presence of greatness. So Monique has recently started to craft these leather masks. She just finished a master's in depth psychology at Sonoma State and has been studying mask rituals throughout history, in particular, the personas that people take on when they put on a mask. So people become someone or something else when they put on a mask. They are no longer Kristin or Monique, but they are goddesses or fairies or, in my case, a butterfly.

Happy Halloween!

Monique's website:

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

conspiracy/history repeats itself

I've been watching the first season of the HBO series Rome. There is a lot of blood, violence, nudity, sex and phallic symbols. That should convince most people to tune in! What fascinates me is that politics is the business of power. Not necessarily money, but control, esteem and status. Cesar had complete control over his subjects. They did whatever he wanted them to do and could dismiss them with "That will be all," and they immediately withdrew themselves from his presence and set out to fulfill his wishes. He ordered martial law in Rome in order to bring peace to the city. He set out to dominate regions in order to ensure he would not lose his status in the world. He had people killed because they posed a threat to his status, and spared others only if it would suit his political purpose.

So how can we fool ourselves to think that our own government doesn't operate in this manner? People are drawn to politics often because they desire power and status and control. Not all leaders are benevolent, and if they are, they are usually eliminated. People in power, families who maintain dynasties, want to maintain the status quo. Those who are at the top should remain at the top.

I'm also reading an article in the New Yorker about conspiracy theory. So while watching Rome I'm reminded of some of the unfortunate and mysterious deaths of our day that seem awfully similar to deaths that might have happened in the time of Rome. Cesar could have killed Pompey's son. But political strategy spared his life. But what about Paul Wellstone? John Jr.? Why did their planes mysteriously go down? What about Princess Di? How could these people who are so highly esteemed in our culture and who have body guards and press surrounding them all the time be killed in accidents?

Not to mention the assassinations of the heroes of our generation: JFK, MLK, Lennon...

So call me paranoid, but I'd rather think that I'm not living my life with the wool pulled over my eyes.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

wu wei

Yesterday I was at my mom's house out on the deck in the middle of the day. In Northern California, our autumns give us beautiful crisp sunny days. Warm but with a bite in the breeze. Yesterday (and today) was one of those days. I didn't want to leave Marin and go spend the rest of the afternoon and evening in my dark cubicle. So I lingered a few extra minutes. I thought about how Alexei would love it here. I thought how nice it would be for him to witness the change of seasons. The creek in back is very still these days, not gushing like it was in March and April. Now it's covered with yellow leaves from the deciduous trees behind our house. I noticed that even in the still water, the leaves seemed to move infinitessimally slowly. And they seemed to move en masse. Watching the leaves had a calming effect on me, and reminded me of the Taoist concept of wu wei, floating down the river with your eyes closed. Letting the river of life be your guide. Trusting that you'll land on beautiful shores.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

blame it on the jaegermeister

If I had known that the jaeger would have had that effect on me, maybe I would have tried it last year, and yet, it still did not yield the results I was looking for.

But then, am I still looking for the same results? It's funny, but now that I can honestly say that I was closer than ever before to living out my fantasy with M.M., I wonder, would realizing the dream kill the beauty of it? Question is, would I really want to have a guy like that in my life? Especially when his feelings for me would pale in comparison to what Alexei has given to me?

For the sake of my one or two readers, I will recount the evening, because it really was sweet, in a very drunken teenager kind of way.

It all started on Saturday evening, I was getting ready for some friends to pick me up and take me to the Red Lion Tavern, when I got a phone call from a mysterious 213 number. I was hoping it would be him, and when I heard his voice on the other end of the line, I was trying to play it cool. He asked when I would be heading over there, and then I suggested he pick me up and we go together. FINALLY! The moment I had always dreamed of for 2 years had finally arrived. He said to meet him outside in 10 minutes and he would be in his BMW. His BMW! I would finally get to be in the passenger seat at night in Silver Lake in HIS CAR!

I went to the curb 5 minutes early so in case he was early we wouldn't miss each other. I saw a rat crawling across a telephone wire. When I got into the car, my diarrhea of the mouth began, but with him, it's never meaningless diarrhea, it's deep conversation. We always jump into the deep and meaningful stuff immediately. That's why I like him so much. We talked about weddings and love and partnership and being ready and really wanting it.

Did I mention how good he looked? His hair was longer than before and he was dressed in all black and, yes, he looked hot. He was the dark knight riding me down Sunset Boulevard on his silver stallion.

We arrived at the Red Lion and my old roomie was already there with some of his Macedonian friends. So already I felt we were in an alternate universe. In a German beer garden, hanging out with Balkans, and I came with M.M. He came with me.

We sat next to each other at the bar before we found a table. I remember really wanting to touch his long black hair. Not just touch it but run my fingers through it.

I can't seem to remember much of the conversation that we had at the table because that's when we started doing shots of jaeger, and if I do that then I must already be 10 sheets to the wind. Or maybe it was peer pressure and the fact that he wanted me to do a shot with him that I agreed to do it.

My old roommate and I kept secretly whispering in each others' ears about M.M. He said, "I really like this guy." I said, "Of course, you do. So do I!" He told me that he thought that if I ever had a chance to be with M.M. that I would forget about Alexei. And I told him that the only way I would forget about Alexei is if M.M. told me that he loved me.

Which will never happen. That's why he's just a fantasy.

But looking at him on the other side of the table among my friends and in my life felt like I was living out the dream. At the end of the night we moved into a booth inside, and we sat next to each other and talked about Espana and Barcelona, where I've never been but he has and called it "Barthelona," lisp and all. At this point, all I wanted was for our lips to meet and stop talking and leave all the Macedonians behind.

So when the bar closed, we went outside to say our goodbyes. My old roommate told me that if I wanted to go to bed with M.M. I should tell him, "I really want to spend the night with you, but if we do, nothing will change." He said that should work. Yeah right, like I really would say that. M.M. poked at my waist and suggested we go. When we walked away, I wanted to hold his hand, because it felt like he was my man that night. But I didn't know how he would respond. So I didn't.

He drove me around the Silver Lake reservoir. The streetlights reflected on the water. I had forgotten how beautiful and calm the reservoir looked at night, and how many times I had dreamed of looking at the lights on the water with him.

We drove by his street and he pointed out to me that's where he lived. Of course, I knew that already because how many countless times had I driven down this street looking for his car and trying to find the number that matched his address when I lived in the neighborhood. But I simply nodded and played along.

Finally, he pulled into the driveway where I was staying at my friend's house. We started saying our goodbyes. It seemed so anticlimactic. I felt compelled to tell him more, but I didn't want to seem pushy or risk being rejected. So here's what I said:

Um, I want to do something else right now, but I don't want to seem inappropriate.

He said:

Kristin, I am not understanding you right now.

I said:

OK, how do I explain this...

I turned to him and said:

I find you very attractive and there's something else I'd like to do right now, but I don't want to be inappropriate.

He smiled and said:

Oh, you're so sweet!

He kissed my cheek and gave me hug. It was a real hug. Long and strong. But it was only a hug and a kiss on the cheek.

When we finished hugging, I said:

Well then, keep in touch!

I jumped out of the car and didn't look back.

Friday, October 13, 2006


I can't believe how busy I've been and have decided that I incredibly value my downtime. I am elated that I no longer have to work 2 jobs and am now down to just working one (isn't 1 enough?) until December and then I'll have no job at all!

Lately I have been pondering the notion of masculine and feminine because my girlfriends and I have been observing that we often possess more masculine qualities than our male counterparts. And what I mean is what is typically known as qualities that are typically assigned to men and qualities that are typically equated with women. However, I think our society is wrong to call them masculine and feminine, but we are offered no other vocabulary in the English language and American culture in which to describe these qualities. Why is a man who shows emotion called feminine? And why is a feminine man considered weak or even "gay?" And why is a woman who is strong and powerful called masculine, or even worse domineering, or a bitch? What I'm getting at is why is it considered negative in our culture if a man is soft and nurturing, and a woman is hard and decisive?

I prefer the concept of yin yang. It carries no stigma of flip flopped gender roles. Even the symbol of yin yang is more forgiving. It is not a circle divided equally in black and white. It is a circle whose amorphous halves flow into each other and even contain an eyelet of the other within its core. I believe it is much healthier to use the yin yang model with the human species. We all possess soft and hard qualities. We are all black and white. We humans, as a species, are all both opposing sides.

What comes with seeing the human race as yin and yang is that you can't have one without the other. You can't have hard without soft. You can't have nurturing without demanding. You can't be one half of the whole because the other half will fill itself inside those areas where you are lacking. And we all need the balance. White without black seems blank and black without white looks like nothing.

Friday, October 06, 2006

sorry i haven't written...

Another quote from Clinton on the George Bushes: "You know, the way they speak and all... it could just relate to the way the synapses work in their brains."

Can we re-elect him as President?

Friday, September 29, 2006

random thoughts

I just read an article in a dated issue of the New Yorker by David Sedaris about his struggle to learn the French language. To overcome his difficulty to communicate, he simply started agreeing to whatever people said to him. "D'accord" (O.K.) was his response to everything, which mistakenly led to him sitting in his cotton briefs in a hospital waiting room surrounded by other (fully-clothed) patients. Something was apparently lost in translation. I was laughing out loud at this article.

Then I read a story about Clinton and also cracked up over something he said. En route from Berlin to Cape Town on a private jet, after talking and playing cards until 4 a.m., he informed the writer of the article: "We're going to have a *great* time in Africa." Another classic comment was when he arrived at the stadium in Berlin for the World Cup Final: "I'm totally psyched for this!" Clinton sounds like a swell guy to hang out with!

I saw Michel Gondry's latest film "The Science of Sleep." It's an interesting concept, the blurry line between reality and dreams. Sometimes the experiences I have feel like a dream, and sometimes the dreams I have feel so normal that they could be real. It's like the Chuang Tzu story about when he dreamt of being a butterfly, but when he woke up he didn't know if he was really a butterfly dreaming about being a man. Sometimes I feel like I would just like to stay in my dream and never wake up. But for example, when I dreamt that I received a $700 parking ticket, I was really glad to wake up.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

the healing process

Why is it so hard for people to see what's good for them? Why do people keep reopening wounds and refuse to heal? Or rather why do they create new wounds, thereby making the healing process longer and more painful?

I wrote F. a goodbye e-mail yesterday. It hurt me to say goodbye, but I know that our relationship was unhealthy. Heavy drinking can be fun at times, but eventually you pay, either short-term with a hangover, or long-term with liver failure, but eventually you pay. We were drunk with infatuation, but now I've sobered up, and I'm not sure he has. I know neither of us wants to say goodbye, we'd love to keep the fun and the fantasy alive, but someone had to put an end to it, and apparently it had to be me.

I read an article in GQ a couple days ago that said breaking up via email was not proper etiquette, but when we met face-to-face, it was totally unsatisfactory and so I had no other choice. Yes, of course I had other choices, like a phone call or a real letter, but I'm done with that, and I wanted to get this over quickly. I tried to give him the face-to-face meeting, but he didn't have the decency to be mentally or emotionally present for me that afternoon, even when what we needed to say to each other should have been soberly and openly expressed.

So I'm on the road to recovery from him. That's the first step, isn't it? Admitting that you are addicted to something that wasn't good for you, and giving it up. And then taking it day by day. So this is my first day of sobriety.

Monday, September 18, 2006


I won a pair of tickets on KCRW to see Breakestra yesterday evening at the Independent. The problem is that I am not a pair. I am single. And it was a Sunday night. Unfortunately, my single girlfriends couldn’t make it for one reason or another. In fact one of them had a date, and so in a way, she was pairing up. I could have asked D. because I know he would have gladly gone, but to be honest, I didn’t want to see him two nights in a row because I thought it might give him the impression that I was *really* into him and I might have to uncomfortably thwart his advances. I wouldn’t have minded his company because he is a fun and outgoing person, but I was afraid he would put the moves on me like he was the night before. Don’t get me wrong—I like it when a guy shows you how he feels about you. But honestly, this guy had just met me and some of the things he was saying and doing didn’t seem natural. Same goes for the Texter. We met at Wish with a group of friends, made a plan to meet up for dinner, and then he steps it up to spending the night with him that very night. I am perfectly happy to share intimacy and physicality with someone when you feel like it’s a natural transgression of time spent together and the chemistry between you. But when it’s just sex, or just kissing for the hell of it, I can’t imagine doing that with anyone except for maybe Marky Mark, or if I was at Burning Man. Am I missing out on fun? I don’t think so, because if I end up sleeping with someone just for the hell of it, I know myself well enough to know that I’ll feel rejected if he doesn’t want to see me again. And frankly, feeling rejected feels worse than feeling alone and makes me want to avoid getting myself into another meaningless sexual situation again. I’d rather hold out for something deeper.

So, while dialing all of my friends I knew who might be available to join me for the concert last night, I got a call from F. It seemed coincidental, because more than any man in San Francisco and in my life right now, he is the one that I would like to spend time with. Yet we can’t spend time together. It’s like we’re grounded from each other for bad behavior. Anyway, his name was the only one in my contacts menu that I wouldn’t call, and somehow he sensed that I was thinking about him. Which brings me to the subject of recovering. I am trying to recover. I am trying to bounce back. I am trying to be open to new guys. The problem is that you click with one and want more with one, and the myriad others that you meet don’t do a thing for you. Spending time with M. felt like Disneyland. There was a magical feeling of discovering and elation when we were together. So it’s hard to forget the way he made me feel. They say the only thing that makes you forget one is to be with another. So how come it’s so hard to find someone that you want to be with?

The show at the Independent last night was incredible. Breakestra was going OFF! And even though I never found anyone to go with me, I still had a great time. There’s something about seeing good live music that really makes you feel good inside. And to top it off, I think I made someone’s night. I picked up my pair of tickets and was about to head inside when I saw a well-dressed woman waiting on the sidewalk holding a flyer. She said to the man standing next to her, “Is this the band that’s playing tonight?” I went up to her and handed her my extra ticket and said, “You’d like to see the show? Here’s a ticket! Happy Birthday!” She thanked me and I went inside.

Later on, the man who was with her approached me in the club and asked if I was the one who gave his wife the ticket and wished her a happy birthday. He offered to buy me a drink and asked if I wanted to join them in the VIP area upstairs. They were very appreciative and friendly. They had left their three children at home with a babysitter and were enjoying their night off. And I didn’t feel like I was dancing alone.

Monday, September 11, 2006

births and deaths

So it was my birthday on September 8th. I am constantly reminded how important it is to enjoy our lives. It’s taken me a long time to realize this, but I think it’s the most important lesson in life. You have to enjoy your surroundings and you have to enjoy the choices you’ve made. Because life is only a series of choices we make. Many people feel that they are trapped in their choices, but they must see that our possibilities really are endless.

Today is my friend Stephanie’s birthday, and for 31 years of her life, she celebrated her birthday just like any other birthday. Then in 2001, suddenly September 11 became a day of tragedy. And many people forgot that it was actually the joyous day when she was given life. I guess now when the day rolls around I try not to reflect on the terrible the events of this day in 2001, but how lucky I am, how lucky we all are, to be alive, and to be given the gift of life and its endless possibilities. If we are not taking advantage of the possibilities before us, and accepting our choices, and accepting the power we have to make new choices, we are merely sleepwalking through life.

I have of course been riding my bicycle a lot lately. And I love riding, it’s very exhilarating and fun. I saw two deer the other day that had been killed by cars. We joke and call them roadkill, but they were living creatures, and seeing a beautiful fawn lying lifeless on the side of the road made me very sad, because that spotted fawn had a mother, and probably siblings, who mourned the fawn’s death, and the car must have simply driven away into the night with no remorse for taking away the fawn’s possibilities of roaming and grazing the hillsides of Marin.

Since I wrote about what my friend Brendan did over his birthday weekend, I will recount my birthday events.

September 8:
Phone call with Alexei
Sushi lunch with my mom and Rosy
Received a birthday card from all my new co-workers
Computer crashed so I got to leave work early
Drinks and dinner with Jayson and friends
Dancing with Young, Julie and Sultan
Propositioned via text message

September 9:
Brunch with Jessica, Chantal, Young, Jayson, Estelle, Sultan, Julia and Noemi
Stephanie’s bridal shower
Marin Bicycle Bash and drinking beers from a keg in a red trailer equipped with DJ
Dinner with my mom

September 10:
Bike ride to Mill Valley
Walk to Tennessee Valley with Angie
Brunch with Angie
Bike ride back to San Anselmo
Beers with Rosy in Fairfax
Dinner with my dad and Karen

Even though I didn’t paraglide down Grouse Mountain, I still think I took advantage of celebrating life.


Thursday, September 07, 2006


Here is what my friend Brendan in Vancouver is doing for his birthday which is today (let this serve as inspiration for living life to the fullest):

[copied directly from the e-mail he sent to me]

Opportunities for partage (say with high-brow french accent) of such
comsically significant proportions rarely materialize so consider this an
gathering that should not be missed. I am coming upon a birthday weekend and
I'm turning it into a marathon of epic party proportions. Beginning on
Thursday September 7th at 7:30 in the morning and spanning 4 solid days of
partage Brendan's Birthday Marathon is gonna be one to remember. Events
include paragliding, chocolat tasting, dancing, fine dining, hiking, video
games, shopping sprees, oysters, satellite reports from parallel
international celebrations taking place all over the globe, you name it. Not
only that, the japanese royal family was kind enough to coordinate the date
of the birth of the future emeperor of japan as the kick-off to the event
weekend and God will give us a fantastic light show (a partial eclipse only
visible from Japan and Australia unfortuneately) on the 7th. The only 2
things that might have made it better is if JT had listened to me and
scheduled his new album release for this weekend and if Brian DePalma hadn't
have been so stubborn as to schedule the Black Dahlia for next Friday (I
could have used the Kirchner factor to get me through this trying
milestone). I'll just have to settle for the new Deicide album "The Stench
of Redemption" which will be the official soundtrack for the BBM. All hail

The itinerary so far (subject to change as better ideas materialize):

Thursday 07 2006

Grouse Grind starting at 10:30 am
Paraglide 12:30 pm
Dandelion and Burdock 3:00 pm
Champagne at the Vancouver hotel 6:30 pm
Dinner on Main 7:30 pm
kyoo-pid'i-te at Blim at 8:30 pm
Blender 10:00 pm

Friday 08 2006

Cinnamon Pancake breakfast on Main 7:30 am
Beach and ocean swim (TIDE WILLING) 11:00 am
Fig and almond protein shakes 3:00 pm
Oyster feast/Guinness 6:30 pm
Sake and japanese tapas 7:30 pm
Six Acres 9:30 pm
Tokyo Lounge at 10:30 pm

Saturday 09 2006

Brunch with parents 10:00 am
Lattes and african chocolat 6:00 pm
Dinner at Nyala 7:00 pm
Shark drawings and desert at desert place beside the Nyala 8:30 pm
Furniture Warehouse at 10:30 pm

Sunday 10 2006

Indoor climbing 10:00 am
Shopping 2:00 pm
$4 martinis and chicken kababs at licorice 7:00 pm
Sanctuary 9:30 pm


Tuesday, September 05, 2006


Last night I watched the film Tsotsi, the South African film that won the Oscar for best foreign film this year. This was truly some great filmmaking, and the acting was superb. Above all, the story was a true hero’s journey, or else an antihero’s journey, because when you first meet Tsotsi, you do not like this guy. He is a gangster (the word Tsotsi apparently means Thug in Afrikaans). He is full of hate and lacks all decency, killing old men and shooting women for money. Yet as the story unfolds, he becomes a likeable character. You are on his side. Things happen to him that make him remember the child he was before he became a street survivor, and ultimately change into a decent man. In addition to the story itself, the cinematography was beautiful, especially the lighting.

I was talking to my friend Jessica yesterday about a dance film we’d like to create. As a theme, it’s going to be about identity, and the idea is how does your identity change according to external factors in your life. This has been something that I’ve always written about in my journal. I’ve often wrote about “who am I” according to where I was at that point in my life. For example, now I am Kristin, 35 going on 36, single, living with my mother in West Marin, a TV editor by profession, with a lover in Cuba. A year ago, I was living in Los Angeles in my hip and cool Silver Lake apartment. But I was unhappy. Here I feel happier, even though I’ve sacrificed some of my independence. Anyway, the theme of change and changelessness comes into play here as well. As much as we change throughout our lives, there are things that never change. People may always see me as the same spirited, high-energy, some may say crazy, gutsy girl. But M. says he remembers me from high school more as a shy and quiet girl. That was before he really knew me! Or that was before I really knew myself! I digress. The point is that external influences cause us to exhibit some characteristics above others at any given time and place. But who we are as a person, as a human being, no matter what the context, will always be the same. No one and nothing can change that. So we’re going to try to show this through dance and film, movement and moving picture, by repeating a phrase of choreography in several settings with different costumes and perhaps different music, and also allowing for the setting to inspire improvisation. I think it’s a very interesting concept, and I’m excited to embark on this creative endeavor.

Monday, September 04, 2006


Sitting outside on the deck at my mom’s place is like my own private sanctuary. For the most part, it’s quiet, save for the passing cars on Sir Francis Drake Boulevard. Otherwise, it’s all about the trees, the creek and the birds that live in the trees. At any given moment in the day, I come out here and enjoy some solace. It’s a retreat from the multitudinous rhythms of life in general, the meaningless chatter of the television or radio and especially my cluttered and dark bedroom where I check my emails. I can relax in the sunshine, smell the clean air and, if I’m lucky, observe some wildlife (or even a neighbor’s cat) cruising my backyard. I can even come out here in the middle of the night, when I really can’t see the trees or watch the water in the creek go by. But I can look straight up and see the universe of stars and planets shining crystal clear in the pitch black sky.

Once I met a man in front of Albertson’s who was trying to get people to sign various petitions. I stopped to chat with him for a few minutes. I don’t know how he knew that I needed to hear a little bit of his dime-store philosophy, but I’ll never forget what he told me that day. He said that I needed to talk to the universe—that I should go out on my porch at night and look up into the sky and tell the universe what I want, and the universe would listen and respond. Have I started to do this? Not yet. But when I have such a natural altar as my mom’s deck under my feet, I would be doing a disservice to myself and to the universe if I didn’t take advantage of it by beginning a regular dialogue out here.


When I awoke this morning from my dream, the first word out of my mouth was “F***!” Exclamation point! I’m really trying to shake F., but I am obviously not over him yet. However, the dream tells me that subconsciously I’m ready to move on. In my dream, I was at his house. I had apparently been staying at his place for a few days, but I was leaving for a trip somewhere, and was in the middle of packing my bags. I was in a hurry, and asked him to call me a cab. I was frantically getting my things in order. He came back and said the cab was on its way. He came close and then touched my waist and kissed me. I can’t deny that I enjoyed it but, even in my dream, I knew it wasn’t right. I told him so, and told him to stop. And he did. Then the cab arrived, I said goodbye and thank you and I left.


The crickets are chirping.

Saturday, September 02, 2006


This morning I woke with the duet by Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell “You’re All I Need to Get By” on my mind. I haven’t really thought about that song in years. It was the song I always wanted for the first dance at the wedding I imagined with R. To me, the lyrics symbolize everything I imagine a true partnership to be about. “Darling in you I’ve found/Strength where I was torn down/Don’t know what’s in store/But together we can open any door!” The lyrics speak of being able to take the great leap of faith into the future that life holds with someone else, and it implies that the couple wouldn’t want to go into the future without each other. I remember when I was listening to that song when I was with R., I had to pick up the phone and leave the song playing on his answering machine: “I took one look at you/And it was plain to see/You are my destiny!” What’s crazy is that I really felt that way about him. I felt like all of my paths in life led me to being with him, and I imagined such a beautiful union and so many possibilities. This reminds me of another song, by Martha Griffiths, that speaks of love. But instead of lyrics teeming with idealism and faith, she sings of how love can betray and kill your "magic dreams." “Sweet Bitter Love/Why have you awakened/And then forsaken/A trusting heart/Like mine…” Since R., I have not met another man, not even A., that I can honestly sing those trusting, hopeful, idealistic words of the great Marvin Gaye, “You’re all I need to get by!” Since R., probably because of R., I've been singing the bittersweet melodies of Martha Griffiths.

I also want to write about sex and affection. I love experimenting physically with men. I love the way two sets of lips unite in one kiss, and the playful experimentation of that initial union. You never know how you'll react to a person until you kiss him, or until you have to say goodbye as well. I guess what I want to say about sex and affection is this: both are fun and enjoyable activities, but both don't even hold a candle to true love, especially when you're trying to hold on to the faithful idealism that true love exists.

Thursday, August 31, 2006

My first post EVER!

This morning, I sat on the porch at my mom’s house in Forest Knolls, having my coffee, reading the short story in a back-dated issue of the New Yorker. Suddenly I heard a buzzing sound, something like the buzzing of a generator. When I looked up, I saw that it was a hummingbird, whizzing by my ear and into the trees above. The air was warm and as my new bicycle sat next to me, bored and despondent, I was quickly persuaded that I must go for a ride and enjoy the sunshine before heading into my desk job. I heard a rustle in the trees and saw some crisp yellow leaves prematurely fall to the ground. Dandelions fly by me, and I think, this isn’t such a bad place to be. So why do I feel so restless?

Back from my bike ride. Wildlife report: saw 1 lizard, 1 snake, lots of butterflies, a flock of quail, two flattened racoons, and a palomino horse.