Tuesday, July 31, 2007

wild and limitless

When I left Jayson's place at around 8 pm yesterday evening, I was seduced by the light of magic hour to the shoreline. Coming to Ocean Beach reminds me time and again that San Francisco is, in effect, a beach town. And what a beach. Wide and expansive. Wild and uncontrollable, much like the City's inhabitants. The crashing waves resonate a constant rumble, while white foam begets more white foam. I watch lines of pelicans sail through the sky in an inverted V, and cargo ships inch towards the horizon, both headed for destinations unknown to me. We are at the edge of the Earth here, standing in an ecotone, on the threshold between one solid body that I intimately know and a fluid body of something so profound and unrestrained and full of life that remains a mystery to me. As much as I love my City, when I stand here on this shoreline, I am reminded of the limitations of its perimeter, and of the infinite possibilities that this planet offers us as a gift.

The sun breaks apart into panels of gradient hues of orange. It seems as if Monet could have painted this landscape for my eyes, and for the eyes of the man next to me with his camera, snapping away, and for the eyes of the lovers next to him, entwined in cozy embraces and kisses, and for the eyes of the dogs unleashed, running free across the sand, and for the eyes of the children playing games with the waves lapping the shore, and for the eyes of the surfers waiting for that perfect wave, and for the eyes of the hard core beach bums weathering the chilly air, roasting marshmallows on their bonfires, and for the eyes of the man untangling his fluorescent kite so he can send it high into the sky once again.

The sky darkens into a shade of pinkish-purplish-blue, and as I walk back to my car, the wind sings in my ears the passionate love song of the Pacific.

Monday, July 30, 2007

list no. 2 - things that make you feel alive

1. Flying down a hill after cycling up a steep incline on the flipside.
2. Diving into a wave, especially if it's into the chilly waters at Ocean Beach.
3. A kiss that takes your breath away.
4. Losing yourself on the dance floor.
5. Crying tears of joy or sorrow.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

so many definitions for the word

love [luhv] noun, verb, loved, lov·ing.
1. a profoundly tender, passionate affection for another person.
2. a feeling of warm personal attachment or deep affection, as for a parent, child, or friend.
3. sexual passion or desire.
4. a person toward whom love is felt; beloved person; sweetheart.
5. (used in direct address as a term of endearment, affection, or the like): Would you like to see a movie, love?
6. a love affair; an intensely amorous incident; amour.
7. sexual intercourse; copulation.
8. (initial capital letter) a personification of sexual affection, as Eros or Cupid.
9. affectionate concern for the well-being of others: the love of one's neighbor.
10. strong predilection, enthusiasm, or liking for anything: her love of books.
11. the object or thing so liked: The theater was her great love.
12. the benevolent affection of God for His creatures, or the reverent affection due from them to God.
13. Chiefly Tennis. a score of zero; nothing.
14. a word formerly used in communications to represent the letter L.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007


It always befuddles me that the fans of the SF Giants wear black to show their support and devotion to their team. Black is a color that we commonly wear to funerals, when we solemnly remember those who have passed, or when we remember somber events in history. For example, I remember in 1989 when I was at UCSD, and the massacre at Tian An Men Square happened, and all the Chinese students wore black, or black arm bands or head bands, to show support for their brethren back home who perished on that day and those still battling against the powers that be that brought on that horrible debacle. So why is it that we go to support a team that should bring us joy that we wear the color of death? Perhaps we wear black because we know what's coming. We know it's a hopeless case. We know we are doomed. As we march up the ramps to find our seats at the stadium, dressed in black (and orange--the colors of Halloween), we are marching on to the gallows with our dying team.

So when this baseball season is over, I truly hope to see a new Giants team reincarnated next spring, with fresh new faces, who can really play ball. Even though we missed a 9th inning rally last night, my dad and I couldn't help but take off at the top of the 8th. It was such a pathetic display of professional baseball, where the only thing the fans get excited about is when Barry steps up to the plate. I don't feel like I can rally for one player, even though he might hit that historic home run. We go to the stadium because baseball is our national pastime, not to watch batter after batter strike out or ground out. And for the price of our tickets, not to mention the price of peanuts and beer, we fans deserve a little more satisfaction than being able to watch Barry have about 3-4 at bats at best, and a team that leads the Majors in double plays.

But every time my dad invites me to a game, I will cancel all plans and don my best black and root for the home team, and usually return home frustrated and saddened, having suffered another loss.

Wearing black to the game is a paradox quite like summer, a season that anywhere else typically conjures images of balmy nights and scant clothing, but where here in San Francisco, we bust out our sweaters and scarves, always prepared for the thick fog to roll in and gusty winds to plow through the streets. And so we must wait until these boys of summer, dejected, leave the field, when the Indian summer begins, and the looming grey dissipates, in order to clearly see the light of the sun through the dense fog, the glimmer of a new hope.

Monday, July 23, 2007

love child

OK, so, here's what happened. About a year and a half ago, I got the Mayor really, really drunk (easy enough) and then took advantage of him. This Sunday at the Stern Grove Festival, we finally made the first public announcement of his illegitimate son and our clandestine union. I think it'll do wonders for his campaign.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

louis loves his checks

Once a month, Louis Gourmeau receives his Social Security check from the U.S. Treasury at his home in Roquefort-les-Pins, Département des Alpes Maritimes, France.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

your identity crisis is unclear

Jessica and I found out yesterday that our proposal for funding from Dance Films Association for our film was denied, but they offered these words of advice: "we applaud your efforts but urge you to consider clarifying the identity crisis..." Uh, isn't that the point of an identity crisis? That you don't know how to identify yourself?

list no. 1 - Mt. Tam in the summer

1. the wind in the long golden grass against a grove of dark green coniferous trees
2. sticky monkey flower
3. the North Side Trail on a warm, sunny day
4. the bed of fog that covers the Pacific Ocean and the City
5. picnic lunches with friends at Potrero Meadows

Friday, July 13, 2007

this thing

Lately I've been thinking, what if one day I were to stop writing this thing? What is all this blah blah about anyway? Is it entertainment for others? Or is it narcissistic of me to spend so much time writing my daily thoughts and to even think that others may read them [or not]? Or is it the need to feel that people know that I'm here, or out there [in cyberspace]? Is it a plea to be noticed? What is the purpose of this? Is it for me or for someone else? Am I giving you too much of myself, more than you want? Is it worth anything? Or am I wasting my time and yours? What if one day, you came here [to this site] and found nothing?

That said, I've been debating all day whether to write about my thought of the day. It's about The Rolling Stones. I was listening to Sucking in the Seventies this morning on my way to my mom's office where I'm killing time and getting paid. When Mannish Boy came on, it seemed to me that Mick Jagger was trying so hard to channel Muddy Waters, and not doing such a bad job at it. I imagined that Mick Jagger must have shot up so much heroin that he actually thought he was a big black man from the American South.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

my new favorite local hangout

Le Velo Rouge on Arguello and McAllister. They serve Blue Bottle coffee, have live broadcasts of Le Tour de France and zinc all over the place. They also have a prix fixe menu every Wednesday and Thursday courtesy of Radio Africa & Kitchen.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

one of the many reasons why i love SF (updated)

Chloe has called our attention to this not-so-atypical candidate for Mayor of San Francisco.

Chicken John now has a blog about his campaign! Read his campaign statement. It's quite convincing!

Monday, July 09, 2007


This year, I had quite a memorable 4th of July in Sausalito. Although I didn't get to partying until sunset, we had good times out on Stephen's boat, which is docked right behind the Trieste. We sailed only 1000 feet (or yards? can't remember) into Richardson Bay (as far as the Coast Guard allowed us to go), just in time for this magical sunset and one of the clearest nights for fireworks on the Bay that I can remember. After the display of light and color and smoke cleared from the sky, we blasted The Stones and danced like crazy with Stephen's collection of maracas to Sympathy for the Devil. Now that's my kind of Independence Day Party.

The docks hold a ton of memories and nostalgia for me, and now here's another night that will make me always think fondly about this special place.

Click here to have a look for yourself.

i love a rat...

that loves Paris and good food!

Ratatouille rules!

Friday, July 06, 2007

dream v. fantasy

I've been thinking about the difference between these two notions lately:

dream /drim/ Pronunciation Key - [dreem] - noun, verb, dreamed or dreamt, dream·ing, adjective
1. a succession of images, thoughts, or emotions passing through the mind during sleep.
2. the sleeping state in which this occurs.
3. an object seen in a dream.
4. an involuntary vision occurring to a person when awake.
5. a vision voluntarily indulged in while awake; daydream; reverie.
6. an aspiration; goal; aim: A trip to Europe is his dream.
7. a wild or vain fancy.
8. something of an unreal beauty, charm, or excellence.
–verb (used without object)
9. to have a dream.
10. to indulge in daydreams or reveries: He dreamed about vacation plans when he should have been working.
11. to think or conceive of something in a very remote way (usually fol. by of): I wouldn't dream of asking them.
–verb (used with object)
12. to see or imagine in sleep or in a vision.
13. to imagine as if in a dream; fancy; suppose.
14. to pass or spend (time) in dreaming (often fol. by away): to dream away the afternoon.
15. most desirable; ideal: a dream vacation.
—Verb phrase
16. dream up, to form in the imagination; devise: They dreamed up the most impossible plan.

fan·ta·sy /fænt si, -zi/ Pronunciation Key - [fan-tuh-see, -zee] - noun, plural -sies, verb, -sied, -sy·ing.
1. imagination, esp. when extravagant and unrestrained.
2. the forming of mental images, esp. wondrous or strange fancies; imaginative conceptualizing.
3. a mental image, esp. when unreal or fantastic; vision: a nightmare fantasy.
4. Psychology. an imagined or conjured up sequence fulfilling a psychological need; daydream.
5. a hallucination.
6. a supposition based on no solid foundation; visionary idea; illusion: dreams of Utopias and similar fantasies.
7. caprice; whim.
8. an ingenious or fanciful thought, design, or invention.
9. Also, fantasia. Literature. an imaginative or fanciful work, esp. one dealing with supernatural or unnatural events or characters: The stories of Poe are fantasies of horror.
10. Music. fantasia (def. 1).
–verb (used with object), verb (used without object)
11. to form mental images; imagine; fantasize.
12. Rare. to write or play fantasias.

Thursday, July 05, 2007


lighten up, Bono!

This bit of humor, just in from my dear old dad:

Bono, the lead singer of the band U2, is famous throughout the entertainment industry for being more than just a little self-righteous.

At a recent U2 concert in Glasgow, Scotland, he asked the audience for total quiet. Then, in the silence, he started to slowly clap his hands, once every few seconds. Holding the audience in total silence, he said into the microphone, "Every time I clap my hands, a child in Africa dies."

A voice with a broad Scottish accent, from the front of the crowd, pierces the quiet...

"Well, foockin stop doin it then!"

Wednesday, July 04, 2007


The Simpsons have taken over 7-11. I thought it was a scary enough sign of American corporate control that Star Wars took over the US Postal Service.

On second thought, the Simpsons in 7-11 is actually quite funny and clever, with Frosted Krusty O's for sale for instance. And as I drop my resumes and reels into an R2-D2 shaped mailbox, I can tell it, "Help me Obi-Wan Kenobi, you're my only hope." So instead of offering your run-of-the-mill exchanges, maybe this takeover of commercial and government institutions will create an entertaining environment for shoppers and employees, like a jedi mind trick persuading people to not go postal, or to buy more donuts.

Which reminds me, when I went to the Post Office in Forest Knolls last week, the postmaster bid me goodbye saying, "May the Force be with you." I suppose I could get used to this.

Simpsons Avatar that I created on the Simpsons movie website!

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

hillary & health care

From the Michael Moore website:

Hillary Clinton became the second largest recipient in the Senate of health care industry contributions.

"As she runs for re-election to the Senate from New York this year and lays the groundwork for a possible presidential bid in 2008, Mrs. Clinton is receiving hundreds of thousands of dollars in campaign contributions from doctors, hospitals, drug manufacturers and insurers. Nationwide, she is the No. 2 recipient of donations from the industry, trailing only Senator Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania, a member of the Republican leadership." Raymond Hernandez and Robert Pear, "Once an Enemy, Health Industry Warms to Clinton," New York Times, July 12, 2006.

This and many more interesting factoids from his film Sicko, which I saw on Sunday night, which makes me want to move to France even more (under the condition that Sarko won't change things too much)!

Monday, July 02, 2007

ocd kitty

I moved into my new apartment this weekend. My new cat, Cloud, has been living there solo for two weeks, with Jon's sister occasionally stopping by to feed her and clean her litter box. So when I entered the empty apartment on Saturday, Cloud met me at the door, all purrs and meows, totally ecstatic to see another living thing coming to share her space. When all my furniture and boxes had been hauled in, Cloud walked in circles rubbing up against everything in sight--the table, the box, my hand, Sultan's leg, the chevalier mirror, the chair... the table, the box, my hand, Sultan's leg, the chevalier mirror, the chair, and so on--purring loudly and drooling she was so happy. I thought that this behavior was temporary and that soon she would settle down after the novelty of having me around wore off, and after she marked all these new items with her smell. But no.

I think she might have an obsessive compulsive disorder. The cat doesn't stop rubbing up against everything. Even the stuff that was already there. The walls, the doors, the refrigerator. Everytime she passes by anything with a corner, her hip or the side of her face swings to one side and she gives herself a nice scratch. But it's never enough. Her appetite is unsatiable. I think she is addicted to the sense of touch. When I went to sleep on Saturday night, my arm lay stretched out over the side of the bed, and she walked back and forth underneath my hand, copping a self-induced feel. I finally had to kick her out of the bedroom so I could get at least a couple hours of shut-eye.

I don't know if Jon had the same issues with her, or if this is behavior is just for me. Maybe I should hire a pet psychologist. Or maybe I should buy some meditation music to get her to just relax for a bit. I could get a second kitty so she could have someone to play with, but I'm not ready for that level of commitment. I'm just getting used to having my own apartment and a new pet!